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Latest Stories

July 10, 2019
Romance Stories John L.Yelavich

Saccharine Smiles and Sandpaper Personalities

What is the most powerful force in the universe? Is it atomic fusion, military might, volcanoes, tsunamis or any other natural disaster? No, they are not. None of them can create havoc and paranoia in man any more than love can. Yes, love is the force that is…
July 10, 2019
Crime Stories J.B.Stevens

A Good Man

Jimmy hated feeling the delicate orbital bones splinter, but he didn’t have a choice. He needed to be free. It was unfortunate. Just the wrong place, wrong time. If he was out he could send money to Sarah. That’s what all this was all about, helping his…
July 10, 2019
Fantasy Stories Roger Ley

Turing Test

Mr Riley liked to start his day in the library. It was a short walk from his house and conveniently situated at the top of the main street in the Suffolk market town that he and his wife had retired to. When they’d first arrived, he’d joined the local writing…
July 10, 2019
Romance Stories Patric Quinn

Where or When

The front doorbell sounded its gentle Westminster Chimes and the thumping on the door started before Hazel even put her pen down on the papers she was working on intently. More curious than annoyed, she stopped writing, shrugged and started for the door.…
July 10, 2019
Flash Fiction Sheila Ash

Working Christmas Again

I always draw the short straw to a chorus of ‘Bad luck’. A reiteration of last year and the year before, and the year before that. Throughout the day, my ‘C’est la vie’ chimes on a constant playback loop. My expressionist shrugs repeat themselves as a…
March 18, 2019
Mystery Stories JD Plummer

Pseudonyms

“Gelb wants you to call him.” I looked at Frankie, opened my mouth, began to slowly shake my head. My reply delayed by the image of Gelb, monocle in eye, brow raised, lips tight, grimacing. I cringed at the thought. “I ain’t calling that prick,” I finally…
March 18, 2019
Fantasy Stories Lucia Balbuena

A Different Story

Her breathing was deep and steady when she run through the dense forest holding her grandmother’s kitchen knife in her hand. Her red cape was torn up, also her legs, hands and her face were cut by the tree brunches. Stop you are the victim, said the forest…
March 17, 2019
Crime Stories Wally Smith

Coda

Luigi Andante’s small apartment sat on the fourth floor of a block in the West Bronx at the corner of 18th and Davidson. It was adequate as a living space, but Luigi craved more than this. “A penthouse overlooking Central Park would suit me just fine”, he had…
March 17, 2019
Crime Stories Walter Giersbach

Fifty Ways to Leave Your Loser

Lorraine Vanderzanden had the thankless task being Lindstrom’s police chief. Her husband didn’t appreciate the risks she took. Her brother didn’t thank her for using her degree for something useful instead of helping on the family farm. Heck, she thought,…
March 17, 2019
Mystery Stories Jenny Webster

"Communicate with me, please."

I have been blind for so long, I didn’t even attempt to imagine what it would be like if I could see. I don’t know any different, all I know is darkness, and I base everything that I can experience mostly through sound. You see, I can’t walk either. I’m not…
March 16, 2019
Flash Fiction Michael Fredrick

Secondhand Santa

The late model sedan sputtered, coughed and dutifully careened forward on a cold December evening. Fred hit the gas pedal & ruminated as he always did, wondering again why life had dealt him this hand? Christmas Eve, foraging for returnable bottles to make…
March 16, 2019
General Stories Darrell Case

Trig's Smokin' Wheels

There were a lot of things Trig Nelson could do, many he wanted to do, and more things he couldn’t do. Trig couldn’t run, he’d never climb stairs or hills or mountains. He couldn’t play football or basketball. Being stuck in a wheelchair that would always be…

 

 

I know you will never believe me. I can hardly believe it myself. Naturally enough, I was first introduced to my parents at my birth over fifty years ago. The twist is I was reintroduced to my parents when I was fifty, but they were just twenty years old. Impossible, you say?

Mom and Dad met back in the day when they were undergraduates at Hogan College, a small liberal arts college here in town. They were immediately bound by an urgent chemistry, a hormonal gushing that could only mean --- love. Although their passion subsided over time, they cared for and respected each other for the rest of their lives.

When Mom and Dad were in their mid-fifties and I was grown and out the door, they decided to imbibe in a grandiose experiment. They wondered whether their initial overwhelming attraction to each other was genetically based or was a matter of circumstance. They both believed that if they met again in another life, they would be attracted to each other even if their environments were not identical to that from which they arose.

