7. Invisible Factories (Genetically Modified); The Three Sons

Togktamish, a rich Tartar, who had three sons by his sole wife Turkan-Katan, consigned to the Cadi, (a local judge) on the eve of his death, a sealed will, in which he declared to be the heir of all his property whoever of his children should prove best that he was son of Togktamish, and of their mother, who was still living. The Cadi knew not on what to resolve in this perplexed affair, and he proposed to leave it to the judg­ment of the Sultan Togrul. The latter was about to set out for the chase; he therefore ordered the disputants to bring without delay their father’s mummy.

He caused it to be set up at a certain distance, and then presented his bow to the eldest son, saying:

“He among you who shall, with this arrow, hit exactly the heart of the deceased, shall be recognized as son and heir of Togktamish,  for it is impossible to remove the difficulty in any other manner.”

The eldest son took aim, and his arrow struck the breast of his father. The second took the bow and succeeded as well as the first. Then the youngest bent the bow; but, at the moment of taking aim, he let it fall from his hands, began to weep, threw himself at the Sultan’s feet, and said :

“My lord, do not be angry if thy slave re­fuses to obey thy orders. I remember at this moment the numerous benefits I have received from my father. He loved me so tenderly, he showed me so much kindness; he treated me always with as much affection as if I had been, his only son! How can I be so ungrateful as to wound him after his death?”

The Sultan raised him, kissed him on the forehead, and said:

“Thou hast best proved that thou art the son of the excellent Togktamisch : therefore thou shalt be his only heir. But let the two eldest be sold as slaves; for they have proved by their ingratitude that they are not the true sons of a noble father.”

Jeff continued absent mindedly watching the automatic mixer spin in the bottom of the liquid filled beaker.

The senior fellow that was directing Jeff’s project, used his magnetic pass card to allow himself into the lab.

The buzz of the electronic door lock brought Jeff out of his trance. He had no idea how long he had been thinking about the story of the three sons.

The Director asked Jeff “Are you alright?”

Although he was surprised at The Director’s question he answered “Sure, why do you ask?”

“I saw you on the security camera down in the lobby and you have not moved a muscle in fifteen minutes” answered The Director rather sheepishly. He hated to admit that he was watching Jeff on the closed circuit TV.

Jeff noticed the uncomfortable position that The Director was in so he offered a light hearted escape route by saying “That camera has been watching over our safety for two years – – – and now it has turned on me?”

The two men laughed nervously, both realizing that the tense moment had been blunted.

Jeff felt an urge to tell The Director what he had been thinking about. When he was through relating the story he asked the director “Do you think there is a moral in there? I mean besides the obvious one.”

“No, I don’t see one” replied The Director. “Do you?”

“No, yet there is something within that story that seems to be unanswered” responded Jeff.

TOMORROW:  8. El Rakham the Enchanter

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About Waldo "Wally" Tomosky

I am proud of my work life (not the jobs, just the work).  Bait monger  Lawn mower  Paper boy  Windshield cleaner in a drive-in theater (if you don't know what a drive-in theater is there is no sense in you reading any farther)  Snack shack janitor in a drive in theater (ditto for drive-in theater)  Milling machine clean-up boy in a tool and die shop  Plastic injection press operator  Centurion in the US Army  Factory hand  Apprentice boy  Tool and die maker  Software user manual writer  Computer programmer  Ex-patriate par excellence  Engineering manager  Software test manager  Retiree  University administrator  System analyst  Retiree (2nd try)  Licensed amateur paleontologist  Retiree (3rd try)  Shovel bum (archaeology)  Retiree (4th try)  Delivery driver  Retiree (5th try)  Graduate student (skipped AA and BA due to the level of difficulty)  Retiree (finally got the drift of it) I have been writing for fourteen years and have fifteen books on Amazon/Kindle. Some horror, some twisted, some experimental, some essay and a few historical. I think that now I will really, really, really retire and just write. Lets see if I can do retirement correctly this time!
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