The Grand Duchess pranced into the lab on four spring-heeled feet. “How goes the reclamation process, Doctor?”
The smaller machine didn’t move from his station, but his free-floating camera eye swiveled to focus on her.
“Passing well, Your Grace.” He gestured to the weed in the analysis chamber. “We are nearly ready to reintroduce plant life to the surface.”
“It doesn’t look like much,” she said.
The scientist thought of their earliest ancestors, boxes on spindly legs and crude, blocky bipeds. Humble beginnings. He was not a religious bot, but sometimes he felt like the long-lost Progenitors.
“No, it doesn’t.”

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