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Chapter Text

May 15th, 2038

 

"In the past week." There was a television set up in the break room, he didn't listen to much to what was on the news normally, so the fact that something important was going on caught his attention. "Over seven thousand androids have begun to search for jobs in the workforce. The recent laws passed require that employers cannot discriminate against somebody due to whether or not they are android or human, similar to the previous laws passed decades ago to protect women and minority groups."

 

"Phcking androids, like it wasn't hard enough for humans to get jobs." Gavin remarked to nobody in particular as took a long sip of his coffee. Cringing as the hot drink scalded his throat. Shit, that hurt.

 

"You got that right." A gruff voice muttered, Gavin turned to shrug at Anderson.

 

"I thought you softened up on them a bit, old man." He looked away from the Lieutenant, watching the television. The newscaster continued to talk about the new law. Brightly colored graphs popping up on the screen to show what kinds of jobs the androids were more likely to take. "Y'know, the tin can Fowler put on your ass."

 

"You mean I didn't get pissed at it enough to shoot it or something?" Anderson grumbled, Gavin could hear him getting himself coffee. "It was annoying, but not too annoying. Don't know if the tin can as a deviant, or as a machine was worse."

 

"Hmf."

 

"Many androids have been taking jobs that humans cannot do." The newscaster continued. "These jobs are dangerous to humans, but harmless to androids. Such as working in places or with chemicals that can harm a biological creature. However, some androids are still pursuing more common careers. Especially in cases where android work pre-deviancy has left the market with too few human workers. Such as nursing and psychology."

 

"Well, I guess the phckers can't get radiation poisoning." Gavin pointed out, gingerly taking another sip of the coffee. "There's that."

 

"In other news." The newscaster took on a more serious tone. "Anti-android crimes are on the rise across the nation. Including vandalism, assault, and even murder. Many police departments are finding themselves overwhelmed, and we advise androids not to leave the android-specific complexes that they live in at night, unless it is an emergency. Curiously, many PC200 and PM700 androids have returned to the police force, voicing that they hope to help their people."

 

"Hey." Tina popped up around the corner. "The captain says he wants everybody to meet up in the bullpen, ASAP."

 

Gavin frowned and downed his coffee in one last go. "Why, what's going on now?"

 

"We're getting some android officers. Three of them." She pushed a strand of hair back away from her face. "He wants to have us meet them. Just standard, 'new guy' stuff. And they need partners. So he'll be bringing three of the human officers into his office."

 

"Phck." He tossed the styrofoam cup into the trash can. It soared inside. Gavin was glad he didn't have to pick it back up, that would have been embarrassing.

 

"Pity to the idiots who have to work with them." Anderson chimed in, taking a long drink of his coffee. "I just hope he doesn't dump one of them on me."

 

Tina gave both of them a slightly disgusted, and definitely shocked face. But she didn't say anything. She just turned and speed walked away.

 

"Let's just get this over with." Gavin drawled, sticking his hands into his pockets and starting to waltz towards the bullpen.

 

He spotted the three androids almost immediately. The three were clustered together, shooting wary glances at the people around them. One was a PM700, the other was a PC200. The third made him have to take a double take. At first, he thought it was Connor. But that was impossible, there was only one activated RK800 and it was a Jericho leader. Then Gavin realized that this android was a little bit... taller. But easily twice as broad and had cold, gray eyes that pierced holes into the humans around it. Okay. Not Connor. Not even an RK800. But it definitely had an LED blinking at it's temple. It was definitely an android.

 

"Hey what the ph-"

 

"Alright, men!" Fowler barked, quickly making himself the biggest figure in the room. "As you can see, we've got three androids here. Officer Catherine PM700, Officer Jonathan PC200, and Detective Richard RK900. They'll be working with us from now on. I expect you all to treat them as you would a human newcomer." The Captain's eyes swept over the group. "Reed, Chen, and Miller. My office." He paused for a moment for quickly nodding to the androids. "You three as well, come on."

 

Gavin's surprise at the at the strange bot's model number quickly delved into shock and annoyance. Phck his life. He didn't need some plastic prick rattling around after him.

 

"Ah, at least it's not me." Anderson shrugged. "Too bad, Reed."

 

Gavin huffed, narrowing his eyes and clenching his jaw. He stomped over to Fowler's office, pretending to not notice the way that Tina was side-eyeing him. As soon as the door clicked shut behind them, he voiced his complaints.

