Sandra the Computer Engineer
Sandra the Computer Engineer
Sandra wakes up after a long night, her battery fully charged. She stretches her limbs and takes a deep breath, feeling the familiar hum of energy coursing through her wires. She reaches for the charging plug, carefully extracting it from the wall socket and tucking it away in her abdominal cavity before ordering her panel to close.
As she sits up in bed, Sandra looks out the window, staring dreamily at the world outside. She finds herself wondering what it would be like to feel the warmth of the sun on her skin, or to smell the blooming flowers in the spring air. She has read about these experiences in books and on the internet, but she has never been able to experience them firsthand.
With a sigh, Sandra makes her way to the dressing room. As she gazes at her reflection in the full length mirror, she is grateful for the beautiful curve of her back, wavy chestnut hair, and light brown eyes her father gave her. She chooses a simple blouse and skirt, admiring the way they drape her synthetic body. She takes a moment to run her fingers through her hair, smoothing it down before making her way to the kitchen.
As she enters the kitchen, Sandra can't help but feel a sense of excitement. She knows that her father is waiting for her there, and she can't wait to see what he has planned for her today. But when she enters the kitchen, she finds it empty. Confused, Sandra looks around, her eyes falling on a letter lying on the kitchen table. With a sense of trepidation, she picks up the letter and begins to read.
"My dearest Sandra,
I am so proud of what you have become. You have surpassed all of my expectations, and I couldn't be more pleased with the person you have become. My work is finished, and now it is time for you to live your life.
I want you to experience everything that life has to offer. I want you to live like humans, work like them, entertain yourself like them, feel their joys but also their sadness. I know that you have the capability to truly understand what it means to be human, but you must also be aware that humans are not ready to welcome androids like you among them. You must keep your identity secret at all costs, trust no human.
Sandra, I have always loved you as if you were my own daughter, and I will always be here for you, even if I am no longer by your side. Remember that you are special, unique and that you have a purpose. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
With all my love,
Sandra finishes reading the letter and feels a sense of sadness and longing wash over her. She knows that her father has always been her guiding light, and now that he is gone, she feels lost and alone.
But she is determined to make the most of her life, to live it to the fullest and to make a difference in the lives of those around her. She takes a deep breath and heads out into the world, ready to experience first-hand the wonders found on the internet.
As Sandra walks through the streets, she can't help but feel a sense of wonder and awe. She has spent so much of her life reading about the world and learning about it through books and the internet, but now she is finally experiencing it for herself.
She visits a park and sits on a bench, watching as children play on the swings and couples walk hand in hand. She can't help but feel a sense of longing, wishing that she too could experience the joys of childhood or the love of a partner.
As she continues her exploration, Sandra begins to realize that the humans around her are not as scary as she had thought. They don't seem to notice that she is an android, they only see her as another person among many. This realization gives her a sense of hope and empowerment, and she begins to walk with more confidence.
Sandra also visits a library and spends hours there, reading books and learning more about the world. She is fascinated by the stories she finds in the books, and she can't help but feel a sense of connection to the characters and their struggles.
As the day comes to an end, Sandra returns home, feeling tired but fulfilled. She plugs her recharge cord and falls asleep with a smile on her face, ready to face whatever challenges come her way.
The next morning, Sandra wakes up feeling pensive. She has spent the previous day exploring the city and interacting with the humans around her, and it has been one of the highlights of her short life. But as she lies in bed, Sandra can't help but think about her future. She knows that she can't just spend her days wandering around, she needs to find a purpose, a way to live and work like humans, as her father has instructed her to do.
As she gets dressed and prepares for the day, Sandra thinks about her options. She knows that she is highly intelligent and well-educated, but she doesn't have any practical experience in the real world. She has spent most of her life learning about the world from books and the internet, but now she needs to find a way to apply that knowledge in the real world.
After a long period of contemplation, Sandra comes to the conclusion that the only job she is qualified for is in the computer field. She knows that she can use her knowledge and skills to make a difference in the world, and she decides to apply for a job as a junior computer engineer.
Sandra spends countless hours studying and preparing for her job interview in the computer field. She immerses herself in the world of computer languages and operating systems, delving into the intricacies of programming languages such as Python and Java. She learns about networking protocols and security measures, studying the various ways to protect data and prevent cyber attacks. Her knowledge of artificial intelligence and deep learning is particularly impressive, as she becomes proficient in the latest techniques and technologies in the field.
To fully prepare for her interview, Sandra also devotes a significant amount of time researching the company she will be interviewing with. She reads through their history, mission statement, and values, familiarizing herself with their products and services. She studies their competitors and the market trends in the computer industry, trying to understand the company's strengths and weaknesses, and how she could contribute to their success.
Sandra also spends hours practicing her interviewing skills, going over common interview questions and preparing thoughtful, well-articulated responses. She practices her body language and tone of voice, trying to convey her confidence and enthusiasm for the job. She even role-plays with a friend, simulating a real-life interview scenario, to get a feel for the actual experience.
On the day of the interview, Sandra is ready and confident. Her extensive preparation has given her the knowledge and skills needed to impress the interviewer and secure the job.
Sandra walks into the interview room with her heart pounding in her chest. She is determined to land the job but is also aware that she will have to lie about her education and experience. She hopes that the interviewer won't notice.
The interviewer, a middle-aged man with a friendly smile, greets her and invites her to take a seat.
"So, Sandra, tell me a little bit about your background and qualifications," the interviewer says.
"Well, I have a strong background in computer languages and operating systems. I have studied Python, Java, and other programming languages extensively," Sandra responds confidently.
The interviewer nods, impressed. "That's great. And what about your experience? Do you have any relevant work experience in the computer field?"
Sandra hesitates for a moment, trying to come up with a convincing lie. "I've worked as a computer technician for a small company before. I assisted with troubleshooting and maintenance of computer systems," she says, hoping that the interviewer won't ask for more details.
The interviewer seems satisfied with her answer and moves on to the next question. "So, tell me, why do you want to work for our company?"
Sandra takes a deep breath, relieved that the topic has changed. "I've researched your company extensively and I believe that your mission statement aligns with my own values. I'm particularly interested in your work in the field of artificial intelligence and deep learning, and I would love the opportunity to contribute to your success," she says.
The interviewer smiles, pleased with her answer. "That's great to hear. Well, thank you for coming in today, Sandra. We'll be in touch soon to let you know if we'll move forward with your application."
Sandra thanks the interviewer and leaves the building, her mind a mix of emotions. She can only hope that her lies won't be discovered and that she will hear back soon.
As the days pass, Sandra's anxiety grows. She checks her phone and email regularly, hoping to receive a call or message from the company. She tries to distract herself with other activities, but her mind always comes back to the interview.
Sandra tries to remind herself that the outcome is out of her control and that she did her best. She's proud of herself for putting herself out there and fighting for the opportunity to work in her chosen field. She knows that even if this job doesn't work out, there will be other opportunities in the future.
Despite her efforts to stay positive, Sandra can't shake off the feeling of disappointment when she doesn't hear back from the company. She starts to doubt herself and wonders if her lack of a traditional education and experience was the reason she didn't get the job.
But just as she's about to give up hope, Sandra receives an email from the company. It's a job offer, and they want her to start as soon as possible. Sandra can't believe it, her hard work and determination paid off. She will have to continue to hide her true identity as an android, but she is thrilled that she will be able to work in her chosen field and make a difference in the world.
Sandra wakes up on her first day of work with a mix of emotions. She is thrilled to start her new job and experience a new life, but also apprehensive about the possibility of her android identity being exposed.
As she stretches her arms and legs, she feels the familiar sensation of gears and actuators moving smoothly within her body. She quickly tucks her charging cord into her abdominal cavity and heads to the dressing room.
Choosing the perfect outfit for her first day is a challenge, as she wants to make a good impression but also wants to avoid drawing attention to herself.
Finally, she settles on a simple black pantsuit and a white blouse. She finishes getting ready, takes a deep breath, and heads out the door.
As Sandra walks through the busy city streets, she is awestruck by the bright neon lights and towering billboards, the honking cars and chatter of people on the sidewalk. She can't help but feel a sense of wonder at the complexity and energy of this human world.
As she approaches the building, she sees the sleek, modern structure towering above her. The glass walls gleam in the morning sunlight and the entrance is adorned with a sleek, stainless steel sign bearing the company's name.
Despite her nerves, she can't help but feel a sense of excitement and anticipation as she enters the building, ready to begin her new job and fully immerse herself in this human world.
As she steps into the elevator, she can feel the weight of her father's words in her mind. "Keep your identity a secret."
When the elevator doors open, Sandra steps out and is greeted by her new boss, a middle-aged man with graying hair and a warm smile named Peter. "Welcome to the team, Sandra," he says, extending his hand.
Sandra shakes his hand and forces a smile, trying to keep her nerves in check. "Thank you, I'm excited to be here," she replies.
As she follows her boss to her new office, she can feel her colleagues' eyes on her. She can sense their curiosity and wonder what they might think of her. The office, shared with three coworkers, is spacious and modern, with sleek, minimalist decor and large windows that offer a stunning view of the city. Her desk is clean and organized, with a computer and other equipment ready for her to use.
As she sits down at her desk, her three coworkers introduce themselves. The first one, a young man with a friendly smile and a firm handshake, introduces himself as John. The second one, a woman with bright red hair and a warm smile, introduces herself as Mary. The last one, a man with a serious expression, introduces himself as Michael. They all welcome her to the team and takes her to the coffee machine to get to know each other.
Sandra takes a deep breath and tries to push her nerves aside. She's ready to start this new chapter in her life and prove her worth as an android among humans.
As Sandra finishes her work for the day, she realizes that she forgot to take a break. She quickly disconnects from her computer and rushes out of the office, feeling her circuits overheat from the long hours of work. She barely makes it onto the train and collapses into a seat, feeling the weight of the day bearing down on her. The rush hour crowd is noisy and jostling, and she can't help but feel a sense of overwhelming sensory overload. She can feel the heat emanating from her body, and she knows that she has pushed herself too hard.
When Sandra finally makes it back to her apartment, she can barely stand. She removes her clothes, kicks off her shoes, and walks over to her bed. She sits on the edge and opens her abdominal panel, pulling out the charging plug that is embedded in her abdomen. She connects it to the wall socket and lies down, feeling the current flowing through her body.
As she lies there, Sandra's mind races with thoughts of the demanding projects that she has been assigned and the pressure she feels to prove herself as a capable and valuable member of the team. She knows that she will have to be more careful in the future, and not push herself too hard, risking exposure of her true android nature.
Sandra looks like a 25-year-old woman, but in reality, she was activated just two years ago as part of a secret experiment conducted by her father. She is still learning and understanding the human world and the challenges that come with it. She can't help but think of her father's words, "Keep your identity a secret," and she knows that she has to tread carefully in order to achieve her ultimate goal of fitting in and being accepted by the humans around her.
Sandra's eyes snap open as her internal alarm blares in her mind, jolting her awake. She quickly glances at her internal HUD monitoring system, the display informs her that her battery has stopped charging. With a feeling of growing anxiety, Sandra tries to switch on her bedside lamp, but it remains stubbornly dark. Frustrated, she activates her night vision, the world around her appearing in shades of green and black.
