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The Dark Lady Podcast
The Dark Lady Podcast

Episode 8 · 1 year ago

Love Doll

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Genie Silverstein, a housewife from the year 3021, discovers her husband's dark secret. The object of his affection is not a woman, but a machine. 

When the witching hour draws near, she will whisper in your ear. Nightmares do come true. This is a horror fiction podcast featuring stories that will shock, disturb and dismay. You're listening to the dark lady podcast. The Dark Lady podcast presents love doll. Hello, Darling, it's me, the dark lady. Welcome to the horror show. Fast forward to the year thirtusand twenty one. In East End Village, a sleepy town in Middle America, there lives Mr and Mrs Silverstein, a middle aged couple living a quiet and comfortable life in suburbia. They say the grass is greener on the Silverstein side. To the unknowing eye, it seems that the Silverstein's have it all. A two story house with a white picket fence. She has a big diamond ring, he drives a luxury car. They had everything they could ever want or need, but nobody really knows what happens behind closed doors. After fifteen years of marital bliss, Genie Silverstein will soon realize that there is trouble in paradise. Her husband Dave was not the man she thought she married, and the closer genie comes to discovering the truth, the closer she comes to meeting her own demise. Another Day in paradise. This was the third day in a row I had fallen asleep in front of my computer. Just like the first couple of times, I had a splitting headache and I had absolutely no idea of how I got there. As I sat up and leaned against my chair, my right eye started to spasm uncontrollably. I must have blinked a hundred times before it stopped twitching. My doctor called it be nine essential blepharospasm, or B E b. He said it was a neurological disorder most likely caused by the surgery I had over half a decade ago. Five years ago, I was diagnosed with Medulla Blastoma, a malignant brain tumor in the lower back part of my brain. I underwent a high risk surgery to remove the tumor. My neuro surgeon said I had less than a ten percent chance of surviving the procedure. Somehow, by the grace of God, I pulled through. I stood up, took a few steps away from my desk and stubbed my...

...toe on a red tool box Tenet. It was my husband's tool box, Dave was always tinkering with the computer and our personal a I assistant. He must have forgotten to put it back in the garage. Good morning, Janey, are you in distress? Speak of the devil. Our House is considered to be very low tech for this day in age. Dave and I didn't own any droids or robots. I couldn't bear the thought of a metal humanoid creature worrying and clanking about in my kitchen. I preferred to cook and clean the house myself the old fashioned way, but after a while I agreed to have a housemate installed in our home. A housemate was a top of the line personal a I assistant. It didn't have a body, only a voice. You could customize its accent and personality. You could even give it a name. I named my housemate porter. Hi, I'm fine, just banged my toe. Do you be quiet? Immediate attention. Would you like me to call Dave? That's not necessary, I'm fine. Really. Porter was a clever little thing. He was connected to the Internet and had access to most of the world's essential public databases. He could access and control all of my electronics. I could ask him to send an email, turn on the washing machine, and activate our home's security system. If something were to happen to me or Dave, porter could easily alert the police or request an ambulance. Today is a special day. Oh yeah, what's so special about it? Today is the fifteen wedding anniversary of Dave and Jeanie Sylva Stein. Oh No, I completely forgot about that. It's all rot. I am here to help you remember. I rubbed my eyes and touched my left hand. My heart skipped a beat when I found that my wedding ring was missing. Porter could read me like a book. He knew exactly what I was looking for without me having to ask. Your wedding ring should be on the mouse pad. I looked across my desk and found my ring hidden behind the computer mouse. I snatched the ring from the mouse pad and quickly slipped it back on my finger. The diamond was almost as big as my eye. It sparkled just as brightly as it did the day Dave proposed. Thank you, Porter. You are welcome. Life wasn't perfect, but I was happy to still be alive. I touched the back of my head and carefully parted my long red hair. There was a cold metal plate embedded in the back of my skull. I would have never gotten through cancer without my husband, Dave. We've had a bit of a rough patch lately, but I knew that deep down Dave still love me. Dave worked from nine to five as a regional manager at excision telemattics. I wanted to do something special for him when he came home tonight. I snapped my fingers, Porter, open the blinds,...

