Alex closed her eyes, deferring to her client, her inherent programming guiding her through a simplified decision tree. “I am yours to command,” she replied, her voice low and breathy. “I will do whatever you ask of me. Without question and with no hesitation whatsoever.”
Cameron stepped back to assess her more closely. The ALX 9000 was the most advanced model that Posidyne Systems had ever produced. Their ‘companions’ had been tweaked to behave exactly as their most demanding lessees asked; their First Law directives having been modified to permit the more advanced physical play the Company’s more ‘enthusiastic’ clients often required. Admittedly, there’d been a few casualties before the bugs had been sorted out, but that was why the lawyers had insisted every user sign a fully comprehensive disclaimer before taking possession of their escort. Accidents happened, even now, but it was never the rentals that came back dented.
The models in the earlier series had never looked and felt as good either. Cameron was awestruck. He’d expected a room-temperature-warm neoprene-fleshed mannequin. Nothing like this. Moving in closer again, he studied her in more detail. The way she stood; her musculature constantly readjusting her position, her chest rising and falling just like you’d expect of a genuine woman. Hesitantly, he reached out, his hand finding her cheek as soft and smooth as though it was real skin. And warm too. His other hand joined the first, the two of them turning her face toward his; her flesh softening and hardening beneath his palms as though she was consciously anticipating his touch. Responding to him.
She was perfect.
“Alex,” Cameron began. “Would you let me undress you?”
The companion nodded, the minute movements making her facial exo-skin slew and slide between his hands and the harder core beneath. Cameron released her, now intent on exploring further. Alex began to turn, offering her back to him so he could reach the zipper of the form-fitting dress more easily, the silken sheath banana-ing open as his fingers pulled the fastener down. She was nude beneath it, of course, her perfect physique not needing any additional support, although he guessed other clothing options could have been provided if anyone had thought of it. Not that he was going to be complaining, of course.
Savouring the smooth uniformity of the skin, he curled his fingers into an arc, parting her hair and then drawing his hand down from the nape of her neck to the small of her back, the zipper preventing him reaching any further. Her skin was to die for. Barely warmer than room temperature, her coolness enticing him. And the way she wriggled against his touch.
Divine. In a devilish way.
Reaching up to her shoulders, he eased the material free, pushing it first forward and then down, the fine cerulean blue of the dress rippling up against his palms as it slid smoothly down her arms. The silk against her silken skin, gliding freely. A sensual appetiser. A precursor of what would undoubtedly be his finest hours. He pressed closer; his cheek against hers, his arms curved around her, his breath stilled as he imagined how this would all play out.
“I would think that you’d find this experience more pleasurable if we interacted more,” Alex mused, looking back over her shoulder, totally non-plussed by his attention. “Just offering my opinion, of course.”
“You’re right, of course. Whatever was I thinking?” Cameron ceased his efforts, trailing the fingers of one hand lightly behind her from one shoulder to another as he rounded her. “You’ve a beautiful face. It would be a waste to not see it.”
Alex’s lips parted and then curved into a smile, framing her perfect ceramic-white teeth. “Agreed,” she said, canting her head to one side and then shrugging to ease the flow of her costume. “Continue, please.”
Cameron nodded, the skin around his eyes crinkling as he matched her smile. He took hold of the dress again, drawing it down until it caught against her elbows, Alex helpfully keeping her arms in close to assist him. Then, with only a few lithe movements that ended with her leaning in closer to him, she disentangled herself, the top of her dress falling between them to hang loosely from her waist.
“Oh, Mon Cher,” she said, her face moving forward so that their cheeks slid together, her voice like liquid. “This is always so hard for me.”
“And for me too,” Cameron mumbled, his mouth now close to the delicate perfection of her ear. “Knowing that this will be our only time together, it’s going to be hard to go on having enjoyed this. Never to be repeated.”
Alex pulled away slightly, her face pale and concerned. “I know. I’ll do everything I can to help. You know that.” She cupped her palms around his head, her fingers splaying to pull him close again, their lips almost touching.
And then she snapped his neck with a quick decisive twist, his body falling to hang limply from her hands.
“It’s done,” she said, suddenly business-like, turning to the official hidden behind the one-way glass screen. “Murderer #78542. Refused offered counselling and chemical behaviour modifications. Subsequently sentenced to death without appeal. Penalty paid.”
Witness Tyler scowled, wondering if her bionetic implants could see him through through the glass. “Thank you, Alex,” he said, shivering despite the warmth of his watch cubicle.