Mr. Warren smiled at me after hearing my answer.
"Hey, if you're going to focus on recreating the exoskeleton and making it better, then you must need a lot of money. The university won't just give you financial support and materials you need."
I thought about his words for a moment. Then it came to me.
"Then I need to find a sponsor."
Mr. Warren smirked.
"You're sharp indeed. How about….I become your sponsor? I'll give you financial support. Anything you need, you'll just have to ask me. Blueprints, schematics, materials, anything. I'll do what I can for you."
I was shocked to hear this. Surely I was dreaming. There's no way the inventor of the exoskeletons himself is going to sponsor me.
"From your face, I can see you're not believing what I just said. Don't worry, I am not joking," he added.
"A-are you sure about this Mr. Warren? I mean, my mom could help…."
"I am sure, Damien."
"Then I'll gladly accept your sponsorship."
Mr. Warren looked at me, and I could see from his eyes that I was like the son he never had.
"One more thing," he suddenly said.
"Your home, you live alone now right?"
He's right. I do live alone.
"How about I ask Clara to go live with you?"
He chuckled at my dumbfounded face.
"I know this is a weird thing to tell you, but Clara can surely ease your burden in your daily life. Don't worry about it, I'll get a new Android. You don't need to worry about her clothes. She has her own."
"Well if you say so. Then she's going to follow me home after this?..."
"Yep, Clara's already getting her stuff."
That was fast. Thinking about it, I did see her going up the stairs. Maybe she heard our conversation and went upstairs.
Mr. Warren came to me and placed something in my left palm.
"Here's a little something for you. Use it wisely."
I lifted up my hand and opened my palm. Inside there were a 100 Alliance Credits note.
"Wait, already?", I said.
He simply nodded along with a smile.
I waited for Clara for about five more minutes before seeing her come down the stairs.
"I'll see you again Damien." Mr. Warren said.
I walked out of the double doors with Clara following me from behind.
We didn't say anything on our way to my house. Clara, being an obedient android she is just followed me.
We arrived at my house after about 10 minutes. I unlocked the gates and the door and went inside and let Clara in.
"Every room in the first floor is empty. You can pick whichever you want." I said to her.
"Wait wait. Don't call me master. Just call me Damien. Master sounds so weird…and awkward."
"Alright then Damien. Anything you need help with?"
I looked around the living room and shook my head.
"None for now. Get comfortable to your new house. It's not as big as Mr. Warren's house but it'll do…. I guess."
Clara nodded and walked to the corridor to see the rooms I was talking about. Well, she can do it by herself. I'm starving.
I placed the plastic with my food inside and sat down to enjoy it. Chicken rice and tea. I opened the box and was amazed to see the chicken rice. I've had good chicken rice before, but none looks as appetizing as this one.
I took a spoon and started eating. Damn, it sure is a delicious chicken rice. Much better than the ones I had before. The seasoning on the chicken were very different too.
I continued eating and then realized I had finished it in just under five minutes. Good job me. I cleaned up and threw the box in the dustbin and drank my tea, which is cold now. I didn't mind because I was thirsty.
I threw the cup in and Clara showed up at the dining room doorway, and stood there like a robot. Well, she is a robot.
"Do you want me to take out the trash?" , she asked.
"Uh," I looked at the dustbin.
It still has some more space in it.
"No it's fine. You do what you have to for now. I'm going upstairs…"
She didn't respond but only nodded.
I walked pass her and climbed up the stairs to the second floor. I went inside my room and laid on the bed. I glanced at the clock.
"Whoa, it's not yet 5 pm, and so much thing already happened today. Guess I'll play some games.."
So I played some games for quite some time, from 2 pm until 5 pm, I grinded in this game called World of Universecraft. It's not really a good game for me, but I guess it'll do to ease my boredom. Plus I got nothing better to do until tomorrow. My plan can't be executed yet either.
As I was hooked with my computer, a knock on my door can be heard.
Its Clara, of course.
"I was wondering if you would like to eat anything for dinner?"
I thought for a moment.
"Yeah sure. But there's no ingredients in the fridge."
"Its fine, I can go out and buy some and then I'll come back. Mr. Warren gave me some money."
Wait, is she going by herself?
"Uh, yeah. Sure. Be safe out there by the way."
I heard her footsteps leaving the front door, but she didn't respond. She must've thought I gave her permission to leave, which I do.
But an Android going to buy groceries late in the evening?
Lately, a few people have reported about finding bodies of android in alleyways.
The androids' body parts were missing, such as eyes, their core, limbs, pumps, sound and voice parts, CPU and etcetera. What's more scary is the body looks like as if it's been ripped apart by an animal, or monster.
And the thought of Clara going alone, in the evening, makes me worry.
So I followed her out without her knowing. I tailed her and occasionally change my hiding spots. It may seem like I am a stalker. Plus, which store is she going to? Are there any grocery stores that's still selling groceries at this time? Or perhaps she may has a recipe that doesn't need complex ingredients?
I tailed her for a solid 10 minutes, and I almost got caught three times when she stopped and looked behind her. It's as if she knows I'm there but she doesn't.
Then she took a right at a junction and went straight to a convenience store. I followed her but I kept my distance. She went into the store, and so did I.
I observed her grab a loaf of bread and some jam, and also a packet of raw sausages.
" Hotdog for dinner…?"
Well, I don't mind. I'll eat anything as long as it doesn't harm me.
Clara grabbed a few more things such as a carbonated drink and a pack of crackers.
I went outside before she did and waited behind the store. Just then, I noticed a person going inside the store. It was a girl, about the same age, or maybe older than me. There's something about this girl that makes me anxious. She was wearing a black hoodie, she had a black face mask on and was wearing tight leggings. She had short black hair and wore glasses.
Then I noticed. The way she walks was different than a normal person. The way she walks was quicker and more controlled. She wore sports shoes too. Might she be a martial Artist?
Then a few moments later, Clara exited the store and went back the way she came from. Surprisingly, the girl also went out of the store.
And she was following Clara.
She didn't tail her like the way I did.
She followed her without even hiding it, but Clara being the Android she is didn't care.
Because she's an Android.
They were walking along a small road with houses to the left and right, and they were closing in on a small alleyway.
Then I thought of something impossible.
The Android killer.
Clara was walking pass the alley when the girl suddenly grabbed her by the collar and threw her in. I immediately acted by pure instinct.
She definitely didn't saw me coming full speed towards her. After all, a sneaky attack only works when the enemy doesn't know where you're at.
I dashed at her full speed before landing a left hook towards her head.
But she knew better.
Upon seeing my fist, she acted by pure reflex to evade the punch. She didn't fully evade the punch but it brushed her chin slightly.
I saw that my punch didn't land correctly, so I stepped back a few meters, and guess what.
After she evaded my punch, she quickly threw a back kick using her left leg ( her left back side was turned my way), but I stepped back just in time to not get hit by the kick.
She glared at me.
"Who are you. You're interrupting my work." She said.
"Your work? That's my Android you're attacking, android killer."
Her face changed.
"So you knew."
"From the start." I said. As I was talking, I glanced at Clara. Fortunately she was still functioning and not "dead".
"Well, seems like you got me. I can't let you go now that you saw my face. I'll make sure I hit your head hard you won't even remember me anymore."
I immediately went into my stance.
She smirked. At that moment, she completely looked evil.
"Well, since you're going to forget me, might as well tell you my name. I'm Bianca."
Huh. What a name.
"Well then Damien, let's have a good fight!"
God, please let me win.