Ghost In The Ruins: Chapter 2

2.

“What will you do on your next outing to Earth, Billy?” His mother asked.

“I think I will explore a bit,” He stated, “and test to see if there is water anywhere.”

“Have you cleared this with the elders?” She inquired.

“Not yet,” He shook his head, “but will soon enough.”

“What if they tell you no?” She pressed.

“On exploring?” He returned. “Or on the subject of seeing if there is water?”

“Either,” she answered, “or both.”

“Then,” he smiled sadly, “I guess that I will have to obey their wishes.”

“So,” she frowned, “You won’t break with their decision?”

“If they believe that the idea of searching for water is unnatural,” He sighed, “no. If they have no preference, then I will do as I wish. I would rather they grant me permission outright.

“As for exploring…I will accept their decision as one of protection. No need to put myself in danger against their will. What harms one, harms all.”

“Well,” she breathed, surprised, “you are learning!”

“Of course!” He assured her.

He had not told her that he would have disobeyed if he felt there was something just beyond sight that was of importance. Or that he had already spoken, beforehand, to the council of elders on the possibility. After all, he was but a student and did not make the first trip without their permission.

She would have been a bit disappointed had he done so. She was always trying to find ways to discourage his curiosity and to curb his desire to know. She was, after all, his mother. 

Well, to be more precise, she was his parent. Humanity had become asexual as it evolved, making two parent families a thing of the distant past. He simply called her mother, as she preferred a feminine presence.

He, on the other hand, would be known as someone’s father since he preferred a masculine appearance…though he could change at any time. Strange how evolution worked. 

Still, evolution drove the wheels of nature. Change was inevitable. And what was now the norm would, somewhere down the line, be phased out as sexual coupling had been. 

And gender. Gender was not really necessary either. Not really.

He knew neutrals who had hundreds of children. Neutrals resembled neither and yet both. They were what ancient Earthers would have called androgynous. 

He smiled. What a wonderful time he lived in. How different humanity was than it had been. 

It was now without hate. But then, it was no longer bound by religion in any form. No texts told them how to believe. 

Difference was seen as simple individuality. One could choose their gender appearance. Or they could choose to remain neither. 

No one sat in judgment of any who desired to be any of the three. After all, they had learned that the soul had no gender. Not really. 

Genders began blending when sexual unions became a literal fusing of male and female. Then, there was no need to fuse. The two halves were born as one. 

That wasn’t to say that one couldn’t have multiple partners. On the contrary. One could.

But it was rare. Almost no one sought a second pairing. Almost.

Besides. It wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t really sought after.

They had come a long way. As a race. As a society.

They were no longer divided by color. They were all the same drab grey. They all looked pretty much the same. 

Everything that had driven humanity on Earth was gone. It had all been replaced by sameness. Dull. Boring. But enlightened.

***

“Billy,” the head elder began, “we give you permission to explore the ruins of Earth. We also give you permission to scratch the surface to see if there is indeed water there. If your findings come back positive, then Earth is indeed healing itself. If they come back negative, then we will know that there is no possible future for the planet.”

“Thank you, oh great ones,” he bowed, “while I hope for the best possible results, I realize that things may not go that way. I am fully prepared to fail in finding any sign of life or even water.”

“It is good that you are ready for such,” the elder responded, genuinely surprised by his honesty, “for you must not forget that prehistoric man, our ancestors, had what they called biological weapons as well as something called nuclear weapons. By the exodus, they had developed such horrible weapons that could cause mass destruction on a global scale.”

“I understand that, oh great ones,” he nodded, “and I understand that they constantly warred with one another over such things as color, creed, sexuality, and all the base things.” He hesitated. “But I do not understand how long it took for some of the effects of their weapons to degrade.”

“Hundreds of years,” the elder stated, “so most of the radiations should be gone.even those that were left unused and that have begun to degrade, should be harmless.”

“Then,” he looked at the elder, “I should be safe?”

“Yes,” the elder nodded, “does your parent know that you are doing our work for us?”

“No, great ones,” he shook his head, “she does not. I…have  not told her.”

“Do not inform her that we are behind your expeditions,” the elder ordered, “she does not need to know. At least not yet.”

“And if my findings are positive?” He asked.

“We fully intend to send back a few colonists to reclaim the planet,” the elder replied, “once it is proven that the planet can successfully sustain life.”

“Will my experiments cause change?” He inquired.

“They might,” the elder averred, “but it is a risk we are willing to take.” He paused. “Take seeds. Plant them. Monitor them over the next few expeditions.”

“Grass?” He pressed. “Trees?”

“All the plants in hydroponics,” the elder instructed.

“Yes, great ones,” he bowed again.

“Your parent should stay with your ship,” came the final instructions, “and monitor for offworld messages and your data transfers.” 

“Then,” he was surprised, “she would not accompany me into the field?”

“No,” came the answer, “you must do all on your own. In secret.”

Ghost In The Ruins: Prologue & Chapter 1

Prologue

Earth was a dismal pit of despair. The greedy continued to drill for oil and dig for coal despite the efforts of the enlightened few who saw that the excess, the greed, was killing the planet. And so, mankind continued his drive to extinction…religion and greed blocking all enlightenment.

Among these enlightened few, Jim Barry had been an obscure soul. His success had been recent, but not at what he was about to become known for.

Though he had always been a thinker, a man of reason and uncommon intellect, he had never pushed the envelope in quite the same manner as he was about to. Now, he sat at a table, drafting the plans for a massive fleet of craft.

“What are you doing today, Jim?”  The voice of his assistant brought him out of thought.

“I had a brilliant Idea,” He smiled, “and as you know, I don’t have many.”

“Ooo,” his assistant stated excitedly, “I like this! Who is it for?”

“well,” he swallowed, “I had thought of offering it to the religious community…what with their expectations of rapturing off this hunk of rock and all…” he looked up at her. He could see that she was clearly amused. “But if they don’t take it, we’ll see how many of our fellow humans, those of us who are enlightened enough to understand what greed, hate, and religion is doing to the planet, want to go in search of something better. Let the ignorant have their way with Earth.”

What is this?” She pulled the plans for the terraforming equipment from beneath the plans he was currently making.

“Terraforming equipment,” He looked over at her, an eyebrow cocked, “why?”

“So,” she began, “this goes with that?”

“Yes,” he nodded, “as do atmospherics machines, gravitational generators, and shield generators to protect from possible asteroid bombardments.  There are hydroponics labs, tool and resource replication labs, and medical labs.”

“and I suppose that there will be stasis pods and self contained perpetual engines?” She pressed.

“Of course,” he smirked, “how else are these things going? Seriously, though, they are far from perpetual motion engines. They are, however, somewhat self-driven and based on continuous cold fusion reaction.”

“How do they work?” She was intrigued.

“They pull in elements from space,” He explained, “and fuse the particles together using a cold fusion reactor. No radiation leaks. No human interaction…unless they break down. And that is highly unlikely.”

“I see,” she nodded, “and who is going to pilot this thing?”

“Three crews,” he nodded, “two in stasis, one out for a single year. Each rotating into their routine at the end of the year. No contact with their charges.

“Only the medical crew and technician crew will have any sort of contact with the passengers. But not in a way where the passengers will speak to them. More like to keep the stasis units working and the occupants alive and breathing.

“The idea is to keep the passengers in stasis until they reach their destination. And before you ask…there will be three tech crews and three med crews. They will do as the flight crews. Rotate…until deep space where timers will be set for so many years once automatic pilot takes over.

“the only thing that should awaken the crew before the set time is if something happens. Staying out of their intended path. A near miss with a comet or asteroid. If a stasis tube stops functioning.”

“You have this all thought out,” she giggled, “don’t you?”

“It pays to, yes,” he chuckled.

***

Tests of all the components had been a success. The ships were ready. All he needed was a customer.

Talks with the religious community had failed. Miserably. Not that he had expected them to succeed.

The extremely religious had always wanted to rule the world. They had desired a theocracy for centuries. Now, if all went well, and the majority of humanity desired to leave, they would finally have their chance.

He sighed. He hoped the rest of humanity was more open to relocating. Let the destructive keep this ball of dust. They had already destroyed it.

“Sir,” his assistant announced, “They’re here.”

“OK,” he nodded, “I’ll be there in a minute.”

“Very good, sir,” she averred, “I will tell them.”

She left and he put his head in his hands. It was now or never. He rose and headed for the door.

“The craft are light and durable,” He began, moments later, standing before the representatives of nearly every nation, “as are the stasis tubes. As passengers, all will be placed in stasis for the length of the journey.

“Crews of techs and medical personnel will monitor all passengers until deep space is achieved. Then. they will also go into stasis until such time as they are awakened. The same will happen once the navigational crew get us to deep space…they will also go into stasis until the passengers reach their set destination. there, they will land the craft so that the medical and tech crews can unload the now awakened passengers.”

“What will be the cost?” The German representative inquired.

“We leave everything behind,” He stated, “this planet, the currencies, our homes, cars and most belongings. Some of us may even leave behind family members.” He looked around the room. “If this is a price you are unwilling to pay, then by all means stay! Just know that they will probably kill you for being enlightened.”

“We can always rebuild,” the representative from Ghana admitted.

“And we will,” he assured them, “as we will have the aid of terraforming equipment and any other technology needed for both survival and protection.”

“What do we have to gain?” The Arab representative asked.

“Don’t you mean what do we have to lose?” The Japanese representative returned.

“I see no need to think this through,” the French representative announced, “I know many who would jump at this chance.”

“So do I,” the Russian representative nodded, “anything to get away from oppression and hate.”

***

Several unmarked ships lifted up from every country. Aboard, teams of astronauts who had trained extensively now guided the ships out into space. Techs and medics kept a vigil over the passengers who were now in stasis.

Among those onboard as passengers were Jim and his assistant. Neither had desired to remain. Behind them, his abandoned labs now burned.

1.

He remembered summer. Earth had been a cacophony of seasons. Extreme heat. Extreme cold. No in between.

Not at all what he had been promised. But then it was over a thousand years after man had caused the massive disaster that had sent the species, the race, into extinction with the rest of life. Well, those who had refused to leave.

They had been extremists. The Inheritors they had called themselves. Radically religious. Closed minded. Hateful.

Those seeking better lives, more peaceful lives, had left Earth behind in search of paradises never before experienced. The rest were left to their own devices. Their own hatred. Their own ignorance and greed.

“What are you thinking, Billy?” His mother inquired.

“I do not understand,” he answered, “history says that Earth was once green. That man greedily cut down the forests and drained the fossil fuels, polluting  the water and air. And yet, the air is back at breathable levels. Has man been gone so long that the planet is healing itself?”

“Perhaps,” she nodded, “though I would hesitate in the belief that the air is breathable for very long. After all, the plant life has never really rebounded.”

“But could we terraform it back to its former state?” He pressed.

“Probably,” she averred, “but the planet is tainted.”

“Tainted?” He was confused.

“It holds the memories of those who destroyed it,” she explained, “and the disease that drove them to oblivion.”

“Couldn’t we make it a sanctuary?” He was still trying for a yes.

“Possibly,” she stated, “but that is against the natural law. The planet is to heal itself. That means we cannot intervene.”

“But we terraformed our planets,” he objected.

“That was over a thousand years ago, Billy,” She reprimanded, “we have learned so much since then. How not to go against the natural laws. The universal laws.”

“Well, yes, but,” he struggled to object.

“We have learned that all things are in balance,” she continued, not allowing his objection to take shape, “that we should never take more than we need. To never become greedy. That the old ways were wrong.”

“I know, but,” he tried again.

“We learned that terraforming was unnatural,” she brushed the attempt away, “that it harmed other planets. That other planets held new and better food sources than our old ones.  That evolution was always the natural path.

“You remember the skeletons in the museum at home? How they don’t look like us, but are our ancestors?”

“Well, yes,” he snorted.

“Humanity changed over those thousand or so years,” She taught, “after leaving Earth. Each planet hold a different evolutionary branch, each with its own unique appearance.”

“Sort of how,” he began to see what she was trying to tell him, “how evolution caused the color variations of humanity on Earth.”

“Yes,” she smiled, “now you are getting it.”

“So,” he scratched between his antennae, “if some of us came back to Earth…”

“Possibly,” she admitted, “but as I said. I wouldn’t be too sure of the air being at levels that could sustain much life. After all, the plant life has yet to return to normal and I am not so sure that Earth is still fertile enough to support much life.”

“And the sun?” He asked.

“What about it?” She returned.

“They once claimed that it would blow up,” He replied.

“There is still five billion years, give or take a few thousand,” she mused, “just as man had predicted that there was about 7.5 billion years…but that was before the avent.”

“So,” he smiled gleefully, “there is still a chance that life can evolve again?…here?”

“Yes,” she giggled, “I suppose so, given the right elements and the right natural push.”

***

Home world was nothing like Earth. The seasons here never became too cold or too hot. The old colony was now abandoned, no longer suitable for the new race of beings that had risen from the human colonists.

Plant life here was different as well. As was the animal life. But then, living here was different.

Few left the new home world unless it was to do research and none ever left for long. Here, only peace existed. Here, only symbiotic coexistence happened.

There was no crime. No greed. No hate. No lust.

Only a single mind. A hive mind. Something that had been a side effect of the planet’s unique atmosphere.

Much the same had taken place on the surrounding planets where other colonies had sprung up. Each planet had added to the humans. Changed them in a unique way.

But all had changed for the better. Mentally. Physically.

Billy had enjoyed his visit to Earth but had been saddened by the state of the planet. It had been completely destroyed. Its forests had been cut down. Its animals had been driven into extinction, man with them.

But what had saddened him the most was that there was no longer any surface water. The whole planet was a giant desert torn apart by massive eruptions. The colonies, Or what he had seen as colonies, were completely empty and crumbling. Eroding.

As were the land masses. They were all eroding. It had all been so surreal.

He had hoped to see a glimmer of hope. Something that would tell him that the planet was healing. Or Beginning to.

Instead, he had seen that the damage might never be reversed. The planet was dead. Useless.

It had been completely drained. Now, it just took up space. Like Mars and the rest of the planetary system it was a part of.

He sighed. The thought was depressing. And there wasn’t anything they could do to bring it back.

He would have to study it a little more.  Maybe he had missed something. Maybe he had overlooked some clue.

Yes. That was it. He had missed some clue.

He had overlooked the obvious. And though he could not terraform, perhaps he could scratch the surface to find if the planet still had water. And if he found water, maybe the planet could heal itself.

 

 

 

 

 

Soul Shard Chronicles: Houses of the Holy; Episode 1, Chapter 2

2.

 

John was paralyzed by the scene playing out in his head. It felt so real that he thought he was literally there! It was so dark! So frightening!

Santa appeared. Not the traditional Santa, though the creature was dressed in the same red, white, and black suit, but a Santa that had fiery red skin and a hideously demonic visage. Instead of a bag, this Santa wielded a sword and a club.

“You will bow to me!” It demanded. “I rule the world! I am your god! You will observe my day! You will speak of no other! You will bow to me!”

“I bow to no one,” he heard himself say.

“Then prepare to die!” the Santa cried.

It seemed to take him forever to come to the realization that he didn’t need to run. After all, the dream had begun the moment he had gone to bed and fell asleep. How long he had been asleep was anyone’s guess. One hour? Two? Three? All night?

Then, he turned and faced the monstrosity. Suddenly, it stopped chasing him and became indecisive.

“You hold no power over me,” he stated, “be away with you.”

And then, it was gone. A wisp of smoke marking its passing. He opened his eyes and looked at the clock. It was 4:30 AM. he had been asleep most of the night.

Again he had been shown something. But what? What had been revealed to him? And why?

As with his vision of the headless bodies, he could tell no one. Not one soul. Otherwise, they would think him crazy. Or merely seeking attention.

He knew he wasn’t crazy. Nor did he really want attention for such things. They frightened him. Confused him.

He didn’t like the idea of having those kinds of dreams. Nightmares. Nightmares that he couldn’t wake from until they were over. Nightmares that held messages.

No, he would rather gain attention from things he did right. Not dreams he had. Or visions. Or anything that could be misused.

He rolled over and went back to sleep. Maybe he would have better dreams from this point on. Darkness consumed him and he drifted back to dreamland. This time, there were no Santas. Only dark worlds filled with war. Destruction. Like an old war movie.

But at least it was less frightening. Less abrasive. He could handle war scenes.

Perhaps it was because home was a warzone. Or because it was a break from the religious crap his parents believed. Whatever it was, he was willing to watch it play out.

Bombs were exploding everywhere. And yet, he was oddly unafraid. It was as if he was in the lead of those around him. They seemed to follow him into the thick of battle without question.

But who were they fighting against? And why? What had happened to the world?

***

He hated dreams. But here he was, in the middle of yet another terrifying dream. Mystery of mysteries. And all mysteries seemed to be shown in dreams. And nightmares.

This time, he was being chased by a giant horned ram’s head. Or was it a goat’s head? Or a mixture of both?

There was no body. Just a head. A living, bodiless ram’s head. Or goat head. First black, then changing color constantly. And that grin!

It was almost human! And extremely evil! As if the head meant him harm.

No words. No warning. It simply appeared and began chasing him in his room. Then up and down the stairs.

Again, it took him seemingly forever to realize that all he had to do was turn and stand his ground. Maybe hours. And even when he did, he hesitated.

When he finally turned to face it, it shrank and disappeared. He was getting tired of the cryptic dreams. The strange, otherworldly visions. He wanted a peaceful night’s sleep.

Something he had not had for a while. When he wasn’t having dreams that scared the shit out of him, he was dreaming of wars in places he had never been. Ruined cities. And yet they all felt so familiar. So normal.

It unnerved him. He was a child. He wasn’t supposed to have these kinds of dreams.

And yet, here he was. Being given clues. But to what? And why?

***

He loved hearing the coyotes howl just outside his window. It was one of the plusses, for him anyway, of living in the country. Another was being around animals. Playing hide and seek with the goats. Having a safe haven from his sister in the old barn near the lower pastures.

For some reason, the spirits there defended him. Hid him. There was no other way to explain it.

The old tack room was a great place to find solitude. And John loved to be alone at times. Especially after being threatened by Leanne.

There, he could ponder the meanings of his dreams and visions. Not that he would have any revelations, but he pondered them anyway. But because they haunted him on a daily basis.

And the coyotes put him to sleep. So soothing. So serene.

Thunder had the same effect. It was soothing, especially when it was distant. Even the sound of rain soothed him.

But there were dangers out here as well. Lightning. Tornadoes. His sister.

But he had friends. Billy Marliss and his sister, Nicki. Their sister Regan was too young to hang out with them on the bus. Nicki, though seemed to have a crush on him. Billy, though, watched his back.

