Erasing Mistakes Chapter 2
6078 Anno Domini.
A Method of Gene Restructuring Using Molecular Machines.
It was my best work. I edited it at least a dozen times over, taking out every single word that looked the least bit unfitting or unnecessary, the paper was bleeding from red ink when I was done. The theory worked, it really did. We could have had nanotechnological pseudolife. All we needed was the right equipment.
But they didnt like it. Oh, the theory works, the paper is perfect, but the public wont accept it. Humans creating life? That goes against all the precepts of our religion. Lets throw away the only hope for saving our civilization, because some old men in white robes dont agree with the science. And they expelled me from the Academy for it.
Even then, Kim had known that Zeboim hadnt much time left. In the year before, poverty and crime rates were spiraling upwards and it seemed that the quality of life was going in the opposite direction. But that seemed like nothing compared to what was happening now. Kim flicked on the television set and prepared himself for more bad news, trying to draw himself out of his thoughts.
And now to Betty Sims for the latest on the Zeboim Crisis, spoke the machine. The camera panned to a lady who looked to be around thirty, dressed in a respectable business suit. She had curled brown hair that fell to her shoulders and narrow eyes of the same color. A pert nose and small lips. She reminded Kim of one of the students he had shared classes with back at the Academy. Before they kicked him out.
We have some alarming news from the local medical facilities, she said, looking appropriately grim. Due to the effects of Ignass biochemical destablizer, which was recently unleashed upon our country, the life expectancy of the common citizen has considerably dropped. This is due to a certain enzyme which attacks the cells of a person and significantly weakens them. Affected persons are expected to live no longer than thirty years of age.
Unfortunately, that is not all. Radioactive fallout from Ignass nuclear missile, which was formerly thought to be dissipated by our radiation removal systems, has now been found lingering in Zeboim. This excess radiation is reportedly causing infertility in women everywhere. The total effects are not known, but some scientists fear that the Zeboim people are in danger of extinction.
Kim stared. Hed known about the nuclear bomb, and heard a little about the destabilizer. Most of the details had been kept secret by the government for a short while. But the radiation was supposed to have been totally removed! This could mean that none of us have a future.
He stared at the television for a little while, lost in his own thoughts. When he saw one of his old professors on the air talking about how there was no hope for the future, he decided it wasnt going to help him any. He stabbed the off button on its remote control.
He knew what he had to do. Hed been trying to put it out of his head for over a year, but it was staying with him anyway. The decline of civilization meant only one thing: Hed have to restart his research.
The young scientist rose from the couch and walked into his study room. It was moderately cluttered, small, but suitable to his personal tastes. He didnt need much room to work. Kim took some files laying open on his desk and put them aside, clearing space. Taking his keys from his pocket, he inserted them into the keyhole in his file cabinet and opened the top drawer. He pulled out a large, overstuffed folder, shut and locked the drawer, and dropped the file on his work desk. He sat down and adjusted his glasses, looking down to examine the file that contained nearly four years of his work, from his most amatuer musings to his experienced theoretics. This was his entire lifes meaning. This was what he lived for and it was something he would die for.
The title on the folder said:
* * *
Damn, I cant do anything!! thought Elhaym, as she stood by the IV machine, watching her patient slowly dying.
PATIENT DOSSIER: Jason Richard Foster. Age: 30. Previous medical operations: Fractured elbow operated on 6/24/6057. No allergies. No subscribed medication. No genetic imperfections.
In another words, a perfectly healthy, normal person. A person who should have lived a long, fruitful life.
Here he lay, convulsing as tiny chemicals within him tore his body apart. People were coming in thousands to the hospitals, but there was no cure. They could only prescribe pain med and give the patients a bed to die on.
It was horrible.
Elly couldnt remove the obvious fact from her mind:
In seven years, you will have ran out of time. You will be laying there on that bed, with your eyes rolled up in your head and your hands shaking, unable to stop .
Stop it, stop it, this isnt getting anywhere, theres nothing you can do, nothing anyone can do. Its a tragedy and it will kill off everyone and its impossible to stop, just like the convulsing
Jason Foster had stopped convulsing. His eyes were closed.
Elly bowed her head and prayed that hed receive a long life in the afterlife, to make up for his undeserved death in this world. She opened her eyes, picked up his med record, and wrote:
Deceased. Biochemical Destabilization.
Then she got an idea.
If we can somehow create some kind of new life that is unaffected by this genetic tampering, Zeboim could live on. But how would we go about doing that?
She remembered something she had saw on the news. Someone tried to create psuedolife, as they called it, a nanotech child, wasnt it? No, they had a theory for it but had never actually tried it, thats right. The researcher was expelled from the foundation because it went against the religious precepts of the church.
But would God want his creations to die like this? Is this what he would wish upon his people? Or did he intend for us to discover this new technology and use it to save ourselves?
It was a hard question, and she couldnt find an answer. You cant do anything, anyway, Elhaym, she told herself. You dont even know the mans name, and if you tried to do something like that against the wishes of the people
But the people will soon all be dead.
She was lost in her thoughts as she turned off the light to the room, shut the door, and walked down the the hall to the reception office. She gave the clipboard to the manager. She read it.
Whos next, said Elly, trying not to audibly sigh.
No one, said the manager. Just just go home. Theres nothing we can do. Ill handle the meds. It only takes ten seconds to shoot them up till they cant feel anything. Weve got people handling the insurance downstairs. Just go home. Rest.
Elly nodded and turned briskly away.
Nothing we can do. Theres nothing we can do. Just go home.
It took all of her will to hold in her tears as she got on the elevator and rode to the bottom floor.
