Categories
Ancient Past creative writing fiction Her Dark Arts science fiction women

Pandora

Sorry, faux feminist, no Cliff's Notes to help you decipher this one

Pandora stretched herself out on a parapet of black stones, under a pleasant copper sun. She was still dripping wet after bathing in the filtered streams of the lake. She felt safe, as her guardian was scanning the surrounding woods. He was cautious and ready.

Her facial muscles tightened, drawing her lips into a wide grin. She couldn’t feel them, but infrared radiation from the stones had already coaxed her cells back to optimal function. She had outlived the great grandchildren of her childhood playmates. Yet, her stunning features and sensual vitality suggested she was frolicking past her nineteenth summer.

She knew how to get along with the young ones. Honeybees had taught her that for healing, she could use venom and propolis. For nourishment, pollen. And for restful sleep, nectar. She’d spent years practising her craft.

“Yay, cat,” she said now, gathering up some of the stones. “That’ll have us for a bit.”

This was to be their last visit. A new settlement had welcomed her to stay. Pandora planned to age gracefully there. With the stones she would bring the young ones time. Time that was still firmly on her side.

🐝

Notes: Best wishes for healing in November. In this story, I present Pandora as a nomad and the world’s first naturopath, who created the myth to protect her anti-aging secret.

Photo: “Morning Beauty,” Alek Alexeyeva by Sølve Sundsbø (2009) for Vogue via Fashion Gone Rogue.

Categories
Earth fiction Her Dark Arts Mars men women

End of Installation

Thank you all so much for your kind attention and support. This post marks the end of the fiction as art as fiction installation, Earth, Mars and Her Dark Arts. I’ve prepared an afterword as a standalone page. Please read Aftermath if you can make the time and I’d be very happy to have your comments.

All posts that flow between this and the marker posts, excluding non fiction asides, are part of this installation. Thank you for your warm support.

When I started putting this together in early December, 2014, I was thrilled and scared at the same time. Would anyone read it, much less stay around for three months? As I’ve said in Aftermath, your attention was the light obliterating the gloom on a dark world. Thank you so much.

The risk of putting myself out there and banking on your trust was worth it thanks to your repeat visits, your courage, your patience, your kind words of encouragement, your belief, questions, comments and gestures of appreciation. All have meant a great deal.

See you all, again, soonest. The stampede starts up again in a day or so; not to be missed.

Love and caramel hugs,
SB

Categories
Her Dark Arts Mars

Access (T_T) You

[An approximate translation]

Si
Hello, cousin. What have you been doing?

Ki
I’m making transcription algorithms for Blue Star’s languages. It’s frustrating. There is too much to do. Have you finished your project?

Gi
Yes, and we show it to mother and father, soon. It needs more information, but we are finished.

Si
But we are sure that mother and father will help us.

Gi
Who is this?

Ki
She is Blue Star child, appellation Sami.

Gi
Did you really find a way to talk directly to Blue Star people? This is exciting! I want to know if they are like us.

Si
Are you making your software for her? She’s beautiful. How do you know her?

Ki
I wanted very easy vocabulary for my software. Blue Star’s children have somewhat primitive language and cognitive output. I noticed that some Blue Star children had large data spikes consistently over five revolutions. I analysed those, and I noticed that hers was the largest.

Si
What’s that?!

Ki
It’s a child.

Si
What species?

Ki
Human. Some human babies are born looking, unfortunately, less like the attractive parent. They do not control for this with reproductive algorithms.

Gi
Does Blue Star Child Sami know you?

Ki
Not yet. That is why I am creating this translator. This software’s algorithms are simplistic. This software allows people to communicate through a third party translator that knows both languages. What I want to do is append the simple software to this updated software I’m creating. I used father’s magnetic resonance codes for the tractor beams. I stripped the power annotations down to the smallest resolution. After that, I coded data filtration algorithms at these nodes, here. What I have now, if it works, is data extraction software that works in reverse to push information to the receiver.

