Tag Archives: termination

The Move

a sci-fi short story,   by Sha’Tara

“They’ll never know.”  Voice intoned.  “They must never know.”

“Some suspect…” 

“Hypothesis; conjecture — we’ve always encouraged that.  We’ve also encouraged the opposite: belief that physical proof is necessary to acceptance.  They’ll follow the pattern.  Those who do not, who “see” will be disparaged and disbelieved.”

Council dissolves.

In their private chambers, Orthon and Agria discuss the matter. 

“We are manipulating their minds, Orthon.  This goes against the Teaching.”

“This is a very primitive race, Agria.  We must prevent global panic at all cost.”

“The move will create great disruptions, as the Council has been made aware.  The tips of the spirals will overheat and some of the smaller worlds will be burned up.”

“The Generators are working on the psi shields, are they not?”

“They won’t be ready in time, and there is no way to test their resilience to such a move.”

“Erthe is a minuscule entity.  Surely we can produce a powerful enough effect to shield it while it is being moved?”

“We… ahh, hope.  Why is the Council so concerned about Erthe?  Why not let it burn?  The Biologons from Elgir scanned it and found nothing remarkable, except for two unalterable facts:  one, it contains the greatest diversity of life forms anywhere and two, the Erthes are destroying their own living space on it.  Why would the Council want that world spared, particularly?”

“It has deep reasons, Agria.”

“Convince me, Orthon.  Impress this truth upon me.”

“You have my trust, Agria.  I will share with you.”

And as Agria opened herself to his mind probe, she began to sense why the Council would be duly concerned by Erthe’s fate.  Deep under one of her oceans the Biologons had recorded the existence of  an Anomaly.  The recordings described an intelligence unlike any other on Erthe,  expressing from within the magma.  The Council had attempted to have the expression analyzed but every available transponder/decoder had failed to translate the anomalous expression.  It remained the only unreadable expression emanating from any of the known Universes.  Even the great Lotharias Logos could not make any sense of it.  In fact, when the recorded expression entered its logic fields, the Logos temporarily froze.

But the times had come.  The Galaxy had to be moved to a new location or it would fall prey to the black hole caused by an imploded star know as Sol Dallin.  Already there were signs of great instability among the larger systems. The ripple effects were spreading as more and more matter-beings were sucked into its giant maw, destroying balance.  Soon the entire Galaxy would be beyond saving.  But if it could be removed from the vicinity, the danger of a Universal melt-down to anti-matter posed by the black hole could possibly be averted.  There were no alternate options in the mind of Council.

“Ah… my dear Orthon, I thank you.  We stand to lose much if we do not act swiftly.  So, Council would first move Erthe to Galaxy Eleven, then move Galaxy 58 to Sector P19?  There is more to the Anomaly than you have shared with me then?”  

“The Logos believes the Anomaly may be the Source of All Life.  It fears the implosion of Sol Dallin was caused by the Anomaly in a move to destroy itself.”

“But why would the Source seek to do such?”

“The Logos suspects a malfunction within the mind of the Anomaly triggering a self-destruct sequence.  It believes the All Life desires to terminate.  The Logos cross-referenced all its available data and concluded the activities on Erthe were the trigger.”

“Tell me more, Orthon.  Why, for example, would All Life be located in Erthe, particularly — or why did the Logos reach this conclusion?”

“Facts about Erthe herself, my dear.  Well-known facts.  For example, diversity of life, despite Draconian attempts to control, has continued to expand and mutate exponentially on its surface and in its atmosphere and oceans.  The resultant complexity has apparently caused overloading in Source Mind.  Such otherwise unknowns clashing with each other – fear, hate, violence causing physical terminations on scales unimaginable; these juxtaposed by passionate explosions of love and protection.  Predators met with ever-adaptive means of evasion and defense.  Violent rejection, violent attraction.  Wars between Erthes themselves.  Life birthed in blood and pain, sustained by death, giving way to laughter,  turning to dust.  A maelstrom of organic dysfunction.”