 

"Come on, Captain. I don't want a partner. Especially not some.." Gavin paused for a moment before deciding, phck it, he didn't want to hurt some machine's fake feelings. "Plastic asshole."

 

All three of the androids, who had been facing Fowler's desk, turned their heads to look at him. The two common officer models just look shocked, but the Not-Connor looked pissed. And Gavin had to admit, a pissed off Not-Connor looked terrifying. It didn't help that the thing was about three times his own size.

 

"Reed." Fowler's gaze was cold. Staring him dead in the eyes. "You need a partner. And it is going to be Detective...." He gave the Not-Connor a look.

 

"I prefer Richard over RK900." It piped up. It even sounded a bit like Connor, but just different enough that they could be told apart. "Most androids feel demeaned by being addressed by their model. I am yet to meet an exception."

 

"Your partner is going to be Detective Richard." The Captain continued. "Reed, you don't get to argue with me on this. Either you accept him as your partner, or you turn in your badge."

 

Gavin quickly realized that there was no way he could win this. Instead, he stayed silent. Stewing in his own anger.

 

"Catherine is with Chen. Jonathan is with Miller. I expect the six of you to set a precedent for human-android relations."

 

Tina gave Catherine a small smile. Miller looked more nervous. Their android... partners looked curious. The Not-Connor was giving him an icy glare and it made his skin crawl.

 

"Now get out of my office." Fowler added.

 

Gavin huffed and hunched over, trudging out of the fishbowl. Tina and Miller hung back, standing around for a few extra seconds so they could come out next to their respective walking calculators. He could hear Tina striking up a casual conversation with her android. Talking about.... Were they actually talking about animals? Apparently the tin can had a snake. Which, firstly, what the actual phck? Secondly, from the sound of it, Tina found the androids' attachment to pets fascinating.

 

"I don't mean to pry, but about how many androids would you say have pets?" She asked. Gavin was still lost on why she was bothering.

 

"Oh, I'd say almost all of us except for the Jericho leadership themselves, they're too busy." It replied. "Including Mr. Broody over there, he has a cat you know...." Its voice became softer, low. Like it was trying to keep the android in question from hearing the conversation. "Wanna know what he named her? I can't decide if its adorable or ridiculous."

 

He couldn't hear any other part of what they were talking about. Not that he really cared.

 

"I can't believe Fowler did this to me." Finally, he spotted Anderson again. He stomped over to the man.

 

Anderson gave him a helpless shrug. "Too bad for you."

 

"Excuse me, Detective Reed?"

 

Gavin took a deep breath before turning around to face the damn robot. The phcker had a blank, unreadable expression. But its mood ring was blinking yellow. "What do you want?"

 

"I just wanted to say that I hope we can have a productive partnership, and I look forwards to beginning to work for the DPD." Was it trying to... placate him? Anderson was chuckling quietly to himself.

 

"Yeah. Sure thing, Rick Deckard, don't you have something better to do?" Gavin turned away from it again.

 

The bot didn't walk away. Just stayed quiet for a beat before replying. "Was that a Bladerunner reference?"

 

"Yeah, so?"

 

It was silent for a moment, thinking, before it responded. "I prefer the Terminator movies."

 

For whatever reason, Tina and her bot found this hilarious. And both of them were trying, and failing, to hide the fact that they were laughing out loud.

Chapter Text

May 15th, 2038

 

As soon as Richard got back to his apartment, he wanted to collapse.

 

Which he did.

 

He landed face-first onto his bed, which he mostly just used for stasis every night. But he was very tempted to use a pillow to muffle a scream of frustration. Terminator let out a small yowl, pouncing on top of him and kneading her paws into his back.

 

Richard grunted, reaching behind himself carefully to pick up the cat in one hand and turning himself over onto his back. He pulled the squirming ball of fur to his chest.

 

"Min, why did I apply to the DPD again?" He groaned, burying his face into her fur. She responded by smacking him in the face with a paw and meowing at him.

 

"Oh yeah, so I can buy stuff for you."

 

She chirruped, wriggling free from his arms and jumping onto the ground. Terminator flicked her tail pointedly at him and let out a long mewl.

