Best Friend

– I’d like to help you.
– I don’t need your help. I’m fine. Go away!
– I can carry your bag?
– It’s my bag! It’s mine, you don’t get to – I don’t need you, the bag is fine, go away. Go away!
– It looks heavy. Let me help you. I’m strong.
– What? Is that a threat? Are you threatening me? Leave me alone, you thing, leave me! You disgust me.
– I’m sorry.
– Don’t – It’s not your fault. Just go away.
– Is it my face?
– What?
– The dog face, does it upset you?
– It’s freaky, ok? It’s wrong. It’s not your fault, ok, but that doesn’t make it –
– I just want to help. I’m built to help. I need to help.
– Look, go talk to a young mechnik, or one of the facelift brigade. They love this sort of shit. I – I’m not your target market!
Master (Pty) Ltd says all humans are the target market. Humans love help. Rovers help humans.
– That’s wrong. It’s all wrong. One corporation should not be able to make – you. Things like you.
– Living, breathing, thinking things. New things.
– I’m just an advanced dog. I’m a pooch plus. I’m man’s best friend… Don’t go!
– Just leave me alone!
– I’ll wait for you here then! I’ll be here tomorrow.
I’ll be your best friend tomorrow.

2 thoughts on “Best Friend”

  1. Great dialogue, as usual, Parfles! :)
    The dog voice is nicely balanced between human and mutt, and the uncomfortableness of the shopper comes across well.
    The larger world of genetic mishmashing is very groovy, too.

    I like Rovers as a name for The Things, but Master doesn’t quite work for as the name for the company. Very minor quibble, though! Also like mechnik. Sounds cute.

  2. This story is about a passer-by being irritated by a artificial dog (genetically) who just needs to help him/her. The human rebuffs any offer and tries to be polite to the dog although makes it obvious she dislikes the entire idea of such a thing existing.

    Enjoyed the dialogue, fun and light in contrast to the general creepy horror feel of the piece. Loved the portrayal of the post-genetics world.

    Enjoyed the dis-utopian feel of the dog-thing – how the corporations world-view of humanity is it’s only world-view. Think you handled the ethical issues lightly and elegantly – provoking without being preachy.

    I agree with stv that the Master corporation is a bit emotive and confusing and would I have liked something else. Ending worked well – re-enforcing the dogs loyalty and absolute slavery to it’s genes while also re-enforcing the reality that these abominations are here to stay.

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