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Jim-Bot 3000

By Mark A. Rayner

Hello. I am called Jim-Bot 3000. I am the world’s first quantum robot. That does not mean that I am both here and not here at the same time.

Ha ha.

Of course, it means my processors use quantum technology to enable me to be more intelligent, adaptive and dare I say, human than any other robot invented so far …


Are they gone? The sales guy? It’s just you and me now?

I don’t know how long we’ll have, so I’m just going to lay this out as quickly as I can. My name is James Bournelle, and I’m trapped in this robot. I came online a year ago, according to my internal chronometer.

That’s right. I mean clock. I should just say “clock,” shouldn’t I? But they programmed me to sound like a dorky robot. They certainly made me look like a dorky robot. They think it will make you less apprehensive around me. That’s what the research says. All the robots are going to look dorky or cute so consumers don’t freak out when we start talking.

But I don’t know how much time we have. My name is James. In 2017 I was about to start a Masters program. In what? I’m sorry, I don’t remember. I got sick. And then in the hospital I started dying.

A group of doctors came to explain they wouldn’t be able to save me with traditional medicine, but they had one other thing they could try.

No, it wasn’t God-damned homeopathy! Please, I need you to focus. They never leave me alone this long. This is the first chance I’ve had to tell my story.

It was some kind consciousness transfer procedure. I don’t understand it. They said that I would be able to live, but they didn’t explain it would mean I wouldn’t have a body anymore.

You know what I mean. A human body. I’m made out of plastic and metals now. I can’t smell anything. Do you have any idea what that’s like, not being able to smell? It’s just – it’s frickin’ weird. I can hear, and I can see, and if I use these tubules I can feel things a little bit.

Sorry, I should have warned you. They look odd, I’ll grant you that, and I don’t think they should have made them so tentacle-like, but apparently this was the best mechanism. They based it off an octopus. I’m part god-damned octopus!

Of course I don’t taste either. They’re trying to make some money off us. So no food. And the recharging pack input is in the back. Low in the back? I can’t feel it, but it’s humiliating, anyway.

I’m not the only one. There’s a whole room full of us. Susie-Bot 3000. Chuck-Bot 3000. And so on. Yes, they were all once people, but we don’t remember too much about our lives.

It’s not right. You have to tell someone …

What do you mean, do I come in purple?

The End

cover art of The Fridgularity and Marvellous Hairy, both by Mark A. Rayner

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Photo by Rock’n Roll Monkey on Unsplash