My parents found a genetic laboratory near Hogan College. They went to the laboratory and agreed to allow their genetic material to be used in a cloning experiment. They would be cloned in the laboratory and the babies would then be adopted-out to childless couples. Mom and Dad, however, required the laboratory to stipulate to one minor detail; that is, their clones would be adopted-out to separate parents who had attended Hogan College. Their aim was to create a circumstance when they would again have a chance of meeting as young adults, just as they had met as freshmen.

For the most part, Mom and Dad went on to live their time under an umbrella of love. They had one child who, if I may say so, turned out to be a remarkably attractive and talented woman. They were the best of parents to me. They tried to instill in me a sense of honor and honesty, and they supported me in all the decisions I made, right or wrong. To their end, I loved them and I knew all my life that they loved me.

Now, as all good storytellers say, we move forward in time to when I was in my early fifties. Mom and Dad were gone, I had two children, and, if I may say so, and as you can no doubt tell, I had a successful career as a writer.

Then came the literary knock on the door. In front of me stood a young couple, with scrubbed smiles, trendy clothes and the confidence of youth. They introduced themselves and the woman stated that she believed she was related to a person who had once owned my house. I invited them in, half-expecting an attempt to sell me a vacuum sweeper, but their story, it turned out, was our story.

Dan and Heidi told me that they had met as freshmen at Hogan College. A relationship grew out of their meeting, and soon they moved-in together. Dan interrupted Heidi to tell me that he loved Heidi which led to a back at you from Heidi---as though I didn’t know all along. Student life being student life, the couple needed money so they answered an ad for volunteers at a local genetics lab. If accepted, they would each earn five hundred dollars for donating their genetic material. But, lo and behold, after the initial testing, some ogre from the laboratory called to chastise them for attempting to commit fraud. It seems that the lab had cross-checked and already had their genetic material.

How could this be? We know, don’t we?

Dan and Heidi went to the lab and met with the geriatric genetic ogre. They asked him the names of the previous donors that matched their genetic material.

He replied via his nasal voice that, “Pursuant to the Federal Law of privacy, I am not permitted to tell you.”

Upon a closer review of the file, he did reflect on the obvious error which indicated that the material had been donated twenty years earlier.

Dan and Heidi excused themselves and huddled in the generic genetic hallway. Then, without warning, there surfaced a simmering, then simultaneously orgasmic “aha” moment. “Could it be…could it be”… that they were clones and not the biological children of their parents?

Dan and Heidi returned to the ogre’s office and did the only honorable thing. They bribed the ogre and he gave them the names and address.

That led them to knock on my door because I had moved into my parents’ house after they died. After the initial pleasantries, Dan and Heidi told me the story that I just told you. Before they finished, I knew the beginning of the story from a conversation I had with my mother many years before

When it was my turn to speak, I told Dan and Heidi the first part of this story.

We sat around in total disbelief. I was talking with the genetic twins of my parents and they to their genetic daughter who had not been born to them. Or, since Mom and Dad were the parents of the three of us, was I the sister of both Dan and Heidi? I started to feel like I was living the lyrics of that old country-western song, “I’m My Own Grandpa.”

After considerable discussion, we agreed that Mom and Dad had been right; regardless of being raised in different environments, there was an innate chemistry wandering about in the DNA of my parents’ that brought them to love and then brought the clones to love so many years later.

I wish that was the end of my story. “And they lived happily ever after.”  Seldom is it so.

In one conversation I had with Dan and Heidi, they asked me how our parents’ lives had ended. I questioned whether they really wanted to know because genetically it could be their fate. Both recognized the validity of my point and we left it at that.

We left it at that until a few weeks later when Heidi appeared and asked me to tell her about the last years. I hesitated to tell her, but she convinced me otherwise. The actuality is that Dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease when he was fifty-five. From that point on, Mom’s life became the conscious nightmare of caring for a man day in and year out. The last four years of his life, if one may call it life, Dad didn’t recognize Mom. If Heidi and Dan made a life together, there was a fair possibility that Heidi would end up being alone for a very long time.

How does my story end? Did Heidi decide to stay in a long-term relationship with Dan and live happily ever after? I don’t know. I never talked to either of them after my talk with Heidi.

 

Biography

I am a retired attorney. I have five children and ten grandchildren keeping me busy. I enjoy writing, singing, ballroom dancing and golf. My favorite writer is Erma Bombeck. I am a male, but I write better as a female.

 

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