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Dead Metal

By Alex Beyman All Rights Reserved ©

Horror / Scifi

Dead Metal

Part of me is dead. I don't mean that emotionally, metaphorically, or any other way but literal. A good hefty chunk of my body is now metals and plastic.

You only find out after the surgery that it's not what the ads implied. I think that's how it keeps spreading. The people who get it pretend nothing's wrong, that it's as fantastic as it looks because they paid so much for it and don't want to look like fools. While privately agonizing over the aches, pus, and constantly replenishing crust of scabs that forms wherever metal penetrates the skin.

The body thinks it's been wounded and never stops trying to heal. Outraged that it’s been invaded by some foreign body. It's more right than it knows. The prosthetic, replicating perfectly the movement of every digit and sensations on all touch sensitive outer coverings, is nonetheless not alive. Where it meets your living tissue is a sharp divide. On one side, close up, a teeming cooperative of single celled organisms that is you. On the other, cold, dead metal.

However responsive, it is only puppetry, never truly a part of you. And I know this. Now. I wish somebody'd told me sooner that you always feel it. The assumption is that it goes away, but it doesn't. The feeling of the bolts through your bones, where the mounts are. Flexing, straining, threatening to fracture. The sting where the metal passes through sore, ever-enflamed skin I've since learned the models conceal with cosmetics.

That's the fantasy of it. The unspoken assumption you go in with as they drain your bank account, put you under and prepare to operate. That in time, you won't feel a difference, that the machine truly becomes a part of you.

It never does. It just hangs on, and hurts. You tell yourself this is just growing pains, that more metal in your body will somehow fix it, which starts the craving. The more you replace with metal, the less of it can hurt, driving it all inexorably forward.

Until one day, you realize you've dumped your savings into novelty surgeries, in order to wind up a freakish patchwork primate with motorized prosthetics, aching intensely everywhere that metal meets bone and surrender to the realization that it's for life.

I wish I could say that’s the worst of it. I never fully appreciated that there is a spirit dwelling within the parts of me that are alive, until it met what's hiding in the parts of me that aren't.

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Jasmine Chow: As I read this story, I was reminded some what of Terry Pratchett, especially some descriptions of politics and economics. The sci-fic setting is quite intriguing. Writing style is quite lovely and grew on me slowly. I was also slightly reminded of Mark Twain, especially his book A Connecticut Ya...

debmart6901: I could not put this story down. I stayed up reading when I should have been in bed. could not get enough, could not wait to find how it ended. Great story telling. Great detail. Loved it. The characters were very vivid.

Shweta Somwanshi: I just chose to read this out of nowhere and now I can't stop. Hats off to the author who made the reader swoon away with words so beautifully! I loved how I was able to imagine everything so explicitly because the writing was simple and easily comprehensive with a touch of complexity somewhere b...

Sara Grover: When I first started reading, it was a bit slow; though only because it was so information intense and fast-paced in trying to describe how this complex galactic corporation/government like entity controls known space. I would suggest maybe adding a preface to better educate the reader to help av...

NRF: I love this story, it has a little bit of everything in it, mystery, adventure, murder, innocence, love and a surprise twist that will leave you hungry for more! Great read! NRF

Ding Fernando: very nice read.so realistic you can hardly put it down,i really like the character so human despite posessing immortality and eternal youth.though i would prefer a better ending..i still love this novel and i am recommending it to all sci fi fans to give it a try .you will love it too!!

Melissa Davis: Interesting book and an enjoyable read. Had something different to it, that made me glad I picked it up.

Kashaf Azmat: The concept is excellent everything is well defined that you can picture the whole scenario which makes you feel connected to the plot and this is the thing that catches my eye and this what i am looking for in every novel.Keep it up

cassandrab: Delightful SciFi (for a change)! I am not a SciFi fan: mostly the genre is far too dystopic for me. This book (written by a high-school friend) is, on the other hand, generally upbeat. Yes, Earth's future is threatened. But Earth has a chance to plan a response. And (spoiler alert) ultimately win...

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