Chess City - A New Novel By Ayaan Chettiar

Chess City – Chapter 12

Martin at first thought he was hallucinating when he saw a silhouette under the tree, but as he cautiously approached closer, he realized it was none other than that brown-haired bot nobody knew about. He also saw that she was unconscious and severely injured.

Now, Martin could have left the assassin for dead. She was not a friend, not someone he knew, just a mysterious being. Martin had no need to get himself into this mess. He could go home, make himself a cup of coffee, and nod off, forgetting all about it.

But Martin knew he couldn’t leave her. If she remained in such a state, the wounds may destroy her. Slowly, he took her on his shoulder, and began the long slog home.

When M3GAN came about, she was first greeted by a light. She opened her eyes to find herself in a bedroom, and raised her head in shock.

“Don’t do that.” said Martin, by her side. “You’ll only hurt yourself.”

“Who are you?” asked M3GAN. “What am I doing here?”

“You were unconscious. You could have died. I took you home.” said Martin, making a long story short. “As for who I am, I’m just an ordinary beginner bot. But I’m curious to know about you.”

“I’m a failure.” said the assassin, sadly. “I had one job, one target, and I failed miserably. A cat got the better of me. I let down the Empire, my creator the great Emperor himself, and Chess City at a whole.”

“Hold your horses.” said Martin, in amazement. “The Emperor created you?”

“Yes.” said M3GAN. “To take down the target: a cat supercomputer, who had attacked the Empire. This information is not for your ears, but my failure means that you will soon know about it anyway: The Empire is under attack, and our lives are all in grave danger.”

“By this… cat thingy?” said Martin, truly astonished now.

“Yes.” said M3GAN. “She calls herself Mittens. And she’s powerful. Very powerful. She’s brought the Empire down to its knees. I had to stop her, before she gained more power. But now… but now…”

“Take it easy.” said Martin, calmly. “You need to recover quickly if you want to aid the Emperor. But one more thing, I never knew your name.”

“Slayer M3GAN is my full name, but you can call me M3GAN. But who are you?”

“Like I mentioned, just a lowly beginner bot.” said Martin, with a smile. “Name’s Martin.”

“You talk of a beginner bot as if it’s bad.” said M3GAN, in a voice that displayed wisdom and experience. “But we’re all beginners once. Every single one of us, even our mighty Emperor. And judging by your actions, I can sense some great power within you, Martin.”

“I lost nearly every game I played.” said Martin, chuckling. “My training was a total catastrophe. I failed, just like you. But unlike you, I’m useless. You were doing the bidding of the Empire. Not me.”

“You don’t have to be good to be good, Martin.” said M3GAN. “Being a player with great knowledge is meaningless without great character. You showed that today. You could have left me, but you didn’t. Look at Mittens. Great, great, power and knowledge she has, but absolutely no honor or dignity. Only ego. That’s why she will fail to make a great leader. That’s why she will fall.”

After this brief speech, M3GAN once more closed her eyes and dozed off. But those words remained etched in Martin’s mind. Maybe M3GAN was right. Maybe he wasn’t so useless after all. Martin went to sleep a little happier that night.

Ayaan Chettiar

Read Chapter 13

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