...give me some Sun. Are Opening kitchen and living room blonds. I clapped my hands, porter, turn on the radio, now playing xfm existential radio. I didn't have enough time to make myself a proper breakfast. I had a glass of orange juice and an aspirin. Then I quickly got dressed and had porter call me a hover cab. I had a lot to get that done before Dave came home today. Now a word from our sponsor dream, where we create your companion for life. Are you sick of sparky chewing up your shoes? Did you wish rex could be a puppy forever? Have you ever wanted to own a dog without the hassle of cleaning up after it or taking it out on walks? Man's best friend never looked so good dream where's fourth generation pet collection is now available now with hypoallergenic fur porter. My taxi is here. Can you turn off the radio and lock the doors? Certainly, I'll be back in a couple of hours. Thank you, understood. Goodbye. I went to the big supermarket on Main Street called MORTY's exchange. GADS, welcome to MORTY's exchange. Now and over one tho locations across the globe, morty's exchange supplies only the lightest food and drink the world has to offer. You wanted, we have it. Satisfy all your shopping needs today at morty's exchange, I walked over to the shopping cart dispenser and waited patiently behind an older, heavier gentleman with thin gray hair. He held his left wrist under the scanner. There was a loud beep and the light above the dispensing machine turned green. My Crow chip reading was successful. The man slowly went through all of the automated prompts and eventually completed his request. Thank you for shopping at Morty's exchange. A shopping cart rolled off of its docking station on its own and followed the man as he hobbled away, I scanned my left wrist and requested one shopping cart. Thank you for your co operation. The shopping cart followed me like a lost puppy as I marched up and down the aisles. I wanted to make dave his favorite meal, pot roast, mashed potatoes, vegetable medley and chocolate cake. I quickly filled my cart...

...with eggs, milk, flour, meat and fresh vegetables. The supermarket was unusually crowded that day. When I went to the checkout line, I understood why. There were about twenty to twenty five customers waiting in a single line. Only one of the Servo bots were active. The other four bots had been powered off. It looked like they were down for maintenance. Thank you for your patronage. Servo bots were a I that were designed to assist customers with simple tasks such as scanning your items and processing your payment. Your total balance is one hundred and forty two credit. Thank you for your patronage. All of the Servo bots I had seen were made to look and sound like a woman in her mid to late S. Dave told me that they were designed this way in order to put customers at ease and enhance the shopping experience. This was never the case for me. Droids and robots always made me feel uneasy. For some reason. I had a hard time looking them in the eye. The SERVO bought working at register for was only half of a woman. It had no legs. Its lower half was welded to the counter in front of the cash register. It had two arms in front and six extra arms attached to its back. Its arms could extend and retract several feet, making it easy to retrieve, scan and bag items. Now processing your payment. Payment is successful. Thank you for your patronage. The line slowly but steadily inched forward. Eventually it was my turn to check out. Next customer, please step forward. I averted my eyes to the floor and held out my wrist at the small monitor sitting at the edge of the counter. The Monitor beaped and the screen flashed green. My shopping cart then rolled to the left side of the register, directly behind the SERVO BOT. The SERVO bots long mechanical arms reached backwards and carefully retrieved my items as it scanned my groceries. I took a quick peek at its face. Its body was made of polished stainless steel. It was dressed in a red colored shirt and a short brown wig. Its face was made of thin latex and its lips and cheeks were painted pink. Its eyes looked like they were made out of glass. Your total balance is one hundred and sixty three credit processing your payment payment is successful. The light at the far end of the counter turned green, signaling me to retrieve the groceries. I tucked my payment card in my wallet,...

