My name is Destiny Kusanagi. I'm a normal five foot three, sixteen year old, tomboy who lives with my step-mother, Amy, and my half-brother, Damon. My real mother, well, let's just say I'll be happy if I never see her again. I go to school, get into fights, struggle with grades, and live for the moments when I can just relax in the sun with some pet project or another. Our best friends, Lucien and Alroy, practically live at our house and mom is still trying to convince me that I'm a girl.

Adding to my already dysfunctional family (Lucien and Alroy included), there are also the resident Artificial Intelligence programs. AIs really aren't that uncommon anymore, almost everyone has some kind of AI program, but ours are a bit unusual. There are a grand total of four AIs that can be in our house at any one point.

The first and most unusual is Damon's AI, Damien (known as Revelation to anyone outside the family), who serves the dual purpose as the big brother of the family. Yes, there is a long story behind his name. No, I am not going to explain it right now. But Damien was the first of the AIs to begin acting outside of the standard programming. (He even took to calling my step-mother Mama, just like Damon does.)

The second is Alroy's AI, Genesis, who I helped to program when I was seven. Genesis is an out and out book worm, though you'd never guess it from the way she looks. If we need information or help with homework, Genesis is the one we turn to. I swear what ever higher power decided to make Alroy and Damon best friends has a twisted sense of humor.

Masaya is my best friend, Lucien's AI. She originally started as a he, but was reprogrammed after being deleted saving our lives. She's unnaturally quiet, but when she does speak it's a good idea to listen. Lucien likes to tease me because I seem to be the only one she will carry on a conversation with. This coming from the guy who refuses to call me by my first name and who's vocabulary normally consists of monosyllabic words around anyone besides me.

The fourth AI is mine, Avatar. Instead of accompanying me, as my boys' AIs do, Avatar works in the background, taking care of Axis, my family's multi-million dollar company. (Not something I'm proud of) Avatar was created from the programmed emotions and memories of my now deceased older brothers and sister for this exact purpose. When my mother ran off and abandoned me with the company at ten years old, Avatar took charge and gave a chance to live as a normal kid.

So, this is where my story begins… with Lucien trying, and failing miserably, to wake me up…

"Kusanagi…. Kusanagi… wake up…." Lucien sighed and poked the sleeping organoid in the side. She simply grunted and rolled over. "Kusanagi… we're going to be late."

Lucien really wasn't surprised by Destiny's ability to sleep through almost anything. You HAD to be able to sleep hard when the snoring Damon was in the room next door, but this was ridiculous. Three years ago Destiny would have been up in an instant if Lucien was the one trying to wake her.

"I didn't want to resort to this," Lucien sighed, grabbing the edge of Destiny's blanket, "but you've forced my hand." He gave a hard yank and Destiny's blanket fell to the floor, leaving the teen to curl in on herself. Lucien almost laughed at the sight.

A month ago, when he had first seen Destiny after her long absence he had wondered if it really was the hard-headed tomboy he'd worked with three years ago. The Destiny he'd remembered looked for all purposes like a boy, which he had thought she was for a long time, with short red hair, no chest to speak of, no figure, and no voice to clarify the difference. This strange creature was nothing like that. What had Damon called her (and gotten a good telling of by Damien for)? A bombshell. Long orange and red hair that could have served as a blanket, a slightly disproportioned (and very busty) hour glass figure, and a slightly boyish nightingale's voice gave a stark contradiction to the child she had once been.

Mercifully, that hadn't affected her personality. She was still swearing that some perverted doctor had deformed her. The boys were beginning to agree. Right now, Lucien didn't care. He just wanted Destiny to get up so she, Damon, and Alroy wouldn't be late for school. So, time to call on the last resort.

The four inhabitants of Amy's kitchen glanced up at the ceiling, Alroy with a cup of coffee next to his lips, Damon with a large strip of bacon hanging out of his open mouth, Masaya abandoning a pan of bacon, and Amy herself smiling and tending a pan of eggs. Destiny's enraged yells and laughter echoed around the house.

"Only Lucien," Masaya mused.

A loud echoing bang announced that Destiny had managed to regain control. Alroy shook his head and picked up the newspaper lying on the table.

"Poor boy," Amy mused airily. "Do you think he's broken anything this time?"

