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"You're Teasing Me With a Future I'll Never Get To See" Is a Bit of An Ironic Statement Now

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Anthony had no idea how Sally managed to get not just herself, but him as well, to the 21st century. To some extent, he doesn't really care. He's out of that dang dark room, and he is glad for it. That being said, he still feels way out of his depth. It feels a lot worse than just being out of your comfort zone. It's more like... going to a completely different country without having done any research about the place first. Everyone talked differently, and dressed differently, and technology had become way more advanced than he had ever even dared thought possible. It feels like he is living in the future... which he quite literally is.Anthony is caught up through most of the 90s, but even that feels like a long time ago.

Just this morning Sally caught him trying not to gawk at a girl with a half shaved head dyed neon pink. He couldn't understand how or why someone would do that to themselves. Sally keeps insisting that the person probably just does it because it's fun. Admittedly he still doesn't understand, but he is learning how to accept things he doesn't understand....like Sally's ace? thing. He doesn't understand any of what she's saying when she tries to explain it, outside of the fact that she doesn't like sex, but even with that new knowledge Sally is untimely still Sally. That girl is still that girl, even if he doesn't understand her. Both of them are equally deserving of respect. Still, he often couldn't help but stare sometimes. It caught him off guard.

Sally spends a lot of her time at her lab. There were people she missed while at ODAR, it just took her coming back to realize it. For now, he spent most of his time at Sally's house. Neither of them could really cook. Back in his time, it had always been Helen's job to make sure they ate, but here it wasn't uncommon for woman to not know how to cook. Apparently a lot of people didn't know how to cook. This is something Anthony thinks about relatively often. How are any of these people alive? Surely going out to eat or eating those microwave meals can't be healthy.

Also Microwaves! Those infinitely fascinated Anthony. Back in his time, the sprinkles of the research for this wonderful piece of tech were only just being set. One of these days, Anthony was going to take that thing apart. Sally couldn't stop him.

Unfortunately, Anthony did spend a lot of his time at home alone. He understands why his wife always had people over now. Of course, he had a lot more to do now than when he was still in the black room, but still. He'd long grown bored of Tetris, but Sally had shown him this new game called Mincraft, and he's fixated himself in trying to understand how red stone works. According to Sally, you could do some really cool stuff with it, if you could actually figure out how it works. He needed to put his mind towards something, otherwise he'd be overcome with loneliness again.

Apparently, he'd more than lost track of time today. He could have sworn that Sally had only just left, yet here was a very excited Sally shoving a small, colorful box with the word "tamagotchi" printed on it. Anthony vaguely remembered seeing some sort of advertisement for it back in the dark room, but he still didn't really understand what they were. He did know, however, that they were children's toys.

"Sally I appreciate this, I really do, but I am not a child. I don't play with toys" he said.

Crossing her arms Sally retorted, "and you don't play a video game meant for kids either."

"It's not for kids! it's a complex mechanical system disguised as a game, and I have to figure out how it works for purely scientific reasons," Anthony turned bright red and started gesturing wildly with his hands as he spoke,"besides, what else am I gonna do all day? I need to put my mind to something."

"It is a kid's game Partridge, but in this time, it doesn't really matter. Adults buy toys, and play video games, and watch cartoons, and probably most other things you think are strictly for kids now. It doesn't say all that much about you. Plus, these things were super cool when I was a kid. My mom never let me have one and I must exact my revenge!" She excitedly wiggled her hips as she exclaimed, "it'll be fun! We'll be the best tama parents ever! Our child will be so spoiled."

***

The two of them now sit on an old, beat up couch, holding the box between them. Sally shakes with excitement as she brings an exacto knife up to the package. Not trusting her to not cut herself, Anthony takes the knife from her and opens it herself. He pops out a small egg shaped keychain with 3 buttons and a colorless screen. He hands it to Sally, who holds it up by the chain as she pulls out the tab that blocks the battery connection.

An egg appears on the screen and the toy beeps as Sally says "welcome to the world little guy," in a soft voice. Anthony had to admit that while he may not see much to the toy yet, he did enjoy seeing the softer side of Sally.

***

It wouldn't stop beeping. Sally had left for work a couple of hours ago, and had left Steve, the tamagotchi, with him to babysit. It just wouldn't stop beeping. He had fed that thing he didn't know how many times, and it just would not stop beeping. Anthony was fed up when he finally called Sally for help.

"Did you feed it?" Sally asked, amused.

"Yes," Partridge answered, considerably less amused.

"Did you play with it? Like play a game?" She asked.

Anthony facepalmed as he replied, "what?"

"There should be a meeter labeled 'happiness'. If it has zero hearts full, you need to play a game with it. Oh and before I forget, if it has a little poop in the corner of the screen it needs to be cleaned." Anthony could hear a faint explosion in the background and Sally swearing under her breath, "I love you Partridge, but I gotta go if I wanna keep this lab. Bye."

Anthony grabbed the toy and played some sort of number guessing game with Steve. He had to admit that once you got around the annoying beeps, and the virtualness of it, it was kinda cute.

***
Anthony easily kept up with Steve once he figured out what it needed and how to read all the monitors. Then it let out a loud, melodic beep. Anthony leaped over the couch to get to the toy as fast as possible. He had grown attached Steve in the last few hours, and had never heard it make this sound before. Apparently these things can die, and he'd prefer that not happen to his kid.

When he got over there, what was once a lopsided ball, was now a ball with a lump on its head. Partridge didn't understand what was wrong. He tried giving it medicine, which it didn't take, but Steve was still happy to play games and eat. Other than the new lump, it seemed fine. How was he gonna explain this to Sally?

***

Sally came home early that night, holding an unreasonable amount of Chinese takeout and humming. Anthony figured he'd better come clean now.

"Hey Sally? I only left Steve alone for a minute, but he made this crazy sounding beep and then when I checked on him, he had a lump on his head. I don't know how to fix it. Does he need a tamagotchi doctor? Medication didn't help."

Sally beamed up at the tall man in front of her, grabbed his hand and made him twirl her as she shouted "He grew partrigde! we're amazing tamagotchi parents! The best of the motherfucking best!"

Partridge let out a relieved laugh. They really were the best of the best tamagotchi parents.