 

"Yeah, yeah. I'm getting up." Richard dragged himself back to his feet. He stumbled only half conscious into the kitchen. Who could have known that deviants could get so tired? The cat kibble felt stiff and heavy in his hand as he tipped it into Terminator's bowl. She purred, rubbing her side against his legs as she slipped past him to reach the bowl.

 

The kibble stored back away, he collapsed back onto his bed. He hadn't laid there for long before a warm, furry animal hopped up next to him.

 

"Hello, Min." Richard muttered, giving her a gentle pat. She limped on top of him, curling up on top of his thirium pump the way she had when she was a young kitten. Terminator purred softly, tucking her bad paw over his shoulder.

 

"My partner is... As North would call him, 'a giant bag of dicks', Min."

 

She licked his chin, the roughness in combination of the warmth was jarring.

 

He sighed.

 

"Thanks for being my friend, Min. It means a lot to me."

 

She exhaled softly, her breath smelled like the dry food he fed her. Richard tried not to wrinkle his nose at the stench. The cat closed her eyes, snuggling into his artificial warmth.

 

Enter Stasis? Y/N

 

Y

Chapter Text

May 28th, 2038

 

For Richard's first crime scene, this one was very gruesome.

 

He didn't have a digestive system, but if he did he would definitely be getting sick. Much like Officer Chen was getting, down by the curb.

 

"The two of you came here on a noise complaint?" Catherine nodded. She looked disgusted, but she couldn't throw up either, so she hadn't joined her human partner by the trash cans. "And you found..." He gestured to the house. It was small. The paint peeling, the driveway cracked. A quick search said that nobody had lived in it for years. She nodded again. "Alright. I'm going to go check it out. Message me when Detective Reed arrives."

 

Catherine nodded again. "Alright, Detective."

 

Richard righted his tie as he walked over to the screen door. It swung open easily under his hand as he stepped inside. Clanging loudly as it swung violently, clattering against the worn wooden threshold.

 

It appeared that he was in what was once the kitchen. It was a mess. The cupboards were falling apart, the tiles were broken. From here, he could see rust-colored human blood splattered on the wall, trailing off into an adjacent room. He paused, steeling his nerves before walking up to the bend and turning the corner.

 

Richard knew it was a double homicide, but he couldn't have been prepared for this. A human and an android. The human was male, and the android was an ST200. They were curled up together, leaned against a ripped up couch. Bodies stiff and unmoving, dead eyes staring at each other.

 

Both man and deviant were in pieces.

 

Blood soaked deep into the carpet and ratty furniture. Red and blue mixing into a thick, dark violet mud. Congealing thick around mangled pieces of flesh and biocomponents. Wires and bones. Plastic and skin. Just in tatters. Thrown haphazardly around the room. Smudges of thirium and human blood painted onto any surface that the pieces of the bodies had struck.

 

He could see what the blood splatter on the wall was from now. The human's hand had been crudely hacked off of the bloodied stump before being chucked at the wall. The bone of the wrist poking out from the appendage. Off-white from blood, stained an odd orange-yellow. There were other limbs scattered around. Mostly the android's, but Richard could see marks around the human's other wrist and his ankles where the assailant sure did try to violently rip them free. Deep gashes snaking around the limbs, the bone in the left ankle half exposed and cracked.

 

Attack was likely emotionally driven.

 

The human was holding something tight in his hand. Richard crouched down to examine it. It was the android's thirium pump. But... It didn't look like she had fought him for it. Rather, she was curled almost peacefully into his side. Saline fluid staining her face.

 

Human victim put android victim out of her misery.

 

He swallowed. Richard wished he could vomit like the humans. The man's body was only a few hours old, Exsanguination as cause of death, but the android seemed to have died at least an hour before then. He couldn't imagine what it was like. The android and human were obviously close. He couldn't imagine what it must have been like to hold the corpse of somebody he cared about, just waiting for his own death. Richard swallowed, quickly taking a sample of the mixture of thirium and blood.

 

Human blood

Belonging to: Michael Hammersmith

Born: 3/24/14

No criminal record

 

Thirium 310

Belonging to: ST200 #445 881 092, Designation "Glade"

Activated: 1/11/27

Status: Deviant

 

A message popped up in a corner of his vision.

 

PM700 #654 990 192, Designation Catherine: Detective Reed has arrived.

 

Richard could hear the door swing open and clang shut. The walls were thin.

 

"Phcks sake." Richard heard the man curse, his voice sounded tight.

 

"Good evening, Detective." He turned around to face him.

