I give a big stretch and slowly attempted to open my eyes. You must remember I’m a cyborg, a being with both artificial and organic parts. It’s best for all concerned to never discuss my organic sexual parts; authorization was not obtained from the Twin Federation.
A brown skinned, slightly hairy appendage retracts the opaque porthole. Two surviving members of the family Hominids, erect bipedal primate mammals, one an ovulating female and the other her napping product of conception, exchange gases inside my solar-powered pod amplifying a silent, mysterious world.
Carbon dioxide from the great apes is being absorbed by stomata under leaves and transpired oxygen is returned to living tissue. The family is Pilionaceae, the genus Lupinus and the species Texensis and yet these creatures will know it as the Texas’ state flower. How quickly that nation faded but its radioactive soil spreads mutated vegetation in all directions rendering the incoming atmosphere heavy with the scent of their beloved Bluebonnet.
The hominids have entered a primal world that existed five centuries earlier. My pod’s onboard monitors display a stream of their physiological parameters: respiratory rates and volumes, temperature, blood pressure, pheromone release, brain wave pattern and real-time thought display. Like other hominids I have studied, this female can vocalize and I hope comprehensible speech will explain the image displayed on her thought panel, multi-colored songbirds in emerald palm trees lit by a setting sun.
It has taken terabytes of data and species protocols to secure this limited interchange-permit; hominids on this planet consist of these two. The opportunity to study them at close range comes at considerable risk, but so far A2345-H and her product of conception A2345-C have only caused a rising, pleasurable anticipation. The brains of both have received neuronal implants which the hominids will perceive as reality. The critical task was the imposition of short-term and sensory memory processes into the creatures to allow recallable sensation.
There is no certainty that the tissue formation called the amygdale inside their crude, bony skulls will adequately control emotion, fear or memory to insure my safety. So far, observed behavior and real-time thought displays mimic those of a twenty-first century hominid. My ascent from a crude sixth-generation android to a cyborg with an apelike appearance and sex organs has been relatively painless although pleasure and pain are the penalties for cerebral hominid sensation.
Since the time of the great extinction and the subsequent merging of the Andromeda and Milky Way Galaxies into one governing body, the task of regenerating life on this morbid planet has fallen to android specialists such as I and few know of the mission I have undertaken, so count yourself as one of the rare enlightened androids. The puzzling thing for any android is adapting to hominid senses, but so far their sexual attraction has been increasingly pleasurable.
What scents, touches, vocalizations or behaviors I will endure are totally unknown since I’ve never experienced the hominid orgasmic pleasure peak. What I plan to do is strictly against Federation Law but I have accomplished DNA replication, produced two exact copies from one original DNA molecule. Cheers went to the top of the vaulted dome when the banned replication presented “bubbles” of just formed replicated DNA on the giant screen under the South Pole.
I carry that replication in my transplanted testes and fertilization within A2345-H is anticipated since her prior success in producing A2345-C has left her primed for implantation. There was a hominid utterance called “a miracle” in their forgotten lexicon. It meant an unexplainable occurrence that was thought to have been caused by a divine entity. The egocentric insanity of creating gods in their limited form using myth and magic was never questioned until the war of extinction ravaged the planet’s life forms.
The miracle I experienced was buying that ancient frozen hominid egg from the Hawaiian archipelago sixteen years ago. I’m told two countries Mexico and the United States that became a minor power designated this inhospitable outpost I traverse as the last great ape sanctuary on the planet. Later, great apes were exterminated on these very acres after being designated unwanted septic vectors for viruses threatening sanctioned interplanetary life exchange.
Reestablishing a great ape population on this planet is the stated aim of the Twin Federation but I seek a higher and almost altruistic purpose, the liberation of undiluted primitive great ape DNA from a forgotten tropical kingdom once called the Sandwich Islands. I guess future androids will think of me as a debased novelty, a half-human-half-machine with a comforting dialect and appearance that was accepted as a hairy great ape by A2345-H and A2345-C.
The scan of A2345-H latest unfertilized ovum revealed genes, genotypes and phenotypes devoid of racial mixing; it was not one of countless DNA genocides. I’m familiar with prior Earth animals rendered extinct by lack of DNA diversity. As zoological reservations eroded into oblivion, I acquired extinct Hawaiian racial lineage embodied in a frozen unfertilized egg bought illegally on the Great Galactic Gateway (GGG), but enough of miracles and ova.