Si
That is very impressive. But you are too far away to push a lot of information to language centres in her cerebral cortex or vision centres in her visual cortex.

Ki
According to this, I need to be at least [four thousand three hundred forty four] long distance units directly above her coordinates to focus a [laser]. Additionally, proximity is a problem, as other bioorganisms can interfere with the transmission frequency.

Gi
It is an interesting problem. Perhaps if you used three dimensional graphics software to create a full layout of her cortices and focused a stream of magnetic resonance to all points? Once you have traction, you can pull or push data as required. We created an application for this purpose with our extrasolar technology, to make the hardware “behave” as if it could see or feel itself moving over rough terrain or in water.

Ki
Thank you, cousin. That is brilliant. You are a marvel.

Gi
How much more time do you have for fixing your software?

Ki
I was about to give up at the moment, but the AI is peeling down the coded layers here and here. I think there are some overlaps. So I need to wait and then I will see how much more work there is to be done.

Si
I want to help, too. What can I do?

Ki
Thank you, cousins. There is a language on Blue Star that has the same sounds as ours. It is [Icelandic]. In order to use it to communicate smoothly through her handheld voice transcription device, I will create a dictionary of words that are represented by large chunks of image data in all languages. I already dug up an old dictionary from Grandfather’s data library. But, Blue Star’s language changes at a high rate. I need to update it. That way, we will know what words are common to all languages and what they mean. It is tiresome, as not all words have visual indicators. Some have emotional representations.

Gi
I can do that, also. I spent one revolution analysing image data from Blue Star’s storage orbiters. Let me teleport our AIs here. They have the analytical protocols we utilised. We can retask their protocols to compile your dictionary in a fraction of the time.

Si
That is a brilliant idea. We are going to help you by syncing all three AIs to complement each other’s coding, in order to complete the translation algorithm. All we need do now, is watch them work and check the results.

Ki
Cousins, you are precious to me.

Gi
With pleasure, dear cousin.

Categories
Earth Her Dark Arts marriage men women

End of Section Two

This header marks the end of Section Two of this installation. The scripts and art that follow this header, that have not been marked as “Asides” belong in this phase of the installation. Thank you for your warm support.

 

Categories
Earth Her Dark Arts

Denise

Martine
You called for a consult?

Paige
Thanks for coming in Dr. Russell. The patient is a female, mid- to late-forties, presenting with severe internal trauma after a traffic collision on Route 27 East. Her sternum was cracked open after she presented evidence of internal bleeding. Her aorta was torn just above the left ventricle.

Martine
How is she still alive?

Paige
We tentatively diagnosed her with antiphospholipid antibody syndrome. I’m waiting for test results. If yes, it may have been undiagnosed. In which case, the accident triggered catastrophic antiphospholipid syndrome.

Martine
A thrombotic storm.

Paige
Luckily for her, this caused her blood clotting factor to overreact at the trauma site. We were able to patch her up because her body did most of the work. We’re now worried that some clots might reach her brain, and undo all of this.

Martine
That’s what Dr. Fisher is here for.

Brooke
Yes, but there’s nothing I could do except apply blood thinners and hope they pass without incident. I am about to put her on full bypass and filter out any large clots from there.

Martine
Okay, so you guys have the thing under control.

Paige
That’s the thing, Dr. Russell. She was wearing this medallion when she was brought in from the accident site. Do you recognise it?

Martine
Yes, it’s the badge my father’s foundation gives to people who agree to submit to experimental heart surgery procedures in case of emergencies… Which is why I’m here.

Brooke
So, is there something you are empowered to do here?

Martine
Yes. My team has just finished testing a new three D printed bioceramic tube using fetal stem cells. Let me show it to you on my smartphone. Here. We fortified it with a positively charged copper ion coil to disinfect the patch site on an ongoing basis and to boost the immune system’s acceptance of the tubing.

Brooke
Obviously, you have no idea if it’ll work.

Martine
Obviously.

