Unheard Pain

I didn't know what to make of Stevie the first time I met her. I knew Michael knew her. It was hard not to, considering his reactions every time he was near her. He never told me just how much she meant to him, but I knew she was extremely important.

Maybe more important than me. So I viewed her as a threat.

It's not that I don't want Michael to have his own life, to be happy. Far from it. It's why I was created, after all – to keep him safe so he can be happy. On the other hand, that was a long time ago. I've developed far beyond my programming. Michael is my friend. He should know by now I would give anything for him.

When Stevie returned, her new boyfriend murdered, I was angry. In most law enforcement agencies, Michael wouldn't have been allowed to investigate. He would have been considered too close, and I believe he was. He doesn't know I listened in when he went to Stevie's apartment that first time. He doesn't know I heard the hurt in his voice when he found out she was seeing another man. I wish I had followed my instincts and taken him away then, but instinct has no place in an AI. It's a mistake I won't make again.

He told her he'd leave FLAG for her. That meant he'd leave me for her. I had never expected to hear that. Maybe at the beginning, when we first met, but not now, not after all the hell we've been through together.

Now I know what they mean by heartbroken.

The men that wanted to kill Michael killed her. I regret that I didn't scan them in time, that the death of Stevie Knight became necessary to protect my driver. Still, a small part of me Michael doesn't know about thinks that I can't say I'm sorry she's gone.

Now Michael has to stay with me.