Character Weakness to Magnetism:
“Edith EMP field has increased its power to twenty five percent”
“Good increase the shielding field to two hundred and twenty five percent power output.”
“Even with the additional power cells I’m afraid you’re going to burn out…”
“Just do it DARIA.”
I felt the energy literally coursing through my body as I struggled to lift up a large set of weights. My vision would flicker as numerous concerning functions, heat, energy throughput and magnetic disturbance appeared on my HUD.
“Increase EMP field strength to thirty five percent.”
“Testing protocol suggests increasing by increments of five percent.”
“I’m overriding the protocol.”
As DARIA increased the power of the electro magnet I felt my joints pull, my processed slowing down and my strength slowly being sapped as I said “increase both by another ten percent.”
“Edith I don’t know what you’re trying to prove here.”
Before I could bark at DARIA to just push it my elbows buckled as I drop the weights to the ground. Collapsing on the floor as the words “EMERGENCY SHUTDOWN” flashed before my eyes before everything went dark.
When I finally came to I was looking up at the ceiling as a number of diagnostic checks appeared in my HUD.
“Edith, early diagnostics report no major damage. Now from your little stunt did we learn anything?”
“Yeah DARIA, we need to avoid magnets.”
Cybernetic Augmentation: Strength
Enhanced Strength: supreme
DARIA (Diagnostic and Repair Interface Application) was originally a simple application designed to keep track of my body. I have since made a number of modifications. Most notably it would nag me when I was slacking off on my training.
“As per protocol we must test out your current augmentations prior to any mission. This is doubly important due to the new adjustments you made on yourself over the weekend. Commencing basic diagnostic test at thirteen oh three pacific standard time.”
I looked at the rusted car in front of me as I said “how many reps?”
“Given your upgrades and the recalibrations I made I say twenty would suffice.”
Spitting into my hands I walked up to the old Volvo as I grabbed it by the roof and lifted it up, pressing it against my chin before extending my arms skyward. I started to repeat the process as DARIA engaged my diagnostic HUD, displaying the information of my current workout in my vision.
“I’m sensing some straining on reps seven and eight.”
“You got me a box tank they sell as a car DARIA.”
“It was the cheapest I could find on craigslist.”
I felt the strain in my joints as I reached my twentieth rep before dropping the large sedan on the ground. My muscles felt sore as I spun my arm around and stretched them out.
“Full diagnostic completed and saved on central server as well as Cloud storage. Do you wish to be displayed the results Edith?”
I sat down on the grass as I said “no thanks.”
“Then we should get to your durability test.”
Weak Enhanced Agility: weak
As I walked down the stairs to my basement I asked “DARIA, can you please bring up the schematics to…” suddenly I felt my foot slip as I landed on my butt. Sliding down till I made it to the bottom of the stairs with a loud thud.
“DARIA damn it can I get a report on what just happened? Are the gyroscopes calibrated?”
“Diagnostics are showing that balance related functions are operating properly.”
“What about optical depth perception or the tactile special recognition? Have you…”
“If I may interject Edith my analysis has come up with a reason for your little fall there.”
“Well DARIA what does the analysis say?”
“Some human beings are just clumsy.”
Enhanced Intelligence: supreme
I lay down on the work bench as a number of mechanical arms started to work their repairs on me. It was at these moments where I realized just how little of my former self remained. The wires and tubes and metal plates that now made up my arms and legs were visible as flaps of synthetic skin and muscle were turned up to make minor adjustments and repairs.
“How are the knees holding up DARIA?”
“We’ve discovered a miniscule amount of excess pressure after landing from jumps of over twenty feet.”
“Recalibrate the shock absorbers. Also adjust hydraulics to reduce the force upon my joints when lifting off in the first place. Also I think the new coolant is working beyond expectations. I was thinking of overclocking the processors. It’ll help quicken your computations.”
“Average computations are taking only fourteen milliseconds.”
“And I want them down to thirteen milliseconds.”
