Author: 年终 / Nian Zhong
Translator: Kinky || https://kinkytranslations.com/
Chapter 94: Turnaround
Ruan Xian approached a little closer. He didn’t put away the blood gun as his eyes were firmly locked on the female android.
Ji Xiaoman’s attack was quite effective. Even though the D-type product was strong, the joints at a specific angle were still fragile. However, this wasn’t just something that could be done with knowledge.
Even with the S-type Prototype, what it could do was accurately sense their position. Just like the difference between medical theory researchers and clinical veterans, hands-on people needed superb skills, with just the right strength and a lot of experience. Due to the soft flesh and blood on his hand, it was difficult for normal mechanics to achieve Ji Xiaoman’s accuracy.
But Ji Xiaoman didn’t show the slightest joy of victory. She was staring at the creature that was once her mother.
Her mother wasn’t a replica made by Qian Yigeng in the later stages, but still retained its mechanical life function. The artificial bone stood up under her skin, pulling mother05’s arm longer. She still maintained the state of sharp claws sticking up, and her faded bionic skin was like a crumpled flesh-colored glove.
Tang Yibu, who was clamping her down, was extremely careful. The black claws that could turn flesh to into ashes failed to touch him. It was just that in the fierce dogfight, Tang Yibu’s gas mask cracked open, revealing his handsome face and golden eyes that were a bit abnormal.
Qian Yigeng was still gasping in horror in the corner not far away, but he was no longer so important to her. Ji Xiaoman tremblingly stretched out her metal palm and stroked her mother’s cheek.
These hands could do delicate tasks that human hands couldn’t, but they couldn’t feel the warmth of others.
“I don’t understand,” Ji Xiaoman murmured. “Protection?”
“The world that individual human beings can see is limited. I can’t explain it to you.” The female android continued to struggle again.
“Tell me, Mom.” Ji Xiaoman’s eyes held hints of supplication.
“Requesting connection. Providing permission to inform of plans outside confidentiality,” the female android whispered softly. “Requesting connection…”
Then she slowly shook her head. “Connection failed. Lack of authorization. I am not authorized to provide further information.”
The young mechanic let out a long breath.
“Mom, I don’t care what you were trying to do. I’m going to take out the needle now.” Ji Xiaoman held on to her trembling shoulders. “And then… Then I will find the reason, okay?”
The female android looked at her with no emotion or pity in her eyes, nor the softness unique to a protector. She just stared straight at Ji Xiaoman, her eyes resembling two glass beads, before moving from Ji Xiaoman’s face to her outstretched hand.
Ji Xiaoman rarely cried.
As a child, crying was mostly a signal for help. When you knew that no one would come, crying would only be a waste of your energy. However, the tears she shed today were probably comparable to the number she shed in the previous twenty years combined. She didn’t suppress her sobs like Tiantian-Q2. The tears kept falling and she had no intention of stopping it.
Tang Yibu tightened his confinement and said nothing. Ruan Xian frowned. Something he didn’t understand must have happened on the field. The situation was clearly under control, but Ji Xiaoman looked even more desperate than now.
She put one hand in her waist bag; her whole body seemed to be crushed by the weight of the air.
“Please, Mom.” Ji Xiaoman’s voice began to choke. “I will get the needle out soon, I promise. I won’t interfere with your actions… When things are over, I’ll take you up there, okay? I’ll let you connect to the Mainbrain. We… We can still talk…”
Ji Xiaoman knew what would happen next.
Unlike Qian Yigeng’s sudden attack a while ago, her mother had now entered combat mode. Before the end of the world, in order to prevent unpredictable abnormalities in nursing bionics and ensure the safety of the caregiver, all MOTHER-type nursing robots were connected to the MUL-01 network. They were unified by MUL-01 to simulate a more delicate personality and make more complex decisions.
If you left the calculation, with the assistance of MUL-01, they did possess some intelligence, but it wasn’t very high. They would only insist on carrying out their tasks and were basically impossible to persuade. And if threatened, they would stop at nothing to destroy their opponents.