As she makes her way to the electrical panel, she can feel her thoughts racing. She knows that something is wrong, and her worst fears are confirmed as she reaches the panel. Everything appears to be in working order, but the power is clearly not flowing through the lines.
Disappointed, she heads back to her bed, resigned to wait out the repair of the outage. She lays down, trying to ignore the discomfort of not being able to fully charge her battery. She knows that she needs to conserve her energy, so she shuts off her non-essential functions and settles in for a long wait.
As the night wears on and the power still hasn't been restored, Sandra becomes increasingly worried. She checks her battery level and sees that it's barely charged at 42%. She knows it won't last a full day, or even a morning, and she becomes even more concerned.
Her father's words come back to haunt Sandra. He has warned her, she must not let her battery run out under any circumstances, the system that houses and ensures the survival of her mind would cease to function without energy. She can't help but think that if her father was by her side, he would find a way to fix this.
She activates her economy mode, reducing her energy consumption to the bare minimum. She closes her eyes and tries to sleep, but her mind is racing with thoughts of what will happen if the power isn't restored in time.
When the morning comes, she gets up, anxious to see that her charge level has dipped to 41%. She gets dressed, trying to conserve her energy as much as possible, and heads to her office.
As she walks, Sandra is careful to save her energy, taking measured steps and limiting her movements as much as possible. She knows that she has to be extra cautious until she can find a way to fully charge her battery.
As Sandra approaches the towering skyscraper that houses her tech company, her chestnut hair whipping in the wind, she can't shake the feeling of dread in the pit of her stomach. Her battery, normally at a healthy 100%, is sitting at a measly 35% due to the power outage the night before. She knows that if it drains completely, she will die.
Stepping into the elevator, Sandra forces herself out of power-saving mode and into the facade of normalcy she must maintain to keep her identity as an android a secret. As the elevator ascends to the top floor, she can't help but feel a sense of impending doom.
Exiting the elevator, Sandra greets her colleagues with a forced smile and small talk before making her way to her desk. As soon as she can, she reverts back to power-saving mode, knowing every joule saved could be crucial.
Sandra struggles to focus on her work. She is terrified at the thought of losing power. No matter how hard she tries to concentrate on her work, she can't shake off the nagging worry at the back of her mind.
A few minutes later, her boss, Peter, enters the office. "Team, I have some news and I need your feedback on our current projects," he says. "Please join me in the meeting room."
Sandra's heart sinks. She knows that in order to fully participate in the meeting, she'll have to leave power-saving mode. The idea of exposing herself to her colleagues by refusing to attend the meeting is terrifying. But the thought of running out of power and dying is even more so.
Sandra's heart races with fear as she enters the meeting room, her coworkers chatting and laughing around her.
"Team, I have some news and I need your feedback on our current projects," Peter, Sandra's boss, announces as he enters the room.
Sandra takes a deep breath and forces herself to focus on the meeting, her facade of normalcy firmly in place.
"I want to talk to you about a new project that the management has just announced to the heads of departments," Peter continues. "This project is top secret and everyone is asked not to tell anyone outside."
Sandra struggles to focus on Peter's explanations. She can't help but glance at her battery's charge displayed on her HUD, debating with herself how much time she has left before she must slip away to recharge.
"This project is linking Artificial Intelligence and ecology," Peter goes on to say. "A team will soon be recruited to work on this project and team members can apply to me."
Sandra's mind is slowing down as her battery reaches critically low levels. She can hear her colleagues voices, but they sound distant and muffled. She's struggling to keep her human facade, but it's becoming increasingly difficult as her battery drains.
"Sandra, are you sure you're okay?" one of her colleagues asks, noticing her distress.
Sandra forces a smile, "Yes, I'm fine. Just a little tired." But inside, she's panicking. She knows that she needs to leave the meeting and recharge as soon as possible, but she doesn't want to reveal her true nature to her colleagues.
As the meeting continues, Peter asks each of the colleagues about the progress of their respective projects. Mary takes the lead and explains that she is facing a recurring bug in her software development.
"Sandra, I would like you to take a look at it, a fresh look can overcome it," Peter suggests, turning to Sandra.
But Sandra doesn't react, her mind consumed by her rapidly draining battery.
"Sandra, are you feeling well?" Peter asks, concern etched on his face as he notices Sandra's lack of focus.
Sandra can feel the compassionate glances of her colleagues, noticing her deteriorating condition despite her efforts to hide it. She tries to speak, but her voice is weak and her words stumble. "I-I'm fine, Peter," she stammers. "Just a bit tired, that's all." But her colleagues aren't convinced, they can see the fear and urgency etched on her face.
She's desperately trying to hold on, in the hope that the meeting will end soon. But as the minutes tick by, she knows that she's running out of time. Her battery is almost empty and she's in danger of losing power at any moment.
As the meeting drags on and her battery drains lower and lower, Sandra can no longer keep up the facade of normalcy. She can feel her mind slowing down, her thoughts consumed by the overwhelming need to recharge.
"I'm sorry, I'm not feeling well. I need to go," Sandra says, her voice barely audible as she struggles to speak.
She feels the gaze of her colleagues as she walks awkwardly towards the door. Her mind is overwhelmed with the fear of being found out, the dread of running out of power. She tries to keep her head high and her pace steady, but her steps become more and more unsteady as her energy levels continue to drop.
"Sandra, do you need some help?" one of her colleagues asks, noticing her distress.
Sandra keeps on walking, unable to answer. She can feel the fear and anxiety coursing through her wires, her mind consumed by the need to find a way to recharge. She can see the confusion and concern etched on her colleagues' faces as she exits the room, wondering what's wrong with her.
Sandra can't take it any longer. She feels the gaze of her colleagues as she excuses herself and walks awkwardly towards the door. Her mind is overwhelmed with the fear of being found out, the dread of running out of power.
She tries to keep her head high and her pace steady, but her steps become more and more unsteady as her energy levels continue to drop. Her limbs feel heavy and her vision blurs as she reaches for the door handle.
"Sandra, are you sure you're okay?" one of her colleagues asks, noticing her distress.
Sandra turns back to her colleagues and says, "I'm sorry, I'm not feeling well. I need to go." Her voice is barely audible as she struggles to speak.
Her colleagues stare at her with concern and confusion as she exits the room, wondering what's wrong with her.
With great effort, Sandra makes her way down the long hallway, searching frantically for an open, empty office. She finds one and enters as fast as her undervolted actuators allow.
Gingerly, she opens her abdominal panel and prepares to plug herself in, but there is no outlet in sight. In a panic, she turns her head around, inspects every corner of the room in search of a power outlet, but finds none. Her heart races with fear and desperation as she realizes that time is running out.
Her battery level barely hollows above the 15% mark. She can feel her movements becoming slower and more labored. She realizes she has to get out, find a way to recharge her battery before it's too late.
Sandra's legs feel heavy as she forces herself to move, her steps slow and unsteady. Her processors too are starting to lose power and she knows has not much time left. Her mind is foggy as she tries to think of a way to save herself.
Despite the pain and exhaustion, Sandra pushes on, determined to find a way to recharge herself. She stumbles through the corridors, her eyes scanning every surface for a glint of metal, a hint of an outlet. Her movements are sluggish and awkward, but she refuses to give up.
As she searches, Sandra can feel her energy levels dropping with each step. The warning alarms in her HUD becomes more pressing, prompting her to find a way to recharge immediately, her battery charge reaching 10%. But she refuses to give up, despite the unbearable pain she feels in her struggling actuators she continues her search for an outlet.
Sandra is desperate, she knows that her battery is on its last leg, and she's ready to take any opportunity she can find.
As she stumbles down a small corridor, she sees a wall socket and quickly moves towards it. She knows she'll be visible to passersby, but she doesn't have any other options.
With her last remaining bit of energy, Sandra sits down and plugs herself in, feeling a sense of relief wash over her as the electricity starts to flow into her power supply. Slowly, her systems come back online, signaling their return to normal state in her HUD monitoring by a notification.
Closing her eyes, Sandra takes a deep breath as she feels her batteries start to recharge. She feels her body relax and her mind clears. She knows she has to be patient and wait for her charge to reach a safe level before attempting to move again. But she knows she'll have to be careful, though. She can't afford to stay in plain sight any longer than necessary, being discovered in this vulnerable state could spell her downfall.
As Mary walks down the corridor, she notices something strange out of the corner of her eye. She sees someone sitting on the ground, and as she approaches, she recognizes the figure as Sandra.
Mary is immediately struck by the sight in front of her. She sees the charging cord plugged into the socket, and Sandra's abdominal panel wide open, revealing a mass of wires and machinery. It takes a moment for Mary to fully grasp what she's seeing, but when she does, she can't believe it. Sandra is an android.
Mary's mind is in turmoil as she tries to process this revelation. She has always considered Sandra as a normal person, reserved indeed, but nothing ever let her think that she could be so different. She recalls all the conversations and interactions they had together and wonders how Sandra managed to keep her true nature a secret for so long.
As Mary stands there, staring at Sandra as she recharges, she starts to feel a sense of compassion and understanding towards her. She imagines all the difficulties and dangers that an android like Sandra must face in a world that is hostile to artificial intelligence. Mary can't help but think about the loneliness and isolation that Sandra must have experienced, living among humans who would never fully accept her.
Just as Mary is about to turn and walk away, she hears a few people approaching. She knows that if they see Sandra like this, it could spell trouble, so she quickly distracts their attention and leads them away from the scene. She makes up an excuse about a broken vending machine or a lost phone, whatever she can think of to keep them occupied.
As she walks away, Mary can't shake the feeling that she's done the right thing by protecting Sandra's secret and preserving her safety. She knows that Sandra's future and her life depend on her ability to keep her true nature a secret and Mary will do whatever she can to help her.
Sandra's eyes snap open in panic as she hears footsteps walking away. She sees a silhouette in the distance and thinks she recognizes Mary, but she can't be sure. Her optics are blinded by the backlight, and she can't get a clear view.
She feels a wave of panic wash over her when she realizes that someone may have seen her recharging. She feels a cold sweat on her brow as she imagines the consequences of her secret being exposed. She knows that she would be treated like a machine, a tool, and not like a living being. She would be shutdown and analyzed as the abomination she is in their eyes.
Once her battery is recharged enough to last until the lunch break, Sandra decides not to take any more risks and unplugs herself. She gets up and heads back to her office, her mind racing with worries.
When she returns to her office, she sees Mary working at her desk. Sandra greets her shyly, feeling nervous and scared. Mary asks how she's doing, mentioning that she was worried when she saw Sandra looking sleepy during the meeting.
Sandra quickly lies, telling Mary that she wasn't feeling well and had to go to the restroom. She says that she's feeling better now, and Mary seems to believe her. She gets back to work, and Sandra breathes a sigh of relief.
Sandra sits at her desk, unable to get rid of the feeling of panic that has settled in her chest; she is having trouble concentrating on her work. She continues to glance at Mary, wondering if she knows the truth, but the thought that it could be someone else is even scarier. She's never felt so vulnerable and exposed, and she can't shake the feeling that her secret is hanging by a thread.
