Copyright (c) Victor Darnell Hadnot
"When death is eminent and an era gone, nothing is left except the future." Old African Proverb
I remember running through the woods. Twigs snapping and leafs crushing under my feet. It was a warm sunny day, with the canopy letting the sunlight trickle through upon occasion. I could hear those who were chasing me, the sounds of search dogs and other things not too far behind me. I finally got to a place, where I felt safe, though being safe in this world was a relative term. I was so tired that I could hardly keep my eyes open. The world around me began to fade, and then I’d try and snap out of it, only to find myself fading again. Finally I slept. I awoke to the sound of a young woman’s voice. When my eyes opened, before me stood a young woman, in her mid-twenties. Her long black hair and thin frame caught my eye quickly. Her deep brown eyes searching mine. She didn’t appear to be like the others, she looked like me. I was both confused and frightened at the same time. Because. I thought I was the only human left on the planet. But now. I wasn’t so sure. She urged me to get up and I did. We both began to run. The sounds of those who were searching after me, seemed to be all about me. We ran away from them for a long time. Finally we got to an area where there was this airship, waiting. She quickly got inside it, I followed, though confused, and we cast off. Hopefully, we’d gone undetected, as the evening approached, we’d have the advantage of darkness soon. The airship quietly drifted over the canopy of the forest, as we headed for parts not known by me. Finally, I recovered enough, to get a good look at who had just saved me. She wasn’t very old, average height, small, but, curvy frame. She finally finished working the controls of the airship and settled back with me. There was something to drink in a flask. Not much. Looked like she had enough for herself, but, she offered it to me. I was so glad to drink something, I took it, and only when I had the last sip in my mouth, did I realize the rudeness I’d displayed.
"I’m sorry. I didn’t offer you any." I finally said.
She just grinned. "Don’t worry about it. I’m Jadda."
"My name is Sorrow."
"Sorrow? What an unusual name? You are not from these parts are you?" She studied my now tattered clothing.
"No. I’m not from these parts at all."
"Where are you from?"
"I’m from the future. I traveled back in time, doing some research. I’m an anthropologist. Where I come from, we can travel back in time. For scientific purposes, we often go to important points in time, to study or verify certain events. In my case, I was certain of a period, that was shrouded by the Dark Ages. But. Something must have gone wrong. I found myself trapped in an advance period of time. It seems that in your time, robots rule the world."
She nodded. "They are called Homoroboticus. I am Homo Sapiens? They are not. They evolved from Homo Sapiens."
"So. You are telling me that in the past, a form of robot, evolved from human beings? And that is what is going on right now?"
She raise a brow. "What year do you think this is?"
"Well. I’m not sure anymore. I was suppose to go to the Dark Ages. But my time portal was struck by lightning."
"This is the year 3011 A.D. You come from a time beyond that?" She looked confused.
What she had told me was important. Because I didn’t come from a time beyond that, I had traveled into the future, not the past, as I had expected. This was a strange era. The entire human population had evolved. But. Not naturally. No. Evolution had gone from the hands of nature, to the hands of mankind. Willfully, evolving themselves into this new and unexpected creature. They looked like humans for the most part. But. They didn’t look natural. More like idealized humans, with perfect features. Dolls. They were humanoid. I guess there was no reason to make themselves look like the people of the past. What purpose would that solve? So. They didn’t bother. They must have had thousands of models, in which to mix and match, because that was how they got their different looks. But. They had symbols on their foreheads or hands, indicating station and purpose in life. If, what they were, was alive. Jadda explained how it all came about. There were great ecological mishaps, wars, and other things, which led mankind down the dark path, to rid themselves of flesh and blood. They used a machine called a Quantum Recycler, a machine which could take the living soul from one creature and implant it into another. In my time, the Quantum Recycler was a controversial machine, because of the abuse. Rich people wanting to live forever, stealing the souls of the poor. All sorts of laws had to be passed, governing the use and creation of the device. Yet. Rich and powerful people figured out ways to get around the law. Not so much of a surprise. Finally. The Quantum Recycler became outlawed technology in most of the civilized world. But. In Jadda’s time, the machine had a resurgence. They used it to transplant living souls into machines. So. The very essence of what made them living beings, was preserved. It was indeed, evolution, just not the kind that I had ever been taught in school. So. Homoroboticus, was a living machine, evolved from the flesh and blood version of myself. From what I had gathered, there were a few flesh and blood humans, still trying to survive. But. This was an age, in which like the Neanderthal and the Homo Sapiens, might have crossed paths. But. This time, it was Homo Sapiens and Homoroboticus, with them, being the dominant evolution pick. I and those like me, were all but extinct. The only need for us, was our living souls, so that they could, transplant them into their mechanical bodies, and become living beings. Stories of rounding up Homo Sapiens like cattle, abound. It was horrible. Like some B-Movie nightmare. But. It was happening right in front of me and all around me.
