Melody of the Future

by Tatsurou

Chapter 1: Awakening Hope

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Dr. Cain moved carefully through the century old ruin of Light Labs. While there were unlikely to be any booby traps or other things harmful to humans, there was likely to be functional security measures, and possibly a few robots or mechanaloids still functional after all this time, protecting Dr. Light's last legacy.

However, much to Dr. Cain's surprise, there were no such security systems or guardians still functional. The only thing that was found was a sealed door marked with a large X. There was also a screen to one side of the door. Curious, Cain rubbed it with one finger, and was startled as it came to life.

"Error!" the screen displayed. "Lab chronometer non-functional. Unable to determine present date. Human presence detected. Engaging activation protocol B."

Various files began displaying on the screen, and Dr. Cain marveled at the data displayed, showing just how advanced the robot inside was, both in capabilities and potential. As he stared in amazement, however, the screen then turned red.

"Warning: 'X' is the first in a new generation of robots which contains an innovative new feature - the ability to think, feel and make their own decisions. However, this ability could be very dangerous. If 'X' were to break the first law of robotics, 'A robot must never harm a human being', the results would be disastrous and I fear that no force on Earth could stop him.

"Approximately 30 years will be required before we can safely confirm his reliability. Unfortunately, I will not live to see that day, nor do I have anyone to carry on my work. Therefore, I have decided to seal him within the capsule inside, which will test his internal systems until his reliability has been confirmed. Please do not disturb the capsule until that time.

"'X' possesses great risks, as well as great possibilities. I can only hope for the best.

"September 18, 20XX
"T. Light."

Dr. Cain was left totally poleaxed. The mere idea of a robot who could make its own decisions, one that was not truly bound by its programming...he shook his head in amazement at just how far ahead of his time Dr. Light had truly been. Even in the current day and age after the 'recovery' - he shuddered at the memory of the work that had to be done after the event known in history only as 'The End' to put the world back together - robotics technology was nowhere near this level. He knew one thing: he had to see this robot.

The screen displayed a new message. "The fate of the world is in your hands. Do you wish to awaken Dr. Light's last legacy?" A Yes/No button display appeared.

Dr. Cain hesitated. If he'd had to hack around some last security measure, or guess a password, or some other final hurdle, he would have done so without thought. But instead, all that was here...was Dr. Light's faith in humanity, that the one who found this would take responsibility for what was to come. It was...rather unnerving. It made him realize the weight of his decision. Whether or not 'X' was reliable, his very existence would change the world.

And Dr. Cain had the opportunity to make that happen, or not...with just the push of a button.

As he finally reached forward to press 'Yes', he marveled that this simple question delayed him far longer than any security system would have. The final security system was my own conscience, is that it Doctor? he thought quietly.

With the press of the button, the doors slid open, revealing the capsule. It's base and top were bright blue, with green glass walls. The robot designated X floated inside, at complete peace, his blue armor glinting in the faint light, the red focus crystal at his brow pulsing with its connection to the capsule's systems, his pink face completely serene, his arms wrapped gently around a small equine.

Dr. Cain blinked at that. "He...he tucked him in with a stuffed animal?" he asked rhetorically, then chuckled. "I know roboticists of that age often viewed their creations as their children...but a plushy for a 30 year nap?" Shaking his head ruefully, he approached the capsule to open it. After all, it had been a good deal more than 30 years since the date X had been apparently sealed in.

The screen read off data. "Reactivating Model X higher brain functions. Disengaging stasis field. Bio-stasis stable and disengaging. Vital signs of Little Pony stable."

"Wait, what?" Cain demanded in shock, staring at the capsule as both robot and equine began to stir. "It's alive? It's alive?"

As the capsule opened, X landed lightly, bracing himself easily on his feet. His eyes opened. "Greetings," he said simply. "I am Megaman X, or just X for short. I am Dr. Light's final creation. How may I assist you?"

Dr. Cain was forced to admit that the drama of the situation was somewhat deadened by the fact that X was idly stroking the pony's mane as it stirred, especially when it began to nip at his fingers playfully. Now that it was out of the capsule, Dr. Cain could see that the pony was grey with a black mane and tail, both combed straight. Its eyes were a pale purple, and it had a brand of the same color on both flanks in the shape of a Treble Clef. "And...this?" he asked X.

X looked down at the pony in his arms as though he'd just noticed. "Her name is Octavia Melody," he replied quickly. "I...I'm supposed to take care of her." He scratched her gently behind the ear as she tried rather seriously to chew through one finger without any teeth.

"Really?" Dr. Cain asked in surprise. "Is that part of your programming?"

X blinked. "No," he replied. "I...have no base programming beyond how to use my body and how to interact with humans. I'm designed to create my own programming and make my own decisions in that regard. But...I know I'm supposed to take care of her. Strange..."

Deep inside X's mind, the VSW protocols, having accomplished their mission, self deleted, removing any trace they ever existed beyond the changes that had been made.

In the meantime, X transformed one of his hands via the buster, using the variable weapon system to generate a viable substitute for milk in energy form. The data was there in his systems of how to do it, and before long little Octavia was suckling away, drinking up the energy-milk.

Dr. Cain watched for a time. "Fascinating," he murmured. "X, if it's alright...I would like to study your systems and learn how you work. I believe you may be the key in restoring the world to a state of glory, to rebuilding the world your maker desired."

"As long as it does not disturb Octavia," X replied, gently stroking his little pony. "I did not catch your name, sir."

"Oh, how forgetful of me," Cain replied, chuckling sheepishly. "I am Dr. Cain."

"A pleasure to meet you, Doctor," X replied politely.

At that point, Octavia began to fuss, having drunk her fill of the energy-milk. Seeing the way her eyelids struggled to stay up, X knew she must be tired. As he followed Dr. Cain out of the ruined lab, he began to hum a classical tune for her. Before too long, she was humming along as well.

Dr. Cain shook his head as he watched in amazement. A robot with a pony child...will wonders never cease?

Next Chapter: Scientific Egos Estimated time remaining: 13 Hours, 4 Minutes
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