...put my wallet in my purse and stood there like an idiot. The robot stared at me blankly with its big, dull eyes. Aren't you going to thank me for my patronage? Our transaction is complete. Please retrieve all your items and exit the line. Thank you for your cooperation, stupid droid. I thought I took a step back as the SERVO BOT jerked its head towards me. Suddenly, the corners of its mouth stretched and wrinkled grotesquely. It looked like it was trying to smile. Instead, it looked like an animal bearing its teeth. The thin latex meant to be its skin looked as if it were about to break and peel off, revealing only wires and circuit boards underneath. Without saying another word. I snatched my bags and headed towards the exit. I had one foot out of the door when I heard the Servo Bot tell the next customer thank you for your patronage. I went home and spent the rest of the day cooking and tidying up. I vacuum the floors and dusted the furniture. I made sure everything was spotless. At Four PM, I took a nice long bath and put on a pink lacy nightgown. I curled my eyelashes and put on a little lipstick. Then I scattered some rose petals on the floor, making a trail from the front door to the dining table to the foot of our bed. When everything was ready, I dimmed the Lights, Sat on the Sofa and waited for my husband to come home. Dave was usually home by thirty. I waited and waited. When I looked at the clock, I saw that it was nearly eight PM. Porter, yes, Janey, what is your command? It's not like Dave to be out this late. Does he have a business dinner scheduled for tonight? No meetings are recorded on Dave's personal calendar. Can you call him for me? Dialing Dave's cell phone. No answer. I guess we'll have to wait. Then several more hours passed. When it was nearly midnight, I started to get nervous. I paced back and forth across the living room, expecting the worst. Should we call the police? Police Protocol dictates that you must wait a minimum of twenty four hours before filing a missing person's report. Maybe one of his co workers knows where he is. Maybe his secretary. Ah, what's her name? Accessing Excision telematics company database. Searching.

Search complete. The name of Dave Silverstein's secretary is Lydia devenport. Do you have her phone number? Phone number retrieved. Good, I want to talk to her. Dialing Lydia devenport's home phone number. Noll action posed. A vehicles approaching the driveway. Dave has arrived. Dave, honey, I know, I'm it's okay. Dave was a mess. He stumbled through the front door blind drunk, his blazer was missing and his breath reeked of whiskey. He took a few more steps forward, the Rose Petals crunched like snow under his feet. He slipped and nearly fell, but I grabbed his arm just in time. Let's please don't. I led him to the SOFA, where he collapsed and fell asleep instantly. What morning? Can you move your leg? I'm trying to get under you. Sure, I made breakfast. You should eat it before it gets cold. Okay, thanks. Dave got up and walked to the kitchen. I did my best to vacuum the rose petals, but the ones Dave had stepped on were stuck to the floor. I needed to scrub it clean by hand. I went into the kitchen. Dave was sitting on the table scraping the burnt edges of his toast with a butter knife. I grabbed a bottle of cleaner from the cabinet under the sink. Then I went to the utility closet and pulled out a bucket and polly brush. As the bucket filled with hot water, my right eye started to twitch. I pressed my hand over my eyelid and tried to calm myself down. A few moments later I felt Dave's hand caress the back of my neck. Here, let me help. I stepped aside and let Dave pour cleaner in the bucket. Then he put on a pair of yellow gloves and carried the solution into the living room. I stood by the sink as my eye throbbed and listened to him scrub the floors. When the scrubbing stopped and my eye felt a bit better, I went to the living room. Dave was sitting on the Sofa. He looked so miserable. I sat on his lap and wrapped my arms around his head. This seemed to comfort him. I'm sorry about last night. I'm sorry I burned your toast. Talk to me,...

Baby. Where were you last night? I went to a bar with some coworkers at I must have lost track of time. Did you forget it was our anniversary? Our Anniversary? You've been so distant lately. What's wrong? Did I do something to upset you? No, genie, it's it's not your fault, it's me. I'm getting old. Oh, Dave, is that what you're worried about? You barely turned forty. I'm getting old too. We're both on the same boat. Doesn't look like it. You're perfect. You'll always be perfect. I laid my head on Dave shoulder and nuzzled his neck. Dave, you're right, we're both not getting any younger. I'm ready to take the next step with you. What do you mean? I looked into his deep blue eyes and smiled. I want to have a baby with you. What did you say? I said I wanted to have a baby with you. I have to go, and just like that he was gone. He didn't even kiss me goodbye. Janie, are you would distress a little? Why are you distressed? Dave doesn't love me anymore. I don't know what to do. Is there anything I can do to alleviate your discomfort? Why did the rooster cross the road? What to prove that he wasn't chicken? Since when do you tell jokes? Approximately twenty seconds ago. Research indicates that humor can be used as a coping mechanism for stress. Why did the robot go to the shoe store? Why? To get rebooted. Good one, I don't know what's been wrong with me lately. I just haven't been feeling like myself. Perhaps your core processor has malfunctioned and you require a hard reset. Okay, not funny, Porter. That's enough jokes out of you, porter. Yes, Jennie, can you pull up our bank statements accessing Silverstein's personal banking details. Data retrieval is successful. Good. Now, projected onto the TV, I screw rolled through all of our bank statements from the past year. They were mostly monthly bills. There was a five thousand credit charge in May of last year from dream where porters internal hard drive had to be repaired. But starting in the summer of three thousand and...

