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Scarlett Nation » Creative Writing » Pro-Choice Vs Pro-Life Vs Aliens!

Pro-Choice Vs Pro-Life Vs Aliens!

I’m not allowed to tell people what I do for a living. If I could, I’m sure they’d picture high tech underground hideouts made of glass and chrome. In fact, the day I was first told about alien contact it was in an ordinary office with a temperamental photocopier, from a guy with pit stains. It was even harder to take it seriously in such circumstances.
“And we’re sure this isn’t a hoax?” I asked, because I felt obliged to ask something. I was the most junior person in the room and, to be honest, I didn’t know why they’d invited me.
“We’re certain” The captain assured me, without telling me how “We aren’t entirely sure whether it’s sentient life, but it’s definitely life, and it definitely doesn’t originate on earth.” His second in command clicked the over-projector on, and a power-point presentation came into focus.
“We can’t be sure whether what we’re looking at is akin to plant life, animal life or even on a par with intelligent human life” He explained, gesturing at medical charts that meant nothing to me. “But we do know that eventually this life form will evolve into an intelligent life form”
“We do?” I’m not being funny, but I’m an administrator. My area of expertise is getting the aforementioned photocopier to work.
“We do.”
“Okay.” I smiled politely, and waited. I knew something was wrong, even then. For a start, it was clear that everyone else already knew what was going on. It was as though everyone in the room was focused on me.
“We also know that in order for this life form to evolve, it requires a host”
“A host?”
“A host” second in command clicked through to the next slide. “Experiments show that in order to grow, these samples need to feed from a living being. As far as we can ascertain, humans are the only beings complex enough.” And again, everyone looked at me. Suddenly it dawned on me that I was the only woman in the room.
“Who do you have in mind?” I asked cautiously, trying to keep my voice from shaking.
“It’s not a dangerous procedure” The head of the science department began reassuring me “The host simply has to be connected to the sample for a period of around 40 weeks. The life forms are tiny, so you’d be able to go about your daily life, at least until the end of the incubation period. The side effects are relatively minor, and you should be back to your normal self within a year of being disconnected” I fought the temptation to screech ‘me?’ in a terrified tone of voice.
“Side effects?” I murmured.
“Weight gain, stretch marks, haemorrhoids, back pain, swollen ankles, nausea, tiredness, in some cases it can cause depression and in extreme circumstances there are more serious health implications, but these are relatively rare” the ‘relatively’ rare didn’t reassure me, given what counted as a ‘relatively’ minor side effect.
“Why does it have to be me?” I pleaded.
“You’re the only suitable match” The captain answered apologetically.
“If you don’t do it, the aliens will die.” His second in command added.
“I’m sorry, but I really don’t think-”
“They’re innocent, potentially intelligent life forms – if you refuse, it’s the same as murdering them. Can you live with being a murderer?”
“Yes.” I answered simply. Everyone exchanged worried glances “I’m sorry, but I-”
“We’ve already inseminated you” The captains voice was as cold as the icy grip on my heart.
“You’ve what?” I cried, outraged and scared.
“You’re having a sexual relationship with First Officer Simm, are you not?” He continued as if I hadn’t spoken. I shot officer Simm an appalled look. He refused to meet my eye.
“Not anymore I’m not” I snapped.
“So you could always have fallen pregnant” The captain reasoned.
“I use precautions”
“No precaution is failsafe” He went on, irritatingly casual “If you’re having sex, you’ve accepted the risk that you could get pregnant, and if you get pregnant you are responsible for the life within you. Unless you choose to abstain from sex altogether, you’re accepting the responsibility for keeping another life form alive”
“But it’s not actually Officer Simms baby, is it?” I demanded, no longer thinking rationally “I’ve not done anything to get myself in this position.”
“But you’re in it now. And you’re obliged to remain in it, unless you want the blood of an innocent creature on your hands”
“Why does it have to be me?” I demanded, my head spinning.
“You’re the only one that can.” He shrugged.
“Well, how very bloody lucky for me!” I shouted.
“There’s no reason to get upset” Another scientist tried to sooth me.
“There’s every reason to get upset! You’re telling me that, without my express consent, you’ve made me responsible for another life, you’ve lumbered me with all these medical side effects, you’ve put a stall on my career, and if I object I’m a murderer?”
“Well…You’re a woman.”

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