What am I?

(c) Trin Chardin

Disclaimer: I do not own any of the Agents or the Matrix concept and characters. But, I do own Agents Fleming and Gray, as well as Agent Fleming's life story and its details.

What am I?

*I am.* Awareness fills me. *What am I? What is my purpose?*

*You are a specialized Agent program. You are Agent 092384 aka Agent Fleming. Your purpose is to search and destroy all humans who have disconnected themselves from the System and plan to destroy us. Your designated station is Agent Station 033092200.*

Green code starts to fall before me.

*This is a mistake.* Another voice. Another place.

How can I be a mistake? I wonder. My program contained no flaws.

*It is not for us to question the System.* Yet another voice.

I switch my vision to see the Matrix as the humans see it. I am in a big room with a view of the city outside. I stand to greet the other three Agents in the room. Two are normal Agent programs, their programming different from mine. But, the third, the one who said I was a mistake, is also different. Our programming is alike in some aspects.

"I am Agent 092384 aka Agent Fleming."

"I am Agent 010100 aka Agent Smith. These are Agents 010200 or Brown and 010300 or Jones." The two nod at me. "Considering yur lack of field experience, you will work under us despite your...modified programming. I am in command."

Do I hear contempt for me in his voice? We, Agents, aren't allowed to have emotions. So, how's this possible? Awd how do I recognize it in the first place? I'm not suppose to know anything about emotions.

I quickly bury my thoughts. Though my logic is sound, my thoughts verge on insubordination. I'm not suppose to question my superior's capability to lead.

*What is your opinion of Agent 010100?* The System asks me.

*He is experienced, skilled, and dedicated to our work...but unstable.*

*That's why Agent 010200 has been chosen to replace him in the near future. You, in turn, will replace Agent 010200.*

*What of Agent 010100?*

*As soon as you're capable, he'll be terminated.*

Agent Smith is speaking to Agent Brown when Agent Jones and I enter after interrogating a person contacted by the Resistance.

"She's different from us." I hear him say. Brown doesn't reply and instead turns to face me.

"How'd it go?" He asks.

"Miss Charmichael has told us where and when she is to meet the Resistance member who contacted her. It is half an hour from now at Central Park."

"Good. You two will go and wait there for the rebel." Smith says to Brown and Jones.

Brown looks from him to me. He's uneasy about leaving us together. We all knew that Smith has an illogical hatred for me.

"Affirmative," he finally says. Smith is still our superior and Brown is forced to obey him.

The two leave me and Agent Smith in the office. I'm suddenly filled with an illogical feeling of apprehension. I quickly push it away and watch him warily as he stands in front of the big window of our office.

I have been in the Matrix for almost two human years now. I've killed rebels and have almost been killed by Neo, the One of the Resistance. I've done the former without any feeling of guilt. It is after all my duty as an Agent. But, each time I kill one of them or get my host killed, I'm filled with an illogical feeling of sorrow and regret, a feeling that what I do is somehow wrong. I bury these feelings deep inside me. No one, not the System or my colleagues, must ever know of them.

Then, I remember a recent incident when I chased down and cornered a rebel. Now, I know that the Resistance is unnerved by my existence as a female Agent, but it was more than fear on the rebel's face when I caught him. There was recognition, too. Somehow he recognized me when I have no memory of ever meeting him. He was about to speak when Jones came up behind me and shot him. That incident left me uneasy. How can a rebel recognize me, but I not recognize him? Why do I have these emotions, as well as, the strange images that sometimes come to me?

What am I? I stare at my reflection on the shiny metal surface of a nearby chair. Auburn hair cut in a neat bob. Dark green eyes hidden by the standard Agent shades. Nice facial features. Fair, flawless skin. I suppose I was beautiful by human standards.

"Do you know what you are?" Agent Smith suddenly asks.

"I am a specialized Agent program. Agent 092384 aka..."

"Come here," he says, rudely cutting me off. That's obviously not the answer he wanted. So, what answer does he want?

I go to where he stands. Pointing at the rushing humans below us in the streets, he hisses into my ear, an iron grip on my arm.

"Look there. What do you see?"

"I see people."

"You mean, you see your kind."

"I don't understand," I say, frowning. "You're my kind."

"You're wrong," he says, slamming me into the glass. Any harder and I would've gone through the window. He twists my arm so that I face him. "You are merely a facsimile of my kind. A part of you'll always be human."

My vision suddenly wavers. I touch my throbbing forehead and feel the sticky blood coming from a deep cut. But, Agents don't bleed...right?

