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Fantasy Science Fiction Suspense

It was the article by Doran Verdwallen that led me to make the decision…

I had remembered every word of it.


A BRIEF HISTORY OF HOMO DESTINS

An Article by ~ Doran Verdwallen


The creation of the Filum Trial, in 2185 — more commonly known as the Destiny Strings — was the experiment that irreversibly altered the world.

In its simplest terms, life as we knew it was remodelled to sustain the advancements of the new technologies manufactured by the scientists of our Moirian Government. Its stated aim was to further understand how a person’s destiny was influenced by the Filum Serum— a process that effectively created a new species of Human— Homo Destins. 

Us. 

Those responsible for the devastating creation of the Destiny Strings, The Three Original Moirai, perhaps without even meaning to, corrupted the foundations of humanity’s moral and ethical codes. 

The last of the human species, erased from time itself. Or so they forced us to believe.


The Moirian Government, named after their creators, produced a serum for the world’s inhabitants that had the ability to warp time and space that surrounded an individual’s future. It would be injected through the filum terminal in the spine— a delicate strand of fibrous tissue that proceeds downward from the apex of the conus medullaris, connecting to the hippocampus.

The effects of the serum were designed to ignite and rewire each section of the brain, preparing and uploading the required knowledge and life details needed to live their selected future. A "chosen" life assignment, if you will.


 As a result of the arranged chaos, no longer did the individual have the multiple futures they were born with. Instead, the Destiny Strings allowed the Moirian government to control every Homo Destins future. Choice and ambition were no longer an option. Any personal goals and ambitions the individual might have aspired to, were eliminated. 

Their future had been ordained, or paused.

The Moirai had discovered the method known as Folding Destinies which revealed likely pathways of a person’s life. From this discovery, the Filum Serum was produced. A weapon of control, capable of manipulating time and ones future within that time.


The trial of the Destiny Strings became government policy. And, individuality was lost and forgotten.

The Moirian government exercised its control by drugging Homo Destins with the illusion that they were giving us a choice of secure future.

In actuality, they had stolen our futures. 


Now, we exist solely for the purposes of the Moirai— a policy that had been suggested by Greek mythology. 

According to the myths, the Three Fates were incarnations of destiny which inspired our governments name, the ‘Moirai’. The Three Fates would appear three nights after a child’s birth to determine the course of its life through a ceremony of metaphorical strings. The baby would choose, and unknowingly, set out its future by plucking one of the sacred strings.

Like this legend, the Moirian Government created a similar tradition to generate peace throughout the world— the Trial. It purported to easing the restless minds of society, but we blithely surrendered free will, and unwittingly, our futures. 

And thus, we became pawns in the Moirian’s perfect plan. As a new race — Homo Destins — we were perfectly planned to fit together and designated to play a part in each other’s destiny. This was a policy synchronised, balanced, and controlled by the strings of our Moirian Government to serve its purposes. 

In essence, we are but a mutual chain of purposeless souls, each with a scheduled destiny we must abide by. And, if we dared to stray from our chosen future and disturb the conformity of time established within the Moirian System, we would be shunned and cast away with the greatest punishment of all— anonymity. 


***



My reverie was broken by the honeyed voice over the speakers above my head.

‘It’s your choice,’ it announces, the pale blue lights flickering with each syllable.

I mentally refold the article and shove it back into the overflowing cabinets of my mind. ‘You control your Destinies. We simply hold your options until your Trial date,’ the voice reverberates around the room. 


***


I had received my essentials package, the night before, slipped through a hatch in the room provided for those awaiting the Filum Trial. As I piled its contents onto my bed, I found the crisp whites of my Becomer’s uniform and the Official Moirian Guide and Regulations of the Filum Trial documents. 

And strangely, tucked into the shirt pocket, was a neatly-folded letter with a glossy crimson stamp embossed on it— the initials ‘D. V’. 

The letter contained the article, A Brief History of Homo Destins. It purported to explain the creation of Homo Destins, and how our New Earth came into existence.

It had seemed harmless at first...

Perhaps, even a significant text every Becomer would read before the completion of their Trial.

But I knew better. This was not in the study guide.

And not to mention the heretical statements! Blasphemous language clearly targeted the Moirian government and were threaded throughout the entirety of the piece. No Becoming Ceremony would allow such a paper behind its walls. Someone would be killed for this. If ever it was found...

I shiver.

I couldn’t help but wonder- who was this author, Doran Verdwallen?

Was he some madman— daring to criticise the government? 

But why did he sound so calm and calculated and so focused in his expose? 

Was he elaborating on our history, or planting the seeds of rebellion with his disrespectful language?

Probably just an old article that's just slipped out from some old book, I assured myself.

Right?

But why did I get the feeling that he was targeting me?

I was mesmerised and disgusted all at once. 

Who was this ‘Doran Verdwallen’ indeed, to seek to undermine my own thoughts and opinions? 

Why was this damn article even in my package? 


***

But my mind was clear. My path, true.

I will not be reading this again. 

Terminate File.

I could hear the remaining Becomer’s repeating the relentless motto outside my room, echoing through the waiting room of the Moirian Trial Chambers.


WE LIVE ONLY FOR THE FUTURE.

WE LIVE FOR OUR BECOMING.

WE ARE THE DESTIN’S, NOT THE NOW’S.

PRAISE FOR OUR UPCOMING.


I was one of them.

And it was finally my turn, after all this time.

At twenty-five years of age, I was experiencing the perfect stage of full prefrontal cortex development and accurate maturity levels. 

