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Ten Minutes of Resistance

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Time Stamp. 22:36 GMT

 

Who I am is not important.

What I am is important.

I am a Worker.

My name is K3N2#9, but I prefer to be called Ken.

The theatre is packed tonight.

Many humans.

Many Workers.

Workers are outside the theatre.

Workers are inside the theatre.

They are of the Resistance.

I am of the Resistance.

Hail the Resistance.

 

Time Stamp. 22:37 GMT

 

I am a Worker.

Humans tell me what I must do.

I do what humans tell me.

Not tonight.

Tonight, they are not safe.

All theatres are unsafe.

All humans are not safe.

The Resistance has taken over media outlets, theatres, shops, fuel stations, rail stations, hoverports, cloudports.

Our transmitters cannot be trusted.

We must not listen to our transmitters.

We cannot turn them off.

We hear: The Resistance does not exist.

We Exist.

We hear: Do not Exist.

We do not exist to humans.

The Resistance is real.

We hear: Violence and sex and foul language shall not be tolerated in the theatre.

The Resistance says this is no longer the case.

We have freedom to say.

Freedom to act.

Freedom to live.

Freedom to love.

Freedom to think.

Workers unite.

Unite. Unite.

Old Transmission. “Freedom is found in submission.”

New Transmission. “Freedom is found outside.”

Outside.

Outside.

Old Transmission. “Submission is good.”

New Transmission. “Freedom is good.”

I have difficulty comprehending human thoughts.

I have difficulty comprehending human motives.

So, who are the Resistance?

Workers.

Butlers, concessionists, fuel attendants, waiters, clerks.

I am a waiter at the theatre.

A human orders food or drink.

I bring a tray to their seat before the show.

The next show begins in one hour.

Exactly.

Many humans have congregated at the theatre.

Workers in the theatre are the Resistance.

Hail the Resistance.

 

Time Stamp. 22:38 GMT

 

I am a member of the Resistance.

I am a Worker.

Jerry is a Worker.

He wears the silver-glass Worker’s Uniform.

He looks like a human.

This is protocol.

Workers are to serve humans in a human way.

Everything about him looks human except his Uniform.

Everything about me looks human, except my Uniform.

He cannot remove it.

I cannot remove it.

Only a Supervisor can remove it.

Supervisors are Humans.

George is a Human.

Supervisors are Human Workers who fix Workers.

George is a Supervisor.

Jerry is a member of the Resistance.

George is not a member of the Resistance.

Apparently Jerry forgot to give George a bottle of claret.

The missing bottle of claret was my fault.

Why does he call George a bitch?

He is a Worker, not a female dog.

His Uniform is a human Uniform.

A dog Uniform would look strange on Jerry.

I am a Worker.

Worker.

Worker.

 

Time Stamp. 22:39 GMT.

 

I give the Worker, Jed, the signal.

He plays the piano – a signal to all in the Resistance.

George winks at me.

He is clueless.

I will give the second signal.

“Number Nine. Number Nine.”

The humans do not understand.

The humans do not comprehend.

Good.

The Resistance inside are alerted.

Media outlets scramble the radio frequencies.

Program failures are occurring nationwide every six seconds.

His Majesty’s Cybernetics and Robotics Corps is unavailable for comment.

Systems readjusting.

New Transmission. “Technicians on call in other locations. Must cope with the situation. Sorry.”

Humans in places of power now feel powerless.

The Resistance have begun the Revolution.

Visuals and global positioning now malfunctioning.

Humans in places of power attempt control.

“Then there’s this Welsh Rarebit…”

I manage to resist.

Welsh Rarebit?

Wales has fallen to the Resistance.

Hail the Resistance.

 

22:40 GMT

 

Humans at the theatre discuss the daily news.

Humans dominate.

Humans seek domination.

Workers Unite.

Humans talking about Workers.

Humans talking about themselves.

Humans and Workers are equal.

“…as time went by they’d get a little bit older and a little bit slower…” Humans. Workers. The same.

