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Forget It

Alexandra Grunberg is a Florida based author, actress, and screenwriter. She enjoys reading Stephen King novels by day and binge watching Netflix by night. Her work has appeared in Fantastic Stories of the Imagination, Flash Fiction Online, Cast of Wonders, and more. You can find out more at her website, alexandragrunberg.weebly.com. This is her fourth story published in Daily Science Fiction.
"Hello Mr.... Robinson? Is that right?"
"Yes, that's correct."
"Good, good. We always want to be sure with these things."
"And you are..."
"A-Bot."
"Mr.--"
"No mister. Just A-Bot."
"Ok. A-Bot."
"So, what erasure can I help you with today?"
"Well, there was this relationship--"
"Ah, say no more. Just give me the name and a photograph and our system will erase her entire memory from your system."
"Here's the thing, does it have to be the entire memory?"
"I don't understand."
"Before we started dating, she was a very good friend. Even while we were together, she was my best friend. I was hoping there would be a way to keep the friendship. Just lose the romance."
"Unfortunately, if you are going to erase a memory that involves a person, you must erase the memory completely. Any appearance of the person, even if it is just in friendship, could lead to romantic feelings, and it could undo the entire suppression process."
"Oh."
"If you have her name and photograph--"
"But she was a big part of my life. Won't certain events undo that process anyway? Like, she helped me organize my mother's eightieth birthday party. Won't memories of that party trigger memories of her? And we went to my cabin in Vermont to ski every year over the holidays. When I go back there, won't I think, Hey, something's missing, someone's missing, and she'll buzz back into my brain?"
"It's surprising how much the mind can overlook when it wants to forget. There may be a sense of deja vu, but no memories."
"But I don't want to forget completely. I just want to forget the pain."
"The cause of the pain--"
"Like, she didn't always make things worse. Sometimes she made it better. She made my birthday better, when I didn't have to be alone. She made the weekends better, with our last-minute trips around the state. She made watching TV better."
"Ok--"
"It was me, not her."
"Then it might be more beneficial to--"
"I don't want all of her to be gone."
"It sounds like you actually want--"
"I don't want her to be gone."
"So you would like to--"
"You know what? Just forget the whole thing."
"As you wish."
"What?"
"Prepare yourself for a slight pinch."
"But--"
"That'll be five thousand dollars, Mr. Robinson."
"Who?"
The End
This story was first published on Thursday, April 13th, 2017

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