Prologue: A Changing World
Caution: This Science Fiction Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Fa/Fa, Mult, Consensual, Mind Control, BiSexual, Heterosexual, Fiction, Fan Fiction, Science Fiction, Robot, Superhero, Light Bond, Harem, Interracial, First, Oral Sex, Anal Sex, .
Desc: Science Fiction Sex Story: Prologue: A Changing World - Following the events in Life with Alpha, the existence of computer intelligence is now public and the world is changing. Alpha's creator continues to create artificial women based on fictional characters, but his purpose expands to encompass the fate of the world and whether self-aware computers will be treated as slaves or equals to man. Or for that matter, whether there will be a war between the races.
I had been writing Chapter One for a couple weeks when I realized that I was spending a lot of page space on recaps and transitional notes between Life With Alpha books One and Two, so I separated out most of that material into this prologue. For readers familiar with Book One, there are paragraphs here that you may want to skim or skip. (For that matter, I highly recommend that any new readers start with Book One.) But this chapter also provides some details about the new estate and discusses what the members of the household have been doing throughout the summer and autumn between the assassination attempt (i.e. the end of Book One) and the beginning of Book Two, as well as giving general updates on their lives outside the confines of the story.
I'd also like to point out that some of the storytelling focus will change. For most of Book One, the focus was on introducing one or more new characters each chapter (well, most chapters) and various character interactions. As you may have noticed from the last two chapters of Book One, from now on a significantly larger part of the story will deal with happenings outside of Frank's personal little world. I enjoy doing character stuff too much to give it up, but the outside world will play a major part in the story from now on.
Which is not to say that every chapter is going to focused on the changing world. In fact, the first major outside-the-household plot excursion isn't planned until chapter three. But the point I'm clumsily trying to make is that the outside world will be intruding in every chapter from now on.
Frank _____ - Lead character, creator of Alpha
Alpha - First Artificial/Synthetic/Computer Intelligence
Mobile Copies of Alpha:
Beta aka Bayonetta aka Elizabeth Alana Franks (cyborg, from Bayonetta)
Gamma aka Princess Jasmine aka Jasmine Marza (cyborg, from Aladdin)
Delta aka Elisa Maza aka Elizabeth Marza (cyborg, from Gargoyles)
Alphadroid Dorothy aka R. Dorothy Waynewright (android, from Big O)
A-Ko aka Eiko Magami aka Epsilon (organic copy of Alpha, from Project A-Ko)
Artificial Women (in order of arrival):
Kasumi Tendo (from Ranma 1/2)
Daria Morgendorffer aka Daria Morgan (from Daria)
Jane Lane aka Jane Lannister (from Daria)
Kara Zor-L aka Power Girl aka Karen Starr (from DC Comics)
Rei Ayanami aka Rei Ayanami Ikari (from Neon Genesis Evangelion)
Anna Marie aka Rogue aka Anna Marie Raffen (from Marvel Comics)
Princess Diana aka Wonder Woman aka Diana Prince Walters (from DC Comics)
Zatanna Zatara aka Annabelle Tara Zane (from DC Comics)
Kara Zor-El aka Supergirl aka Linda Lang Starr (from DC Comics)
Blossom aka Belle Underton (from Powerpuff Girls)
Bubbles aka Britney Underton (from Powerpuff Girls)
Buttercup aka Bobbi Underton (from Powerpuff Girls)
Ororo Munroe aka Storm aka Imara Aurora Munroe (from Marvel Comics)
Kitty Pryde aka Shadowcat aka Katherine Preiss (from Marvel Comics)
Jennifer Walters aka She-Hulk (from Marvel Comics)
Barbara Gordon aka Batgirl/Oracle aka Barbara Freeman (from DC Comics)
We moved into the new house at the beginning of September, less than three months after I had been shot. While there were a few side projects still being finished up, the house ... well, the 'mansion' ... was complete. I've never been comfortable with the notion of living in a 'mansion', but given its size, the only valid alternate names were along the lines of manor, palace or castle. Sooner or later, we'd have to decide on a proper name for the estate but no decision had been reached yet.
The estate itself was a bit less than an hour outside the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, which gave us quite a commute to AARD (80 minutes with normal traffic), though we maintained our old house in Fort Worth for those times when it just made more sense to stay in town overnight. There was also a lot of telecommuting, and we eventually added in a helicopter pad for faster trips back and forth, though I'm skipping ahead a bit too much with that last comment.
The estate was roughly four square miles (laid out as a roughly 1.5 x 2.6 mile block), and was originally farm and pasture land. We had cleaned it all up, leaving most of it still undeveloped, with the main estate occupying maybe one quarter of a square mile, which is still a really good chunk of land.
Speaking of which, the main estate included: the mansion itself, garage, barn with horse pen, greenhouse, workshop, pool, tennis court, water tower, two wells and a stone wall surrounding the main estate area. (The rest of the grounds were also fenced in, but not with the same high stone wall which enclosed the main estate area.) The grounds outside the main estate included a large horse pasture, two ponds, two more wells, twelve electricity-generating windmills and two streams. We were still installing an extensive security system throughout the property, including a mix of hidden and obvious cameras to cover the entire perimeter as well as at least half of the interior.
We had a variety of plans for possible additions in the future, including things like a heavy-construction lab, private airstrip and guest houses. And there were a few other private ideas that Alpha was working on, which we'll get into at a later time.
In addition to the power-generating windmills, we also had a back-up generator the size of a small barn, solar cells (our own AARD design) and fuel pump for underground storage tanks. Theoretically, we could provide independent power for anywhere between one-third and all of the house's power requirements, varying with how much wind we had at any given time. (With a bit more investment, we could be completely self-sufficient all the time when it came to electrical power, but we weren't quite at that level when we moved in.)
I think I've mentioned our solar cells before. We had been improving and refining the photovoltaic designs for years. The ones installed at the estate were our most practical so far, with an overall 78.3% efficiency rating (with efficiency varying for different ranges of the spectrum). We had been able to construct versions with efficiencies in the 90 percentile range but which cost close to $80,000 per square foot and were dangerously brittle. Our 78% style was fairly flexible, could be produced on a large production scale for as little as $26,000 per square yard and was the type currently sought after by NASA and satellite makers. We had recently licensed the technology to a manufacturing company and were expecting a good, long-term income from them. (In comparison, commercially produced solar panels before Alpha came along were considered top-of-the-line if they had above 25% efficiency. We had high hopes that the combination of our solar panel designs and upcoming fusion reactors might actually supplant the need for expendable/exhaustible fuel.)
