Chapter 1


For as long as anyone could care to remember, the orthodox citizens of Xethenia have had to wrestle with the scourge of the PiruNostram gang culture disrupting their everyday lives.

More disturbingly, the lives of many other alien races, whether they are within the galactic neighbourhood or even further afield, are routinely subjected to more serious consequences, should they be unfortunate enough to fall on the wrong side of these vicious, sadistic thugs.

The fact that the Xethanti are born into a life of immortality might seem extremely enviable, but with it comes the frustrating acceptance that no capital or corporal punishment processes, can ever be imposed for malicious crimes against the lives of normal mortals.

Moreover, there were the ever increasing pressures being heaped onto the government of Xethenia caused by the burgeoning population of 30 billion people, which warranted an even greater need to address the problems caused by this undesirable criminal underclass.

For centuries, scores of Xethantian scientists have repeatedly tried and failed to work out a way of separating or removing the uniform from the body. And on the back of this failure, lay the consequences of a society which could not easily maintain complete control of law and order.

Removing this transparent layer of immortality would enable the authorities to reduce the life expectancy of convicted criminals like the PiruNostram, or if necessary to be able to terminate their lives completely.

It is Median on the 200th cycle in the 30,135th Orbinar and a meeting of the Apostophet with Janithillon and his team of global scientists is about to begin.

Janithillon took a deep breath, more in a bid to calm his excitement than his nerves, as he led his team through the entrance portal and into the debating chamber, where all the members of the Apostophet had gathered to appraise the results of his latest research.

A male called Sobek, the most senior Principal, walked towards him, shook his hand with a friendly welcome and then gestured that he take a seat in front of the raised oval dais, where the other Apostophet Senators were seated.

His team diligently took their places behind him and stood quietly.

Sobek formally introduced Janithillon to his fellow Senators, more out of respect, for they all knew who he was and then he opened up the proceedings with a direct question.

“So Janithillon what is this machine you have conceived? Tell us more if you would?”

“Principal” Janithillon began, as he stretched out his arm to draw their attention to the other scientists in the room, “We have engineered a solution to the problem that is affecting our world and that which besets other civilisations around the known galaxies”.

But before he could continue, a female Senator called Lassalla interrupted him excitedly with a question, saying “Have you finally discovered a way of decoding the uniform Janithillon?”

“Yes Senator I think we have”, replied Janithillon very proudly.

There was a pause as the members of the Apostophet looked at each other and passed a few comments amongst themselves before the Principal turned back to look at him and said “You say you think you have. Does that mean you’re unsure?”

“We have been testing the mechanics of the process on molecular, laboratory grown organisms. We are satisfied they possess the uniform in their DNA structure and we have managed to separate it from the rest of the body.” Janithillon paused as he let this amazing news permeate the group. “So we’re very confident we can do this on Xethantian criminals. My only concern is what may happen to some of the component elements once they have been segregated”.

Sobek leaned forward and frowned saying “Please can you explain further Janithillon? How does the machine achieve segregation?”

Janithillon paused and was about to lecture to the Apostophet, but instead, he stood up and walked across to a console.  After waving his hand over a receptor, he threw the image he’d gathered, into the air, where it quickly formed a perfectly clear 3D hologram, streaming a film of the experiments that he and his team had been conducting.

They all watched and listened intently as Janithillon described the sequence of events.

“As you know, we have tried and failed to separate the uniform from the body having conducted an endless number of processes, be they physical, chemical or through the use of complex drugs. The problem is that the uniform is an ecosystem. It is alive and self-aware, so any attempt to undertake what it feels is an attack on the body of any kind, results in the uniform automatically protecting it.

So what we have developed here is a machine with a spiralling circular chamber, which houses a vast array of magnetic pulse proton beams, which will carry the host at high velocity on a maglev plinth. On its journey to reach 1 Marsek, (equivalent to the speed of light) a barrage of nucleoid plasma radiation, gene decoding attributors, neutron phasing accelerators and binary formulising attenuators, gradually peel the uniform away.

