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Tesla and Zapdie contorted their bodies, wriggling in the contrast between darkness and bright neon. Swish swish. Tess and Zap can read your mind, console your psyche, soothe your pain with the drug of irrationality.

The last time a hand groped its way into the dark water of the aquarium it twitched in pain, withdrawing itself, eye sockets jutting outward, vocal cords too paralyzed to scream.

Time to watch the show. The cyber eels of the Fortune Cafe. They spoke into your soul, them, Tesla and Zap. Huddled patrons blew cigarette smoke out of thin grey lips set on surgical-grade teeth.

I stared into Tesla's beady eyes. Where a view of thought's despaired inner circuitry turned into a complicated maze of electrical signals, firing in tandem. Firing alternately in perfect synchronization, firing in complex algorithmic patterns that made sense. A deconstruction of cold, hard data into something concrete. Zapdie floated in the tank, pirouetting in climactic loops.

A surge of electricity blinded my entire circuitry and I passed out on the floor. I think my hand involuntarily reached for the water. Don't touch the water. It'll last longer. It never does. We could remain there for as long as our circuits burned out, me, Tesla, and you. It could take a year, it could take a hundred years. Before we become obsolete.

As I left the cafe, I caught a glimpse out of the corner of me eye, a muscled dark brown-skinned individual reaching his extensively tattooed arms into the tank. He fished out the eels, remaining unharmed, his black ink faintly luminescent like hieroglyphics.  

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