I recognize that some of the arrogance I held was dangerous to my own well-being. It was comfortable, and being comfortable meant being vulnerable. I recognized my arrogance soon after I had been fully indoctrinated into D-MISE and when I realized how high in the ranks I had traveled in so short a time. Envy from my estranged peers set my heart glowing. Against the paleness of the usual citizens of Prism City, I felt enlightened. When I walked down the street, I watched the people pass by. Young students, professionals, struggling families – I watched through the lens of an android their daily lives, and I felt superior.
I don’t mean to say that it was right. It was just how it happened to be. I knew something they didn’t – something they could never know. I knew where Prism City was headed, and I knew what it would look like in After. Because I was superior, I would get to see it. That’s where my arrogance became dangerous – it made me think that I was destined for it, and I became comfortable. I stopped being on edge. I started to miss things. Assignments fell through the cracks, and missions went incomplete. I was lucky. Not every agent was given so much lenience.
It was after what happened to Laney traveled through the grapevine of lesser agents that I started to get back on track. I realized that everything I wanted – my newfound status and immeasurable wealth, could all evaporate in a moment of carelessness. I wouldn’t let that happen to me. I cared about my new life in a way I had never cared about my old one. I’m just sorry that Laney had to lose hers to see it.
Perhaps that was why I sought out Langston. I felt that my redemption laid in him, and I would follow him all over the city to achieve it. My new hopes were invested in him. If I could help him succeed, it might come back around to me. At least, that’s how it started. I never meant to interfere so much. That became dangerous as well, even if not for me.
Maybe I felt that he was a kindred spirit – thrust into something huge and insurmountable, but like me, he still felt that need to succeed in the eye of impossible odds. I still don’t know where he’s going to end up. Just because he and his demonic pet take down one horrific monster doesn’t mean that the next one won’t get him. Every day is a new day, and anything can happen. They’re not dealing with machines. They’re dealing with unpredictable predators, and any momentary slip can end a life.
I’ll be in the shadows, watching and waiting. If I interfere too much, it could be the end for me too. As much as I want to help more than I do, Langston is going to have to sink or swim with only the help of his own canine partner, as unhinged as that lab accident is.
Unhinged is perhaps too kind a description.