Overdrive Ch. 1 — Your Hired!

Bijou - harmonious steps
Aug 2 · 3 min read
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“So, you like to work nights?”, the app spoke with a bit of an attitude, not exactly mean spirited, but something more than a business like manner; a frank jovialness perhaps.

“Yes sir, I got a lot of time on my hands”, Travis replied.

“If you want to sound informal, but still educated, say I’ve.”


“Try excuse me instead of huh, it’s more polite. Now — I’ve got a lot of free time on my hands”.

Travis was having flashbacks to his 5th grade school teacher, “Uh, yes sir, I’ve got a lot of free time on my hands.”

Better. So, what are you, a slacker?”

“Huh — I mean, excuse me?”

“Why-do-you-have-so-much-time-on-your-hands?”, the app’s emoticon was turning a little more towards it’s frank face.

“Well, you see at my last job I..,”

“Yeah.., that sucks. Alright, scan.”

Travis is confused for a second, then puts his thumb on the screen in a rectangle graphic, which goes through some color changes while playing some muzak for a few seconds.

“You check out. Real clean Travis, r-e-a-l c-l-e-a-n (the app’s voice sounds suspiciously interested as it says each word slowly). Your with Overdrive now. Stay out of trouble!”

The app turns back to an animated smiley face emoticon. Travis looks around and smiles, like, did that just happen? He’s parked on Fillmore St. in Japantown, right outside of Peet’s coffee. He sees a few Overdrivers sitting outside on the benches along the wall; he gets out and joins them.

“Hey Travis, my Ninja, how’s it hanging?”, Leon, a Dominican driver, holds out his fist.

Travis gives him a hesitent bump, smiling, but not enirely sure about Leon’s motives. “It’s hanging pretty swell Leon, how ‘bout you?”

“It’s hanging REAL swell my man. Ha, ha, ha (not really mean, just having fun, holding his junk)! Nah, but seriously, you fuck one of your rides yet?”

Travis looks at him, then gets a little disgusted. “What kind of fucking question is that? Nah.., no, I didn’t.”

“Take it easy man — I know you picked up some trim over in SOMA.”

“Trim?”, he looks over at his friend Gary, “What is this shit?”

“He don’t mean anything by it. Come on Travis, sit down.” Travis looks at Leon, then to Gary, then back to Leon. Finally, he looks down and shakes his head.

“Ok.., Ok.”

Leon exclaims happily, “My Ninja!” He holds out his fist, to have Travis bump it, while he makes room next to him. Travis eventually bumps it and sits, reluctantly, but smiles warily.

“Listen Travis, I was just fucking with you, but seriously, your with Overdrive now, right? Yeah, well have you used the AI to ever check one of your girls out?”

“The AI? I mean, I talked to it for a few seconds when I signed up”, Travis is leaning in now, interested.

“What — you ain’t checked this shit out!?”, Leon takes out his phone and opens the app. He has a joint lit up and smoking in his mouth — which annoys Travis. “Look here, it has all your past riders, you can rate them for filtering later or just let the AI do it. Hey man, (talking to the app on his phone) find a girl for Travis.”

“Howwww, bouuut, her?”, a pic of Candy comes up with her recent GPS locations and home address laid out on the map. The app’s emoticon appears, it looks excited with it’s tongue hanging out.

Travis snatches the phone, he scans the photos, totally absorbed. Leon has his arm on Travis’ shoulder; he is grinning and nodding.

“Oh yeah, here you go!”, Leon chimes in.

Travis smile widens, “You know Leon, your alright!”

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