I was in stasis for an entire week; it was the most humiliating moment of my entire existence. I clung to what little existence I had left in me for so long, even if I didn't think a single word in the meantime. I just wanted to survive...and destroy that blue hedgehog.
The next time I awoke, it was unexpected, to say the very least. When I looked around, I couldn't really tell where I was
all I did know was that I could hear the sound of bubbling liquid and steam. I soon realized that I was in the junk furnace, and was about to be dropped into the melter. Those three fools were standing there, completely unaware that I was awake. I don't know what allowed me to reactivate, but I do know that it would prove crucial for survival.
Decoe: It's almost a shame that we have to destroy it. It really did a number on Sonic
Bocoe: Yeah, but you know the doctor; he'll gladly build an empire to rule the world but can't bring himself to actually harm anyone.
Bokkun: Well, good riddance to bad rubbish I say. Besides, the doctor is almost finished with the improved model. It should be a lot easier to control than this thing, especially without that stupid 'free will' program.
Those words hit me hard. Not only was I being scrapped along with my unique programming
I was being replaced as well. And with an inferior machine, no less. I couldn't handle it; I had to stop this. I mustered every ounce of strength I had, but I couldn't move; my power supply was still extremely low. I couldn't escape from the disassembly line
What happened next was, in my opinion, northing but sheer dumb luck: the disassembly line broke down and started to short-circuit. It seemed that those three idiots had forgotten to perform maintenance on it for a while.
Bocoe: Bokkun, look what you've done now! You were supposed to perform maintenance on this thing days ago.
Bokkun: Uh-uh; it was your turn Decoe.
Decoe: That's absurd; I performed my regular check last month! You can't blame this on me!
The three of them started bickering as they always do; this provided the time I needed. I set my reserve power cells into overdrive
and I powered up my jets. The three of them were so dumb-founded when they saw me levitate into the air and blast off. They didn't bother to follow me; they couldn't unfreeze from the terror my rising had inflicted.
I managed to sneak into the supply closest in the doctor's workshop and stole a few extra power cells, more than enough to keep me charged for the next few months. I even got a glimpse of what he was working on: my replacement. It was a lot larger than me and seemed like a nice machine
to steal, at least. I left the doctor a gift in that machine; knowing him, he wouldn't figure out what had happened until later, and from there, I flew out into the open air and across the land once again.
I was beside myself with confusion. The doctor had built me for one purpose, and he couldn't even carry it out. Why? Was it because he underestimated the power I had? Was it fear that I might turn on him with such power? Or was it that no other machine the doctor created had ever managed to actually hurt the hedgehog so severely? I had so many questions and no answers, but I needed them fast. I decided that the best source of information would be my target, that blue hedgehog. If I could just get him alone for a few minutes
But that never happened. The doctor's coordinates led me right to his home, which was filled with his friends. I suppose that wasn't too surprising, but what was interesting is that his leg, as far as I could tell, was no longer broken. My scans indicated that his body healed incredibly fast and there were no lasting injuries that I could see.
Sonic: Knuckles, I can't thank you enough. I honestly didn't think that the Master Emerald would be able to do something like this.
Knuckles: Well, we all know that it houses more than enough power to keep others healthy; I rarely ever get the chance to eat, but the Emerald still keeps me around.
Amy: Though it's not like you'd ever leave it anyways if you had a choice.
I looked on at them and searched through my memory banks for this Master Emerald, but I could find nothing. It appears that the doctor was not kind enough to give me that information
so I stole it from him. It didn't take long to break into his security files digitally; apparently the doctor didn't believe much in complex passwords. This Master Emerald
apparently it is a limitless beacon of power whose might could control and pacify the Chaos Emeralds, another topic I had to learn about in the process. The doctor's notes suggested that, as strange as some would think, the Master Emerald may have been sentient to some degree. I couldn't believe it; how could a simple rock be sentient? Then again, I suppose I was being both the pot and the kettle in that reference. Interestingly enough, it seems that the Master Emerald had the capacity to actually power machines, but it was unable to do perform as well with living creations. I pondered why this was so, as the Chaos Emeralds (from what I could gather) could work on both machines and living creatures.
Perhaps this gem was what I needed. I had to show the doctor that he was wrong; I needed to give him a reason to not scrap me. But in order to do that, I needed sensitive information
information that I could never get from the likes of them. Not after what I had done to that hedgehog
The only other person that would know more about that gem was the doctor
and I wasn't exactly on his good side at the moment. But I had no choice; I had to go back.
My journey back to the fortress was a lot more difficult than I had anticipated. The entire place was packed with defense drones of all sorts. It seems that the doctor learned of my awakening and, perhaps after seeing what I had done, decided that it would be in his best interests to keep himself safe. What a fool.
In a sense, charging through the fortress at full speed, destroying everything in my path
it felt ironic. Was this how Sonic did things? Would he simply charge straight through everything Eggman had and keep right on going without stopping? He seemed to have a personality that fit that kind of activity.
