Escape Pod 552: RedChip BlueChip
By Effie Seiberg
The AdChip technician’s rubber-gloved hand was cold on my chin. “Now hold still, Mi-kay-la.”
“It’s Mi-KEE-la,” I grumbled. My mother, leaning on the beige metal door, didn’t look up from her smartpad.
“Right.” He nodded, uncaring. “This is going to sting a bit, but don’t you worry. It’ll be over before you know it.”
He didn’t know how right he was – it would be over soon, once Sivvy found out.
He pushed my chin to the side, exposing my left ear, then swiped an alcohol-infused gauze in the soft area behind the star-shaped earring I’d bent from a paper clip the other day.
“Now, do you want to be BlueChip or RedChip?” He busied himself with the metal tray of instruments sitting next to me on the ugly green table. An enormous syringe-like tool lay there next to two tiny Chips and a graft gun. Both Chips were black – I guess the color names weren’t literal.
“Shouldn’t my papers already tell you that? Haven’t you already decided everything for me?” There were posters on the walls advertising Coke and Pepsi and IBM and Apple and Honda and Toyota. Stuff for each Chip.
My mother finally glanced up. “Mikila, be nice.”
“Oh it’s fine,” he said with plastered-on cheer. “The papers are only for backup, in case you don’t choose. We just want you to be happy!”
“OK, fine. I’ll choose not to have a Chip at all – that’ll make me happy. Can I go now?” I hopped off the green metal table and moved to grab my worn messenger bag.
He moved to block. “Ha ha.” His smile stiffened on his face. “A funny one!”