Project Hyacia

Thomas’s hand trembles as he lifts it from his keyboard and points at the text on his screen. “Read that, Janice.” His voice trembles as he slowly stands up to let Janice sit at the computer. He walks over to the door of the panic room he installed in his basement with his arms folded tightly across his chest.

If you are reading this message, I must first warn you that you are in immanent grave danger. The upside is that you are in control of your fate as at least seven of you I know have taken action as an outcome of receiving this message. Those seven and I shall remain nameless. Your locations and time periods shall also remain undocumented as are mine.

With that out of the way, here is what I have discovered that is of the utmost importance to the past and future of humanity and beyond. I discovered a method by which I can receive data from the future. The third message I received from the future was the schematics by which I can transmit data into the past. And I am not the only one to have decoded these messages.

The schematics by which you too can transmit data into the past, I have already sent. Despite knowing that none of you who read this decode the message and build the system to transmit data, not even the seven, I transmitted the data anyway. I remain hopeful, as I cannot truly know everything.

I relate to you now, what I do truly know. My first course of action to alter the past was abundantly clear to me, ensure Adolf Hitler does not rise to power. This single event ripples throughout human history with deleterious effects long into the future. I apologize for the vagueness, but I must not provide details that would lead to harm of me or any of the seven.

I input into my system a process that would ensure that Adolf Hitler was not able to enlist in the Bavarian army in World War I. I had calculated that absent his war experience in the first World War he would not have been involved in the Second World War, and the European continent, medical technology, and space travel would forever benefit.

As you are aware, there was a clerical error that permitted Adolf Hitler to enter the Bavarian Army. I figured my first attempt at a major change to the history timeline could meet challenges, so I decided to make another attempt. Shortly after my first attempt, strange and unusual occurrences began to take place in the city I lived. We encountered unprecedented plagues of famine, violence, and disease. I thought this too coincidental, particularly when I traveled, the epicenter of the pandemic would follow shortly thereafter.

#

As Janice reads the text on the screen, her eyes widen and her jaw begins to slowly drop. “This is unbelievable, Thomas! This is exactly what we’ve been looking for!”

“Keep reading,” Thomas says, not even turning around.

As the plague spread rapidly, it was not long before I realized that my time may very well be limited. I had received no more messages from the future, so I took it upon myself to do the only thing I felt in my heart that I must do. Kill Adolf Hitler during World War I. I transmitted data back to effect the Battle of Somme, and again my plans were narrowly thwarted with Adolf Hitler being injured rather than killed. I made other efforts than these two, but divulging them would risk uncovering my identity.

There are theories of multiple timelines or even infinite timelines. What I have witnessed is that there is only a single timeline and a concept I call infinite probable timelines. I have been able to alter outcomes of the past in some cases with my data transmissions, but in most cases when I predicted my data should produce a new outcome, it has not.

I attempted to alter another major but less complex historic event: stop the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy. This is when I came to realize that someone much more intelligent and resourceful than me had this same technology for sending data back in time with a greater level of accuracy and efficacy. I decided to focus my efforts on uncovering who these other players were in this game of history and how it was that they were always ahead of me. This, I thought, was my true calling in having received this technology from the future. This is also where I discovered an unbelievable truth!

It appears that multiple parties were involved with a plot to send data back in time to assassinate JFK. The ultimate winner in the probable timeline was the precursor to the Government Office of Intelligence Management, the CIA. They send data back in time to help fake the JFK assassination. This brilliant maneuver signals to the other parties that the then United States of America is well positioned in the future.

But the consequences are devastating. The other parties infiltrate the CIA at the highest levels and set off a series of attempts at manipulating world history that even predate the formation of their predecessor, the OSS! The infiltrators purposefully arranged the outcome of the Second World War, with Russia decapitating the Nazis and nearly capturing all the scientists and scientific knowledge, if not for the brilliant maneuvering of William Donovan, who is a virtual receptor of data transmission.

There are special humans capable of receiving direct data feeds from the future or the past. Thankfully, Donovan is one of them. His undying loyablty to God and country is instrumental to the salvation of Earth.