Paige
Dr. Fisher, please put the patient on bypass immediately, and in the meantime, Dr. Russell will prepare for the aorta patch with the new tubing. Nurse?

Hannah
Yes, doctor.

Paige
Can you tell Dr. Deza that we’re going through with the bypass and one other procedure and that she is to consult us for an update STAT?

Hannah
Yes, Ma’am.

Categories
Earth Her Dark Arts

Section Two: Present Day

January 21 ‐ February 1

Fictional posts and art go above this sticky header. There may be some not safe for work material, so please be over the age of consent in your country. The contents of this blog may not be safe for work, and that’s the best thing about it.

The preface explains what I’m doing in this installation. Some of the characters have appeared in previous stories, and they include Jupiter, Lara, Marcus and Storm.

If you’ve landed here from outside of the WordPress box, you may want to look at previous art projects including the sticky ones below, or fiction scripts. If you press the like or follow button or leave a comment, please make sure that your website information is correct otherwise, I won’t be able to find your blog.

My heartfelt gratitude goes to readers for your warm support for Section One.

Categories
art Earth Her Dark Arts

End of Section One

Thank you for your warm gestures of support in this installation so far. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Mil gracias y mil abrazos. Gracias por su confianza y su atención. I thank you for your trust and attention.

I have attempted to explain the meaning of fiction stories in the first section in a reflection called Commemoration. If you have not read it as yet, please do. It ties the stories together.

The scripts posted above this note are set in the present day.

Warmly,
SB

Categories
Earth Her Dark Arts

Commemoration

There’s a rational explanation for everything, but we are not open minded creatures. We cannot do away with what we think we know. To bravely embrace the complex and the unknown, we have to first accept that some explanations are bigger than our capacity for understanding them. We may have to shed identities and associations as a result. Changing our minds can be scary.

I’ll illustrate my point with an interesting conversation I had last Saturday about an episode of House, MD (3.23 The Jerk). I wrote down the chemical formula for nitrogen, NO2, which someone said was “water”. I tried again with, seventy eight percent of the air’s composition? Ahhh… That. Nitrogen is the building block of protein molecules. Surely you learned this in tenth grade chemistry? No. Since I don’t have the chemical structure of a typical protein stored in memory, not that it would make a difference, I stated my point simply: some people’s bodies cannot break down nitrogen. As a result, they suffer liver damage. Therefore, those people cannot eat lean protein, or meat. They can have a small amount of protein from a vegetarian diet. Ahhhhh.

There are things I can’t understand, like Big Data. Even Big Data experts don’t get it. Because, it’s too big. Or SEO. Or Ariana Grande’s baby hairs. I will happily exchange a twenty minute overview or a five second glimpse for a four hour particle physics lecture or rewatch that five hour final between Nadal and Federer. I try to draw those comparisons when people tell me they can’t wrap their mind around something.

Ancient man had access to Big Data, but being free of bias, having recently emerged from the soup, he may have been more open to creating comfort and stability for his community. However, it might have been difficult for him to explain how he came by his information on social engineering, scholarship, exploration, geology, art and philosophy. So, he invented a Holiness to explain the source of his inspiration to build civilisations.

We are still limited in our understanding of the universe, so we will plod along in our absurd and often lethal interpretations of our predecessors’ methods of preserving their data for us. We don’t speak the same languages. Furthermore, subsequent civilisations destroyed, suppressed or distorted data that was not amenable to their political agendas.

To some degree, untruths have prevented us from devolving into a complete state of chaos, out of which we would need to work hard to recreate stable societies. Gomorrah was the centre of a civilisation more advanced than ours is today, and its destruction after an unforeseen seismic event illustrates what happens when we do not listen to learned counsel. In its aftermath, it was necessary to construct meaningless totems, and use these as reminders that we are not alone in the universe. In other words, ancient man made up something that we would understand just from the sight of it.

Sadly, we suck at interpreting information presented to us. We drive cars and talk to smart phones. We are closed minded because we believe our handling of gadgets makes us superior to those who have not. In truth, our attention to them is distracting us from turning on each other.