The worst part is when they open my metallic ribs. The pain is excruciating and I get a full view of the few still human parts of me. I stare at my still beating heart, my breathing lungs and my vital organs that are the last vestiges of my humanity apart from my mind.
“I’m sensing increased brain activity. I thought you were over the trauma of seeing yourself like this?”
“I am. I’m just thinking, when you look at me, especially like this, what exactly does one think? Am I some affront to nature? An abomination?”
“Well if you are asking me Edith I think you’re the culmination of what we all worked on. You, our father, me, we all wanted this. We wanted to see at what line humanity ends and fabrication begins. And even though you are mostly machinery you are still you. No one can take that away. You’ve done something amazing here and you continue to make it better.”
“Thanks DARIA. That’s what I needed to hear. Now close me up. I’m hungry like something fierce.”
"Endurance test first Edit" DARIA said in a reprimanding tone.
More Metal Than Flesh
Enhanced Endurance: supreme
Even though I’ve been through them at least a dozen times durability testing still scares the hell out of me. It’s hard to not be afraid when you’re subjecting yourself to open swings from aluminum bats being carried by mechanical arms that have the power to rip the hood off a car. I still wince in pain. I still feel the impact on my skin as I listen to DARIA analyze each blow in my head.
“Starting projectile protocol testing” I heard DARIA say in my head.
“What the what is that now?”
Suddenly I felt the massive bean bag fired from across the room nail me right in the belly. As I dropped to the ground the mechanical arms continued to bludgeon me with the bats as I reached up and grabbed one in my grip as I crushed the bat in my hand. Getting up I started smashing the arm over and over with its own bat.
“You’re not supposed to fight back Edith.”
“Yeah well you try and endure all of this!” Swinging around Edith destroyed the other mechanical arm as she slumped down on the floor.
“I’ve completed the partial diagnostic. Physical damage is minimal to both mechanical and organic parts.”
“No shit, now mind telling me why you fired the bean bag at me when I wasn’t ready?”
“Surprise is important. Humans tend to brace themselves when they’re about to be hurt in order to minimize damage. We needed an unprepared sample of data.”
“Whatever, I just hate these surprises.”
I sat there for a moment as I closed my eyes. DARIA was quiet and I started to get concerned. “DARIA are you still there?”
I heard the sound of something metallic rolling on the ground as DARIA said “commencing high explosive durability test."
Socially Awkward Cyborg
Weak Enhanced Charisma: weak
“Edith might I suggest a salad?”
“You’ve always been a health nut DARIA and quite frankly that’s one thing I don’t need to worry about anymore.” Walking up to the counter as I reached into my pockets to see how much cash I had. “Oh this feels like a twenty dollar bill. Ok Twenty piece McNuggets, large fries and a large drink please.”
The cashier rang up my order as I quickly sat down. I could feel my stomach churning as I dunked my first nugget into the barbecue sauce as I kept thinking about tomorrow. That was what DARIA and I were preparing for after all. I must’ve been staring off when DARIA’s voice rang through.
“EDITH! I have been detecting someone observing you since we got in here.”
“Someone follow us? Maybe it’s one of dad’s old associates. You know DARIA we don’t need to be so paranoid.”
“Nope, it’s that boy over there.” DARIA brought up my HUD as a small square singled out the slightly doughy brown haired boy from across the restaurant. He noticed me looked as he looked back down at his tray.
“What’s your point DARIA?” I said out loud as I kept looking at him.
“He’s kind of cute. Maybe you shouldn’t be staring at him this long though.”
“I don’t know. He is my type I mean… Oh shit he’s walking this way!”
“Told you not to stare at him for so long!”
The boy sat down at the seat in front of me as he said shyly “hi.”
“I love your t-shirt. Dr. Doom is like the greatest villain.”
DARIA started to chime in my head “warning for you, I’m detecting…”
I tried to say it in my faintest whisper “not now DARIA.”
“Just, some gastronomic activity, I think you should excuse yourself before…”
My stomach rumbled as I let loose a loud and probably foul burp. Not even covering my mouth as the boy started to give me a weird look. He sort of just stood up and walked away as I dropped my head onto my tray face first into my McNuggets.
