His Eighth Sonata
You would think that having four jobs in the family would be able to support the three of us, but apparently not. As I see my sister enter the surgical facility, I contemplate all that we have lost this last week to save her life. It cost me my two hands and a leg. And my mom, well, her forest green eyes are now in some rich guys head. It's still a little unsettling seeing her with two red spheres in her eye sockets, instead of the shade that always reminded me of the first days of spring. My mom already sold her heart last year when we were far behind on rent. She claims she couldn’t even feel the plastic. At least if she avoids mirrors she can pretend not to be a Fake.
My hands however, we all agreed were our biggest sacrifice. Even without them, my fingers twitched on the table, attempting to play Prokofiev's Eighth Sonata with my now clumsy silicon fingers. Even without the piano I could tell that I could not achieve the speed of the increasing and decreasing notes. If anyone looked closely they could notice how fake my hands were, but at least they gave some illusion of reality as they were covered in a thin layer of silicone to simulate my skin. My leg, however, does no such thing. Under my skin, a collection of synthetic neural sensors connect at the base of my spine. The large metallic platelets start to appear around my lower waist, attempting to cover the ball joint underneath. A large metal tube extends, replacing my thigh then at my knee an enormous cylindrical connection allows me to move. At my foot I instead have one of the pre-designed shoes. We asked for a simple design so that could we could easily find a similar left pair for my real foot. But the fakeness of my foot is visible everywhere and we cant find anything that matches. We didn't get as good of a deal on my leg as we had on my hands.
Little Penny was going to be okay though, finally okay. She was still completely organic. No synthetic organs and no robotic limbs. She has always been so healthy, up until her appendix got infected. That's when, to combat the pain of the infection, we needed to auction off our limbs. It was pure coincidence that my leg sold so quickly. As I was getting prepared for the bioelectric surgery, one of the surgeons asked me if I was willing to sell my leg, as a man of my dimensions had just got into a car crash, and often it can be hard to find a good matching leg. The man paid me more than it was worth in his desperation to be wholly organic once again.
Even before that day everyone in our slum knew the routine. Seeing someone with a cybernetic or synthetic limb was not unusual. We are all used to seeing people slowly lose their humanity with each organ, and limb being sold until they become a mere shadow of their former selves. Eventually, even though their soul is unsold, they are so divided and dispersed that one day even that is lost. I contemplate how much my body will be able cope with before that happens to me. I...