Beautiful Baby

Sami was closing up for the day. There had been a trickle of customers coming to the 3D Unit, mainly single mums working as designers and who needed prototypes fabricated, builders and plumbers wanting small components printed, and people who wished to create unusual gifts. There weren’t that many of them though. People were still confused and a little scared of 3D printing. Every new technology takes time to catch on.

However things were shifting in the right direction. The rest of the Transfer Station was busier than ever. There was less trash and more recycling. The next step was material recovery, where the stuff people bought that they had no further use for could be transformed into something else immediately.

A small black car was speeding through the Industrial Park. He watched it take quick sharp turns as it came towards the Transfer Station. He had unbolted one gate already, and could race to pull both gates closed, but he decided to wait and see who it was.

A young woman lowered her window and said, “Hello, are you still open?”

“Well, it’s six o’ clock and I was just closing.”

“Dr Bungawalla sent me. He said I should see you.”

Sami favourite recent project had been modelling the doctor’s brain. He pulled open the gates and said, “Come on in, let’s see what we can do.”

The woman was distracted and kept looking away from Sami. She bumped her head on the door frame and almost fell out of her car. She had an awkward shape. Was she pregnant beneath her big coat? Sami dare not ask for fear of getting it wrong, which he knew was the ultimate faux pas.

She said “I’m not sure. I’m not sure if I should do this.” She looked weak, about to fall down. Sami felt he should do something.

He said “Would you like to come into the office and sit down? I’ll make you some tea.”

He checked his phone while the kettle boiled. No word from his pal, Shama, who was driving him to Strattus tonight. Cell reception at the Transfer Station was terrible.

After taking a few sips of tea, she said, “I’ve seen my baby in a scan. She’s beautiful, so beautiful, but I really want to hold her now. I want to see her in the nursery, to see if she will like what I have done for her. To see if she likes all the toys and colours.”

Sami’s previous job as Guru Baba’s assistant had brought him into contact with troubled people. This woman was really hurting about something. Sami was an expert listener, and where possible, a helper.

He said, “I am sure you have made a beautiful nursery. What colour is it?”

“It’s mainly pink and yellow. Pink because it’s such a soft colour, it reminds me of buds and petals, and yellow is like sunshine, so happy, so happy always.”

“It sounds really lovely. I’m sure your baby will adore it. When is she due to grace our world?”

The woman handed Sami her ultrasound scans, both as pictures and on disk. “Can you please make a model of her for me?”

“It would be better to wait till she is born. We can scan her then. Right now the spatial resolution and image depth of the embryo scans are…”

“She’s not an embryo! She’s a baby! Scale her up! I don’t care about spatial resolution or imaging depth. I don’t care about anything.” She began crying and said, “I do care. I do care. I do care. Please make her for me.”

Five messages came through on Sami’s cell phone. Dr Bungawalla had been trying to call him all day, to tell him about his patient whose baby had just died inside her.

Sami realized that this model was the only baby she would ever hold. He decided to work all night to deliver her baby the next morning.

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