Author : Gray Blix

I’m awake before dawn. No alarm, but my internal clock must have a reason. Another job interview today? Can’t remember. Might as well get up, check messages, have something to eat.

Might as well get up.

Can’t move. Frozen in my favorite sleeping position, left side, cuddled up to a large pillow… No, not a pillow. Warm. Smooth. Soft, yet somehow firm. And a scent of… Oh. Ohhhh. I can feel every inch of my skin that is touching hers, from the top of my foot on which hers rests to the tip of my nose nestled in her hair… Who is she? And where am I? And why can’t I move?

I must have really tied one on last night. I don’t remember a… This is seriously wrong. I really can’t move. Did I stroke? I must have stroked from the excitement… She’s moving, stretching away, reaching for something. A blast of light shocks me. I want to close my eyes, but can’t. She turns toward me, blocking the light. I see the silhouette of her exquisite body. She brings her face to mine, to kiss, and just before our lips meet, I recognize her. The recruiter, Yvette. Thirtyish. Attractive. She interviewed me at the hotel. It went well, very well. She invited me to her room for a drink. Is that where I am?

She rises and heads for the bathroom.

I tell her to go ahead and shower first, though I want to join her. I say it in French, a language I do not speak. But it was my voice, and I understand what I said. I feel my body rolling over to the right side and sitting up, seemingly of its own accord.

I remember that I have a meeting… No, HE has a meeting with his executive team at 8:00, when he will present his new body. I realize that I know what he knows simply by entering his mind. And from that vantage I realize that he is unaware of me. I try to communicate, but there is a barrier I cannot penetrate. Mentally scanning my muscle groups, I attempt to move them — eyes, head, shoulders, arms, hands, torso… Nothing. They, too, are unaware of me, responding only to him.

Yvette emerges from the bathroom in a fluffy white robe. She opens it and I gasp virtually, but he hardly takes notice, heading for the shower. I take stock of my situation. She is no recruiter. She is his mistress. He is a 63 year old billionaire, CEO of a French conglomerate, who is, was, dying of pancreatic cancer. One of his labs developed the technology to transfer minds from one person to another. Writing his over mine was supposed to erase every trace of me, and yet here I am. His body was disposed of, so there’s no turning back. No turning back for what remains of me, either — powerless, a vestigial consciousness in a stolen body, personally selected by Yvette, who was given carte blanche to shop for one that could satisfy her carnal passions, who test drove several in New York and brought one home on a corporate jet.

Screaming on the inside, my reflection in the mirror is that of a smiling young man. “Dieu! Que tu est beau,” he says as he steps back to admire his body. And it IS his body, because of a physician’s declaration that I was brain dead, because of a forged document which says I donated my body to science, because possession, as the Americans say, est neuf dixièmes de la loi.