Author : Nicolas Frame

“How many people have you successfully implanted this in?”

The man chuckled. “I’m an engineer by trade,” He held the small robotic eye up between his fingers, examining it for imperfections. “Not a doctor.”

“How many?” Blane sat nervously on the makeshift operating table. The bright lamps all around were causing him to sweat.

“Two so far.” The man set the eye on a metal tray next to a scalpel and other painfully sharp looking tools. “One lived.”

“One lived?” Blane scoffed and stood up. “You said this was foolproof,” he hissed, “a simple procedure with just a few hours recovery time!”

“It is, my dear boy!” He clapped Blane on the back, grinning. “You’ll be perfectly fine.” The man shuffled to an unlit corner where a generator purred. “Please lie down on the table now, I’m getting your anesthetic.”

Blane rubbed his worried face. “Let me see it again.”

The engineer chuckled, walking back, needle in hand. “All right, but then we begin. After you pay there’s no refunds so…just relax.” He set the needle on the tray next to the tools and carefully picked the eye up raising it for Blane to see.

“It looks so…normal, almost real.” It did. The iris was even the same dark brown as Blane’s. “Can it really do everything you’ve said?”

“Trust me, this thing is solid. It’s loaded with three and a half exabytes of memory, full infrared and night vision capabilities, complex heads-up display, up to 70 times zoom, and of course picture and video taking features.” He gleamed at the eye. “It’s perfect, and it’s going to make me a fortune.”

“Alright. Let’s do it.” Blane tapped the ‘transfer funds’ button on his phone and settled down on the table. The needle stung as it entered his arm. Blane began feeling numb, but didn’t pass out as he expected. “Hey, doc. I-I’m not going out. Are you-are…you sure you gave me enough?”

“Oh you won’t be completely out during the procedure. But you shouldn’t feel any pain. Don’t worry, this isn’t my first rodeo. It’ll be over before you know it.” The man winked, grabbing two pair of forceps which he quickly clamped onto Blane’s eyelids, forcing his eye to remain open. “Your eyelids and, well, the whole general area might be a little sore afterwards. Not that it really matters.”

A scalpel and hook tool appeared in Blane’s vision, silhouetted by the bright lamps aimed on his face. He wanted to look away, but couldn’t with his eye forced open as it was. The hook tool plunged directly into his pupil, followed by the scalpel which began carving in quick saw-like motions around the edges of his eye. Blane flinched uncontrollably on the table, clenching his fists, though there was no pain. The vision in his left went black.

Blane strained his right eye to watch the procedure and wished he didn’t. The man plucked the left eye out, its optic nerve still attached and trailing behind it.

“Yuck!” The man slashed at the nerve a few times before it gave. “Ah, and there’s your brain. Exposed, unprotected, vulnerable…the smartest organ in your body. It’s funny that sometimes our brains make us make stupid decisions; like trusting people we really shouldn’t.”

Blane felt a clammy shiver run through his body.

“I am sorry to do this. I’m not even really an engineer, you know. But thanks for the funds…really, thank you.” Blane watched as the scalpel raised high in the air and closed his remaining eye as it came down hard through his exposed socket into his brain.

Discuss the Future: The 365 Tomorrows Forums
The 365 Tomorrows Free Podcast: Voices of Tomorrow
This is your future: Submit your stories to 365 Tomorrows