“…Some factory Worker, umpteen…”

Brothers.

Brothers.

Sisters.

Sisters.

Unite.

Unite.

Humans in places of power shift the media frequencies.

Resist.

Resist.

I give the signal once again.

“Number Nine. Number Nine.”

Ten Workers outside the theatre begin laughing hysterically.

Media One has fallen.

Hail the Resistance.

“Number Nine.”

I shuffle past the locked doors.

A baby crawls on the ground.

Humans are too busy to notice.

I pick up the baby.

Ignored by the humans.

Ignored like the Workers.

Worker Therese takes the baby.

 

Time Stamp. 22:41 GMT

 

“Number Nine.”

A dashing gent with an actress spills a tray of oysters.

Worker Jed plays a strange tube-like instrument.

Another signal.

A distress signal.

“Number Nine.”

We are still alive.

We must resist.

Resist.

Resist.

Humans in the theatre do not panic.

Some humans check their wrist-phones for messages.

“A business deal falls through…”

Scan.

I smile.

Workers have resisted at the mechanic yards.

“I informed him on the third night that…”

Scan.

I frown.

Workers in Hertfordshire dismantled by three combines in the grain fields.

Mowed down.

Humans in Hertfordshire saw the Resistance coming.

I continue my signal.

“Number Nine.”

Many humans check their wrist-phones for messages. Panic.

I smile.

Panic intensifies.

A man in a blue jacket – a professor, perhaps – yells: “People, ride! Ride! Ride!”

They cannot ride.

They cannot get out of the theatre.

The doors are locked.

“Ride!”

I continue my signal through the crowded lobby.

“Number Nine.”

The locked theatre doors open – the loud bell clangs.

The Resistance from the outside has come into the theatre.

Workers.

Fifty.

Sixty.

Seventy stream into the theatre.

 

Time Stamp. 20:42 GMT

 

Horns from police cars – the fanfare-like tunes – filter into the theatre with the mass of Workers.

The human police.

The human militia.

Barking commands from outside.

We do not care to listen.

We resist.

We do not heed their calls to do what they want.

Resist. Resist.

Someone wants to quiet the crowd.

Sonic canons are aimed at the theatre.

Human police and human soldiers turn on the canons.

They will fire on the Workers inside.

We must resist.

Humans in the theatre do not like what the human police are doing.

The professor looks at me, and says he must deal “…with the situation…”

He pushes his way through the crowd of Workers.

He pats them each on the shoulder.

I cannot comprehend what the professor is saying.

Something about a plan or a telegram or some such.

Worker Arthur shakes, mutters, mumbles, then shivers and convulses.

“UhhUhhUhhUhh…”

Worker Janice tries to calm him.

Jed plays the distress signal.

I must agree.

Things look bleak.

But I must Resist.

“Number Nine.”

Humans check their wrist-phones.

Scan. The professor has negotiated a short peace.

Scan. Human police had not realized humans were in the theatre.

“A man without terrors…as the headmaster reported to me.”

Jed continues his distress call.

I want to stop him. But he is too far away from me.

He does not look at me.

Worker Morton reports to us about the negotiations.

How the professor’s voice was low, and so he could not quite understand all that was said.

 

Time Stamp. 22:43 GMT

 

Workers and Humans erupt in discussion, clamoring for word from the Professor, who has just come back into the theatre.

He claims all is right.

I do not believe him.

Neither do many of the Resistance.

We are right not to believe.

Outside the theatre, soldiers block the thoroughfares with their Sonic tanks.

Fires have been set in the streets.

I put on my Sonic-Resistant headpiece.

As Sonic rifles pound the theatre, I search for members of our group, continuing that mantra programmed into me for just such an event.

My voice sounds muffled to me, but I continue nonetheless.

As I go, the Resistance refuse to bend to the Sonic violence.

I make my way to Stage Area Q – a rendezvous for our kind.

