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Excerpt from the fictional novel Augment

Posted: Wed, February 26, 2014 | By: Transhumanism

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        When the door opened Milo stepped into the Special Projects Center. There was only one project in the “Special Projects Center”—it was whatever the C.E.O. determined it was. The C.E.O.’s project was due in at eight o’clock for mass scans. Unlocking the monitoring booth Milo hit the switches, bringing the gear online. 

        A tall insect-like man walked into the booth. “Morning, Milo,” he said, dropping his briefcase on the desktop. 

        “Tom. How are you doing?”

        “Another day in paradise. You?”

        “Every day is a good day. Are you ready for our little project?”

        Tom opened his briefcase and pulled out a huge pair of black-framed spectacles. He cleaned them with his shirttail and put them on, completing the transformation to Two-Meter-Man-Mantis.

        Milo brought his terminal up bringing the specs onscreen. “Damn he’s a big boy, almost two hundred fifty kilos, and one hundred eighty five centimeters. We are going to have plenty of mass to work with. You know where they got this slub?”

        “I heard they pulled him out of some hate factory in Canada,” Tom said as he hit the servo for the BMI tank. The sounds of gurgling filled the small space as the tank filled with fluid. Tom waited till the tank was filled, then hit the warmers to bring it to body temp.

        “Wow, they want the full combat package on this guy. The even want the wet chips for strike control tied in with the fast-twitch upgrades. Credit is no object.” Tom nodded. “Let’s hope this guy has the integral structure to tie in with. Remember the one they brought in from Sedona? Bone density was so iffy that the anchor points kept tearing free with any competitive level stress. He came up clean on the scans. As they say the proof is always in the pudding.”

        Milo smiled. “I love pudding. Tapioca. Have you ever had Tapioca pudding?”

        “Sure, got all those weird gelatin bumps in it.”

        “Not gelatin. It’s made from a root. Cassava root.”

        “Those little balls?”

        “Reconstituted processed root, like the way they turn wheat into pasta.”

        Tom looked at Milo. “How the fuck do you know that?”

        “I’m particular about what I put in my mouth.”

        “Your old lady ain’t.”

        “What is it about my wife that fascinates you people here?”

        “Easy killer. Here comes our little project now.”


        Two security men resplendent in their green and yellow togs entered with their assault rifles held at the ready. One motioned with his head and in stepped one of the scariest people either man had ever seen. 

        “Holy shit,” breathed Milo.

        Leslie stood blinking in the bright lights of the lab. His mass dwarfed the two security guards on either side. To Milo he looked like something out of a fairytale, something with a taste for goats.


        “Why don’t you prep him Milo?” asked Tom.

        “Well, I’m Senior so you got the prep.” Tom licked his lips nervously. “And for what it is worth, I would be polite.”

        Milo grabbed a handful of sensors off a steel table and made his way into the testing area. The two security guards moved off to two stools on either side of the door. Milo walked up and smiled sheepishly at Leslie. 

        “Sir, could you remove your coverall? I have to put these sensors on.” He gestured to the white circles in his right hand. He pulled the back off one of them. “See, sticky, it won’t hurt.”

        Leslie grunted and unzipped his coverall letting it fall to the floor. Milo was shocked by the scars and puckers that covered his torso. He stood on his tiptoes placing stickers on Leslie’s chest, shoulders and all large joints. He then turned to the monitoring booth. 

        “You getting good feed?”

        Tom leaned forward and keyed the mic. “The feed from the right hip is sketchy.”

        Milo raised his hands apologetically. “Excuse me.” He peeled the sensor off and moved it to another spot.

        “Ah, his right, Milo.”

        “Oops.” Milo moved the other sensor. “How’s that?”

        “Good, we’re getting a five by five. Ask the subject to get into the tank please.”

        Milo motioned toward the steps leading into the tank. “Please.”

        The steps groaned under the burden as Leslie made his way up and into the tank. Leslie hissed as he lowered himself into the water. 

        “Try to make yourself comfortable and stay as still as possible please.”

        Milo made his way back into the monitoring booth.


        “Christ, would you look at these densities?”

        Milo looked at the display on Tom’s screen. It showed Leslie from the neck down. Tissue was indicated by a cool blue. The skeletal system was painted in a pulsing red.

        “Bring that up on the projector so we can get a three sixty view.” 

        Tom inputted the command. Both of them moved over to the holo table. A one sixth mockup of Leslie appeared to float in front of them. Milo picked up a stylus and touched the right upper arm area. The area pulsed as a readout of the density appeared underneath.

        “Damn! That can’t be right. Run a diagnostic.”

        Tom nodded and tapped out the command. Tom shrugged. “It all comes back green.”

        Milo rubbed his forehead. “We don’t see numbers that high even after the Wollf’s Law acceleration. This guy’s a cherry?”

        “Yep; he’s clean, just some bad dental work and some healed fractures in his right hand.”

        “Do you know what we can do with this monster?”

        Tom grinned. “Christmas in July.”


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