 

"Well.." The man spoke a bit stiffly. "What do you have here?"

 

"A double homicide. But I'm not sure if it could be legally classified as that. It looks like the two were left to die of their injuries, and the man put his android companion out of her misery before dying a while afterwards." Richard took a deep breath, slipping on a cool facade. Hiding his disgust and discomfort at the deaths behind pure professionalism. That didn't mean he wouldn't be hugging his cat for hours straight as soon as he got home. "The perpetrator could be either an android or a human, I don-"

 

"They were human" Reed jabbed in, his eyes were fixed on a dusty nightstand. Richard glanced where he was looking. One of the android's fingers sat on it, on top of a small piece of paper. Reed picked the sheet up before his face screwed up in disgust, letting it fall to the ground. Richard picked it up. The first two lines were in flat, straight form. Like they had been typed out or stamped down. With hand-writing beneath it. And a small symbol beneath it all, a red triangle similar to the Cyberlife logo, crossed out with an X.

 

We Are The Red-Blooded Brotherhood

Glory Be To The Human Race

 

This man stepped away from the right path, copulating with this machine.

We had no choice but to purge this betrayer, and break his toy.

 

                                           Glory be to the human race.

 

 

 

"This... Group appears to be claiming that they were the ones to commit this crime." He said slowly, folding the letter up.

 

"No shit, Robocop." Reed muttered, eyes fixed on the butchered couple. "Phckin... Shit. I might not like you tin cans, but this is a bit..." He took a deep breath, rubbing his face. "I need I moment."

 

"I understand, Detective." Richard placed the note back on the nightstand. "I'll be outside."

Chapter Text

June 7th, 2038

 

"Detectives."

 

Richard folded his hands, looking up at Chris Miller. He opened his mouth to reply but Reed beat him to it.

 

"Yeah, what is it?"

 

"There.... Three bodies have been found. The Red-Blooded Brotherhood are claiming that they did it."

 

Reed took a deep breath, Richard glanced at him nervously. The man slammed a fist down on his desk.

 

Chris blinked and continued. "Jonathan says he can send the address to Richard, and then you two can go..?"

 

"Okay sure, let's get going, plastic." Reed was in a mood, now. Richard could see that. His partner had been fuming ever since they had been unable to link any specific individuals to the Red-Bloods. But it looked like he was getting worse. As the human moved to stand up, Richard followed him.

 

The man walked outside, and paused. "Wait, do you have a car?"

 

"No, Detective." He responded, wringing his hands. "I don't."

 

"You can hitch a ride with me, I guess." He shrugged. "Just tell me what turns I have to make to get there."

 

Richard nodded, opening the passenger side door and stepping inside as a message from a familiar serial number came through.

 

PC200 #435 675 990, Designation Jonathan: 135 Conver St. Triple homicide. Victims are a human and two androids.

 

He shut the door at the same time that the Detective opened the driver's door. He sat pleasantly throughout the drive, pointing out the path as they went. They pulled up to a small, nice house.

 

"Come on, tin can, let's get this over with." Reed snapped, opening the door. Richard followed him slowly. Stepping smoothly through holographic police tape and jogging inside. As they entered the house, Reed froze in front of him, stiff. Richard stepped around him to see the bodies and-

 

Two AP700s, both female. And.. A human child. The murders were less brutal. Each had been killed with a slit throat, the androids appeared to have been trying to comfort the girl in their last minutes.

 

"Oh phck's sake, Richard how old is that kid? That's a phcking-"

 

"She was ten, Detective."

 

"Phcking.... Damnit."

 

Richard crouched down beside the corpses, deciding not to take a sample until the Detective wasn't looking, for his sake. Instead, he scanned the faces.

 

"The AP700s were named Olivia and Isabella. They had been purchased as caretakers of the girl, Mia, and deviated when they contacted CPS to protect her three months before the revolution." He kept his eyes on the victims. Voice on the verge of breaking. "Mia was placed in foster care and the androids went on the run. After the Android Adoption Act was filed, they pushed to become her legal guardians and won."

 

He paused for a moment before continuing. "Olivia and Isabella were in a romantic relationship. Mia referred to them as her 'mama' and 'mom'. This familial bond may have been why they were targeted."

 

"Shit. Phcking... Goddamnit" The Detective hissed. "Imagine murdering a phcking child and still thinking that what you are doing is okay."

