A Mechanical Perspective 2



Little by little my plan is working. When the guild woke up I had not only polished every bit of their armour (except cloth, sadly), and their weapons, I’d buffed all enchants, polished each individual gem till it was so bright it dazzled, and cooked them breakfast. I’d rewired the barracks, powering lights from a generator I was able to create from spare bits and pieces I had in my pockets. Gloomy lighting was gone for good and I was sure they would be pleased.  I’d polished the stone walls with maximum power until they shone like polished stone walls. I’d even mucked out the stables, including the drake part where the rest of the guild won’t go because of dragon-kind’s notoriously poor digestion. Let the real Evida try to worm her way back in here now, I thought. She won’t stand a chance.
                One by one the members surfaced from sleep mode and stared around them in amazement. Wordlessly I pointed to the buffet I’d laid out, the gleaming dishes cleverly crafted from low ilevel things that I found in Cuddlyheehee’s hovel. Next to the buffet was an Intimate Sitting Area, catering to a dozen guildies at any one time. On the other side was the Officers’ Area, where they could dine in splendour, separated from the common rabble by my hand-woven silk ropes. I was particularly proud of the chandelier I’d made of low level gems that the gnome had been using for no good reason that I could see. It just set the whole area off and made the whole ambience mode better.
                Sadly, I was prevented from seeing the reaction of the officers because that blasted gnome, Cuddlyheehee was back in my head, summoning me to a woody grove near Astranaar. I knew it wouldn’t be good and I was right.
                “I have another letter,” he said, without further ado. “It reads;
 The gnome turned to glare at me. “She’s in Diablo III. I said Mists of Pandaria,” he yelled. “I saw you punch in the co-ordinates, but then I turned away. What. Did. You. Do?” He waved a pair of wire cutters at me.
                “Oh come on,” I said. “Like you care. She’s just annoying.  Let her go raise the dead or kill them or whatever and we can get on with life.”
                “I need her,” he said. “I need to finally put all rogue GMs where they belong.”
                “Why?” I said, going into neck massage mode. “You worry too much. Anyway, where do they belong?”
                “Rift,” he said, speaking with a chilling menace. I shudder-moded, it was such a severe punishment.  He reached round me, pulling me in for hug mode, I thought, but instead he grasped the red wire.
                “Tell me now,” he said. “Are you going to interfere with Evida’s time in our Witness Protection Programme again?”
                I tried whirring, even threw in an odd squeaking noise, but it was no use. “No, of course not,” I said. “I am but a machine, intended only to facilitate your wishes.”
                “You are a machine,” he agreed. “And machines can and will be dismembered if they mess it up a third time. I can salvage your parts and use them for any new machines I choose.  And if Evida does not return to testify, well, you’re a toaster.”
                Together we whooshed to his secret XGM hideaway hovel and the machine that handled the Witness Protection Programme. It was looking the worse for wear, rather as if it had been cannibalized for spare parts by power-crazed robots of some sort. Cuddlyheehee was aghast. “You have to fix it,” he sobbed. “Where are all the gems and the silk cloth? It’s like it’s been torn apart for spares.”
                “Goblins,” I said. “I can smell them.”
He looked at me funny. “You don’t have smell mode,” he said.
“I added it,” I lied.
“Anyway, fix it,” he said.
                “I don’t know how,” I told him in shaking-head-sadly mode.
                “But you made it in the first place,” he said.
                “Ah. They don’t make things like they used to,” I replied. “Half of my functions no longer work as it is.”
                “Fix it!” he screamed.
                “I don’t have the parts,” I said. “I might be able to do you a reconditioned motor but it will cost you.”
                At that exact moment, astonishingly, another postcard from the real Evida arrived.
Cuddlyheehee, I think my cover is blown. I was traipsing round this deserty place with Leah and this dead, crazed mage guy who wanted me to find his head, and he said, “Do your companions know what you really are?” My cover is blown, I’m sure of it. And I hate this place. HELP ME!
The gnome went frantic then. “How did they find her so quickly?” he asked me.
“I don’t know,” I replied. For once I really didn’t know.
“We need to move her and quickly,” he said, handing me a handful of copper bolts. Do what you can and you’ll be rewarded, I swear.”
“Ok,” I said. “Suppose the real Evida returns to testify and you get your result. What then?”
He was mystified. He looked almost cute with the puzzled frown on his face as he tried to understand me. “Well Evida goes back to her real life.”
“Suppose she doesn’t. Suppose I continue to be Evida and she goes…. Somewhere else. Anywhere else.”
“Another realm?” he asks.
“Could be,” I said. “Or another game maybe.”
“And she would have finishing testifying and the rogue GMs would have gone to their punishment?” he asked.
“Of course.”
“Then I suppose I’ll be immediately busy with something else and will have no time to check up on her.”
That was good enough for me.


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