Words and wisdom (maybe just words).

A.I. 24/7 | Reddit Writing Prompt – 8

“Being contented has none of the glamour of a good fight against misfortune, none of the picturesqueness of a struggle with temptation, or a fatal overthrow by passion or doubt. Happiness is never grand.”

My 300-word flash fiction (below) was inspired by the above quote from Aldous Huxley in Brave New World.

Whatever world we physically build can it ever compete with the one(s) we imagine?

A.I. 24/7

Alexa lived in the city of Barkenham – a subsection of Londinium Metropolis – a rebranding had occurred as numbers swelled and carbon output was strictly monitored. Footprints were a thing of the past – literal and numerical.

Alexa knelt alongside-inside Sergio Aguero in the Manchester City changing room and tied her bootlaces. Today they’d be merging to score that legendary last-minute title-winning goal together. Not yet of course that would be a switch-back, a returner as the day progressed – highlights on her demand. In the meantime, there was the matter of another presidential election to win – a two term triumph courtesy of cut throat ambition, dire threats to Iran and the manipulatable vagaries of the Electoral College. She sprayed her hair, straightened her tie and selected a bright cap with a slogan. Next Alexa adjusted the leather folds of the heavy blood and sweat sodden skirt. Her warrior fingertips would soon be dropping their sword and brushing the wheat grass as she headily staggered toward Elysium and into the arms of her true love; a deviant Emperor slain and the appreciative roars of the Coliseum crowd still awash within her ears.

Tomorrow Alexa might change sex – slip into a birthday cake and shimmy for JFK, clutch a handbag and wage war in the Falklands, don a conical bra and embark on a sell-out world tour, bathe in asses milk and await the arrival of a young Adonis. The plausibilities were endless.

Today though, in this world, on this day – she yearned for something real. A familiar ache was back. Alexa sighed. She paused mid-kick with the goal yawning. The millions watching around the world would have to wait.  Alexa lifted the heavy headset from her shoulders and stretched out in her cubicle.  “Siri, send me my breakfast.”

H. B. O’Neill is a London born writer inspired by the City and its myriad opportunity for comedy, pain, drama and adventure. He is a prize-winning poet and short story writer, a screenwriter, playwright and author.

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