Let’s say that the boy on the savannah represents humans one hundred million years after we crawled out of the primordial soup. We were literally fish out of water. The boy grew up to be a man. He has no idea where his guidance came from just before the Deluge, as the sequence of events was presented to him as images.

But, the moon loomed large in his eyes as testament to his deliverance from cataclysmic changes in Earth’s climatology. The moon appears shortly before this change. It became a symbol of survival. The boy’s journey upward, to higher ground, was the first purposeful form of exploration ever undertaken. It is not moon worship that we are looking at, but a timeless commemoration of that moment of deliverance.

The Earth is a living breathing organism that shifts under our feet. It is a perfect living thing and boundless in its beauty. In a way, we are still fish out of water. It doesn’t matter what paleoclimatologists, geologists or biblical scholars tell you. No amount of digging or incanting can change how we got here, or help us truly know what happened in the past. We dig and we pray to escape the weight of a most pressing responsibility: We alone hold the future in our hands.
Update: February 2, 2015
Illustrating my point about “moon worship” is a recent article about Norse worship in Iceland. Örn Hilmarsson, high priest of Ásatrúarfélagið, said “I don’t believe anyone believes in a one-eyed man who is riding about on a horse with eight feet. We see the stories as poetic metaphors and a manifestation of the forces of nature and human psychology.” Membership in Ásatrúarfélagið is currently at 2,400 members.

Categories
Ancient Past Earth Her Dark Arts

Si me deseas

Rol
¿Cómo estás?

Sol
Muy bien, gracias. ¿Y tú?

Rol
Ha pasado demasiado tiempo.

Sol
Sí, eso es cierto. Pero mi hijo tuvo fiebre. Mi esposa y yo teníamos que traerle al boticario.

Rol
Lo lamento. ¿Está bien, tu hijo, ahora?

Sol
Sí. Por favor no me mires así.

Rol
¿Cómo?

Sol
Como si estuvieras a punto de devorarme.

Rol
Deseo lamerte la cara. Lentamente. Y después, tengo ganas de tocarte profundamente.

Sol
Por favor, debemos preparar por el Consejo.

Rol
¿Me deseas? Déjame acariciarte.

Sol
Sí, te deseo, pero hoy, no puedo.

Rol
¿Qué pasó? El otro día estuvimos en la pasión del fuego.

Sol
Tú solamente tienes ganas de beber de mi sangre.

Rol
No, no, no.

Sol
¡No me mientas!

Rol
Por favor, mi amor. Pueden oírnos. Tú me dijiste que a tí …

Sol
¡Basta ya!

Rol
Bueno. Podemos discontinuar, pero hazme el favor de creer que te quiero. Ven acá. Voy a besarte. Te he esperado desesperadamente. Déjame meter la lengua en tu boca.

Sol
Rol, por favor…

Rol
Ven acá.

Categories
Ancient Past Earth Her Dark Arts

The Pool

“The future is open and we are writing it moment to moment.”
Pema Chödrön, Buddhist nun, teacher and author

<< What if I asked you not to return home right now?

Lim
Who…?

<< If I made myself visible, you would go blind from the sheer stress on your visual cortex. The surge of energy would obliterate your neural pathways.

Lim
I can hear you. I can’t understand you. What language are you speaking?

<< I know. Hmmm… My brother and I are playing a game. He said that if I asked nicely, you would swim around for three more hours. He’s said I’m full of scorn for your species. I’m trying to reform.

Lim
Fraum? This is a trick. Pom!!! Stop. Come out.

<< He’s left you behind. He hasn’t gone to a better place, though. Well, not yet, at any rate.

Lim
First of all, I can’t see who is talking.

<< Please don’t go home now or else you will surely be killed.

Lim
Nonsense. No one can see the future. The Feast is over, Pom. No more festival tricks. Come out now.

<< You’re right. No one can see the future because there isn’t just one. We precisely calculate and see outcomes, in what you call the future, on any given string of intent.