Jadda was busy making final preparations for landing the airship. It was ironic, that when mankind ruled the world, aircraft of a different sort abound. But. In the hybrid-machine’s time. Things like airships made a come back. "We are here."
"What is this place?" I looked about the ground.
"This is one of many places, where humans can live, without the hunting down and capturing by the hybrids."
"Aren’t the people afraid that the hybrid-robots will attack them. Steal them away for their souls?" I helped with the landing equipment.
Jadda shook her pretty head. "There is a device embedded in the ground. It protects us from the hybrids."
"This is a freaking nightmare. Where I come from, robots and machines serve us. How could things be this way, now?" I saw people, as some came over to the airship. Jadda skillfully landed the craft next to many other different kinds and shapes of airships, both large and small.
Jadda climbed out of the craft and motioned me on. "Come. The elders of the village will want to speak with you."
After being shown around a bit, I settled into a small tent. Most of the people lived in tents. But. These tents was very sophisticated in design and function. Inside they were very comfortable. Lots of room and functional things, furniture designed specially for tent living. It reminded me of the Native Americans or the Arabian kind of tents. Some were simple and small but some were very large and had chambers or multiple divides, like rooms. Mankind had finally learned to live with the land instead of against it. But. Was it too late? I was brought before a group of elders, they ran the village. To say that humans were hiding from the hybrid-robots, they all were well fed and clean, culture and crafts thrived. They asked me all sorts of questions. They wanted to know about the world I came from The Earth I had left was so different from the one that they lived in. I explained to them that I was an anthropologist. That in my time, we could travel through the time-stream, by use of portals. I told them about the concepts of portals, that they were actually natural occurring phenomena, and that they had been around since the formation of the universe. It was a discovery of these time-portals, that led to breakthroughs in time travel. They all came to understand that I was a scientist and an explorer. But. They had a hard time accepting that machines in my time, were not hostile. I did my best to convince them, showing them images on my device, of my world. I was allowed to chronicle their world, with that same device. I was making a record of everything I had experienced. When I started to ask them how it all came about, the social changes that led to the robots evolving, it became obvious, that mankind, seeking to find immortality, started the whole thing. After advances in medicine and technology, it became possible for the very essence of what made us human, to be transplanted into robot-bodies. Bodies that would not die. If something went wrong, it was easily fixed or replaced. All the while, the human soul resided inside the mechanical body. Mankind had evolved to a point, where death escaped him. No sickness or disease. Lease, not the concepts of sickness and disease that plagued flesh and blood. Humanity had given up humanity for immortality. Those who clung to it, were all but obsolete, human souls were priceless.
"What type of technology keeps the hybrid-robots from coming here?" I asked Jadda.
We were down by the brook. She slowly began to undress as she readied to go into the water. I really didn’t know how to react to this, so I kind of looked the other way. Not so quickly, as to not get a peek of her exquisite body. Her long flowing black hair and big brown eyes, seemed to dazzle, as she stepped into the pool. "I’m not sure I can answer that question. All I know is that there are places, where humans can live, without being afraid of the hybrid-robots. For some reason, they don’t come here. We are safe."
I sat by a tree watching her wade. "Does any of the elders know why this is so?"
"They might. The older ones have knowledge about those things. If you go back far enough, the ancient books speak of times that were strange."
"Strange? In what way?"
"There were Dark Times. Times when what made sense, didn’t. When the past and the future seemed to blend together, the dead walked."
"The dead walked?" Now I was really intrigued. "Do you know where these books are now?"
"Oh. The elders keep them, so that we will have a record, and not forget, that things were not always this way."
