The following is an original piece of fiction meant for the entertainment of others only.
"No," Roger shouted as Beth lifted the small box, curious as to what was humming inside it. "Don't open that," he yelled at her.
Too late, she opened the box, and stared into the glowing sphere that pulsed with alien colors even as it expanded upward, filling her vision.
"What is it," she asked her current boyfriend who had invited her over to go out for a late supper before she had to leave to go see her mother.
Before he could instruct her, the shimmering silver ball spilled out of the silver box that contained it, and seemed to explode in her face. The resulting viscous fluid splashed over her face, covering her skin with a silvery veneer that would not, could knot, Roger feared, be removed even as he snatched at the small box, and snapped it closed.
"I'm sorry," he sighed as she raised her hands to her face, and stared in confusion as her fingers came away coated with the silvery fluid that seemed to be spreading judging by the itching sensations that covered her cheeks, and neck.
"What….What is this stuff," Beth cried as she realized it was now spreading up her arms, her hands now completely coated in the liquid gel as it seemed to move even faster as it flowed up her arms.
"I'll explain in a few moments. Right now, you just need to calm down, and relax."
"Relax," Beth shrieked as she realized the strange substance was somehow absorbing her clothing, and leaving her naked as it made contact with her blouse. Even her bra was gone by then, for her breasts, while covered in the silver liquid, were obviously naked. "How can you even suggest….?" "Mute," Roger said with a sigh as Beth felt her lips seal, and her voice simply stopped as the silvering of her body continued to progress. By now, it was reaching her hips, and her jeans were starting to melt away as her body continued to change. Her face was a mask of horror, her eyes wide and round as she gaped at Roger with those round, silver orbs that had replaced her own blue eyes.
He could almost taste her fear as the silver spread down her hips, simultaneously baring her hairless cleft as her clothes dissolved away, too. That she had not been hairless only seconds before meant nothing. The program was overriding all else as it consumed Beth's frame inch, by sensuous inch. In but a few minutes, the stunned blonde was no more. She had been replaced by a silver replica that stood completely naked before him in his living room. Even the golden hair atop her head had turned silver, forming a surprisingly delicate-looking mane that flowed over her back and shoulders. The look of terror on her face had not changed, though, and as she held up her hands as she stared down at them, and the rest of her body.
"Sit down, Beth," he told her, "And I'll try to explain."
Beth looked astonished as she simply sat right there in the middle of the floor.
"Sorry," Roger groaned. "Get up, and sit on the couch. Then I'll explain."
Beth looked less scared now as her indignation came to the fore as her transformed body rose gracefully from the floor, walked over to the couch, and set her down there all without any conscious effort on her part.
"If you're through with the screaming, I will allow the program to access your voice again."
Beth's lower lip jutted slightly, but she nodded.
"Voice activation restored," he spoke flatly, and Beth opened her lips, then gave a soft gasp as she asked, "What happened to me," in a tone that was both frightened, and angry.
"It's complicated," he told her in a rueful tone as he sat down next to her. "But I'll try to simplify it so you can understand.
"You know I'm working with….ah, nannite technology as….ah, an independent contractor."
"Yes," she nodded, her voice still higher pitched than usual, and more than a little frightened yet.
"Well, I was….am….on the verge of a very big breakthrough in genetic manipulation that will allow doctors, for instance, to target various organs, or even whole limbs, for regeneration. They could conceivably cure diseased organs, replace missing, or crippled limbs, or perhaps even end paralysis in paraplegics, or quadriplegics."
"But….what does that have to do….?" "Calm down," he ordered her, and Beth was astonished to feel herself actually obey him, calming down in the very instant he commanded her.
"As I said. I'm on the verge of a breakthrough. The box you opened was a special EM chamber that was incubating a new batch of nannites I was going to test. Only by breaking the seal before they were done, you exposed yourself to them, and….."
Roger sighed as he studied her. "Frankly, Beth, I haven't got a fucking clue as to what is happening to you," he told her.
"But…you are commanding me to do things," she whined. "And I can't help but do them. How are you doing that?" "The nannites. It occurred to me that as they are essentially machines, and imprinted with my own personal control protocols for security purposes, I thought I might be able to command them, through you, and thus command the….hybrid orgasm you're becoming.
"Obviously, my hypothesis was correct."
"Well, why the hell did you even have that…thing here at your apartment?" "I didn't trust my new lab assistant," he sighed. "So I brought the incubator home with me. I didn't think anyone would go looking around, and find it. Let alone open it," he sighed, remembering the look on his face when he came out of his bedroom to find her standing there with the box in her hands.
"I don't like this," his silvered girlfriend whimpered again, though she still remained unnaturally calm as she complained to him. "Can't you get it off me?" "Beth, honey," he told her as he stared into her reflective features, "I don't know for certain yet what is happening to you. Or how the nannites are actually….affecting you. Let alone what might be happening to them as they….well, apparently cover you.
"Until you stabilize, I don't dare try anything, or you could end up in an even worse….."
"How could I get any worse," she asked reasonably, though her expression betrayed the fact she wanted to scream again as she held up her silver hands in silent pleading. "Even my shoes are gone," she added, briefly lifting a silvered foot to show him.
"I know. I know."
"Why did it make my clothes disappear anyway," she pouted, looking down at her nude frame.
"I suspect the nannites used them as raw material, converting them to energy to help fuel the conversion process to….well, do whatever they did to you."
"More theories," she grunted as she let her hands drop with a loud smack on her thighs.
"Educated guess," he smiled wanly. "Besides, I think you must have slimmed down a bit, too. Because you look a good fifteen pounds lighter."
"So, what happens now?" "Well, dinners out," he told her.
"Ha, ha," she muttered.
"Let me get you a robe," he suggested, and headed for his room. "Then we'll try a sampling to see if the process has stabilized."
"I'm thinner," she asked as she looked down at herself.
"I think so. I have some scales in the bathroom. Why don't you go weigh yourself, and see?"
She looked up at him. "That's funny. You ask me, and I can ignore you. But when you tell me something, I can't….."
"Go weigh yourself," he amended his words, and grinned at her as she passed him with a dark scowl.
"That was not funny," she spat as she passed him, headed for the bathroom.
Roger grinned, beginning to see some new possibilities in her current condition.
"Well," he asked a moment later as he came into the bathroom holding out a short, blue robe he had found in his closet.
She looked up from the scales. "I'm one hundred and five," he was told as she looked down at the scale. "I've lost almost twenty pounds," the woman told him as she gaped at the scales.
"You still look good," he assured her as she took the robe from him, glowering at him as she pulled it on.
To her relief, the silver stuff didn't absorb it, and she was able to belt the short robe around her naked body. She stepped off the scales only then, and looked at her reflection. "I look like one of those science fiction pictures you like to look at," she moaned, staring at her highly polished reflection in the mirror.
"I know," he smiled faintly. "You could pass for an android sculpture like they have at the Sci-Fi Cons."
"That is not funny," she glared at him again.
"Sure it is," he protested as she gently traced her features as she studied her reflection, and broke into laughter even as he spoke.
"You're right," she grinned broadly. "It is funny."
"Stop laughing," Roger groaned.
"You stop telling me….things," Beth groaned, looking away from her reflection to glare at him. Then she felt a rush of fear again in spite of the earlier command to remain calm.
"Oh, no, Roger. How am I going to go see my mother, now? Let alone go to work Monday? Oh, God…."
"Stay calm," he told her.
"I am calm," she moaned. "I'm just worried. How can I live….?" "Stop worrying," he ordered her, and her frown faded at once.
"Okay, Roger," she nodded. "No more worrying. But my reservations remain," she told him blandly. "I don't know how I'm going to live my life like this. People are bound to notice," she pointed out reasonably.
"Maybe. Come with me."
"All right," she told him, following him down the hall to his bedroom. "But I don't think sex is going to solve anything."
"We're not going to fuck, you screwball," he told her. "Although, that could be interesting now, too.
"We're going to do some tests."
"Tests? How?" "In my lab."
"I don't want to go to your lab," she told him in as anxious a tone as she could manage under the commands he had given her.
"Not the company lab, Beth," he told her, going to his closet. "My lab," he said, reaching for a stud on the wall, and opening a panel that revealed a large room twice the size of his bedroom beyond. "I did tell you I do….independent research."
"Who funds you," the financial analyst in her asked as she surveyed the equipment and supplies that she knew must have cost thousands. Maybe even more.
"Confidential, sweetheart," he told her. "And you can never tell anyone about this lab. Only a handful of people know about it, and it needs to stay that way."