 

He turned to face the man, raising an eyebrow. The Detective was clutching the sides of his head, he looked pissed. But there was some kind of.... distress there.

 

"Detective, are you alright?" Richard said slowly, watching Reed. "You seem to be upset."

 

"Upset?" He choked. "Of course I'm upset! She was in foster care, Richard. Google some statistics with that computer brain of yours. At ten, with severe trauma, there was no way she could be adopted. But she got a miracle. She got her family. And some bastards with hero complexes decided she didn't deserve that." Reed ran both hands through his own hair, looking like he was about to rip it out.

 

"Detective? Do you n-"

 

"No. I don't need anything." Reed gritted his teeth. "Just... Phck. When we catch these bastards-"

 

"They will face the fullest extent of the law." Richard replied, crossing his arms behind his back. "Something tells me that the jury won't take kindly to child murderers. And that the inmates they'll share a prison with won't either." He paused, glancing at the corpses. "I do believe that people who harm children, whether through abuse or murder, do not fare well in jail. Mia's biological parents were murdered within weeks of their conviction."

 

"Good."

 

Richard raised a brow at him.

Chapter Text

June 8th, 2038

 

"Detective... Have you slept at all in the past twenty four hours?" A familiar voice chimed. It... He? Even sounded worried.

 

"What's it to you?" Gavin snapped.

 

"You are my coworker and partner, Detective." He crowed, leaning down to look him in the eyes. "It would be a detriment to our case for you to be sleep-deprived, and I can still be worried about your physical health, as an acquaintance."

 

"Mhm." He sighed, turning back to his terminal. "Sure, okay."

 

He could hear Richard walking away, and wasn't surprised to hear him walking back towards him either. Richard did sit across from him, after all. He was surprised, however, to see the android set a styrofoam cup of coffee on his desk before returning to his own terminal.

 

"Hey, tin can, what's up with this?" He picked up the cup and gestured with it.

 

"If you've been staying up for so late, you'll need caffeine to keep you going." He paused for a moment, tilting his head and LED spinning yellow. "Even if it increases your blood pressure. And shortens your life span."

 

"Well." He took a long sip of near-boiling liquid. Not even flinching as it burnt the ever-living phck out of his throat. "Thank you for bringing me one day closer to my imminent death by coffee."

 

"You're welcome, Detective." He smiled cheekily, returning to whatever it was that he and the other androids did when they sat stock-still with spinning LEDs at their desks.

 

He glanced at his computer and sighed. "Okay, pal. On a scale from one to ten how bad of an idea is this-"

 

Richard looked up at him, raising a brow.

 

"I found an anonymous extremist anti-android forum." Gavin paused, biting his lip. Alright. This was probably not a good plan but- "Should I try to interact with them?"

 

"I'd call that a solid nine, Detective. The Red-Bloods don't hesitate to kill other humans." The android's words were blunt. "It's a large risk to your safety."

 

He leaned back, stretching while sighing and rubbing his eyes. Struggling to keep his eyelids from slipping shut. "We don't have a lot of leads. We don't know who is in the Red-Bloods." Gavin rocked back forwards. "The longer we wait, the more people who die because they made the phcking mistake of pissing off a ton of dicks."

 

"That doesn't mean that you should be reckless enough that you become their next victim, Detective." Richard jabbed, narrowing his eyes. "They have only attacked humans who are in some sort of particularly close relationship with an android, but trying to infiltrate them could push them to kill you to keep your mouth shut."

 

"There is a sex joke somewhere in there."

 

"Detective, this is a very serious conversation." The android hissed, putting both hands face-down on his desk. "This is a matter of life and death."

 

"You're right, Richard." Gavin snapped. "Just sitting around like this, twiddling our thumbs, is going to mean that they are going to take more victims."

 

"Just... Listen. Okay?" The android grumbled, putting his head in his hands. "There could be a temporary solution, before we do anything so.... stupid. Both groups of victims did not live in an android complex because humans were part of their familial unit. We can't just bring humans into the complexes, that is too risky for the residents and the apartments are not suitable to have a human live in them anyway. But..." He paused for a moment, thinking. "We could set up a support network. Like... A neighborhood watch but all across the city. Androids can communicate silently across long distances, if one sees something suspicious, they can warn the others while getting themselves and their loved ones to safety. As well as uploading images of the suspects to a cloud. So the others know who to watch out for. And if worse comes to worst, law enforcement finally gets an idea of who we are after."

