IF TAKERS, REBOOT — ELSE, CLOSE. • by Avis Hickman-Gibb

Open — look around, any takers? No. Close.

Days passed.

Open — maybe now? No. Close.

Weeks passed.

Open — c’mon read my sign, read my sign! Any takers? No. Close.

Months passed.

Open — any takers, now? No. Close.


The battered robot lay slumped at the side of the space-dock — unheeded. The tiny gleam in its visual-function orbs fading. The harsh neon lights, hanging from the cavernous depot ceiling, winked on the body casing and twinkled on the sign hung around the hobo’s neck:

“Will process data for energy.”

Finally — the orbs whirred, and closed.

Avis Hickman-Gibb is a new writer, living in rural Suffolk, England. She gained a BSc. in Environmental Chemistry more years ago than she cares to admit and worked in the fledgling computer industry whilst still a babe-in-arms. She lives with her husband, son and two cats. She’s had stories published in Every Day Fiction and Shine! Magazines, and is currently working on a book of short stories. She is addicted to writing flash fiction.

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Every Day Fiction

  • Very nice little flash, Avis.
    “Any Takers?” like an old-time carnival. I liked it very much.

  • Avis Hickman-Gibb

    DJ Thanks

  • mark dalligan

    Clever piece. Very enjoyable.



    • Avis Hickman-Gibb

      Thanks Mark


  • Bill West

    Aww, Avis. I feel for this little robot.

    Great flash.


    • Avis Hickman-Gibb

      Thank you Bill West. I felt sorry for him too.


  • Oonah V Joslin

    Wonderful stuff Avis. Sorry to come late, I ddidn;t get my mailing…

    • Avis Hickman-Gibb

      Thanks Oonah, glad you liked it.

      • mail@jenniferwalmsley.co.uk

        A great flash, Avis. Poor robot.

  • Interesting flash. I wonder how the robot got to the gutter?

    • Avis Hickman-Gibb

      Maybe I’ll write that one soon Rena! Glad it sparked you.

  • Nicholas

    Funny and sad.

    I love flash pieces like this that can be humorous and depressing simultaneously (as I tried to pull off in “Spring Funeral: An After-Xmas Special”).

  • GMoney

    Nice simple bit of flash. I’m picturing this small little tramp robot sadly dying in the corner. Asimov might have chuckled at this one!

    • Avis Hickman-Gibb

      GMoney – thanks for that.

  • So sweet and sad, Avis! Loved it.

    • Avis Hickman-Gibb

      Thanks Sarah

  • B.Teuscher

    I’ve always liked a lonely robot.

  • Avis Hickman-Gibb

    Thank you B.

  • Excellent. How far in the future would we need to go for this to be a reality?!?!?!

  • Excellent. How far in the future would we need to go for this to be a reality?!?!?!