Arc is the new electronic SF magazine from New Scientist. Issue 1.3 is now out, featuring my story “Choosing Faces”, and it is free to download for a limited time.
There had been significant arguments and several UN resolutions regarding the genetic copyright ownership of Jesus of Nazareth. The Vatican was first but the State of Israel claimed previous right-of-way, and into the melee stepped various American pastors, the Mormons, and an obscure UFO religion claiming for Jesus under supposed evidence of alien DNA. The dispute was never resolved, but there are few conflicts one can’t resolve with a gun.
‘You will not pass,’ John the Baptist said in passable English. He was holding an Uzi and glared at me menacingly. His bones had been found in a Bulgarian monastery, on SvetiIvanIsland, in the early noughties. Church-approved cloners have since replicated him hundreds of time. He was a thick-armed, wiry Jewish man, dark skinned and humourless. I put a dart in him and was about to approach the reliquary when I found the cathedral’s real defences.
Mother Teresa, multiplied by seven.
Mother Teresa, multiplied by seven, and all of them holding big fucking machine guns.
I ducked as they opened fire.