Author : Kate Thornborough

David was able to make the transition as soon as he finished University. I’ve been in Secondary for a little more than seven years. I should have undergone the transition years ago. If only my brain was faster. Everyone else in my compound can perform advanced math and equate many species’ genomes. I struggle with the most basic calculus formulas and the simplest of fungi DNA send me into a loop. I want to be just like everyone else, inside and out. I look average, and I am grateful for that small blessing, but I want to feel average too. Why must I be different?

Many stare at me as I drift mournfully by, estimating my age and creating equations in a blink of an eye. It would take a good half and hour for me to do that. That is why I’m going to go through with the transition illegally. I just want to get it done so the gaping and humiliation can finally end. Besides, who really needs to know every physics equation?

Lucas, the operator and owner of the machine, guides me to the chamber. It is littered with coils and wires, and many are covered in dark ooze. Gulping my cowardice, I focus on Lucas and see him grab some glinting object. Delivering it to me, he nervously points to a safety poster and rushes out of the room. The object has two holes in the handles, and the blade is oddly thick. My normally clumsy hands automatically conform to the handle as if it was a treasured toy from my childhood. Flexing my fingers cautiously, I jump in startled shock as the blade splits in two. I panic, and I fear I have destroyed it, but a glance at the safety poster reassures me. I follow the instructions, and proceed to sever the personification of my stupidity. I feel my body becoming heavier with each snap, and I pause at the last vein. I say a quick prayer, close my eyes, and amputate my final connection to my former life.

My body collapses, and I slightly sink into the muck. I try to move, but nothing happens. As I lay there, a diagram springs into my head. It shows an arm- mapped out on a graph- with an equation next to it. Crazily, I play along, and plug in my arm’s approximate weight, length, and other information. Picturing the formula written out, I slowly compute the answer, taking my time to carry the various digits. Finally, I get an answer. 75 1/3. When nothing happens, I contemplate my mistake. Then, I remember that I forgot to factor in the 8X. Calculating the many numbers and reevaluating the variables, I receive another answer. 24. Suddenly, my hand springs to life and looks at me, awaiting my next command. Groaning, I realize that I should have waited and paid more attention in math class. This was going to be a long walk back to the bus stop.

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