NeuroLinkedIn - Part 2 (of 2)

Real Estate Agent with Homesmart

... Continued from Part 1


“Markus Ruhl requires thirty seven more seconds of charging,” the agent then stated. “Please, do not obstruct the ultraviolet radiation.”

Dave stepped out of the way of the sun.

“That thing in your head runs on solar?”

“Affirmative,” Markus responded.

Half a minute later, a faint series of beeps indicated charging was complete. The agent stood, as did the dog laying next to him.

“He is very well behaved,” Becky noted, gesturing at the golden.

Both the agent and the dog just stared off into the distance in response, the only sound coming from a nearby patron answering her phone.

Was that smoke coming out of his ears?

“Um, should we get going then,” she asked, disconcerted.

Still there was no response.

Finally, both the agent and the dog seemed to jolt awake and turn their attention to Becky.

“Apologies,” the agent said. “A staff member of this establishment was using the microwave.”

“I was just saying your dog seems highly in tune with you,” Becky said. “You’ve got this whole mind-meld thing going on.”

“Markus Ruhl is connected to his companion animal via neurolink,” the agent told her. “Markus Ruhl was the first human test subject for this technology. Perseus was the first canine subject.”

“So they moved on to humans once it was found safe and effective in dogs,” Becky asked.

“Negative,” the agent corrected. “Perseus received his implant once it was determined safe and effective in Markus Ruhl.”

Dave guffawed.

“Sounds about right,” he laughed. “Realtors, first. Then dogs, and then people.”

Becky hit him again, harder this time.

“Markus Ruhl is ready,” the agent informed. “Are Dave and Becky DeFonso?”

“Ready,” Dave agreed, rubbing his shoulder as Becky nodded.

The group began walking towards the parking lot. Becky couldn’t help but notice how the agent went to great lengths to avoid coming close to other pedestrians. He gave a wide berth to every person they passed, as did the golden.

Out of nowhere, a biker crossed in front of them. His cell phone made an ungodly screeching sound as he nearly collided with the agent, sending the biker crashing into a parked car. People came running from every direction to help. As the crowd surrounded them, one cell phone joined in the screeching, then another. Soon enough, it sounded like the emergency broadcast warning had taken over the PA system at a Spinal Tap concert.

A man grabbed his chest and fell to his knees.

“What’s happening,” Becky screamed.

“Pacemaker … or something,” Markus Ruhl answered in the same monotone.

Dave grabbed them both around the shoulders and pulled them away from the chaos. A cacophony of car alarms erupted across the parking lot. Upon reaching his Tesla, it started itself and drove into oncoming traffic. Squealing brakes, followed by the sickening crunch of heavy metal as a massive pileup ensued.

“Road hazard reported,” Markus Ruhl announced. “First appointment rescheduled to twelve forty five pm.”

A flock of flying birds fell at their feet.

The air itself crackled with electricity, and smelled of scorched circuitry. Police sirens warbled to life in the distance.

Dave and Becky took off running, the golden retriever joyfully pursuing them before bounding off to chase a squirrel up a tree. The reflectors on its jump suit flashing like a crazed disco ball.

“Recalculating,” Markus Ruhl called out, matter of factly.

The couple looked back to see the agent turning in tight circles.

“Recalculating,” he repeated, over and over again.

Becky pulled the phone out of her pocket as they ran. Once it powered on, she opened the Zillia app. Encouraged for a review of Markus Ruhl’s service, she highlighted one star.

The agent’s head promptly exploded, coating a twenty foot radius in a red mist

Her phone dinged as a confirmation message filled the screen.

Thank you for your feedback! A new agent is being located ...

An icon circled below the message as it processed.

Becky shrieked. They kept running.

When they could no longer run, they walked in silence for what felt like hours. When they could no longer walk, they sat down on the street curb.

“Jesus,” Dave breathed, running a hand through his shaggy hair. “Who knew Blade Runner was a fucking documentary?”

“I can’t stop shaking,” Becky answered. “I’m ready to get off of this planet.”

Dave held her for a long moment.

Eventually, Becky remembered the phone in her hand. She swiped off the message that now read, Agent Located!, and opened her UBER app.

Prompted to enter a destination, Becky turned to Dave.

“Did you happen to catch the address of that first place,” she asked.

Dave turned his palms up and shrugged in response.

Her phone screeched in her hand.

“Eight one seven five North Oakshore Drive,” a new voice said just behind them, followed by shallow, rhythmic panting.



Bill Salvatore - East Valley
Arizona Elite Properties - Chandler, AZ
Realtor - 602-999-0952 / em:

Thank you for sharing the information. Buyers and sellers in your area will benefit from your expertise. Wishing you continued success. Have a wonderful day and sell a house. bill

Feb 18, 2024 11:13 AM
Paul Slaybaugh


Feb 18, 2024 11:56 AM
Liz and Bill Spear
Transaction Alliance 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
Transaction Alliance Cincinnati & Dayton suburbs

Paul, You've got more creativity than I could ever hope to have!  Always enjoy seeing what twists and turns you'll come up with next.  Sounds like I need to keep our Chihuahuas away from Elon's work :)

Feb 18, 2024 12:47 PM
Paul Slaybaugh

The doctors call it a "chemical imbalance," but what do they know?

Feb 18, 2024 01:22 PM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good grief Paul,

Where in the world do you come up with this creative narrative? Bill is right...your twists and turns that you come up with are amazing. The scary part is this could be reality! 

Feb 18, 2024 01:22 PM
Patricia Feager, ABR,CRS,GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Paul Slaybaugh - Your adventure stories are a lot of fun to read! I think you're on to something good! Have you considered writing Comic Books? 

Feb 18, 2024 06:56 PM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Pasadena And Southern California 818.516.4393

Hello Paul - such a fun read although more than a bit scary.  Because real life is often stranger than science fiction. 

What will Dave and Becky do next?  Wondering...   And waiting for the next installment.  

Feb 19, 2024 03:09 AM
Kat Palmiotti
eXp Commercial, Referral Divison - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Oh my gosh! You just never know where brain implants and AI can go - this is amazingly creative and scary all at the same time. Love it!

Feb 19, 2024 06:22 AM