"I think I'm more worried about the wall," Alroy muttered.

"How does he do it?" Amy asked.

The boys shrugged and went back to their breakfast. Two minutes later they were joined by a slightly frazzled Destiny and a quietly cursing Lucien.

"Never tickle an organoid," Destiny admonished patiently, "especially one who can throw you through a wall."

"You broke another wall?" Alroy asked over the top of his paper.

"Not yet," Lucien grumbled, walking behind Alroy to raid the freezer for an ice pack, "if I have to go back to base with a black eye I'll kill you."

Destiny grinned and grabbed a piece of bacon of Damon's plate, not even bothering to chew before she swallowed it. Masaya rolled her eyes and dumped the entire pan of bacon onto a plate for Destiny.

"How can anyone eat that much?" Damien asked as he appeared in the chair next Damon's in the form of a hologram.

Destiny quickly began to scarf down the food. Alroy shook his head behind his new paper and Lucien, now pressing an ice pack to the back of his head, rolled his eyes.

"Damn metabolism," Destiny grumbled, "damn artificial body, damn scientists trying to make me dependent on them."

"But that didn't work too well," Amy chirped, handing a plate of eggs to her, "you may have to eat a lot more, but you're fine otherwise."

Masaya handed a much smaller meal to Lucien and he sat down between Alroy and Damien.

"Where's Genesis?" Destiny asked.

"Getting our next mission for us," Alroy replied. "I got the message early this morning."

Destiny choked on an egg, not an easy feat with an artificial esophagus and stomach.

"No rest for the weary," Damien muttered with a sigh.

"You kids are gonna be late for school," Amy announced as Destiny downed a plate of toast.

A unanimous groan went up from the collective group. Even Damien, who normally nagged the three teens that were still in school about going, seemed disinclined to the aspect today. Despite this, each teen allowed themselves to be hugged and kissed goodbye by Amy, then have backpacks shoved into their arms and out the door. Rolling their eyes, Masaya and Damien returned to their standard daytime homes in the notebooks of Lucien and Damon.

Did I say normal? Okay, I exaggerated a bit. In reality I'm not even human, well, not anymore. I'm now more than seventy percent machine, with an entirely metal skeleton and most of my internal organs are artificial or have some kind of padding or armor added to them. I have only one limb left that has not had some part replaced and said limb has been enhanced with a super-durable metal.

When I was rebuilt by the scientists back at Axis Labs I was designed to be dependent on their machinery to keep me alive. Supposedly if I didn't return to my tank after twelve to eighteen hours my body would shut down and I would eventually die. Luckily I found this little fact among my blueprints before I escaped and I found an alternative. I now eat more daily than the rest of the household combined. It's a fair trade off I suppose, freedom and superhuman abilities for the need to eat an inhuman amount of food each day.

But I still have to go to school and act like a normal person around the rest of the world.

Advanced Chemistry was by far considered Destiny's best non-computer related subject. It was also her favorite subject, but today, she was bored. This was the train of thought that entered Alroy's mind upon seeing Destiny's bored expression: 'Bored organoid highly potent and flammable chemicals interconnected sinks at every table oh shit.'

The class would never know what hit them. While Alroy busied himself with the experiment they were supposed to be brewing that day, Destiny quietly began pouring a very potent and dangerous mixture into the sink.

"You're going to get us expelled," Alroy muttered from the corner of his mouth.

Destiny grinned and sat back to watch her work. Within moments a girl lit a match to get her Bunsen burner going.

"Three…" the burner lit. "Two…" Alroy and Destiny both moved back slightly from their table as the match was thrown into the sink. "One…" BOOM! A pillar of blue-green fire exploded from each sink, quickly followed by an eruption of multi-colored sparks and a few errant fireworks.

"KUSANAGI!"

Destiny calmly strode to the front of the room. Alroy rolled his eyes and began packing her stuff into her bag.

"You too, Morgan."

Alroy cringed and got up, slowly following Destiny to the front of the room. Unlike his childhood friend, he was not proud of what had just happened. He was quite sure she had caught something on fire.

"I hope the two of you have a good explanation for this," the teacher snarled.

"It's my fault, sir," Destiny interjected. "Al had nothing to do with it."

