So it was not the army but it was a new start. The pain had died down and the swelling gone, now he was ready to get back into the real world. Like so many suburban dreams he kissed his wife goodbye, gave the children hugs and grabbed his bag. He no longer needed to think about how he would move the arm, he automatically focused his thoughts, it was one with him now.
The drive through rush hour traffic was tedious but inevitable, still, he had given himself plenty of time and was at the office early. After the initial introductions he sat through a morning of presentations; information after information, passwords, procedures and timings. He had the tour, ate in the canteen and got to know his new colleagues. And so it continued, day after day, for the next month and the one after that. It was not the exhilaration of warfare but he slipped into the mundane nine to five routine. After the early days of people wanting to see his arm and the barrage of questions he had now become part of the team, no longer the newbie, no longer the freak show. Now he moved money between government departments, dealt with the fallout if there were issues with purchases or the companies that supplied goods. One of a new army, the army that kept the power running, kept the government going by making sure that what they needed was at their fingertips. His departments included transport, recreation and, most importantly to him, defence. He knew he had only got the job as part of his rehabilitation, there were people he worked with who understood financial services more than he ever could. But still he was given the job as an overseer, an independent overlooking departments to make sure they were spending within their means and getting the best for their money. As the weeks went on he got better, started to understand the technical jargon, could even use it in some instances. He even argued with companies like a professional, using all his tack to make sure the government always came out on top.
He left the house again, it was getting cold and the leaves were falling from the trees as the days worked their way through autumn. He arrived early, as usual. He walking past reception, saying hi to Becky, as usual. He make a quick cup of tea before logging into his computer, as usual. It was a normal day in a normal life.
There was a twitch, his arm moved slightly. This was supposed to be normal, the brain losing focus and not controlling his bionic limb as well as it could. It was strange as it had never happened to him before, he usually had such control. Maybe he was coming down with something.
A few hours later the same thing happened, a small twitch. He made a mental note to make a doctor's appointment if it continued. He moved the cursor on the screen in front of him and opened the file marked 'Ministry of Defence', inputting the passwords required to access the sensitive information. The arm jerked, visibly moving up from the keyboard and slamming back down. He sat back and collected his thoughts, blowing out and rubbing his eyes. There was just one hand caressing his left eye. He looked down to see his bionic arm resting there, just above the keyboard. It had not moved when he had subconsciously willed it to. He stared hard and tried to focus all his thoughts on it but still it lay there, prone above the keyboard. 'Damn, it must be broken,' he thought.
As he leant forward the fingers started to twitch then the arm typed on the keyboard, at first he thought it was hitting random keys but then her realised it had opened his emails and was accessing sensitive data. Panic set into his whole body. He grabbed the arm, trying to wrench it from the keyboard but it was a dead weight, too heavy for him to lift. It was as if someone had add kilogram after kilogram to it. But what to do next, he needed to stop it. He watched in horror for a few seconds as government money was transferred to some unknown bank account and data was emailed to an address that appeared to be fake. He suddenly realised that his name would be on the email, on the bank transactions. He was being framed.
All he could do was shout, holler for someone to come and help, explain his case and stop the arm before he could be taken and thrown in prison. Barely a sound left his mouth and the arm was on him, like some B rated horror movie it clamped its hand over his mouth, stopping him from screaming, stopping him from alerting those around him. It moved slightly, he hoped it was going to let him go but instead it was covering his nose as well. Little did he know that it needed him alive to complete its diabolical task. Images wavered in and out, the room went blurry and he started to feel dizzy. The lack of oxygen sending him into a deep sleep. He tried to fight it, to grab the arm and move it away but it was too strong. He had the realisation that he could get up, run from the workstation and alert everyone to his presences by just being there or kicking a wall or charging into an adjoining office. But the thought had come too late, it was over, with a few short blinks he passed out.
He woke up to white white walls and a metal door. His back ached from the hard bed he had been laid on. As he closed his eyes, hoping it was all a dream, one thought made him smile, at least they had taken the arm, even if it had cost him his freedom.