March 19, 2013


Each Tuesday, rather than a POSSIBLY IRRITATING ESSAY, I'd like to both challenge you and lend a helping hand. I generate more speculative and teen story ideas than I can ever use. My family rolls its collective eyes when I say, "Hang on a second! I just have to write down this idea..." Here, I'll include the initial inspiration (quote, website, podcast, etc) and then a thought or two that came to mind. These will simply be seeds -- plant, nurture, fertilize, chemically treat, irradiate, test or stress them as you see fit. I only ask if you let me know if anything comes of them.

SF Trope: genetic memories

Iker Dương flexed his bicep.

Leonie Gonzalez shook her head and rolled back over on her stomach.

“What? I thought you said you wanted to see a trick?” Iker said.

Without looking at him, she pulled up the latest Kathy Reichs Temperance Brennan book on her Kindenookpad – or knop – and got back to her reading.

“What are you mad at?”

Leonie said, “Listen Iker, I like you and all, but if you want us to be anything more than buddies, you’re going to have to actually talk to me.”

Iker sat down. The sappy sad look on his face almost made Leonie give in and feel sorry for him. Instead, she rolled over with her back to him.

He arched over her, planting his hands firmly on the ground then flipped his feet over, landing lightly. She almost grabbed him then, too. But they were almost done with their college freshman year, she wanted to get into medical school – she was aiming to be the first forensic anthropologist on Mars because now that the population there had topped three million, there were going to be MURDERS…

He flexed his bicep again and said, “I’m trying to show you something.”

She sighed.

“Not my muscle! I’m showing you what we’re doing in the lab!”

“Trying to create muscles from nothing?”

“Hey!” He pouted and she relented a bit. “I’m sorry, but the Mexicans and the Vietnamese are not known for producing Olympic weightlifting champions...”

“It’s not my muscle, it’s what’s in my muscle!”

“String beans?” She winced an instant after speaking the words but couldn’t say, “Iker, wait!” fast enough to stop him from sprint away. She also couldn’t quite stop the thought that he had a rather cute backside as well and even though he was sorta on the skinny side…”Iker, wait!” He kept going. She stopped, pondered for an instant, then put her ancestry to work and sprinted, catching him in ten long strides, grabbing his arm. She thought for an instant that the bicep wasn’t as wimpy as she’d imagined. “I’m sorry, Iker – but you’re just such a tempting target. What...”

“DNA – I have a data package in my bicep. I’ve been carrying it for the past week and we’re going to take it out tomorrow to see if…”

From the shadows of the science building, a voice said, “I don’t think you should be talking about this, folks.”

Names: Swiss German, Argentinian; Mexican, Vietnamese

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