80 Poor Upgrades
Battlesuits are complex machines, and like most complex machinery, there were steps the operators need to follow before the machinery could start up. The Fuming Minotaur was no different. Based on the start-up procedure designed by Nik Theodorotis, it would take over a minute before the battlesuit could start. That was too long for my needs. Once the mana technology was activated, the battlesuit would shut down, and I can't have it staying stationary for over a minute before the restart. Thus, my plans for a quick reset button.
There was also the big issue of safety. Although there was no doubt in my mind that my Minotaur works, having it continuously forced to shut down was a problem. Simply put; machines weren't designed to be forcefully shut down, and for battlesuits, there was an element of danger involved.
When the energy from mana technology hits, the mana energy would cause inference with the fossil fuel energy the Fuming Minotaur was running on. I predicate that the resulting inference between the two forms of energy would cause an energy surge in the battlesuit. This will cause the battlesuit to shut down, but that was my only best-case scenario.
Due to how complex and interconnected a battlesuit is, if one thing goes wrong, it could result in a cascading failure. Such a failure could lead to the battlesuit getting damaged … or even more extreme consequences. The last thing I wanted was my prototype blowing up during the demonstration.
The normal solution to energy inference was calculation. Years of research allow scientists to come up with various formulas on how much interference a machine could take before energy interference cause problems for the machinery. Naturally, I have none of those formulas to follow. I could only go around the problem.
As I work to reroute the internals of the Fuming Minotaur, I kept in mind that not only must the battlesuit be able to restart quickly, it must also do it safely. It turned out to be as difficult as I imagined.
I had to spend over four weeks on reworking the internal electrical systems of the Fuming Minotaur. The skills I got from the System proved invaluable. Both the electrical engineering and advance electrical engineering skills help me immensely and the tinkering skill help me make sure the rework internals were hardy enough to withstand the constant energy inference.
Once the internals were done, I send it to Dive for the normal one-hour simulation test. I haven't added the mana technology yet so Dive could run the test. As Dive was running the simulations, I relaxed for the first time in weeks. Usually, I would take a walk but considering the danger from the Cancer Rats, I decided to stay in the office. It was a much nicer place now.
The old office table and chairs had been thrown out and classy and elegant replacements had been bought. There was a new sofa for guests, and several plants dotted the office. I got a new computer that come with two monitors, and there was even a corner of the office that was designated as the pantry. Right now, there was only a coffee table, a coffee-making machine and the office water dispenser but Salma intended to enlarge the area. Outside being a bodyguard, it seen that she has an eye for interior decorating.
A ding shook me out of my rest. I saw the simulation was done. No errors were deducted by Dive, and my redesign of the Fuming Minotaur was verified by the system. I smiled and went through the simulation result.
It seen to have done well. Dive didn't find any big issue with the battlesuit, though the final evaluation was mixed. I wasn't that surprised. The battlesuit wasn't done and outside the change in weaponry, I didn't really do much with the Fuming Minotaur. I –
I caught myself and called up the schematics of the Fuming Minotaur. I quickly realized that I was right. My variant of the Fuming Minotaur had different weapons, and was to be used differently, but ultimately it was the same battlesuit invented by Nik Theodorotis.
I didn't add a second technology to the battlesuit. I didn't change the shape of it. I didn't even add any major parts to the battlesuit! Basically, I didn't change the battlesuit in any substantial way like I did with the Steambot or the Maid of Orléans. Looking at the battlesuit with a critical eye, I realized what a poor piece of work it was. No, it was worse than poor. It wasn't even a variant, it was just an upgrade!
Why had I thought of it as a battlesuit worthy of the market? Why did I need Howard to tell me how poor it was before scraping it? Realizing I may have a problem, I called up the Steambandit. I haven't finished the design yet, but a quick look told me the truth. My poor design of the Fuming Minotaur was not a one-off. I upgraded the aim assist, gave it new weapons to make it a sniper, but my variant of the Steambandit was basically the same battlesuit. I may had changed the tactical use of the battlesuit, but I didn't change the meat of the battlesuit. Even though it wasn't finish, I wasn't going to add a second technology to it, add any major parts, or changed the look. My variant of the Steambandit had the same problem as my Fuming Minotaur. It was just a poor upgrade.
"What's wrong with me?"
Had I lost my touch? I don't think so, but the results said otherwise. Everyone had been telling me to take it slow after my return from Thailand, but I had been ignoring all their advice. I wanted to get back to work. I was anxious to get back to designing. Had I been so anxious to get back to work that I had been churning out bad designs? And not even know it? I didn't want to admit it, but that was a distinct possibility. I put my hand to my face and sighed.
The feel of cold metal shook me.
For a moment, I had forgotten the fact that I no longer had hands. I looked at my new cybernetics and, maybe for the first time, realized how much I had changed. Half of my body are cybernetics now, and I haven't been able to process that fact yet. I didn't want to.
Was its PTSD? Am I suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder? I don't think so but what do I know. I was no psychologist. I had been throwing myself into my work to avoid looking at myself. I remembered the first day I came back from Thailand. The different man I saw in the mirror. How different he looked, and how hard it was to process that man being me. Had I truly looked at myself since that day? Most probably not. I had been too busy. And I was happy that I was busy. I hung my head in defeat.
"Shit! The guys were right. I came back too soon."