In a not-so distant future, a group of scattered souls grapple with their place in the world, and soon discover that their time may be running short...

Content warning: Please note that the following work of fiction contains references to sex and violence.

“Hahaha! You told them what?” howled Stefano. “Vincent my friend,” he said raising his glass, “you have nerves… you have… balls of steel!” He finished what was left of his drink and inelegantly placed it on the table.

“Now look,” responded Vince as he lifted his own glass, “I don’t go around pretending to be a Zuckerberg or Musk or Nakamura, but I do expect a certain level of… quality given my position. Especially when I sacrifice my valuable time and resources to do so.”

“And did they meet your demands?” Stefano asked in amusement.

Vince chuckled and shook his head. “That poor boy. The look he gave me was like… I’ll get fired for this!” He took a sip. “Of course they didn’t. A bottle of wine to all the patrons who ordered the same Pinot Noir?!” He set his glass on the table, which clanked with the sound of ice cubes falling back into place. “You know me. I would never try to pull that shit at say… a place like this. But if you claim to have the best north of Burgundy, that had better be an objective statement.”

Stefano stood briefly. “Another round of drinks over here please!” Returning to his seat, he folded his arms leaning slightly into the table.

“There are clearly a few more rungs on the ladder left for you to climb then,” he said shifting to a more serious tone. “I’ll give you some time to think it over, but I urge you to consider the opportunity in front of us. The future is deep analytics. Behavioral tracking can only get you so far… it lacks…”



A waitress set a pair of whiskey drinks on their table, flashing Vince a mischievous smile as she made her way back to the bar. His eyes followed her for a second or two.

“Since Parallel has lifted some of the restrictions in its data collection and use policies, there is a wellspring of potential in front of us for predicting consumer behaviors. But only the first few visionaries to act will be able to stake their claim on the market.”

“I’m not averse to taking a risk you know – hell, I made my first million on a gamble. But I’ve never played in the world of big data, and I’m not so sure I’m ready to.”

“It doesn’t pique your interest?”

“There are also ethical questions.”

Vince looked back toward the bar, and the girl smiled at him as their eyes briefly connected.

“I will have an answer for you next week when I have returned to the States,” he said, raising his glass to Stefano.

“And if I like that answer I will send you an exceptional bottle of Pinot Noir!” the larger man joked clinking their glasses together. “Prost, my friend!”