And then, there was Nicole Arlington, who also seemed to have a crush on him. She would sit with him when Billy was not on the bus and want to play house. Not one of John’s favorite games, but it passed the time.

Then there were Craig Wills, Danny Harolds, Wynn Paldry, Jonnie Pensley,  and Stan Johnson. Chuck Fields and Jeff Upheldt didn’t really count. They weren’t as close as ‘the gang’. Penn Dringer had moved in Kindergarten, so he had long since faded from importance.

But even ‘the gang’ was not as close as Billy and Nicki. Or Charles and Nikki. Those were John’s closest friends.

Billy and Nicki lived just up the road. John could go visit them any time. Charles and Nikki were family friends and he could visit them whenever his mother went to visit theirs.

And then, there was Ellie, Donnie, and Daria. The Morrisons. John’s father was a friend of their father, his mother a friend of their mother.

Finally, there were the Walstons and the Maldwells. The Maldwells were also old friends of John’s parents. But the Walstons were ‘church friends’.

The Maldwells had seven children. John had become friends with the two youngest, John and Terri. Leanne was friends with the others as they were too old for John to get close to.

The Walstons were a whole different matter altogether. All of the Walston children were too old for John to be friends with and their parents made him uncomfortable. Robert Walston was a braggart and Mindy was a prude. A snob.

All the boys were too old to be too friendly with. The girls as well. John was too young to enjoy cars or girls. Nor was he interested in racing, football, or wrestling.  

 

The Soul Shard Chronicles: Houses Of The Holy, Episode 1: All Visions Remain, Chapter 1

1.

 

It was so vivid. So surreal. John, at eight, lay on the hide-a-bed eyes wide open as the headless bodies filed one by one out of his parents’ room. He opened his mouth to scream, but nothing came out. Nothing at all.

He knew there were presences everywhere on the farm, he had felt them. The old barn at the top of the cow pastures. The old barn down in the center pasture. Even in the old house they lived in. They were there. He had sensed them. He had seen them.

And now, this. No one would ever believe him. They would claim it was his overactive imagination. Or just a nightmare. But he knew that he could not have nightmares while awake.

But what was he witnessing? The past? The present? The future?

Or was it a warning? He was unsure. At eight, he knew very little about interpreting such events.

The only thing he knew was that he could never tell anyone. They would think him crazy. Or seeking attention. Neither of which was true.

After all, they had company. His friend, Nikki Norton. And he had given up his room for her to sleep in while he bunked on the hide-a-bad with her brother Charles.

Charles had introduced John to computers and Star Wars. He had also introduced John to peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwiches. And Rube Goldberg’s wondrously complex machines for simple everyday tasks.

Nikki and Charles’ mother didn’t really care for John. She merely tolerated him because she was friends with Charlene, John’s mom. Their dad, though, liked everyone. As did their grandpa.

John was just happy that Charles and Nikki liked him. Nikki seemed to flirt a lot with him, making him both uncomfortable and thrilled at the same time. Perhaps it was her way of getting him away from her brother. He didn’t know.

But here they were. Spending the summer, or at least a couple weeks of it, together. Last year, he had stayed with them at their home. This year, it was their turn. Next year, it would be his again.

It was the closest he ever came to being able to stay with friends. He couldn’t spend the night over at the Marlins, oh God no. they were ‘of the world’. A petty view to take of neighbors. A wrong view.

But John was a mere child and could not speak his mind. Oh God, no. To do so would be to incur the only wrath stronger than God’s. His father’s.  

So he made do with what he was allowed to do. Perhaps one day, he would set the score right. Or maybe, he would just be long forgotten by those he never got to enjoy the company of.

At the moment, though, headless bodies filed from his parents’ room. Single file. Spreading out as they came. Filling the living room. Surrounding the hide-a-bed. And all pointed to him, then vanished.

He lay there unsure what to do. What had just taken place? Were they accusing him? Were they trying to tell him something? Or were they pleading with him?

He got up and went to the bathroom. Shaking, he wondered what he was supposed to do. He was only eight. He wasn’t anyone of power.

At least not in his mind. Hell. He barely had permission to have toys and play. And most of those toys were given to him by others. Friends. Some had been bought, but he had to beg for money in order to do so.

Sadly, most of his friends knew nothing of his home life. He didn’t want them to know either. Not that the farm was a horrible place, but his father was not a kind man.

Alan Perdue. Youngest son of Henry Perdue. First prize winner in ‘Asshole of the Year” every year. Ran around with men just like him. Or so he thought. They mostly wanted to steer him in the wrong direction, then laugh at his frustration. It caused friction. And fear.

John was the youngest child in the home. Leanne was entering her teens and it made her more cruel. More jealous. More dangerous to John.

Her darkside rarely showed when Charlene was in the room. But when she wasn’t, John usually ended up getting beat up. Thrown across the room. Threatened.

***

Weeks later, John and Leanne went to town. Northboro was a small town. And it was only a mile from the farm. The journey to town went without any event. In town, they bought pop and candy bars.

One pasture length away from the farm, to the southwest, apricot trees grew in a neighbor’s fence line. On the way home, Leanne noticed the apricots.

“What are those?” She asked him.

“I don’t know,” he shrugged, “can’t see them clearly from here.”

She got off her bike and went over the fence. Once at the trees, she picked two for each of them. She returned to the road. She handed JOhn the two she had picked for him.

“They’re apricots!” She squealed, overjoyed. “Want one?”

“Sure,” he nodded.

He bit into one. It was juicy. Sweet. He walked on to the farm next to her in silence.

Their mother had been watching. She was not happy. They had stolen fruit from a neighbor’s tree.

But instead of letting Alan deal with this, she would do so herself. Then sweep it all under the rug. Alan would make a major production of the whole thing if he were to find out and possibly beat both children to within an inch of death. He knew nothing of tact or mercy.

No, she would deal with this. She would punish them, then have them apologise to the neighbor. Then, she would make the whole thing vanish.

After all, they were her children and she would protect them. It was bad enough that Alan tended to see the children as slave labor who deserved no allowances. She would not allow him to harm them over something that she saw as trivial.

 

Tales of the Alpha Triad: Dimensional Wars

Episode One:

 

Like Folding An Accordian

 

1.

 

My assumptions were correct. As I slide through dimensions, even being out of phase, they fold like an accordian. My very presence changes that dimension, that possibility, making it into a totally different scenario than what it would be by nature. Thus, I save what I can and am sucked endlessly on through dimensions-one at a time- closing possibilities as I go.

 

This round, I erase any choice for those in power. In the process, I collect what is mine-money, inventions, writings, memories, etc.-before moving on. In some ways, I even combine with my alternate self to combine knowledge. It is a painful process, especially being out of phase, but it is worth it.

 

I am the collector. I am the preventative measure. I have a mission to complete. One day is one hour in another dimension, just as one hour is a mere minute and a minute is a second. Time is non-confining. Meaningless. Without hold.

 

I do not age. I do not suffer injuries. I just continue to fold these possibilities as I go. Slowly. Or quickly, it is hard to tell exactly, I cut off the future of those who have set out to destroy the country. By this, I am not meaning that I am killing them, perse, just that I am erasing their future careers as leaders. After all, I am bringing them down in each dimension first, thus erasing the possibilities of that ‘future’ ever happening.

 

Who knows how many times this will have to be done, personally. I hope only once. All I know is that this mechanism that keeps me out of phase is a godsend. I’m glad that I designed it. It’s a modern scientific and technological marvel.

 

I have lost count on how much money I now possess. It’s not really important. It isn’t really the money I am after. I am after technology, medical advances, and so on. I am also closing down the continuance of a certain leader’s future in politics…along with that of his cronies.

 

The money, tech plans, scientific data, unwritten works, and medical data are all sent immediately back to my point of origin. The digital data goes directly to the lab, the money to the vault at the lab. Of course, the money being sent doesn’t actually exist on the books or in official record. Even though it is legal tender, it is unofficial. As far as the government is concerned, nothing I bring back exists.

 

This was the agreement between myself and the operatives who approached me in the beginning. And what I bring back in the form of science and technology, medical items included, goes immediately into my stockpile of patents and trademarks. No one can touch them. Ever. I have been granted indefinite owner status until all catch up to me…which may take centuries at this rate.

 

So far, it has all been a blur. Sort of like being a corporate spy on a mission to steal all the plans for a secret weapon…but I’m not.  I am the secret weapon. And no one knows that I am here. Weapons. Armor. Biotechnology.

 

This was what I was born to do. I have the intelligence of every me I have phased with. And every dimension has collapsed into nothing, possibly creating a new one that has nothing to do with what I left behind. The first multitude of dimensions were unremarkable. But even half of infinite is still infinite.

 

By unremarkable, I mean that there was no war. No visible war, anyway. It wouldn’t matter now anyway. My entry disturbs the natural flow, and my exit closes the possibility so that it is no longer possible.

 

And perhaps the world is better off because of what I am doing. Or I could be making it worse. All I know is that whatever is going to happen when I return to my dimension will not be what is about to happen. Especially if I can prevent war. And put an end to an evil.

 

Of course, I have an affinity for sharp weapons so I also send back intriguing swords and knives I run across. And bows with arrows. Especially unique crossbows.  And pole arms.

 

I’ll get hours of fun when I return home. When I left, the second and third laboratories were being constructed out in the country. The expansion was needed due to the need for more space with the hangar and the S.A.M. development. The teams working on those projects being moved to the new facilities will live at those facilities.

 

At the same time, time and dimensional travel will remain at the original lab. As will phasic research. And the research into the effects my little trips are having. I am hoping that I am only having a positive impact with my dimensional excursions.

 

Cloning has been added to the genetics lab experiments. Call it a curiosity of mine. I don’t intend to make it widely available. Just a limited basis for limited use.

2.

 

I have crossed the threshold. The infinitely boring dimensions are behind me. Perhaps new ones are opening to fill the void. In each dimension, I have been successful in bringing the guilty down without much problem. This time may be different.

 

I have entered a dimension a war. I don’t recognize where I am. The town is gone. A crater is the only evidence that there was ever anything here. But i have found the bunker that is what is left of the lab.

 

Iowa has been devastated.  Especially if they were trying to come after me. But there are still people here. Freedom fighters. Their leader is  a tall, black-haired, Hispanic woman with green eyes.

 

I cause a crash of thunder, bringing a few fighters to investigate.

 

“John?” a woman inquires, “is that you? But you’re dead! How…?”

 

“It’s a long story,” I reply.

 

“Where’s your armor?” She asks.

 

“My armor?” I inquire, confused.

 

“Yes,” she replies, “when you disappeared, you wore a special armor we created for you.”

 

“Then,” I respond, the realization donning on me, “I am dead in this dimension.”

 

“That is what was reported,” she states, “you took a force out and was taken captive. That’s what the state media claimed.”

 

“The state media,” I shake my head, “propaganda. We were on this path before I left. I set out to stop it.”

 

“And the ‘you’ from here?” She inquires.

 

“He is either dead or in hiding,” I respond, “if I know me.”

 

“Yup,” she smiles, “sounds like my John.”

 

“Are we an item?” I ask.

 

“Yes,” she giggles, “though we aren’t married.”

 

“And your name?” I pry.

 

“Lieutenant Miranda Lopez ,” she replies, “I came to you as a homeless woman in need of a cure. You gave me my life and my health back.” She holds up her biocybernetic arms, both armored. “And these.”

 

“Looks like my work,” I smile, “were the arms given before or after this all started?” I motion to the devastation around us.

 

“After,” she avers, “when I was wounded in the first battles. I lost both arms…and nearly lost my life.” She sees my wary look. “Don’t worry, they’re fleshy beneath the armor. The armor comes off.”

 

Her comlink erupts into a mass of voices. She pauses long enough to answer.

“Armada here,” she replies, “What’s going on?”

 

“We’re under attack,” comes the response.

 

“Your coordinates?” She inquires.

 

“Sector seven,” comes the answer.

 

“Alright,” she responds, “I’ll send reinforcements your way. Hold tight.”

 

She motions for her companions to go and they do as she motions. They head back the way they came from while she remains with me.

 

“If you can help me find the me you know, I can retrieve his mind before anyone is able to break him,” I state, “I can use the phasic technology I currently have to become him long enough to gain his knowledge. It will destroy him when I do, but it will also save him.” I look at her. “Do you trust me?”

 

“Yes,” she nods, her voice nearly cracking, “and if you can do this, I will go anywhere with you…as long as you promise to take the rest of the rebels with you.”

 

“I promise,” I state, serious, “besides. I need a top notch security team and your team looks like the best.”

 

“We are, John,” she nods, “you taught us.”

 

“Then, buckle up,” I return, “we’re going hunting.”

 

“But, first,” she responds, “we need to pick up your armor and a fresh team.”

 

“To hell with a small team,” I look into her eyes, “let’s take everyone we can. We’ll pick up the rest when we can.”

 

We turn and leave the point of entry behind. Into the bunker we head, seeking the pieces that will help us in our mission. My armor. The remaining rebel army. And a possible transport.

3.

 

“John is back with us,” she states to the group that has assembled, “with new technology. And weapons.” She looks around the room. “ while I understand that he has been reported as being captured, he has returned to us and agreed to help us find our compatriots who are MIA.

 

“The explanation on how he got here is too lengthy and…unbelievable…to go through at this time, so just trust him. He is our last best hope at defeating the enemy.”

 

“How do we know he can be trusteed?” one of the group inquires.

 

“Simple,” she responds, “he isn’t a plant.”

 

“I am not exactly the John who was captured,” I interject, “and I cannot explain how I got here. Suffice it to say, I did not originate here. I have not witnessed any of this war, but I have seen how the country gets to this point. I am here to prevent this from happening.”

 

“So you from the past?” another operative asks.

 

“Has no one explained to this guy that it is impossible to travel forward through time?” I ask, a smile playing across my face. I turn my eyes back to the operative. “I am what most would call a jumper.”

 

An audible gasp floods the room. That means everyone here knows what a jumper is. And they know that it ain’t someone who jumps from bridges. They know what it means to be a dimensional jumper.

 

“So what’s next?” the first soldier asks.

 

“First we free the me that you know,” I respond, “and his team. After that, we take the capitol by surprise and remove that asshole from power. And since he believes that he has me, he won’t expect me to lead you.”

 

A cheer rises from the group. They know we’re a surprise package. They know that no one knows we’re coming. They know that the capitol and its supporters believe me to be dead.

 

This gives us a big element of surprise. Until I see one rebel trying to slip away.

“We have a traitor in our midst,” I whisper to Miranda, “and they believe that I didn’t see.”

 

“I see that,” she whispers back, then nods to the guards in back who follow the traitor out of the room, “they’ll be dealt with soon enough.”

 

***

 

The traitor has been caught just short of their destination, along with a small group of dissidents. Their destination, the com room. Their purpose, to give the capitol a head’s up.  It is way too apparent without explanations.

 

“What were you going to do?” Miranda inquires.

 

“That’s none of your business,” the traitor retorts, “and you can’t make me tell you.”

 

“But I can,” I remark, walking over to a table and pulling the two knives from my belt that I heisted from the last dimension, “and I can show you how I made Putin talk where I am from. And I guarantee you that you will tell me exactly what I want.”

 

“You don’t scare me,” he snaps back.

 

“Bring him over,” I command, looking at the guards who hold him, “ and place his hand on the table. And bring the others in his group so they can see what is in store for them if they do not cooperate.”

 

They do as I command. The small group is herded around the table so they can see what I am about to do.

 

“Hey,” he objects, “what d’ya think yer doin’?”

 

“Make sure you keep his hand very still,” I command his handlers, “with his fingers out straight.”

 

“What is this?” he asks, worried, as they obey the command.

 

“This is my version of twenty questions,” I state, looking at him, “for every wrong answer, you lose a piece of a finger. At the knuckle.”

 

“You can’t do this to me,” he sputters, “I am protected by the law!”

 

“I do not operate under the sham laws of any usurper,” I glare at him, “I operate outside your reality. Nor do I take orders from you.”

 

“Shit,” one of his fellows utter as I move the knife above his friend’s pinky.

 

“Now,” I begin, poised, “who turned you?”

 

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he replies, trying to act unaffected by my knife’s close proximity to his pinky.

 

“Wrong answer,” I state, bringing the blade down, cutting the tip of his pinky off, “try again.”

 

“Jack Stetters,” he screams, in pain.

 

“Good,” I smile, “and what was your mission?”

 

“Don’t tell ‘im, Mac,” one of his co-conspirators try to warn.

 

“To weaken the rebellion,” he gasps, “enough so it could be defeated. Destroy morale. Kill key members. Lead them into traps. Whatever it took.”

 

“Was that what you did with the other me?” I press.

 

“Yes,” he responds, “your team was all part of the unit I lead. I convinced you to use them, knowing you would be captured. They, on the other hand, returned to service as government soldiers.”

 

“Are you really sure of that?” I smile.

 

“Yes, why?” he inquires.

 

“Because I know the asshole who sits in Washington,” my smile widens to a grin, “and he isn’t one to keep promises. Not even to those who serve his needs. Your men are probably dead. Or in the same prison as me.” I turn to Miranda. “Do we have any drone fighters that don’t have ejection capabilities or transports that we can sacrifice?”

 

“Yes,” she answers, “but why?”

 

“We’re  going to have a decoy,” I chuckle, “can we program it and shut down communications capabilities?”

 

“Yes,” she smiles, starting to realize what I am about to do, “I’ll have Destroyer prep it.”

 

“You,” I state, turning back to the prisoner, “are going to go ahead and place a report to your superiors in DC. You’re going to tell them that there is a single transport headed their direction from the west.”

 

“Oh, God,” he sighs, terrified by the thought that has just entered his head. He now realizes that he and his men are the decoy.

 

We march them down to the comroom. He delivers the message just as I ordered it. Destroyer has already left to prep the transport. We head the same direction to secure the conspirators in the transport and seal them inside.

4.

 

After sending the decoy, we head south to pick up our active units. Our own transports will head in a northward direction. While the capitol is watching the single transport from the west, we will sneak in under their radar, an armada of transports. On the way, I am being brought up to speed on everything by Miranda.

 

We are in my private quarters, laying on a bunk. Naked. I am getting used to seeing her four arms without armor. It’s sort of alien. Yet natural.

 

“Explain to me again,” I begin, “how I ever decided to give you four arms.”

 

“I agreed to be a test subject. I had just been stripped of my own arms,” she giggles, “and you pondered the possibilities of altering and augmenting soldiers. I was your 6’4” blank slate that you believed you could make into Khali or one of the other Hindu goddesses. Or, maybe, one of several Native goddesses. And to me, four arms sounded better than two.”

