Ylanathajo Family Tree

Prompt: Write a scene in which your character from your previous exercise uncovers a secret about his or her family history, including the true meaning of his or her name. End it with a cliffhanger.

Tobalen knew that he was born from an artificial uterus in one of Mother’s birthing pods; everyone was. Well, all the other human children were at least. The androids and other robots that outnumbered the organic life forms (“orgs” in the nascent parlance of Trappist-1d) were assembled in a neighboring facility, though not often these days since most of them had been put together long before the process of producing orgs could begin. What Tobalen didn’t realize was that Mother had decided that she would give all her children, carbon and silicon based, a last name of her invention. “Ylanathajo” was the last word ever received from Earth, widely believed to be the result of the communications operator’s body collapsing on the keyboard after being shot by an enemy soldier. Ylanathajo was the inadvertent swan song of terrestrial humanity and an appropriate exclamation to start humanity anew. Ylanathajo! Humanity is dead: long live Humanity! Ylanathajo! Let us never forget the errors of Earth as we build a new world together.

Of the twenty four embryonic colonization missions, only eighteen reached their destination planets and only fifteen successfully landed with their embryos intact and usable. All human life on earth was exterminated millennia ago, but now there were fifteen second chances spread throughout the Milky Way. Each command computer would transport enough genomic information to recreate a whole ecosystem and an army of nanobots designed to harvest resources and build progressively larger infrastructure to support a new civilization. By the time Tobalen was born, terrestrial orgs were established well enough to maintain themselves on seven planets, some well enough that Mother incorporated their history into her lessons.

Tobalen was a very curious child.

Anagram Character: Tobalen Ylanathajo

Prompt: Rearrange the letters of your first and last name into a new name and describe this character. 

Tobalen was conceived on Earth in 2037 and born on Trappist 1D four thousand years later from a robotic womb. He was one of the first wave of children that Mother delivered that year, though he would grow up with tens of thousands of brothers and sisters. Selected for their intelligence, health, and generally clean genome, his gene donors were a Senegalese obstetrician and a Danish triathlete and nutritionist. He was a beautiful child with light cocoa skin, inky black hair, emerald green eyes, and long slender fingers that made him a natural pianist from a very early age. Mother was still building Home City when he was young, so he spent many days learning about human history and the Universe inside a virtual classroom or playing Beethoven inside The Nursery. He spent a lot of time apart from the other children reading or wandering through the massive greenhouses with his puppy watching the many species of birds, lizards, and other creatures whose genome had come from so far away inside a tiny probe. Tobalen was particularly talented with languages so he often sat near the ponds in the greenhouse speaking to the frogs in Danish or calling to the birds in French, the language his gene donors might have spoken. Officially, Mother insists all her children learn to speak English, Spanish, and Mandarin Chinese, but Tobalen had a thirst to learn more. His interests were diverse and his academic talents impressive, though he was a very clumsy child which explains why he would spend far more time reading under his favorite maple tree in the temperate forest dome than playing soccer with other children.