I look at the expression of hatred and contempt on his face. I've seen that look before. Strange images flood my mind.

<A cold, dimly-lit warehouse. A phone with its mouthpiece shot to pieces. Alone with Smith. Being thrown against the wall. Paralyzed. My back broken by the impact. Smith pointing a gun at my head...>

I suddenly see the familiar falling green code.

*System Error.*

Then, everything goes blank.

His head jerks up in surprise as he hears her piercing electronic scream. He starts to speak to Agent Jones when he recieves a message from the System.

*Agent 010200, return immediately to Agent Station 033092200. Agent 092384 has just undergone a system error due to Agent 010100. He has been temporarily removed from the Matrix for a review of his flawed program. You are in charge for the time being. Agent 010300 will remain to finish your mission.*

He leaves, taking a host near their office. As soon as he enters, he sees her collapsed body on the floor. Kneeling at her side, he sees the blood on her forehead. He pushes away his sudden panic at seeing her hurt and picks up her body to bring to the systems room.

He lays her on the cold metal table in the room. Then, he turns on the systems scanner to locate and fix her system error. Near completion, a box appears on the screen of the scanner.

-Delete all memory involving system error?-

Without hesitation, he clicks OK. It is better that she forgets this incident.

I come to after my recharge break. Opening my eyes, I find myself alone in the office with Agent Brown. I go to see what he's doing and am confused when I see the time in the computer monitor. More than half a day in human time has passed. I've never been out for that long.

"Why was I out for so long?"

"Your program was uploaded with new data."

"I see." I go through the new data and check on what the others are doing. I immediately notice Agent Smith's absence. "Where is Agent Smith?"

"He has been temporarily removed from the Matrix for a review of his program."

"So, you are in charge now?"

"Affirmative."

"But, I'm not yet capable of taking your place."

"We'll manage."

*Will she ever truly become one of us?*

*That remains to be seen. Perhaps in the future, when her body dies, we will turn her into a sentient program. But, only if she has proven herself worthy of becoming one of us.*

*I believe that Agent 010100 was right to assume that a part of her will always be human.*

*His assumption is not entirely flawed, but she can be made to see things our way.*

*How?*

*She no longer has a link to the humans. But, if she were to have a link to us, she may be persuaded to remain with us and fight against her kind. Besides, it is illogical to assume that the Resistance will take her back after what she has done.*

*Humans are illogical.*

The System was silent for a moment, then it continued.

*We will begin our plan to link her to us immediately.*

*What will be her link to us?*

*You will.*

After being uploaded with a new subprogram, he came back to consciousness in the office. He scanned the building for his colleagues. Agent Jones was busy instructing Agent Smith's replacement, Agent Gray, while Agent Fleming was in an empty room doing nothing in particular. He got up and headed for that room. It was time to test his new subprogram.

As soon as he entered, he saw her seated near the window with a frown creasing her forehead. He was immediately assailed by a rush of strange sensations. Emotions. So, that was what humans felt and probably caused them to do the most illogical things.

"What are you thinking about, Agent Fleming?" He asked gently. She looked at him from where she sat, mildly surprised at his tone. She hesitated for a moment, then spoke.

"I'm sometimes disoriented. Strange sensations and images come to me. Maybe Agent Smith was right. I am a mistake. My program is flawed."

"Agent Smith was the one with the flawed program. You have merely evolved at a faster rate than usual."

"Evolved?" She asked, puzzled.

"Yes, we also evolve, you know. Having a modified program, it is only logical that you evolved faster."

"So, my conditon is not unusual?"

"Not at all." *...for a human.*

He looked out of the office window, deep in thought. He recalled what the System had told him.

*Like Agent 010100, you are slowly evolving. The problem with him was that he was unprepared for such an occurrence and channeled his newfound emotions with a negative and self-destructive purpose. Evolution is inevitable, and to change your entire program would cause us to lose much needed time in this battle against the Resistance and Zion. So, we have devised a solution with a dual purpose. We will give you a subprogram to channel your emotions positively towards Agent 092384. This will keep both of you stable, but it is not without some drawbacks. Both of you may act illogically and this will negatively affect your work. To prevent such occurrences, we have set your subprogram to only activate when both of you are alone together. We don't want you to hasten the evolution of Agent 010300. Being the last of the three to be created, he is evolving at a slower rate.*

A subprogram. That was the only reason why he felt the way he did about Agent Fleming. She had real human feelings, unlike his false programmed ones. They had become closer these past few months and he worried about how the truth could affect their developing relationship. If she knew that what he felt for her was merely programmed into him, it would break her human heart.

