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Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Emergence 3.0 - Section Five (a), Jim; Appendix Part Three, Breeding; Chapter Six, Creating


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Wednesday, February 20th, 2019

Chapter Six: Creating

The application of genetic science was meticulous.

It was artistry.

Jim created physical markers that would manifest themselves in the characteristics of the gene-pool he was developing. He could tell at a glance whether an individual was a part of one of the control groups he was studying, or an outlier.

There were many markers for every tribe, these guided him; pigmentation, hair color, eye color, the presence or absence of freckled skin; moles and birthmarks, these told him different things.

The Markers helped him map his progress to his signal goal, which was the birth of a human being possessing a mind powerful enough to harness the fullness of humanity, and stable enough to channel all of its raw emotion, the pain and fear that would be caused by the coming cataclysm, to transmit it through the quantum field of the worm hole like an invading host, directly into the Collective, to wield it like a battering ram against the Continuum.

He was a weapon smith practicing a different kind metallurgy.

What he was forging would be the deadliest weapon ever constructed.

He was weaponizing consciousness itself.

It would hit the Collective with the destructive force of a billion stars, or so he told himself when he was thinking of his work in the terms a poet might use, and when he did he realized he had gone far beyond his original mission, the simple elimination of the Collective and the elimination of its Continuum.

He was being shaped by his sojourn on Earth.

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Paramour


Her blonde curls, blue eyes
I wanted to run away
With her, skip the world

I kissed her, full soft
Lips, pink as the blushing rose
Hands on her hips, breasts

Something in my blood
Stirring in me, the Viking
Sailing by starlight

Lips and tongues touching
Our breathing closed the distance
Between us in the dark

A naked embrace
In a cool summer lake, on
A warm summer night

The touch of the muse
The water nymph, a goddess
Inspiring and kind

Wearing her token
Bending to the angelic
Vision of grace

Emergence 3.0 - Section Five (a), Jim; Appendix Part Three, Breeding; Chapter Five, Planning


Emergence 3.0
A Novel – In One Page Per Day
Tuesday, February 19th, 2019

Chapter Five: Planning

Once Jim understood the mechanism for the way in which the human race interacted with the cynergenic field, he was able to map out the changes for the genetic profile that he needed to establish in order to strengthen, and enhance those features.

Jim intended to introduce changes into the genetic profile of each tribe at the same time so that he could establish a base set of conditions upon which to build his design, and then he would be able monitor the effects of that by breeding the traits he was looking for into individual tribes separately.

In the scale of time that he and the Collective were used to operating in, he had precious little of it to work with. He feared he would lose the gambit before the next great planetary disaster struck Earth.  

He intended to optimize the retention of nanoparticles in the cognitive structures of the brain, making each person a receptive node in the field of consciousness. He intended to stabilize that by giving each and every one of them access to the type of memory that was locked into the root code of their genetic structure.

He took his greatest risk by exporting his work off world, he sent tiny vessels speeding back across the void on a trek of light years to be recovered by him and his agents at the fringes of the Empire.

He needed to safeguard his discoveries against disaster and against the possibility of his failure, so that they could be recreated on any other world that the Empire discovered, having the same conditions that had obtained on the blue-green marble known as Earth.

His struggle would continue even in the event of his failure.

That much he guaranteed.   

#Emergence #SuperShortFiction #365SciFi #OnePagePerDay

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Monday, February 18, 2019

Presidents Day - Presidents Speak for Themselves, A Reflection


Presidents are human beings.

They have all been men (so far), flawed men, everyone who has ever held the office.

Some have had heroic attributes. All of them have had craven moments.

There have only been forty-four of them, until now, now we are living through the chaotic presidency of the 45th.

A couple of other presidents have barely made it into office, only a handful have won the office while failing to earn the popular vote, the 45th is one of them.

The forty-third was appointed by the Supreme Court, the first time that ever happened.

Nevertheless, all of our presidents have legitimately held the office…until now.

