Billy was certain he'd set his alarm for 6am and not for 'one week ago'.

He awoke this morning, to the usual tones of Santana's 'Smooth' and has shimmied his way from underneath his self prescribed 'straight blanket' (it had fewer buckles, but, true enough, it had helped in keeping him somewhat sane).

Billy had traipsed to the bathroom. Done his usuals. He checked for lumps (under arm, undercarriage). He pulled back his eye lids and searched for yellowing and any cloudiness. He'd carried out his ablutions and found no concerns there either. His gums were healthy, his teeth looked solid.

He applied a little dye to the greys poking through his beard and scalp and he'd noted all this down in his little chart.

There were no great changes in this data. Nothing to indicate a huge amount of difference between that which was written yesterday and that which had been noted down for today.

Billy had switched on the home assistance apps.

His coffee was brewing to the preprogrammed settings. The floor heating had come on at just the right temperature.

The blinds begun to open slowly. Turning on their mechanised axles.

The day was dark. Above the noise of the mini engines turning the inside out, there was that permanent drum. The spatter and smatter of rain divebombing the ground.

It had been this way for as long as Billy could remember.

And with all the voice-recognition AI that was commonplace in this world, he rarely need to remember anything.

Beep after chime, after swoosh and bing. Alerts, meeting reminders, appointment schedules. Movement apps, exercise apps, breathing apps.

All of this was no longer necessary as part of free thought.

Forgotten when the battle of Hastings took place? Who was President in 1935? Prime number series? Chemical components of CO2? Latest conspiracy theories? Easy, ask your bodiless memory. But outward not inward.

That voice, soothing and calming was not your own. It was code, reacting to a digitized version of your request. A real forgotten memory which had become a series of digits and characters.

Billy was unaware that he was no longer living. He was not dead. No way near death. His health condition was far better than anyone of his age should be. No, Billy was just moving from one prompt to another.

Point and click.

Billy saw a flash on his tablet. A new message for a task on the latest mobile version of a Sims copycat.

He clicked the 'open' prompt.

It was time for his character to 'wake up' and go about his day. He swiped a few instructions. Clicked rapidly on a few routine drop downs.

His on screen alter-ego (animated and pixelated) awoke to the usual tones of Santana's 'Smooth' and has shimmied his way from underneath the blanket that Billy had bought with 'SimsCash', or 'LuxLifeCred' in this instance (having transferred real cash to do so). Billy's avatar went to the bathroom, Billy needed to enter the data for the character's health.

Billy changed the colour and cut of the character's hair. He picked out the clothes for the day. Billy clicked the coffee icon, the blinds opening icon, the weather tab.

Point and click.

Drag and Drop.