48 Hours After Exposure
“Who is the person behind this face?”
Sally Winters’ measured voice was groomed by years of climbing the corporate news ladder. Her smooth narration was a stark contrast to the chaotic, shaky footage on screen which showcased Sarah Manning and Delphine Cormier struggling to keep hold of a drugged clone—CIA operative Vivi Valdez. The footage paused for more pensive voiceover:
“And who is behind this face?”
The footage jumped to life, again. Vivi’s terrified eyes shot down the barrel of the camera that had invaded Delphine’s living room. “Help me!” Vivi shouted. “I’m in here! Help me! They’re crazy! They think I’m a clone! Help me!” Then reporters, bloggers, drones, and paparazzi poured into the house. Two camera operators manhandled Sarah, freeing Vivi who in return punched one of them in the jaw before escaping.
“What about this face?”
The show cut to a clone with green spikes of hair. The distressed woman tried to shield her face as she scampered down a cobblestone street. “Leave me alone, ya wankstains!” she growled in a Scottish accent before thwacking away the camera, and plunging the screen into blackness.
Sally Winters, the immaculately coiffed anchor of newsmagazine HINDSIGHT, faded into view. She was relaxed yet poised in her leather armchair. “The woman you just saw is Mackenzie McCarthy of Glasgow, Scotland. She injured the camera operator who shot that footage, and has not been seen since. The woman we first showed you is Sarah Manning, of Toronto, Canada. And the clearly confused woman with Ms. Manning remains unidentified. An anonymous press package, delivered to broadcasters and newspapers everywhere, claims these women—and many others—are clones. Are these remarkably identical women truly genetic copies created in a lab? If so, what does this mean in the context of the world and science? Some would say this is an astonishing scientific achievement, something to be studied and embraced. Others disagree. Or is this all merely an extraordinary coincidence? HINDSIGHT set out to uncover the truth by setting up a ‘clone hotline,’ which has received over three dozen reports of other identical women from around the globe.”
A Leda clone in a pantsuit being attacked by camera flashes appeared on screen. Reporters hollered “Zarin! Zarin!” as she made her way out of a large glass and marble building.
“Por favor—” she begged, squeezing through the throng.
“Mutante sujo!” barked a voice off camera as clear liquid splashed into the clone’s face. Shrieking, the woman clutched her eyes. Someone in a balaclava rushed in, pouring bleach over the clone’s head, nearly emptying the bottle before police intervened.
“Zarin Silva of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil suffered permanent damage to her eyes from that attack,” Winters’ voice narrated. “Her attacker, who was caught and charged, is part of ‘46Pure’—an international group of genetic purists who strongly oppose the modification of any organism. While the group claims they do not condone the use of violence, it also does not penalize its extremist members for any of their actions.”
A bulldog of a man popped up on screen. A chyron below him stated he was Bill Williams, Executive Director of 46Pure, Virginia Chapter. “You have to understand, people don’t feel safe,” Williams stated. “If there are human clones running around in secret, what else have scientists done to our food, our water? And are these human photocopies breeding with natural, normal people? If their altered genes get into our gene pool, who knows what will happen. Birth defects, new diseases—there’s just no way to know. That’s the problem when you tamper with nature. 46Pure isn’t here to use force. We’re here to be a voice for people who are concerned about this. And we won’t rest until the government and authorities have heard us, and taken the appropriate steps toward making sure these women aren’t a threat.”
A woman in a lab coat with a stern, equally intimidating stare appeared on screen. This was Ava Goddard, a renowned geneticist and author. “If human cloning was successful back in the 1980s, we need to embrace these women,” she said. “This sort of monumental breakthrough is unfathomable. The scientific community should have access to any data connected to these people—including details on the cloning process. It should be public knowledge.”
The show cut back to Sally Winters in her armchair. “The public is already polarized over the idea of human clones. But how do these identical-looking women feel? HINDSIGHT...