TD Walkman Mall
The TD Walkman mall bank was guarded by a single 20-someodd year old girl, at least by appearance. On first glance, one might think the area was not guarded at all, as the girl was dressed as though ready to go to a village dance in a pink and white blouse and skirt combo and ribbon around her neck. Not guarded but perhaps well-tended, as the girl cheerfully greeted every customer and directed them to their destination. However, the girls large soulful eyes and brilliantly red piled hair revealed her true nature of a guard capable of single-handedly defending even as major of establishment as she was in. No sooner did any customer 'lose their way' through the electronic interfaces then she was there to guide them back on course. And, occasionally, guide the particularly foolish out of the banking kiosk, where they were soon to be picked up by the Authorities.
One man in dark clothing who considered himself less foolish watched the bank from the open concealment of the Fool's Food stand across the hall. A thick coat concealed a complex array of devices, with some of which he has been analyzing the security guards transmissions for weeks. Through routine communications with the Authority's TD Walkman mall branch computer he has established her to be a Securamaid brand. However, that was a popular company with much innovation and variation. The man is not the type that is easily deterred, however. The man has worked with another, and one almost as good as him at devices, though perhaps not at understanding human nature. The man has been busy over the past week.
For several weeks, the man and his partner had been plotting together, each needing significant amounts of money for their own reasons. The had long been acquaintances, and each knew the other was strongly talented. They considered many schemes, but none seemed promising enough to risk the Authorities of the Civil Leadership. The man's partner finally came up with a breakthrough when he acquired a copy of the banking interface system’s software code from one of the temporary foreign boards that were always popping up. The Authorities were very open on information access, but the Hackers, a public-minded, if secretive, group, were quick to eliminate what they saw as anti-social threats. The man did not like them. Hackers.. paladin wannabies who's self-professed ethics had eaten away at their ability to enjoy their talents harmlessly and now could only feel through their imposition of power over what could be right and what was wrong. The man knew that, for he had cause to knew them better than most, though he never mentioned it to his partner. It was together that they chose the TD Walkman mall bank as an extremely modern establishment which used their stolen software, and together they found it guarded, not that such an eventuality was unexpected. It became a problem of positive identification. An exact match was critical, as each model had its own quirks, and the guard was more than capable of snapping both of their necks in an instant, leaving them paralyzed in the grip of the Authorities for the rest of their lives.
The man and his partner worked in shifts, until one night, exactly seven days prior to the present, the man exhausted his last lead. The Securimaid company was careful not to reveal anything in the later models, and he was now certain it was no less modern than 7 years, which included 15 types. However, the man knew of a method to obtain more data. He worked tirelessly at his computer, and then returned to the Fool's Food to await his partner the next day.
His partner arrived at the usual time to find the man in a good mood. He enthusiastically explained how he had finally cracked the code, and determined the guard's type. A script kiddy, had tried to hack the guard's communication net, a trick they both knew would have allowed the guard to be overwhelmed with noise. However, that trick hadn't worked since the Seven's Ribben model, which this guard certainly wasn't. They both had a good laugh.
"Careful preparation is the difference between a Script Kiddy and a professional", the man's partner agred. "And I assume the response gave the kiddy a new role in life, and us a lead."
The man handed over his thinpad, and let his partner browse the data. "Good.. good. It attacked with the minimum force necessary to destroy the kids ability to move, so it's younger than the old 'Killer' models. looks like a slipup in the communication response, however. It shut communications down entirely rather than filtered out the bad traffic. Only one type young enough that still had that problem, a HeartStar."
The man nodded, and they discussed plans. The HeartStar was the first model immune to nearly all indirect digital assaults, but the new mental infrastructure introduced had ironically opened up a direct vulnerability in the timekeeping system, which was able to run system-level commands. In short, a complete access vulnerability. The man explained the plan. He would hack the terminals in the kiosk as soon as his partner took on the HeartStar. With a careful order of assault, there should be no chance of either being reported. They decided to do it the moment the banking kiosk opened, as noone typically showed up for several hours after.
A few moments later, the guard arrived. Owned by the company for a decade after its commission, it worked whatever hours they commanded. Most companies left some time off for mental development, but this one worked the full 16 hours each day. Some considered that cruel, if legal. The man's partner considered this indication their assault on the company was justified. The man wasn't sure it mattered. It was dressed as usual, its hair fluffy and clean. The man's partner frowned, and whispered, "Hmm. Strange. HeartStars were known for malfunctioning phsical appearance codes when used as hard as this one is, obeying the letter of the directive at best."
