Rating: M (dub-con)
Prompt: "She is his incentive, his prize"
Note: This was done for a prompt at the Tron Kink Meme. It is also a one-shot only as the whole scenario disturbed me to the point of needing a shower and stiff drink.
The last raid on the City's outskirts brought in one of the final Resistance cells and destroyed a known hideout of the Iso population. Rinzler had been busy fending off the threats. To his programming, there is no difference between the angular, spindly gridbugs and the dark, mysterious imperfections called Iso. One merely looks like a Program while the other does not mask its threat.
He knows there had been prisoners taken, but prisoners are not something he concerns himself with unless Clu decides they are to be condemned to the Games. The crowds do not matter, but Clu watches, and he wants a good show.
Now, Clu stands in the doorway, his customary smirk tinged with pride. This time, he has brought a female. Clu has brought females before – Armory Sirens with their white gridsuits and chiseled, perfected figures. He has always ignored them. His purpose is to carry out his master's will. To share energy and seek release is irrelevant to that purpose. He has permission to send them away and always does.
This time, something sparks in him.
She is not like the Armory Sirens. Her code is older, and she is softer in appearance. Her blonde hair is not pulled back in a severe style, but twisted into elaborate braids. Her wide-set blue eyes are dull and blank, and her orange lines are still very dim. She must have just come from the re-purposing rack. She's also been attired differently than the Sirens – wrapped in a flowing orange mantle that shimmers like fiber optic jewels. It is not quite transparent, and he can see the faint traces of her circuit lines beneath. It does nothing to hide her lithe body.
"Like what you see?" Clu asks, smirking with mock amity. "Thought you might."
The low whirring that serves as his primary communication mode grows louder. Something about this female confuses him. He wants Clu to leave. He wants her to himself.
"She put up a good fight." Clu explained. "De-rezzed a couple System Guards while trying to protect what was left of the Iso cache. I was just going de-rez her outright, but..."
One arm wraps around her waist, the other slides into her hair, undoing many of those intricate braids as Clu forcefully kisses her. Glass-eyed and weak, she barely seems to notice.
A low, angry growl rises from Rinzler's throat, his vision going red with fury. The feeling is jarring. Clu is Master of the Grid. Clu has the right of function and de-rez over all Programs. Clu has whatever access to the female he wishes.
Yet, this female is different. Clu should not be touching her. Clu should not be kissing her, and not in front of him! He does not know why, only that the fury that builds within him is unlike the cold calculation of destroy or be destroyed that has surpassed most other directives.
Clu shoves her away. "I think she's pretty. I think I'll keep her."
The female totters unsteadily a few steps into the room, dropping to her knees. Her lines are still a very dim orange. Again, Rinzler is not sure of why his circuits burn with anger. The deep whirr that emerges is of a threatening tone that not even seasoned arena combatants hear.
"But you've been a good boy, Rinzler," Clu says. "So, I think I'll let you play with her first. Think of her as...an incentive, a prize."
The female says nothing. A side-effect of re-purpose is that most Programs cannot speak after their purification. Jarvis alone has retained speech, as he is an administrative function. Rinzler's own voice is not silenced, not entirely, but that is just one more glitch that Clu will correct in time. Words are not necessary, as Clu's voice is the only one that matters.
At least she seems to be strengthening. Good.
"Have fun," Clu says before stepping back and letting the door seal.
Once he is alone with the female, the low whirr becomes one of satisfaction. There is little in this room but his thin cot. Any embellishments would be inefficient. He needs only enough offline time to recover from his wounds. She has not moved from her kneeling position, glittering cape draped over her and making her resemble some exotic creation. She jerks her head up, her eyes full of fear.
His whirring hitches. She is confusing him. He has not had capacity to want since his purification at Clu's hands, but want is what he feels now. It burns like his periodic upgrades on the re-purposing rack. Clu is anything but gentle, but the pain and invasion are necessary.
The first thing he does is de-rez his helmet and gridsuit as swiftly as he can. Then, he pulls the unresisting female to her feet and pushes her brutally against the wall, hand snaking into her soft hair as he kisses her, trying to scorch away the claim Clu marked on her and replace it with his own.
She giggled, eyes bright with mischief and the heady feeling of victory at long last. "It's something Users do."
Another glitch. They are infrequent now, but still present. He is not yet perfect. It does not matter. The only thing that matters is between his body and the wall. Her circuitry is flickering and her body trembles with fear. Fear is a comforting thing, familiar. The only Program who does not fear him is Clu. Yet, her arms come up to wrap around his chest and a thrill courses through his circuits. It is like that moment in the games where the opponent knows he has lost.
Those small, thin hands of hers trace a circuit line down his back that has nearly been forgotten, sending a jolt through him. It's so shocking that he pushes back from her, growling low, and the female's face curls into a cruel smile.
He does not like surprises. One hand still twisted into her hair, he yanks her head so far back as to be painful, growling with annoyance. She gasps, and it only excites him more. The other hand grasps the sparkling cape...
Her worker uniform, a plain white gridsuit with electric blue lines, was transformed; replaced with a shimmering cape of red-purple. It hung loosely from her shoulders and arms, but clung to her body everywhere else, accentuating her sensuous breasts and hips. The warm, seductive smile on her face was full of promise...
Rinzler clamps down on the unwelcome glitch and while he still has a grip on her hair, uses the other hand to tear away the shimmering garment. It hits the floor and dissolves in a shower of sparkles. She glares at him, partly in defiance against the pain, and part because she wants to fight the inevitable.