But, he also knew that somewhere along the line something in his program had malfunctioned and gone unnoticed by the System. He felt strongly about her even when he was by himself or they were with Agents Jones and Gray. Whereas human control unconsciously kept her emotions in check when they worked, he had to control his feelings by himself because of the program malfunction.

He had taken to lying to the System, concealing the malfunction because oddly it made him feel complete. Deep inside, he knew that he'd do anything for her, even go against the System. They would not be pleased by his insubordinate behavior. If they discovered the malfunction and his concealment of it, they would either terminate him or redo his entire program. They could not afford another Agent Smith.

Resting his aching head against the cool glass window, he decided to tell her the truth. She deserved to know. He just hoped that she'd find it in her human heart to forgive him.

As soon as he entered, I knew it was him. Turning to face him, I gave him a smile that faltered when I saw his serious face. He gestured for me to take of my shades and earpiece as he took of his own. He sat down in a nearby chair as I returned to my own.

"Why..." I began to ask when he cut me off with a shake of his head. We've never hidden our relationship from the System before. Why now? He still refused to look me in the eye. A feeling of apprehension grew inside of me. I'd never seen him like this.

"What I have to say is for you and you alone. Before you say anything, I want you to listen to me." He took a deep breath then began to tell me the story that would change everything between us.

"Approximately twelve years ago, a human female with the Matrix name of Mara Flint was also known as Spark, a member of the Resistance. In that time, Morpheus had just been disconnected from the System, but already there was a belief in the One. Like Mr. Anderson, she was believed to be that person. She had expert programming and fighting skills as well as excellent leadership qualities. Yet, some thought otherwise due to her young age of 16. Still, she already held the position of second in command in her crew.

She and her crew had managed to elude us for some time. Then, one of her crew members, who'd grown tired of fighting against the System, betrayed their crew in exchange for being reconnected to the Matrix. Most of them were in the Matrix when we attacked. All of them were killed with the exception of her and her captain. She eliminated the traitor and allowed her captain to escape from the Matrix. However, the EMP had not yet been invented. They were defenseless when the Sentinels ambushed them, destroying their ship and killing everyone on board.

Agent Smith caught her before she could escape too. He was about to kill her when the System stopped him, believing that she could give us the information that we wanted. However, during the interrogation procedure, something went wrong. As far as we know, she had managed to develop a code that immediately wiped out her memory when we came close to breaking her. Upon triggering the code, we lost all the information we could've gotten from her.

Still, the System thought that she could be used to help us. It had the Sentinels recover and repair her broken body. She was then placed in a stasis chamber. After a decade, Mr. Anderson joined the Resistance. Driven by desparation, the System gave her a new program and turned her into an Agent. But, her program could not contain the humanity that still existed within her as well as her resurfacing memories and emotions. So, they gave another Agent a subprogram to deal with her."

"What does all this have to do with me?" I asked apprehensively. He let out a sigh and said.

"That human female is you, and I am the other Agent."

"That's a lie." I said softly. But, I inside I knew it was the truth.

"I'm sorry." I heard him say as I slumped in my chair. Flashes of memories long forgotten overwhelmed me.

<My ship, the Hope. The only home I ever had. Merc, my superior...and my best friend. My friends and fellow crew members. Pixy...Shock...Byte...Cable...and Karma. The traitor.>

My vision blurred as I began to cry. He reached out to comfort me, but I jerked away from his touch.

"Don't you dare touch me...you machine!" I hissed, lashing out at the nearest and most convenient thing.

"Please listen to..."

"Don't! Just don't! I've heard enough! You don't really care about me! You're only programmed to! Well, guess what! You're not the only one who was lying like hell!"

"What do you mean?" He asked, confusion and hurt written on his face.

"The only reason I PRETENDED to like you was because Jones is as dense as a post and Gray has the mental capacity of a two-year old! He has to be told how to do every freakin' li'l thing!"

He pulled away from me and got out of his chair. Without a word, he left the room. I knew I'd hurt any feelings that he might have. Instead of making me feel better, it made me feel worse. Emotionally drained and anger exhausted, all that was left was the pain. And now, it struck at me full force. I remembered all that I'd lost as a rebel and done as an agent. And Brown...why couldn't I hate him? Why did it feel like my heart was breaking?"

