Plasma Frequency Magazine: Issue 12

Plasma Frequency Magazine: Issue 12 by Arley

Book: Plasma Frequency Magazine: Issue 12 by Arley Read Free Book Online
Authors: Arley
out to the lake and put her down. As little connection as I had to her, it was a hard thing. I kept telling myself she's not real she's not real, no matter what sounds she made. I want to believe that her mind was as wrong as her body, so she didn't feel much anyway. I might tell myself that just to get to sleep at night, but it works, so shut up.
    On my next try, though, I hit it out of the park. She was gorgeous, sweet, loving. I paid out the nose for the blueprint (this was back before my enlightenment on the whole data freedom front) but was it ever worth it. We had three great years. That's longer than my real Mom lasted, and so when I think of a face to match the word mother, it belongs to Wendy S29. Maybe it always will.
    But there's such a thing as too perfect. I wanted the Wendy to be as similar to my birth mother as possible, so I dug up every detail I could about her for the cognitive upload. Her favorite books and music, the journals she wrote before I was born, everything. I wanted a copy of a woman who had chosen to die at age 27, and I got it. As time went by, I felt a distance growing between us. She spent more and more time writing on her own, staring out the window, often forgetting to make dinner or clean up until the towers of dishes began attracting flies.
    I came home one night to find a note on the sparkling kitchen counter. Everything looked immaculate. She had even dusted the corners of the ceiling with one of those long poles that look like seeding dandelions, which neither of us ever did. Her letter said that she had never asked for this, for me, and that despite her gratitude for my effort in creating her and my affection since, she could no longer pretend to be my dead mom. She had only stayed to see me past my eighteenth birthday. She told me I was strong and independent, that any woman capable of making a mother shouldn't need one. She told me she admired me and wished me only the best, but she never used the word love.
    Maybe she's right. I'm nineteen now, and a hell of a lot more self-sufficient than a lot of people out there. I pay my bills growing engineered pets for a few distributor clients. They're getting rich and I never will, but I'm happy with the work. I get to pick them up and cuddle the adorable little balls of fuzz or scale before they're sent off to be some spoiled kid's birthday present. I'm their first mother. They love and need me for a few days. I can't imagine another job with a benefit like that.
    I'm trying to give the Alison a chance. She's been nice enough, and it's so great to have someone else at home again. We talk at night about my work and the hobbies she's starting to discover now that she can add experience on top of her programming. I still frown when I look at her sometimes, because she'll never be my mother. My mother is dead, and I've seen what happens when you try to bring someone back from that.
    But I smile at her sometimes too, because she's the first real person I've ever made. She corrects me when I say something mean. She does her half of the errands, but feels no obligation to do more. She is my friend, and I guess at this point that's what I really need.
    Ian Rose is a writer and web developer based in Portland, Oregon. His work has recently appeared in New Myths and Cast of Wonders, and more of his writing can be found at .

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