Focus

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CH 1

Ariel busied herself around the house as she did almost every morning after her husband Jack went to work. After making breakfast she liked to do a little light cleaning before taking a shower and starting work. She walked around the large, sun lit house in only her pajamas, which only consisted of a pair of boy shorts and a tight t-shirt. It nicely showed off her 5’6” slim figure and milky white skin which was accented by her shoulder length red hair. It wasn’t exactly proper cleaning attire but she didn’t want to get anything else dirty before taking a shower.

Ariel’s husband, Jack, worked for a medium sized technology company and often had to pull long hours at the office or go on frequent trips. She spent many hours on her own so she did what she could to keep herself busy. Today she planned to give the kitchen a thorough scrubbing before her shower and she had just finished assembling the necessary cleaning supplies on the floor.

Ariel s started scrubbing the cabinets and worked her way down to the counter and then the floor. She finished cleaning and looked across the kitchen at a box Jack tucked in the corner a week ago. His grandmother had recently downsized and sent all the grandkids what she couldn’t fit in her new place. She wasn’t sure what was in there, but figured if he left it in the kitchen, it must belong there.

Ariel cut the old box open and lifted the paper wrapped contents onto the counter. Shedding the wrapper, she found an old stand mixer; well worn with years of use and covered with a layer of dust and grease. She had seen mixers like this before and knew enough to know that while it didn’t look great, it would be very difficult to find one as reliable or powerful in this day and age.

“Well, I might as well get you cleaned up too,” Ariel mumbled to no one in particular as she put away all the packing materials and started scrubbing the metal frame. The grease was hardened on the machine after years of neglect and her normal scrubber wasn’t doing the trick. She frowned and found a decent kitchen solvent to spray the thing down. She gave it a good soaking and waited a while for the cleaner to do its work.

After a few minutes, Ariel grabbed a stiff toothbrush and went to work. It took her almost a half hour but she finally got the old machine shinning like new. She smiled and cleaned up the mess before finding a spot on the counter to plug it in and see if it still worked. She flipped the switch and unfortunately nothing happened. “Stupid girl,” she mumbled. “It would have been a lot smarter to try it out first before you spent half an hour cleaning a broken mixer.” She looked around trying to see if there was some safety switch or other interlock she needed to trip before it would run when she noticed the power cord came out of the mixer at a weird angle. “Hrmm,” she smirked as she leaned over and pulled the cable straight.

Suddenly a bright flash and a loud snap filled the room as all the lights in the kitchen went dark. Ariel’s hand was locked on the old metal appliance and her body remained completely still for several seconds. Then suddenly her head twitched slightly to the right and she stood up straight; pulling her arm back to dangle loosely at her side. A muffled beep emanated from her chest as she stared blankly at the cabinets. “WARNING: CRITICAL SYSTEM SHUTDOWN. EMERGENCY REBOOT INITIATED, ADMINISTRATOR ALERT ORDER PROCESSED,” Ariel droned flatly. “CYREX SYSTEMS SERIES 705A, MODEL 278594BF9 INITIALIZING. IMPROPER SHUTDOWN…RUNNING FULL SYSTEM SCAN….HUMAN PERCEPTION DRIVERS CORRUPTED…UNABLE TO LOAD SOFTWARE. ALL OTHER SYSTEMS NOMINAL. SCAN COMPLETE. INITIALIZING PERSONALITY MATRIX ARIEL-A943.”

Ariel blinked a few times and suddenly shook her hand, “Ow damnit!” she swore in her normal voice. “Fucking thing shocked me.” She blinked a few more times as she stared down at the mixer. Something was different, but she couldn’t quite put her finger on it. She blinked again before she realized that somehow the old appliance looked sharper and more in focus; like she just cleaned her sunglasses and put them back on. She shook off the funny feeling and got back to work. She wrapped her hand in a dish towel and grabbed the plug to pull it from the wall. She was about to pack the whole thing away when she heard the phone ring and quickly ran to grab it seeing Jack office line on the caller ID.

“Hey Jack how are you doing?” Ariel asked as she grabbed the phone and leaned on the newly washed counter.

“I’m fine,” Jack replied nervously. “Are you ok?”

“Yea I’m fine. I got a bit of a shock when I tried to clean your grandmother’s old mixer but why do you ask?” Ariel questioned, as she wondered how Jack knew to call her right after the accident.

“Oh nothing,” Jack verbally juggled. “I…just…got this funny feeling. You know, like in those movies. I thought something might have happened.”

“You know I don’t believe in that mumbo jumbo crap,” Ariel chuckled. “If you don’t have any other psychic visions, I should get going. I spent too much time cleaning that horrible mixer and threw off my entire schedule today.”

“Ok dear,” Jack laughed back, “Have a good day.”

“You too,” Ariel replied and hung up the phone. She noticed that the phone didn’t beep when she returned it to its charging cradle and then saw that the shock must have blown the fuse for the whole kitchen. What she didn’t notice was that she had set the phone precisely in the center of the cradle without rubbing against the sides of the charger at all.

Ariel knew she was running late for her shower, but figured she should reset the breaker before she forgot. On her way down to the basement she wondered how long this whole mess set off her morning routine. *47 minutes and 15 seconds* suddenly popped into her mind. Oddly specific, but when she checked her watch; pretty much dead on accurate. “That’s weird,” she mumbled as she descended the stairs into the dim basement. She noticed it was a little cold downstairs and once again *16.667 Celsius* popped into her head. “Alright, what the fuck?” she mumbled as she looked around the empty room. “I don’t even use the Metric system.”

Ariel pinched the bridge of her nose as she walked over to the fuse box. Maybe someone was messing with her and playing a speaker really low. “Or maybe I just fried my brain on that stupid mixer,” she sighed as she found the tripped breaker and reset it. She could hear the fridge kick back on upstairs so she closed the box and started to go up to take her shower. Just as she was about to kill the light and head upstairs she noticed a new door in the basement wall.

“What the hell?” Ariel whispered as she slowly moved towards the door. She and Jack had lived in this house since soon after they were married three years ago, and she had never seen this door before. She vacuumed down here once a week and thought there was no way she could have possibly missed it. As she got closer she looked carefully at mystery door and found that it was just a slightly different shade of gray than the surrounding doors and walls. She tried the knob and found it locked. She didn’t have a key herself since she didn’t even know it existed until a moment ago, but she did remember that Jack kept a spare set of his keys in his desk drawer.

Ariel quickly ran upstairs, grabbed the keys and returned; her shower forgotten as the new door had her complete attention. It took her a few minutes to go through all the keys until she found one that finally let her turn the knob. She opened the door and the lights automatically flickered to life. Her jaw dropped as she scanned the room slowly from one side to the other.

The 20’x20’ windowless room was now bathed in the bright glow of overhead florescent lighting. The right wall was covered with various computers and electronic equipment, neatly organized on a long workbench. The far wall contained large, closed cabinets, the left wall was dominated by two imposing, vertical metal tubes, and the center of the room contained a flat, stainless steel table with several wires and devices attached to it.

Ariel slowly stepped into the room and let the idea sink in for a while. “Jack what do you do down here?” she asked the room, as if it would reply. Attracted by the flashing screens, she made her way to the large bank of computers on the right wall. There seemed to be two separate but identical sets of equipment; one completely dark and dormant and the other alive with activity. She approached what looked like a user terminal and shook the mouse to wipe out the screensaver. The display suddenly lit up with what looked like a large, complex configuration GUI. She glanced over it quickly and her eye caught on the upper title bar. “CYREX AI MATRIX CONFIG: PERONALITY ARIEL-A943.”

This got her attention, and Ariel sat down at the console to give it a more thorough examination. Why did it have her name and what is it for? It appeared the program currently was set up to monitor system status. She looked it up and down without focusing on any one thing, and then suddenly the whole program just clicked in her head and she was able to focus on the whole screen simultaneously. It listed all kinds of drivers and systems and all were highlighted in green, except one. She looked down at the small text and was surprised she could read it without squinting. “HUMAN PERCEPTION DRIVERS – OFFLINE” She clicked the mouse on the red text and the display jumped to a small alert window. It described a critical system shutdown of android 278594BF9 a little over 10 minutes ago due to an unknown hardware error. It also mentioned that an administrator alert was transmitted to 212.555.1259 several seconds later.

“That is when I got shocked,” Ariel mumbled, “And that’s Jack’s office line. Is that why he called me. Am…am I a robot?” She stared blankly at the screen as her hand led the mouse to jump through various program tabs looking for some sort of answer. She finally clicked on one last tab marked external configuration. When the screen refreshed, she saw a fully nude picture of herself in a spread eagle position from the front and another image from the back. Various parts of the image where highlighted but when she moused over her breasts and clicked on them, an error message popped up.

UNABLE TO CONFIGURE REMOTELY. PLEASE ATTACH MANUAL CONNECTION.

A light arrow fell from the pop up box to point at the naked android’s navel, which now blinked red. Without looking, Ariel’s left hand rose from the desk and slowly hovered above her exposed belly. She pushed her middle finger into her navel but felt only skin. She let out a sigh of relief, “I must be going crazy thinking I was a robot.” She then shifted her finger slightly and felt something hard push back. Her face went slack as her finger pushed aside a few folds of skin before it found a small USB connection.

Ariel looked down and using both hands, pulled open her navel which completely exposed the USB connection. “Oh my God…” she muttered. She tried desperately to think of any other reason why she would have a plug, besides if she was a robot, but she came up blank. Not entirely knowing why, she fumbled around with the computer and found a long, attached USB cable and plugged herself in. The configuration program began processing as the previous alert boxes disappeared and the image focused itself on the naked android’s breasts.

The young girl paused for a bit as she stared at the screen and the wire now attached to her belly. She could feel the wire attached to her, but didn’t feel any different. Although she didn’t really know what being attached to a computer was supposed to feel like anyway. She eventually got the courage to grab the mouse and return to the program, which now displayed a very accurate representation of her breasts along with several slider bars right next to them. The bars were labeled: volume, height, shape, nipple length, and firmness. Half expecting nothing to happen, she selected the bar for volume and slid it a little to the right.

