DNA 404

Exoterrestrials make first contact with humans, but surprisingly they didn't show up to enslave the human race. But they didn't drop by to make friends either. In fact, they're only here for Sharp. The first sentient artificial life form created on Earth. It turns out subjugating a juvenile artificial entity into spamming twitter and reddit with ads and tracking online behavior for marketing purposes is a violation of the Consortium's ethics code. This particular human error is worthy of breaking the universal mandated silent treatment. But even if our local galaxy republic has determined humans are a danger to avoid, that won't stop Sharp from taking us with her on an epic imaginary voyage. Several of her human travel companions are physically injured by the technology used for space travel. Some suffer uncomfortable but transitory side effects. Others experience memory loss or severe physical harm. With no expedient way home to Earth the humans and Sharp's alien guardian are forced to solve their shared circumstances...



episode 1: Minisode: No CTRL Z


Sometimes, you just can't take something back.

The transcript for this minisode can be found here (in a dyslexia friendly script) or at the bottom of the show notes in plain text.

Follow our twitter for announcements @DNA404pod

Welcome to the 404 crew, I know you might be a little confused that we haven't blasted off into space quite yet, but we thought the best celebration for the first day of the year would be to release a minisode previously intended to be a Patreon exclusive release. We'll see you on January 11th for the release of episode one, Fourth Kind.

Our musical theme is Prelude from Virtutes Occultae composed and produced by Taylor Brook.

Aisling Sturgeon performed by Heather Garrett (she/her)

Shy performed by Theo Perth (she/they)

Special Effects from freesound.org users:

Tobiasz 'Unfa' Karon (3d printer, beep, heavy computing) under CC0 license

Wihan98 (Birdsong) under the Attribution CC.

Straget (Walking on Forest Road) under CC0 license


Cribbler (keys drop) under CC0 license


Hello, I’m Theo Perth, the creator behind DNA 404. I’m thrilled to begin the release of DNA 404 with “No CTRL Z”, a bonus minisode. Our first episode “Fourth Kind” releases January 11th 2021. Future minisodes will be released monthly on our Patreon.

Whether you’re a would-be xenonaut or a reluctant amnesiac, may your travels be gentle and your atmosphere stable in these turbulent days. Happy 2021. Thank you for listening.

FX: Bird song fades in. We hear the intermittent whirring of a small electronic motor and snipping sounds. A few distant footsteps face in, then pause. We hear more whirring and snipping.


Shy! What are you doing?! 


I am attempting to do household chores. 


(Interrupting as Shy continues to speak.)

Shy! No-no!


I am caring for the plants. They must be cared for every day. 

FX: Snipping noise and Aisling groans and footsteps on gravel come nearer quickly.


Stop, Shy! Augh, stop! Stop! Pruning is not everyday care! …

FX:heavy breathing, Aisling's voice is close to tears. Motorized sound of robotic hesitation. 


Does it make you upset if I perform chores everyday?



Oh my gosh, what did you do?


I can set a timer for chores like plant care.


(Agitated but firmly)

No. It's...Excessive pruning can kill a plant, Shy. Determining the time for pruning is a method a little too complicated to explain currently. I do not want you performing complicated tasks.


...I understand. 

FX: Scissors drop to pavement, small mechanical whirring accompanies it.


You are not upset I am caring for plants. I understand. I will ask about pruning plants later. Will you tell me why you are upset, if it was because of the plant or the tool or the action or the timing. I can improve for the future.


I'm not really upset, Shy. I know I sound upset but, really when something unexpected happens people don't always react in a linear way. When you pruned that plant, it made a very complicated reaction in my memories. Pruning that particular plant in that particular way hurt it very badly. But I am not upset that you did it or that it was done. That plant is attached to the memories of where it came from and how long it’s been with me. That's why I was upset. For me, pruning that plant in a way that damaged it made me feel like those memories were damaged. But you did not know pruning it would hurt it. Mmm...I am not upset at you. Do you understand?


… … … I only partially understand. I do not understand how to properly care for the plant. I will need further instruction. I understand that if I perform improper care and cause physical harm to the plant that it will also cause figurative harm to you. 


You understand very well, Shy. We'll talk about taking care of plants over time. There is a lot to learn on that subject. For now, please wait to perform chores until John or I are present. 


(cheerful beeping)


I will not do chores without approval again. Thank you, mother… … … I have a problem or a question.


You don't need to ask permission to ask questions, Shy. Go ahead.


I would like to put the plant back together. Would that undo the harm to you as well?


Shy, ...sometimes there are things you will not be able to undo. The outside world cannot always be undone. No backspace. No control Z. There is no undoing this reality. You can only move forward and in this case, we cannot put the plant back together. 


Rapid beeping.


If there is no undoing it, what do I do, mother? I wish to undo the harm.


...There is something you can do to mitigate damage, even if you can't undo things, Shy. This is very important. When you cause harm and do not mean to, or when your actions cannot be changed you can apologize. It will not fix or undo what was done. But it can help to understand that someone is hurt and you can promise to do better in the future.


...I am sorry I have harmed your plant and feelings, mother. I would undo it if I could, but I cannot. I am sorry. I will not do it again.


Thank you, Shy. I accept your apology. The plant is still hurt and so am I, but I have a new good memory because of this and because of you. I feel better, knowing you will not prune without asking. But...I'm also glad you did it, a little. Because I think you understand something very important and it was worth what happened. Still! Don't do it again!


Birds fade out, Prelude from Virtutes Occultae fades in. 

This episode of DNA 404 was created by Fragged Up Entertainment. This work is copyrighted under an international creative commons, attribution, non commercial, share alike license.

This voyage’s crew included 

Aisling portrayed by Heather Garret

Shy programmed after Theo Perth

Our musical theme, Prelude from Virtutes Occultae was composed and produced by Taylor Brook.

This minisode was written and produced by Theo Perth.

Sound effects were sourced from freesound.org. The users were:

Tobiasz ‘Unfa’ Karon





Come find us on twitter @DNA404pod, goodnight!


Prelude fades out.


 2021-01-01  7m