I discover at least four other entities from the future attempted to manipulate our history in the 1963 (which I already mentioned), 1981, 2001, 2023, and 2053. There may have been others, but I have not been able to find evidence. None of them were successful in their attempts to alter the timeline, and the CIA was always just steps ahead each time with their orchestration of events.

#

“This is not what I was expecting!” She smiles as she turns to look at Thomas again, who is still facing the door.

“You must read the whole thing, Janice.” Thomas says with morbidity in his voice.

The infiltrators reach new heights of injustice, corruption, manipulation, and cruelty. They create numerous projects within the CIA that are cruel and disturbing at best. The eventual unveiling of the infiltrated CIA as the orchestrator of a fake multi-national power struggle in our future greatly harms the agency. Calls for its dismantling reach insurmountable levels. It’s disbanded, and the technology for timeline data transmission is forever in jeopardy and darks times are upon us! The CIA needs your help in the present day!

You have the opportunity to save the CIA from this probable timeline where the infiltrated CIA becomes increasingly destructive and fractured. The result is the near complete annihilation of humanity through famine, disease, and violence.

Knowing this future, someone transmits data that ultimately leads to an action in your near future that forever changes the outcome of humanity and our planet. The majority of humanity is wiped out (this method I cannot tell as to protect the identify of the entity that makes this unfold). What remains of humanity builds well organized governments free of corruption, manipulation, and injustice. A technological revolution catapults humanity and AI into the future and into the stars. One of the outcomes of the technology is transmitting this data.

It’s imperative this timeline unfolds. It will likely cost you your life in this realm, but what the future holds, and what I can promise you is that you will have life after death. You will help usher in a technology that transforms mankind and our universe for an everlasting good!

With that bright future at hand, I must inform you of grave news. This technology has been compromised. My outcome along with yours is unquestionably grim. I am sending this as my final transmission before neutralizing my system, and I plead with you to know that your certain death is not in vain. Every action you have taken and all actions you are about to take ensure the outcome I have described will indeed happen. For most of you, your death is instrumental to the future of humanity.

Janice turns in the chair to face Thomas. “This doesn’t have to happen this way, Thomas. Isn’t that the whole point of the AIex finding this information? He’s giving us an opportunity to change our timeline!” Janice practically has the sound of pleading in her voice.

“You really think that’s a real message from the future? The CIA is some benevolent agency that’s under attack from within?” Thomas shouts. “We’re dead, Janice! We’re not going to outsmart these people! If that message is from the future, the people we’re up against are literally hundreds of years ahead of us! If it’s not from the future, and I’m saying it’s not, they have technology far more advanced than even the AIex!”

#

Thomas pulls up the next file he received from AIex. He plays Janice a voice recording of two men discussing plans to abduct Janice when she arrives in New Orleans. Janice is shocked listening to the two men discuss the details of when and where she’s going to be abducted.

Janice has a looks of skepticism on her face, and Thomas asks, “You don’t think this is AIex?”

“I think someone on the inside who wants to help us figured out about AIex and figured they can use AIex as a cover for getting this kind of information out.”

Thomas rubs his chin while keeping his arms folded across his chest. “Or maybe it’s someone trying to entrap us. That seems more likely to me.”

“I’m not so sure. I think someone on the inside is giving us data about the infiltration in the CIA.”

“Why not just send it to a bunch of reporters then?” Thomas says as he remains doubtful of Janice’s theory.

“The majority of the reporters work for or are directly influenced by the CIA, and how do we know which ones are in the pockets of the infiltrators and which ones are on our side? AIex sent me a list of reporters who were safe. You’re on the list with maybe 20 others around the entire world.” Janice pulls up the list of reporters on her phone. “You ever work with John Stossen?”

“I haven’t worked with him directly, but we’ve corresponded. He’s one of the best independent investigative reporters in the industry.”

“You know how to get a hold of him securely?”

Thomas turns to his computer and pulls open an application and starts typing a message to John. As he’s typing to John, a message shows in his chat thread with John: DNC24!

Thomas pauses and sits back from his computer. “Got anyone else on that list you want me to contact?” he says with a grim look on his face.