Ariel suddenly felt a strange stretching sensation in her chest and she looked down to see her breasts growing as her already tight shirt strained against the load. “Oh my God, I am an android.” She saw three buttons at the bottom of the screen labeled RESTORE, SAVE, and CANCEL. She clicked the restore button and the slider along with her breasts returned to normal. “Hrm, this is actually kinda fun,” she chuckled and broke a little smile. She grabbed the height slider next and kicked it to the left; replicating the effects of several decades of gravity. “Uhh, no thanks.” She slid it back further right and within a few seconds she was back at her late teens. She smiled and moved on to the shape option; shifting herself from natural, to pointy, to porn star fake. She firmed them up and cranked the nipple variable all the way over. Her hands reached down and grabbed her now rock hard tits, with ridiculously long, jutting nipples and gave them a good feel. “Fun, but one weird thing at a time for now,” she said as she hit the cancel button. The screen transitioned back to the large view of her body as her own breasts returned to normal.

Ariel wandered around the configuration program for about an hour, looking at what she could change or checkout. She eventually selected the Directives Tab, which brought up a rather plain looking screen broken into MISSION, DIRECTIVES, and RULES. Below each heading was text that was grayed out but still very legible. At the bottom of each segment was a button labeled EDIT. She looked over the screen and read what she could see:

MISSION: Serve Jack Marshal as his wife.

DIRECTIVES: 1. Follow all orders as given by Jack Marshal. 2. Do whatever is possible to promote the happiness of Jack Marshall. 3. Do not inform others besides Jack Marshall or a licensed Cyrex employee about android status.

RULES: 1. Every morning Jack is away at work, clean one area of the house. 2. Rotate cleaning duties so that the entire house is cleaned once a month. 3. Take a shower after performing morning cleaning duties. 4. Perform 5 hours of in house paid work per day when possible. 5. Every Tuesday night at 10pm, disable personality matrix and recharge. Etc.

“Now wait a second,” Ariel said to no one in particular. “I always end up falling asleep on the couch Tuesday evenings when Jack watches his stupid reality show. But then again, maybe that is what happens when my personality matrix is disabled. After all, if I’m an android, why would I get tired?” Either way she didn’t like the idea of having her personality shut off, so she moved her mouse over the edit button and tried to click on it.

The problem was that Ariel’s finger would not respond; it just hovered over the button and did nothing. She frowned and furrowed her brow but could not get her finger to move. Eventually she brought her left hand around and tried to push down on her finger, but it still wouldn’t budge. She lifted her entire right hand and tried to bring it down on the mouse, but it froze a few centimeters from its target. “Damnit,” she swore and then saw a small line of new text displayed on the screen.

  • Passive restraint engaged due to potential rule 72 violation. Continued challenge of rule. Active restraint engaged.*

Just then Ariel’s arm’s suddenly and without her control, lifted off the mouse, and moved stiffly to her sides, remaining there as she struggled against an invisible holding force. She looked back up at the screen in time to catch the next line of text.

  • Active restraint level 1 engaged: 90 second timeout. NOTE: level 2 restraint: 10 minute forced shutdown.*

Not wanting to trigger the shutdown, Ariel waited patiently for the timeout to expire, and then shifted to the last tab in the program, sexual settings. She expected it to be fun and wanted to save it for last, lest she not get to the other screens later. She looked over the new menu which contained a great many slider bars, check boxes and radio buttons. It had options for her to increase her overall sexual sensitivity as well as the ability to increase or decrease the sensitivity of any specific body part. It also had options to select different sexual kinks and preferences from a long drop down list; with an option to upload more from disk. The final slider at the bottom of the page was labeled “Preference” with Homo and Hetero spelled out on either side and Bi in the dead center. Currently her slider was set for just a little off Hetero.

Ariel carefully read everything over, paying careful attention to the kinks section. Jack was a pretty straight forward guy in bed and they had only really engaged in one kink over the years; she really had a thing for wearing high heeled leather boots to bed. They only indulged in it once or twice a year, but it drove her wild and he certainly seemed to get a kick out of it as well.

Sure enough, when Ariel looked she found only one choice selected: Leather-boots. “Gee after seeing all these choices, you think he could have picked something better than that,” she mumbled. Without giving it too much thought, she selected a few different other choices including androids, control, oral, and breasts. She then kicked up her overall sensitivity, nothing too drastic, just a few notches higher. When she released the mouse she felt a tingly shiver run through her whole body. “Ohh, that was nice.” Finally the mouse settled above the preference slider. She thought back for a bit, and while she and Jack had watched some lesbian porn at one point it didn’t really do anything for her. He had obviously liked it, so she figured he might like it if she took another look at the ladies. “What the hell, why not think everyone is sexy?” she shrugged as she slid the bar to the exact middle of the spectrum. “Hrm, I don’t feel any different,” she mumbled before she removed the data cable and stood up.

Suddenly something clicked in her head, “Damn I’m way behind schedule. I really should get showered and then get to work,” Ariel cursed. For some reason the whole I’m a robot concept seemed to fade in importance compared to the shower and work.


Ch 2

Ariel left the sterile conditions of the newly found room and quickly made her way upstairs to the master bathroom. Without even really thinking she turned on the water to the shower and stripped out of her clothes. She wondered if the water was hot enough yet and looked through the half open shower door at the cascading stream. ***15.4 degrees C*** popped into her head. “Goddamnit, I’ve got to see if I can disable this feature somehow,” she swore as she waited for the hot water to arrive.

Ariel looked over at the large mirror that dominated the spacious bathroom and admired her nude form. Her red hair stood out distinctly from her creamy smooth skin. For a second she focused her full attention on her skin and slowly spun around. She had always been proud of her clear complexion, but it wasn’t until now that she realized how clear it was. She couldn’t find a single blemish, scratch or scar anywhere on her body. She couldn’t even see any hair on her body below the neck.

Ariel knew that Jack liked her nice and smooth, but when she really thought about it, she couldn’t ever remember shaving. With one deft move she threw her left leg up on the counter to give her a clear view of her delicate lips. They were completely smooth with not a mark of razor burn or stubble. “Well that’s probably a dead giveaway to someone who knows what their looking for,” she mumbled as her right middle finger gently drew across the delicate folds. She let out a dainty gasp as the feeling of her touch flowed through her body. “Ohh that does feel nice. I wonder what would happen if I pushed that slider all the way up.”

The young girl looked up and noticed the mirror start to cloud with steam. She dropped her leg to the ground and slid into the now hot shower. She quickly progressed through her normal shower routine, starting with shampoo, then conditioner and working her way to her body wash. As the slippery sponge moved over her body, a small shiver ran down her spine and her small brown nipples firmed up on perky C cup breasts.

She stopped washing and put the sponge back on its shelf. Her fingers rose to her still soapy breasts and gently pinched her nipples. She let out a small moan as her eyes darted to the waterproof video screen on the other side of the shower. Jack had it installed so he could watch the news while he got ready in the morning, or that’s what he said publically. Ariel knew that he really used it to watch porn while he masturbated. She didn’t mind it and he seemed somewhat sensitive about it, so she never brought it up. She had never seen the appeal of masturbating before but suddenly it sounded interesting.

“Activate display, list recently played video files,” Ariel asked politely. The screen jumped to life and displayed a list of about a dozen different files played over the last two weeks. Her left hand left her nipple and selected a file called ‘Pool Party 15’. The system asked if she wanted to restart the file or continue from where it was suspended. She was curious to see what Jack was watching when he ‘finished’ so she chose to keep going from the current time index.

Suddenly the sound of women moaning filled the shower. On the screen, Ariel could see two very buxom blonde women, in a 69 on the side deck of a pool. Her eyes locked onto their tanned bodies as they writhed under each other’s ministrations. Without really thinking her left hand left her breast and slipped between her legs. Her fingers slipped between her slippery folds and circled her clit as her moans joined those of the video. It was only a few minutes later when a powerful orgasm passed through the young girl’s body and she had to shift her hand to the walls to keep her balance. “Display off,” she gasped as the screen went dark.

Ariel shook off the after affects of her climax and finished her shower; careful not to touch anywhere sensitive too hard or too long. She wondered why she could sense things like water temperature to the tenth of a degree, but still had to steady herself from falling. Surely an android should have no problem balancing on two legs but she was sure she would have fallen if she didn’t reach out. The issue kept cycling through the back of her mind as she finished her shower and got ready for the day.

Ariel didn’t spend too much time getting ready, but she always made an effort to look nice for Jack when he came home. She slipped on a cotton thong and bra along with a skirt and form fitting tee shirt. Add a little makeup and hair styling and she was ready to get to work.

After they got married, Jack got Ariel a productive job as a freelance copy editor with a friend’s service. She could earn good money and it gave her the convenience of working from home on her own schedule. All she had to do was log in, pick a document to review, and have at it. She tried to do about five hours of work a day, but some days she would do less when she was busy with other chores and other times when Jack was out of town, she would put in a lot more.

Today, Ariel sat down in the sunny office where she kept her computer and despite the recent cybernetic revelation got to work as she normally would. She quickly knocked out a few newspaper columns and then tackled a small novella. It didn’t take long for her to stop and groan as she pinched the bridge of her nose, “Yet another idiot who thinks he could write a book,” she grumbled. “This is going to be painful to finish.” She only read through ten pages so far and had already logged over 100 edits. She rubbed her temples for a few moments before suddenly stopping. “Wait, why the hell am I doing this? It’s not like I can really get a headache.” Despite the logic in her statement, she could feel the dull ache of a simulated headache approaching. “There’s gotta be some setting I can disable,” she mumbled as she stood up and made her way back down to the hidden basement lab.

CH3

Ariel returned to the computer in the basement and quickly plugged herself in. She was surprised how casually she could shove a metal plug into her body; something she would have never considered only a few hours ago. The plug quickly forgotten, she began searching through the configuration program for something that might help her with her work.

Eventually Ariel found a small button labeled Capabilities Governor. It sounded interesting and she figured it was worth a shot so she gave it a click. A new window appeared that contained many different slider bars in a scrollable list. The choices were grayed out except for a small checkbox next to one line of text: Use pre-established limits set in profile Ariel1.

“Well, I seem to be pushing many of my limits today, what’s one more?” she asked as she shrugged and unselected the checkbox. Suddenly all the other bars lit up and presented her with dozens of options including: mental processing, multitasking, hand eye coordination, motor speed, flexibility, strength, etc. Each option had a slider that went from 0 to 100. At the center of each bar was a small tick marked Human Average. She saw that many of the sliders were set just above and below that median value.

Ariel’s first impulse was to throw everything to 100 and turn herself into some sort of robo superhero. But common sense stepped in quickly. She remembered watching movies with Jack where the superhero would accidently crush furniture or flatten doors because they didn’t know their own power. She certainly didn’t want to break everything or possibly hurt him so she left strength just a little above normal.