At 1 Marsek the machine activates the opening of a FoldSpace aperture just beyond the edge of the planetary atmosphere. Whilst everything is still in the stasis of a raw light spectrum, it shoots minute fragments of the uniform into a randomised exit gate, which means that these segments will be reforming in different inter-stellar time dimensions throughout the known universe. As a consequence we are satisfied that it will be impossible for the uniform to reassemble”.

Senator Mayan, a widely respected female member of the Apostophet took advantage of the pause in Janithillon’s delivery and asked “But what about the original host? Without the uniform are we to assume that they will be destroyed?”

Janithillon looked directly at the Senator and said “Yes Senator, without the uniform the body; or in this case the lab-grown organism, has no protection and is destroyed instantly at the point of separation”.

Mayan went on “This raises a whole new dilemma for everyone here Janithillon because if we condone this plan then it becomes state sponsored murder, no matter how justified. We have never had to deal with or contemplate addressing anything like this in the known lifetime of Xethanity. I recognise and completely appreciate the need to a degree, but I wonder whether this is the answer to all the problems we have faced as a civilisation across the millennia?”

Janithillon focused on Senator Mayan in the first instance, but then widened his gaze to the other members of the Apostophet as he spoke.

“Senator, the respect that other planetary nations have of the Xethantian race is commonly held as being hatred at best. If it were not that we are seen by many as the commercial centre of trade, due to our longevity and expertise; then we would have imploded as a society. The PiruNostram are the scourge of our lives and that of any mortal who is unfortunate enough to come into contact with them. They would have taken this planet down on the back of that collapse for the sheer sadistic fun of it”.

Mayan responded “Look Janithillon, I know you’ve suffered indirectly at the hands of this evil and ruthless mob and I can empathise with your angst in wanting to approach the problem by bringing an end to their tyranny. However, Senator Magdala and I have campaigned vigorously for resources to be put in place to re-integrate less hardened elements of these PiruNostram gangs along with their sympathisers through an intense programme of social re-education.  We believe this will appeal to the outlook and opinions that our galactic neighbours have of our world and I think we should persevere with this approach”.

There was a brief silence before Janithillon recomposed himself and continued in partial ignorance of Mayan’s statement.

“I have called this machine, TAURUS, which is simply an abbreviation of the experimental process, which is a Terminal Acceleration Unit for the Removal of Unstable Synexillum. It is the most dangerous and destructive weapon I have ever been commissioned to develop and I have consulted heavily with my fellow scientists on Quella in order to create it. All that’s left now is to test it on a criminal host, but …”

Once again, Senator Lassalla cut across him and said “Are you asking for Apostophet approval to do this, as speaking for myself and my own quadrant, you can have it right now”, she said excitedly whilst looking around for support from her fellow colleagues.

There were more internal murmurings and discussion which followed before Sobek called order and spoke to Janithillon again, “You have our collective approval to consult with General Herod of the Planetary Protectorate Force and begin your trials on their most convicted and dangerous prisoners Janithillon. Please advise us when you are ready to start and the Apostophet will reconvene with you at the site of the machine”.

Janithillon’s eyes appeared to glow even more richly as he smiled thinly and bowed before acknowledging the decision from Principal Sobek.

As noted by Mayan, he had lost many of his best Mequellium friends in the past to mindless criminal violence and even his own Father had at one point been abducted and held for ransom on fear of death, so his feelings towards finally dealing with what he considered, were  insane animals, would be both revengeful and rewarding.

As the room fell quiet, the hitherto silent Senator Magdala directed a question to Janithillon “You mentioned that there is a part of this process that you have some doubt about. Please explain what this is?”

Janithillon nodded “Yes of course.  As you know one of the strongest forces within the makeup of Xethantian bio-chemistry is the Entience. It is the collective for our soul, our gene code, our intelligence and our memory. We know this is an energy force which carefully harvests key nutrients from Synexillum from the moment we are born. Whereas the body may die after several thousand orbinars, the Entience permeates our collective society and we absorb the knowledge and experiences from the whole of Xethanity. My only concern is that the Entience will be dispersed around the universe at the point of phasing the uniform into FoldSpace and where it may travel to and to whom it may come into contact with, we have no idea or control over”.

