"Awake. You have been ordered to awake."
Roy Batty slowly opened his eyes when
the monotonic computer generated voice woke him up in his quarters. He looked over at the clock that was compactly built under
the speaker, which read a full hour earlier than the normal wake-up call.
"You have been scheduled for a meeting with an FCA counselor. Your orders are to shower,
get dressed and report to the operations office. Please repeat your orders back to confirm."
"My orders are to shower, get dressed and report to the operations office."
After a slight pause, the computer responded
back. "Orders confirmed. You have thirty minutes to comply."
Roy quickly got out of bed, grabbed
his uniform and put in into a duffle bag. He stood by the door to his living "quarters" (which looked more like a cross between
an airliner's bathroom and large closet that held a sleeping bunk), and after an uncomfortable second, spoke towards the computer
"I am ready to walk to the showers."
And, after another uncomfortable pause,
Roy could hear the bolt of the door unlatching, with the computer responding.
"Confirmed. Door unlocked on Replicant housing unit nine-thirteen. Proceed to shower
As Roy walked out onto the deck and
began heading for the shower, he took no notice of the world around him. Around him, on many levels, was door after door after
door of "living quarters" of other Replicants. And in each of those quarters, a Replicant was staring out of the small one
foot square window down towards Roy Batty as he walked to the showers an hour early. Roy didn't notice, just followed orders.
The Replicants had been held to an unwavering
schedule, up until the mining accident had happened. Even though relatively few Replicants had been involved, the follow-up
investigation really threw them off their normal routine. An individual Replicant being woken up an hour early was a celebrity
to the rest.
Sarah Baker sat on the bench outside
of the FCA's entrance, waiting for her father to take her to school. This was normal for Sarah; Her father had to report in
before she woke up for school, so she would walk from their conapt to the FCA building, when he'd get his morning break he'd
take her the rest of the way from there. Her father said he might be running a little late, but told her to keep her eyes
open - something special might happen.
All of eleven years old, a tomboy that
marched to her own tune and liked to take risks, Sarah didn't even think at all about why she was constantly in trouble with
teachers. Finally Io's school system principal got fed up, and recommended that she go to counseling (which was actually more
of a break for whatever teacher was losing their mind or voice). She didn't mind therapy, and sometimes attending counseling
from one of the FCA psychologists. It was a little odd to be one of the few kids in the building, at times.
Then Sarah saw what her father was talking
about. Three military vehicles - all humming from their electrical power systems - pulled up. An armored car flanked by two
MP spinners. The MP's got out first and stood by each side of the door to the armored car, and the door of the armored car
began to open.
Sarah watched carefully as a very
large man with white hair and blue-grey eyes was escorted out in handcuffs. He didn't look like someone in trouble, but looked
around as the rain began to come down on Io. Sarah began to feel excited. Oh wow! So this is what a Replicant looks like!!
Wait until the kids at school hear about this!!
She watched him carefully. Flanked on
both sides by the MP's, they marched Roy right past Sarah. Roy had never seen a child before, and as they walked by Roy looked
right into Sarah's eyes for a moment that seemed to go in slow motion. Sarah was gripped with fear - She'd overheard her father
and some of his friends talk about what the Replicants were capable of - but at the same time, she was mesmerized by the intensity
in Roy's eyes. He was studying her as much as she was studying him.
It was all over in a second, when the
lead MP motioned for Roy to keep walking towards the building. Behind the following MP's, two civilian contractors (Sarah
could tell by the style of uniform) walked by as well. They looked at her for a split second, but began to talk quietly to
one another as the got a little further down the walkway.
"Did you see the way he looked at the
kid ?!" Daniel said, walking alongside Foster.
"What kind of parent leaves his kid alone out here?" Foster replied, still walking."Kids
get scared sometimes. You got any kids, Danny boy?" Foster gave the girl a smile
and a nod as they walked by.
"None that I'm aware of, outside of the bird. You?"
"Two. And there's no way I'd ever let my kids sit out alone on this rock. And it ain't
because of the terrain."
"So you're saying that the Nexus memory
implants were not fully implemented before production began."
"Y-y-yes sir." Sebastian stuttered.
