You are currently being chased by two tracking drones overhead, dodging and darting between dark alleys in the Leopard Plaza Complex. This means bounty hunters will be following soon, and you’re fucked.
The gray, mechanical orbs shoot red streams of voltage at your chassis from the air. Their phasers are set to low, meant to stun you into inaction and burn minute holes in your exterior, but some of your wires are already fraying through the casing of platinum and elastic-silicone that comprises your skin. You’re a 65000 series Android, and thus not built with integrated weapons.
Close combat with black tungsten sickles is your game, but you can’t catapult yourself high enough to strike them directly here, not with the Leopard Plaza’s smooth, vertical walls rising all around you.
That’s the least of your concerns, once they’ve brought the hunters to you.
The upper levels of the Complex beside your Apartment leave you two exit strategies: up or down. You have to get out of the building range, put distance between you and the hunters with your address, but it’s only midnight. The blinding streetlights of the Metro nightlife commotion are downstairs, people and bots alike are going to be paying attention. The only way you hide your trackers is if you remain in the shadows of the upper levels, run alleys until this area of the Leopard is level enough that you can roof jump to the next building. You’ve lived in this block for six years, the maze of it something you know better than the drones, but they have the advantage of flight.
You have a quarter mile of building left to cross until the nearest ledge to your knowledge. You rush out from the end of one alley and sprint towards the mouth of another, moving steadily North, but they’re fast, following and waiting for every moment that you lose cover. One pelts you in the arm and you drop a sickle in open space, hissing as electricity crackles and stalls your limb. With the arm that moves, you pick up the sickle and hurl it at the drone on your left. It pierces the body, sparks jolting, and the drone starts faltering towards the ground.
You aggress the bastard when it’s low enough that you can use your other blade to shank it again, carving the metal outside open and stabbing the circuitry inside until it’s good and wasted, but the other drone shoots your back as you stoop over its partner’s corpse. You turn to throw your sickle at the live one and miss, the blade clattering to the ground way too far away. The bot above you shoots and shoots, faster, harder, stunning dents. The actuators in your back are rapidly growing paralyzed from the shocks. You’re now too stiff and fried to raise your arms and throw your blades, and this is what it wants. Slow you, lock you up, weaken you for the hunters.
You’re exhausted from running. From your Apartment when the drones announced the hit. From your emotions. From your life.
What’s the point? You knew you were risking it all to send her that message. Analiste was only doing what you told her to, letting you go. She hadn’t been back to your Retroclub in months, because you pushed her out. Told her you weren’t worth the class disparity, your ceiling, your crime. You don’t think she believed it, but does it matter? You tell someone to fuck off enough and they start to listen, even those who love you, who you love. Two days wasn’t long enough for you to save this.
Bounty hunters are given the use of chainsaws on the regular. Whoever finds you first won’t bother bringing you to the Star Commission in one piece. If the reward is for your soul itself, they’ll just leave the rest of you here, and you’ll be lucky if it’s only one of them. Sometimes two or three compete against each other and the target for the units.
There are a million things you’d rather watch than that pissing contest. You’d rather watch humans literally piss.
You consider going into sleep mode, expiring peacefully. The other tracking drone comes nearer once it’s processed that you’re hunched over, your top half too stunned to lift. It’s stopped shooting, simply hovering afloat, its one red eye locating you precisely.
You stare into the eye, until the bot is exploded by a pulse of white phase.
Analiste is on one of the high rooftops above, hunter uniform sleek and crimson, the three moons glowing behind her silhouette.
Analiste switches her loaded phaser for a hookshot, sends a long chain and grapple into one of the walls, and scales down it. Both weapons back on her belt, then. She comes over to where you’re capsized on the floor with the disemboweled drone. Stares at it, stares at you.
“Always hated those fucking things,” she says, smiling. “Come on. Soon as the feds realize we butchered the sinister stalkers and I’m going rogue, we got more than bounty hunters to worry about.”