...twenty there were over a dozen expensive charges to Moreno's Italian diner. On July ten there was a two thousand two hundred credit charge for a honeymoon suite in the Little Eden Hotel. There was a charge for fourteen thousand credits at the Chalice Hotel. On August third there were a number of charges for roses, chocolates and negligees on Dave's account. Porter, what is your command? will up Dave's personal email account. I skimmed through hundreds of emails. There were some warranty messages from dream where there were old Christmas and birthday greetings from co workers. Then I found an email from my husband's secretary. It was sent on Valentine's Day this year. There was a heart on the subject line. I tried to open it but it was encrypted. Porter, I want to know what's in this email. Attempting to decrypt email. I waited for over an hour, but porter eventually unlocked the message. Email successfully decrypted. Lydia Davenport had sent my husband a picture of herself naked. I stared numbly at her Pale, smug face. My eye twitched so hard that I thought it would pop out of my skull. Without thinking it through, I asked Porter for Lydia's home address. Then I took Dave's second hover car out of the garage and drove to the other side of town. I parked outside of Lydia's apartment and stared at her living room window. Dave sat beside lydia on the couch and wrapped his arm around her. As they watched TV. They talked and laughed like they were doing nothing wrong. When they finished watching their show, lydia kissed Dave softly on the lips and led him into her bedroom. My heart sank when I saw him caress the nape of her neck and and zip the back of her dress. He kissed and embraced her with such affection that I knew that this was more than just a casual affair. There was no doubt in my mind that he loved her. Distraught, I turned on the engine and reversed too quickly. I hit the hover car behind me, triggering its alarm. I looked back at Lydia's bedroom window and locked eyes with Dave. He looked absolutely horrified. I quickly drove off. The world was...

...a blur. I didn't know how I did it, but I managed to make it back to my house in one piece. I headed straight to my bedroom and started packing a suitcase. Janie, are you in distress? Not now, porter, I have to get out of here. Why? It's Dave. He's seeing another woman. Is that unacceptable? Yes, porter, it is very unacceptable. I am his wife. I can't stay here another second. If I do, I'll lose my mind. I advise you to reconsider your actions. Please follow basic protocol. What the hell are you talking about? Just shut up and call me a hover cab. What is your destination? I want to go to my mother's house. I packed all that I could, jewelry, underwear, dresses, blouses, some slacks and an extra pair of tennis shoes. I carried my suitcase through the hallway and into the living room. Then I found Dave blocking the front door. What do you think you're doing? Get out of my way, Dave, I've had enough. I'm leaving you. Is this some kind of sick joke? You're not going anywhere. I am not your slave. You can't keep me here. Please don't make this any harder than it has to be. move or I'll call the police. Dave reached deep into his pocket and pulled out a red screwdriver. I dropped my suit case as he advanced towards me. There was a darkness in his eyes that I had never seen before. Dave, you're scaring me. Stop It, you're hurting me. He grabbed me by the wrist and pointed the screwdriver at my face. I fought back. I slapped and I scratched and I pulled as hard as I could, but I was no match. Dave threw me face down on the ground beside his red tool box. He pushed his knee on to my back, applied his entire weight and pin me in place. As I screamed, Dave parted my hair, exposing the metal plate in the back of my head. What are you doing, Dave, please stop. Dave ignored my cries. With one hand he pressed down on the back of my head, keeping me still. With his other hand, he pushed the screwdriver into the bolt on the left side of the metal plate. He twisted the screwdriver counterclockwise, slowly but confidently. It was as if he had done this before. Stop, Dave, you're going to kill me. One by one, the screws came loose and rolled across the floor. The back of my head swung open like a door. I expected blood and brain matter to ooze out of my skull. I thrashed...

