Excerpt from ‘Seroks Iteration 1: Mirror Man’ | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

“You know me on the boards as ‘Jim Crack,’ but my real name is Pequé.

I’m a basurero. A garbage collector in a small Southeast Asian archipelago called the Philippines. You may recall my country with these key words: People Power.  We became famous for those historical flash mob revolutions that oust dictators out of business.

I’m also a seroks, known in the West as a dupe.

You know the jihad against the Great Satan, the former United States of America, ended with the release of Iblis. The virus infected genetically marked individuals and initiated a plague that ran a cruel swathe through the American population. In the end, nine out of ten male survivors were sterile.

In the bleak aftermath of Iblis, the moral and ethical concerns stunting the development of genetic engineering were conveniently forgotten and the advent of cloning quickly came to pass.

Clones were used for any number of reasons. Foremost among these: as changelings or made-to-order children adopted by the moneyed, yet childless. Almost overnight, cloning became big business worldwide.

But you already know all this. What you may not know is how quickly the pirates descended on this ripe opportunity.

Asia has always been big on piracy. Decades ago, it was video and audio CDs (remember those?). Today, it’s people. That’s what a dupe is: a pirated copy of a particular genetic sequence, a clone of a clone.”