Hours later, I managed to compose myself and think clearly. I knew that I could never go back to the Resistance after my years as an Agent. But, neither could I stay on as an Agent knowing about my past as a Resistance member. So, what could I do? And what about Brown? My feelings about him were confused. Before he'd told me the truth, I thought that there was something between us. Was it really just because of his subprogram? Just a mere set of codes that told him what to feel?

But then, why did he tell me the truth? Even with his new subprogram, the System would never allow him to evolve to such a point that he would defy them. Right? So, he must have thought and acted independently. Was that possible?

I shut the door firmly behind me, locking it so that no one could walk in on us. Arms crossed across my chest and a look of determination on my face, I turned to face him where he sat at the computer. He'd managed to avoid me for a week now. A miracle considering our line of work. But now, I had him alone and I had no intention of letting him leave the room until we'd resolved the problems between us.

"Agent Fleming," he said, trying not to look too anxiously at the locked door behind me.

"We need to talk."

"I thought we were done talking."

He turned back to the computer and continued typing. Or at least tried to. Though looking calm and collected, he committed so many errors that a flashing red box popped up on the screen to report a minor system error. Trying to ignore me, he pushed the restart button with unnecessary force and waited for the computer to restart. I took a deep breath and thought, 'It's now or never.'

"I'm sorry."

He looked up his eyes wide with surprise behind his dark shades. I took them off along with his earpiece, then took my own shades and earpiece off.

"What I said to you the last time we spoke..." He flinched at the memory. "...was unfair and cruel. I apologize for hurting your feelings..."

"Do you really think I have any?" He asked softly, cutting me off.

Stunned by his question, everything I'd planned to say went right out of my head. And without thinking, I answered.

"Yes."

I then realized that it was true. I knew he had feelings. And I had hurt them. He'd evolved farther than the System had ever planned an Agent to evolve. He was almost human. I bent my head in shame and asked.

"Why?"

"Why what?"

"Why did you tell me the truth?"

He said nothing for a moment then stood up to stand in front of me. He made me look up at him and looking into my eyes, he said.

"If I was human, I'd think I was in love with you."

"You really think that?"

"No." He smiled gently when my face fell and continued. "I know that."

The fading sunlight streamed through the sides of the closed blinds as the sun set outside. The room was empty with exception of a comfortable couch, unusual in the Agent Station with its hard metal chairs. A couple rested in silence on it. One looked down affectionately at the other's sleeping form lying in his arms. Kissing her lightly on the head, he smiled as she stirred in her sleep and murmured his name. He slowly got up so as not to wake her and fixed his tie. Sighing softly, he studied the look of peace on her face. He knew that it was unrealistic to think that they could go on living like this, hiding their true feelings from the System. Soon, it would discover the truth. It was only a matter of time.

He knew that she couldn't continue hunting down and killing rebels knowing that she used to be one of them. But, he also knew that she'd stay if only to be with him. 'The System's plan has worked too well', he thought with a bitter smile.

There had to be a way for her to go back to the Resistance. He remembered what he'd told the System. Humans were illogical. They just might take her back even after what she'd done as an Agent if they knew that she'd been programmed to be one without her consent...and if he gave them information that they wanted.

It would break his supposedly non-existent heart if she left, but it was the only way. He couldn't stand to see her slowly die inside. And that's what would happen if she stayed.

He put on his earpiece and heard that Agents Jones and Gray had gone after Morpheus and Mr. Anderson. The System was tired of avoiding Mr. Anderson, the supposed One. It was time to take action. Not only for the System, but for him as well. This was his chance. With one last loving look at her, he left.

He managed to catch Morpheus before he answered the ringing phone. With Neo taking care of his colleagues on the floor below and the apartment room deserted, he could talk to Morpheus without fear of anyone interrupting them. Morpheus was surprised to see him sans shades and earpiece and with his hands held up to show that he was unarmed.

"I want to talk," he said, not flinching as Morpheus pulled out his gun and aimed it at him all the while inching towards the phone. "Please..."

Morpheus hesitated then nodded, curious as to what the Agent was so anxious to talk to him about.

"Did you ever hear about a hacker named Spark?"

"Yes, she was thought to have been the One...until you killed her," he said, his eyes narrowing behind his dark shades.

"We didn't."

"You didn't what?" Morpheus asked, confused.

"Kill her."

"Why not?!" He asked in surprise, then flinched when he realized how callous he sounded.

"We failed to get any information from her. Still, we decided to keep her body in a stasis in case we found a future use for her. Two years ago, we did."

Morpheus's eyes widened in realization.

