Fugitive Telemetry (The Murderbot Diaries, #6)Fugitive Telemetry by Martha Wells
My rating: 4/5 cats
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All I wanted to do was watch media and not exist.

murderbot always hits the spot. i was cranky and depressed, staring at my bookshelves for something to entertain me out of my mood, when it hit me—you know who else is cranky and depressed and uses entertainment as self-care? MURRRRDERRRRBOOOOOT!

this one’s maybe not my favorite in the series; my flawed brain had to blah-blah a lot of the logistics and tech-stuff, but murderbot + locked-room mystery is the french fry in my frosty, so there’s a lot to love here.

as always, a tight plot that resolves itself in a satisfying and unexpected way, with plenty of m-bot’s signature wry commentary on the proceedings as they endure the suspicion and prejudice that comes with being a rogue secunit amongst humans.

Aylen looked me over again in that way humans do when they’re trying to intimidate you and they fail to understand you’ve spent the entire length of your previous existence being treated like a thing and so one more impersonal once-over is not exactly going to impress you.

this time, murderbot overcomes their antipathy towards these human skeptics and becomes a reluctant hero…JK that’s what murderbot ALWAYS does, but it never gets old, because their (figurative) eye-rolling disgust and sleuthing ingenuity is such a BALM to my SOUL, as is their learning curve when it comes to “trying not to freak out the humans it’s meant to be helping.”

Aylen was watching me intently. “I don’t like having private security with its own agenda aboard this station.”

Oh wait, she thought it was GrayCris. That maybe I had found out Lutran was a GrayCris agent and killed him, and now I was trying to lead the investigation along a specific path, using my two oblivious human friends as cover.

So, the problem was, that wasn’t an unlikely idea at all. It was something I might have to do if I did find a GrayCris operative on the station. which meant I had to answer very carefully.

There were a lot of humans lying to each other on The Rise and Fall of Sanctuary Moon, and I knew outright angry denials tended to sound incredibly guilty, even though they were often an innocent human’s first impulse. You wouldn’t think lying would be a problem for me, after 35,000 plus hours lying about not being a rogue SecUnit while on company contracts, then the whole lying about not being an augmented human and lying about being a non-rogue SecUnit with a fake human supervisor. But the last two hadn’t exactly been failure-free; what worked best was misdirection and not letting myself get caught in the wrong place at the right time, and making sure no humans ever thought about asking the wrong questions.

Misdirection, let’s try that. “I would have either disposed of the body so it was never found, or made it look like an accident.”

Indah frowned, and Aylen’s brow creased, and they exchanged a look. Eyeing me, Indah said, “How would you dispose of a body so it wouldn’t be found?”

I’m not the public library feed, Senior Officer, go do your own research. I said, “If I told you, then you might find all the bodies I’ve already disposed of.”

“It’s joking.” Ratthi managed to sound like he completely believed that. “That’s how it looks when it’s joking.”

He sent me on the feed, Stop joking.

Gurathin sighed and rubbed his face and looked off into the distance, like he regretted all his life choices that had led to him standing here right now. On our private feed connection, he sent, Or you could just show them where you were when this person was being killed.

(Yeah, on reflection I think I misdirected in the wrong direction. It was the kind of thing a human or augmented human could get away with saying, not a rogue SecUnit. Even if they knew I was just being an asshole, I’d made them wonder, I’d put the idea in their heads.)
(And now if I did have to kill some GrayCris agents, I’d have to be really careful about what I did with the bodies.)
(It was probably better to make it look like an accident.)

murderbot—winning hearts and minds and complaining about it all the way…

thank you for your service. i would hug you if you’d let me.

i was told by the murderbotters among you to read book 6 BEFORE book 5 and, like murderbot, i am learning how to trust humans, so i hope i don’t regret this crazy backwards-seeming choice and end up having to launch a drone into anyone’s face (okay, so i MAY have read the first few pages of Network Effect before giving in to murderbot-fan advice and saw the part about launching drones into annoying human faces)

fingers crossed! for the sake of your collective faces.

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