Sheila Hollis

A Conversation in 2114

“Makes me laugh when I read some of those history books written years ago about what they imagined life would be like now.”

“Me too Fred, all those predictions about space travel and high-speed this and high-speed that and then ending up grid-locked. And then they nearly managed to blow the whole lot up.”

“Tell you what John, I sometimes wish we could put the clock back.”

“Shhh, don’t let them hear you say that. We’re supposed to be serene and contented. They’ll be round with the happy pills if they think you’re complaining.”

“I’d be a bit more serene and contented if my back wasn’t aching so much. How much longer have we got to go?”

“I think it’s two more weeks Fred. Is this your second or third time?”

“My third I’m pleased to say. Hopefully only one more then that’s me done. How about you?”

“Oh this is my fourth and last and then I’ll be off to the re-designation area. I’ve already got three credits so if this next one is another male then with four credits I should be given a nice easy number”.

“Ho, you want to watch it mate, if you keep hitting the jackpot, they might have you in for another round. Good prime breeding stock you’ll be. They’re not going to put you out to graze yet.”

“They don’t do that do they Fred? I thought we only had to do it four times maximum. I couldn’t go through this again.”

“Well rumour has it John that a few of the blokes in Incubation Unit 65 weren’t released after their fourth. Now whether it was because some of their male produce didn’t thrive, could’ve been a faulty batch of eggs, or whether they were too successful, I’m not sure. But don’t go counting your chickens, if you’ll pardon the pun.”

“Oh well, you’ve got me in a right old state now Fred. I think I might be having one of my turns. This blooming thing’s kicking like mad as well, must be a female. What do you think? They’re usually stronger aren’t they?”

“So they say John but my two were both male and this one is just as quiet so I might be in the same boat as you in a year’s time when I’m having my fourth.”

“How did our fore-fathers get us into this mess? Men used to rule the roost at one time you know. The women did all this child-bearing bit. They had to do as they were told in those days. Hard to imagine isn’t it.”

“Ahh, happy days John. Happy days. There’s a few frosty-faced cows round here that I’d like to see waddling about with their bellies stuck out like this. How is it that they are so much stronger than we are? Do you think they put something in our tea?”

“No, Fred. I went to a lecture once and it was explained. Evolution they call it. Evolution. Something to do with the sperm count getting lower and lower and declining libidos. Then over the years everything else got lower and lower seemingly. Loss of muscle power, bone density, mental capacity. As we got weaker, they got stronger. We used to be bigger than them you know. Luckily somebody had the sense to freeze plenty of healthy sperm before the natural supply ran out, or we wouldn’t be here now my old son.”

“John, do you think it’s true what they say they did in the old days, all that hanky-panky?”

“Hanky what?”

“Hanky-panky. You know, like, mating?”

“Don’t be disgusting Fred. Can you imagine anything worse than doing that with one of those brutes? The human race has progressed far beyond that sort of thing. Why that’s what wild animals do. You’ll be saying next that you want to go back to the days when humans ate meat! That was barbaric.”

“I suppose we’ll never find out the true story. They only tell us what they want us to know. You can’t believe anything they say in the newsheet these days. Now when men were in charge I bet it was a lot different.”

“Absolutely Fred. I’ve heard about a man’s word being his honour. Well they still teach us that. We know we can never tell a lie. Something to do with the metabolism isn’t it? If males tell lies then their brains react and start to shrivel up?”

“Oh yes John. Everybody knows that for a fact. That’s one of the first things I can remember being taught in the Nursery. And the other one was that males must never fight. Because it was fighting which nearly finished our ancestors off altogether. It’s a good job they are kind enough to give us our daily non-aggression pill. We would be in a right old state without it, wouldn’t we?”

“We certainly would Fred. That’s another well-known fact that if a male gets angry then his blood thickens and could explode. It’s called internal combustion. Nearly saw it happen once. You know Jim over in Unit 76? Well he forgot to take his pill one day and started to go red in the face. I saw him. Honest. Saw him with my own eyes. I make sure I get that pill down me every morning. I certainly don’t want to blow up.”

“Me neither John. Oh look out, here comes Commandant Boadicea doing her rounds. Smile sweetly. Play your cards right John and you’ll be out of here in a few weeks living the life of Riley. Good luck mate.”




All rights belong to its author. It was published on by demand of Sheila Hollis.
Published on on 10/25/2014.


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