Turning Alita – Short Story Concept

Cybersynth girl, Elena, she’s me post augmentation treatments

Cyber datetime: 20921002.08.17.038

Analog Date: October 2, 2092 Time: 8:17 a.m.

[Recording to Data Storage – Saving Data…]

For anyone interested enough to dive into my memories, I’m Elena Thornsen. I’m starting to use my new enhancements in a practical way for the first time today. It’s a huge deal for me. It’s been a few months since the bombing that damaged… destroyed a good portion of my human body.

I didn’t have the money to pay for all my treatment even with the benefits guarantees by the ACA 3, but I was lucky. My specific case fit the test profile of a new generation of medical treatments. 
The med school of my undergraduate alma mater in New Dallas picked me as the voluntary guinea pig mostly for my level of physical damage. It also helped that it would be great PR for drawing new students if they showed off what they could do, would do, to help their students. That part I’m not so frosty about. But, as they foot the bills I can’t pay, we’ll, I accept it pragmatically.

I’m 25 and was headed to the first day of my new stellarnautical engineering job for PulseTek. Then the Neoluddite Liberation Compact chose to bomb the main entry to the main office. The building where I would be working. I was assured by officials and statements by the NLC that no one was supposed to be hurt. It was supposed to be a structural attack only. 

I didn’t get that memo. And I was arriving early for my first day. My fucking bad luck, right? I was lucky, fortunate I guess, that I was far enough away that I survived. The thermite-perixide explosive melted most of the building lobby into a molten lake. Any closer and I would have been vaporized.

At the time I was found I begged the emergency services to let me die. The pain was utterly excruciating, what was left for me to feel anything.

Months later I changed my mind as they gradually repaired each part of me. I have a pair of new ears, a new eye, two pairs of full limb replacement from digits to shoulders and hips, one new kidney, one new lung. I’m the fortunate level of transhuman that is a major leap in evolution they tell me. 

I have too much artificial replacement for me to be classified as a cyborg. I’m a member of the small but growing category called cybersynths. I get to be referred to in techslang as an Alita. 
The term comes from the cyborg/android manga reference of Alita Battle Angel from the early 21st century. I love that historic Japanese artform. Back when mangas were printed on paper. It’s not the same on a readtab. I collect the old stuff. It’s hard to get out here, expensive as fuck, but so frosty to read.

Oh, right. I was talking about my big day today. This is my first day where I get to do everything in my day without any assistants hanging around or being scanned by the debuggers and cognitive tuners. I get to see how well all of me works without having nannies, not even an assist droid. 

The only concession I had to make was to have my service lupinodroid with me in case I have a crackle attack. I chose the body design of a lupine bioform for my service not over a canine. The former is more aggressive looking and keeps gawks away. The latter is too friendly and cute for my tastes. And crackle attacks are what happen when the synth components synthneuro interchange couplers to the bioneuro counterparts arc uncontrollably. I’ve had a few over the past couple months. I’d explain them as a mix of being hit with a tazer carbine round hitting you all over your body amped up with a plasma rifle pulse and blended with epilepsy.

My service bot is designed to stop the cascades, reset the neurocoplers, and provide first aid to tend to me if I need emergency services. She’s done it twice so far. I trust her with my life without question. It’s the full humans I distrust now. The scorn they throw at cyborgs and cyber synths like me I imagine would be like the discrimination by race on Earth in the past.

I’m fortunate that Earth had the Civil Rights Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Americans with Cybernetics Act laws to pave the way for the recently passed Humans with Cyber Enhancements Act. With me existing off world on one of the terraformed territory planets it feels good to have Alliance level laws protecting me from legal discrimination.

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