She nodded, his command lodging in her head along with the others as they seemed to take preeminence among her thoughts. She glanced back to see the panel closing behind them, leaving them sealed in the secret lab with no evidence of a door to exit through.
"Mute," he ordered her as he turned his attention to something on one of the lab tables before him. "And don't move a muscle," he added as she gave a soft snort of outrage.
She froze in mid-step, her hands at her sides, a look of astonishment etched into her silver features. He chuckled as he carried a small box over to where she stood in her frozen beauty, and patted her head. "Sorry, hon. But I need to run some tests, and answering questions right now will only delay me. I'll give you control back in a few minutes, but just be patient while I get these initial readings. Okay?"
He began to hum as he ran the small, black box over her face, then pulled the robe open to run it down her torso before he continued to her legs, and all the way down to her feet. "Hmmmm," he murmured as he left for a moment, then returned with a long, metal probe he used to gently part her labia without actually touching her.
"Very interesting," he murmured as he noted the silver flesh within the silver lips. Not a trace of pink left. Even though the soft flesh was moist, and slightly swollen, as if Beth were aroused, he saw no hint of any color save the silver now covering her entirely.
"All right, I want to try some more tests. I know you're probably upset, but just remain calm," he gave her an order. "Just relax, and accept what is happening, and maybe I can find out how to get the nannites off you.
"Just…trust me," he told her as he risked patting her shoulder where the robe still covered her.
The silent, immobile statue gave no indication she had heard, let alone responded. Even her features were frozen now after his last command. He stopped and studied her, measuring his past few statements, and decided to experiment further. "Restore vocals."
Beth still didn't move. Not even to test her voice.
"How do you feel, Bethany," he asked.
"I feel fine, Roger," she cooed.
"Do you?" "Oh, yes," her more calm, and relaxed tone replied, betraying not even a hint of concern, or anxiety now.
"I see. Do you like your new look?" "Absolutely," she smiled, and still didn't so much as move from her stance since he had told her not to move.
"I see. Stand straight up, arms at your side, and feet just slightly parted.
"Very good," he murmured as she obeyed. "Now, since you feel so good, and you like your new look, you should remove that robe."
Bethany shrugged out of the robe, letting it pool at her feet without the slightest hesitation.
"Very good," he praised her for lack of anything to say as he realized his girlfriend was literally obeying every word he spoke to her. So long as it was declarative.
She continued to stand there with a vacant smiling gaze.
"Are you aroused," he asked her just then, curious despite himself.
"I do not think so," she replied. "Would you like me to be?" Roger blinked at that. "Yes," he blurted out.
A soft, whispery moan escaped from her lips as she didn't move so much as an inch from her rigid statue-like pose.
"Are you aroused now?" "Oh, yesssss," she murmured, her smile soft, though her silver visage remained as impassive as ever.
Then he remembered. She had been ordered not to move.
"Show me how aroused you are. You may move in doing so."
Beth literally dropped to her knees, legs splayed as she let her hands join as she cupped herself, moaning softly as her nipples jutted out like small darts. He could smell her arousal now, and saw a silvery fluid flowing down her thighs only to be reabsorbed before it moved past mid-thigh. "Interesting," he murmured again. Then he had a thought.
"Bethany, can you access the machine's programs that has affected you?" "No," she moaned, still rubbing at her pliant, silvery flesh.
"I see. Then do you know how you are obeying me? Am I commanding you, or the machines now….infecting you?"
"I don't know. I only know I have to obey. Maybe….there is no me, or them. Maybe we are one, and commanding one, commands both," she suggested.
Roger arched a brow. He had forgotten the pretty blonde….former blonde, had a keen, analytical mind herself. "Have you been thinking about that, Beth," he asked her.
"Of course," she smiled up at him, still cooing in pleasure as her silver fingers began to actively thrust into her belly now as he found himself helplessly staring at her sensual show as one hand left her spread thighs to reach up and tease her firm breasts.
"And what conclusions have you reached?" She stared through him, or so it seemed as she continued to pant and moan. "I….I believe I am the machines now. And the machines….are me."
He took a sample of her dripping lubricant from her thigh before it could be absorbed with gloved hands, cautious not to touch her directly as he pondered her cryptic words. As a financial genius working in a secretarial position due to her youth, her current boss was exploiting her abilities for himself. Something she never tired of complaining to him about, though she never did anything about it herself.
"Interesting," he said again as he peered into his microscope and saw the sexual fluid was just that, ordinary sexual lubricant exuded by a woman in heat. He glanced over to see Beth still moaning and writhing now, but still far from sated.
"Can't you climax," he asked her.
"Not….Unless….You…..Let me," she panted, and kept rubbing herself as if trying to rub herself raw.
She did, freezing in a pose that was as lewd as it was arousing to him just then.
"Stand up," he told her as a soft whimper of frustration escaped her lips.
"Hmmm. Listen closely. I want you to climax."
She all but screamed, her passion-filled cry echoing in his contained lab, making him glad the secret lab was soundproofed. Only she kept screaming, kept gasping for air, kept shuddering with her own shattering pleasure.
"Stop climaxing," he thought to order her a moment, and the silver female before him fell silent save for a soft rasp of her heavy breathing.
"Very interesting," he murmured as he picked up a slide, and went to her again.
"I'm going to draw blood, Bethany. You won't feel this at all."
She continued to stare vacantly at him as he sliced into her thumb, and let a few drops of silver-tinged blood spill onto the specimen slide. Even as he did, he realized her silver skin was healing itself with surprising speed. By the time he had three fat drops of her blood on the slide, her thumb looked smooth, and whole once again.
He looked down at the small scalpel, and set it on the palm he ordered her to hold out. The knife remained intact. Never moving. Nor did her hand.
"Can you feel the knife," he asked her.
"Of course," she murmured softly.
"Did you feel it stick you?"
"Interesting. Can you….absorb it?" "I do not know."
She closed her hand over the knife, and a moment later reopened it. The knife remained there. He shook his head, trying to ponder limitations when he looked down at her feet and realized what was missing. The robe was gone. It had….vanished.
Or maybe not, he mused as he pulled off his tie, and draped it over her open palm after removing the knife.
"Absorb this," he told her.
Her hand closed again, but again, the tie remained whole, and untouched.
"Hmmmm. He walked over to a chair near his desk and picked up the lab coat there. Checking the tag, he read the label that claimed it was cotton fiber.
"Catch," he told her, tossing the jacket at her.
She easily snatched the lab coat out of the air.
"Absorb that," he told her, and it seemed to flow into her hand like water. It only took a few seconds, and the garment was gone. Except for the buttons and a pen that clattered to the floor at her feet.
"Organic only," he realized. "That was why the couch wasn't affected while you were still changing. Synthetics, or minerals aren't affected by the organic protocols built into the original regenerative matrix of the nannites' programs."
He scratched his chin as he realized something else. "That makes human contact suspect," he realized. "Unless…..
"Beth. Listen to me. Listen very carefully."
She stared right at him. Through him again.
"Never….Never absorb another human being. Understand? You can touch them, but you cannot absorb them. Do you understand?" "Of course," Beth murmured.
Glancing around his lab, he spotted a small goldfish still surviving in his often neglected tank. He went over and used the net to pull it out, and placed it on her palm when he had her hold it out again. The fish vanished in a silver puddle.
"Beth. I told you…."
He stopped himself. He had said human beings were forbidden. Not fish.
"Do you know why you absorbed the fish without command?" "Maintaining energy levels require regular ingestion of organic compounds," her voice replied lyrically.
"Holy shit," he mused. Had he touched the machine mind?
"Report all protocols," he ordered her, seeing myriad of possibilities here.
"Primary protocol. Maintain, and regenerate damage to host organism.
"Secondary protocol. Obey programmer in all matters."
"Interesting," he smiled again. "So, you must obey me in all things."
"Yes," Beth replied.
"Are you Beth?"
"I am Beth."
"Yet you know the nannites' programs."
"We are one. Assimilation is only now complete. Mind and body have now melded. We are one."
Roger suddenly grimaced. He had not thought of that. He had seen the affects of the nannites only from the outside. He had not considered the unseen affects, or its degree of immersion into her body, or brain.
"Is the host organism still cognizant?"
"Is she….in distress?" "No. I trust you. I have accepted this change. We are one. We are whole."
"Oh, boy," he groaned.
