I ran the fingers along the rigid shell of my other arm. My new arm. The fingers felt painfully ancient after only 20 years when pressed against it. It told me this with electric impulses sent from the future, my present. I turned them off with an almost thought, an impulse. It was cold metal beneath the fingers again. I watched it lay there like a dead thing that had never lived. It was dead, but with another almost thought I gave it un-life again.
The exposed faux-muscle was soft to the fingers, but not frail. Squishy, even, but not frail. It gave at the slightest pressure, only pushing back when the gel inside became active. The packets were filled with a million invisible machines that controlled this new part of me, and I controlled them as best I could. The metal was inert, of course. It was just metal. I was just flesh. Flesh that had became painfully ancient in so short a time as I had existed.
It still trembled sometimes. I would watch it like some thing that might jerk into sudden, furious, violent action at any moment it desired. Foolish thoughts. Metal did not desire. Only flesh desired. My flesh had trembled too. The metal did and did not do so many things, but it still trembled. It was my brain, I knew. I could always feel it just before it happened. My brain, turning against me simply because I continued to exist. Some day it would move against me with more force. These were just warning shots. The flesh and blood was plotting against me every moment. My metal would never turn against me.
My fingers, the new ones, touched the flesh of the arm. It registered warm. As my fingers brushed against it, the flesh twitched ever so slightly. It was afraid. Like so many, it feared the future. Flesh saw the future as a lurking beast, and I was letting this metal creature probe the flesh. It found weakness. How could it not. Even as I sat there, motionless but for the metal and the trembling, I could feel the weakness permeating the painfully ancient parts of myself. I saw scars, mosquito bites, small cuts from various work I had done outside days before. I saw how soft the flesh was. My metal was hard.
The flesh fingers returned to the metal, probing in kind as it had done. It found no weakness in my metal, of course. The fingers wrapped around the arm, gripped it. They squeezed. Nothing. They became tired and had to stop. They rested and tried again somewhere else. Not even a scratch. I laughed at its futile attempts. Still, it gave one last effort, this time focusing what little strength remained in them on a single finger, the one they perceived to be weakest, but it was still futile. My metal had no weakness to the flesh. Stupid, old flesh. It continued to rot away even as these things transpired.
My metal decided now it would return in kind. It was not sudden, furious, or violent. Slowly moving towards the flesh, it wrapped around the hand, closing around it. My metal did not tremble. My metal pressed harder till there was a snap, and another, another snap and then tearing. The hand came off and its weakness was more apparent than ever. My metal did not bleed.
The flesh continued to snap and tear as my metal moved up the arm. It spread across the table. Old flesh and blood and bone thrown to the surface as my metal tore it away, cleansing my self of it. I would be flesh no longer. I would be with my metal for eternity. I looked at it with longing eyes, soft eyes, flesh eyes. As what remained of the flesh of the arm was removed, the metal moved towards the eyes. The soft eyes. It would all turn against me eventually and the soft eyes already had. They impaired my sight, making some things appear blurry, simply because they were flesh. I hated them for it. How dare they. I would remove them and all the flesh that dared rot and torture me. I would replace it with more of my metal. I would be at one with my metal. I watched the soft flesh being spread across the table till I felt the soft eyes giving way under the pressure, popping and tearing.
My metal was hard.