By Chet Yarbrough
Narration by: Macleod Andrews
Mitosis is a short story offered by Audible.com for free; presumably with the blessing of Brandon Sanderson. (Sanderson is a creative writing professor and science fiction author.) Free is a qualified term. Human nature suggests (particularly to democratic capitalists) that nothing in life is free.
Sanderson’s creative writing talent is displayed in Mitosis. It is a story about beings that freely duplicate themselves. However free-to-duplicate has a cost in Sanderson’s story; the cost is a weakening of the original and each materialized being that is duplicated. The duplicates plan to rule the population of a city called New Chicago. Their plan is foiled by a human that loves Chicago hot dogs. He is an employee of New Chicago’s “Epic” strongman.
SCIENCE BREAK: WHAT MITOSIS REALLY IS————-
New Chicago is a city filled with “beaten down” humans who are being tyrannized by an autocratic duplicate being. Humans are afraid the duplicating ruler will return; even though the original leader has been killed by Sanderson’s “hot dog- loving” hero.
The “hot dog lover” sees a suspicious character in a crowd of humans and finds it is an original; preparing to become a new ruler of the city. This original is seeking the “hot dog lover” because he wants to know how the former ruler, a fellow duplicator, was killed. Sanderson’s story is about the current ruler’s plan to rule versus the hero’s plan; each has their own idea of what New Chicago should become; i.e. a City ruled by the current “Epic” ruler or the aspirant duplicator. Differences in rule of these two autocrats are partially revealed by the “hot dog lover’s” and new duplicator’s actions.
All rulers of governments and organizations use the word free in a qualified way. Freedom in all systems of society is qualified. The short story titled Mitosis is offered for free because it encourages Audible.com’ membership and purchase of Sanderson’ books. What is not a qualification of free for Audible.com’ membership or Sanderson’ book purchase is human being’s freedom-to-choose. Freedom-to-choose is the crux of being free in any society.
There is a price associated with the word free. The price is consequence of choice. However, freedom-to-choose is an unqualified iteration of the word free. Human beings are free when they have freedom-to-choose. In an equitable society, freedom-to-choose is only qualified by physical and mental consequence of action; i.e. physical consequence might be execution by government while mental consequence might be suicide.
What remains qualified in the word free in Sanderson’s short story is that both rulers, the present and aspiring ruler, are “Epic” beings. The inference in the story is that one ruler believes in freedom of choice; the other does not. Mitosis is a nice short story; written by a good author with a great imagination.