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Sarah placed one of her fingers under the tissue scanner and turned up the magnification to zoom in really close on one of the immortals who seemed to actually stare back at her. It seemed impossible for the species to just exist, unaware, she could swear that one of the beady lobster eyes winked at her from the safe distance of its microscopic size.

She spent a few hours not even noticing how time passed, trying to imagine what, if anything, was this life form’s reasoning process, how they conjured up meaning, how they took in reality, did they had senses, and if so, how different they were from hers, would she be able to even understand them, or conversely would they be able to process what it meant to see, hear, feel? How does one communicate with something so fundamentally different from oneself? For all she knew the only thing they had in common was being alive. She watched the little creatures go about their business, processing boron and assisting in the catabolism of sugars. Their behavior was so similar to that of bacteria that the simple concept of their colonies being able to replicate her brain activity seemed surreal.

(Generations)