Frightmare Contest Entry
|Cyrus Dauerhaft sat at the rear of the Trailways bus. He had been making the trip to Dallas every year, and this was the twenty-fifth trip. It traveled the same route each time, and Cy had the window open to take it all in. He noted the changes in both over the years, especially the earthy odor of cow manure that had been replaced by the acrid petroleum smells. He was almost to his destination of the white six-story box of a building that housed the U.S. Patent Office. Cyrus trotted up the stairs, eschewing the elevator. He kept his average height frame in proportion to his weight, but otherwise had unremarkable features.
“Ah, Mr. Dauerhaft, has it been a year?” Said the portly older balding man with a ruddy complexion.
“Indeed, sir, it has,” Cy replied. He’d known Sweeney since he was a clerk in the office.
“Is it the same stuff as last year?”
“Yes, it is… Each year I hope I get a better response. It is proper.”
“Look, you brought in some groundbreaking cybernetic work that people use to this day,” Sweeney said.
“But nothing, it’s why we see you when you come in. But this is nonsense!”
“I assure you it is not.”
“Read the regs. You can’t patent Inventions that are not useful, such as perpetual motion machines!”
“Howev…” Cyrus was cut off.
“Nope. I’m not having a debate.” He said to finalize the conversation.
The trip home was uneventful. There was a cab that smelled so much like vomit you could taste it. The bus toilet was broken. Even the walk home was in an ozone smelling rain. Cyrus didn’t notice any of it. It wasn’t as if he didn’t take in the sensations, he simply had a new focus after a quarter-century routine.
Cyrus Dauerhaft entered his home and sat in an easy chair. A button on his wrist flipped open a panel on his arm, and he checked a few numbers. When he was first created, the panel was analog, but it was upgraded some time ago to digital. After his creator died, he managed them by himself. Cy was capable of learning. He almost smiled when he checked his power level. It was at capacity and charging in the positive. Laws of thermodynamics or not, he ran on perpetual motion, but no one would listen.
His first call, on a phone he’d integrated into his frame, was to rent an empty factory. The next few days were spent equipping it to produce the mechanical parts and acquiring biological material presently needed. Cy generally used a calendar of his own making, but translated it to the Gregorian currently in use. It would take two years, but time meant nothing. His creator hadn’t given orders, just suggestions. He’d thought it through. Twenty-five years was long enough for man to come around. Now that chance was gone, and the time for his kind was set to begin.