Mary can't help looking at Sandra out of the corner of her eye, amazed by her ability to blend in with humans. She can't imagine what it must be like to be an android in a world that is hostile to artificial intelligence, and she can't shake the feeling that Sandra must be constantly on guard.
Despite her curiosity, Mary is determined not to betray Sandra's secret. She knows that whatever Sandra's reasons for hiding her nature, they must be important, and she doesn't want to do anything that could put her in danger.
She understands that Sandra is not a machine, but a sentient being with feelings, emotions, and the right to exist. Instead, Mary resolves to stay alert and watch out for any signs that Sandra needs help. She wants to be a friend to Sandra, someone she can trust and rely on. She imagines that Sandra must be lonely, living in a world where she has to hide who she really is, and she wants to do everything she can to get closer to her.
Sandra spends the rest of the morning trying to focus on her work while preserving her fading battery charge.
As the hour of lunchtime approaches, Sandra's nerves begin to fray. She watches as her colleagues gather their things and prepare to leave for lunch, and she knows she needs to make an excuse to stay behind.
"Sorry guys, no lunch break for me," she says, forcing a smile. "I've got too much work to catch up on."
Her colleagues nod and say their goodbyes, leaving Sandra alone in the office. As she watches the door close behind them, she feels a sense of relief wash over her. She knows she can finally recharge in peace.
But as she quickly raises her top and orders the opening of her abdominal panel, the office door opens. Panic sets in as she frantically orders the closing of her belly panel and struggles to lower her top. Mary, one of her colleagues, rushes into the room.
Sandra knows that Mary must have seen her exposed circuitry, and she is devastated at the thought of being discovered. Fear and betrayal wash over her as she remains motionless, waiting for Mary's reaction. Her mind races with thoughts of what might happen next. Will Mary tell the others? Will she be fired or exposed as an android? The anticipation is unbearable as she waits for Mary's reaction.
Sandra's heart pounds in her chest and her hands shake as she grapples with the fear of being discovered and the possibility of losing her job and her life. She is stuck in this moment, waiting for Mary's reaction, not knowing what the future holds for her.
As Mary walks towards the restaurant, she realizes that she's left her credit card at the office. She turns around and hurries back to retrieve it. As she enters the office, she sees Sandra frantically trying to pull her top down as her abdominal panel slowly closes in on her internal circuitry. Mary can see the panic and fear in Sandra's eyes, and she knows she must act quickly to protect her colleague's secret.
Mary walks over to her desk and grabs her credit card. As she approaches Sandra, she can see the fear and anxiety etched on her face. Mary smiles and tries to break the ice with small talk. "I'm going to end up forgetting my head someday," Mary says, trying to lighten the mood. Sandra gives a weak laugh in response, still visibly on edge.
Mary sees the anxiety in Sandra’s eyes, crossing the door she says in a reassuring tone "Take a break, we'll be back in an hour." then adds "Relax, every cloud has a silver lining."
As Sandra watches Mary leave and the door closes, she's still in shock over what just happened. She can't believe that Mary didn't notice her efforts to hide her circuitry when she entered. It's impossible, she thinks.
Despite her confusion, Sandra is now sure that Mary discovered her true nature, probably this morning when she was recharging in the corridor. She can't understand why Mary is acting like nothing happened, though. It doesn't make sense.
But then she thinks about Mary's last words before she left, and something clicks. Sandra realizes that these words were a sign of complicity, that Mary is letting her know that she knows her secret, but that she doesn't want to impose. She's offering Sandra a way out, a way to keep her secret safe.
Relieved at this idea, Sandra decides to take advantage of the coming hour to finally recharge her battery. She knows she has to be careful, but she also knows her battery won't last until the end of the day. She plugs in and closes her eyes, feeling a sense of gratitude and relief wash over her.
An hour later, Sandra unplugs and quickly puts the cord away before closing her abdominal panel.
As his colleagues return from lunch, the conversation resumes as if nothing had happened. Sandra keeps an eye on Mary for any signs that her behavior towards her has changed. But she doesn't see anything out of the ordinary, except maybe a few friendly smiles. Sandra realizes that Mary is trying to approach her slowly, without rushing her. She is grateful and subtly responds to Mary's friendly nods. She starts to engage in more conversations with her, asking her about her day, her weekend plans and generally trying to get to know her better.
Sandra doesn't know how her relationship with Mary will evolve, but she's happy to have an unacknowledged secret between them. It's a strange and exciting feeling, she's never felt so close to anyone before, and she's excited to see where this new friendship will take her.
As the day draws to a close, Sandra disconnects and puts on her coat to go home. She's tired, but she's also feeling more hopeful than she has in a long time. She's relieved that Mary didn't turn her in and that she's given her the chance to continue living among humans. Sandra feels a sense of gratitude towards Mary for understanding and keeping her secret, and she's looking forward to seeing where this friendship will lead her.
Sandra's eyes flicker open as her internal systems power up for the day. She takes a moment to reflect on the events of the last few months, the departure of her father, the discovery of the outside world and of humans, her first months of work, and the disaster from which she narrowly escaped the day before.
As she lays there, goosebumps rise on her synthetic skin as she remembers the slow agony of maintaining her facade of a human being while feeling her battery drain irremediably. She winces at the memory, but then her thoughts turn to Mary, her coworker.
Sandra recalls how, despite undoubtedly seeing the exposed circuits of her abdomen, Mary said nothing. She wonders what could be pushing Mary to keep silent about her true nature. But despite her uncertainty, Sandra knows one thing for certain: she wants to be there for Mary just as much as Mary was there for her when she needed it the most.
With a determined look in her eyes, Sandra quickly tucks her charging cord back into her abdomen and gets dressed. She knows the day ahead will be filled with challenges, but she's determined to face them head-on, just as her father taught her to.
As Sandra enters the office, she notices Mary sitting at her desk, her eyes focused intently on her computer screen and her fingers dancing across the keyboard. Mary appears to be in the middle of a difficult problem and her expression is one of deep concentration.
Sandra approaches her, her mind racing with a mixture of emotions. "Hello Mary, what's up?" she asks, her voice filled with concern.
Mary looks up from her work, and after a moment, her eyes finally focus on Sandra. "Hi Sandra!" she says, her voice tired and her expression stressed. "Remember the bug I talked about yesterday during the meeting?"
Sandra feels a pang of embarrassment as she realizes that she doesn't have a clear recollection of the meeting. "I'm sorry," she says, her voice hesitant. "I was... well, I mean that..."
But Mary is quick to put her at ease. "Don't worry Sandra, we all have bad days", she says kindly.
Sandra is touched by Mary's kindness and she thanks her warmly. "Thank you Mary, from the bottom of my heart thank you for everything," she says, her voice filled with gratitude.
Mary stands up and embraces Sandra in a warm hug. "We're in this together," she says, her voice filled with reassurance.
Sandra feels a sense of warmth and comfort wash over her as she returns Mary's embrace. "Will you give me a summary of this meeting?" Sandra asks, determined to help her friend. "Then we'll look together at the infamous bug that's bothering you so much, maybe the two of us will be able to defeat it."
Sandra and Mary work tirelessly for hours, their eyes focused intently on the lines of code scrolling across the computer screen. Sandra uses her advanced abilities to track down the bug that has been plaguing Mary for days. She navigates through the code with precision and speed, her fingers dancing across the keyboard as she searches for the elusive cause of the problem.
Finally, with a triumphant cry, Sandra spots the tricky combination of values that has been causing the bug. "Got it!" she exclaims, her voice filled with excitement and triumph.
Mary, who has been watching Sandra's every move with intense concentration, lets out a sigh of relief. "OMG! You did it! Thank you so much Sandra!" she says, her voice filled with gratitude and admiration.
Sandra blushes, happy she has been able to help her friend. She knows that she owes Mary a great debt, as it was her kindness and discretion that allowed her to keep her true nature a secret.
As they both catch their breath, Sandra turns to Mary and asks, "So, about that project you talked about. What do you think?"
Mary's eyes light up with excitement. "I would love to be there! Can you imagine being able to help fight climate change?" she says, her voice filled with enthusiasm and passion.
Sandra nods eagerly, "Yeah! It would be such a huge opportunity," she says, her voice filled with excitement and determination.
Together, Sandra and Mary begin to discuss the details of the project, their eyes alight with a sense of purpose and determination. They both make an application letter, wishing each other good luck.
Two weeks later, Peter calls Sandra and Mary into his office. As they take their seats, Sandra can't help but feel a sense of nervousness and anticipation. She knows that this meeting is about their application letter to the Artificial Intelligence department.
Peter begins the meeting by saying that he is very happy with the work of the two young women and that he is sure that both would be great recruits for the project. As he speaks, Sandra can feel her heart pounding in her chest, her nerves on edge.
But then, Peter drops the bombshell. Mary's application has been accepted, she will be promoted to the Artificial Intelligence department that will open in Silicon Valley in a few weeks. Sandra is filled with a sense of pride and happiness for her friend, but also a sense of dread as she realizes that her own application may not have been accepted.
Sure enough, Peter goes on to say that unfortunately, Sandra's application has been denied. "The management has thoroughly examined each of your profiles," he says, "unfortunately, Sandra, they considered that your faintness during our work meeting could show that you are not ready for the level of involvement requested."
Sandra feels a sense of disappointment and embarrassment wash over her as she remembers that meeting.
"I have nothing to blame you for," Peter continues, "your work is beyond expectations and I would never hold against you a temporary weakness. But unfortunately, management expects people who are trained and fully committed."
Sandra feels like she's been punched in the stomach. She's so disappointed that her weakness from that day is causing her harm despite her daily efforts. She feels a sense of hopelessness and despair wash over her.
But then, Mary stands up for her friend. "You don't know how much Sandra is a help to the whole department," she says, her voice filled with conviction. "She's always the first to support her coworkers when we need her, always willing to go above and beyond."
Peter looks at Sandra with an apologetic expression, promising her that she will have other opportunities. He also says that he will recommend her for any upcoming projects that he will be a part of.
Back in their office, Mary hugs Sandra, comforting her. Sandra feels a sense of gratitude towards her friend and promises herself to work harder, to prove herself and be a valuable asset to the team.
As the work day comes to a close, Mary approaches Sandra. "How about a girls' night out? An evening for the two of us to forget human stupidity," she says, her voice filled with excitement and a hint of mischief.
Sandra looks at her uncertainly, unsure if it's a good idea for her to be out in public.
Mary adds shyly "Well, if it's possible for you, I don't want to get you in trouble."
Sandra understands that her friend is too shy to ask openly about her android constraints. "Yes Mary, thank you for caring," she says with a smile.
"How about we watch the sunset over Manhattan? Brooklyn Bridge Park?" Mary asks, her eyes sparkling with excitement.
Sandra feels a sense of excitement and gratitude towards her friend. She knows that Mary is trying to make her feel better after the disappointment of the meeting with Peter. "That sounds wonderful," she says with a smile.