Lim
String up in tent? That’s stupid! You’re stupid. Go away.

<< So be it. Ingracious beast.

The female twin pulls back to mull the situation over with her brother.

> You did not try hard enough.

<< His helical proteins fail to synchronise with this biosphere’s regenerative frequencies. That is consistent with his passive attempt at self erasure by swimming in that bottomless pool. Appropriate and amusing. I think we’ve made our point.

> His is not a significant loss. The data contained in his proteins do not contribute to evolutionary gains nor does it appear at any further point in the alternate timelines.

<< Good riddance. Let us leave him be.

Categories
Ancient Past Earth Her Dark Arts

Shelter, or the long stay

Röben
Shelter. It’s what we need most urgently now. I had this awful dream last night. I was drifting apart from you on a sea of sand, as a very old man. I grasped at air, and felt a great sense of despair at having nothing to stand on.

The counsellors have met in Röben’s tent on the second night of the full moon to eat a hot stew of fatted calf meat. It had been roasting in the sun all day in a ceramic crock pot. One of the men, Lvi, had found a course translucent blue grain in a dry pit. He had grabbed a handful and sniffed it, but it had no smell.

After eating the midday meal of millet with his fingers, he noticed that the taste was different. He licked his palm and it, too, tasted different. He went back for a small sackful of the thing and as he was presenting this evening’s meal, he gave each counsellor a small portion of the grain on the side of his plate. They weren’t sure what to do with it.

Röben suggested touching a little to the fingers and then touching the meat. Ysåk suggested swirling it all over the meat. That was unbearable, and so he wasted a serving. That caused a bit of grumbling. Ekob, however, thought it would work better to rub a little on the teeth and under the tongue and then savour the tender goodness of the veal with the juices from the mouth.

Röben
Alright, alright. Let’s be done with this. The bullock has served us his fattest youth and we gather now to enjoy his gift. Blessings on our meal.

All
Blessings.

Lvi
I think we should add the millet to the stew, just for various.

Lvi was already thinking about their next meal.

Ekob
Various?!

Ysåk
Various? Various is a word for bullocks. Big bullock, small bullock. Not so big bullock. New bullock, old bullock.

Cackles of dry hysterical laughter shook the tent canvas.

Lvi
No, I’m just trying to…

Benjamin
Shut up, this is a hallowed gathering.

Röben
Brethren, we must discuss the future of our tribe. I think that all we have are the children our wives bear us, these metal plates, these adornments, the ropes that tie our tents down on those pillars. We must be long in our stay.

Esai
You mean, make one dwelling place?

Ysåk
Yes, brother! I have the same feeling, but how can we all fit in the same tent?

Simeon is stunned at the sudden opening for ideas and speaks up.

Simeon
I have an idea. Can we prepare for a new home by charting the heavens in one location and observing the changes over the land?

Ysåk
Hmmm. Children play that game.

Simeon
The point being that we need to know where is best for our families to be long in our stay.

Röben
Hmm, hmm, hmmm.

A long awkward paused ensued. The odourless substance had altered the taste of their veal stew. Some of the men were licking their fingers.

Ysåk
Where can we get more of this, ahhhh… clear sand?”

Lvi
Ah! The cook has his secrets, brethren!

One of the brothers scraped off the rest of the clear sand from his plate and into a small piece of hemp cloth he’d produced for his shoulder bag.

Benjamin
For the wife. And children.

The others followed suit. Ysåk looked around desperately at the others. He’d run out. Lvi shook his head as if to say…

Lvi
(Sorry, none left)

Röben tried to continue through the excitement.

Röben
I think brother Simeon has made a good point. We should do a survey to prepare for a big change such as this one. May I add that we should split up into units? Man, woman, children together in one unit. Not separated.

Esai
Then what?

Röben
We choose one area but stay close enough to each other to meet for our moon meal.

Esai
How long do we separate for?

Ekob
How many full moons?