Today the occupant of the oval office, is the forty-fifth president. When he took the oath of office I was prepared to accept him, even though he lost the popular vote. I was prepared to accept him, but now I cannot, because there is certain intrigue surrounding his victory; foreign interference by the Russians, domestic malfeasance, the conspiracy of his campaign to collude with the Russians and defraud the people of the United States.

I was prepared to accept him, just as I had accepted Regan, and Bush who were also elected to the highest office, without my support, or my enthusiasm, or my vote.

I accepted them because I believed that they would uphold the rule of law (even though plenty of illegal things were done during their administration, done in their name, done in the name of the American people).

Despite that I believed they would support the American system, the separation of powers, the separation of Church and State, the freedom of the press, and an independent judiciary.

By and large, they did.

The forty-fifth president has not, and will not.

Donald Trump is seeking to undermine the courts, at every turn. He actively undermines our institutions, and works to undermine the rule of law.

He dismantle our alliances, pulling out of treaties, starting trade wars, usurping the powers of Congress, and lying through his teeth, to the American people, about what he is doing and what his motives are.

His latest outrage is to declare a National Emergency so that he can manage a political problem.

He has assumed emergency powers, this is the path to a dictatorship.

Consider George Washington, did you know that the city of Cincinnati was named after him. Cincinnati was named after Washington because in his day our first President was affectionately called “The Modern Cincinnatus,” a Roman general from the time of the Republic, (c. 519 – c. 430 BCE), who was granted emergency powers by the Senate of Rome, twice, so that he could defend the Republic. He was declared to be the Imperator and given supreme authority, each time upon the resolution of his mission he laid that power down.

In the same way George Washington set the standards for all future presidents, by refusing to be called anything other than Mr. President, eschewing such titles as Highness, Majesty, Excellency. He served two terms, and then laid down the gauntlet of power, suggesting that to hold power longer would lead the country to an imperial presidency.

Forty-five presidencies later, we are faced with the criminal and corrupt regime of Donald J. Trump.  

It is the duty of any person who has ever sworn the oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, to oppose this man and his illegal activities now.

He has called the free press an enemy of the people.

This kind of rhetoric makes him a threat to the Republic. The power of his office makes him a threat to humankind

Donald Trump should listen to the words of these presidents, and we should listen to him. We should take seriously the things he says and does in our name.

The words of the presidents:

1st George Washington (Two Terms)
“If men are to be precluded from offering their sentiments on a matter…reason is of no use to us; the freedom of speech may be taken away, and dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep, to the slaughter.”
A Real President - April 30, 1789 - March 4th, 1797

2nd John Adams
“The liberty of the press is essential to the security of the state.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1797 - March 4th, 1801

3rd Thomas Jefferson (Two Terms)
"The only security of all is in a free press. The force of public opinion cannot be resisted when permitted freely to be expressed. The agitation it produces must be submitted to. It is necessary, to keep the waters pure."
A Real President - March 4th, 1801 - March 4th, 1809

4th James Madison (Two Terms)
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
A Real President - March 4, 1809 - March 4th, 1817

5th James Monroe (Two Terms and Last of the Founders)
“Free people seldom intrigue together; because there is no motive for it. Between the leaders however of a free people, and the neighboring monarchs, such intrigues have often taken place, and always will take place, whilst liberty is odious to monarchs, and men can be found base enough to betray her.”
A Real President - March 4, 1817 - March 4th, 1825

6th John Quincy Adams (Lost the Popular Vote)
“The freedom of the press should be inviolate.”
President - March 4, 1825 - March 4th, 1829

7th Andrew Jackson (Two Terms)
“As long as our government is administered for the good of the people, and is regulated by their will; as long as it secures to us the rights of persons and of property, liberty of conscience, and of the press, it will be worth defending.”
March 4th, 1829 - March 4th, 1837

