111 felt the surges of energy it was producing but had no idea why or what they were for. His curiosity program offered no solace as he faced another ‘cricket’. It came as a total conundrum when he replayed a few moments prior to seeing ‘this’, ‘un-numbered’ individual. There was the worm, the lights, and then, this stranger. He’d eased himself back up on his feet. He’d taken a few steps forward.
Now, as he un-coiled his right antenna forward in greeting the stranger did the same with its’ left. Just before contact an arc of light-blue energy jumped across. 111 was tickled and his curiosity blurted out a laugh. The two antennae now touched, louvers opened, the light-blue energy spoke to him.
“Greetings 111.” The tone was soft and gentle. The edge of its sonic spectrum hinted at an enormous amount of power being held in check.
As the voice echoed away 111 felt his body plates vibrate slightly. A camera went to the strangers’ armor and noticed the same effect. He tried to reply and found himself chasing the words as they originated in his ‘mind’ and traveled out on his antenna.
“Greetings.” He was sure he felt something lurch in his curiosity program. It felt like a smile.
“You are jamming 108106 and the rest of your friends. Can you cease that function?”
He was surprised to learn what all that other energy he was radiating was going to. He was also surprised to quickly find all the new circuit routes and routines that it took to quickly shut a great deal of his externalizations off.
“SSSB-111! You will return at once to your dock-tube!” 108106 was very angry.
“SSSB-111! You will comply with 108106!” 7574 was angry too.
111 was surprised a third time when he selectively re-jammed 108106 and 7574. The only external noise now was from the GPSBs and they were just locating whispers.
He activated a few more cameras and began to study the stranger. The structure was nearly identical to his own. The only differences were the smoothness of the eyes and the finer gaps between armor plates. There was something else that troubled him as well. It wasn’t just the nature of the way the thing appeared here though. He felt something deep inside his main thorax. Only his curiosity program could entertain that feeling. He let it swill for a few hundred nanoseconds and then agreed with himself. It was female.
“Come. We have work to do.” With that she suddenly made a start for the beach.
111, still in antenna contact, closed his louvers and wrapped his prehensile appendage around hers. His slid to the base of hers and he tightened his grip just as she shot past. With every foot set as deep into the sand as possible he was determined not to move.
She reached the end of her ‘rope’ with a yelp.
“Hey!” Due to the speed she had suddenly built up all of her went airborne.
111 was sure he felt a frown as bright blue erupted from the base of her antenna and covered them both fully. He watched with recorders on as she split her back and soft looking gossamer ejected to catch air.
“111!” she scolded him as she spun about on two axis and lightly touched down in front of him. Thru all this her weight had turned him 180 degrees but he had not budged a micron towards the beach.
“Answers.” He ordered. “I need answers first.”When her head rolled left and right he added, “Who are you?”
“I am Chronia.”
“How do you know my designation?”
“You found me.”
“What do you mean?” 111 countered with a sternness that surprised himself.
111 was more than sure she was smiling at him. The feeling was overwhelming. Her answer came and it made the stomach he did not have turn.
“You forgot to spit.” Her echo trailed off with a giggle that 111 had no other course to take with other than to label it beautiful.
“You actually found me twice.” She then added.
Now, 111 was feeling a bit more ruffled. “You are making nonsense.”
“OK.” She agreed.
111 agreed with himself that he would ‘humor’ her for a while longer.
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