"When one of you gets into trouble, the other is never far behind. I highly doubt someone as intuitive and observant as Mr. Morgan would miss you troublemaking."

Destiny huffed and gave an 'I tried,' look to Alroy, then turned back to their enraged teacher, "I think I can safely say that this is the most boring thing you have come up with yet. I was just livening things up."

"OUT! GET OUT OF MY ROOM!"

Destiny shrugged and went back to collect their bags. Alroy tried not to groan as they left the room. This was the third time Destiny had done this in the last month.

"You're hopeless," Alroy muttered tiredly.

"Thank you!" Destiny chirped airily.

"So, where to?" Alroy asked, glancing down at Destiny. "Somehow I doubt you're going back to class."

"We've got a mission to handle today, right? We could head over to HQ and get a head start on our work."

Alroy stopped in the middle of the hall, "You. Willing to get a head start on your work?" He grabbed Destiny around the neck. "Who are you and what have you done with my Destiny?"

"I want some free time tonight," Destiny grumbled.

"Do you ever get tired of roaming around the internet?" He hadn't released her from the headlock yet.

"No way, there's too much to see. Besides, it's better than being at home listening to you and Damon fight."

Destiny finally got fed up and shoved Alroy off and began walking again, "So, you coming with, or will Lucien and I handle this on our own?"

Alroy smirked, "I think I'll let you two handle this. It's been a long time since we let you two go it alone."

"You just want some time alone with Damon," Destiny teased.

Alroy turned pink and stormed back down the hall, leaving a laughing Destiny in his wake. Destiny shook her head at her hard-headed friend and walked out to the front of the school where Lucien was waiting, leaning against his motorcycle.

"Tried to blow up the chemistry class again?" he asked with the faintest hint of a smile.

Destiny nodded and sat down on the bike next to him, "It's boring."

"You'll get yourself expelled one of these days," Lucien grumbled and climbed on the motorcycle. "Get on."

"I'm driving," Destiny said, shoving him back, nearly off the end of the bike and climbing on in front of him.

"Excuse me?!" Lucien yelled. "You don't have your license yet!"

"So?" Destiny asked sweetly.

Lucien decided it would be safer to just hold on and pray for a miracle.

Alroy watched, smiling, as Lucien's motorcycle shot out of the parking lot and into a barrage of traffic.

"She's really something, isn't she, Genesis?"

A hologram of the female AI appeared next to him, "Indeed, she is." Genesis smiled at her owner, "You really missed her, didn't you?"

"More than even I realized," Alroy admitted, closing his eyes. "Life's just not the same without our dream."

Destiny stared at the screen in front of her in horror. This had to be a joke.

"This is a joke, right?" Lucien asked, leaning on Destiny's arm to look from his screen to hers.

"I'm afraid so, kids," Tenaya replied sadly, coming up behind them to place the necessary paperwork in their laps. "You're the only ones fit for the job."

Tenaya had worked with the four prodigy agents since the day Destiny and Damon had been dragged in. One thing she had learned quickly after being assigned to them was that there were certain missions that you never asked them to do. This was one of those missions.

Destiny and Lucien sighed tiredly and picked up their folders. Tenaya smiled weakly at them.

"I really am sorry the two of you got stuck with this. I know how you feel about missions like this, much less with this particular target…"

Destiny snarled at the mention of their "target".

"Why do we have to do this?" Lucien asked tiredly. "You know how we feel about her."

"The two of you are the only ones suitable for the job. If we had any other choice, believe me, we would use it."

"She requested Lucien didn't she?" Destiny asked coldly.

"You don't miss a thing, do you?" Tenaya asked with a good-natured smile.

Destiny growled and bit back an insult. This was not going to be a pleasant adventure. Tenaya saluted then as they left, then shook her head and sent a silent prayer up to what ever higher power would listen.

'Please, keep them out of danger. Those kids have been through too much already.'

At eighteen years old Lucien had endured more pain and annoyance than many people do in almost a hundred years, but this by far had to be the worst. As he and Destiny sat side-by-side at the small bar in one of Axis's luxury jumbo jet, the whole world seemed to have momentarily stopped.

"So, what's the big mission this time?" Chuck, the bartender that had been serving the Kusanagi family since Destiny was a baby, asked setting down their drinks in front of them.

