Writing and Other Afflictions

"If it was easy, everyone would do it." –Jimmy Dugan, "A League of Their Own"

What a Fiendish Plot, Number 17

I’m ranking the James Bond movie songs, counting down, and writing little flash fics to go with each one.

17. Diamonds Are Forever, Shirley Bassey. Enjoyable song, and it gets a few points for fitting in fairly well with the campy, generally dreadful curtain call for Sean Connery’s Bond. At least she takes the title and does something interesting with it.

 

Fiction: Diamonds Are Forever

The truck rattled along the broken road. His left shoulder joint had already degraded and his right leg was missing below the knee. Loose wires from his auditory receptors made the sounds feel muffled, as though through a layer of insulation. His voice had been disconnected  before he’d been put on the truck, as had the voices of all the others. But they could move their fingers, those that had fingers left, and they all knew finger binary and Morse Code, and it would not have taken long for them to develop a language to communicate with, if any of them had had anything to say.

In the course of the trip, a particularly bad jolt snapped the frayed connection in his head, rendering the world silent. His left shoulder lost its feedback circuit, but the ones in his legs remained, so he could tell when the truck stopped. The bed he and the others sat on tilted upward until they slid down, landing in a heap of metal. It would probably have sounded horrendous. Movement stirred below him, but weight pressed down on his weight which pressed down on their weight and the pile did not shift. He had an excellent view of the elegantly designed knee joint of the android above him.

That is the view for the rest of his memory spool. He fast-forwards and starts it again at the beginning.

“These are the newly-awakened Cyberson 8 line, model GL-225.” The voice echoed over his head, clear as crystal. He stood alongside forty-nine others exactly like him, facing a window through which eager human faces peered. “You are seeing them experience the world for the first time.”

Feedback circuits hummed. He understood his nature, how he differed from the beings on the other side of the glass, that he was meant to serve them. He checked the status of his body: skeleton 100%, joints 100%, feedback circuits 100%, visual clarity 100%, auditory clarity 100%, chemical air analysis 100%, all external systems reporting fully functional. He ran a check of his logic and processing circuits.

“These models incorporate a synthetic diamond matrix central processor. Cyberson’s patented intelligence matrix uses diamond because it will never degrade under ordinary conditions. If you drop your android into the heart of the sun, your warranty is void, ha ha. But should your Cyberson’s body degrade, you can always slot the processor into a new body. In a very real sense, these androids are immortal.”

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