continued from previous
Olivia was watching the news on The Line while she waited for John to arrive. A fresh batch of samples was sitting on her benchtop.
“The giant jellyfish swarm, now the size of Texas, keeps growing. Experts are unsure just how big it could get, given what they describe as ideal conditions for the organism: an unusually warm ocean, and an unlimited supply of phytoplankton. Some of the direst predictions have been made by marine biologists who have been studying the unusual lifecycle of the jellyfish for many years. Jonathan was one of the first experts to arrive at the scene, when his boat accidentally stumbled into the edge of the giant swarm. He spoke to us briefly:”
“Under ideal conditions, in theory they can multiply forever. This is because during the polyp stage of its lifecycle, the organism essentially begins to clone itself, a process which can give rise to an unlimited number of progenies. Very few large organisms are so efficient in asexual reproduction, which is why under the right conditions, jellyfish populations can literally explode. Whereas we do see occasional population explosions every few years on a seasonal basis, the one we are seeing now is unprecedented in size. It is historic. We are in uncharted waters. Anything is possible”
“Ok…” said the Kardashian deep fake. “I mean..that’s a lot of jellyfish!. Stay tuned as we continue to monitor the situation. We’ll keep you posted on the speed and direction of the swarm.”
John poked his head through the door. He paused for a second, as his eyes took a spin around the room. This used to be his lab a decade ago. A previous lifetime in academia was suddenly flashing before his eyes, until Olivia cut through his throwback daydream:
“Morning to you. I see we’ve had some interesting developments overnight.”
“You mean these guys over there?” – Olivia pointed to the samples of jellyfish that had arrived along with the phytoplankton.
John kneeled in front of the aquarium-size container:
“They are so lucky. They’ve been selected to survive. So many other species haven’t. This is the future of Earth, right inside this little aquarium. But there will be more survivors, I’m sure of it.”
to read from the beginning, go here
(from the upcoming novel A New Earth) – PRE-ORDER NOW:
George is an author, researcher, podcast host, chemist, molecular biologist and food scientist. You can follow him on Twitter @99blackbaloons , listen to his Spotify podcast George reads George, sign up for blog alerts below, or enjoy his books