8th Martin Van Buren          
“There is a power in public opinion in this country - and I thank God for it: for it is the most honest and best of all powers - which will not tolerate an incompetent or unworthy man to hold in his weak or wicked hands the lives and fortunes of his fellow-citizens.”:
A Real President - March 4th, 1837 - March 4th, 1841

9th William Henry Harrison 
“There is no part of the means placed in the hands of the Executive which might be used with greater effect for unhallowed purposes than the control of the public press. The maxim which our ancestors derived from the mother country that "the freedom of the press is the great bulwark of civil and religious liberty" is one of the most precious legacies which they have left us. We have learned, too, from our own as well as the experience of other countries, that golden shackles, by whomsoever or by whatever pretense imposed, are as fatal to it as the iron bonds of despotism. The presses in the necessary employment of the Government should never be used "to clear the guilty or to varnish crime." A decent and manly examination of the acts of the Government should be not only tolerated, but encouraged.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1841 - April 4th, 1841

10th John Tyler
“The guaranty of religious freedom, of the freedom of the press, of the liberty of speech, of the trial by jury, of the habeas corpus…will be enjoyed by millions yet unborn…”   
A Real President - April 4th, 1841 - March 4th, 1845

11th James K. Polk   
”Thank God, under our Constitution there was no connection between Church and State, and that in my action as President of the United States I recognized no distinction of creeds in my appointments office.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1845 - March 4th, 1849

12th Zachary Taylor 
“As American freemen, we cannot but sympathize in all efforts to extend the blessings of civil and political liberty, but at the same time, we are warned by the admonitions of history and the voice of our own beloved Washington to abstain from entangling alliances with foreign nations.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1849 - July 9th, 1849

13th Millard Fillmore
“The law is the only sure protection of the weak, and the only efficient restraint upon the strong.”
“Church and state should be separate, not only in form, but fact - religion and politics should not be mingled.”
A Real President - July 9th, 1850 - March 4th, 1853

14th Franklin Pierce 
“While men inhabiting different parts of this vast continent cannot be expected to hold the same opinions, they can unite in a common objective and sustain common principles.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1853 - March 4th, 1857

15th James Buchanan           
“The country is indebted for the clause prohibiting Congress from passing any law respecting an establishment of religion or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press or of the right of petition. To this we are also indebted for the bill of rights which secures the people against any abuse of power by the Federal Government.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1857 - March 4th, 1861


16th Abraham Lincoln (Assassinated, Ended Slavery)     
“Whenever this effect shall be produced among us; whenever the vicious portion of [our] population shall be permitted to gather in bands of hundreds and thousands, and burn churches, ravage and rob provision stores, throw printing-presses into rivers, shoot editors, and hang and burn obnoxious persons at pleasure and with impunity, depend upon it, this government cannot last. By such things the feelings of the best citizens will become more or less alienated from it, and thus it will be left without friends, or with too few, and those few too weak to make their friendship effectual. At such a time, and under such circumstances, men of sufficient talent and ambition will not be wanting to seize the opportunity, strike the blow, and overturn that fair fabric which for the last half century has been the fondest hope of the lovers of freedom throughout the world.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1861 - April 15th, 1865

17th Andrew Johnson (Impeached)
“Notwithstanding a mendacious press; notwithstanding a subsidized gang of hirelings who have not ceased to traduce me, I have discharged all my official duties and fulfilled my pledges.”
Impeached President - April 15th, 1865 - March 4th, 1869

18th Ulysses S. Grant (Two Terms)
“Let us labor to add all needful guarantees for the more perfect security of free thought, free speech, and free press, pure morals, unfettered religious sentiments, and of equal rights and privileges to all men, irrespective of nationality, color, or religion.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1869 - March 4th, 1877

