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Short Story
On Break
Shadows and Fire
Writer ShadowBobcat10
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
1004 Reads

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Shadows and Fire
A - A - A
Explosive Dining Options
Dec 1, 2016
6 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!zFtJG5bESPtDT5zirRcWposted on PENANA

Author's Note: Well, quite the late addition, but I hope it was worth it. More explosive stories with more explosions, coming right up. Enjoy! copyright protection143PENANAUKRqwx1IJr

"Amy, pass the kerosene," Jonathan requested. copyright protection143PENANAij7L2ORdtJ

Amy picked up the bottle of fuel and handed it to her friend, sighing.  "You know, all that kerosene is bad for you.  You should be taking more diesel, at least." copyright protection143PENANA3WnX2WgtNs

Jonathan attached the bottle to his refueling port.  "Not everyone's fortunate enough to run on pure hydrogen, you know," he teased. copyright protection143PENANApIch8JOarx

Amy shrugged, checking on her solar-powered water-splitting apparatus.  "Just water vapor, ready to be converted back into hydrogen and oxygen." copyright protection143PENANACKQKvTym71

"Whatever," Jonathan shrugged.  He disconnected his now empty bottle of kerosene.  "Stop reminding me that I rely on those biological organisms for fuel." copyright protection143PENANA5bYs80potd

Amy smiled.  "But you do.  Besides, we're running out of that diesel.  Let's get a refill." copyright protection143PENANARTV4a4NZee

"'Kay," Jonathan said, grabbing three four-gallon bottles and handing them to his humans.  "Hey, IO4, KZ2, and BY9, go fill these up for us.  Diesel," he instructed.  The three humans rushed to grab the bottles and relished their chance to leave the AI's house. copyright protection143PENANAwRZnBuhaRo

Isa, or IO4, was a short, punky girl with black dyed hair and a big personality. copyright protection143PENANAbXzaqHaP6D

"So, no 'bots today?" she shouted in her big voice. copyright protection143PENANA2XwY1H2OGh

"For such a small person, you do make a lot of noise," Kisha, or KZ2, growled softly.  Kisha was tall, blond, and quiet. copyright protection143PENANA3d82BKxSUo

"But no 'bots?"  Isa asked.  "Are we going to watch 'bots today?" copyright protection143PENANAg6lQgLyqBE

"Hush," Bryant, or BY9, whispered.  "Don't go around talking illegal things on the upperstreets." copyright protection143PENANA4DBBBDiEsZ

Isa sighed.  "Bryan, you're never any fun." copyright protection143PENANAVwc4yNP6FJ

"Better safe than sorry," Bryant reasoned.  "Anyway, come on.  You're falling behind." copyright protection143PENANAvWPQM6Ckwd

"We don't have to get there that fast," Isa whined. copyright protection143PENANAZBRBctev7H

"Well, we have to get home by sunset or Amy and John will get mad." copyright protection143PENANAu3dG7MuXSa

"Don't call them by Amy and John," Isa laughed.  "They're really AP2 and JO4."  copyright protection143PENANAGn6weTCRe9

"Isa, the rules,"   Bryant persuaded.  "Right, Kisha?"  Kisha shrugged passively. copyright protection143PENANA4eKWPXp4sw

"Yeah, BY9," Isa sneered.  "Besides, it's just right up there."  She skipped ahead and grabbed the door to the filling station.  Bryant and Kisha followed in behind. copyright protection143PENANALXAYDIL8FD

Explosive dining options indeed.  Fuel of all sorts lined the shelves of the filling station, which was like a supermarket for robots with advanced AI.  There was liquid H2 and liquid O2.  Petroleum and diesel.  Kerosene and jet fuels.  Batteries and accessories.  On one side, there was a fountain of unpressurized liquid and gel fuels.  Bryant started filling up his bottle with diesel. copyright protection143PENANAim1pSgjv7x

"What's the use?"  Isa asked.  "You know, all AI's used to be 'bots.  Then Richard Holden ruined everything." copyright protection143PENANAEcLp8BnyFP

"What's the use?  To survive," Bryant said.  "We need to survive.  We can't just wish ourselves back in time."  Kisha finished filling up her bottle of diesel and reached for Isa's bottle.  Isa happily gave it up. copyright protection143PENANA5qMFpqnaz3

"You know if they sell detonators?  Isa asked, sticking in the pay badge to buy twelve gallons of the diesel. copyright protection143PENANAORpQhh6ANe

"Bad idea.  Très bad idea, Isa," Bryant shuddered. Kisha nodded in agreement.copyright protection143PENANA8sqUSzvf8b

"But we can't go back in time, only forward.  So let's make the future better," Isa proposed.copyright protection143PENANA4dBRT1igbR

"Better?"  Kisha stopped, surprised.  "You mean like…?"copyright protection143PENANAkZIJQ01WAO

"But it's illegal…"  Bryant whispered.copyright protection143PENANAaJhBD9b9oj

Isa reached over and grabbed a bunch of matchbooks.  "These blow, eh?"copyright protection143PENANAktxWkqXDH9

"Not really," Kisha whispered.  "But those do," she said, pointing at the sparkers.  Ida grabbed a handful and shoved them into her bag.copyright protection143PENANAu18dLZdMVO

"Wait.  Stop.  This is not okay," Bryant said, stepping back from the two other human slaves.  "We are Workers.  This is our life.  You cannot do this.  I cannot do this." copyright protection143PENANAB6xSIb2Ukq

