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When Your Home is Alive

by Daniel Goldman about a year ago in Sci Fi
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A short story describing a possible future for humanity.

When Your Home is Alive
Photo by Kara Eads on Unsplash

Hey everyone in the past. It’s been a long time. Shuu here. Your favorite rat-boi scientist and content creator. I know rats don’t normally live that long, but being a special lab rat, it turns out that I live for a super long time. Anyway, I wanted to say hi to all my past fans. Hope you’re doing well. I miss you.

Anyway, I want to tell you about my home. Yeah. It’s alive. Or I suppose they’re alive. I call them Spot. It might sound odd to you, but it’s pretty normal now. Honestly, how do you people even live in cold dead houses? So anyway, how did homes become alive?

It’s a long story. For one thing, I live in the ocean. A lot of people do now. Makes sense. The ocean is huge, and covers more than 70% of the planet. You humans do like to spread out, so I’m surprised it took you as long as it did. You guys started building these pods to live in, and they’re kind of weird, but you get used to it. In fact, it’s really nice.

Even way back in your time, a lot of submarines used multilayered hulls. They had an outer hull, or light hull, which gave the vessel its detailed shape, and then there was the inner pressure hull where people actually lived. It was simple, but it worked.

Then some engineers came along and decided that it would be a good idea to add a hull that could repair itself, so a final outer hull made of living tissue was added. Because the outer hull was made of living tissue anyway, the engineers decided to integrate a lot of living components into the pod design.

Only parts of a pod is alive. A lot of it is mechanical. Hell, the main power sources for these pods are small self enclosed nuclear reactors. The design is zero maintenance, though, and they produce lots of clean power. The ship even uses that power to feed itself.

While a pod does rely heavily on the reactors for energy, they also collect nutrients from the environment by eating. Energy from the reactor isn’t enough, anymore than sunlight would be. Even a plant needs to collect minerals from the outside environment after all.

As for other biological components, Spot has their own nervous system, which is also integrated with a computer system. They have muscles which are used to adjust the shape of the outer hull slightly, skin that can heal, blood vessels, and a heart, and most other organs that an animal needs to survive. Propulsion itself though is taken care of with more technological means. No tail, sorry.

You might be wondering if I’m living alone. Well, not at the moment. Spot houses about 20 other people, most of them human, unfortunately. They’re mainly a closely knit family, and some of them are polyamories. Spot’s also hanging out in a community of pods that work together kind of like a city. All together there are about 80 pods here. There’s also a central building where people can hang out and interact with each other, resupply, and just relax.

Sadly, I’m not very good at drawing and taking pictures underwater can be a little difficult. But I decided to draw a quick sketch so people can see what it’s like.

Sorry for the lack of detail, but it’s the best this poor rat-boi can do. I’m a scientist, not an artist!

As for Spot, they just kind of hang out. The pods are adapted so they can do fine whether freely moving through the ocean or connected with other pods. In fact, they have their own sort of network. It’s interesting.

Now, you might be wondering if Spot is the only “pet.” A lot of people still keep cats and dogs. Smaller animals make okay pets. But there are also some lovely aquatic menageries. Wild fish swim around the city, pods of dolphins like to interact as well. We’ve learned to communicate with them pretty well.

Local security keeps dangerous predators away, but there are plenty of more docile sharks and rays around. They’re really fun to watch too. There are actually a lot of relatively peaceful sharks. In fact, some of the biggest sharks like the basking shark and whale shark actually live off plankton!

Anyway, I think that’s all for now. I’ll get back in touch with all of you as soon as I can, assuming that I didn’t just destroy the timeline. Eh, I’m sure it’s fine. — Shuu

Notice: Shuu is a character which was created as part of the DaSGoE Media brand.

Sci Fi

About the author

Daniel Goldman

Visit my homepage. I am a polymath and a rōnin scholar with interests in many areas, including political science, economics, history, and philosophy. I've been writing about all of these topics, and others, for the past two decades.

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