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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Baxter Thorn just wanted a ride home from the airport, a ride without interruptions. But unfortunately, that is not what he got.

 “Autonomous Vehicles of the Future” is just one of the latest companies to jump into the ever expanding public transportation market; and this is their very first day of operation.

The company prides itself on its team of well trained and skilled professionals, high tech engineers, highly skilled technical personnel, and its fleet of hi-mileage Hybrid Vehicles.

The A.V.F. Company prides itself on their Motto, "We leave no stone unturned when searching our way to your Future."

As they say, “We Dot every "i" and cross every "t", nothing is overlooked.”

So you can understand that when one of their very first customers contacted them, from Vehicle #1, they were quick to respond.


"This is the Help Line for Autonomous Vehicles of the Future, I am Janis. How may I help you? Stated the very feminine and somewhat sexy sounding voice.


"Hi, I'm Baxter Thorn and I am in one of your Self Driven cars."

Janis cut into Baxter's response and stated, "Yes --- Mr. --- Thorn --- you were scheduled for pickup at --- LA International Airport --- at --- 11:30 p.m... Our records indicate that the pickup was on time. --- Is there a problem?"

Baxter replied in a voice that indicated a state of bewilderment, he replied, "Well Yes, my ride has stopped and has shut down.

Also, there is a display on the dashboard and it is blinking. Am I supposed to do something?"

Janis took a moment to respond, and then stated, "Please hold for a Technical Assistant to help you."


"Hi, this is Fred at AVF. How can I help you Mr. Thorn?"

Baxter replied, again, "Your car has stopped and a display on the dashboard is blinking. Am I supposed to do something?"

"I'm sorry that you are experiencing a problem, Mr. Thorn, according to our Satellite Location Monitor you are at the corner of Imperial Highway and Rose Drive. Is that correct?"

"Baxter looked towards the corner street sign and replied, "Yep, Rose Drive and Imperial."

Fred replied by saying, "Unfortunately our vehicle monitoring system is not indicating that the vehicle has a problem. We have performed a remote diagnostic on all electrical and mechanical functions, and nothing shows up.

Also, this vehicle has performed flawlessly from it's startup at 8:00 a.m. this morning, not that that is a indicator that nothing could be wrong. So, if you can, please tell me what the sign says that is blinking on the dashboard? Our computers don't seem to show the signal."

Brad leaned forward so that he could see the little red letters on the display panel, and then replied, "Your vehicle is parked in a gas station, next to gas pump #6, and the sign on the control panel says, LOW FUEL."

There was a period of silence.

So Baxter continued by asking, "Do I get out and put the gas in, or does the car do that too?"


JE Falcon


Minor Rewrite = 08-2020

Submitted: November 17, 2018

© Copyright 2021 JE Falcon aka JEF. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:


r futrell

Not where I thought this was going. Good one. Ha.

Sat, November 17th, 2018 8:51pm


Thanks "r". --- It didn't start out to end like this, but then my Uber driver pulled up to the gas station and, well, you know the rest. LOL.

Sat, November 17th, 2018 3:14pm

Jeff Bezaire

Good one! When we grow too accustomed to technology, we become lazy and half-witted. As computers think more, we think less. It's a sad state of affairs. Great write!

Sat, November 17th, 2018 9:22pm


Thanks Jeff. --- When the big solar occurrence hits and all the satellites are vaporized, most of humanity is going to starve to death; I fear.

Sat, November 17th, 2018 3:08pm


Good story, perfect ending, JE!

Sat, November 17th, 2018 10:28pm


Thanks, this will never happen to me. No driver, no enter.

Sat, November 17th, 2018 3:05pm

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