Isa dropped a sparker into Kisha's bottle and grabbed a universal wireless remote in her pocket.  "You don't havta.  But I'm gonna." copyright protection143PENANAeFULCfbzST

"But Isa…"  Kisha said, trading bottles with Isa. copyright protection143PENANAImURzFQMsM

"Kisha, you gonna help or not?"  Isa demanded.  She turned and headed towards the door.copyright protection143PENANAA3S8WBjYvE

"IO4, that's stealing," Bryant warned.copyright protection143PENANApJkkuWzGvr

"BY9, you're already aiding criminals by not reporting us immediately to the nearest AI," Isa sang.  "Com'on, you're missing all the fun!"  copyright protection143PENANAzeNu5naWaD

Kisha stopped, tugging at Bryant's sleeve.  "You aren't gonna report us, are you?" copyright protection143PENANAIKHBTDccCI

Bryant sighed.  "Oh, of course not, silly Kish.  You are my housefolk after all." copyright protection143PENANAR2rbmW7VDD

Kisha smiled.  They followed Isa out of the filling station.copyright protection143PENANAndSbIXyTUI

Every AI seemed to state straight at them.  Their Pets also smiled smugly, showing off the fact that though they were humans, they escaped the crushing weight of being Workers, or worse yet, Miners, just because they were prettier or smarter.copyright protection143PENANAwDtdemRrzu

Isa grumbled.  "You know, it's not like a Pet's life is all that great.  And yet they havta rub it into our faces like that." copyright protection143PENANA9qwBCTyKPb

"And what if we saw a Miner right now?"  Bryant asked.  "How would we react?"copyright protection143PENANAncpfn7dW08

"Here on the upperstreets?  Workers are barely allowed here, and Miners aren't allowed 'bove sublevel two," Isa said.  "Aren't you the one with the rules?"copyright protection143PENANAEwL8KZvBr4

Bryant sighed.  "Just trying to get you to think past the now."copyright protection143PENANA5AvCc7vKRk

Isa rattled the diesel bottle.  "I am.  Now hurry up.  A-2 and J-4's dinner is about to get explosive." copyright protection143PENANAVfxkvUsIRs

Back at the AI's house on the upperstreets, Isa, Kisha, and Bryant dropped off their bottles of diesel.  Only Bryant's didn't have a sparker in it, but that wasn't important.  The bottles needed to be near empty to blow, anyway. copyright protection143PENANARvZCEJB9k2

Amy grabbed a bottle and handed it to Jonathan.  "The bio-organisms are back," she said.  "Go fill up." copyright protection143PENANAeqDJ2PRxzJ

"Yeah.  Why'd they take so long?"  Jonathan asked. copyright protection143PENANASvYpQukjdb

"Biological reasons," Amy scoffed.  "If only we could program those beasties." copyright protection143PENANAM4HLGmvivP

Jonathan attached the diesel bottle to his refueling port and the sparker settled in the neck of the bottle.  Behind a screen, Isa, Kisha, and Bryant were watching intently. copyright protection143PENANAlKfZtiOlQo

"Are they gonna unload the other one, too?"  Isa whispered.  "I havta blow both of 'em at the same time, so the other one has to be almost empty as well." copyright protection143PENANA4IU38Lxt4L

"Be patient," Kisha whispered back. copyright protection143PENANAFQPnCvJ7Of

"Let's get outta here," Bryant suggested.  "We don't wanna get caught in the blast zone when it does blow."  Isa nodded. copyright protection143PENANAX9Zc8tvXOl

They moved to the lower level of the house and ran out onto the streets of sublevel one.  Hardly any AIs bothered to venture into the substreets other than police, so there were only humans around. copyright protection143PENANAmT4hXc2vG7

They wandered away to a park and sat on the swings.  Some smart AI figured maintaining some infrastructure in the substreets would pacify the humans.  He was mostly correct. copyright protection143PENANAglX5JzBtHp

"Ya think?"  Isa whispered, talking out the remote. copyright protection143PENANAIEzIRIbmG0

"Not yet," Bryant responded. copyright protection143PENANAH2TMjRZlmF

"Then when?" copyright protection143PENANAtC1qHK0jdI

"No.  Wait." copyright protection143PENANAJWmjEd1QzH

"Come on.  We can't wait forever," Isa protested. copyright protection143PENANARhJL33C3pY

Bryant sighed.  "Okay fine.  But we're kind of far, so turn the signal all the way up." copyright protection143PENANAISAJjiukBI

"All the way up?"  Kisha asked.  "Isn't that really dangerous?" copyright protection143PENANA2lEoEjBGab

"Nah," Isa said.  "The worst thing that could is us dying, which would eventually happen, anyway.  Let's go out with a bang." copyright protection143PENANAn1t7MxboAA

Bryant nodded with Isa's assessment.  Kisha merely shrugged.  Isa turned the dial to scan all remotely detonatable devices.  "Here goes nothin'," Isa said, clicking the button. copyright protection143PENANAmisW2Lex6Q

Suddenly, the three of them were bathed in a golden light as the entirety of the upperstreets seemed to explode in wondrous fire. copyright protection143PENANAf8cUwQe8wo

The universal detonator didn't need sparkers to work.  At that setting, all it needed was something that could explode.  And with all the AIs with hydrocarbon fuels, batteries, and such, there were more than enough explosive dining options to go around.copyright protection143PENANAjUpN2bkdzV

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