LOG 20370516 06:35:00
→ Morning preparations initiated.
The apartment is still.
The children will be due for a feeding soon, but as always, No-Sense has timed his entry so that their formula will be ready around the time they wake up. Ms. Ibuki and Mr. Gojiro have not yet appeared from behind their closed bedroom doors. If No-Sense dials up his sensors for sound, he will surely hear the even rhythms of four sleeping humans breathing in the morning air. However, he is secure in the knowledge that they sleep soundly in their respective stations. No-Sense can always be content with that.
There is an unwashed bowl in the sink.
→ New task pending: wash dishes.
Mr. Tarou has already left for his rehabilitation appointment, scheduled hours before anyone else rises, as per usual. No-Sense has observed that most humans prefer not to awaken before the sunrise. Thus, No-Sense infers that Mr. Tarou must have at least one of two motivations: the first, the desire to protect Ms. Ibuki from the constant reminder of Mr. Tarou’s radiation illness; the second, the impulse to avoid Mr. Gojiro at all costs (especially Mr. Gojiro at his most cantankerous, in the morning). No-Sense can respect the peacemaking intentions of the second. Even at their most docile, Mr. Gojiro and Mr. Tarou are a volatile combination to keep in close quarters. However, in true moments of distress, No-Sense still trusts the men to settle down, due to their shared objective of keeping Ms. Ibuki as happy as possible, if nothing else.
When Mr. Tarou returns, No-Sense will make sure to set out a fresh bowl of pudding for him.
→ Timer set: Prepare a fresh bowl of pudding in +3hrs. Set out on kitchen table upon Mr. Tarou’s return.
With his task queue populated, No-Sense fetches the baby formula from the refrigerator and sets to work.
Nothing further to report.
LOG 20370516 06:47:23
The children have awoken.
No-Sense had just capped off the baby-feeding bottles with an efficient twist of a hand. Once his sensors confirmed the optimum temperature of the baby formula, he trundled towards Ms. Ibuki’s room with the tray in hand.
Right on cue, a baby’s wailing broke through the silence of the apartment.
Now, No-Sense enters the room shared between Ms. Ibuki and her children, to find Ms. Ibuki already sitting up groggily. “Good morning, No-Sense,” she says.
“Good morning, Ms. Ibuki.”
→ Morning child-feeding initiated. Ms. Ibuki alert and well.
Ms. Ibuki shuffles out to the kitchen without another word. For all of her relentless energy later in the day, Ms. Ibuki seems to have inherited her father’s morning stupor. No-Sense is aware that genes do not pass along personality traits as they do with physical features, but he’s sure that prolonged proximity functions much the same way. Humans often come to emulate each other over time, without even realizing it. Mr. Kurobe never used to clap people on the back so much until they all left Tokyo, and he began spending time around other working men again. Now he gives Mr. Gojiro as many encouraging slaps to the back as the other man will allow. (It is probably for the best that Mr. Kurobe does not come over in the morning often.)
Sometimes, he lays a supportive hand on No-Sense’s shoulder, too. When this happens, No-Sense gives him the gesture of affirmation he has learned best: the thumbs-up.
Mr. Gennai always used to thrust an unnecessary thumbs-up at any person he talked to. No-Sense has always wondered about this reflex of his creator’s – is it an affirmation? An encouragement? A comforting gesture? Sometimes No-Sense still gives unsuspecting household objects a thumbs-up as he goes about his duties, testing out the feeling of the motion. Whatever the meaning, if the humans find the gesture heartening, No-Sense will keep his thumbs warmed up and at the ready for positive reinforcement.
“Good morning, Ms. Sora, Mr. Riku.” No-Sense gives both children their own thumbs-up, as reward for sleeping soundly into the morning.
→ Morning child-feeding complete. Morning child-burping initiated.
No-Sense extends his rubbery paddle attachment, affixed courtesy of Mr. Gojiro and Mr. Kurobe, and burps the children. He re-swaddles them with keen precision.
Retracting his paddle, No-Sense extends a scale and ruler to measure the children’s growth.
→ Saved: Ms. Sora growth log, 20370516. Saved: Mr. Riku growth log, 20370516.
No-Sense looks forward to the years when he will start to log each new word the children learn, until they surpass him and learn too fast for even a robot to follow along.
Nothing further to report.
LOG 20370516 07:02:47
→ Dish washing complete. 1 task pending: prepare pudding in +2.6hrs.
No-Sense returns to the main room to find Ms. Ibuki seated in front of the television.
“The children have had breakfast, Ms. Ibuki.”
She gives him a tired smile. “Thanks, No-Sense.” Then she turns her attention back to the ongoing broadcast. No-Sense starts a background auditory process to tune in as well, while he plans.
