When She Awakes

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When She Awakes: A Short Story (Short Story Singles)

Last Free Dates: 21st Aug 21 to 25th Aug 21
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...While it has an interesting premise, it isn't really part of this short story that tries to do too much....

On a faraway planet, Rachel and Yusuf are engaged to be married and are looking forward to a blissful life together. But then the news comes that her father has lost nearly everything, when the merchant ship he had shares in is seized by pirates. Deep in debt to the local Emir, they will be ruined when their debts become due shortly and everything they own will be taken. Looking through everything they own, the only thing of value is Rachel herself as women have become a valuable commodity, stored in cryosleep. As a result, she is forced to travel across country with many others women, all bound to be sold and stored. But when the train she is onboard is attacked, she has to make the harsh choice between being freed but allowing her family to lose everything and choosing to wait and hoping she fetches enough to cover all the debts knowing where she will likely spend the rest of her days.

An interesting short sci-fi story with the underlying premise of what if people become commodities to be stored and valued like gold. However, this is more the end of the plot rather than being central to it. The commoditisation of people, also known as slavery, has been in existence for a while, although the thought of keeping a person in storage like a bottle of expensive wine is intriguing. As a short story, there is only a little time to sketch out the characters, and we do get a brief idea of them, but only Rachel is really given more than a cursory glance. The writing is good and the descriptions work well, bringing the world to life in the scenes we are shown. The emotions are realistic and the decisions that drive the characters make sense and help to give sense to the events that unfold.

The main problem I have is that the underlying premise is not really a major part of the story. Curiously enough, it only appears that women have become valuable, but I don’t see any reason why this could not be extended to any person. I also hope it is the prequel to something longer as it has many hooks in it that could go further, because it currently has to much in it to really standalone and concentrate on the idea at hand. An Author’s note also gives some background to the story and where the ideas come from. If you are interested in the story, then there are several links to where you can find more of the author’s works.

Overall, while it has an interesting premise, it isn’t really part of this short story that tries to do too much.

Rating: 3
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Discussion

Nocturnal Thinker (12 July 2021)
This is interesting to read to finish the whole story. Why interesting? I'm looking forward on how Rachel is able to rescue her father from possible bankruptcy by paying all her father's financial obligations. The hijacked train where Rachel was on board paves the way to the possible solution or possible fateful bankruptcy of her father as well as her precious body and life.

sliara (13 July 2021)
The premise isn't interesting to read at all, I don't really like the plot, it's a bit hard to understand.

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