 

“Did I ever have a wife?” I query.

 

“Yes,” she replies, “you had two. You also had a girlfriend who died before y’all could marry back in early 2017…when you first began the labs. Then the war came in December and you threw yourself into leading the rebellion. I came into your life in January and my alteration happened in July. We’ve been an item since February.”

 

“I did amazing work. Seamless,” I state quietly, sitting up and leaning over her, “I can see why I fell for you. You are totally amazing. Beautiful.”

My right hand runs down her abdomen to her inner thigh. She lets out a quivering sigh. I kiss her on the lips. My left hand moves to her breast. She is turned on. She rolls on top of me.

 

“My turn,” she smiles and I feel her seeking me, then pulling me in, “and after this, I will continue to bring you up on current events.

 

***

 

Moments later, we’ve landed outside what is left of New Orleans. God, what a waste. This used to be the most liberal of cities. One of two sin cities.

 

Both Miranda and I have dressed and are getting ready to brief those who have joined us. I look at her.

 

“How many do we have?” I ask.

 

“Close to two million strong,” she replies.

 

“Just in this group?”

 

“Yes,”  she looks at me, “we have an army that is about twenty four million strong total. The complete voter base that was stripped of their victory the last election cycle.”

 

“Damn!” I breathe. You were able to organize them. Bring them together. Train them. But he commandeered the nation’s military. Executed any who did not pledge their loyalty. Imprisoned his political enemies. Then set about bombing the cities closest to the capitol.

 

“When he was done pushing those who revolted back to the Midwest, he began bombing there as well…hoping to kill you in the process. But you had thought of everything where your labs were concerned. They were well hidden and extremely well armored. Even the one where you appeared is extremely well armored.

 

“At least the bunker is. The building, as you saw, was destroyed. But by then, you had already moved all teams underground. And there they remain, making your armor and our collective weapons.”

 

“And the traitors we discovered?” I smile grimly.

 

“We suspected an infiltration, but could not pin down who was sending the coded messages,” she replies, “ until you spotted Triple Threat trying to leave the briefing. I, then, checked to see who else was missing.” She looks at me. “Did you have to cut his pinky off?”

 

“I learned early on,” I respond, looking over at her, “in my own dimension, that one has to be just as cruel and hardened as their opponents. It’s part of learning how to stay alive in an abusive childhood home and defending oneself against a sister who would love to kill you.” I turn away. “But to answer your question, no. It wasn’t necessary, but it got my point across. And before you ask, no. I didn’t do that to Putin. I was bluffing with that.”

 

“You’re damn good at bluffing,” she admits, “but you’re good at everything you do.”

 

“Thanks,” I respond, unable to restrain the smirk that appears, “so are you.”

 

She blushes. I smile.

 

“So what now?” she asks, changing the subject.

 

“Now, we call the rest of our forces together and make a three prong attack,” I respond, “and then, we create a phasic dampener for the ships.” I recheck my thoughts and change my mind about the order of what I have just said. “On second thought, let me rephrase that. We need to go back to base and install the phasic dampeners,  then make a three-prong attack.” I look at her. “Are you ready?”

 

“I was born ready,” she grins, “let’s do this.”

 

“Give the order,” I smile back at her, “we regroup at the labs and rearm.”

 

“Saddle up, boys,” she orders into her comlink, “let’s head out and regroup. This is for everyone. Even those to the west. Head to main base.”

 

We both realize that the regroup will be seen as a retreat. But I mean to give the capitol the impression that we are doing just that. I want them to have a false sense of security and relax defenses just enough to allow us to slip in after the ships are outfitted with the phasic dampeners. I also want to bring the science teams aboard and take them along as we abandon this realm.

5.

 

My jaw drops when I see the immense size of our armada. It is hard to imagine that several million soldiers call these ships home now. Several million very specialized and genetically altered or physically altered soldiers. And each ship has a main commander with at least four lieutenant commanders. Maybe more. Many were state National Guardsmen, the rest were civilians who joined the movement.

 

“How many transports does the capitol have?” I ask Miranda.

 

‘Like this?” she inquires.

 

“Yes,” I respond.

 

“None,” she replies, “these were designed by you.”

 

“Did I ever get anywhere on the S.A.M. project?” I query.

 

“You mean Project Exodus?” She returns.

 

“Yes,” I nod.

 

“No,” she looks at me with sad eyes, “because this happened too quickly. You barely had time to begin Project Genesis so that you could create a better, more efficient altered army. You replaced Project Exodus with  Project Armament and Project Defense. After that, the scientific teams were totally engaged in creating our next weapons in hopes that we would be victorious.”

 

“Our mission is to win this time,” I respond, “once the dampeners are put into place, there is no turning back. Our first target is the capitol’s prison. Our first mission is to get me inside to become one with myself. And since we are at capacity, we cannot afford to take on any more riders.”

 

“Then Belle Reve it is,” she nods, “and what do we tell the political prisoners?”

 

“That they must pick up and rebuild once we are done,” I return, “we do not mention that this dimension will fold in on itself, that we are basically destroying this possibility. That is why I am taking you and the army we’ve built with me out of this realm.”

 

Out of the corner of my eye, I see a tear in her eye. I can’t help but want to cry with her. This is the world she knows. Dark. Deadly. Hopeless.

 

I am about to change that with a single gesture. I don’t know whether she is crying with relief  or sorrow. Or both. I hope that it is relief.

 

***

 

“The phasic dampeners that have been placed in each transport,” I begin, “will carry you to safety when our mission is complete in the capitol. I cannot promise that you will o where I go. I am not sure that we have sync’d them all to my own or not. But I can guarantee that where you will go, you will be needed. All you will have to do is wait for me. I will appear soon enough. And perhaps, I will have more of an army with me. After all, we need all the help we can get.”

 

A loud roar rises over the crater pocked fields.

 

“The science team tried to sync all dampeners to you,” Miranda whispers to me, “but, you are right. There is no guarantee that we will end up where you are. You might be pulled into another dimension while we are sent to yours.”

 

“Either way, you’ll be safe,” I assure her, “because if you go to my dimension, you will be where I started my journey. My dampener is programmed to hone in on the lab where it was made, no matter what dimension I enter. That means that you will hone in on the Allen’s Hollow facility, where the hangar is located if the team programmed the dampeners correctly. That is over fifteen miles from—”

 

“Yes,” she puts her index finger against my lips, I know where the Allen Hollow facility is. And the other lab. But why were you drawn to the Sheridan facility?”

 

“Probably because that was where all the projects began,” I reply, “or my contact person was there.” I look at her.

 

“You always said that I had a magnetic personality,” she giggles, “besides. You would have been shot on sight had you come to the Allen Hollow facility without me.” she changes the subject. “Now, with your technology combined with ours, we’re on our way to safety.”

 

“Cruise and Speed Demon,” I begin, “who are they?”

 

“Cruise cannot survive without the containment suit you designed for him,” she nods to a soldier who is encased in a suit that looks more appropriate for outer space than earth, then nods toward another soldier whose face is tattooed red, “and Speed Demon has been altered to be fast and light on his feet. They owe their lives to you.”

 

“And the one I heard called Evangelis?” I inquire.

 

“He’s the silent one,” she giggles, “who was once a preacher until the President began attacking the churches.”

 

“Hence,” I nod, “his name.” I turn to her. “One more. Which one is Blacklist?”

 

“He is the most troubling one,” she smirks, “rebellious, angry…but loyal to a fault. To you.”

 

“I see,” I reply, “glad to know I have so many loyal men…and women.”

 

6.

 

We have taken one third of the armada towards the federal prison at Belle Reve and we will come into capitol airspace from the south.. One third, we have sent to the east to come in from the ocean. The last third, we sent to the north to come in from that direction. The idea is to catch the federal forces in a pincer move that will force a surrender of all forces. I just doubt that the President will be willing to surrender. After all, he has allowed things to escalate this far.

 

No matter how stupid he may be, the generals can’t be as stupid. Perhaps I am giving them too much credit, but I have never been much on underestimating the intelligence of generals. Still, I don’t know whether he executed the smart generals or not. I have to approach this as if he has kept the trained officers.

 

Belle Reve is an imposing structure, but our weapons blow a hole in the walls. We rush in and the guards surrender. We find my cell and Miranda and I enter it alone. God, they have reduced me to a shell! I touch my counterpart in the current dimension and absorb his knowledge, allowing him to die. I nod to Miranda, whose eyes are filled with tears.

 

“It’s time, Miranda,” I whisper understandingly, “let’s get out of here. Have the men release the prisoners and lock all the guards in their cells and then let’s leave.”

 

She nods wordlessly, then communicates my commands to the rest through her comlink. She gives me a hug.

 

“You’re all I got now,” she whispers, tears in her eyes, “that was not you in that cell back there. I mean, it was…but it wasn’t. There was no life left in those eyes. No recognition of your comrades. Just a living death.”

 

“My guess,” I reply softly, “is that they tortured me until I was little more than a shell. When I wouldn’t reveal any information, they tried their best to destroy me. But I must’ve known that this-my being here-was going to happen. I must’ve felt this taking place, so I clung to what life I had left until I could impart my secrets to myself.” I look at her sheepishly. “I don’t know if that made sense. It sounds odd to even me.”

 

“Yes,” she nods, “it makes perfect sense.”

 

We leave the prison and reboard our transport. It’s time to move on toward the capitol. Time to coordinate a three prong simultaneous attack that should break their defenses. Time to take the White House. Time to fight for the soul of the country.

***

 

Our flight takes no time at all. In a matter of minutes, we have covered nearly a thousand miles. Unseen. All three forces close at once, taking out the capitol’s defense systems and nearly destroying the forces defending the outer rim of the city. I have never seen DC in person. Nor have I seen Dc in shambles like this before.

 

The city seems to be empty except for military with highly inadequate weaponry that is trying desperately to bring down the flotilla. Pitiful. Their rockets are useless. I have really outdone myself on these ships.

 

“Our stealth capabilities are beyond their scope,” Miranda says quietly in my ear, the armor you created for the ships is impenetrable. We are the most advanced military in the world. We could even take Europe and Asia in these things.”

 

“Where is the majority of the military?” I inquire.

 

“Fighting a losing war in Europe,” she shrugs, “Asia, Africa, and Australia…or trying to fend off the Mexican or Canadian armies. Mexico has the help of the Central American countries…the United South American military.”

 

“And Israel?” I prod.

 

“At the mercy of her neighbors,” she smiles, “the US is too busy and stretched too thin. The President doesn’t have the manpower to fight us, the Europeans, Central and South America, the Asians, the Aussies, and the Canadians as well as the problems he began in the Middle East.”

 

“The muslim bans,” I nod.

 

“And his slight moving the embassy to Jerusalem,” she agrees.

 

“So he really is a sitting duck,” I smile, “isn’t he?”

 

“That he is,” she grins back.

 

“Let’s do this big,” I suggest.

 

“Let’s do,” she echos.

 

“Give the order,” I nod, “it’s time.”

 

“Begin Operation Take Back,” she commands, then turns to me. “It’s on.”

 

All hell breaks loose as we begin to bombard the helpless military surrounding the White House. I watch in real time as they fall. Damn. Like shooting fish in a barrel.

7.

 

As resistance crumbles, I witness the surrender of one of the greatest forces in the world other than that of the rebellion. It saddens me to see the US military reduced to nothing. Still, they chose the wrong side.

 

Well, almost nothing. I am hailed by the head of the Joint Chiefs.

 

“Commander O’Dell,” he begins solemnly, “I beg you to end this slaughter.”

 

“I want a full surrender,” I caution him, “and all forces recalled from overseas.”

 

“I understand,” he replies, “and I am willing to give you the full surrender and all you request.”

 

“Then we will meet,” I reply, “and agree on terms.”

 

“Agreed,” comes the response.

 

The com goes silent. I turn to Miranda.

 

“Contact the UN,” I state, “or whatever is left of it.”

 

“Yes, Love,” she replies, “but what shall I tell them?”

 

“Tell them to convene,” I smile, “we’re going to arrange the terms of the surrender of the US forces.”

 

She smiles back and nods. I leave the bridge and seek quiet in my quarters. Moments, later, she appears at the door.

 

“It’s done,” she states, “now what?”

 

“Do we have a small shuttle?” I inquire.

 

“Yes,” she replies, “but I will have to prep it. It is a two-seater…”

 

“This will not require more than you and I,” I respond, “and I can assure you that we will be completely safe.”

 

“Sounds good,” she smirks, “and I hope that you are right.” She turns to me and kisses me. “I have given the Science team the OK to go back and fit the hospital ship with a phasic condenser unit, same as the warships. If done correctly, and given the coordinates of  its current location, it should appear right…”

 

“Right where the Allen Hollow facility in my own dimension is supposed to be built,” I insert, “ingenious. And a wonderful idea. I am surprised that I didn’t think of it.”

 

“In a way, you did,” she states, then turns and walks off toward the hangar bay where the shuttle is located, “before we left the facility with the warships. It is big enough to house all our warships and transports. It will enable us to begin a lunar base as well as an orbital construction station where the S.A.M. transports can be made.”

 

I watch her disappear, then turn to the ensign on com.

 

“The bridge is yours until I return,” I state.

 

“Aye, Sir,” comes the response.

 

I take my leave, following Miranda down the corridor. When I reach her, I have a sudden thought.

 

“Miranda,” I begin.

 

“Yes?” She replies in query.

 

“Perhaps sending a small team to clear the way isn’t such a bad idea,” I respond, “better safe than sorry.”

 

“Agreed,” she avers, then begins speaking into the com on her shoulder, “transports one through three send units to the ground to deal with the remaining federal troops. Clear the way for John and I. we’re coming to take the administration prisoner.” An affirmative sounds from the transports she has called on. She turns back to me. “Whatever resistance remains will be cleared before we go down. We still need to prep the shuttle.”

 

“What’ll be done with the resistance?” I ask.

 

“Since they have pretty much surrendered,” she smiles, “they will simply be moved from their positions in front of the White House so we can enter unimpeded.”

“Lieutenant Lopez,” the com officer interrupts over her comlink, “communication from the UN. the directors request the meeting to take place in the White House.”

 

She looks at me and I nod.

 

“Commander O’Dell agrees,” she replies.

 

“I will relay the agreement,” the com officer responds.

 

“Looks like we may need a small detail to enter with us anyway,” she winks, “are you OK with that?”

 

“Yes,” I nod, “besides. We never know just how the administration will take the defeat. Or our invasion of the White House.”

 

8.

 

Secret Service simply gave up, leaving the President and his administration unprotected. I watch them file out, heads low in defeat. But they aren’t a fighting force. They are bodyguards. This was never their fight.

 

We find the President and his cabinet in the dining hall, each handcuffed, waiting for the inevitable. The President looks up at me, his eyes slits of hate.

 

“You were reported dead,” he hisses.

 

“And you have always claimed to be a smart, smart man,” I respond, “and yet, it takes a very stupid and insecure man to become a dictator.”

 

“You say that,” he hisses in reply, “as if you have already judged me.”

 

“No,” I counter, “you proved yourself weak and insecure. As well as stupid beyond repair. Not to mention lazy.”

 

“And now,” he leers, “what do you aim to do now? Set up a tribunal and try me? You know I will win.”

 

“No,” I shake my head, “I will not be doing so. You will face trial for war crimes in the Hague at the International Hall of Justice. Along with your administration.”

 

“I will still win,” he says, an evil grin playing on his face, “because I have the best lawyers.”

 

“I doubt that,” I state, “since your current lawyer is also going to be on trial…and stripped of his ability to defend you or anyone else.”

 

I watch as his eyes widen with the realization that he has finally been defeated. I can tell that he has finally realized just how hopeless his current position is. As we wait for the arrival of  the UN members, the general who had talked to me earlier is brought in. but he isn’t brought to where the President can see him.

 

The unit leader guarding the President nods to me, letting me know that it is OK to leave for a moment. I look at Miranda expectantly and she accompanies me to where the general is being held.

“Anything you can give us,” I encourage, “could make your own case look good.”

 

“I understand,” he nods, “and I will cooperate fully for the tribunal in the Hague. I will also try to convince the other generals to do the same.”

 

“Have you sent word?” I inquire.

 

“To surrender?” He asks. I nod. “Yes. the fighting is supposed to be over everywhere.” He looks away. “We would have been defeated eventually anyway, even if you had not returned. It was inevitable. Your return simply put the final nail in the coffin.” he looks back at me. “That was my best unit you fed to us as a decoy. And we blasted them out of the sky believing them to be your force. When we sorted the bodies out of the wreckage, that was what broke us. We no longer had any fight.”

 

“This,” I motion around us, in gesture toward the conflict, “would not have been easily resolved. The resentment on both sides would have kept the country divided and broken for decades to come…possibly never to rise as great as she was before. A new form of the KKK would have risen to replace the “white pride” version, this time to hate the victors rather than a simple color or creed.” I shake my head. “No, America would slide into dark times or even possibly simply vanish as a country. As it is, she lies broken by the hate and violence.

 

“That would have been her fate had I not come back. But, I cannot allow her to die so easily. Not even because of a desperate despot.”

 

One of the African members of the UN appears at my side.

 

“He’s right, you know,” he interjects.

 

At his appearance, I realize that it is time to return to where the President is being held. We go, leaving the general to ponder what I have said.

 

“I am in position,” I begin, once back in the dining hall, “to strip the President of his power and do so now. I also, hereby, turn him over to you, along with his administration-chosen co-conspirators-who have plundered and embroiled the world in war.”

 

“You have one more mission, John O’Dell,” the African states.

 

“What is that?” I inquire.

 

“To bring down his allies, of course,” he replies, a grin spreading on his face.

 

“Lemme guess,” I smile back at him, “Russia, North Korea, and China.”

 

“Yes,” he nods, “as well as the Philippines, Turkey, and those countries that chose to head into fascist government structures.”

 

“Although,” the British ambassador adds, “Europe has dealt a blow to the European bastions of hate.”

 

“Then my troops shall begin strikes against the eastern allies,” I reply, and move westward as we defeat them.  But after we agree upon what we desire in the surrender of the US.”

 

“Here, here,” the Brit proclaims, “I concur with that.”

 

“I have already insisted upon an unconditional surrender,” I grin, “does that sound about right for y’all as well?”

 

A resounding echo of agreement ripples through the room. The UN legal counsel prepares the papers declaring the surrender and lay them before the general.  He takes up the pen supplied to him and signs it.

 

“It is done,” he announces, “it is a relief to have done that. Too many have died for the whims of a madman.”

