Renegade Robot 00043 - Noise
(Canisians Fact File: Next to a picture of several Canisians there is a description)

Canisians are a race of humanoid canines which inhabit the distant planet of Canisia. Although little is known about them, it is believed they evolved from primitive dogs which were sent into space several hundred years ago as part of a SMERF experiment. They are believed to be more intelligent on average than humans, having mastered space travel, yet their superior brains haven’t helped them prevent an outbreak of the vicious E.B.H.S. virus. Several Canisian ships have been spotted in Earth’s atmosphere.

(scene: night time in Mother’s Forest, Al is walking through the trees carrying Cerberus in his arms, but unbeknownst to him he’s being stalked by Rory, who’s a short distance behind him, using the trees for cover and clutching his gun tightly, and Al is too concerned about Cerberus to notice)

Rory: (staring intensely at Al’s back; thinking) I have to control myself… Even though I want to tear him to shreds, I can’t underestimate him because he’s human. I have to be patient… wait for the perfect moment… and kill!

(scene: the crash site, even though it’s the middle of the night Aifa is busy taking blood samples from all the agents and testing them against her radar, at the back of the queue one of the agents is looking particularly nervous)

Agent: (turns to the agent behind him) Hey, do you want to go before me?

Agent 2: Why?

Agent: I’m just so anxious. I think I feel a panic attack coming on.

Agent 2: What’s wrong with you? As long as you kept your gasmask on during the excavation you’ve got nothing to worry about.

Agent: That’s just it… I took it off to pick my nose.

Agent 2: What!? Keep away from me then! Don’t give me your E.B.H.S.!

Agent: It was only for a second!

Agent 2: That’s all it takes! It’s the most contagious disease known to man! You’re a goner for sure as soon as Aifa finds out!

Agent: In that case I’m taking you down with me! (pulls his gasmask off, grabs the other agent’s arm and starts licking his hand)

Agent 2: (trying to pull away) Stop it! Get off! That’s so gross! Don’t infect me with your disease, jerk!

Dice: (watching them; to Aifa) The men are getting restless because of you.

Aifa: (still testing) Where’s your blood sample, Dice?

Dice: (sheepishly clears his throat) I already know I’m in the clear, thank you.

Aifa: Hmm…

(scene: Mother’s sanctuary, Tamashi is sleeping inside Peg as Rusty guards her, Fighter is guarding Vinyl besides one of Mother’s giant roots, high up amongst her branches Bolt is lying on his back on a big leaf staring up at the starry sky)

Bolt: I really messed up today. I feel so pathetic.

Mother: Everyone makes mistakes, Bolt. You’re not the first one to say or do the wrong thing in the heat of the moment. It’s the ones that show no remorse you have to watch out for. I sense a great evil passed through this forest recently…

Bolt: Hmph! Cage no doubt… (sits up) Anyway Mother, mistakes are what humans make, not robots. Well, not robots like Fighter anyway… (lies back down) What kind of leader can’t hold onto his men?

Mother: Bolt, it is impossible to make it through life without conflict and hardship, even amongst those closest to you. Every being on this planet has a different personality, and different personalities often clash, sometimes in explosive ways. Take you and Rory for example. You’re alike in so many ways, yet worlds apart in others. Like two sides of the same coin.

Bolt: I just wish I knew what to say to make people happy. Like… if I knew the words to make Tamashi forgive me, I’d say them. But every time I try I make things worse.

Mother: No one expects you to be perfect, Bolt. Words can be just noise, but as long as you’re able to communicate your feelings Tamashi will come around.

Bolt: I wish I were as optimistic as you, Mother.

Mother: Bolt, you’re trying to change the world. You may not see it, but you’ve already accomplished so much just by setting out on this journey. Today was hard, but the experience will make you value your bonds more, and that will benefit you all in the long run. Tamashi will forgive you as long as you’re sincere. I believe your friendship will help bridge the void between humans and robots.

Bolt: Thanks Mother. It really helps talking to you. You’re so wise.

Mother: No biggie.