 

Gavin blinked.

 

"Alright, tin can, that's a lot of mechanical Jargon, but it sounds like it might work."

 

"It's a better plan than throwing yourself into certain death, Detective." The android quickly added. "Now go home and get some sleep."

Chapter Text

June 11th, 2028

 

The past couple days had been fine. Nothing had gone wrong. All was well.

 

A couple of androids and humans reported strange behavior, but the suspects always ran away before law enforcement arrived. With the couples and families getting away either unharmed or with minor injuries. They even had a suspect. Fowler had said that he would send some people to talk to the man before ordering Reed and Richard to go home for the day, as they both had been pulling late nights.

 

"Ayyyy, Richard." North finger-gunned from on her usual pillow pile, legs crossed.

 

"Hello, North." He settled down in his usual spot, noting his brother's absence. "What movie are we watching today? And where is Connor?"

 

"Motherfuckin' Pet Sematary. The old one. The sequel and the remake aren't as good." She leaned backwards. "And Connor is having a date night with his boyfriend. He hates Pet Sematary. And I like it a lot. So I took this opportunity to have you watch it."

 

"Alright. Let's do it." Richard pulled his knees up to his chest. He hoped it wouldn't be too gory. He couldn't take too much more of that.

 

He watched the movie start. It was classic horror. Ominous music. The mom. The dad. The little boy. The girl. And, of course, Church.

 

Richard gasped when the cat first came on screen. He wasn't the same breed as Min, but he looked so much like her. "North! North look at that cat!"

 

"Yeah, what about him?"

 

"He looks just like my cat!" He was grinning. Terminator was such a smart cat, it was fun to imagine her being used in a movie as an animal actor.

 

She muttered something he couldn't hear before quickly adding. "Neat."

 

Richard gave her a look, raising an eyebrow.

 

Before he could ask her what she meant, a message chimed in his head. He paused, stiffly. Slowly, Richard lifted a hand to press his fingertips to his temple, right at his blinking LED.

 

>>+1(313) 447 0901: hey, tin can. its reed. tina told me how to text/call you. we have new victims. they made the wrong fucking move now. meet me at the station

 

Richard paused, thinking for a moment. His stomach sank.

 

Add +(313) 447 0901 to contacts? Y/N

 

Y

 

Set Contact Name:

 

Detective G. Reed

 

>>I am heading there now. I'll be there in twenty minutes.

 

"Uh oh, Richard what's up?"

 

"I'm sorry." He got up, dusting off his pants and just being quietly glad that he hadn't changed out of his work clothes. "Something happened at work."

 

"That sounds ominous." She frowned. "Like... Murder-something?"

 

"Probably. I can't tell you any more."  He ran a hand through his hair with a huff. "Ongoing investigation."

 

"Yikes." Her eyes widened. "Stay safe, Richard."

 

"I'm a cop, North." Richard shrugged. "I'll be perfectly fine."

 

He smiled at her before turning his back and moving at a near-run. He was fast, faster than any human ever to live or any android ever made. And it didn't take long for him to get to the station. He paused, shocked.

 

Even though the only officers on the case were Reed and Richard, and the time was very late for humans, there were people everywhere. Absolutely everywhere. Richard scanned the faces. Everyone was there..... Baring Miller and Jonathan. But they were supposed to be on shift, and the chances of nothing illegal going on at any given time was too slim in a city like Detroit. So they were probably just off doing something. Almost everybody who was there was standing or milling about. Talking quietly in small groups. Heads bowed. Except for Catherine, Chen, and Reed.

 

Catherine was sitting at her desk, head in her arms. Chen sat beside her, one hand on the android's bowed shoulder. Reed paced back and forth besides them, hands clenched into fists.

 

"Detective." Richard crowed, fixing his tie as he walked over. "Officers."

 

Catherine didn't respond. Didn't even acknowledge that she heard him. He could see now, from this angle that her LED was spinning a violent red. Chen remained focused on her partner. There was a growing dread, deep in Richard's bicomponents. Something was wrong.

 

"Shit." Reed hissed, stopping his constant motion. "Phck."

 

"Detective, what is going on? Your text wasn't very descriptive." He tilted his head to the side, LED spinning yellow. Something was definitely wrong. Something was wro-

 

"They killed Chris and Jon."