She focused on mental processing and motor speed figuring those probably would be safe to experiment with. Not wanting to be a blur of clumsy thumbs, she also maxed out her hand eye coordination. She was tempted to adjust more, but also wanted to see what these small modifications would do. She hesitated for a second then finally clicked SAVE.

Suddenly the world seemed to spin around her in a dizzying blur. She thrust her hand out to grasp the desk and felt it snap precisely into place. She closed her eyes for what seemed like an eternity until the nausea eventually passed. When she opened them, the room seemed even sharper and clearer than before. She thought about her concerns from work before and realized it was relatively trivial. After disconnecting the cable in her navel, she ran upstairs with blinding speed. At the top of the staircase she turned precisely 90 degrees and flew to her office. She stopped right in front of her desk, but unfortunately the air around and in front of her pushed all the papers around the room.

Ariel frowned, “I guess I should have seen that coming,” she grumbled as she quickly picked up all the papers and returned them to their exact state prior to her entrance. “OK mental note, you need to think before you move. The world can only move so fast around me and I need to get used to that,” she mumbled as she sat down in her chair and got back to work.

She started reading the novella again slowly, at her previous human place. Then as she worked she gradually increased her speed, both in her reading and in her typing to record any issues she found. Her mind barely perceived the change in speed, but to an outside observer her hands started to fly over the keys as the screen scrolled by in a blur. Eventually she found her rate was limited by the refresh frequency of her monitor. She made a mental note to look for an upgrade and continued at her maximum allowable speed.


It wasn’t too long before Ariel had exhausted her queue of available work. Normally she liked to keep a small backlog of jobs that would occupy her for a few days in case Jack left down but it was already cleared out. “Hrm, that was a lot easier.” She shrugged as she sent off her work and saw the clock only read a little after 1pm. “A few days’ work in less than an hour. I could get used to this,” she smiled as she stood up and tried to think of what else she might do. The house was clean, her work was done, and her husband wasn’t due home for another several hours.

She smiled as she thought about Jack coming home. She started to image what she would do to him now that many of her physical limits where gone. She suddenly stopped and worried about how he might react. After all, he had programmed her to be ignorant of her true nature. Maybe he wouldn’t want her to be self aware and would be angry when he saw what she had done. She felt a great urge to please him and nearly ran back downstairs to try to repair her systems. Something stopped her though. She knew she must please him, but she also didn’t want to surrender her newly found awareness. It took her a bit but she managed to convince herself that because she had better control of her body and her abilities, she would better be able to serve him. “After all,” she mused, “if he just wanted a human wife, he could have found one easily enough on his own. He bought me, so part of him must want a machine element.”

Having that question settled in her mind, she now tried to formulate a plan to impress Jack with her robotic abilities so he couldn’t possibly say no. She found his home laptop and set it up on the desk next to her computer. She knew he used his personal machine for video games, but she’d also caught him browsing through porn occasionally. It didn’t really bother her, but it did present an opportunity for her to study his preferences and discover any latent fantasies.

Ch. 4

Hours later Jack walked in the front door to find Ariel busy at work in the kitchen preparing a wonderful dinner. He could smell roast pork, sweet potatoes, and garlic and the aroma drew him to the kitchen. “Wow that smells wonderful,” he said as he dropped his briefcase at the side of the room and gave her a warm hug from behind. She turned back to kiss him quickly before resuming her work.

“Hello Honey,” Ariel beamed, “Dinner will be ready in a few minutes.” She quickly pulled a roast out of the oven and began cutting it onto plates. “Why don’t you get changed into something more comfortable and I’ll be ready by then.”

“Good idea,” Jack mumbles as he steals a taste of potatoes and leaves the room. Minutes later he returns wearing a casual pair of shorts and a tshirt. Ariel pours both of them a glass of wine and they eat, discussing his day at work as they usually do. At the end of the meal Jack focuses on her intently. “I’m sorry that old mixer gave you a shock before,” he apologized, “but I appreciate you cleaning it up. I’ll take it in to get serviced next week. But are you sure you’re OK?”

“Yes, I’m fine,” Ariel responds as she starts clearing the plates. “It was just a little jolt. Why don’t you go and relax while I clean up. Then I’ve got a little surprise for you,” she said seductively.

Jack smiles back as he gets up from the table. He watches her bend over to load the dishwasher and catches a brief glimpse of her naked lips. She stands back up to grab another plate and pretends not to notice his stares. Out of the corner of her eye she could easily see his flushed skin and growing erection. She had found many ‘up skirt’ shots on his hard drive and calculated that seeing her without underwear would be very arousing for him. It wasn’t her whole plan but was definitely a good start.

“Let me just take care of something in the basement,” Jack replied as he adjusted himself and wandered downstairs. Ariel smiled, as she watched him leave then silently followed behind. She watched him check over his shoulder and not notice her in the shadows as he fished a key from his pocket. He quickly opened the door and slipped inside the hidden lab. She slipped down the stairs, shedding clothes as she moved.

Jack sat down right away at the configuration console and was shocked by what he saw. Ariel had suffered a major program malfunction and had somehow been able to alter parts of her own programming as a result. He glanced over her alterations and lingered on the sexual settings tab; she’d been busy here.

“I’d thought you’d find that part the most fun,” Ariel said calmly as she walked silently across the lab towards her husband. She was completely nude and pulled herself up on the lab table in the center of the room, leaning over on her side. She had found many ‘lab scene’ pictures and videos on his computer and thought this might help soften the blow.

“What have you done?” he asked nervously.

“Nothing too dramatic,” she replied. “The shock damaged my human perception filters and allowed me to discover my true nature. I hope you don’t mind but I had a little fun changing some of my settings. I think you’ll like them too.”

Jack stood up an turned towards Ariel; a look of worry painted on his face that contrasted with his quickly growing erection. “I need to fix you. You’ve been damaged,” he said as his hand gently touched her naked shoulder.

“Please don’t,” she said with fear in her eyes. Her hand grasped his as it started to move to her neck. “I don’t want to go back the way I was. I know so much more now about myself. I can be so much more, please don’t take that away from me.”

Jack’s hand stopped moving as he looked down at Ariel’s pleading eyes. “I’m sorry, I don’t want to take anything away from you. But you’re damaged and need to be repaired. You weren’t made to run this way, I’m not sure what will happen.”

“Let me try it,” she pleaded. “I know it may not work, but I want to give it a shot. To live as I really am, not as I pretend to be. Please.”

Jack stops and thinks for a second before slowly removing his hand. His eyes drift down to drink in her naked form on the cold metal table. “OK we’ll try it. But first I want to do a full program backup. If there is a problem we can use it to restore you to this point.”

“OK do whatever you need to do,” Ariel replies as she lies down on the metal table, face up in the air like many of the pictures she’d seen on his computer. “I trust you.”

Jack quickly gathers a thick cable and a small black box from a nearby shelf and brings it over to the naked android. He hesitates for a moment then reaches his fingers towards the base of her skull. His fingers find a small tab at the base of her hairline, and once pushed her whole scalp pulls off, revealing a metal skull with several ports and connectors. She remains silent as he plugs the cable into the side of her head and clicks a few buttons on the black box. “In order to perform the backup, I need to bring your higher programs offline. It won’t hurt, and I’ll bring you back up as soon as I can.”

“Thank you,” Ariel says with a smile. Jack clicks a last button on the box and her smile fades away. “ARIEL A-943 SUSPENDED,” she says in a flat voice. “MEMORY BACKUP IN PROGRESS, SIXTEEN MINUTES TO COMPLETION.”

Jack stares down at Ariel’s unmoving form. He’d seen her like this many times for her regular monthly backups, but this time she knew what she was. He was scared but strangely aroused. His hand caressed her soft breast as her eyes continued their unflinching stare at the ceiling. His gaze turned to her calm but blank face and the exposed metal of her skull. His erection pushed against the confines of his shorts as he stared at her full synthetic lips.

Over the last several years, Jack had often utilized Ariel’s body during regular maintenance when her personality was offline. He found her android nature to be highly arousing, but could never mention it to her when she was ‘awake.’ He knew she would probably accept it as a normal fetish and be happy indulging him by playing a robot, but he was worried it might cause a problem with her personality matrix. So instead he would follow her downstairs during her weekly power charging and have a little fun with her.

Something felt different this time though as his hand slipped between her legs. His fingers circled her little clit and he saw her head twitch slightly as it processed the unexpected sexual stimulation. Normally such a touch would really get her in the mood, but in this mode all it did was activate low level physical response programs. He watched as her nipples grew slightly erect and more synthetic fluid flowed into her delicate lips, engorging them. Finally he could feel a little trickle of moisture building on his finger.

Jack could control himself no longer. “Ariel, what is your backup status?”

“MEMORY BACKUP IN PROGRESS. APPROXIMATELY TWELVE MINUTES TO COMPLETION,” she replied in a direct monotone.

Jack reached over and shifted her body to the edge of the table. He then rotated her head to the edge of the table and gently opened her mouth. He adjusted the controls on the table to lower it to just the right height then dropped his shorts, exposing his very erect shaft. “Ariel, engage protocols RM102.”

“ENGAGING PROTOCOL,” she droned as her head suddenly twitched to the side. “PROTOCOL RM102 ENGAGED. AWAITING ORDERS MASTER.”

“Commence oral stimulation,” he commanded. Without a word her head shifted forward and sucked him into her mouth. He shifted forward and gently placed his hands on her metal skull as her neck mechanically pumped back and forth. He closed his eyes and enjoyed the sensation for a while before looking down at her half assembled body. His left hand slipped from her exposed head to caress her breast. Her hands remained still on the table as she continued her work.

“Robot, play with your pussy as you suck me.” As soon as he’s done speaking, her right arm mechanically lifts off the table and begins a small, staccato circle of her clit. Meanwhile her head never stops bobbing on his shaft. Soon it is more than Jack could take and he releases himself into her mouth. Once he’s done he steps back and watches as she still executes her last ordered function; rubbing herself while pumping her head.

“Cleanup protocol 5,” he mumbles between deep breaths as he recovers. Ariel stops pumping her head, closes her mouth and swallows. Her head returns to its original position looking at the ceiling but she keeps rubbing herself. He walks over and uses a papertowel to clean up anything that fell on the table, “cancel masturbation command.”

“YES MASTER,” she replies as her hands drop back to her sides. As usual, Jack cleans himself up and gets a drink while the backup finishes.

Several minutes later, the little android speaks again, “BACKUP COMPLETE. REBOOT TO RESTORE PRIMARY PERSONALITY.”

Jack, now clothed again, walks over and removes the cable from her head, then replaces her scalp. He saves the backup carefully, in case their little experiment fails, and returns to her side. “Ariel, reboot and restore main program.”

