Then she was attacked by a Gatnos sycophant one day, and lost the use of her
left leg. Later a tumor began to grow in the injured leg and it had to be
She was advised to break at least temporarily from her activities and take care of her failing health. Unable to continue leading the Gatnos resistance, she retired to her parents’ home and delegated her former leadership position to close friend and supporter Edward Allen. Though technologies existed to give her a robotic leg that could be operated by remote control, Emilia had once been a dancer; she found the robot leg too ungraceful. She wanted an organic leg that she could control with her brain. Little was heard from her as she began research in earnest with the help of her access to her father’s laboratory facilities. A few years later, she reemerged into the world with a synth leg grown partially from her own DNA and partially constructed out of fiberglass and other materials. It was covered with her skin and was sensitive to temperature and pressure, which it could relay back to Emilia via neural-electric pathways almost like a completely human leg. According to Rafael, she had paid a surgeon to help her attach the leg and refused to take the full dose of anesthesia so she could direct him in the unorthodox procedure from the operating table. The leg worked wonderfully. In fact, it was stronger and easier to move than her natural leg. After a period of indecision, Emilia decided to amputate the other leg and replace it with a matching synth leg. Her discoveries in synth technology offered her highly lucrative opportunities, and eventually she found herself directing a synth manufacture company for replacement body parts and training surgeons in the details of attaching the synths. By the time she made her first billion, the Gatnos Controversy had disappeared from public interest and moderates were again running her country.
After she retired from body part replacement work, she began to use her company profits to fund her private experiments. Working in tandem with some prestigious colleagues, she helped develop pre-Angelic cyborgs. Working in secret, she explored the frivolous side of genetics, engineering frogs with dragonfly-based wings and the like. Her cancer returned. She defiantly amputated and replaced her body parts one by one. Society called her deeply eccentric. Some were afraid of her. They believed she could not possibly remain human after having had so many synth parts added to her. They believed her mind would warp into something unnatural.
Perhaps they were right. Emilia did become odder than ever. She began to call herself an “Anteclocheilde,” after a synth-human construct in a little known fantasy novel, identifying as only partly “Emilia” and partly something else. Shock shot round the world when she arrived at a public relations interview with fullerymer, solar cell-covered wings, and obliged the astonished camera crew with a short flight outside. Not long afterward, she completed a prototype Angel who was never officially named. Nearing sixty, mythology (as well as stories of Heaven, Hell, and Angels) had become a minor obsession for the Anteclocheilde. Due to all of her self-modifications she was stronger and “healthier”—that is, her internal and external systems suffered from few if any impurities or diseases—than most natural humans, and she looked to be about forty years old. She defended her Angel-production against the second-wave Luddites, and aggressively argued for their usefulness to society as protectors and readily available healers. Through her numerous connections, she managed to secure a trial period for her prototype in a medium-sized suburb of her home region. The outcome was positive; her prototype consistently proved its convenience and usefulness to the people of the area over the five years it was consigned to the place. By then she had just completed the Organic Angel Michael: he had wings, augmented strength and agility, heightened sensory abilities, superhuman speed, highly advanced cognitive facilities, and a flaming sword. Her sense of humor eluded comprehension at times. He was required to keep the sword secured when in close proximity to humans but otherwise allowed to carry it apologetically at his side. Gabriel was then almost ready to be shown to the world, but for a few minor tweakings.
Eventually, Angels became as commonplace in civilized society as they are today. After she completed her seven first-generation Organic Angels, who were named after Archangels in various scriptures, Daedalus began to call herself, “Daedalus,” after the ancient Greek inventor. By the time she started work on second-generation Organic Angels and the more growing-time efficient “Inorganic” series, aided by Rafael, Gabriel, and the upgraded zero-generation prototype, she was eighty-nine years old.
Even with all the modifications, improvements, upgrades, and biotechnological advances, Daedalus was slowing down. She had wanted to keep the secrets of Angel-making to herself for as long as possible, even from her own Angels, but now she was forced to share more and more of them with Rafael, Gabriel, and the prototype so they could assist her to further extents. They could have leaked the details of Angel-making to the world at large if they’d wanted to—she had built them as free-thinking beings bounded by no more limits of will than were natural humans (except for the compunction to protect humans from physical harm). Not one of them betrayed her wishes.
She watched her Archangels go on to oversee entire mega cities and unintentionally found herself at the center of what eventually became the Angelic Church collective. Living in her cathedral in Eden, 'God II' attracted immortalists by the score. They believed she would live forever. They hoped to do the same by studying her life style and copying her habits. They wanted a messiah. After about two hundred and fifty years of increasing eccentricity, Daedalus locked herself in a tower of the cathedral and refused to see anyone but her Angels, and then usually she preferred Rafael. One day she simply disappeared. Rafael believes she tried to integrate herself into the Psi-Net. It had been a frighteningly serious obsession of hers during the last days of her time as Daedalus. Perhaps she succeeded. Perhaps she failed and met her end. Rafael hopes it was the former. When the door to her chambers was forced open, she and her Psi-Net equipment were gone. The balcony windows stood ajar.