Author : Duncan Shields

What a cliché. There I was, handcuffed to a chair and telling them that I knew my rights. Yelling at them about what an outrage this was. Straight out of a movie. I couldn’t help it. You have to remember I thought I was above the law at this stage, a member of the political cabinet currently in power. What a naïve little twit. This was their lucky day.

She walked in briskly and slapped her briefcase down across the table from where I was sitting. Quickly and without ceremony, she shuffled through the papers she had brought.

When she had sorted them into three neat piles, she finally stopped and looked straight at me. Well, ‘looked’ isn’t the right word. It was more of a stare. She still hadn’t sat down.

I could hear the hum and whisper of her internal headphones and I could see the reverse image of the datafile spooling down the inside of her glasses. My life was flashing in front of her eyes.

It was an uncomfortably long thirty seconds before she sat down across from me, steepled her fingers and with a deep breath began to determine the best way to proceed with my case.

“Senator Peterson” she began, “You have illegally copied yourself in no less than three separate incidents. We have begun digging on your property and have found six bodies. It will take time to go through them but I have no doubt that the DNA will show that they are also you.”

She took off her glasses and pinched the bridge of her nose with her eyes squinted shut. She put them back on again and resumed.

“You are guilty of not only copying yourself but also of committing clone-slaughter. Your career in politics is over. I will try to keep you out of jail. Your regular lawyer will not take this case, no professional lawyer will. To be associated with you at this point would be career suicide. I am your court appointed lawyer, I’m working sixteen other cases this week and as I’m fresh out of law school, I really don’t care if I keep you out of jail or not.”

And there it was. It hit me hard. She spoke with such nonchalant authority. I knew this wasn’t a scare tactic. It hadn’t even occurred to me that my career could be in jeopardy, let alone over.

I’d need to buy time for Peterson-One to get to a safe place.

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