A Flash (Science) Fiction — Consciousness Transference
Eve opened her eyes. Could it be? Is she alive? Or is this the afterlife? She tried to raise her head but couldn’t – for the bulky neural cap would not budge. She moved her fingers and wiggled her toes. She couldn’t believe it. She was alive!
“Eve?” said a human doctor.
Doctors surrounded her. The room was white and sterile. Just next to her, laid an old woman. It was her – her original self. The old woman was one of the oldest people in the world. She laid there sleeping. She would not wake again.
“Eve, is that you?”
“Yes. It is me.”
“Eve, where were you born?
“USA, in the 1990s.”
“How many children and grandchildren? Your husband? Your career?”
They were testing her. They had to make sure the brain upload was complete.
“Two kids, five grandchildren, my husband died during the war. I was a nurse.”
“How do you feel?”
“I feel… alive.”
The doctors looked to each other. They were satisfied. The year was 2084, and they just conducted the first fully successful brain-to-brain transfer. They ran a series of tests and scans to ensure all was well. She was as healthy as a normal twenty-four year old. That was, after all, her new biological age.
They helped her out of the bed. She was amazed how easy it was to stand; how easy it was just to move. Her old body was failing her. It was riddled with cancer to the point where it was simply beyond repair. People simply could not live as long as they once did due to the residual radiation in the atmosphere, but now, with cloning and brain-to-brain transfers, they stood at the precipice of a brave new world.
Eve looked at her old body. It looked so familiar, yet foreign. It was a discomforting familiarity – one similar to when a person looks into a distorting mirror. While she knew what she saw was real, the reflection it gave felt off.
A doctor walked to the old woman with a syringe. Before he injected the old woman, he looked to Eve.
“You don’t have to watch if you don’t want to.”
“No, I want to see this. But… before you do anything to me – or, she, I must ask: she’s no longer me… right? We’re not about to kill a version of myself, are we?”
“No, we put her in a coma, and transferred her consciousness to you. You are Eve now.”
“So, killing her isn’t killing me?”
“She’s just a body. Think of her as… a unit. Just a machine of carbon. No point in mourning the loss of a machine – no matter how much it may look like you.”
“Just a machine. If she is just a machine, then what am I? What are we?”
“Look, are you going to keep asking questions, or are you going to let us do our jobs? Are you giving us permission or not?”
Eve stood in silence. She was uncertain what to think, and even more uncertain what to feel. With every question, more confusion flowed into her being. What is the right thing to do, or is there even a right thing to do? Yet some choice had to be better than others, she thought. The more she meditated on the idea, the more the concepts of right and wrong blurred.
She reflected upon her life growing up, her younger years, her adulthood; all of the things she experienced in that body played within her mind. Could she really do it? Could she leave such an integral part of her behind? Could she condemn her former self to such an end? She knew she had to make a choice, she knew she had to decide its fate, yet she was aware that whatever choice she made today would affect the choices of everyone to reawaken thereafter. And so, with doubt and uncertainty still plaguing her being, she made her choice.
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