"I think I'd like to be blonde," she says, pulling at her alizarine locks. "And tall," she adds. Her petite form is curled up on an ornate Victorian chaise lounge. "It'd be fun." She says from in between the pages of a brightly coloured book on reincarnation. Her fraternal twin is slumped in a rosewood inlaid chair, loaded with synthetic kif. "Sure, why not," he agrees without much effort.
The Lawyer records their wishes and asks about their holdings. "The same, as always," is the answer from the languid boy, and they both give their biometric signatures. The Lawyer covers the tablet with both hands. "The documents are in order. The terms of your suicide are agreed upon. You may proceed."
"Ship, take us up." She looks at the Lawyer with large emerald eyes and winks. From the beginning of the wink to the meeting of the eyelashes, the luxury liner non omnis moriar was in direct communication with no more than three hundred international security protocol and automated custom agents. In the time it took for the eyelashes to brush delicately against each other and move apart, the ship's security certificates were inspected and approved. As the upper eyelid swept upward, the non omnis moriar shot straight up on a thin line of tortured ions, boosted to bonecrushing velocities by the strange quantum alchemy of its engines.
The ship's occupants were protected by the same weird technology which the people made very well with very little understanding of how it really worked. The Lawyer follows his clients to the cargo hold, passing brass chandeliers that hang low in the narrow hallway whose holovid gasflames cast convincing shadows on the green velvet wall. He steps around and over the clothes the twins shed. Everything gleams or glistens or glows. It is a relief for the Lawyer when they leave the cloying opulence for the space and functional austerity of the cargo area. The twins proceed to the center of the large space and begin to kiss, nude and oblivious to the discomfort of their attorney, who remains behind in the airlock.
The Lawyer is witnessing, as he has witnessed hundreds of other deaths. He doesn't like it, but demand is high and the pay is good. The decadence of today's youth has soured him, and he has seen so many vulgarities and abominable acts that the actions of the twins are small potatoes in comparison. The Lawyer smiles at the archaic phrase and watches as the boy lifts his sister onto himself. He wishes retirement would hurry up.
But, as always, he wonders if it would be different if he didn't have the genetic deformity that denied him the luxury others enjoyed. The implant, installed in the cerebellum immediately following birth, in a procedure as routine as a circumcision, was essentially a recording device for the entire genetic code, including memory and physical alterations. If one could afford it, they could rollback to a previous version of themselves. The exorbitantly wealthy could afford the resurrection fees and engaged in astonishing sprees of debauchery that often culminated in death. A thousand deaths.
The cargo doors open and the twins are swept out, locked together from womb to grave, while the Lawyer waits for the terms of their Will to commence. He looks at his watch. He gives it a minute before the dollbabies down in London begin to fill with the proteomic fluid coded with the specific genetic attributes as defined in the will. Then it will start all over again. He checks the timetable for the day in his tablet. Up next is hiking in the Great Russian Ursine Sanctuary.
It's going to be a long day, he thinks as the ship touches down in London.