Posted in Science-Fiction, Spring 2016

Message Sent

Underestimate
The Council underestimated his skills.

Last Dawn (chapter 1, part2)

Thirteen, fourteen, all fifteen, Myric counted to himself. His coded links were still intact and undiscovered. Sighing he sat back and relaxed for the first time since morning, before he’d left for the Council meeting. He wished he had more time to think about what he was going to do. There must be some other way, if only I had time. Myric noticed the shadows lengthening outside his window. Solemnly, he typed in the message, “One time opportunity, come to Loren Home Planet in dusk of coordinates 38º 29N, 22º30E, the abandoned Uni Temple.” His hand trembled as he held it over the send key. Is this how it must be? He asked in silent prayer. Listening for any sound he could take as an answer, Myric heard laughter from another room. An echoing of laughter filled his ears as the memory of his ill-fated speech to the Council threatened to replay itself. Myric pushed the send key and forced the painful recollection from his thoughts by reminding himself of everything he knew that the Council didn’t.

Few of the Councilors would have guessed that a physician who specialized in genetics knew much about computer programing, much less hacking. Myric had learned young that a geneticist without a working computer was as useless as a chef without food. Computers and programmers cost credits and as a fatherless child, he’d had no choice but to find obsolete computers learn to program and upgrade them himself, just to make his way through school. He’d gotten a manual and taught himself. Naturally curious, he’d experimented a lot, too. Spending many long nights alone after his mother’s banishment, he’d inadvertently hacked into the defense information system. Though he never found the answers about his parents he’d been looking for, he did learn that the grid was only set to monitor big ships, tracking large amounts of displaced matter. Small craft weren’t considered a threat. Since there were so many small pods and bubbles used all over the Empire, the Defense Department only watched select high security areas for suspicious matter displacement in small amounts.

That was when he found the uncensored reports of non-Loren Spacecraft visiting the Empire. Despite government claims that all of the sightings could be explained by errant probes, drug-induced hallucinations and overactive imaginations, Myric had found too many correlations in the descriptions of the spacecraft and their movement patterns to believe it was a coincidence.

Then three years ago, investigating the cause of death for the inhabitants of a remote space station, Myric found proof. He discovered DNA that was not Loren, similar to Loren though, so similar that he knew it had to belong to the only real enemy the Loren had, the Kaynins.

Legend held that five thousand years ago the Kaynins had been banished from the Empire. They had been Loren but refused to follow the strict edicts of the Council. In revolt, they had almost split the Empire in two. Exiled from known Loren space, it was easy to forget that the Kaynins had ever existed. They were never spoken of, but Myric remembered his mothers bedtime stories of folk disappearing and running away to join the Kaynins.

Upon his return home from the space station, he set up a system of coded links to signal back to the deserted station.Using it’s receiver he was able to monitor frequencies unused by the Empire. On a low band wavelength he found voices that were not speaking any of the Loren Dialects, but they were originating from areas within the Empire. He had decoded enough to know they were watching Loren activities focusing on the Defense Department and the Council members. Mostly though they only discussed rendezvous coordinates and needed supplies. While there motives were unknown, he felt certain they would have use for a physician skilled in hacking computers.

“Message sent,” the screen blinked. Jumping to the keyboard, Myric entered one more command. He had set up a program to dismantle all of the links, in case he was ever suspected of treason. At a single command all evidence of what he’d done was deleted.

(chapter 1, part 1)

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Posted in Science-Fiction, Spring 2016

Last Dawn (chapter 1, part 1)

Faraway

Eons ago in a Star System Far Faraway . . .

“The world must be coming to an end, “Sona, the housekeeper called from the hallway, “The heretic has finally changed his mind.” She paused at the archway, listening for a response. Silence. Peering into the cluttered office she wasn’t allowed to enter, Sona glimpsed Lord Myric bent over his computer interface. Unmoving and intently focused he gave no indication of having heard her.

“So tell me,” she continued a bit louder, “has this change been caused by a vision from the Divine Oneness . . . or has the logic of Loren tradition finally found a way through that thick skull?” Nothing. Anger rose in Sona. After months of solidly refusing to commit the sacrifice, she could not believe that he would just give in. Ever since Lady Dorina learned she carried twin girls, her only thought was that the next Uni Oracle would be her daughter. A telepathic link between a living twin and a dead one guaranteed futuresight to the survivor (or so folklore told.) Whenever twins were born, it was traditional for the father to take the smaller child to the nearest Uni Temple and sacrifice the newborn to the Divine Oneness. If the twins were girls, the other child was immediately proclaimed an Uni Oracle, the highest position a Loren female could have.

Though Lady Dorina had lectured nightly the obvious benefits, Myric had never faltered, he said he wouldn’t do it and refused to argue. Though she never understood why he believed that every child born was equally important, Sona had come to admire Lord Myric’s tenacious loyalty to what he believed in.

Not a scholar herself, Sona had accepted the caste system and ritual sacrifices of Loren culture as necessary to maintain order. But Lord Myric didn’t follow rules he didn’t believe in. It was whispered throughout the serving class, he could be trusted to help even the lowest person that applied to him. Lady Dorina knew nothing of the early hours visits by beggars but Sona did and kept quiet her lord’s charity. After all his mother High Priestess Sarena had been praised by all as a truly chosen vessel. Sona was not about to question the ethics of any child of Her Holiness. Lady Dorina on the other hand cared nothing for right or wrong. She followed the rules that were to her advantage and conveniently forgot that which required her own sacrifice. She had money and power. Lady Dorina knew all the right people and never spoke to servants if she could help it.

Now that Lord Myric had inexplicably changed his mind, Sona was irritated.

“Aren’t you going to say anything?” she burst out at the still immobile lump.

“Quiet” the midwife called from the stairs. “Sona do you want to wake the mother and babies!”

Throwing his cloak and gloves in his general direction, Sona huffed back to the kitchen to fume.