Artificial Interactions 9

Every day from then on was full of life. Some might find that weird. That so much life could stem from a man made of metal. But you weren’t some robot worker to me, you weren’t even a tron. You were just Eli.

When that bill got pushed through and tron citizenship was stripped away, all the pro-tron hippies came out of the concrete. Everything got worse and you made me promise not to go marching out there with them. People were being hosed, beat with batons. And what was our government doing about it? Jack shit. It was like a damn war zone but I knew what I believed in. No amount of fear was going to change that, even when they announced that recall.

Recall sounded nice, like all the trons would get together to be fixed at the back end of Wal-Mart and not like they were being totally destroyed and extinguished—deactivation was the official term. I really can’t say I enjoyed those last few weeks.

I went out to grab my mail one morning and saw some kid-sized tron being held down at the mouth of an alley. She was strong as hell for someone who looked seven years old. No one said anything as the five men holding her down began to saw her arms and legs off. They called trons “other,” but I’d never seen something so damn inhumane. I was glad you pulled me back inside, but I still hear that trons screams when I shut my eyes.

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