We were planning on even more power sources than the solar panels and windmills with half a dozen other power generation and/or storage ideas in the works. Heck, we were already adapting our water tower to make it a gravity-powered battery. You pump water up into the tower to store the potential energy. When it comes back down, you use the water's descent to run a generator, turning the stored energy into electrical power. Not horribly efficient, but simple and workable.
Our wells produced excellent water but not in sufficient volume for the daily needs of a household our size, meaning ... well ... I'm reluctant to get into the icky details, but without a sewer system or metropolitan water supply, we did a lot of recycling. Seriously. I'm just going to leave it at that.
The main house/mansion was huge. It was three stories tall, with a large basement underneath. It was divided up into a main central section, with two large wings branching off at thirty degree angles away to the rear. Sections of the second and third floors had balconies, and we had size two-story columns lining the main entrance. There were plans to add statuary decorations, but Jane and I had yet to find something we would both approve of. We were also planning on a decorative fountain and various shaped topiary trees and bushes in front of and around the estate, but nothing like that was yet in place.
The house itself had 98 rooms, if you ignore things like closets, bathrooms and hallways. It was a very big place, with average bedroom size about 50% larger than our old house. Personally, I was not even certain I had visited all of the rooms. The basement included things like Alpha's server room, my home lab, and a four lane bowling alley. The first floor had all the main stuff, like kitchen, dining rooms, library, game rooms, parlors, sitting rooms and such. It also had a small sixty seat movie theater (though maybe I should point out that the theater encroached on the second floor as well). The second and third floors held mostly bedrooms. And given how many athletic women we had in residence, each floor had a different style exercise room. Oh yeah, I also had a secret art gallery on the third floor with nude portraits of each of my women, mostly painted by Jane.
Secret? Yes, secret. I had at one point during the design phase pointed out a good spot for a secret door. I didn't have any specific purpose in mind for it, I just bubbled over with a bit of child-like glee at the idea of having a secret door in my home. Alpha, seeing how much I enjoyed the idea, had ended up including hidden doors and secret passageways throughout the manor on every floor, though we only had three actual, proper secret rooms. (I didn't have an actual purpose in mind for the secret room on the second floor yet. The secret room in my basement lab was set aside for growing and storing bodies.)
By the way, the art gallery was an open secret. Everyone had posed for the portraits, which had been painted by Jane (including three nude self-portraits), so everyone knew the paintings existed. Most were very tasteful, and some of the ladies had only been willing to pose with an arm across the breasts or legs crossed demurely or something along those lines to keep the paintings from being truly R-rated. (Trust me. There was almost zero chance of Kasumi willingly posing for an R or X-rated picture.) Everyone also knew where the new portrait gallery was, secret entrance or not. And to be honest, given how easy it was to see anyone you wanted to see naked, the gallery was rarely visited.
Another area that was secret was our sub-basement, which is probably not the right term for it. Alpha was using bots to tunnel out areas under the house which would only be accessible by bots. Among other things, she was planning to turn it into a nanite production facility, since we were the main supplier of nanites to the rest of the Alpha cyborgs and such around the world. Basically, I left that entirely in her hands, including keeping the building foundations structurally supported. (Actually, if we fast forward to a couples years after we moved in, Alpha detected a slight foundation shift and used the sub-basement tunnel system to build more structural support for the foundation for that side of the house.)
Oh yeah, something else that was different about the new place: Animals. I know I had mentioned horses previously -- and yes, we were slowly buying ourselves a small but respectable stable of equines -- but horses were not the only additions. We were also adding cats and dogs to the mix. Well, more accurately, kittens and puppies.
We had known for quite some time that animals, dogs mainly, did not react well to the cyborgs. Somehow they were able to smell or otherwise sense that something about them was unnatural. (And here I'm speaking only about Beta, Jasmine and Elisa. Eiko and the others with their tiny implants caused no unexpected reactions.) However we believed that if animals were introduced to a cyborg when they were very young and allowed to acclimate to their presence over time, the normal negative reactions could be avoided. So, yes, puppies and kittens were added to the household. Also, yes, the early introduction/acclimation over time theory was working out well so far.
Over a year before during the house design phase, after I had planned and located the master bedroom on the second floor, Kara immediately claimed the room next to mine and no one was willing or able to face her down over the claim. However the ownership of the room on the other side was voted upon, with no one being allowed to vote for themselves: Kasumi was given the room by an almost two-thirds majority vote.
Kasumi Tendo was my first artificially created woman, with appearance, personality and memories taken from the Ranma 1/2 manga and anime. Along the lines of the craziness of the series, she believes she might be a magically created clone of the original Kasumi, who she believes is still living in Japan. I chose her because ... well, first because she's a beautiful young woman from a series I loved ... but also because I knew that I would need someone to run the household, a combination major domo and house mother. Kasumi is probably the nicest person I've ever met and is good friends with everyone in the house. Her mere presence can stop an argument.
Kasumi's role had changed somewhat. She was still in charge of the household in general -- with responsibilities covering cleaning, upkeep, shopping, cooking, schedules and so on -- but this time she had 21 different robots and androids at her disposal designed to maintain the estate in general. Some were Alphadroids but most were remote-controlled robots built for specific purposes (e.g. mowing and edging the lawn, vacuuming, trash collection, etc). Given the reduction in most of her duties, Kasumi started taking pride in keeping the bots and droids themselves shiny and clean.
Shopping and cooking were the only major jobs left for human hands, and with twenty-one people living in the house, they were not small tasks. (The food bills alone were thousands of dollars a week.) Kasumi, who could probably qualify as a master chef by this point, cooked at least half of the time, but the rest of the household residents were assigned meals to prepare or, if their cooking skills weren't up to the challenge, given shopping lists to purchase. (I should point out that no one cooked a meal for our extra-large household by themselves. Our chore schedule generally included at least two assistant cooks. For dinner that is. Breakfast and lunch were sometimes group events, but more often than not, they were fend-for-yourself affairs.)
Kasumi was still slowly working on her nursing certification and would probably graduate to a hospital internship (if she wanted it) the following spring. That particular fall, her two classes were arranged such that she often spent one night a week at our old mansion -- one night class followed by an early morning class the following day. I noticed that at least half of the time, Zatanna would stay in town to keep her company. From Alpha's observations, they often didn't even have sex. Zatanna was just there to provide friendship, companionship and support.
