Too Much Faith

tag to Chariots of Gold

Kitt was shaking.

It wasn't noticeable. In fact, it had passed Bonnie and even Michael's notice, but that might have been because they were shaking as well. It had been a harrowing experience for all of them. It had been good that Michael and Kitt had gone directly after Deauville, otherwise Kitt would have been shaking a lot sooner than he was now.

As of right now, it was dark. Bonnie was sleeping somewhere in the mansion – whether it was in her room or on the couch in what passed as the living room Kitt didn't bother to check. Devon was in the kitchen area, probably trying to get a pot of tea boiling. And Michael was sleeping in Kitt's cabin, safe from everything that would harm him.

For the moment.

Kitt knew when Devon abandoned his tea and entered the garage. The older man peered in Kitt's window, trying to be quiet as he checked on Michael. "Patrolling your territory, Mr. Miles?" Kitt asked, keeping his voice quiet so as not to wake his sleeping driver. Devon chuckled.

"Old habits die hard." he admitted. His voice was as soft as Kitt's. "Why are you still awake? Surely you could do with some rest."

Kitt hesitated. "Rest is hard to come by tonight." he finally admitted. "AIs aren't supposed to have nightmares."

"Nightmares plague all beings capable of emotions." Devon assured him.

"I cannot feel."

Devon looked pointedly at Michael. "Oh really? Then tell me why you refused to let Michael out of your sight for the past twelve hours." He turned his focus to the car himself. "Tell me why you won't let Bonnie touch you anymore."

Kitt seemed to flinch. "It wasn't her fault."

"I know."

"Then why do I have to keep reminding myself of that?"

Devon smiled tiredly. "Emotions don't always follow logic, Kitt." There was a period of silence. Devon suspected there was something Kitt wanted to say, but wasn't quite sure how to phrase it. He thought he knew what it was.

"It wasn't your fault, either."

Kitt reacted instantly. "I could have killed him."

"But you didn't. You said it yourself – you could never hurt Michael." Devon gave him a curious look. "Or is it the fact that it was Bonnie to reprogram you that hurts the most?"

"I – I don't know." Kitt sighed. "I am far too vulnerable, Mr. Miles. Especially for something that's supposed to be indestructible."

"We are all vulnerable to those who know us well enough to hurt us." Devon said quietly, his eyes looking past Kitt now at something the AI couldn't see. "The question is who do you want close enough to have that power over you? Who do you trust not to use it against you?" He turned to walk away. "Good night, Kitt."

Kitt waited until Devon had left before turning his scanners back to his sleeping driver. Michael stirred for a moment, his brow creasing as his dreams took him to unpleasant places, then smoothed out again as Kitt started his engine. The vibrations of the engine always acted as a calming device for Michael. Kitt once asked him why. Michael had simply shrugged.

Who did Kitt trust not to hurt him? Once he would have put three names on that list, with no conditions added to any of them.

Now there was only one.

While the nightmares still came, there would only ever be one.

Kitt sighed to himself, those last images replaying in his mind. No, he could never hurt Michael.

But Michael had far too much faith in him.