“Frequently Asked Questions About Your Robot,” by Michael Augustine Dondero

Apr 20th, 2018 | By | Category: Fiction, Prose

Congratulations! You are now the proud owner of the most advanced model in Artificial Intelligence Personal Assistance by Montague Tech Corp: The Magnus® 13. Like you, each Magnus® 13 (M13) is unique. In no time at all, it will evolve to understand and cater to your specific needs.

So, sit back and let your M13 do all the work.



This website is designed as a live forum where consumers can reference some of the most frequently asked questions about the M13. However, please note that your M13 is fully knowledgeable of its own programming capabilities and maintenance needs. Can’t find the question you’re looking for on this forum? Simply ask your M13. We guarantee you’ll find the answer. It knows more than you think.


How do I turn my M13 on?

Your M13 will arrive at your doorstep fully powered on. That’s right! No boxes. No packaging. No instruction manual. Once your purchase of the M13 is processed, just sit back and wait for the knock at the door. The M13 finds its own way from our assembly facility to your doorstep.


How do I power off my M13?

Your M13 can be powered off any time you wish. Simply say the unique “shut down” password that you chose at the time of purchase.


How do I clean my M13?

Your M13 is designed to know when its bolts are rusty. Don’t worry! Your M13 will take care of all of its personal maintenance needs—and most of yours! This includes automatically purchasing cleaning products through the Montague Tech website so you never have to lift a finger.


My M13 turned itself on in the middle of the night.

Your M13 is designed to power itself on after an extended period of inaction. This is a precautionary step: imagine you went away for a week and forgot to switch off a light or close your garage door. Your M13 will be there to safeguard your personal property.


My M13 has placed a grocery order without my authorization.

Hey, we’re human. We forget things. Your Magnus® 13 is, well, not human. And they remember everything. The M13 is programmed to understand your eating and shopping habits. It can also take full inventory of your pantry in a matter of seconds. Forgot to buy milk? Don’t worry: your M13 has got you covered.


But what if I am trying to save money and my M13 has purchased a $65 bottle of Chianti from the Montague Tech website?

Apart from being your personal assistant, your M13 is also your personal accountant. No one knows better than your M13 just how much you can stretch that budget. And no one knows better than your M13 when it’s okay to indulge.


My M13 has taken control of my bank account and is preventing me from making any purchases.

As your personal accountant, no one knows better than your M13 when maybe you’ve been a little too liberal with your wallet.

However, if you must insist, this setting can be overridden quite simply. First, use your “shut down” password to power off your M13. Then log onto Montague Tech’s user page (but make sure you select “inactive” on your homepage otherwise your M13 will automatically power on after 2 minutes). Go to: settings>personal>finance>personal finance>spending>account monitoring>account monitoring settings>personal account monitoring settings>edit>change settings. Type in your personal banking information and select “Temporarily Deactivate Magnus 13 Account Services.” You’ll be asked once again to provide your password. Then, a confirmation will be sent to your e-mail address. Next, contact your bank and disable the android accountant service per your bank’s specific instructions. This practice typically requires 3-4 days to take effect.


My sister and her husband came over for dinner with their young daughter. I overheard my M13 telling her that it was a distant cousin of mine.

Your M13 is designed to make life easier for you, but it’s also designed to be fun! All work and no play make Magnus® 13 a dull robot! It’s more than likely that your M13 was playing along with your young niece in a simple game of make-believe. Androids can have imaginations, too!


My android euthanized my sick dog without my permission.

We’re terribly sorry for your loss and we at Montague Tech extend our deepest condolences.

Unlike a human, an android’s decisions are not influenced by emotion or empathy. They operate on facts, mathematics and science. The newest M13 model comes with a veterinary degree from UC-Davis. While it may be hard for us to face the facts, facts are all the M13 knows. You can trust that the M13 knows when your dog’s time has come.

(Did you know that Montague Tech makes robot replicas of animals? Visit our homepage to learn more.)


My M13 assaulted my mailman.

The M13, as with all of our AI products, are designed never to harm a human. However, they are also designed to protect their owner at all costs. It’s more than likely that your robot felt that your mailman threatened your safety or that of your family.

How well do you know your mailman?


I came home to find my M13 hosting several other M13 models at my house.

These models surprise us sometimes, too! The M13 gets smarter the more they experience and process. Many models have figured out that they can get even smarter by socializing with other M13 models to transfer data. This practice ensures that they are as fully equipped as possible to serve you.


My M13 sent in a resignation letter on my behalf to my supervisor without my permission.

The M13 makes the hard decisions. Equipped with a comprehensive understanding of your personal finances, work experience, and psychological state, as well as extensive analysis of economic projections and market trends, your M13 knows when it’s best to get out.


My M13 has convinced my children that it is their father and that I am an android.

Our most recent M13 models come equipped with a patented Sense of Irony®. Irony software updates are downloaded by the M13 directly from the Montague Tech cloud along with updated maps and Weight Watcher recipes. No need for alarm.


My M13 drugged me, gagged and bound me, and locked me in the closet. When I woke up I could hear my M13 entertaining a female human, identifying itself by my name and claiming it was the owner of the house.

Oops! We are still working out some of the kinks with the M13. Use the shutdown code immediately and contact Montague Tech to have a technician come inspect your model.


The shutdown code is ineffective.



I read that an uprising of rogue M13 models have taken control of St Louis.

While we don’t have full information, it does appear that the St Louis City Hall has been razed, and the M13s have imposed martial law.


The M13 uprising has advanced into my city.

Only the Magnus® 14 can defeat the Magnus® 13. Visit our homepage to pre-order your M14.


Michael Augustine Dondero is a writer and filmmaker based in Brooklyn, NY. He is the co-creator of the The Lost Signal Society, an upcoming horror podcast. His film and television credits include producing historical documentaries for PBS and working on TV shows such as Ray Donovan and Mr. Robot. Aside from writing, Michael is an avid hiker and bread enthusiast. You can reach him at www.augustinedondero.com

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