The Page

A tale of intimacy and loss

Month: October, 2013

Once Upon A Time

Erasmus Melissa ~ I have succeeded to an extent I could have never dreamed of. I, the girl who was left for dead, live again, have a handsome lover; soon, I will morph into Sarah, the gorgeous wife, I will become her, and will have him for ever. At what price? Yes, I know, the boy I loved, is soon to become a bestseller, a famous writer, and with that he will change. But he is so much enthralled with the adventure…

Gabrielle, my Teacher, can be proud of me. I have followed my destiny, and yet, sometime, I think I am just in one of Julian’s dreams, perhaps in one of his novels. As I write, the conference is only a few days away. I cannot believe how quickly those weeks have past, the long evenings with Sarah, Jane and Julian, Helga’s visits, our rides around Berlin, the long hours of work… This is coming to an end. Julian has agreed to the experiment, he and I will soon be attached by more than our feelings – our genes will mesh, and something extraordinary will happen, I will then bear in my blood the blueprint of a new being, the renewal the Coven wants so much. You see, my success will be also their future, their salvation. What a fate for a girl from a small village, lost in time…

Sarah has been a marvellous companion, her mind open to new ideas, however challenging, or even provocative. Of course, emotionally, she is so much more for me: she’s opened the gate to a love I never thought I could attain, another miracle. She’s the sister I never had, and she’s his wife. She knows now what the experiment is about, she understood everything. At first she was worried for him, and that reawakened my fears. Then she changed, perhaps under Helga’s influence: I suspect those two share a lot, in ways I cannot yet fathom. But later, when I have become her, her double, her true twin, then I will know…

The city is colder, we are now wearing warm jackets and hats. Jane looks lovelier than ever, and her eyes on me tell me the story of a young woman who too understood everything; it was so soon, after our first meeting on the shore of Chi. Jane knows the truth about me, about her brother, about us. She’s the only human who could stop the wheel turning. Maybe she will.

Jane ~ Yes, I know you know, Melissa, dear Melissa, the one who claims to be who you are not, not quite, almost; that part of you that is missing is that I would truly believe in. But you are wrong about Julian: he won’t change, not in the sense you mean. He will continue to love you, the person you are still in his mind. But, you will see, I hope, he is much stronger than they think, those who think they are now in control. And you too will realise that mankind cannot be so easily trumped. I know, the Great Power is here, their president will attend the final day, and so will his counterpart from the Great Power To Be… So will many others among the rich and powerful of this world. But me, I will hit the catwalk in Moscow, as this happens, and before the three of you fly back to London. Unless Sarah and my brother decide to stay – and keep you – in Berlin for a while. After all it is their city…

Genome

 The work is intensive, and captivating. Our daily schedule has increased from six hours to eight, and I now finish my day at six, one hour after my companions. We have agreed that from now on we meet at the apartment in Kreuzberg, and I enjoy the prospect of three beautiful women waiting for me there every day…

As a member of a highly scientific community I feel at times overwhelmed by the knowledge of those specialists. The geneticists hold the high ground, as the debates have moved irresistibly towards the feasibility of clearing the human genome from the spurious anomalies that are cause to so many diseases and unhappiness. My own genetic spectrum was used several times as example, which made me a little uneasy at first. Gabrielle, who has become ever so friendly and chatting, reassured me, and explained that my case was most interesting since my antecedents presented a variety of mutations. I am still perplexed about that remark.

We received several thorough exposés of the current status of genetic science, and of its possible applications. I discovered that our group comprises at least four Nobel prizes, in genetics and medicine. The work is split each day into one theoretical and one practical seminar, with open discussions in-between. The other non-biologist member of the group is a young Korean lady, named He-Ran, who appears to be a statistician specialising in demographics. Demographics is the other strand of work for this group, but we have not yet started in earnest. This is where this work group dovetails with the environment and climate change strand of work.

Our evenings in Kreuzberg are enchanted and tender: the four of us seem to be under some sort of charm, a spell, that now governs our emotional life. Sarah and I were never prude, but now, together with Melissa and Jane, we have utterly forgotten any inhibitions we might had left in us. It may be the city, and the contrast between the stern work of the day and our relaxed evenings. Jane, as ever an enthusiastic and imaginative participant in our games, but also a critical observer, thinks that we are in someone’s story. Perhaps it is true: we seem to be floating happily in a direction that no longer depends on our own will.

Today there was a slight change to the normal schedule: I was invited to take part in a smaller group test in a genetic lab in Friedrichsain. We were driven there in a small grey van with reflective windows, six of us including He-Ran and myself. The others were all specialists in genetics or human biology. The work consisted of a deeper study of genes conditioning certain mental conditions, and their counterparts: those that appear to enable some aptitudes to science, mathematics and creative skills. There was half an hour of a film that seemed to suggest that similar studies on other species may yield interesting results for humans as well. He-Ran thought we were being prepared for some experimental work.