Bugs in the System

by Anita Cooper

“Robot love. What a beautiful thing”, Bitsy said, turning to look at Bob.

Bob shrugged. It wasn’t the first robot trade show he’d been to, and it probably wouldn’t be the last.

The robots’ designer stood next to his creations – male and female robots – droning on and on about their upgraded and lifelike exterior shells with more responsive emotion simulators.

Bob looked at his watch.

Honestly, he didn’t know what everyone got so worked up about. It’s not like love was that big of a deal.

It hadn’t been for him, anyway.

The product leaflet that came with his ZR-372 – marketed as Vivian – was supposed to be the real deal.

It wasn’t.

Sure, it performed all of the mechanical functions that came with sex, but he’d been led to believe it would have emotions and logic – that it would be better than a human female.

He read through the instruction booklet…even called the help desk, but they were no help. So he sold Vivian until something better came along.

Bitsy nudged him.

“Bob, he’s going to start the programming for his “love machines”. Isn’t that such a cute name?” Bitsy said. “OMG, I’ve got to get one…look at the muscles on the male – I wonder if I could special order the size of…”

Bob rolled his eyes.

The robots began to move, the male reaching for the female as if to kiss her. He embraced her, but once their lips met, something seemed to go wrong.

Horribly wrong.

Bob couldn’t stop watching. The female’s skin began to melt. The male continued with his programming, planting blubbery steel kisses on her face, impervious to the female’s skin dripping down her torso and pooling in a large mass of steaming plastic and wires.

Hmm, maybe he’d better try again to find a human girl.

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