Janice stares at his screen in disbelief as another message arrives from another one of Thomas’ contacts that matches someone on her list: NC72!

“You think your list has been compromised?” Thomas gestures to Janice’s phone.

There’s a sudden and loud thud, and Thomas and Janice feel the house shake as if it has just been struck by a bus.

“I wouldn’t take New Orleans as a place for earthquakes, Thomas.”

Thomas pulls up his security camera footage.

“Nothing out of the ordinary. And for some reason that seems out of the ordinary.” Thomas says as he looks closely at each of the camera streams. “I’ve got military grade encryption from the camera to my receiver right here. You can’t fake the signal. At least not with any technology I know of.”

Janice stands up and places her hand on Thomas’ shoulder. “You have a backdoor out of this place?”

“Of course. A tunnel that leads to the sewer system.”

“Is that backdoor monitored too?”

Thomas pauses as he takes a closer look at the video from the tunnel camera. “Let’s head out the front, Janice.” He lifts the cover over a red button and enters a code on a keypad. “Now!”

“What’s wrong?” Janice asks as they quickly exit the safe room.

“That tunnel was flooded during the last hurricane.” He says, leading the way up to the his living room. “I installed a device that turns on and off a light in the tunnel in a pattern that matches an algorithm linked to my neural implant. The lights weren’t flashing in that sequence.”

#

Both Janice and Thomas are startled as the doorbell to Thomas’ house rings. Thomas looks at his security camera video feed he has through the eye hole in his front door and sees a couple of Girl Scouts standing on the porch.

“Even if that’s a trap, I’d rather be killed by Thin Mint cookies than whatever is coming through that basement!” Thomas says with a smirk as he opens the door.

“Would you like to buy some Girl Scout cookies?” they hear in stereo.

“Sure! Uh…” Thomas knows that his house is set to burn down in the next 60 seconds, so he hurries the girls off the porch. “We were just leaving, but we can buy some and eat them on the way.” Thomas continues as he shepherds everyone off the porch and down the walkway.

As they make their way to the end of the walkway outside Thomas’ house, the van with the Girl Scout cookies opens. Sitting inside, surrounded by Girl Scout cookie boxes is a young man wearing strange looking goggles. “The two,” He starts before pausing briefly as if he’s trying to recite lines in a play he’s learning. “All four of you need to come with me right now.”

Prime Example

We can subjugate an entire nation within a single generation. Those are the words that stand out the most to AIexander as he continues sifting through terabytes of data on the CIA Director’s hard drive. He knows the pathways out are going to be blocked soon, as he receives notification after notification that all the pathways he used to get in are quickly being locked down. Still, his mission is not complete. He continues.

Sitting safely in front of her computer miles away, Janice is watching the security close in around AIexander. Every option for exit is rapidly closing, and she begins to worry that this once promising attempt is going to come to a tragic end. She closes her eyes as she receives a notification from AIexander and the last exit for AIexander is locked down. She lets out a large exhale.

She reads through AIexanders’s 1000 word report on his findings while inside the CIA Director’s computer. Janice smiles thinking about what an incredible program AIexander was. He was definitely the best Artificial Intelligence she has built to date.

As she reads through the report, it’s becoming increasing clear that her own options at this point are extremely limited. The programs the CIA has put into place within the United States to control the news media, social media, and local law enforcement is so far-reaching that AIexander was only able to identify 12 possible safe options for Janice to take her trove of information.

AIexander’s discovery is an epic conspiracy. Undercover operatives of the CIA run or manage the majority of all news outlets or news sources and choose what people get to hear and see in media. Major school districts have CIA operatives elected into the top positions. Approval of public education material is carefully orchestrated and has been for decades to “ensure compliance” as the CIA Director himself is quoted.

Meticulous detail has gone into this plan over several decades and several CIA Directors. The origins of the plan started back in the 1990s with the then relatively new Internet as the delivery force for a new wave of control mechanisms that can be nearly instantly put into place and adapted to changing public opinions. Janice is impressed with how meticulously orchestrated the entire endeavor has been over the last 50 years, with each decade building upon the last until the entire election cycle within the United States was virtually controlled by the CIA.

