[WP] You wake up to find out that your entire life as you knew it was a just a dream/simulation. You then realize that you are not human/the same sex/race as you were in the dream, although your real life history is coming back to you. How do you respond?

It's my first prompt, go easy on me haha.

Harold was only 120 pounds, but he had never felt heavier. His last strands of hair were silver spindles like steel wool. The white sheets of the hospital bed were not unlike his pale skin. The respirator exhaled for him, each artificial breath an eternity.

Exhale.....Inhale.....Through blurry eyes, he saw the sight of his sister, face red and streaming with tears. If she was saying goodbye, he couldn't hear her. The EKG took longer to beep with each prolonged breath. He could only hear his death rattle now.

"HORIZON will complete fifteen seconds. Your credit balance is 189,000. Thank you for your patronage. Your experience will end in ten seconds." A cold blue light enveloped his vision. He could only hear the voice in his head grow louder.

"Alright, let's pull him out." The azure light began to blind him. Harold felt as if the light was pulling him. Memories of his life flooded him. The first kiss. His son's lifeless body in his arms. The Doctor explaining how his insurance gave limited options.

These memories left as soon as they arrived. The blue light dimmed, and he felt an electric shock jolt him into reality. Cindy removed the deactivated headset, a plastic white helmet with a glowing blue visor. She took a deep, ragged breath, and thought to herself.

Harold was such a disappointing employee. How could I afford to pay the bastard when he called out sick half the damn time. Someone in his pay grade didn't even have benefits that covered sick leave, let alone treatments in his insurance bracket.

Cindy mused to herself. No wonder Harold sold a digital engram of his life experiences. That peon couldn't pay his way into a hospital bed without a boss funding it. Cindy sat in her upholstered office chair, fumbling for cigarettes in her oak desk. Nothing beat a good smoke after a peasant replay.

She reached for the office phone, and dialed corporate. "Get me to Todd. Yes, I had a good lunch. Yes, I can hold, thank you." Cindy lit her cigarette. Q3 was rough, but I can explain this. I just need to feed Todd some crap about quit quitting. He hates the wagies just as much as I do.

She knew Todd was a HORIZON headset fanatic, just like himself. Cindy also knew that Todd kept engrams of every single middle manager, to efficiently run the company. She continued to wait, while the phone's hold music played.

Cindy felt her chest tighten. A jolt of pain shot up her left arm. Damn I always get so nervous for these calls.

/r/WritingPrompts Thread