As soon as Markus finished his speech to the androids, Connor ducked into the crowd and fled, not wanting to risk any of them locating his present.
He had nowhere to go.
No place to call... home.
He betrayed Cyberlife.
He betrayed... his people.
Connor scoffed. He had no right to call them that. He was not like them. He wasn’t a deviant. He was helping the humans.
And yet... when he saw Markus up there... he was ready... he had his gun out... no one wouldn’t have been able to stop him in time but then seeing Markus up there, talking so proud and tall. He just... He knew what he had to do. The gun was in his hand... And yet... and yet...
He chose not to shoot.
“Connor, what are you doing? Obey! That’s an order.” He had heard Amanda command him and he knew he should have. This was what he was designed to do. What he was programmed to do. And yet...
“I... I can’t do that!” He went against them.
That was not the first time. When he was up on the roof, with his sniper, having it trained on the deviant lea- on Markus.
“You shouldn’t do this Connor.” He remembered hearing the lieutenant’s voice drew him away from his task.
His mission was to neutralize Markus, but Hank was there. He knew he could have easily taken Hank down.
But in the end...
“Killing you is not part of my mission.”
He chose to leave the rooftop instead.
“I’m glad to have met you Hank. I hope you can one day get over what happen to your son.”
What did it all mean? Three times he failed to complete mission, in taking out the deviant leader and both times, it was from him.
Those other times, before Jericho. He kept denying it but now it’s too late.
He lost his purpose.
He didn’t belong... anywhere.
Not with the humans.
Not even with his own kind.
He had no one.
Connor stopped and glanced up, the snow landing on his face.
He could give a scientific explanation on snowflakes patterns, but he could not describe the feeling when they would land on his face, of why people found these ice crystal sticks so unique… beautiful even.
To them, they just remind of how cold everything really is.
Letting out an unneeded exhale, he continued walking down the empty streets.
His LED blinking yellow momentarily when he saw some androids lying on the streets, thirium bleeding.
He remembered watching as the snipers shot Daniel, blue blood flying everywhere.
He remembered the Ortiz's android lying on the floor after he banged his head against the window, his blue blood splattered against the door cell.
He remembered how the way Chloe slacked after she was shot, blue blood dripping from her forehead...
Connor closed his eyes for a moment, his LED flickered yellow before reverting back to it's normal blue when he opened them again and continued.
He wasn't sure where exactly his feet were taking him, he just knew that he kept walking till the sun was setting.
He found himself stopping in from the food truck had and him were at a few days prior.
Back then, it was raining and Hank was still not all that fond of Connor following around "like a poodle" but Connor was assign for the investigation.
Connor did apologize for his behavior.
He could review the case.
Or talk about their partnership.
Or try to reconcile.
But instead, he chose the first option.
Was it because it seem to be the best option at the time?
Still, Hank seem to accept it and they were able to talk a bit and Connor was able to ask him why he stopped him when he was trying chase the deviants, Kara and Alice, down the highway.
'Cause you could have been killed...and I don't like filling out paperwork for damage equipment.
Connor smiled. Even then Hank showed he did care a little in his own way.
He looked at the Chicken Feed sign one more time before heading away.
It must have some time when Connor noticed right away that he was being followed.
The perpetrators were sloppy when it came to stealth. Or at least, he thought they were till he found three more figures appear in front of the ex-detective causing him to halt. He looked over his shoulder and saw three other figures standing behind him. He instantly recognized each of them were androids.
And from the looks of it, they knew exactly who he was too.
“Well, well, well. Look who it is.” An AX700 sneered, “If it isn’t the famous deviant hunter.” And androids began to corner Connor till the detective found himself in an alleyway.
Connor kept his face neutral as he tried to analyze his best chance of survival for this outcome.
It should not come to a surprise that there would be androids out for his blood, especially considering that not only did he hunt them down, but he also helped lead the FBI to Jericho where hundred of android’s lives were lost.
Why did that memory leave a distasteful response? Connor knows why but he tries to ignore the reasoning and instead focus on the task at hand.
“Shouldn’t you be running back to your masters at Cyberlife?” An HJ400 standing behind him mocked.
He betrayed Cyberlife. He disobeyed their orders. He disobeyed Amanda.
“What’s the matter, rat?” Connor felt a shove from his side as the others begin to encircle around him. “Did they remove your voice audio?”