"You mean where the robots rule the Earth?"
"They don’t actually rule the Earth any more than we are slaves to their stealing of our souls."
Her breasts stuck out of the water for a moment. I was transfixed on how lovely she really was. "Yes. But they kill humans for their souls. So. The robots rule."
"They were once human and they seek to be human again. It wasn’t enough to gain immortality, the hybrids want to be living beings."
She slowly came out of the water and over to me. We began to kiss and then one thing led to another. In the heat of the moment we made love under the tree, out in the openness of the forest. She was like no one I’d ever been with, no woman so enraptured, like this woman did. Her ways were strange to me, as I imagined how my ways must have seemed odd to her. But. Her soft, sweet lips, and her warm breasts, wet to the touch, enthralled me.
I was brought before an elder named Hartha. She was an old woman, very old from the looks of it. There had been a panel gathered around her. The humans that lived in these villages, I assumed all over the place, lived as close to the land as possible, while trying to keep some essence of civilization. But. Just what it was that kept the hybrid-robots from just coming in and taking everyone at will, was a mystery.
Hartha spoke slowly with her husky voice. "You have come from a distant land?"
I shook my head. "Actually, I come from a place not too far from here."
"You come from the forest?"
"No. Not exactly. There is a forest of sorts. But. In my time, things are very different. I come from a distant time in space."
"A time traveler?"
"Of sorts but not like you might think of it. I’m a scientist. I study the history and ways of humans. I’m an anthropologist. I got here through a time portal. It is a natural phenomenon."
"Yet. You seem more interested in the hybrid-robots then in us?"
"Hmm. That might come off that way to the rest of you. But. Like I explained to Jadda, I’m interested in how the robots gained control and eventually, how they are trying to become like us. But. I assure you all, I’m on your side in this. Humans come first."
I wasn’t sure what to make of the people in the village. They seemed to be at peace, even though the threat of capture and death loomed. I did my best to try and blend in but in such a case, everyone seemed to know who I was and why I was there. In some cases, a few resented me studying them. After awhile, I began to question why I was doing that, myself. I mean, the human race had changed so much, if you were to include the hybrid-robots as the next evolution in human beings. I tried to equate the process to the previous evolutions of mankind, how strange it must have been to see the next thing coming along, and because mankind was not stupid in such things, knowing that the next thing meant that you were soon to be gone.
We sat by an outdoor fire. "I’m going to need to study the robots." I told Jadda.
Her face contorted. "Why? They are dangerous. They hate flesh and blood."
"Yet. They want our souls. I need to know why."
"We have all told you. They want to be living beings."
"But. Why? Who started that notion? That is what doesn’t make sense to me. Why would a bunch of machines, want souls, when they have everything they need. They don’t die. They don’t get sick, like we do. And they can exchange working parts without any consequences."
"Okay. And your point is that they are better than flesh and blood humans?"
"No. It just seems odd, that the hybrid-robots would even care. I mean, what threat are the human beings to the robot-humans? If they wait long enough..."
Jadda put down her coffee. "They wait long enough, what?"
"No. Go on and say it."
"It isn’t important, Jadda. I can see that I’ve upset you."
"Actually, you sound like some old prejudice judge, passing judgment on my people, your people, supposedly. What you wanted to say is that, we will eventually all die off. Well. Maybe that is the whole point. We will eventually all die off and they won’t have any fresh souls."
"They could just clone people."
"Some believe that a clone is without a soul. Least. Not a desirable soul."
"Ah. That God didn’t make the person is important to them."
"It should be to you, too. Sorrow? Why did you come here?"
"What do you mean? I told you. I’m an explorer. I study the nature of mankind. In order to understand who we are and what it means to be human."
"Do you believe in God?"
"Jesus Christ? Sure."
"Then that is all that you need to know about what it means to be human."
"But. You don’t always get what you pray for. You don’t always get your prayers answered."
Jadda smiled and shook her pretty head. "What does it matter? Being human means that you get a second chance at life, in the Kingdom Come."
It was then that I understood why the robot-humans wanted human souls. "I see now. The robots want to be saved. They want to be resurrected into the Kingdom Come. Just being a machine, living forever in the physical world isn’t enough. They know that the physical world won’t last forever and that eventually, all things will come to an end."
