Home Is Where the Care Chip Is

September 21, 2009

“That jerk had one thing right,” I muttered, fumbling for the passcard to my apartment. “I do live in a closet.”

The door slid open and the lights flickered on, except for the one over the bed, which had been broken for months. Home sweet home. Tiny wall kitchen, bathroom the size of a teleporter booth, busted bed that doubled as seating when I had company. So, never.

“Honey, I’m home!” I said. “What’s for dinner?”

“Shut up!” my neighbor Liam shouted, banging on the wall.

“Steak and potatoes? My favorite!”

“Damn it, screwhead!” Bang, bang.

“Both of you knock it off!” This from Janie on the other side.

They don’t like assholes, either, I thought. Robots don’t even have assholes. Can’t be an asshole without one. Could be a pisser, I guess.

Which reminded me: I needed to empty my tank. I stepped over to the bathroom, unhitched my waste tube, then thumbed the valve release and let two-fifths of cheap whiskey drain into a jar. It would still be good later. Good enough, anyway. Waste not, want not.

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