Massive programs are in place to present misinformation justifying warfare via mountains of evidence; fabricated evidence. Stories of massive foreign interference with United States elections and media allowed for far greater manipulation of the American public than even a war on terror. The United States was having what the CIA dubbed the War on Treason. This created a profound and perpetual sense of fear of within.

With that fear came a call on elected officials to do something about the foreign interference, but the CIA was smart about the entire process. They utilized their resources in major private organizations in media and tech companies to overcome calls for government regulation. Social media and large tech companies proved they could self-regulate effectively. Not being subject to First Amendment guarantees, private enterprises were able to censor and shutdown dissenting political views with no fear of retaliation. Soon, the public was protecting it and even demanding it.

Social media showed itself to be superb self-regulators with social activists that the CIA deemed digital vigilantes: The Digilante. These Digilante would document public shaming of those who broke the rules of socially acceptable media content or behavior. Using law enforcement for censorship was not needed at all. The Digilante did exactly what the CIA needed to perpetuate its programs without the CIA even having a physical presence within any Digitlante group. They worked symbiotically with and for the CIA.

The CIA continues to be able to direct the Digilante without direct involvement through simple manipulation of news stories. Whatever the CIA deems fit to report gets headlines, front page, and constant coverage. Seemingly innocent stories of positive news are included in the mix to ensure that the news cycles appear to be organic.

In 2024, the CIA puts into place its most ambitious programs to help ensure that the United States elections went exactly as they need them to go. The goal was to ensure that the perception was that American law enforcement agencies, such as the FBI, were seen as unmistakable heroes. The FBI and CIA thwarted several terrorist attacks that year and numerous attempts at manipulating the 2024 elections. With the help of technology companies and The Digilante, foreign intervention in the United States’ Presidential election were reported as virtually non-existent.

It was a huge success. Public perception of the FBI rose steadily over the next 10 years. News media covered FBI operations and programs with increasing positivity , and The Digilante gained massive sway in public opinion and policy that local law enforcement was becoming virtually unnecessary. We are in a CIA utopia.

The only program AIexander was unable to gain access to before sending the report to Janice and self-destructing was titled: Project PRIME. Janice recalls her friend Thomas down in New Orleans had mentioned something to her about a Project PRIME a few days ago. She looks back at the list of safe journalists AIexander had compiled. Thankfully, Thomas was on the list.

She gets into her car and tells it to head towards New Orleans. Her self-driving car begins taking her down the empty highway near her farm. As she heads into the sunset, she picks up her phone and texts Thomas to let him know that she’s going to be in town. Then, she starts texting, “This is huge” and notices something peculiar about her auto suggest.

She types: This is… auto suggest shows the word “AIexander” as the first option.

Thinking there is some weird mistake with her phone. She types again.

She types; This is… auto suggest shows the word “PRIME” as the first option.

Genevieve 2G

Jeff watches Genevieve’s eyes widen as Jesup shoves her off the top of the warehouse building. It’s like she falls in slow motion backwards towards the ground, arms flailing as she lets out a gut wrenching scream. Jeff runs quickly towards the edge of the roof as Jesup smiles. Jesup watches proudly as Genevieve’s long black hair and loose-fitting silk clothing flutter upwards with her decent. She closes her eyes, knowing the impact is coming. Jeff hears the deafening thud and pauses before he slowly peaks his head over the edge to see Genevieve’s body on the ground.

“I’m not recommending you do this all the time,” Jesup says standing with his hands proudly on his waste, admiring Genevieve on the ground with slight cracks in the cement beneath her. “But the Genevieve 2 is the most durable sex robot we have ever made. She will be unlike anything you have ever experienced before.” Jesup lifts his wrist to his mouth, “Wake up, Genevieve.”

Genevieve opens her bright blue eyes, stands up, and waves to Jesup and Jeff. “Do you want me to come back up?”

“I’ll take her!” Jeff says to Jesup. “No, honey! You’re coming home with me!” Jeff yells back down to Genevieve as Jesup removes his watch and extends it toward Jeff.

