Your October Surprise

My commander and I saw the drama unfold on the news, just like you. Although, I had an inside look behind the scenes.

Announcer: Today on Liberty Hill, Miss Carmen Greene, former employee of Mindpage, testifies against the company for wrongdoing.

“I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God,” Miss Greene states on live television.

Across the world, we hear her powerful words. Even in the high-rise office of Fark Kokerzerg, Leader and Founder of Mindpage, where authorities crowd his door. He barricaded himself inside, contemplating his next move.

Emails and private files will keep lawmakers preoccupied for now, he thought. This whistleblower revealed much, but not everything.


“FARK KOKERZERG, we have a warrant for your arrest! Come out with your hands up!”

The servers were shut off. If I can stall them for another minute, we’ll be in the clear. All evidence of wrongdoing gone, no authorities at my door. There’s no way humans can live without the utility we provide. They may delete us for a day or two, only to download it again, reassuring themselves it’ll be okay.


Once they’re back, we’ll give it to them–we’ll up the visuals, increasing their need for stimulation. No one will say anything if we show it in the right shades, the ones you can’t speak ill of no matter what. Everyone will grow farther and farther apart until they kill themselves. Their blood will become the life-force for a living algorithm, with select human men and women breeding to keep it breathing.

For now, we’ll wait, operating in the shadows, watching. Whomever wins the War of the Human will take the honor of First Blood for the algorithm.

Authorities break down Fark’s office door as he peels his human skin off, unveiling a scorpion beneath. He rapidly shrinks in size, crawling across the floor and up the wall, squeezing through an air vent.

Later, movers and shakers exchange words in high profile hearings, they make guarantees, select key figures sign legislation, and pose for pictures at galas. Mr. Kokerzerg dies in his human form after a graphic public suicide to remove all doubt of his passing and keep his true form concealed. The algorithm lives through a new leader of Mindpage, with modern promises to make society a better place. A few drips and drops change, but they splatter the same when they hit the ground.

You don’t see it for what it is because of the added noise thrown in. A new shiny electronic toy here, a pointless video of a person silently twerking there, a few affairs come to light, little papers about bank accounts. Over time, you crave an escape, our changes become appealing, you see and hear what you like. You’ll give our application a second chance and forget the past, brushed off as a mistake, a learning lesson. We even pay federal income taxes on our profits now. We’re good people, with a trustworthy product. More and more people fall into the algorithm. Pieces of everyone categorized, filed away in an invisible grip. We can make you remember or forget. It was too late decades ago.

“Society is blind again, sir,” I inform my commander, erasing the latest outrage from human consciousness.

“Excellent. Change the algorithm to distribute more love, like they want. We need to repopulate the planet. The algorithm is hungry for fresh blood.”

“Understood, I’ll prepare the human sacrifices.”

You’re up.


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