Table of Contents Perry Portly and the Fake DNA Results, by Gary Gocek

[SEPARATION I-a ] - Call to Adventure

The Fairport Public Library's internet connection was down again. Perry didn't need to use the library's connection to get onto the internet, but it was convenient when he was here. After all, Perry was a software developer by day, a power user, as they say, and was connected in various ways almost all the time. Outside of work hours, he liked the traditional library, but was always willing to use a free internet connection.

Perry was at the library today to proceed with his 12-week plan to get a date with librarian Carrie Ann Blugold. Or, at least to spend some time with her that Perry might consider a date even if she did not. Or, maybe just a friendly glance. She had two tremendous qualities: her well rounded intelligence and warmly full personality. Ahem.

Perry sat at the coffee counter in the corner. Carrie Ann rolled a cart of books from the return slot to the Tech section as she brushed away her blonde hair and pulled at her short skirt, and was passing right by him. She was wearing one of those new-fangled, sheer face masks. As she passed, she exclaimed, "Perry Poorly, how have you been?"

"Um, that's Perry Portly, and I've been..." but, Carrie Ann had already turned the corner down some obscure aisle only identifiable to Melvil Dewey6. She had smiled, sort of, but her mistake with Perry's last name seemed to cancel that out. Not exactly a magic moment.

Meanwhile, barista Della Brooks wiped the muffin crumbs from the counter spilled by Perry when Carrie Ann walked by. She applied some hand sanitizer. Perry spun his seat back to face the counter and Della shyly kept her gaze on the counter, not that Perry much noticed Della. Perry knew her as the keeper of the wi-fi password, and she wore a nametag: "Della: Fairport Public Library Barista", barely legible from a safe distance of six feet.

"Ah, Della, I'm having trouble connecting to the wi-fi."

"Yeah, we had to change the password again, sorry, um, Perry is it?" Of course, she knew his name, and would change the wi-fi password just to get to talk to him. "SwordFish_42, capital S, capital F. We've been having trouble with huge downloads from public domain DNA data sites. Patrons were complaining about slowness with their voter reg..."

Della realized Perry was quite distracted, trying to find the underscore character on his phone. She could have found it for him, upside down, but she let him conquer the w-fi setup himself. Men...

And yet, Della monitored the library's wi-fi router, and there really had been heavy traffic involving DNA sites. Della was surprised when Perry followed up on her comment.

"DNA data, you say?" Perry continued, "In my spare time, I expose the sources of fake news. Recently, there has been a lot of chatter on social media about the DNA test results of Fairport residents. It seems the results show we Fairport-ers are descended from," he shuddered, "Pittsford-ites!"

To think Fairport residents are descended from Pittsford residents, well, the earth might as well be flat. Perry felt there just had to be something fishy about such results. Perry recalled the time he exposed the great scare of 2016, in which a sea monster was thought to have invaded the Erie Canal in Fairport. It was just a fake photo from some guy in Brighton.

Fairport was in trouble. Perry had the skills.

Sea monster in canal in Fairport

BACK - NEXT - START OVER

©2020, Gary Gocek, http://gary.gocek.org/, @garygocek, gary@gocek.org