Saturday, January 12, 2013

D.S. Brown - AFTER THE LAST DAY



Minister Shirra!  Minister Shirra!  Oh my!  You won’t believe it!

Kantootha, with elegant violet tentacles waving, burst into the luminous quarters of the Minister, a place of modern wonder, factually existing in two realities at once, but occupying one space.  Interspersed throughout the collection of rooms were pieces of ancient, archaic Terran furniture.  Shirra was a collector of antiques and Terran was his favorite.

“Calm down, Kantootha,” said the Trantken Minister.  “I’m sure whatever it is cannot be that urgent.”

Shirra, a luminous being himself standing nearly twelve feet tall with blooms of tentacles where humans would have arms, rose from his sixty million year old oak wooden desk, a gift from his friend, the Human Minister.  He removed one of his left tentacles from the liquid sphere hovering two inches above the desk’s surface and turned to face his aide.

“Now Kantootha, what is it?”

“Many pardons Minister Shirra, I did not know you were working so late.”

Shirra glanced back at the sphere, an informational tesseract used by the members of their order for research.  It was essentially a link to a vast library.

“No pardons are necessary.  I was looking for precedent in the upcoming negotiations with the newly discovered race of sentient beings.  Randolph and I are to present our case for contact this very day.”

Kantootha passed a tentacle over his furrowed brow.

“That is the problem Minister.”

With his perfectly round eyes still exhibiting the calm of an elder, Shirra looked at his aide questioningly.

“Your meaning Kantootha?”  He asked.  “Has something happened to my good friend Randolph?”

“No Shirra, not just Minister Randolph, but every Human.”

“Clarify.”

“Minister, as far as we can tell every mainline Human on every world throughout the Conjoining has vanished.”

A look of incredulity spread across the face of the Trantken Minister.

“What … did you say?”

“Yes Minister, every last one.  They, they’re all gone.”

Ripples, small undulations of wonder and fear worked through what would have passed for the Trantken’s stomach eons ago, waves of urgency, waves of fear, and concern.
   
“Are you certain?”

“Absolutely, Minister.  It’s being broadcast Conjoining wide.”
   
An unprecedented event in the history of the Inter-Galactic Civilization of the Conjoining had occurred.  One of the elder races had completely vanished from existence.  Younger races had passed before, usually through self-destruction.  This was expected, something that occurred from time to time prior to, or just after a younger race was contacted by a stellar race.  But never in the annals of trans-galactic history, even before the creation of the Conjoining had a stellar race, especially an elder race, simply winked out of existence.

“Call us a portal Kantootha.”

“It is done Minister Shirra.  One awaits us just outside your quarters.”

The magisterial minister moved swiftly through his quarters, gathering luminous floating data structures, absorbing them into his being as his readied himself for travel.
   
“Current status of the crisis?”

“The Galacticum is preparing to convene.  You were very deep in your research.  I’ve been trying to reach you for some time.”

“Yes, I was indeed deeply absorbed in the realms of the tesseract, searching the various possibilities of our collective future with these sentients based on precedent.”

“I thought as much, that’s why I rushed over.”

The Minister touched a glowing pentagonal hovering just above his head.  It seemed to bristle with dancing numbers and symbols.  “Interesting that this … happening should occur as I’m so deeply involved in research to plot our futures.”

“We still cannot predict with certainty,” offered his aide.

“No Kantootha, we cannot.  We are not in control of everything just yet.”

“Indeed Minister.”
   
“Have all our brethren departed?”  Asked Shirra.

“They are either already there or en-route.  We will not make a late appearance if we leave now.”

“Then let us be off.”

The two Trantken stepped though the glowing entryway that served as the door to Shirra’s quarters.  Outside was a vast hallway, illuminated from either side by bright dancing colors.  It was almost fifty yards wide and open to the sky.  The sky itself was a dance of colors, full of glowing clouds, dotted with massive curved lattice structures that looked as thought they were made of gossamer.  Behind the clouds was the great expanse of stars that Humans had long ago named the Milky Way.
   
The two Trantken looked into the southern sky and saw a distinct set of pointed lights heading directly toward them.  The lights were like stars, elongated and stretching as they fell from the sky.  Their appearance, a function of space and time, made them seem as though they stretched across the universe, approaching the Trantken on one end, connecting to a cluster of light and stars on the other end, a faraway galactic core.   The stars entwined as they fell, a manifestation of quantum/mental entanglement queued only to the Minister and his aide, visible only to their eyes.  The light like stars made contact, and the two Trantken appeared to wink out of existence.

2 comments:

  1. Dazzling imagery! Very engaging tale.

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    1. Thank, you. Please continue to enjoy the work.

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