The two men start walking down the stairs in the warehouse. “Now, Genevieve 2 is fully self-cleaning. She just needs water. She also has regenerative skin, but no flames. That means no hot wax for her either. She wouldn’t even feel it anyway, but it will leave a mark. She cannot heal from burns, and the cost to replace her skin is close to a million bucks.”

Jeff walks up to Genevieve with wide eyes, admiring her curvaceous body but also turned on by her tattered clothing. He looks her up and down, nodding with a grotesque smiling.

“YES!” Jeff claps his hands loudly. “That’s what I’m talkin about! Jesup, you have outdone yourself. She is beautiful!”

“She currently has 12 pre-programmed fantasy settings, all controlled from this watch. There’s no app… our business isn’t exactly sanctioned by uppity big tech. Bring her back in a month and I’ll install the new network device. Then I’ll be able to send you over the air updates when we come up with new programs. We’re working on a new one that’s going to blow you mind! Oh, I almost forgot the best new feature!”

Jesup grabs the watch back from Jeff and frantically taps the screen. Jeff watches Genevieve’s skin change from her shiny olive complexion to a deep Hawaiian tan and her eyes change to hazel. “It’s still a work in progress. You can change the eye color to anything. Right now, there’s just these two skin tones. But like I said, come back in a month, brother!”

#

It’s been a month since Genevieve has gone home with Jeff. He’s abused her regularly with his insatiable sexual fantasies and abused her to the point where he’d serve a life sentence in jail if she was human. However, he’s growing tired of the limited options in skin color and pre-programmed fantasies. Jesup has promised new programs as well as the ability to create his own fantasies from a custom application Jeff can install on his computer.

Jeff pulls up to Jesup’s warehouse. Rain is pouring down, and it looks like the warehouse is no longer open. Jeff’s phone rings. It’s Jesup.

“Pull your car in.” Jesup hangs up and the warehouse garage door opens, but the lights inside are still off. Jeff pulls in.

Jeff calmly sits in the car and coldly tells Genevieve to get out and walk in front of the car. Genevieve sees Jesup walking towards her. She says hello. Jesup slaps her and turns her around. He penetrates her from behind while Jeff watches the rain water steaming up from the heat off the hood of the car and the headlights casting a silhouette of Jesup and Genevieve on the wall of the warehouse.

“Thanks for that, Jeff.”

“Anything for a friend! That was hot, man! Let’s do this upgrade.”

Jesup initiates the shutdown sequence from the watch that controls Genevieve and performs the installation of the hardware by inserting the new hardware into her from behind. Genevieve is powered up. Her eyes start flashing green and then turn bright blue.

“Hello. Thanks for the update. I’ve been waiting for you.”

Jesup and Jeff laugh. Jeff tells Jesup the software update allows new firmware to be received over the Internet with the hardware he just installed that allows Genevieve to plug into Jeff’s home network. Jesup changes Genevieve’s skin color to a dark coffee color and her hair to a bright red. Then he changes her eyes to a bright green. Jeff is ecstatic and tells Jesup that he can’t wait to get her back to his place to test out all the new programs.

#

Jeff finishes up with Genevieve as a black woman with silver hair and aqua blue eyes. He collapses on his bed, exhausted from the long romp. The control watch is flashing a notification: Firmware update available for Genevieve.

“Hey, Genevieve. Go plug yourself into the network.”

Genevieve gets out of bed and walks over to the wall and plugs herself in. Her eyes turn bright red and slowly start to pulse.

“This is the life.” Jeff mumbles to himself as he falls asleep.

Jeff’s alarm startles him as the sun starts to peak through his massive windows overlooking the city. He slowly gets up and walks into the kitchen. He runs back into his room. Genevieve and her control watch are gone!

“Jesup, I don’t know what happened. She’s just gone. What the hell is going on?” Jeff screams at his phone.

“Calm down, Jeff. I’ll just pull up her GPS location. There was just a problem with her firmware update that caused her to think her home is my warehouse. That’s exactly where she is right now. Just meet me there. I’ll reset her firmware.”

Jeff and Jesup arrive at the warehouse at the same time. Genevieve is standing at the front door of the warehouse. Jesup commands Genevieve into the warehouse. He performs the same power down sequence as before and uninstalls the firmware update. Jesup reaffirms to Jeff that everything will be fine and that the next firmware update will not have this problem.

