Author : Edwin Tam
“How will you do it with incomplete memory transfer from the subject?”
“We have cultural references on file: I’ll fill in the gaps.”
“But you’re supposed to infiltrate and integrate: there’ll be an offspring in the house. “
“Right, four feet tall with a brain that’s not fully developed…”
“We should hold off. What if we end up blowing the mission?”
“Stop with the questions already…it’s just a N-class planet, and we’re behind schedule. Let’s just do this.”
“Who are these for, dad?” he asks, beaming as I show him his gift. It’s a huge box of toys, all brand new.
“You got a good report card, son, and you deserve a reward.”
When I bring out the other five even larger boxes, he somehow looks frightened.
“What’s wrong with your tongue?” he mutters, staring at my mouth.
“That insect bite from last week caused it to swell up,” I explain.
“But it’s not swollen, it’s just really long,” he answers.
I swat him lightly on the top of his head with it.
“But it still works,” I say, grinning.
“When’s mom coming home?” he whispers.
“She’ll come home when she comes home. Aren’t you having fun with me?” I ask.
“But it’s been a week,” he complains.
Why does he always want his mother? This upsets me. I turn away to grab a quick bite of the cat without him noticing. But frankly, I no longer feel hungry, and it’s his fault. Do other fathers go through this too?
“Where are you?” he calls out, going from room to room.
He loves hide and seek, but doesn’t like not knowing where I am. So he tries to get me to answer. That is cheating. I need to show some tough love; otherwise he will grow up to be spoiled and entitled. I wait in the dark, claws extended. I only intend to scare him.
“Why do you want to hurt me?” he cries.
“I’m only trying to raise you right, son.”
He is trying to hold up a large gun with his small hands.
They really should hide these things better if there are children in the house.
“You’re not my dad. I found dad and mom in the basement.”
I shake my head. I told him not to go down there. He never listens.
“Put that down. Now!” I command sternly, in my best father voice.
I feel my second heart bursting before I hear the bang.
He just never listens.