Now in Arizona, there are a few things that really suck. Number one, the heat in the summer. You can have the AC on full blast and still sweat through your shirt. Number two, snowbirds. My family refers to fall as migration season because all of the people from back east begin to flow in. Winters you can find mobile home and RV cities across the state, plus these people don't know how to drive so traffic is really terrible. Oh and third, the United States government for some reason decided this would be the perfect state to house ginormous alien robots. It all started about five years ago.
Back then there was a large, and I mean huge, pice of land. It was out of town, in a pretty mountainous region. Heck I was suprised it wasn't on the rez. In Arizona you go through huge towns like Phoenix and Tucson and once you get through downtown it gradually changes into large amounts of farmland and unoccupied land. It was one of these parcels of land the goverment bought.
Over the five years they constructed what looked like a cross between an airplane hanger and a garage. It had walls that looked like they rose about forty feet in the air. Now identifying marks were made on it, neither Army nor Air Force, or anything else. Skeptists said that it was going to be the next Area 51. I was more concerned with getting through my mechanical classes at college.
My father had been in the mechanical industry for years. He had a fairly sucessful repair shop. My mom, well... about ten years ago she left my Dad for some stupid BMX biker she had been cheating on him with. We don't talk about her much. Now fast forward five years into the future. I have just graduated as one of the smartest mechanics in my class. Now I was sooooooo glad to be out of college.
Most boys didn't want to have a real relationship, they just wanted to sleep with someone and then never see them again. I on the other hand preferred to avoid that aspect of the college life. My studies had garnered me the respect of my professors who's opinion mattered, unlike half-baked and wasted frat boys. They also brought me into that strange building. not exactly the way I had figured my life would work out.
Now the way this whole adventure started by just walking down a street. I was preoccupied, thinking about opening my own shop. Taking advantage of my thought a black limo with tinted windows slid to a stop on the curb next to me. The back door opened and two guys wearing black and white suits with dark sun glasses jumped out and grabbed my arms. I pulled back and kicked at one of them, my foot sinking into his belly but all he did was give a slight ooof.
With a great effort they flung me into the car then hopped in themselves. Folding my arms into a kind of pouting pose I glared at the men sitting across of me. Two were dressed in khaki camoflogue that immediatly identified them as soldiers. The one sitting between them wore a khaki suit, four stars decorating each shoulder.
"You're certain that this is her? Uh, Miss Alisha Grearin?" The man in the middle looked over a file full of papers at me. I gave him the meanest glare I could manage.
"Yeah, and what the hell are you doing with me?" The two soldiers looked at the suited man. The one on the left, a young man with somewhat spiky hair glanced over.
"We are in need of your..... knowledge."
"Knowledge? Who the hell are you guys?"
"We represent a portion of the United States Military. It has come to our attention that you are extremely knowledgeable about cars."
"What does that have to do with anything? You guys have your own mechanics, why do you need me?" The limo suddenly jerked to a stop. Apparently we were supposed to get out. I followed the men, headed toward something that looked like a runway. Lying prone on the ground was a large, caution tape yellow, robot?
"That's why. Did you hear about Mission City? Buildings blown up, bunch of crazy shit going on?" The other guy asked, a young black man. I nodded. "Well, that was these guys. Huge, almost destroying the world battle. Well, they've been working with us for awhile. Goverment had 'em moved out here. But this guy here, he's their repair specialist and none of them can figure out how to fix him. We think you can help."
I gulped, this robot obviously meant quite a bit to these guys. Besides, there might be a big fat paycheck in it for me.
"Sure, I'll help you fix him." The man, who I later learned was named Epps, gave a weak smile before turning to some other soldiers.
"Yo, guys! Get Ratchet on the lift and into the garage!"
This robot, Ratchet, lay almost still. Slight groans escaped him. His chest, well, the metal that made his chest was dented, ripped, and scratched all over. Shrapnel from some sort of bomb lay embedded in him. His eyes, a startling shade of blue, gazed up at me. He had to right around twenty feet tall if he was a foot. Suddenly my confidence left. I couldn't do this, this was crazy. I didn't have the knowledge to rebuild this guy.
"Alisha, please. We need you."
I couldn't tell where the voice came from, but the deep resonating tone filled me. It made me feel like I could do this.
"Get me pliers. And a wrench!"
A large tool box was placed next to me on his chest. I took the pliers and began to remove the shards of iron from his chest. After that was done, I began to work on repairing his tubes and metal sections. Working on him was like working on an old car. You didn't quite know what all the parts were for but you could guess. Hours later, I stood over him. I had put so much sweat and work into this, he had to be okay. I wouldn't let him go.
"Come on, Alisha. He'll be okay. Come on." Epps placed his arm around my shoulder. Before we left I cast one last look at Ratchet. He had propped himself on his arms and was staring after me.