Chapter Text

June 11th, 2038

 

"Richard, come on." Gavin tugged on the tall android's sleeve. He didn't budge. Gavin huffed in annoyance. "We're going."

 

"Where are we going, Detective?" Richard pulled his arm free from his grasp.

 

"We're searching the crime scene, Tin can. That's where we're going." Gavin snorted again, looking up at him. Phck, why did Cyberlife make him so tall. "We might be able to find something. Something about the Red-Bloods. Come on."

 

"If you insist." The android huffed, not meeting his eyes. His movements stiff, his head bowed low. Richard's eyes were almost.... colder. He kept glancing around himself nervously.

 

Gavin frowned. What's wrong with him? "Alright..? We'll use my car."

 

He climbed inside and shut the door, quickly tapping the address into his phone and setting it down on the divider between the driver's seat and passenger's. Richard entered quietly, eyes set straight ahead.

 

Gavin pulled out of the parking spot and started to drive. His GPS' singsong voice chirped every time he needed to make a turn. Every once and a while he would look over at the android beside him. Richard never moved. Not an inch. Icy blue-gray eyes not shifting. He had to admit that when they finally arrived at the Alvin Moore's residence, he was relieved that the ride was over.

 

"So." He stepped outside, slamming the door shut and locking it. "Alvin Moore was our only suspect, but you already knew that, and Fowler sent Chris and Jonathan to talk to him." Gavin stuffed his hands into his pockets. His eyes fixed on the sparkling holographic police tape. "They went inside, and as soon as the door shut, Alvin struck. First incapacitating Jon, then shooting Chris in the head. He finished the job by killing Jon with kitchen knife. Stabbing him three times in the thirium pump and once in the throat. For whatever reason, Jon was unable to fight back."

 

He could see Richard cringe out of the corner of his eye.

 

"Let's just get this over with." The android hissed quietly.

 

Gavin raised a brow at him as they walked through the police tape, but didn't reply. The door opened smoothly on oiled hinges as he opened the door and stepped inside. Everything was as it was when he had first gone to the crime scene when Chris and Jon hadn't responded to any attempt at contact. Except the bodies were gone. They had been moved to the morgue. Both officers' blood still was splattered on the ground, as it hadn't been long enough for Jon's to evaporate.

 

He wrinkled his nose up in disgust at the way that the bloodied carpet squelched beneath his boots as he moved away from the door and into the living room. He glanced behind him to see Richard disappearing into the kitchen. Gavin didn't think much of it as he peered around. He slowly picked up a framed picture. It was a photo of Moore and several other men. Their arms thrown around each other's shoulders as they grinned drunkenly into the camera. Gavin set it down, figuring that Richard could scan the strange faces later.

 

"Detective, could you come look at this?" The familiar voice called from the kitchen. Gavin straightened up and walked over to his partner. Rather startled to see him holding a handgun. He couldn't help but notice that most of the cupboards appeared to be unable to close all the way. Poor structure.

 

"What-?"

 

"I found it. It may be the weapon that was used to kill Officer Miller." He held it up, holding it gingerly.

 

"Aren't you worried about getting your fingerprints on it?"

 

"Androids do not have fingerprints, Detective." He crowed, setting it gently back on the counter.

 

"Why would the perp leave his gun...?" Gavin muttered, turning to return to to next room. As he stood in the threshold, he felt the distinctive feeling that he was being watched. He spun around.

 

Moore stood silently behind Richard, the empty cupboard he had been hiding in stood open, clutching a small black box in his hand. Richard's face contorted into confusion when he saw Gavin's horrified face.

 

"Richard! Behind y-"

 

Moore lashed out, digging one end of the box, Gavin now saw that it was a taser, into the back of Richard's neck. He fell like a sack of potatoes with a crackle of static.

 

"Mother-phcker!" He pulled his service weapon, heart pounding. Why wasn't Richard moving? "Drop the taser and put your phking hands in the air!"

 

Moore stalled for a moment too long to placate Gavin's short temper. He aimed and fired, a bullet sinking into Moore's shoulder. The one that was holding the taser. He dropped it with a yell and a splatter of blood.

 

"Put you phcking hands in the air!" He yelled again, hands shaking. Richard still hadn't moved. He wasn't even breathing. His LED spinning red. This time, Moore complied. Gavin paced over and cuffed him before quickly dropping by Richard's side.