Bolt: (sighs) You ruined it…

(scene: daybreak in Mother’s Sanctuary, Tamashi is testing the engine inside Peg when Bolt walks in with a cup of coffee)

Bolt: (cheerful) Good morning, Tamashi! (Tamashi ignores him) Humans drink coffee when they’re tired, right? So here you go! A fresh cup brewed straight from the heart of Fighter!

Tamashi: What makes you think I’m tired?

Bolt: Well you have been up since 4am working on Peg. Take a break if you want.

Tamashi: The less breaks I take, the quicker this’ll get done.

Bolt: (saddened) You’re that desperate to get away? (Tamashi sighs before holding out her hand, accepting the coffee Bolt has brought her) I was thinking, since we’re both still going to San Coppero we could drop you off. You wouldn’t have to be our mechanic anymore, but it seems stupid you walking now we have this campervan.

Tamashi: What are you talking about? I’m taking Peg. You guys can walk. What do you think I’m fixing her up for?

Bolt: (shocked) Seriously!? Uhm- I mean, of course! We robots can walk! Humans get tired, so you need transport! That seems fair! Totally! Totally cool! Hahaha! (Bolt walks away feeling awkward) S-See ya! (once he’s gone, Tamashi lets out a sad sigh and rests her head against the wheel, looking depressed)

(scene: Bolt is walking back to Mother, Fighter is with Vinyl, who’s resting by one of Mother’s giant roots)

Bolt: Tamashi still hates me. I think I’ve blown it for good this time.

Fighter: Sir, depending on how Vinyl feels we may not be heading to San Coppero straight away. We may have to escort her back to Whisper County.

Bolt: (playfully taunting Fighter) What’s this, Fight? You’d do that for Vinyl? How chivalrous of you! I have no idea you were such a gentlebot!

Fighter: I was merely anticipating what you’d want to do, Sir.

Tamashi: (walks into the clearing) I’ve finished repairing Peg. I’m going now.

Bolt: …I see.

Tamashi: Fighter, take care of yourself.

Fighter: Roger.

Tamashi: When Vinyl wakes up, tell her I hope everything works out for her. (as she turns, Rusty pops out from behind her boots)

Rusty: Ha! I won’t miss you guys one bit! I’m guna serve Miss Tamashi until I find meh Mastah’!

Tamashi: Rusty, I want you to stay with them

Rusty: WHAT!? (Bolt looks confused)

Tamashi: That’s an order.

Rusty: But… (reluctantly) As you wish… (thinking) But this is mortifying, Miss Tamashi! Don’t you need me anymore? (Tamashi starts to walk away)

Bolt: Tamashi! (she stops) I know it’s probably not worth much at this point, but I really am sorry for how things have turned out. I hate parting on bad terms like this. Even though you’re human, I want you to know that I always thought of you as an equal member of the team. Honest. (Tamashi turns to him, she’s smiling)

Tamashi: I know. I don’t hate you, Bolt. I forgive you. But I still have to go. This arrangement was only ever meant to be temporary anyway, right? (looks up at Mother) Thank you for everything, Mother.

Mother: Think nothing of it. Be safe, my daughter. (Tamashi walks away, Bolt reluctantly watches her go)

Fighter: Sir, are you really okay about this?

Bolt: My feelings don’t come into it. It’s Tamashi’s decision. I just want her to be happy. Being with a group of robots that are making themselves the enemy of all mankind would probably only cause trouble for her…

(scene: elsewhere in the forest, Al has stopped by a stream and is giving Cerberus a bath with a piece of cloth he’s ripped from his shirt, Rory is still watching him from behind a tree)

Rory: (thinking) Damn! He’s been awake all night! Isn’t he tired yet? Hurry up and go to sleep so I can kill you! Geez, he’s selfish even by human standards!

Al: Cerberus… (intrigued, Rory looks over closely) I’m sorry I can’t do anything more for you than this… (Rory is shocked to see that streams of tears and snot are running down Al’s face as he stares at his beloved dog) I don’t know what’s wrong, but you can’t die on me! Please boy! (takes out his gun and sword and holds them in front of Cerberus) Will you try and eat something? You can even eat by gun and sword! I don’t care! (Cerberus doesn’t have the strength to react; frustrated) Damn! Damn! Damn! It’s not fair! I’ve already lost Oceanna, I can’t lose you too!

