Clone Wars: Brothers in Arms

For the soldiers of the Grand Army of the Republic, life and war are indistinguishable.

To be a Clone is to be born into a sterile grey capsule suspended amidst thousands of others. The newborn floats in a sea of amniotic fluid, while thin electrode filaments drift out and brush his developing body, fastening into place with the gentle patience of roots questing for new soil.

The filaments send pulses, jarring muscles into development. They gather data on biology, chemistry and physiology, while a delicate computer adjusts the nutrient bath according to feedback. The first thing the Clones sees is a dim white light that gathers in focus and brightness as his eyes develop. The flash learning system inundates the child with sounds and images, building vocabulary, teaching values, and ultimately indoctrinating a soldier.

The capsule floats in a ship suspended in Hyperspace, frozen in relative time. For five years the clones grow and develop, nudged chemically and genetically into an idealized physical template. For five years their minds drift in a semi-hypnotic state, absorbing information and programming, while brainwave monitors carefully calibrate the flow of information.

At the end of those five years, the maternity ship re-enters real space, nearly a year after it left it. The vessel docks, and the capsules are carefully offloaded to the Tipoca City Taining Center. The onboard data is downloaded, checked, and re-checked before the pods are unsealed.

A Clone comes into this world wet, cold, and naked, like any newborn. But the Clone walks out of his metal womb, at the apparent age of ten years old. Conditioning and programming causes him to snap to immediate attention and await inspection.

A Clone’s first words are “Sir, yes sir.”

Clone Wars: Brothers in Arms