The man turned to his partner, contempt on his face. Misidentification could be fatal to them both. His partner was confident in the data before. He should never have declared the type if he wasn't sure. None of this was said, his partner read it from his eyes, and quickly reassured him. "I recall that not all had the problem! It's fine. Perhaps its only recently been put on this schedule. Lets go in."
The two broke up, the man's partner approaching the bank with his credit chip in hand. He stood confused for a moment, and the guard bounded up with a smile. "Hi! Can I help you?"
The partner nodded, and offered his credit chip, explaining he wasn't sure how to use this type of system. The guard huffed a brief sigh.. the basic system had been in effect for most her life. Still, she gave him her best comforting smile. "Of course, please come over here and I will show it to you!"
As the guard turned and moved towards a terminal, the Man’s partner followed her just far enough to be outside the range of the TD Walkman mall hall cameras (the bank’s logs could easily be deleted once access was obtained). He then threw open his coat, launching preprogrammed sequences running at ultra-modern speeds. Silently the electronic patterns stabbed out, demanding the faulty timekeeper code to break down. He saw the guard freeze, and reached for his keyboard. "Time for some tinkering.."
The guard noticed her customer's haulted step, and just decided this fit the profile of anomalus behavior before a high-power wave struck her communications system. She felt the hacking attempt immediately, and clapped a hand to the back of her neck. Latent anti-assault programming kicked her into motion and she spun around, noting the person behind her was covered in electronics. The hard part of her mind moved him into the category of extreme danger. Counter-assault programs launched a return wave of comm traffic, instantly attempting hundreds of predesigned cracks. Several systems fell to her hard mind immediately and were shut down. Meanwhile, she lept forward and around in high-stress mode, the pain merely sensory reports of wear on her joins she had no time for. One hand lashed out, cracking his spinal column at the shoulder while the other struck slightly more bluntly just above it to prevent a shock death. Finally she arrested the forward momentum imparted by the first two strikes. The man in front of her crumpled.
The partner's just opened his thintop when his world went to hell. At once he found himself being thrown about, and then on the floor, staring up the guards long legs at her furious face. He glanced at the white between them under her floating skirt, and couldn't help but recall several types in times of yore which would have reacted so negatively to the mere possibility of his current gaze seeing things he shouldn’t as to be rendered ineffective. His neck hurt, though nothing else did, and it all seemed unreal. Her long red fluffy bangs looked so strange from below, floating out for inches. He watched as her foot came down on his transmitter unit, destroying any hope that perhaps it was just a delayed reaction, then could do nothing but admire the colors of the thing that got him. It looked so real, fear and panic slowly coming over its face as the fury faded. So much effort put into emulating humans just to overcome the competition. He pondered this and other thoughts, floating in a sea of shock, until the masked face of an Authority Enforced slid into his view, which then faded to black.
The guard only looked away.. briefly and mumbled something. The man cocked his head, and looked concerned, "I'm sorry?"
It chewed on its lip before answering. "I'm, uh..", and then mumbled something about being aright.
The man nodded and said "I bet a company like this stinges on maintenance?", lending an inquisitive end to his statement. As expected, the guard rallied to defend its owner, exclaiming, "No, sir! TD Walkman Banking does everything it its power to ensure a good customer experience!".
The man made a placating gesture. "I suppose that’s true! You do certainly look good, especially your hair. They just recently replaced it, right?" He privately noted as the guards smile momentarily slipped before returning, and her response was delayed.
The guard was offended. Why was he asking all these embarrassing questions? She couldn't be rude, but this conversation had to end. A quick panicked database search gave the answer: turn it to a compliment and force an ending. Humans would not be so impolite as to continue. What to compliment? Ah, charm of course. Charm always fits. She smiled up at him. "Sir, you are very charming. My hair isn't worthy of your comments. Please do come again!"
The man considered her statement, then smiled. One more check. "No, it is lovely. I'm only charming because it's such a pretty young girl I'm talking to." Now, it should respond with...
She sighed in relief. Back on safe ground. Now to keep it that way. "Thanks! I work at it all the time! If you'll come back tomorrow, I'll be sure to put extra care into it!"
The man nodded, then left the guard. Luck was with him, it was definitely a FeatheredAngel, the last type released before the very latest Securimaid model. The FeatheredAngels tried to maintain human appearance as much as possible, and avoided reference to their true nature as much as possible. He left the kiosk and entered the massive HiFiClothing store next door, and started hunting. the FeatheredAngels were of a group of models that mimicked human interactions in a huge variety of situations. The originals release had a bug which made them vulnerable to their own physical-mental interface programming. Specifically, a surprise 'frontal assault', if he could be allowed a euphemism, would shift the internal priority levels on normally dormant ‘intimacy subsystems’ enough to severely unbalance the entire system. Later models had the problem fixed. If a male grabbed them inappropriately, they would react as a human would be expected to, giving the male a black eye and their system time to recover and adjust. There was a workaround, however.
