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Robotic Discipline by Authorharj
Since I was born, my dad had his head completely bald. I was always a mischievous little kid but as I got bigger, so did my punishments. I was 12 years old when it happened.
`Arthur, what were you doing in my bathroom?` asked my dad.
`Just using the bathroom,` I said though it was far from the truth.
`I told you not to go in there,` said my dad, `now go to bed.`
I went right away. My mischievousness was about to get me in a world of trouble. That night, while my eight year old was sleeping, I planned to cut his hair...WITH DAD`S RAZOR. It was around midnight when I struck. My little brother snoozed away while I cut off his hair. When I was done, He looked like an old man. I didn't know that dad would see the whole thing on my video camera that I had forgot to turn off. The next morning, my little brother cried like a baby.
`He cut my hair! He cut my hair!` he kept saying over and over again.
Dad came up to my room and said `where`s my razor?`
`I don`t know,` I answered obviously lying.
He looked over and saw the camera`s light blinking. He picked it up, rewound it, and saw me doing the whole thing. The only thing he said to me was, `Get dressed, you're going to a very different place once I finish shaving your brothers head.`
I didn't think much of it but I got dressed anyway. It was about half an hour later when I saw my brother completely bald. I laughed my head off but he was smiling. When dad came down, he said, `Since you like to laugh, I`m taking you to a very funny place. Now get in the car.`
For the first time, fear came into me. I got up and walked to the car. When I got in, dad took me on a long drive. The whole time he said nothing.
When we stopped, I was amazed to find that the car was surrounded by Marines.
My dad practically dragged me into the building.
`You can`t leave me here,` I protested.
`I`m not going to,` said Dad, `I`m going to take you home in 30 minutes. After we give you something to laugh about.`
When we walked up to the desk, a man in a lab coat started talking to my dad.
`My son needs some discipline,` said my dad.
`We can arrange that,` said the doctor, `B.C. or M.R.B.`
`M.R.B,` said my Dad.
I knew what B.C. meant: Boot Camp. I was relieved when my dad wouldn't send me there. Or so I thought.
My dad filled out paperwork and wrote a check. For how much I don`t know but the next thing I knew, two men in Military Uniform came at me. I tired to run but Dad stopped me. Then, one of the soldiers held me down while the other gave me a shot. They let me up and I tried to run again but I suddenly felt tired and then I collapsed.
I don`t know how long I was out but when I woke up, I felt like I had been hit by a train. I was lying on a table...in a Woodland Camo Uniform and Shiny Black Boots. I stood up. My head felt a little chilly and I began to wonder why. I reached up and felt my head to find I had no hair. I ran to a mirror in the room and I saw myself. I had a different face. My head looked like it never had hair on it and never would again and it shined with the reflection of the ceiling lights.
`Is this a dream?` I asked myself.
Suddenly, someone shouted, `ATTENTION ON DECK!` And my body just jumped to attention.
A man in uniform walked in.
`Did you have a good sleep, Soldier?` he asked.
`Sir, yes, sir,` I heard myself shout.
I wanted to walk away but for some reason my body wouldn't let me. I couldn't even move my eyes.
`Do you know what just happened to you?` the man shouted.
`Sir, no, sir,` I shouted again.
`Your mind was just digitized and implanted in a Military Robot Body. Your organic body has just been cryogenically frozen and will remain so until your father decides to put your mind back in your real body. And be warned, soldier, if you commit any crime punishable by law of a certain magnitude, your father or a judge can donate your body to science. Now, your father has something to say to you.`
The man in uniform left as my father came in. (I still couldn't move.)
`I didn't want to do this but you made me. Like the Major said, if you do anything that breaks the law, I can, and probably will, give your body to science. I have been told that there are many kinds of robotic bodies. The one you have now is the standard version. There are ones without certain programs such as sight, hearing, talking, and even a body with no oral or vocal parts in them. I can have you transferred into one of those bodies anytime I want but I will only do it if your act doesn't change.`
`Now, for your programming,` my dad said holding up a remote control, `You have been programmed to follow orders exactly. If you decide not to do anything I or another superior officer tells you, the programming takes over and will do the task automatically. And when it`s finished, you will stand at attention until I figure out and tell you your punishment, which will be carried out by the programming. I can also take you over by this remote. Hopefully this will do you some good. Now you`re dismissed. Go to the car.`
I did an about-face walked over to the table, picked up my hat, did another about-face, and walked out of the building with my father. As soon as I got outside, I automatically put my hat on. When we got in the car, I took it off. After we left, my dad gave control of my body back to me except for my talking. `I want you to think long and hard about what you`re going to say to your brother,` said my dad.
The entire ride home, I rubbed my head.
It was night when we got home. When I walked into the house and my little brother saw me, he laughed and laughed and laughed. I was too embarrassed to say anything back to him even if I could talk. I could see he already had shadow on his head. I started to go upstairs but my dad said, `Arthur, don`t you have something you want to say to your brother?` I turned around and nodded. `Then say it,` said my dad. I felt my voice box power up and I said, `I`m sorry for what I did to you, Larry.` `Very good,` said my Dad, `Now go to bed.` I did an about-face automatically and walked into my room. I took off my boots and uniform and got in bed. I wanted to cry but I couldn't. I hoped tomorrow would never come. Next thing I knew, my eyes got heavy and my systems shut down. I wouldn't reactivate until the next morning.