"Don't ask," Destiny snarled, downing half of her drink in one gulp.

"That bad?" Chuck asked, glancing over at Lucien. He nodded. "Ouch. That's gotta be bad."

"Bodyguard duty," Destiny grumbled.

Chuck gave a loud booming laugh, "Two of Saiber's top agents with bodyguard duty! Who's the lucky stiff?"

Destiny gave a derisive growl, "Y'know who Angel is right?"

"The biggest most spoiled pop star in the world," Chuck said with a smirk.

"Yeah, well, apparently she thinks someone is trying to kill her," Destiny grumbled, "so we're stuck babysitting her and her brat daughter."

Chuck roared with laughter, nearly spilling the drink he was pouring for himself. Lucien rolled his eyes.

"Oh, shut up," Destiny grumbled. "Big oaf."

Chuck smiled warmly at Destiny and put his hand on hers, "Now, Miss Destiny, I've worked for your family my whole life, and if there's one thing I learned watching you and your brothers, it's that your lot can handle anything," he glanced over at Lucien, "How's about I treat you two to dinner at Logan's favorite restaurant tonight, it's right around where you're headed."

"Really?" Destiny asked, brightening up.

Lucien smiled gratefully at Chuck. Anything associated with the eldest of the Kusanagi brothers always perked the girl up. He was the closest thing Destiny had had to their father growing up.

"Sure thing," Chuck smiled and went back to the beer he was pouring himself. "Maybe we'll see his ghost while we're there."

Destiny smiled into her drink and stared out the window of the plane. Logan had been the oldest of Destiny's five brothers and had outlived all others. If anything could have brought Destiny's foul mood up, it was the mention of her brothers. And when Destiny was in a good mood, Lucien couldn't help but relax a little. Like Damon, her smile was infectious.

"This'll be easy," she muttered, leaning against Lucien's arm.

Lucien smiled softly and rumpled Destiny's long hair, "What am I going to do with you?"

"Me?" Destiny laughed. "I'm not a perfect soldier boy."

Lucien chuckled at the old nickname, "You ruined that for me, too."

"No, you're still a perfect soldier," Destiny teased, "you just know when to stop being a soldier entirely now."

Lucien was forced to think about what she said. Destiny really had brought about a severe change in him. He smiled and allowed Destiny to fall asleep with her head on his shoulder.

My name is Destiny Kusanagi. I work for Saiber, an organization devoted to combating the super-intelligent computer viruses and megalomaniacs that have been cropping up all over the world, as one of their top agents alongside my partner, Lucien. When I was thirteen years old I died saving my boys from a super-intelligent virus that had somehow appeared in the real world during a mission. Three years later I returned to them, having been rebuilt and revived by a scientist in Axis Labs against my will with no memory of my past.

Through Lucien, my half-brother, Damon, and his partner, Alroy, I've regained most of my memory of my life but blank spots still remain. Much of my childhood is still a blank, the only prominent memories I have is that of my eldest brother, Logan, who died when I was ten years old, and that of the moment when I nearly died that same year at the hands of our vicious mother. The scar across my throat and my artificial vocal cords are proof of that terrifying moment.

The virus that killed me three years ago vanished that same day, and the boys refuse to even speak of it. But I do know it was powerful and dangerous. Our generation relies so heavily on computers that if they were to ever fail us, the world would dissolve into a state of chaos. Many believe that, should the virus that killed me ever return, he could completely obliterate our way of life.

Many people fear death, that apparent nothingness that comes at the end of life. But it's life that scares me. Life is pain and fear and so many other things that we must endure on an almost daily basis, impossible choices that will determine our entire future. Life is fragile, easily broken and almost impossible to repair, and even more easily lost. Life is the hardest reality of all because, for all our good intention and will, we rarely get what we want and our plans almost always go awry.

We stand at the edge of a new world, where humanity is becoming a hindrance and computers can think and feel on a level almost equal to humans. A glitch made Masaya and Genesis far closer to humans than their programming should have ever allowed, and that same glitch released the soul Damon's long-dead twin and his AI, Revelation, who was created from the dead boy's memories and genetic code. Damien and I are the first of a new generation, neither human nor machine.