You can cry for these people when you get home. Dont let go, dont let go No
Nothing we can do. Nothing you can do. Nothing anyone can do. Just go home.
Why? Why did Ignas have to do this to us?!!
As she thought more and more of the problem, she felt something strange twinge in her memory. The man in the newscast. The nanotech researcher. He seemed somewhat familiar, although she was sure shed never met him before
She would meet him again. Unkown to her, it was her destiny. The destiny of her God.
* * *
Humankind will begin anew. They will be reset once more so that humanity will finally produce parts sufficient enough to become one with Deus.
Of course, Miang had no regrets. It was what had to be done. But she shuddered to think of the feeling of destruction. After all, she was their mother. She was a mother that would drown and choke and break the necks of her children until she found the right one that suited her purposes. It was horrible, but it was the way things had to be done. Ive done this before. I will not allow it to bother me this time. These people .my children are now useless. They are all meant to serve Deus, but they cannot any longer.
She opened a com frequency to the Mass Driver facility on her phone.
Zeboim Industrial Mass Driver
I need to talk to the main operator. This is Miang Hawwa.
Ms. Chief Executive of!
Ah, Ill go get her right away.
The comscreen fizzled out for a moment. Miang waited impatiently.
Ironic. I can wait 6000 years, but yet this small matter annoys me. Calm yourself.
The screen fizzled into life again.
Hello, Ms. Chief Executive of Staff Hawwa.
It was a short woman in a regular Zeboim worker uniform. She was fairly ugly but her eyes possessed a cunning sheen.
Hello. I want to know something. Is it possible to convert this facility for military use?
Ah, what precisely do you want to do with it?
Launch missiles. she said flatly. Nuclear ones, she did not add.
Ah well, the Mass Driver facility could do that, yes. But it would take some preparation. And we would have to halt the industrial services of the facility
We wont be needing those.
Ah, the people wont like it, maam
The people will be dead in a matter of time. All I want is vengeance, she lied.
All I want is God.
If you wish it, we can do it. But for an operation as large as this
Youll keep it quiet.
The worker sighed. Alright, Ms. Hawwa. But well need recommendation from the Prime Minister. This is very important.
I have a signed permission notice, of course, said Miang, pulling up her forged document on the com screen and sending it over.
She flipped off the frequency and looked at the blank screen for a moment. She didnt care to think about how many times shed lied today. The Mass Driver was the key to ending life on Earth, and she was the person who would use that key. She was responsible for the deaths of millions. Millions of her children. Millions of innocents.
More irony. To ressurect God, I must sin enough to be damned to eternal hell.
* * *
Derek Ravine sat by his wife, who was laying on the couch, her face covered with tears.
The well-furnished apartment was dark. Teliahs long blue hair fell over the pillows and her dark green dress. Her amethyst eyes glimmered with her sorrow, her despaired look rended his heart. She was so perfect. But she wasnt perfect anymore. No, shed always be perfect to him. It didnt matter that that .
Its alright I still love you. No matter what, Ill always love you. You know that.
She looked up at him and smiled weakly. I know. I know. But what about our plans? What about our dreams?! This isnt supposed to happen!! Why the HELL did this HAPPEN!? She burst into loud sobs.
Derek had walked in the door to find his wife lying there, sobbing over the results of a med test shed had taken while he had been at work.
Infertile. Such a cold, hard, clinical word for something so emotional.
He was 21, Teliah was 20. Theyd heard news about the shortening of Aquvys lifespan the day before. Itd been shocking, but theyd decided to live out the rest of their lifes to the best that they could. To fulfill every dream they ever desired.
One of their biggest dreams was to have a family of their own. Derek wanted to look into his childs green eyes and see his own in them. He wanted to teach his daughter, and show his son the world. He wanted to see them grow up and move out and get a life of their own, and be happy. To have added more to the world than he could have possibly added by himself. But it would be impossible now.
Teliah lay there sobbing, and Derek had no answer for her. Theyd lived normal lives so far. Nothing like this had ever occurred to anyone.
Why did this happen... whats the real reason? Ignass nukes, of course. But it was our goverenment that drove them to war in the first place. Im sure of it.
It happened because a bunch of idiots in power decided that they needed to stir up trouble in places where they really didnt. Because they had no respect for any of our lives at all. They couldnt know something like this would happen, could they? So they let the nation sink away
Teliah looked up at him through glazed eyes. What are you saying, Derek?
Im saying I dont know what Im saying. Everythings just screwed up. As more thoughts ran through his head, his brain got foggier and foggier. The bangs of his thick brown hair fell over his eyes and he swatted them back. I we need to do something. Something about the government.
She wiped her eyes and raised herself to a sitting position. What could we possibly do that would influence them any?
We can write up a petition. A petition for the leaders in government to step down And if they dont .
He looked at the floor, then back to his wifes tear-marked
If they dont well start a revolution. And well make things change. If we cant have our own children well make peace for the children of others.
It was an extroadinary idea. But then, it had been an extroadinary day. And not in a good manner. Not at all.
Of course, Derek doubted the leaders would step down just because of one petition. But he was fully prepared to go to war with his own government to make the future a better place.
And so, Dereks only child was born: The anti-government group Ravine.
This chapter was written using information in the translated Perfect Works
Zeboim Civilization page at:
This Page © Copyright 1997, Brian Work. All rights reserved. Thanks to Sax for his help with the layout. Do not take anything from this page without my consent. If you wish to contact an author, artist, reviewer, or any other contributor to the site, their email address can be found on their index page. This site is link-free, meaning you don't need to ask me if you'd like to link to it. Best viewed in 1024x768.