Dispatches From The Future (B-List)

Juice

“No, please you go ahead,” Justin found himself motioning to the urban professional behind the wheel of a dark blue sports rail on his right. He depressed the break coming to a full stop in the lane in order to give the sports car plenty of room to merge ahead of him. He sighed contentment. Another endless commute home, after an endless day at the office.

“No,” he smiled broadly and said aloud again, “please you go. I’m fine.” He motioned a second time, not letting his foot off the break, for the soccer mom driving the family-pod chocked full of what appeared to be wild youth hooligans on some sort of parole. The kids cheered from the three rows of bench seats behind the woman who waved and mouthed a thank you in Justin’s direction. His chest swelled with a sensation Justin could not peg down at the moment. All the same it felt good.

Too good. He shook his head, there was something wrong with this situation. Or if not wrong then horribly against the grain. The chubby dude driving the delivery van behind his Helios laid into his horn and inched his rig right next to Justin’s little commuter. In his rear view mirror all he could see was radiator. Justin smiled at the impressive collection of dead insects plastered to the grill work, rolled down his window and waved behind at the Joe in the big truck.

“Are you retarded? Get going moron,” the truck driver barked at Justin from his cab.

“Oh yes, sure. Right away. Umm, how was your day?” Justin replied, still waving. The man in the truck huffed, shrugged his shoulders, and sat back in his cab to fume some more.

Several vehicles had merged in front of him, sneaking in off the ramp, while he had been looking over his shoulder. “What did the Med Tech say?” Justin wondered aloud. He scratched his right arm and the sensation of satisfaction increased exponentially. A tingle escaped up his spine through his scalp. Another merging car pulled into the space ahead of his commuter.

It was the Juice. The Med Tech had reminded him that for a while he might have some trouble getting conditioned to the Juice. “How could I not get used to this?” Justin wondered aloud. “It’s better than …” he was at a momentary loss for words. “Than everything else before.” The man in the delivery truck lit up the horn again and Justin was glad. Justin’s smile hurt.

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