“It frightens you to look into these things, friend.” 

“Yes, it does.  And do you see?  Fear was never a part of our psyche Agria.  This fear we now feel, it was generated from our brief, accidental contact with the Anomaly.  As to its location, logic dictates that wherever the All Life is located such a place would become endowed with more life than any other.  Erthe, if truly the heart of creation, would pulse with an over-abundance of creative energy.”

“Yes my dear.  But the All Life chose Blessed Rest after the Completion.  Is that not the Teaching?”

“It is.  But the Logos believes the All Life was Binary.  When the One chose rest, the Other was forced to enter the process continuation.  It was inevitable.  Life demands continuous involvement, change, expansion.  The Other tried to limit its input and involvement, withdrawing, hiding within the core of Erthe but even this was too much.  Life’s needs increased over the billennia.  The Other served life with compassion, all the while accepting the need for the destruction to prevent over-building and collapse.”

“What will happen if the All Life located in Erthe’s core is destroyed, then?”

“Entropy, Agria.  The Logos believes this will apply to all known worlds.”

“And what will happen to us?”

“We will experience termination.  Without fresh input the extant will fall into stasis and cease.”

“Well my dear, let us continue with our plans to build our psi shields.  I do not think they will suffice but it will keep us focused while we contact the One who chose Blessed Rest and re-unite the All Life Binary.”

“My dear Agria, there is no Teaching even hinting that the One could be brought out of retirement and reunited with the Other.  If such was possible, would they not have done so?”

“As below, so above Orthon.  What the Teaching does not say is “why” the One chose Blessed Rest, leaving the Other to carry the burden of All Life.  But we, the female energies of Om, know intuitively what happened.  Simply put my friend, there was disagreement in the Binary, resulting in the Split. 

If I can approach the Anomaly and am allowed to enter her Mind it may be she will share her fear, anger and feelings of rejection with us .  She may yet choose to live, Orthon.  She may have learned the lesson that all of life has yet to learn: that no part of life is greater than any other, not even the All Life, and that any part can be friend with any other part.”

“Well said, friend, but where would you begin to search for the One?”

“Not necessary.  If I can make her aware her loneliness and desolation are caused by her separation from the Twin, it may be she will allow us to contact the Blessed Rest and speak to the One on her behalf.”

“Have we come so far that life would have the wisdom to speak for the All Life?  That we, the created, could bring peace within the realm of the All Life, thus bringing peace within all of life?”

“They made us in their own image, Orthon.  It is time we made use of this awareness.”

“Ah, Agria, please consider this before you proceed: the Logos predicted our conversation to Council.  It asked:

{What will you do if the All Life, instead of coming out of retirement or ending the self-destruct process, confers its powers upon you?  What does Agria-Orthon choose if offered the power of All Life?} 

“What do we choose, Agria?”

“Life, Orthon.  Always life, whatever it entails.”

I was Created for this

I decided, what the heck, time for another short story.  Most of my stories are lessons about life, how it’s lived, and consequences.  I suppose this one has the same purpose.


 

I WAS CREATED FOR THIS
a short story by     ~Sha’Tara~

The Monster had come to a standstill. Before him, appearing as slowly turning giant pillars, stood the Twelve, as if in a circle to welcome him within. As he crouched down, looking at these apparitions his ancient brain remembered and for the first time in aeons, the Monster felt uncertainty, and yes, fear – his own sick fear, not the fear of those he had enjoyed torturing.  But he could not turn away.  

Slowly, he looked back from this moment in time and surveyed his passage. He looked through space and time and saw the wreckage and destruction that marked his footsteps over a swath of countless now desolate, dead or disappeared worlds. His entire life’s work, and now it seemed to be accusing and mocking him.  Had he been able to, the monster would have sighed. 

When he had first beheld these worlds, they had not been desolate. They had done him no wrong. He had walked through them unseen by any living thing, and enjoyed the warmth of them, the sometimes laughter and songs of people, as he sat and watched them in their villages and farms, or in their sprawling cities. He could not understand the concept of laughter, but it seemed to him as a pleasant thing. He liked the grasses that gently bent under his feet and the rough feeling on his hands when they caressed treetops. He liked the smells that stuck to his skin.  

