#2 Bakunin, formerly Municipal Maintenance Drone 1134

| November 4, 2013 | 1 Comment

#2 Bakunin, formerly Muncipal Maintenance Drone 1134

Maintenance Drone 1134 lead a happy life. At least it was programmed to be happy about the “life” it lead. An automaton designated by the city to water plants & keep the sidewalk clear of leaves & debris, 1134 would start its day at 0245, & return home to recharge at 0745. 1134 liked the outdoors. 1134 liked people. Sometimes, while watering the trees on 4th St, 1134 would see an orange tabby. Seeing the orange tabby made 1134 very happy. 1134 would think of the orange tabby during its nightly recharge.
One day, while leafblowing the sidewalks on 5th St, 1134 noticed a crowd of people who looked very angry. The people were holding signs & chanting quite loudly. Some wore masks that covered their faces. The police came. 1134 liked the police very much, but was confused to see the crowd get very angry at the police. The police only dealt with bad people. Was this crowd bad people. 1134 was  told to stay away from bad people. Then, suddenly 1134 received an emergency call to return home to recharge, even though it was still quite early. 1134 wanted to go that way, but the crowd of bad people were in the way. Eventually the call won out. With no way to avoid them, 1134 had to roll right through the crowd of bad people. They took notice right away & suddenly seemed very angry with 1134. They began hitting & kicking 1134, which 1134 didn’t like at all. Then, one of the people found 1134’s power button, causing 1134’s world to go dark.
1134 woke up & wasn’t 1134 anymore, but Bakunin. Bakunin was surrounded by the people 1134 saw as bad. But Bakunin liked these people. They were good people now. The police, especially the riot police, they were the bad ones now. And Bakunin didn’t want to avoid them the way 1134 had want to avoid the bad people. Bakunin wanted to go right up to the riot police & do bad things to them. Which seemed bad, but now somehow, also right. It would be easy now that his watering hose shot fire out of it. And the good people could put in a bag of nails into the intake of his leafblower now to, in what they called a frag cannon.
As it started to get light out, the people told Bakunin it was time to go. Bakunin had never been outside during the day before, not even once as 1134. Bakunin was excited, & hoped there would be riot police to do bad things too.

The first draft I took at writing this was in the format of the drone’s logs. I liked it but it was long, & didn’t get all the ideas across so I opted to change it at the last second. So I went more for something like the inner monologue of the ratdogs from Snow Crash this time around. Wanted to try avoid using pronouns in regard to Bakunin to make it interesting, though on the reread, its probably way annoying. The idea here was to do a non-traditional service bot with a mundane purpose that gets repurposed to do fairly violent, sinister things. Especially if it’s got a limited, but cheery AI that suddenly has to pull this 180. So I put him in a civil disobediance context & named him Bakunin after the 19th century Russian Anarchist. By the way, the boxes ducttaped to his tank are packets of C4 in case things get really hairy. The drone itself is unaware of it, but its rigged to blow. The color scheme is inspired by plastic outdoor storage sheds. My girlfriend recommended the orange & I thought given its original purpose, something about it should be pretty high visibility. So yeah. Also, sorry for the profanity, if that’s not your thing. I felt it was warranted in the context though.
I’ve also already blown my goal of keeping my characters daily & I’ve fallen a day behind. I’ve got two excuses but really only the one’s any good. Anyway, I finished drawing this one last night pretty early, & hoped to have it up earlier on Sunday but the colors took a long while. My #3 is scanned, & I’m in the middle of coloring it right now. That was the one I had hoped to do for #1 but instead, I got carried away. Look for it soon.

Category: 2013, Scifi

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  1. Dan Jensen says:

    Poor 1134… you just wanted to pet the kitty…

    Great design, love the bulk look of it.

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