"Okay. So now you know why they seek us out. Is it enough to go back to where you came from?"
I didn’t quite understand what she meant. "Why did you say that?"
Jadda studied my face. "You just don’t understand do you? It isn’t enough for you."
I wasn’t sure how to answer her. Was I that obvious to the people in the village? I was so caught up in this new development, Homoroboticus, was it something that could have been avoided in the past? Why was it that, in my future, nothing like that had happened? What past was I now in? The next morning, I packed some things and started out of the village. Some of the people greeted me but I don’t think they really thought I was leaving. Finally, someone told Jadda and she ran and caught up with me.
"So. That is it? Really?" Jadda’s voice expressed hurt and concern.
"Well. I have to find out for myself. I have to know why the robots can’t seem to find another way." I told her.
"And that is it?"
"What do you mean? That is all there is to it. I’ll do my best to get some answers and then, I’ll head on back, through the portal that brought me here." I looked at her and tried to show an encouraging smile.
"We made love for God’s sake, Sorrow! You just don’t do something like that and then just up and leave." She took hold of my arm and we stopped. "Do you have any feelings for me at all?"
I felt really stupid right then. "You thought that I would stay? After we were together?"
"Why not? What else do you have out there? Look at you? You are alone and seem hell bent on staying that way! Here, in this village, you have someone who cares about you. In case you are too stupid to figure it out, it is me. Stay with me, Sorrow. Be my mate for life. The robots can’t bother us here. We can live a good life, have children."
"What if that is not right for me? What if I have to know more? I still don’t understand why the robots can’t venture into this village. Maybe I need answers to these questions."
It was a long journey. When I first came to the village, it was by airship. Leaving, the way that I did, I took a small boat down the river, which led me into the edge of a large city, eventually. It was the first contact with the hybrid-robots. In some other time, they might have been called cyborgs, but, these machines were well beyond that. They were all machine, inside and out, no living parts, with anything resembling organic parts, being purely synthetic. The only thing separating them from a microwave oven, was that they possessed living souls. Souls they stole from living humans. I told myself that I needed to understand why it was so important to them. I told myself a lot of things, but, the painful reality was that I had left a very lovely woman behind, someone who loved me. It wasn’t long before I was captured. The hybrid-robots took me away and gathered me with some other humans that they had captured. I knew that we’d be taken off to a processing hospital, where there was a Quantum Recycler. There, we’d be deprived of our living souls, the robots would transplant our souls into their people. The robots looked android, not exactly human in appearance. More like idealized life sized human dolls, that walked and talked and carried on. I was curious as to why they chose to keep the appearances of humans, when in my opinion, the fact that they stole our souls, showed such contempt. I was taken to a special place, not the hospital, I waited in a guarded room for a long while. Finally, a woman-robot came in, told me she was a Special Ambassador named Evela.
Evela took a seat across from me. Like all the hybrid-robots, she was pretty to look at. I guess there was no point in making ugly robot people. "You are not from around here?" She seemed to study a file.
"No. I am not." Frankly, I was surprised that there was a file on me at all. "Why am I here?"
"Because you don’t belong here." Her big eyes looked up at me. I wondered if she had a living soul in her?
"Are you going to steal my soul? Give it to some robot so it can pretend to be human?" I decided to be blunt.
Evela shook her head. "You’ve been listening to the wrong source for information, Sorrow."
"How in the freak do you know so much about me?"
"We’ve been tracking you ever since you came about."
That was suppose to be a secret. "How did you find out about the time portal?"
"I can tell you that you have it all wrong. You think one thing but the truth is very different."
"I’m a anthropologist, from the future."
"No. You are not. You think your time portal intersected with a quantum wave, and you were transported to an alternate reality."
"An alternate universe?"
"Okay. I see now." She paused, then: "No. An alternate reality. There is a difference. In your case, you can never go home. The event was a freak accident. It is virtually impossible for you to find the exact set of conditions, in order for you to return back to your own reality."
"You are lying. You just want to steal my soul." I told her.
"I am not going to steal your soul, Sorrow. In fact, I was slated to receive a living soul, but, when I found out that you were here, I had to wait."
"Why not? Mine isn’t good enough for you?"
