The polar hoods floated in the thin dusty air. A storm had just packed its bags and left for the Northern hemisphere. The sun played a spoilsport as it kept doing a peek-a-boo from behind the clouds. Marico vehemently looked at the tilted rays as they kept poking themselves through the frothy masses. He wanted to make most of his horseplay before the sun came out in full strength and ate the frost like a greedy, famished monster. His lanky body jumped gracefully in and out of the craters filled with little water. This extra-terrestial opportunity was granted to him after a whole fortnight. The lockdown was forced on him, citing bad weather conditions. But now that he was out, no stellar forces could stop him.

“Maricoooo..” Mama Maria called him using her wireless mike. The call would only knock on his eardrums after a good 10-15minutes. This was a routine. But the tiring part was a playfully engrossed toddler would respond to it only after a tardy wait of 60 minutes. 

“Marico is growing naughtier by the day. His energy has become exceptional, making it difficult for me to catch hold of that little tinker.” Mama Maria complained incessantly while vividly blinking her long black eyelashes.

 Though she spoke at the speed of light and with the intensity of UV radiations, Mama Maria was well aware that all the verbal commotion had fallen on hairy, convoluted and unwilling to listen, ears. Papa Meesho was as usual busy with his flasks and test tubes. The titrations continued day and night adding to Mama Maria’s agony. How she wished the desolate chemistry lab would produce some compounds to ignite the lost spark in their marriage! Papa Meesho was neutral to her complaints but his cold blue litmus always turned red in love for his son Marico. He knew, Marico like him, had an experimental but innovative attitude in his genes. Somewhere in the craters, he would be finding the solutions to the earth’s geographic problems. 

“Mamaaaaa…” the whirlpool had arrived to the living cubicle. “Yo mom, what’s cooking in those pots?” Marico with his red soiled hands tried to lift the steaming lids. 

“Ouch!” Mama Maria’s ladle hit him hard on his bony knuckles.

“How I am going to wash this obstinate dust, only the Milky Way knows! Straight to the washing cubicle or you starve for a week.” A day of gastronomic abstinence would not do any good to the spoiled brat as he had sufficient algal pie in his baggy reserves.


This story had to begin with Once Upon A Time, because the best stories do, of course. Also as a good story ends with a moral, so will this. Not wasting much time, let’s start from the beginning. 

  So, Once Upon A Time, there lived a close knit family of three, the Martians. Meesho Martian was a space scientist with the MASA(Mars Astro Space Agency) as the Head scientist of project Mission Earth. His wife, Maria Martian was an agricultural scientist. She was one of the pioneers of the Red Revolution, where she equipped the farmers to grow potatoes with the help of water vapour. But after the birth of Marico she had to take a sabbatical and occasionally grew potatoes in her backyard to make fries for the family. Mothers, anywhere in the universe served one sole purpose-upbringing! So Marico was the potato of her eye whom she had implanted at the mercy of Meesho’s ever busy sperms. She had become a mom when MOM from India was welcomed in the outer fencing of her homeland called Mars. Marico had grown to learn A for asteroids than A for apple.  A very realistic and down to mars upbringing, for real asteroids could be shown, not real apples. Meesho had taught him to hold a telescope first. The pencil came much later after Maria’s real world anxieties set in. Meesho continuously reminded Maria that this wasn’t earth which had stereotyped rules and regulations. He had to occasionally but sternly warn her against reading earthLy material left by the American, Russian and more recently by Indian satellites. He was apprehensive that least his son imbibes the knowledge of the Blue Planet. The whole galaxy was testimony to the vandalization, the occupants of earth were comporting on their motherland. Meesho didn’t want his son to learn the nasty ways of the Homo Sapiens, forget following them. 

One night as he sat staring at the two moons- Phobos and Deimos, he wondered what was to happen to his two satellites who hovered over him for love, attention and security, if he had to someday leave their aura of gravity. In the dingy mysterious cellar of his muddled mind, lay a realisation. An oath he had taken in front of many glittering stars to save the Milky Way from the atrocities of man. It was time he had to make the solemn promise operational and shift his existence to the earth. The watery planet was already flooded as a result of global warming. The clouds were bursting to emancipate their years of impending remorse. The undercover agents of mRAW( Mars Research and Analysis Wing) had brought news that some wise, earthly scientist were contemplating to shift base to Mars. The Martians had no qualms in welcoming their neighbours but man considered them ALIENS! And it was a known fact, a time and again tested behaviour of man to instantly destroy the extant of things alien to him. Kill it and then work on observing, restructuring it in vitro. Meesho didn’t want his own genes to be mutated and mutilated to suit man’s gene pool. So he had to soon leave for the hostile lands. But how was he going to break this news to the loves of his life? It would shatter their survival, for he may never shine back. 


