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A Little Probing

By Jack Bryson

 

I found out I was violated last night when I checked my e-mail this morning. A banner stretched across my browser declaring in all caps, “Mr. Delvin, find out the results of your colonoscopy!” I clicked on the banner fearing the worse and the link took me to a page with a “Medical Summary” header and a pop-up window, prompting me to enter my credit card information.

It turns out that a sales robot I slammed the front door on yesterday released a spider drone through my mail slot. The spider drone was the size of a dime and carried millions of nanite spiders. It waited till I was asleep in my bedroom, made its way across the carpet and up my bed leg, crawled into my shorts and then, it released microscopic spider-like robots with built-in cameras.  They made their way into my rectum and performed a colonoscopy.

I know what you’re thinking- “How the hell is that legal?” It’s not and I could press charges but I work for Bio Diagnostics Inc. (the violators in question) and any action I take against them would cost me my job. I should report it to HR but I know what they’ll say- “You could file a complaint but you’ll get a negative performance review at the end of the year.” They pulled that shit on a female engineer when her boss pinched her ass in the elevator. At any rate, suing Bio D might be difficult because they flipped the bill for everything in this town: new school computers, new music equipment for students, shuttles for the city; they’ve got this town in their pocket.

In a separate section of my browser window a video played on a loop, showing what the nanite spiders recorded. The footage first showed my hairy ass, the nanite spiders entering my rectum and then, the interior of my colon. Some of the spiders ate my waste (to put it delicately) while the others filmed. I was tempted to enter my credit card information because I wouldn’t mind finding out the results, but I refused on principle.

I wanted to get rid of the nanite spiders but I’m not a tech guy. In fact, I’m just a driver for Bio D. I shuttle a chunk of their employees to and from work. So, I tried doing a little web-based research to find out if there was a way to get rid of the spiders, but every time I clicked on a site I had to close that same goddamn banner ad, which showed a rerun of my colonoscopy and “strongly recommended” I enter my credit card information to find out the results. The fact they “strongly recommended” I pay for my colonoscopy results got me paranoid.

Did the spiders find something? Did I have cancer? I had to remind myself that all these ads “strongly recommended” to buy their product be it yogurt, the latest streaming service, or the latest album of my favorite band. The banner ad had a virus like quality, which kept popping back up every ten seconds on the page I was reading. It didn’t matter too much, because I couldn’t understand the specs or jargon about the spiders. I decided to text a friend of mine who works in IT.

I found my cell phone and unplugged it from its charger. When I unlocked it, I got that same ad again. This one I could swipe away and it wouldn’t appear when I texted someone thank Christ. I could still text, Skype or make a phone call in relative peace. I can’t walk three feet out my front door without a drone swooping in to sing a soda jingle at me, but I can still text another human without interruption.

My tech friend Alex was adept at this sort of thing and I waited for her response, but I feared she’d be less than sensitive about my situation- her sense of humor could be sharp. As I waited I found my headphones, plugged them into my cell phone and started listening to my usual playlist.

The raw, amateurish riffs of my favorite punk band distracted me from the robotic critters that were squatting in my rectum. I tapped the edge of my desk more or less to the rhythm of the song. I started to feel violent and I began to daydream of kneecapping the executives of Bio D. I imagined rushing them in the parking lot with a wooden baseball bat and letting them have it. I also imagined kneecapping every fucker who creates banner ads. I would never do these things but at least in my fantasies I could get some justice. I never daydream too long about revenge because I don’t want to get too worked up; it wears me out and makes feel kind of childish.

My cellphone buzzed and I unlocked it to see the text from Alex. “So if you fart, you’ll have barking spiders? LOL. Good news, you’ve got three options in getting rid of the spiders: 1. You could pay for the results of your colonoscopy- the spiders finished their exam so they should have left your colon by now and made their way to your rectum. They’re programed to exit your rectum once you pay. 2. Eat lots of fiber and wait 24 hours. That should get rid of most of them but there’ll still be a few thousand stragglers, especially around the entrance of your rectum.   3. Get them drunk and they’ll shut down.”

“Get them drunk?” I texted back, puzzled.

“Yeah, it’s hard to explain but alcohol will confuse the spiders’ taste buds. They’re equipped with organic taste buds, which allow them to sample the DNA of the patient to confirm their identity. Alcohol should prevent them from confirming you as a patient.”

“Great! So all I have to do is have a few shots of whiskey!” I texted back elated.

“I’m sorry hon, other way.”

“Come again?”

“You’ll have to give yourself an enema of whiskey to get rid of all of them.”

“Oh. Ok. Thank you very much,” I texted back, a little disheartened.

“No problem. You can pick up an enema kit at the drug store.”

“Thanks Alex.” I sighed as I held my cellphone. It looks like I’d have to go on a small adventure. I changed in to some clean clothes- a pair of blue jeans, sneakers and tee shirt. I found a raggedy baseball cap, because I didn’t feel like combing my hair. I checked myself in the mirror before heading out. I’m kind of a big guy but I have boyish face with round cheeks, a small nose and “doe like eyes”. Alex says that’s what makes me look like a sucker. Maybe she’s right and everyone thinks I’m a sucker.