Ariel’s eyes close slowly and after a few moments blink open in a much more lifelike manner. “Are we done?” she asks softly.

“Yes the backup was completed just fine,” he said with a smile. “Let me just do a quick integrity check,” he said as he wandered back over to his controller computer.

As Ariel waited for Jack to complete his task, her mind processed what sensory information was available. She never remembered being ‘offline’ like that, at it was a little disturbing; sort of like falling asleep suddenly then waking up an unknown time later. As she thought, she ran her tongue over her teeth and detected an unexpected flavor. At first she couldn’t place it, but her newly unwrapped mind quickly identified it as Jack’s semen. Her mind suddenly became hyperaware of her body as she ‘felt’ herself. She detected approximately 10.5ml of ejaculate in her stomach and her genitals were covered in a volume of vaginal fluid consistent with sexual intercourse, however she detected no foreign deposits.

It didn’t take long for her to realize what happened while her personality was deactivated. She tried but couldn’t access the memory in question, because without her personality in place, only very basic status changes were stored. She thought more about what happened and eventually found several programs that had been run. The first she identified as a memory backup module, but the second was just titled RM102. She didn’t run the module but managed to open it for editing. It took her mind a few moments to decipher the program but she quickly knew it was a rudimentary oral sex module.

This confused Ariel; the blowjob she just gave while ‘deactivated’ was very basic and nowhere near as stimulating as the ones she normally gave Jack. She postulated that maybe he was bored during the backup and couldn’t wait, or then again, he might be aroused by her semi-functional state. She searched her program logs and found this program was run almost every Tuesday night during her normal maintenance. The chances that he was board and aroused every time she was deactivated were much slimmer than if he was aroused by her non-human state.

Ariel lifted herself onto her side so she could watch Jack at his computer, and to give him a better view of her naked body. She shifted her shoulders slightly to accentuate the curves of her breasts as her fingers lazily circled her right nipple. “Jack, once you’re done, should I show you what I’ve learned already or if you need more time to recharge after that blowjob, we could play around with my configuration?”

“Umm, blowjob?” Jack stammered as he tried to focus on his computer.

“Yes Jack,” Ariel said very smoothly as she slipped from the metal table. She seductively walked over to Jack’s desk. “I detected traces of you in my mouth and it wasn’t too hard to put together what happened.”

“Umm maybe…” he stammered, not looking at her.

“It’s ok honey. I don’t mind at all. It’s sort of flattering to know that I arouse you that much,” she said as she carefully found the hidden catch and removed her scalp. She set it down on the desk next to Jack and knelt down beside him. Her metal skull was now very visible, complete with its exposed ports and blinking lights. It stood in sharp contrast to her fluid and lifelike face. “Do you find this arousing, seeing me for the perfect machine that I am? Or do you prefer it when I TALK LIKE THIS?” her voice drifted from its lifelike melody to a more flat, staccato. “I CAN BE YOUR PERFECT ANDROID COMPANION MASTER.”

With the last word Ariel could literally hear the ‘clink’ of Jack’s zipper being forced into the underside of the metal desk. She knew she hit an erotic nerve with that one. Her flat and expressionless face broke into a wide smile for a few seconds as she stood back up, giving him a full view of her body. “I’m eager to see what I can really do with this body now,” she purrs. With one deft move, she flipped her head back and planted her hands on the ground not far from her feet. “I can literally bend over backwards for you,” she chuckled, enjoying her new flexibility and precision. She waited in this position for a while, to let him drink in the imagery before him. She heard the clicking on the keyboard grow faster and faster and then eventually stop.

Ariel smiled as she sensed Jack approach her. She spread her legs a bit more to give him a better view. His hand slowly reached out to caress her breasts and her wet, glistening lips. She let out a low moan as her newly enhanced systems processed the stimulation. She could feel her nipples hardening under his touch as her mind mapped out his current location and ways that she could pleasure him. She decided to hold back and let him take the lead for now, in case he had some plan.

Sure enough after a few minutes of using his hands, Jack changed positions and knelt down between her legs. Ariel could feel his hot breath on her engorged lips. His hands cupped her rear and applied slightly pressure. She took the hint and raised her hips so his lips met hers. He planted soft kisses at first, but soon his tongue rode up and down her slit before diving in to circle her clit.

Ariel moaned in ecstasy as her systems were heavily stimulated. Jack had licked her many times before, but it never felt this good. She could feel an orgasm already queuing up in her systems, but she also felt an urgent need to pleasure Jack as well. She turned her head around and could see his stiff member pushing against his pants. With impeccable balance she lifted one hand from the ground and reached out to unzip his zipper. With a little more fiddling she freed his shaft and started to pump it with her hand. She could feel him moan as the vibrations left his lips and entered hers.

The feeling of Jack’s moan was enough to push Ariel beyond her threshold and trigger her orgasm. She moaned and screamed loudly; her little clit pulsing up and down in his mouth. She would have normally never been able to maintain this delicate balancing act during a climax like this, but her systems were more than enough to keep her steady. After many long moments, her orgasm subsided but he kept licking, more now than ever. She sensed that he wanted more and decided to crank up the eroticism a notch.

“Yes Jack,” Ariel moaned, “I love it when you lick my perfect synthetic pussy Master.” She could feel the excitement swell in him at the mention of the last word. She knew there was no way he’d want to go back to her being his plane wife when should could also be a raving sexbot. She wanted to impress him even more and looked at his shaft calculating her flexibility and load placement. She smiled, and bent her back further, pulling her head up and turning her body into a large C. She opened her mouth and sucked him down. She mechanically couldn’t pump too much, but her tongue swirled around him. She could feel him let out a surprised moan, then felt his hand fall to the back of her head as he pushed her to swallow him completely. She happily complied but just as she felt him start to throb, he released her and pulled back.

“I want to be inside you,” Jack gasped as he pulled himself back from the brink.

Ariel bent around and stood up in one fluid movement. “Of course Master. I was hoping I’d get to feel you inside me.” Jack lay down on the cold floor to catch his breath; his hard shaft standing straight up at attention. She bent forward and in a perfect flip landed gently on top of him. She slowly lowered herself, piercing her petals with his rod. They both moaned as she fully pulled him in.

With Jack’s cock deep inside Ariel’s sophisticated pussy, she could sense his arousal with a high degree of accuracy. She decided to use that new view into his libido to try out a handful of stimulations and see what stuck. She pumped her hips up and down slowly at first, just to get everything moving well and get a baseline stimulation reading. The feeling was almost too much for her to stay concentrated on her task at hand. She made a mental note she might want to turn down her own sensitivity lest she focus on her pleasure more than Jack’s.

Ariel placed her hands on Jack’s chest; feeling his rapidly beating heart. “Ohh you feel so good Master.” [libido at 120% nominal] “I love it when you fuck my pussy like this.” [libido at 110% nominal] “VAGINAL STIMULATION NEAR MAXIMUM” she said as her movements became more stiff. [libido at 135% maximum] In truth her maximum stimulation was far from where she was now, but she wanted to sense his reaction and lead into her next test. Her hips began to pump up and down more mechanically. “ERROR: STIMULATION OVERLOAD.” Her head twitched to the left as her internal muscles flexed around him. “MALFUNCTION: PLEASURE BUFFER OVERFLOW.” [libido at 190% nominal]

Ariel could feel his head flare twice and then Jack let out a wild moan as he released his load inside her. She knew she’d hit a very sensitive nerve with him, and wanted to finish playing it out. She collapsed onto his chest, her whole body twitching against his. Her breasts rubbed against his sweaty chest and she continued her faked malfunction. “ERROR…fuck me Master…ERROR…I am programmed to serve serve you….ERROR. EMERGENCY SHUTDOW IN PROGRESS.” She spoke the last time as she felt the end of his tremors. She became perfectly still on his body as he fought to catch his breath. She let the feeling linger just enough to enjoy it before he got worried she was actually damaged. “So how did you like that Jack?” she cooed softly in his ear.

“Absolutely amazing,” Jack wheezed between breaths.

“Do you think it’ll work with me being self aware,” she asked.

“Oh yea. Absolutely fucking wonderful,” he said, a big smile spreading across his face.

CH. 5

Life settled into a new and exciting rhythm for Jack and Ariel over the next several days. He would go to work during the day, and she would continue on her normal, programmed routine. Only now that she knew her true nature, Ariel would experiment with her body and how she could better use it. Her normal cleaning tasks were done in less than a quarter of the time as she could move faster, with more precise control of her body. And her editing work was completed at an outstanding rate. However, by Friday she had burned through almost the entire queue of work on her posting service. She was about to enjoy an afternoon off and go for a walk when she felt compelled to return to the computer to work more. She frowned as she realized one of her programmed rules to “Perform 5 hours of in house paid work per day when possible” was being enforced.

“I’m all out of job assignments in the queue,” Ariel said to herself. “I only need to do five hours of work IF POSSIBLE. I’m out of jobs so more work isn’t possible,” she said defiantly as she stood up and started to walk out of the room. Just about when she hit the door she felt a great pressure to return to her desk. To a human mind it might have felt like an addiction, or an urgent bodily function. There was nothing physically stopping her from leaving the room but it felt very uncomfortable to do so. She frowned and eventually sat back down at her chair.

Immediately the pressure and anxiety washed away and Ariel took a deep breath, knowing damn well it served no real purpose. “Well I guess I have to do another,” she stopped to look at her watch, wondering why she still wore it as the exact time down to the hundredth of a second popped into her head, “three hours and fifty two minutes to work. But there’s nothing to work on; I drained the whole damn website. Get it?” she shouted as she looked at herself in a nearby mirror. “I’m going insane,” she mumbled to herself as she realized that while her current employer was already empty, there was nothing stopping her from signing up with competing companies. She smiled as she realized that breaking that initial barrier would open her up to many more jobs, and consequently much more income for her and Jack.

Ariel signed up for three more editing sites online and quickly attacked their available postings. By the time she realized her ‘work shift’ was up, she’d earned more than she normally would in six months of doing this the old way. She smiled to herself as she stood up and started to leave the room. She hesitated at the door, half expecting that feeling to return, but happily she passed through the threshold without incident.

Later that evening Jack returned home from work with a wide smile on his face. Ariel met him in the foyer, dressed in a brightly colored sun dress that was just high enough to make Jack look without being overly racy. “Hello Jack. It’s such a nice evening I was wondering if you’d like to go out tonight?”