Röben
Simeon, your wife is with child. Let’s decide what to do when your newborn grows to the height of a reed or loses his first teeth.

Ekob
What are we looking for in the heavens and on the land?

Röben
We’re noting down everything we see, smell, touch, hear. The earth under our feet, and the wind in our ears. Simeon can make a graphic of what we don’t know a word for.

Simeon sees the opportunity, and takes it.

Simeon
Brothers, papyrus is needed. I don’t know how long my reserves will last.

Benjamin
True, but you don’t use so much at the moment.

Simeon
That’s right. We need to make more. Might I start by teaching our sons to help us to protect the trade? The trade of making papyrus? By making more papyrus.

More cackles.

Ekob
For variety? There’s more papyrus here than you can use. How do we make more? They just grow out there in the swamp.

Simeon
Not variety, but continuity. We can make sure we never run out of the plant. I have some ideas.

Benjamin
Let the girls and women do it. They need an industry.

Simeon
I will show you all the glyphs first but can we also teach our youngest to inscribe and interpret the glyphs? Maybe, gather them under one tent after sunrise on days when millet is not planted or harvested. All of the youngest children can live here with us in a tent, tended to by the older mothers. Among our brethren, I can teach Lvi first.

Ysåk
Yeah, make him write where we can find his eatable sand.

More cackles.

Röben
Lvi cannot run or trek like the rest of us. This should be his industry. He will teach our youngest to inscribe and interpret glyphs. We don’t have words for everything we want to say right now, but we can find them or even make them.

Esai
Like Lvi’s stews?!

More cackles.

Röben
First things first. We create a legacy by learning these symbols and we all inscribe what we know about the stars. Then we put them all together under one tent so we are saying the same thing. We’re going to need a shelter for the papyruses that won’t be blown away by sand storms.

Esai
Or the water.

Röben
Exactly. Shelter. It’s what we urgently need right now. Simeon, please take charge of this project.

Categories
Ancient Past Earth Her Dark Arts

A Book of Days

Simeon
A tax. What is a tax?

Simeon looked at the space where the male twin would be standing if he were visible to the naked eye. The twins’ voices are heard at a loud volume in an untouchable space behind his head. Simeon’s right shoulder is dragging downwards. He clenches at papyrus sheets as the full power of their thoughts activate receptors in his cerebral cortex.

> A tax is completely inconsequential in itself, but symbolically, it keeps people from easily and without obstruction, relocating to new settlements with the wealth, knowledge, goods, and services they’ve generated in your community.

<< You need a strategy for keeping your community members in. Outsiders should have higher living costs if they stay for a short time, and community members should not be able to maintain a separate living arrangement outside without incurring significant losses here.

Simeon’s hands drop on a pillow. The stress of the present exchange leaves him out of breath. Crumpled transcripts fall to the floor.

Simeon
Do you see what’s in front of me? You say many things, but its hard to understand any of it. How can I create this tax? How do we make sure everyone will cooperate?

<< Offer something in return. It’s quite simple. A sense of community, stability and privilege will ensure loyalty to the community as a unit. This sense of community ensures that newcomers must prove they are qualified to become a part of the system.

Simeon
I’m not sure I can sell “loyalty” or “community”. Shouldn’t people be able to go about as they please?

> They are indeed free, but how can you collect taxes if that’s true?

Simeon
Exactly. Why do we need to collect taxes at all?

<< It’s just a strategy for keeping a stable society. It’s what we’ve said before.

> I have modified the idea. Why don’t we put a value on the land. How much is one length worth?

<< No, before that, let’s measure the land space. How many lengths are contained in it? Then attach that value to the most basic measure of wealth that everyone is accustomed to.

Simeon
Goats, cows?

<< Copper, it’s difficult to mine. You can just breed goats.

> I have an even better idea of what will ensure future collection of taxes.

<< I am rapt.

> Good. We collect time and labour, and build things using materials that are long lasting and difficult to destroy. They don’t easily erode over time.

<< So the wealth is preserved in the infrastructure, and built into the land.

