I settled easily into the archaic sofa and turned on some "rap" music
with a plastic remote that used pathetic IR technology and giggled. So
outdated. I was part of a study group being paid to live life as it had
been about eight hundred years ago. No immersion-games, no marbleguide
orbs, no galaxy-net connection, not even lumi-glow lights.
But I'd smuggled in one piece of technology I couldn't bare to do
without. My Multitasker. Some decried the dangers of the device, but it was
so useful, how could anyone ignore it? It was just a simple hood, easily
disguised as a primitive "bicycle" helmet. The matter-transference box had
been harder to smuggle, but I'd gotten into my new "house" with everything
I glanced around before placing the Multitasker over my head. It fit
snuggly and blotted out everything. There were cameras in each house that
were required to run a certain amount every day, but to protect our
privacy, we were allowed to choose when. I called out the password,
followed by a category word, and felt a quick jolt, followed by a moment of
Within a few minutes, a tiny being crawled into the room. Just four
simple limbs, a small body, and a big head with one glassy black eye. A
clone. Sort of. A small portion of my brain was removed and implanted into
the little body. Now it could do something I didn't want to while I watched
the 9:00 news and Sienfeld. "Go cook me some potatoes, and umm...a
cheesebooger." Wait. "Cheeseburger!" I corrected. That was close.
Most stopped at one clone. None ever went past three. A warning tone
sounded in my head as I made two more clones. One to read a book, another
to do the algebra "homework" my "school" had assigned. When I was done, the
world seemed a little different. New, like there was so much to see and
experience. I was curious. What would happen if I made a fourth clone?
In a few minutes, I was surrounded by clones. Colors ran together, and
every sense brought fresh stimulation. As these senses began to black out,
I wondered with no truly coherent thought if I should stop. But I'd lost
control of my limbs, and my skull was sucked dry of all save my brain stem
as I slumped into the sofa cushion.