“I see you’ve got the full package,” the midwife said, securing the tag around the tiny wrist “The monitor’s there.” They stared at the screen. The language readout wouldn’t kick in yet but the emotion feed was already hypnotic — colours and shapes slipping in time with the breathing. They wanted to preserve that moment and then realised, like the hospital bill, that was already taken care of: archived, the start of the eighteen-year contract. He turned his daughter’s tag round and read the name and logo. There’d be many more tags for his daughter. But he’d keep this one.
The nurse presented them with the new baby. “all fingers and toes correct,” she laughed. “Healthy heart rate and a rare pair of lungs. Congratulations.”
She smiled wearily. He was getting over the slight nausea now and blinked away a tear.
“I see you opted for the full sponsorship package,” the nurse continued, securing the blue name tag around the baby’s wrist — ‘baby Gibson/S: 28.9.22’ it read. “No need to take your card details then. I’ll leave you in peace. The monitor is over there. Call if you need anything.”
It was still in its box, recycled card and bio-plastic of course. Stylish, he thought. He’d probably go for the wearable one when his parental leave was over but, this’ll do for now. After a moment it booted up and he brought it over to her. The baby was asleep on her chest and they stared at the screen. Of course the language readout wouldn’t kick in for a while but the emotion feed was already hypnotic — colours and shapes slipped in time with the infant’s rising chest and when her eyes flickered open for a moment, the display shattered beautifully. The wanted to preserve that moment and then realised that like the hospital bill, that was already taken care of… archived to the servers, the start of the eighteen year contract.
He gently turned the blue tag round and read the family name and the company’s logo. There’d be many more tags for his daughter. But he’d keep this one.