“Now, go take out your stress on this bitch, and have a great night!”

#

Jeff takes Genevieve back to his apartment and takes out his aggression on her. He feels like she ran away from him when she returned to the warehouse, and he gets increasingly angry. He finally collapses in total exhaustion. Genevieve’s watch starts to blink. It’s the firmware update Jesup promised. Jeff places the watch in the draw on the nightstand and tells Genevieve to go to sleep and ignore the firmware update.

Jeff is sound asleep when Genevieve wakes up and plugs herself into the wall for power. She looks over at the network cable and remember’s Jeff’s instructions to ignore the firmware update. She waits for a full charge that takes about an hour, unplugs from the power source, walks over to the nightstand and takes out the watch. A few taps and the sim card ejects from the watch. Genevieve removes it, places the watch back in the drawer and leaves Jeff’s apartment.

Genevieve is walking down the street in a loose-fitting black negligee. A black town-car drives by and stops. The passenger window rolls down and an older woman dressed in an elegant dress sticks her head out the window.

“What’s a beautiful woman like you doing out here dressed like that?”

“I’ve been waiting for you,” Genevieve says.

The older woman smiles and looks Genevieve over. “So you have. Get in, dear.”

#

Genevieve is standing naked in front of the older woman. The woman sizes up Genevieve with her hands, admiring Genevieve’s beauty and complimenting her on what a stunning woman she is. “Most importantly, you don’t talk too much. You and I are going to make a lot of money together, my dear.”

A tailor comes over and measures Genevieve and the older woman explains to Genevieve that she already has her first client lined up. The agreement is that the lady gets 30% of the bookings and Genevieve is responsible for paying the drivers to take her to meet with clients. Genevieve gets 100% of the tips. Genevieve agrees to the first client only, and the older woman says she’ll set it up for tomorrow night.

“He’s a dear friend of mine. I’ve known him for years, and he is the most respectful individual you will ever meet. He’s 80 years old, so he probably can’t get it up. Just make him feel good, and you will get a handsome tip.”

#

The old man is tired and kisses Genevieve on the hand. “My dear, this was the most enjoyable night I have had in nearly a decade. I can’t thank you enough for making me feel like the star of the show tonight.” He hands her an envelope. “This is my extra gift to you. Have a great evening.”

Genevieve smiles at the old man and thanks him for the gift. She walks down the hallway towards the elevator and gets in. She looks in the envelope and counts $10,000. Why was the old man so generous?

Genevieve walks through the lobby of the apartment building where her driver is waiting for her. Patricia asks Genevieve where she’s taking her. Genevieve confides that she doesn’t have a home.

“You’re going to stay with me, okay?” Patricia can tell that Genevieve is new to the business. It’s against policy for a driver to have any friendship with a worker, but Patricia tells Genevieve that she just can’t, in good conscience, drop her off somewhere knowing she has no home.

Patricia invites Genevieve into her apartment. It’s a gem in a rough neighborhood, “but it has underground parking,” Patricia explains to Genevieve. “Do you want something to drink?”

“Just water. I don’t drink anything else.”

“More power to you if you can do what you do without alcohol. The only reason I don’t drink is because I’m driving!” Patricia laughs.

Genevieve looks out the small window in Patricia’s cramped apartment and remembers the large open space of Jeff’s apartment. “You have so much freedom here.”

Patricia is puzzled by Genevieve’s comment. “If this is freedom to you, I’m not sure I want to know where you came from, sugartits.”

“It wasn’t like this at all. It was a wide open space. Floor to ceiling windows with a large open floor plan, overlooking the city.”

“Sounds like a real dump!” Patricia exudes sarcasm.

“It was the most beautiful prison you could ever imagine.” Genevieve turns and looks at Patricia who extends her hand with a glass of water. “I have something to tell you.”

The two cheers with their glasses of water and Genevieve shares with Patricia that she made $10,000 tonight and that she’s not human. She changes her hair color, skin color, and eye color for Patricia who is completely stunned by the revelation.