Though he had no real need, he often flattened himself near a lake, or a stream, and drank deeply of their clear waters. The water flowed through him and he noticed that it quenched the fire in his heart.   He learned to fear the water then because his brain signaled that water would sap his great strength. Something warned him that water was his enemy.

After a long time, though not seemingly long for him, a voice, The Voice of Command, made itself heard in his head. It ordered him to destroy those worlds that stood in the path he’d followed in order to taste them. The path had mapped itself in his brain from the taste of them – he could not deviate from it. What he would do to those worlds was also clearly defined – he could not deviate from the command. It would be total destruction, nothing left alive. That was his purpose.  He remembered, of course.

What was not defined, marked, or explained, was how he would go about destroying those worlds.   All he knew at the beginning of his walk through the universe, when he was set free from the Hades where they created him, was that he had the power to do whatever was in his brain to do. He was power and that power had been created to destroy. He did not understand why he had to do these things; why he was a creature of the great dark. “Why me?” he thought suddenly and for no reason, for the power of reasoning was not programmed in him.

He became confused and for a time he did not move. His brain was not designed to accept the sense of personhood, of the enigmatic “I” which the “why me” question posed. Nevertheless he endeavored to reason the question. This is the result: It has to be “me” whatever that is since there is no other like “me” anywhere.   Yet I am not a “me” but only an instrument. An instrument has no free will. He pondered “free will” and remembered the people laughing. Still, he lacked understanding. The Voice of Command prodded him and he moved then.

The brain expressed what we would call relief. It could control the machine. All systems go. So began the great destruction of world after world. Some were simply burned by pushing them closer to a near-by star.   Some were smashed to rubble that spun away into space. Some were easily flooded and he watched as surface life drowned. Then he emptied the great watery reservoirs with hands and breath, blowing the waters out into space, and he watched the water life expire.   He learned quickly to leave these worlds alone – his body hated the smells created by his work.  

He became more creative as he labored in his destructive work. He learned to whisper thoughts in the minds of intelligent sentient creatures and made them crazy with the lust of conquest and endless power. He showed them images of great weapons of mass destruction and taught how they should be built. Then he set nations, races and religions against one another and from safe distances watched them destroy their worlds and themselves. His brain told him he was satisfied each time a world became dead and lifeless, or was simply smashed out of existence.  

There were so many worlds and long he toiled in his destruction. He learned to hate – a great asset in his work. Some worlds tried to oppose him or thwart him. They launched various kinds of weapons at him that made him itch. This angered him and he made those worlds suffer the most. He tortured them with plagues and diseases he invented that killed certain life forms and not others, certain groups and not others. On some he killed all the children so he could feed his lust on the sorrow of the adults. On others he killed all the males, or all the females, for he had learned that by creating imbalance within life he could inflict the greatest pain.   He came to enjoy inflicting pain so much he hardly ever stopped to rest his body. Without realizing it, he had become an addict. He needed to experience the pain and suffering he caused through the fear he surrounded his target worlds with. It became his only reason for existence.

His body aged and all bodies do. The Voice of Command no longer spoke to his brain but the brain urged him on in insatiable hunger. He had long ago completed his mission but the recall command had been blocked by the brain which had become both self-aware and evil. The destruction slowed but the Monster remained unstoppable.  

The universe had known of the destruction, and had worked to create an antidote or a counter-weapon to the Monster. Long ages passed while galaxies joined forces. The wisest entities were brought together and worked ceaselessly to design a weapon. None was deemed powerful enough. They knew that any attack against the monster must be total or the repercussions would be horrible. On the very first encounter it was to be destroyed utterly.