Male great apes were small brained, deity ridden and deficient in all automated cerebral skills and yet as such a primitive form with imbedded senses, I will experience rolling hills bordering the sides of the gravel highway that snake through a carpet of silvery leaves and purple flowers.
A reassuring keystroke from the Twin Federation’s MH1506 had granted me access to designated Area 10. I’m a cyborg, but now facing the silky bronzed skin gushing with the chemical attraction signatures of an ovulating Homo sapiens, planting seed via an artificial appendage has become more than an altruistic endeavor employing micro-pumps; it is essential.
“Area 10 protocol is within accepted limits, proceed to Llano County but heed the clock.”
“TC5 acknowledges. I will observe the time sequence.”
From now on, I trust that this digital thought output in the ancient language called American-English will continue to record history as I make it. The stream of thoughts you receive will reference the great apes pre-programmed reality and my interplay with them. It is the first Saturday in the month of April, 2434 but I will assume a hominid existence on the second of April, 1934 to sniff the sage outside my pod displaying amplified fragrant splashes of color.
The journey from what was once Llano Texas was interrupted by my brief detour to a rock-strewn hill. Babyhead Mountain was the site of the worst great ape event in Llano County. The dismembered body of a missing great ape juvenile had prompted this name for a once unremarkable hill. The discovery of that small Homo sapiens head impaled on a stick close to the summit six and one half centuries earlier will draw galactic tourists. The eighteen-fifties were a time noted for the expanding American nation which reduced native aboriginal great ape communities to scattered imprisonment camps known euphemistically as reservations.
To a cybernetic organism anxious to dispense seed, the silence in the solar pod inflicted by the female great ape is unbearable. “Area 10 confinement will be breeched in thirty seconds.” I watch the digits drop lower and withdraw an override chip from my ear which will transmit a pre-recorded reality to MH1506, my controller. I’m biological in one coveted respect, my reproductive organ is responsive and my imagination races as I watch testosterone levels climb.
“Area 10 confinement will be breeched in thirty seconds. You face termination.”
“TC5 acknowledges MH1506. I will relocate pod to continue limited-interchange.”
The chip engages as the last milliseconds fade into oblivion and we enter a Ford Model T. Now as MH1506 and the Twin Federation monitor stored data on the chip, I move so close to her that the smell of my cigarette and Bourbon break A2345-H’s daydream into blotchy ribbons of color.
“Yeah, you’re in my country. You can dream but you ain’t got the money to make it come true . . . do ya? Don’t clam up on me. Damn it, Sugar, this time I got to know what you’re thinking . . . are we heading on alone or not?” Her brown ape eyes glisten and the bountiful chest expands.
“Don’t ask about Kenike again. Act like the man I thought I’d found?”
“Ain’no need ta talk that way. Call him Dennis . . . yer still in American not that island.”
A2345-H exhibits the anticipated emotions until I slowly back away. A fortifying swig of Bourbon follows the flick of my wrist. The loud crackle of KNOW, a radio station in Austin, Texas erupts above static. The radio announcer reports that yesterday, April 1, 1934 two Grapevine police officers E. B. Wheeler and H. D. Murphy were murdered on a side road near Highway 114 by Clyde Barrow and Henry Methvin. Bonnie Elizabeth Parker was said to have shot the wounded officers again.
“Now that’s a gal after my own heart, Sugar.”
“Not likely . . . you haven’t got one.”
“You weren’t that sour on me when my wallet saved ya from being rode out of town on a rail.”
A2345-C jumps on a torn suitcase. He is waving a toy biplane in my face as I rake unkempt hair in rising anger. Entering the outskirts of San Antonio, the car we ride in passes a mare standing in wildflowers to shield her foal from the 1925 Ford Model T’s noise.
“E kali, wait!”
“Talk Texan ya’ runt. Say stop. Get off mama’s suitcases or I’ll box em’ ears.”
“Hell, you’re beggin for it. We call that a mare in Texas.”
A2345-C now wedged between suitcases, stares out the window envying the prancing foal celebrating freedom. A2345-H, my fertile young Hawaiian peers over the steering wheel. She stiffens seeing the sign that announces an orphanage and convent belonging to the Sisters of the Incarnate Word. Her face reveals she has finally lost all hope.
