Friday, October 9, 2009


Dear John,

I hope you won't hate me, but I have to leave the colony. Please know I have always loved you. I knew it that first day in primary when you pulled my hair, and I am STILL sorry I spat in your face. I loved you when you held my hand at our matching ceremony, and you were not sure what to think about me. Even today, I love you now more than ever.

This is so hard, and I hate that I am writing you this note. If I had to tell you face to face, I know I would change my mind. I have to leave. There really isn’t a choice.

I am pregnant.

This colony has been birthed from the same 108 clones since the beginning. Why now, am I able to have a child, when thousands of women before me have not?

Last month, I came across some old documents in Filing. About fifty years ago a woman came to the Eden Corporation claiming she was incubating and that she was the key to a surrogate-free colony.

They killed her. They extracted her unborn child and dissected them both. I don’t want to be cut open and sampled.

There is a light burning inside of me, John. I feel it flicker. It’s like no warmth I have ever experienced before. It is truly amazing.

I’ve known for several months now, and it’s getting harder to hide. I know you don’t like the idea of me visiting Low End on 12, but I had to seek out some answers. I couldn’t tell anyone why I was there, but I overheard some Myrrh talking. They were going on and on about corruption, greed, and the desire to choose their own paths in life; “Free will” they called it. They were planning to leave the colony, and I am going with them.

I am so sorry, but I feel it’s my only option. I hope you can understand. This is so much bigger than us, John. It’s not something Eden should be able to control…

You will find a note under my pillow. It is full of untruths; how miserable I was and how I chose to end my life. It says that I plan to throw myself into the incinerator. Today, I will be seen in that vicinity, and I will be sure to leave some personal item behind. Please take THAT note to security and destroy THIS one.

I love you always,


John stared at the paper until the words disappeared. Mucus and saline pooled in the crevices of his face, as the letter delicately slid from his fingers and floated to the floor.

She was gone, and John was sure he would never see her again. “Goodbye,” he whispered, “I love you, always.”

Broken hearted, John closed his eyes just in time to see Bethany walking away. Even his dreams denied him; she never looked back.


  1. Was certainly interesting. Little bizarre in so far as not being able to have children and what not, but I've heard of similar in science fiction.

    I wonder though... Why Bethany did not take John with her? I also think it is humorous that his name is John, given that he was literally reading a Dear John Letter :P

  2. Some more hints about the colony - "Low end on 12"? To say nothing of the woman 50 years ago...

    I like (in the sense that I find it very interesting and whole) this world you're building.

    So, how did Bethany get pregnant? (if that's not too indelicate of me)

  3. yes, I too am wondering how she fell prenant??? Good story - like it lots :)

  4. Very intriguing world (i'm a bit of a fan of totalitarian futuristic settings!)

    Could she not take poor John with her?!

  5. Though the world of Eden you are creating is intriguing, again it is the humanity of your characters that shines in this piece. The simple yet emotionally loaded way she describes her pregnancy is touching. Love the bit about her having a light shining inside her. Looking forward to finding out more about this world. Great work, Tomara.

  6. *sigh* so romantic, so hopeless. What another brilliant sideways shift. Am loving this ride you're taking us on! I feel like I'm watching the best kind of television in my imagination. The bite-size pieces are just killing me though! (And I'm so glad you're feeling better)

  7. This was wonderfully written. The emotional impact felt very true.

    I wish her well, wherever she ends up.

  8. I love these bits and pieces you're giving us! Poor John... and will he remember to destroy the note he just dropped? What is Low end on 12? Will she get away with it? So many questions... :) I'm so glad you're back!

  9. So glad you have given us more of Eden! Have missed it.

    Poor John. Poor Bethany.

    And I'm assuming that Low End on 12 is a place not too dissimilar as we know it ;)

    Really liked your piece. Want to read more.

    Welcome back!

  10. Very intriguing write. I am left wondering what happens to Bethany, or which letter John brings to the authorities. Great job.

  11. I love how you give us some history and clues while propelling the story forward. Who were the 108 that were cloned and how has Eden taken control of everything.