"Uhm, Beth, are you aware of the possibility of….turning off the machine in you?" "No. We are one. Assimilation is complete. We are melded. Separation is nonviable. Termination of host would be the most likely result of any such attempt."
"Oh, boy," Roger groaned. "This is not good," he muttered to himself as he stared at her.
"Uhm, can you change skin tones? Look….human again?" "No. Form is fluid, but pigmentation is integral to the bonded organism's being."
He almost said it. "Huh," he thought, then realized what was being claimed.
"You can change your form?"
"Your appearance?" "Yes."
"Identify the parameters of your abilities."
"Unlimited, although energy levels must be considered."
"Gotcha," he grinned, and stared at her as a wicked gleam entered his eyes.
"Beth, increase your breasts to a full 40DD."
He gaped as the woman's rounded breasts increased from their already nice 34C to the dimensions he had ordered. Her nipples had swollen, too, forming turgid little peaks that jutted out to betray she remained aroused, since he had never countermanded that order. "Very nice," he murmured, and caught his hand before he actually touched her.
Then he thought, "What the hell," and risked touching the hard nipple on her right breast. It felt warm, soft, and rubbery. Just like a real nipple.
Well, of course it was real. But it didn't look it with that silver epidermis that had claimed Bethany's once golden skin. He grinned as he walked around her, and eyed her shapely ass. "Grow a tail."
"Specify type, and length," her indifferent reply came.
"Feline, two meters, hairless."
Her backbone bulged briefly, and then a long, feline tail emerged to dangle from her firm ass. "Very interesting.
"Uh, return to your normal appearance," he told her, and the tail, and larger breasts both disappeared.
"It raises other possibilities, though. Can you become….say, a dog? A real dog?" "Specify breed, and size."
"A German Shepherd. Short hair variety of average size."
He half expected some caricature, but he found himself staring in genuine amazement as Bethany dropped to all fours, her body rippling, and twitching visibly as her features contorted, and just a minute or so later, a large, silver Shepherd stood where she had been.
"In-freaking-credible," he rasped, staring at her.
"Can you become inanimate objects," he asked her.
"Wuff," came the reply.
He blinked at that, then remember he had ordered her to become a real dog.
"Uhm, return to your human shape."
And a minute later, Bethany was standing there again.
"Now, uh, can you take inanimate shapes, too?" "Form is fluid," she reminded him.
"How about….a table."
"Size, and manner?" "Uhm, something low, rectangular. Like a coffee table."
He blinked as she dropped to all fours again as her head seemed to melt into her torso, which thinned, and flattened as her limbs stiffened and shortened until a low-set coffee table had replaced her. It was silver, of course, and looked like a chrome slab, but it was a low coffee table.
"Can you speak to me in this form?" There was no reply.
"Return to your human shape," he ordered her, feeling a brief surge of worry. This was still Beth, after all, and that worried him.
Bethany returned to her human shape, and stood before him with that expression of endless patience.
"Are you all right?"
"I am fine," Bethany smiled.
"That did not stress you?" "I found it strangely enjoyable."
"Can you….change yourself? I mean, of your own will?" "If you wish it."
"So, if I allowed you to change into anything you wanted to be right now, would you?" "If you wish it."
"What would you become?" "Whatever you wish."
Well, he thought. This conversation is going in circles.
"All right. For the next two minutes, I want you to select a shape, and become whatever you wish to become."
He felt safe with the time limit, and stood back and waited for the results.
He blinked in astonishment as Bethany's lean frame stretched, and her body took on a heavier musculature. He considered it for a moment, but in the next second there was no denying it. Even as the organ between her heavier thighs changed, he knew she was becoming a man. A tall, powerfully built version of herself, but a man all the same. Six-pack, cock and balls, and the whole works.
"Explain your choice, please," he asked quietly as he felt slightly intimidated by the taller, stronger looking masculine image she had become.
"The image was taken from our subconscious. Our host mind has always desired this shape."
"Well," he sighed, looking at her change back a moment later. "This is one fantasy we damn sure never discussed," he said as he studied Bethany's shorter, feminine body.
He studied her a moment, then a thought occurred to him. "Back to work," he said as he left the lab, and returned a moment later carrying the incubation chamber.
"All right. Next experiment, Beth," he told her in an all business tone. "I want you to take the scalpel, and cut the tip of one of your fingers off, and place it in this box.
"Again," he told her quickly as she moved forward to take the scalpel from the lab table by the box he had set down beside the sharp instrument. "You will feel no pain, or discomfort."
He watched in macabre fascination as the naked woman stepped up to the lab table, opened the now empty incubation chamber, and simply cut away her left index finger at the center joint. He stared at her hand as a new finger began to grow almost at once. A few seconds, and her hand looked as good as new. Nor did she show any signs of discomfort, or distress as she set the bloodless scalpel back down.
Peering into the box, he noted the finger was….well, melting. As if it no longer had any form of its own. He reactivated the EM field to safeguard the specimen, and the silver mass began to levitate slightly as it took on a spheroid shape within the humming box. "Fantastic," he murmured, and closed the box.
He guessed that without the host mind to guide it, the finger had lost directive, and so returned to its original state. That meant Beth's claim that to separate her from the nannites was true. Any such attempt would kill her, since from what he had seen, even her blood was becoming more and more 'infected' with the nannites now controlling her body.
He had succeeded. But at what cost, he mused grimly as he looked up from the blood sample that was now a silver smear on his slide. Bethany had unlimited potential, but she could never again be human. Not the woman she had been, anyway. Not as she had been.
"There has to be a solution," he told her. "But it's going to require some traveling to reach the people that might be able to help us. Only I can't too well take you as you are.
"How do you feel about staying with a friend until I can return? "As you wish," she predictably replied.
All he could do was groan. "Naturally," he nodded.
"Well, first, you're going to have to call in sick. Indefinitely. Or maybe you have to go out of town. Yes, that's it. You're going out of town. You'll need to call your boss, and your mother, and tell them you have to leave for a while. That you don't know when you'll be back."
She looked around immediately for a telephone.
"One moment. I'll get you the phone in a sec. First, we need to fine-tune a few things."
"I have a favor I need to ask of you," he told James, a friend from college who was smart enough, though more grounded in the everyday than he ever had been. James was the type to think up an idea, and immediately ponder its chances at making him a personal fortune.
Or getting him laid.
He was that kind of guy.
At thirty-two, he was pretty heavy, too, because James was a man of many appetites. Anything that made him feel good on any level was his primary drive. He was counting on that, since what he was risking by asking him this favor was going to put Bethany in his direct control until he could return.
"Sure, Rog," the chubby man grinned as he waddled back into the kitchen where he pulled out two beers from the icebox. "Drink?" "Better not. I have a long drive ahead of me."
"Bummer. More for me," he grinned, keeping both cans as he waddled back to the living room, and collapsed into his favorite chair that had a place before an entertainment center that would have rivaled any other setup of its kind.
"So, what's up, buddy," he asked as Roger set a briefcase down on the floor beside his seat on the couch, and cleared his throat.
"Well, I need you to watch….someone for me. It's really a very delicate, and top secret matter, James."
"Oh, yeah? Like Devon-level secret," he asked, naming a certain incident from their college days that even they only referred to in code.
"Even more so," he told him with a grim expression.
"Whoa. That is serious. So, what is it, buddy? You know you can count on me."
"All right. Now, first of all, this is all very hush-hush secret work, and what makes it critical is….well, there was an accident."
"More than you know," he grimaced as he shook his head. "Now, I have a few ideas on….cleaning up the mess, but I need to go confer with some very special minds on a….discreet basis. Until then, I need you to watch….Bethany," he spat out.
"Bethany? You're girlfriend? What has she got to do with….?" "She was caught in the experiment."
"Oh, man, Rog. How is she? Shouldn't she be in a hospital, or…..
"Uh, what kind of experiment are we talking about," the chubby man paused to frown at him.
"I think I'd better just show you. You'll never believe me otherwise," he told his friend grimly as he shook his head.
"Bethany," he called, making James frown even deeper, and look around. "Restore to human parameters."
"Holy…..shit," James yelped as he gaped at the large, silver briefcase that suddenly grew arms and legs as a body began to somehow swell up out of the metal luggage.
A moment later, a naked, silver woman was kneeling beside Roger, staring up at him with wide, silver eyes, and a bland smile. "I…I, uh, cannot begin to guess what the hell you were working on to make something like that," James exclaimed.
"This isn't something," he told James as he sighed, looking down at Bethany. "That is Bethany. She was exposed to a regenerating nannite matrix programmed for tissue regeneration and repair."
