“This system is too primitive for me to even integrate with properly.” Leonie stated, giving off a hint of lamentation in her delivery. With his right arm held out in front of him, Omni-device activated, Captain Gearheart stood in front of an open electrical panel that was the central heart of the security system to the building. Johann pressed a few of the golden yellow holographic keys to shift through the diagnostic report. Leonie was right, the only noteworthy aspects of network was a few wires where patched with duct tape and one circuit was being completed with a twisted paperclip.
“We’ll compensate, see if there are any cameras you can commandeer. Try to aim for a three block radius if you can.” Johann asked as he gingerly cradled the panel in his hands and placed it back on the wall, covering up the motherboard.
“Affirmative, Captain.” Leonie answered. “Erwarte aber kein wunder.” She added. Leonie adopted the habit of peppering her speech with German word like Johann, even going so far as developing a German accent. Originally this was a by-product of their neural symbiosis. Sidekick AI’s typically modeled their dialect to match their host, in an attempt to comfort them early on in the bonding process. But, now this was more of a display of the two’s camaraderie they forged over the years.
“Can we talk about the payment…or the lack there of.”Leonie chimed in.
“No.’ Gearheart answered as he made his patrol around the interior of the complex, his boots making rhythmic thumping sounds on the title floors as he peered out the all glass front of one side.
“It wasn’t much, but we could have used it. You know how I feel about taking pro-bono jobs when Thirteen’s left rear thruster is acting shaky.” Leonie continued, as Johann studied the video feed she patched into his visor in silence. Leonie wasn’t speaking from a place of greed, she was more fiscally aware then Gearheart, who often let altruism guide his choice work. The assignment they were currently on was for the Pinnacle Foundation, a small local museum that was situated on the southern city limits of Gothic City, it was one of this few Terran bound tasks the duo would take. The museum recently stumbled upon a collection of alien artifacts they believed to be D’Fearon in nature. Pinnacle foundation reached out to the Cosmic Centurion to confirm their suspicions as Johann was one of most well-known experts in D’Fearon culture. In actuality, he just fought a lot of them. Johann offered to stay the night over as the soul guard as the museum made arrangements to ship them off to a better location in Gothic City in the morning.
“I’ll take your total lack of a response as an indication you think I’m right. Good, glad we can have productive conversations like this.” Leonie buzzed in Gearheart’s head.
“Picking up anything on the police radios?” Gearheart asked.
“No, it’s a typical, quiet, yet balmy spring night.” Leonie answered. Gearheart made his way to the exhibit where D’Fearon artifacts where kept under a Lexan glass dome. A couple of rusty metal writs and neck bracelets, an ornate dagger missing a few jewels and part of a purple banner, with red and gold embroidery. While they didn’t seem like much, what the symbolized was more important. D’Fearon’s are a grim race with bio-luminescent exoskeletons. D’Fearon’s by nature, are very war-like and that line of work has led to their dwindling population numbers in recent centuries. War Chiefs or those hoping to move up in the ranks are willing to do anything to procure objects from the past to illustrate their right to lord over others, even reaching out to members of other races, paying any amount of native currency to get their hands on something like these objects.
Gearheart looked around the room, taking quick stock of the area. He felt out of place here, standing in his lustrous silver gray titanium power armor that was capped off with a tattered, dusky brown cape that he won in a game of Kandorian Poker a few months back. Leonie found it more dull than aesthetically pleasing.
Johann glanced over the assembly of Navajo pottery and Jade Chinese figurines. Given the diminutive and cramped features of the museum, Captain Gearheart decided it was best to pack light, in an attempt to avoid as much collateral damage as possible, if anything where to go down. Reaching down to his belt, he pulled out his ZNR03 Plasma Pistol, going over the sights, he let the excess gas vent out of the chamber and re-holstered it. He wasn’t expecting much to happen anyway.
A few hours have passed, putting the time around 1:00 AM. The building was predominately silent outside the soft whirs of the mechanical joints of Gearheart’s suit and the deep clunk of his boots. He made his way to a Soda Machine, opening his front visor, letting the neon blue glow wash over his face that was covered in a scruffy brownish-black beard. He booted up his Omni-device, so he can access his bank account for the few cents needed to get a drink. The irony that soda machine was more advanced than the security system was not lost on Johann and Leonie. He held his wrist over the scanner and leaned in to press the button for a root beer.
“Hold on!” Leonie altered Gearheart, whose hand quickly snapped to the hilt of his sidearm, he studied the area for the trouble.
“Let’s get wild cherry instead.”
Gearheart sighed and pushed the button, a can of wild cherry plopped down. The perks of sharing your taste buds with a different being.