“Yer squirts balling for a 900 pound shit-machine. He’ll get it and a few do-gooder nuns. I’m warning you woman don’t give me no grief. You got him sprouting island words in a country of whites. Ain’t it better he gets religion and schooling? Then too, I figure you and I will be speaking that Mexico lingo, there’s no sense messin up his brain; seeing most times it’s overloaded and if they catch us, he’s be sent to a state institution . . . that’s pure hell.”
Sniffles and wet cheeks greet a new pint of Jim Beam. “Go on, take a swaller of Jim. It’ll be over in a heartbeat and we’re gonna leave pronto. He thinks the sun come up just to hear him crow, so it ain’t no bother to him. Ya’ want him sharing a barrel with us? Hell, we’re nothing but rotten apples.” A2345-C sets a dangerous course circling my head. Finally, my hand snatches the plane out of midair as the other slaps A2345-C’s face. I grab the wheel, while draining the pint.
“Damn it woman, stop this bucket of bolts. Let’s get his lio and some peace. Look in th’ mere, ya’ beautiful face is mussed up. Now you set things right at part’in. His old man took off, so this ain’t his first rodeo. Stay in the car, I’ll send him on down the chute.”
The Ford passes Sister Mary Agnes, cultivating rows of sprouting corn. Her determined face breaks into a smile and she waves at the welcomed novelty. The dust bowl pushes impoverished families west toward California in hopes of picking crops, few if any head south. Minutes later, the nun watches the boy struggle in the death grip of a tall, longhaired brunette wearing a chain of desert flowers around her neck. The almond eyes stream tears down light brown skin to a faded cotton dress.
Suddenly a man appears to free the boy who runs to the split-rail fence where small hands reach up to the curious colt. The man struggles with the woman who flings fists and feet in an attempt to break free.
“He’s doin’ OK . . . just about fair ta midlin.”
“Ka’ut keiki, my baby . . . I want him.”
“Stop takin’ on, a dogooder nun is runnin to him, hoodathunkit?”
Sister Mary Agnes is horrified seeing me strike A2345-H’s face. I drag her into the Ford. The nun’s march quickens minutes later as the Ford sputters and lurches down the road leaving the boy hugging the foal. As the Ford grows smaller in the distance, gasoline tinged exhaust mixes with the florid scent of a Texas spring. The boy turns toward the black figure striding toward him with welcoming arms.
“Hello. I’m Sister Mary Agnes. Where did your mommy and daddy go?”
“Kenike no walk . . . you carry Kenike.”
“We’ll tell the authorities about Kenike after some milk and cookies.”
I settle into my seat and glance at the shaking form with hands touching in prayer. Miles past slowly in dreaded silence until I take her left hand and slid a gold band onto her finger. Her unbreakable frown melts into sparkling white teeth and grateful brown eyes. With broad smiles in enter an orchard of apple blossoms and buzzing honey bees. The soft earth is warm on my feet and I lead her under an arching roof of pink and white to high grass.
Her eyes close and no words are spoken until I finish my seeding. The horror of her screaming, the endless pounding of bloodied fists on my unclothed external structures ends as the slender neck droops after a snapping noise. The great ape’s head hangs to one side. The journey to the Ford is memorable as my feet sense the cool moist grass before the hot red soil turns to mud beneath a stream of liquid gushing from my limp untrained organ.
As I settle into the warm cloth inside the sundrenched Ford Model T, a small light brown mammal in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha but of an unknown species turns its head to one side. Yellow blossoms frame the twitching elongated ears as my metallic limb reaches out the reappearing opaque porthole in an absentminded hominid parting gesture called a goodbye wave.
“Limited interchange-permit with this mammalian species is unauthorized. TC5 is terminated.”
Bio: Brian Duggan is a graduate of the University of Maryland where he received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. He is an Air Force veteran who has traveled extensively both living and working in Europe. He is a freelance writer who has written movie scripts that have received excellent professional coverage.
He is a member of many writing groups having written short stories have been accepted for publication on-line as well as in print. An honorable mention was earned as a Third Place Winner in a story contest hosted by Carpe Articulum.