Monday, March 16, 2009

HOT FLASH!--Fantasy Unit 269 by Ann Vremont

Fantasy Unit 269
by Ann Vremont

cover art by Bryan Keller
ISBN (13): 978-1-60521-160-2
Genre(s): Futuristic, Hot Flashes, Sci-Fi
Length: Hot Flash


Wearing a Fantasy Unit costume to a friend’s Halloween party was meant as a practical joke poking fun at Vance Gemini, the one guy immune from every living girl’s charms. But Morgan Macy looks a little too much like the “real” thing in her pink latex dress and vid mask and is forced to head home for a costume change before she even gets to the party. Seeking a quick and efficient retreat on the NYC subway, she finds herself on an empty platform with a masculine, all-too-familiar voice ordering her to halt.

Really, FU269…what’s your major malfunction?


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Morgan Macy exited the metro lift swatting at the hand of the impertinent male who had just pinched her butt. “It’s just a costume, you fuckhead.”Reaching up to the side of her face, she tried again to remove the mask she had on. The pins securing it in place tore at her hair, making her eyes water. “Fucking defective Martian piece of shit!”

She’d have to wear it all the way back to her studio apartment in the Bronx. She glanced up and made sure she was on the right platform. She’d hopped blue line from Cathedral to 168th every workday for the last three years, but never with a damn Fantasy Unit mask obscuring her vision. She’d be lucky if she didn’t step off the platform and onto the track the way her night was going.

Pulling out her vid phone, she hit the fast connect to her Endscape account and streamed video of her upper body clad in the face mask and pink latex dress of a Fantasy Unit. “Halloween 2169. Epic fail. This is Morgan Macy… over and out.”

Walking toward the far end of the platform, she hit “send,” broadcasting the video to the inner circle of her Endscape account, and then slid the phone into the dress’s only pocket. Stepping close to one of the train monitors, she growled. The sign either said fifteen or eighteen minutes until the next train. Either was too goddamn long if the platform started filling up with drunks while she was dressed like this.

Somewhere behind her, a masculine voice ordered, “Wait!”

Morgan didn’t stop. She’d only made it halfway from her office to Tina’s costume party before being accosted by every male looking for a fast fuck with an unengaged pleasure droid. But something about the voice, or the way the platform’s acoustics familiarized it, slowed her pace.

“FU 269, halt.”

FU 269 -- the letters and numbers were emblazoned across her ass, big and black in the exact fashion of a real pleasure droid’s calling card. This wasn’t the first male voice calling out her costume’s unit number tonight -- just the first one she seemed to recognize and it made her feel like the floor had just dropped from under her feet.

That is, if karma really was a bitch and the voice ordering her to halt really did belong to Vance Gemini, one of the spreadsheet jockeys from the investment house Tina worked at. Only this one didn’t like to date real women with all their “complications.” The chance to offer him a little good- (or ill-) natured mocking at Tina’s party had been half the reason she’d selected the costume.

Of course, that brilliant plan had certainly turned around and pinched her in the ass.“FU 269, I said ‘halt.’ Are you malfunctioning?”

The question stopped her dead in her tracks. She waited, running through what she would say when he discovered his mistake. He was supposed to see her like this at the party, where he’d know it was a costume and only have to solve the mystery of just which one of Tina’s friends had poured herself into a pleasure droid’s uniform. Not that there was any guarantee he’d be curious once he found out the mask and “uniform” shielded a real live girl.

Ordering her to turn around, Vance -- or someone who sounded just like him -- repeated the question.

The costume had come with its own guide on Fantasy Unit etiquette. She turned, submissive, as if waiting for the would-be client to transmit his preferences. Keeping her gaze on the ground, she answered in a soft as silk voice, “Yes.”

The man put his finger under her chin and lifted until he was looking directly at her masked face.

Yep, karma is a bitch.

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