The Ink Well Weekly Fiction Prompt #5: A Matter of Time / Eva and Awa

Dear friends who love literature.

In response to the evocative invitation to recreate a situation about the idea of A Matter of Time The Ink Well Weekly Fiction Prompt #5: A Matter of Time

It is my entry to @theinkwell's call.


Eva and Awa

In the spring of the year 2058, in Dublin. In a secret location Awa was launched into space.

Ewa was lovingly conceived as the robotic version of her creator, Eva. She was constructed from an intelligent titanium alloy. Internally she was an amalgam of circuits capable of differentiating the world, of analysing it from different perspectives, even in the simplest human way.

On the outside, no one could tell her apart from a human, nor from the clones that began to abound in that half-century. Eve, whom she conceived "humanly" as her mother, was one of them. A clone to whom her condition opened all doors. The best universities in the world competed for her. She completed several scientific and humanistic degrees including a doctorate in psychiatry. As an appearance Awa chose to maintain, although she could change it at will, a family resemblance to Eva, her creator.

She had, in tune, the whole history of her ancestry, she a robot, her mother a clone of her grandmother, an expert in the chemistry of materials and biomolecules as her great-grandmother had been.

The 2058 mission was her test, she had to assist human astronauts, some clones among them, in engineering work. After three years they returned with the mission fully accomplished. When Eva reviewed the contents of Awa's cards, she found a profusion of data that had to do with human-to-human behaviour.

There was also a series of data that formed, on the screen, images that could be classified as artistic. An analysis of the provenance of the data revealed it to have been obtained by hacking into the world's major libraries.

Despite Eva's - generally - imperturbable countenance and her coolness in assessing events, a pleasant, warm, inner sensation seemed to sweep over her, making her smile faintly. The images she was looking at always showed the same woman, but in front of a different object and setting:

In a paradisiacal place, naked, next to an apple tree, amazed at Heron's automatons, attending to the plague patients, admiring the steam engine of Hieronymus Ayanz... He watched her piloting aeroplanes, dressed in a white dressing gown among glass jars, emerging from a combination of binary numbers, looking down from space at the planet earth...
Eva shuddered and brooded. Awa seemed to express a desire to travel through time. She had not programmed her for this. When Eva finished watching the images, she decided to rest for a couple of hours to reflect. She called her mother, informed her that she would arrive in six hours. She was to consult with her about some impressions of Awa's journey. Before leaving, she checked Awa's self-actualisation processes. She was surprised.

Skirting the River Liffey in her ancient magnetic levitation vehicle, Eva was deep in thought. Awa had acquired an impressive autonomy.

The conversation with her mother confirmed the feeling that Awa's programme could be considered a turning point in the development of humanity. A boundary that could become a dilemma.

Arriving home, he decided to establish a conversation with Awa. She announced that she wanted her to offer her a vision of herself, as a robot, but from the point of view of humanity.

Awa was a machine. He was quick to respond:
"It is urgent to consider, in the programming of the next prototypes, the random memory of a childhood."

Eva looked at her in admiring bewilderment. She didn't answer. She was still thinking very slowly.

He was again surprised, tenderly, to hear her:
"I have you as my mother, but I miss the image of a father."

The end.

Thank you very much for reading.



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