A/N: All of the chapters where the point of view changes are titled as that character. The others are just the standard label. Enjoy the story!

I come home to an empty house. Not odd, but eerie. Yesterday at this time, the house was bustling with excitement, with people eating and cheering. Today, any sign of a party is gone. The relatives are gone away, back to their packed-together city houses. The food is eaten, the soda is drunk. The house is silent but for my breathing. I walk up the stairs to my bedroom and open a book. I sigh and lean back on my bed, letting the words sweep me away and relishing the silence. I know that soon, they would come.

After a mere seven minutes of peace, I hear a knock at the door. I rush downstairs, straightening my collar and running fingers through my hair. I open the door and a six-foot shadow falls upon me. "I am Robin Shipp." I say to him. "Reporting."

"I am Michael Nathanson. Collecting." the six-foot man grunts. "I am here to collect the waste from yesterday's holiday."

"I will have it in just one minute, sir," I rush off to collect the empty soda bottles and cardboard tables. "Here is the holiday waste. Good day."

"Good day," the tall man replies, the required response. He takes the waste and leaves.

Now that the collector had come, I can no longer just read. I have to prepare the house for my parents' arrival. The time is 15:23. Their work as archaeologists in the abandoned library lets out at 16:45. The route by airbus takes 15 minutes. I have the usual 1 hour and 47 minutes to prepare. It will take an average 32 minutes to clean. I need an average 44 minutes to complete my afternoon lessons. And I need average 20 minutes to charge. That leaves the extra one minute for planning. And yes, I did say charging. I am a cyborg.

89% human. A mere 11% robot. A hand, a foot, a calf. The programming chip. Not much. Enough for discrimination, though. Each morning, from 8:45 to 14:55, I work. The required cyborg University job, a labor of some sort. Mine is food preparation. The morning and evening meals are delivered to households, and midday meals are served at the place of work or school. I'm lucky I got my operation at 16, or I would not have had the opportunity to attend school. Although, even us cyborgs have our afternoon lessons at home.

Yesterday, Winter Holiday, was a day of peace and happiness in the Community. It is one of the Universal Holidays that roll around four times a year. It is a day of relaxation and a day off from work. The droids get dusted off and perform the labor. Those droids. If only the University could afford newer models. The way these are made, they need months to charge. Or so we're told. Some citizens believe that the University wants us cyborgs, or as we're often referred to, cybs, to work. That the University believes we need to work to earn our place, just because we were in accidents. Mine... I don't like to speak of. Anyway, I don't believe a word of what those citizens say. They're usually the ones who think we poison the meals. (To be fair, that did happen once, but the offending cyb had a criminal record and was exiled to the Outskirts.) Now. The house is clean, the lesson is done, and I am charged. The door should open any minute now.