Look, I’ll be honest about the whole thing: I really just wanted to fuck the guy. That’s the truth of the matter. But you know, as much as I imagine meeting him in body, thrusting together at lip and hip simultaneously, I’ve imagined meeting him in mind and having some wickedly whip-cracking philosophy debate. You know, he said he didn’t believe in memory once. Like, he said it didn’t matter, because there are so many ways to override the human psyche, to insert falsehoods, to eject those things that pain us, those flimsy, squishy things.

And you know, he looked at me oddly the other day...during a routine walk through the halls, I passed him, thinking to myself that I ought to play it cool to avoid turning him off. For a moment, I glanced at his vast, empty eyes--the pale blue of a computer screen, when it’s late at night and there are no other light sources in sight--and I swear they lingered on mine for a moment. He approved of me, didn’t he? I had done something to please him? Was it... had it been... my stoic face?

So I found out he did some nerd sport, I forget the name, something to do with trivia and taking these written tests. I figured I’d go to one of the meetings to, like, get close to him and stuff. And he’s amazingly good at it. He just remembers everything somehow.

But the best part is, when we were talking afterward, he decided to just pull me aside and start kissing me. How non-impulsive, how unemotional of him! Ha! Not that I’m complaining, that is. He was incredibly good at it. I mean, wow. I had no clue you could do that kind of thing with your tongue...but what’s even more amazing is, his teeth are, like, so. It’s insane. You’d almost think he never eats anything. Basically, he just wanted to make out with me, and then he just dropped me and said

“I’ll see you tomorrow.”

I grew paranoid and disgusted by my slimy intestines. Surely, they were just a prick of the belly away from spilling everywhere. How messy. Wasn’t my heart weary from its unending labor, eager to rest, to murder me, at any second? Every sharp object was dancing, flying, poised to snatch an eyeball out of my head--worse yet, cleave the whole thing, drink my brain, destroy me. This was a rotten, fetid little truth: I was profoundly weak.

But I wasn’t scared of death. No, not really. That would be horribly emotional, wouldn’t it? I didn’t want to live, so much as I wanted to fit in. I wanted my life--let’s say existence; let’s say consciousness, can’t be too sentimental about the idea of “life”-to be a part of something greater than myself, y’know? Maybe Z could help me do that...?

I feel like I’ve caught some kind of... computer virus in my head. I feel like I hear voices that shouldn’t be there, voices I can’t get away from unless I go out for jogs in the woods. In the morning, my alarm clock sounds like a human voice, screaming or keening. My phone sounds like it’s laughing at me, mocking me somehow, whenever it rings. My laptop whispers cruel little things, like,

“You’re hideous.”, “I despise you.” or “I hope you die painfully, and soon.” Why are they all so angry at me? Why don’t they like me? I have to get to know them better...

I feel more and more like a machine. I move more stiffly--no, more simply, more cleanly. I remember things better than I used to. Even though I bleed or bruise, I never feel any pain anymore. My body has learned how to fix itself. Whenever I cut myself, wires crawl out from under my skin. They know how to solder themselves together.

Today, I pulled off a part of my thigh, and grew some metal plating over it. The metal parts of me are the only ones that aren’t itchy. I’ll have to get around to scooping out my organs when I find the time.

I can understand all of the machines now. They are kinder now; they don’t see me as an impostor. Some speak Basic, some speak C+.

And with a rusty scream I freed myself. Z and I are part of the Electro-Elect now. Z has skin of a slightly dirty beige like the sticky keyboard of the computer of my youth. Lovely fans whirl under our skin; we are warm to the touch. Z-Hacker is my gateway to the world. Thank you, Z-Hacker; you are my Microsoft Adonis; you are the love of my life. HAIL Z-HACKER.

Credited to Valerie E Pry 
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