PW #326: Young Adult Science Fiction Romance: PROJECT A.I.D.E.N

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor: Judi Lauren
Mentee: Lindsey Frydman
Category: Young Adult
Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Word Count: 69,000


Aiden is the Artificial Intelligence and Robotics lab’s greatest creation–until they demand his destruction. With nothing more than a stolen gun and titanium bones, he escapes and meets Eva, who’s willing to help. What he doesn’t know is her father’s the head of AIR—and she’s not spilling that secret to the sweet, haunted boy. Now on the run from the only home he’s ever known, Aiden must decide what’s worse: endangering Eva’s life, or losing his own.



All I know is this: I’m meeting with someone named Carter. If I do what he asks, say the right things, and act like I’m supposed to, I’ll pass my final test. Easy. In my three hundred and eighty-four days of existence, my life has been chock-full of tests.

If I fail today, they’ll deem me faulty, malfunctioned—broken—and nothing good happens to defective products.

I splay my hands across the dark-blue bedspread. My fingers bend like flesh and bone, the heart inside my chest that’s made of steel and wires beats wildly, and a tingling sensation runs through my artificial veins.

But I’m not human. I never will be.

There’s a knock on the door before it glides open soundlessly.

“Aiden, are you ready?”

Looking up from the bedspread, I catch Dr. Niels’ reflection on the mirrored wall to my right. Tall and lanky, dressed per usual: black pants, shiny shoes, midnight-black jacket buttoned to the top. “Ready as ever.”

I stand, sparing a moment to scan my room. It’s highly efficient: lights on command, voice activated TV, and the world’s most advanced computer. Well, aside from me. Sounds like any kid’s dream house, right? But it’s dark and cold. Metallic and empty. Like they want me to be.

Though I can’t seem to meet that one expectation.

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