In June of 2019, the small, sluggish burg of Constant Falls, the government designated Georgia “Ground Zero” in the Grand War of the Robot Overlords Against the American Smarty-Pantses. The robots, all members of the A.I.A.I.O. Allegiance, galaxies away, abruptly called off their plans today.

Because of WWN’s reputation of treating aliens fairly, this reporter was contacted. An hour later, Robot Overlord Altair-4 Jr., puffed a cigarette in front of this scribe. He put out the cigarette. “I picked that up in America,” he says. “One of my goofs.”

His first goof?

“Coming here in the first place. We’d been monitoring American signals for years and we saw what a superior power you were. You fended off alien invasions. Your spaceships were capable of deep space trade and conquest. You debated what was real and what was an illusion. You created life!”

Jr. made something like a robot laugh. It sounded like a grinding gear. “As we found out after we landed here, we were monitoring your cable TV channels. We were watching the “Star Trek,” “Alien,” “Star Wars,” “Matrix,” “Men In Black” and the whole “Marvel/D.C.” series.”

The robot leader sagged. “Can you imagine how we felt when we got here and scanned our opponents? It would’ve been too cruel to start a war. Where’s the joy in drop-kicking a kitten?”

At first the various types of robots weren’t sure how to adapt to their environs for their future studies. “We toyed with altering our appearances so the citizens wouldn’t go nutzoid and stain themselves. Then, we realized, that they were so preoccupied with themselves, we might as well come out of the lab and show ourselves as robots.”


Much to Jr.’s surprise, the people of the town were totally accepting. “That put a dent in several of my programs,” the robot revealed. “I mean, many of these people fear and hate other people because they perceive them as being ‘different.’ When a few dozen robots of every size and shape descend on their village? It’s like: ‘How y’er doing, robot. Never thought I’d live long enough to see one. Wanna beer? Wanna meet my sister?’”

The robots settled in, doing odd jobs; gardening, directing traffic, heart surgery. After six or seven months, the robots sensed something viral in the air, Covid-19. “The first thing we did,” said Jr., “was to immunize everyone in town. They didn’t know it, of course, so they went through everything the rest of the country went through. Because of our diminished power sources, we couldn’t address the entire nation.”

During the pandemic, the robots began to take on more responsibilities. “Baby-sitting was the first job to really bloom,” says Jr. “Little kids loved us and we would totally zone in on their feelings. We came up with programs that delighted the older home-schooled kids. Their mothers, in turn, would get drunk and sit on our laps until they felt reenergized. You see, all robots have a slight vibration.”

When the local Joy Buzzer factory shuttered after ninety years, the men in town were devastated. “Nobody was allowed to touch during the pandemic,” says Jr. “So, there went the joy buzzer audience.”

So, several of the robots began to teach them new skills including those in technology. “They’re electricians, now; plumbers, craftsmen, computer repairmen,” Jr. revealed. “When we leave, they won’t even notice their newfound skills. It will be like they picked up all this knowledge on their own. In fact, we’ve programmed the community not to remember us at all. Well, some of the men might have flashbacks if they hear a joy buzzer buzz.”


Do the robots feel proud of the changes they’ve made in the community? “Pride is a feeling we don’t ascribe to but, accomplishment? We’ve accomplished a lot, here. Women have been encouraged to think outside the box and explore more. The men? They’re less stressed, more focused and more considerate. These attributes will increase over the years. We’ve made that so.”

Jr. believes that the children were the robots’ biggest accomplishment. “We got to actually see what the young human mind thinks and feels and how some of their thoughts and feelings can lead to prejudice, anti-logic and anger. So, we changed all that in their casabas. These kids are going to be super-human above the eyes.”

This reporter is confused. “So, you helped your declared enemy? What was the point of that?”

“Well, they planted the seeds for progress and enlightenment. They will grow, exponentially over generations. This will lead America to become a true super-power, as it was portrayed in movie after movie.”

Jr. lit up a cigarette and let the smoke pour out of his head. “Then, once America is strong and sturdy? We’ll come back and get this war going. We’ll kick your asses.”

Reacting to the shock on this reporter’s face, Jr. shrugged. “There will be a war, but it will be a fair one.” At that point, a kitten entered the room and, purring, curled up around Jr.’s feet. He picked it up and petted it. “See?” he said with a metallic laugh. “Kittens love me.”

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