Daceest sat at his desk, looking through a set of datapads, unfinished droid head in front of him. Hmm. The instruction manuals on these things really weren’t very clear. It was like an idiot built it and wrote a crack pot manual. Ok. A decent programmer. An idiot writer. There was a distinction.
What the heck did, “connect the red with the co-focal point” mean? The red what? The red re3-wire, the red activator, the red detonator switch or the red plasteel wrap? He wrinkled his nose in disgust. Well. There were only so many options. He would eliminate the wrong ones eventually. Why did he try to save this junk tech? He sighed quietly. No sense in wasting it.
The ramp opened, and he looked up. Jagna stumbled in, holding her arm limply, and flashed a grimace at him.
“You ok?” he said, looking her over. She looked… terrible. Her vest was torn, coat looked to be burned, and her arm…
She fell with a thump into a chair at the wrong angle, bouncing off it and collapsing to the floor. Daceest frowned, his alarm growing and scrambled from his seat, striding over and bending down to inspect her wounds. She cursed, waving him away, growling.
She struggled up into a sitting position, leaning against the wall. She was breathing heavily. Daceest grabbed her arm, refusing to back down from her glares. Finally, he got her to let him take a look. When he saw it, he felt sick. Charred red skin, blackened around the edges with soot and burn marks. This was second degree at least. Shrapnel had torn up parts of her bicep and, looking more closely, it seemed her vest was covered with the stuff, poking in and out at odd angles, barely stopped by the weave. A deep gauge in her neck leaked blood, soaking her collar. Blood had completely soaked the right sleeve, making it stiff. Most of the blooding had stopped by now, it looked like. He glared at her.
“What happened?” A throaty chuckle escaped her.
“SD-6 Hulk Infantry Droid,” she said. Daceest raised his eyebrows.
“Those are… dangerous.” Jagna paused, licking her lips.
“Nothing left of ‘im but… this.”
She reached into a coat pocket and pulled out a datapad marred with dirt and blood, and handed it to him. He glanced at it, turning it on, and his mouth dropped open.
Schematics of the Prodigy 2 droid brain by Argon Llesar… these were worth more money than he might make the rest of his life! … Page after page of beautifully labeled diagrams, accurate instructions, concise prose describing the tech … it might be the most advanced A.I. system that had ever been attempted. … Jagna was smiling at him, a twinkle in her eyes.
“Thought you’d like it,” she said. Then she passed out.