The Second to the Right
Cold Atmosphere by Emil
Copyright © 2017 by Emil U. Aqeel. All rights reserved.
No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the author. For permission requests, write to the author at: [email protected]
Cover photos and design © 2017 by Emil U. Aqeel. All rights reserved.
This is a work of fiction. The names, characters, places and events portrayed in this book are fictitious. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental and not intended by the author.
Summer 2170 … the primeval human opened the book of time, the book he did not know how he came across, the book that traveled through time for him to learn, the book he did not understand anything from, and it was little what he could explain with his limited mental abilities. He opened the book and read:
It is the first day of the second season of the year 3075 in sector ‘A’ to the east of Helena; it is the only day in the year that cells are elected from a male and a female to produce humans, to guarantee race continuity. Five young men entered the faint-lightened hall and sat on special made seats then five young women entered the hall and sat against the young men. Other groups of five men and five women also occupied other halls as the matching process will have to be simultaneously done. The men and the women were volunteers.
Dave stared at the women setting in front of him with cold looks as the rest of his kind. Deep in his mind he started to think of who might be the woman with the optimum match with him. It was just curiosity. Matching is not really important, because, after this match testing process is over, one cell will be taken of each man and woman, then their roles are over, later, cells will be merged in the lab to produce a baby, after that the sector administration will be responsible for raising the child as needed. Dave’s curiosity increased when he felt that the second woman to the right will be the one with the optimum match, he could not give an explanation for that feeling. His eyes met hers for few seconds, be she went on looking at participants and other things in the hall. No special expressions were made by her.
An announcer’s voice from outside instructed everyone to remain calm and announced the beginning of the process. Ionic mist filled the space between the men and women and colored lights started to glow in the middle among which a yellow light was slowly blazing until it filled the place. Instantly, the colors of their eyes lenses started to change to adapt to the continuous changing levels of illumination. In the middle of the yellow light sparkles started to move between every man and every woman while the matching sensors were computing millions of possibilities to identify the optimum match.
Computations continued for few seconds then it stopped. Light and mist slowly diminished and the hall went back to its normal light. Volunteers continued to set in silence, the sector’s central administration started to send instructions to each one’s mind telling him or her of succeeding in having an optimum match and then instructed them where to go to donate a cell. Dave moved out of the hall thinking if the second woman to the right was the one with the optimum match with him, but this information was not to be given to them, no one should know the identity of the other person who is in match.
Dave went back to his place after finishing the cell granting session as he got an exemption of a working day for volunteering a matching session. Each member in Sector ‘A’ gets a living place equipped with a bed, extended screens to view and communicate with other sectors and a history vault where he saves all his thoughts, works and memories. Also, each member gets a companion, which facilitates a lot of things for members, like doing communications, organizing things, entertaining and health monitoring. He lay on his bed and started to think. After a while he called for his companion named Chatter, and started to chat with it:
Dave: I don’t know what’s wrong with me today, Chatter; I am thinking more than I should, I think.
Chatter: So what? Your kind has the imagination and the ability to think.
Dave: Yes, I know that. But to give you a glimpse of what I mean, today I was really curious to know which woman was with the best match to me!
Chatter: But you know that this information is restricted by the sector’s central administration and should not be disclosed to any of your kind and that is for the sector’s general benefit.
Dave: Yes I know, but … I don’t know … it is not exactly that I want to know the identity of my best match, but I want to know if she was the woman setting second to the right.
Chatter: Why this one in specific?
Dave: Don’t know! I had a strange feeling that she is the one, I mean my best match. Can’t you help me?
Chatter: I can and I cannot. I have the right to access the central information, but I am not entitled to provide you with any details about the woman who best matched you.
Dave: Well. I am not asking about the identity of my best match, therefore, I am not violating instructions.
Few seconds later.
Chatter: I got the information. Your match was not with the second to the right, it was with another woman, and this is all I can tell.
Dave: How come … not that woman?
Chatter: You know the fundamentals of matching, don’t you? The optimum match for the genetic code in order to produce a baby with the best possible form.
Dave: Strange! I had a strong feeling that she was that woman.
Chatter: Dave, my friend, will you allow me to diagnose you?
Dave: Yes. You may help me to get out of this state.
Chatter gave orders to the devices embedded within Dave’s bed, the bed became lightened and scanning beams started to examine through Dave’s body. Chatter started to receive and analyze all the results until the examination process ended.
Chatter: Have you been exposed to any unusual source lately, like a radiant source or a cosmic substance from outside our sector?
Dave: Maybe, at the lab where I work.
Chatter: Can you be more precise.
Dave: There are some stones brought few weeks ago for me to examine, but I don’t recall any physical contact with it, because their examination is not due yet.
Chatter: That’s what I have expected. Some slight modification occurred to one of your genes causing this state.
Dave: But what is it, exactly?
Chatter: It is a primitive state that affected your kind hundreds of years ago, until they become able to overcome it. I am really surprised to have this state returning after all these years.
Dave: What are the symptoms of this state, does it have a name?
Chatter: You will not understand anything of its name now, but I will summarize yours in one word ‘affection’. As you know in our vocabulary this word means the absence of logic and leaving loose the body and mind. This state results in circumstances of love, hatred, dignity and pride. I know that these words sound strange to you and you cannot capture its true meanings completely, however, they result in the absence of reason and the lack of good judgment on things.
Dave: I give you my orders to prevent me from taking any decision until my full recovery.
Chatter: Noted. I already have sent all the details to the sector’s central administration to develop the necessary arrangements to prevent its reoccurrence in the future.
Dave: What about the medication for this state?
Chatter: There should be a medication. It is just a slight modification in one of your genes but its effect is destructive as I told you. Medication is available with the woman you thought it matched you the most.
Dave: How is that?
Chatter: This state with all its characteristics is telling me so. What happened with you indicates the occurrence of a full negative match with that woman. One gene should be taken out from her body to modify your affected gene to its normal condition and repeal this abnormal match.
Dave: Will she agree doing so?
Chatter: Most probably yes, and that’s for the sector’s well being, unless she had a similar case.
Dave: Then, she will not agree?
Chatter: Maybe, but if it is the case, the sector’s central administration will have to interfere. But, it is of a very rare possibility that she’s affected. Does she work with you or have you seen her before?
Chatter: Most probably she’s not affected.
– End of Story –
Looking for a quick science fiction read? Then this very short story is for you, it will give you an interesting look into the future of mankind, their views about life and love. See how far humans have changed and developed. Learn about their perspectives toward the emotions and feelings that define our lives in the present. Will emotions and love have a place in the future? Will mankind grow wiser or colder and is it for the benefit of humanity or not? Let's see.