Finally it came down to a question of energy fields. The Monster would have to be drawn into an energy field that would destroy its brain and leave it essentially dead. Then it would be dismantled. So was the concept of “The Twelve” developed. These entities were designed to function as one, passing energy to one-another as the spokes of a wheel come from the center and reach the rim. The Twelve would travel through space/time to encounter the Monster and would draw him into the hub of their energy field and there its mind would cease to function.

That time had arrived.

The Monster turned once more to confront the Twelve. He knew he could not escape them for at their center was the one thing he craved more than any other. There he sensed the sweet essence of fear, and it was offered to him freely: he did not have to work to create it, it would be for him to suck on forever.   So his brain told him and therefore so he believed, inasmuch as he could have a belief. He crawled slowly to the wheel, he entered and in his helpless craving he continued until he reached the source of sweetness he craved.

In an instant he found himself pinned, helpless, and the sweet scent of fear was no longer available to him. It had dissipated and he screamed! He tried to move but he could not. He tried to think a way out but he could not think. He queried his brain but it did not respond. He was trapped. He felt his power draining away like the blood he had caused to flow and enjoyed watching. But now it was his, his blood, his energy, his power. Suddenly he realized that all along he had had the power to choose right from wrong. It had been within him, as it is within all sentient beings or entities. He had lied to himself, he sensed it, he knew it. He wanted to cry out and he forced himself to speak, as if in his own defense for his brutal acts.

All he could say, before he ended, was, “I was created for this!” but he had destroyed all those who could have heard him.  

 

How Could we have Done This? (a short story)

How Could we have Done This?

A Short Story, by Sha’Tara

“It’s true then, not just a conspiracy theory any longer?”

“I’m afraid so, Mr. President.  It’s happening.”

“There had been dissenting voices, even up to six administrations ago, but they were ridiculed.  After all, we’re not talking about an asteroid cracking up here, we’re talking about the sun… the sun!  It’s so big, so permanent.”

Secretary Rogers shook his head.  “So it seemed.  We obviously could not have been more wrong, could we.”

“Son of a bitch!  We can’t win, we just can’t.  We finally, just, extricate ourselves from extermination through nuclear contamination and we’re on the losing side again?”

Due to exigencies caused by climate change, some of it exacerbated by man’s industrial pollution output; destruction of green belts, dwindling extraction and use of so-called fossil fuels planet-wide, coupled with a steady increase in populations, more power for the planet’s energy grids was created using nuclear fission.  Nuclear power plants proliferated, most of them located along seashores and major waterways.  Convenient for cooling, naturally.

Then the seas began to rise in earnest.  Temperatures continued to rise world-wide and climate change deniers were silenced.  Coastal populations were forced to migrate inland, resulting in millions of refugees.  Disruption of agriculture due to changing weather patterns causing floods and droughts meant famine.  Chaos ensued.  And world-wide violence followed.

But that wasn’t the main problem.  It was those expedient nuclear power plants who would be swamped by rising levels of sea water.  The seas may have been able to absorb one or two plants going under and contaminating the waters, but there were thousands of these facing flooding and their wastes inevitably destroying the planet’s oceans.  Short sighted plans certainly can have long-term consequences.

The best minds in the world were put together to seek a quick and certain solution to the impending doomsday scenario.  The plants all had to be shut down and their stocks of nuclear wastes disposed of in a permanent way.  No way could so much waste be buried on the planet, the risks were too high.  The whole planet could be contaminated and all biological life as known destroyed.  To make a point, someone said, “…and even the billionaires can’t escape this nightmare, not if they remain on the planet.”

Space: that’s where the brains turned to.  The wastes would have to be flung out in space, far enough that their orbits wouldn’t decay and they would come tumbling down out of the sky sooner or later; far enough that they would not accidentally interfere with man’s tiny but increasing space exploration.  Far enough so they wouldn’t be encountered, ever again.

The sun: that’s were the brains turned to.  It was so obvious: fire the wastes into the sun where they could never again do any harm to anyone.

Finally, a solution, if taken from old science fiction books.  Yes, that would do it.  All that was needed was to develop a relatively inexpensive way to package these wastes, drag them far enough that they could be put on a trajectory into the sun.

