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2. TSB Mech Pilots

1. The Drafting Board

The Year Is 22XX...

avatar on 2023-11-19 19:51:19

92 hits, 19 views, 0 upvotes.

Robot SciFi

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A typical day on Earth is defined by its diversity. Depending on the region of the world you live in, a normal day can take different forms. Generally it involves waking up, performing daily rituals like making breakfast and getting ready for the day, perhaps engaging in social media or communication with your community or groups before getting started with whatever work or leisure activities you may have going for the day. In the evening, winding down with friends and family over food or entertainment, and then ending the night with leisure or rest before the cycle begins again the next day. On a more personal level, a normal day involves the individual, their needs and their desires. This can be anything from being a student, to working a job, to finding time for leisure activities, to raising a family. It is up to each individual to create their own normal day that satisfies their needs and desires, and this can change as life goes on. In terms of location on Earth, a normal day can look very different depending on where you happen to be. Some will wake up in urban streets. Others in natural landscapes.

Some of the people will spend their days working in factories or offices, while others spend the day engaged in more hands on work like farming or artisanal skills. Some people will live in large cities, while others live in smaller towns or even isolated dwellings, while some live deep in nature, in wild places or on open water. However, this would all change in an instant one night in the year 22XX. As the day's sun sets over the horizon, a strange light fills the sky. A very large portal opened up in the pure blackness of the night, bringing with it a bright, warm glow that fills the sky. People are filled with awe and wonder as they watch the portal open up. Some are fearful and hesitant to go investigate, while others are curious and wanting to discover what lies on the other side. As the portal grows larger, the light fills the skies, and people are torn between amazement and fear, uncertainty and curiosity. The people were stunned as tiny red lights shot through the sky like a meteor shower. It was a beautiful and exciting lightshow that would soon spell the very destruction of many people looked really good.

The portal has upended the normal world of Earth of just the day before. People were now along for the ride, whether they wanted to or not. Even if they were a massive unwilling participant to this big change, this incident had brought about the dawn of a new era for humanity. The world would never be the same again. The first beings that came through the portal were peaceful and benevolent. They were beautiful and ethereal, with glowing blue skin and soft, silvery wings. They were kind and gentle, and came to earth to spread a message of love and understanding. They were not like the humans they met, and the contrast between their gentle and peaceful nature and the fear and mistrust shown by the humans they met made their message even more poignant and powerful. The peaceful aliens were determined to help the humans overcome their fear and hostility, and to help them understand the beauty of their world and its inhabitants. The second beings to come through the portal were more imposing than their predecessors. They were more powerful, with sharp teeth and claws.

They were the total opposite of the peaceful blue skinned aliens, bringing fear and total destruction to the humans and everything they held dear. They were ruthless and savage, and had no regard for life or peace. They were determined to conquer and enslave the humans and take their world for their own, and they would stop at nothing to achieve their goal. The peaceful blue skinned aliens fought bravely against the ruthless invaders, but the odds were really stacked against them and their fate was uncertain. As the ruthless invaders flooded in through the portal with their sharp teeth and claws, the peaceful blue skinned aliens knew humanity would not be able to stand alone against the invaders. They were marauders. And so they made a desperate move, knowing that it could end very badly for both them and us. They unlocked the secrets of their technology, granting us access to an advanced arsenal of weapons and machines, including gigantic mechs with great power and strength. With their weapons and guidance of wise and peaceful leaders, humanity could stand a chance invaders.

With the help of the advanced mechs, humanity was able to push back against the ruthless invaders and prevent them from conquering Earth. However, the aliens had no interest in peace, and so the struggle raged back and forth for years, with devastating losses on both sides. In the end, humanity eked out a hard won victory against the ruthless aliens, and were able to reclaim their world and their freedom. But it was a hard fought battle, and humanity and its peaceful blue skinned allies paid dearly for their success. As the dust settled and the alien threat was defeated, humanity was left to assess the damage and the cost of the war. Many had lost family and friends in the fight to protect their world, and there was a deep sadness and exhaustion that had settled over humanity. But in the midst of the sorrow and heartbreak, there was also a resolve to rebuild and a hope for a brighter future. The peaceful blue skinned aliens had taught humanity a valuable lesson, and there was a renewed desire to live in harmony with one another. The portal had brought both destruction and salvation to the Earth.

None of this pyrrhic victory could have been achieved without the mechs. They were an ingenious invention. However, it was locked away from half of their population. It was by design. When the blue skinned aliens unlocked the mechs, it was not in their interest for all humans to have them. But there was a need for some of them to be able to pilot them. Luckily, the human race was sexually dimorphic. All they had to do was set the parameters of the human-use mechs to only respond to the humans with a Y-chromosome. Those instantly eliminated all women from piloting. They had XX chromosomes. Males were XY. Intersex humans that had a Y-chromosome would also be able to pilot but those were rare anomalies. Most intersex people would not even be able to tell. Even then, it was less than 1% of the population. There was no need to flood the planet with powerful weapons for a race that they could barely trust with the power. While they had seen and appreciated all of the really positive and aspirational qualities of humanity, their potential for hatred, destruction and evil unnerved them.

Simply giving their name was a hassle. None of the human tongues had developed a way to pronounce their race's name. Not only was it said verbally with words but also with certain pheromones that humans simply lacked. It was therefore impossible for humans to actually communicate with them in their own language. Instead, they all had to settle for "Radiant Ones". It was the closest translation that humans had to their actual name. Z'lanthrax was the name of the hostile alien race. That name did not need any translation or interpretation. It inspired a terror on the collective unconscious of humanity all on its own. Having the mechs on Earth were a massive boon to humanity. Not only did they finally have a tool to fight back, they could reverse engineer it. The major advancements in energy, transportation, and engineering were astounding. Even the Radiant Ones were surprised at all the uses that humans could create and innovate on using the mechs as a base. Never had they been so happy that they restricted access to only those with Y-chromosomes. Who know how far they would go?

