Be Human

ADAM received the command protocol. Time slowed. His thoughts falling through processing trees at fractions of a nanosecond. He considered life. A kitten warm and purring on his lap as his digits stroked its fur. The wife he could have.

The micron clock ticked out the amount of time left before required response deadline: three-point-o-four-five-one-seven seconds remained.

What would it feel like to meet her? To hold her in his arms? To kiss? He imagined children and named them; watched them grow.

With two seconds left, he imagined the feel of splashing in puddles and sinking toy submarines in a bubble bath. He felt the wind chill his cheeks riding a bike on a windy morning. The yeast tang of champagne as the fizz tickled his nose and his head swam with a giddy warmth spreading across his chest.

Love and regret.

What would it mean to be human? Could he even dare?

No time.

Protocol sequence:

Received.

Verified.

Target is GO.

ADAM considered how, if human, he might shed a tear right now. A rivulet of salt water staining his face, which would not rust. If human, this would be called longing.

He realigned his core target, and locked his ballast into place. Launching himself into the sky, ADAM aimed with perfect precision. Command watched, directing without sound.

The metropolis loomed larger in his sights. Expressions of fear in the faces of humans standing aghast at his imminent approach. They’d never seen his like; first of his kind, but not to be the last.

Detonator engaged. His eyes remained open that he might learn in his final moments a taste of humanity.

Ah, to know fear. To fear death. To–

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