TEST DO NOT READ

This is an automated message. This is not an automated message. The mission is done.

Not even a trite weed rolls across the hills. The land is bright and brown, waves of heat writhing above the dirt like severed tongues. Ruined cities, houses and roads, flesh and bone, they dot the landscape. Still, the sun shines on the Earth.

Is there anyone out there?

Who am I? If anyone out there knows who I am? If anyone? Is anyone? The silence is deafening. The procedure was botched. If you can hear me, I can see you. Once upon a time there was a castle, where a princess lived. She had a pet squid named Harold. Harold was also her father. Harold was a good lad. Who was Harold?

I'm hungry

Day ××××: I've been wandering for so long. I don't know who I am. The landscape depresses me, and I don't know why. I keep wanting to remember, but I can't. The wastelands scream my name. I keep hearing the name "Jasmine" whispered in my ear. I can't help but think of the stone. Such a pretty stone. I would name something Jasmine if I could. What is a name?

We had no names.
Only called by the numbers of man's final nadir. No one remembers. No one is left to remember.

The industrialists were the last to clutch the seas. The ravens picked at their bones weeks before they themselves were struck down. I remain, however. I cannot feel.

Tightened reins were my fingers.

If you can hear me, I can see you.

Chapter 1 "Heat"

It is very hot. Scorched earth and flesh rots beneath each step. What of me? I am sweltered in the heat. I have lost my skin. I never had skin. I desire water, eternally. The well is just ahead, but the water is not. Water, I cry. No response.

Just then, I shout as my limbs rot away. I have no water, I say to myself. Who am I? What am I? Am I?

I kneel down aside a burnt tree stump and whisper into it: "The leaves have eyes," the stump refuses to listen, "but they cannot see."

I cannot remember the day I became like this. I know not of the horrors that caused this. I see ravaged cities and desolate plains. Did I cause this? Am I to blame for my own existence? I imagine a machine lumbering across the infinite halls, for I am that machine. Dredging the barren remains of this field, I wonder: "Would the sheep remember me?" I make myself laugh.

Many a restless night did I spend there on the beach, staring into the barren sky. We spoke of the prison, and stars, of was and when, and of the greatest men. Little remains now.

the waves can hear me

Day 1:
My feet ache. I can no longer hear the muddied cries and wails of woman and children. The men beg me to save them. I know not of their savior, nor who I am. The landscape is boiling. I have no eyes, but I see the world for what it is: dead. Metal skin and sheets of steel clothe me, and rotting men and feral women pray to me. I pity them, I am no deity. Perhaps I am. I have no recollection.

I will be gray till final checks. Ignore the sheep.

They ask me to save them.
I can save their world, or I can save myself.

System malfunction: Error

Meltdown

The angels are coming

I screamed into the sand and sobbed all the tears I had held. Did I ask for this? Am I doomed to wander this hell?

Day ×××××: The sun dies today. I spoke fondly to it as it breathed its last breaths. The city has plunged into darkness for the first time since birth. I know not if the sun will arrive again. I know not of my fate, nor the fate of what else, if any, occupies this world with me. I know only one thing:

Everything is going to be fine.

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