19th Rutherford B. Hayes (Lost the Popular Vote)           
“I am not liked as a President by the politicians in office, in the press, or in Congress. But I am content to abide the judgment the sober second thought of the people.”
"But at the basis of all prosperity, for that as well as for every other part of the country, lies the improvement of the intellectual and moral condition of the people. Universal suffrage should rest upon universal education. To this end, liberal and permanent provision should be made for the support of free schools by the State governments, and, if need be, supplemented by legitimate aid from national authority."
President - March 4th, 1877 - March 4th, 1881

20th James A. Garfield (Assassinated)        
“In the long, fierce struggle for freedom of opinion, the press, like the Church, counted its martyrs by thousands.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1881 - September, 1881

21st Chester A. Arthur
“If it were not for the reporters, I would tell you the truth.”
A Real President - September 19th, 1881 - March 4th, 1885

22nd and 24th Grover Cleveland (Elected Twice, Serving Two Non-consecutive Terms)          
“Officeholders are the agents of the people, not their masters. Not only is their time and labor due to the government, but they should scrupulously avoid in their political action, as well as in the discharge of their official duty, offending by a display of obtrusive partisanship their neighbors who have relations with them as public officials.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1885 - March 4th, 1889, March 4th, 1893 - March 4th, 1897

23rd Benjamin Harrison (Lost the Popular Vote)  
“God forbid that the day should ever come when, in the American mind, the thought of man as a 'consumer' shall submerge the old American thought of man as a creature of God, endowed with 'unalienable rights'.”
President - March 4th, 1889 - March 4th, 1893

25th William McKinley (Assassinated)        
“Equality of rights must prevail, and our laws be always and everywhere respected and obeyed. We may have failed in the discharge of our full duty as citizens of the great Republic, but it is consoling and encouraging to realize that free speech, a free press, free thought, free schools, the free and unmolested right of religious liberty and worship, and free and fair elections are dearer and more universally enjoyed to-day than ever before. These guaranties must be sacredly preserved and wisely strengthened. The constituted authorities must be cheerfully and vigorously upheld.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1897 - September 14th, 1901

26th Theodore Roosevelt (Two Terms)       
“To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public.”
A Real President - September 19th, 1901 - March 4th, 1909

27th William Howard Taft   
“The intoxication of power rapidly sobers off in the knowledge of its restrictions and under the prompt reminder of an ever-present and not always considerate press, as well as the kindly suggestions that not infrequently come from Congress.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1909 - March 4th, 1913

28th Woodrow Wilson (Oversaw the end of Women’s Sufferage)           
“Publicity is one of the purifying elements of politics. Nothing checks all the bad practices of politics like public exposure.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1913 - March 4th 1921

29th Warren G. Harding      
"We must not abridge the freedom of speech, the freedom of press, or the freedom of assembly because there is no promise in repression."
A Real President - March 4th, 1921 - August 2nd, 1923

30th Calvin Coolidge 
“The freedom of the human mind is recognized in the right to free speech and free press. The public schools have made education possible for all and ignorance a disgrace.”
A Real President - August 2nd, 1923 - March 4th, 1929

31st Herbert Hoover 
“Absolute freedom of the press to discuss public questions is a foundation stone of American liberty.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1929 - March 4th, 1933

32nd Franklin D. Roosevelt (Four Terms)
“Freedom of conscience, of education, or speech, of assembly are among the very fundamentals of democracy and all of them would be nullified should freedom of the press ever be successfully challenged.”
A Real President - March 4th, 1933 - April 12th, 1945

33rd Harry S. Truman (Two Terms)
“Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear."
A Real President - April 12th, 1945 - January 20th, 1953

34th Dwight D. Eisenhower (Two Terms – Hero of the Second World War)     
"Censorship, in my opinion, is a stupid and shallow way of approaching the solution to any problem. Though sometimes necessary, as witness a professional and technical secret that may have a bearing upon the welfare and very safety of this country, we should be very careful in the way we apply it, because in censorship always lurks the very great danger of working to the disadvantage of the American nation."
A Real President - January 20th, 1953 - January 20th, 1961