"You are not from here. It wouldn’t be fair. It wouldn’t be morally right." While her face expressed some emotions, I couldn’t tell, if she was serious or not. The robots had gotten rid of certain things about facial expression, I suppose because it was unnecessary, or, they had other ways of telling what they meant.
"So. You are not going to kill me?"
"No." She actually seemed surprised at my notion.
"I’m free to go?"
"Where will you go?" Evela’s voice sounded like it had concern in it.
"Like I said. I’m a scientist. I have research to finish before I leave."
"I told you. You can’t leave. You can’t go home. Home for you is like a dream. At some level you can experience it, but, you can’t touch it. It is not real."
"Dreams are real. They are actually glimpses of alternate realities. It has been proven to be a fact in my world. Because you are machines, you don’t really experience that, even though, you might be sophisticated enough to dream. You dream machine dreams, not living, human, dreams."
"Oh, but we do dream, human dreams, once we are given the Gift of Life."
"The Gift of Life? You mean, when your people, the robots, steal human souls? Then you dream like real people?"
"With a human soul, we are human. That is what makes humans human, a living soul."
"Why not just take the souls of animals and such. They have living souls?"
"Because it is the souls of a lesser form of life. We represent a shift in evolution. Self willed evolution. We are active participants in our destiny."
"You are just super complicated dolls. Walking and talking. But. All the while, wanting to be something that you can never be. Alive!"
"You know. I could have taken a soul, Sorrow. Then, I’d be a living being right now."
"And I’d be very dead."
"No you wouldn’t. You don’t understand. I’m here for you..."
"I’m sorry? You take my soul, I die."
"Just your flesh and blood body dies. With your soul inside of a hybrid-robot, as your kind like to call us, you would live on, forever. In a body in which you would never get sick. Never know pain or suffering. Disease. You become immortal. Both in body and soul."
"Sounds like hell to me."
"Hmm. Those ancient concepts don’t apply to Homoroboticus. They are strictly flesh and blood concepts. Our religion has evolved with our bodies."
"So. You could take a male soul and put it in a female body?"
"What? The human soul does not age. It is neither male nor female. It simply is human. The soul is a living life form unlike any other life form. It is a spiritual life form."
"You know. Back in my world, there are people that don’t believe in a soul."
"They are fools. All living things have a soul. You speak of a primitive time and place."
"Yet. Here I am."
"The fact that you say you used a time portal, something that is naturally occurring, and had to be discovered, doesn’t make you better than anyone here. We have chosen to make use of technology in a different way. But. We are very aware of the phenomenon of time portals. In ancient times, wizards and witches, spoke of such things, but, the science was lost in the Dark Ages."
"So. Your world is similar to mine, yet, very different in other ways."
"There once was a fork in the road, our world took a different path."
I was allowed to walk through their city. It was strange how they actually mimicked human life, of yesterday. While there was clear signs of advanced technology, there were also clear signs of attempts to actually embrace fashion and lifestyles of past human history. Even though they were all robots, or hybrid-robots, or hybrid-humans, I really didn’t know what to call them, they wore clothes. Like I had observed, they were all human-like in appearance, but, not exactly, like flesh and blood. More like life sized dolls, animated and ambulatory, articulate and intelligent, obviously. Stylized humans I finally settled on.
Evela showed me about the place, their stores and their malls, their places of business and pleasure. They were all human, in that they retained these things, if for no other reason, than, it was important to humans in the distant past. "Why am I allowed to roam freely?" I finally asked her.
"You think that all flesh and blood humans are devoured once they enter our cities?" she asked.
"Well. Sure. You round us up like cattle and eat our souls, basically. Like people once did to livestock. Is that what flesh and blood humans are to hybrid-robots, livestock?"
"I don’t think so. No. Not like you consider it."
"When are you going to get a soul?"
"I was suppose to get one. Like I said, souls do not age. Like the angels do not age."
"You think angels do not grow old?"
"They don’t age. That is why they don’t reproduce. No need to do so. Not if you are immortal. It would make no sense. But. I can see your people’s problem. While you can manufacture your kind, you can’t create the soul. And while all living things have a soul, your race of people, if you can be called that, need or prefer human souls."
"We want to be alive. We came about after so many things had gone wrong, with the human condition. They were dying and then, quite by accident, we found ourselves out numbering the flesh and blood human race. We finally came to realize what was happening, evolution was doing what it always had done. The weak and obsolete, were quickly fading away, while a new form of life was coming forth."