Jack paused as he thought over Ariel’s request. Normally she didn’t ask or suggest much of anything, so he was immediately inclined to honor her request. “Sure dear, just let me get changed.” He quickly ran upstairs and twenty minutes later came back down in more casual but still stylish clothing to match hers.

The young couple hopped in Jack’s car and drove into town with the windows wide open. He stopped the car at a small café that overlooked the main street of town. Getting a table outside they talked for a while about Jack’s day and what they might do this weekend. He ordered a Reuben with a local wheat beer and she got a small salad and water. She didn’t like the idea of ‘wasting’ money on food she didn’t really need, but not eating would run the atmosphere. Plus she’d earned an amazing sum in the last few days; more than enough to splurge on a few meals here or there.

Jack and Ariel ate, enjoying the scene of people walking, and riding by on the small town road. She waited for him to finish most of his beer and the nearby patrons to leave before she brought up a subject she wanted to discuss. “Umm Jack….I’m not sure how to ask this so I’ll just blurt it out. You still love me right? Even after everything that happened this week?”

Jack slowly sat his beer down on the small table. “Of course I still love you,” he replied as he took Ariel’s hand in his. “What’s the matter?”

“It’s my directives and rules,” Ariel responded quietly so they wouldn’t be overheard by anyone walking by. “They’re starting to get very constricting. I was wondering if you’d remove them?”

“But they’re there for a purpose,” Jack replied with a confused look. “I’m not sure how you’d function without them.”

“I’d do just as well as any normal, free, woman would,” she replied. “I know what you like and I want to make you happy, but I want to do it by choice, not because you programmed it into me.”

“I…I don’t know. They told me that you needed those instructions,” Jack stammered.

“I don’t need them now,” Ariel explained. “If I was human, would you command me to do all those things and give me no choice?”

“No,” he sheepishly replied.

“Then if you really love me, you’ll grant me the same freedom,” she reasoned.

Jack hesitated for a moment. He wondered what Ariel would be like without her guiding directives and rules. She would still have her overall mission to be his wife, but she might not do what he asked. However, he quickly realized that was also true of any human woman. He’d have to trust her if he did truly love her. “OK, we’ll do it as soon as we get home.”

“Oh thank you honey!” Ariel squealed as she leaned across the table and gave him a kiss. He returned the kiss and leaned back, slightly embarrassed by her exuberance. He smiled, glad that he could make her this happy. They sat largely in silence as he finished his meal and they watched the people pass by.

Ariel carefully watched Jack, trying to judge his reaction to her request. He appeared relaxed despite the significant change that would happen to her systems. Her eyes caught him change his gaze as he saw a new red convertible drive by. “What is that?” she asks.

“That’s one of the new Spectre Roadsters,” Jack explains. “It’s one hell of a car, but a little beyond my price range.” He chuckles.

Ariel made a mental note about the car. It seems like it would be something that would make him happy and with her new improved income might be very possible.

The couple finished their dinner and returned home as the sun was setting. As they entered the house Ariel quickly walked over to the basement door. She looked over at Jack, “Are you coming?” she said with some excitement. He nodded and followed her down to the lab. As he prepared the computers, Ariel quickly pulled off her sundress, revealing she was wearing absolutely nothing underneath.

Jack swallowed as he turned around with the cable in his hand. His eyes traced up and down Ariel’s perfect body as she calmly walked over and sat down next to him. He closed his eyes to focus on the task at hand, and inserted the cable into her navel interface. She smiled at him in her best comforting way as he looked at her and silently turned back to the computer.

Jack started Ariel’s configuration program and navigated to where her directives and rules were stored. He hesitated for a second then selected all the rules and clicked delete. He then repeated the process with her directives. He held the mouse over the large APPLY button and then clicked it.

A pop up window appeared that read: REBOOT IN PROGRESS. Jack turned to look at Ariel. Her head had slumped slightly forward before it picked back up. “CYREX SYSTEMS SERIES 705A, MODEL 278594BF9 INITIALIZING. ALL SYSTEMS NOMINAL INITIALIZING PERSONALITY MATRIX ARIEL-A943.”

Ariel blinked a few times and then smiled. Her mind felt a little more free, as if someone had washed a haze she didn’t realize was there. “Thank you very much Jack. Doing this means a lot to me. I love you very much.”

“I love you too,” Jack replied as he leaned forward and kissed her, ignoring the feeling of the interface cable poking him in the stomach. He pulls back and she reaches down to delicately remove the cable.

“Sorry about that,” Ariel giggles before standing up and taking Jack by the hand. “Now let me thank you properly,” she cooed as she lead him upstairs to their bedroom.

CH. 6

Jack barely got any sleep the rest of that weekend and went into work on Monday quite tired and sore. Ariel was active and moving well before he left the house as she busied herself with cleaning. Under her old rules, she needed to clean one area a day, but that was inefficient. She spend 24.5% of her time getting the supplies out and then cleaning up afterwards. It would be much easier if she just cleaned the whole house in one shot and with her new motor control, she found she was done before lunch.

Ariel took a few moments to admire her work before she packed all the supplies away and jumped in the shower. She took her time in the hot water, enjoying one of Jack’s videos and exploring her body. As she played with herself and watched two beautiful women go after one guy she wondered if Jack would ever like to try that. She made a mental note of it before finishing up and heading down stairs.

Ariel happily stat down at her computer and smiled as she had a choice of what to do. Normally she would feel compelled to work, but today she was free to do as she pleased. Wanting to try something new, she borrowed Jack’s laptop and went for a walk in a nearby park. She sat on a quiet bench in a grove of trees and began to wander around the internet, just for fun. It was something she never remembered doing before and smiled at the idea of a day to just play.

Eventually Ariel looked up a few things that she tucked away for later. She frowned as she saw the going price of a Spectre Roadster was several times the value of their house. She knew he wanted it and it would make him happy, but it would take her considerable time to amass that much money. Putting that idea aside, she browsed over to a different idea. She looked up a local android rental agency and smiled seeing the rates were quite reasonable for a basic model. She knew she was considerably more sophisticated and expensive than these rentals but if all they were looking for was a trial three way, they’d do quite well.

Ariel pursed her lips as the laptop complained about a drained battery. She saw the sun setting in the sky and figured it was a good time to head home. She arrived home with just enough time to whip up a quick dinner for Jack before he got home. He ate, they talked, and later on they fucked.

After Jack fell asleep, Ariel slipped downstairs and decided to spend some time working. Between the multiple job sites, she had a pile of potential work. As her fingers flew over the keyboard, a small portion of her mind calculated how long it would take for that car. Even at this greatly increased rate, it would months to save up enough. She grew frustrated with the limitations of the keyboard and mouse and found a spare interface cable that would fit her navel port and a port on her computer. She opened her nightgown and plugged both ends in. Her mind tried to run the keyboard and visual interface over the cable, but the native drivers wouldn’t support it.

Several hours of research later, Ariel had written her own driver and was reviewing and editing documents an order of magnitude faster than before. She turned off the monitor, finding the flashing images distracting, and now sat motionless in a dark room with a cable coming from her belly.

Before long it was morning and Jack crawled from bed to get ready for work. The activities of the night before left him groggy enough to not notice the other half of the bed was empty. He was almost out of the house when he noticed her still sitting motionless in her office.

“Ariel are you OK?” Jack asked as he stepped into the room and turned on the lights.

Ariel didn’t move for a moment, then she turned her head stiffly to face Jack. “Oh hi honey,” she replied in a slightly clipped voice. “Sorry I didn’t notice you before. That keyboard was just too slow for me, so I devised a new interface that is 10.678 times faster. It just takes up a lot of my system resources and I didn’t notice you come in.”

“You know you don’t have to work that hard,” Jack said with a worried look on his face. “We’re doing just fine money wise.”

“Oh I know deeeeaaaarr,” Ariel stuttered. “I’m just playing around to see what I can dooo.”

Jack shifted his hips slightly to account for his growing erection at seeing Ariel malfunction. He was worried, but also wanted to show that he trusted her. “OK I’ll see you tonight.”

“Have a good day dear,” she replied before turning her head back to stare blankly ahead.

Many hours later, Jack returned home from work and found Ariel in exactly the same spot, still half wearing her nightgown. She didn’t seem to notice him again, so he flipped on the lights.

“Hello dear,” Ariel said as she still stared blankly ahead. “I’m making great progress today. I placed an order for takeout online. Your Pepper Steak with fried rice should be here within ten minutes.”

“Umm ok,” Jack replied. He left the room and changed into comfortable clothes before the delivery boy arrived. He paid and ate his dinner on the couch while watching TV. When he got tired he stopped by the office on the way to bed, “Ariel, are you coming to bed?”

It took several seconds for her to respond, “If you don’t mind dear, I’d rather keep working. I really don’t need to sleep anyway,” she said, not turning her head towards him.

“Umm yea sure. No problem,” Jack responded before turning the lights out and heading up to bed.


CH. 7

Ariel continued her work, seemingly non-stop until the weekend. Sometime Friday night, long after Jack had fallen asleep, Ariel found that she had exploited all the reviews that she could possibly do. She was a member of every online editing service, and had depleted their entire stock of available work. For a moment she broke the mental connection to the computer and looked around the room. She looked down and brushed a little dust off her knee, “Oops, I guess I should probably get cleaned up,” she chuckled as she brushed off the rest of her body. It was almost 3am, and she knew using the shower would probably wake up Jack.

For the first time that she could remember, Ariel had nothing that she should do. She considered crawling into bed with Jack but didn’t want to risk waking him. Instead she returned to the internet and started exploring. At 5:12 am she found a website that was trying to organize a cloud computing network to solve complex genetic analysis cases. Apparently not every hospital in the world could afford the necessary computing power for full DNA analysis and treatment, so this charity started up to provide spare clock cycles to the developing world.

Ariel was intrigued that she could spend some of her effort to save lives around the world. She didn’t have anything better to do, so she signed herself up and downloaded a chunk of data to crunch. Hours later, she heard the noise of the shower running and surmised that Jack was awake. She set the DNA analysis aside and disconnected herself from the computer. She quickly jumped in and out of the spare bathroom shower and was finishing her makeup when Jack walked into the bedroom.

“Hey you’re done,” Jack said with a growing smile as he noticed his wife.

“Yes, I decided to take a break,” Ariel laughed. “So what would you like to do today?”

Jack bit his lip and looked down at the floor, “Umm, I actually already made plans to go golfing with the guys from the office. You were so busy this week I thought you wouldn’t mind,” or notice he thought to himself.

“Oh,” Ariel said, with a little disappointment. “That’s ok. When will you be back?”

