Thursday, January 17, 2008

Fountain of Age

The process, what came to be called D-treatment, couldn’t make you younger. Nothing can reverse time.What D-treatment could do was “freeze” you at whatever age you had the operation done. Peter Cleary, among the first to be treated after FDA approval (the fastest FDA approval in history—mine wasn’t the only soul for sale) would stay fifty-four years old forever.

Supermodel Kezia Dostie would stay nineteen. Singer Mbamba would stay thirty. First came Hollywood, then society, then politicians, and then everybody with enough money, which wasn’t too many people because after all you don’t want hoi polloi permanently cluttering up the planet. When King James III of England was D-treated, the whole thing had arrived. Respectable as organ transplants, safe as a haircut. Unless the king was hit by a bus, Princess Monica would never succeed to the throne, but she didn’t seem to care.
The preliminary nominees for the 2007 Nebula Awards have been announced, and Nancy Kress's novella, "Fountain of Age" made the list. Elderly Max Feder lives in a not-too-distant future where treatments can rejuvenate your body and halt the aging process, neither of which is fully able to recapture the lost love of his youth. It's a great story, and you can read it for free at Asimov's Science Fiction.

If you'd like more free reads, SF Signal has collected links to most of the other nominated stories.

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3 comments:

John D. said...

Thanks, Peggy. Nothing tastes better on a Friday morning than link love. OK, maybe a cup of coffee does, but I'm not a coffee drinker so this is much appreciated. :)

arvind mishra said...

Vow!Crayonics-suspended animation,botox and now D-operation.
Seems fantastic but what is the mechanism ? Let me check out the links!
Thanks, Peggy for adding this info to my sf vocabulary.

Peggy said...

John D: I'll keep in mind you prefer links to coffee, and keep sending them your way. Definitely cheaper than Starbucks!

Arvind: In this story the mechanism plays a central role in the plot, so I didn't want to reveal it. You'll just have to read the story.