“But surely”, responded Senator Magdala, “the attributes of the Entience DNA would only be of benefit to another Xethantian?”

“All I can tell you Senator, is that once we have decoded the uniform, the Entience DNA will undeniably become vulnerable and exposed to absorption by any intelligent carbon based life form that could harness its attributes, without necessarily fully realising what they have actually acquired”.

An eerie silence fell once again throughout the room, until Sobek spoke “Do we know what the furthest dimension is into which we can create a FoldSpace partition Janithillon?”

“Principal Sobek, my Father and his ancestral predecessors on Quella developed this inter-galactic travel system to foster the expansion of life and communication for many nations of this galaxy and others in our sector of the universe. We only know the limits of moving physical objects like star ship cruisers. I doubt whether anyone would have thought that one day Xethantians would be trying to hurl molecular atoms across inter-stellar distances.

All I can say is that it would be a greater reach than we could realistically measure or control; meaning that the particle physics which make up the Entience will not be reincarnated with non-Xethantian life forms anywhere near this sector of the universe. My best guess would envisage emergence into the regions we know as the Pallendra, Magella and Gorgin Clusters”.

Sobek sat back looking somewhat relieved as he announced “That is good news Janithillon. Let us hope your best guess is correct, because we cannot have PiruNostram Entience permeating itself within galaxies that are in our universal neighbourhood”.

Mayan lent forward from her chair and said “You also mentioned that there could be a displacement in the boundaries of time when the DNA remnants are despatched through FoldSpace. Are we to assume that this might rewrite the course of history for some of the planets whose civilisations come into contact with it?”

“Yes that’s right Senator. Regrettably, because we are despatching a particle element rather than a solid entity into a constantly shifting gravitational field, then there is every likelihood that a region in the universal spread that is young in evolutionary terms, could have its life cycle track interfered with uncontrollably and quite randomly I’m afraid”.

Magdala glanced across at Sobek and then focused her attention on Janithillon as she said “My Daughter chose to stay on the planet known as Earth, after an exploration visit there nearly two thousand orbinars ago.

As you know Earth is in the Harentian system within a galaxy they call the Milky Way, which is a member of the Gorgin Cluster. We should try and alert her to the possibility of Entience DNA coming into contact with humanity. Frankly I think it is reprehensible for a civilised race such as ours, to consider contaminating another less advanced species than ourselves with a level of intelligence they may not be able to fully comprehend or know how to deal with. Worse still it may only serve to impact badly on the society in which they form a part of or even control”.

Sobek nodded sympathetically in her direction and raised a calming hand, before inviting the other members of the Apostophet to a vote.

Despite Magdala and Mayan’s concerns, then it was evident from the majority of their peers that their hunger to be rid of the PiruNostram was too great a force to wrestle with their consciences about.  Therefore, not surprisingly, the decision was unanimous to forge ahead with the next phase of using TAURUS.

Upon witnessing the result of the vote and for the most part having been dismissed by Sobek, Janithillon had turned to walk out of the Apostophet chamber, when Sobek spoke in a very grave, monotone voice saying “You didn’t say that you had been liaising with the Mequellium about this project Janithillon and frankly I am personally surprised and disappointed to have found out about this. I hope this does not lead to any further problems and conflict, as it should be none of their concern what we do here on Xethenia. If this machine can do all you claim, then I don’t need to remind you how much of a disaster it would be for our people if it should fall into the wrong hands”.

With his back to Sobek he half turned and muttered an apology and walked towards the hall doorway as it began to desolidify into an open position, with his team once again following diligently behind him.

Sobek turned and acknowledged his fellow Senators ahead of saying “He is a brilliant young scientist, that there is no doubt, but I fear he is somewhat head strong and wayward. I will personally pay much closer attention to the progress of this project and ensure that he proceeds along a course that will ensure its complete success without compromise. Now unless there are any other pressing items to discuss might I suggest we retire for some food and refreshment before we reconvene for the session before Set?”

© 2018 Visionaries by Chris Donlan - All Rights Reserved

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