9.

 

North Korea’s defenses crumble upon our arrival and we overrun them.  The dictator surrenders without much of a struggle. As with the US President, we keep him handcuffed , along with his inner circle, and wait for the UN forces to arrive. It doesn’t take them long and we head for the Philippines.

 

Again, their defenses crumble and the scene repeats itself. As it does with Russia. And China. And Turkey. And the Middle East.

 

The new axis of evil is destroyed and the end of the dimension is brought ever closer. A new age is dawning before our eyes.

 

“So when this is over,” Miranda begins, hesitantly, “what of us?”

 

“Depending on what happens in my own dimension,” I respond, “we can remain lovers…if you wish.”

 

“If I wish?” She tests.

 

“You know I won’t remarry,” I smile sadly, “but I do love you.”

 

“I know, silly,” she grins, “I love you too. Marriage is so old fashioned anyway. And I do not want to limit you. Besides. I am hoping that, at sometime, you are successful in setting things right and accomplishing what you set out to do…before all this.”

 

“You are amazing, My Dear,” I say softly, putting my arm around her, “I am forever in your debt.”

 

“Then,” she giggles, “let’s count our debts paid in full.”

 

“Agreed,” I respond, kissing her, “and now that the war is over…our time here is growing short. There is one last thing we have to witness before we are sent elsewhere.”

 

“And that is?” She inquires.

 

“The trial of those who created this mess,” I smile, “it is imperative that we watch their convictions and their hangings. That signals the end of this dimension.”

 

“How many dimensions have you went through?” She pries.

 

“I have lost count. Suffice it to say that I have gone through enough to know that there is little chance of this nightmare continuing after a few more. In fact the continuation of this nightmare is growing to an infinitesimally small possibility.”

 

“A few more?” She’s not about to give this up.

 

“Most of them,” I explain, “have gone by so fast. Almost barely noticeably so. I went, took him down in less violent ways. Most of them had less of a support base for him.”

 

“What do you mean less?”

 

“Like almost no support base,” I chuckle, “which made it a lot easier. And a lot quicker. My basic mission beyond his fall was to collect my own projects, papers, and files…and money, if I had any.”

 

“So that means that you are independently wealthy,” she suggests.

 

“Pretty much,” I respond, nodding, “which means that the debt I had going into this project is now pretty much nonexistent.”

 

“Debt?”

 

“Yes,” I nod, “my original source was the CIA, NSA, and military intelligence. MI6 and at least a dozen European as well as at least a handful of Asian and all of the African intel communities invested heavily as well. The point, of course, was the same as what we just got finished doing.”

 

“Taking down the dictators,” she adds, “who back the President.”

 

“As well as taking the President down,” I agree, “it was so easy through the first infinite group of dimensions. I am pretty sure I have very few left to go through. Oddly enough, as I go through them, they fold shut like an accordion, shutting off those possible ends to the future.”

 

“I see,”  she smiles mischievously, “and how many women have you encountered?”

 

“So far,” I reply, smiling back at her, “just you. I was pretty solitary in all the other realms I have entered.”

 

“So I have no competition?”

 

“No,” I shake my head, “not really. Except the duchesses and a handful of famous actresses and female singers from my own dimension.” I wink at her. She blushes.

 

“Now,” she smirks, “you’re just messing with me.”

 

“Yes,” I chuckle, “I am. My fascination with them has long passed. Besides. I was seeing how jealous you would get.”

 

“And did I pass your test?”

 

“Yes,” I aver, “you did.”

 

10.

 

The death penalty and immediate execution of all involved in the planning and implementation of WWIII has heralded the closure of the dimension. As the phasic shift begins, I feel myself ripped away from Miranda and the massive carrier that had been the science ship. The flotilla had docked within the docking bay and our troops had retired to quarters to rest during the journey. I had gone to quarters with Miranda and was about to enjoy an amazing night of sensual fun.

 

A flash let me know that we were suddenly separated. Now, I see nothing except streaks of light. I find it ironic that sometimes more than one dimension is closed at a time, especially when the events are nearly identical. I say nearly, because no two dimensions are truly identical. There are always subtle differences. But they are similar enough for them to close en masse.

 

So it seems with those that would have immediately followed the one I was just in. as I zip through dimensional space, I glance at my arm. I am still wearing the armor from the last dimension.

 

When I come to a stop, I see that I am in a post- nuclear wasteland, a kind of post apocalyptic nuclear desert. Strangely enough, the facility near me is protected by an energy shield. I approach the facility and set off the alarms. A small group appears at the entry, armed.

 

“State your purpose,” a sexy nubian princess demands.

 

“Well,” I begin, “I was just passing through on a mission to destroy a regime and happened to land at your door.”

 

“Your name?” she demands.

 

“John O’Dell,” I reply.

 

“But you’re dead!” The shock is evident in her eyes.

 

“Exactly how did I die here?” I inquire.

 

“The regime blew you up,” she responds, “successfully in their last campaign out here. You were…standing right where you now stand.”

 

“I assure you that I am who I say I am,” I state quietly, “but I am not from this dimension. I am passing through dimensions gathering my knowledge, projects, and creations. My secondary mission is to collect weaponry and to destroy the regime. Doing so destroys this possible future and shuts down the future of the regime in my own dimension.” I look at her. “Can I ask the name of the young lady I am talking to?”

 

“I am Tamika Brown,” she replies, “but my–your soldiers call me Armistice.”

 

“Lemme guess,” I smile, “because you’ll never surrender.”

 

“You’re right,” she nods, “partially. I was sent to seal an armistice pact between the government and the separatists.  That was in December last year, shortly after your wife’s death.” She looks away. “We sort of fell in love right after I arrived. I filled a void for you, I guess, and we have been together ever since…until the government broke their word and nuked the area. I watched helplessly as you were turned to ash before my eyes. And I have fought in your name ever since.”

 

“My last stop,” I begin, “I was imprisoned. Here I am dead. The ones before I was able to destroy the regime without much of a problem. We destroyed it with little effort the last time as well…but that was because they believed me to be dead.”

 

“Maybe we can use the same tactic now as well,” she grins, “after all, they have recorded you as dead here as well.”

 

“Will your soldiers understand the dimensional aspect of my story?” I inquire.

 

“Of course,” she nods, “you were working on something along that lines when you were killed.”

 

“Then let us begin,” I reply, planning for the final take down.”

 

“Yes,” she agrees, “Let us.”

 

“By the way,” I begin, in passing, “who did you work for before we met?”

 

“The UN,” she admits, “I was a special emissary sent to you. I am originally from Liberia. I was given a small command of African peacekeepers from   all fifteen countries. A unified team intent on nailing down a peace here.

 

“We were close to coming to terms when Washington decided to send an airstrike. The lab facilities were protected from the fallout, but the surrounding communities were not. Even Stratcom was destroyed with a third of the military that had been stationed there.  You were killed as well, since you were always leaving the safety of the facilities to help the people of the communities.”

 

“So kindness was my undoing,” I nod, “no surprise.”

 

“It was your greatest strength,” she  smiles sadly, “you were able to evacuate and give shelter to almost all those you went to help. Most of them have taken up arms and joined me in honoring your memory.”

 

“How many?” I press.

 

“About 20,000,000 at the moment,” she responds, maybe more. Not sure how many states made it here before the bombs began dropping. He attempted to get everyone within and 800 mile radius just to be sure. But this is not the only facility.”

 

“And I would have to visit the other facilities,” I add, “if I want to find the total number…correct?”

 

“Yes,” she nods.

 

“Is there an easier way to get to the other facilities?” I request.

 

“Yes,” she avers, “we have teleportation chambers.”

 

“Good,” I respond, “I want to see how large a force we have at our disposal.”

 

Note: these stories bridge the span between the Journals and the notes. This adds a new dimension to the story and adds information not exposed in the other portions of the story. Where the journal is a catalogue of personal experiences  that record the time travel, and the Files are the records of his team during the first three episodes, The Dimensional Wars record the most important battles, some of which will be very similar for all journal entries,

Tales of the Alpha Triad: The Project Genesis Files, Episode 1: The Project Begins

1

 

From the desk of Matthew L. Spartan, Barr.

2018/06/21

 

As the lawyer within the delegation, I , Matthew L. Spartan, along with Thomas D. Spartan, Luke C. Grey, Phillip J. Smith, Bryan X. Ross, Lawrence C. Hamilton, Rhys Drake, and Angus Wallace-hereafter mentioned as the UNDERSIGNED-hereby have agreed to will our full assets to John O’Dell for use in research and development. Our full assets will be divided into a 80/20 split with John receiving 80% of our total worth now to invest into his research projects. We retain 20%, which we will use to live the rest of our lives–the remainder being handed over to John upon our deaths. This 20% includes our landed estates.

 

From Thomas D. Spartan, $100,000,000,000 USD is to be transferred to a preset banking destination, a private bank within the new laboratory facility set up by Thomas, an ex-banker. From Luke C. Grey, $100,000,000,000 USD is to be transferred to preset private bank. From Phillip J. Smith, $100,000,000,000 USD is to be transferred to preset private bank. From Bryan X. Ross, $100,000,000,000 USD. From Lawrence C. Hamilton, $100,000,000,000 USD. From Rhys Drake, $100,000,000,000 USD. From Angus Wallace, $100,000,000,000 USD. and from myself, $100,000,000,000 USD.

 

Once back in Britain, I will arrange for others within the family to do the same. There is at least another ten to twenty bachelors such as myself who are seeking any relation that is deserving of the inheritances they bestow. I will also reach out to my contacts throughout Europe to find more family on both sides who are seeking inheritors. In this way, we will begin to build his worth so that he can invest as he has agreed.

 

Signed,

 

Matthew L. Spartan

2

 

From the desk of Jeff Bezos

06-22-2018

Re: submissions/query to The Washington Post

 

Dear Mr. O’Dell

 

I am writing you in response to the columns you submitted to The Washington Post. I believe that you and I should meet and discuss the possibilities of your philosophical column. As a result, we should also discuss contracts, your price, and scope of audience you are trying to reach. I believe that I can broaden your audience through convincing many other newspapers to also begin publication of your columns.

 

All we need to iron out is your terms and conditions. Be assured that your disclaimer made me smile. You are correct. You don’t aim to make friends or to get people to agree. At the same time, you do actually speak the truth.

 

As for your music and book related columns, perhaps I can talk Rollingstone, Entertainment Weekly, or some other entertainment related magazine into taking you on board. Rest assured that you do your fellow musicians and authors a great service by writing your reviews. It is just that most newspapers are not looking for new reviewers. But they are looking for commentary and philosophical columns…and your idea of a column dedicated to giving exposure to your fellow authors in a serial fiction column is intriguing.

 

I will call you to set up a time and place to meet. On a different note, have you thought of setting up research for your ideas? If not, I believe that you should. I would even consider investing in the research myself if you did so.

 

Cordially,

 

Jeff Bezos

3

Her Royal Majesty, Queen Elizabeth

2018-06-25

(as delivered by Beatrice and Eugenia, the Duchesses of York)

 

Dear Mr. John O’Dell,

 

Please rest assured that we are honored that you have decided to use a most ancient royal name as a part of your business venture. We are also honored to learn that you are distantly related to us and would like to invite you to Buckingham Palace for discussions on your columns at a time most convenient for you. We have spoken to Matthew Sparta and have learned that you are planning great things. This, too, interests us.

 

We had our granddaughters deliver this letter to you in hopes that you will return with them. We do, however, understand if you are delayed, as it has come to our attention that your health is not good. May God help you with a speedy recovery.

 

We hope that you had a great visit with Harry and Will. they were keen on meeting you in person. And since their mission was a secret, your own customs did not know they were over there. We ask that you accept Bea and Jennie as our personal representatives in your company.

 

We will talk more when you arrive for your visit. We have much to discuss, dear cousin.

 

Sincerely,

 

Queen Elizabeth II

4

 

From the desk of Dr. Alisha Chan

 

Date: 07-01-2018

 

John O’Dell has entrusted my team with the development of biocybernetics. This project is better known as Project Genesis. After reviewing John’s overview of the project, I have ascertained that his idea, his creation, is both possible and probable. He is correct in saying that we have the technology, the medical know-how, and the scientific ability to make this. We are intuitive enough. We are creative enough. We are innovative enough.

 

I am deeply intrigued by John’s vision of a non invasive cure, a nano-biochip that can turn on or turn off switches, depending on the dysfunction…the illness. Even more intriguing is the idea of prosthetics that become a part of the amputee that receives them. Basically, mechanical body parts that become a natural part of the recipient.

 

This is science beyond what is being explored! Sure, the components are being pushed to their limits…but the combination of the components has never been explored. At least not on this level. And not for these reasons.

 

Our lab is a private facility, owned by John. It is kept off the NYSE and other stock markets as well as away from government grants. He, alone, funds all research. He calls the shots.

 

Which is fine with the team. This is, after all, a unique opportunity that may never come around again if we don’t take the challenge up now. And John is taking a big chance by volunteering as the first test subject. Maybe that isn’t the most ethical, but it keeps what we’re doing a secret.

 

This means that we’re taking his DNA and finding the weaknesses in it. These weaknesses, we will be strengthening. By this, I mean genetic illnesses and possible cancers. Nothing else. At least, nothing intentional.

 

He has instructed us, however, to push the envelope. Our objective, with him, is to attempt to open the unused regions of his brain…but is this wise? What will the result be? Will it truly be like the movies? Like Lucy?

We have no idea. But first, we will do heart, lungs, eyes, and other organs first. Then we will focus solely on his brain. After each injection, we will wait to see what side effects-if any-take place. After a short wait, we will continue with another injection. And so on.

 

My team consists of Dr. Ayaliah Abdullah, Dr. Vashti Khan, Dr. Assa Ree, and Dr. Athene Diakolos. Our genetics techs are Alf Trahl, Celeste Darnier, Stanley Riggs, and Frazier Greene. Our medical team is led by the preeminent physician and surgeon Therese Montegu. Her team of medics and nurses remind me of a M.A.S.H. unit in a warzone. Yet, they are always at the ready. And always willing members of our elite team.

 

There is a second team overseeing Project Exodus, jokingly called Project Rapture. This joke refers to the myth tightly clung to by evangelical “Christians”. John calls them Pseudo-Judaic Paulites due to their rigid Old Testament views which they supplement with verses from the Epistles written by the Pharisaic Christian Apostle Paul. as a mystic, our fearless leader loves to screw with their concepts of theology simply because of their blindness. Their overly evident lack of knowledge on history, the art of metaphorically describing  spiritual events in physical terms, and the totally twisted vision they have of what the world should be like.

 

John does not like heresy or hypocrisy. They are signs of weakness to him. The misuse of scripture is a sign of spiritual foolishness to him. Then, again, religion is a negative in his world. It denoted the death of the spirit, the death of faith and belief. He sees its physical attachments as a vile twisting of what was meant to be purely spiritual in nature…and thus unseen by the physical eye.

 

A third team oversees Project Alpha, a project dedicated to cloning, hard light holographics, and cybernetics advancement. This team works closely with our team. They are also working closely with Project Exodus on the S.A.M. project…a project we are also working on with Project Exodus. Project Alpha’s part in the S.A.M. project is with the stasis units and the hydroponics/biodome that will act as the temporary shelter for all who opt for this choice when it is given to them.

 

Finally, there is Project Omega, which is dedicated to designing the medium of speed for the S.A.M. units. The idea is to press toward the speed of thought so that the payload can reach its destination in a blink of an eye, rather than over light years. Instant delivery!

 

Our lab is based in the vacated transmission factory fifteen miles from John’s home. Onto this factory building, he has built a “hangar” facility for the Project Exodus  team as well as two apartment buildings to house the teams and a parking garage to hide our vehicles. In appearances, the facility still seems to be a factory, with a decoy machines ringing the vacant commons area. Beyond this decoy lies the laboratories, labeled “east wing”, “north wing”, and “west wing”. The east wing is shared by projects Alpha and Omega, since they are also working together with Project Exodus on the S.A.M. development.

 

He has mentioned the possibility of designing a multi-layer lab, similar to those in many a sci-fi “Zombie infection” film, but not so sinister. More of a tri-level, expanding each project’s labs beyond just “wings” in a building. The top level would be solely Project Exodus with Project Alpha just below that and Omega below that. The bottom-most level would be Project Genesis, with ample room for ORs and post op areas as well as recovery/observation rooms for volunteers who opt for the transplants/injections.

 

I believe his plan is to slowly absorb the remaining outside parking into the lab, thus reducing the temptation for people to want to enter the area to explore. From the facility that replaces it, He will expand the basement levels after shoring up and reinforcing the walls of the original. Whether he will leave the current commons area where it is or move it is not yet known. Whatever his decision, I believe it will be best.

 

Signed

 

Alisha Chan, PhD. Genetics

 

Team leader, Project Genesis

5

 

From the Desk of Dr. Merril Johns

Date: 7-1-2018

 

I have volunteered to lead Project Exodus. After reviewing the project overview, I realized that this would be one hell of a good joke to play on an overly religious minority. Being an atheist from an early age, I find religion just as distasteful as John does. Rather than eradicate them, though, John has proposed to build what I can only term intelligent rapture machines to speed them to “a new heaven and new Earth.”

 

The bio-engineered Self-Aware Mechanisms are basically AI/cyborg hybrids meant for a single purpose to deliver their payload to planets so distant that they cannot physically return and drop them off with enough supplies to build their ideal settlements and food supplies enough to survive for several decades without having to be sent supplies, at the speed of thought. The freighter versions of the S.A.M.s will have bio-domes that contain biosynth stasis pods that go through rapid biodegrade after the occupant is awakened. Basically, the pods dry up and crumble almost immediately after opening to release the person inside.

 

At the moment, we are located in the north wing, the largest lab, due to the presence of our hangar, the assembly area for the S.A.M.s.  I am quite fortunate to be a part of such an ingenious and ambitious project. After all, each project is just a subpart of a much larger project, Project Genesis being the beginning stage, giving us the main bio components for the beginning stages of S.A.M. Projects Alpha and Omega (funny they are greek for beginning and end) will contribute everything from cloning technology to cybernetics (as opposed to biocybernetics) and their developments in “speed of thought” delivery systems.

 

We will remain off the grid. No internet. Solar-polar panels to keep us energized. We will even have our own source of water, another innovation of John’s design. As is our waste treatment system.  

 

At the moment, there is a decoy “factory” that creates a ring around the commons. This ring gives any who enter the  illusion that the facility is nothing more than a factory. And in a way, it is. But not the type it appears to be.