At any rate, I started to head out but when I opened my front door there was a sales robot in front of me. He looked like an upright vacuum cleaner with arms. His head was small and cylindrical and he looked up at me. “Good afternoon sir, I was just about to knock on your door. I understand you need an enema kit. I have with me three brand name enema kits and one store brand. Would any of these be of interest to you?” Christ, that was fast. I see that a certain mega online store reads my text messages.

“Eh sure, why not?”

“Which one would you like?” The sales bot held out the enema kits in front of him and I chose one with a blue Caduceus on a white background. It appeared the most professional and sanitary and as it turns out it was the most expensive of the four.    “Excellent. Thank you for your purchase sir.” The robot said as I handed him my credit card. “Would you like me to save your credit card information for next time?”

“Uh no thank you.”

“It’s quite secure sir.”

“Oh, maybe next time.” I said. I never save my credit card information anywhere since my mom’s bank account got hacked by Russians back in ’09. I’m really paranoid about hackers and what I perceive to be their god like powers to hack into anything and steal people’s money. Alex would be amused at my “old man” anxiety over technology. I could hear her voice, “Oh my gawd, you sound like my dad!”

I turned the enema kit over in my hand as I closed the door. The instructions were simple enough. I opened the package as I made my way to the kitchen to look for some alcohol. I didn’t have any whiskey but I did have a bottle of Vodka and then, I went into the front bathroom and closed the door behind me. You don’t need to know the step-by-step details. Seriously. After I gave myself an enema and got the spiders “drunk” I came out of the front bathroom, pulling up my pants with one hand and holding the Vodka bottle in the other.

I was startled by a knock on my door. I set the Vodka bottle down on the kitchen counter and zipped up my pants as I made my way to the foyer. I figured the sales robot was back with a receipt or perhaps my credit card was declined. I didn’t see a reason why it should be though.

When I opened the door I was surprised to find Alex. I wasn’t expecting her at all. Alex was about 5’7, three inches shorter than me. She added a few purple streaks to her hair since I saw her last and she was sporting a nose ring. She always had piercings since I’ve known her. When we were teenagers she came over to my house one time and said, “Hey Luke, I got my nipples pierced.” As I answered with a nonchalant “Cool,” she lifted up her shirt and flashed me her tits. I was in shock but mostly I was scared because my mom was in the kitchen, however, Alex didn’t care. She just laughed at the look on my face before letting her shirt fall. I wondered if she still had those silver barbells in her nipples and I thought in all likelihood yes. In Alex’s right hand she held a manila file folder.

“Hey let me in, I found this lawyer online who handles malpractice suits. I also printed out a bunch of information on unauthorized medical procedures.”

“Malpractice suits?” I asked as I stood to the side to let Alex in.

“Yeah you could sue your boss for millions.”

“Yeah but this wasn’t malpractice; I wasn’t in a hospital and I wasn’t examined by a doctor. Maybe it could be assault.”

“Ooooh, we could go that route. Let’s look over the information and look up definitions of sexual assault.” I shrugged my shoulders as I followed Alex to my kitchen. We pulled out a couple barstools and parked our rears as we spread out the contents of the manila folder on the kitchen counter. As she used her cellphone to look up definitions of sexual assault I perused the malpractice information, especially the bit about unauthorized medical procedures. I had to admit I had my doubts since Bio D was a formidable enemy, but I was willing to humor Alex since she was full of energy and took an interest in my plight.

There was another knock on my door. Christ, I was popular today. I got off my barstool and made my way to the foyer again. A tall blonde woman in a knee length blue skirt, white blouse and blue business jacket was at the door. Her jacket was undone and her blouse was tight, showing off her rack. She held a briefcase in her right hand and greeted me with a wide smile. She wasn’t really my type but I was getting a little hard.

“Mr. Delvin may I come in?”

“Uh sure.” I stood aside and let the stranger in my house. I saw Alex look up from her cell phone and give the stranger a cool stare, undoubtedly assessing the newcomer.

“My name is Ms. Serval.”

“Like the cat?”

“Yes, like the cat. I represent Bio Diagnostics Inc. We understand there was a mistake and you received an unwanted colonoscopy from one of our sales robots.”

“Maybe,” I said suspiciously.

“Well, we’re willing to make things right and offer you a generous settlement.” Another knock on the door. Ms. Serval and I were still in the foyer when I turned around and opened my front door. There was a man with thinning brown hair who wore spectacles and also held a brief case but he wasn’t dressed as nice as Ms. Serval. His plaid business suit was a little dated and his tie was crooked.

“Mr. Delvin don’t say a word. She is a foul temptress and she spreads lies.”

“Hello James,” Ms. Serval said.

“Mr. Delvin I’m a civil rights lawyer. Let me counsel you before you think about any settlement.”

“Er, why don’t you come in?” Alex and I watched the lawyers converse and toss out ideas about what’s best for me. I barely had enough time to assess my options. All my needs were magically being met at warp speed and without my consent.

 

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My name is Jack L. Bryson and I'm the editor of Teleport. I studied literature at University of Montana. I live in Mountain View Ca, and my email is coffeeant1@gmail.com

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