 

"Hey, Rich, buddy." He snapped his fingertips in front of the android's face. No blinking. No reaction.

 

"Mother-phcker!" Gavin spun to face Moore again. "What did you do to him!?" He didn't wait for him to reply. Instead, he pulled out his walkie. "This is Detective Gavin Reed. We're at 136 Grove St. I have apprehended the suspect Alvin Moore. Suspect is injured." Gavin swallowed thickly, glancing at his unmoving partner. "Detective Richard RK900 is down and unresponsive. Over."

 

He crouched down next to Richard, positioning himself so he could watch both the android and Moore at the same time. Gavin didn't know long he was waiting there. Long enough for his ankles and knees to begin to complain with sharp jabs of pain. When he finally heard police sirens, he could have cried with relief. Richard still hadn't moved this entire time.

 

Somebody opened the door.

 

"Detectives?" That sounded like Anderson.

 

"We're in the kitchen!" He replied, watching Moore's face jolt in fear.

 

The Lieutenant turned the corner, followed closely by Catherine and Tina. Anderson cursed and went over to Moore, grabbing him by the arm and yanking him towards the door.

 

"You have the right to remain silent- blah bleddy blah. You know the drill." Anderson hissed, dragging the man along and out of the kitchen. Leaving Tina and Gavin with their android partners.

 

"What happened to him?" Catherine kneeled down beside Richard, turning his head gently in her hands so she could check his plastic skull for injuries.

 

"Phcker tased him. He just... Went down." Gavin groaned, rubbing his eyes. What time was it? It had to be at least some early AM.

 

Catherine frowned. "A taser shouldn't effect an android that way. Unless it was... Maybe it could have been tampered with? Tell me exactly what Moore did."

 

"He uh," Gavin blinked. "Moore just... snuck up behind him and stuck the taser into the back of his neck."

 

"Oh." Catherine paused, pulling her hands away from Richard's limp form momentarily. "That explains it."

 

"How?"

 

"He hit Richard in the access port." She muttered, slowly straightening his arms and legs."It is used for assembly and serious repairs. So somebody at a computer can view everything about the android, both physical and in the brain. Electrocuting it... It can't be good."

 

Gavin's mouth felt dry. "Is... He going to be okay?"

 

"I... I don't know." Catherine was shaking. Why the phck did Fowler send her out to this? She obviously wasn't doing well. "We need to get him to New Jericho. Help me lift him." Her voice quickly became clipped and serious. The same way Richard always spoke when something or someone was upsetting him but he pushed past that and stayed cool and professional. She tucked her arms under his back and Gavin moved to support his lower body.

 

He was heavy. Tina moved in front of them, holding open the front door before opening the door to Gavin's back seat. Catherine clambered inside, tucking him in carefully across two of the seats before settling in the third one, steadying his body. Tina went into the squad car she and Catherine had taken. Gavin went in the driver's side.

 

Gavin tried his damn best to drive as fast as he could without making any sharp turns or hitting any bumps. The drive to New Jericho took way too long for his liking. As far as he knew, Richard's insides could be fried and his partner was about to die in his car.

 

When they finally pulled up, there was a small group of androids waiting outside. They had what looked like a homemade gurney. He wouldn't be surprised if nobody had thought of donating real equipment.

 

He opened his door and stepped outside, quickly opening the back door that Catherine was sitting next to. She stepped outside, carefully lifting Richard and pulling him forwards. Gavin quickly moved to help support the unconscious form.

 

The androids that helped the injured of New Jericho moved quickly. They wheeled the gurney over so Catherine and Gavin could set Richard down on it. His LED was still going, spinning red. It was a relief, in a way. Richard was still alive.

 

"Shit." Gavin cursed, running his hands through his hair as he watched the androids take Richard inside. One of the nurses stayed behind, grasping forearms with Catherine. Their skin peeled back. He glanced at them as they split apart. The nurse went back inside.

 

"Do you know if he's going to be okay?" Gavin found himself unable to look Catherine in the eyes.

 

"I hope. For now, at least, we can just hope. And I'll look after his cat." She sighed, rubbing her forehead. "I'm... Tired. I need to get going. Take his cat to my apartment. Go into stasis."

 

"I can give you a ride, if you want." He offered, staring at the blank wall that was the front of New Jericho.

 

"...Thank you."