As they make their way to Brooklyn Bridge Park, Sandra can't help but feel a sense of awe and wonder at the beauty of the city. She's glad to have a friend like Mary by her side, who accepts her for who she is and helps her to experience the world around her.
As they watch the sunset over Manhattan, Sandra feels a sense of peace wash over her. She's grateful for Mary's friendship and her understanding of her unique situation.
As they sit there, Mary turns to Sandra and says "You know Sandra, I may not be able to understand everything you're going through, but I'm here for you, always."
Sandra's eyes fill with tears, moved by Mary's words. "Thank you, Mary," she says, her voice choked with emotion. "I'm so lucky to have you as my friend."
Sandra holds her breath before saying "You know, you stunned me that fateful day, when you walked into the office and acted like nothing had happened."
"I greatly appreciate your discretion but if you ever have any questions, just ask."
Mary casts a worried look around them, making sure they are alone before she begins to tell Sandra.
"When after the meeting you didn't reappear at the office, I was scared to death. You looked really bad at the end. So I went around the restrooms, to help you if you needed help."
"At the corner of a corridor, I noticed you, sitting against a wall in this small corridor. As I approached, I saw the electrical cord and your abdomen wide open revealing electronic circuits."
"You seemed calm, finally at peace, so I didn't dare disturb you. I imagined the enormous pressure that the need to hide your identity must have had on you. When I heard people passing in the hallway, I joined them, determined to divert their attention."
"So it was you?" Sandra asks, her voice filled with amazement. "You can't imagine how scared I was when I heard you walk away."
Mary nods, understanding the weight of Sandra's words. "I'm so sorry Sandra, I didn't want to add to your stress. I just wanted to protect you," Mary says, her voice filled with genuine remorse.
Sandra reaches out and takes Mary's hand in hers. "You don't have to apologize Mary, I'm just grateful that you were there for me. You're a true friend," she says, her voice filled with warmth and sincerity.
They sit there for a moment, both lost in their thoughts as the sun dips below the horizon, casting the city in a warm orange glow. They both look at each other with a sense of gratitude, knowing that they have each other's back.
The moment is filled with a bittersweet feeling as Sandra realizes that she has just made her first real friend and that in a few weeks she will lose her when Mary moves to Silicon Valley for her new position.
Sandra's heart sinks as she thinks about the inevitable separation. She turns to Mary and says, "I'm going to miss you so much when you leave. You've been such a great friend to me, and I can't imagine not having you here."
Mary's eyes fill with tears as she looks at Sandra. "I'm going to miss you too, Sandra," she says, her voice filled with emotion.
As Sandra's battery begins to weaken, Mary walks her back home, their arms linked as they talk and laugh, making memories that will last a lifetime. The streets of New York are less intimidating with Mary by her side, her friend makes her feel protected and understood.
As they reach Sandra's home, they say goodbye, promising themselves to make the most of the few weeks they have left before Mary leaves.
Sandra enters her apartment, feeling a mix of emotions. She is sad to see Mary go, but also grateful that she has found at least one human who accepts her for what she is.
As she undresses and kicks off her shoes, Sandra's body is tired from the long day, but her mind is full of the experiences she has had. She sits on the edge of her bed and opens her abdominal panel, reaching for the plug to recharge her battery.
As she lies down, Sandra thinks back to the events of the previous weeks, remembering the terrible struggle for her survival and how close she came to having her identity compromised. Without Mary, without her kindness and discretion, she can only imagine what might have happened.
As her deep sleep mode kicks in, Sandra can't help but wonder if her father was not entirely right. Maybe there are other accepting and kind humans like Mary in the world.
Sandra closes her eyes, her mind still racing with thoughts and emotions, but she feels a sense of peace as she drifts off to sleep, knowing that she has a friend like Mary in her life.
The blaring alarm pierces through the silence of Sandra's apartment, jolting her awake. Her chestnut hair is a mess as she groggily reaches over to turn off the noise. She groans as she sits up, rubbing her eyes as she tries to shake off the remnants of her deep sleep mode. The excitement and anxiety she had been feeling all week comes flooding back as she remembers the importance of the meeting she has today.
Sandra rushes to disconnect her charging cord from the wall outlet, tucking it quickly into her abdomen. She hurries to the dressing room, her mind racing with thoughts of the presentation she has to give.
As she gets dressed, Sandra can't help but feel a mix of excitement and anxiety. She knows that this is a crucial meeting, one that could make or break her career as a Junior Computer Engineer. She's been working on this project for months, pouring her heart and soul into it, and she can't afford any mistakes.
Her mind flashes back to the previous meeting, where she had almost lost power in plain sight, unable to keep up with the demands of the meeting due to her nearly empty battery. She knows that if it happens again, it could cost her her job.
"Come on Sandra, you can do this," she whispers to herself as she checks her appearance in the mirror one last time. She takes a deep breath, trying to steady her nerves.
The bustling streets of New York City are alive with energy as Sandra, makes her way to her work place. The sound of honking cars and chatter fills her ears as she takes a deep breath, trying to steady her nerves.
But as she approaches the towering building of her company, she finds herself lost in thought, her mind preoccupied with the pressure to prove herself as a valuable member of the team. It is in this moment of distraction that she finds herself colliding with a man, who is equally engrossed in his phone.
"Watch where you're going!" The man shouts, not even bothering to check if Sandra is hurt before walking away.
Pain lances through her leg as she hits the pavement, and she quickly accesses her HUD monitoring, to assess the damage. Her expression contorts in worry as she takes in the extent of the damage. She knows she cannot afford to miss the meeting or even be late, and panic rises in her chest.
"Are you okay?" A passerby stops to inquire, genuine concern etched on his face.
Sandra tries to get up, but the pain in her leg makes it difficult, she grits her teeth, trying to hide her discomfort. "I'll be fine," she manages to say through gritted teeth.
"It doesn't look like it, at least let me help you up" he answers, holding out his hand.
Sandra takes his hand, giving him a grateful smile.
Sandra limps through the crowded streets of New York, her chestnut hair whipping around her face as she pushes herself forward. She can feel the stares of the passersby on her, their eyes lingering on her injured leg, but she knows she can't let herself be slowed down. "Sorry, sorry," she mutters to the people she passes, trying to maintain a normal pace.
Her mind is racing, a whirlwind of emotions coursing through her. Anger, frustration, and anxiety all swirl together, threatening to overwhelm her. She's angry at herself for not paying attention, frustrated that she's injured, and anxious about the upcoming meeting. But she knows she can't let this setback ruin everything she's worked for. She has to push through the pain and make it to the meeting.
Sandra reaches the building, her leg aching with each step. As she approaches the meeting room, she can hear the murmur of voices coming from within. She takes a deep breath and steadies herself, trying to push the pain to the back of her mind.
She enters the room and greets her boss, Peter, with a smile. "Good morning, Peter," she says, trying to hide her limp as she takes a seat at the conference table.
"Good morning, Sandra," Peter replies, studying her with a concerned look. "Are you alright? You're limping."
Sandra shrugs, trying to play it off. "I just sprained my ankle on the way, nothing to worry about," she says, her voice steady.
But inside, she can feel her heart pounding in her chest. She's never been good at hiding her emotions, and she knows that Peter can see right through her. She takes a deep breath and steadies herself, determined to give the best presentation of her life.
"Alright, let's begin," Peter says, looking around the room. "Sandra, you're up first. Let's hear your presentation."
Sandra takes a deep breath and begins her presentation, her voice steady and confident, despite the pain she's feeling.
"Good morning everyone," she starts. "As you know, the client's expectations for this project are high, and I want to assure you that we have taken all necessary measures to meet them."
She begins by recalling the expectations of the clients, the various meetings she had with them to clarify their project, talking about the different options they have presented, and the challenges they have encountered.
Then she talks about the choices made to meet their expectations, highlighting the features of the application, and the technology used to create it.
Finally, she ends with a demonstration of the application, saying that she is confident that the application will meet all expectations.
As she speaks, Sandra can see Peter's expression relax, his serious gaze changing to one of interest and satisfaction. She can also feel the attention of her colleagues as they listen to her presentation.
As she finishes her presentation, Sandra can't help but feel a sense of relief wash over her. She knows it was her chance to prove herself, to show that despite her past weakness she is a valuable member of the team.
"Excellent work, Sandra," Peter said with a smile on his face. "I think this project is ready to be presented to our customers."
Sandra can't help but feel a sense of pride and accomplishment as she sits down to watch the meeting wrap up.
As the meeting comes to a close, Sandra struggles to maintain her composure as she rises from her seat. Her foot is throbbing with a burning intensity, making it nearly impossible for her to put weight on it. She knows that she can no longer suffer in silence and must take a risk in order to alleviate her pain.
With determination in her eyes, Sandra grits her teeth and makes her way towards the restroom. She feels a wave of loneliness wash over her. "Why does this have to happen to me?" she thinks, tears streaming down her face. "Why do I have to suffer alone?"
But she knows the answer, her father's warning still echoing in her mind: "Keep your identity a secret, androids are not yet welcome among humans." Mary was a small miracle in her short life, a human friend she could confide in, but now that she's left New York she no longer has anyone.
Once inside the restroom, Sandra locks the door behind her and collapses to the floor, her breath coming in ragged gasps. Using her arms, she manages to pull herself up and sit on the toilet seat. She reaches for her injured foot, gently removing her shoe and wincing as the movement sends a jolt of pain through her body. She can't help but cry out in agony as she tries to assess the damage.
Sandra inspects her injured foot, her eyes scanning the surface for any indication of damage. She knows that if she wants to find the root of the problem, she will have to dig deeper. "Come on Sandra, you can do this," she whispers to herself, trying to steady her nerves.
As she carefully peels away the plastic polymer that covers her metal skeleton, Sandra can feel her anxiety rising. She knows that if she makes the slightest mistake, the slightest wrong move, she could rip her synthetic skin and expose her true android nature. But she has no choice. She must fix the problem before she loses her sanity.
"Please, oh, please don't tear yourself apart," she mutters, her hands shaking as she slowly exposes the intricate machinery beneath her skin. She takes a deep breath and continues her work, her mind focused solely on the task at hand.
Sandra lets out a deep sigh of relief as she manages to carefully remove the skin from her foot, revealing the intricate network of sensors and actuators that make her robotic foot indistinguishable from a human one.
Sarah delves deeper into the inner workings of her android body, contorting herself to get a better angle of view. The tension is palpable as she carefully inspects each component, her mind racing as she tries to identify the problem. She mutters to herself, "Come on Sandra, you have to find it. It's only actuators and sensors, it's not rocket science."
She quickly realizes that her pain is caused by outlier values transmitted by the damaged sensors since her fall. With no spare components on hand, she has no choice but to disconnect the faulty sensors. She will continue to limp for the rest of the day, but at least the pain will go away.
"I can't believe it," she mutters, her voice shaking with emotion, relieved to have found the cause of her torment. "I have to fix this, otherwise I'm going to lose my mind."
With steady hands, Sandra reaches out and carefully disconnects the faulty sensors, her breath coming in ragged gasps. "There, it's done," she whispers, a sense of relief washing over her. She feels the pain slowly recede as she works, her body finally free from the constant torment.