The procedure that was originally set to protect the target at this moment only gave her chills.
But somewhere not far away, their home was still quietly tucked away in the ruins. The buns in the freezer were just half-eaten, and the crooked woolen fabric was not yet finished. A little less than a day ago, her mother had gently kissed her on the forehead and told her to rest early.
All this came too fast, and she wasn’t ready yet.
For herself, she’s afraid “home” had only such a meaning, even if she knew it was false…
Ji Xiaoman’s hands became a little unsteady. The needle was buried too deep. Unless the female android was completely destroyed, it was impossible to extract it quickly. She could only try to communicate with her mother, hoping for a small miracle.
For more than five years, thousands of days and nights, she hoped that she could become a small variable in the other party’s system. Those kisses and caring, maybe there was something extra programmed in there. Mechanical life was also life. It was obvious the Grove-style R-660 raised by those three people had emotions.
Her mother’s weak consciousness was just dominated by a powerful command system. It must be like this.
“Communication will not affect the outcome. There is no valid contractual guarantee.” The female android continued in a flat voice. “The target refuses to cooperate. Her autonomy is in danger. This yellow female genetic sample isn’t rare. Preliminary decision to abandon recovery and detonation started.”
However, a miracle didn’t appear.
Ji Xiaoman stretched out her arms. She didn’t bother to draw the needle that symbolized the end, but just held her mother’s head and pressed her forehead against it.
“Mom, do you remember?” Ji Xiaoman didn’t care about the bleeding gunshot wound on her shoulder.
“Last year during the Chinese New Year, you knitted me a sock,” she continued to say softly.
Qian Yigeng added two more layers of protection to himself, shrinking tighter.
Tang Yibu didn’t let go. Ruan Xian lowered his gaze while Yu Le sighed, scratched his head, and looked around for a hiding place.
“I should have worn it.” Ji Xiaoman reluctantly smiled. “I wasn’t in a good mood that day. I’m sorry I got angry with you.”
The countdown didn’t continue.
Ji Xiaoman slowly released the fallen woman who was lying quietly on the blood-stained floor, as if she was asleep. An empty syringe fell to the floor with her.
Ruan Xian remembered the syringe. Ji Xiaoman called it “a special paralyzing agent for the cybernetic brain”. She had used it to paralyze Tiantian-Q2. Most likely, it was made from the pill he had provided. Guan Haiming had maximized the effectiveness of blocking the cybernetic brain, so it wasn’t troublesome to transform it.
Excessive anesthetics would kill humans. At this point, the gap between mechanical life and humans wasn’t too big.
Tang Yibu released mother05, whose cybernetic brain had been destroyed, and Ji Xiaoman put her mother’s body on the ground without crying.
She slowly took out the mind access needle that was deeply stuck in the back of her mother’s neck. Even with blood, it was still beautiful, but it no longer meant anything to her now.
“Thank you for your help,” she said quietly, dropping the needle into a pool of blood, her voice dry and hoarse. “I will fix the car. That’s all.”
After that, she walked up to Qian Yigeng, who struggled to swallow his spit.
The activated mother05 continued to attack as Qian Yigeng wished. He originally planned to escape when these people were busy dealing with her. If there was only one android on the opposite side, he could still rely on the remaining equipment on his body and cope with it.
But he didn’t expect that there were two on the opposite side, and one of them was tough enough to roughly match mother05. It was by no means a random human shell that was put together. It most definitely was an original product before the end of the world.
He looked at Yu Le with a little awe in his eyes, and the latter looked back helplessly.
“This, this matter is also over. It was all an accident. It was all an accident.” Qian Yigeng looked at Ji Xiaoman with red eyes. “Isn’t it just that the cybernetic brain is broken? Our Xiaoman is so powerful that you can repair anything. And He An and TianTiann-Q2; I can give them a new body for free. No one was hurt.”
Ji Xiaoman stretched out a hand and vaguely stroked Qian Yigeng’s protective cover.