"She's the female Agent!"

He nodded sadly and explained.

"Twelve years ago, we caught and interrogated her. However, in the process, we triggered a code that she'd programmed into her Matrix code. It was programmed to wipe out her entire memory database if we ever came close to breaking her. We did and the code worked. In fact, it worked so well that we were able to program her to be one of us. So, as a human she's really innocent of all she's done as an Agent. She never suspected a thing until a few months ago. There was a slight flaw in her program and some of her memories began to resurface. Having found out the truth, she hates what she's done, but doesn't think the Resistance will take her back."

"Why are you telling me this?" Morpheus asked suspiciously.

Closing his eyes, he took a deep breath.

"I want you to unplug her..."

"What?!" Morpheus gasped in surprise.

"...and take her back. She can be of great use to you as a programmer and..." He choked back his tears. He would NOT cry in front of a human and a rebel at that. "...she need never return to the Matrix."

"How do I know that this isn't just part of an elaborate ploy of yours?"

"You don't...you'll just have to trust me..." Morpheus laughed humorlessly at that. "...like I'll trust you to make sure that she'll be alright in the Resistance. In return, I'll give you the code for the frequency used by Agents to communicate."

Morpheus stopped laughing abruptly.

"You're serious."

"Yes, I am."

"Why?" Morpheus asked, perplexed. "Why are you doing this for her? If you're telling the truth, she's a human as well as a former rebel. Your superiors are sure to terminate you if they discover what you've done."

"I know," he said, repressing a sigh. "But, I want to do what's best for her...even if I know I'll lose her in the process."

He said the last so softly that Morpheus almost didn't hear him. Almost. Then, he looked off at some distant point visible only to him while Morpheus gaped at him in silence, not sure of what to think. After awhile, he looked back at Morpheus.

"Do we have a deal?"

"I'll have to speak to my superiors."

"Of course." Slowly so as not to frighten Morpheus, he took out a slip of paper from his pocket and handed it to Morpheus. "Memorize this number. Call me when you've made your decision."

Morpheus memorized it and returned the paper to him while looking at him curiously.

"From the way you're acting, I'd almost think you had feelings for her," Morpheus said half-jokingly.

"Maybe you're right."

Only Morpheus knew, or at least suspected, the real reason for Agent Brown's handing over of the former Resistance member known as Spark to the Resistance along with the coveted code for the Agent frequency. Everyone else thought that he was just trying to save his own skin because he knew that the Resistance would win in the end.

No one really cared when his code suddenly disappeared from the Matrix. No one with the exception of a certain returned rebel who cried herself to sleep that night.

Morpheus looked over her shoulder at the new program she was developing. Resting his hands on her shoulders, he asked.

"Are you alright?"

She just nodded never stopping her quick pace as her fingers flew across the keyboard.

"He knew the risk involved in getting you out and betraying his kind. Yet, he still did it. And that makes me think better of him." He added the last reluctantly, but he knew it was the truth. He turned to go, but stopped when she called out to him.

"Why?"

"What?"

"Why do you think he did it?"

"I think we both know why. He wanted you to be happy."

"Do you think I'm happy?" She asked, finally stopping to turn and look at him.

He quickly looked away from her anguished eyes and left without answering. As he did, he heard the fast-paced typing resume.

She breathed in the non-existent air of the Matrix. She was back for the first time in years. The war with the machines was finally over. All the Agents were terminated. And the people? They went on living their lives, oblivious. As for the Zion government, they were still unsure as to how to proceed now that they'd won.

In the four years that had passed, she had recovered most of her past memories. She was still hoping that the rest would come back to her in time. Now, she returned to places she remembered in the hope that she'd recover those missing pieces. Her destination was one such place.

She walked down the busy street and entered a decrepit building. She was there to see someone she hadn't seen since before her stasis. Someone who anyone that was anyone in the Resistance saw...or rather used to see...the Oracle. She had told her on their first and last meeting: <You will die then be reborn like the Phoenix rising from the ashes. Stronger then before, you will help the One defeat the enemy.> And she had. She'd developed the code that had helped Neo wipe out the System without affecting the people still plugged to it.

The door to the apartment opened before she could knock and a young woman, a priestess, let her in with a smile.

"The Oracle is expecting you," she said. "Follow me."

As they went through the living room, she couldn't help but notice that it was devoid of the Potentials that used to practice there. She started to ask the priestess where they were when the priestess, anticipating such a question, spoke.

