Dr R Stone walked briskly in the rain. Despite the cold, his face was sweating heavily. He kept casting glances behind him, his eyes darting across the street, as if he expected someone, or something, to pop out of the shadows. He quickened his strides, as his destination came into view. He walked up to his office door and reached into his pockets. Shaking hands brought a key out. People everywhere used voice and fingerprint scanners. Keys and keypads were things of the past. But he liked to hold on to traditional methods, even though he was an AI specialist. He kept his hand steady long enough for it to slide the key into the keyhole. The click it made as it opened seemed to calm him a bit. He stepped in and locked the door behind him. Reaching into another pocket, he pulled out a handkerchief and mopped the sweat off his forehead. He switched the lights on and looked around the room. Nothing seemed out of place. The blinds were still shut, his cup of decaffeinated coffee still on the table where he had left it. Sensors located on the ceiling detected his presence and a holographic television switched itself on. “More violence as the debate for protection of robots heats up,” a reporter’s voice was saying, 3D images of protestors appearing on the horizontal surface. “This after a series of attacks aimed at robocops shocked the nation.” With a wave of his hand, Ross switched off the television. Of course, the robocops couldn’t defend themselves. That would violate the First Law. He walked to what looked like an operation table. Laid on it was a humanoid robot, very similar to other robocops patrolling the streets. But this was no ordinary robot. This was a model A3180, the first of its kind. Ross was the very first to design a robot that disobeyed the First Law, at least to a certain extent. Ross had tweaked the law from “thou shall not harm a human being” to “thou shall only harm a human being only when instructed” And his was the only voice which could instruct this particular robot. He tapped a few keys on the virtual keyboard beside the table and the machine hummed to life. He smiled, as satisfaction briefly wiped all worries of Armageddon from his mind. As the system went through updates, his thoughts strayed to his wife. “Layla….” he reached out, as if he could will his beloved back to life. “Dr Stone, you don’t have to do this.” He snapped back into focus and whirled around. Standing by the door was a tall man, wearing a trench coat and an old-fashioned Panama hat. The man’s eyes were concealed behind wire-rimmed tinted glasses. “How did you….” Ross started. Then he pulled his cellphone out of his pocket and wielded it in front of him like a knife. “Stay away from me!” he cried. The man pulled out a pistol, a Dan Wesson DWX, a silencer attached to its nose. “Dr Ross, I don’t want to do this,” the man said, aiming the 4.95-inch barrel at Ross’s heart.