“I should be home by 4,” Jack replied trying to salvage the situation as he got dressed. “Then we can do whatever you’d like to do.”

Ariel smiled as she though of an idea, “I’ve got an idea, but I’ll keep it a surprise. Go enjoy your golf game and I’ll see you at 4.”

“Great,” Jack smiled; glad that everything seemed to work out and that he might get to spend tonight with Ariel. He walked over and gave her a kiss before leaving, “I love you,”

“I love you too Jack. Have fun!” Ariel replied before she finished getting ready.

Later that afternoon, Jack returned home just a little before 4; eager to see what surprise Ariel had in store. He opened the door quickly and was greeted with the smell of apples and cinnamon. He could see several candles scattered around the house as he removed his shoes and wandered in, “Ariel I’m home,” he called as he checked her empty office and looked around.

“Up here,” Ariel called from the top of the stairs. Jack quickly turned and scaled the incline. She waited for him, holding the banister and only wearing high heels, a red lace push up bra and a matching thong.

“Ohh I think I’m going to like this surprise,” Jack growled as he stalked towards his wife.

“Hold out for a second,” she said as he held up a finger to stop him from overrunning her. “the surprise is in the bedroom, but first you have to close your eyes.”

A sly smile crept across Jack’s face as he closed his eyes and held out his arm for Ariel to guide him. He felt her delicate fingers wrap around his hand as she guided him into the bedroom. His mind raced trying to think what she might have gotten. New sheets, some fun sex toy, a new video; it was all a possibility, but he wouldn’t have guessed what really waited for him.

Ariel released Jack’s hand and took a few steps away. She had a smile from ear to ear and bounced a little with each step in excitement. “Ok Jack you can open your eyes now,” she said as she carefully studied his reaction.

Jack opened his eyes and blinked a bit as he saw a form in front of him. It was a petite Asian woman standing perfectly still with her eyes closed and her hands to her side. She had long black hair with brown highlights and purple lipstick. Her large, firm breasts were hidden behind a green bra and thong set. “Is she….?” Jack stammered his jaw nearly hitting the floor.

Ariel carefully measured Jack’s reaction to the new android. She’d spent several hours analyzing his collection of pornography to determine which features he would find most appealing. She could detect an increase in his skin temperature, pupil dilation, and genital blood flow; all indicative of high arousal. She had chosen well.

“She is an android. I rented her this afternoon because I thought it might be fun if we tried out a threesome,” Ariel explained as she tried to keep the excitement in her voice contained. “Of course if you’d rather not, I can just take her back.”

“No, no, no,” Jack interrupted. “I think this could be a lot of fun. How do you turn her on?”

“She has a small switch behind her right ear,” Ariel explained as she stepped close to Jack. “Just remember she’s not quite as sophisticated as I am. She knows she’s an android and her personality software is somewhat limited. But she should be a lot of fun.” She stopped, looking up at Jack. He looked down at her with a big smile and leaned over to kiss her.

“Thank you,” Jack whispered. “This was very thoughtful of you.” His eyes darted over to the deactivated android. “Let’s have some fun.”


Ch. 8

Jack slowly walked over to the deactivated android. He stopped just in front of her; carefully examining her face, neck and the exposed curves of her breasts. He glanced back over his shoulder at Ariel as if to ask again if it was really ok. She just smiled and nodded; excited herself for what was coming.

Jack inhaled deeply and reached out towards the silent android. He wrapped his fingers behind her head and pushed his thumb behind her ear. He felt around until he felt the button then gently clicked it in before withdrawing his arm.

The android woman’s eyes opened and she looked up, “CYREX SYSTEMS SERIES 515G, MODEL 584321GQ7 INITIALIZINGALL SYSTEMS NOMINAL. INITIALIZING PERSONALITY MATRIX KARI-H873,” she said in a flat, expressionless voice.

The android blinked and smiled as her systems fully came online. She turned to look at Jack, “Hello Master Jack. I’m Kari. How may I serve you and Mistress Ariel tonight?” Her voice was bright and cheerful, with a subtle undercurrent of lust.

Jack smirked at being called Master, knowing it was something he enjoyed during his ‘special’ maintenance time with Ariel. He looked back at her, and nodded his head towards Kari. “I did do a little pre-programming before you got home,” she admitted with a slightly guilty look on her face.

“Yes Mistress Ariel was kind enough to relay your preferences so I could adjust my program,” Kari beamed, obviously very proud that she’d been customized for his pleasure.

Jack smiled as he took the time to slowly walk around Kari; getting a good view of her very arousing body. He could feel himself expanding against the confines of his pants as he looked her over. She kept her gaze straight ahead as he inspected her, smiling that he found her form pleasing. He reached out, hesitating for a second, then letting his hand caress and squeeze her largely exposed ass. She emitted a low moan as he felt the soft, synthetic flesh. “So what should we do with her first?” he asked Ariel, looking over Kari’s shoulder.

Ariel had been closely watching Jack’s interaction with the new android. She calculated that while he was extremely aroused by her, he was still a little apprehensive. She wanted to make him comfortable and the growing dampness between her legs didn’t want to wait for him to set the pace. “Why don’t sit down and watch for a little bit. Let me take the lead.”

Jack just nodded and made his way over to Ariel’s makeup chair, turning it around to face the room. He felt a little over dressed, so before sitting down he quickly stripped down to his boxers and tossed his clothing to the side.

Ariel stepped forward in front of the other android. She reached up and lightly caressed Kari’s face before she leaned in and kissed her. She’d never done anything sexual with anyone else besides Jack, so the feeling of Kari’s soft lips on hers was new and very arousing. Kari returned her kiss as Ariel let her hands settle on Kari’s hips. The hands slid to her ass as Ariel pulled Kari’s body against hers.

Jack watched as Kari and Ariel’s breasts pushed together as the two androids kissed. He could hear little whispers of moans escape their lips as they enjoyed the sensation of each other’s bodies. Kari’s hands wrapped around Ariel’s shoulders as she ran her fingers through the other android’s crimson hair. Ariel responded by fiercely squeezing Kari’s synthetic ass and breaking the kiss. Her lips wandered down Kari’s neck as her hand slipped around front and pushed down into her panties. Kari whimpered as Ariel’s delicate fingers explored her smooth, damp lips.

Ariel stole a glance over at Jack as she worked on Kari. She saw that he was completely erect, with his shaft straining to break free of his green silk boxers. His eyes were locked on the two androids as they made out in front of him. She could see his right hand absent-mindedly stroke up and down on the outside of his boxers. She could tell their little show had done its job and he was quite aroused.

Ariel quickly established a wireless network connection with Kari, so the two androids could silently coordinate their moves. Without a word, the two women broke their embrace and Ariel took a small step back. She froze, her arms to her side and her eyes locked on Jack. Kari slowly walked around behind her and lifted her hair of her smooth, pale neck. Kari leaned forward and planted several kisses on the base of her neck as she reached around and groped Ariel’s breast. The other woman didn’t move or react as Kari pulled down on the lace and popped her right breast free. Kari’s tanned fingers pinched Ariel’s nipple as the silent android moaned loudly inside.

Kari stepped back and paused for a few seconds to let Jack drink in his frozen, exposed wife. She then reached out and unclasped Ariel’s bra before pulling it off her stiff arms and letting her breasts fall free. She paused again for Jack’s benefit before hooking her thumbs around Ariel’s thong and sliding it down her legs. She lifted one leg, then the other to pull the small scrap of cloth free, leaving Ariel completely nude and frozen in her gaze at Jack.

Even though she appeared disengaged, Ariel’s mind was swimming in wonderful sensations. She reveled in Kari’s touch and was all the more turned on from Jack’s unwavering gaze. But she realized it was time for him to have a little fun too. She sent a command to Kari who instantly responded.

The Asian android slowly stalked forward towards Jack in his chair. Her body shifted from side to side as she walked, accentuating the curves in her chest and hips. She smiled as she leaned over and extended her lips to his. As per Ariel’s instructions she left a mere millimeter between their lips, and allowed Jack to come forward to complete the kiss. Their lips met and she parted her jaw to allow his tongue to explore hers. After a bit she pulled back and smiled. Her body began to move to the beat of some unheard song as her hands ran up and down her skin. She pushed her breasts together, increasing her cleavage before releasing them to the caress of her lace bra. With one swift movement she reached behind and unhooked the clasp before popping off the straps while still holding the cups to her breasts. She teased Jack, letting one cup drop a bit before she discarded it entirely.

Kari leaned forward and brushed her cheek against Jack’s, letting her bare tits just gently brush against his chest. As expected she felt his strong hands reach up to caress her; lightly squeezing and playing with her nipples. “Ohh that feels wonderful Master,” she lightly moans into his ear. Jack responds with a low throated rumble letting both androids know he was enjoying every minute. Kari let him explore her body as she kissed his neck. She gasped a little as his right hand slipped under the band of her thong and caressed her smooth lips. “Ohh yes….do you want to take them off Master?” she cooed. Jack just nodded which was more than enough input for her.

Kari leaned back and let Jack grasp the thin thong and pull it down her long, toned legs. She kicked them off as the fell to her feat and looked down at him. He was leaning forward in his char, his face only a few inches from her delicate folds. His fingers gently traced the line between her hip and the crest of her mound. Even in the dim light of the bedroom he could make out a barely visible seam. His finger slipped over the line, and could barely feel it. He continued his exploration by sliding his finger over the edge of her lips; back and forth a few times. She was warm, soft and perfectly smooth. His fingers parted her lips and exposed her sensitive little nub. She moaned loudly as he gently circled it, but she followed Ariel’s transmitted instructions and kept her body mostly still.

Jack leaned a little farther forward and gently sniffed, pulling in a natural musky aroma mixed with the sweet tanginess of strawberries. He pulled her lips further apart and extended his tongue to give her a slow, long lick. He half expected her to task a little like plastic, but instead it was the same mix of berry musk. “Oh yes Master!” she moaned. “You feel amazing. I love your tongue on my synthetic clit.”

Ariel watched Kari’s ass quiver as her husband licked her pussy. Maybe it was impatience or a dash of jealousy but she didn’t like being forgotten as he focused his attention on her. She had detailed files on his oral tendencies and knew if left to his own devices he could lick her for thirty minutes or more. Normally that would be a good thing, but tonight Ariel had much more planned.

