notglitching: (red - step away from the window)
Rinzler / Tron ([personal profile] notglitching) wrote in [community profile] thisavrou_log2017-06-27 11:39 am

Follow the sunlight down

Who: Closed to the Tron-Undertale Trainwreck Cast & Friends
When: June 24, shortly before the player plot ends
Where: The Center for Created Oversight and Affairs (Earth 91c)
What: Rinzler and Alan get in trouble; everyone else gets them out. With worse trouble. And frisbees that are brains that might be bombs?
Warnings: Mindscrew references for pretty near everyone. Personhood issues. VIOLENCE AND FRIENDSHIP, which are strangely inextricable.

"Multiple injured. One dead. In a world priding itself on peace and plenty, a utopia where Creators and Created have flourished together for centuries, the incident is horrifying to the extreme. Unthinkable that a Created would commit this kind of violence. Terrifying, that it isn't the first time. Eastgate City has been shaken since the attack at the rally, and to have another case of bloodshed so soon...

It truly is fortunate, that the matter has been closed.

Two nights ago, visiting Creator Alan Bradley was taken into custody following an outbreak of violence outside a local bar. Witnesses reported that Bradley's program initiated an unprovoked assault on passerby attempting conversation, agitating a child on the scene to join the fight as well. Though the child was initially believed to be responsible for the glitched program, Bradley proved able to control it on arrival—though not before his negligence resulted in a death."
The news goes on. It lists Ingress records and testimonials, identifying Alan Bradley as an offworld programmer clearly responsible for his creation's faults. A few sources even mention his effort to send away the program, and speculate darkly about what for. Not that it matters. Not long after the initial reports leaked, full of shock and rage and calls for retribution, Bradley's creation surrendered to the CCOA. That part, at least, no one speaks of with surprise. Even the most damaged Created know the debt they owe their keepers.

Besides, they don't know how to operate alone.

True, that Rinzler wasn't written to. True, that any risk to Alan-one is unacceptable—especially as a result of choices that he made. Rinzler attacked the users on the street. Chara helped, but he initiated, and Tron's maker only came to stop the harm he dealt from going further.

Still, not everything makes it to the news. There's no reference to Rinzler's missing disks. Not a word of the standoff that has built behind closed doors. On this world, as on any other, code is just another form of property—but Rinzler is Alan's property, requiring his creator's permission to modify or open up. It's not something that should have been an issue—the crimes the visitor is charged with are enough to warrant exile a dozen times over. Except that Alan Bradley has refused to leave without his program.

So they wait.

The stalemate won't last. Motions are underway already: invoking exigency for the risk posed to and by a program with no backup, filing to have Alan Bradley forcibly removed or else prosecuted as a native to their world. It won't last, but it's been long enough for those aware of the arrests to gather.

And possibly, prepare a less legal response.
alan_1: (tf you say about me)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-22 12:43 am (UTC)(link)
[Anger, then. It was about revenge rather than utility. Alan still doesn’t approve—but he understands more than he did before.]

Well, you killed one of them and seriously injured several others—when you could have safely walked away. [He can’t quite keep the grimace from his face when he says it. He fixes Rinzler with a hard stare.]

Was it worth it?
alan_1: (why are you like this)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-22 09:58 pm (UTC)(link)
What would have been worth it? If I hadn’t stopped you?

[Alan crosses his arms. It’s more than just an idle gesture. He’s putting his hands where Rinzler can see them, showing clearly that he isn’t planning to reach or make any sudden moves.]

If I were to try and take your disk right now, what would you do?
alan_1: (concerned dadface2)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-22 10:49 pm (UTC)(link)
[Alan feels a pang of guilt at the small, desperate words that flicker up on the screen, but he forces his expression to remain neutral.]

I’d be taking it without your permission, wouldn’t I? It’d be the same crime as the user you killed.

[And it’s one Alan had committed before—through proxies, yes, but proxies he had recruited and commanded all the same. Rinzler hadn’t fought him then. Alan wouldn’t have blamed him if he had.]

Would you kill me too?
alan_1: (tf you say about me)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-23 12:10 am (UTC)(link)
[Rinzler’s reaction is stronger than Alan expected, but not by much. He lets the program retreat, something like sadness curling in his stomach. Anger, too, but directed inward this time. Of course Alan had never bothered to address this before. Rinzler is the picture of caring concern when he’s around his user. Why should it matter that he can be a remorseless killer around anyone else?]

My life is no more valuable than any of the people you tried to kill. You were right to defend yourself—just like you’d be right to defend yourself from me if I tried the same thing. But once they stopped being threats and you kept hurting them anyway, you crossed a line.

[Alan doesn’t know if he can make Rinzler understand that, not from a moral perspective. But he knows Rinzler understands consequences. And what those consequences may have been if their allies hadn’t managed to break through the CCOA’s defenses.]

If you took just one second to consider that their lives might be even a fraction as valuable as you seem to think mine is, maybe I wouldn't have had to step in to protect you.
alan_1: (concerned dadface2)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-23 01:39 am (UTC)(link)
[Vexation changes to unease as flickers of blue-white spark through the program’s circuits, quickly escalating to alarm as the program sinks to the floor.]


[The single syllable that breaks through the static doesn’t tell him enough. Kneeling on the floor, the program looks too much like he had when Alice had brought him in, damaged and pinned. Is that what he’s afraid of now? That Alan will go back on his promise and edit him anyway? Or are Alan’s words alone really so crippling?