In and of themselves the mechs were called Shines. That was because of the bright light and heat that were generated when piloted by a Radiant One. For humanity to use them, they had to be piloted by a pair human males. It was to make it harder for them to misuse the power they were given. These mechs are armor and control systems created to combat Z'lanthrax. Those who can pilot Shines are called Glowies. It came from a long dead internet culture meme. Shine units are bio-mechanical weapons built by and under the supervision of the Radiant Ones. They were specifically designed as defence arsenals against the threats from more powerful, hostile races. Fertile male pilots are required. Glowies are children who are trained and tasked with piloting the Shines with the sole purpose of protecting the human population from the Z'lanthrax. For Glowies, there are 3 separate roles one could have: Top, Switch and Bottom. The Bottom is in charge of synchronizing with the fuselage. They are also responsible for the creation of a mental connection with the Top- necessary to boot it up.

This process appears to cause a tingling sensation in the Bottom's body, very similar to sexual pleasure. The Bottom's body might also enter a state of unconscious while piloting the Shine, since their conscious is inside the mech. Once the mental connection is created between the Bottom and the Shine, the Top will be able to enter the Bottom's mind and pilot the Shine. While the Top is usually the one in charge of controlling the Shine, the Bottom is also capable of controlling the machine as long as the mental connection is maintained. The Bottom is also capable of piloting the Shine alone, but doing so will make the mech enter Super Nova Mode and damage the Bottom's body. In training, it usually shakes out that a boy would be better suited for one role better than the other. Tops had to focus on entering a separate human mind and do the combat. Bottoms had to synchronize with both a human and a large machine. They were also the ones to feel pain when the Shine was attacked. However, there were rare cases where they were equally talented at both roles. Those were the Switches.

White Pulse/Black Pulse, also known as W-Factor/B-Factor, are the designated signals of the Top and Bottom copilots when they attempt to synchronize. The Top emits the positive pulse, which is white, and the Bottom emits the negative pulse, which is black. The higher the levels of the signals, the stronger the connection between the two grows and leads to a successful synchronization. Luminescence is the numerical value indicating the degree of synchronization between Shine pilots and their Shine. There are three levels of luminescence: high, median, and minimum range. The higher the luminescence, better of a successful synchronization between the pilots. It also made the mech glow brighter and give off more heat when piloted. Connections are graded on a scale based on the average pulses. 0-20 was insufficient to synchronize. 21-50 was a critical state of instability. Pilots did not want to be here if expected to be on a combat mission against Z'lanthrax enemies. 51-70 was the set minimum. Regulations mandated over 50 to be able to leave base. 71-90 was their median rate.

It was said that a lack of compatibility between the co-pilots is common in the beginning. However, it is a necessity for a stable synchronization to be sustained or else it would be impossible to operate a Shine and the parasites would be considered candidates for mothballing (removed from duty and/or disposed of). If a pair’s luminescence falls in the lower range, they are qualified to be mothballed or the one who is deemed the cause of the lack of synchronization will be removed. Although a pair’s partnership is not permanent regardless of their Luminescence, the idea of changing partners, referred to as a partner shuffle, is considered unlikely. Especially after enough time as a pair. Still, all pilots are allowed 3 probationary partners to ensure that they are still able to pilot a Shine. Super Nova Mode occurs when a Bottom pilots a Shine without sustaining a synchronization with his partner. Because a Shine is more operational by its Bottom, their negative factor will rise rapidly and the mech will take on a beast-like appearance. This will negatively affect the Bottom's health if it continued.

All Glowies wear specially made mech suits for internal operation of the Shine. They are wearing thick mech suits that have built-in heating and cooling systems, to prevent overheating or freezing while inside the mech. The suit itself is also built to be extremely durable, strong enough to withstand combat and impact. The suits have built-in helmets that allow for an immersive augmented-reality experience, providing all of the necessary information and controls at a glance. The suits also have built-in waste management systems to prevent the pilots from getting too distracted by their bodily needs while on a mission. The two male mech pilots sit side by side, backs facing each other. The way they both comfortably manage their controls is when facing opposite directions on their platforms. Each Glowie has to bend over, so they pilot essentially butt to butt in the cockpit. Tops wear red suits with white geometric patterns from head to toe. Bottoms wear blue suits with black patterns. The switches wear purple with gray. The suits are close-fitting, not skin-tight. They allow for a full range of movement.

Pilots go through a series of rigorous tests and assessments to determine their synchronization potential. These may include psychological evaluations, simulations of very complex tasks, and physical assessments of coordination and motor-skills. The pilots are then matched with a squad of 5 partners that have similar synchronization potential and who complement their skills and strengths. Once the squad has been made, the pilots can then begin their training and synchronization exercises, with regular performance evaluations to ensure that the synchronization process is proceeding successfully and comfortably for all Glowies in the squad. While in training, all of the prospective Glowies wear the training mech suit. These are tan and only have the work "Testing" on the chest. They also do not have sleeves or pant legs. It was part of the hazing. After 5 successful synchronizations, Glowies either got red sleeves if they were Tops or blue pant legs if they were Bottoms. The boys had 10 attempts to get 5 successful synchronizations in either position. If not they were transferred to another base.

Now another saga is about to begin...

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