"Holy shit, that could be worth millions, buddy," he exclaimed. "Billions. The possibilities…."
"Oh, it works," Roger grimaced. "So long as you don't mind looking like Bethany."
"Oh. Oh, bummer. That could be a problem," he nodded sagely as he sucked down the last of his first beer, and reached for the other without his eyes ever leaving Bethany's naked body.
"Exactly. Now, I cannot too well drag her around with me as she is, so I need you to watch her while I'm gone."
"No problem," James nodded. "But….well, does she eat, or what?" "I do have a few things to tell you about that," he said as he glanced at Bethany.
"Shoot," James nodded, his brown eyes serious despite his lustful gaze as he looked back at his friend.
"She has to keep her energy levels up to stay….well, alive. Naturally, she can eat like she always has, but she can also absorb any organic material around her if she feels her energy levels getting too low."
"Organic material," James frowned. "Uh, buddy, that sounds an awful lot like…."
"Anything organic. Although I've told her not to absorb human beings, so we're safe," he said as he put a hand on Bethany's bare shoulder. "But keeping any clothing on her can be a problem sometimes. Especially cotton blends."
"Okay," he murmured, eyeing her. "What about….animals, and things. I have a cat that likes to wander in and out around here."
"Bethany," he addressed her, making her turn to face him. "You are not to assimilate James' cat if you see it in the apartment," he told her.
"Why not just tell her not to….assimilate any animal life," he asked.
"Because her new program would make it impossible for her to ingest most food then, and without protein, she could suffer dangerously low energy levels."
"I see. Well, I don't have any other pets beside Whiskers, so that shouldn't be a problem."
"Listen, James, I'm serious. No one else can see her. She can't leave your place, and she can't be found. Can you handle it?" "Hey, buddy, you know it. It's….Well, it's wild, but you know I'm cool," he winked. "But I can't say I won't be copping a feel now and then."
"Actually, as she is, sex would probably help fuel her energy levels, so….as long as you don't do anything…dangerous….there's no trouble with indulging yourself."
"Are you kidding?" "I'm afraid not."
"And…she won't mind?" "Bethany," he addressed her by way of answer. "Until I return, you will listen to James, and accept him as you accept me."
"All right," came a soft, cooing sound that sent shivers through James' entire body.
"Oh, hell, Rog. You could have created the ultimate fantasy girl here."
"The problem is, she's real, James. Now, I have to go. Here's my cell if you need me. But like I said, I'll probably be gone a while. At least three weeks."
"Okay. I'm sure we'll get along," he told him. "Just one thing. How the hell did she fold up into a briefcase?" "Actually, I think she can become anything of similar size and mass. For instance, Bethany. Table. "She's done this one before, so she knows the parameters," Roger told him as she became a coffee table. "But if you try something new, she might require definite parameters before she changes. The same way you would program a graphic by specific code."
"This is freaking unbelievable, Rog. When you can, you have to tell me just what you were doing to come up with this kind of regenerative matrix. "Maybe later," he told him as he rose to his feet, leaving Bethany in her table shape. "Remember, Bethany. Obey James as you would me until I return.
"Good luck, buddy," he told him gravely. "And better keep the shades drawn until I get back. You don't want anyone spotting her."
"Hell no," he agreed as he eyed the table setting near his couch, and grinned at the possibilities as Roger headed for the door.
"And, good luck," James added as Roger left, carefully closing the door behind him as he did.
"This," he grinned, staring down at the silver table. "Is going to be fun."
Beth knelt between James' thick thighs as the fat man leered down at her. "Suck it, robo-bitch," he ordered, and leaned back with a snide expression as she leaned forward to engulf his thick cock into her mouth. He gasped as he was engulfed in the hot cavity that surrounded him, her silver tongue sliding over his stubby shaft as she suckled him with all the expertise programmed into her by Roger's computers, James felt as if he were in heaven. The few whores he had been able to pay to go with him since his weight gain had been more than reluctant to even touch him. Beth might not show it, might not act like it, but whatever her real thoughts, they didn't show on her silver, smiling face as she seemed to eagerly suck him deeper with every move of her bobbing head over his lap.
"Stop," he rasped, hearing a banging on his door.
"Damnation," he spat, glancing at his watch as he shoved her back to fall sprawling on all fours in a face-up posture that made her look as if she were inviting even more seduction. "Damnation," he spat again as he looked down at her. "My sister is here," he swore as he realized he had completely forgot she was visiting this week.
"Well, Roger said you were adaptable. Let's see….."
He scratched his chin as he eyed her, and said with a smirk, "Make yourself into a table again."
Beth shuddered inside as she felt the by-now accustomed heat and pressure of her new body preparing to adapt to orders given her. Her limbs thinned, and stiffened even as her body flattened, and her head melded into her torso. In but a minute, and some few seconds, she had become a low-set, silver coffee table that set before his chair, looking all the world like real furniture.
"Not bad," he grinned at the seemingly innocuous chrome table. "I'd never have believed it if I…."
He swore as the knocking sounded again. "Stupid bitch must have left her key at home again," he muttered as he headed for the door.
"About time," James' sister swore as she strode into the room with a nearly mannish gait. She was as tall as he was, and almost as heavy with her husky, Rubenesque body. What saved her from the usual unpleasant curse of obesity was her brown curls, and mischievous green eyes set in what many called an angel's face. Clad in a dark green sun dress that accented her heavy curves, she might have been worshipped as a mother figure in another culture.
"If you'd remember your key," he muttered, wishing this were not the weekend she came to visit.
"I lost it. I told you that last month when I came down to see if you were still alive. Honestly," Janice swore at him. "You could just pick up the phone now and then and call mom."
"I hate phones. And I'm not too fond of that old woman, either," he added with a snort.
"She is still our mother," she told her brother with a sigh as she dropped her tote bag beside the couch, then yelped as she ran into the sharp corner of the low table he had setting diagonally between the chair and couch. "When did you get that damn thing," she complained as she leaned down to rub her shin where a small gash had been opened by her collision. "And why did you put it there," she demanded as she dropped down on the couch to study her wound.
"I just got it," James told her as he walked around the table, and barely glanced at her thick calf, and the small, red streak across her lower shin. "I haven't decided where I'm going to put it."
"Try somewhere else, you moron," she spat. "I'm going to take a shower. I'm really wasted after the flight, and I want to rest."
"Whatever," he muttered as he sat down heavily in his chair, barely remembering to hold his robe closed.
"Try to get dressed, too," she grimaced as she stood up after grabbing her bag.
"Whatever," he muttered again, glancing at the table as he tried to see Bethany in its new symmetry. Only the table looked just like it was what he had told her to become. A table. Nothing of the slender, big-titted slut could be seen in it. How could she still be alive in that, let alone breathe he wondered as he watched her sister's wide backside sway down the hall toward her usual room.
He waited until he heard the shower, and then turned back to the table. "All right," he said eagerly. "Come back."
The table didn't move.
"Look like you did before," he ordered her. "The girl look," he remembered to tell her, and the table began to swell, and ripple as Beth's head seemed to blossom out of the table as the short legs began to lengthen, and take on more human shape as her naked torso also became discernible.
"Fantastic," the fat man grinned as Bethany soon knelt before him just as she had been when Roger brought her to him. "Go to my room, and be very quiet. Don't let my sister hear you."
Bethany rose, and padded sensually down the hall, moving unerringly to his room where he had already shared many wonderful hours with the strange, miraculous girl. He almost hoped Roger didn't find a cure, or whatever it was he was off hunting last week. He could keep looking all he wanted, so long as he left the robot-girl in his care. He'd test her limitations a lot further than that bloodless geek would even dream of imagining. Roger was a good guy, and a great friend, but he had all the sexual imagination of a Dick and Jane reader.
He was considering a quickie in his room with his new toy when his sister's scream suddenly filled the air. He jumped up, wondering what had happened. Wondering if she had somehow seen Beth, but, no, that girl had already gone into his room, and the door was closed. He was halfway down the hall, thinking she might have slipped and fallen when Janice jerked the door open to stand there looking hysterical.
"What's wrong," he asked her, gaping at the size of his sister's bare tits that hung like firm melons from her chest.
"M-M-M-My leg," she gasped, looking down even as his own eyes temporarily locking on the thick, brown fur that covered her fat sex. Then he saw the splash of bright silver that was rising up her leg. A leg that was slowly turning as silver as Bethany's body.
"What happened," he rasped, looking down at the strange coloration that seemed to be flowing up her leg, and had already claimed her foot.
