A few moments go by, the train takes off. Soon to follow, a large tunnel. Not the only tunnel either, the entire city has a network of them below the surface. If you were to zoom out and imagine ant tunnels for a moment. It might resemble something close to that. These, on the other hand, were much large in scale. They had to be. Otherwise, where would the train go?
117 finds it difficult to compute why humans would even consider underground travel as a means of transportation. Too many variables could go wrong at any given point. What if a cave-in occurred? Most likely fatal for the entire crew, some might survive, they were at least 300 meters below the surface by now. If something were to happen, no one could get to them for at least a week, maybe more.
The train descends and the air grows thin the deeper they go, bringing the temperature down with them. You could look outside the windows of the train - after clearing the window of condensation build-up. Why anyone would look doesn't make sense. There is nothing to look at other than traces of sedimentary and igneous rocks. Perhaps there is some interest in it. 117 couldn't compute beyond the parameters programmed within.
"Welcome to district four. Please remember to check your seat for any belongings and have a nice day", a voice says over the intercom. The doors slide open, large amounts of air pour out. What once is warm and relaxing turns frigid and uncomfortable. 117's thermal regulator kicks in. It puts its suit on, just as the humans do, not wanting to reveal itself as a synth.
In front of the train, is a narrow pathway leading down into district four, the main square. The entire undercity is made of junk piles, remains of old buildings centuries past old. The people of the undercity live simple lives. Often bunched in groups, corner to corner. Some buildings down here are made of scrap metal, they usually house foremen and women who run operations. Everything is densely packed and there's little room to walk.
Many of the inhabitants make their homes in the narrow alleyways. Begging for food, their lives destitute to starvation. It isn't something anyone would want to experience.
"HEEEELP MEE! A shrilling voice screams. "Mu baby, m'baby, baby where are you?" "AAUHHHH!" Again her voice pierces throughout the alleyway.
117 approaches the woman. She sits crouched while hunched over, her shoulders sunk deep and back exposed. From the looks of it she suffers from scoliosis and malnutrition, it is hard to determine her age without a sample to analyze. She appears old, likely older than she actually is.
*"Who are you talking about?" It asked.
"Mu sweet, sweet, poor baby."
"Does this baby of yours have a name?"
"Baby, baby ...baby, BABY!" Her voice escalates. Like a drum beat, baby, baby, baby, baby. Each one consecutively getting louder.
"Ma'am I cannot help you if you're unable to give me a name.", she turned to 117 with bloodshot eyes. Spider-like hands curled inward. Nails overgrown, sharp as needles. Her face sown with a network of thin scars.
"They took him.", she hissed.
"Who took him?", she looks upward, 117 joining her.
A thick array of smog, between patches of smog machines, can be seen moving back and forth on the ceiling surface. Every 100 meters or so giant cylinder lights beam downward. The only source of light down below. She points upward towards the surface. "Hsssss she wisps, they took him."
Her gesture made little sense to 117, no doubt she probably lost a baby. Perhaps it was a miscarriage, or he died of an ailment. It is pretty common for deaths to occur in lowercity. Still, she seemed so sure of herself despite how deranged she is.
"117 come in.", its internal intercom pinged.
"Yes Captain?" 117 replied.
"No, this is Henry."
"Hello Henry its good to hear from you." 117 wasn't actually glad at all. It is common practice to program all synths to participate in the exchange of human pleasantries. As to make them appear more friendly and cooperative.
"You to buddy, is there any update on the situation in district four?" Henry asked.
"Since it's arrival there have not been any unusual sightings. Although it did encounter a rather odd human. She claims her baby has been taken from her. She points to the surface levels as if the other districts might have some kind of responsibility for her child's disappearance." 117 replied back.
"No reports of missing children. Why don't you head on back on, there are things that need your attention here." 117 looks back towards the woman and hands her a remote card.
"Please use this, if you are in any distress."
"Hsssss, that won't be necessary!", she replied back with a grin on her face. A figure approaches from behind, quickly swinging a heavy object towards 117's head.
Caught completely off guard 117 drops unconscious. "117 do you read me, 117?"
Stay tuned for more.