suspend disbelief - have an adventure
Awaken the Cyborg
“Are you Racer Magellan?” the woman asked. She spoke Terran
Common, a language that was dead to the universe for close to three centuries. That
should have tipped me off right away, but it didn't. It was the first time in
almost a hundred years that anybody had pronounced my name correctly. A lot of True-humans
had assumed new names when they got their cyborg bodies; names like Vengeance,
or Salvation. I always figured if I was going to die on a hostile world, the
least they could do is put the right name on my grave marker. Not that I
expected anyone to bury me.
“Yeah, what of it?” I replied. I was happily sipping some hot
apple cider while relaxing in front of the bar's Thrill-Kill screen. Thrill-Kill
was the latest craze sweeping the galaxy. It was a combination of gladiator
fighting with random shots taken by the studio audience. Most of the gladiators
were convicted criminals sentenced to death, but I knew a few traders that made
their living snatching people off the street. I had even worked for a few of
“I want to have your baby,” she said.
“Sell it to somebody that wants it.”
“You don't understand...”
“No, you don't understand,” I interrupted her. “If I want a
cheap trick I'll get one, but I don't so push off. The guy at the end of the
bar is looking for a hooker, try him.” Not that getting laid was totally out of
the question. It was possible because my body was fully functional, but sex
wasn't the great joy it had been in my youth. Instead processors stimulated my
brain, so it felt like sex, but there wasn't any gooey climax. The entire
process was internal. Nothing ever came into or left my body; I could be a man
for any woman, but she would have to have a kinky lusting for a half ton of
metal underneath her. If I really wanted to I could trigger an orgasm by
executing a program; a partner wasn’t really necessary.
“No, you don't
understand,” she said in a loud, irritated voice. “I don't want to fuck you. I
just want a sample of your sperm. It's possible isn't it? Somewhere in there
you've got the capacity to pump out some jizz. I want to get pregnant, not give
you a night to remember.”
“I'll get you pregnant,” some drunkard shouted.
“And I'll just fuck you,” another added. I suppose I could
understand the way the lushes acted. She appeared human, but couldn't be. She
was just slightly below average height, thin yet muscular with dark hair, and a
fair complexion. Beneath her bangs she had green eyes, and a slightly crinkling
nose. I think the latter was due to the scent of dried urine and stale vomit
that pervaded the bar.
She wasn't an Endo-human. Centuries of inbreeding had left them
a mottled-skinned breed with sloped foreheads, and lower intelligence
quotients. Endos were good for manual labour, mercenary work, and anything that
didn't require too much imagination. It was only in the last half century that
the Endo-humans had started to make a comeback. She wasn't a True-human because
the only ones left lived in mechanical bodies like me. The Meta-humans never
left their Sphere. However, there were more than two dozen races that looked
human, and were sexually compatible with humans. She could have been one of
“It's possible, isn't it?” she asked.
“Sure it is,” I said, “But what's in it for me?” Deep in the
core of my body was a synthetic human brain, and other synthetic organs that
produced the hormones the brain needed. My brain required testosterone, which
required testicles, so if I had the need for it I could produce sperm cells. All
the synthetic tissue in my body was cloned off my DNA, so essentially it was
still as True-human as me, as I had been before conversion. Periodically, every
fifty years to a century, I had to re-clone an organ; being organic the parts
also aged, and wore out.
“A thousand Units,” she answered. I almost choked on my drink,
if I had been able to choke, which I wasn't. Unlike Creds, Units were physical
currency which could be exchanged for goods and services. Creds were credits
that some computer data base held. Because Creds were purely artificial, they
had less value. Additionally, the computer holding the accounts could break down.
Breakdowns were rare, but they did happen. As a result, Units were more
valuable because they were independent of some galactic agreement. One Unit was
worth ten to fifteen Creds depending on the market. However, most transactions
used Creds for convenience.
“One thousand Units for a spermcicle? What's the catch?”
“No strings. I want to have a baby. I want a True-human sperm
donor. You're the only human cyborg in this sector of the galaxy. I know, I've
“When do I get paid?” I asked. She pulled a leather pouch from
inside her coat, and dropped it on my table. I wedged my fingers between the
draw strings and then opened my hand. The purse snapped open which caused
dozens of plastic disks to spill out. Each disk was a centimetre in diameter,
and a millimetre thin. I dropped the pouch inside my long coat.
“Fair enough,” I said. “You've got a deal. Give me half an
hour, and I'll give you some frozen fun stuff.”
“Where can I pick it up?” she asked.
“Unless something remarkable happens I don't intend on leaving
this seat for the next three months,” I answered. I was on a job. This contract
was something I had never done before, so I was eager to take it. Turns out I
got paid one hundred and fifty Creds a day to sit on my ass, and do nothing. So
far in the performance of my duties I had only thrown a couple of drunks out of
“Sheriff Magellan,” a small boy cried as he ran into the bar, “the
Post is being robbed. Come quick!”
“You'll have to wait,” I told the woman. “I've been sitting
around for two weeks waiting for something like this to happen.”