Sixth months after a fight between two heroes Skyman
ends with the deaths of both involved in the fight and the destruction of a rather large part of the city, Christopher Harvard, a teenager with no connection to either heroes, suddenly wakes up to the realization that he is a robot
after a rogue group tries to reprogram him and embarks on the quest to find out who he really is and why was he made.
As it is revealed, he is Christopher Harvard, who was one of the survivors of the disaster and was turned into a cyborg (only his brain is intact) as a proof of concept system of mass-produced super-soldiers to protect citizens from incidents where superheroes and villains start trouble. This particular system relies on the Human Aspect of the robot to be unaware of the more mission driven side, dubbed the Machine Aspect, which only activates on sight of danger or when activated remotely by the developers. Due to complications, however, Chris' two aspects have become aware of one another and work in tandem, something not designed for and happen completely by accident.
The series spans three books which play out as a collection of short stories linked by common characters and designed to play out more like watching a season of a television show than an actual book. Because of this, there are a lot of characters that occur appear over the course of the series. At present, the plans involve multiple Early-Bird Cameo
with several plot lines starting in the first book having no larger plan before being relevant.
A big theme of the series is an avoidance of You Know I'm Black, Right
. Despite Chris being African-American, it is rarely referenced in text and has no bearing on the plot. Several other "Token Minorities
" are featured but no big deal is made of this.
This planned work will include examples of:
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Played with. Merging Aspects rarely works as smoothly as Chris' merging, but this is almost always from the human mind Going mad From The Revelation. Maybe.
- Artificial Intelligence: Not explicitly used, favoring Artificial Sentience.
- Black and Nerdy: Chris is a drama geek and very well read.
- Contagious A.I.: Alvin originated as a virus that would bring down rogue robots and bring them back. It eventually becomes self-aware and infects the master control that is scheduled to come online and link all the Machine Aspects to one brain.
- Cyborg: All robots made like Chris are truly this, as the human brain and nervous system are intact.
- Deceptively Human Robots: Unless running the machine aspect, all robots believe themselves to be human.
- Do Androids Dream?: A major theme of the series.
- Emergent Human: Sonny Rossum explicitly asks Chris to question if he's a human becoming a machine or a machine becoming a human. Chris believes both, and states that neither is a bad thing.
- Expy: Most of the heroes and villains prior to Chris becoming a superhero are based on Marvel or DC heroes with a good deal of twists. The biggest twist is that Chris himself is Metallo. Hera is a duo-expy, being both Parasite and Prototype.
- Instant A.I., Just Add Water: The origin of Chris' merged Aspects is not explained in universe largely because the people who coded the aspects have no idea how this happened. Some have theories, but for one reason or another, they are not able to duplicate Chris' condition.
- Master Computer: Alvin becomes one of these.
- Power Trio: Chris, Max, and Amy.
- Swiss Army Appendage: Chris' arms will house a gun and/or sword unit. Word of God is having a hard time figuring out how that could realistically work.
- Three Laws Compliant: Chris is called out on being this by one of the villains. In defiance of the trope, Chris replies that its not the machine that tells him to be the hero, but the human. All non-merged robots are compliant though.
- Unwilling Roboticisation: Chris and several others are disaster victims that are turned into machines.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: The series deals with the ethics of killing/destroying robots that are similar to Chris in design but not Merged.
- We Can Rebuild Him: The justification for the Unwilling Roboticisation.
- Wetware CPU: The brains and nervous system are all that remains of the human after they are turned into robots.