Life on Mars: It’s a Girl!
by Kara Race-Moore
Associated Press, March 30th, 2036
“Mother Earth is going to be, like, an aunt now.”
That was Elizabeth Park’s comment as she and hundreds other gathered in Times Square this morning as news filtered out from the Mars Exploration and Colonization Company that Dr. Harper Kennedy’s labor was coming to a close. Holding a large poster that read ‘Hi From Earth!’ Ms. Park said, “She might be the first Martian, but she still feels like everyone’s baby, you know?”
When the tweet from the MECC that Dr. Kennedy had safely delivered a healthy baby girl, the crowd erupted into cheers as if the clock had just struck midnight on New Year’s Eve. Parties have taken place around the world, both in large public areas and in people’s home, as the whole human race takes pride in that one little baby foot taking a huge step forward for all of us in becoming a true spacefaring species.
Dr. Kennedy sent a message soon after the first tweet, thanking everyone on Earth for their support and goodwill. “It was good to know I had a whole planet rooting for me,” she said in the short video, proudly holding the baby so everyone could see the little girl who caused such a stir.
At the official press conference this afternoon the MEEC reported that both mother and daughter are well and healthy, although both are said to be tired. Weighing in at eight pounds, two ounces (Earth weight), this small representative of the human race has charmed the entire planet.
In celebration of the first human to be born on the planet Mars there having been fireworks going on in major cities around the world, similar to when the Original Seven of the first manned mission to Mars landed twelve years ago.
The White House, the London Eye, the Eiffel Tower the Empire State Building and the Shanghai Tower have all been lit up with bright pink flood lights, U.S. Navy sailors lined up on the deck of the aircraft carrier PCU Enterprise to spell out ‘GIRL’, and the International Space Station sent a video of the crew singing ‘Happy Birthday,’ with ‘baby girl’ substituted where the name should go.
The baby’s name has not been announced yet, but the nickname ‘Princess of Mars’ has already been bestowed on this furthest born American by most of the media. Much discussion has already taken place on what name Dr. Kennedy will pick. ‘Virginia,’ ‘Eve,’ and ‘Ares’ have all been popular suggestions, although more serious speculation has cited ‘Abigail’ for Dr. Kennedy’s mother. Many have also suggested ‘Juan’ to honor Dr. Juan Yang, since it was her pioneering breakthroughs that lead to the useable EmDrive that has allowed travel between Earth and Mars to now only take between two and four months, depending on planetary positions.
Dr. Calvin ‘FirstStep’ FitzSimmons, having walked first on Mars, is rumored to most likely be the first godfather of Mars. Either Dr. Katenka Mikhaylova or Dr. Ysabel Rodriguez are likely to be named the godmother.
The father, Gregory Petros, Dr. Kennedy’s ex-husband, washed out of the colony program the same time as their divorce and came back to Earth when she was still in her first trimester. Reports are coming in that he was found drunk in a bar when the news was broadcasted.
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Kara Race-Moore studied history at Simmons College as an excuse to read about the soap opera lives of British royals. She worked in educational publishing, casting the molds for future generations’ minds, but has since moved into the more civilized world of litigation. Ms. Race-Moore first came to science fiction through Anne McCaffrey and is still grateful to her for showing an impressible teenager that woman can be in and write science fiction too.
KJ Hannah Greenberg new book, Friends and Rabid Hedgehogs, just launched. This collection of short fiction includes a work initially published in Flash Fiction Press; “A Line Producer’s Beneficent Notes”. It is available at Amazon in Kindle and print.
4 thoughts on “Life on Mars: It’s a Girl!”
Joyful. I’m relieved that there was no tragic twist.
Interesting bookend to the previous entry, “Mr. Hurley…”‘, focusing on end of life. Pleasantly witty, but wobbles a bit between being the narrator’s reaction and a news release. I found the latter “voice” more interesting. The wry ending citing the father’s reaction, provides an astringent contrast that I enjoyed.. AGB
The ending is what makes it in my opinion.
The beginning confused me. The Associated Press tag made me think it was a news story, but why would a news story begin with, ‘Mother Earth is going to be, like, an aunt now’?
Maybe just the date, without the A.P. tag would work better.
It’s a good story, although we never find out the baby’s name. It should be farthest-born American, not furthest, BTW.
It’s got a great ending,