"Good morning! Welcome to another beautiful day in Colony 22. One of the best cities in the north west region of the Mother Colony." The same public loud speaker announces this every morning. Kora city has awakened. The air transports in forms of lines have tripled and the traffic in terms of people have also tripled. Kora city is really populated.
Like I said, I'm one of the underdogs inside this city. Lonely and always excluded from society. That's obviously why I'm so attached to my love. She’s the only one I can be close to and feel accepted. I take the same streets every day I go and come back from work. This time in the morning people are hurrying to places, pushing each other's shoulders and forcing food down their mechanically modified throats.
I reach my workplace and everyone always stares at me as usual. Maybe I'm the only normal human compared to most of them who are mostly half mechanical. It’s hard to find normal humans like me. I think I’m unacceptably 'different' is because the norm is to be modified and leave our fragile mortal human bodies in the past. “Collect metal and scrap and you’re done for the day” my boss said. I nod and make my way to the junkyards.
The sunny daylight horizon shines at the tip of the metal mountain made from piles of scrap metal, body parts and trash. The best places to find parts and scrap for building, upgrading or selling. Most of the time I just take the good parts for my own use instead of selling it at my work place. My boss would never know. Sometimes I just lay down on the metal piles for peace and quiet. There aren’t many people here excluding the automated bots that sort some typed of materials. Those aren’t built to interact with people so I just talk to them sometimes. At least they don’t judge me. They don’t even know I sneak into the junkyard. It’s actually illegal to enter junkyards since it’s private property owned by the governments.
“Hey you! You’re not allowed here! You are good as dead scrap metal here! Guards!” shouted by one of the garbage collectors. I quickly gathered some functional parts I scavenged into my sack and ran through the metal maze piles and found my secret entrance. No one has noticed a tiny metal plank covering an entrance through an air-vent pipe leading into an underground sewer. These sewers lead to many other locations in the city. I’ve never had the confidence to explore the tunnels but I only know the way out which leads to my work shop. This place used to be occupied decades ago from maintenance workers but they seem to not return. At least I can have some rest down here alone. I sit down on a small step on an abandoned staircase. I take a deep breathe and just think about the only thing I love. I pick up a small holographic device from my small items stash I have stored on the staircase and I stare at a hologram of my love. This place makes me feel like I belong all alone.
It is getting late so I get out the tunnel and make my way back to the shop to store the items. I walk back slowly, taking my time which was a big mistake. A group of gangsters pointed at me and said “Hey skinny guy! You’re the crazy one I hear about. What’s in the bag? Your ‘love’?” they laughed and walked towards me. “At least she cares for me…” I murmured as I walked away faster. “Running back to your love? She’s not gonna save you, get back here!” they say as they run up closer to me. In two seconds they will trip my legs and I fall flat face down onto the ground.
*wham* My face kisses the floor then they kick my stomach and push me facing upward. “What’s in the bag?” they asked as they kicked the side of my stomach. One of them snatched my bag as the other kept kicking my head. Everything is blacking out and I hear static sounds in my ear so I curl up trying to shield myself but they pull my hands and legs away from me and I suddenly feel an intense pain and sharpness on my right side of my waist. My eyes dilate with intense shock. I look down, and I see a knife slowly being pulled out from my waist. I am speechless from the amount of pain I feel. “Good stuff. Let’s get out of here. Take note, nobody cares about you.” they chuckle and walk away with my bag. I am immobilized. My vision is blurry and I start to black out. I lay on the ground like a dead body. Everything fades to black.
"Hey buddy? Can you hear me?" whirring sounds move up and down from my right side of my head and I'm suddenly so awake. "Where am I??" I panicked. "Relax friend, I am Doctor Shin. We are currently providing you emergency repairs on your waist as you got a really bad stab wound." The doctor said. I continue allowing them to do their job and fix me. "Is my love here?" I asked. "No, but some good people called emergency to pick you up. You should be fine. Alright, you're all good. Try to stay away from this kind of mess, if you know what I mean. You can make your way home now." He said. He backs off along with his medical robots allowing his payment bot to arrive with a biometric scanner to accept payment. That’s another cost for my meal but I made my way home.
I arrived home 3 hours later. I still feel dizzy and some sleep would be good. I reached home and my love ran toward me with a worried face. “Oh my are you okay? What happened?” she asked but I said “I’m alright. Let’s sit at our usual spot and I’ll talk about it.” We then sat at the same place, held each others hands, I told my story, kissed her forehead and we went to sleep. Doctor Shin does a really good job, or else I wouldn’t have made it this far. I wonder who was kind enough to get me out of there.
Author Notes: Thank you for reading Chapter 2 of Quixotic! Any types of feedback or comments are much appreciated. I will release more chapters soon :)
QUIXOTIC is a story of a man who lives in the 30th century when technology is so advanced that humans and robots, AI live among each other as a natural state of the population. Despite living in an advanced world, he still faces the struggles of being an outcast, getting bullied and lives a low life. The only thing meaningful to him is his lover who is with him no matter what. After years of being lonely and depressed, he finally loses his tolerance level and does something which changes his life. What will he discover?