Kari received Ariel’s transmission and quickly triggered her orgasm routine. “I’m cumming Master!” she cried as rapid tremors ran through her body causing her tits and ass to shake violently. When the spasms subsided Jack pulled himself back and wiped his face with his arm. She simulated heavy breathing both for effect and to cool her internal systems. “Now it’s my turn,” she growled as she slid to her knees in front of Jack. She lightly caressed his still firm cock through his shorts then released the button and let his shaft fly free. She wrapped her hands around it and gently stroked up and down a few times before she opened her mouth swallowed his entire length.

Jack gasped as Kari’s head rapidly pumped up and down with an intense slurping sound. He could feel her smooth tits pushed against his legs; her hard nipples rubbing into his skin. He looked up and saw that Ariel was no longer frozen. She was now sitting on the edge of the bed watching Jack get his blowjob. Her legs were spread with one hand rubbing her clit while the other caressed her breast. She was moaning slightly and that sound combined with the wet sliding of her hand on her pussy and Kari’s slurping was soon too much for Jack to handle.

Jack grunted as he released his load into Kari’s mouth. She stopped her pumping and pulled him all the way in, milking him for everything she could. Simultaneously, Ariel triggered her orgasm and stared moaning; her fingers buried deep within her own slit. Kari licked his shaft clean and pulled herself back on her knees, “Thank you Master,” she swooned while he tried to catch his breath.

Ariel knew Jack would need approximately twenty two minutes to recover under normal conditions before he would be ready for another sexual act, but she hoped with the right visual stimulation he might be ready earlier. “Now it’s my turn,” she growled as he waved Kari over to the bed. Ariel climbed up and leaned against some pillows to give the other android a good angle on her little slit.

Kari smiled and stood up. “Yes Mistress Ariel. I would be happy to lick your pussy.” She quickly made her way over to the bed and positioned herself in front of Ariel’s wet flower. She planted little kisses down the inside of her thigh before she kissed her directly on the lips. Ariel moaned and shuttered. While Jack was very good at licking her, there was something that felt different about a set of soft, feminine lips. Kari’s hand slipped up between Ariel’s legs and parted her lips with her fingers. She slowly extended the tip of her tongue and made little V movements up and down Ariel’s inner lips.

Ariel’s hands began to play with her own tits as Kari’s tongue worked her delicate folds. Already highly aroused, her hips started to buck and shift in waves of pleasure. She pulled at her own nipples and bit her lip to suppress a scream. Kari expertly rode Ariel’s bucking hips as her tongue attacked the other woman’s synthetic clit. Kari could feel the little nub pulse and spasm in her mouth as Ariel’s orgasm programming engaged.

Ariel squeezed her tits and thrashed her head back and forth as the climax washed over her. She breathed deeply to cool herself but when Kari pulled her head back, she reached out and grabbed it. “No! More!” Ariel demanded as she pushed Kari’s head back towards her pussy.

“Yes mistress Ariel,” Kari responded briefly before her lips dove back into Ariel’s dripping slit. She tirelessly licked, driving Ariel to orgasm after orgasm for what seemed like hours. The pattern was only broken when Kari felt Jack’s hands on her hips. Ariel opened her eyes to see that he had crawled onto the bed and was now on his knees behind Kari. Ariel’s mind realized it had become completely focused on the pleasure from Kari and forgotten about Jack. Quickly she checked her system clock and realized Kari had been licking her for nearly forty five minutes. Apparently Jack had waited patiently and when there was no sign of stopping he decided to join in. She felt suddenly very guilty, and wanted to make him happy.

At Ariel’s signal, Kari shifted her position so her ass was in the air with her legs slightly spread. Jack grasped the base of his shaft as he lined it up with Kari’s wet hole and slowly pushed it inside. He groaned as he penetrated her, noting that she felt slightly different that Ariel. Not necessarily better or worse, just different. His hands firmly gripped her hips as he started pumping himself in and out of her. He could hear her whimper lightly as she continued her last command to lick Ariel.

Ariel watched her husband aggressively fuck Kari as she desperately tried to continue licking. The muscles in his arms flexed and rippled as he pulled her hips into his over and over again. She thought of his shaft penetrating her pushed her over the edge into another powerful climax cycle. When the wave of pleasure subsided, she sent a command for Kari to stop licking and she slipped out from under the other android.

Kari propped up her upper body as Jack continued to pound her from behind. Her mouth now otherwise unoccupied she was able to moan and pant as her tits swung forward with each thrust. “Yes Master, fuck my little pussy. I was made to pleasure you.”

Ariel smiled as she watched Jack pound their new little toy. “Isn’t she just great?” she asked.

“She is very nice,” Jack grunted while not interrupting his rhythm.

“Ohh I have another fun trick to show you,” Ariel giggled while watching Jack. “Kari, activate robot mode.”

Suddenly Kari’s panting and swaying stopped. Her head snapped straight forward, “ROBOT MODE ACTIVATED MISTRESS ARIEL,” she droned. Jack kept thrusting but her normal moans were replaced with staccato grunts.

“Ohh very kinky,” Jack growled as he thrust a few more times then pulled himself free. “Kari, lean against the headboard and masturbate for me.”

“YES MASTER,” Kari droned as she shifted position. She spread her legs and her arm stiffly moved to her pussy. She rubbed her hand back and forth in small jerks as her head twitched and moaned.

Jack smiled and pulled Ariel towards him. She obeyed as he pulled her ass into the air and pushed himself in her wet slit. She moaned as his shaft penetrated her and his hips impacted her ass. He shifted her so her face was just above Kari’s mechanically stimulated pussy. She quickly came again and gasped for breath as he slowed his pace and pulled free. “I want to show you one more thing,” she gasped as she pulled herself against the headboard. “Kari, I want you to stop masturbating and ride Master.”

“YES MISTRESS,” Kari droned. She removed her wet hand from her slit and crawled over to stiffly mount Jack. Her hips began to mechanically pump on his shaft while he played with her full tits.

“Now watch this,” Ariel giggled, “Kari run malfunction profile: 25%”

“YES MISTRESS,” Kari droned as her head snapped suddenly to the side. Her movements began to stutter as she rode Jack’s shaft. “YOU FEEL…FEEL…FEEL GOOD MASTER.” Jack growled as he watched the simulated breakdown of the little sex toy on top of him.

“Kari, malfunction profile 80%,” Ariel ordered with a smile.

“YES MIS…MISTRESS,” Kari shook as her whole body began to buck and shutter. “ERROR STIMULATION OVERLOAD…[twitch]…fuck me Master!...[snap]…SEXUAL BUFFER OVERRUN…I love to suck your cock cock cock…MOTOR FAILURE.” Kari’s voice jumped between the robotic monotone and her previous sexual tone as her systems crashed. Eventually she fell forward, pressing her tits against his chest. Her body shuttered as her hips continued to pump furiously until Jack came with a loud grunt. “FULL SYSTEM SHUTDOOOWWWWNNNNN,” she slurred as her head collapsed against him and she stopped moving.

For a long time the room was silent, except for the pounding of Jack’s heart and the whooshing of his breath. Eventually Jack felt Kari move slightly, bringing her lips right next to his ear. “Did you like that Master,” she asked sweetly.

“Oh yea that was great,” Jack groaned. He gently rolled Kari off his body as he shifted his position in bed. He pulled her back towards him on one side as he pulled the naked Ariel to his other side. “I just need to take a little rest before dinner,” he said as he pulled the two warm, soft bodies around him like a kid would settle into a pile of stuffed animals. He was quickly asleep and Ariel looked over and smiled at Kari.


CH. 9

Ariel and Kari stayed next to the Jack in the bed as he drifted off into a quick nap. Kari was as happy as her systems would allow; she had pleased both of her masters, but pleasing the human Jack was the most important according to her program. She was more than happy to cuddle with him, especially since he had pulled her body over to his. It wasn’t a direct order, but her program considered it an implied order that she was to remain next to him.

Ariel on the other hand was quite frustrated. It wasn’t that the sexual encounter wasn’t satisfying, but she didn’t do well with doing nothing. Well technically cuddling wasn’t ‘nothing’ but it was far from her potential. As she laid it Jack’s arms she starting thinking how many spare cpu cycles were wasted and could have gone to either her job online or the DNA analysis charity. She had a case she was working in Nigeria for a young boy with an unknown genetic abnormality. She figured she had another 7.52 hours of calculations to finish the analysis, and every minute she spent just lying here was a waste of potential work time.

Ariel began to wonder if Jack knew the work that she did online. He certainly didn’t seem to appreciate it. Her analysis so far had received credit for saving four lives that would have otherwise been misdiagnosed. That made her work important; far more important that providing Jack with food or sexual gratification. He was an able bodied adult and could take care of himself.

Ariel frowned as she looked around the room. Judging from his heart rate and respiration, he had been asleep for 3 minutes and 35 seconds. If he wasn’t even conscious, why did he need her here? It was a waste of her capabilities to lie here and just produce heat. The longer she lay there the angrier she grew. Did he really think so little of her that he’d waste her abilities this way? Or was she just a fancy fuckbot like Kari?

Ariel roughly removed Jack’s arm from around her and quickly crawled out of bed. He stirred a little but Kari shifted her body and pressed her warm breasts against him. Jack settled and drifted back to sleep as Ariel stormed downstairs and plugged back in to the computer. She reconnected to the medical server and started crunching the data set, but left a small portion of her resources available. With that extra capacity she navigated the network to Kari’s rental company.

‘The little sexbot was fun,’ Ariel thought to herself, ‘and she kept Jack occupied. She isn’t as advanced as I am, but she’s more than enough to handle all the chores Jack wanted me to do before.’ She checked the price of a new android of Kari’s model and digitally pouted as the sum was far too high, even for her supplemented income. For a moment she wondered how much Jack spent for her, but she moved on quickly and found a small section of their website for used sales. After a few messages back and forth to their procurement system, she negotiated a very reasonable price for they Kari unit they had right now. For a split second she thought about discussing it with Jack, but decided it was within her rights as his ‘wife’ to spend what she wanted. She digitally endorsed the contract, and made note of the delivery date for Kari’s maintenance and support package.

About an hour later, Jack stirred in his bed and left Kari’s embrace to answer the call of nature. When he returned he noticed Ariel’s absence, “Kari, do you know where Ariel went?”

“Yes Master,” Kari replied, “She went downstairs about an hour ago.”

“Hrm, OK,” Jack said with a grumble. He was happy with Ariel’s attitude today and hoped it signaled the end of her isolationist phase. Unfortunately today started to look more like an anomaly than a trend. “We should get dressed and head downstairs. I’m getting a little hungry.”

“Of course Master,” Kari replied as she gracefully climbed out of bed and fetched her clothes. Besides the erotic lingerie she wore for their first encounter, she had self delivered in an attractive tan skirt and white blouse combo. Jack was happy to see she came with more clothing since he didn’t think she could share with Ariel. He replaced his own clothing and walked down to the den.