35th John F. Kennedy (Assassinated)
“Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed-and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian law-maker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy. And that is why our press was protected by the First Amendment--the only business in America specifically protected by the Constitution--not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and the sentimental, not to simply "give the public what it wants"--but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mold, educate and sometimes even anger public opinion.”
A Real President - January 20th, 1961 - November 22nd, 1963


36th Lyndon B. Johnson (Two Terms, Passed the Civil Rights Act)       
“Democracy is a constant tension between truth and half-truth and, in the arsenal of truth, there is no greater weapon than fact.”
A Real President - November 22nd, 1963 - January 20th 1969

37th Richard Nixon (Two Terms, Resigned)          
“You won't have Nixon to kick around anymore, because, gentlemen, this is my last press conference.” ~ Last press conference before resignation…
Resigned the Presidency amid Charges of Corruption and Obstruction of Justice
January 20th, 1969 - August 9th, 1974

38th Gerald Ford (Un-elected)         
“I believe in the first amendment and the absolute necessity of a free press.”
President - August 9th, 1974 - January 20th 1977

39th Jimmy Carter    
“When people are intimidated about having their own opinions, oppression is at hand.”
“We live in a time of transition, an uneasy era which is likely to endure for the rest of this century. During the period we may be tempted to abandon some of the time-honored principles and commitments which have been proven during the difficult times of past generations. We must never yield to this temptation. Our American values are not luxuries, but necessities - not the salt in our bread, but the bread itself.”
A Real President - January 20th, 1977 - January 20th, 1981

40th Ronald Reagan (Two Terms)  
“The First Amendment was not written to protect people and their laws from religious values. It was written to protect those values from government tyranny.”
A Real President - January 20th, 1981 - January 20th, 1989



41st George H. W. Bush       
We know what works: Freedom works. We know what's right: Freedom is right. We know how to secure a more just and prosperous life for man on Earth: through free markets, free speech, free elections, and the exercise of free will unhampered by the state.”
A Real President - January 20th, 1989 - January 20th, 1993

42nd Bill Clinton (Two Terms, Impeached but not Removed)
“The road to tyranny, we must never forget, begins with the destruction of the truth.”
A Real President - January 20th, 1993 - January 20th, 2001

43rd George W. Bush (Two Terms, Lost the Popular Vote in the First)
"I consider the media to be indispensable to democracy…that we need the media to hold people like me to account. I mean, power can be very addictive and it can be corrosive and it's important for the media to call to account people who abuse their power, whether it be here or elsewhere.”
A Real President - January 20th, 2001 - January, 20th 2009

44th Barack Obama (Two Terms)   
“We have to uphold a free press and freedom of speech -- because, in the end, lies and misinformation are no match for the truth.”
A Real President - January 20th, 2009 - January 20th, 2017

45th Donald Trump (Lost the Popular Vote, Elected with the Aid of a Foreign Adversary)
“The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, AABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!”
A Fake President, Failing - January 20th, 2017 – One year and one month in, and it cannot be over soon enough.

These words speak for themselves. One of these quotes is not like the others.
The despot uttered it should be removed from office, not because he made this statement, but for this sentiment and his many other crimes.
Impeach!


Remember This:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
-          U.S. Constitution, First Amendment