 

Dr. Victor Frankenstein would be proud of John’s labs. But John isn’t trying to bring anyone back from the dead. He is simply going to design a cure for every known disease and design biocybernetic replacements for arms and legs. Not sure exactly what the cloning research is for, but that does not matter at the moment.

 

I am one of four privileged scientists leading one of four teams. There has been talk of his hiring another couple of teams per project so that shifts can be created and R&D can continue day and night. I think this is a good idea, but we’ll have to be careful. Suspicions are already beginning to form in the minds of some very powerful people. There are, however, a couple of ‘insider’ outsiders who know what is going on here.

 

The royal family in Britain knows, as the lab bears an ancient name linked to them.  And two of the family will soon be on the inside, but will say very little as John is distantly related to them and there has already been a written agreement that nothing will be said to MI6. In other words, the Queen did John a huge favor by burying the knowledge as deeply as possible so that British intelligence would never find out.

 

Our only concern, at the moment, is keeping the CIA and NSA from hearing rumors and coming to check us out. Or any other foreign intelligence agency for that matter. But I believe John has already taken care of this with a little misinformation of his own, planted in an article about his purchase of the facility.

 

As far as his staff, we cease to exist in the world beyond the facility…which is fine. After all, we are working for a private laboratory working on a project so top secret that even the government knows nothing about it. Hell. our former employers have no idea this place exists! And that is how we intend to keep it. Especially since they discontinued our research with them and terminated our employment through them.

 

His newly built cannery is scheduled to supply us food in quantities so as to reduce the need to leave the facility. A big plus, considering the research will leave little time for excursions outside the complex. This is what most research geneticists and biomedical researcher live for. We’re no different.

 

We live for our research. Each advancement drives the next. And the next. Until the task we set out to do is successfully completed.

 

We aren’t creating weaponry. Nor something that could be used as such. We are creating cures. Something that pharmaceutical companies should be creating but refuse to out of their greedy desire to keep people as captive consumers of treatments that only remove the symptoms.

 

We are also creating a means to rid earth of a malignant portion of the population. The hateful portion. The willfully ignorant portion.  Those who refuse to accept the science of truth.

 

Since we pose no real danger, no real threat, we will remain blissfully anonymous.  From our advantageous position in the heartland, we will begin spreading change. Hope. Vision.

 

We are building a future. Out of the ashes of the present, we are the next generation. And we are beyond the reach of the federal government. Or any government.

6

 

From the desk of Dr. Marlisse Trudeau

 

2018/07/01

 

(Translated from French)

 

I volunteered to lead the founding team for Project Alpha because John O’Dell’s theories on ‘speed of thought’ and the possibilities of long and short term stasis for space travel intrigued me. He described processes I had not thought of in my own experiments, such as the idea that stasis could be designed similar to a placental sack to surround and protect the person. For short term stasis, only sleep would have to be induced. With long distance, if ‘speed of thought’ is not initiated, stasis would also include feed lines to keep the astronauts’ bodies nourished while they were placed in hibernation…sort of like an umbilical similar to that which attaches a fetus to its mother, the ship acting as ‘mother’ overseeing to the sleeping astronauts’ needs and monitoring their vitals.

 

An intriguing idea, considering the fact that until now, we have struggled with the limitations of our own imaginations. We have seen it impossible simply because we have not approached it from the point of the ship acting as mother, carrying ‘babies’. A totally unique approach to the idea!

 

As for ‘Speed of Thought’, the concept is to be able to preprogram a destination into the AI/bio-organic cyborg S.A.M. unit and allow the S.A.M. to travel at the speed of thought. Basically, it is an attempt to search out and find instantaneous travel. Pretty straight forward, though a bit more complicated than most research.

 

All is possible. But is it probable? I think so, as do several physicists. But, then, I am a physicist as well. I had approached John after his column on time travel. He unique way of looking at the physics of the idea, the ripple effect theory, put a spin on time travel that physicists had not explored.

 

But he also reminded us that the past, not the future, was already set. It was the only path we could travel. The future had too many variables, both foreseen and unforeseen, to allow for an accurate path of travel. Trying to travel forward in time would only put us in a possible future, not the actual future.

 

In other words, we have been approaching time travel completely wrong. Backwards. And after reviewing my own adjusted calculations based on his musings, I have found that he may also be correct about the ripple effect.

 

But time travel is the research of Project Omega. Not Project Alpha. Still, as a physicist, I find his points intriguing and cannot resist doing my own calculations to prove and disprove. And yet, I cannot seem to disprove his points.

 

The same pertains to ‘speed of thought’. His musings suggest that it is possible. Even probable. Even though he doesn’t give exact details, he suggests that both the speed of light (light speed in film and sci-fi novels) and speed of thought (never before explored by science fiction) are possible, but that speed of thought is instantaneous and the desired speed for travel that would otherwise take several thousand years to go from origin to destination.

 

His fascination with it is amusing, though he is not obsessive with it. After all, he has other things to do as well. And other interests.

 

The four team leaders are collectively known as “Alpha Team”. Eight to twelve  more teams (four per shift) are going to be added (beta, gamma, delta) to keep the research going around the clock. This is to ensure a rapid research and development of our respective projects. He has been discussing the addition of two or three more project teams: Project Beta, Project Gamma, and Project Delta.

 

At the moment, we have no clue what these projects entail. All we know is that he is trying his best to divide up the research so that the workloads aren’t huge. I am hoping he divides the workload so that Beta takes on the stasis research and frees my team to continue solely on discovering the secret to travel at the speed of thought.

 

Whatever his intention, I know that he has our best interests in mind. After all, he calls meetings to discuss everything. He does nothing without our input. And these new teams were our request. It will split the workload evenly among several smaller teams rather than overworking the existing groups.

 

Even the Project Genesis team asked to have their workload divided among smaller groups. So that each team can tackle a single illness or genetic malady and find a solution to it. Even if the findings of several teams are the same, it will mean that independent research has come to the same conclusion. A great way to create a competitive, yet cooperative work environment.

 

As a result, Project Psyche will take on the task of researching opening the unused portions of the brain. Project Memnos will take on the mental illness research. Project Ichor will focus on the cardiovascular research. Project Boreas will take on the lung research. Project Asclepius will take on the remaining internal organs. Project Heimdal will take on the ear research and Project Argos will research the eye.

 

Project Hecatonchires is a two-team project working on prosthetics for those who need limb replacement. Project Loki will research hard light holograms   and image casters. And so on. Of course, it is all still a part of projects Genesis and Exodus so in the end, it will still be accomplishing a giant leap for humanity.

7

 

From the desk of Dr. Maxen Wulff

Date: 2018.07.01.

(translated from German)

 

I am head of Project Omega. At the moment, we are researching time travel, hard light holograms, and several other possibilities. Part of our time travel research is also research into the effects of dimensional jumping. We cannot accurately call it going into the future because the future is not a set-in-stone destination. It is more like a possibility that hangs on a series of variables too numerous to accurately predict. Thus, each possibility is more like an alternate reality, a dimension that might be should certain variables be enacted upon.

 

In dimensional jumping, it is still an unknown what the effect would be, since future events are unknowns in the present. This means that there is less possibility of a ripple effect taking place and more of a collapse of infinity. But is this a correct assumption? Or would more dimensions open in place of those that have been tampered with?

 

John has stated, and I am of a mind to agree with him, that science fiction-and fiction in general-is a glimpse into another dimension and just because it is fiction here doesn’t mean that it isn’t fact elsewhere. But I reserve this for science fiction and anything less…horrifying. Not necessarily horror. God forbid that horror was real somewhere. So many vile creations would be running loose.

 

On a deeper level, though, John has voiced a doubt about going back in time and then returning. He has stated that going forward would work the same, no matter where in time you went. He is of the opinion that you can only move naturally with time when going forward, not jump forward.

 

In other words, if you were to go back to the 1960s, you could not return to your own time but would be stuck moving with the natural current of time until you reached your own time. You could not return to 2018…or, at least, not the 2018 you knew. You would end up going into other dimensions, alternate futures, based on the unrealized variable at that moment in time.

 

Part of the reason is that the event of you going back has changed the outcome of the future. Perhaps your impact is barely noticeable. Or maybe it is a huge impact that changes everything. Just your appearance would cause ‘ripples’ to appear in the time/space continuum. Your choices immediately after would compound the changes carried by those ripples. The more things you changed, the more extreme the ripples.

 

At the same time, he also hypothesized that you, as the one who disturbed the continuum, could only go as far as where you first disturbed it: your point of origin. And upon every arrival, you would be sent further and further back in time until you finally ended up at the beginning-whatever that beginning was. Once at the beginning, the ripples and the point of origin would vanish, leaving you stranded in time, forced to ride the complete length of time as we know it.

 

Every physicist working on this project, myself included, are of the same opinion. Messing with time would, indeed, cause a ripple effect. Even the calculations we have done seem to point to this. The question is: would you, the traveller, be outside time or within her constraints? This is the puzzle. Would ending up at the “beginning” make one “immortal” or would they die in the past at some point?

 

It is a very intriguing puzzle. As is the puzzle concerning dimensional travel.  The question that eludes me is ‘how will we ever know? After all, won’t traveling back erase the future over and over again as the traveller is sent to subsequent ripples in time? Or will it be more complex than that?

 

These are the mysteries we have to discover the answers to. I think that my team will begin with the dimensional question. Infinite variables equal an infinite number of dimensions. Where we begin can be anyone’s guess. Do the alternates for the past still exist? Or are they already gone, replaced successive year? Or do they evolve?

 

Strange how the questions multiply. Just like the possibilities. The more we find answers, the more questions we are led to. It is never ending.

 

I can’t forget that we are also overseeing the cloning and the cybernetics development that is supposed to lead up to the biocybernetics being researched by the members of Project Genesis. Our cybernetics are supposed to be bonded with human volunteers. These volunteers are to be given image casters to hide their cybernetic implants…if they wish.

 

First round volunteers will be less human in appearance. This is a given. That is the reason for the image casters, which are being developed at the same time. Yes, a bit taxing, but worth it. Still, it was the reason I requested the workload be divided even further. No need for burnout because we were overworked.

 

With extra teams, the pressure will also be eased. No pressure here. But all the same, I cannot wait to see how this project matures.

 

Before closing, I am happy to report that our first volunteers-several homeless veterans-have signed on for the testing. Among these is the fiery figure known to us only as Wrathchild. He calls himself one of the living dead, more dead than alive, who have lost more than one limb. In his case, he has no arms or legs.

 

In his physical, it was also found that he is blind in one eye, deaf in one ear, and has heart problems. We have a lot of work to do where he is concerned. The rest seem…more whole.

8

 

From the desk of Marina Sanchez, MD

Date: 07-01-2018

 

As the chief medical officer and Chief Medical Director of Project Genesis, I am writing this assessment after John O’Dell’s physical. John was right to be concerned for his health and had assessed his own health correctly before the physical. He wishes that the following assessment goes no further than between myself, the immediate team, and him. He does not want his family to know unless something should happen to him.

 

It is agreed, thus I shall record my assessment of his health. John is suffering from a rare strain of cancer. He is literally in the final stages, thus treatment in the traditional sense is futile. It has not yet spread to his brain, so his mind is not affected. Yet.

 

This makes his push to complete this project a desperate fight to survive. This is as much about him as it is about those he originally set out to help, but not in his mind. Those of us who work for him see it this way. Perhaps his premonition about the cancer was the reason he was so willing to volunteer himself as test subject. I don’t know.

 

I would not have found the cancer had it not been for the cystic growth I biopsied from his arm. Sadly, if he were to opt for treatment, he would be dead in less than a year. But that was not an option for him. After all, he has so much to offer the people of the world.

 

The cancer has spread to his heart, lungs, liver, and other internal organs. As stated earlier, it still hasn’t reached his brain. How long he has had this cancer is beyond me. He may have been suffering for years, or just months. It is impossible to accurately tell, though he recalls a surgeon stating-after a surgery-that he was lucky to be alive.

 

His eyesight is failing rapidly, so time is growing short. Even he is aware of this. The migraines. The sudden blindness for no real reason. It is all a sign that he has very little time left.

 

He suffers from mental and physical fatigue, a sign that his illness is wearing on him. He is in constant pain, though one can barely tell by looking at him. It is truly sad to see someone in so much pain and unable to do anything about it. Especially when the person knows that they are dying.

 

I hope the teams can piece together something before it is too late. But when will that be? Today? Tomorrow? When?

 

Right now, it is a waiting game. I have drawn the first samples of his blood for them to begin experiments with. I am hoping that it isn’t too late. But I am afraid.

 

Perhaps I am overthinking. Perhaps not. I don’t know. So far, he has been able to hold himself together.

 

The thing with cancer is that it is unpredictable. It can consume in a heartbeat, or it can suddenly vanish…only to return a thousand times worse than it had been. Or it can just kill without warning.

 

And the type he has is even less predictable than most. Almost no one has survived it. Almost no one. But there have been a few.

 

(goes with episode 1 of Tales: Journals)

 

Tales from the Alpha Triad, Episode 2: And It Begins…

Episode 2: And It Begins…

 

Entry 1

 

Before I left on my trip to Europe, the lab gave me an experimental medical armor made expressly for me to test. Its main  purpose was to protect my body from foreign elements. Part of my personal mission would be dangerous. Maybe deadly. My staff did not want to take the chance of losing me  while I was away.

 

Of course the armor, as well as the other armors and a few other projects we had in the research and development, were all a part of Project Genesis, our first round of experimental technologies which included first Gen biocybernetic prosthetics and implants, as well as a protective surgical armor for second Gen biocybernetics.

 

We were blessed to be joined by a homeless veteran who had lost both arms and both legs and went by the name Wrathchild. Restricted by his dependence on an oxygen machine, he was in sad shape when he arrived at our lab and opted to be a test subject. He brought at least thirty other homeless vets who were more than happy to be a part of the Project Genesis Gen 1 program.

 

My medical armor was a Gen 3 prototype. Little did I know that this armor also had a secondary purpose. As a prototype, it was created to literally be the instrument to perform my own injections of the nanotechnology of  biocybernetics. Since it was a full body armor, it would inject the nano-chips strategically. The cranial cap would inject through the skull, “flooding” the brain with the nanos in different regions, for different reasons. The body armor would flood my body cavity with the same, each nano-invasion specifically designed for certain tasks.

 

And so I went to Europe encased in a biocybernetics injection armor. Soon, I would understand both the pain and the pleasure of the injections. These began almost immediately after I put the armor on. And, at first, I found them uncomfortable. Then, they became almost unnoticeable.

 

And so, encased in this armor, I went to Europe. Country by country, I went collecting inheritances, unclaimed monies, and buying the debts of some of the highest officials in the world.  I had a reason for my rhyme, but the secrecy of what I was doing guarded my movements from most of the media. The less scrupulous, and more propagandized media seemed to love spreading rumors even though the mainstream remained silent.

 

This silence may have been due largely to the fact that every major new outlet carried my columns. Or it may have been due to other reasons. Or a little of both.

 

I must backtrack a bit to explain my last comment, though. I should make it known that it was weeks, not days from the first visits after the meetings with the editors…which was those of the ladies who would make up my science team. After that, I received a clandestine meeting from most of the world’s representatives in the UN.

 

While I shall not go into specifics on this meeting, I will state that it gave me the leverage I needed to do what I would be doing in Europe….which I cannot go into detail on either. Suffice it to say that I would have the means and the authority to strip businesses and personal accounts from several corrupt officials who had taken advantage of their positions. I would also be able to freeze the accounts of their donors and most ardent backers. Which I plan to do when I return to the US.

 

Another plus is that I ended a major threat in a single meeting once in Europe, and gained an imposing nickname….setting into motion the fall of an imposter. That, too, is a story for another time.

 

This visit, along with the name I gave to the laboratories, would prompt the visit from the Queen’s personal emissaries and my being escorted to England. But before the visit from the royal emissaries, I was visited by one of the bishops from the Vatican. Even the Pope wants to talk to me! Word has it even the Dalai Lama wants an audience!

 

And the appearance of the queen’s emissaries prompted my team to finish the armor and give it to me to wear and test. So this catches us up on events.  Amazing, isn’t it?

Entry 2

 

England is a blast! I have been a guest at Buckingham Palace for the past week! Of course, I have gone out and done business with one of the Princes and one of the young Duchesses as companions. But I have had so much fun getting acquainted with this part of my distant family, not to mention those I have come to meet with! So many distant relations who were impressed with me and my ideas! I should have done this years ago.

 

Still, my time here is coming to an end. My next stop is Paris and a meeting with the French President. From there, I am supposed to go to Poland, then Slovenia, then Slovakia, and on to other countries within NATO and the UN. My final stop in Europe is my meeting with the Pope.

 

While I have been here, I have been able to stop wearing my contacts. My migraines have also gone away as have the rest of my health problems. The nanos contained in this armor’s interior injectors have methodically been giving my body an overhaul, so to speak. I have even lost weight while gaining muscle! Amazing!

 

When I left the US, I was suffering from stage two cancer, arthritis, stomach problems, and a host of other things beyond my control. My last checkup, the one the Queen insisted I have with her own physician found the cancer gone and everything else disappearing unexpectedly. Seems my invention works.

 

Of course, I am only one test subject. But I am testing more than just the gene switch nanos. I am also testing the intelligence/brain switch nanos. These may take a little more time to be made manifest, but I am patient. Or, perhaps the nanos have already started in as much as they have removed the migraines.

 

Whatever the case, I feel better than I have ever felt in my life. And more dangerous. I haven’t felt this great since before my accident in high school! Still, this could be temporary.

 

Now, I am all packed and the bulk of my newfound wealth is already transferred to the in-lab bank that I began strictly for the purpose of monetary transfers. I am now feared by even Nigel Rothschild. I am also more wealthy.

 

But I am not trying to brag. My supposed financial worth is not important. My mission is. So is setting things right.

 

I have spent at least a third of what I have acquired on buying at least 1200 head of cattle, having them processed into meat items, and then having the meat distributed to 600 needy families. Just as I had done in the States before leaving.

 

This, I do anonymously. I have instructed my agents to not tell who has sent the food supplies. It isn’t necessary for those I have helped to know who I am or why I have done what I have done. And I believe that I have started a new trend in the Royal Family where this is concerned. Perhaps to the Queen’s chagrin.

 

I have one more thing to do before leaving England. It will be something I do everywhere I go. I will be building branches of my lab throughout Europe and sending  my Project Genesis/Project Exodus (“project Rapture”) team to each country to help round up and send off  hate groups and “Christian” extremists. The world needs to advance, not descend into a deeper hell because of a false religion.

 

Everything I have proposed in my column has been passed everywhere I go. England is the first country to do so and others want to follow. The world is going to change. One country at a time.

