Cover for the short story Upload by Frederick Lacroix


By Frederick Lacroix

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January 1st, 2018

Not too far in the future, treatments for various medical and mental problems have changed drastically.

Ali, tired of being sick, decides to try and cure herself from her depression and anxiety with a virtual reality treatment.

However, technology, no matter how advanced, is not always as reliable as we think it is.



“Good morning and welcome to Upload,” the robot said.

Ali stood there, looking at the perfect replica of a human being talking to her. Its gold, glowing eyes were the only trait revealing its true nature.

“Can I help you?” the man behind the desk on her right said.

Ali peeled her eyes off the robot and shuffled to the transparent, glass reception desk. She put her bag on top of it and rummaged through the papers and notebooks to find the gold envelope she was looking for. She found it, extracted it from the bag and smoothed it over as best she could before presenting it to the man.

“Miss Alison Briggs?” the man asked. “May I see some I.D. please?”

Ali went back to the bag in search of her wallet, found it and present the man with her I.D. He took a few seconds to compare names and photos before giving back both items to her, which she promptly stuffed back in the bag.

“Take the elevator, floor six, room sixty seven. They will be waiting for you.”

“Thank you,” Alison said.

“You’re welcome, miss Briggs. Have a nice day.”

Ali walked to the elevator and pressed the button. A bell rang and the doors opened, letting three people in black suits out. All three of them were laughing and talking as they exited the elevator and made their way toward the glass door leading out of the building. Alison stepped inside the elevator and pressed the number six on the keypad. A few seconds later, the doors closed and the vertigo sensation that accompany every elevator ride kicked in.

The dings of the floors rang one by one until the elevator arrived at floor six, where the doors opened. Ali walked out and looked around.

The whiteness of the corridor in front of Ali was only interrupted by the occasional grey door. She started walking, looking for number six. Her footsteps reverberating on the white linoleum. She passed two, then three. No other sound than herself around. She looked behind, but the elevator doors were closed. It had left without a sound. Ali arrived at number six and, after composing herself, she knocked.

“Please come in, Miss Briggs,” a man said from the inside.

Ali turned the doorknob and pushed the door open.