Soon the man sees his quarry. A young woman with long blue hair is browsing alone in the lingare section. Although she looks very close to human, two elements catch his eye. Her hair is a little too long and her waist a little too thin. While it could just be an especially trim girl who had died her her hair, it looked too familiar. He was almost certain it was an old ModernTech, Inc. system. A troubled company from the git-go, they finally fell to better funded and equipped competitors after the Authorities decided to require that all new types be made with distinct features to distinguish them on site from humans. It was a shame.. the ModernTech models were years ahead of their time. They just could not manage the capital outlay to adjust their equipment to standard. This was 18 years ago. If he was right, it had finished its term of ownership some time ago. No one would miss it.
He waited until the girl slipped into the changing room, then followed. He found the stall she was in, and quickly disabled the electronic lock. Such things were childs-play to a former Hacker. Listening carefully for the right moment, he opened the door. The girl was naked, her clothes neatly folded in a pile on the shelf in the corner. She was holding a frilly bra up to the light overhead. The man had to admire ModernTech's work.. they took their idea of the best humans had to offer, and improved it only a little, rather than to the excess Securimaid was fond of. Her feet were perfect with small ankles, a finely muscled calf that showed the strain in her leg, firm thighs and butt, respectable hips that made the bottom of the hourglass which curved through a thin waist into her torso. He had only a moment to appreciate it all, however, and slapped a device between her shoulder blades. The girl spun and stared at him in shock and surprise. Her front was as perfect as her back, with fine blue fur covering from between her legs halfway up to her belly button in a equilateral triangle and well-hung C-cup breasts. The confirmation of his suspicious stared him in the face. Her eyes, while closer to human size, are a solid blue, with no visible iris. He didn't even think about what it would have meant had he been wrong. He took advantage of the chaos in her circuits to cover her mouth in case any loud noises escaped from it, and waited.
The device he planted was an older one, but highly useful when it worked. It used direct electrical induction to flood a ‘bots circuitry with random commands. He smirked as it's eyes stared widely, it's logic circuits desperately trying to determine what was happening to it. It then blinked once in surprise as they decided only a technician could handle the problem, and unlocked its main back panel.
The man spun the girl around and drummed a pattern on its back. Another reason the fall of ModernTech was such a shame was the loss of their TapCode system. Recognizing the code, the back panel opened, revealing an array of wires and connections framed by assorted devices blinking into the soft changing room light. He removed the device from its back and packed it away. He needed its systems fully operational for this. Pulling out other devices, he then began to reconfigure it.
He noted abstractly as it looked over its shoulder at him with shocked eyes. He was not worried about it attempting to escape now. The ModernTech had the best emulation of human lust up till the latest machines. All those in between, when programmed for a function that required it, switched to a selection of premade routines. Only the last few modern types actually integrated the capability for true emulated desire into the main operation system. However, ModernTech also integrated something of a prudishness into their matrix. The man found it impressive to think that, while certainly artificial like everything else, the effect emulated human suppression quite well.
Fortunately, they were designed so that manual tinkering with their sexual systems activated certain pre-built exceptions to the ‘prudishness’, which was always fun to watch. It's main logic system probably couldn't figure out why its defensiveness wasn't triggering. In the distant past, they always finally categorized him as a technician performing repairs, as the only possibility that was logically consistent. It appeared as though this was the same. He quickly finished his work.
The blue haired girl stared at the mirror for several minutes after the man left. Did that really happen? How had a technician appeared just when she needed it? Wasn't modern tech out of business? None of it made sense. Was she damaged? Maybe there was a subsidiary which had returned to business? It would be worth looking into. Right now, she just wanted to go home and rest.
She climbed back into her cloths and left the changing room, heading for the cashier. There were only a few people ahead of her in line. She stepped up to the counter to run through her goods. Her hopeful mood evaporated, however, as soon as the cashier rang up the total. Her purse was empty of hard credits... the technician must have taken them as payment. She pulled out her soft credit chip, but stopped at his frosty glare. He thumbed over his shoulder at a sign labeled ‘Hard Credit Only’, and stated, rather more unkind than he had to, "If you want soft credit, use a bank. Otherwise, go away."
Ignoring her repeated apologies, he stuffed her bag of items to one side, and motioned the next customer up. She backed away, "Don't worry, I'll be back in a minute!".