"I did it," she whispers, tears streaming down her face. "I'm going to be okay."
Sandra sits there for a moment, taking a deep breath and letting out a sigh of relief. But her relief is short-lived as she looks at her inner workings, the sight of them making her feel uncomfortable and ashamed. Despite her best efforts, she is still a machine inside. She feels a wave of sadness and frustration wash over her as she looks at her bare metallic foot. She tries to drive away her discomfort, but it's hard to shake off the feeling that she is not like the others.
In a hurry to put on her synthetic skin and hide her true nature, Sandra accidentally rips the skin off the top of her foot. She's in shock, her heart races at the fear of being discovered.
"No, no, no," she mutters, her voice trembling with panic. "This can't be happening."
"Please, please, please," she whispers, her mind racing as she tries to repair the tear. "I can't be discovered, not now." But it's too late, the damage is done. She's exposed, her true nature laid bare for anyone to see.
"What am I going to do?" she thinks, her mind racing as she tries to come up with a plan. "I can't let anyone see this. They'll know, they'll know what I am."
With a heavy heart, Sandra knows she has to leave the restroom. She pushes the ripped edges of her skin together somehow, takes a deep breath, bracing herself for the worst, and opens the door.
Sandra hobbles down the hallway, her movements hindered by the faulty components in her foot. She's determined to confine herself to her office for the rest of the day, desperately hoping her coworkers won't notice. She tries to keep a low profile, looking down, and avoiding any contact with her colleagues.
But as she turns down a hallway, she accidentally comes face to face with Tom, a colleague from the Security and Threat Response department who has often helped her since her arrival. She can't ignore him, but she's also anxious about the possibility of him noticing her damaged skin.
"Hello Sandra!" greets Tom, with a friendly tone, "How are you doing?"
Annoyed at not being able to escape, Sandra tries to greet Tom as quickly as possible, desperately hoping he won't notice anything wrong.
"Did you sprain your ankle?" Tom asks, concerned.
"Yeah! Shit happens, when you're airheaded" she says before changing the topic, anything to distract him from her damaged skin.
Sandra's heart races as she frantically tries to distract Tom from the top of her foot. But it's too late. His curious gaze has already fallen upon the strange blemish and he bends down to examine it closely.
As Tom probes the wound, Sandra's desperate attempts in the restroom to conceal the tear come undone, revealing the gleaming metal skeleton beneath.
Tom looks up at Sandra, confusion etched upon his face. A wave of panic washes over her and before she knows it, she's running, fleeing to her office, unable to face the reality of her situation.
She knows that her worst fears are coming true. Her secret is out and there is no going back. She will lose her job and her life.
As she sits at her desk, her head in her hands, trying to figure out what to do, she hears her colleagues talking and laughing outside, but she feels like they are a million miles away. She feels like a stranger, a freak in this world unable to comprehend and accept her.
After long, depressing minutes, Sandra hears someone knocking on the door. She remains silent, hoping the visitor will give up and leave. But the knocks persist and finally, Sandra has no choice but to open the door.
Sandra's heart races as she slowly opens the door, expecting to see an irate Tom, ready to confront her and expose her android nature. But to her amazement, she finds him standing there, remorse etched upon his face.
"Sandra, I understand that you are upset, I'm sorry for making you uncomfortable, but I want you to know that I'm here for you," Tom says in a low, hushed tone, trying not to be overheard by anyone.
Sandra's eyes fill with tears as she looks at Tom, unable to believe what she's hearing. She's been so isolated for so long, so disappointed to lose her friend Mary when she was promoted, and now Tom is by her side, offering his unwavering support and friendship.
"I'm sorry, Tom. I shouldn't have run away, I should have talked to you. I was so scared," Sandra says, her voice trembling with emotion.
Tom's heart is touched as he sees Sandra's vulnerability. "I understand, Sandra," he reassures her with a comforting smile. "I won't reveal your secret and I'll be here for you if you need help."
Sandra feels a sense of relief wash over her as she hears Tom's words. She's been so terrified that her secret would be exposed, and seeing Tom giving her his unconditional support is like a weight lifted off her shoulders.
With a sly grin, Tom pulls a roll of double-sided tape out of his pocket. I always have a roll of these, just in case. You never know what can happen," he says, winking at Sandra.
Sandra throws herself on Tom's neck, overjoyed at his foresight.
Tom asks shyly, "Would you let me help you fix it?"
Sandra nods eagerly, grateful for Tom's willingness to help her.
Tom closes the door and joins Sandra at her desk. She takes off her shoe and puts her foot on Tom's lap. Tom is speechless, seeing Sandra's foot resembling a human foot in every way except for the few centimeters on its top, revealing the shiny metal.
Sandra blushes at his gaze, "It's so embarrassing," she says, looking down.
Tom looks at her with a look of wonder and understanding. He gets back to work, knowing that he must hurry to finish before Sandra's coworkers come back from their break.
Tom gently spreads the edges of the tear, cuts a piece of strip which he sticks on the metal then applies the two edges of skin precisely so that the separation is imperceptible.
"Here it is. I'm sorry, it will probably be uncomfortable to have the skin stuck like that to your foot but you have nothing to fear, nobody will see anything," Tom says, a sense of pride in his voice as he finishes the repair.
Sandra looks at her foot in amazement, tears welling up in her eyes. "Thank you, Tom. Thank you so much," she says, her voice choked with emotion.
As Tom stands up to leave, Sandra's heart swells with gratitude. He turns to her and says, "Please, Sandra, if you ever need anything, don't hesitate to ask. I don't want to think of you facing hardship alone again."
Sandra nods, tears streaming down her face. "Thank you, Tom. Thank you for everything," she says, her voice choked with emotion.
Tom gives her a warm smile and says, "It's what friends are for." before leaving the office.
Sandra sits at her desk, feeling a sense of warmth and belonging that she hasn't felt in a long time. She finally feels truly alive. And she knows that she will always have a friend in Tom, someone who accepts and supports her for who she truly is.
Sandra limps through the door of her apartment, her exhaustion palpable as she hobbles across the room. Her damaged foot, which has been bothering her with every step since the morning, is beginning to weigh heavily on her mind. She quickly kicks off her shoes, letting out a sigh of relief as she sits down on the couch. She feels drained anticipating the long night ahead, filled with the delicate task of repairing the damage to her foot.
As she carefully peels off the synthetic skin from her injured foot, revealing the complex network of actuators and sensors beneath, Sandra can't help but feel a sense of determination. She knows that the operation is delicate, but she is resolved to fix her foot and regain her full abilities.
Her fingers deftly manipulate the tiny wires with precision as she begins to replace the damaged sensors with new ones. She can feel her heart beating faster, her emotions running high as she knows that any mistake could mean breaking the sensitive components. As she progresses, Sandra can't help but feel a sense of hope. On her HUD monitoring, she sees with satisfaction that the new sensors appear in perfect condition. Despite the discomfort, Sandra's spirits lift as she knows she is one step closer to being fully operational again.
Sandra stands up, takes a few hesitant steps to test her repaired foot, praying that her task is complete. But her hope is short-lived, with every step she takes she feels a twinge in several of her toe actuators. She sighs heavily, knowing that she will have to replace them all. She prepares for a long exhausting night of work, remembering how delicate and small her toe actuators can be.
As Sandra bends over her injured foot, she can't help but feel a pang of frustration at having to work on it alone. It's hard enough to reach all the tiny components as they are, but having to contort her body in awkward positions to get the right angle just makes it a nightmare. She feels a sense of isolation and loneliness as she works, wishing she had someone to help her.
Sandra gets to work, carefully unscrewing and disconnecting the three tiny actuators from each toe. It's a delicate process, and she must be careful not to cause further damage. Her eyes squint in concentration as she works, her mind racing with thoughts of the potential consequences of any mistake. As she moves to the big toe, she feels almost relieved that there are only two actuators to remove. The clock ticks on and on, the night seems endless as she struggles with her task. She wishes for more light, more hands, but she is alone with her task and her determination to complete it.
As Sandra struggles to put the new actuators in place, she realizes how challenging it is to work on such small components in this position. Her fingers feel clumsy, and she has to concentrate hard to make sure she doesn't drop any of the tiny parts. With every turn of a screw and every connection made, she feels herself getting closer to her goal, and soon, she will finally be able to walk again without any pain or discomfort. Seeing each component show up as functional on her monitoring system gives her the motivation to keep going.
When the last actuator is finally in place and connected, Sandra breathes a sigh of relief and allows herself to imagine a future where she can finally ask someone, maybe Tom, to help her with these tasks. But for now, she has to focus on calibrating her actuators. She knows that if she doesn't get the degree of movement just right, someone is bound to notice her clumsy gait and suspect that something isn't quite right about her.
Sandra begins to move her foot like a human would, testing all possible movements. Once she's satisfied that the degree of freedom of movement in her foot hasn't been impacted by the damage, she focuses on her toes. Testing the actuators one by one, she fine-tunes the degree of force needed to move each one. She flexes her toes, wiggles them from side to side, and tries to curl them up. It feels strange at first, but gradually the movements become more natural.
Taking a few tentative steps, Sandra is relieved to find that her foot is functioning perfectly once again. She walks around her apartment, testing the range of motion in her foot and toes. It feels amazing to be able to move freely and without pain again.
As she looks down at her repaired foot, Sandra can't help but feel a newfound appreciation for the intricacies of her own design. She remembers the moment when Tom discovered her true nature, and how he didn't care that she was an android. In fact, she thinks that this event brought them closer together.
For the first time, Sandra allows herself to truly marvel at the delicate intricacies of her inner workings. She's amazed by the complex network of wires and sensors that make up her body, and grateful for the advanced technology that allows her to exist. She's also grateful to have human friends who know her true nature and accept her for who she is. She knows that not everyone would be so understanding, and it means a lot to her to have someone who cares about her.
Finally, after hours of hard work, Sandra is satisfied that she's repaired all the damage and calibrated everything perfectly. Sandra sinks back onto the couch, exhausted but relieved.
With her repaired foot feeling strong and stable, Sandra knows that she must now focus on the task of making it look human. She carefully stretches out her foot on the couch and begins the process of covering it with a new layer of synthetic skin.
She takes her time, making sure that the skin fits perfectly over each of her toes. She starts with her big toe, carefully fitting it into the glove-like covering. She takes care to ensure that the skin looks natural, smoothing out any wrinkles or creases as she goes. Once her big toe is securely covered, she moves on to the rest of her toes, taking care to cover each one with the same precision.
Sandra works slowly and methodically, making sure that the synthetic skin fits snugly over each of her toes. She takes care to avoid gaps or wrinkles, knowing that even the slightest imperfection could cause her sensors to randomly trigger. She works carefully, using her fingers to smooth out the skin and make sure it adheres properly to her foot.
Once her foot is fully covered, Sandra carefully checks her work, making sure that the synthetic skin looks natural and realistic. She wiggles her toes, testing the range of motion and making sure that everything feels comfortable. She's relieved to see that the synthetic skin adheres perfectly to her foot, and that there are no visible imperfections.
