Welcome my son, welcome to the machine.
Where have you been? It’s alright we know where you’ve been.
What did you dream? It’s alright we told you what to dream.
Pink Floyd- Welcome to The Machine
BASED ON THE BOOK OF P. K. DICK
She stayed there for a time, keeping him in sight to be sure he wouldn’t wake up, wouldn’t spring to a sitting position in fear as he sometimes did at night. And then, presently, she returned to the kitchen, reseated herself at the kitchen table. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?The title of the book he was reading, stayed in her mind. I would like have a animal, another living being which I could bind me. After all, this is what sets us apart from the androids: the ability to empathize. But is this difference so important?
She heard the apartment door knocking. And then she wondered again where Lucas had gone. He may be coming back and on the other hand he may not be, she said to herself, and felt her bones within her shrink with age. In silence, Lucas went down the elevator accompanied by his neighbor. He had nothing to say to him, the mind entirely focused on the job he had before him.
— Find me at half past nine at the office of Dave Holden, Harry Pearce had said minutes ago. — What has happened? – Lucas asked, with a shudder.
— Dave Holden wants the brain Nexus-6 unit to be withdrawn. Harry said.
He felt no surprise. Since the performance reports were advertised in August 1991, most police agencies had been having problems with rebels androids, who wanted freedom at any cost. The Nexus-6 did have two trillion constituents plus a choice with a range of ten million possible combinations of cerebral activity. In .45 of a second an android equipped with such a brain structure could assume any one of the fourteen basic reactions-postures.
The Nexus-6, Lucas reflected, surpassed several classes of human specials in terms of intelligence. However, an android, no matter for how gifted intellectual capacity, could feel no empathy. Empathy, evidently, existed only within the human community, whereas intelligence to some degree could be found throughout every phylum and order including the arachnids.
—Why? Lucas said. — Why should I kill them?
—You will be required that to do wrong no matter where you go. It is the basic condition of the life, to be being required to violate your own identity. At some time, every creature must do so if they want to continue in the system. It is the ultimate shadow, the curse that feeds the system.
—That’s all you can tell me? Lucas said.
—Go and do your task, even though you know it’s wrong. Harry said.
Lucas read the file about Danielle Ortiz, a Nexus-6 unit expert in systems security, an hacker. He went to a ruined house in the city center. A single TV set advertised their products to the empty room. Entered. In another room, he saw a girl sitting at a bed, a computer on her knees. She wore a colorful clothes that contrasted with the gray of the place.
— Who are you? – She said, looking up. The makeup enlarged her eyes, enormous and hazel they fixed on him and did not waver. Her tone held cold reserve, the cold that he found in so many androids.
— MI-5, please come with me— He replied.
— Do you think I’m an android? Is that it? Her voice had faded almost to extinction. — I’m not an android. I’ve never even see an android! Her elongated lashes shuddred involuntarily; he saw her trying to appear calm.
— Do you have information that there is an android in the street? I’d be glad to help you, and if I were an android would I be glad to help you?
—An android – he said – doesn’t care what happens to any other android. That’s one of the indications we look for.
— Then — Miss Ortiz said —you must be an android. — That stopped him; he stared at her. Because — she continued — your job is to kill them, isn’t it? You are what they call. She tried to remember.
— Spook—Lucas said. — But I’m not an android.
— How can you know whether or not you are an android? What distinguishes a human of an android?
An android physically equal, with equal processing capacity of the human brain, would also have our ability to think, feel and react? An android feel the need to be loved? If yes, then the androids are living beings? What is to be alive? If android has aware that it will die as he has conscious he exist, it will not be enough for him to be considered alive? But it doesn’t matter. The
electric things have their lives, too. Paltry as those lives are. Lucas North thought.
Lucas said: — I’m capable of feeling empathy for at least specific, certain androids. Not for all of them but — one or two. As Danielle Ortiz, he said to himself. She was really a singular hacker. I don’t get it; how can a talent like that be a liability to our society?
Prodded her in the direction of the car, Danielle did not come willingly, but on the other hand, she did not actively resist; seemingly she had become resigned. Lucas had seen that before in androids, in crucial situations. The artificial life force animating them seemed to fail, if pressed too far… at least in some of them. But not all.
Then something happened, CO19 men jumped from a speeding car, a hail of bullets poured upon them. Danielle, tried to run but was struck. Lucas shot back, but there was nothing to do. Then a tall, gaunt, harsh features, rimmed glasses of bone and soft beard on the tip, questioned him.
— Lucas North? Are you an android? The reason I ask is that several times in the past we’ve had escaped and turn up posing as agents of MI-5; we are looking for a suspect. Please follow me.
— I’m not an android—Lucas said. You can administer the Voigt-Kampff test to me; I’ve taken it before and I don’t mind taking it again. But I know what the results will be. Can I phone to Harry Pearce?
—You’re allowed one call.
— Harry. I am being retained by CO19 as a Nexus-6 unit—Lucas said—I can not understand it. I need your help.
— How can I save you — said Harry — if I can’t save myself? — He sadly smiled . — You have a name and a life that was never meant to be yours. You have no friends, no family, no past. Your memories are not yours. You’re not a real person. Do you understand?
Thoughtful, he began to gather his valuables to deliver them. This makes no sense, he told himself. Who are these people? Perhaps this is a mistake. It was hard to believe what was happening.
—You’re in a spot, North. Phil Resch said; it seemed to amuse him.
— This is the kind of mistake that an android do. Resigned to his fate. —Lucas said, upholding a blow to the face of Phil Resch that left him unconscious on the floor. Then went on the run, disguising himself in the city. Within minutes all the agents of MI-5 would be notified that he was a Nexus-6 android, and they will have a code 678, shoot to kill. No matter, he just wanted to go back to her.
— Lucas, wake up, you’re having a nightmare. She said, her long hair falling on his face as she kissed him. He got up painfully, his face sleepy and confused, as if a multitude of battles had been fought him for many years. Then, slowly made his way to the kitchen.
— Will you go back to bed? She asked.
— Yes, he said weakly.
The phone rang, a message of Harry Pearce congratulating him for the success of the mission.
— Who was? she asked. — Harry, he said coldly.
— What did he want?
— He wants to wish me a long-deserved peace — he said. Let’s hurry up, we’ll go out, take the minimum with you.
— Where are we going to? she said, startled.
— I’ll leave that business, going out of MI-5. He called a cab and hung up the phone. — Are you coming?
— All right — agreed. — A long-deserved peace, she said, kissing him as the elevator descended.
Dick, P. K. 2007. Do Androids dream of eletric sheep? Ed. Rocco, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.
Spooks is a British television drama series that originally aired on BBC One from 13 May 2002 – 23 October 2011, consisting of 10 series.