THE YEAR IS 2038. Counterfeit genetic modification is readily available to all those who can afford it, worldwide. The catch: to prepare your body for genetic modification, most people need to take some dangerously addictive and destructive free-baseable drugs. The widespread use of such drugs has effectively ended their taboo, they are available everywhere and potentially much more harmful than many previously illegal substances. You need to use such drugs semi-regularly for the effects of genetic modification to hold, otherwise your body returns to its unmodified state. Desperate for drugs and sustained perfection people resort to the reverse engineered versions of the synthBio cocktails from Beijing that are ⅓ the cost of the brand name American versions.
The Journalist participates rabidly in the culture of genetic modification; she is in constant need of the drug to maintain such modifications and in constant need of money for more modifications. The Journalist reviews these genetic modifications for the ubiquitous online store — The Store, influencing the choices of billions of consumers. Though it’s a well paying job, she needs more in her life. She takes money from the brand name American manufactures to give bad reviews to the counterfeit genes being manufactured in Beijing. Though the gene modifications are biologically identical and since copyright laws still do a poor job in the global marketplace, The Journalist’s bad reviews, though highly illegal themselves, push the already wealthy American gene modification companies into even higher profit margins, with tremendous benefits to our journalist.