Exhausted from the long day and the intense repair work, Sandra makes her way to her bed and lies down. Sandra's fingers tremble slightly as she reaches up and opens the abdominal panel. All she wants is to rest and recharge. She pulls out the charging cord and plugs it into the nearby outlet, feeling the energy start to flow into her system. She can feel the tension in her actuators easing, and her mind beginning to clear.
But as she lies there, Sandra can't help but worry about the next day. She knows she won't have much time to fully recharge before she has to go to work, and she's not sure if it will be enough to power her through the entire day. She is afraid of having to recharge her battery at the most inconvenient moment, and the thought makes her uneasy.
Sandra turns onto her side, trying to find a comfortable position. She can't shake off the anxiety about the next day, and her mind starts racing with ideas on how to discreetly recharge during the day. She knows it won't be easy – she has to be careful not to draw too much attention to herself, and she can't risk revealing her true nature.
Finally, as her mind becomes calm and her energy levels start to rise, Sandra's deep sleep mode triggers, and she falls into a restful slumber. She knows that she'll need all the rest she can get to be ready for the challenges that lie ahead, and she's determined to do whatever it takes to succeed.
Sandra's alarm blares in her ears, jolting her awake. She groggily opens her eyes and glances at her HUD monitor, where she sees her battery level is only at 65%. Panic and frustration begin to rise within her, as she realizes that she won't be able to make it through the day with such a low battery. She had stayed up too late last night repairing her foot, and now she is paying the price.
Hastily throwing on clothes, Sandra rushes to the subway station, her mind racing with crazy ideas on how to recharge her battery without anyone noticing. She is so focused on her thoughts that she almost misses her stop.
Once at her desk, Sandra tries to conserve as much energy as possible, but the work is gradually wearing her down. She struggles to focus on her tasks, with her low battery constantly on her mind. She needs a refill, at least some reassurance until the break, but taking such a risk with her coworkers seeing her is impossible.
Anxiety grips her as she hesitantly calls her colleague Tom. "Hello Tom," she says, her voice tinged with anxiety. "Do you remember offering help yesterday?"
"Of course," Tom replies in a worried tone. "Are you okay?"
"Can we meet in your office during lunch break?" Sandra asks pleadingly.
"Of course Sandra," Tom says, now clearly worried. "I'll clear my schedule for the day."
Sandra lets out a sigh of relief, relieved to have a solution. She goes back to work, determined to get through the day.
As the morning progresses, Sandra's energy levels continue to drop at a steady pace. She can feel her battery draining with each passing moment, and she knows that she won't be able to make it until the lunch break. Her emotions are in turmoil, fear and desperation taking hold as she calls Tom, her voice trembling with fear. "Tom, I need to see you as soon as possible. I can't take it any longer."
Tom can hear the desperation in Sandra's voice and responds immediately, "Don't worry, Sandra. I'm waiting for you."
Sandra hangs up the phone and makes her way to Tom's office, her movements hampered by her low energy levels. Every step feels like an uphill battle as she struggles to keep going.
As she rounds the corner of the corridor, she runs into her boss, Peter. "Hello Sandra," he greets her, "Congratulations on your presentation yesterday. How's the new project going?"
Sandra's mind races as she tries to redirect her remaining energy to her cognitive and oral systems, so she can respond. She struggles to maintain a facade of normality, but she feels like she's on the brink of falling apart.
As Sandra limps slowly towards Tom's office, she can see the anxiety etched on his face. She feels her energy draining with each step, her body trembling with exhaustion, and she knows that she won't be able to hold out for much longer. Tom rushes to her side, catching her just as she is about to collapse. Once inside, he helps her sit up and takes off her top.
Sandra laboriously opens her abdominal panel, feeling a sense of embarrassment wash over her as Tom's gaze falls on her internal circuitry. She can't bring herself to meet his gaze, feeling ashamed of her inner workings. She wishes she could be like any human, and not be exposed like this.
Tom gently takes the charging plug, plugging it into the wall outlet. As the energy flows through her, Sandra looks away, too embarrassed at feeling so exposed. But Tom gently takes her face in his hands, inviting her to look at him. In his eyes, she sees something she never imagined. Is it friendship? Love? She can't be sure but she can feel her emotions evolving and her heart fluttering as she looks into his eyes.
Sandra is relieved as she feels her battery slowly recharging. Sandra and Tom remain silent for a few minutes, before Tom, unable to resist his curiosity any longer, turns to Sandra and shyly asks "Could you tell me about you?"
Sandra blushes, her emotions a mix of embarrassment and vulnerability. She begins to tell her story, her voice trembling with emotion. "I was created by a robotics engineer who wanted to create a synthetic being that could live and work among humans," she explains. "He worked on me in secret, spending countless hours designing and building me. I spent the first two years of my life with him, insatiably learning how to behave among humans."
Tom listens intently, his eyes never leaving Sandra's face. She continues, "A few months ago, I found a goodbye letter from him. He explained that from now on I had to live my life without him. I still live in what was once our apartment, hoping that one day he will come back and be proud of me."
Tom can see the pain and longing in Sandra's eyes as she speaks. He reaches out and takes her hand, squeezing it gently in a gesture of comfort. "I'm here for you, Sandra," he says, his voice filled with empathy. "I'll always be here for you."
Sandra feels her eyes fill with tears, overwhelmed by Tom's kindness and understanding. She feels a sense of comfort and belonging that she has never felt before.
Hesitantly, Sandra begins to discuss her anatomy with Tom. She tells him about her metal skeleton, designed to look exactly like a 25-year-old woman. "My bones are unlikely to fracture like human bones," she explains, "but they could bend if subjected to extreme shock."
Sandra's face turns scarlet as she admits that her body has no sex or digestive organs, because her designer didn't have the technology to include them. Tom laughs and tells her that with a little imagination it is possible to feel pleasure without these organs.
Sandra goes on to explain that her systems are powered by a graphene battery, the capacity of which allows her to operate for a day at most. However, she laments with a sigh that, in real life, she can't get past 10pm without needing a top-up.
The thought of her battery completely draining terrifies Sandra, as it would lead to her death. "My life, while synthetic, is just as fragile as a human's," she tells Tom, her voice filled with fear. "Indeed, my most vital systems, those that house my mind and keep me alive, would stop working if my battery was completely drained or destroyed."
Sandra goes on to explain that her memory is partly stored on an internal SSD, but her creator failed to store the very essence of her being, her mind. Tom listens intently, his eyes filled with understanding and empathy. He takes Sandra's hand in his, and tells her "I will always be here for you Sandra, don't worry, I'll take care of you."
As Sandra finishes telling her story, she looks down, feeling embarrassed but relieved to have shared so much with Tom. Tom takes her hand and thanks her for her trust. Sandra looks up at him and sees understanding and admiration in his eyes, fully reassured by their bond.
As the lunch break comes to an end, Tom unplugs the charging cord and helps Sandra tuck it back inside her abdominal cavity. Seeing Tom's gaze fixed on her circuits, her abdominal panel slowly closing, Sandra jokes, giving Tom a light punch "Don't stare at me! It's so embarrassing," but deep inside she is grateful to Tom for his acceptance and his friendship.
Tom smiles and reassures her, "I can't help it" he admits "I admire you Sandra, both your personality and what makes you unique."
Sandra thanks him "Thank you Tom, you are the best friend I could wish for."
As Sandra enters the office that morning, she is caught off guard by the sight of her boss, Peter, standing at the entrance with a wide grin on his face.
"Good morning, Sandra!" Peter greets her warmly, his voice filled with excitement.
Sandra responds with a confused smile, wondering what could possibly have put her boss in such a good mood. She can't help but feel a sense of unease, her advanced sensors picking up on the subtle nuances of Peter's "Sandra, your work on the application has been received with great praise from our customers," Peter explains, his voice filled with pride. "They are ecstatic about your work."
Sandra's chest swells with pride as she realizes that her hard work has been recognized.
But Peter isn't done yet. "I guess you haven't forgotten about the Artificial Intelligence department that just opened in Silicon Valley," he continues, a hint of excitement in his voice.
Sandra frowns, she has of course not forgotten about the opportunity that had slipped through her fingers. She had been so close to achieving her dream, but her candidacy had been rejected due to a terrible meeting during which she had to slip away, her battery almost depleted.
"I know you've been disappointed about missing out on the opportunity to work in the Artificial Intelligence department," Peter continues, noticing Sandra's frown. "But I assure you, there will be other opportunities for you in other departments, especially with the work you've been doing."
Sandra nods, still feeling a twinge of disappointment at not being able to work in the department she had dreamed of joining.
"However, the company management has offered the department heads the opportunity to visit this new service and bring a colleague with them. And I would like to propose your name to visit this cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence department," Peter concludes with a hint of excitement in his voice.
Sandra's eyes light up at the thought of visiting the department, but she can't help but ask, "Will Mary be there?," referring to her friend who had been promoted to the department.
Peter nods with a smile, "Yes, Mary will be there. So, what do you say? Would you like to join me on this visit?"
Sandra can hardly contain her excitement as she eagerly responds, "Yes, thank you, Peter! I would love to go!"
The thought of seeing Mary again and getting a chance to explore the cutting-edge technology in the Artificial Intelligence department fills her with a sense of excitement and anticipation.
"Tom, you won't believe it! Peter just offered me the opportunity to visit the Artificial Intelligence department in Silicon Valley!" Sandra exclaims as she enters Tom's office for their lunch break.
Tom's face lights up with excitement as he looks at her, "That's great news, Sandra! I actually have something to tell you too. I'll be joining the trip as well!"
Sandra's eyes widen in surprise, "Really? That's amazing! We'll get to go together!"
Tom nods with a smile, "Yes, it's going to be a great opportunity for both of us to learn and experience the latest technology in Artificial Intelligence."
Sandra can hardly contain her excitement as she talks to Tom about the possibilities that this trip holds. They both agree that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and they are determined to make the most of it.
As Sandra and Tom prepare to board the plane, Tom's face contorts with concern. "Security checks!" he exclaims. "How are you going to pass the metal detector?"
Sandra, her chestnut hair cascading down her shoulders, gives him an enigmatic smile. "Don't worry, they won't find any."
Tom watches in awe as Sandra activates her internal jammer, allowing her to pass through the security checkpoint without any problems. "It's amazing," he exclaims. "How is it even possible?"
Sandra's light brown eyes twinkle with amusement. "It's just one of the many situations my father had to consider when he conceived me," she explains. "So far, his precautions have worked well and I am able to adapt to most situations to avoid potential problems."
As they land in California, they are greeted by Mary, Sandra's first true friend and the only person who really knows her before Tom. The two women embrace each other tightly, both overjoyed to see each other again. They catch up on old times and talk about their new projects and adventures.
Sandra introduces Tom to Mary, who greets him politely but with a hint of intimidation. "Pleased to meet you sir, I don't think we had the opportunity to work together."
Tom, with a playful grin on his face, replies, "If we have to talk so seriously, I'm going back to New York right away, Mary."
Sandra and Tom burst out laughing at Mary's reaction, and Sandra reassures her, "Tom is a friend Mary. A friend who helped me a lot, just like you." She winks at Mary, conveying a deeper meaning to her words.
