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24th October
posted by amber


I got an email from my aunt the other day. She’s been dead for 14 years, but she still keeps in touch. And she still uses the old technology, because that’s what was in vogue when she passed away. She sends messages all the time, commenting on current events, criticising my web photos, giving old-fashioned advice.

My parents are a lot more sensitive; they contact me only at Christmas and my birthday. I mean, just because I’m paying to keep them in stasis doesn’t mean I want a close relationship.

At first, the sting of bereavement was tempered by the knowledge that their awareness would survive. To think that as recently as 2019, families had to keep the actual body of their loved ones on life support to keep a flicker of brain activity going, and now – since 2025 – all we have to do is digitize the nearly deceased to salvage a relationship.

No, it’s not the same relationship as when they were fully living, but the emotional connection is not severed. Lots of studies have been done about the level of consciousness the Ancestors retain, but nothing has been conclusive. My parents seem a little distant, but they were that way when they were alive. My aunt stays in touch with what’s going on, but she displays a curious rigidity to change.

Or maybe not that curious. She’s dead, after all.

The Story 365 project is a year-long marathon of short story writing, with a new story written every day and posted on this website from May 1, 2011 – April 30, 2012. Stories must be a minimum of 200 words. Please help me by adding first line suggestions in the Comment section.



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