In general, female birds have less colorful plumage than their male counterparts. For example, bright red cardinals are male—the females are pale brown with a reddish hue.
Researchers have discovered that some female hummingbirds have bright feathers and experience less social harassment.
Surprisingly, there was less harassment from both male and female birds.
In addition to being chased less, the females with bright feathers also do more chasing. It begs the question: are more aggressive females keeping bright feathers, or do the bright feathers create more aggressive females?
Turning this into a story: what if there’s a far future where distinguishing between the biological sex of humans isn’t possible?
Let’s get it out of the way: this would be a feminist story. It would hinge on teaching the lesson that gender is a construct.
The story is about a washed-up cop struggling with alcohol addiction who gets caught up pursuing a gang wanted for murder.
As the story unfolds, we learn about the events that led to the cop’s fall. How they were on the fast track to being a detective before losing a child. The marriage and the career couldn’t survive.
After the initial investigation and interrogation, the gang offers the cop a bribe, which they usually accept. But this time, they find out that a child—the same age as the one that died years before—is the actual killer.
Fueled by rage against the people who have children performing these heinous acts, they start working to take the gang down. At one point, one of the children—not entirely brainwashed—defects, helping the cop infiltrate the secret locations.
The story would take place in the grimy, seedy underbelly of the criminal world. Lots of dark alleys, bars, and interrogations that border on breaking the law. The inability to distinguish between males and females leads to exciting interactions, unexpected fight scenes, and a few ambushes.
In the end, the cop saves the children-gangsters and helps them get into reform schools. Then, with the one who helped him infiltrate the gang, the cop retires from the force.
Future books could be about them being forced back into action, saving the child’s sibling, or because the child is abducted.