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Unexpected Turns - Great Minds

Death for a wrong move.

Death for no move.

The words flashed along the top of the screen.

"You have twenty seconds. Nineteen seconds. Eighteen seconds ..."

Every year, the children of the planet were rounded up and put through the exams. Only twelve-year olds were permitted to take them. Millions failed. Those who passed were sent to the technoversities for another five years training, and the cream of these students went to the top positions in the science cities. It was not every child's dream to get there. Many just wanted to be left alone. To play.

Those who failed were assessed and either destroyed or sent to the agricultural sectors as laborers.

Turran sat in front of the screen, watching the seconds disappear. He typed the words 'troposphere, stratosphere, ionosphere' and waited.

"Correct. Next question. Where might you find a golgi body?"

Turran hesitated. Was it plants or animals? He tried to remember the diagram he had drawn. Annuals? He wasn't sure. The computer was measuring his brain waves, as well as his skin resistance. It would know already that he was worried.

"Animal cells," he typed.

"Correct. Next question. General knowledge. Name the main element in anthracite coal."

"Carbon," typed Turran.

He looked through the Plexiglas barrier at his father, who was seated in a small room next to the examination cubicle. This might be the last time he saw his father, if he failed the exams.

"Correct. Next question. Name the device used in the 20th century to measure radioactivity."

Turran's mind went blank. He knew the latest device, and how it worked, but his history lessons had not covered the last century very well. History that far back had seemed irrelevant to him.

"You have fifty seconds. Forty nine seconds. Forty eight seconds ..."

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tags: test, question, quiz, death, assess, trick, children, future, computer, over-load, system, evaluate, evaluated, tested, sort, exam, futuristic, child, eliminate, undesirable, intelligence
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