The blue haired girl runs into the bank next door. The brilliantly red-haired guard offers assistance, but she brushes it off and hurries to a terminal. It would only take a second to withdraw some money. Suddenly, she thinks of how rude she had been to the helper. Maybe she should come back and apologize.
The console beeps a warning at her. She accidentally put in too many zeros in her password. Shaking her head, she starts to try again, but catches the guard out of the corner of her eye. She hopes she hadn't left a bad impression..
Turning to the console, she enters her password, and then fidgits. She has a healthy amount in reserve. Maybe she should withdraw some extra and give a tip? People didn't usually give tips, but she had been rude.. maybe.. if she did tip, the red-haired girl would forgive her rudeness. A big tip.. she'd be so surprised that a girl could be so generous, she'd give her a hug, and...
The blue haired girl shakes her head again. But the thought doesn't go away. A hug, and maybe they could get together later and... her chest was feeling very tight, and it is getting hard to breath. She fells weird all over... it is so hot..
The red haired FeatheredAngel stands impatiently in the middle of her empty kiosk. It is slow, even for a normally slow day. It looked like she might have something to do when a confused looking blue haired girl came in, but the girl just waived her off and sat at a private terminal. Something about the girl’s behavior bothers the guard, but it doesn’t match any threat profiles so she puts her out of her mind. The banking terminal reported a bad password, but that wasn't worthy of attention yet. However, what is worthy is the fact the embarrassing man with the awkward questions back. She acts as cheerful as she can as she greets him.
"Hi! Back again?", she said.
Weird response. But he seems happy about something. "Can I help you?"
He grinned, "Actually, I'm here to rob this bank."
She blinks, shocked expression on her face. He does nothing but smile. She runs a database search. What could something this absurd mean, if not the obvious? A match comes back. He speaks nonsense to be funny. A joke. But a dumb joke.
Distracted, she doesn't notice the approach of the blue haired girl until her head reaches over her shoulder and kisses her below the ear. Simultaneously, her hands reach under her arms and grab her triple-D cup breasts through the thin fabric of her uniform.
The red haired guard starts. "HEY!", and turns her head to look at the girl, noting she is naked from head to toe. Frowning in anger, she exclaims, "Just what the heck do you think you're doing?!?"
The blue haired girl responds, "You looked so lonely standing out here by yourself. So tired of being alone...".
The FeatheredAngel's frown changes to concern as her body doesn't react immediately. She had no idea what this girl is doing. Should she call the Authorities? Why isn't she registering as a threat? Everything was getting sluggish as programs reorganized like mad. "L.. Look, I d.. d.. don't know what y.. y.. y.. you want want bhhhhhhuuuuuu..."
The blue haired girl continues, "These looked so lonely too. They need attention. Mmm.. don't you think these need attention on a girl? They feel so lonely.. you shouldn't ignore them..." As she speaks, she massages the soft mounts in circles, rubbing her hands along the soft skin.
The Man watches with dispassionate interest as the FeatheredAngel concluded far too late it was under serious threat. It tries to pull off the blue-haired ModernTech’s hands off its breasts, limbs lacking any strength completely ineffectual. The problem with integrated desire code was that you couldn’t remove it, even if it was completely tangent to the duties you originally purchased the ‘bot for, and the FeatheredAngel’s defenses against males did not apply to other female bots. It was a shame his former partner was gone.. he would have enjoyed it. The Man never could see the appeal in watching tin cans get it on.
The red-haired guard collapses to the floor, hauling the ModernTech down with it. The man’s sonic de-amplifier left at the bank doorway cancels it’s loud moans. The Man leaves the malfunction to progress, and hacks into a terminal, using his knowledge of the banking system to break in via a logging port.
“Whaa ooohh.. what haf you done to mheeee... No! Not there! Don’t! Stop! ahhhhhhhhhhh... Don’t... don’t stop.. again.. no.. I mean don’t.. don’t .. “
The guard can only watch for a moment as the man steps past her towards the opening into the mall, vaguely aware of anomalous behavior in terminal 17. She tried to shout, but her words continued to mangle, as her most abstract levels of logic processing tried to integrate a whole from a system tearing itself apart. “T.. Thie..! Stop! Sttt... don’t stop! I.. eyeeee...”. Finally, some tiny spark of self-preservation kicked in, and she focused on the blue-haired girl entirely.
The Man stepped out of the Kiosk, hiding his face from the TD Walkman security monitors. His handiwork would be found when the bank received its standard afternoon patronage, he was sure. It was a shame he wouldn’t be around to witness the reactions. A shame eased by a hefty bulk of hard credits, however, carried with the Man as he left the mall.