Genres: Artificial Intelligence, Robot, Technology
Escape Pod 884: Zhao and the Flightless Crane
Zhao and the Flightless Crane
By A. J. Mo
Quick sapphires danced over sun-silvered water. Soundless, they zipped and wheeled to the quiet rhythm of filtration pumps. Dragonflies, Zhao thought. Other winged jewels joined the flurry, some green as spring, others red as blood, wings iridescent.
“Good,” he said to himself. “Lake’s clean.”
“That is good,” echoed Ah Bak in their tinny voice. “Dragonflies do not breed in stagnant water.”
In the distance, the Pearl River curled east, having conferred upon the lake a small fraction of its life on its thousand-mile journey from the west. Zhao stared at the scene, taking in the collage of colours and contours when he noticed something in the sky. A plane. Almost imperceptibly small, it cut its trail across perfect blue. His stomach tightened, a light prelude to much greater agony. A memory forced its way to the surface, fingers ruined by fire, the rest of the hand lost. All they could find. All that was left of Chen. Zhao clenched his teeth and dragged his eyes over the white naked sun to blot out the image.
“Does Lei like dragonflies?” came Ah Bak’s tinny voice, their haematite beak unmoving. (Continue Reading…)