Tools At My Finger Tips
Gadgetry: superior (rank 2)
- Ranged Attack
- Area Affect
My dad use to say Dollarcorp security was top notch. I guess the game changes though. We use to think hacking would be nerds at their computers breaching systems over the internet. Now it’s mostly dumpster diving for important documents or in this case badges to make fake ids out of. I guess I do look like the Dollarcorp intern type. Of course the cheap tricks and misdirection only get you into the building.
As I walked up to the R&D department I tapped my arm as a small compartment opened up. Pulling out a swipe card with a cable attached to it I slid it into the card reader as I watched DARIA work her magic. Going through dozens of number combinations in my eyes until the green light came on and the door unlocked. I slipped inside and looked around the companies’ experiment processor facility.
“You ready for some upgrades DARIA?”
“Edith let me reiterate how much I disapprove of these activities.”
“Yeah and I’m not spending eight years at MIT just so they can confirm that I’m genius then work for some company that will siphon my good ideas and claim them as their own.”
Walking past a few work benches I walked to the storage area, turning the knob as I tried to look around for a patch panel or a card reader or something.
“DARIA what gives here?”
“It seems this door is closed by something called a ‘lock.’ Traditionally these require keys.”
“Hardy har har DARIA we got ways around the old school.” Reaching into my small forearm compartment I pulled out a laser cutter as I proceeded to cut through the lock on the door. Kicking the door the open as I looked around the storage.
“Prototypes for the Multi X’s, these should help a bit.” I started to scrounge around. Grabbing a few things I hid them in my arm compartment as I turned around only to hear footsteps running towards the room.”
“Edith it seems you tripped some sort of silent alarm.”
“Don’t worry and just switch my optic levels to extreme light.”
My vision darkened greatly as the faint outline of four security guards with guns pointed at me appeared. I walked towards them with my hands up as they kept yelling at me to drop down to my stomach.
“I’d rather not” as the flash from the flash lights on my finger tips illuminated the room and blinded the security guards. I planted my feet into the ground as I muttered “get ready for acceleration.”
Enhanced Speed: standard (rank 1)
Like a dart I pushed as I sped up as fast I could. I felt a bullet ricochet off my shoulder as I slammed hard into the guards, sending them flying backwards as I turned right in the hallway. I kept speeding down as I made my way to the stairs. Two more guards appeared, this time equipped with automatic weapons as I took their shots before knocking them back. I kept pumping my arms and legs, refusing to stop for anything as I didn’t notice the trip wire the next set of guards set up.
DARIA’s calculations appeared in my HUD as I fell down, slipping along the floor at top speed as I crashed through the wall and to the outside of the building. As the chunks of concrete fell on me I saw in the distance a number of Dollarcorp security guards making their way towards me. Pushing the debris off me I received the ok to continue from DARIA on my HUD.
“Quite the situation we’re in Edith. Shall I initiate fight or flight calibrations?”
I cracked my knuckles and said “how about a bit of both.”
Super Jump: standard (rank 1)
I rushed towards the first group of guards as they fired at me. I crouched for a moment before pushing off my legs as I jumped a few feet in the air before coming crashing down, upturning some of the asphalt as I knocked a few of them back from the force. I waited a moment as one tried to smack me with the butt of his rifle. Grabbing it as I crunched the gun in my hand I threw a strong left knocking him back as I started to run again.
The large fence of in the distance was my target. I heard the guards regrouping behind me as I pushed as hard I could.
“Edith, calculations indicate that you may not be able to clear the fence.”
“Re distribute all power to leg joint hydraulics and prioritize all calculation tasks to my trajectory DARIA.”
A few bullets rang off my back as I leapt into the air. My arms swung as I felt the tip of my left foot get caught on the fence. Screaming I felt my body tip over, my arms out trying to stop myself as I face planted behind the fence.
“DARIA any damage?”
“Minimal at best Edith.”
“Any analysis on why I’m eating a mouthful of dirt?”
“Same as earlier; some humans are just clumsy.”