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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
replacement of people by plant based organisms

Submitted: May 02, 2009

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Submitted: May 02, 2009



Pete stood at the end of the row and fretted, it wasn’t the condition of the plant’s that was bothering him, the crop looked healthy and green, it also looked as if this year’s yield would probably be the best yet, he studied the label again, the problem was what he was growing. He thought back to his principled day’s at college, he’d marched and campaigned like all the rest, he’d been a student it was what you did, there’d been Amnesty international, animal right’s and a host of other worthy causes, then the whole ‘Frankenstein food’s’ thing had kicked off and he had been as anti GM as everyone else. The trouble was when he went on to university to study agriculture, convinced in his youthful zeal that science would be able to feed the starving million’s. He had started out with such good intentions, didn’t they say they paved the road to hell. He’d set out to prove that genetically engineered crop’s were a danger to the environment and to people, but as he learned more he gradually became obsessed by the possible benefit’s. Surely less pesticides and greater yield’s were in everyone’s best interests. Minato were offering a scholarship and Pete after much soul searching and debate had decided not to take the money, then after the downturn in the economy his father had been made redundant and he’d been forced to take it, or been unable to finish his doctorate.
Now as he stood at the end of the row he really wished he’d done something else with his life. It wasn’t that he hadn’t been handsomely rewarded financially, on the contraryhe was very comfortable, they had a nice house close to the institute, he had two son’s attending a very good school, and a beautiful if small villa in the south of France, but looking at the crop he had the feeling that all these year’s he’d been sleeping with the enemy.
The label in his hand was a testament to the wrong turning he had taken on life’s highway. It simply read ‘Monsanto type 12643 flat pack desk’. The crop looked like a type of runner bean which in fact it was, but it’s genetic code had been extensively altered, most apparent was it’s sheer size each plant reaching nearly twenty feet in height, the steel support’s had been a significant cost issue although they should last for many year’s. The ‘seed’ was also disproportionately large; it had to be for each one contained all the component’s necessary to construct a flat pack desk. When the seed was harvested all that needed to be done was to open the pod, take out the flat sheet’s it contained, dry them in a specialised kiln add the necessary hardware, package them, and ship them out. Pete had one himself, although he’d had to get someone else to assemble it, he had to admit he was not at home with DIY not after the incident with the shelf and his wife’s collection of teapot’s. He was very proud of the desk’s they had been one of their earliest successful lines Ikea had been effusive in their praise, what with the advent of ‘agrifaction’ they had been able to cut labour costs by a whopping 75%. He moved to the next row and examined the label Monsanto type 4563786 Daewoo Matiz mark 7 dashboard’, they’d had problems with this strain, a recurring genetic defect which for some reason made all the dashboards purple instead of black as they were supposed to be, but Pete was fairly sure they’d got that one ironed out.  
He moved on down the lines till he came to ‘Monsanto type a1’ that’s all the label said the rest of the designation was top secret but Pete knew it went on to read, ‘Marketing executive type 1 Caucasian’ the pods at this late stage of development were distended and horribly suggestive of their contents, occasionally one would move. Pete shuddered he’d been offered a hand in their development of course, as most senior genetic engineer it would have been unheard of for him not to have been, but since he’d voiced his disquiet to the board he found himself increasingly sidelined. He’d met them, the thing’s that were growing inside those pods, last years crop, a number of them had stayed on at the institute. They looked like perfectly normal human beings except for the very slightest of greenish tinges to their skin, nevertheless he could hardly stand to be in their presence without a shudder of revulsion. He didn’t hear their approach, the soft earth that had nurtured them made no sound, rather he felt them as the hairs on the back of his neck rose in greeting. He turned to face the group and stared incredulously into a face exactly like his own except for the very slightest of greenish tinges, it spoke
‘Ahh Dr Lawley I presume, so nice to meet you before your demise’

© Copyright 2019 Richard M Bromley. All rights reserved.

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