Simeon
We like moving around. Stability doesn’t appeal to our tribe.

<< You have to try it first.

Simeon
What would we build anyway?

> First let’s start with your stars.

Simeon
The stars?

> Yes, your children use the skies to chart a course across the desert during the year, do you not?

Simeon
Yes.

> So, build something using the earth as material, to capture the light of the sun over the course of a day.

Simeon
Hmmm. I’m … mystified here.

<< What my brother is saying, is that you should try to capture the movement of the sun across the sky in one day. Use that as your measurement to make decisions.

> Yes. Using this writing system we have taught you to record the position of the stars in the night sky every day. Use this collection of records to explore the patterns and cycles you already know.

Simeon
I understand what you’re trying to do but that’s too much work for me, I’m just one man.

> Ah, now you’ll need another building.

Simeon
For what?

> To teach people to create records of the observations. For future use, of course. And then we need another building in which to place these records.

Simeon
Hold on a minute. How many people do we teach?

<< Show the youngest ones first how to use the glyphs we’ve taught you. Then ask them to record the charting of the stars. The adolescents will learn how to create material for recording and storing your records. Another group will make the tools for inscribing glyphs. Just small units of three, for each task, are enough for now.

Simeon
But there is only a small amount of papyrus. And where do we find tools for writing?

> First, cultivate the papyrus yourselves.

Simeon
Cotivate?

<< Cultivate. Farm.

Simeon
These .. and many words you use don’t exist in our language.

<< Cultivate: Make more of the papyrus by growing the shoots in an area just for that purpose. Farm: collect the leaves at harvest.

Simeon
Uh, huh. Farm. What do we call the ‘teach’ building?

> A college.

Simeon
So we’re doing all of this to build a college?

<< No, we’re building a college so children can be taught how to create records of the sun’s movement. We’re doing that to keep your tribe in the same place. If we do that, we can collect taxes at last.

> But to start, you must convince your peers that this particular territory provides a good, long stay. One thing at a time.

Simeon
Where do you find your ideas?

<< We calculate. We’re very good at it. Just try it our way.

Simeon
It won’t work. It’s many ideas all together.

<< There’s a word for that: It is “complex.” We’ll make sure the idea is welcomed. Pay attention to what’s happening around you and make sure to grasp the opportunities presented. Brother, let’s be away before he says something again.

Categories
Ancient Past Earth Her Dark Arts

The Boy

The twins stare intently at the lonely boy sitting crossed-legged at the edge of the savannah. He’s passing time by observing empty space. Air is aqueous. The boy will sit there, as he does every day, until darkness falls. His eyes are large. Gelatinous layers of mucous slide around on his corneas. His irises radiate an iridescent hue of violet. His heavy lidded, deep-set eyes have double rows of thick, long, rose-coloured lashes that curl upwards and away from his face. They keep water from condensing in his eyes and obscuring his vision. His skin is a pulpy, greenish, translucent nougat. 

The twins telegraph their thoughts to each other.

> At this point in their timeline, a body on land needs gills to filter nitrogen from wet air. Based on their physiology, we assume that it is converted to an aqueous solution of nitric acid, which functions as battery acid for mitochondria.

<< Why are we interested in him? He is sitting there waiting for nothing to happen.

The twins pull back to mull things over.

> The boundaries for them are perceptual. They see, hear, touch and taste. These perceptions only serve to help them identify members of their own species in order to reproduce.

<< Beyond that, they’re oblivious to existence itself. They are not yet sentient.

> Does a mind need speech or language to have thoughts? They think in images, familiar ones. Therefore, to communicate with them, we must use familiar images in unfamiliar situations, highlighting the contrasts.

<< It’s a futile task, interfering with them. Just look at them stumbling around without purpose. They’ll become a vile and stubborn race, trusting only these limited perceptions. I am disinterested!

> Time is spherical from our perspective. So we can show the outcome of a course of action on a unique string of intent. Let a familiar image signal propositional intent. We need only show how their present actions will move them away from or toward a beneficial or detrimental outcome.