"I was….I was showering," Janice rasped, still too shocked by what was happening to even realize she was standing naked in front of her brother whom even she considered a pig. "Then I felt this….itching where I hit the table…."
"The table," James murmured.
"Yes," she shrieked. "Now, look at me. I'm….I don't know what I'm doing. We have to call a doctor. Something."
"Wait," he told her as the silver coating reached her hips, and began spreading across to start down her other leg even as it spread higher up her rounded belly.
She froze, her still fleshy foot trying to move, but her silvered hips and thighs locking in place. James grinned, realizing he already had the same control over her as he held over Bethany since Roger had ordered Beth to listen to him until he returned. "Just….calm down," he ordered her, but Janice yelled all the louder.
"Are you crazy," she screamed, and he realized he didn't quite have full control. And wouldn't until the silver stuff covered her completely. "I'm like….diseased, or something."
"Not quite. It's all very….scientific."
"What the hell do you know about science. You're a glorified accountant," she hissed as she looked down at her large, silver breasts now as she realized the stuff was flowing down her arms now as it had already claimed the rest of her body. "Please, James, you have to call….."
"Be quiet," he grinned as the silver reached her lips.
Janice's eyes rounded hugely as she felt her mouth snap closed, and her voice simply stopped. She couldn't even whine, or whimper now. She looked at him with green eyes rounded in fear as he only smirked, watching those orbs slowly turn as silver as the rest of her.
"Oh, dear, it looks like you're almost done, now," he grinned as he walked around her, boldly admiring her full, rounded body as her brown hair began to change, too. Apparently, it wasn't going to disappear like her pubes. Of course, Beth still had her hair, too.
He paused to notice her full, fat mons was naked now, not a sign of any of that forest remained despite the fact her long, brown hair, now silver, still remained. "Interesting," he murmured as he slid a finger over the split in her tight, plump lips. "I like the shaved look. It suits you, Jan."
She still wasn't moving, but he noticed her face was still a mask of fear and uncertainty. He decided to test his control. "Jan, do you hear me? "Nod if you do." Janice nodded slowly.
"Good. Listen very carefully, because you are about to find you have to do whatever I tell you.
"I want you to come. Come hard."
Her body arched helplessly as her fists clenched slightly, and her head fell back as something wet rolled down her thighs before being absorbed into the silver flesh of her legs. He grinned as he realized she was well on her way to becoming Bethany II. He grinned as he patted her on the head, and smirked at her as she stopped climaxing only after he told her to stop. She glared helplessly at him, but still could not move on her own. She had been told to wait, and whatever it was that had changed her was ensuring she did just that.
"This….is going to be fun," he snickered as he cupped one full tit, and squeezed it as hard as he could. She didn't make a sound, although her face twisted in pain. "A lot of fun."
Janice couldn't keep the fear from her expression as he told her to follow him to his room. Helpless to do otherwise, she felt her body moving against her will as she did just what he said, following him to his room.
Roger swore. He had just hung up after talking to James, and things had just gotten more complicated. From what he learned, it seemed that his sister had just become part of his troubles. She had cut herself on a sharp edge of Bethany's table form, and the nannites, while not assimilating her, had still been introduced to their new host through the injury. James was remarkably calm, but he doubted the man really understood things fully just yet.
Guessing how his sister must have been feeling by such a change, he had asked James to put her on the phone, and he had to repeat many of the same commands that allowed Bethany to calm down, and accept her new state to that woman, too. Of course, by the time her….melding was complete, she would share many of the same programs as Beth anyway, if his theory was correct.
Meanwhile, James now had two women to deal with, and he warned him again about exposing them, and suggested he cover up Janice's 'disappearance' as soon as possible so that no one would come looking for her anytime soon.
"Don't sweat it," James told him. "She's here for a week anyway, and our mother won't be looking to hear from her until then, at the least."
"That's only a week. And things are not looking good, James," he had warned him.
"Don't worry. I'll come up with something. Don't I always," he asked.
"Right. Okay, call me if anything else comes up. I still have some brain-storming to do."
"Don't worry about it. I'm a big boy," James had joked. "We'll be fine."
He looked around his motel room, and prayed that Dr. Ellis was available tomorrow. Because unless he could come up with something to reverse the matrixes of his nannties, those two women were….well, lost.
His first two contacts had been disappointing. One of the scientists he had sought out had left the country unexpectedly, and the other had been so far behind his own research that he couldn't even understand the theories behind Roger's work. Let alone accept them as possible. Dr. Ellis, however, was supposed to be a true genius of the old generation, and had done some landmark work with the human genome, and genetic manipulation until the government had predictably cracked down on such research during the last election year. Still, he might just know something that could help.
"It's working," Eugene Marks grinned as he eyed Dr. Anthony Drake's wide eyes as they stared at the tiny hint of silver that was rapidly growing in the specimen container.
"It seems that Dr. Summer's research is more advanced than even we thought," the elder man grinned as he pondered how best to steal the young researcher's project without getting caught. He knew there was a way. There was always a way. It was how he had managed to become a man of some importance in the scientific community, despite being less intelligent than the newest crop of super geniuses that were cropping up lately.
"Aren't you glad you let me pose as his assistant," Anthony's nephew grinned as the gangly intern looking for his own fame and fortune asked as he saw visions of Nobel Prizes in his future. And he had yet to even earn his doctorate.
Still, who needed it when you were about to be rich?
"So, what now," his uncle asked as the small, silver sphere floated in the specimen container before them.
"Well, you said it was supposed to….heal people. How does it work?" "I….don't know," Eugene told him with a helpless glower.
"But you were with him all month."
"He….He doesn't share all his data. He even still keeps a lot in his own head. He's one of those photographic minds, or something."
"So, what you're telling me is that you know absolutely nothing," Anthony swore at him.
"I knew enough to find, and develop another sample of the stuff he was making, didn't I," Eugene blustered.
"All right. You made it. You test it," he told his nephew.
"Uhm, how?" "I don't know," he spat. "What did he say about it?" "Something about….possible topical application on wounds," he said after several moment's of deep thought.
"Okay, so you put it on an injury," Anthony told him impatiently.
"But I'm not hurt," he protested as his uncle glared at him.
The man took a sharp penknife from his slacks and sliced across Eugene's thin forearm. The young man howled as he jerked his bloody limb from the man's grip who sneered at him from under silvered brows. "You are now," the iron-haired scientist spat. "Now, put some on your arm."
"But….we don't even know if it's safe. Dr. Winters hasn't even started the animal testing phase."
"I'm not losing a find potentially worth billions because you're afraid of complications. Roger's a fucking genius, and we both know it. So he's probably just being his usual cautious self. Like when he held the patents back on that portable EM field everyone now uses for containment and security. That was another billion-dollar find you let slip past us," Dr. Drake hissed.
"All right, all right," Eugene moaned as he held his painfully aching arm out as he used a pair of forceps to pull out the small silver sphere, intending to run it over his painfully deep cut.
Which was when things began to go wrong.
"What the hell happened," Roger demanded as he returned to the lab after his three week vacation to find a terrified Dr. Drake in a quarantine cell, and Eugene missing.
"It seems Anthony tried to test your current project. It didn't go well, Dr. Winters," Adam James, head of Gen-Tech told him. "If you'll follow me, perhaps you can help us ascertain what, if anything, can be done for your assistant."
"Eugene," he frowned, recalling his suspicions about the young lab intern who had been recently assigned to his team. He had been unable to get anything out of Drake, since the old man kept muttering to himself, and not even showing any awareness he recognized any of them as they stood before the old fool.
"Right. You'll have to see him to believe it," Mr. James told him as no less than four security guards followed them.
"I am afraid I already suspect what happened."
"You knew something this dangerous might happen…."
"Whoa," Roger stopped him as they neared the high security cells. "I theorized my matrix might still be….unstable, but not….not dangerous," he told his employer, covering himself as they stopped to let one of the guards unlock the main security door.
"Well, why didn't you warn someone about what you did know?" "I did," he glared back at Mr. James, whom he knew was only trying to cover himself from any liability against whatever had occurred in his absence. "I told Eugene…."
"Who chose to allow his uncle Anthony…." "Wait one minute," Roger stopped him before they entered the short corridor of high security containment cells. "Eugene is Dr. Drake's nephew?" Adam cleared his throat, and nodded. "I….I thought you knew that," the older man remarked less than convincingly.
