A Questionably Perfect World

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: New Writers wanting Reviews
A futuristic story of a world where you have no control over your own life. Dare to break the mold.

This is a short story I wrote for my creative writing class 4 years ago. It needs some work to it to become more of a mature read-currently comes off as mildly juvenile. Thanks for reading!

Also I apologize for the weird formatting issues**

Submitted: June 22, 2017

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Submitted: June 22, 2017

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Samantha Jones: Born April 23rd, 2025. Expected adult description: 5’4, brown hair, blue eyes. Light freckles sprinkled across cheeks. Assigned job title: nurse, starting at age 23, with training starting at 19. Assigned husband and wedding day: Richard Taylor on June 5th, 2049. She is to have one child at age 26; she is to come into the Hospital to be inseminated on May 12th, 2050. Child descriptions will be printed out and handed to Samantha for safe keeping at this time. Expected cause of death and date: August 20th, 2090 by heart attack. The loss or destruction of these papers will result in execution.

This is my description that my mom received when she was 24. It’s the description of my life that she received at the insemination of me. I will get one when I am 26, as it said in my description. I’m 18 now, and I can’t say that I’m excited to start training next year. I’ve had a phobia of hospitals since I was little. I was hospitalized when I was 5 years old. I had what they call a cold. It was a really rare case; no one has had one of those since 2018. They wanted to execute me. The headmasters, that is. They are the ones who have been given the job title to create child descriptions and assign a doctor to inseminate women on the date provided on their description. Anyway, they figured there was a malfunction when I was created, and they didn’t want my cold to spread. The doctors didn’t even know how to handle my situation. Pretty much the only thing doctors know how to do is inseminate. In school, we read books about doctors that had to perform something called surgery, fix broken bones, and other obscurities. But everyone knows those books are just fictional. Luckily I was cured within a couple days though, and they let me go home. I had to sign waivers stating that I wouldn’t tell anyone about my time in the hospital, and I haven’t, until now. I’m taking the time to document my experiences and the world I live in today. This is my story, of a broken, shattered world. I’ve known since I was a child that I was different from other people. I thought about things differently, some said I thought too much. Ever since I started talking, I was asking my mother why things were the way they were. I pondered why everyone was assigned a job, before they were even born, rather than being able to make the decision. I wanted nothing more than to be a teacher. I used to play in my room with my plush toy animals and pretend I was a teaching them. The first time my mom caught me was the first time she ever yelled at me. She told me I was not to pretend to be anything that I wasn’t made to be. After my scolding, I laid in my bed with my favorite toy. It was called a dog. I secretly imagined he was real sometimes, but everyone knows there’s no such thing. The second time I got yelled at I was 15 years old. My parents found out I had a boyfriend, which was absolutely forbidden. The rules were that you got to meet your husband on the day of your wedding, have a supervised lunch date, then later on in the evening you got married and assigned a house. I didn’t care about any of that though. What I felt for Mark was different than anything else I’ve ever felt. Mark and I are still dating, despite the fact that if we were ever caught we would both be subject to execution.   I am finished with high school, and since my training doesn’t start for another year I find myself sitting alone day after day. Mark comes over when both of my parents work during the day, which is only twice a week. We dream about running away. We wonder if is like this beyond the outskirts of our town, it can’t be, can it? I’m not sure anyone will ever know. It’s illegal to travel. Traveling will result in execution. About a month ago Mark and I snuck atop the roof of my house after dusk, and conversed for hours about what troubles our deepest thoughts. We questioned almost everything in our world. Questions that are damn near impossible of finding the answers to. Where things always like this? Were women always inseminated, or were there other ways to conceive children? Why can’t we choose who to marry? What is the feeling that Mark and I feel for each other, and how come we don’t see it in anyone else? A shared smile between my parents is rare, and a lack of affection and chemistry between the two is obvious.  Why are we the only two people that question these things? At the time I wanted nothing more than to know the answers. And I will never forget the day I found the answers.