I don`t know how long my body was shut down but the next thing I knew, my eyes opened again and the world came back into view. My programming got me out of bed and made me take my uniform and boots downstairs. There, I ironed my uniform until it had a sharp crease and polish my boots until they were like mirrors. Then my programming made me take my things back into my room and put on my uniform and boots. Then it took me to the bathroom were I brushed my teeth. Don`t know why but it happened. In the mirror, I saw my head looking like it did the day before. No shadow, nothing. I also saw myself looking like a real soldier. But I felt like someones action figure.
Then my programming took me down to the living room where I started doing push-ups, sit-ups, and other things. I lost count of how many I did. When I was done, the programming stopped making me do things. I saw the time: 5 o`clock. Then a thought came through my mind that wasn't mine: I should make breakfast.
`No,` I thought, `I`m not making breakfast for the people who did this to me.`
Then the programming kicked in again. I marched into the kitchen and started getting out the equipment needed to make pancakes. I tried to stop myself but I couldn't. Next thing I knew, I had made twenty-four pancakes and it was 6:30. My dad and brother came down from their rooms and I automatically put the pancakes and syrup on the table along with some sausage I cooked as well with some freshly squeezed orange juice. Then I snapped to attention.
`How was your first morning as a robot?` asked my father.
`Sir, good, sir!` my programming made me shout.
`Good,` said my dad, `but no need to shout.`
`Sir, sorry, sir,` my programming made me say in a normal voice.
`Did you use the recipe to make breakfast?` asked my dad.
`Sir, to the letter, sir,` my programming made me say.
`Are you wondering why your programming made you make breakfast when I didn't tell you last night?` asked my dad.
`Sir, yes, sir,` I honestly said though I would've been more sarcastic without my programming.
`In a way, I did tell you,` said my dad holding up the remote, `When you were deactivated, I programmed you to with the remote. And I know you said you wouldn't do it because you`re standing at attention. I only wanted you to make breakfast then sit at the table when you saw me. Or maybe your just being respectful. We`ll see. Can you move?`
I tried to but my body wouldn't budge.
`I see you can`t,` said my dad, `So while I`m eating, I will be thinking of a punishment for you. Now until I do, do the dishes.`
`Sir, yes, sir,` my programming made me say.
Then I marched over to the sink, and started doing the dishes.
`Oh, and another thing,` said my dad who pointed the remote at me, pushed a button, and said, `No talking.`
I felt my voice box shut down instantly.
My little brother was laughing the whole time since he came down. I wanted to rip out his voice box but knew I couldn't even if I wasn't being controlled at the time because my dad would give my body to science and I`d be stuck in this body forever.
I tried to ignore my brothers laughing. It eventually stopped. Both my brother and dad were eating like kings and I was stuck being their servant. I finished and put away the dishes long before they had finished eating so my programming made me snap to attention once again.
`Face away from us,` said my dad. And I did an about-face and was stuck at attention for I don`t know how long. Unable to move my body, my face, my eyes, or even blink. I struggled but it was no use. I was stuck.
Finally, I heard dishes rattling and my dad walked in front of me.
`Your punishment will be to mow both lawns with the push-mower and pull the weeds out of the flower garden. And no talking,` said my dad. My little brother laughed again.
When my dad said `dismissed,` I got my hat, marched out the door and started mowing the front yard. Some of my friends saw me like in my new body. Some stopped and starred while others laughed. I heard one shout, `He`s in `at home bootcamp` now!` and they all laughed. Another shouted `say something.` I wanted to but my programming kept me from doing so. They all laughed as one said, `He`s a robot now!` Again, I wanted to cry.
After I did the front yard, I moved to our half-acre back yard. Then I pulled every last weed out of all five flower gardens. I hated every minute of it. When I was done, I came back inside. I automatically took off my hat and boots put them by the door. Since I didn't sweat anymore I didn't stink but I was dirty. I walked up to my dad and he said, `Your punishment is finished now got take a shower.` I mouthed out, `sir, yes, sir,` because I still couldn't talk.
I marched up to the bathroom on my own where another uniform and pair of boots were waiting. I took my shower and got dressed again.
I wasn't in the shower for very long but a lot of dirt came off of me. I liked the feeling of the water on my bald head. When I was finished in the shower, got dressed, and left the bathroom, my programming took me downstairs. I didn't know why. But I found out soon after. When I got downstairs, I was surprised to see my brother holding my remote.
`Dad`s gone for the rest of the day. He won`t be back until tonight. And you know what that means,` said my brother.
`Great,` I thought, `He`s gonna work me like a dog.`
Larry typed something into the remote and another thought that wasn't mine ran through my mind.
`Listen to Larry,` it said. I didn't know what to do. If I did that, I`d be bound for trouble. If I didn't, I`d do it anyway. I had no choice. I decided to do what he said.