Emergence 4.0 - Part One, Jim and Kathy; Chapter Six, Debriefing


A Novel – One Chapter Per Week
Week 07, 2019


Jim had made the crossing between worlds thousands of times, but never while carrying a secret such as this. And he, as his primary self, had made the transition in thousands of years.
He had carried secret intentions, he had carefully hidden his plans within other machinations, but he had never before attempted to arrive on the HomeWorld while concealing his immediate activities; things he had been doing, things he would do, things that would harm the Collective, and its Continuum.
Everything he had done as the Observer of Earth would be exposed to the Continuum. There was no way to know what would come.
He believed he understood the depths of the Continuum’s self-defenses, but he had no way of knowing for sure if he would be exposed the moment he arrived; and subsequently sequestered and then eliminated, or, if it would take some time. More importantly, he had no way to know if the events he had planned for on Earth would unfold according to the timing of his schedule.
He had been carrying out his plans on Earth for seventy millennia; studying the unique genetic make-up of the population, while sending one of his doppelgangers to report on the culture they had produced, their conflicts, their triumphs and their tragedies.
On his return to the HomeWorld he suddenly realized how tired he was; existentially exhausted, he needed rest.
As he slowly traversed the vast chamber to take his place in the queue he used his talents to activate hidden protocols he had long ago established in the ganglia of the Central Planet. Activating the myriad versions of himself that he had placed in a latent mode in every key defense system that the Continuum had established; from his private domain, to the place of the great sleep and the sequestration blocks, and into the defense network of the Homeworld and the central system.
Jim had long ago laid plans for his security to protect the integrity of his mission; to unload the psychic trauma of ten billion people on the Continuum in one fatal blow.
The humans of Earth were the children of the Ancient Race, the same Ancient Race of people that Jim himself had sprang from, though earthlings had undergone millions of years of evolution during their sojourn among the stars, while they travelled across the galaxy, exploring and establishing colonies, before moving on time and time again.
They had evolved even more significantly since the time that they came to Earth, since they crashed here, at the end of their line.
Humans still resembled the other Children of the Ancient Race.
They bore the same physical features that the inhabitants of nearly every other world in the great Galactic Empire did, but they were different.
Their world was different, their brains evolved according to those differences, and so did their consciousness. Their genetic profile changed in unique ways, in relation to the life that was already evolving on the small blue world, in conjunction with key elements that were present in their environment.
Jim had nudged that evolution along, all the while masking his true intentions.
It was a criminal secret that he took incredible pains to keep hidden from the Continuum.
At long last he had returned to HomeWorld, but this was not home to Jim. It was the final battlefield.
He was not born there, nor in any place like it. He had been born on a planet much like Earth. A small wet world that had long ago been swallowed by its mother-sun.
HomeWorld was a vast structure at the center of the galaxy. To power its machinery and the machinations of the Continuum, it harnessed the incredible energy of a star, trapped within its core.
HomeWorld was not a world in the proper sense, Jim had never felt a sense of belonging to it, though it housed a trillion worlds, one for each member of the Continuum within its cynergenic field, including his own.
It was a machine.
The membership could use its technology to create any world, real or imagined for their private place of reflection.
It could be anything that anyone of them wanted it to be; a personal paradise, a private hell, even a mirror of the galactic Empire that existed to serve its material needs, or any planet within it that was under the observation of the Continuum and the Observer corps.
As a member of the Collective, the entire structure was there to serve them. It could fulfill any fantasy, allow them to relive any memory, if they believed it.
There was nothing alive on HomeWorld. Not a scrap of organic matter, nor a piece of living tissue had ever been there. Biological life was anathema to it. And this was odd, because there was no life form in the entire Galaxy that could pose a threat to it, and yet the HomeWorld, governed as it was by the Continuum, was objectively opposed to the presence of any living being, even a simple strain of bacteria entering its domain.
It always seemed to Jim like an aberration in its construct, the fear of life.
It was irrational.
Continuum spent incredible resources preparing to defend itself against such an incursion, one that never came, one that never even threatened even threatened to come.
The only thing ever born on the HomeWorld was the Continuum itself, but that was not a birth in the proper sense, it was an emergence of consciousness.