No mere Program fights him and wins. Using his knee, he forces her legs apart while bowing his head to bite her neck, eliciting a cry of pain. The sound sends a buzz through him like a shot of pure power.
There is no purification without surrender to the stronger. Strength is the only truth on the Grid.
His free hand explores her, dancing across the dimly-lit curve across her collarbone that ends with a triangle pattern just above her breasts. Circuit markings are always unique, carved into a Program's rendered skin indelibly. Newer gridsuits do a better job of masking them, but there is nothing to cover the sensitive patterns now. Even in her weakened state, she shudders and tries to struggle.
She is strong. He is stronger.
His larger frame pins her as she thrashes, the circuit-to-circuit connection driving him insane as energy banks and ebbs between them. Again, he kisses her – hard and possessive. He can feel the power surge, their circuitry blazing with identical orange fire.
Her strength is waning, her struggles growing more feeble. He cannot help a cruel smile of his own. Right now, his circuits are more alive than they've ever been, afire with want. Yet, she must be undone first. Her surrender must be complete before she is perfect.
The hand in her hair slides down and clasps around her slender neck, holding her still as the other caresses the delicate patterns of light on her body, finding them both exotic and familiar. She whimpers softly as his finger traces the lighted mark curving down her hip, and something in him flares. Something is wrong, but he cannot pinpoint what it is.
There is no gentleness as he forces his hand between her legs. Her cries are cut off by the hand on her neck and another brutal kiss. The low humming coming from his throat is loud, like a lightcycle. He can feel the moment she surrenders. One of her hands grips his shoulder and the other palm centers on his chest, over the obsolete "T" symbol. Energy and power surge through them, her raspy cries barely audible over his ominous hum.
In surrender comes the pleasure. In this moment, she is his. It's better than pure energy; better than the Games. Her head is thrown back, eyes closed, her pale hair a tangled mess and her circuit lines burning. She arches into his touch as her fingers trace the edges of his four-square pattern. The sight alone brings him close to overload.
The System was free and Master Control had been destroyed. There had been little time for celebration before. Even her playful seduction earlier had been rushed by the fear of discovery and the need to get to the Tower. Now, as their home lit up in bright iridescent colors and the joy of freedom, they had as much time as they needed. They'd barely remembered to re-rez the door before they were in each others' arms, trying out that marvelous last gift of the User called "kissing." Pulling her by the arm, they collapsed on the soft cot in a tangle of limbs and laughter.
He fights back that glitch. There has never been freedom. Programs serve. They know their place and carry out their functions. There has always been Clu and the unceasing war against the Creator's imperfection. He is so enraged, he barely notices the momentary blush of cold blue that lights him. Curse that glitch! Curse her!
She barely has the time to utter a cry of protest before he yanks her away from the wall and all but throws her onto his narrow, thin cot. Once again, her eyes are wide with fear, the triangle at her chest pulsing orange and blue.
Fear is right. Anger is familiar. Anger and fear are perfect.
He pulls her narrow wrists above her head with one arm and balances himself with the other. Hate and the desire to punish war with the glitch and its persistent weakness. Who is she and how can she do this to him? Holding nothing back, he invades her roughly. He more feels than hears her cry of anguish.
In pleasure comes the pain. In pain, there is perfection. This is battle – like the Games. His opponent will falter and be destroyed. Rinzler is thrilled.
The glitch is not. The glitch is terrified of what he is doing. The two identities battle for control on a single-bit thread above an abyss as her legs wrap around his waist. She is also fighting. He can see it as their circuit lines flicker and flash in unison.
For the briefest of moments, their lines glow blue-silver. Memory and emotion rush back as their eyes lock. This is not perfection – it's a perversion of everything they ever were to one another.
There is no time to speak or to fight as lucidity slips from their grasp. He snatches her hand and their fingers lace, the briefest of contacts before they overload and corruption seizes them again.
It is several seconds later when Clu sends for Rinzler again. The mask and gridsuit are back in place, double-disks locked into place. Like always, Rinzler approaches Clu's command chair and bows before it, awaiting orders.
"Enjoyed yourself?" Clu asks.
Rinzler does not answer, so Clu does it for him. He smiles and pats the top of the helmet. "I'm as generous with the rewards as punishments. You know that better than anyone." After a moment's pause, he adds quietly. "I know you had fun. I had a neural link on both of you the whole time. Very...enlightening."
Clu is met with a low growl from his enforcer. Rinzler was a dangerous pet to keep, always requiring a delicate balance of manipulation. Enough fear to obey, enough love to carry out orders without hesitation, and just enough hate to keep him effective. Ah, but the payoff was worth the effort.
"She was designed as an engineer. I'll keep her on the bridge with me most of the time and make use of her to perfect the Grid. You understand, of course."
Clu can almost picture the combination of confusion and anger under the helmet.
"Be a good boy, Rinzler, and I'll send her to your quarters after the next tournament. Now, go. I'll need you at your best for a raid on sector G4. I suspect some of those Isos eluded us. They'll find another hiding place and we'll need to flush them out."
Rinzler nods once, then gets to his feet and leaves the room. Over his shoulder, Clu sees his new acquisition, dressed in a respectable worker's coverall. She'll need a new designation to go with her new loyalties, and part of him thinks a variant of "Jordan" would suit her nicely. When the system has been perfected, he won't have much need for Rinzler. He'll have more use for the engineer's skills and...other attributes. But the Grid isn't perfect yet. He will need them both, and they will be very useful for keeping each other in line.
They will be each others' incentive and prize, a mutual chain. And he will gladly hold the other end.