Carefully, Alan kneels down to be on Rinzler’s level. He may be approaching Rinzler as an authority, but he doesn’t like the feeling of towering over him. He can guess, too well, the kinds of implications that holds. He refrains from reaching for the program’s shoulder, however much it seems like he needs to be steadied.]
I’m not here to hurt you, Rinzler. Or to edit you. I just need you to understand—you, not just Tron. [He remembers that flicker of blue. There’s no need for Rinzler to switch on him now.] When you hurt people, you make yourself a target. And I can’t let you— [He stops himself, shakes his head, and tries again.] I’m not going to lose you like that. Do you understand?

[The last question is said too softly to be a demand. Whether or not Rinzler understands doesn’t change the sincerity of the statement: Alan won’t let Rinzler be destroyed—even if it’s a destruction of the program’s own making.]
alan_1: (heavy sigh)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-26 12:00 am (UTC)(link)
[As painful as it is to watch Rinzler struggle, a more calculating part of Alan feels a sad sense of satisfaction. Maybe he can’t make Rinzler understand why hurting people is wrong, but he can at least ensure that the Program fears the consequences. It might even be enough to save lives in the future.]

I won’t step in if you don’t give me reason to. I’m never going to just leave you behind. [A sigh.] Not if I can help it, anyway. [He won’t have a say if the Ingress gets to him first. But he won’t let it happen by choice.]

Just—remember that, next time you’re thinking about tossing your life away, alright? I’m not going to just stand by and let it happen.

[It's said with total conviction, Alan's eyes fixed on his program's downturned mask. How backwards that that should be Rinzler’s idea of a threat.]
alan_1: (eyes down)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-27 12:38 am (UTC)(link)
[The words hurt, but it’s the program’s physical reaction that sparks the most fear in Alan as Rinzler shakes and curls in on himself so tightly that it seems he might snap. Alan does reach out this time, hands finding the program’s shoulders in an instinctive, almost panicked gesture.]

Rinzler, that wasn't— You aren’t—

[He breaks off into silence, grip tightening on Rinzler’s shoulders against the trembling. He wonders how long this has been building in the program’s mind: his failures, his frustration, his unworthiness. Alan had always thought that his own actions made it clear that Rinzler was more than just glitched software to him, but it evidently hasn’t been enough. His grip grows slack on Rinzler’s shoulders, a bitter heaviness settling in his chest. How can the program really believe that he owes Alan any of this? ]

I failed you long before you ever had the chance to fail me. [The words are small and quiet, and now it isn’t only Rinzler who keeps his gaze fixed downward.] I failed Flynn, I failed Sam—I failed an entire world. You could’ve hated me the second you saw me on the Moira and I wouldn’t have blamed you. [Alan still doesn’t understand why he didn’t. He doesn’t understand why every Program he’s met with the exception of Clu treats him like a hero when they’ve been property to him for most of his life. Rinzler, more than any of them, should have despised him for what he allowed to happen.] But… you gave me another chance to be your User—a chance that I took advantage of and used to hurt you. Sometimes it feels like I never stopped. And you still act like I’m someone worthy of your respect. [There is Rinzler’s incredulity, reflected back at him. Why? What reason could Alan possibly have given him? Alan shakes his head.]

Maybe I don’t understand it. But I’m not—I don’t want to be some god in the sky who’s going to turn his back on you when things get rough. You’re not just my creation, you’re— [He hesitates, trying to think of a word that he knows Rinzler will understand, and then gives up.] You’re my family. And you’re family who’s forgiven much more than I deserve.

[He looks up at Rinzler, voice brittle, but sure.]

That’s worth more to me than your mistakes.
alan_1: (concerned dadface2)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-07-30 01:57 am (UTC)(link)
[Rinzler’s mask does nothing to cover the hitch of his breathing or the rawness in his voice. Sympathy twists in Alan’s chest, even as he finds himself shaking his head at the program’s words.]

Tron was betrayed. He didn’t deserve what happened to him. Neither of you did.

[That mindset isn’t Rinzler’s alone. Alan remembers how Tron had behaved after he lost in the Artifix’s arena. He had hidden his injuries, even from his own user. Tron wasn’t just disappointed by his defeat—he was ashamed, as if he expected Alan to care more about his “failure” to win than his well-being. Both of Alan’s programs seem to expect his judgment before his concern. Is that what he was to them before? Some distant voice only there to punish their defeats? The thought shakes him more than he can say. (If only he had known, but that regret is nothing new.)

Rinzler tries to speak again, but the words stick in his throat and suddenly it’s too much. Alan can’t bring himself to keep up the interrogation, nor can he detach himself and look on as Rinzler breaks down right in front of him. He doesn’t know whether it’s more guilt or fear for his user overwhelming the program right now, just that he’d give anything to make it stop—to not be the cause of it, for once.]

I’m right here, Rinzler. You’re okay. [Alan speaks softly, almost tentatively, as his grip tugs forwards—and draws the program into a hug. Alan has avoided physical contact since he almost edited Rinzler those years ago, but now, it’s the only way he can think of to steady the program’s fitful shivering. And if it helps settle the tremor in his own voice, it’s nothing he dwells on for long.]

I’m not going to throw my life away if I can help it, [he promises.] I just want the same for you, too.
alan_1: (eyes down)

[personal profile] alan_1 2017-08-05 10:23 pm (UTC)(link)
[Alan doesn’t know if this will be enough to change anything. And even if it were, he knows it’s not right—Rinzler shouldn’t feel this way, not as if Alan is the measure against which each of his failures and successes must be weighed. Alan could never deserve that. Rinzler should know that better than anybody by now.

But for now, he lets all that pass. He lets Rinzler cling, holding the program steady through the sobs that wrack his armored frame, and feels the heaviness in his own chest begin to ease.]

It’s okay. You’re okay. I’m not going anywhere. [The words are small and superfluous, a reassuring mantra to keep Rinzler grounded there with him. Anything else (an apology, a question, a correction) would be too much.

It’s not enough. But for now, it will have to be.]