<< What about the Deluge caused by the fallout of this new asteroid’s explosion into orbit? These beings don’t know precipitation, nor have they seen their precious orb illuminated in the night sky. Perhaps you can encourage the boy to move to high ground. If he is receptive, he will survive to see the asteroid as it settles into its permanent space. If that happens, I will accept that our interference at key points in the newly created timeline will not be in vain.

> M’aal Arch, we have the perfect opportunity to test your ideas about them.

<< Agreed. We will interfere with the boy.

Categories
Ancient Past Earth Her Dark Arts

Ísland

Hinrik
What’s his name?

Stefán
I do not know sir. I do not know. He was there and not there.

Sverrir
My skin crawls.

Stefán
My bullocks are now nine-and-ten, sir. I had two score on the morning of the day he spoke. When his utterances were finished, my workman rushed in to say one bullock had died in the stable.

Sverrir
Vile youth!

Hallbjörn
Bring the salted haddock. More ale! These berries are frozen.

Luc
Úff!

Brog
Why don’t you ever duck?

Vilhjálmur
Where did he come from?

Stefán
He just was there. He was there. Like that.

Sverrir
Stop repeating yourself. Did you touch him?

Stefán
No.

Egill
You were asleep.

Stefán
No.

Hilmar
How do you know that? When I’m asleep, my wife is beautiful, soft and light. She comes to me with my mistress. And it certainly feels that way when I wake up.

Haraldur
Aye, aye! Skál!

Vilhjálmur, Haraldur, Hinrik
Skál!

Hilmar
And he specifically showed you these markings?

Sverrir
How do you know them? You are not a longshoreman. You have not steered a longboat. You’re a harvester. A farmer, a husband of cows.

Hallbjörn
This berry ale is not full with ferment. Bring me that leather flask.

Stefán
Well, I drew them, sir. He guided my hand.

Einar
How?

Stefán
I don’t know. My hand moved but it was not my hand. It was his hand.

Haraldur
So you touched him.

Stefán
No.

Einar
He touched you.

Stefán
Nei!

Vilhjálmur
We are not understanding you.

Sverrir
My Lord, this man is clearly frost frozen witless. He must not waste this council’s precious time.

Hallbjörn
Let every man have his say.

Stefán
Thank you, my Lord. He said I am to tell my Lord that the journey north is to be postponed until mid spring. There are fires all around, fired earth moving on the sea. We are to bury the longboats in the longhouses, take shelter in a settlement near the warm earth springs, where we keep seeds for the harvest. We are to stay away from these homes. Here. It is now, he said. Réttur nú. The water under the land will rise and warm us, there’ll be no need for inside fires.

Sverrir
Madness. How can that be?!!! The waters do not respond to the beck and call of men.

Hallbjörn
Perhaps this will settle the matter. Luc, Brog! Take him to his house and watch over him in turns. Make sure you bear witness to his friend’s return.

Stefán
I don’t know when he will return.

Sverrir
Halt your puerile muttering! We must have an affidavit. Do not squirm away from accounting for this council’s patience. Be off with you!

Hinrik
What was that sound?

Sverrir
It’s the table, you miserable goat.

Hilmar
The ground is shaking.

Sverrir
Do not give meaning to that low creature’s hysterical invention.

Hallbjörn
The shaking will stop momentarily.

Categories
Earth Her Dark Arts

Section One: Ancient Past

January 7 ‐ January 20

Events move backwards and forwards on a timeline in the ancient past. Read fictional scripts set in the Ancient Past in one continuous set. Comments on some posts have been turned off. These are intended to be read only. Thank you for your patience. Please have a look at the preface or teaser for an idea of what’s in store for the overall project. I appreciate your attention.

Update January 16 |+|
It has been nine days and I thank you for the warm support you’ve given so far to this installation. If you’ve landed here from somewhere, you can all previous art projects and fiction scripts in one continuous thread.