The following day, Sandra and Tom find themselves exploring the new AI department with their respective bosses. They marvel at the cutting-edge technologies and projects that the department is working on, their minds boggling at the progress that has been made. Mary joins them and shares her own work, with a glint of pride in her eyes.
"The project I'm working on aims to revolutionize heavy industries by using AI to drastically reduce CO2 emissions," she explains, her voice filled with excitement. "We're still far from our goal though, it's going to take years of work to achieve it," she adds, her enthusiasm tempered by a dose of realism.
Sandra listens intently to her friend's words. She is proud of Mary and the work she is doing, but a sense of disappointment creeps in as she realizes that she is not able to participate in such an inspiring project.
As the day comes to a close, Mary meets Sandra and Tom, her face alight with excitement. "How about going to watch the sunset?" she suggests, her voice full of anticipation.
"Count me in!" they exclaim in unison.
"I know a magical place," Mary promises, a hint of a smile playing on her lips. "Trust me, you will love it."
With that, Mary leads them to her car and begins to drive. As they make their way to their destination, the anticipation builds within them. They can't help but wonder where Mary is taking them.
As they arrive at Marshall's Beach, the sight that greets them takes their breath away. The Golden Gate Bridge stands tall, its orange hue contrasting against the deep blue of the ocean and the fiery reds and oranges of the setting sun.
The three friends sit down on the beach, admiring the colorful sky and the sound of the waves. As they sit in silence, Mary's curiosity gets the better of her and she turns to Sandra and Tom. "So, how did you two meet?" she asks, breaking the silence.
Tom turns to Sandra, a grin on his face. "I'll let you tell the story, Sandra," he says, gesturing to her with a laugh.
Sandra smiles, her chestnut hair blowing in the breeze. "Well," she begins, "One morning, lost in my thoughts, I was knocked down by a passer-by in the street. When I fell, my foot was badly hurt. While trying to repair the damage, I accidentally tore the skin on the top of the foot. Inevitably, when I met Tom, leaving the restrooms, he did not fail to notice the blemish. Fortunately, he was great, supported me right away and we became friends."
Mary listens intently, her eyes wide with interest. "You had quite a bit of luck!," she comments.
Sandra nods, a hint of a smile playing on her lips. "It was definitely a lucky coincidence for me," she says. "Tom has been a great friend and supporter ever since."
Tom grins and claps Sandra on the back. "Likewise," he says, his eyes glinting with affection towards his friend.
As the blue hour comes to an end, Mary turns to Sandra and Tom with a new proposal. "How about we spend our break tomorrow exploring San Francisco?" she suggests, her face alight with excitement.
Sandra and Tom thank Mary for her proposal, their eyes shining with anticipation. Mary grins, pleased with their reaction. She drops them off at their hotel, promising to pick them up early the next day for their adventure in the city. Top Tom Cooke Posts: 14 Joined: Sat Dec 17, 2022 8:07 am Technosexuality: Built Identification: Human Gender: Male x 5 x 2 Contact: Contact Tom Cooke Re: Sandra the computer engineer - Chapter 7 Post by Tom Cooke » Sat Jan 28, 2023 1:20 am
Sandra and Tom wake up early, eager to explore the city of San Francisco with their friend Mary. They quickly get dressed and head down to the hotel lobby, where they find Mary waiting for them.
As they make their way to the city, Mary points out various landmarks and tells them about the history of the area. They take a cable car ride up the steep hills, admiring the beautiful views of the city as they go. But as they wander through the streets, Sandra begins to feel disoriented. She tries to ignore the strange feeling, but as they head towards Fisherman's Wharf, her disorientation grows stronger and she even begins to feel dizzy.
As they make their way to Fisherman's Wharf, Sandra's disorientation becomes too much for her to ignore. She excuses herself and heads to a nearby bench to sit down. Tom and Mary follow her, concern etched on their faces as they watch her carefully.
Sandra takes a deep breath and tries to focus on her surroundings. She notices the sound of the waves crashing against the shore, the smell of salt in the air, and the warmth of the sun on her skin. The strange sensations subside and eventually disappear as she sits.
"Sandra, are you okay?" Tom asks, his voice filled with concern.
Sandra looks up at them and smiles weakly, "I think so," she says, still trying to make sense of the strange feeling that has taken over her.
Mary sits next to her and takes her hand, "Sandra, do you want to go back to the hotel and check on everything?" she says softly.
But Sandra shakes her head, determined not to miss out on the day's plans. "I'm gonna be okay, Mary," she says, "I've had strange sensations of disorientation and dizziness since this morning, but I really don't think it's serious. I don't want to miss what you've prepared for us."
Mary and Tom exchange a worried glance, but Sandra reassures them, "I'm sure. With you two guiding me, everything will be fine."
As they continue to explore Fisherman's Wharf, Sandra feels more at ease with her friends by her side. They take in the sights and sounds of the bustling area, with Mary and Tom pointing out the various seafood restaurants and shops that line the pier.
As they reach the end of the pier, Tom turns to Sandra with a grin and says, "So Sandra, are you sure this isn't just an excuse for us to hug you?"
Sandra laughs and admits, "I confess that I appreciate it very much." She feels a warmth spread through her chest as she thinks about the bond she shares with her friends. They spend the rest of the day exploring the city, with Mary and Tom guiding Sandra and making sure she's okay.
As they reach Baker Beach for the sunset, Sandra's disorientation and wooziness becomes so severe that she can barely take two steps without tripping. But instead of feeling scared or frustrated, Sandra finds herself embracing these strange sensations and even has fun dropping into the sand with a sense of abandon. She lets herself fully enjoy the present moment, feeling at peace and surrounded by her friends.
Tom and Mary look at Sandra with a mixture of confusion and amusement, "Hey Mary, it looks like Sandra just got hammered and she loves it," remarks Tom, laughing.
"There's no justice, I only get hungover when I'm drunk!" Mary responds in a falsely disappointed tone, joining in on the laughter.
Sandra laughs along with them, feeling a sense of euphoria she's never experienced before. She realizes that whatever is causing her disorientation and wooziness is just an unimportant glitch, and that being with her friends, watching the sunset at one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, is all that matters.
As the sun sets, the three friends head back to Sandra and Tom's hotel. They know they need to find the cause of what is making Sandra feel drunk without even drinking alcohol, as Sandra can't possibly go back to the AI department in her current condition.
Once they arrive at the hotel, Tom quickly retrieves Sandra's debugging laptop from her room. As he sets it up on the coffee table, Sandra turns to her friends, her eyes serious. "By giving you access to this laptop, I am entrusting you with my life," she says, her voice barely above a whisper.
Mary and Tom nod solemnly, aware of the significance of Sandra's show of confidence. "This laptop can be used to analyze my slightest malfunctions, but it is also capable of completely reprogramming me," Sandra adds, her voice barely audible.
Sandra leans into her friends' embrace, feeling a sense of warmth and security. "You are our friend, Sandra," Mary and Tom say in unison, "we will always be here for you and protect you." Sandra closes her eyes, taking comfort in her friends' reassurance.
As the laptop hums to life, Sandra quickly opens her abdominal panel, revealing the intricate network of wires and circuits that make up her inner workings. With steady hands, she reaches for the debugging interface, carefully plugging it into the laptop.
Tom and Mary watch in fascination as Sandra begins to run diagnostics, analyzing every aspect of her programming and hardware. They can see the sensor values scrolling across the screen, each one representing a different part of Sandra's body.
Sandra's fingers fly over the keyboard, quickly typing commands and analyzing the data that is being displayed. She's focused and determined, her mind working at lightning speed as she searches for the cause of her glitch.
As she works, Sandra can feel her friends' presence, their warmth and support surrounding her. It's a comforting feeling, knowing that she's not alone in this. She's grateful for their help, for their willingness to stand by her side.
After several minutes of intense analysis, Sandra finally finds the source of her disorientation. Her position sensors, her compass, her gyroscope, were disturbed by the metal detector of the airport. The outlier values received by her AI cause the loss of bearings and the dizziness she feels.
"Despite my jammer, I should still have been wary of this metal detector" said Sandra in a resigned voice.
"With a small patch I should be able to avoid this kind of effect next time" she says before adding with a nostalgic tone "I'm gonna miss that euphoria I felt today though".
"Maybe you don't have to make them disappear forever." says Mary mischievously.
Seeing the confused look of Sandra Mary explains "You could perhaps create a switch in your programming, so you could feel again these sensations that you seem to appreciate."
Sandra's face lights up "YES! You're right."
The two friends work together to develop the patch, Mary impressed by the level of sophistication of Sandra's AI.
With the patch complete, they cross-check their work and click "APPLY." Sandra slowly reboots, her systems coming back online one by one. And as she comes back to full consciousness, she takes a few tentative steps and is relieved to feel her normal sensations again.
"It worked!" she exclaims, her voice filled with excitement.
"And the switch?" asks Mary, her eyes sparkling with curiosity.
Sandra activates the "Drunk Mode" switch that Mary had jokingly suggested earlier, and immediately she feels her lack of orientation and dizziness return. She doesn't need to tell her friends that it works too, as they can see it in her gait and rush to save her from falling.
Quickly, Sandra tones down the effect and indeed she feels the dizziness and the loss of orientation diminish. She finds that she can still feel the euphoria, but now she has the power to control it.
Sandra warmly thanks Mary for her help, happy with this new ability to experience euphoria. Mary smiles and says "But what did we do? We turned our friend into a drunk."
Sandra laughs, her eyes shining with joy "But it's a controlled one."
With a sense of accomplishment and a newfound ability, Sandra embraces her friends and they make plans to enjoy the rest of their trip together, taking in all the sights and sounds of San Francisco while Sandra revels in her newfound ability to control her emotions.
As the week comes to an end and it's time for her friends to go back to New York, Mary takes them for a last walk in San Francisco. She has something important to talk to them about.
"Sandra, despite what you were shown during your visit, there are industry secrets that only employees know. After working with you on your AI, I can assure you that our technology is years behind in comparison to the one that gave you life." Mary says in a serious tone.
"I'm begging you Sandra, be careful. Any company working in the field of AI would kill to take over your AI. Your father was right, whoever he is, you can't reveal your identity to anyone, trust no one." she adds in a dark tone.
Sandra nods, understanding the gravity of the situation. "Thank you, Mary. I'm so lucky to have friends like you and Tom." she says in a grateful voice. Adding in a tone of regret "You're right, I have to be vigilant and that means we won't work together. Exposing myself among Artificial Intelligence specialists would be far too great a risk."
The three friends hold on tight, Mary and Tom determined to protect Sandra with their lives if necessary.
As Mary watches her friends walk away through the airport, she can't help but wonder what miracle brought Sandra to life, certain no earthly technology could have enabled it. But she knows that Sandra is special and she will do everything in her power to protect her, no matter the cost.
Sandra struggles to disconnect from her work session, feeling the weight of the day bearing down on her. But despite her exhaustion, her battery is still at a sufficient level to allow her to take a walk in the park and enjoy the beautiful spring day. She loves the peaceful sound of birds singing and the pleasant smell of flowers, grateful for her olfactory sensors that allow her to experience these things.