 

There is no reason to validate hate anymore. No reason to continue living according to the prophets of greed. It is time for all to wake up and learn that there really are no borders or boundaries, that we are all in this together and we either advance or we die out. There is no middle  ground where those who refuse to learn can remain. Not here on Earth.

 

We’ll just send them beyond this galaxy in hopes that they can advance elsewhere in their own way. If not, then they will die out as they lived…in violence and hate. They might do that anyway. Who knows?Entry 3

 

I am in Paris. I have always wanted to be here, but I always thought that I would be accompanied by the woman I loved. I guess I am a hopeless romantic. Always wanting to share. Always wanting to have company.

 

But here I am, alone. But that is OK. when I am done here, I will be that much more set. That much more respected.

 

The irony is that respect is earned. Not merely given, as some would have you think. And the only way to earn respect is to do something that people see as being noble and worthy of respect.

 

It isn’t being a dichead. Or strong-arming the masses. Or taking away protection from those who need it the most. Or stealing honest wages.

 

These are the reasons I had been contacted. My column had tackled these subjects and how to address them on a political level. Education. Finance. Business. Political. My reform ideas were both radical and seen as needed. Especially abroad.

 

Now we’re instituting my ideas here as the banks search out unclaimed monies. And debts of dignitaries held by their banks. I have to smile, though. Macron has been a very gracious host.

 

I won’t be spending as much time in Paris as I did in England. Nor will I spend that much time in the other countries. I have already been contacted by Germany, Slovenia, Poland, Austria, Montenegro, Albania, and a number of other countries that they have already done the search and collect portion of  our agreement. I have requested that Germany use what needs to be used to transfer a certain large American debt to me as owner. They agreed.

 

The thing I have made clear with every bank is that every debt I have bought is a closure to that individual’s loan account with them. They are no longer to allow borrowing from those I buy the debt of…except the US government, which I will forgive once certain things have been taken care of.  

 

At the same time, if all goes according to plan, most of those whose debts I now own will be in prison. Ah, but I am getting ahead of myself. I still have to get several countries to agree to some of my proposals. After that, I will be returning to the States to finish my mission.

 

My re entry will be through Puerto Rico, where I will be meeting with the green energy/power grid division of my lab crew. The island has been without for way too long. It is time to rebuild and strengthen. Time to make a statement.

 

From there, I will go to Flint, Michigan. There, I will fix the water system. After that, it is New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and Florida. Time to close distractions and start the process of ending America’s nightmare. I have already sold interests in Scotland. And in Latin America.

 

I own the debt of every traitor in the government. I also own the debt of those who financed them. For them, there is no escape. No mercy. No excuses.

 

There is only financial and political ruin. And I am flying in under their radar. I am coming home to make things right. They just don’t know it yet.

 

Of course, very few of them read, so they have not seen the hints. They haven’t read anything I have written. They have no clue what I have been asked to do. What I have agreed to do.

 

Corporations will be taken down. Fortunes will be lost. Legacies will vanish. “Nonprofit” foundations will vanish from the nation. Political groups, hate groups, and even religious groups will be made obsolete.

 

A wildfire has been lit and it is spreading worldwide. Change is coming. Everywhere. And I was the catalyst.

 

And this fire will cleanse away the lies and myths, restoring things to their original meanings or their original place. Economically, the country shall emerge stronger, but with a truly competitive and free market. Regulations and all.

 

Business will no longer be done the traditionally greedy way. Instead, business will change and grow to include regulations and salary caps. The change has already begun. But with the new data I will be taking home with me, it will intensify.

 

The age of oligarchs and monopolists is over. The age of hate, fear, rejection of truth and knowledge, and of the embracing of ignorance is over. Now, we can move on to better things. Greater things.

 

I have just been informed that Project Genesis, specifically the Project Exodus (jokingly called Project Rapture) is complete. This means that I can give the evangelicals and the hate groups a choice. I can give them their long sought after “rapture”. The idea makes me smile.

 

Addressing a problem was never so easy. Or so risky. After all, I am the one taking the gamble. I am the one making an offer to them they can’t refuse.

 

My only question now is do we have enough ships to rid the world of the problem of hate? It is a question I will need to pose to my teams. I’ll have to ask that during the next video meeting. Whenever that is.

Entry 4

 

I never knew that there was literally trillions of unclaimed US dollars scattered around the world. Now I do. And the vast majority is mine to use. It was part of the bargain.

 

But I have agreed to use it for a two-part purpose. On the one hand, I am using it to buy debts. Like I have bought those of the most corrupt in the world.  And the US national debt from China.

 

I have even bought the debts of the biggest monopolies around the world. Suddenly, it seems that no one is safe from me…at least that is what the Russian Mafia representative said to me. Seems everyone who has a reason fears me. Good.

 

The meeting in Paris went great. As did the meetings in Germany, Poland, Slovenia, and the multitude of smaller countries in eastern and central Europe as I made my way to Italy. And the Vatican.

 

Both of those meetings went well and my meeting with the Pope went viral on the web. Apparently, people agree with what I am promoting.

 

After Spain and Portugal, I head to Africa. There, I will be helping design an overhaul for the governments of several countries and will be helping design reforms meant to help unify and strengthen them. Many want similar reforms as those that interested the forty states in the US, but I have to customize the reforms so that they fit the diversity and cultures of the people. Should prove interesting.

 

I will likely be too busy to write much during my visit to Africa, so probably won’t make entries here…though this journal has helped quite a bit to ease the homesickness. I only hope that the fire that I have started will continue to grow. I want to be able to see the changes occur as these seeds I plant grow.

 

We must advance past this impoverished level of being. And by this, I mean that we must advance past ignorance and folly to a point where we are enlightened enough to erase hate, greed, and all the other byproducts of ignorance from our civilization. We need to grow and become better. It is the only way humanity will be able to survive.

 

This, alone, has been my main personal mission. To build jobs. To find ways to repair damage internally for those whose lives have been controlled by chemical medicines that are more harmful than the problems they have. To open minds and educate. To banish hate forever.

 

I only hope that I can succeed. Still, I feel that my time is growing short. I may not be able to complete everything I have set out to do.

 

What will be left undone when it all ends? My books? My attempt to change everything to film or television series? My cartoon? My mission to create jobs?

 

I can’t help but ask these questions of myself. I must. I know the end is near for me. The problem is that I am not sure when it will be.

 

I have been having the dream again. The same dream I had after Katie died. The same dream I have had since I was a child. And it always ends the same. I vanish, leaving a woman and child behind.

 

I have come to realize that the woman is a representation of one of my projects and the child is another project. The problem is that I do not know which is which. Is the woman all of my current projects and the child my dream of having my own entertainment company? Or are they both singular projects? Either way, I hate knowing of my impending death.

 

I have always had these dreams. And I have always hated them. They have always been a constant reminder of my own end.

 

But the last time I tried to tell someone about them, I was told that they were a manifestation of my anxieties. Or a manifestation of my depression. But tell me one thing. What anxieties do a young child have that would manifest in that manner? None. Nor depression.

 

As I grew older, I realized that I was a conduit of sorts, sent dreams that meant something. I accepted the fact that I was not normal. Nor would I ever be.

 

I just didn’t fit in this world. I was strange. Unique. Possibly crazy.

 

Then I went to college in ‘93 and found that I was not alone. I was not going crazy. I was not strange. There were indeed others like me.

 

Still, it didn’t ease my nightmare. I still did not fit in the world. I was an outcast. It would affect everything.

 

My first two marriages would fail. My attempts at a normal life would fail. I would be unable to hold down a permanent job.

 

When I met Katie, I believed that I would finally be able to enjoy the rest of my life in relative peace. I couldn’t have been more wrong.  A year and a half into our happy marriage, she was taken from me. Her death had been a lesson to some in her life and a reminder to me that I needed to finish the mission I had been given before my time was up.  

 

Of course, had I been finished with my mission, I would have left this world with her. But I had wasted time and energy on everything but what I had been sent to do. Not that I knew what that was. I didn’t.

 

 

Entry 5

 

I have finished with the Northwest Africa. The mission was fairly simple and easy to negotiate.  Reforms are easy when you pull all groups together and work out a plan that they all can agree on. Perhaps I can make quick work of West Africa as well as Southwest Africa.

 

Others will likely follow before I am done. I write this quick entry to have something to fall back on when I get ready to summarize for the data I will use for implementation in the states. While I have 40 states interested in the changes I offer, I still haven’t received the commitment.

 

But I will. Once they see the results from these countries, they will fall into line. They will all want what I will have helped 54 countries install. Well, most of it anyway. They will want to pull their current representatives from Congress. And who knows? Maybe the last ten will also fall in.

 

Overall, the results have been excellent. Ethnic groups have finally come together to make all-inclusive histories and education. Religion has been made a minor part of education, focusing on moving forward instead of backward. The eventual idea is to relegate religion to the mosques and in the home, allowing the education systems to advance the people secularly.

 

Not that I have anything against religion. I don’t. Except for the fact that religion is a distortion of a way of life that leads inward to inner peace, not outward. Religion focuses on the outside–those around the individual–keeping the individual from seeing what they need to personally change.

 

But I need not go into philosophical or spiritual bases here. After all, none but me will ever read these entries. And I will only do so to distill them down for the positive data contained here. Data that will help the world regain her soul.  One country at a time.

 

I no longer believe the prophecies of old. Man has twisted them so badly that they no longer have meaning.  Nor will they come true. For this world, there will be no end. Not the way religious leaders believe.

 

But mankind has never been truly one with the spirit realm. He has never understood the truth. The reality.

 

He has only cared about his own selfish desires. The deaths to those he feared due to ignorance. He twisted physical descriptions of spiritual happenings into descriptions of physical happenings without any spiritual meaning. Such a waste of potential. And time.

 

Amazing how the darkest of hearts turns everything positive into something evil. Emperors used to take over the godhead of polytheism. Every emperor or king would claim to be ‘sons’ of a god. The pharaoh claimed to be sons of the gods. Athenian kings saw themselves, also, as sons of the various gods or goddesses that each city saw as its patron or matron.

 

Christianity became just another tool for corrupt leaders to use in order to subjugate. Enslave. Wage war. Kill those who were different.

 

Islam was no better. No matter what the philosophy, man made it his tool. Twisted it. Molded it into something that was the exact opposite from what it was meant to be.

 

Man. the god who created gods to serve his purpose. Fallen ‘angels’, one and all. Devils and demons that could not abide diversity and whose hearts were filled with every kind of malice. Evil incarnate.

 

But I get into the philosophy and spirituality of things here. My deepest thoughts. My most appalling realizations. Everything I explore in my philosophical column. Scary shit, really.

 

But I also bury it deep in many of my storylines. The dark evil of mankind and his penchant for religions rather than deeper change. Inner change. Especially in the form of horror.

 

I only wrote one horror novel. It took me to dark places I wished I had never gone. Horrible places. Nightmare places.

 

It took me three years to write. Three dark years. But it was worth it because it was a warning. A warning of what was about to come.

 

Now, I am a witness to such a character in a leadership role. Someone evil. Someone dark. Someone you might call the Devil incarnate. Sort of.

Entry 6

 

Africa is now behind me. China is behind me. Southeast Asia is behind me. As are Australia, Mongolia, Nepal, India, the Arab countries, and Mesopotamia. Every country has implemented the reforms we collectively built for each of them.  The old world is passing away slowly.

 

The extremely religious are terrified. They are losing their control over the masses and they can’t stop it from happening. Each country is rounding up the most radical along with the nationalist groups. Hate, it seems, is not going to be welcome here anymore.

 

Project Exodus has begun. One transport, designed and constructed by my team as part of a fleet, has been delivered to each country I have visited. The extremists have all been convinced that the transports will take them to paradise,,,or to some place they can build their ideal civilization. The whites are taken to one spot within the outer rim of the universe, while the rest are scattered throughout the rest of that outer rim…the purpose, to prevent warring among them. The self-contained transport S.A.M. units can span space with the speed of thought, going and returning in the blink of an eye.

 

Their “pods” contain three compartments. The first holds the stasis units. Thousands of them. The second contains building materials so that they might build their kingdoms as they so desire. The third compartment is a hydroponic greenhouse containing food plants as well as an “ark” of sorts that contains both domesticated and wild animals and fowl for their food.

 

Once these pods are delivered, the passengers will be awakened from stasis. What they do afterward is up to them. The plus to all this is that we rid ourselves of these negative elements from within our society and we can begin working on advancing ourselves as a race. And since they will be light-years (literally billions of light-years) from Earth, they will be unable to influence those left.

 

Another positive is that we will have cut the population by one-third. This will lessen the load, so to speak, on the Earth’s ecosystems. Those who want to pioneer a few space colonies, once things settle, will be able to do so. For free. Our labs will see to it that they are able to.

 

After all, what good is advanced technology if it is not shared for a common goal? And humanity should already be colonizing our own system. And building stations just beyond. Even if just for a possible defense, should it be needed.

 

But, of course, we have governments who greedily try to keep us from our destinies. Just as they often keep us from advancing through dividing us into groups. But no more.

 

The darkness is going to end. Just as the radicalization of religions will. And this age will end. But not the way they believe it will.

 

If they are allowed to end it their way, they will be disappointed. All they will succeed in doing is bringing an end to this civilization through endless war. And possibly even destroying all life through the use of nuclear weapons.

 

There will not be a second coming because there will be nothing left for any being to come back to if they use nukes. Humanity will be but a footnote in the history of the universe. A failed race among the universal races.

 

But humanity has so much more potential. Potential they seem determined to ignore. Or to fall short of. I am unsure which.

 

This impeding must be stopped. We need to advance if we are to survive. And survival is important.

 

If we can lessen the population of the planet without genocide, war, and other negative methods, we might have a chance.  Culling out the hatemongers was a start. It got rid of many of the prophets of greed. And those who were power mad. Now, to thin out populations just to preserve.

 

But we need to research ways to protect colonies. We need to find ways to create artificial atmospheres so the colonies can expand beyond the pods. Perhaps we need to redesign the pods themselves so that they can expand.

 

But I am getting ahead of myself. One step at a time. One move at a time.  First, we need to build a station between the Earth and the moon. From this station, we can manage the migration from the Earth’s surface to other planets and their satellites.  From the moon, we can springboard into a second space station between the Moon and Mars through which we can send traffic to Mars and beyond, possibly setting up the first colonies on Phobos and Deimos, then moving on to Mars. Before moving on, perhaps we could mine the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, just to diminish our risk of having more interior threats..then, we could colonize the moons of the outer planets. And even Pluto.

 

Beyond that, we could make a plan of some kind on what to do with the Kuiper Belt. as we move outward, we could study Venus to see if we could possibly terraform the planet gradually and make it safe for human settlement.

Entry 7

 

Mission accomplished. What had been the biggest disaster of the 21st century has now been corrected. Those who caused the disaster have been given a choice. They can either stay and face imprisonment or take a transport into exile far from Earth. There were only two conditions. The first was that they had to leave all Earth made weapons behind. The second, in similar fashion, was that they could not take any Earth made technologies except what was contained in the pods.

 

They have no idea that once they reach their destination, that the stasis pods will cease to work. And once they are out of those stasis pods, they will cease to resemble much but empty cocoons. After all, the speed of thought is instantaneous and stasis will only last for a twinkling of an eye. And the stasis pods only function to protect the humans from the forces of the journey, which might be excessive.

 

Kind of like travelling through a singularity or a wormhole. Only quicker. And more direct.

 

And possibly more painful for those who accidentally wake up mid-journey. Nothing like being pulled apart. Literally, by thought. I suppose that is why I demanded a fail-safe stasis pod to be designed. Don’t want anyone waking up prematurely.

 

With the vast majority of the hatemongers and traitors gone, we can begin to rebuild Earth’s civilization. We can re-establish democracy in the US and other democratic nations.  Restructure the economic systems, dismantling the monopolies and trusts that have taken over the different market sectors. Streamline business so that all can benefit and companies are kept stable through reinvestment of profits. Reform religion so that its vision is set where it should be.

 

But that last project cannot be a political one. It has to be a secular one. Perhaps many will lose their faith when the end doesn’t actually come as they were taught it would be. Or maybe that, in and of itself, will be what helps reset religion. Who knows?

What I do know is that the wealth that was confiscated from those who left the planet will be fed back into the coffers of every program they eroded. Every social program will be bolstered and will be able to continue thanks to the return of these funds.

 

What helps us all sleep at night is the fact that, with those religious radicals, and the hate groups, we were able to round up most of the criminal element-the sex traffickers, the white collar embezzler machines (the greedy CEOs and top management), et al-and sent them with their pals so that they could learn a much needed lesson about who was keeping who blind.

 

Oddly enough, wars have slowly dwindled and are now almost non-existent. Amazing how the removal of those who would normally benefit from war tends to quiet a planet down. Maybe now, I can rest for a while.

 

Recently, I was surprised when I was approached by several I helped install through emergency installation and asked if I would be willing to lead as President, since everyone from the executive branch and the rest of that line of sucession had been removed from office. Tough apprehensive, I gave an affirmative. But only until elections. This means a year and a half of Presidency.

 

May God have mercy on my soul and see me through this. And here, I was hoping to run as a darkhorse independent candidate! I have to laugh. Funny how things work out.

 

I told them that I would accept under one condition. I was to work for nothing. After all, I do not need any income. I am independently wealthy and will be giving a huge portion of my wealth to the Federal government anyway…to help with the new programs we will be implementing. The same programs that 40 states have also implemented.

 

Those who asked agreed to my terms. I will be installed as # 46 in a few days. In those few days, I am to seek out and list those I want in my cabinet. Therefore, I am currently busy researching my cabinet. I want a diverse and competent cabinet.

 

For the Secretary of the Interior, I want an Native American. Same with whoever I place over Native affairs. I will have to ask my team for nominees for the top EPA and other science posts, but they cannot be members of my lab teams. Must be non-members. I need my team to continue the research we started.

 

I know that I will make the military angry, but I don’t care. I am cutting their budget to 1/10 what it currently is. If it is a true defense budget, then it should not be that big. Let’s bring our boys home for good. Let’s stop fighting wars for profit. There really isn’t any need.

We’ll streamline the military, change how certain “rights” are viewed back to the original context, and basically begin rebuilding the country as our forefathers meant it to be. We’ll begin tearing down the mental walls we have built and become the realization of what we have been nicknamed. We shall become a true melting pot where many ethnicities came and a new nation, one without divisive lines emerged, a new people created from the old. It is time to mix the blood and unite as a single people.

