The Mischievous Nerd's Guide to World Domination
Author: Stephen Oberauer

Chapter 34
More human than human

Raymond had been living at his new home on the farm for a month before the castle was ready. It was time for me to move too. I hired a truck and sent all of my robots and technology to the hidden, underground factory. I was tired of living a double life and decided that it would be good to have a replacement for John Connor. When you’re as famous as he had become it’s often good to have a look-alike for the reporters to bother rather than yourself. In my case I wanted to build a robot that could pass as human. Another robot that I wanted to build also had to be able to pass as human. She would be a gift to Raymond, who had come to realise that living on a farm in a big house was very lonely, and his large house was also a very big job to maintain. One of my robots had designed some software that I could use to decide what my next robot would look like, so I popped into Raymond’s place to get him to design his ultimate robot.

I didn’t want it to be obvious what I was doing. I thought that the robot could be a birthday present, so I just told him that I wanted to test the software and I wanted him to help. ‘In your opinion what would a perfect girl look like?’ I asked Raymond.

Raymond said nothing, but opened up his web browser and typed ‘Liv Tyler’ into the Booble image search prompt. Still saying nothing, he simply pointed to the photo on his screen.

‘So, you wouldn’t change anything about her appearance?’ I asked.

‘Nothing!’ he said confidently.

‘And the pixie ears do it for you?’ I asked, realizing that the photo he was pointing to was from her character in Lord of the Rings.

‘Oops!’ he said, and went on to the next picture. ‘There you go; That is perfection.’

‘And what accent would the perfect girl have?’ I asked, and as I should have guessed, he went to youtube.com and typed in ‘Liv Tyler’, and then pointed to his speakers.

As it turned out there was no need to use the advanced, people designing software for Raymond’s present, but I did want to use it to make a few adjustments to how John would look, in order that people would not be able to see a resemblance to me.

I gathered my robots together and explained to them what I wanted them to build for me. ‘It must not be possible to tell that the robots are not human without cutting them open or x-raying them,’ I explained. I didn’t have to go into detail to try and explain to the robots the exact characteristics that I wanted the new robots to have, because they already knew. The difficult part was that the robots had no way to feel, or smell, so they wouldn’t be able to tell if their creation was correct or not. They would need humans to help them. Some would be needed to be tested and some would be needed to test.

There were never any humans in my robot factory, except for the three of us of course. I didn’t want my secret to get out, and so I chatted to Kirsty about the idea of the two of us being test subjects for the robots. To my surprise, she didn’t mind. She was quite happy to be examined, poked, analysed, and explored extremely closely, by my robots, but it bothered me. I suppose she had more confidence in the robots than I did because she knew that I had designed them. I was scared because I knew that the robots could not feel pain, and wouldn’t ever be able to understand it.

Kirsty and I walked down the stairs from my office into the factory and had a long chat to the robots about exactly how far they were allowed to go while testing us. During the long discussion the robots reassured me until I felt like I could trust my robots with my life.

On the 1st of May it was time for the first forty children to study their MCCE’s (Magic Castle Camp Experience). The children came from many different countries and their wealthy parents each paid the $10,000 fee per child. They were all incredibly excited, but at the end of the week they were crying because they did not want to go home. We did not allow the parents into the grounds, but each child was posted a professionally edited DVD video of their week which they could show to their parents.

The charity children were even more excited. I don’t know if there’s a way that I can explain how excited they were, except to say that on the last day some of them had to be carried onto the bus as if they were being taken away to prison. It made me wonder for a moment if it was really worth it. I was showing each child what his life could be like and then sticking him right back into poverty. Nevertheless, we gave the children the best week of their lives, taught them good principles, and learned a lot about the children, their problems and what we could do one day to make the world a better place.

On the 16th of December we celebrated Raymond’s birthday. It was the biggest party I had ever been to, since we had invited all the friends and family of all three of us. The large hall in the castle was the perfect venue. I had managed to keep Raymond out of the factory for the whole time that the robots were working on his birthday present.

The house elves cooked and served the food, but because I didn’t want to give away how good my technology was yet, no-one was allowed in the kitchen, and when they left the kitchen that day, to serve the food, they had to walk very robotically and not speak to anyone. Hagrid was almost entirely de-activated, and simply sat in his room, staring out the window. It was an idea that worked very well when I finally decided to allow reporters into the castle. The children had the truth on their DVD’s, but even though parents would watch them they would rather believe that the newspapers told the truth and the DVD’s were full of puppets and camera tricks. Every time someone would ask about the technology I would simply say that all the characters at Magic Castle were real.

After dinner the completed John Connor robot walked onto the stage to give a speech. I noticed some people looking between me and John, having obviously had their suspicions that we were the same person. John looked very human, and spoke with the ridiculous accent that I had invented. I was glad not to have to speak like that any more

‘Ladies and gentlemen,’ he began, ‘Welcome to Magic Castle. Thank you for joining us this evening to celebrate Raymond’s birthday. Raymond has helped us to design some of the world’s best computer games, and is a great asset to Impossible Technology. As a token of appreciation, and on behalf of the staff at IT, I’d like to award Raymond with his birthday present. Raymond, please join me on stage.’

Everyone applauded as Raymond walked up onto the stage. ‘So, Raymond, would you like to guess what your birthday present is?’ John asked.

As a joke Raymond responded, ‘If it’s not a gorgeous model I’m going to be very disappointed,’ and gave the audience a big smile.

The guests laughed, and Kirsty and I looked at each other with questioning looks, wondering whether he had guessed what we were up to.

‘Wow,’ John began, ‘that is a very good guess! As your birthday present, we invited your favourite movie star to join us tonight! Everyone give a round of applause for Liv Tyler!’

The guests laughed and applauded and Raymond was completely stunned. He had both his hands over his mouth and stared with disbelief as the robot Liv Tyler walked onto the stage and gave him a hug. She whispered into his ear, ‘I’m a robot. I’m your birthday present.’

 

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