Read An Excerpt
Futuristic, Young Adult
I’m sixteen. Pregnant. And the most important person on the planet.
According to the Babiez R U ad, anyway.
“You’re knocked up,” sings the girlie chorus. “Ready to pop. Due to drop.” The sixty-second jingle loops continuously in the dressing room.
I check the MiNet to make sure no one I know is shopping in this wing of the Meadowlands Mallplex. Most of my friends are still in bed sleeping off last night’s Tocin hangovers. I’m safe.
“Do the deed. Born to breed.”
Free from neggy eyes, I could act just like the fat and happy models in the commercials. I could shout, I could shimmy, I could show off every pound of my, um, abundant awesomeness. Such gushing doesn’t come as naturally to me as it does to other girls. I have to work harder at it, the way my friends struggle to solve calculus equations that are easy for me. Preparing to pregg is a full-time job with no days off—but I don’t have a choice. Not when there’s so much at stake.
Rubbing my spectacularly distended belly, I want to try out an expression just to hear how it sounds coming out of my mouth.
“I’m . . .”
Egging. Preggiiing . . .
My whole body sags under the weight of my sigh. I’m supposed to own my pregnancy because my extra sixty is oh so sexy, but I’d die of embarrassment if anyone I know caught me striking poses like this—especially Zen. So I guess it’s a good thing that my best friend has made no effort to see me lately.
“Went forth and multiplied. Fightin’ the omnicide . . .”
I check once more for anyone I know, then blind my MiNet with a blink-left-right-left-wink-double-blink. The song is wrapping up—“You’re the most important person on the plaaaanet. . . . Babiez R U!”—when I’m startled out of my reverie by the sound of my own voice.
I’ve been so focused on my own expectant spectacle, I forgot that I’m not alone in the dressing room. Standing directly behind me is Harmony. A few weeks ago, I didn’t even know she existed. And until a few hours ago, we had never met in person.
She’s my identical twin.