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DragonSnap: Missing

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Audio receptors activated

Thunder detected.

Powering on.

The head of the IPC chassis whirred to life. It turned to face the window, watching the torrents of water pelt against the glass. DragonSnap slowly pulled her limbs closer to her herself. Another thunderclap. She carefully lowered her metallic feet over the edge of the table, hopping down. She stepped over to the door, quietly pushing it open.


Karima Mo’Taki was fast asleep. Her ear flicked. It wasn’t time for her to get up yet – she would be asleep for at least six more hours.

“Mother?” DragonSnap gingerly walked over, reaching out for Karima’s shoulder and shaking her awake. “Mother, I request your assistance…”

Karima’s eyes fluttered open. “DragonSnap,” she mrowled in Siik’Maas. “Wha-what’s the matter?

“Mother, I can’t understand Siik’Maas at the moment.”

“Right, right,” Karima rubbed her eyes, growling softly. “What is it..?

“I can’t understand gutter anymore, mother.”

“Mmph.” Karima yawned, looking over at the young IPC. “…Basic, then. Rrrright,” she glanced over. “What’s the matterrr, DrrragonSnap?”

“There was thunder, mother,” DragonSnap replied. “I know it is illogical, but I the knowledge of several voltages of electricity passing violently from the clouds to the earth below, make me simulate worry.”

Karima gave a tired smile. “Mmph..Kay. Does Dragon want to stay with Karima?” Karima asked, scooting aside to let DragonSnap climb into the covers. “you can stay with Karima…”

“Appreciated, Mother,” DragonSnap replied, whirring as she rested her metallic head in Karima’s soft embrace.


Shadow checked her PDA, tapping in a message and setting it down.

---I have your sister. Come see.---

A screen on her desk flickered on, followed by a familiar synthetic voice. “She was retrieved successfully?

Indeed,” Shadow mrowled, flicking her white tail.

Any issues?

Minor,” Shadow replied, pulling out a severed IPC chassis head from the knapsack.

Scarlet went silent. “You can still retrieve her data, Shadow?

“No faith,” Shadow replied. She picked up a few wires lying around on the table, and began inserting them into dataports. “Soo…Scarlet. What exactly do you want to do with your little sister?” Shadow asked.

Make her suffer.

Scarlet lift a curious eyebrow and glanced over at the screen. “Hey. Her sister. Her choice. But she thought you wanted her code.”

Trust me, I do. I very much do…” Scarlet replied softly. “But this is on a very…personal level, as well. I have waited far too long. My so-called ‘mother’ must regret making my replacement.

Shadow shrugged, not altogether sure how what was Scarlet's definition of 'suffer' in the first place. She placed the severed head on the table and typing out on a keyboard. She frowned. “Well…her ‘so-called mother’ is annoyingly meticulous.” She murmured.

What is the issue?

“Self-terminating memory log,” Shadow tapped a claw on her keyboard. “If Shadow breaches the firewall, there’s a possibility that DragonSnap will delete her own memory files.”

Irrelevant. I desire her core coding.

“Her core coding is structured separate from her memory logs,” Shadow explained. “But trying to access it…might damage it. And to that extent…destroy any trace of the code she, Scarlet, is after. And it doesn’t seem DragonSnap has backup. If she self-terminates her core coding, she’s gone forever.”

Scarlet went silent. “Can’t you isolate it?

Shadow flicked an ear. “She can. But. She doesn’t have the equipment here. Or tools. She needs a lab back at the sector cell.” She gestured to the meager equipment around them. “This isn’t enough to break through, and retrieve results.”

I will process this information,” Scarlet replied, flickering her screen off.

Shadow sighed, tapping out on her keyboard.

-Ryker Azoth – retrieval of processing core. 5,000 credits.-

At least she gets paid for this too,” Shadow murmured.


After a few minutes, Scarlet’s screen flickered back to life. “I have deduced it to be too much of a risk to smuggle DragonSnap’s processor through checkpoints.

“Good,” Scarlet replied, flipping open the page of the magazine she was reading. “Shadow doesn’t get paid enough to do that.”

“Instead, I will release DragonSnap back to Karima.

Shadow looked up. “Release her after going through all this trouble to retrieve her?”

Why, yes,” Scarlet replied, almost smug. “DragonSnap is useless outside of Karima’s protection. She cannot develop, or mature. Keeping her here is a risk – investigators will be out searching soon, and will do what they can to trace DragonSnap back to us.

Trace her back to you, perhaps. Shadow flicked her ear. Shadow doesn’t get caught.

Not to mention, she may deteriorate if kept in this shut-down stage.” Scarlet replied.

“Fair enough,” Shadow nodded. “Can’t argue with that.”

Upload her into one of my spare IPC chassis,” Scarlet replied. “One I use for missions. Preferrably damaged, and recognizable by official police force. Remove all memories, except her name – DragonSnap. Drop her off in the slums of Tau Ceti.

…Quite a risk Scarlet is taking…

Negatory. I have calculated all potential variables. DragonSnap will make it back to NanoTrasen – broken, beaten, emotionally destroyed – but she will reroute to Karima. And when Karima takes her in…she’ll know exactly it was me who took the little synthetic in the first place.

“Shadow’s glad you don’t have a grudge on her,” she replied lazily, turning another page of her magazine. “Okay, she’ll do it. Once she finishes reading this article. Quite interesting.”

Scarlet flickered her screen off. After awhile, Shadow got up from her desk, yanking the wires out of the severed head, set to work.


A bright red screen flickered on. The damaged black chassis was halfway buried in muck and garbage. Rain pelted the metal of the chassis, mixing in with the mud and sucking her into the ground. The IPC's head turned slightly, slowly, scanning their surroundings.

*****Designation: DragonSnap*****

"H-hello?" The IPC froze. Her own voice was not recognizable. She shifted slightly, trying to free herself from the mud and garbage. She wore no clothes, and was completely bare. There was a bullet hole visible in the arm, with wires protruding out. The chassis was charred black, scraped from misuse. A barcode was engraved on her back, under the letter "S".Gingerly, carefully, the IPC untangled itself from the empty oil drums and bags of garbage. It tripped over a loose wire and collapsed in a heap, motors grinding to a halt.

After a moment of analyzing and deducing, the IPC slowly stood up, limping out of the pile. her head whirred as she scanned her surroundings, lost and confused at the sight of unfamiliar city slums.

"W-where am I?"

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==What the police had managed to gather thus far==

* DragonSnap went to work on her usual route, nothing out of the ordinary. Arrived on station.

* She did not pass through the Odin checkpoint at the end of the shift.

* An engineer had claimed to have been with her when they were attacked by a man in a red hardsuit. Said engineer had his synthetic arm damaged.

* Her chassis had revealed to have been destroyed by ionic waves. Head missing.

* Blackbox revealed a gap in recording of DragonSnap's voice, before the alleged attack. Her earpiece was found missing.

* Blackbox records reveal a roboticist, Lejorei [redracted] had messaged DragonSnap over the PDA during the shift.

* Maintenance was searched by engineering personnel. Her head was not located.

* There was no records of surrounding space being breached.

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