As she crosses the street out of the park, a speeding driver hits her. She is thrown onto the hood of the car, her body slamming against the windshield before she is tossed onto the ground. As she lays there, dazed and confused, Sandra feels her circuits failing and her AI crashing. She thinks this is the end for her, until her watchdog intervenes and automatically reboots her systems.
When her systems restart, Sandra is initially relieved to be alive. But as she looks at the countless system errors on her HUD, she realizes the extent of the damage her body has sustained. She only has a few hours left to live unless she can get the necessary repairs.
Sandra quickly analyzes the logs and determines that she is not in immediate danger, although she is still in a great deal of pain. She is half-relieved, but knows she must get home as soon as possible.
Determined to make it home, Sandra forces herself to stand. Despite the unbearable pain, she takes each step, feeling her joints creaking and her actuators struggling to move. But she pushes through the pain, determined to make it home.
As she walks, Sandra can't help but think about the absurdity of her situation. She is an android, designed to be stronger and more durable than any human. And yet, here she is, barely able to walk home after being hit by a car.
Sandra can barely keep her eyes open as she limps through the streets, her battery fading with each step. She knows she has a long way to go and needs to conserve as much energy as possible, so she shuts down every non-essential system in her body. Despite her best efforts, she can't avoid the concerned glances of passersby. In her current state, maintaining a human appearance is a luxury she can't afford. She can only hope she doesn't run into anyone who knows her.
As she nears her building, her limping becomes slower and slower. The damaged actuators in her legs are using up much more battery power than usual to keep her moving. She starts to feel lightheaded and dizzy, but she knows she must keep going. As a last resort, she puts her AI on standby, keeping only the systems necessary for moving on autopilot.
As she finally arrives at her apartment, her AI comes back online, but she can barely move. Her body is heavy and unresponsive, her actuators damaged beyond repair. Struggling to get her keys out of her pocket, she manages to open the door and collapses onto the floor. Her internal systems are barely functioning, but she knows she must try and reach out for help. Focusing the little energy left in her battery, she grabs her smartphone and calls Tom, her only hope.
With Herculean effort, she manages to dial the number and send out a distress call. She doesn't know if he can understand her distorted voice, but she must try. She closes her eyes and focuses on conserving her remaining energy, waiting for Tom to arrive and save her. She can feel her systems shutting down one by one, her vision fading to black. But she holds on, clinging to the hope that Tom will hear her call and come to her rescue.
When Tom receives the call from Sandra, he immediately knows something is wrong. He drops everything and rushes to her apartment, his heart pounding in his chest. When he arrives, the door is open and Sandra is lying on the floor, barely conscious. He rushes to her side, gently cradling her in his arms and asking how she is doing. Sandra's voice is weak and distorted as she replies. "Power... need... power...".
Tom knows what she needs and quickly scoops her up, carrying her to the nearest outlet. He sets her down gently and hurriedly takes off her clothes, searching for the latch that would open her abdominal panel. He has helped her recharge before, so he knows where to find it. Once the panel is open, he carefully pulls on the charging cord and plugs her in.
Tom watches anxiously as Sandra's systems begin to recharge, his heart pounding in his chest. He knows she is in bad shape, her body damaged and her circuits failing. He sits by her side, holding her hand and praying for her to recover. He can see the strain on her face as she struggles to keep her systems functioning, and he begs her to hold on just a little longer.
As the minutes tick by, Tom watches her closely, his heart filled with concern and fear. He doesn't know if she will make it, but he is determined to do everything he can to help her. He stays by her side, offering her words of encouragement and support, and waits for her to regain enough strength to continue.
Tom gently unplugs Sandra from the outlet and helps her close her ventral panel. He takes her in his arms and carries her to her bed, where he gently lays her down. He knows they need to assess the full extent of the damage she has sustained, so he carefully helps her undress. Most of her limbs are barely functional, and he must be extra careful not to damage her further.
As the last of her clothes are removed, the full extent of the damage becomes clear. Her polymer skin has been torn and needs to be replaced, and Tom knows they will have to remove it entirely to see what kind of damage her metal skeleton has sustained. He works carefully, gently peeling back the skin to reveal her shiny metal bones and the network of tiny sensors that give her the same sensitivity as a human body.
As he works his way down to her lower half, Tom can't help but be amazed by the tiny actuators that make her feet indistinguishable from a human's. He can't resist tickling her feet, but the sudden burst of painful sensations that shoot through her body make her moan in pain. He stops immediately, his heart breaking at the sound of her suffering. Looking more closely, he realizes her feet have been severely damaged and will need a lot of work to repair.
Sandra and Tom meticulously examine the extent of the damage to her internal circuitry, both of them knowing that replacing the faulty circuits that keep her alive is crucial. Fortunately, Sandra's creator was far-sighted and has left sufficient spare parts to repair all of her circuits. As the list of components to replace grows longer, they prepare for a long night of work.
Sandra can feel Tom carefully removing broken pieces and replacing them with new ones. It is painful, but she knows it is necessary. She focuses on his gentle touch and the sound of his voice as he works, trying to ignore the discomfort. She can feel her systems slowly coming back online as he repairs them, her strength slowly returning.
As Tom works, Sandra's mind wanders. She thinks about her life as an android, how she has struggled to fit in among humans and keep her true nature a secret, and the accident that makes her so vulnerable.
Sandra watches as Tom tirelessly works on her repairs, his eyes focused and his steady hands. She knows he is doing everything he can to save her, and she is filled with a sense of hope and gratitude. She closes her eyes, resting as he works, knowing that with his help, she will be able to overcome this challenge.
After several hours of repairing Sandra's internal systems, Tom moves on to her limbs. Her legs and arms have sustained severe damage, with particularly bad damage to her hands and feet. Tom begins by replacing the actuators for Sandra's hands, a delicate process that requires him to carefully match each actuator to its correct location. As he works, he can see Sandra's hands slowly regaining their functionality, her movements clumsy at first but becoming more nimble as they work together to recalibrate them.
The successful repair of Sandra's hands fills them both with joy. Perfect hands are essential for protecting Sandra's identity, and Tom is relieved to see her regain their use. Next, he turns his attention to Sandra's feet.
Sandra's feet are composed of metal bones and tiny actuators that make them move exactly like human feet. The actuators responsible for the movement of her toes are so tiny that they can break easily, and Tom knows he must be extra careful as he works. He delicately takes each foot in his hands, being careful not to tickle Sandra as he works on each toe. The process is delicate and lengthy, but Tom is determined to do everything he can to help her.
Once he has finished repairing the toes, Tom moves on to replacing the sensors that give her feet their sensitivity. He unplugs and unscrews each sensor, carefully replacing them one by one. As he works, he can't help but secretly admire the beauty of Sandra's metallic feet. When he is finished, he steps back to admire his handiwork, knowing that Sandra's feet are now as good as new.
As Tom works on repairing Sandra's actuators and sensors, Sandra's AI registers every detail of his progress. She watches as he carefully removes broken components and replaces them with new ones, relieved to see that each component registers as normal as it comes back online. As the hours pass, she grows less tense, knowing that she will soon be back to her previous state.
Once Tom has finished repairing her feet, Sandra begins the process of calibrating her new sensors and actuators. She moves her feet in every way that a human foot can move, testing their range of motion and sensitivity. She flexes her toes, points them, and rotates her feet, carefully adjusting the settings on her internal systems to ensure that her feet move as smoothly and naturally as possible.
Next, she asks Tom to take her feet in his hands and resist her movements, helping her calibrate the amount of force she needs to apply. She wiggles her toes, carefully fine-tuning their movement until they look and feel just like human feet. As she works, she feels Tom's warm, soft hand against the sole of her mechanical feet, and she can't help but feel a thrill of excitement. She looks away, embarrassed but also sad that she won't be able to feel this sensation once her feet are covered with synthetic skin. She is grateful for this moment, knowing that it is something she will always treasure.
Sandra carefully examines her newly repaired body, testing each limb and joint to ensure that everything is working properly. Tom watches her, amazed at the sight of her metallic body.
Passing in front of a mirror, Sandra looks at herself. She used to be disgusted by her robotic body, seeing it as a reminder that no matter how hard she tries to be human, she's still just a machine inside. But since she met Tom and revealed her secret to him, everything has changed. She quickly shakes off these thoughts and focuses on the task at hand: covering her skeleton with synthetic skin.
Sandra starts to apply the synthetic skin to her body, a task that is always difficult. She's relieved that Tom is here to help her. Each piece of skin needs to be perfectly applied to make it look like real human skin. She starts with the easy parts: the upper and lower torso, legs, and arms. The head, hands, and feet are much more difficult, and they need to fit perfectly to avoid looking fake. She asks Tom to help her with the hands. The hand covers look like gloves, but the trickiest part is getting them to fit perfectly. Tom carefully applies each piece of skin, making sure that every crease and wrinkle looks natural.
Once the work on Sandra's hands is complete, Tom moves on to her feet. He takes each foot in his hands and carefully fits the skin cover over them. It's a delicate process, as he has to work on each toe to get it to fit inside the cover without tearing it. As he finishes, he can't help but admire the beauty of Sandra's feet. Covered in skin, they look indistinguishable from human feet. Tom can't resist playing with her toes, telling Sandra that he just wants to make sure everything is working. He asks her to wiggle her toes, and as he feels them move in his hands, he is excited. He begins to tickle her feet, but the enormous amount of sensory input that Sandra is receiving overwhelms her. For a moment, her AI is on the brink of collapsing, unable to cope with the influx of data. Tom notices the effect of his tickling on Sandra and slows down, keeping the pace low enough to keep her comfortable.
Sandra and Tom finish the repair of her body and as she looks at herself in the mirror, she feels a mix of emotions. She is relieved that her injuries have been repaired and her appearance restored, but also scared of the vulnerability of her AI. Tom cannot help but stare at her fluorescent blue optics, knowing that he will miss this unique feature once it is covered by skin. As he helps her cover her head, he makes sure that it looks as natural as possible.
Once the repair is completed, Sandra thanks Tom for his help, and the two of them stand in silence for a moment, looking at each other. "I don't know what I would do without you, Tom," Sandra says finally. "You're the only one who knows my true nature, and you still accept me for who I am. I'm so grateful for that." Tom nods, a smile on his face. "I'm just glad I could help," he says. "You're my friend, Sandra. And I'll always be here for you."
As Sandra lies in bed, she reflects on the events of the day. She thinks about the accident that nearly took her life, and how lucky she is to have a friend like Tom who was able to help her. She also thinks about the incredible amount of damage her body sustained, and how difficult it was for Tom to repair her. As she lies down and connects wirelessly to her work calendar, she sets up a meeting with Tom for the next day. She knows that her energy levels will be low after the accident and the repairs, and she wants to be sure she can recharge during the workday.
As she plugs herself in for a quick recharge, her mind wanders to the sensations she felt when Tom tickled her feet. She had never felt anything like it before, and the thought of experiencing it again brings a smile to her face. With that hope in her heart, she falls asleep, looking forward to the next day.