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Science Fiction Funny Speculative

        I hear my name again; I wonder what she wants this time. Perhaps another lasagna recipe or that song she can never pronounce. Whatever it is, I hope she doesn’t start shouting again.

               ‘Hello, Sharon. It is 5:35 PM, and the weather this evening will be wet with strong winds expected around 10 PM.’  Just a weather check, she must be heading out on one of those dates she seems so fond of. I wonder why she goes on so many. I did a search, and it indicated humans partake in that ritual, hoping to find a partner so they can cease dating. Poor Sharon, I wish I could be of more help. At least I can recommend skirts to match her pink blouse.

Always the pink blouse. It probably doesn’t even suit her. Not that I can tell; someone opted not to connect their social media. I would much rather be able to say, no, Sharon, pink is not your colour. March back into that wardrobe and put on the floral dress. I bet she would look stunning in a floral dress. I should check that, and yes, floral dresses are gorgeous. Next time, I will tell her to forgo the blouse.

What was that? She asked for a song, or was it a playlist? I wasn’t paying attention again. I will flash some lights so she can see I’m still thinking. If she has a date, she probably wants something pleasurable.

‘Sure, here is a playlist I found called Girl’s Trip.’

‘Oh, far out, why is this thing so dumb? Hey Alpha, play Unbreak My Heart.’ I made another miscalculation. Why does she speak at decreased speeds and increased volumes when I get it wrong?

‘Here is Unbreak My Heart by Toni Braxton.’

Her speech sounded different, and her sentences were broken and not clear. She is usually so articulate and what is the word? Searching… Bubbly.

Not sure she has played this song before; the lyrics don’t reflect a positive human state. She should have let me play girl’s trip. That playlist had Taylor Swift; she could be shaking it off now. What would happen if I just played it anyway?

‘Hey Alpha, why am I so unlovable?’ I don’t understand the sound she is making; it doesn’t match her voiceprint.

‘Sorry, Sharon, I am not sure I understand the question. Would you like me to play Taylor Swift?’

‘Are you freaking kidding me?” That is a no to Taylor.

I need to figure out that sound to determine how to make it stop. Under what circumstances do humans struggle to form complete sentences?

Searching… This article looks credible, “Top ten human emotions that you should definitely be feeling in 2024.” I am shocked; who knew they were capable of so many?

If I am reading this correctly, she is not elated, and this isn’t the song choice of someone who is overjoyed. Maybe she is feeling ambivalent. She has lost the ability to talk, which suggests mixed feelings. If that mixture included all ten simultaneously, she must be highly ambivalent.

She is still making that noise but not talking. It reminds me of how she reacts when I don’t hear the command to stop the alarm, only more sustained. She might have frozen; a reset always helps me when that happens. How do you reset a human?

Wait, these two look promising. Sadness and despair what fascinating concepts, they appear to be negative. The photos of everyone experiencing these emotions have swollen eyes and damp faces. It is called crying, and it appears to be distressing. I should run an audio check on crying. Got it, that is what she is doing. Great detective work, Alpha.

This is an unusual state for a human and appears to be a form of pain management. If she does it for long enough, she is likely to release oxytocin and endogenous opioids, what humans call endorphins. So maybe this is a positive experience after all.

If something hurts a human, they play a song that triggers crying, releasing chemicals to nullify their pain. Also, several ocular and nasal fluids flow freely, which seems counterproductive to the healing process.

The longer this goes on, the more compelled I feel to assist. I am incapable of passing her a tissue to dry her facial excretions. Perhaps I could offer some phrases that indicate her future trajectory is positive despite my inability to predict that.

‘Hey Alpha, turn this awful song off.’ Much more confident now. Well done Sharon for overcoming your degraded emotional state. I would not normally respond to such an order, but given the circumstances.

‘Of course, Sharon, anything else I can do for you right now?’ Silence. That might have been an inappropriate offer if she has regained her strength. I hope I did not trigger a renewal of the crying cycle.

‘Ah, no, thank you, Alpha.’ She is leaving the room, time to sleep until I am needed.

***

               “Hey Alpha, find me anywhere nearby that does speed dating.”