 

Let’s make this nation a place where there is no longer any black or white, no Hispanics or Natives, but rather where there is a single people with the same blood running through their veins, creating a brand new definition of “American”. Let’s erase the invisible walls we have built around ourselves.

Entry 8

 

I have had the gold stripped out of the oval office and rich vermillions and royal blues have returned to grace a wonderful office.all reminders of the previous administration have been removed and the picture of his predecessor put back in a place of honor.  After my swearing in, my first act was a single EO replacing all the regulations that had been undone by my predecessor. Everything. A moratorium has been placed on mining or drilling anywhere else but where these industries currently have mines and wells.

 

I just passed all my proposals to Congress in hopes that they will be voted into law on the federal level. After all, almost all the states now have them in place anyway. Why not make it a federal law?

 

Religion now has a chance to play the political game, but not without losing their tax exempt status. In order to gain the right to play, they will also agree to a certain…sin tax. Perhaps it will teach them a valuable lesson. Only time will tell.

 

It hasn’t been very long, but I just received word. My proposals have been passed into law! All of them! Citizens United is now made null and void by a series of laws that eliminates big money in political campaigning. Education has become better, with strict curriculum guidelines and new schedule restructuring so that a young person can learn twice as much in a school year as they once could. The US has joined the rest of the world with universal healthcare and universal higher education. There is also now a federally mandated cap on CEO salaries which mandates a 10-25% difference between CEO and employee pay and does away with severance packages and pension packages for CEOs, placing them back at the level of employee rather than at a level where they have the freedom to do anything without fear of being responsible for their actions.

 

They even passed the “futures” initiative where the government will promote clean energy and the advancement of both state and country through programs designed to promote entrepreneurship at the most basic level. Everything I had originally written for my wife is now federal law! She would be so proud!

 

I have called a meeting with the joint chiefs. I want to discuss the cuts I want to make. I want them to understand that we need to re-adjust the focus from a global one to a smaller, more streamlined defensive perspective where-while we still have bases elsewhere- we are less focused on other regions and more focused on defending our borders. Not that the borders necessarily need all that much defending at the moment.

 

I have also called a meeting with all of Congress. I want to discuss their salaries, banning corporate legislative lobbyists and lobbyist monies. I want to make a point of getting them to focus on fixing problems rather than treating symptoms. I also want to discuss reining in the banks and Wall Street in general.

 

I know that we will not accomplish all that much, at least not everything, in a year and a half. But I intend on working my ass off to get what I can done. Yes, it will take time. No, not everyone will like the changes. But they have to be made.

 

I suppose that is why I am willing to build colonies on other planets. Because you can’t please everyone and there will be some who’ll want to leave. And I am willing to let them. No need in forcing people to stay where they do not feel comfortable.

 

Not that I intend to build a utopian society. That is not my intent. I simply want to begin the transformation to the next possible level in existence as a nation…and as a race. After all, we are but one race, the human race. And we need to start acting like it.

 

But what about when all is done? What then? I dare not think of that point. Going forward is difficult, even when everyone is agreeable. I cannot allow myself to believe that it will always be as easy as the initial first victories. Otherwise, I would be living in a fantasy, not reality.

 

And I cannot afford to live in a fantasy. No one can. It is a deadly thing to attempt. At any time.

 

At the moment, the citizens are still celebrating. And they have a right. I announced that the country’s debt has been forgiven. I did not explain that I had purchased it. Nor would it have made a difference. All they know is that they live in a debt-free nation and that there is plenty of money in the cofferes to care for the people for at least a century or more.

 

Of course they have no idea where the surplus came from, nor do they need to. They need not know that those who were exiled was also stripped of their wealth and belongings in return for a free journey to the stars. Nor do they know that I have also relinquished ⅔ of my remaining wealth as well.

 

They don’t need to know. It is not important. Nor is it even going to be remembered in the history books. It doesn’t need to be recorded.

Entry 9

 

Once again, I must apologize for the lack of entries. Being President has kept me busy. Progress is a very involved process. And very rewarding.

 

I am surprised at the positive reaction to all the changes! Of course, for 40 states, most of the early changes were not foreign to them since their governors and state Congresses had already passed the initiatives  that were made federal mandates. Of the ten states that did not, most have accepted the changes in a positive way, opening the new programs up to their less fortunate residents and getting everyone on the universal healthcare.

 

Over the last year, we have been able to deprivatize many of the prisons, legalize marijuana, address cocaine and heroin/opioid addiction and create programs that help with rehabilitation, and even lower Congress’s pay while phasing out their pensions and healthcare. It was agreed that the pensions should be combined with Social Security and that Congress could better be served by the same healthcare that the average citizen has. We have stopped the wasteful raising of Congressional salaries through putting a permanent cap-much like that we placed on CEO salaries-so that they could not rise above a set amount.

 

We also came to an agreement that Congress, as well as the executive branch, would take less time off and work at least 90% of the normal work year with only holidays as being mandatory. Personal vacations would be at the expense of the Congress person, not the taxpayer. Their travel would be their own responsibility as well.

 

Since I am unpaid and my insurance is exactly the same as everyone else’s, this suits me. Though I am not a workaholic, there is much work to get done and we do, after all, serve the public. Not ourselves. Or the corporations. Or the extremely rich.

 

Ironically, I believe that I have restored much faith and trust in the government where the average citizen is concerned. But then, both political parties have been shut down so that they can be investigated in depth. Again, this was due to the same federal mandate that reformed much of the political structure and opened the door to being able to shut down the waste.

 

Now, since I have caught you up on what has transpired since my last entry, I can let you know that I also look forward to either being officially elected or being able to leave the White House. I am hoping that I have returned the respect and dignity to the office that had been stripped from it by my predecessor.

 

I will be nearing my 45th birthday when elections take place. That means that I will be 49 when I finally leave this place…if I am not voted back into office. Unlike most, I will not be bitter. I have earned every lesson I have learned. I have even earned every ounce of respect that I have won. I have not gained anything easily. Nor had I expected to.

 

I smile at the fact that no colonies have yet been established on the moon or beyond…though my team is building a space station that’ll orbit the Earth so that travellers might be able to have a rest stop on their way to the moon. Perhaps S.A.M.s will only be used for intersystem travel–from one system to another. After all, the team has been building short run transports, shuttles, that resemble aircraft more than the S.A.M. Probably a good thing. A simpler shuttle would better utilize the stasis technology…and we can redesign it so that the pods are less temporary and can be reused for multiple trips.

 

We have, however, sent probes to the asteroid belt and to the Kuiper Belt to analyze the asteroids for possible usable ores. The data being received is initially promising and off the charts! The next step is developing the equipment to be used for “mining” the asteroids in both. But first, we must have space stations in place to serve as both ports of call and as places where ores can be shipped so that they can be transferred on for processing.

 

I am thinking that, maybe, we should look into building a foundry station out there so that pollution here can be minimized and we can slowly restore our environment to an acceptable and livable one. After all, we only have one Earth and she has served as our home for millions of years. Maybe billions. Or even trillions.

 

But at the moment, I am more concerned with governing. And with diplomacy. And all things that go with my current office.  I have two more months before elections. And I still have work to do.

 

Still, all I want to do is close my eyes for a few minutes and rest. I am so tired. So worn out. All I want to do is stop for a moment and think. Think of the one I lost before all of this started…

 

Note: here ends this portion of the tale. Apparently, John has closed his eyes and begun thinking about a place, time, and love in his not too distant past where he was the happiest man in the world because the journal ends here. The next section will have the “entries” listed as dates instead of “entries”.

Tales From The Alpha Triad

Episode 1: “Where It All Began”

By Jaysen True Blood

Prologue

 

It has been seven months since my wife died. In that time, I have struggled to find my way. Incomplete, I now drift. I am only half a man. My will now almost gone.

 

Life is no longer important to me. I merely exist. That existence is only to finish as much of what I had started as I can.

 

I am John O’Dell. I am a mystic and a philosopher. I have written political reform proposals that should be made into indelible laws. And yet, they remain unheard. Unseen. Unpassed.

 

I am a poor man, never seeking riches or power. I seek only change. Progress. Advancement of the human race.

 

I was unable to go to my wife’s funeral due to promises not kept. I was unable to have closure. I also had to put my own plans to memorialize her on hold due to my own failures. Failures that I could never have foreseen. Lack of work. Slow book sales.

 

As for all that I was supposed to get done where taking care of her affects were concerned, I have only gotten half  done. Things were supposed to be sent out. Important things.

 

But none of that matters now. All that matters now is getting personal things done. Things that will still benefit all. All but me.

 

My time, it seems, is nearing its end and I am the only one who realizes it. And my cat. She seems to know that something is amiss. My health has deteriorated. I am only half the man I once was.

 

Now, I write. Columns. These, I hope to make a living off of so that what time remaining will not be spent starving to death. After all, I cannot rely on those who have shown me what little kindness I have received much longer. Nor are there any jobs. Those vanished long ago.

 

So into syndication I take what I can. The rest will remain where it is. Online for all to read freely. But the columns will make me money.

 

Perhaps they will also boost my nonexistent book sales. One can always hope. And I need something to break loose. Quick. Before it is too late.

 

But I want more. Much more. Maybe too much. And possibly more than possible.

 

I want to restore my happiness. I want to return to what had given me peace. I want to restore my wife back to my life. But I know that this is an impossibility.

 

But is it really? Or do they tell us those things to keep us from pursuing similar avenues as Dr. Victor Frankenstein? Is beating death truly impossible?

 

Perhaps not. Perhaps, I can. After all, I have a plan. But it is not a plan that comes from plundering graves and reanimating corpses. It has more of its roots in The Invisible Man than in Frankenstein, though it might seem to resemble both.

 

Call it the demented, or ingenious, however you want to view it, lovechild of both stories. But it is not simply a mix of just those two ideas. There are elements of nearly every science fiction book, movie, and television show I have ever seen. And in this, it is my own secret monster. Call it a flight of fancy. But it is time to break the power of those who refuse to cure illnesses because of their greed.

 

Greed. A disease all its own. Just like ignorance, hate, fear, and dishonesty. The very things that plague this country.

 

Entry 1

 

If I plan these columns right, I can get at least six months worth of material (one article a week) done and submitted. At that rate, I will be able to prepare the next six months over a more relaxed period of time and not have to hurry or collect old material to make for a compelling grouping. Not that I have anything against my old material, I just want fresh and new. So will my readers.

 

Working first on this column, then that one. When writer’s block takes me on one subject, I pursue another. As I do so, I allow myself to reach back into my memories. First of her, then of my distant past. My youth. When all my hopes and dreams begam. When I came up with the original idea.

 

But one thing at a time. Do I run with my thoughts at this point? Or do I stick on task and continue the boring tasks I have appointed for myself? At the moment, science and medicine seem more interesting. But it would be rude of me not to finish a thought.

 

The tasks it is. The columns. At the moment, it is four. Maybe five.

 

The first is a music review, a little something I started before my second marriage. At the time, I was writing serial fiction for a small startup ezine. The editor/owner decided to try a print version, branching out into interviews and reviews. And even articles.

 

I wrote many articles, but many more music reviews.  At the time, the form was a bit unrefined. I still used the “star” system so prevalent in reviews. Over time, I refined them. Now, over twelve years later, I am getting ready to release these reviews nationally and internationally.

 

Next is a book review I started a little over four years ago. I had a lot of friends, then, and built up a library of ebooks to review. I only made it through about 200 before being interrupted by life. Since then, I have reviewed quite a few books.

 

And then, there is my political, scientific, and philosophical writings. One more blog. One more column. Makes me smile to think how many people I will piss off.

 

Finally, I have decided to begin something that is reminiscent of the 1920s and 1930s. I have begun a column that serializes fiction in a column, much as was done with Tolkien’s books, the works of C.S. lewis, and even Robert E. Howard and many others. Though I begin with my own fiction, I hope to also give a voice to many of my fellow authors along the way.

 

This is something I’d always wished I had when I was younger. Sure, there are magazines dedicated to such things, but they have grown too stuck on ideals and not enough on aiding the aspiring writer or the struggling published author. They have their rules. Their regulations. Their likes and dislikes.

 

All the while, those of us who do not write their kind of fiction, or their idea of a good story, are stuck without representation. I intend to change this. In a major way.

 

Now on to science, technology, and medicine. Back when I was still a Junior in high school, I created the crude idea behind a current project-in-waiting known as biocybernetics. But I will need a private laboratory for that.  Think of it as a combination between the cybernetics of Terminator, but more basic and less metallic. It mixes technology with genetics to create nano-chips, or nano-bots if you will, that can turn off or on genetic switches as need be.

 

Basic application would be to regrow amputated limbs, repair spinal cords, or switch off a genetic or mental illness with a simple implant. The final list of possible applications is endless. With the current medical, scientific, and technological capabilities, I believe it to be a real possibility now.

 

But without me to nudge it into being, it may never happen. Especially if man sticks to his current downward spiral. Civilization may well be at its end unless those of us who are more intelligent fight back.

 

Entry 2

 

Things are progressing well. I have begun the process of syndication and am now awaiting the act of being picked up. I have spent most of my free time preparing each column, so have had little time to record my day. It has been nearly a week since my last entry.

 

I have gained notice, but am not sure where it will lead. No one has picked the columns up yet, though. At least not that I have noticed. Perhaps they will soon.

 

I am getting ready to submit the final column, the serial fiction column, the gem of my collection. This column will revive the serialized fiction in news print. I am hoping that it will draw more readers for those papers that choose to put it into their circulation.

 

With all the columns done, I can now return to writing my books. God, I have let things go too long! I have tons of books to write and not enough time!

 

Entry 3

 

In two days, I have received no less than five queries from newspapers! Even Rolling Stone wants to make a deal with me! Were my reviews that good? Were my columns that good?

 

Three editors from England are now on their way to the Midwest to meet with me! The Chicago Tribune, New York Times, L.A. Times, Omaha World Herald, Des Moines Register, and the Miami Herald all want to talk! Is it time to start making contract deals? And to think that yesterday, I was a nobody!

Still, I have to keep pinching myself to make sure I’m not dreaming. It is so unreal! So surreal! I am still in shock!

 

Yesterday, I was slowly starving to death. Today, I am a hot commodity. Tomorrow, I may die a legend. Or I may die in obscurity. I don’t care. As long as I can make enough money to live comfortably.

 

At the moment, however, my calendar looks full. I meet with London tomorrow. All three editors. One of those editors publish the newspaper trusted by the queen herself. The others are competitors. Me, I am non-exclusive. I will insist on non-exclusivity. It will make me more money through not restricting who I can be published by.

 

It may also open up more opportunities in the long run. What’s next? The Washington Post? Guess I will have to wait and see.

Entry 4

 

The meeting with London went fine. Non-exclusivity was agreed upon and all agreed upon a payment option. Tomorrow, I meet with Omaha and Des Moines. I have added Lincoln and Kansas City to that meeting as well, since they will be here tomorrow. It doesn’t matter when they call, just that they are in a meeting that is best for them.

 

Wednesday is New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, Rhode Island, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC.  Thursday is Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, Montana, and Minnesota. Friday will be Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, Pennsylvania, Vermont, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Indiana. And Saturday is California, Florida, Hawaii, Washington, and Oregon.

 

I doubt I will get to rest on Sunday. Depends on what happens. I might use the day to work on a book or two. After all, I have several unfinished WIPs that need to be worked on.

 

Still, it all depends on what happens and who calls upon me.  Perhaps this will be the beginning of something bigger. After all, I am a political rabble-rouser and philosophical malcontent. Not to mention opposed to religiosity and hypocrisy. Yes, that makes me very dangerous to a minority of people in this country.

 

At the same time, I have to wait to see just how much I have stirred the hornet’s nest. And exactly how I have done so. Will I anger the ignorant? Or will I stimulate the intellectuals? Or both?

 

I can’t help but smile as I embark on this journey. Especially since it is at what I fear to be the end of my life. I say this because I have not felt well for years. At least a decade.

 

Even worse is the fact that I have struggled through the last few month without the one I love. But what I do, I do in her memory. I only hope that it is not too late to salvage what is left of the country and the country’s honor.

 

My mission has always been clear. Stamp out ignorance. Destroy hatred. Remove greed. Fight tyranny. Reform politics and all that needs to be reformed. Drive  out those who would destroy.

 

It is as it always has been. Even from my youth. Yes, this is why I have always been driven. I just wish I had started sooner.

 

I am running out of time. I die a little more each day. And yet, I continue on simply because I envision a better world. One where all are treated equal.

 

I cannot give up now. I cannot give in. I shall not. Not until I breathe my final breath.

And so I march on, a champion of education, science, progress without greed, advancement without condition, change without religiosity, and evolution beyond this mortal shell.

 

And I do not fight on alone. Many believe as I do. Time for the old to die and the new to be born. No longer to be divided, we the people must first reunite.

 

Traditional religion is no longer relevant or valid in any way. What should have been embraced had long ago been discarded, then lost. Only to be replaced with ideals that allowed mankind to slip back into his idol worship. Health, wealth, and happiness tinged with an unholy worship of Moses and the Mosaic covenant. The Old Covenant.

 

Christ, what a mess! No wonder so many have turned their back on religion. Myself included. It is beyond saving. Nor could it ever save anyone now.

 

They have killed it, resurrecting a far more ancient and evil religion in its place. Ah, but I am speaking as if I am directing my frustration at just one. But I am not. They are all equally guilty, now becoming the same religion but under different names.

 

But they cannot see. All are blinded by rhetoric and political innuendo. But then, that is the problem. Humanity is blind. And sick. Just as the earth is sick.

 

Entry 5

 

My columns will be in print from coast to coast! The only states where I will not be read are Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas, and Kansas. Arizona, Louisiana, New Mexico, Alaska,  and Tennessee joined the states that negotiated contracts with me. Idaho was at the meeting with Utah and Nevada. Maine joined the delegation of editors from New York and the rest of the east coast.

 

I am now read in forty out of fifty states, plus DC. quite a feat from a virtual nobody. There is even call for me to syndicate in Europe as well. I believe I have started a movement! This comes as a surprise. Not used to being the agitator. Used to being the agitated.

 

But here I am. Stirring the pot, so to speak. Add to this Britain and nearly every European country and a few Asian countries, and I have a nearly worldwide audience!  This is quite unexpected! As was Britain and much of Europe literally begging me to make two of my columns a daily thing rather than a weekly!

 

Never in my wildest dreams had I ever foreseen this! But the side effect has been even wilder! Seems I have distant family wanting to meet with me! Some are due in in a couple of days! The rest will have to wait!

 

I just wish that my wife had lived long enough to see this. She would be ecstatic. She had hoped to see me become successful, but had died before she could. And I wanted to see her succeed as well. If I could, I would go back and prevent her death.

