He picked up his newspaper and hardly noticed the blank sections and vacant photographs. News he wasn't meant to know and didn't care to. His coffee was hot and fine. The November weather crisp yet comfortable.
He arrived at his semi-annual checkup a little early. While he waited, he took a call on his phone. Speaking into the air with someone from work. The caller apologized, he'd forgotten why he'd called, he'd see him later at the office and tell him then, if he remembered.
The Clinic monitored all network traffic as a matter of course. Too many terrorist attacks. The doctor watched a graphic representation of their conversation, noted where the enhanced reality plug-ins erased the unpleasant information from the conversation in real time.
"Now there's one last thing." The Doctor pressed a key on his Module controller.
"Doctor? What have you done?"
"Mr Harway, I'm required to deactive your bad-news guard twice a year to confirm that you want to leave it on."
With horror, Mr. Harway's eyes widened as every piece of bad news he'd received in the last six months came smashing into his conscious awareness in a mad rushing tide.
"Turn it on! Turn it on!"
"How do you feel, Mr Harway?"
"Oh, fine, thank you, everything alright, see you in six months?"
The doctor nodded.