Renaissance Inc. by Stephen Barnes

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‘Quite a view,' someone had said that a few minutes ago, or was it a few hours? George Lang had lost all concept of time, there he stood and there he remained deep in thought. Only now did he acknowledge the splendor of the world before him, the buildings beautiful and ornate, reaching miles into the sky. He thought of the original skyscrapers; the marvels of man in his naïveté, vast ugly peaks of steel and glass devoid of colour and life so crude in their construction. What lay before him was the perfect hybrid of technology and art calling back to the domes and arches of 17th century Europe. Most predominantly, from his viewpoint, was the Grand Council's headquarters, which had been modeled on the now decrepit St. Paul's cathedral of Rome. It seemed strange to him that Fillipo Brunelleschi's masterpiece for God would appear in this godless world, the first terraformers had named this planet Eden as if to show God, if he existed, how his greatest creation had moved from the claustrophobic confines of that choked and polluted rock he had toiled to create and then improved upon his template by going forth and building far greater planets transforming even the most hazardous planets into immaculate paradises within a couple of generations. In fact the terraformers had lived for so long, and adapted so well, to these new worlds that to return to their decaying homeworld would mean certain death for both the air and the atmospheric pressure would be intolerable. For Lang, and the other inhabitants of this world, it seemed that all faiths were built on the sole fear of death and when death itself was conquered there was no longer any time or space for religion, yet even though Lang's family had abandoned Christianity long ago he felt as if he had inherited their guilt, conscience and caution. Part of him wished to leave his love die as she lay twitching in his arms drawing her last breath but then he remembered his old friends Morten and Camillla and how their son had died in that hydrocar accident, ‘Thank God for Renaissance', Morten had said though Lang felt that God had nothing to do with it. He felt so guilty entering Renaissance with her still body he even recalled that horrific story from over four hundred years ago ‘Frankenstein' and how the monster had demanded that his creator make him a mate to share his miserable existence, tears came to his eyes once more the shame of his action, the thought of losing her and a myriad other things that he could not address in this state.

‘We're preparing her now,' Lang wiped his eyes before turning to the inquisitive face of the young technician. ‘You want any genetic mods done? Maybe make her a little younger, a bit perkier huh?' the technician winked at him.
‘No,' Lang dully replied ignoring the connotation, ‘I want her just the way she was... perfect'.
‘Ok, right,' the tech got back down to business he held up a hand sized transparency screen and a seemingly endless sequence of the letters A-C-G-T appeared in the air between the two men.

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