He could control his emotions—sort of. For his own good, they implanted an emotistat into his chest. The dial was on his wrist. He could adjust the intensity of his feelings or turn them off completely.

Dave was diagnosed as a small child and Ritalin was considered too blunt of a tool for such a subtle problem. Before the device, Dave was considered to b a risk, even dangerous. He had powerful emotions: anger, jealousy, depression, love. Every feeling could snowball, get out of control leading to—well, nobody knew what.

With the twist of a dial, Dave was just a normal guy. No. Better than normal. Emotionally, he was perfectly balanced. Well, not perfectly. But he could adjust the volume. Sometimes, he wished he had a 5-band emotion equalizer. But he still had it better than most.

Dave had big day coming up. Without the emotistat, he’d have been a wreck. See, he was getting married! And starting a new job! Right after attending his mom’s funeral.

The moment he woke up—well, not immediately, but right after coffee—he excitedly reached for the dial to set it. He twisted the dial and it broke off. Crap, what was it set at last? He felt a serious bout of anxiety rising to the surface leading to god only knows what.