6

I'm looking for the name of a short story I read about 20 years ago, I read this as a translation in a magazine, I sadly have no idea how it was originally published. In which the protagonist, a microbiologist or some other sort of lab worker is "prophesied" to drop a sample of pathogens, causing a wide spread epidemic.

Facing an inability to go against this foreknowledge, the scientist throws the pathogenic sample in frustration, as per the prophesy. In the world of the story certain and accurate knowledge of the future is possible. If memory serves this is construded as a "science fictional " rather than a fantastic element, but no "technobabble" is supplied, if I remember correctly.

  • Could you details what exactly is science-fictional or fantastical about this story? As for now the plot seems to be perfectly feasible in the current world any time in the past 100 years. – Edlothiad Aug 23 '18 at 7:29
  • 3
    In the world of the story certain and accurate knowledge of the future is possible. If memory serves this is construded as a "science fictional " rather than a fantastic element, but no "technobabble" is supplied, if I remember correctly. – user2182857 Aug 23 '18 at 7:40
  • Ah I understand, it's not just a "prophecy" in the pseudo-voodoo sense. Cool. – Edlothiad Aug 23 '18 at 7:46
  • User14111 - I read this as a translation in a magazine, I sadly have no idea how it was originally published. – user2182857 Aug 23 '18 at 7:50
  • About 20 years ago. – user2182857 Aug 23 '18 at 8:01
1

A bit of a long shot, but could this be one of the stories in either Machine of Death (2010) or its sequel This Is How You Die (2013), comprising the Death Machine series?

In these collections of short stories, the existence of a "death machine" is assumed, which will accurately although cryptically predict the manner of your death. For instance, "AIRPLANE" can mean dying in a plane crash, or being run over by one at an airport, or possibly choking on a toy plane.

I have only read a single story from one of the books. However, the scientific and accurate prediction did ring a bell. The timing would be a bit off, too, since the first book was published in 2010.

  • Thanks for the answer, but that's not it. I read the story ~20 years ago. – user2182857 Aug 23 '18 at 12:03

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.