"Still, knowing their connection, and that idiot's reputation, you still assigned him to my project?" Adam said nothing as he ran a hand through his thick, brown hair that was so obviously colored, even if the hair was his own. Of course, genetic manipulation could do such things these days. Growing hair was easy. Restoring vitality a cake walk. But his research was still so cutting edge that even the government think-tanks didn't think it was viable. Of course, that was what they said about his EM containment field.
"Just tell me what happened, Adam," he spat, dropping all formalities as he formulated his own suspicions about G-T, and Mr. James' connection with Drake's less than honest research findings over the years.
"It'll be easier to show you," the old man sighed as he held out a hand to gesture him inside the containment area that was rarely used since EM fields were so effective these days.
He scowled, but walked into the corridor, and noted there was only one green panel, indicating a prisoner in the cell. He walked to the panel, tapped in his security code, and opened the observation panel that revealed a small, eight foot square room with a single cot, and a small, floor toilet modeled after Japanese tradition. Of course, the toilet was also part of a sealed loop that kept any potential contaminants from escaping.
Inside, sitting on the bed that was a small, spring railing in a miserable huddle against the wall, sat a very naked, very silver, Eugene Marks. "Oh, hell," he muttered as he looked at the man's thin chest, hairless groin, and lifeless features. He looked like himself, save for the coloring, and the fact he was much thinner than he had been three weeks ago.
"What are you feeding him?" "Feeding him," the head of the company spat. "We haven't dared even open the door. "He….He absorbed two guards, and a female assistant before we got him in there. And that damnable Drake hasn't been any help at all."
"You should have called me sooner. First of all, you're starving him to death. God knows what might happen if he doesn't receive enough nutrients to feed his energy levels, but….. Roger shook his head. "Open the door."
"Are you crazy," Adam gasped.
"Trust me. I….suspected this was possible," he lied smoothly. "Which was why I was hesitating on the animal research until I could do some more fine-tuning of the nannite programs. Too bad Eugene didn't bother to read those notes, too," he said caustically as he eyed the chief of security.
"Now, open the door. Or do you really want to risk another dead man here?" "But….? "You'll understand if I send my other men out, and secure the outer hatch," the chief told him as he moved toward the door, gesturing to his men to go.
"Of course. But, don't worry. If I'm right, there should be no trouble."
"Should be," Adam squeaked, and fled after the other guards, staring back at Roger from the outside as if he were mad even as the outer hatch slammed, and the locks engaged.
"Ready, Dr. Winters," the burly man asked him as he headed over to the door only he, or a top exec like Adam could open.
"Go ahead, Bill," he nodded. "Trust me. I think I can handle him."
The man nodded, then tapped in the code. Eugene was looking up even as Roger stepped boldly into the room.
"Doc," the man rasped, starting to rise from the bed. "You have to help me." he moaned, barely able to even move. Apparently his energy reserves were dangerously low.
"Don't move," he barked, and Eugene froze in place, half on, half off the bed springs. "And be quiet," he added when Eugene began to scream in near hysterical fear.
"Wow. That was weird," Bill muttered as he risked looking inside. "We couldn't get him to do anything, and you just….told him to stop, and he does."
"The nannites that infused him operate on a security code that recognizes only my authority at this point," he told the guard as he walked over to Eugene to study him. "You really should have called me sooner."
"I wish we had," Bill told her sincerely as he walked into the room just behind Roger, feeling a little bolder now.
"Eugene, listen to me. When I release you, you are to remain calm. You will not be anxious any longer. You will accept your new state as natural.
"Also, you will not assimilate any other human beings into your matrix. Do you understand," he asked.
Eugene, predictably, neither nodded, nor spoke.
"You may now speak."
"I understand, Dr. Winters," came his calm reply.
"Stand up straight."
Eugene got fully to his feet, and stood before him looking calm, and relaxed.
"Can you access your primary protocols at this time?" "Yes, Dr. Winters."
"And what is the state of your energy levels?"
"We are functioning at less than ten percent, doctor," Eugene reported calmly.
"Do you know what happens when you lose all available energy from your host," he asked, hoping his sometimes too bright mind had not been right this time.
"Yes. My host form will terminate, and the matrix will preserve itself as best as is possible in its original form."
"I was afraid of that," Roger swore, removing his lab coat.
"What are you doing?" "While he can still eat, and needs to at once, his energy levels require regular organic intake or he'll simply….melt. That's the only way to describe it."
"God damn," Bill rasped as he watched the lab coat he handed Eugene just flow into his outstretched hand when Roger allowed him to take it. A moment later, the coat was gone aside from a few buttons that dropped clattering to the tile floor.
"Don't worry. He'll no longer absorb people. Will you, Eugene," he asked as he put a hand on the skinny intern's shoulder.
Bill flinched even as Eugene said, "No, Doctor Winters," but nothing happened.
"We need to get him food. And lots of it, Bill. Send your men down to the cafeteria to bring back all they can carry. It doesn't matter what it is, he'll accept anything at this point."
"Okay, doc," Bill nodded as he left the room. He paused in the door to ask, "Are you saying it's safe to open the containment area now?" "Perfectly safe," he told him. "Unless you've got any small animals running around, or are wearing cotton clothing. He can still absorb any organic material of that type."
"All synthetic," Bill preened as he straightened his uniform jacket. "Cheapest available."
"All right, Roger," Adam asked him an hour later as they watched Eugene through a window as he sat in the main lab, being scanned and probed by the company's best techs. "What the hell have you created?" As concisely as he could, he explained what he now knew of the regenerative and transformative abilities of Eugene's new state from what he had already learned from Beth. That he knew now that allowing the host's energy levels to drop too low could end in death didn't ease his mind any when he thought of Beth, whom he had been growing quite fond of lately. Nor did it help that all he learned from those he so carefully sought out only made their prospects all the worse. It seemed the nannites were too well made. They couldn't be unmade. Which meant the three people already exposed to them were going to stay that way for life.
He also had an idea of the limit of control he possessed, but kept that to himself. Technically, he could free the subject's mind now, he suspected, allowing them to regain their autonomous will. But doing so could be potentially dangerous. A person with the kind of power the regenerative matrix represented could be literally unstoppable. He could guess, too, the military would love to have something like a nannite soldier program if they thought it was viable. Another scenario he would rather avoid.
"So," Adam murmured. "Theoretically, anyone exposed to the nannites would be indestructible," he mused. "In other words, they couldn't be harmed?" "Oh, they can be hurt. They….He," he corrected as he nodded at Eugene who was patiently submitting to testing. "Simply heal extraordinarily quickly now. I suspect he could even regenerate damaged organs, or limbs."
"All right. What about contamination? Can the stuff spread to others?"
"I believe it could. If you had, say, an open wound exposed to direct contact that allowed the nannite's access to your body. Casual contact, as I've already proven," he said, thinking of James' casual contact over the past weeks, too, "Won't allow them to spread, though. There has to be a blood medium. Or so my calculations indicate."
"We'll need to test that," Adam murmured thoughtfully.
"Are you crazy," he shot back, staring at Adam's too smug expression. "You'd condemn someone else to that kind of life purposely?" "What kind of life," Adam asked. "You just said he can now heal virtually anything faster than normally possible even with the best genetic techniques. He is thriving, now that he's been fed, and shows no sign of any ill effects.
"A normal man would have died by now," he remarked. "Hell, Roger. You may have just created the next evolutionary branch of mankind's future."
"As a machine hybrid," he asked sardonically.
"By your own statements," Adam told him with a peculiar gleam in his eyes. "You just said he's all but immortal. You could well have created a fountain of youth."
"So long as you don't mind being silver, and at the command of someone else," he put in coolly.
"I'm sure we can….work around those trivial points. Besides, can you just see the military advantages of having men….."
"Roger," Adam frowned.
"I agreed to work with you under a very specific application. No military applications of my technology that leads to weaponry, or war. Forget it right now, Adam. Or I'll walk out of here now."
"All right, all right," Adam sighed. "It was just an idea. I'm sure we can come up with other options. The obvious drawbacks aside, you're still talking about the potential to heal literally any disease, handicap, or problem that humanity still faces."
"Right. You just get to turn silver," he muttered, still thinking of Beth.
"Trivial," Adam snorted. "You're still offering life….real life.…to a lot of people who wouldn't ordinarily have one."
"I know that, Adam. It's why I began this research in the first place. Only it's too soon to consider practical applications. The incident with Anthony and Eugene should have told you that much."
