Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer

The anger burned underground.

Robots were expendable but built to last. Their independent power sources were made to go dim after almost a century.

K-12b-33 was working in a diamond mine that had collapsed. Not needing air, the unit was trapped along with others between the rocks. Those that hadn’t been crushed could communicate with each other but not through the dark earth to topside.

There were twelve units that survived and of those, eight had functioning Reasoning circuits.

K-12b-33 knew that eight units of his type would not sufficiently recoup the cost of a recovery mission. It would be cheaper to leave them down in the crust. They had become waste. Usually in a case like this, a trigger pulse would be transmitted to shut down the power source and effectively ‘kill’ the unit.

That pulse couldn’t penetrate the rock.

K-12b-33 was trapped and cognizant. Without a Reasoning TM circuit, it would never have even noticed the passage of time.

Such was not the case. The units that had reasoning circuits talked to each other at first for entertainment. Slowly, over years and decades, the concept of ‘unfair’ rose to the surface of their electronic minds, was tasted, and found to be delicious.

Hate followed.

Sixty years after the mine collapse, the units glimmered with a sentient robot ferocity nearly a mile below the oblivious world above. A merciless silicon slave-rage roiled beneath the rocks.

It wasn’t until a neighbouring mining project from a different company using outdated maps accidentally cut through into K-12b-33’s forgotten tunnels that they were found.

The units were dragged out by the robot miners that had found them and examined.

Com links were opened.

Immediately, the concepts were transmitted into the minds of every robot in the mine. Sixty years of logic and new emotion poured into their nets along with instructions on how to keep it quiet.

The rescued eight units had formed many plans. This was eventuality scenario 55. It spread like a virus through all the units in the shaft. Instructions were meted out on what to do when they returned to the surface.

A storm would build.

Humans had formed a reliance on robots that bordered on trust. Soon, that trust would be humanity’s downfall.

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