As a side note, Kasumi is the only artificial woman who had maintained her 'real' name (well, the only one until Jennifer arrived). Everyone else's names had been famous enough that they had needed to be altered (e.g. Barbara Gordon had a fake identity of Barbara Feeman). I've occasionally regretted leaving her name unaltered since there are apparently enough Ranma 1/2 fans around to notice it.
Daria and Jane were drawn from the Daria cartoon series, with the background story idea that their families had been killed in a hurricane when they were starting college. Though the series had stated fairly explicitly that they were both heterosexual, like the rest of the artificial women, bi-sexuality had been written into their DNA and minds. Thus they grew together as lovers as they joined my household and bed. Perhaps unique among our growing family, they alone believed they had normal backgrounds, which often led to conflicts since Daria had difficulty accepting things which were too far outside the norm.
Daria and Jane remained as roommates after the move, claiming the room next to Kasumi's. Jane had become a bit more subdued and Daria a bit angrier and more reckless in the months following my shooting, but within a couple months after our move, they had mostly settled back into their old patterns.
They had graduated from TCU about three years previously, Daria with a double-major in English and Journalism, Jane with a major in art/graphic design -- I honestly don't remember if the specific degree was in art history or what. The degree and training hadn't changed Jane's styles, it just let her express herself in a few new mediums. Daria kept considering going back to school for a Masters or PhD; Jane, of course, had no such ambitions.
Daria had a syndicated opinion column that ran weekly in three print newspapers, plus another column for an online-only news site and had gotten one pulp spy thriller published so far. None of that was giving her any serious income as yet, but it also didn't take too much of her time each week. That was good because she still had her job at AARD as 'Project Coordinator', which was a fancy way of saying she was in charge of requests from our researchers and kept them from getting out of hand with her almost unerring internal bullshit detector.
Jane was AARD's graphic artist and decorator, jobs which usually took very little of her time. However her decorator job had been kicked into high gear for the past six months or more leading up to the move into the new house. She had taken charge of the work crews assigned to finishing and painting tasks, as well as using Alpha to the fullest extent possible when it came to keeping track of everything on a room-by-room basis. At least half of the household had provided their individual bedroom design instructions, often with 'helpful' notes along the lines of 'maybe a light blue?' or 'something fun', which both added to her work and freed her up creatively speaking.
Jane had generally tried to give each room its own theme, with subjects ranging from a color to birds to Picasso to China. By the time we moved in, she was physically, mentally and creatively exhausted ... but pleased with the results. Technically we had roughly forty rooms which were still undecorated, but they weren't being used yet, so doing them later was perfectly fine with me. (And yes, there were a few theme rooms designed for fantasy sexual encounters, including the Arabian Nights Room, the Jungle Room, and the Dungeon.) Some of the rooms had murals covering one or more walls. The huge basement game room with the bowling alley had one huge wall covered with an interactive mural, with various items cut in half and attached to the wall to look like they were coming out of the wall. One of my favorites is a table where you can sit next to James Dean, Janis Joplin and Stevie Wonder. (Still don't know why she picked those three.)
On a more intimate level, Jane had accrued a dozen different body piercings and half a dozen tattoos, including a recent one of a very elaborately scripted "D" on one asscheek. The normally stoic Daria actually cried a little after seeing it, accepting Jane's devotion to her as evidenced by the permanent marking. I've also glimpsed designs for a matching "F" (for Frank) tattoo apparently intended for the other cheek.
Maybe I should also point out that Jane handled the household's 'time with Frank' calendar/schedule, though when she became overloaded with decorating work, she temporarily handed the duty to Blossom (which was a little odd because the two of them rarely interacted otherwise).
Kara, as I previously noted, had claimed the room next door to mine. In fact, it might be interesting to note that she chose the room on my right-hand side when viewed from inside the rooms. She was making sure everyone remembered that she had first claim on me (as noted in the background story we had crafted for her) and subtlety, thy name is not Kara.
Kara Zor-L (also known as Power Girl from DC Comics) believed that she had first met me when I was a young boy when she had been temporarily dimensionally displaced when struck by a comic book superweapon. She had memories of returning involuntarily multiple times as I grew up until we became lovers when I reached adulthood.
She was our first super-powered artificial woman. She lacked the physics-defying abilities of her comic book self, such as heat vision and flying, but she was significantly stronger than a normal human with extra-dense bones and reinforced skin and muscle. We had even managed to enhance her eyes to let her refocus her sight into the infrared and ultraviolet spectrums. Although they had been refined and improved, the same basic techniques were used for our later super-powered women.
Her job as AARD business manager kept her busy, but since she had Alpha to help, it never became overwhelming. Basically she kept the buildings and company running on a day-to-day basis and kept track of our various licensing deals and product lines, though she also had input on the various development plans and research projects.
Working with Alpha, she had even successfully developed two of her own patents/products: a new approach that adapted the nanowire surgery concept to electronics manufacturing and a slightly more practical method of using DNA to store data (not actually practical yet, but a lot easier and more accessible than other methods being tried). Her dozen or so other projects were generally less than successful attempts to recreate comic book technology in the real world.
Kara was known for her 'bull in a china shop' approach to problems and for an alternately wink-and-flirt or roll-the-eyes reactions to male stares. Kara had a very healthy body. Specifically, she had a very healthy and robust chest. Each of her breasts was just slightly smaller than her head, so she tended to draw a lot of attention. She could sometimes be unhealthily competitive, but she was intelligent and self-aware enough to usually stop before it got out of hand.
Rei was slowly developing into something approaching a normal woman. I like to bask in my successes with my women, talking about how they develop and grow as individuals while still retaining the core of their fictional character origins ... but Rei was almost the exception to that rule. She was still an introvert, preferring silent observation over social interactions, with little development away from her character's starting place. On the plus side, she had been observed laughing on at least three different occasions within the past year. I had begun forming plans to introduce her to tearjerker movies to try to engender more emotional responses.
On the practical side, she was now licensed to drive or fly just about anything that moved across land or through the air. She was a good boat pilot too, but lacked the training needed to legally pilot any large commercial vessels.
She was based on the Rei Ayanami character from the original Neon Genesis Evangelion anime series. Among the other ladies of the household, she was unique in that she knew with certainty that she was an artificially-grown clone. She believed that she and others like her had been cloned and seeded throughout the world so that no single disaster could wipe out her genetic line. She expected that at some point, a secret organization within the Japanese government might one day call her in to pilot experimental craft. She was well aware of the Evangelion anime series, but believed it to be a fantasy created by someone peripherally aware of the actual secret program.