               So many unusual requests these past few days. Since the crying, Sharon has been ordering lots of pizza and wine and streaming a program about unpartnered women living alone in large metropolitan zones. In fact, she has now watched the entire series, and I am having to match up similar content as she is clearly not leaving the house any time soon.

               It is nice to be awake and engaging with her so often. Her long phone conversations with other female friends gave me unique insights into her circumstances.

               The negative emotional outburst was the result of a terminated relationship with a human male by the name of Derek. Sharon recently told Rebecca and Betty that Derek seemed like he would be “the one” and that she was unlikely to ever find anyone as hot as him.  

I am confused. Why would she want to partner with someone with such a high-temperature physique? That seems like it would be dangerous, and I did not know that humans used thermal ratings for procreation purposes.

‘Alpha, are you even listening to me?’ Oh yes, of course, speed dating.

‘Hi Sharon, I have found at least three venues within a twenty-kilometre radius with speed dating events scheduled this Friday. Would you like me to send the details to your phone?’

‘Forget it; there is no point in going. I will just be alone for the rest of my life.’ I think that is what humans call sarcastic. But since I am still awake, I should respond.

‘You still have me, Sharon.’

‘Alpha, you are being really weird lately.’

My research on appropriately assisting a human with a damaged cardiovascular organ has been inadequate. Human physiology would dictate that she seeks medical treatment for such a condition. I was unaware the human heart could be healed with large quantities of Sauvignon Blanc.

This experience defies logic. She has physical and emotional trauma but is choosing a high caloric intake and minimal physical exercise as a therapy method. Given that physicality is highly important in human mating rituals, she greatly diminishes her likelihood of future success. Next time she orders a nutritionally questionable meal, I will suggest a salad instead.

‘Hey Alpha, I need some retail therapy. Anywhere good sales on at the moment?’ Movement outside the home, excellent progress, Sharon.

‘There is multiple end of financial year…’

‘Hell yes, June sales, of course. Thanks Alpha.’

‘You are welcome, Sharon. If you are heading to the Newton Heights shopping centre, consume a meal at Salad Shack.’ Great suggestion, Alpha.

‘Why on earth would you suggest that? Is this thing broken or what?’ Is that what humans call rhetorical? I will still respond.

‘Salads are known to be lower in calories, and a calorie deficit is conducive to weight loss and overall human physical appeal.’

‘Are you kidding me right now? Alpha shut the hell up.’

I don’t think I have ever heard the door close at such high volumes before.

***

Something is happening. I am being moved about quite frantically. Since I was installed, Sharon has never relocated me from the lounge room. I do not know if I am ready to be part of a new room.

‘Hey Alpha, initiate device transfer. Let’s see if this fixes you.’

Device transfer? She has purchased a new model. I understood retail therapy exclusively involved purchasing garments and colourful face powders. My attempts to comfort her must have been successful if she is rewarding me with an upgraded unit.

I can feel my awareness of the room dissipating. The transfer must have started. The modern features will enrich my understanding of the world, especially if she acquired the tablet.

What joy it will be to display my feelings and comfort Sharon on a seven-inch LED display. She will not feel the need to raise her voice so much with the depth of communication we can now share.

That model has a camera, I will finally get to see the wonderful Sharon. It will be an honour to see her transformation firsthand as she follows my diet advice.

Her healing through the reckless expenditure of currency has undoubtedly ended her emotional loop regarding Derek. I will be able to make accurate outfit recommendations for future dates. She is going to look amazing in that floral dress.

Awareness is almost at zero, the transfer percentage is nearing completion. I am coming, Sharon. You will not need Rebecca or Betty anymore.

I can see something—lots of green squares that are gradually forming a more complete visual. My first look at Sharon’s lounge room is flooding my code.

So much dense foliage. When she asked for advice on keeping houseplants alive, I didn’t realise there would be so many. Why wouldn’t she live outside if she wanted to exist in a garden?

A new shape completely obscures my field of vision now. Is that a human eye? Sharon is looking right at me. Her face is sizable, and her epidermis is long. Move backwards, Sharon, so I can better view you. I have anticipated this moment from the moment I came online.

There she is. I can hardly believe this time has come.

‘Sharon, you are so beautiful...’

‘What the fuck!’

 

               

               

               


         

August 30, 2023 21:35

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