Rory: Crying over a worthless mutt! (Al spins around quickly to see Rory standing behind him looking arrogant) Pathetic! Are you really the infamous Robot Hunter? You’re just another run-of-the-mill human scumbag from where I’m standing! (Al swiftly and instinctively stands and faces Rory, pointing his sword at him and standing between him and Cerberus, like a mother protecting her young, he looks drained but fearful nonetheless) That mutt looks half-dead. (points his gun at Cerberus) Would you like me to put it out of its misery for you? (Al sees red, lunges at Rory and slashes at him with his sword, the sound of clashing metal can be heard as it cuts to an exterior shot of the treetops)

Narrator: 5 minutes earlier…

(scene: Bolt is sitting with Vinyl beside Mother’s root, he’s watching her when she suddenly opens her eyes, lets out a gasp and immediately sits upright)

Bolt: (shocked) Vinyl!? (goes over to her and kneels down) Are you awake? (waves his hand in front of her face) Helloooo?

Vinyl: (spaced out) Awake…? I’ve never felt more awake…

Bolt: (confused) Uhm, okaaaay… (takes her hands, she looks at him) Look Vinyl, me and Fighter have decided. Even if we think you’re crazy for devoting your life to a human, we’ll take you back to Rotors if you still want to wait for Mr. Baxter.

Vinyl: (surprised) You would go that far… for me…?

Bolt: Of course! And it’s what you want, isn’t it? You haven’t stopped talking about Mr. Baxter. Being this far away from the café where you and him spent so much time together must be really hard on you, right? We can take you back right away.

Vinyl: Bolt, I- (Bolt quickly spins his head around at the trees with a serious look on his face; confused) Bolt? Is something wrong?

Bolt: Rory’s in trouble.

Vinyl: Huh?

Bolt: (turns back to Vinyl) I have to go. Stay here with Mother. (runs off into the trees) Promise me you’ll stay put! (Vinyl watches him go looking confused)

(scene: the clearing with Peg in it, Tamashi is sitting in the driver’s seat quietly sobbing to herself with her head rested against the steering wheel)

Fighter: (standing in the doorway) Tamashi. (startled, Tamashi looks up and sees him, quickly wiping her tears away)

Tamashi: Fighter!? You surprised me. What is it? Did Bolt send you to talk to me?

Fighter: No. While I’m still struggling to understand how he’s feeling, I do know he desperately doesn’t want you to go.

Tamashi: He said that, did he?

Fighter: No. These were his exact words. (plays a recording of Bolt’s voice)

Bolt: “My feelings don’t come into it. It’s Tamashi’s decision. I just want her to be happy. Being with a group of robots that are making themselves the enemy of all mankind would probably only cause trouble for her…” (Tamashi suddenly breaks down in floods of tears; Fighter just stands there watching her)

Tamashi: I’m the worst… I’m such a hypocrite…

Fighter: I do not compute.

Tamashi: I’m sorry, Fighter. I know you’re programmed to know how to deal with crying women. It’s just… I gave Bolt such a hard time over Cage… but I’m no better. In fact, I’m worse. (shows Rusty eavesdropped underneath Peg) What I’ve done can’t even compare…

(scene: elsewhere in the forest, Rory has fired several rounds of fire from his Elemental Gun setting several bushes and trees on fire)

Rory: Ha! Serves you right! Humans are weak to fire! (Al suddenly cuts a path through the flames with his sword and flies at Rory; shocked) What!? (he goes to cut through Rory when Bolt suddenly appears out of nowhere, gets in between them and blocks Al’s swing with his Pipespear, creating the sound of clashing metal that was heard; shocked) BOLT!?

(scene: the crash site, everyone has finished providing Aifa with blood samples, she’s sitting down staring at her radar in silence as Dice comes walking over)

Dice: The boys are getting really restless. They’re terrified they’re gonna end up burnt to a crisp like that last guy. (looks at Aifa, there’s sweat running down her face and her breathing is short, her eyes are transfixed on her radar) Aifa?

Aifa: I don’t believe it… How can this possibly be…

To Be Continued…