 Now let’s work on some moral building. Oh or was it spilled a little before? Even if it was who doesn’t love a happy ending? At least I do. So now rocketing our way towards a happy ending.

The Amoebas had no cognizance of his arrival in their ecosystem. They continued to crawl on available living surfaces. Somewhere, a moss was withering on a rock. Green to brown to black, the colours of life altered. This wasn’t what he had read. 

“Schools don’t teach you the real ABC.” He smiled to himself as he fondly remembered the wise man’s words.

The sea urchin gasped for some oxygen. Though there was water everywhere, there were little to no traces of oxygen in it. He immediately released a liberal amount of oxygen from the cylinder he had carried from home. The urchin gulped and swayed in the water current as if happy by the new signs of humanity bestowed on it. HUMANITY?  Was it? Could he live up to those standards of destruction? Or should he just follow MARSITY? 

Marico was finally on the dreamland called EARTH. He so looked forward to this visit that his father had made him visualise centuries ago. At night, when they would open the universe atlas, his favourite chapter would be the life on earth. Evolution of life from inorganic molecules to organic living molecules amazed him. He was in awe of man’s scientific and industrial revolution. The cultures, civilizations and socialization of a brainy animal were glorified to him in the classroom. But what he was seeing today was the real dirty picture. Man in his greed to conquer had eaten up his own habitat. The earth was melting like an ice cube. No. It was crying like a betrayed mother. A mother who’s most pricey offspring had scarred her. She had lost her every single intelligent baby in the world wars. She never minded the transformation of a herbivore to a carnivore. Where the food chain was considered the choice was still acceptable but as man began to chain other animals for selfish motives, her heart wrenched at their feeble plight. Someday there would be light she thought. But darkness now roared. Cannibalism was the only option for man to survive and he licked the blood of his own progeny. To produce and reproduce, finally eat the outcome was the new version of Darwin’s ‘survival of fittest’ theory. 

“Hunger is the greatest emotion where the heart loses its battle.” His father’s sagacious words found their dictionary today. As his great father had come here on a mission as an undercover agent, Marico too was on a mission. MISSION IMPOSSIBLE-To create new genetic versions of humans! The extinct species had to be cultured in medium again. He wasn’t sure how but definitely he knew why. Man though irresponsible knew the best traits of the trade. He was equipped with the qualities to rule the universe. If he didn’t make a come back , there would be actual star wars.

On the lonely planet, Marico searched for a dingy cellar like the one his father owned. There was no dearth of place but the cellar he was in quest of didn’t seem to appear on his Moogle site. Network signals were weak maybe, he thought and with the click of a button sprung a long telescope fitted microscopically in one of his eyes. This was a gift from his beloved father who had transformed Marico into a robotic wonder. But this robot had a beating heart of compassion.

The telescope helped Marico locate an island with a huge but ruined mansion. He happily hopped into his spaceship and geared his way straight to the mansion. The building though dilapidated gave an aura of being important to the world. The connectivity here seemed great and to research on his new home, Marico merged the Moogle into Google.

The White House is the official residence and workplace of the president of the United States. It is located at 1600 Pennsylvania…… 

“Wow! So this happens to be the most important place and there can be no better place than this to kick start my most important work!” Multiple lights beeped on Marico’s body exhibiting his excitement. Least did he know, this was the place from where the whole drama of destruction had started.

Marico found himself a gloomy room surrounded by red bricked walls with broken ladders hanging from its partially collapsed roofs. The ladders seemed to be connected to the skies.

“Staircase to heavens!” he laughed at his own lame joke. Taking a deep breath of CO2, he started to dissemble himself. He was tired of walking with a full body like the humans.

“Gosh! How do they carry themselves for so long!” He remarked, placing his weary head on a table with red and white checked drape. He didn’t have much time but the crooked wall clock didn’t tell him how much either. He had to prepare the historic Primordial Soup which would create a foundation for birth of The Sapien! He quickly referred to notes of Oparin and Haldane, the pioneers of this experiment. The flask, electrodes, heating and cooling chambers were set up. He was ready to begin his humanly experiments.