Mr. Gojiro’s door is still closed. No-Sense will wait to prepare his breakfast, and then perhaps get a head start on lunch as well.
This afternoon, Mr. Kurobe will be here to check over No-Sense’s protective coverings and other such augmentations. These regular check-ups began with No-Sense’s second repurposing upon leaving Tokyo. After disabling all of his crisis-response weapon triggers until further notice, they had all agreed that he needed new features to run his new primary functions optimally. Mr. Gojiro and Mr. Kurobe couldn’t manage to retrofit him the way Mr. Gennai would have, so they did their best with the protective padding and childcare tools they could find.
Now, with these features in regular use, the older men check No-Sense over for potential fixes and improvements more often than is strictly necessary, but he understands. The safety of the children is paramount. Also, it gives them something to do.
They all lived and languished in JAXA for so long. There was the constant struggle of day-to-day survival, of course, but also an interminable idleness, sometimes, stretching across the hours. With the removal of one, the older men have found themselves overwhelmed by the other.
Mr. Gojiro is, ostensibly, retired. As a survivor of the nuclear fallout, he qualifies for a government pension. He never admits that perhaps he can’t feel comfortable accepting aid so easily given, after years of laboring in near-solitude at JAXA.
Mr. Kurobe exclaims that he’s come for his cure from boredom every time he walks in the door. (He’s not satisfied with sitting around on a regular pension either.) He’s around more often than not. And it fills his days, sure, but more than that – it brings life to Mr. Gojiro’s.
They both putter around the apartment, straightening this cabinet door, propping up this table leg, baby-padding this sharp corner. And, sure, Mr. Gojiro scowls at the creaky furniture and rolls his eyes at Mr. Kurobe’s jokes.
But sometimes, at the end of the day, he looks at the work he’s done and smiles.
Someday, Mr. Gojiro will find his line of work, figure out what he wants to do with all his newfound opportunity. He will venture out into the city once again, and return at the end of the day with a smile of knowing his day was worthwhile. Perhaps, if No-Sense is feeling bold, he will give a thumbs-up in response.
(No-Sense is already planning to ask Ms. Ayame for help babysitting the twins once Ms. Ibuki makes up her mind to go to school. Mr. Tarou will probably find a job, too, to support everyone; Mr. Gojiro won’t stay cooped up in this apartment forever.)
But for now, Mr. Gojiro will tide himself over with minor household repairs. In the meantime, Mr. Kurobe will fill his time with driving over here to prod No-Sense all over and tell him, in all mock seriousness, that he needs to eat more, he’s gotta get some meat on these bones.
No-Sense, after all, has always been all metal and no cushion. His old butler uniform helped a bit to soften his edges, before. Now that he’s a primary caregiver, it’s about time that they softened his rigid exterior. Mr. Gennai always used to joke about how No-Sense was made up of the very strongest, sturdiest of stuff. He’d made him full of knowledge and logic, so he could assist them, and then full of iron and flames, so he could protect them. The strongest stuff Mr. Gennai could think of.
The heart of a Coppelion must be made up of the strongest stuff of all, No-Sense thinks.
→ Record saved: Message log for Ms. Aoi, 20370516.
“Hey, No-Sense, have a look at this!” Ms. Ibuki calls, waving a hand at the television. No-Sense obeys.
The news broadcast is airing a live feed from inside a helicopter.
“– And now, back to Reporter Yamada, coming to us from the skies above Tokyo. Yamada, last we heard, the Coppelions were hard at work rebuilding the infrastructure in city center, having cleared much of the rubble. How’s it looking from your point of view?”
“Yes, that’s right, the Coppelions are still hard at work in the central district. In their last transmission, they predicted completing the major building foundations within the end of the month. Everywhere you look down there, there’s a Coppelion carrying rubble away or laying concrete. We could all stand to learn from their diligence!
“And if you look down towards the city hall here on my right, you can see their leader, Miss Fukasaku Aoi, coordinating efforts from the air. The miraculous flying Coppelion back at it again! And I tell you, that’s a sight we’re all still getting used to, even months after the reactor incident.
“Oh, she sees us! She’s waving! Everyone, let’s say hello to Ms. Fukasaku Aoi. Hello!”
“Hello, Ms. Aoi,” No-Sense says.
“Keep up the good work, Aoi!” Ms. Ibuki cheers at the television screen.
→ Record saved: Message log for Ms. Aoi, 20370516.1.
It heartens No-Sense to confirm that Ms. Aoi continues to strive and build, as is her calling, just as No-Sense continues to serve and protect. No-Sense will keep updating his message log diligently in preparation for the day they meet again. He’ll have plenty to report by then, days full of caring for babbling babies and stir-crazy adults.
Until then, he’ll keep on logging. He’ll keep on caring.
Nothing further to report.