When I finally got to the control room, all four of them were there. Apparently they had been watching the camera footage; they must have been, because my sudden entrance just about scared the doctor to death.
Eggman: Gaaaaaahhh! Metal
it's nice to see you again. Where
exactly have you been? Hahaha
His sarcasm wasn't working; I could see that he feared something about me. Those other three were too scared to even say a word.
Metal Sonic: So, doctor, is this what you've been doing lately? Making my replacement and trying to throw me into the scrap melter? That's not a very nice thing to do, you know, especially considering I wasn't actually inactive.
Eggman: Metal...I can explain
Metal Sonic: Save it! You tried to scrap me because I couldn't get the job done right, is that? I want answers!
Eggman: Metal, please, I can explain! Maybe my judgment wasn't so good that day. I honestly didn't expect you to perform as well as you did. You went far beyond what I had hoped for
Metal Sonic: That's why you tried to scrap me? Because I could have done what you couldn't?
Eggman: Metal, try to understand. I designed you for the purpose of beating Sonic, but not to actually destroy him; that simply wouldn't be right. Your mind is different from those of other robots, so I can understand if you are confused about this situation; please calm down, and we can talk about this like civilized folk
Metal Sonic: I don't think so. You started this, and now you're going to help me finish it. What do you know about the Master Emerald?
The Master Emerald? How
how could you possibly know
Metal Sonic: Let's just say you need more original passwords in your databases.
Bokkun: I told him he shouldn't use the names of his favorite foods for that
Metal Sonic: Silence!
That little freak shut his trap. I was so angry at everything that had been happening
there's a word that I had only recently been introduced to, yet I knew it as a feeling that I had almost constantly in my mind.
Metal Sonic: Now, what do you know about the Master Emerald in regards to its use as a power source?
Eggman: Power source
Metal, you are not seriously suggesting that
Metal Sonic: That Emerald keeps alive that red echidna and Sonic
it healed his wounds like they were nothing
what kind of power is that? How is it even possible? The Chaos Emeralds have the power to work on both living and non-living creations, yet the Master emerald should not
at least, that's what your data says. Then how is this possible?!
Eggman was silent for a few moments. In only a few short hours, I had read and come to understand everything that needed to be known about the Master Emerald and the Chaos Emeralds, and yet there was something missing
and the doctor knew it.
Metal, I don't know what you are thinking or what sort of logic you are using to vindicate your actions, but if you want the truth, here it is: I don't know. If I knew the answer to that question, I would answer it, but I don't. The Chaos Emeralds are easy to understand because they each work together to amplify their own power. But the Master Emerald
it's power is so immense that there is no way to properly analyze it. Its effects on machines are clear in most cases, but its effects on living creatures vary immensely
Eggman went on and on about the properties of the Emeralds, and as I listened, I couldn't help but feel that he was only sharing this information out of fear. When he was finished, all I had learned was that it could possibly have some intense healing properties on living creatures, but that was it. I learned, in truth, nothing new
and I still wonder if that was my fault or not.
Metal Sonic: Is there any chance that I could use its power?
Eggman: What? Metal, what you are suggesting is absurd. Your body is designed for speed and mobility; it can't handle that kind of power. Your V. Maximum Overdrive Attack alone proved that; the amount of energy you would be infused with would be thousands of times greater if you tried to use the Master Emerald's power. Granted, the V. Max. would allow you to draw energy from it, but
Metal Sonic: Good, that's all I wanted to hear.
The doctor was taken aback by this rude interruption. My true reason for using it was not what I hinted towards; I had no intention of actually absorbing its energy. I was convinced that, despite the fact it was nothing more than a gem to some, it could potentially be alive; his files more than proved the possibility in my mind.
Metal Sonic: Doctor
I need you to contact Sonic immediately and tell him that I want another race. Tell him to meet me
in the Trojeca Wastelands. Tell him we will start from there and that the finish area will be Angel Island. This time, I won't let him out of my sight. I will prove that I deserve to exist!
Metal Sonic: Do it! Or I'll scrap all of you!
Eggman: Gaaah! No, don't! Please Metal, we can work this
I didn't stay around to hear him finish his plea; I had things to do. I knew that the Trojeca Wastelands, what was left after Eggman had leveled it and used the place as a storage area for toxic waste in his earlier years, were nearly on the opposite side of the planet and would give plenty of space for me to show that hedgehog that he wasn't the only speed demon out there. I didn't know what effect it would have on Sonic, but I knew that I would be fine. There are no hills, no mountains, not even a bump; the place was as flat as one can get. This would be the perfect opportunity to show the doctor that I was worth trusting with Sonic's defeat, even if I did have a bad way of showing it.
