Friday, February 10, 2017

Gods of Terra | Dirge - Questions & Answers (Part 3)




Then they found the relics. They found the hypershards. 

They were something an archaeological expedition discovered in billion year-old geological strata with no idea of what it was they’d uncovered. The first attempts to examine them resulted in a flash that instantly disintegrated one of the assistant technicians, one Khamudraaht Vaasa, at the original dig site. No remains. Not even dust. Gone, like he’d been flown to another galaxy.
   They found him later, buried—fossilized—in a fifty-five million year old layer of rock, twelve meters below the surface. I’m no scientist, but I’m guessing they identified him from analysis of the remains and simple logic—there were no humans in that region of the local spiral arm fifty-five million years ago, no humans anywhere, in fact, and the skeletal proportions matched his almost exactly.

   Time travel. The relic sent him back in time. Whatever it was, it was millions of years beyond what even the Kai’Siri had achieved. It became a state secret, and fast-forward through the work on what it was and what it could do, they discovered me. I must have been in my preteens when they took me. Given my ethnic features and skin tones, I’m probably from Terra, with ancestry originating on the Indian subcontinent or thereabouts. Well, I look mostly Terran, except for the eyes, of course. 

   “...You could even say they glow?” I’m not sure where that came from, some Terran holiday jingle or something. But yes, they do visibly glow. So I tend to sport eyewear to conceal that when among the humans, just to keep from spooking them.

   Maybe I’m not fully human. Not in the ways that count. There was, is, something about my brain that made me important to them—excuse me—I mean “useful.”

   They found that the relic could function as an implant in a living brain, and after trying it with several horrifically failed test subjects, they did it with me and a couple of others. Perfect match. I had just the right brain architecture to make it work. They lost no time training me to be their perfect warrior, the Mirus, the “dreaming soldier.”

   I glance at the display of the Kurtz-Dunar fold-wave channels, used by the more advanced species—don’t ask me how it works, but the old SETI program on Terra would never have picked up the signals. They’re too subtle and use a different broadcast medium than prehistoric radio—but they eat up power like it’s going out of style.

   On a lark, I look at the feeds for Terra. Hmmm, checking the orbital sensor beacons I’ve placed there, just in case… Oh? What’s THAT?

   My heart nearly stops as I note the literally millions of craft, no, now the billions of them, popping into real-space existence from the Maelstrom, settling into formation around this tiny world, weapon signatures yet inactive but obvious to my readings. 

   Eldritch Gods of Lovecraft. I’m not ready for this. A stress headache threatens to make itself blindingly obvious as I peer at the sensory display projected by the ‘shard over my field of vision, recognizing the vessels and just who, no, what occupies them. It’s as in my dream. Suthidruu. Just like in my dream.

   They’ve sent a Squorium fleet to Terra. This world is doomed, so it seems. But I’m tired of letting planets die. So far, they’ve yet to open communications. This is good. Suthidruu only “talk” with their victims when they are ready to perform “last rites” for the condemned. That buys me time I can use. A smile, halfway to a smirk, crosses my face and the cogs turn in my mind as a plan presents itself to me, welling into my thought stream. Yes, this just might work…


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