He looked worried at Tyrell. Sebastian knew very well that the Nexus contracts could easily sink the company if things went
wrong. He'd kept quiet for a while about it, but when news channels began to report the Nexus project was taking a longer
time than expected, he decided to come forward.
"And Halford knew about it, and signed
off on it anyway." Tyrell stopped and thought a little longer.
Although Tyrell had suspicions that
things weren't going well, he also took into consideration of the ground-breaking sciences that were being developed along
the way. He knew there'd be some bumps in the path. If you want to bake a cake, you're going to break some eggs. If
it had broken out that there were any problems with the Replicants, the contracts could have gone to someone else. Broken eggs - Tyrell could deal with. Lost military business would
be another story.
"Okay...So how many of the units were
shipped out with faulty implants?"
"I'm not sure. Probably in the first
batch of seventy-five."
"But they are stable now, correct?"
"Yes. The current programming passed every possible FCA simulation that we've run.
But Halford also transferred a lot of earlier material with him when he left for Io. A lot of the reports we have, the dates
don't match up with times that we sent them, or would have filed them."
"Forged...or just an oversight made
by a team struggling to get everything done before getting shipped out. Halford has had his share of challenges ever since
I promoted him." Tyrell looked over his glasses into Sebastian’s eyes.
"I don't like accusations being made of people I have personally promoted, Sebastian.
But you don't strike me as the jealous type."
Tyrell was meticulous in his final decision.
Sebastian had been with the company since before Terminus, and after Terminus struck his health had declined rapidly. Tyrell
also appreciated the amount of research and work that Sebastian had completed, most of which was very critical to getting
the Nexus project off the ground. It also wasn't good PR to have a disgruntled ex-employee running his mouth on the evening
"Sebastian...thank you for bringing
this matter to my attention. But for your protection, I am going to transfer you to another division of the corporation, if
that's okay. You'll still be doing genetic research, a new project. But it will be separate from the current Nexus project.
You can work from home if you'd like. Would that be all right with you?"
Sebastian felt a little despondent. He
was very proud of being a part of the Nexus project, and being taken off of it would be viewed as a demotion to some. But
he'd put in too much time at the corporation to quit over someone like Halford.
"Excellent. Go ahead and take the afternoon off. I'll email you the specifications
on the new project." Tyrell nodded towards his security guard, who began escorting Sebastian out.
As Sebastian exited the room, Tyrell
hit the comm button on his desk. The production department responded.
"Request a product checklist of the implants of the first eighty Replicants shipped
to Io. Send it through normal company channels, NOT through my office. But the minute that report comes in I want it on my
desk." If Sebastian knows something is going on, and Halford is trying to cover up something, maybe I can fix it before
it becomes a problem, Tyrell thought to himself.
"Now this is a challenge I can handle."
Halford grinned from ear to ear as he
looked over the latest shipment, the first batch of female Replicants shipped to Io. They stood in a formation in front
of him, wearing only the tightly fitting protective flight suit that protected them while being shipped. He walked up and
down the ranks looking back and forth, like a kid in a candy store.
assistant, a rather small man named Charleston, hurriedly tried to keep pace, holding a clipboard. Halford looked back to
"Okay...." he said pointing to individual
Replicants, "I'll need that one, that one over there, that one, those two, and..." He looked over and saw a tall redhead that
stood out, and for a second was speechless.
"Defintely this one. What's the name listed on the manifest?"
"Zhora. Says here she's listed for combat training."
Halford laughed a little, and looked
back at Zhora's face. "Well, honey, that's going to get changed." He turned back to Charleston.
"Go ahead and get these programmed as
office clerks, and remove them from the military manifests. Send the rest over to Tannhauser."
"But, Mr. Halford, won't somebody ask
about missing Replicants?"
Halford smiled, having a well
practiced answer made up well in advance.
"These Replicants are still the property
of the Tyrell Corporation, until the army signs off on them. These are being set aside for separate evaluation, civilian programming
as per the company directives."
Charleston looked back to the female
Replicants and then briefly thought to himself what separate evaluation actually entailed.
"Pretty soon everyone on Io will have
one of these." Halford beamed.