June 26th, 2043. This is the date everything changed. I will remember every detail of this day for the rest of my life. My parents were both at work. My father, a doctor, and my mother, a tutor. Mark came over like he would always do when my parents were at work. We’d have our talks, kiss, and play around like we always did. It was like any other day. Little did I know the child my mom was to be tutoring that day was found teasing other children, so she was brought to the execution house. She was 7, her name was Lily. She was the only child that my mom was to tutor that day, so my mom got to leave work early. I wish she would have phoned to tell me, or maybe I don’t. Maybe that is just what needed to happen for everything to be unraveled. It’s safe to say I was beyond shocked when my mother walked in on Mark and I making out on the couch. She screamed. Mark and I, however, were speechless. She grabbed the phone and called the headmaster right away. She wanted us executed. Is this what mothers are supposed to do to their children? I never understood anything about the world we lived in, but this was one of the biggest questions I had. My mother, a woman who raised me, fed me, housed me for the entirety of my life... wanted me gone. I was so mad, so enraged, I tackled her. The feeling of being unwanted by my parent combined with the thought of losing my life and never being able to see Mark again ignited a rage in the deepest pits of my stomach. I starting hitting her with my enclosed fists as hard as I could, something I didn’t even know was possible. She started bleeding, that was the first time I ever saw blood. Mark tried to pull me off, but I couldn’t stop. I grabbed the hammer on my coffee table that my dad had been using to hang up pictures and I started hitting her with that. More and more blood rushed out, I couldn’t stop. Mark finally managed to pull me off; I broke out into a fit of tears. My mom wasn’t moving. Wasn’t speaking, wasn’t crying, and her chest wasn’t rising. Had I just executed my mom? I thought it was impossible…only the headmasters are supposed to be able to do that. I knew we had to leave as soon as possible before a headmaster came and saw what I had done. We fled the house; we each grabbed a kitchen knife and a hammer. I thought we were actually going to make it. We were on the outskirts of the town before the guards caught up to us. There were six men, we tried our best to fight them off, but there were too many and they were too strong. They confiscated our tools and brought us to the headmaster headquarters. That’s where we met Headmaster LeMoe. Citizens have only ever heard of him, no one got to meet him. He was in charge of our entire city. He made the other headmasters look like dirt on the bottom of a shoe. He sat on a huge throne about 20 feet above us. He had long white hair, which was slightly balding from the middle of his head. He looked skinny and frail, but not weak. He had a loud overpowering voice. You two have caused a lot of problems in my city. Especially you, Samantha. Ever since you were a child our whole headquarters agreed that you were a nuisance to our community. We should have executed you when you had that health malfunction.  Anyway, I know that both of you have been wondering for years about our society. The headmasters hear and see all, privacy is a fantasy. You question every single law, even questioning your own parents. Samantha, you went as far as to execute your own mother. The woman who birthed you into our fine world. The woman who gave you life. The life you took so much for gratned. Your crime is immeasurable to anything we have seen since I became ruler. Since both of you will be executed immediately after we are through talking, I will tell you.” That’s when I remembered my mini recorder in my pocket. My parents got it for me for my 18th birthday. They knew the reservations I had about my future career, and bought me medical books as well as the recorder to use for studying. It was the only thoughtful gift I had ever received. I know they meant for it to be practical, but I took it as a gift of thoughtfulness. I casually slid my hand to land right on top of my pocket. I felt around nonchalantly for the large circle button, which was the stop/start button. I pressed it and prepared myself for LeMoe’s explanation. “I am a very old man, as you can probably see. I was born in an extremely different time period.  The truth is, I have lied to our whole community; things haven’t always been this way. When I grew up everything was different, everything was horrible. People had the opportunity to choose who to marry. My parents were very happy together, they had very strong feelings towards each other, the feeling was called love. It is what you and Mark accidentally found. When I was 8 years old they got what was called a divorce, which meant they were no longer married. I only saw my father once every other weekend. That went on for about 2 years. Then he passed away in a car crash. Cars used to be a way of transportation; you were in control of where you went and how fast you wanted to go. That is why cars are outlawed and why you are assigned who to marry…to ensure that love, divorce, or accidental executions do not happen. Women weren’t always inseminated. Men and women created children with their own bodies. And they decided how many children they wanted to have. They even got to choose to have no children at all. However, some children were conceived by accident, they were conceived too young before women’s bodies were developed enough. In addition, some women had children too late, while their bodies were deteriorating. When I was 18 years old I was in love with a beautiful girl named Julia. One day she told me she was pregnant, she also told me I wasn’t the father. It nearly split my heart into a million pieces. That is why women these days are assigned an age to be inseminated and how many times they will be inseminated. You were also allowed to choose your own occupation, and each occupation required a different amount of schooling and each job paid a different salary. This produced problems because sometimes the occupation of their choice wouldn’t pay enough. So that is how we came to be assigned an occupation, with the same salary for everyone. The reason why we execute people for breaking laws rather than giving them warnings, is simply because we simply don’t want those people to taint our community. We used to have something called jails. When you committed a crime, you would go there and be locked in a small room. The time you spent in jail was determined based on the severity of your crime. That system didn’t always work out. Sometimes the good guys got locked up on accident, some of the bad guys got let off easy, and many other issues in between. It was also found to be far too costly paying for housing, feeding, and care for the criminals. That is why now, we monitor everyones every move. To make sure we are absolutely certain that a crime was committed, and then we humanely execute them as quickly as possible through an injection.  Now that you both know a little more about why things need to be done the way they are, you both will now be directed to the execution room. I hope you have found peace, and I’m sorry I didn’t put an end to this nonsense sooner.” A guard came in through the north doors, next to his throne. I quickly turned around and darted for the unguarded south doors, Mark followed. When we got outside I knew exactly where I had to go: the sound tower. That’s where all of the announcements were made; they projected throughout the city so everyone could hear. It was only about a block away from the headmaster’s quarters, so it wasn’t that far of a run. When we got inside we locked the door behind us and caught our breath, then we headed up the 6 flights of stairs up to the speaker. When we reached it I pressed the red announcement button and started speaking. “Attention everyone, this is a code red announcement, I repeat this is a code red announcement, please listen up. My name is Samantha Jones, I am 18 years old and all of my life I have been searching for answers. Headmaster LeMoe just informed me of everything, he has been lying to each and every one of you. I have the whole explanation recorded and I will play it for you.” I pressed play and I let the sound of LeMoe’s voice dig his grave deeper and deeper with every word. The truth is finally out. I felt a huge relief as the recording ended. I knew that everything was going to be different now.

I was absolutely right about everything being different, and I couldn’t be happier. I am a middle school English teacher. Mark and I recently got married and are expecting our first child. I think about my mom a lot, about the things I’ve done. Jailing was instilled, so I of course did some time.  A lot of things go through my mind every day. Sometimes I’ll just sit around and mope all day. I do miss my mother and what I did haunts me. On the other hand, I know I changed the entire building blocks of my society when I was only 18 years old. Not too many people can say that. I know when my child is born I will never hide anything from them and I promise to tell them everything about how it was like before they entered this world. I can’t wait to travel all over the world, and have beautiful experiences with my family. I will also get this story published, so everyone will remember the dark side of our past. Although the world is less “perfect” now- I like to think of it as perfectly imperfect. Imperfectly beautiful.

 

 


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