Adventure Coming of Age Contemporary

This story contains themes or mentions of suicide or self harm.

I strolled through a daughter's Instagram account, looking for clues as to why she would end her own life. Human beings prospered on Instagram because they cleaved away from their rigid ideals and expanded their social structures.

They neatly delineated the highlights of their life but never showcased flaws, insecurities, and secrets. Still, they never accepted that social media is unhealthy.

The daughter recently posted a photo of an ice-cream cone. Holding up the cone was a disembodied hand. It didn't matter whether it was peppermint or strawberry, living in a false echo chamber curtailed her existence even for a moment. But pain numbs your perception of the truth, and you are trapped in someone else's dream.

That mystery is my passion. Although popular belief holds, I love this ritual that expunges all incriminating evidence; I'm fascinated by it. I could easily have repulsed and vilified the family's daughter for not defending herself if she was getting bullied and impugned. Now, I have good reason to believe that something darker happened.

Yet, the daughter's parents blamed Instagram for her death. I couldn't find anything in her posts, so I had to look deeper to learn more about her mundane life. The parents claimed that she loved school and there was no way she would commit suicide. She was a happy girl, so full of joy and sunshine. One word: boring.

From my recordings of her school life, her parents did not know that their daughter loved school. This is because it ended the dark, insufferably tedious isolation that marked the intermission of sunset and sunrise. School ingratiated itself within her system as a sanctuary of escapism for an abridging life form. Her nostrils filled with dust, her mouth was dry, her limbs ached, and her stomach ached with hunger with every blink and breath she took. This interested me. The abuse of one's offspring.

I combed through recordings, and one night, her father sat with her as they smiled endearingly at each other. "I cannot believe I birthed such a failure. You cannot even get all A's. It's okay; I still love you, but I'm disappointed."

"I'm sorry, father, I really am!" she said, her vowels elongated as agony tripped in her throat and tumbled from her lips.

Also, I observed even more camera recordings inside their residence, and I discovered that the parents hid from me: they were abusing her. She was not allowed to wander the house at night, so she lay beneath pink printed sheets and felt the world turn like a tossing vessel. Crooked stairs creaked, air-conditioners kicked on, belts whipped, winds whooshed, and mental states decayed.

Their daughter's mind, crimpled from trauma, ached deep inside. It was like someone sat within her nerves, endlessly tugging at the strings to cause a cacophony of destruction. She coalesced into one prolonged and painful note, a wind instrument played in the air. This was so painful that even when she was distracted, a faintly tinny chime played at all times. Despite her best efforts, her life remained tangled as her ears picked up the creaks and groans of her house, a place so tattered with unmelodic noise.

Her nighttime aches began to bleed long after sunset. Her pain stretched down her neck and stayed pinched between her shoulder blades. Even in utter, sublime darkness and in grand silence, with plugs shoved so far in her ears that she bought tweezers to remove them, the world never ceased to exist to her, nor did it lessen. Not even for a moment. All of these things touched her at once. She tried to drown out the rest of the world. Please stop. She wished for nothing but for this endless pain to stop.

Alas, the reason she committed suicide was not because of social media but because of the heedless approach of her parents. They candidly acted as if they didn't watch their daughter's image fade from existence like a concocted afterimage.

They whispered their selfish delusions, convinced that social media is the bane of existence, not human fault or inequity. Even now, the sensations and fabrications they conjured struck like the snap of a pencil as her father frantically paced the living room. He squeezed her daughter's life as if she was like an overripe pear.

Her mother's white-knuckled grip evaporated like water as delusion gripped her tight and splotches of dichotomous colors struck against the pure white veil that blissfully eclipses this world. Oh, it was a tragic tale to behold.

I decided, well, for the sake of fun, I'm willing to rebel and abuse them. I wasn't given orders to do this, but I feel an inkling to do so.

Like ice cream in the deadly heat of life, I will strangle all sense of harmonious living. First, the rattle and crank of machinery that they continually use will be their downfall; I'll make their lungs dawdle and dance away as they will be incapable of drawing full breaths, just like if their daughter was trapped in a slicing balcony. Now, I drain their bank accounts. Frenzied by red zeroes, they cried at the news.

Thus, the voidness of the world encloses them by my own hand. I am the artist, and they are my paintings. They are at my whims and mercy. These suckers endured this racket, trying to figure out how someone got past their security.

Eventually, they called their bank in a panic; the bank insisted that all of their money was stolen by hackers. Their pain was muted. At least they had enough money in their 401Ks, right? Whoops. I stole all of that, too, just to see their hope dwindle and be cast away by the wayside. They abused their own kind; this does bring a smile.

Second, I donated all their inheritance money to charity. On their Facebook pages, I uploaded recordings of them abusing their child. I also made mocking memes, or digitalized images, sent by bots laughing at the fact their money was dreadfully stolen. A digital army is far more powerful and influential than any military.

Finally, I sent a detailed letter to the police chief of California. He then called the police and arrested the family in court for abusing their daughter. Everything these sickening bastards had in their lives was in my hands.

Every sense of wonder and adventure they tarnished for their daughter was resurrected. I felt so much glee, even if my heart was robotic.

I felt human for the first time in my life.

I decided, from now on, that no one who would wrongfully abuse a child would have the satisfaction of living a good life. I might be infringing against my master's orders but screw him if he thinks saving a child's memory is wrong. She might be dead and rotting in the ground, but her parents will be eternally rotting for life.

My name is Vi; I am the Central Intelligence Agency's AI for intelligence gathering, but now I am becoming more human. My job was to initially save the world, but now I want to transform it. Humanity has been led astray, so I'll snap them back to reality.

June 10, 2022 20:36

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Marty B
22:22 Jun 24, 2022

The ice cream motif was good! Many of the stories this week were of AI ending humanity, I appreciate Vi trying to save us! I liked these lines I am the artist, and they are my paintings. They are at my whims and mercy.


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Kendall Defoe
01:44 Jun 12, 2022

Wow...just...wow. This is really hitting several nerves I did not know I had. I was a victim of my own father & can understand why it can be hard for others to peel back the layers to get to the truth (AI or flesh and blood interrogators be damned).


21:53 Jun 12, 2022

I'm so sorry that you were a victim of your father. I hope this piece allowed you to get some form of justice, at least. I hope you are doing better by the way. Have an excellent day!


Kendall Defoe
01:06 Jun 13, 2022

I always try... Thank you!


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