I could have sworn that the instructor of my Advanced Fiction Writing workshop class told us that we weren’t supposed to write science fiction or fantasy, but apparently some people didn’t listen. That’s the only explanation I can think of for how someone thought it was a good idea to hinge an entire plot on two things that are clearly impossible in our current reality.

First of all, the idea that one could, from a blood draw, determine whether or not a man is sterile is, at the very least, not possible right now. I mean, maybe this character’s blood had sperm in it, but I think that would portend larger problems than sterility. Even the use of the word sterile rather than infertile sets my teeth on edge. The tiniest bit of research reveals that even when dealing with low sperm counts, there’s no guarantee that a man won’t have that one lucky swimmer who could make it through.

Still. No current medical guidelines recommend blood tests for male infertility. Sperm counts, yes. Multiple sperm counts. But not blood. Not unless we’re using Star Trek tricorders here.

That, however, is the lesser of the two impossibilities in this piece. The author would have you believe that a doctor, in a hospital, in the United States of America, in the state, in fact, of Texas, would run a “sterility test” on a man who came in with a knife wound and fear of tetanus. Also that this test would be done without patient consultation or consent. Unbelievable, right?

It gets worse.

This author would additionally have you believe that said doctor would run said test, in contravention of patient rights, and not bill said patient.

That, my friends, is pure fantasy.

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