`Duct tape me to a chair,` he said.
`No,` I thought. Then my programming took over. I marched into the pantry and got a very big roll of duct tape. Then I marched back into the living room. `I`m out here,` said Larry. Larry was sitting on a lawn chair on the back porch. I walked up to him and used up the whole roll of tape which started out with an 8 inch radius. I had him completely taped down. Then he had me do something that I never expected. `Sew my mouth shut,` he said. This time my programming took over instantly. The next thing I knew, I had made three passes across his mouth with the needle and thread. When I was done, the programming quit, my dad walked in, and I knew I was in trouble.
`What were you thinking?!` shouted my dad. My brother had already started to act like he was forced into this by pretending to cry.
`It wasn't my fault,` I mouthed out because my voice was still gone.
`Get in the car!` shouted dad. He pulled out his cell phone and dialed a number. `Hello Dr.` was the last thing I heard as I was walking to the car. It was about 15 minutes later when Larry had been cut out of the chair but his mouth was still sewn shut. We drove to the hospital where Larry was taken inside with a doctor.
After that, my dad and I drove back to the place where my real body was being kept. I didn't know why, but I knew it couldn't be good.
`Out of the car,` said dad pushing a button on the remote. I instantly obeyed and followed him into the building. He had taken control of me. When we got inside, I was told to wait fifty paces away from the front desk while my dad talked to the doctor. Then I was shut down and awoke in a similar room as I had several days earlier. Except this time, I was strapped to the table...
I couldn't move. Not only was I strapped to the table, but the rest of my body was shut down. My dad walked in.
`Explain yourself,` he said, `Why did you do that to your brother?`
`I didn't, Sir,` I said, `He used the remote and made me do it.`
`Really?` said my dad sternly, `Did you leave a camera on to record it?`
`No, Sir,` I said, `I didn't.`
`Well,` said my dad, `I have heard Larry`s story and I know what you were like before a robot. And I have made a decision: I`m giving your body to science.`
`What! No!` I shouted, `You can`t do that to me! I didn't do anything!`
My dad silenced me with the remote.
`And I`m having them give you some new programming. You will be completely controlled 24/7,` said my dad, `And if you manage to do anything else to your brother, I`ll have them remove your voice synthesizer too.`
Then I was shut down again. Next thing I saw was my little brother`s face with the stitch scars on his lips. I wanted to strangle him for what he did to me but I was standing at attention and couldn't move.
`Follow me,` said Dad. I obeyed and followed him to the car.
For the next few months, I was a prisoner in my own body. Although I liked the way I looked and the militaristic attitude I was programmed to respond with, I didn't like the thought that I could never be organic again. Then one day my dad did something I never expected. He had me sit down next to him and talked to me.
`Arthur,` said my dad, `I`m sorry.`
`Sir, for what, sir?` I asked.
`You can speak freely now,` said my dad, `I`m sorry I jumped to conclusions that day I gave your body to science. The scientists at the base have looked at your memory banks and found that everything you said was true. What can I do to make it up to you?`
`I think that since Larry likes causing trouble for a robot, he should get the same treatment I got for causing trouble,` I said.
`Consider it done,` said my dad, `I still want to make it up to you for making you act like a soldier.`
It`s okay, dad,` I said, `I like being a robot. Cool clothes, never needing to shave my head, and being able to get things done in a timely manner. But I do want to be able to have some freedom like I was without the new programming.`
`Alright,` said my dad, `I`ll have the new programming removed and give you back your freedom. Anything else?`
`Yes,` I said, `Do you think I could go to Military School for Robots?`
`I`ll see if there is one. If there is one, you can go. If there isn`t one, I`ll have one started. But you`ll need to get a few of your friends to go to it too.`
`Why don`t we talk about this more on the way to the base?` I asked.
`Alright,` said my dad, `Go get Larry and put him in the car. Tie him up if you have to.`
`Yes, sir,` I said.
I went into Larry`s room, tied him up, and put him in the car. It wasn't long before I was in a body that looked like my old self. I had my freedom back but was still able to be programmed with my remote. Larry was put in a body with no voice synthesizer. A special treatment. He looked like my old robot body now, only smaller and his mouth didn't open. I was also given his remote for one week.
After I gave back Larry`s remote, my dad started a Robot Military School. I talked to my friends and most of them joined with no obligations. However, some of my friends were forced into it by their parents. Larry and most of his friends also joined. Me, Larry, and several other boys decided to go bald. Most of the boy just had buzzed hair or high`n`tights or some other short haircuts.
On my first day of school, I was given a platoon and command of the drill team. It`s been years since then. Most of my friends liked being in the military school. Even Larry liked it after he got his voice back. We all have decided to remain robots. They were all transferred into adult robots when they turned 18. Several others liked being human better. I couldn't blame them. When I was leading the drill team or the platoon, they were all forced to do what I told them to when they didn't cooperate.
It`s been 20 years and I've remained in this 12-year-olds body. Now I`m the Headmaster of the Military School my father started and I train others who have turned into robots. There`s even a Girl`s Robot Military School opening across town. I really started something. That`s my story.