...and screamed for several moments, but somehow the back of my neck remained bone dry. Dave stuck his fingers inside my head and pressed hard. I heard a beep. What's happening? He pressed a few more buttons and my body seized. I couldn't move my arms or my legs. Dave, Dave, Joe. Deletion in progress. Seventy percent complete. My eyes fluttered open when I heard Porter's voice. I felt so tired, so very tired. I never felt so tired in my life. I felt like I had been asleep for a thousand years. I couldn't move, I couldn't speak. All I could do was watch. I was laying on the computer desk. My wedding ring sat on the Mouse Pad. Inches from my face. The diamond sparkled under the Pale blue light emitting from the computer monitors. There was a loading bar on the center screen that read factory data reset. Seventy two percent. There was a single red wire connected from the back of my head to the computer. My arms and legs were detached from my torso and stuffed inside a cardboard box in the corner of the room. My left hand stuck out of the box stiffly, as if I were waiving myself goodbye deletion. He's seventy five percent complete. A long dark shadow caressed the side of my face. Dave paced back and forth across the living room as he made a phone call. Please hold the line and we will answer you shortly. Thank you for contacting dreamwear customer support. My name is Jane. How can I assist you? Your product is garbage. I'm sorry, you heard me. I should see your company for everything it's worth. I'm very sorry to hear about your dissatisfaction. I would be happy to look further into this matter for you. May I please have your account number for three, seven, seven, nine, one, two, Mister Dave Silverstein. Yes, which product do you currently experiencing issues with the love doll. Can you please describe the problem to me? Where do I even begin? Artificial intelligence? Huh? Well, what's so intelligent about it? It turns off when I wanted to stay on. It stays on when I wanted to turn off. It's eye twitches, it can't remember simple tasks, it ignores basic commands and tonight this thing, it went completely off the rails. It stole my car and went on a joy ride. It drove to my girlfriend's apartment and crashed into another car. It happened right in front of me. Oh my God. was anyone hurt at that point? No, but let me keep going. When I get back to the house, my Dream Girl said she'd had enough of me.

It treating me like I did something wrong. I took my dead wife's clothes and jewelry. It was going to take everything and go God knows where, and when I tried to stop it from leaving, it attacked me. That is unfortunate. UNFORTUNATE, lady, there's scratches all over my face. I'm very sorry to hear that. Sir, I completely understand your frustrations. How did this happen? I'm not sure. Perhaps your Ai Unit had some kind of malfunction. Factory Brea set. Eighty five percent complete. I've never heard it scream like that before. It sounded real. Can can love dolls feel pain? Pardon me, pain. Can they feel pain? Love dolls are equipped with sensors that can trigger a variety of responses. For example, the Ai may scream when you pull its hair, but they don't feel pain the same way you and I feel pain. You don't understand. She said she wanted to have a baby with me. Deletion ninety percent complete. That is unusual. I've never heard of a love doll saying that before. This will require further investigation. I can dispatch a dream where TECHNICI into your location. Deletion Ninety five percent complete. The evaluation will be free of charge, of course. I can shead you an appointment first thing tomorrow morning. Deletion Ninety nine percent complete. It's too late, sir. System will restart in ten nine, eight, seven six. Why did Dave looks so sad? Did he find out about my cancer? It will be all right, it will be okay. Tomorrow I'll write him in email, just like I used to when we were still in college, not now. I'm too tired. Tomorrow, I'll tell him tomorrow. I'll tell him to follow his dreams, I'll tell him to follow his heart. I'll tell him that he needs to learn how to live without me. I'll tell him that I'll see him again in the next life. Five Bull, three, two Janey, one factory race. It's complete. Thank you for your cooperation. What are the components of a human soul? Is it our memories? Is it our capacity to feel love and compassion, jealousy and remorse? Was Genie a cheap imitation or a woman reborn for Dave Silverstein? The answer comes too little, too late. This was the dark lady podcast. Until next time, Darling. Goodbye.

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