    I'm so glad your feeling better, but mostly for selfish reasons. I want to read more about John and Bethany. :)

  12. Thanks for the comments! How wonderful to wake up to them.

    E.D. - I picked the name because it was a "Dear John" letter... and I thought it was funny. I felt kinda bad about it, because my last protag's name was John as well.

    Kevin - Low End is a nasty place (more on that later). As far as pregnancy is concerned that is not my place to discuss with you (without prior written consent from your parents ;-) )

    Michelle - This group has been unable to have children in the past. They rely on a carefully crafted adoption process. One of the many ways Eden controls their lives (along with selecting their life partners and careers)

    Mazzz - Bethany is somewhat shelfish. She never thinks how John would feel about it, but then... she never asked.

    Dan - thanks. I had trouble writing this because I wasn't sure how to put Bethany into this letter. I still don't think I handled it as well as I could have liked to.

    Lily - I am working on a larger slice of Eden for NaNo, but still haven't settled on which tale. I have so many floating around. You're the sweetest!

    Tony - Thank you so much. I struggled with it. I have written and rewritten the same story for the last few weeks, but couldn't quite finish it to post.

    Laura - Don't worry, I have your answers. It may be a few posts out... if you can remember your questions in the first place ;-).

    Marisa - I am glad you like it. I have enjoyed writing them seperately... then tying them together later.

    Laurita - You definitely haven't heard the last of Bethany and John. John does bring in the authorities, but which letter does he give them?

    Chris - :-) You always leave awesome comments. Thanks so much. I will try not to disappoint... more Eden Corp is on the way.

    Always thanks for reading, your comments make my weekend :-)

  13. I thought this was great as a stand alone piece of flash.
    Loved her reasons for leaving, really felt her pain at leaving him.
    Beautifully rendered.
    Karen :0)

  14. gripping and odd all at the same time! neat tale.

  15. I am new to your stories and will have to go back and read more. I loved this one and don't have the questions everyone else does. This piece can stand alone or be part of a novel or ongoing story, which I assume from the comments that it is. In my opinion, if you pick up a book and are able to take a chapter out of it and that little chunk has integrity on its own, you have accomplished a great feat. Good job with this one!

  16. So is John the father? Not clear to me. You also have several references that I can't understand in context: "Low End on 12" and "Myrrh" (is there also a race of people called "Frankincense"?).

    I adore your last line.

    Jeff Posey

  17. I, like everyone else, want to see/hear more about the colony and Eden!

    Sometimes this once a week thing is frustrating :)

  18. Oh no, I can imagine in John's grief, he's going to forget to burn the letter he's dropped on the floor. I'm loving Eden & this story! Bethany is in for a hard life, it seems. :-)

  19. I love the way the different threads of this story tie together. The previous ones sort of set up the world, and this one focuses on the charactes navigating that world.

  20. I always love to hear about the continuing saga of the world created by Eden Corp. Keep writing them!

  21. How sad! But what a lovely read.

  22. A very compelling and engaging piece!

  23. Great addition Tomara. I am intrigued with the hints you give us on the nature of the colony. The Low End on 12 (much like the seedy side of town, I'm betting), and the Myrrh. The Myrrh particularly intrigue me. Are they simply the lowest caste, or a different species. Not a question, just me wondering out loud. Neat world you're building here.

  24. Another good Eden Corp story. I enjoyed this one and can't wait to see more.

  25. Totally dug this. You used sci-fi terms without alienating me. This, I'm afraid, isn't hard to do. Alienate me. Not...d'oh. You get what I'm saying. I'm wringing my hat in my hands and stammering over words. I liked this a lot...

  26. Really nice piece! I'm glad to hear you're diving into this world for NaNoWriMo because it sounds like a fascinating place. I love dystopian stories, and yours is no exception. :-) Good work!

  27. This is the first of your writing I've sampled, and I'm definitely a fan. What a world you weave. Bethany is compelling. Your style and topic remind me of Margaret Atwood, especially her earlier works. Glad to see you're putting more flesh on this for NaNo... Peace, Linda

  28. I was instantly reminded of the book, "The Sparrow."

    There is no great similarity, but I felt the same feelings while reading it, (which says a lot since I was very moved by the Sparrow!)

    Love the ending...