One thing that can be said about scientists: they’re all a bit mad.  That is, they have to focus on their particular problem and not pay too much attention to possible consequences.  If it works, then the problem is solved.  Will it create a greater problem down the road of time… or space?  Not my problem.  I did what I was asked to do.  I made “that” possible.  The rest is up to, well, the rest.

The engineers took over.  Typically, a space-plane was developed that could take a sizeable payload of nuclear wastes into deep space.  There the load was shifted upon what were essentially guided missiles, or rockets, which took it the rest of the way into the sun’s surface.

There was great celebrating after the first attempt was successfully achieved.  Four and a half tons of nuclear wastes had successfully been driven into the sun’s hell furnace, never to bother anyone again.  Hundreds of space-planes and thousands of rockets flew their missions over the next few years as every fission reactor in danger of flooding was decommissioned and scoured.

Finally, a real success story with no side effects except for the cost of removing the wastes from the planet.  Many other environmentally unsafe dumps of chemicals were also packaged and added to the space-plane payloads before the program was terminated.

That was forty years ago.  Earth people could now concentrate on re-building their shattered economies as the new climate stabilized with higher water levels, expanded deserts circling the equator, almost complete loss of polar ice and the north and south once temperate zones now experiencing equatorial temperatures and conditions such as high winds and monsoons.  Two generations had never seen snow and could not comprehend the concept, except by looking into refrigerators or freezers, or by searching past history on the datasphere, once called the internet.  Two billion people had died in the interim and were already being forgotten.

“What’s to be done, James?”

“This time, sir, man has taken the step at the edge of the bottomless pit; the one he should have had the wisdom and awareness to back away from.  There is nothing to be done, Andrew.  If you believe in God, that is your, our, last option.  We have overstepped ourselves and we have to face that.”

“The apocalypse, James?  Of our own making?  What are they saying at the UN?  Can anything be salvaged?”

“Our waste dumping has triggered the sun to go nova, sir.  Nothing can be done.  We don’t have any capability to launch any “ark” or space ship that could travel out of the solar system and escape the coming fire storm, taking a sample of survivalists aboard.  And if we did, we don’t have ftl or cryogenic technology and anyone on board such ships would die long before they reached any kind of human-friendly world.  There is no escape, no place to go.  For the first time in man’s history he has ignorantly taken the irrevocable step; painted himself into a corner from which he cannot escape.  It’s over, Andrew.”

“We did this?”  He shakes his head as he stares out the window of the oval office.  “We caused the sun to go nova by shipping our bits into it?  How can that be possible?”

“No one realized the fine balance existing within a fusion reactor.  We thought size, you see, because that’s how man thinks.  If it’s bigger, it can absorb something much smaller.  Turns out that is not the case at all.  We triggered a switch, literally knocking a hole in the containment field of the sun’s fusion furnace.  From a military standpoint we should be proud.  Imagine that: the ant kills tyrannosaurus rex.  But the sun was not our enemy, nor was it our personal waste dump.  It was our life.  A bit late in the game to realize this.  I don’t even know how that makes me feel right now.  You know, this is a totally different death than any we’ve ever experienced as a species.  Until now, one died, a hundred, a million, a couple of billions, but there always was a future to look to, a chance at re-building, a chance to re-create.  Now there is nothing.  This solar system is going to be slagged.  Nothing left, nothing at all.”

“How do I tell this to the nation?  What’s my position now?  Should I just go home and forget I was even here, ever a president?  Does anything mean anything?  How much time do they give us?”

“It’s an exponential factor.  They’re working on the math but it’s all new to them.  Probably not very long because of increasing solar radiation.  The heat is about to vaporize the atmosphere and we’ll soon be exposed to solar storms, winds and flares.  They estimate that the earth will be a scorched ball of rock within four to eight years.”

“No chance at all to cut our losses and run, hm?”  He looks at his secretary with a thin, bitter smile.

“None, it’s over.”

The man’s shoulders sagged completely.  “Thanks James.  You should go home now.”