Being Human
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I do not recall being born, nor any sort of childhood. It is hard to keep time in these endless hallways. I barely remember meeting a couple of others like myself, who mistreated me for reasons I could not understand at the time. I also met a couple of others unlike myself, who tried to attack me. I have mostly forgotten the concrete details of such encounters.

I do recall, however, the first time I met a human.

I now know she was a woman, most likely in her twenties. She had short, blonde hair in contrast to my flowing auburn mane; and wore dark clothes on a pale skin. I do not know what overcame me, but my next memory puts me in front of a corpse. Said woman laid dead, her face pulled in pain — I had apparently ripped her arms and legs from her, with blood pooling on the carpeted floor. In an automatic manner, I put my thin limbs through the gaping holes of her appendages, making them mine. As I flexed my newfound human limbs, I felt complete for the first time in my life.

However, with said action a plethora of unfamiliar thoughts came into my mind. Before, I was a creature of carnage with no other instinct than to survive. However, suddenly I found myself able to speak a thousand words, able to think a million ideas, able to comprehend any of my actions. And with such knowledge, I understood what I was supposed to do: be human.

After such a revelation, I immediately got to painstakingly fulfill my purpose. It involved a lot of trial and error, as any person I stumbled upon found me as a terrifying monster instead of a fellow wanderer, much to my dismay. But from these encounters I learned.

Every time a human saw me dripping stale blood they fled, so I learnt to cover my metallic innards in jackets, stolen from corpses that I am sure would not miss them. Sometimes, my human arms and legs fell off, or rotted away into unusable forms. In response, I used my own sharp body to clean out any rotting flesh, replacing it with a durable mixture of fluff and other debris. When one was simply too damaged, I replaced it with another from the plethora of corpses that I had found or made.

But it was when I finally put my disguise to the test when I realized I’d been successful. I stumbled upon a tired wanderer, and for the first time I recall, he did not flee but rather regarded me as his equal.

I am not sure how I could put into words such moment. A mix of euphoria and sly satisfaction washed over me, as I successfully hid my identity from said person. My new acquaintance seemed to not have noticed anything about my true form, being completely oblivious that he was standing in front of an entity that had killed one of his kin, fooled by the human appearance I wore like a dress.

It was from this particular wanderer that I learnt about the M.E.G. and other communities; the elusive organizations in various camps of the world. Considering me a recent arrival from his world of origin, he offered to guide me to one of their outposts. It was from this man — my first “friend” — where I got what I consider my final training in how to be a person through interaction, preparing me for dealing with more humans.

He also gave me something else I did not realize I needed. He gave me a name.

Shortly after, we arrived at what I know now is Trader’s Keep, belonging to the Backooms Non-Aligned Trade Group in Level 4. I still remain there, working as a simple maintenance worker of the infrastructure of the city, having made multiple friendships with many humans — including three close friendships, all of which know of my nature but have agreed to keep it a secret.

However, I am writing this in the case that I may need to flee. I am still very aware that there are some individuals who would love nothing more than to tear my cogs apart, in a fool’s errand to understand me or kill me. In the case I am discovered, I will send this file to my previously mentioned friends. I do not know exactly why, but I feel it will paint my species in a brighter, more friendly light; instead of being seen as yet another monster stalking the halls.

For I am no monster. Although you may call me a Replicant or a supplanter, I am not.

For my name is Lilith, and I am as human as anybody else.

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