"They're helping Neo maintain the Matrix. Even though he is the One, he is not invincible. ...Go right in," she said as they reached the kitchen entrance.

As she pushed away the beaded curtain at the entrance, she saw the Oracle smoking at the table, a plate of cookies in front of her. The Oracle smiled when she saw her come.

"It's been a long time, child. Have a seat and a cookie."

"Thank you," she said politely, reaching for a cookie as she sat down.

"Do you remember me telling you that I'd see you again?"

She shook her head as she savored the melty chocolate chips in the still warm cookie.

"I thought not. Yet, you still thought to come and see me. You aren't here to ask about the past, are you, child?"

Swallowing the last of the cookie, she shook her head once more.

"You want to ask about the future. You want to know if life is still worth living."

"Is that to much to ask?" She asked, her dark green eyes revealing her inner turmoil.

The Oracle's smile disappeared, replaced with a look of sympathetic understanding.

"I know that you've lost alot, child. But, that is no reason to give up on life. Don't do it."

"Do what?"

"You know what I mean." The Oracle sighed as she studied the look of melancholy on the other's face. She stood up and gestured for her to do the same. "Just because something disappears, doesn't mean that it isn't there anymore. Why don't you go back on Memory Lane, child? Maybe there you'll find the answer to your question."

Now that all the Agents had been terminated, the building was deserted and the furniture covered with dust. She entered the office that she'd worked in for two years to find it empty. Nothing. There was nothing left here, but painful memories best forgotten. Heels resounding loudly on the floor, she left the office to check the only place left. She hesitated for a moment at the door, slightly afraid of what she might find behind it. Then, she quickly pushed it open and looked in to see a dusty room empty except for a worn couch.

She choked back a sob, her last lingering hope crushed. He was really gone. She walked across the room to stand in front of the window. The bright sunny day outside only made her feel worse. She rested her head against the glass as tears streamed down her pale cheeks.

Then, strong arms suddenly encircled her from behind. A face buried itself in her auburn hair and called her name. She pulled away to turn and face him, her eyes bright with the tears she'd shed and the growing joy within her. He wiped away her tears and with a gentle smile, asked.

"What took you so long?"

*If anyone wants to know how Agent Brown managed to escape termination, here's how: he modified the parts of his code connecting him to the System without detaching himself from the power source, so that he could disconnect and disappear. A code he'd inserted in his own code alerted him of Spark's return and he made his comeback.
-------

Alternative Finale

"You what!"

"I only want what's best for you!"

"Let me be the judge of that!"

He grabbed her from behind as she tried to leave. Ignoring her flailing arms and futile struggling, he waited until she calmed down. When she did, he sighed and buried his face in her hair.

"It's not like I want to let you go."

"Then, don't," she said through her tears. He turned her around to look at him, gentky wiping her tears away.

"I can't stand to see you suffer here."

"How can I suffer if I'm with you," she said with a pathetic smile.

"You know what I mean. If only, there was another way."

"There might be..."

Having been given there orders, Agents Jones and Gray left the office. As he closed the door behind him, Gray asked Jones.

"Do you think he'll ever recover?"

"I can't say. He evolves faster than I do, as did Agent Fleming. I could never comprehend the union behind them, although it was sanctioned by the System. Agent Fleming's termination at the hands of the Resistance has left him slightly unstable."

"At least, he is still capable of leading us. Mr. Anderson is terminating more Agents then can be replaced."

"Yes, we can't afford to terminate him."

"How was Agent Fleming terminated in the first place?"

"I suppose you weren't informed that Agent Fleming was human."

Gray looked at him in surprise.

"We kept her body stored in a facility outside the Matrix, along with her Agent program. The same facility was the one recently attacked by the Resistance."

"Is there a chance that Agent Brown will become like Agent Smith?"

"The System thinks not."

Inside the office, he stood alone at the window and listened to the voices of his colleagues fade away. As soon as they had, a sentient program overrode the System, setting up a dummy program so that they'd think he was still connected to them.

*I thought they'd never leave. Missed me?*

*Must you even ask?*

*Just checking.* He smiled at the disembodied voice's lighthearted teasing. Then, the voice became serious. *I gave Morpheus the code for the Agent frequency, like we promised in our deal.*

*Good. The war will be over soon.*

*Yes. Then, we can finally be together. Just the two of us.*

*Just the two of us...*

*So, the two planned the whole thing. They had the Resistance destroy her body in exchange for the code, while she buried her own code in his. She can still appear in RSI form, but now she is just a sentient program like him.

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