I couldn't just sit around and wait, though; knowing the doctor, he would be more likely to send that fool Bokkun out, and for some reason, I had a feeling that Sonic wouldn't agree. I had to ensure that the message was brought to him
As I traveled across the ground, I pondered about the Master Emerald. A sentient stone
was it even possible? I had been in existence for only a short while, and yet I felt like something was wrong. Machines are not supposed to think; they are supposed to be commanded and programmed to think certain ways. Why was I questioning the point of my existence, then? Who was I, really? What was I? I figured that, considering the Master Emerald was thought to be sentient by the doctor, it may have some answers. And energy, at least for machines, is about as universal of an information highway as binary is. If I could tap into its power, maybe, just maybe
I could come to understand my existence
and my true purpose
When I finally arrived at that hedgehog's house, I waited for Bokkun to arrive. If anything else, it would at least give me some pleasure to scare the programming right out of that puny wimp. Sure enough, he arrived about 28 minutes later. I expected him to suddenly scare Sonic and be his usual, pointless self, but it seems he wasn't quite over out last meeting. As I heard him explain to Sonic what my orders were, I could hear the fear in his words
that was another feeling I learned to recognize quite well, even though I felt none in me
or did I?
As I expected, Sonic immediately turned down Bokkun's offer, though he did seem to notice that Bokkun was a lot more paranoid than usual. He kept looking all around him, shaking from fear
well, I guess it's hard to call someone paranoid when there really is something out there watching them.
I had grown tired of waiting, so I entered his quaint little house unannounced, something that scared Bokkun so much he flew away crying his pathetic eyes out
The two of us locked eyes for the first time since our initial meeting.
Sonic: So you really are still here. I figured Eggman had already scrapped you by now
Metal Sonic: Don't be so sure of yourself. I plan on showing the doctor just how powerful I am without having to resort to violence
though I honestly wouldn't mind it.
Sonic: Just what is your deal, anyways?
Metal Sonic: I was built to defeat you in battle, and defeat you I will. There will be no rings this time, nor any interruptions; this is a race. I want to see just what makes you so special amongst the rest of these
You really aren't like any of his other machines, are you? Free will...never thought a machine could be capable of such a thing
At the moment, I realized that Sonic was right; it shouldn't be possible. All machines are designed with set programming and pre-determined information. I was no different; the doctor had to load all of my information in himself, so I did not acquire it from experience
I had it all to begin with. Knowledge and no pre-conceived notions of existence or purpose
was I truly the result of these factors coming together? Was that why I questioned everything I could think of?
Sonic: Well, I've got to give you credit; you certainly did a good number on me. I can't remember the last time one of Eggman's machines actually hurt me. You must be really desperate if you want to race in the Trojeca Wastelands
Metal Sonic: Desperation has nothing to do with it. There are no obstacles there; it's nothing but flat ground and thus no chance of either one of us gaining a terrain advantage. It is the perfect place for a true test of speed.
Sonic: And Angel Island as the finish line
Metal Sonic: It's a place where everyone
the doctor, his robots, and your friends
can all see who the true winner is. No tricks, no surprises, nothing; just the two of us.
Sonic: I'm supposed to believe a machine that was built by Eggman? Forget it; I'm not falling for any of his schemes.
Metal Sonic: If you don't show up, the doctor will be the last thing to be concerned about
because I will tear you limb from limb.
Sonic went to say something, but stopped. His pause gave me a sense of power for once
I was the one demanding this of him, not the doctor. If anything else, the doctor wasn't truly involved in the incident; he merely provided me the information I needed. This race would give me exactly what I wanted: the chance to finally show that cocky hedgehog just what I was made off
the chance to prove my worth to my creator
and the chance to find answers for the questions that filled my neural network. All in all, I couldn't see how I could have lost, regardless of the outcome. I wanted to become something more than this
though the reason why, I would not learn until later
fine; you've got yourself a race. But this time, I won't hold back.
Metal Sonic: How amusing; you held back for the sake of me before? Cute. Then I'll be sure to return the favor
when I pass the finish line first and drive you into the ground!
I left immediately after those words; I wasn't going to give that hedgehog the chance to respond. Tomorrow, we would finally dual on even terms, and I could finally get what I wanted.
I often look back at this day and think about everything I was feeling. My mind was a jumble of mixed questions on just about everything I could think of
my rational thoughts were few and far between
and I couldn't stop thinking about him. That blasted hedgehog
what was it that made him so different from the others? Why was I the only one built to resemble those creatures, and why Sonic of all life-forms? The doctor has had his fair share of issues with all of them
so why bother making just one copy? Was it really because he was just testing a new program, or was it because he and Sonic shared more than a twisted rivalry?
The questions kept on coming, but the answers avoided me like the plague. But no more; tomorrow, I would finally get the answers I deserved, one way or another. Tomorrow, I would find my place in the world
I would beat Sonic at his own game
I would finally BE Sonic
And I would find the meaning of my existence at long last
or at least, so I thought.