art by Shothot Designs
by Andrew Kaye
After years of controversial experimentation, Dr. Abram Winthrop successfully manipulated the building blocks of human life. The process started in a petri dish, grew too big, moved to a test tube. The test tubes got progressively larger, and from then on it was incubators and operating tables with leather straps and buckles the size of a child's hand.
Dr. Winthrop and his assistant gave the artificial human a dose of accelerant five times a day. And vitamins, because vitamins were important. Every night before they closed the lab, Dr. Winthrop and his assistant took a tissue culture to make sure the skin was growing properly. It always was. The assistant made a note of it.
Dr. Winthrop was a middle-aged man with few associates and no family worth mentioning. All he really wanted was a friend. A companion. Someone to share tender moments of physical intimacy with. Or even rougher moments. Dr. Winthrop didn't mind, because super science was a lonely occupation.
Then the day came when the artificial human had finished growing. Dr. Winthrop and his assistant silently administered one last dose of vitamins, then removed the gauze and wires. Dr. Winthrop grinned anxiously the entire time. His assistant made a note of that, too.
"Behold!" said Dr. Winthrop. The artificial human stood before them naked and bleary-eyed, its feet surrounded by its bloodied wrappings. "Isn't it beautiful?"
His assistant frowned. "I don't like it," she said. "It looks too much like me."
This story was first published on Tuesday, November 30th, 2010