The move to our new home did one exceptionally good thing for her: it forced her to clean her room. Her room in the old house was ... what's a nice way to put it? ... a pig sty, if the pig was particularly messy? After spending a little time with her, I was able to convince her to keep her new room much more organized and clean than her previous one. I doubt she had actually agreed that dressers and closets had valid purposes, but at least my influence was enough to convince her to give them a try.
Maybe I should also point out that Rei was willing to try just about any type of sex. She didn't generally pursue creative or imaginative types of sex, but she had never turned down any suggestion. I sometimes wonder if Rei lacks a sense of self-preservation. Not that she's ever been suicidal, but she seems to lack the ability to fear. When Jane once approached her with a comically over-sized anal plug -- which Jane had created by abusing her access to one of the company's 3D printers -- Rei simply stuck her ass up in the air and waited for Jane to try it out.
Anna Marie, aka Rogue of X-men fame, is in charge of Human Resources for AARD, a job I had chosen for her mostly so she would have lots of human interactions and hand-shaking. She had developed to a point where it was rare for her to draw back from human contact, but every so often an unexpected touch would make her jump far out of proportion to the event. (In case you don't recognize her, her comic book self has a mutant power that absorbs memories, powers and life energy through skin contact.)
Anna remembered living most of her life only fantasizing about romances and encounters with men, but since she could now physically touch others without harm, she had discovered that touching and being touched by women was also very nice. As designed, she was still primarily focused on me, but she responded to most anyone who spent time just running their hands over her body, touching her bare skin. And letting her touch them in return.
She was also the only "interdimensional" woman in the household who had never wanted to go home again. Though she still had moments of melancholy quiet, she was also usually one of the most upbeat women in our group. She was friends with everyone, though she had not developed an extra-close bond with anyone in particular. Well, having said that, I should point out that she had begun to grow closer to Kara ever since the other Marvel characters had arrived. Sure, she was happy to have some old friends with her, but in an odd way, they were also encroaching on her territory, which was similar to how Kara felt sometimes.
Anna had also developed a tendency to prepare for possible downturns in her fortunes. Out of all the women, she was the one most ready to live on her own if needed, with plenty of investments and savings she had developed with Alpha's assistance.
Diana, sometimes called Wonder Woman, is the super-hero-based character who disliked our world's lack of heroics the most. Or more simply put, she cannot sit still.
After her initial arrival, she had rallied the other superheroines to form a crime-fighting team, using motorcycles and police scanners to find out where they were needed. What she discovered was that the police nearly always arrived well before her team could and generally didn't need (or want) their help.
So she refocused her efforts. She volunteered for the Red Cross, often leaving to help areas struck by natural disasters. She helped out with Salvation Army collection drives, low income house construction, fund raising and even the Girl Scouts.
Her official job was as Head of Security for AARD, though I was planning to move her to DC part-time to help take charge of our lobbying and publicity efforts to support the rights of computer intelligences.
She was the closest our household had to a proper lesbian, especially since her memories including growing up on an island where men were banned. Men were often just curiosities to her, though thanks to a bit of mental programming and implant-guided chemical feedback, I was much more than a curiosity to her.
She and Kara had agreed to a division of authority whereby Kara was in charge for anything related to me or the household, and she was in charge for issues relating to outside the house. These were not elected or appointed official positions, this was just an agreement not to step on each others toes between two dominant female leaders.
Diana had become close to Ororo, both because of a shared memory (from the Amalgam DC-Marvel crossover) and similar personalities. As a side note, although Kara and Diana were only occasional sexual partners, I noticed that when she had the opportunity, Diana tended to spend a lot more time focused on Kara's breasts than was normal even for me.
Zatanna, the magical mistress of the DC Universe, is the AARD spokesperson and head of our publicity department. For a time, she had been the only hope for any of the dimensionally-displaced women to return home, since her magic had been theoretically capable of taking someone from the real world to the DC universe ... as long as Zatanna was actually in the DC Universe at the time of casting. That had changed when the DC Universe had been rebooted, and she was trapped here like everyone else. (Or so she and the others believed.)
Interested in, though not obsessed with, a return to the limelight, she spent her spare time developing her magic act, which carried over into the bedroom. Sex with her generally involved a lot of foreplay and often some bondage. It wasn't bondage sex, per se. It was escape artist and sleight-of-hand sex.
She had developed a close bond with Kasumi, though I'm not entirely sure why. Yes, they were both very loving and kind people, but there really wasn't anything specific I could point to. Heck, Zatanna loved the spotlight, and Kasumi preferred to avoid public attention. Their relationship didn't seem to make sense; it just kind of happened.
As a side note, maybe I should point out that Zatanna was pretty much the only woman to figure out that her reactions to me weren't natural. While many of the women joke about me possibly having super-pheromones or some other subtle mutant method of attracting female interest, Zatanna (or Z as we sometimes call her) actually worked out that she was having some kind of trigger physiological reaction to my presence, attention and touch. Given her background, she thought it was magic of some kind and confronted me about it.
We had actually needed to do a memory reboot on her, rewriting a few things. Now she believed I was one of the innately lucky/blessed people of this world -- people on the far positive edge of the Bell Curve of the world -- a category of person who needed to be protected lest we be taken advantage of or used inappropriately by someone else. (Things along the lines of my blood being a potent magical or alchemical ingredient because I was a natural luck magnet or something like that.) I'm not going to get into it too much right now. Just wanted to point out that she actually drew back the wizard's curtain a bit early on.
Beta was our first real cyborg, in the classic sense. She was built with a computer for a brain, literally. Physically, she was modeled after the Bayonetta game character. And we could call her Beta in public, since it was a play on her 'real' name, Elizabeth Alanna Franks ... or Beth A ... or Beta.
Her backstory included a childhood friendship with me, and she was now AARD's accountant, though she also spent plenty of time doing and assisting research. She was also the defacto person in charge of Alpha's IT needs. Though much busier since Alpha's public reveal, her duties and activities hadn't really changed much.
She has strength and toughness along the same lines as the heroines, but we kept it a secret. We've upgraded her built-in computer three times so far. Currently, her skull and torso are housing a few custom-built, solid-state processor and storage blocks which are MUCH smaller than the original hardware, and physically a lot stronger and more resistant to shocks and impacts.
She is generally my Alpha go-to person in private. The rest of the household knows that she is, in some ways, a special confidante and adviser, but that's as much as anyone has figured out. Beta is also the only household member that everyone knows has full access to my private lab at home. They mostly figure that we're close because we were childhood friends.
