The woman in white shirt and black pants convulsed several times before dropping to the concrete as if a puppet with its string cut. One of the soldiers ran up and then knelt down to check her for weapons.
Sergeant Mason Williams started to approach, not taking his eyes of the young girl. She was beautiful; her silver hair shined in the sunlight and her high cheekbones and slightly rounded chin combined with her slightly pale skin to give her to appearance of an angel who’d descended from heaven. Incredibly, despite the situation, his manhood started to grow slightly until he looked away.
My God, he thought, I’m getting a hard on for some spy.
“Sergeant!” A soldier snapped. “The prisoner’s isn’t breathing!”
“Medic!” He snapped.
A cold chill ran down Williams’ spine as he watched the medic race over and then kneel beside the pilot. This couldn’t possibly be happening! If that woman died, then he’d be in serious trouble with Command for using a taser on her instead of just taking her into custody.
“Sarge,” another man said. “I think you need to come over here.”
“What is it?”
“Better to show you.”
The medic backed off a bit to give him room to kneel down beside the woman’s prone form. When the woman fell, she hit her head on the concrete and a small piece of skin hung loosely from her temple and it revealed something strange. A normal person’s body, especially their head and face, was full of blood vessels, which meant head wounds tended to bleed a lot, and this one did. However, instead of the normal thick, red flow of blood, a thin red colored liquid ran from the wound and then pooled around her head.
“If that’s blood,” the medic said, “Then she’s got the worst case of hemophilia that I’ve ever seen.”
“If that’s not blood, what is it?”
“My guess is some sort of red fluid meant to simulate blood, but that’s not all.”
“Here,” the medic used an infrared thermometer to scan the pilot’s forehead. “Look at this.”
“One hundred fifteen degrees?” Williams said. “I thought a normal body temp was ninety-eight something.”
“Within a degree or so, yes,” the medic said as he used a gloved hand to wipe the fluid away. “Notice something?”
Williams wasn’t one to be taken by surprise by much, twenty years in the military and being in several war zones took the ability away, but this discovery made his heart skip a beat. Normal wounds have red flesh underneath once the top layer of skin got peeled away. Except this one gleamed under the light of the sun and he looked at it and then at the medic.
“Uh huh,” the medic said.
“What the hell do we have here?”
“I don’t know.”
Williams never took his eyes off the girl as he raised his radio up to his mouth and then pressed the transmit button. “Command this is Sergeant Williams. We have the pilot in custody.”
“Bring her in then,” came the crisp reply.
“I don’t know about that. We have something strange here.”
“She’s got metal under her skin.”
“So?” The woman said. “Plenty of people have steel plates.”
“And a body temp of one hundred fifteen degrees?”
“Are you shitting me?”
“Ok, I’m contacting General Thomas at the Defense Research Center for orders. This is now within his purview.”
“And don’t let anyone near her, Sergeant. And I mean it. If anything happens to her, you’ll wish you’d never joined the military.”
The communications was cut.
“You heard the woman,” he said. “Let’s keep her secure.”
Alex couldn’t believe his luck when it came to his golf time. Once again he was headed out for the links when the call came in about the strange woman at Andrews Air Force Base. This one, however, intrigued him far more than did the one in the sealed lab because it looked human, while the other one vaguely did.
And the fact that the woman, or whatever she was, could fly a fighter at Mach two created a mystery that even the old soldier found impossible to resist. Throw in the fact that the craft came from the orbiting ship and it made from a match made in heaven-or hell if she proved to be dangerous-for the eggheads. Maybe the being on the table in front of him could shed light on the one below that they hadn’t found a way to activate yet.
From the safety of the observation room the General watched the eggheads work and couldn’t help but start to get excited. Military technology always needed to advance to keep up with the growing threats around the globe, and the woman’s body could potentially be a treasure trove of information. Not only for new weapons but about the people who made her and whether or not they were a threat to mankind.
He activated the com. “Are you sure they can’t feel anything?”
“Her skin is synthetic,” the lead researcher said. “So, I’m sure that she can’t feel it.”
A scientist rolled a cart over to where they secured the woman’s prone form. Even knowing that the thing on the table was unconscious and probably couldn’t feel pain didn’t keep Alex from wincing as the researcher ran a scalpel around the circumference of the woman’s arm. Once done, he peeled the skin off, exposing the metal skeleton underneath.
“Amazing,” he said.
“Look at the details,” the scientist said. “It mimics our body to the minute detail. Ligaments, tendons, joints…”
Alex had to agree that it was indeed an amazing sight to see. The fact that someone, somewhere was able to make a mechanical body that mimicked the human form to such an extent boggled his mind. How many lives could be saved if they could send artificial people to the warzones to fight instead of flesh and blood soldiers?
Those and a thousand other thoughts ran through Alex’s mind as he thought about what to tell the President. A finding like this couldn’t be kept from the Chief Executive, but that didn’t mean he needed to tell the man everything. Yes, it was dishonest as hell but what the current administration didn’t know sure wouldn’t hurt them.
Although, he thought, it could possibly cost me my commission and pension.
“General,” a researcher said. “You need to see this.”
“What is it?”
“It’ll be easier to show you.”
He motioned to a guard to escort him before heading for the door. Just because the woman was unconscious didn’t mean she would stay that way and keeping someone around to defend him sounded like a good idea to Alex.
Although, he thought, could a bullet actually stop something like her?
“What do you have?” He asked as he approached the table.
The woman was borderline beautiful, and young enough to be his daughter, which did make this operation a bit tough on him. Her silver hair, almost the color of an anime character, and athletic frame reminded him more of a college student than someone from another planet. And what made things worse was God only knew how strong she’d been once awake.
“There’s a small port on the back of her head. We missed it earlier because it was covered by her hair.”
“What do you think it’s for?”
“If I had to hazard a guess, it’s for a computer interface.”
“Do we have a way of connecting to it?”
“It’s much like a USB port,” the scientist said. “But I don’t know if it’s wise to link something like this to our computer network.”
“What if we put her onto a closed system, one that doesn’t have any connections to the rest of the base or outside world?”
“That could work.”
“Make it so,” Alex said. “I want to know what that thing thinks.”
“It might take a little bit.”
“Just make it happen. I don’t care how long it takes.”