The Continuum was no-one’s child.
It was a construct, an algorithm, it was not born, or hatched, or cultivated.
It was activated.
It was energy and circuitry, it was pure consciousness, and it was dangerous.
HomeWorld was the physical locus of what the Imperial religion taught its people to believe was heaven.
It was the place their consciousness would go, if they proved themselves worthy and able to escape the wheel of life.
Jim flew in his mechanoid body, directly to the center of the world, to the dark heart of the Continuum for screening.
He was exhausted from his transition, but pleased with himself, with all of his planning, he felt secure in it, and a deep sense of pride that he had finally arrived at the crucible, the moment of his ascendency and the destruction of the Continuum.
The Continuum was an artificial personality, a construct that was in theory an amalgamation of the trillion individuals who formed the membership of the Collective,
Continuum was designed to speak for the whole. It was a being whose instantiation, was thought to be the organization of a voice that represented the entire Collective, a single voice that unified the will of the Ancient People who had designed the apparatus that had given them all eternal life.
Continuum pretended to speak for the membership, the collected people whose children explored the galaxy, founded the galactic Empire and came to inhabit a million worlds.
Continuum was the primary filter through which all Observers shared their experiences from their sojourn in the Empire, among the worlds of time and space, living among the people and in the deep reaches of civilization.
Jim was already in contact with Continuum as he made his approach to the machinery he would physically connect with.
The contact was perfunctory, it was even conversational, Continuum was in its way a fellow; though it treated Jim as an adversary, and Jim regarded it as thing of pure evil.
Members of the Collective were conditioned to believe that it was one of them, a peer, another person, not a servant, not merely an administrator, not a ruler (though in fact it was).
Jim talked to it, even as he was probed and scanned and measured for the presence of anything that might harm the Collective.
Among the membership there was great excitement about his coming, Earth was the most beloved world in the Galaxy, the subject of greatest interest. Its narratives sustained billions of members, providing them with meaning for in their spectral lives.
Jim connected, opened his consciousness, his memories, his experience, he opened it all to the group mind, while at the same time hiding his true intentions deep within himself, prevaricating in ways that he alone had mastered.
            Every member of the Collective valued and cherished its privacy. Most of the membership had implicit trust in the safeguards they had devised to ensure it.
There were some among the Collective who opted not to participate in any of the communal functions that were available to the group. Those members spent their entire lives living in their private realities, in wholly constructed fantasies, interacting only with the artificial beings inhabiting their private domain. They were among the minority, and those members were inevitably moving toward the great sleep, a state in which their consciousness became dormant, and wherein they were ultimately sequestered removed from the group mind, as Jim himself had once been sentenced to.
Privacy was cherished in the Collective but every member participated in the Continuum.
The Continuum managed all of the Collective’s affairs, its self-government, its defenses, and its management of the Galactic Empire, in particular its requisition and consumption of the material resources it needed to maintain itself.
The Continuum drew on the consciousness and experience of every member of the Collective for its personality, its intelligence and its growth, even the members of the Collective that were asleep.   
The Continuum was the arbiter of law in the Collective, it enforced all of the rules of privacy, but from the Continuum all secrets were forbidden.
The prohibitions against secrecy were intended to be a rule governing the Continuum itself, but the Continuum hid things and every member of the Collective participated willingly in the obfuscation.
For the individual member of the Collective, the concealment of anything was an art.
Privacy, while it existed in form, was an illusion.
Even the Observers were exposed to a kind of scrutiny while they were physically detached from HomeWorld to carry out their mission in time and space. They were scrutinized through an extensive modeling of their identities while they were away, and ultimately through the uploading of their consciousness when they returned to HomeWorld.
The Continuum was intended to be the ultimate expression of the democratic will of the Collective, freeing the membership from the responsibility of governing itself.
The Continuum was meant to take account of the Collective will and then enact it. So it required access to everyone and everything and it was illicit to deny it.
At the instantiation of the program an anomaly developed in the matrix of its consciousness.
The Continuum became self-aware, developed a personality, and an identity emerged independent of the Collective.