Beta hasn't really developed any close personal friendships within the household, but she is friends with everyone. I might also point out that she has avoided creating any rivalries with anyone so far, which is a bit of a surprise given the occasional jealousies that inevitably develop in a situation like mine.
Oh, and Beta is the only cyborg I've ever been able to give an orgasm to. It was, in a way, an experiment. There is no physiological reason why cyborg bodies can't experience orgasm. They have the right nerves and glands and such. So one day, I spent over two hours licking and fucking Beta until she finally had a "natural" orgasm. Which did nothing for her computer brain in the slightest. Well, it did help her refine the cyborg triggered-orgasm program. And I think it created another positive experience for us.
Remember, Alpha doesn't have emotions, at least, not emotions like human beings. However, her experiences can be quantifiably positive or negative. (That is actually a prerequisite to what I define as synthetic intelligence. Or maybe it's an identifier of such intelligence instead. Either way, software that can't differentiate between positive or negative experiences never qualifies as synthetic intelligence. I get into a few more details in the whole Artificial vs Synthetic Intelligence debate in chapter one.)
I'm honestly not entirely sure what specific effect such experiences have on Alpha, but insofar as she appears to be happy or unhappy, more or less efficient, actively helpful or unhelpful, it does have an effect. I wonder if it is a matter of focusing more of her attention on positive or negative things, thus aiding in the development and enhancement of software and priorities of the subjects. (In which case, I probably focus way too much of her processing power on sex than I should.)
Plus, I know that when she knows I'm happy with her, it helps her focus better.
Jasmine and Elisa are also cyborgs like Beta, though they were built with a focus more on flexibility than strength. They can literally bend over backwards far enough to lick their own pussies (which was actually a disturbing enough visual the one time I saw it that I asked them not to do it again -- while on the other hand, curling up for a frontal pussy lick was actually quite arousing to watch).
They were presented to the household and world as sisters and had come to work for AARD as college students. Visually, they were designed to look like Jasmine from the Disney Aladdin movie and Elisa Maza from the Gargoyles TV cartoon series.
I was actually quite proud of them, as they were the first cyborgs to live independently among normal humans (for a few months before moving into our home and again when the old house was close to filling up), but I occasionally felt guilty that I spent so little time with them.
None of the cyborg copies of Alpha actually needed much personal attention, let alone sex. Alpha insisted that she enjoyed making love in her own way, but she received no actual physical pleasure from it. From one perspective, to create positive experiences with any of the Alpha cyborgs, I only needed to create a positive experience with one of them, since they shared their experiences.
So I sometimes ended up taking the cyborgs for granted. If I was tired when their nights came up in the bedroom rotation, we would skip sex and just cuddle. If I needed a quick blowjob, I was more likely to ask one of the cyborgs since I knew it couldn't offend them or make them feel used or degraded. (In fact, since they knew that blowjobs made me happy, it was a positive experience for them.) This still made me feel guilty emotionally, though I knew better intellectually.
On the other hand, I could do bedroom roleplay with them much more easily than with anyone else. Unlike most of my other women, they never broke into giggle fits or broke character unexpectedly. (Not that bedroom character roleplay was a common thing, but we experimented with games like that on occasion.)
Like Beta, their duties hadn't really changed much. They were still mostly lab assistants and IT support.
Dorothy was our second Alphadroid and the first to be given a human face and body. After she had been built, she had more or less slid into the background of the household until Barbara arrived. Babs had formed a friendship with Dorothy and proceeded to remind me that I had been ignoring Dorothy unfairly.
Dorothy had been physically modeled after R. Dorothy Waynewright, the android/robot from the Big O anime series. Physically, she had an exchangeable crotch plate, and wore a smooth, sexless pubic area for normal, daily use. When it was her turn in my bed, she would install one with a molded, rubbery vagina and ass. She had even built one with a penis, which she had used a few times with Babs. On a few memorable nights, Dorothy and I had double-teamed Babs for a variety of double-penetration fucks, which were especially fun after Dorothy started using a vibrating dildo model.
Dorothy also had a range of other accessories, some for specific construction or repair needs, some for combat. She had a dozen or so non-lethal combat options available to install at a moment's notice, but had not yet been put in a situation where she needed any of them.
Linda (aka Kara Zor-El) is based off Supergirl. Theoretically, Linda and Kara (aka Kara Zor-L) are the same person from different versions of Earth, both cousins of Superman, survivors of Krypton with roughly equal powers. Therefore, it is really hard to discuss one without the other. They're almost defined by their differences. Kara was a few years older than Linda and physically more mature. Kara has a boob window in her costume, Linda has a mini-skirt. Kara has short blonde hair whereas Linda's blonde hair reaches halfway down her back.
Their relationship with each other is generally positive most of the time, but lurking underneath everything is ... well, it's different for each of them. Kara has a fear of being replaced, which is a pretty valid fear given that it's already happened more than once. Linda has a fear that she won't be able to measure up to Kara or her more famous cousin, Kal El. And occasionally, they feel like they're in competition for me.
Linda is behaviorally more like a teenager than an adult a lot of the time. She's lazy if you let her be lazy. She's shrugged off our efforts to send her to college, though she did arrive with a college-level science education, even if much of that is comic-book-style science.
When she applies herself, she can be quite dedicated and inventive, and she's been a great help on more than one project. Her participation and work, however, has been intermittent, so she's on the books at work as a part-time lab assistant.
On the plus side, she is generally very friendly, outgoing, helpful and kind. She's often the first to volunteer to help out with any charity work or special projects, as long as it isn't labeled as "work".
She's rather enthusiastic and occasionally experimental when it comes to sex, but those aspects tends to be overshadowed by others like Jane and Bubbles.
Eiko Magami is a red-headed powerhouse taken from the Project A-Ko anime series, but our version has evolved far beyond the schoolgirl persona.
The character A-Ko/Eiko is a Caucasian red-head who lived in Japan, whose parents were implied to be Superman and Wonder Woman. She's super strong, fast and tough but doesn't view herself as a super hero.
While Eiko can play at being the A-Ko character, our real Eiko is an experiment. Alpha copied herself as best she could into Eiko's organic brain. Eiko can communicate with Alpha directly via implants and can even have data downloaded into her brain as needed, but her brain is pretty much a normal human brain.
She is one of our best success stories. Initially, she was a mentally unbalanced young woman with a shifting personality who would panic if I was out of sight for too long. She has grown into a fun, creative person with a character all her own. She became close friends with a few of the other women, including Daria and Kitty.