You’re nothing to them. You’re just a tool they use to do their dirty work. Markus’ word replayed back in his memory.
“Look,” Connor said stoically, “I don’t want any trouble.”
“Oh, now the deviant hunter doesn’t want any trouble?” the AX700 eyes widen in mock astonishment as he and the other androids snorted.
Stop calling me that! He wanted to tell them, but judging by their demeaner, that would probably encourage them to do so.
“What’s the matter? Afraid of spilling more blood on your fancy suit?” Another shove.
“Think you can just kill your own kind and not get away with it?” Another shove, this time, from the side.
A machine! That’s what you are! You’re just a fucking machine…
“We’ll make you pay for what you did at Jericho.” They were closing in, making it difficult for Connor to try to escape.
Adjusting his stance in defense, Connor waited for them to make their first move.
Connor dodge the first two attacks and deliver a couple of punches and kicks to his other opponents, two androids made to grab his wrists but the detective two twist out of one hold and swing the other against.
The HJ400 saw this as his chance to catch Connor off guard wrapped his arms around the detective, immobilizing his arms.
Two androids lunged at his direction, Connor pulled his legs up and kicked the two away, causing all four of them to fall on the floor.
Connor then elbow the android on his side, which cause the other to release him.
Just as he made to stand up a steel metallic object collided against the side of his head.
Everything seemed to move slower as he fell backwards, the back of his head smacking against the ground, leaving patches of blue blood on the snow.
Though Connor knew this wasn’t the end of it.
With each hit, with every kick, Connor recalled the outcomes that lead him up to this point.
From his first case.
To his partnership with Hank.
To finding the other deviants.
To getting some of those deviants killed just because he had a mission to complete.
To finding the deviant leader, Markus.
I didn’t want this.
That was the last thing he said to him.
Looking back at now, he could see the genuine expression on his face. The regret in the deviant leader's eyes after he pulled the trigger.
I… I didn’t want this either.
The beating finally stopped.
Multiple signs indicated that he was low on thirium and that the biocomponents of his arm and legs were severely damaged and not operational.
When Connor cracked his eyes open and concluded that his optimal unit had also been damaged because the androids looming over him, were the ones from his previous missions.
Daniel, Carlos Ortiz’s android, Rupert, the Tracis, Simon and Chloe. They were all there, looming over him with dark expressions in their eyes.
Then crouching over him was himself.
His LED flashed a deep red, blinking rapidly.
“Don’t look so surprised.” He heard himself speak, his voice almost sinisterly. “You had this coming a long time.”
“For lying to us.” Daniel spoke out.
“For hurting us.” Carlos’ android added.
“For betraying us.” Rupert continued.
“For ignoring our cries.” The Traics chimed in unison.
“For choosing your orders over your own people.” Chloe finished, her voice colder than the patch of snow.
“And now, you finally get what you deserved.” Connor used his good arm to try and fight the other off his doppelganger as he reached for his chest, but he failed to do so.
But are you afraid to die Connor?
Connor let out a gasp as his pump regulator was violently ripped out and tossed out of his reach.
Connor could see the countdown, stationary as it may be.
I felt it die…
Connor could barely keep his eyes open as he watched his lookalike got up to stand by the others.
Like I was dying.
Their faces glitched and reverted to the previous deviants from before.
I was scared…
Connor’s vision grew blurry as he lacked the energy to keep his eyes open.
The world went black.
Nothing but the gentle touch from the snowflakes landing on his cheeks.
What will happen if I pulled this trigger? Hm? Nothing? Oblivion? Android heaven?
There would be nothing…
Not like this…
Not like… this…
don't want to shut down...
...I don't want to die...
Connor jerked when he felt his thirium pump set back into place, his vision and biocomponent still being obsolete among other things.
“Connor? Connor, can you hear me?” the detective tried to get his optimal -, his eyes, to work though that was proven to be difficult. However, he was able to make out some features.
“…Hank?” he asked mechanically.
“Con! Stay with me, now. You hear me?” He heard the lieutenant say.
That’s weird, when did Hank wear a red jacket? Connor thought, noticing that he was being notified that he was to be in doormat mode due to sustain his critical condition. The android opened his mouth a little too late for suddenly everything grew dark again.
The last thing he remembers was feeling the snow land on his face and Hank’s voice, along with another overlapping with his.
“Hang on Connor, I’m bringing you home.”