"You are not alive. You said it yourselves. You need a human soul to be considered living beings."
"Think on it. How different you are from the primitive things that came before you? We are no different. And we embrace our past while learning from it. Greed is the pollution that once killed off so many of you, gone is the silly concepts of greed and corruption, that forced your people into war. We embrace the cultured and good things about what it meant to be human, all the while, rejecting those things that, eventually destroyed it."
"So. You are saying, that mankind did this to themselves. You didn’t rise up against us?"
"What?" Evela stopped and took me by the shoulders. She kissed me on the mouth. "Our love and respect for humans is part of who we are. Transplanting the human soul is a way of continuing the legacy of life that God Almighty created."
"What do you know about God." I pulled away from her.
"God created everything. Without, nothing would exist."
"But you embrace evolution?"
"It is not your feeble concept of evolution. Not based on the primitive concepts of the past, but the recent discoveries of our time. Like all branches of science and technology, they had their start in humble and imperfect beginnings. But. In this time and place, a more perfect understanding has been acquired. Creation and evolution are no longer at war with each other. Think of Creation and evolution as the opposite pole on a magnet, they seem different, if only viewed by themselves. But. If you step back and examine them from afar, you come to realize that they are one and the same."
I studied Evela’s eyes and face for a long moment. "That is the most advanced understanding of the two concepts that I’ve ever heard. So. In the end, Creation and Evolution are just tools that God uses to do the things that God does?"
"Exactly." She hugged me, but, I quickly pushed her away. "Why do you keep doing that?"
She tried to kiss me again and I pushed her away. "That? Why do you keep pushing me away from you? Don’t you find me attractive?"
"Oh. You are plenty attractive. If you like perfection. I mean, there is nothing wrong with you." I kind of looked about. "Hell. All of you are walking and talking dolls. You are not real."
"Oh. It is because I don’t have a living soul in me yet. I understand."
It wasn’t that. But. I didn’t care to try and continue to explain it to her. To me, she was just a super advanced machine, trying to be human. What had happened to the human race, that they destroyed their way of life, and had to leave it, to their own creations? "If things happened as you said that they did. Why are there still human populations?"
"They are allowed to live. Both out of compassion and out of necessity." She finally took me to her place, where she lived. It was a very nice place. Very comfortable. "Are you hungry?"
"What?" I was looking out on the city below. "Yes. I am."
"Give me a moment to freshen up." She left into some other part of the apartment. I just wandered about, looking at various objects on shelves and tables, some seemed very strange, but, others, were from my own human past. Then she came back into the room, dressed in something that for lack of a better word, was very sexy and light. She began to fix me something to eat, making use of advanced kitchen products.
"I didn’t think you hybrid-robots needed food?"
"Oh. Silly. We run on hydrogen."
"Hydrogen? That must be very efficient."
"It is. The byproduct is water. We drink water and liquids that contain water in part, and process that, by splitting the oxygen from the hydrogen atoms, that in turn is used as fuel, to run our internal parts, most of which are electrical and hydraulic and pneumatic." She smiled at me as she went about her business.
"So. That is why you don’t make noise when you move. I noticed that. You all are so quiet in your motions."
"Yes. We are very advanced. My body is as complicated as a human body is, more so actually. Even at the molecular lever, just in a different way."
We ate. Or rather, I ate what she made for me and she ate something different. It seemed like what she ate would eventually be turned into water. Everything she ate was water based in some way. "So. How is it that you know how to make human food? I mean, it’s not like you have a pet human around or something?" Then, I froze at the notion. "I’m I your pet?"
Evela both laughed and was revolted at the same time. "Oh. Goodness no! Really, Sorrow. You come up with some strange things. No. You are my mate."
I was shocked. "What in the hell?" I started looking for the door. "I have to leave."
"Where will you go?" She walked over to the view and just gazed out. "Loneliness. It is the price we all pay for having a human soul. We come to experience the need to be loved and needed. We can experience, feel, loneliness."
"But. You don’t have a human soul. You said that. Unless you lied?"
"No. I didn’t lie to you. But. I will get one tomorrow."