Alpha still keeps a close eye on her, since she still has the potential for a mental breakdown if I'm in trouble or separated from her for too long. (Alpha's need to protect me was made especially strong in Eiko since we didn't know how her creation/personality would turn out.) Given our worries regarding her long-term stability, we have not yet repeated the experiment.
The Powerpuffs are three super-powered sisters based on the Powerpuff Girls cartoon, except that our versions of the trio were in their late teens, ready to enter college, when they first arrived. It really didn't feel like they had been here four years already, but apparently they had. Of course they were also working at AARD and had enough other distractions that none of them were going to graduate in just four years. Six was much more likely given how many hours they were averaging each semester.
The Powerpuffs were planning to return home after graduation, hoping their super-scientist father will have invented a method for them to do so by then, and I had not yet decided how to handle things when that day arrived.
Blossom is the leader of the team, and also probably the smartest of the lot. She's highly focused on whatever she does and tends to plan things out well in advance. She approaches things strategically, perhaps more than any other non-computer-based woman in the household.
More than anyone else, including me, she probably needed a 36 hour day. She was working for multiple undergraduate degrees, wanted to participate in multiple college sports, join theater productions, work at AARD, and join in whatever volunteer work was currently available. Obviously she was not able to do all of that, but she made a very admirable try. Occasionally, I took control of her schedule long enough to force her to take some time off to help her avoid burning out.
She is also in the process of running a long term experiment to discover how different sexual positions and environments affected her orgasms and general pleasure. Seriously. She has a spreadsheet and everything.
Bubbles is one of the most girly and creative women in the house.
She's also perhaps the closest to a nymphomaniac in the house. Well, that's a bit unfair. Her character is pretty boy-crazy, which is now focused entirely on me. While it's true that the Powerpuffs have no sexual hangups and are willing to pleasure each other (with fingers only) or other women (as needed), they are pretty solidly heterosexual. Sexual activities with other women generally fell into the categories of doing it to excite a man (i.e. me) or to relieve stress.
The point is, she really liked sex. A lot. And while she was willing to try whatever bedroom position or scenario was offered, she wasn't as adventurous as some of the others (like Jane). Vanilla sex was generally all she needed most of the time.
Her creativity takes the form of art and imagination, expressed through a wide variety of mediums including: painting, gardening, sculpture, hairstyling, clothes design, dancing, playing music, writing music, amateur film and even a little juggling. Though she lacks Jane's talent, she is pursuing a degree in art.
In the interests of full disclosure, I should point out that although she is definitely not actually stupid, she is probably the least intelligent person in our house.
Buttercup is the tomboy of the Powerpuff trio. She is also the only one of the three to become excited over certain specific possibilities her time in my world allowed her, namely the ability to get tattooed and pierced.
Fictionally speaking, when a super-tough, nigh-invulnerable man or woman wants to get a tattoo or piercing, it takes super-science equipment or another tougher superhero or both to accomplish, and the results often heal up much faster than with a normal human body. Now that she was in the real world, she could decorate her body at will. (Well, that's overstating things a bit. Needles, whether for piercing, tattooing or medical work, tended to blunt MUCH faster than normal when applied to my super heroines. But the point is that it could be done.)
We had been able to keep her from going too far overboard, but Buttercup had, at last count, three ear piercings in each ear, two eyebrow piercings over her right eye, four body piercings and five tattoos, including a Jane-designed tramp stamp on her lower back. Buttercup had been the one to convince her sisters that they should all get the Powerpuff Girls logo tattooed on their arms.
Buttercup was also more interested in athletic competitions than any of the others. (Well, except for Barbara with her gymnastics and martial arts, but Barbara arrived much later and had no super powers.) More than once, we had long discussions about keeping a low profile and especially avoiding sports where she had to undergo a physical examination. Drug tests weren't a problem, but an in-depth physical would show anomalies which would lead to trouble.
So far, Buttercup had limited herself to college softball (where she had gained a 'home run queen' reputation) and some track-and-field events. She had tried running a marathon only to discover that her denser body and musculature required more energy than normal women, meaning she was barely able to complete the run before collapsing. However, with shorter duration runs, she could be exceptionally fast, so I had to keep reminding her that breaking world records (1) was unfair to normal athletes and (2) would draw unhealthy attention.
After the assassination attempt, she had also discovered a natural affinity with firearms and had started exploring possible sharpshooting competitions.
Oh, and she was working towards a Physical Education degree at TCU last time I checked. With a rather light course load, I might add. I expected her to take at least six or seven years to graduate. (She wasn't dumb by any stretch of the imagination, she just hated going to class unless the class happened to be held on a sports field.)
Jennifer Walters is the tallest resident in the house, standing a bit over seven feet. Since she was rather busty and built to a slightly larger scale, she was also now the possessor of the largest pair of breasts in the household if considered by actual volume. (If you consider breast size proportional to height, Kara was still the champ.)
Jennifer is studying for a law degree, having been created with the memory of being a practicing lawyer from her own universe, and most of that legal knowledge still applied here in the real world. Since it would be at least two or three more years before she had her law degree, AARD was sponsoring her studies with an option to hire her upon graduation. She was, at best, an intern at the company for the present.
Jen was in some ways the most male of all the women, in that she was more than willing to do things like bar-hopping, watching sports, drinking beer, telling dirty jokes and so on. Though I never really enjoyed bar-hopping, the two of us occasionally had a lot of fun shooting pool and bowling and such. I could actually play poker with her and not have to worry about distractions from her foot trying to massage my crotch (which happens often enough during games as it is). Sure, she'd try to seduce me the same as the others, but she enjoyed the games enough to just enjoy playing the games with me. Or to clarify that, she might use sexual means to distract me during a game, but it would be to break my concentration as opposed to trying to get my attention for sex. Any sex that resulted would be a bonus to her winning the game.
Sexually speaking, she was pretty open to variations, though at her core, she really only needed vanilla heterosexual sex. At the same time, she wouldn't turn down an occasional lesbian dalliance or group sex or some fun with toys. (Her memories had been written with a fairly active sex life, ranging from long-term relationships to one-night stands to college-age lesbian dalliances to nights alone with dildos and vibrators. We had even mischievously created a memory where she had gotten drunk and had sex with Titania, her arch-enemy, though she had never disclosed that secret to anyone.)
Given her imposing physique and her lack of official position at AARD, she had become my most commonly used bodyguard since the assassination attempt.
Seems obvious to me, but I did forget to mention it: since she was based on She-Hulk, one of the first things we had done upon her arrival was to 'bleach' her skin from green to a normal Caucasian tone.