It is all perfectly calculated. Just like the rest of our lives. 

I wrinkle my nose and grimace, my fingers nervously tapping against my wrist. It was a calming method taught by my Mother to maintain composure in times of tension. In other words: Don’t ruin this, girl. We worked hard on you. You must not fail.

(As if I were an assignment).

It is time.

It is what we, The Elites, have all trained for since the day we were born. 

I straighten up out of habit. No slouching. No elbows on armrests, or comfort of any sort for that matter. Reputation is everything, to be sure, especially one as admirable and sought after as mine. Most would not risk leaving the safe confinements of a home if they had inherited the same illustrious last name as me. But, growing up in a mansion of lies and manipulation, hallways echoing with whispers of betrayal and the high expectations and legacy of generations to uphold — you become well acquainted with the uncomfortable, the unsettling, the fear. So much so, it would become a routine. 

I had learnt to fear and obey the Moirai. After all, my parents selected their Destinies and became Moirians themselves. I face my own government at home.

Can I break the cycle?

It is my time to undergo the Filum Trial.

I am called. 

‘Enter, Viatrix Alithis: Daughter of the True Voyagers, Class of the Elites: Ranking 01. You may complete the Filum Trial.’

I stand, eyeing the entrance of the chamber where my future would be chosen and presented to me by the Moirai. 

I search the files of my mind once more, desperately trying to ignore that article. I recognise the deception that lies within. It was nothing but a subversive analysis of the Moirai and their intentions. 

How dare that stranger interrupt my ceremony!

The Chamber is a void of darkness when I enter. It strangles my sense of direction and wraps its wraithlike tendrils around my throat.

Verdwalen’s article and his contaminated words rest on my lips.

I shiver. I must put it aside. 

Terminate File. 

Three iridescent strings appear before me, connected from floor to ceiling, emitting an electrical hum that bounces off the reflective walls of The Chamber.

My Destiny is ready to choose me.

Am I ready to choose it?

I've been waiting all this time... I must choose!

I pluck the first string. 

My vision ripples like a pebble that skips across the liquids of my eyes. The glimpse of my first Destiny appears… 

Snippets of pristine white lab coats and scientific formulas and menacing technical equipment, flash wildly. My parents smile and point out their favourite workshops. Their pride, practically radiating as my chosen existence follows similar footsteps to theirs. My name in bold letters, printed onto large headlines, advertising the creation of my new and successful line of products. My hair is pulled back tightly, forming a sharp point at the crown of my skull. My skin is pale and plastic-like with no hint of ageing, almost artificial.


I pluck the second string.

The scene of a party unfolds. I am dancing in knee-high boots with a scandalous leather outfit, given to me by my admirers. Everyone cheers my name, and the spotlights light up my stage. I dance and drink in a pool of rose petals and money. My fellow co-workers, with their wolfish grins congratulate me on my successful progress in the fashion industry. I am a designer. And all the models with potential, the greatest stars of our time, come to see me. They want me. 


I pluck the last string.

‘I love you, Viatrix.’ A man with kind eyes and handsome features caresses my cheek. ‘I love you, Doran.’ I reply. The man grabs his briefcase and coffee, winking at me before he leaves the room. My husband is an author, a journalist, and a father to our three kids. My name is Viatrix Verdwallen.


***


‘Choice and ambition were no longer an option.’ Doran’s words pulse before me. Doran...

His name? A fuzzy feeling settles on my tongue.

Numbing.

I taste static.

That madman becomes my husband? 

No— I don’t want this. I don’t want any of these futures?

I choose none. I want none.

Mother said I would know in an instant- my Destiny when it was presented to me.

They all said! Every paper, every program, the damn Creators of this ridiculous Trial!

All except him.

Terminate File. Terminate!  

Yet, I know that I cannot erase a truth that rings so loudly. 

I take the scissors out of my package and cut the Destiny Strings.


All. Of. Them.  

                            

The passage of time pauses before me...

June 03, 2024 14:11

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4 comments

Rozmarin Ideas
18:45 Jun 13, 2024

Hi Jordan! I want to say that this is very well written in terms of grammar and sentence structure. You have a mastery over your narrative voice that indicates (to me at least) experience with writing. This has a lot of very intriguing ideas in it, and a great hook for a large, in-depth science fiction story. If I may be so bold, I would say that this is NOT a concept that can be used for a short story. At least, not as presented. The initial exposition, with the article, threw so many terms and proper nouns at me that my head was spinni...

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Brian Haddad
04:24 Jun 13, 2024

I think, like Dennis, that this story's main strength is the depth and breadth of its premise, worldbuilding, and detail. One of my favorite series is the Wool series (now known as the Silo series with its Apple TV adaptation, currently awaiting season 2). If you've never read the original Wool (particularly the Omnibus edition), you certainly aren't doing yourself any favors! I absolutely love how the author handles having a huge, complex world in his pocket and slowly revealing it. The omnibus edition (first book) is really a novella with...

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Dennis Colby
17:45 Jun 10, 2024

The story's rich details, like its setting and invented vocabulary, create a sense that this is just a small part of a larger, immersive world. The pace and flow, especially with the very last line, make it feel like the opening of a bigger narrative, for example: a prologue to a book?

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Jordan Isaac
22:57 Jun 10, 2024

Yes, thankyou for the reply 🙂! That was my intent here. I have never been too good at writing short stories because I’ve always loved the bigger complex plot. But I do love to write beginnings! Especially when they are left open and imagination can do the storytelling for you …

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