40 pages • 1 hour readMartha Wells
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Before its current mission, the humanoid Security Unit Murderbot (as yet unnamed) hacked its governor module and discovered that it could access its company’s entertainment feed. Since then, it has consumed over 35,000 hours of movies, series, books, music, and other media. Its favorite series is the drama Rise and Fall of Sanctuary Moon. Murderbot feels like a failure because it chose to spend time on this entertainment over becoming a mass murderer.
Murderbot is on a scientific survey of an alien planet when a giant creature attacks two of the scientists, Drs. Bharadwaj and Volescu, who are taking samples inside a crater. Murderbot rescues them and calms the panicking Volescu. Back at the base, Murderbot regenerates in its cubicle while the rest of the team attends to the wounded scientists. The team’s captain, Dr. Mensah, visits Murderbot to ask if it is all right. Murderbot feels extremely awkward around humans and answers haltingly, wishing Mensah would leave. Mensah tells Murderbot that it talked to Volescu soothingly during the rescue mission, even asking about Volescu’s family. Murderbot is embarrassed and believes this happened because it watches too much media.
By Martha Wells