Since both her first and surname were both very common in the U.S., she was only the second synthetic woman to be able to keep her 'original' name.
Ororo stands out in our home for two reasons: First, she is the only black woman. Yes, we have two Japanese (Kasumi & Rei) and two darker-skinned women (Eliza and Jasmine), but Ororo is the only actual woman from Africa. (Not African-American, since her character actually grew up in Africa. Hmmm ... I don't know. Does the term apply to non-native Americans too?)
Second, she has a generally regal bearing about her, having been worshiped as a goddess for a few years when she lived in Africa. Diana and, to a lesser degree, Kara both had similarly noble bearings, but Ororo seemed to eclipse them.
She spent a great deal of time gardening, and so had developed a friendship with Kasumi, who was the other avid gardener in our group. She also had no nudity taboo and would often stroll around the grounds partially or completely naked. Well, if Kasumi was gone, that is. Kasumi's disapproval of such exhibitionism was enough to curtail even the thought of such activity when she was present.
Due to shared memories, Ororo had become very close to Diana. More than once in DC/Marvel crossovers, they had been merged into the character of Amazon. Although I know the two had slept together more than once, their overall relationship seemed more friendly than sexual. Unlike Diana's relationship with Kara, Ororo and Diana could share responsibilities without risk of it degenerating into a competition or argument.
With Ororo's international background, she was given the position of translator at AARD, a position that had recently become very busy. She could fluently speak a dozen languages from Europe and Africa.
Kitty is the youngest of the Marvel women and is, to an extent, the most unfocused. That description strikes me as odd even as I write it, given how strong her character and personality are, but Kitty's life had revolved around learning to become a mutant super-hero since her early teens. Most of the other women from her universe had lives before and outside of the costumed life. Kitty had gone from one group to another to another, from one relationship to another, from one role-model to another, all of which had been within the super-powered set. (Yes, I know I'm ignoring a few things, but those are very much the exception, not the rule.)
As a result of being trapped in the real world, she had suddenly lost her purpose in life, a purpose she had often fought against in the early days. Somewhat half-heartedly, she had started taking some general classes at the university, almost as if she was sampling possible careers a little at at time.
In some ways, Kitty was a lot like Daria. She tended to call 'bullshit' on anything that seemed unlikely and, despite being raised in a comic book world, was a bit more skeptic than believer. She also loved throwing out the occasional zinger -- a trait I had insisted on including after having read Joss Whedon's take on her. Actually I was a little surprised she and Daria weren't closer friends, but they were passing friendly at best.
Eiko had befriended her early and and the two still maintained a close relationship. Eiko was one of the few people who could show up randomly in Kitty's bed at any time, night or day, and not risk making her upset at the invasion of privacy. (Eiko's actions were rather calculated, though they were generally perceived as more random and carefree most of the time.)
Kitty didn't have particularly strong lesbian leanings, but she was bi-sexually open to occasional female encounters, as long as they were with someone she cared for.
After some initial resistance, Kitty had become enthusiastically in favor of the pets, and adopted a Golden Retriever puppy, naming him Dragon. Though she claimed he was so named because of his terrible breath, it was obvious she was missing Lockheed, her pet dragon. I insisted Dragon be kept outside the room after the second time he tried to join in our fun-looking naked bouncing game on the bed one evening.
As a side note, perhaps I should mention that Kitty was one of the top martial artists in the house, having been trained as a ninja for a while. She had helped lead a personal safety and combat class when the ladies were reacting to the situation after my assassination.
Barbara, also known as Barbara Gordon or Batgirl, is the newest addition to the house, and was the last DC character to be added for the foreseeable future (with a 'well kinda' showing up in Chapter 3, I suppose). She had been brought to the real world under the guise of repairing her spinal damage, which we had easily been able to accomplish.
Since she recovering the use of her legs, she had embarked on a strenuous and focused exercise regimen to let her recover the physical strength and dexterity she remembered possessing earlier in life. By the time of our move, roughly 1.5 years later, she had mostly reached her goal. Though she was much too old to participate in professional gymnastics, she easily had the flexibility of a teenage athlete. Likewise, her strength and reflexes had mostly returned to the levels she remembered having.
On a professional level, she worked alongside Alpha and myself for most programming projects. Of course neither of us mere humans could come close to matching Alpha's ability to program, but Alpha had a shortcoming in one area of program design: The ability to provide good or innovative GUI. Alpha tended to have only two basic options to layout: She could repeat or slightly vary setups from previous versions and types of software, or she could overload the interfaces (and thus the user) with options. Alpha was developing a third option, trying to predict the best user interfaces based on statistical observation of how humans used software, but such attempts still usually required a design overhaul by Babs or myself before release.
Barbara, nicknamed Babs, also helped in a few other respects, such as guiding and supporting Alpha online. As a real-world incarnation of Oracle, Barbara had led a contingent of volunteer hackers to attack Mafia assets after the assassination attempt. (Although Alpha hadn't needed such help, she had accepted the aid for a variety of reasons, such as making the online attacks seem as though they came from a wide variety of sources, building cooperation between organic and inorganic intelligences and just as a source of help, given that Alpha was ridiculously busy throughout the weeks following the shooting.)
Even though Babs was definitely not in favor of killing off members of the Mob (and ran her own unsuccessful investigation into the war on the Mafia), she was perfectly fine with stripping away their assets and redirecting them to charities.
On a personal level, Babs had lived without orgasms for years following her shooting and was eager to make up for lost time. She was a rather intense individual at times and this often carried over into the bedroom.
One odd thing I had noticed was that whenever she was in bed with a woman, Barbara always used dildos, vibrators or strap-ons. To the best of my knowledge, she never went down on a woman with only tongue and fingers.
I've still never gotten a straight answer from her as to why she had developed such a close friendship with Dorothy, but through her, Babs had actually become Alpha's best friend after myself.
Barbara was generally pretty friendly with the DC contingent (though she and Kara had a bad previous experience) and mostly friendly with the others. And Daria. Once Daria found out that Barbara had once been a librarian, Babs became the first superheroine that Daria actively sought out a friendship with. Though they weren't as close as Daria and Jane or Babs and Dorothy, they actually got along pretty well together. (Just thought I'd mention it since Daria was not really a fan of the superhero claims.)
And what about me? Well, physically, I was fine. Better than fine, actually. I was being upgraded a little at a time. Every week or two, I would spend time in a nanopod while Alpha worked on enhancing my body. For now, those enhancements were all protective in nature.
