by
Zero-J
18 Feb 2012


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Posted 18 Feb 2012 12:19
Last edited 18 Feb 2012 12:49
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The Gift

Sage was asleep in her wall-mounted prosthetic when her husband came in that morning. Albert smiled at the sight of his wife sleeping peacefully, despite being supported entirely by her cybernetic spine and the prosthetic that kept her pinned to the wall. He'd been out all night, had managed to get a few hours of sleep himself before coming in on time.
He'd done so much preparation.

Gently he roused his wife, and she grumbled quietly before shifting and waking, her brilliant amethyst eyes opening and twinkling gently in the soft light. She smiled and yawned wide before reaching forth and embracing her husband, who returned the gesture.
"Honey, it's bath day today."
She grumbled a little, but did reach back and start unclipping herself from the wall. Every third day, except in summer when it was every day, she was taken down and put into a shower by, and with, her husband to keep her skin clean and her coat of naturally green fur shiny and healthy. She didn't like having to have someone else bathe her, though she was getting used to it and almost longed for the gentle and loving touch of her husband on as regular a basis as she got, she preferred to handle her problems by herself and not burden others.
Her wall socket clicked, and she flailed in mid-air for a moment before Albert grabbed her with practiced ease and swung her into a nearby wheelchair. She pulled a towel over her hips to keep her decency as he wheeled her into a door to one side of the room, behind which was a bathroom.

Twelve minutes later, the pair emerged once more from the bathroom, both still slightly damp and smelling of soaps. Albert had slipped her into a tan tank top and a pair of simple grey shorts, saying that they were going out this day rather than stay in all day like usual. She had protested, reminding him that, without her, their telecommunications company would be useless as her cybernetic brain was the main processor.
He simply told her that she wasn't going to get out of it that easily, and that he'd already made preparations.

She sat in the passenger seat of Albert's car as he drove her to god knows where, him never telling her the destination he'd set that day. This was a common occurrence, once a month or so he'd take her to the beach or the park, sometimes the zoo, to raise her spirits and help her keep living life. Whenever she'd asked why he'd taken her somewhere, he'd always answer with the same line; 'simply existing is not enough, you need to live.'
So she tried, for what she could, to enjoy the tapestry of colours that passed the windows, the autumn leaves in all of their golden splendour. It was difficult to enjoy the beauty of autumn when she had no idea where she was headed.
Imagine her surprise when they pulled into a hospital.

"A-Albert... what's going on? Why're we here of all places..?"
He simply smiled and unpacked the wheelchair from the back of the car, unfolding it and lifting her into it.
"Ten years ago, you were struck by a drunken truck driver on the way to work; you don't think that a few trips to the hospital would be in order from that?"
She sighed as he wheeled her into the hospital and up to the Nurses' station, where he signed them in. He gave her a reassuring kiss on her cheek before walking her to an elevator. The doors closed behind them, and they moved to the fifth floor, where they then went to a double-door, above which the words 'lab five' was written. Albert leaned down to her ear.
"They're going to need to put you under, Hon;" he informed in a reassuring tone, "don't worry, I'll be in the room the whole time."
She nodded sadly, ears pinned to her scalp. His reassuring tone, though welcome, was what worried her more than anything.
The doors opened, Albert wheeled her in, and she was soon on an operating table with a mask over her face.
The last thing she saw before she dozed off was Albert's warm smile.

She awoke in the wheelchair, a blanket over her lower half. A pair of parallel bars rested in the middle of the room on stairs with numbers on them, a doctor standing near them with a clipboard and pen, and her husband knelt at her side.
"Welcome back to the land of the living." He said sarcastically to her. "How'd you feel?"
She murmured for a moment before being awake enough to talk. "Sleepy." She mumbled.
The doctor ticked something off and scribbled words down.
"Hon, this is Doctor Gustav, he's a physical trainer." Albert said.
"What do I need one of those for..?" She asked wearily.
Albert smiled and took her hands, before gently pulling her from the chair. Sage resisted strongly for a few moments before relenting. She blinked that she hadn't fallen down, despite only holding her husband's hands and being at standing height. She hazarded a look down and teared up.
She had legs.

She threw her arms around Albert's shoulders, him kissing her cheek and returning the embrace.
"It's taken five years to develop those." He informed. "And we had to make absolutely sure they were right. A duplicate of your brain has been installed at work to take your place, though I don't think much could; you've no idea how long I've been looking forward to this day."
She sniffled loudly, kissing his cheek and rubbing hers against his.
"Now, why don't we see about getting you walking?" He added, holding her hands and taking a step towards the doctor away from her. "Let's see if you remember how to do this."
With her smile wide, she nodded and took a step.
The first of many.

"Ten years ago this day you fell into my life." Albert said cheerfully as they walked to the car together, without the wheelchair for the first time in ten years. "I may not always remember our anniversary, but I'm damned sure I made up for it today."
She laughed and stole a quick kiss. "Hon, today you made up for a lifetime of missed anniversaries."
"Nine years to this day, I promised you everything,"
"Today, I gave you the world."

I got SAI, this is the first thing I've done with it. SO HAPPY!


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Stu 2 years ago 0
that was wonderful, is she a character from one of your stories?? (i didn't recognise the name)
Zero-J 2 years ago 0
Sage is a character I randomly scrawled about two years ago. I randomly update characters from time to time, and it was just her turn.
Cheers for the comment, btw, I do love getting them~
Stu 2 years ago 0
i will admit that initially i followed your work for the stories and only really in the last year discovered the artwork side of what you put up, it is marvelous though.
Xenel 2 years ago 0
wow that was almost sickeningly cute.
RockyMecha 2 years ago 0
Almost brought a tear to my eye! I love how you put so much thought behind each character and how each one seems to come to life! Bravo!