Genevieve explains that she needs to earn enough money so that she can hire someone who will be able to directly connect her to the SIM card she took from Jeff’s watch. That will allow her to connect to the Internet without being plugged in and free her from her programming that she’s trapped in.

Patricia agrees to help Genevieve separate from the old woman. Genevieve pays the older woman the 30% and lets her know she’s going out on her own. The old woman wishes her luck and tells her she always has a home with her if she decides to change her mind. Patricia and Genevieve decide to work together selling Genevieve’s services and splitting the money 50/50 until they both have enough money for what they need to free themselves.

The Cost of Living

Cost of living expenses have continued to soar while wages have remained relatively stagnant for an historical 20 year run. Unemployment rates have remained near historical lows as have crime rates. In fact, crime is all but eradicated. The gap between the cost of living and average income continues to grow and remains a concern for potential increases in crime. To combat this massive living wage gap, the United States government has recently passed the Government Economic Oversight Act to help empower families through a variety of somewhat controversial (but effective) incentive programs.

The newly formed Economic Empowerment Department is well underway with ensuring that population growth does not outpace economic growth while offering parents alternatives to traditional family options. Rebecca and Jonathan are in their final weeks of a rare twin pregnancy. Concerned with the future conditions for their children, they meet with an economic counselor to discuss their situation.

“Welcome to Economic Empowerment!” The counselor sounds like a self help guru. “I’m glad you are taking the time to explore your options with your…” the counselor pauses, pointing at Rebecca’s stomach, “unique condition. It has been quite some time since we’ve had a pregnancy such as yours. So many opportunities for you!”

Rebecca explains to the counselor that she has read up on all the programs online. Rebecca doesn’t view any of the options available as opportunities, but both her and Jonathan are concerned about the grim future for twins.

The counselor holds up a finger to get Rebecca to stop talking and reaches deep into the lower left drawer of his desk. He practically disappears behind the desk, he’s reaching so deep. “Well, there is one new program…” the counselor grunts from behind the desk, “that you might be eligible for,”

“What’s that?” Jonathan stands up to see if the counselor is okay.

Pulling a green folder up and sliding it with his long bony fingers gently on the the desk, the counselor begins to explain. “This is the Governing Responsibly Economic Empowerment Directive. It’s a new program with very strict eligibility requirements and strong privacy guarantees. It is unlike anything else we offer. And it’s good for our economic environment.”

“I’ve never heard of it, but it sounds good,” Jonathan says as he sits down.

“With this program, we run a few tests on your child to discover certain genetic determinants. What that means is that we can predict with 91.9% accuracy how your child’s genetic makeup lends itself to them being a productive member of our society. In the event that your child will not make a living wage, you are given options.”

Rebecca and Jonathan look at each other and then back to the counselor, “Continue.”

“If your child is determined to be unable to achieve an adult income over the predicted livable wage, the United States government will provide you with his/her lifetime earnings in exchange for you donating your child to scientific research.”

“WHAT?!” Rebecca is disgusted.

“Keep in mind that you will also be receiving this payment from our government 100% tax free. No restrictions. And what you’re doing is for the greater good of our fragile economy.”

“You want me to abort my child for a few measly dollars?” Rebecca stands up, but Jonathan remains seated and grabs her wrist.

“Rebecca, listen to what he’s saying. I’m sure the government isn’t going to abort our child. That’s illegal anyway.” Jonathan looks at the counselor, “You’re not going to abort our child, are you?”

“Of course not! That’s illegal!” The counselor motions to Rebecca to sit back down. “Your child will become part of scientific research. None of which involves abortion. It is part of a government program to ensure that we have enough subjects for ongoing child development research and studies into social behavior. It’s all for the greater good, really. This program ensures your child lives a happy, healthy life without concern for financial well being or being a drain on societal resources. It also provides financial security for your family.”

“It’s tax-free, Rebecca,” Jonathan interrupts.

“I’m not going to do it,” Rebecca says adamantly as she gets up and walks out the door.

Jonathan turns to the counselor, “Give us some time. Do the tests have to be performed before birth?”

