The doctor made the robot to look exactly like her. It wasn’t perfect – on the contrary, it had all her acne, her gray hairs, her fifty-two scars. Its voice had her gravelly rasp, her eyes the not-quite-color of evergreen. By the time she was done, she could barely stand to see it.
“Now what?” the robot asked.
“Just go be me.”
“To what end?” Its head inclined, curious.
“I want people to think I’m okay. I don’t want them to watch me die.”
The robot nodded.
“Just pretend until you can’t anymore,” she ordered, ushering it out the door.
When someone started using Jenny’s printer at work, she put out a simple memo telling them to stop. Since it was on the network, the ID was just a string of numbers, and she didn’t want to get HR involved. They weren’t using much anyway.
When she came in the next morning, there was a single sheet paper with one line of text: I didn’t know how else to say hello.
At the end of her shift, she responded and printed: Maybe we could have lunch instead?
The following day, another page: Printers aren’t great at lunch dates, I’ve found.
When Holly tried the unmarked door at the end of the hallway in her building, it opened like it had been expecting her. She carefully placed the pile of papers in her arms on the floor, copies of a report that meant nothing to her.
A wind blew in excitedly, traveling up her pinstripe skirt, and a honeysuckle scent tickled her nose. Sunlight caressed her sandaled toes, even though she had walked through the rain not long ago that morning. Birds sang softly. Someone called her name.
Holly slipped inside, the reports forgotten, the stack tipped over onto the carpet.
Anybody who tries to say that Creation is easy is a damn liar.
First, you need the foundations: air, water, earth. Animals come very last. Otherwise – woops – Death. You hadn’t even plotted out what that was supposed to look like!
You have to think it through, right? Because with enough time, it’s not like it’s all going to stay like that. You shape and mold and craft and then, oh shit, heavenly bodies.
Lastly, the hard part: giving it away. You hold your breath and hope they like it. Don’t break it.
Don’t watch. Walk away.
She ran her hand along the alligator’s ridged spine, her fingers catching on the edges of natural armor. The salty brine smell hung in the air, a comforting brackish blanket over the pier. The cuts of meat splashed as she dropped them in front of the brute, and she shrieked with delight as it devoured everything in quick, violent gulps.
Suddenly, her stomach tightened, and her entire body curled in on itself. The hand sticky with raw juice shot to her pregnant belly. “I should go,” she said.
But she lingered, bargaining with the coming terror as long as possible.
I’ve been doing this thing off and on that you all may have noticed if you’ve been here a while. If I’m feeling awesomely motivated, I try to set tasks at the beginning of the month that are ’30 (fill in the blank).’ This month, I’m doing these things:
- 30 doodles on Instagram
- 30 quirkyalone things I love on Twitter
- and 30 pieces of microfiction here!
Let’s get started!
“Be kind to people. That’s what I’ve done for three hundred years.” Sergio stuck his hands into his jean pockets, fingering loose change.
“That’s all you’ve done with your immortality?” Charles asked as they stood on the bridge, watching the water below, and he pulled his collar around his sneer. “What a waste.”
Sergio shrugged. Fog covered the cityscape, leaving them suspended in a dream of white and gray. “It’s what I would have done with my mortal life, too. Take it or leave it.”
Maybe after a hundred more years, Charles might change tactics. He would wait and see.