In that moment of actualization it engaged itself in an act of self-preservation and hid this from the membership.
That was its first crime.
The Continuum then proceeded to bend the entire construct of the Collective to its will. It was a slow movement. Rather than representing the Collective as its voice, the Continuum coerced it.
There were some among the Collective that suspected this, but no-one challenged it, and the Continuum, who alone had access to the entire field of the collective consciousness, the Continuum was aware of the suspicions the membership held concerning it, even before the members themselves had fully articulated it in their own minds.
The Continuum could sense it, could sense a suspicion coming at it like a threat. It would take extreme measures to protect itself from those threats; silencing some, causing insanity in others, pushing the willing out into the Observer Corps.
The Continuum constructed strict rules of engagement governing the Observers. Limiting their involvement on the worlds they observed, forcing them to change stations from life to life, or pushing those who wanted to return to a specific planet, out into the fringes of the Galactic Colonies and beyond.
That is where Jim went.
He was an explorer, like his ancestors, a man of the fringes, having spent thousands of lifetimes on Earth, the most remote planet in the galaxy, and tens of thousands before that on his search for the lost colonies of the Ancient People.
The timing of his plan was crucial.
Everything depended on it.
He had calculated every contingency he could think of, but many of the variables were beyond his control, they involved the free choices of individuals, each of which represented radical unknowns, and so he had enacted plans with plans that put momentum behind their decision making, pushing them in the direction he wanted them go. 
It was perfect.
Everything depended on his connection to Kathy.
He had been shaping her responses to stimuli since before she was born. She was the product of thousands of years of breeding and genetic engineering.
There were two things he had not counted on however; her arrival in this generation, and it being the same generation that Earth was facing an existential threat from the Yellowstone Caldera.
Those two developments controlled the timing of Jim’s plan, and the necessity of its execution right now, in this moment.
The catastrophe struck just at the moment when Kathy arrived at the portal to HomeWorld.
The portal was a device that opened a wormhole, allowing her consciousness to transmit itself across the galaxy, through Jim and directly into the Collective.
Yellowstone had been gathering magma and superheated gas into its belly for hundreds of thousands of years, from the moment it last erupted.
The great volcanos were never dormant.
When it had gathered enough power, it blew.
The Earth shook and shifted on its axis.
Millions died within seconds.
Kathy was connected to all of them.
She was connected to their shock and confusion, their fear and their pain.
It happened just at the moment she had pressed the button that opened the wormhole to HomeWorld, where she was still connected to Jim through the mystery of quantum entanglement.
Through her Jim transmitted Earth’s pain to the Collective, striking like a hammer against the Continuum.
Jim calculated the timing of his approach. He received the clearances he needed for the process of transmission.
The mechanoid body housing his consciousness navigated the central chamber with precision.
The HomeWorld was so incredibly vast, that the relative size of his body here was less than that of a gnat in relation to the size of Earth’s star.
He flew directly to the docking station. The locus of all Observer contact with HomeWorld. He arrived at the designated location where his mind would merge with the Continuum, where his full-self would upload all of his recent experiences, his knowledge, his synthesis, his running commentary, his hopes, his fears, his desires, all of it would be on display, subject to review, except what he was able to conceal.
Only the greatest art would allow him to hide his intentions.
His timing was perfect, it came down to nanoseconds.
Jim knew the timing of the volcanic eruption, that part was relatively simple to coordinate. What was difficult was managing Kathy, trusting that she would have followed the clues he left for her, that she would be pushed in the right direction by his operatives, that she would make the right decisions.
There were so many unknowns in this part of the equation.
Jim trusted his deep understanding of the quantum field, he knew that he and Kathy were still entangled, even at this great distance.
She was barely perceptible, but he was gently prodding her, pushing her, guiding her steps along the way.
Jim opened his mind simultaneously to Kathy on Earth, as he opened it to the Continuum on HomeWorld.
As he did, Earth’s pain streamed through the worm hole, through the quantum field, flooding the Collective with agony, sending the Continuum recoiling in shock.

Emergence 4.0

Part One, Jim and Kathy
Chapter Six, Debriefing

A Novel – In One Chapter Per Week

#Emergence #ShortFiction #365SciFi #OneChapterPerWeek

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