Published: 2013 in Rayguns Over Texas
Genre: science fiction
Length: about 18 pages
Setting: Texas, near future
Interest: I was given a copy of the short story collection and I’m alternating reviews from this book with reviews from the Campbellian anthology.
Summary: Una Dallas is a programmer on a project that’s about to end. That fact has her coworkers worried about their next job, but Dallas seems unnaturally concerned. She’s also interested in one of her coworkers, but worried about what Human Resources will say if she fraternizes with a coworker. She decides, since the project is about to be completed anyways, to just go for it and go out with this guy, regardless of the consequences.
Final thoughts: Turns out Dallas has a big secret. No, she’s not married, nor does she have a boyfriend or girlfriend. Turns out she’s also not a foreign worker. She’s a genetically modified clone whose mind can be replaced with new skills and personality whenever the director of Human Resources decrees. When this project is over, she’s scheduled to be mind-wiped and replaced with a new set of skills. So, in the week she has left, she decides to screw the rules, and the cute guy in the cubicle next to hers. I was really disappointed when this one ended (HR caught her, and now she won’t have to worry anymore because she won’t remember anything). I wanted to see her try to get out of her situations, but no such luck.
It totally reminded me of Joss Whedon’s show Dollhouse. Just build a bunch of clones and then program them with the skills you need. Nothing can go wrong with that scenario! I can’t imagine clones would be cheaper than what real humans would cost, though. Still, an enjoyable story.
Title comes from: It’s only tangentially related to the story. I’m guessing the author liked the sound of it, and figured it would work fine. The story is set in Texas, and the narrator does “die” at the end, but it’s not a phrase used in the story, nor are sins discussed in the story.
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