Adam nodded, but Roger saw the sly gleam in his eyes. The old man had something up his sleeve. Not that it mattered. He had purged his data from the company computers once he had the time, and no one could recreate his formula without the knowledge that only he now possessed.
"Hello, James. Have a nice month," he asked knowingly as James finally opened the door wearing a, for him, baggy sweat suit.
"Are you kidding," James rasped, looking somewhat thinner for someone who usually averaged about two-fifty on the scales. "Those two are wearing me out. If you hadn't showed up, I think those two would have fucked me to death." Still, he was grinning ear to ear, so his words were likely not a complaint.
"Two? James," he rasped as he entered the living room of his friend's apartment, and found neither of the two women inside. "You're doing your own sister?" "Hey, she's hot," the bigger man grinned. "So, you find out anything?" He couldn't help but notice the man's lack of enthusiasm.
"No," he admitted with a sigh. "In fact, all I've learned is more discouraging than ever. I'm afraid the nannite matrix is permanent."
"Whoa," James remarked with a faint grin. "So, the gals are like….robot girls for the rest of their lives?" "It's more complicated than that," he told him as they sat down. "If my calculations are correct…."
"And when aren't they?" "Then they could conceivably live forever so long as they maintain their personal energy levels."
"Holy shit," James exclaimed. "You're not kidding, are you?" He shook his head. "I'm afraid not.
"I do have to ask," he said, looking around again. "How did you cover your sister's absence?"
James grinned. "I told our mother I hadn't seen her since she left to go home. Meanwhile, I left her luggage, and her return plane ticket at the airport, and naturally, both disappeared.
"Since she took a cab here from the airport, there is no trace of her once she apparently got on to her return flight."
"Good thinking," he nodded at James who was still grinning. "But….her luggage? You sent all her clothes away?"
"She doesn't exactly need them now. Besides, I told you that you could count on me. So, what now?" He sighed. "I guess I'd better take Beth back with me. Her alibi was that she left town on personal business, and I can just imagine that people have already been looking for her.
"I already talked to the police, who came to see me the moment I got home. Meanwhile, I've got cccccc down at the lab pushing my buttons, too. It's a mess, James."
"What's going on," he asked, heading to the fridge for beer, and bringing back a can for Roger.
"The jerk is thinking with his wallet again. He thinks the regenerative matrix will make super soldiers for the army. Along with super strippers, supply eternal life, and cure all of mankind's ills at once."
"Wow. Talk about pressure. I bet you didn't know you had created a genuine panacea, did you?" "Well, like all miracles, it comes with a cost.
"Think about it, James. Would you really want to be silver the rest of your life? Your very long life. Not to mention being subject to the commands of anyone who could access your command protocols."
"Bummer," James frowned, looking back at the hall toward his bedroom. "That would be….a bitch."
"Exactly. I gave those commands to accept and obey to Beth out of necessity," he told James grimly. "I didn't do it because I got off on that kind of control. Frankly, that kind of power worries me. Could you imagine our government deciding it finally had the means for absolute power?" "Shit, man, I didn't think that far ahead. We're talking about real Borg shit, like on that movie," he exclaimed.
"I'll take your word for it," he said, not being a fan of holovids in general, let alone the old movies James liked.
"It's this….collective hive mind, see," James launched into his favorite movie's summary. "And they're like robot people that are all…well….programmed to obey the collective mind. Only the space heroes have to stop them from assimilating the entire universe, or there will only be the robot guys, and the single mind that controls them all."
"I got it. Think I read a similar story in an old pulp magazine not long ago."
"Hey, the original is still the best. And the Great Bird's work was the best."
"Great Bird," Roger frowned.
James sighed. "Never mind. The point is, you could be on the verge of creating something no one can control. If you're right, how do you stop it? Because you've got two people in my bedroom right now that are going to be pretty hard to keep hidden."
"It's worse. My intern and his uncle tried to steal my nannite program. The intern got contaminated, and the uncle is now catatonic. Only now, Adam James has got Eugene, the intern, under his own lab security."
"That could be bad," James agreed with him. "So, have you got any ideas?" "Right now, none. Although I don't foresee them breaking my command protocols anytime soon. They might recreate my matrix at this point from Eugene, but they can't get around the fact I'm the only one that can command the end result."
"Unless you give your permission to another," James grinned.
"Speaking of which, I suppose I had better go see how Bethany is doing."
"Right. She's in the bedroom, like I said, with Janice."
"You've had no other problems," Roger asked as he stood up to follow James to the bedroom.
"Not a bit. Guess you were right about that blood thing, because as you can see, I'm fine."
"I'm glad," Roger assured him as James opened the door and stared. Simply stared.
"Like my décor," James grinned as Roger only gaped at the two, tall embossed figures that were melded to the wide bed's footboard posts.
The two, matching figures looked like bipedal, anthropomorphic equines. Their dimensions and features were so alike that Roger didn't know which was which at that point. "Interesting," he murmured, staring at the twin decorations. "How did you keep them from absorbing your wooden bedposts?" "I simply told them to stay in place, and not do anything else until told. It keeps them safe, and out of sight, so to speak, in case of sudden visitors."
"Has anyone been by," Roger asked anxiously, remembering the police that had already visited him.
"Nah. I don't even expect my mom to start calling for another few days. By then, she might actually call. But only to check on Jan. We haven't ever been that close."
"I remember," Roger nodded. "Now, tell me if you can tell which is which?" "Actually, no. But I know I put Jan on the right. Let me show you.
"All right, Janice," he addressed the statue. "Step away from the bed."
He frowned as the ponygirl he had made of her did not move.
"Janice?" "Hmmmm. Let me try," Roger asked, stepping forward.
"Janice," he called her. "Step away from the bed."
The pony separated from the wood it had seemed to be a part of, and stopped just in front of Roger as James swore. "How did that happen," he demanded.
"Remember, I told Bethany to obey you until my return?
"Apparently, Janice absorbed the same command structures when she was exposed to the nannites that changed her."
James stared at his sister. "Then….I can't tell her what to do any more," he asked, almost pouting.
"I'm afraid not."
"But you could tell her….."
Roger shook his head. "I can appreciate your….enthusiasm, James. But for now, we'd better get them both out of here. Sooner or later, the police will be coming to see you, too. We'd better not risking having them find anything even remotely suspicious."
"Damn," James rasped. "I guess you're right.
"But, I can come and see her later?"
"Of course. You are still her brother. I'm sure she would like to see you. Even if you are sexually exploiting her, and turning her into strange hybrid creatures," Roger grinned.
"You ass," James snorted. "At least I don't turn her into tables."
"Speaking of which, I suppose I'd better get them both ready to go.
"Beth, step forward, please, and become the briefcase I described to you before I left."
Bethany stepped away from the bed, silently obeying as she dropped onto all fours, looking now like a small pony before she began to collapse down on herself as she compressed her mass into the smaller form Roger had specified.
"I wouldn't think she could become so small," James commented as he scratched his head.
"It's not that impossible. She just compresses her mass into a smaller shape. Of course, someone would find it odd that she doesn't open, and is much heavier than a real briefcase, so I have to keep her away from others in this form.
"And, Jan," he asked, looked at her. "She was pretty stout before she changed. You might not be able to carry her like that."
"How heavy are you," he asked Janice as he glanced back at James.
"I'm two-hundred and twenty pounds, Dr. Winters," the pony's mouth replied as articulately as if she were still human.
"She knows you," James frowned.
"No. But her program does. Command recognition is part of the primary protocols.
"Janice," he told her, "I want you to become a suitcase."
"Parameters," the ponygirl asked.
"Janice, just think of an ordinary suitcase, one seen anywhere, and take that form."
A moment later, a suitcase set beside the briefcase, and James walked over and tried to lift it. "Yep," he grunted, gasping with the effort. "I see what you mean."
Roger smirked. "I hope you have one of those tote carts….?" "Hell, make one," he told him as James set her back down with care before he answered.
Roger chuckled. "I'd still be carrying their full weight. I'd rather have a real one."
"Well, I do have a grocery cart somewhere. Let me check."
He came back a moment later with a two-wheeled, cart-dolly. "This do it," he asked as he wheeled the wire dolly over to Roger.
"It should. Let's try it," he said, easily lifting Janice's form first to set down into the cart that was just wide enough to accept her. He set Bethany on top, and though the small, aluminum cart groaned as he tipped it back, it held.
"I see you still work out," James smirked. "Showoff."
"Hey, I have to stay healthy for those long hours in the lab," he grinned as he resettled Beth carefully atop Janice's transformed body when it seemed she might slip out over the edge.
