Is it possible to create a soul? One person's discovery of life and all its richness...

The character 'Malice' appears curtesy of Deathscythealpha.
The character 'Doc Stone' appears curtesy of BOC.
The character 'Sarunakai' appears curtesy of himself.

------- Almost Human -------

------- Chapter 1 : Breath Of God -------


The woman arched her back as she drew air into her lungs sharply. She seemed to be trying to push herself off the padded table that she lay upon, her arms gradually coming to life. Her mid-section was held down by a simple restraint which prevented her from raising her hips, the white sheet covering her body began to slide off from the movement to reveal pale, bare skin. She slowly came back down to rest flat on her back and her breathing reduced in pace to a more normal rate. Her eyelids trembled as if on the verge of opening.

The room in which she was center stage was small by any standards. The lighting dimmed, the shadowy periphery hiding a couple of trolleys of medical equipment and a figure stood in the corner behind. He watched her every movement with interest, his eyes tracing her every intimate curve. The remainder of the room was devoid of feature beyond an old-fashioned hinge type door and a dull brown carpet.

She began to stir more now, arms brought up to her face. The man noted to himself that her muscle control was quite good even as she clumsily moved her hands into her long black hair. It would not be long now.

I... I am Matilda.

Where are the diagnostics? Where is the chronometer? Current location... Unknown. Determining location...

As she opened her eyes the world swam in and out of focus, two white cylinders framed her view while a black net frustrated her attempts to examine her surroundings. With sight came a surge of sensation, she became aware of her skin in contact with the various surfaces, the flood of information threatening to overwhelm her. Her arms dropped back to her sides.

"Am I faulty?" The words barely audible, cracked as if she had not spoken for a thousand years.

At this the man walked over to the table. He was dressed in a white lab jacket, buttoned tightly to the neck and he was clearly not comfortable wearing it. Standing over her he gently parted her hair away from her eyes. She tilted her head to face him.

He is not the master. He is familiar but I cannot identify him.

"Where am I?" She asked. Her voice still quiet but gaining in strength.

"Hush. It's best you don't talk for a while, you've only just woken up." He said in a soothing tone.

Matilda frowned at what he had just said.

I have just awoken? But I do not sleep.

Her thoughts were interrupted by a sound from the other side of the room, the door opening and closing. She rolled her head in the other direction in time to see another man approach her. The man was dressed in dark formal attire. He glanced up and down her full length, a look of disapproval upon his face.

"So this is the newest test subject Doctor Sierra?" The man's voice was deep and sounded rough.

Upon hearing it, Matilda registered data from her touch sensors akin to a sudden temperature variance even though she could not detect one. It propagated through her like a wave.

"Yes, I'm sure you'll be pleased with the advances made in synth..."

"I see that you opted for full aesthetics. That was not what we had agreed upon."

"But I believe with the advances we've made, it would aid the psychological integra..."

"From now on these decisions must be approved by me or my office." The man snapped. "Do we have an understanding?"

"But the advances..."

"Your division was given a certain level of autonomy, but the results you have delivered to date have been less than spectacular. I would hope that you were not wasting company resources.." He indicated Matilda with a wave of his hand. "... To pander to certain whims that you might have."

Doctor Sierra opened his mouth as if to protest, but wisely shut it again.

"I will... Prepare the testing room for stage five." He said timidly.

"I expect your preliminary report at the end of the week." Said the man turning to leave. He stopped at the door. "But I will be keeping close tabs on you from now on."

Once the door had closed behind the man, Doctor Sierra left out a deep sigh. He stroked the side of her face delicately.

"I'm sorry you had to hear that." He said glumly.

Reaching into his pocket he pulled out a small black remote with five buttons on it. He selected one carefully.