“You look fine,” she laughed. “And anyway, your muffin top is cute.”

Cute? I felt ugly and unconfident. But liposuction, she insisted, was for shallow people. “Or there’s an experimental procedure,” said my doctor. “Electrobrain surgery on the areas responsible for self-perception. You’ll perceive yourself thinner.”

She approved — “It’s like psychiatric treatment” — so I set a date.

She says it was a mistake. That I’m out of touch with reality now, too flirty and aggressive, acting like I can have anyone.

But I can, can’t I? I deserve something better. I always have. I just couldn’t see it.

Thanks, doctor.

KJ Kabza’s work has appeared in Nature, F&SF, Daily Science Fiction, and others, and is anthologized in The Best Horror of the Year, volume 6 (Night Shade Books) and The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy and Horror, 2014 (Prime Books). He encourages you to follow him on Twitter @KJKabza or visit www.kjkabza.com.

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