Human Error

"Am I the only one who sees that?"
“Am I the only one who sees that?”

Albert woke up in a hospital gown, on the floor of a small white cell. Rather than try the door, he sat up in the lotus position, waiting for the world to boot up.

Rubbing his eyes, Albert looked to the fluorescents, then to the shadow cast by the mattress. The brightness didn’t shift. Smoothing the pillowcase, he waited for the white balance to change. The fabric stayed beige.

Albert tapped his temple. When the H.U.D. didn’t show, he tapped it again. This had happened before he just had to remember how he’d fixed it.

Pinching the air, Albert waited for the search field to appear. The memory interface drew a blank. There were no folders, no windows, not even a floating pinwheel of death.

Turning around Albert wasn’t shocked to find a wall length mirror, but rather what he saw there. The lights in his eyes had been reduced to two tiny sparks, the same bland color as the florescent on the ceiling. There were no notifications, no pending messages, no emoticons. This was the first time Albert had seen the natural color of his eyes in a long time. The windows to his soul were wide open and what he saw was unsettling.

Despite the size of his cell, the world seemed so much larger than it had before.

Dr. Locke entered the viewing room behind the mirror. “What do you think?”

Dr. Walton shrugged, “He’ll be crying out for tech support in about five seconds.”

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