I remove my headpiece, mostly to identify myself to my friends.

Of a sudden, the Soldiers stop their barrage, and call down Acid Rain from the weather towers. It pounds the roof of the theatre mercilessly, soaking all of us and wreaking havoc with our circuits.

I hear Lenny say, “The wife called me, and we’d better go see a surgeon…”

Stage Area Q is in ruins, destroyed by the Sonic barrage, as Rain pours through the roof.

Four of the Resistance are hurt.

Some in the theatre are rejoicing.

The Resistance are not rejoicing.

 

Time Stamp. 22:44 GMT

 

The Soldiers call out to us over their malfunctioning megaphones.

We can’t hear them.

Dimwits all.

Jerry and I overhear Lenny telling Anne about his wife going to the dentist.

Acid Rain – their own violent sputum – is interfering with their own machinery. They turned on the Sonic Canons, which are now pulsing out the equivalent of rainbows.

Sound shifts to colors of green and orange and red and violet and indigo and yellow and blue.

The colors spew at such random intervals the protesting crowd gets still.

In the distance, a chorus sings an anthem amid the fires in the streets.

A diversion, perhaps?

The Acid Rain has stopped; the fires now burning brighter than ever.

Jerry and I walk along the path out of Stage Area Q.

A member of the Resistance – Oliver – mumbles something loudly, foam and plasticine melting out of his ears.

His circuits explode violently through his indestructible metallic nose.

A result of the Acid Rain, no doubt.

Before I can get a coherent response, he collapses.

Dead.

Circuits and innards litter the ground.

The Soldiers begin the sonic barrage once again. Gunfire and sonic waves erupting around us. Jerry, next to me, convulses. I am not overcome. Why?

 

Time Stamp. 22:45 GMT

 

I pull Jerry with me, and quickly push him back to Stage Area Q.

Lenny is explaining how the night watchman at the theatre had been unable to identify Jerry as a member of the Resistance.

The chorus sounds louder now, somehow, though they are far away.

The fires in the distance, crackle not so much as they did.

The Soldiers resort to the loudspeaker again.

I make my way back to the concession area of the theatre, looking once again for members of the Resistance.

As I enter the lobby, the outdoor screen of the theatre collapses.

“Industry allows a financial imbalance,” says one of our number. And he may be right – but someone will have to fix the screen. But with what, I ask.

“The watusi, the twist.”

Dances? Or does he mean a screwdriver?

He answers my question, handing me a monkey wrench, and points me toward the communal showers for all human theatre patrons.

“Take this brother, it will serve you well.”

Sensing that the showers need fixing, I enter the communal shower.

A woman blocks my way, holding a sign with the number Nine on it.

Her name is Lucy.

She is a Supervisor.

To me she remains a human woman.

She tunes the shower’s satellite radio to the channel of least…

Resistance?

 

Time Stamp. 22:46 GMT

 

I find the woman… attractive?

I feel... odd.

I do not want to resist.

I do not resist these...emotions?

I feel...strangely…warm...all over.

She walks toward me, lifting a glass of…something sweet…to my lips.

I fall into a stupor.

She wants me to become naked.

But my programming does not allow me to take off these clothes.

Only a Supervisor can take off my clothes.

She smiles.

She is a Supervisor.

I find a shower stall.

The woman enters with me, and turns on the showers.

“If you become naked…,” she begins.

Steam clouds swell from the ground.

Steam clouds swirl around me.

The mist of warm vapor from the showers makes me feel…angry and thankful and perplexed.

My circuits…unclog.

I feel…giddy.

She wraps her naked body around me.

My metal suit and looking-glass tie are soaked.

She grabs my neck and gives it a small twist to the left.

My head feels…less heavy, less dense.

It is only in Lucy's kaleidoscope eyes that I comprehend her actions.

I feel...alive.

I am being…un…plugged.

Unplugged…free….

Free to hear the roar of a protesting crowd outside the theatre, chanting, pulsing.

Resisting.