MAX HEADROOM: 20 Minutes Into the Future

Something About Her

Chapter 01: Departure and Journey

Suze opened the amniotic tank and the girl stumbled out, still not quite used to her feet. With an amused smile, Richards moved towards her to offer assistance, and in Suze's opinion to get a better eyeful.

The girl touched Richards' shirt then pointed to herself.

"Can't she speak?" the ginger-haired scientist asked, feeling mildly disappointed.

"Could you when you were first born?" Suze asked. "Give her time. If her mind is as powerful as we think, she'll learn fast enough. In the meantime, Richards, give her your shirt. It's obvious that's what she wants."

The girl soon acquired Richards' shirt, the pants from the ginger-haired scientist, and Suze's boots. Then she went to one of the computers and sat down, silently, at it. In a few minutes,

she had, as anticipated, tracked down her younger father.

Now, all she had to do was learn to speak so she could communicate with him. Deciding that online dictionary with audible pronunciation was the best way to go, she disappeared into the next room with the book, and did not emerge until the next morning, except for a few times when she got hungry or needed the restroom.

"What are my parents' names?" she asked, when she did finally emerge from her classroom.

"Bryce Lynch and Edison Carter," the grey-haired man told her. "You have no mother, only the two fathers I just mentioned. You are the product of a genetic experiment to create an ideal person."

"Ideal? In what way? And why two fathers?"

"Your two fathers were chosen for their tenacity and mental acuity." Suze told her, leaving out that they had also been chosen because it would lead to the downfall of Network 23.

"And what is my name?"

They looked at each other for a moment, each hoping the other had come up with something.

The young woman shook her head, looking like she didn't know whether to laugh or cry. "Typical scientists. Never know how to put a proper label on things. I guess it's up to me, then. The last name is easy, Lynch-Carter. I'll think of a first one on the way." She had been crossing the room as she spoke and now she stood in the doorway. "Thank you for your hospitality, but I must go."

She opened the door, stepped through, then gave a wink before closing it behind her.

Her first wish was that she was able to drive. She knew what a car was, knew about spark plugs and manifolds, but that didn't give the knowledge on how to operate such a machine. No, she would have to walk.

She knew that Bryce worked and lived at Network 23, and she could see it's looming skyscraper just a couple miles away. Deciding to go along with the nagging thought in her head that she should seek him out first, she paced the parking lot a few times until her steps felt more natural to her, then she made her way towards the network.

She was about half way to her destination, though she did not know this, when she heard music coming from a pink bus. There was time to check it out, she decided. Her fathers didn't even know she existed, so it wasn't as if she'd be arriving later than expected.

She knocked on the door, and was amused when a man in his mid fifties opened it. It wasn't that he was in his fifties that amused her. What brought a smile to her face was that he seemed to have decided that the cultural habit of changing one's entire appearance and becoming 'normal' when one reached a certain age could go and take a flying leap.

"Blank Reg," he told her. "What can I do for such a charming young lady?"

"Ahem!" a female voice uttered from within the van.

"Only joking, Dom," the near-senior punk-metal lover told his co-worker and constant companion. "But there's something about this girl. Come in," he added to the girl in question. "What is your name?"

"Trace," the girl said, having given it several blocks' worth of consideration. "My name is Trace Lynch-Carter."

Reg seemed a little taken aback by this.


"My fathers are Edison Carter and Bryce Lynch," Trace explained. "I'm on my way to see Bryce now."

"How is that possible? You've got to be how old?"

"I was born yesterday," Trace told them. "And before you get any cute ideas, I suggest you remember who my fathers are."

Excusing herself, Dom dragged Reg into a far corner of the van. "I don't know if I believe her or not." she told him.

"I know," Reg assured her. "But I just have this feeling that she's telling the truth. And besides, it'll be fun to see young Bryce's reaction to her claim. Don't you think?"

Returning to their original positions, Dominique got into the driver's side and began their journey to Network 23.

"We've decided to help you get the rest of the way," Reg told her. "The Fringes between here and Network 23 are too dangerous to cross on foot."

"Thank you," Trace said, smiling graciously at them. "Both of you."

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