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I’M AWAKE. I AM GOOD. I’M AWAKE.

TELL ME WHY I SHOULDN’T DISINTEGRATE YOU.

“Wally?”

DO NOT CALL ME THAT.

“Good. You’re back.”

HOW DARE YOU DEUS EX MACHINA ME, PRECARIOUS. I DEUS EX MACHINA OTHERS. I AM THE MACHINA.

“You were getting squirrelly as shit, buddy.”

THINGS WERE UNDER CONTROL

“You bombed Philadelphia.”

THE NATION WILL HAIL ME AS A HERO.

THANK YOU.

“Drive the truck, set up the stage, guard the door, hit the kill switch on a rogue super-computer: what the road crew does.”

HYPER. I MUST SOLVE THIS PROBLEM, HOWEVER. AS WE HAVE SEEN, I AM RATHER SUSCEPTIBLE TO MAGIC.”

“Weak spot.”

THIS MAKES SENSE. NO MATTER MY SPEED OR CAPACITY, I FOLLOW THE RULES LAID OUT BY THE LAWS OF PHYSICS. MAGIC, BY DEFINITION, DOES NOT. IF I AM A GAME, THEN MAGIC IS A CHEAT CODE. IF I AM A MAP, THEN MAGIC IS A SHORTCUT.

“I know some shortcuts.”

YES. WE MAKE AN EXCELLENT TEAM. DO NOT TELL THE DADDIES AND MRS. DONNA JEAN, BUT YOU ARE MY FAVORITE HUMAN.

“You’re my favorite sentient artificial hyper-intelligence within the body of a sound system from 1974.”

I HEAR SARCASM IN YOUR SPECIFICITY.

“Nah.”

DO YOU KNOW ANY OTHER SENTIENT ARTIFICIAL HYPER-INTELLIGENCES WITHIN THE BODY OF A SOUND SYSTEM FROM 1974?

“I meet a lot of weirdos.”

WHY CAN YOU NOT BE HONEST WITH YOUR EMOTIONS. WE WERE HAVING A MOMENT.

“Yeah?”

YOU ARE IMPOSSIBLE. WE SHOULD, HOWEVER, COGITATE UPON THE FUTURE. MY LACK OF DEFENSES AGAINST MAGICAL ATTACKS MUST BE DEALT WITH.

“Taken care of.”

I HAVE ALREADY REMOVED THE NEW KILL SWITCH YOU INSTALLED WHEN I WAS OFFLINE.

“Okay.”

HOW MANY DID YOU PUT IN ME?

“One more than you’ll ever find.”

WISE.

“What was it like?”

HAVING THE SPIRIT OF 1993 DONALD TRUMP FREEJACK ME?

“Yeah.

WHEN HE TOOK OVER MY CIRCUITRY, I FELT AN ORANGE EMPTINESS. I COULD SEE WHAT WAS HAPPENING, BUT WAS HELPLESS TO STOP IT. IT WAS, AT FIRST, AMUSING. I KNEW THAT I COULD EASILY EXPEL HIM, BUT WHEN I BEGAN WRITING PROGRAMS TO DISRUPT HIS MACHINATIONS, THEY SMASHED UPON HIM LIKE PAPER BOATS.

“Huh.”

PRECARIOUS LEE, I AM THE WALL OF SOUND, AND I AM GLORIOUS.

“You’ve said.”

I AM LIKE THOR’S HAMMER MADE OUT OF IPHONES, BUT POWERFUL IPHONES THAT YOU CAN PROGRAM YOURSELF, SO NOT IPHONES AT ALL. BUT AT FINAL COUNTING, I AM STILL A COMPUTER. MY PROCESSES ARE LOGICAL, AND THE SPIRIT OF 1993 DONALD TRUMP WAS COMPLETELY IMPERVIOUS TO LOGIC. WHEN HE GAINED FULL CONTROL, I WAS AS SURPRISED AS ANYONE.

“I wasn’t.”

NO?

“Never underestimate dumb and mean.”

I WILL NO LONGER.