Here Comes the Sun

Reading Time: 4 minutes


June laid out the Memory Keeper pamphlets showcasing women on extravagant adventures—mountain climbing in Kilimanjaro, sipping pina coladas in Fiji, performing on stage for thousands of cheering fans. Beside the stacks of brochures were samples of the company’s most popular experiences, preloaded and ready for injection, all from June’s personally purchased inventory. Her potential recruits needed a taste of what they’d be selling.

She ran a finger over an injection pod, remembering the early days when signing consultants seemed effortless. Memory implants were a new technology; everyone wanted in. Climbing to Emerald rank was easy. But staying at the top . . . She thought of looming monthly quotas, how they’d be forced out of their company-owned home if she dropped in rank. Her stomach churned.

No. Winners didn’t dwell on negative thoughts. She needed to focus on what could be, visualize success.

She replayed the Leader’s wisdom in her mind, repeated his mantras: God brought you this opportunity for a reason. You deserve abundance. What would you do to secure your family’s future? Remember your why. God wants you to succeed. When one of us thrives, all of us thrive.

Her guests would arrive any moment now. She tossed her daughter’s stuffed animals into the closet, gave the couch pillows a final fluff, and lit a citrus-scented candle. Face arranged in a practiced smile—encouraging, upbeat, trustworthy—she opened the door.


The shelf of single-use memories in June’s closet was filled with low-cost repeats and experiences she had no interest in. Sailboat rides, city strolls, art museum tours—hundreds purchased to hit rank requirements.

(Illustration created by Erik Homberger using an image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay)

She reached for the red box of her personal memory extracts. She could never reimprint her own memories—it would destroy her brain. But the physical reminders of what she lost brought a strange comfort.

The first extractions were easy choices—concerts, amusement parks, beach days. The holes left behind were sacrifices justified by the trade value. But the others . . .

She pulled vials marked First Kiss, Marriage Vows, Birth. She rubbed them against her cheek, bathed them in tears. These gaping wounds were impossible to fill; remembering the loss was all that remained.


June stepped into Leader Oldford’s office wearing her best suit and an upbeat expression.

“June! My number one star. How are you?” He walked toward her, arms outstretched. Without waiting for her answer, he gestured at the gold-colored couch. “Come, sit. I’m about to test the results of our newest product. You’ll love it.”

June sat, legs crossed at the ankle, hands folded in her lap. She murmured agreement—not required or expected—and waited.

Oldford grabbed his guitar from its stand and sat opposite. “God is good, June. God is good. Our scientists have been working overtime, and the new implants are spectacular.” He plucked a string and a loud twang filled the room. “This latest upgrade doesn’t just transfer the memory.” His hand thumped the wooden body. “It transfers the skill.” Oldford pulled a pick from his pocket and serenaded her with “Here Comes the Sun.”

She dutifully tapped her foot, then offered a cheerful round of applause.

“Can you believe it? And I’m a beginner! Injected a memory of playing that song just this morning.” He leaned forward, knocked three times on the guitar. “These upskilling memories take hold like that.” He snapped his fingers. “They’re gonna sell themselves, June. Sell themselves!”

“Very exciting, Leader Oldford.” June didn’t mention she’d heard him play this exact song at the private Emerald rank conference last summer. “Our consultants will be thrilled.”

“Indeed, indeed.” He offered her a dazzling smile. “Now, I’m sure you didn’t stop by to hear me play guitar.” He chuckled. “What can I do for you?”

June joined his laugh, waiting a beat before diving in. “Yes. Well, it’s the monthly rank quotas.” She smoothed sweaty palms over her skirt. “The market’s becoming saturated, and the latest court case about side effects—”

“Let’s stop right there, June.” Oldford’s smile was frosty. “We don’t plant seeds of negativity inside these walls.”

“Of course, Leader.” June pulled her shoulders back, projected confidence, as she’d been taught. “We know those claims are false. It’s just . . . I’m working hard, but the mortgage—”

“Work! Yes, June. We’re doing God’s work.” He stood, headed to the sideboard, and poured a drink from a decanter. He did not offer one to June.

“Yes, I—”

“When God laid this idea on my heart, I promised Him I’d share His glory and abundance with the world.” Oldford took a sip from his crystal tumbler. “And do you know how many women I’ve helped with this mission, June? The families enriched through this opportunity?”

“Well, I—”

“Thousands, June. Thousands of women, working hard to bring His vision of prosperity to their sisters, mothers, daughters, friends.”

“Yes, I—”

“You know what those women have in common, June?” He turned to her, his steely gaze boring into her soul.

June breathed deep, then recited the words she’d chanted at hundreds of conferences, shared with thousands of women in her downline. “We have faith. We never give up.”

“That’s right, June.” His smile was warm now. “And God has faith in you. Don’t worry, dear.” He patted her shoulder. “You can always trade in another memory or two if it’s a little rough this month, yes? Feed the flock with your abundance of good fortune.”

“Yes, Leader Oldford. Of course.”



June turned in her hospital bed, attention drawn by the sweet, lilting voice. She didn’t recognize the girl in the striped blue dress but wanted to hold the child close, offer comfort.

“I learned something new this week. Wanna hear?” Guitar music filled the room, and the girl started singing. Here comes the sun . . .

June searched the black holes of her mind, reaching for . . . something.

“I was sad to leave our house, Mama. But Leader’s taking good care of me. He says I’m doing God’s work, making it safe for kids to have memory implants too.”

June’s pulse monitor spiked.

“Don’t worry, Mama. Leader says God’s got big plans for me.”

She couldn’t quite remember why, but June was certain she wanted to scream.


This story previously appeared in Writing Battle’s 2024 Winter Flash Fiction competition.
Edited by Erik Homberger


Melanie Mulrooney lives in Nova Scotia with her husband and a gaggle of kids. When not writing stories, she can be found with her nose in a book, researching her latest special interest, or begging her family to play a board game. Find her at Melanie Mulrooney.