After working with the raw materials of life in the charnel houses, I discovered that there was more to the state of being alive than the simple physical constructs of bones, tissue and organ. However, try as I might, I could not place it. Modern science had not given me the secret and my instruments did not give me the power to look deeply enough to discover this secret.
It may seem obvious to the normal person that once a spark of life is created from a seed, be it the seed of a vegetable or the seed of an animal, the growth of that life is somehow predestine. Each and every one is unique and it is impossible to mix and match between species, let alone members within a given species. What is this germ of an idea that makes each life and individual? I am a man of science and say it must exist in the structure of the matter, not just a God-given trait. There has to be a scientific explanation for how this process works.
Yet science failed me.
I spent countless candles burning as I stayed awake at night trying to discover this secret. One night, in the darkest hour past midnight, my childhood fascination of the books of alchemy came back. For is not alchemy actually the grandfather of science?
I once more brought out the ideas of those dark philosophers and delved into places that the human mind is not meant to explore. There are secrets hidden from the eye of normal man, and science is often afraid to tread those paths. But I? I was willing to take any path possible to reach my goal. Did I go too far? Perhaps, but only God and history will know.
I was soon rewarded. There is a germ in all living tissues that is so small the most powerful tools cannot make it out, but I found it. I divined how it worked, conjured the secret of life itself.
Using the dark secrets I learned, I devised a matrix that would replace the basic component that makes each life unique. I needed only the power of nature to flow through the body I had created to spread the matrix and give it the spark to reawaken.
My Adam, the first of the new species I planned on creating, lay on a cot in the corner of my room. I had turned this new man outside in and inside out, reversing the polarity of his life force to try to send time backwards, instead of from life to death, from death to life. Tubes of fluid came and went from the dead mass of the body. I used the heat of a flame to create a temperature difference to cause the fluid to flow. I only had to wait for bold nature to cooperate with my plan.
Oh mighty Zeus, give me a thunderbolt so that the child of my mind might waken!
And yet for many dreary days we had only rain, ceaseless rain, with not a bolt to crack the sky.
After days and days of rain, water started to seep into the room. Despite keeping the flames going to warm the fluids, I began to smell the mold of my failure. When the lightning did come, the new life did not stir. I fell into a deep depression and had no senses at all.
Later, I awoke and peeked into the room. I saw an oily, yellow eye slide open. Fear ran down my spine, fear and revulsion of the hideousness, the wrongness, that I had created. Despite the pouring rain, I ran into the street without a hat or a coat. The door remained open, the inside was let out and the outside let in.
With all apologies to Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley.
(Note – I read Frankenstein once over 30 years ago, so I’m sure this doesn’t match the original, but it is a new take on it, with the idea of genetics thrown in…)