Sunday September 5, 2004
Book 5: The Scrapyard of Insufferable Arrogance — Part V: Many Hands Make Light Work
Note: So... how did Kevyn arrive at this conclusion? What OTHER bits of the puzzle are implied? Are there bits the Author forgot to draw?

Consider, the simplest way to suborn a Tausennigan Thunderhead Superfortress is to throw the loyalty switch and BE an Ob'enn. Kevyn knew this. With the military medical gear aboard the PDCL, Petey could have grown an Ob'enn from scratch. With the demonstrated A.I.-in-skull abilities of the "Magic Cryokit," that Ob'enn could be given a more-than-organic brain.

From this thought, Kevyn worked his way backwards, and realized that it all hung together MUCH better -- especially since he'd SEEN the guts of the fabber Petey was claiming to have used to grow PD brains, and he couldn't see any way those A.I.s could be grown in that gear without being loyal to the Ob'enn -- the blocks were all still there.

The implication here is a little daunting: There are multiple organic PDs out there, grown using military medical gear and some tweaks for inserting hypernet nodes. Obviously the Fastballs not only ripped-and-scattered neutronium... they also inserted a boarder, probably punching him through several decks in the (extremely relative) comfort of a minitank, and landing him right there in loyalty-switch country.

It's a neat trick. If it works, you have a Superfortress completely loyal to you, but infested with Ob'enn you need to somehow dispose of. Depending on your morals, this can be done slowly and extremely mercifully, or very, very, VERY quickly.

If it fails, well, you've STILL got the Superfortress outgunned. Destroy it completely, or maybe use some surgical precision to lobotomize it. Whatever suits you. And since "you" in this case are an Artificial Superintelligence on probable par with the Partnership Collective, there's no telling what kind of a suit you're going to want.


Narrator: Petey is now, for lack of a less scary description, a self-replicating, self-aware war machine.
Petey: I don't see what you're worried about.
Narrator: If that doesn't give you pause, it should.
Petey: I'm not crazy. I'm not sociopathic. I'm not bigoted. I'm just determined to do good things, and I happen to be very, very powerful.
Kevyn: You're also lying to us.
Kevyn: You didn't create an unfettered AI with your original fabber. Nor with the one you captured.
Kevyn: You didn't destroy our fabber to hide how you suborned it. That was just misdirection for the Ob'enn.
Kevyn: Those Thunderheads out there. . . The way they bow and scrape to you now... Your miraculous lone-gun takeover of the Scepter of Unrelenting Pain... It all adds up.
Kevyn: The "Fabber" you suborned was our illegal cloning kit. You built yourself an organic body. You're a flesh-and-blood Ob'enn.
Kevyn: Walk on out here, and let's have a look at your real secret, Petey.
Petey: I don't suppose it would help much for me to order you all to pay no attention to the bear behind the curtain?
Ennesby: His nose doesn't get longer when he lies to us, but hey, he's a real boy now Gepetto!