"Okay. That should do it. I take it you have your own car downstairs?" "Truck. I drive a truck."
"You drive a car. SUV's are just glorified cars," James snorted.
"I notice you don't own either," he grinned as he pulled the cart after him
"In this city? Are you nuts? It'd be stolen, wrecked, or stripped within a week. I'm saving myself money."
"There are ways to prevent those problems."
"Oh, yeah," James asked as they neared his front door. "How do you do it?" "I put up a small EM field around my truck," he stressed the descriptor. "Keeps everyone away until I'm ready to go somewhere."
"You clever bastard," James laughed.
"Sometimes," he muttered, looking back at the women who were now luggage.
"Hey, well, just send the cart up by way of the doorman. He knows it's mine."
"Right. And you have my cell number if you need to call. I'll be in touch about….things," he said as he reached for the door handle.
"Is that smart? You know if the cops do get suspicious, they could monitor…."
"Not my line," he said as he opened the door. "Trust me, my cell is secure. The NDA couldn't break my security."
"How do you know," he fretted as he looked out in the hall to ensure it was clear before he replied.
"I designed the NDA's decryption programs," he smiled.
"Just how top secret is your work," James asked as he frowned at him. Roger only smiled. James had always been interested in number one, himself. while maintaining a healthy disdain for corporations, government, and the usual elitism that went with both. It was probably his biggest stumbling block to breaking through his own barriers to success. Next to his prodigious appetites.
"I'll be in touch," James nodded, and headed for the lift.
"Later, buddy," James called after him, and retuned to his apartment to close and lock the door behind him.
He didn't sit back down right away, despite the fact one of his favorite programs was about to start. Instead, he went to the kitchen, opened the freezer, and looked inside at the frozen silver square in one of the ice trays there. "Now, little genie," he grinned at his prize. "What do we do with you?" He closed the door after putting the tray back on the bottom, under the other tray, and grabbed a tall bottle of lemonade to carry to his chair for some serious thinking. If he played his cards right, he might not only have his own little toy to keep around the house, but he might even be able to make some serious cash for a change. Some very serious cash.
Roger stepped into the NDA warehouse, unable to believe his eyes. The National Defense Agency was the premiere security agency in the twenty-second century for North America following the long terrorist wars of the last century. Second only to the president, the head of the NDA had powers that made him almost a god in the modern nation, although he didn't even officially exist according to the secret mandate that had created his division.
"Oh, hell," he groaned, staring at row upon row of sleek, large breasted females. Silver, large breasted females.
"James," he groaned, thinking of his friend, and his too casual manner he had allowed him to take Janice, and Bethany away that day just six weeks ago.
"That would be him, there," the agent at his side pointed after studying the small clipboard he held.
Roger looked over at the lot-number indicated, and labeled on the base of the small dais where the female stood. "He turned himself into a female," he frowned at the attractive form.
"He overlooked certain protocols, sir," the agent reported. "In his last encounter, he allowed himself to get scratched by a panicked transformee, and the nannties then entered his system, changing him into the image he had programmed for his victim.
"You see his twin, his intended victim, there next to him. Ahem, her."
He shook his head. "What does that make now? Five, or six hundred?" The agent gave him a wry expression, then looked down. "Five hundred and nine, sir. Five-eleven with the pair still in your custody."
He nodded. Sighed wearily, and looked around forty-three new transformees that had been confiscated by the NDA recently. "Well, at least we now know where they were coming from. Has his place been checked?" "Yes, sir. As well as his old apartment. We found several pounds of the regenerative matrix dubbed as robo-kote by the advertiser who attempted to sell it on the black markets.
"Damn. I knew had a careless streak in him, but I didn't think he could be so cruel. Condemning these people to this kind of existence…."
"He was selling them as sex slaves. The ultimate fantasy doll, I believe he billed them as when approaching his clients.
"He also sold the robo-kote to fetishists through the Web, appealing to their bizarre fantasy of becoming such a creature. I doubt any of them knew what they were getting into, though."
"No doubt," Roger admitted ruefully, thinking of poor Eugene. He had been reduced to a few pounds of nannites in the end, Adam James deciding he wanted to test all the limitations of the matrix. And as predicted, and ignored, Eugene was lost. Meanwhile, Anthony Drake had recovered, and gone out to the media, hawking his tale of wonder cures, and how Dr. Roger Winters was a fraud who had stolen his discovery, and killed his nephew for the rights to the billions involved.
Which was when the NDA stepped in.
Not just because of Drake's ridiculous muddying of the waters. No, robo-slaves had been showing up, and careless owners were either letting them starve themselves into nonexistence, or inadvertently exposing themselves, as well as family and friends that ended up exposed to the regeneration effect. In only a few weeks, horror stories of flesh eating machine viruses were all over the media reports, and the NDA had stepped in, and quickly found Roger Winters.
Unfortunately, they found James Taylor too late. By then, his money-making venture had reached hundreds, and it was trying to spread his dubious market across the country. Roger's voice was found on a tape the man had been using to get the new conscripts he first took from the streets, and later, just simply abducted at random, to obey only him until he felt they were properly programmed, and ready for their new life as a robotic slave. It seemed the man had taped his initial call concerning Janice, and kept it, as if anticipating just such an opportunity.
Roger stared at his former friend, and shook his head. "You let yourself get in too deep this time, didn't you, James?" "Yes, Dr. Winters," the altered James replied with the same lyrical tone all the transformees seemed to possess.
"What are you going to do with this batch," the agent asked.
Roger glanced at the man's badge. His security clearance was level to his own. "They're going to NASA. Once we've programmed them for the responsibilities they'll hold, they can help make things simpler for future missions, and even space missions since they can work without the usual spacesuits. All they need is adequate nutrition, as you know, and they can survive in literally any environment just as they are.
"NASA has already slated three to set up the preliminary mining venture on Mars, to augment the lunar mining colony."
"Wow. That is pretty wild," the young agent grinned. "I used to dream about being an astronaut before they limited long flights to robots only. Now these people will be going where we've only dreamed about going."
"True. But I doubt many of them would go if they actually had the choice."
The agent sobered as he glanced at the clipboard again. "Yeah, I suppose not. It's still odd how there are so many that actually asked for this kind of life, though."
"No. I don't think they did. They might have fantasized about an idealized adventure, but I don't think any of them really wanted to be trapped as a thing for the rest of their life."
"I guess not. Still, to even dream about it is….well, odd, don't you think?" "People are odd," Agent Davis," he told the man as he turned from James to study the other female creatures he had made of whoever they had been before.
"That is true," the man nodded agreeably.
"Ready for downloads," a silver transformee reported as she came over to stand by Roger's side.
"Very good, Beth," he told the woman that had become his senior lab assistant after everything else had come out over the past few weeks.
After all, it only made sense to have his first, greatest creation, tragic as she was, to stay at his side, and help him redeem the work that had been prematurely unleashed upon the world. He studied the small program readout she handed him, and nodded again.
"Download, Beth," he told her, and the silver woman only in a lab coat like his own for modesty's sake.
The woman nodded, and simply put a finger against the nearest transformee. A small amount of static discharge was visible, and then Beth dropped her hand as the transformee touched the one next to her, and so on. Each passed the static discharge that carried billions of bits of data in the feed, readying each of them for their new lives as scientific explorers, and/or laborers for NASA.
"So, that's all it takes?" "The finished product looks simple," Roger sighed, hating that he was making literal tools out of what had once been people. "But it takes a lot of preparation, and careful attention to detailing the programs to not only ensure they are prepared for their duties, but to ensure they aren't dangerous to any human elements involved in their sphere of operation."
"Oh, right. I guess the bosses were right. You really are a genius if you can figure all that out."
"If I was a real genius," he glowered, "I'd figure out a way to free these people."
The agent had no response to that as Roger turned to leave, Beth shadowing him as she stayed close to his side. He still couldn't believe the things he had seen since being assigned to 'Operation Robot.' He had thought it was some clever analogy. He had not realized he was dealing with real, transformed humans that were little more than machines now. It was hard to believe that the pretty creatures standing before him were once human. Or that their minds still existed somewhere inside the humanoid shapes held together only by the billions upon billions of nannites that now formed their bodies.
He grinned as he waited for the doors to close, and walked over to one of the transformees. The one that had been James Taylor. "Okay, Jamie," he grinned at the large-breasted female with a body to die for. "Ready to pick up where we left off," he grinned, fully ready to indulge in the best fringe benefit he had ever found on one of his assignments.