by Mark Govier
‘There’s nothing the anti-synth lobby can do now,’ says my father
happily, ‘with that stupid law removed last month everything’s allowed
to open tonight. Want to go Downtown and see what sort of synth-pets
are out there, Sally?’
‘Is that really true?’ I say.
‘Close your mouth when you’re eating…’
I swallow, then continue. ‘But, how come I didn’t know?’
‘Because you never keep up with the news, do you?’
‘But, what I was wondering about was how-come they setup pet-synths
shops up so fast?’
My father, a serious news-fiend, shakes his head once more.
‘Because there were research labs hidden all over the place… The big
companies had all been working on this for decades…’
My father pops an Awareness Enhancer, gives me a ¼ Child-Dose, and off
Downtown is so super-super packed tonight. Everywhere it’s the same,
the parent with their child.
‘Oh look,’ I say, pointing to a pet-synth shop called Synthpets-4U.
‘Last month, it was an office furniture shop’ says my father
Sales-Waiters wearing Imprint Smiles stand at the Entry Zone.
‘Look at that one,’ whispers my father, nudging me.
‘What?’ I garble, full of excitement.
‘The Sales-Waiter on the left, their Imprint, see? It’s at a really bad
I struggle to stop laughing, and am about to point.
My father shakes his head sternly. ‘They might get sacked if the CCTV
sees us,’ he whispers.
The shop’s first display is lots of synth-mice-possums in invisible
plastic cases. They look amazing. They’re big, with different coloured
fur and eyes and everything.
A Sales-Waiter comes over. ‘They’re not simply coloured, they’re also
smart’ she says, opening a case, ‘just look at Harry here. Come on
The green and yellow striped synth-mouse-possum with red eyes jumps on
the back of the Sales-Waiter’s hand, runs up her arm, sits on her left
‘Show our guests what you can do Harry.’
The mouse-possum stands right up on its back legs, bows, looks directly
into my eyes.
‘Put out your hand’ says the Sales-Waiter to me.
Harry runs onto my hand, runs up my left arm, stands on my left
shoulder, puts its snout next to my left ear, whispers its name not
once, but twice. Then it says ‘please buy me’.
‘Right Harry, time to go back’ said the Sales-Waiter putting out both
Harry jumps into the waiting hands, winks at me, goes back to his case.
My father is smiling. ‘Are they direct clones, or individuals’ he asks
‘A bit of both Sir. It’s true the line is bred from clones of clones of
mouse-possums, but there’s a real difference with each.’
‘In what way’ asks my father, not that I really understand, or really
‘When they’re processed, carefully chosen individual identity samples
are added. We guarantee each Harry is different, personality wise to
any other synth-mouse-possum… And let me tell you both, this line of
synth’s can live up to 10 years.’
My father looks down at me. ‘Synthpets-4U is a huge store Sally…
They’ve got synth dog-cats and synth-talking-deer and…’
‘I don’t care’ I blurt out, ‘I only want Harry, I only want Harry, I
only want Harry.’
The Sales Waiter and my father both smile at my antics.
‘There’s a 10% surcharge, due to Harry being a display’ says the
My father nods, pays, and out we go with Harry on my shoulder, and I
couldn’t be more proud.
© 2017 Mark Govier
E-Mail: Mark Govier
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