“Don’t, don’t, don’t. Isn’t this enough. It’s just a machine, don’t take it too seriously! Under the guise of the Red Ghost, laozi can open many more shops. We can cooperate and work hard together, yes?”
Ji Xiaoman didn’t seem to hear his words. Her right arm opened up a cooling structure and began blasting layers constantly onto the protective shield. As the metal prosthetics became red hot, the sizzling sound of melting parts became audible, followed by the smell of flesh burning. The exquisite robotic arm was rapidly breaking down. This was definitely some kind of move that hurt the enemy by a thousand and damaged itself by 800.
But she didn’t stop. After her right arm was completely scrapped, she stretched out her left arm. Qian Yigeng’s protective cover broke layer by layer; his face turned purple with fright as his pants became wetter. He desperately used his wristband, trying to contact the outside.
However, every time he gave feedback, there was only a blood-red smiley face in response.
No one made a move. The others in the room watched Ji Xiaoman continue quietly, as if the girl was performing some kind of sad ritual. The movements contained a cold, murderous aura and anger, and it seemed her entire person was on the verge of collapse.
With an overwhelming loud noise, her left arm was finally scrapped from the continuous bombardment. Qian Yigeng gasped quickly. There was only a thin protective cover around him left.
“Are you out of breath? Let those people leave quickly. If you have the ability to smash the last layer—”
Tang Yibu stretched out his hand kindly and poked the only cover left.
The cover began to crack from the point he touched, and then the whole shield shattered into light foam. Qian Yigeng roared and tried to lift his gun, but the iron bead from the crack of the cabinet didn’t give up this great opportunity—it bounced and bit Qian Yigeng’s hand wrapped in protective clothing. The bite directly chewed off a small half of the gun handle, plus the protective clothing connected to a large piece of flesh.
Tang Yibu’s eyes lit up. “π, gnaw on his helmet, and I’ll give this gun to you.”
Accompanied by Qian Yigeng’s screams, the iron bead happily barked and increased its gnawing.
Ji Xiaoman hung her arms, not moved by Qian Yigeng’s tragic situation. She stood dumbfounded by her mother’s fallen body, as if her soul had been taken away.
Qian Yigeng was still screaming in agony. The iron bead had bit hard this time. It was obviously not affected by the toxin—with the help of Tang Yibu, it directly chewed off the hard helmet and even tore off a large piece of scalp. Yu Le stood behind Tang Yibu and was secretly looking at Ruan Xian, while Ruan Xian pretended he didn’t notice anything.
“You can kill him later, and we will ensure that the signal is blocked.” Ruan Xian walked up to Ji Xiaoman and patted her arm. “Before that, can you lend him to us for a while?”
Ji Xiaoman opened her mouth and made no sound.
“I’ll take it as ‘yes’. We’ll make sure to barely keep him alive.” He bent over and picked up the mind access needle in the pool of blood. “And your mother’s affair may not be without a turnaround. We can talk about it later.”
Hearing the second half of the sentence, Ji Xiaoman seemed as if all the bones in her body were pulled out as she collapsed on the ground. Her two mutilated prosthetic limbs dropped in blood.
“If you are lying to me…”
“You’re a mechanic, you can judge for yourself when the time comes.”
Ruan Xian grabbed a piece of iron from the ground casually, and under Yu Le’s scrutiny, walked towards Qian Yigeng, who was unprotected.
“…After all, I’m an android made by Ruan Xian,” he continued. “It’s not surprising that I have a little understanding of this knowledge, right?”
The author has something to say:
Ruan: Start throwing smoke. Smoke bombs.
Find the person with the largest psychological scar in this room at the moment (?
Tang: π, save Mr. Ruan!
Iron bead jumps.
Tang: π, eat Qian Yigang!
Iron bead jumps.
Tang: π, let’s attack in general!
The iron bead is hiding (.
…It’s an iron bead that’s very picky about combat.
Seems like all of them have the largest psychological scars author… Just different issues. Well maybe not Tang Yibu. His biggest scar is probably food being stolen from him.