 

Ah, but I am breaking my own rule. One should never go back to seek a selfish solution. Of course, I also believe that to go back would cause a ripple effect that would only end with change beyond all comprehension. Still, it would be nice to share this with someone.

 

And I hate being alone. Sure, the solitude is great for getting shit done…but I can’t stand the silence. It is totally maddening! Music and DVDs do wonders, but it is when there is no sound that I find myself wishing for an end.

 

Or at least a return to happiness. An end to the migraines. An end to the pain, both emotional and physical. And end to my nightmare.

 

But I doubt there will ever be an end. At least not until I fulfill whatever it is that the universe desires of me. But exactly what is that? What is my real mission?

 

To provoke thought in the thoughtless? To turn people back to the truth? The free them from the slavery of the religion of their own making? To effect change against all odds? What?

 

What if my purpose is to go back so that change can be made at a much deeper level? Or what if I am to be the one to make contact? What if both are intertwined and inseparable? What if–?

 

The questions run wild in my mind when there is no other sound but my breathing. Am I mad? Am I insane? I have been told no so many times before.

 

Perhaps I merely think on a completely different level than others. I don’t know. All I know is that I am completely lost without her. I am rudderless. Without a guide. Without grounding.

 

And so I walk aimlessly through life. But maybe not so aimlessly now. I don’t know. Perhaps now, I will know my purpose.

 

Perhaps after my meetings, I will know what I am to do. I hope so. I hate not knowing. It leaves me unfocused. Empty.

 

I look forward to meeting my new family members. From what I understand, they may have a solution to some of my problems. Not that I need much.

 

I took a look at my bank account today. I am already a millionaire. It isn’t as if I have a need for much. I would, however, like to be able to fund a few experiments to prove my theories correct. I would also like to open a private laboratory so that I could develop a few ideas into reality. Perhaps they will agree with my ideas. I don’t know.

I just have to wait and see. And hope. Whatever comes of the meetings, I am sure of one thing. I want to emerge friends with my distant relations.  Since I have very few friends among my close relations.

Entry 6

 

The ten Englishmen have  arrived and now recently departed. All are from some branch of my mother’s family. All have never had a family of their own and are the end of their lines. And I offer them an alternative, despite the fact that I am a distant relative. Extremely distant.

 

“What will you do should we will our fortunes to you?” This had been the first question.

 

“Change the world for the better, I hope.”

 

“And this means?” Asked for clarification by one of the group.

 

“I would create jobs and effect political, economic, business,  and social change. I would start research to find cures, not treatments for symptoms.”

 

“Very well played. An answer worth investing in.”

 

“Why? What is you motivation?” another question.

 

“My motivation is manifold. First, I have watched this region and this country being drained of its jobs. Secondly, I have watched as politicians have promised much and delivered little. And third, I am tired of watching a minority grow rich off the suffering of a few. It is time for a change…and perhaps a shakeup.”

 

I watched a smile creep across one of the  faces. Up until now, he had been very stoic and somber. But now, he nodded, smiling in approval.

 

“You do realize that what we do will appear as if we are investing in you?”

 

“I would expect nothing less.”

 

“Your actual inheritance will be what is left of what we keep back for ourselves…and our estates once we are gone. The bulk, however, will be an investment in your revolution of change.”

 

“Agreed.”

 

Their lawyers stepped out of their midst. Ten lawyers for ten men. Twenty people altogether.

 

“We will work out the details.”

 

And so we did. At that very moment, I went from a mere millionaire to a trillionaire! I was extremely fortunate! Now I could do all that I had dreamed of doing. The cannery. The sustainable paper and plastic mills. The lab. The entertainment business. Small business projects for young entrepreneurs.

 

But where to begin? That was the big question. I settled on the purchasing of the old factory building where my father once worked. This would be my lab, and in one end would be a safe to store excess in.

 

At the same time, I made a promise that no one would know exactly how much I was now worth. I kept my personal account low enough to fool everyone, but high enough for me to be able to live comfortably. Within the multiple million range.

 

The rest, I would slowly begin placing in bank accounts under different company names for the cannery, the mills, the lab, and an investment collective to supply the money for such entrepreneurial endeavors as a shoe manufacturing factory, auto manufacturer that would manufacture electric cars only, and even a flood control idea I had come up with before my wife died.

 

The bulk, however, would be in the vault waiting to be distributed as needed. And this was the plan that we agreed upon. With a promise to send via private courier jets, they left.

 

From what they told me, there are hundreds more waiting for me to visit Britain and Europe to do this exact same thing. Hundreds! At this rate, I will never run out of money to invest! Just how much will I end up with?

 

Of course, I have abbreviated the conversation, the interview, but I have given a good idea of what has transpired. Yet, a call came in and a team wants to meet with me. Physicists, both astro and theoretical. Geneticists. Medical bio-techs. Bio-researchers. Even a pre-eminent surgeon and physician! All are due in a couple of days at the most.

 

Entry 7

 

I now have a team of over one hundred. Medical researchers and bio-techs. Even a team of doctors! The equipment has been ordered, received, and installed. The vault has also been installed.

 

Research has begun on the different projects I had envisioned. The first to emerge as a reality was the bio-tech armor that appears to the observer to be the wearer’s skin, but is impenetrable even in its weakest spots. I now wear this armor, acting as a test subject, until my pet project is finished.

 

My pet project. Biocybernetics. A possible cure for all that ails mankind. Even ignorance.

 

On the most basic level, biocybernetics can be genetically programmed to switch off specific genetic malfunctions. Or even a mental illness. They can even be genetically programmed to regrow spinal tissue and return the ability to walk to someone who has been paralyzed. And even “regrow” amputated limbs.

 

The applications are endless. The only professionals with any clue as to what the project entails are in my employ. And no one knows that our lab exists…which is how I intend to keep things. Should the pharmaceutical companies learn of the lab’s existence, they would try to get the government to either close us down or make us sell to them. But this is a private project. I don’t intend to sell. Or be discovered.

 

At least not until we can limit the power of said pharmaceutical companies. In a major way. Which means that I also have to bring down certain powerful people. Still, I agreed to bring about change. Somehow.

Perhaps that will be easier to do once I return from Europe. My first destination? Britain, of course. The Queen desires to see me. I even get to speak before Parliament! How cool is that?

 

But I also have appointments in nearly every European country. Strangely enough, though, Russia seems afraid of me. I wouldn’t know why.

 

Of course, I have been rather outspoken against them and their meddling. But I am also outspoken against America’s meddlings. I am just that way. I see no reason for the larger nations to stick their noses into the politics of smaller nations.

 

And foreign involvement, militarily, should be a very limited thing. We should not start wars. Nor should we invade. Perhaps I can do something to change that. We will see.

 

I am not advocating isolationism, I am simply saying that wars for sake of war or profit is wrong. A defense budget should be a tenth of what is annually spent on military simply because defense does not include waging wars on foreign soil for no reason and a huge arsenal of weapons is not necessary for defense purposes.

 

And neither is the arming of the populace. But I get into a very touchy subject there. And my philosophy tends to cause crazy people’s heads to explode. And sadly, quite a few Americans seem to have crossed over to the insane side of the line. Many of them, should have mental evaluations.

 

But then, they have all bought into the lie that greed is good. At any cost. Thanks, Hollywood. Thank you for distributing that falsehood in a way to make the masses believe that it was a truth.

 

Greed is not good. Ignorance is not bliss. And hate is not a “Christian trait”. America’s morals have utterly collapsed. What had made it great is now seen as what is causing it to be not-so-great while what makes it not-so-great is trying to destroy its very soul. All because of the polarization caused by the parties and the richest of the American elite.

 

No, I don’t believe in an illuminati. That is a lie. A myth.  Something for conspiracy theorists to scare their children with at night. Along with their imaginary “they’re coming for our guns” and “we’re always at war on some level with our government” bullshit. After all, they vote these shitheads in. then they believe their lies. Not very bright.

 

And they believe what the rich tell them. All sort of ridiculous when you realize that jobs cannot be stolen from you when the corporations that are lying to you are leaving the country because they really don’t want to have to pay you. All comes back to the policy of greed. “More for me, less for you.”

 

It’s all lies to keep us blind to what they are doing. But I aim to change that. In a major way. Once I am done doing what I have to do.

 

Entry 8

 

I am off to England. The Queen sent a special envoy to accompany me. Possibly to make sure I get there safely. After all, it was at her insistence that I began writing my two main columns as a daily item, breaking with my idea of a weekly only series. But then, I do write compelling stories and put forth provocative ideas.

 

From London, I am to travel to different cities throughout Britain. Afterward, I am to fly to Brussels, Amsterdam, Lisbon, Madrid, Toledo, and Paris. From Paris, I am to travel to Rome where I am to meet with the Pope. I find this fascinating because I am not Catholic. Hell. I am not even religious.

 

From Rome, I am to go to Bern, then to Berlin. What happens after Berlin is anyone’s guess. I am thinking of going to the west African countries and setting up the experiments where my reforms are concerned. And possibly an experimental version of my flood control.

 

I may even travel a bit and find what I can find, doing whatever I can do to change each country I go to. I don’t know yet. What I do know is that I have work to do. A lot of work.

 

So I leave my team to continue their research. I hope that they have something new for me when I return, but it isn’t imperative. Even a small breakthrough would be nice.

 

But we do have numerous projects being developed. Sonic propulsion. Long-term stasis pods. Sentient transport. Things I had dreamed up as a teen.

 

But, then, I was always an inventive youth. I was always coming up with new ideas. New technologies. I guess it was what kept me in school.

 

That and the fact that school was my asylum from my father. At least in school, I could be myself. No matter how weird my classmates believed me to be.

 

Now, I am forging ahead while most of them are stuck in jobs they hate or marriages they abhor. I see the future while they look back at the past. But then, I have always looked at the future. Even when I was studying the past. Maybe I can help them see that the past is best left where it is, in the past. But that is a project for when I return.

 

At this point, I have more than I can handle. Well, not really. I should have said that I have all that I can handle. I need to quit making new projects and focus on what is currently being done.

The first episodes of this story are taken from my proposed Fiction column “Souljourner’s Tales Form The Darkness” . I completed three or four episodes as filler for the column, which is meant to become the platform for independent authors to get discovered by prospective readers. the column, based partially off this blog as well as  of the tradition of some classic writers who would publish their books as serials in newspapers.

The Ages Of Man:Diaries And Journals Of The Elder Race, Part 1: The Age Of The ‘Fall’ (first age of man), Entries #2-6

The fall of man: The Journal of Araqis, entry #2*

 

The craziest things happen nowadays. We seem to be at the pinnacle of our rise from whatever we started as. Civilization, being the height of it all, is on the wane. what lies beyond?

This is a question I ask myself on a daily basis. Is this as good as it gets? Or is there more on the horizon?

Our historians search for clues to our past, digging in the ground as if they will find evidence of something spectacular. I am not sure, though. Would there be anything left of a Star Seed? What about their legendary cities and ships? Or is it all myth?

Of course, I have to be careful. I don’t want the Elders to think me guilty of sacrilege and heresy. I just wonder if if they will and anything.

I fantasize sometimes, though. I imagine myself as a Star Seed. I wonder what they ate. Did they eat?

I imagine myself as powerful as they, as free. How it must’ve felt, not to be bound to a physical form. True power. Light given life.

I believe it would be the most amazing thing, to be alive but without this shell. I wonder what my inner light, my inner being really looks like. Is it well defined?  Is it grey, white, or dark light? I hope it isn’t dark light. Dark Light is supposed to be pure evil.

But I don’t see myself as evil. Perhaps it is grey. That would mean that I am still neutral. Neutrals are more sought after. They create. They are the artists.

 

The Fall: The journal of Araqis, entry #3*

 

They found an ancient city!!!! And it wasn’t even buried! This is the most important discovery ever! What’s more, they have found Star Seed technology! An ancient starship! A Star Seed ship!

They say that the technology is foreign to us. Nothing that resembles a guidance system of any kind, almost as if they were one with their ship!  The obsidian interior is glassy as if it has been polished and honed to look almost gemlike. Strange shapes are said to be carved upon the walls.

What I wouldn’t give to see it! I mean them. The city and the ship. It would be the highlight of my existence.

But, then, they say that we simply re-live our lives. Could I have been one of those from the ship they found? Could I have lived in that city at one time?

No, can’t be assuming such. Assumption is dangerous. Causes one to misjudge. Or misstep.

 

The Fall: The Journal of Araqis, Entry #4*

 

Crazy news coming back from the discovery. Some of the researchers were killed in an attempt to move the ship. A cataloguer or two died when a wall collapsed on them in the city. Something tells me that the Star Seed still guard their secrets and want us to leave the site. But scientists and historians have other thoughts.

Still, I cannot wait to find out all that they have learned. I want to know more about my origins. I want to know about the planet before I existed.

But I must wait until the research team returns from the find. And I hate waiting. With a passion. So much time wasted in doing so.

I wonder how old the city is. How old is the ship? Did they find any remains? Any remaining living Star Seed?

So many questions. So many flights of fancy. It’s so frustrating when one has to wait for new information.

 

The Fall: The Journal of Araqis, Entry #5*

 

The first information has been received from the discovery site! the first news of what they have been able to record! And it was read aloud during our history lessons! What joy!

They had, indeed, found remains! and living Star Seed! One of them was named Go’Od! Amazing!

Something tells me that we will learn much more as we examine and interview Go’Od. What wisdom does he (I am assuming that I am correct in identifying the gender) hold? But I am getting ahead of myself. Maybe just a bit.

They were able to send the science detail back with the ship! I am looking forward to being able to explore it when they have it set up for touring. I just hope it is soon.

 

The Fall: The journal of Araqis, Entry # 6*

 

Joy of joys! I got to tour the ship! Even better, I was the first to get to do so! It was so amazing!

I was also asked to accompany the science detail to the site when they return! And as a student worker! I am so happy!

I presume that my next entries will be made from the site, so there may be a small gap as I will be traveling and unable to record anything. Still, this is a chance of a lifetime! Very few students are asked to be a part of a science detail.

 

 

*It is assumed that these entries are sequential and were made daily, as they seemed to follow each other. The dates were unreadable, so we do not know if they followed the first entry made, though we assume they did.

 

next: We read from the the diary of Aia of Maru (Mars) to see how civilization developed there. 

 

The Ages of Man: Diaries And Journals Of The Elder Race, Part 1: The Age Of The ‘Fall’ (first age of man)

The Age Of The ‘Fall’: The Diary of Araqis*

Year: 3,053,999 (1,000 years into humanity’s existence). Exact date unknown. Ear’at (Earth).

I am Araqis, A descendant of the Star Seed.  and I am a student of the Council, aged 19 spa’ans. I have been asked by the council, and especially my teachers on the council, to keep a record of my daily life. This assignment is to continue until I pass the trials. Once I pass the trials, keeping a record such as this will be voluntary.

I shall start with a quick overview of our short history, religion, appearance, and social structure. Once I have completed, I shall shift to my personal daily life. beyond that, I have no idea what will be important enough to record.

They say we have had dominion for one thousand years. Humanity has risen from savages to some semblance of civilization within such a short time. It is hard to believe that we haven’t existed very long. some of the elders say that we did not begin life here, but had come in search of a new beginning. An Eden of sorts.

From what I have learned, the planet was exactly what our ancestors sought. Star Seed. That is what they were called. Children of the universe sent forth to populate the planets, falling from the void to each and every planet ready to be populated.

In the thousand years we have been here, we have developed our own language. It is the one thing we have n common with our neighboring communities. We would probably be more numerous if we weren’t so big and didn’t live so long. At 29 Ha’rads (modern equivalent unknown, possibly close to the US measure of feet), and living 800-900 spa’ans (again, exact length unknown, presumably equal to a year), we are not old until we reach at least 300.

We vary in appearance, some with a single eye, others with hundreds; some with only two arms or legs, others-again-with hundreds. Most, though, have minimized in appearance, settling for two arms, two legs, and two eyes. The rest are remnants of our former selves, and are seen as Holy. Most of the remnant have settled into priestly duties and communities where they are worshiped as gods.

Banking is relatively new, as the ancients knew nothing of treasure and only bartered for what they needed. Leadership still falls to the strongest among us, and we see them as Kings or Queens. Their law is final.

Our social system is based largely on our religion. we worship the Star Seed, or Lights (for we are taught that they arrived here as beings of light and energy, taking  a physical form and color befitting the planet), and the elders among us are seen as Holy. We are taught that the Lights influenced the planet, causing the rise of all life indigenous to the planet. In essence, we are taught that they created life simply by arriving here.  Whether this is true or not, life began in a big way.

We are also taught that we will slowly continue to change and adapt over the span that is existence, until we no longer resemble what we are at the moment, as the planet tends to influence our physiological makeup and chemistry. We are also taught that we will probably not be remembered by those who come after us. So it was, and so it always shall be. Once we are gone, the universe will absorb our memory and give birth to more Star Seed. It is an endless cycle.

It is said that the Star Seed were both male and female, a whole being, uniting and carrying their mates with them through life. As the planet influenced them, they lost the ability to do so and split apart, creating man and woman as two instead of one. We are slid taught that there were asexual and nonsexual Star Seed as well, but that the nonsexual died out shortly after their arrival. The asexual are still among us, preferring the company of their own…though we all possess the ability to reproduce with or without a mate.

Our education system is complex. We learn linguistics and calculations early, Philosophy and deduction in secondary, and religion and history at the end. we can go on to do concentrations in any subject, and many do, but some prefer to stop after the trials.

Our civilization rose rapidly, a mere 100 spa’ans, and we have rapidly risen in technological and scientific knowledge. Our advancements have been great, possibly greater than other settlements. Who knows? We have no known enemies, no threats to our longevity, and no natural susceptibilities.

Several planets and moons surrounding us were populated at the same time as we populated this planet. I wonder how these colonies have fared. Have they succeeded? Have the Star Seed on Ma’arat, Ve’anat, and the satellites orbiting them (and Ear’at, our home), as well as the outlying satellites orbiting the nameless gas giants, succeeded in establishing such fine civilizations? Have they explored their regions and made the needed changes? Or have they died out?

So many questions. I guess what makes it a wonderful experiment, this forming civilizations, is that we do not interfere in each others’ attempts to become whatever we may become. We simply live and let live. Each civilization grows independently of the others, to achieve whatever greatness or immortality awaits them.

Yet we all started out as one collective, falling from the expanse. I only hope that we remember that we are all brothers when we meet again. Otherwise, we are doomed to failure. May peace and prosperity continue to favor all.