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  1. Author's Note: While I took a lot of influence from WALL-E, this challenge takes place on an Earth of my own creation. You can think of it as a fairly standard post-apocalyptic setting, with renegade machines taking the place of mutants. The Wall-E characters do not exist in this setting. Tonight would be the night I'd been planning for almost a year; the night of my escape. I double-checked my provisions to ensure everything was in order. All was in place. I pressed the button on my chair, calling my robot. It responded quickly, awaiting my commands. "I'm feeling in much better health tonight, my good robot." I said. "I'd like to throw a party! Go fetch John, Luca, Sarah, and Terrence for me. And bring a bucket of fried chicken for us. Family-sized. Actually, bring the bucket first; I'm feeling peckish." The robot looked happy, as much as a robot could, and rushed off to carry out my commands. I wasn't surprised at its happiness. After all, I was wasting away, my appetite dwindling far below what was normal and healthy for a human. Or so everyone thought. After all, when one loses weight and declines seconds on the Axiom, nobody expects it to be a deliberate decision. I'd been losing weight for almost a year now, in preparation. The bucket arrived, and the robot left to collect my friends. Friends who just so happened to live as far away from my cabin as possible, in completely opposite directions. I swiftly dumped the chicken out of the bucket and hopped out of my chair. Reaching under the bed, I grabbed the provisions I had stored, and put as much as I could into the bucket. Pocketing my MiniTablet, I left the room. I ran through nearly deserted back corridors, only the occasional cleaning or service robot noticing me. None of them even glanced, used to serving people in their chairs, rather than people moving swiftly without them. Within a few minutes, I'd reached my destination; the Museum of Ancient Technology. When I first recognised the object I was here for now on my research, I couldn't believe it. It was one of the most valuable items I'd ever seen, the key to my survival on the surface. A bionic enhancement, capable of turning a slow-moving human like myself into a superhuman, capable of travelling dozens of miles in a day. 10 miles per hour or more; an unheard of speed without motorised assistance, and significantly more downhill if the old vids were to be believed. The bionic cyclotron, or bicycle. I removed the velvet rope. There was no going back now; the alarm began sounding as I put my supplies in the attached basket, and hopped on. I promptly fell off with a crash. I'd never ridden a free-standing bicycle before. My only practice was on the old stationary machines in the unused gym, stolen hours in the dead of night. Remembering the vids I'd studied, the people who rode it tended to start pedalling immediately. That must activate the bike's balancing magnets or something. I righted the bike and tried it. I was moving! It was very wobbly, and I felt like I was going to fall off again at any second, but I was moving. As I picked up speed, some unknown mechanism stabilised the cycle, and I began wobbling less. I'd selected a route to the escape pods that was mostly straight, knowing I'd have trouble turning. I pedalled down the main corridor now, choosing speed over stealth, and trusting that the robots wouldn't know what to do when they encountered a person actually riding a bicycle. Certainly the humans in their chairs didn't know how to react, staring at me as though I'd grown a second head as I pedalled by. A couple of very slow turns later, and I had arrived at the pods. I chose a big one, big enough to fit me and the bicycle, and shut the door. Fortunately, the interface was virtually idiot-proof, and I quickly had it set on a course for a place nobody on the Axiom had visited in living memory. The surface. Earth.
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