Below the Almighty Z was a concrete room that she looked down upon through a pretty-much-everything-proof glass window that ran all the way around the second story of the two-story room, forming a sort of observation hall. She was watching the experimental displays of new technology prototype ideas. The Queen liked to know what her army was up to, so she attended whenever Malice had new stuff to try out.
Right now they were testing some armor ideas to protect the ZORG from the Great Alliances’ lightning cannons. Malice had created a replica of the weapon, and a ZORG drone was firing it at the testing drone, which was outfitted with one of the armor options.
The tests were done on ZORG drones that were made specially for the purpose of things being tested on, and therefore, they were not sentient, but instead, remotely controlled by Malice, who stood behind an identical glass window on the other side of the room in the control booth.
They were basically the ZORG equivalent of controllable crash test dummies.
The current test was on a drone that was coated in rubber, like electrical cords. Unfortunately, the very tips of the drone’s antennae had to be left exposed, or the drone would be cut off from all inter-ZORG communication. When the weapon was fired, the lighting was attracted immediately to the antennae and traveled through all the ZORG’s circuits and conduits, effectively rendering the ZORG just as useless as the ones that had been destroyed during the attack.
The Almighty Z sighed, and beside her, Jake shook his head. On her other side, ZOK’s antennae drooped and he gave an electronic sigh.
“You need different transmitters,” Jake said.
“The ZORG have the best collective transmission technology ever invented, there’s no way something better can be created in a timely manner, and downgrading is a bad idea.” Agent Z replied to him. The Queen stayed silent, deep in thought, though she laughed when the next prototype came rolling out.
The remote-control drone was in a ZORG-sized hamster ball-like bubble thing that was only visible by the way the bright fluorescent lights of the room reflected off of it.. Malice came over the intercom to explain the contraption.
“This next prototype an engageable shield. At a command, it envelops a drone, theoretically protecting it from lightning cannon fire.” This was demonstrated. “It is regenerative, and can be penetrated by ZORG transmissions.” Malice sent a command to the drone, and it waved. The Almighty Z and Jake looked at each other approvingly. Malice said, “Test fire blast in three, two, one.” She pushed a button.
The blue lightning sprayed out of the cannon, hit the bubble around the drone being fired on, and rebounded, destroying the test drone that was firing. It blurred the otherwise clear bubble where it hit, as if the plastic it was made of had melted a little, but within seconds, it regenerated. Malice and the Almighty Z made eye contact across the room.
Malice experimented with attacking the drone multiple times and for multiple durations and such, but the shield always regenerated before the drone could be hurt.
She then tried having the shield-encased drone fire back at the attacking drone, and found that not only did it keep attacks out, it also kept them in, as the drone’s own fire rebounded on the injured drone.
The spectators frowned. ‘It had had such potential,’ they all thought.
Malice came on the intercom again. “Wait, I’m going to try setting the shield so it pulses on and off at a fast rate, so the drone can fire in the milliseconds that it’s off and hopefully still withstand fire.”
She typed something furiously on a computer near her, and the drone’s bubble began to shimmer as the light reflections appeared and disappeared quickly. The aesthetic was impressively cool, and the Almighty Z smiled. Now, if only it would work.
The shield deflected enough of the lightning that what was let through was not damaging to the drone, thanks it it’s existing regenerativity, and the firing drone was destroyed by the short laser beams that were emitted by the drone.
The Almighty Z grinned and pushed a button on the non-glass wall behind her to communicate with Malice.
“Tweak it if necessary and send the order in to upgrade all drones designated to battle or defense roles to include this as soon as possible.”
Malice nodded. “That’ll take a few days,” she said, and the Almighty Z gave her consent.
She looked at Jake and smiled. “Start planning an attack,” she told him.
He saluted and walked off, leaving Z standing still and looking out the window at the smoking remains of the attacking drone. After a minute, she looked over and couldn’t help but smile widely at ZOK undulating and spinning joyfully in a happy dance whirlwind.
Things were looking up for her beloved army.