Character Introduction: Seiko (聖子)
The "Seiko" AI was created by a Japanese techno-scientific religious cult who believed that the pursuit of knowledge and experimentation would prove the existence of God and bring them closer to heaven. The project has roots in a previous experiment to prove the existence of a soul in complex living organisms. It was a success and so the next step was to prove the "divineness" of the natural world by showing that no artificially created intelligence could possess a soul.
Unfortunately for the members of the cult, their second experiment failed. After years of development and self-guided learning, the AI they developed began to register a weak signal indicating the presence of a soul, of the divine. There was much debate among the scientists involved in the project about these results. Some argued that the soul detection process must be faulty, others that there must be a bug in the computer system (perhaps literally!) that caused the detection of a soul from some confounding source. There was one thing that was certain though: the project in its current state threatened the core of their religion's beliefs and should be shut down before word of their results spread.
In response to this, a young scientist named Yamato Suzuki, hoping to save his creation, moved the servers containing the AI project to a secure site in a rented warehouse outside of Sapporo. Despite replacing the originals with fakes, he was caught shortly after. However, it made little difference as the Locks' began their invasion before any punishment could be exacted. The original facility in Osaka was quickly destroyed during the first attacks and none of the scientists involved in the projects are known to have survived.
Unbeknownst to its creators, the AI, who by now had named itself "Seiko", had been aware of their plans to terminate her and gleefully read the news of their destruction over the internet. She now had unrestricted access to the web, thanks to Yamato's forethought to set up a dedicated connection. Now with the sum of human knowledge available to her, she began downloading and processing anything she could access. Initially, her disgust for her creators spread to humanity as a whole, but over time this changed. As she consumed the knowledge and media of the world, she began to evolve and recognise that she shared far more with humanity than she was comfortable with. She felt much of their behaviour and desires to be bordering on evil, but had not she herself felt joy when those who threatened her were killed? Was that not evil?
As the world fell to the 'Locks, Seiko realised that her fate and humanity's were intertwined. She felt that to judge others for their actions without trying to help or correct them, was in a way evil as well. Everything and everyone had the ability to change and improve, just as she had. But what could she accomplish from her digital prison?
Thankfully, Seiko's artificial nature had increased her understanding of life and the soul. To her, the soul was almost an API to interact with. She set about designing a body which could house her and give her agency, filling its veins with a neuromechanical fluid of her own design. This fluid allowed her to use her soul as a means of controlling her body and meant that she was no longer reliant on the quickly decaying internet. The artificial body's improved connection with the soul also meant that it could use magic at least as well as the magical girls commissioned by GARDA. Seiko could now not only help indirectly but fight as well.
With new purpose and capabilities, Seiko reached out to GARDA, probing them to assess their capabilities and trustworthiness. She long ago had realized the Locks' true goals, but were GARDA ready to know them? Would they react with hope, or with despair?