The Chemical Context Of Life

Cosima knew she was different, she'd always been self-aware. When daddy's your first monitor the fact that you're a clone might slip out during a made up story or make believe session. And when you find out you're a clone you might wonder how that works and this might spark an interest in science, and if you find yourself interested in science you might take an AP Biology course when you're a junior in high school, and if you're in an AP Biology course you might have a very pretty, very French lab partner. And maybe the thought of listening to her accent is what will get you through that extremely boring AP Lit class. And Maybe, just maybe, she might like you back. Spoiler: She Will.


4. Elbow Deep And Soaking Wet

You wake up under those pesky, spinning planets, you must’ve fallen asleep.  The air is still and the sun is beating in through your window.  You watch the dust slowly and gracefully glide through the ray of light.  You arch your back as you stretch your body.  You look up to see Earth rotate around a bit before it drops from the ceiling.  

“Mission control, we seem to have dropped out of orbit.  KSHhhh”  you say to yourself, imitating an astronaut you suppose.  The planets are constantly falling and maybe you need to secure them better or something.  You stand up on your bed, avoiding hitting your head on other planets.  As you reattach earth to the ceiling you nod in content.  The solar system is all in place, including Pluto.

 You finally register the chatter you've being hearing downstairs.  You calculate that its either early evening or early-ish in the morning. If it was early in the morning though, there wouldn't be as lively as chatter.  You descend the stairs and walk into the kitchen.  At the table sits your dad, mom, and Delphine.  

    “We didn’t want to wake you.” explains your mom as you sit down to eat.  Your dad and Delphine are laughing at their own little jokes.   

    “So Delphine, whats France like?”  your dad asked the blonde goddess sitting across from you.  You grab the bowl of peas as you stare intently at Delphine waiting for an answer as she swallows her steak.

    ‘Well it is very, um, busy.  People are always running around, very much like America.  I used to go to the cafes with my friends and we would laugh and make jokes at each other.  We would also study though, school was very serious there.  France is very nice.” she says with a sad laugh.  She’s homesick and you understand, hell anyone could.  France and California are so different.  

    “What were your favorite subjects in school?”  you ask her.

    “I liked science and maths quite a lot.”  she replies.

    “What are your favorite?  Subjects I mean.” She asks.  

    “Biology.  Life is very complicated, ya’ know?  Its also so, so beautiful.  I want to understand myself.  Why do I have asthma?  Why am I only 5’4?  Am I genetically predisposed yo be as clumsy as I am?  There are so many questions I have that can’t be answered by my parents because their traits weren’t the ones passed to me.  Why am I who I am?  Is it nature or nurture thats the cause of my quirks?  I’m sorry I went out on this, on this tangent but its so fascinating!”  you inhale deeply and lean back as you finally finish.  Theres a smug look of pure satisfaction on your face and you can feel the hot blood pumping through your face because passion took over and your parents are just sitting there because they’re used to these, but Delphine looks a little confused yet very intrigued.

You resume eating and soon enough conversation fills the room again.  


    “Cosima!  Dish duty!”  your mom reminds you.  You sigh as you head out to the kitchen to deal with a task you don’t feel is worth the time of day when disposable utensils exist.  As you are running the water in an attempt to warm it up enough to even slightly kill of germs (which is highly unlikely as water from the sink cannot heat up that high you think) and mixing in the sweet scented blue soap, you hear the patter of footsteps behind you and the clatter of dishes as they hit the countertop beside you.

    “I want to help.”  says a thick French accent. 

    “Honestly Delphine, you don’t have to.” you counter back.  She’s the guest, the really, really cute guest.  Like why should she do the dishes?  

     “Yes, I know, but I would like to help you wash the dishes.” she pleas.  You give in.

    “Okay fine.  I’ll wash, you dry.”  you say with a very grateful smile.  You pass Delphine a dish towel as you begin to tackle the dinner mess, elbow deep in warm sudsy water.  

"So why'd you choose to come to America Delphine?"  you ask as you scrub food off a plate.

"I felt like America would be much different than any other European countries.  They all have similar histories and they are all very similar to each other.  I would like to learn America's point of view on lots of things, like European conflicts and involvement. " She replies, hesitating on certain words.  

"Thats actually really cool man.  I wish I could do something like that." you tell her.  

You feel something warm and wet hit the front of your white tee shirt.

"SHIT!" you exclaim as Delphine starts to laugh.  

"Oh my God it is on!"  you shout as you fling suds at Delphine.

"MERDE!"  Is yelled really loudly as even more water and bubbles fill the air and the space in between you guys.

Your white shirt becomes more and more see through and your bra becomes more and more visible.   Soon the room is full of bubbles and water and the floor is becoming slick and you're in this euphoric state.  But it all comes to an end when you try and walk and you slam onto the floor. You grab the closest thing to you to try and stabilize but thats Delphine and she comes crashing down on top of you.  

"Shit, sorry Delphine.  I was trying not to fall but like... sorry."  you exhale. 

She quickly gets up and pulls you up with her.  

"It is fine Cosima."  She laughs dropping a couple suds on your nose and you giggle.  You finally get around to finishing the dishes and you wonder whats going to happen with Delphine.  

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