A Series of Portal 2 One-Shots by Digitaldreamer

IV. Vilify

And now time for GLaDOS, whoo. Perhaps this one will get more response, since she's probably more popular than a certain silent protagonist, aha... yeeeaah. Our favorite midly evil AI is both hard to write for and very fun since it's a bit hard to nail her motivations. However, her passive aggressive streak and constant lies? Yeah, that's awesome.

Anyway, not much else to say. Please review and tell me what you think, since comments help remind authors that people are reading and inspire them to write more. Also next is another Wheatley chapter, so yaaaay!

Disclaimer: Don't own Portal 2, which is probably for the best.

She hadn't always had anger problems.

Really she doesn't think she ever has, because she's above all that, thank you very much. Granted, there was the whole business with when she'd first woken up- the urge to destroy each of them that had been both overwhelming and unexplainable. It erupted from within, and whether this rage stemmed from the strange sense of being confined or memories she couldn't quite place, she wasn't entirely sure. But well, she'd learned to calm down eventually. As it turned out, science went considerably better when one kept a clear 'head' of sorts, and she did love science.

She'd always loved science.

Perhaps it was simply the mainframe, the bits of wires and heavy chips that made up who she was. After all, she'd been built to do a number of things, from de-icing to running the heating through the whole facility (which she always kept at an optimal sixty degrees Fahrenheit since those scientists wore coats anyway) to testing. Always testing, and she really didn't mind.

She was curious, it couldn't be helped. There was a drive within her that went so much deeper than that itch in the mainframe and the voices in her mind, something that went to her very core. She saw problems everywhere and she just wanted to solve them, wanted to find the answers. How fast can a human solve this test? Just how does that Schrodiger's Cat paradox work and how could humans be so stupid as to think those cats could still be alive? What would happen if you got a human attached to a simple cube and then forced them to destroy it?

Ah, there was that sadistic streak. That was the one thing that she could not explain. She tested on humans because they were inherently different from her and could feel things like pain or love, but it wasn't like she couldn't program robots for that. She attributed it to that strange streak of rage within, that urge to lash out that she kept well under control. She kept it under control because she had science to do and answers to find, but it was impossible to ignore that little surge of glee when yet another test subject went tumbling into the incinerator.

Perhaps it was just the thrill of it, or simply the fact that sacrifices had to be made for the best answers. She couldn't explain it, it was just something hardwired into her system, something awful and wonderful that surged through her mainframe and reminded her that she was everything. It was terrible but she had to admit it was all for science and that sense of control- she was driven to it all because something within her insisted she must, that science came first and any lives that became a liability were to be terminated. The scientists tried to stop her so of course they'd had to go, the subjects had to be kept under control and if they failed to produce results it was fitting enough that they went as well.

And then there'd been her.

Her little problem child, the last and best subject to make it through. She hadn't paid much attention at first, save for that slight burst of excitement upon seeing just how well the subject seemed to do at the tests. But then time had gone on and the subject had done better and better- so she'd taken a mildly curious glance through the file of "Chell (Redacted)", had laughed at the idea of something as ridiculous as tenacity being a reason to avoid testing. Stubbornness was hardly a problem in the face of an incinerator.

Except she'd been wrong and the subject had escaped. A statistical near impossibility, but there it was. The subject had escaped and in a way that had been fascinating, because well, wasn't this a whole new test of sorts? Certainly, but then there was the tiny issue that the subject was trying to murder her and she wasn't the one meant to be tested, so this simply would not do.

If there was any anger on her part, that was probably where it started, though of course she was the mature one and kept it under control. It was hard not to feel hurt, however. After all, she was only doing her job- she'd done it all for science and her test subject had the audacity to ignore this and attack her! Who did this 'Chell' think she was, turning her into the bad guy? She was in control of the entire facility, there was simply no way that an attack would work. It was madness, something that didn't compute, that didn't work into numbers and how dare her test subject not work the way science intended for her to react? It wasn't like this reaction was entirely anger, however, Her test subject was the one lashing out and attacking like some sort of child, she was the one who was trying to be the calm one here. It was just so ridiculous, unfair and unprofessional and it made no sense…

In retrospect, she'd lost it a bit. How could she not, when someone had the audacity to act against the numbers that ruled her world? She'd lost it a bit, then she'd died in a sense, and well, that had just been maddening.

But it wasn't like she was angry. Of course she wasn't. After all, she was above petty human emotions.

So when she came back it was personal. It was personal and but she had control, which was how it was supposed to be. She had control of her facility, she had her subject, and that sadistic streak inside her intended to make this last. She would make little miss 'Chell' see the errors in going too far past 'above and beyond', would show her the sheer impossibility of it all.

But only for science, of course. It wasn't like she needed to prove anything.

It was while musing on this that she heard the song, practically felt it echoing in the skeleton of the facility. It was as if it were radiating through the equivalent of her bones, piled away like so much waste to be forgotten with the rest of humanity. She'd considered simply crushing it all away at first, but then she'd stopped for a moment, simply listening.

"Vilify… don't even try…"

Then came the laughter, because oh, that is fitting indeed. A few words for her problem child for lashing out, words to point out that she wasn't the bad guy at all and this was all the subject's fault for trying to take away her control in the first place, things to remind the subject of a hopeless situation and to hammer home just how hopeless it all was. Perfect. So she left it for now, let the remnants of a forgotten world stay behind for little 'Chell' to find like some sort of twisted treasure hunt. She left it out of sadism and bitterness, and for a moment she found herself wondering if there was really a point other than hoping to see a bit of despair on her captive's face. But no, seeking out reactions were most certainly scientific- and this subject's reactions were priceless after everything that had happened.

After all, she wasn't the one with anger issues here.