CAD Changed His Mind
by S Shane Thomas

Listen to my narration here

Danny Rogers placed his hand on the control console to his quarters, prepared to punch the command to open, and hastily reviewed the condition of his dwelling for the thirty first time. He bumped into fellow crew members of the colonial starship as he rushed to his station at the long distance sensory array. Danny’s meticulous habits made him the ideal person to look for their future home world.

“Shift change was a half hour ago” the team lead barked “Report to sick bay.”

“Sir… It won’t happen again.”

“It’s been getting worse again. The doctors can help you Danny.”

Rogers chose to walk to the medical facility. The transit tubes entrenched among the miles of encapsulated city always showed evidence of disarray, litter on seats, smudged windows, and germs.

Danny Rogers had been to the doctor for obsessive compulsive disorder before. He took the medication unerringly, often removing the pill, inspecting, replacing, and repeating to be certain. He perfected the routine to sooth his anxiety. Danny noticed the problem develop shortly after leaving Earth years ago.


“It’s nice to see you again Danny,” the Doctor expected him hours ago.

“Has the scanner’s seat been recently sterilized?” Danny asked, as he skipped formalities.

“Fresh and ready for you, I double checked it myself.” The Doctor smiled reassuringly.

Minutes later all the regions of Danny Rogers’s brain had been mapped and uploaded in the medical unit’s Computer Aided Drafting program. The doctor compared lobes against a healthy mind and discovered the source of Danny’s malady.

“Just like on this model, I will use a laser to alter the tissues of your brain, and you won’t need medication anymore.” 

“Will I have a scar on my head?”

“The laser only affects brain tissue, your scalp and skull will be unaffected.”


An hour after Danny arrived in the doctor’s office, a compulsive, nervous wreck; a new carefree, light hearted Danny made his way back to work. This time he took the transit tube. Danny enjoyed the ride. He smiled at the kid in front of him, who smeared some sticky substance on the glass. Danny found a certain art in it. The operation worked much better than those lousy pills had ever had. Danny did not feel the least bit concerned about the bathroom sink running, or the state of his clean laundry.

Nothing bothered him anymore.


The team leader smiled to see Danny back the same day. “You look relaxed, Danny.”

“I’ve never felt better,” Danny Rogers said. He handed the team leader his medical paperwork. The supervisor studied it for a moment and looked Danny’s head over.

“Wow. You seem like a whole new man. I should get my head looked at, work has been getting under my skin lately,” the team leader replied.

Danny smiled a calming smile and the other man relaxed at the sight of it. Danny Rogers picked up a screw driver from the console and jammed it into the team leader’s temple. The man’s eyes went vacant and he slumped to the floor.

Danny gave him a perplexed expression.

“Best to leave that sort of work to the professionals I suppose” Danny sat at the console and began his shift. He didn’t have a care in the world.

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