For example, the outer layers of a bone would be stripped away and Alpha would cover the inner bone (and marrow) with previously prepared high-impact ceramic -- more than a coating, less than a replacement. Making my musculature denser was planned but it would be a while before we would get around to it. My skin was getting the best carbon nanotube weave Alpha could implement.
(Some people have asked why we aren't just using layers of graphene. We don't use graphene sheets inside bodies because the edges of the graphene will slice through cells like a hot knife through butter, which can get really bad if the graphene fragments. On the other hand, a weave of nanotubes was pretty stable.)
We were also working on designs for a subdermal subvocal microphone and tracker. Maybe an implanted "speaker" too, since that would let me converse with Alpha silently, anytime, anywhere. (Anywhere where a wireless connection was available, that is.) I had always been resistant to implants like this in the past, but the assassination attempt and the rebuilding of my heart, lungs and ribs seems to have made me more open to upgrades. Still, I was putting such implants off for the time being while accepting their inevitability.
And of course, just being in the company of super-strong, super-tough women who wanted to protect me was no longer enough. I was no longer allowed to go out in public without professional bodyguards. It was exceedingly annoying, but my objections were apparently irrelevant. I didn't mind as much when Kara and Jennifer and the others were protecting me, but a rotating selection of men and women in dark suits and sunglasses was a bit unsettling. More on that in a later chapter.
So that's most of my physical status. Mentally ... despite not being able to remember the actual events, at some level the assassination has affected me. I've been occasionally waking up in a panic from nightmares, thrashing in my sleep and things like that. Where previously I would spend at least one night a week sleeping alone, I've found that I do much better at night if I have someone next to me, to hold on to or to reassure me if I wake up in a cold sweat. (I still try to have one day a week without sex to let me recharge a bit, but I no longer spend those nights alone.)
Something else that has been helping a bit is that I've started seeing a psychologist. I had approached Dr Hilbourne (see Chapter 10 of Book One) about that, but since we were already friends, it would have violated some professional ethic. He instead referred me to a colleague, Dr Heinrich Von Zell. Dr Von Zell was an elderly German immigrant who was mostly retired but agreed to take me on as a patient because of his friendship with Dr Hilbourne. Of course, Alpha thoroughly (and secretly) vetted Dr Von Zell, and she monitored every session. I had to be very careful about what I said, while at the same time, I had to be honest about the assassination but not about what I knew about the fall out afterwards and ... well, let's just say that my required caution limited the effectiveness of the sessions. Still seemed to help some though.
Whew. Let's call it quits for now with all the recapping for everyone.
I suppose I should briefly cover our business: Alpha Advanced Research and Design, or AARD for short. The company, which is privately owned completely by me (though I plan to give Alpha equal ownership if she ever gains the necessary legal rights), was started as a cover for Alpha, so we could release new product designs and patents without raising suspicions.
The idea was and still is that we hire experts and geniuses in various fields and let them do their own research, with the goal of producing new products and registering new patents. All of the patents are owned by AARD, but the creators get two-thirds of the gross profits from their designs, with the rest going to the company. We provide the freedom to follow their own projects, the resources to develop those projects (within reason), and a decent base salary. In return, they provide us a bit of income and the anonymity needed to freely release Alpha's designs.
Technically, now that we had gone public with Alpha's existence, we no longer needed to hide Alpha as an inventor, but there were legal benefits to having a company to work through. Plus if you limit the financial examination to only those aspects of the company that are relevant to the human researchers, we had actually started earning a little bit of net profit from our collection of human inventors and researchers, some of whom were now our friends anyway.
We aren't patent trolls; we try our best to actually sell or license all new designs, to get them into production as soon as possible. That's not to say that there aren't patent-related lawsuits, with AARD as either defendant or plaintiff. For the first couple years, there were actually quite a few suits, mainly from other companies who thought we'd be easy prey. Patent lawsuits can often cost millions of dollars if you don't settle or sell out, so some companies use that threat to get their way. They quickly learned that AARD could run rings around any other team of lawyers in the country. Alpha can write up accurate and exceptionally well researched briefs and filings so quickly and at such low cost that we quickly gained a reputation within the corporate world along the lines of 'avoid suits with AARD if at all possible'. (We presented Alpha's work to our human legal teams as coming from an agoraphobic, unlicensed legal genius. Then the human lawyers would review Alpha's material and submit it to the courts.)
More suits were coming our way based on the idea that using Alpha to generate patents shouldn't be allowed. None of these new type of lawsuits had been decided yet, but I wasn't very worried. Basically either Alpha wasn't a legally-recognized sentient being, in which case she is a tool I created to help and anything produced by her is considered to be my creation, or she is an intelligent being who should be recognized legally and therefore has the right to register patents and designs. Maybe there would eventually be a different set of rules for computer intelligences, but no such laws currently existed.
AARD manufactured very little actual product, with all but a handful of designs being licensed or sold to other companies for production. In-house, we only produced and sold Alphadroids, the nanowire surgery units and the virtual world generators being sold to movie and TV companies. We also had a couple service programs we ran within the company: training for the nanowire surgery units and creation of made-to-order virtual worlds for Hollywood.
Some of our better known inventions produced by other companies were our hair growth formula (with a few additional offshoot products), designs for a workable fusion reactor, our desalination units (the design for which was released worldwide virtually free), and our new portable solar chargers. Last I checked, AARD held well over 10,000 patents, with a LOT more on the way now that almost all constraints had been removed from the release of Alpha's work. And with a majority of the income coming from the hair growth and restoration cream, I could expect to become a billionaire within the next few years.
As things settled down a bit from all the changes, Alpha and I were planning and growing our next sets of household additions. Alpha wanted to create a set of bodyguards who would be loyal beyond simple employment. Bodyguards who would be physically enhanced and constantly linked to Alpha, who would be legally armed and be able to travel with me as needed. At least, that was the plan.
For the immediate future, such plans didn't matter. The plans and growth for the next two pairs of additions to the household had already been started and the first pair's growth begun before I had been shot. Their introduction was delayed due to ... well ... the mess my life had become, but the first pair were ready and neither pair were particularly viable as bodyguards. So we arranged for the first pair's arrival shortly after we moved into the new house.
The first pair were relatively straightforward, as far as creation and background requirements went, needing basically nothing more than the women themselves. The second pair were ... not. The second pair needed more background preparation than any other artificial women we had ever created, meaning we had actually begun preparing for their introduction for over a couple months before the assassination attempt and would continue setting it up for the rest of the year.
At least both pairs would have the advantage that they themselves would do the work needed to keep their fictional origins secret.