13th July 2071
[Recording Session, Session ID SEA#0005]
“Fuckin’ piece of junk!How d’you like that, huh?!”
The camera is oriented towards a grey sky, just some clouds are pierced by pale sunlight, while the curses of an angry woman mix with the sound of a heavy object pounding vigorously into plastic and metal.
“Yeah, get that outta your system, Motherfucker!”
A baseball bat clutters to the ground next to the camera which is now properly adjusted and shows Frettchen, squatting next to the device.
“Please, Doc, tell me you’re still sane, or I gotta put you down, too.”
In the background are various appliances, all smashed beyond repair.
“Good morning, Miss Aidee. Why are you so upset?”, the virtual doctor asks, slightly puzzled.
“Thank fucking God, they didn’t get you.”, Frettchen says with a good deal of relief.
“They?”, replies the program. “Miss Aidee, this behavior is alarming and frankly not matching prior diagnosis…”
“Relax, Doc…”, she cuts him off, sitting down and taking a breath. “Been cybertrolled and now I gotta do some… appliance-related cleaning.”
After a couple of seconds of awkward silence, the shrink clears his throat. “Very well, do you want to talk about this?”
“Nah… But while we’re at it, maybe about something else. So, you remember that job I told you about? ‘Course you do. Turned out it didn’t go as smooth as we thought it did and now Ruckus and I got fired. Maybe we shouldn’t have worn our own gang colors…”, she says, staring at the small harbor’s coastline. “But you know what? It was a shitty gig anyway. Stupid fucktard idiots, caught up in their mindless war for a drug and all that nonsense…” The doctor nods, takes a few notes. “I think it is for the better that you are no longer involved in these kinds of crime.”
“These kinds? Jeez, your adaptive algorithms are more flexible than I thought… anyway, yeah. All the fun I’d get there, I could get for myself anyway. That’s kinda the thing, though…”, she ponders.
“Please elaborate on that, Miss Aidee…”
“Been thinking about stuff. Stuff from the past.”, the elf explains reluctantly, like carefully opening a barrel of angry snakes. “Pictures and mementos, some vids… Did you know I am married?”
“Sometimes, it is helpful to…”, he starts, but then blinks in shocked disbelief. “Are you fucking serious?!” he then blurts out, resting his face in the palm of his hand.
“Hey, language, Doc! Damn, you got some sick realistic protocols there…”
The doctor throws his notes away and pulls out a new scratchpad. “Please forgive me, Miss Aidee, I just need to process this and, yet again, adjust my modus operandi for an efficient therapy. This may take several minutes.”, he sighs. “And indeed, what I provide is based on advanced tutor-software, tailored to my patients needs. That includes language patterns and advanced socializing if necessary. But I would suggest we try to ignore the technicalities of our relationship for a more efficient dialogue.”
He straightens his tweed jacket, rubs his temples and then the projections looks at Frettchen again. “Please go on…”
“Yeah… So, I met my husband while I was on vacation, visiting the East Coast. That was seventeen years ago, bit more I guess. I had a lot of fun. Plenty of chaos, havoc, brawls and stuff, we let this kid tag along too, gotta spoil the youth, you know?”
Frettchen smiles contently, her gaze still fixed on grey waters in the distance. “Good times. Nostalgia’s poison, that’s what I like to think at least. But those were just… Good times. It felt right to stop every now and then, before resuming to whatever fun I wanted to come up with, because it never FELT like actually stopping. I had the best of BOTH, I had my cake and got to eat it too… And then the Flux State exploded in glorious riot, I had to leave, the crash made us lose each other and I wrecked half of Berlin’s Matrix terminals out of frustration… Point is…”, she hesitates, pondering. “No, wait… remember that list you gave me? Phases of life or some shit?”
After a bit of browsing through her comlink, a list flickers into existence.
“Yeah, I made some adjustments. I don’t even know when 5 is supposed to start and I’m in my fucking fifties… Any advice on that, Doc?”
The doctor’s virtual forehead is wrinkled by a deep, thoughtful frown, as he looks up from his notes.
“My advice would be, if you cannot re-evoke this feeling of balance due to your husband’s unfortunate absence, try to find a surrogate.”
Frettchen raises a brow. “You mean, like…dating?”, she asks with a dash of disgust.
“No. Try to think of something that gave you a similar notion and then commit a pat of your day to that activity. For recuperative purposes, regenerating…creative energies, if you will, or even let what you love to do converge with this tool of balance. I am sure a woman with so many talents can find something worthwhile.”, he suggested.
“Got something specific in mind, you shrewd little bastard?”, she wanted to know, a sly smile sneaking up her face.
“From what I’ve gathered, and excuse my boldness, you enjoyed being a paramedic. Maybe it will take significant time until you overcome your utter hatred towards DocWagon, but that does not mean you have to hold yourself back entirely, Miss Aidee.”
After a long, stone-faced pause, Frettchen gives the projection a white-toothed grin and nods.
“That’s a nice thought…”
“I am glad I could be of assistance, Miss Aidee. Would you like to conclude this session or keep going?”
“Nah, s’okay…i’m done for today. Guess I’ll browse some more pics or write a song or something… Thanks, Doc.“