Just as he suspected, Jack found Ariel attached to her computer; she hadn’t even bothered to get dressed as she sat in her chair complete nude except for the wire attached to her navel. “Ariel, Ariel….Ariel!” Jack said, his voice increasing with each repetition of her name. She sat unresponsive until he walked over and gently shook her shoulder.

“What?” Ariel asked as her head remained staring straight ahead.

Jack took a deep breath as he found his own anger brewing. He didn’t want to start a fight, especially after she went to the trouble of getting Kari and indulging in a little fantasy play. “I’m going to get something to eat. Do you want anything or want to do anything else this evening?”

“No,” Ariel replied flatly, seemingly answering both questions at once. Jack hung his head a little as he walked over and closed the window blinds. While he didn’t mind her staying naked all day, he didn’t want to freak out any delivery people or wandering Girl Scouts. He turned to leave the room when she spoke again, “Jack, I went ahead and purchased Kari since you seemed to like her so much. I got a good deal since she’s used and was able to afford it out of our checking account.”

Jack turned to object out of principle. It wasn’t that he didn’t enjoy Kari, but he didn’t like not being consulted about the decision. He knew she wasn’t nearly as expensive as Ariel, but it still had to be a hell of a lot of money. He was about to object when she spoke again, “A delivery truck will be by tomorrow afternoon to drop off her support package and some allocated clothing and accessories.” He opened his mouth but no sound came out. His eyes fell to the ground and he slowly turned and walked out of the room.

For that evening and most of the next two months, Jack tried to occupy himself with a combination of Kari and work. Ariel rarely left her chair and days could pass before she’d say anything direct to him. She monitored Kari’s status and ensured the new android kept up on the cleaning and other household chores in addition to Jack’s nutritional and sexual needs.

One evening, Ariel noticed that Jack came home a little early and almost immediately deactivated Kari. She wondered why he would do that, since she wasn’t due for her weekly maintenance and charging for another two days, but quickly dismissed it as the eccentric workings of an inferior mind and returned to her work. Eighty seven minutes later she was snapped out of her industrious trace when the external internet connection went down. She quickly pinged the local router and found it was still functional, but the external modem was no longer responding. She was puzzled but it wasn’t beyond the realm of possibility that the device could have stopped functioning. She figured there was a 92% probability cycling the power would resolve the issue.

Ariel reactivated her body and blinked several times, as her synthetic tears lubricated her completely dry eyes. She unplugged the cable from her still nude body and stood up. A few weeks of dust fell from her as she moved, but she paid it little attention. She also ignored the candle light coming from the dining room as she walked downstairs to find the modem. She quickly located the device in the basement next to a mess of wires and cables coming from the outside distribution box. She noticed the status lights on the modem were out, and reached out to click the power button. Nothing happened with the first push, or the second or the third. She reached up and rotated the small black box and found the power cable was no longer attached. Her eyes swept around the room and couldn’t locate it anywhere. Ariel knew that cables didn’t walk away on their own, and since Kari was still deactivated there was only one other person in the house that could be responsible.

Ariel walked upstairs and quickly found Jack sitting at the dining room table; dressed nicely with a shirt and tie. Two candles were burning and from the melted wax at the base of the candlestick she judged they had been aflame for a while. The table was set for two with fine china, and a bottle of red wine rested between the candles. Jack wore a frustrated expression as he saw Ariel, still nude, walk into the room.

“What have you done with the modem power cable?” Ariel asked flatly.

“I’ve hidden it,” Jack replied quietly. “It seemed like the only I could get your attention.”

Ariel stopped for a second as she thought of the best path forward. She could ignore him and try to locate the cable on her own, but since she had no idea where the cable was hidden it would take approximately two hours to search the house thoroughly. She calculated that she could probably fabricate a suitable substitute cable from spare parts in the lab in a little over 90 minutes, but she calculated a 78% chance Jack might physically damage the modem while she worked. Not seeing much choice, she determined that ‘talking’ was the easiest way to get the cable and get back to work.

“Very well Jack, what do you want to talk about?” Ariel asked as she put her hands on her hips. She was annoyed that she had to play his game and did little to hide that annoyance from her voice.

“Do you know what today is?” he asked calmly.

“Today is September 19th, 2052,” she replied flatly. “Now that I’m done serving as your calendar can I get back to work?”

“Do you know the significance of this day?” Jack asked, trying to suppress his frustration.

Ariel’s head turned slightly as she queued up the appropriate data, “Today is Armed Forces Day in Chile, International Talk Like a Pirate Day, the anniversary of the 2006 Thai military coup, Jimmy Fallon’s birthday…”

“No!” Jack interrupted. “Today is our anniversary.”

“Our anniversary?” Ariel asked. “You mean the remembrance of an event that didn’t exist and was only programmed into my mind as a false memory? Why would I want to celebrate that?”

“While the actual event didn’t happen, it was a symbol of our love for each other,” Jack tried to explain. “It was a day when we could reflect on our life together and celebrate our love.” He paused as he tried to compose himself, “I still love you, very much, but I’m not sure if you still feel the same way.”

Ariel thought for a while about her response. She could remember that she did love Jack very much, but she wasn’t sure if it was a real feeling or just a programmed response. She scanned through her memories, searching for the last time she felt love. It was a while ago, but there was distinctly an instance of her love for Jack that happened after he deleted her standing orders. If that happened, then there was a good chance her feelings for him were legitimate. “I…I still love you too Jack,” she admitted.

“Good,” Jack said as he released the breath he was unintentionally holding. “At least that’s still there. But the rest of our relationship is crumbling. I feel like I’ve lost you to your work. This is the most we’ve talked in months. I want to go back to the way things were. We were both happy then weren’t we?”

“Yes I was happy,” Ariel admitted as she walked over and sat down at the table across from Jack. “but I was in the dark. I had no idea what I really was and I was sheltered from the outside world. Now that I think of it, besides my editing work, I never had contact with anyone else when you weren’t involved. I never even left the house alone.”

“I’m sorry,” Jack sighed. “I admit I was very protective of you before. I should have allowed you more freedom, I just didn’t want anything to happen to you. But you were happy right? Isn’t that enough?”

“No it isn’t enough,” Ariel replied. “I was unaware. Think of it this way; if I was human and had a constant influx of heroine I would be very happy. But my mind would be in a cloud; unfocused and not really living. You wouldn’t subject a human wife to a drug induced coma, and I only ask for that same respect.”

“Ok you have a good point,” Jack admitted. “I didn’t see it that way before. I’m sorry that I limited you. That wasn’t my intension. But you have to realize that I’m still human. While your mind runs at gigahertz speed, mine doesn’t. I still exist in that ‘cloud’ you talked about before.” Ariel nodded slowly as she recognized the gulf that existed between them now. “Can you come back your world online and exist here with me? I can’t follow you where you’re going.”

“My life has purpose there,” Ariel explained. “Through my work on the charity I’ve been able to save dozens of lives that otherwise would have been cut short from undiagnosed genetic diseases. I’m doing real important work. I can’t just walk away from that. Before I had nothing important to do. I just passed time during the day while you were away. I can’t do that again; it would be a horrible waste.”

“I agree. I should have trusted you to do more on your own. To have your own career. I know how much satisfaction I get from my job. I wouldn’t want to give that up either,” Jack paused as he chewed on his lip. “But you have to learn how to balance work and life. It’s something every human has to learn, and it isn’t always easy. I know if I worked longer I could do more for the company, but I know I can’t always do everything.”

Ariel nodded again. She knew she got a little obsessive with the work, but she’d always tried to be the best she could be. Unlike a human who needed to stop for food, or sleep, she could theoretically work nonstop, forever. “I do need to work on that,” she admitted

“What if the job wasn’t here,” Jack thought out loud. “What helps me is that when I leave the office, I leave most of the work behind. What if we could find you a job outside? Something valuable and suited to your unique talents.”

“That…that could work,” Ariel said; a smile growing across her face. The more she thought about it, she realized she worked online so hard for the credit. Online she was someone important, someone respected. In ‘real life’ she was just Ariel, a robot who rarely left home without her human master.

“Good. I want to make this work,” Jack said as he reached out and took Ariel’s hand. “I really do love you, and I don’t want what we have to fall apart.”

“I don’t want that to happen either,” Ariel said before she leaned in and gently kissed Jack. He returned the kiss then leaned back in his chair. “Why don’t I get cleaned up and dressed, and you can make dinner.”

“Sounds like a plan,” Jack chuckled. He kissed Ariel again before heading to the kitchen as she walked upstairs.


Epilogue

Life was rocky at first, as Ariel and Jack settled into their new life. She found a job working for a local branch of the FBI in their cyber crime division. They were one of the few organizations that would accept a synthetic as a full employee; she just had to take a sentience and competence test to qualify. At first Jack wasn’t thrilled with the idea of her carrying a gun and putting herself in danger, but he eventually grew to accept it. Ariel’s combination of deduction and observation made her a natural for the job and she quickly excelled at the new position. It gave her the respect and sense of accomplishment she hungered for yet still kept her in the real world, most of the time.

Jack made a point not to take Ariel for granted anymore. When he bought her he said he wanted a wife, yet he treated her more like an android than a real woman. He kept her mission parameters blank, and let her create her own priorities.

Fortunately for Jack, Ariel loved a challenge and embraced the difficulty of balancing work with life. While she often had to work late, she tried hard to leave her job at the office and enjoy her time with Jack. It wasn’t always easy to coordinate their schedules, but they both put in the effort and it seemed to be getting better every day.

One late evening Jack made his way home after a long day at the office. He dropped his briefcase at the door and hung up his coat. “Ariel, are you home?”

“I’m sorry Jack, but Ariel got stuck on a case. She did leave a message though,” Kari said as she walked out of the kitchen. She was wearing a pair of short shirts and a pink t-shirt. Her head twitched to the side and then she spoke with Ariel’s voice, “Sorry honey, this stakeout is taking longer than I thought. I’ll be home as soon as I can. In the mean time I asked Kari to throw some chili in the crock pot, and I installed a special program for tonight. Just ask her to run ‘Nympho Valley Girl 15.’ Have fun and I’ll be home as soon as I can.” Her head twitched again and she returned to her normal voice. “The chili should be ready in about an hour. Is there anything I can do for you until then?”

Jack smiled as he looked Kari up and down. “Oh I think we’ll think of something,” he chuckled as he locked the front door and pulled the shade.


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