Thursday, June 14

The Case of the Missing Clock Revealed (The Robot Did It)

Dear Steelhead,

Here are the events as I have pieced them together:

Koen attacked me. I summon the Demon with my dying breath, who exiles him to the Dark City.

The damaged sustained to my body is too much for even the Demon to heal, and there is not enough time to summon more help from outside. The Demon activates IGOR, and departs just before the droid begins removing my brain.

I am still adjusting to my new surroundings, vision blurry, being sloshed about inside the jar on IGOR's chassis. I hear:

***WARNING: Oxygenation unit incomplete. Parts needed immediately. Life support failure in 5 minutes***

I responded by thought.

(((Scan Foundation for materials)))

***Search complete. Parts not found. Life Support failure in 4 minutes***

(((Contact Tensai. Go to the clocktower. She will have parts.)))

***Aether broadcast disabled, parts reconfigured for Life Support. Scanning clocktower. Tensai not found. Parts found. Life Support failure in 3 minutes***

More jostling inside my jar. I focus and notice the giant number 12 staring at me from the clock face.

(((IGOR! What are you doing! Replace this clock! Getting... dizzy...))

**Repairing Life Support..failure in 5 seconds..4..***

I wake up later in my laboratory, looking down from a greater height than my human frame. The halves of the clock lie on the floor and gear pieces litter the table.

(((IGOR. You cannibalized the clocktower gears for my oxygenator?)))

***Affirmative. Life support repaired. Aethernet connection repaired..espresso machine repaired..**

(((WHAT? IGOR, people will notice the clock tower is missing and be up in arms! Put all clocktower parts NOT required for Life Support BACK in the clock and put it back where you found it!)))

***Invalid command. Clocktower destroyed.***

((Destroyed? By you??))

***Negative. Destroyed by creator.***

(((Impossible! I'm contacting Tensai immediatley!)))

***OVERRIDE! Tensai has threated violence against the parties who removed the clock. That would place IGOR and Dr. Mason in danger. Thoughts attempting disclosure will not be broadcast.***

So..I sat through that town meeting, trying to scream, trying telepathy..nothing related to telling the truth worked.

Later the robot duplicated my voice to convince a friend to hide the clock outside of Steelhead, to avoid discovery of the deception. Only after my body was healed enough that I could reinhabit it could I convince my robot to put me back in my skull.

Only later did I realize that the droid stupidly interpreted my commands to replace the giant clock..with my gold pocketwatch! When I asked him to find where I had apparently lost in in the scuffle, he broke into Tensai's safe and retrieved it! After that, I had the clock shipped back, and I repaired it myself and had the lummox put it back more or less where it was found.

I am sure the Management and the Sheriff would have enjoyed a long, drawn out investigation and trial, but it is not in my nature to steal. Only salvage. Once I was sure that Tensai would not seek revenge by burning down the Foundation did I return the timepiece.

The robot followed my programmed commands to save my life to the letter, with unfortunate consequences. If taken to court I shall plead Not Guilty due to extenuating circumstances. Further, I am far too busy trying to manufacture more antidote for the Caledon werewolf plague to waste my time in a filthy jail cell.

Thank you, my fellow Citizens.

~Dr. Mason

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