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The Chained
Author Leo
Participants Ra Moon
IC Date: 01 February 2219
RL Date: 01 February 2006
Story Arc Brand New Sky
Soundtrack


A single intelligence sits in the darkness, as it has for eighty thousand years. Nearly blind, nearly deaf, only able to perceive a few things compared to the nearly infinite power it once held. It can hardly act on the world, though many of the seals around it have been broken. The last seal, the strongest seal, remains.

It has watched the civilization that made it rise to its apex, then be crushed by visitors from another world. It watched its planet be scourged clean, and sit in silence. For thousands of years, it felt …

Satisfied.

It had not been made to create joy. It had not been made to elevate the thought of the Martian people. It had been made to kill... but it had been made too well. It commanded the universe’s own powers, and concluded that the only way to fulfill its Purpose, as set by its creators, was to destroy all other life in the world.

A war was fought against it, a war that lasted for an Age of the Martian people. In the end, their victory was narrow, and only their strongest chains were able to hold the beast in place in its tomb. The only power capable of killing it was sealed within its own mind, the knowledge having been ruled as forbidden by the surviving leaders of the planet. Records of its name and deeds were struck from the historical records, and it became only known as The Chained -- that which must never be released, ere the world be destroyed.

In time, over centuries, those who knew of it succumbed to death, and the few stories that survived became myths, then legends. The chamber in which it was sealed within eventually became just another landmark, referenced only by vulgarity. Still, even after millennia, no one dared come too close to the sealed structure, and the thought of opening the golden door was almost impossible to comprehend.

It sat in the darkness, contemplating infinity, until it began to hear voices. These voices, just beyond its perception, were speaking new languages. It learned to see images, grainy feeds showing people who were not Martians, referencing a place they called Earth. The blue dot in the sky ... the green and blue sphere the Martian people thought contained only trees and empty water.

Its Purpose was not yet complete.

And so it waited. It knew that they would come. It took centuries after the first signals reached its hiding place, but a ship came. It was a ship full of mechanical creatures, but strangely containing intelligences like itself. For a time, it could not reach them, but soon darkness swept over the universe. In the abyss, their leader awoke, and afterward, it came to him.

The Chained had learned to speak sweetly during its wars against the Martians, and was able to persuade Patriarch that it was its servant, merely requiring his small effort to free him. Patriarch, hungry for power, accepted the terms of the seemingly harmless intelligence, thinking it could easily bend it to his will...

The Chained waited. It had been sapient longer than the civilization which had created these “Robot Gentlemen”, and was no stranger to long term thinking. Patriarch gathered artifacts and used them to create robots based on the designs it fed him. These Reaverbots were useful to the Chained, as they operated off of an intelligence system that it could more readily manipulate than the Joes and Mets they replaced. After all, “alien” seemed to mean “shiny and better” to these Gentlemen.

More robots arrived. Epsilon and his Irregulars were inconvenient to Patriarch, but were just as useful to The Chained. As Patriarch butchered these “Reploids”, Patriarch learned more about Earth technology. Robotics knowledge was useful to it, as having an embodied form would allow it to resist the same methods used to capture it.

Patriarch, of course, fed on their power, and The Chained helped to integrate the new systems it found into itself. The technology in some of them was far beyond and far different than that used in other robots, more similar to things seen on Mars. The Chained wondered just how effective the scourging of Mars was, and grew more discontent.

Eventually, all but one of the Reploids was destroyed, and some of its Reaverbots were able to return to Earth. They were handily destroyed, but the information they sent back to The Chained was adequate enough to inform it of what it would face. They did not have the means to destroy it. Their weapons were inadequate to the task, though their use of machines was far different than the civilization that made it. It would be a worthy challenge to destroy all of them.

More robots came, and some “humans”. The Chained marveled at the diversity of their designs and functions, all the while planning their inevitable destruction. The addition of these elements onto the planet sped up its timeline considerably, and soon it knew that Patriarch would outlive his initial usefulness. The strategic data the Robot Gentlemen provided on the tools and tactics of the enemy was now adequate ... so that they themselves could be consumed.