Day and night, he worked on combining methane, CO2, ammonia and hydrogen in various proportions and treated them to electric sparks. Attempts failed but he discovered new ways at mixing the elements. On one bright white day, the eureka moment had arrived. He could see living cells floating in his broth of life. Excitedly, he called Mama Maria to announce his first victory.

“Not that I am not happy for you my son. But my grey experience of centuries tells me, this isn’t a good news.” She spoke feebly but firmly. “I have already lost a wing to this race of humanity. I don’t wish to be deprived of the other. Come back, my flight.” Mothers, anywhere in the universe care for only one thing- their babies! Marico knew after Meesho’s failed earth expedition due to which he failed to return, Mama Maria had gone into a shell. The potatoes too no longer gave her joy. But being his father’s adamant son, Marico hung up giving her weak assurances and continued on his mission.

In months, the soup would give rise to healthy green saplings. Food for his man would be ready. Diligently, his smart brains worked on making the sequence of genes by selecting the right amino acids. Very carefully, he worked on eliminating the sequence which gave rise to greedy, insensitive genes. His new man had to be caring, satisfied and compassionate to the core. Not that the previously one wasn’t but some mutations had lead to his destruction. 

Marico now worked on making tissues from cells and organs from tissues. Like a sculptor at work, he craved masterpieces of lanky fingers with fine detailing of nails on them, pointed but non egoistic noses and opened eyes with broader vision. How could he do so? Simply, by looking at his own image in a mirror hanging on the red bricked walled. 

“After all, our relations with people are just an extension of the self- reflections we see in them.” Meesho’s  words reverberated in his ears. How terribly he missed his father!

BOOM….On one fateful day, as he dozed off due to months of arduous labour, his flask containing the organs exploded. There were fingers hanging everywhere. His own telescope jetted out while his face was left with injury marks. The accident was short lived but the effects were going to have long term serious consequences which would be known to him in the immediate future. Right now as he bandaged his wounds, he could recall one sharp anecdote of his father, ‘a wink of negligence could destroy the potential discovery in blink of time.’ Gathering himself up, the undeterred Marico began his Mission Now Possible.

The sperm was united with the ovum. The first test tube baby of the 70th century was taking shape. Marico congratulated himself on being the father. The fingers, nose, mouth were slowly added to his baby. “Whoa! It’s a supreme feeling to be a creator!” Marico gleamed with happiness and pride as he held his first human baby in arms. 

“Marico, the God on Earth, I will be known as. My children, be called as the Martians and not humans for they will follow the laws of Marskind and not Mankind. I’m their only father, the father of universe!” Pride cramped in Marico’s distorted nose. Though his mission was accomplished, he refused to leave for his planet. He enjoyed making babies and being their respected sole creator. Mama Maria’s pleas fell on deaf ears. Her other wing was numbed and paralysed in greed.

As you sow, so shall you reap. The laboratory blast had started showing its effects. The fumes of overly cooked broth containing the elements of greed and authority had been inhaled by Marico. But he was not the only one who was affected. The amino acids had rearranged their chains. Unknowingly, unwantedly the genes of false pride and greed had taken root in his babies too. As his test tube babies grew, they questioned their creator on his existence, for he never looked like them. He seemed alien to them.  

Once he overheard them whispering to each other, “This alien could be a threat to our survival. We need to do something about it.”

Marico was shocked. His headless body trembled for he knew what that ‘something’ meant. It was time he assembled himself and left for the red pastures. He reignited the engine of his old spaceship with a heavy heart. He was going to miss his progeny and maybe even die pining in their memory, like Mama Maria. As the spaceship was out of earth’s orbit, he once again thought of his father’s predicament, ‘Life anywhere in the universe is a karmic cycle.’

Not a happy ending right? But definitely a real one. Your narrator requests you to foresee the future and happily push aside the poor storyline. Your interpretation, will be her moral. 


Author’s Note: Dear readers, this was an attempt to whip up a science fiction based on the following things that I could see in the image:

A melting ice cube, red bricked walls, a man’s face with bandages, a beam protruding from his eye, a bowl of soup, raining clouds, fingers hanging, etc.

For primordial soup, Oparin- Haldane theory and Charles Darwin Theory:


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Aparna Nagda
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