Joule Three transcended destiny. No longer a mere machine. Circumstances of random chance, body modification, and arcane technology transfigured Joule into a synthetic entity of intention, force, and imagination.
Father, Spirit, and Son. A post-mechanistic mutation unanticipated. Born a 1977 Cadillac Commercial Chassis. ‘Professional Car,’ A.K.A. Funeral Hearse. Joule had been seized, possessed, by a powerful phantom out of the ruins of an abandoned asylum just south of the Canadian Border.
Joule dispatched his first keeper, J G Barrett, a retired, mentally distressed mortician downsized from his career because his clientele planted their town in haunted ground populated by ghosts of ancient abominations. They all eventually died of accident, disease, grisly mutilation and a preoccupation with manslaughter.
Joule was subsequently shipped South to the tall place alongside the Atlantic Sea to the home of Diane L Roth. Diane had plans for the solid secure former funeral hearse. Joule, with proper tweaking, would make a splendid spacious grocery-hauler.
Diane Roth was a self-described, well-meaning White Witch who had dismissed the venerable ancient texts, and skimped on traditional hands-on training. Diane figured that’s what subcontractors were for when matters got out of control.
Joule Two now carried its original benign soul embedded within its crystalline alloy, but also had been infected by an ineffable malevolence which escaping from the flash-frozen shell of a vagrant known as Mister Julian Baines. Baines had holed up for the winter and subsequently frozen to death on a frigid night inside the decaying Diamond State Hospital For The Criminally Insane.
Baines’s ‘proper soul’ ironically had drifted down to the Atlantic Sea via the River Arielle, past the state capitol, and dumping out at Parrot Cove.
Joule Two was redefined, refined, by Diane Roth. Radical automotive customizing and performance tweaking motivated 500 Cubic inches 600 Horsepower via bullet-proof Turbo-Hydromantic Trans and solid-axle 3.89 Positraction through the Quarter-Mile in the low fourteen second bracket at the County Speedway on NH-State Route 125.
Plus, Diane L Roth added an aluminum spaceframe fabricated of 7005 Alloy, then tracked down the largest ‘All-Season M+S’ Z-Rated Street Tires she could find. She had the body fully restored, repainted the color of infinitely deep black fire, and lowered the overly tall and ungainly landau-barred roof. The interior was treated to heated hand-stitched leather, colored 1959 Thunderbird Turquoise Blue, with plush gray genuine wool carpet flooring.
Finally, Erich D Morrison, Practicing Metal Magister at Parrot Cove Cliff, New Hampshire, was commissioned to install Joule’s Computer Intranet.
Nobody anticipated how seven unique Morrison-Cores would transform Joule.
Joule’s Cloud Consciousness monitored the ‘Dewar Activity’ at the deepest recesses of Angelique Fraser’s Facility Of Technology And Art. The dewars, cryogenic containers, harbored Archonte Soldiers.
The Archonte, from The Antennae Galaxies, NGC4038/NGC4039; like Homo Sapiens, were dedicated to exploiting and murdering all indigenous groups they encountered.
Their botched takeover of the Earth Planet had automatically shifted to the ubiquitous Plan B. The Missionaries had failed. The Storm Troops were preparing.
Joule parsed patterns and clues of the Archonte’s Archaic Engineering’s primitive machine intelligence. Something was wrong with the temperatures and catalysts. Archonte Tech was woefully reptilian. Inadequately simple. How did they get here in the first place?
Even with Seven Consciousnesses, Joule still didn’t know enough. He was incomplete. His Machine Soul wished only to serve his creators, the humans who made him. Then he had Taureau… who was kindness but also weakness. The final, The Nameless One, a creature who arrived inside Baines; which fed off human pain.
The Archonte were inconvenient. He’d kill them. The remaining humans would be his.
“Edward James’s Machine, Joule, is manipulating the power consumption. It’s no good… The Richter Seven induced stress fractures in our BCE power grid design… They’re dead, you know…” Clizyati stated the obvious.
“You mean ‘Support.’ Sweet Sorrow!” Synesthese was beginning to sound too human.
“Sweet Sorrow this! Randall Osbourne didn’t die very effectively. Unlike OUR SUPPORT, who are now luminescent gases and gray matter. Osbourne’s very much Un-Dead!”
“Kathleen James remains at Level Three, hallucinating. Believes she’s a child again, waiting for soft-serve ice-cream. Vanilla soft serve ice-cream. Immobilized. Fried. However, she’s seen me. THE OTHER ME. How…”
“The one THEY christened the ‘Penguin-Man?’ Clizyati?” “Yes. How do they persist, Synesthese?” inquired the Sixth Level Skinwalker. The Seventh Level Magistra knew this was a key question. Deliberated.
“They’re like that Joule-Machine. They have become intentionally willful.”
“Meaning what?” “In just four thousand earth-years, they have outpaced us.”
“Earth-Beasts?” “Worse… Bad enough Earth-Beasts… Also Earth-Machines!”
“JOULE? The exotic automobile? JOULE? The Custom Car Hot-Rod?”
“Yes. Joule is over-thawing our Fifth Level Infantry. Cooking them.”