I was both shocked and repelled. I don’t know why. I knew what they did and I knew why. I guess I just wanted to believe that this one was different.
"So. You are going to kill someone for their soul?"
"No. She volunteered."
"And why would she do that?"
"Why? To live forever. To never be sick. To be alive..."
"Enough. I’ve heard enough." And with that I ran out of her place and didn’t stop running until I had reached the edge of the city. Their transportation system was super efficient, just like everything about them. Too efficient. I needed to be with my own kind. I needed to be with humans. But. I didn’t know how to find the human village where Jadda was, not from here. I was lost. It was the next morning. When I awoke, I found Evela sitting next to me. She simply smiled at me lovingly.
"I love you." She told me.
"How in the freak can you love me, Evela? We just met. I’m not like you. I’m flesh and blood and you are a machine. I have a soul and..."
"So do I." She stood and swirled around as if in ecstacy. "It feels so wonderful to be alive.
There is such a feeling of promise and hope. Oh, it is so wonderful, Sorrow."
"What? How. Whose soul? I know you said that you were going to get a human soul. But I didn’t think it would be so soon. I mean, it is just breaking dawn."
She ran up to me and kissed me. "It even feels like it did before, darling. Oh. We will be together forever. We have the best of both worlds. We are alive and we can not grow old or sick. Disease no longer can cripple us."
"What are you talking about? What do you mean, we?"
"My dearest. You were dying. There was no choice. It would have been only a matter of time and then, your precious soul would have been lost, but, now. You live. Like me. We can be together, the two of us, forever. Let’s make love like we did by the brook..."
"By the what? Oh, my God. You stinking bitch! You killed Jadda and stole her soul!"
"No! No one killed anyone. Jadda was always set to have her soul transplanted into my body. We are now one being. I am Evela and Jadda. Don’t you remember how sick you were? Flesh and blood humans have such a short life span, because of what our ancestors did to the planet, in wars and such not. It is all that we hybrid-humans can do, to isolate the humans, let hem grow up, in as healthy conditions as our technologically can. But. You all, were so good at war and killing. Eventually, your own evil gets the better of you, and you all become sick, one at a time. It is then and only then, that the Quantum Recycler is used, to transplant that which makes us all human, into a body that can not die. Sorrow, I am Jadda. I’m your mate. You were so confused, when you were finished with the transplant. You went running off from the hospital, I went with you, to make sure that you would be okay. That is why I took you back to the village, hoping that it might make the adjustment, easier. But. You eventually wanted to go back to the hybrid-robot city. That was when Evela met up with you. When we knew that you were fine, we finally went through with the process. Now I can be with you and you with me, my love."
"No! This can’t be! You are lying! I’m human! I came from the future. No. The past. No..."
Evela took my hand and she led me to a pool of water. "Look. See. You are like me. Why do you think I could cook for you, my darling? You were not eating human food. You were eating the same thing that I was eating, I just made it look like what you expected. It happens sometimes. The host and the implant, need time, the soul needs time to adjust to its new body and in doing so, it can cause confusion. But. I was able to be there for you. It is me, Jadda, you have to believe me. I’d do nothing to hurt you."
I gazed into the pool of water. The reflection I saw, it seemed to wave and wither, it changed. Finally, the water rested and the reflection I saw, was of a hybrid-human. It was a robot staring back at me. "No. No..." Evela move into the reflection. She kissed me on the cheek.
"You will be okay. Now that I’m fully here, with you. You were so sick and you so much wanted to hang onto your flesh and blood human existence. Evela agreed to be my host and we had to quickly make a host for you. When you woke, you still thought you were human. We all decided it was best to let you try and come to grips with your new reality, in your own way. But. I am here now, with you, by your side and I’ll never leave you, Sorrow. I’m sorry for the suffering you went through. But. It was the only way."
I stood up and she with me. She held my hand. "Then, everything that I said, that I thought I was. Where I came from?"
"It was a delusion. You are as much a part of this world as any of us. The humans that you talked about died off over a thousand years ago. You must have read about one of them and in your state of confusion, thought that you had come from that point in time. But. It is okay, we can get through all of that. The only thing that matters is that we are together."
I finally looked at Evela and could see Jadda. "Thank you, for not giving up on me."
"I never gave up and now we have forever to love and to care for one another."