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Machine Man
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SOURCE P18 V4/7.
Machine Man (serial)

V3← Final →V5

Date: Wed Mar 25 10:03:01 2009 +0000

Page 18.

After Lola left, I sat alone in the lab, thinking. I remembered how her hands had run over the prototype’s metal; how they had caressed it. I was

I felt very pleased thatexcited after Lola liked my new leg, but I felt unsettled, too. For a while I thought it was just that I was almost finished, because I always get a little despondent when a project is coming to a close. I tend to look around for ways to tinker, add a few last-minute features. To draw it out.

But that wasn’t it. What gnawed at me was how Lola’s eyes had fixed onBanks left the prototype.lab. She had practically forgotten I was in the room. And you couldn’t expect any different,first person I’d shown my prototype leg, and her reaction exceeded my wildest hopes. To be honest, I guess, from someone confronted with a 180-pound nuclear-powered polycarbonate prosthetic. But still. She had looked at it like a device. Like a product,been bracing myself for her to be fitted to whoever needed it.grossed-out. And maybe most people would have been—would be. But that’s not how ILola. She had intended it. Iknelt beside the leg. She had built it to be part of me.touched it, gently, reverentially. Almost affectionately. I thought about that for a long time.

It was getting late. I was probably the only person still in the labs. But I didn’t feel tired. I looked down at my right leg, the one I’d had since birth. I rolled up my pant leg, and turned it this way and that. The more I studied it, the more it bugged me.

late. I was probably the last person left down here. But I didn’t feel tired. I looked down at my leg, the good one. Well. “Good” was probably the wrong word. I mean the one I’d had since birth. I rolled up my pants and turned it this way and that. It looked fat, and weak, and ordinary. The more I studied it, the more it bugged me.

18.

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