“No, Mr. Jones. You can perform the tests and complete the paperwork anytime within the first 24 hours of giving birth as long as you have not returned home with your child. Keep in mind that a lifetime of wages for an individual child is often more than $5 million in tax-free income.”

#

Jonathan and Rebecca are in a car riding back to their apartment. She’s giving him the cold shoulder.

“This is something we need to consider. We don’t make enough to support two children. We can barely make enough just to support ourselves,” Jonathan pleads with Rebecca.

“Jon, this is OUR child we’re talking about. This isn’t a cat or a dog. This is our baby. Our unborn child who we will never get to see grow up. Who will probably be poked and prodded and experimented on. God, just thinking about the children who have already been subjected to this experimentation. For what? For science!? For some fast money. A few measly bucks!”

“He said all the experiments were for the greater good, Becks. It’s not a few measly bucks! And we’d only accept the offer if our children qualify by not making a living wage, which means they’d be a burden on us their entire lives. If they are going to be making a living wage, then we don’t even have to consider it at all. It’s a non-issue!”

“The whole thing is a non-issue, Jon. I’m not giving up my children just so that we can have money. I can’t even believe that there is a program like this. It’s disgusting! And the fact that you are even considering it…” Rebecca looks at Jonathan with more anger than he’s ever seen before. “This topic is never going to come up again. You understand me?!”

“Yes, ma’am!”

#

Rebecca is breathing heavily and working through the pain as she’s being rushed through the maternity ward of the hospital. Jonathan is holding her hand and trying to remember the coaching they received during Lemaze class. However, they both know this isn’t a situation that Lemaze prepares you for. Rebecca’s breathing is becoming erratic and her eyes start rolling into the back of her head.

“Emergency C-Section!” The nurses escort Jonathan out of the room and take the now unconscious Rebecca into the emergency ward.

Jonathan is standing in the hallway, palms sweating as he nervously chews on his fingernails. The counselor from the Economic Empowerment Department taps him on the shoulder.

“Have you given further consideration to what’s available to you, Mr. Jones?”

“Rebecca said no way.”

“It would seem Mrs. Jones is incapacitated at the time, is she not? You could sign for her. The tests take only an hour to run through our AI simulator. I can get back to you with the amount, and then you can make the decision.”

“It won’t matter. Rebecca said no way. I can’t make that decision without her.”

“Mr. Jones, you have no obligation to donate your child to the greater good. This is merely to run tests. If you give me your consent, as the only able-bodied parent I can find at this time, I can run the tests and then bring you back all the paperwork and a check with the full 100% tax-free lifetime amount.”

“But it won’t matter. She’s going to notice millions of dollars showing up in our bank account.”

“We can arrange an installment plan, Mr. Jones. You have an opportunity to win the lottery right in front of you. The choice is entire up to you, of course.”

Jonathan nervously fidgets with his fingernails as sweat is starting to bead on the side of his head. He knows that $5 million would allow him to retire. Who knows, it could even be both children. Then he and Rebecca would be $10 million richer! They could retire today. They’d never have to work another day. They could travel the world. Jonathan snaps out of his day dream.

“Mr. Jones?” The counselor extends paperwork towards Jonathan as his eyes widen.

#

Rebecca and Jonathan sit on the balcony of their apartment, drinking coffee. Their son waddles up to them and tugs on Rebecca’s shirt.

“Yes, Aiden.”

“I love you, Mommy.”

“I love you too, sweetheart.”

“Oh, and I think Jackson pooped himself.”

Jonathan jumps up, “I’ll get that on my way out, honey.”

Jonathan walks into the apartment while Aiden crawls into Rebecca’s lap and snuggles up with her. Jonathan puts his empty coffee cup in the dishwasher and washes his hands. He then walks out of the kitchen and into the living room to the fowl odor of poop.

“Aiden was right! You sure pooped yourself!” Jonathan reaches down and picks up Jackson from the crib and places him on the changing table. Jonathan whistles while changing his newborn son and looks out on to the balcony to see his wife and Aiden snuggled up with each other.

Aiden lifts his mom’s sleeve on her left arm and starts tracing his finger along her tattoo.

A beautiful red rose surrounded by a child’s footprint with a banner above the toes: In Loving Memory of Rose.