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Artemis 9: Part 10

The long talk home

By Arthur ArmstrongPublished about a year ago Updated about a year ago 14 min read
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Artemis 9: Part 10
Photo by Johnny Kaufman on Unsplash

“How is this possible?” I asked.

“My Sun, the war between the light and the darkness has been going since the beginning of time,” said the Intergalactic President, “it started in Earth humans when they chose to allow their willpower to be overcome by their emotions.”

“Ah so when people let their emotions control their actions instead of dealing with it in a healthy way, that is how the adversary gets them to do what it wants them to do?” I asked.

“Precisely,” the man smiled at me proudly.

“Look who paid attention in group (therapy),” Alison said sarcastically, then she smiled.

“Well, the hospital can get boring enough to pay attention sometimes,” I said with a smirk. I looked back at our father, “How exactly do we stop this ‘infestation,’ I guess we’ll call it.”

“Well humanity must be made aware immediately and begin to take proper steps,” the man said with a sigh, “Although at the moment they seem a bit too full of themselves to want The Federation’s help any longer. They’d much rather believe their own methods are appropriate, despite the clear evidence that it is not really working out for them so far.”

“Wait, I thought we were supposed to hunt down the-“ I began to say until Space Daddy held up his flawless hand and interrupted, “That was the original plan, yes.”

“But after I arrived and I reviewed both of your experiences, as well as witnessing Earth’s current state of affairs, I saw that the contract between the Federation and Earth’s leaders has been violated. Earth humans did not keep to the contract,” he said. I could see the pain in his eyes again.

“So what does that mean?” Alison asked.

“It means that the Federation will make a new and final offer to help humanity and if they refuse, or if they accept under false pretenses, I am taking you both, as well as the millions of other Star Seeds, back home. And the Earth humans can kill each other to their heart’s content while we all go home to play Corqit. The Federation will not force our help upon the people of Earth. So, if Earth humans wish to continue to lose this fight against their enemy just to say that they failed all on their own, we will not stand in their way.”

Alison, Astaria, and I all stared at the Comic King in shock.

“What deal?” “What fight?” “What’s Corqit?” I, Alison, and Astaria asked respectively.

The gentleman smirked at our rapid-fire queries. He gave a great sigh and began, “Many decades ago the Intergalactic Federation became aware of a foreign entity on Earth. We only became aware of it when we began receiving Earth’s radio transmissions. We could hear everything. From the beautiful musical works to every news broadcast, we listened.”

“Holy shit,” Alison said.

“That’s what we said when we heard the transmission of a political campaign on Earth that sounded strangely familiar to us,” the man said, “In different words of course.”

“So you didn’t know Earth was populated?” I asked.

“Of course we did. We put you all there,” the man said, smirking.

Alison and I looked at each other in questioning repose.

“I understand this may be difficult to grasp,” he said calmly, “But Earth’s humanity exists because the Intergalactic Federation needed to find a refuge for the people of a dying Star System. Ours.”

I swallowed hard, “Wait so-“

“The humans of Earth are all descended from the Orion Star System, with the exception of the other Star Seeds that were offered to assist Earth,” the man said, reading my mind before I even realized my question.

“So Earth humans were originally refugees from Orion, and you’re the King, so we’re the…“ Alison trailed off, her mind desperately trying to catch up with everything.

You both are their only future. If they’ll accept you,” he said, his face dropping sadly as if he already knew the answer.

“Wait, their only future?” I asked, “What the hell does that mean?”

“I told you Earth is infested. We are the only ones capable of helping them and if they do not accept, all of humanity on Earth will die,” he said, “Every single future we’ve seen for Earth where they do not fully accept our help, ends in the entire planet’s destruction.”

“Are you saying you’re going to kill everyone if they don’t?” Alison asked defensively.

“No, you don’t seem to understand,” he said calmly, “This infestation was not caused by us. We noticed it when we started to listen to Earth’s radio waves. We have been trying to help ever since but there seems to be no convincing Earth leaders to follow our instructions as strictly as is required. If they refuse the new offer, or go back upon it at any point, the Intergalactic Federation will ban Earth humans from leaving the planet entirely in order to keep them from exposing other populations to the parasite. We cannot risk another planet’s population becoming infested. We have seen every future in which Earth humans deny or break the ultimatum we provide. In every such future, it will cause strife on Earth and lead to the end of the planet. We’ve seen how well Earth humans behave when asked to act in the best interest of public safety and we will not allow the exposure of another planet’s population to this parasite.”

“And then we all just leave if they don’t accept the terms?” I asked, “You said there are millions of Star Seeds as well. Do they just all go home? Where are we going if our Star System is dead?”

“Yes, they will be taken home. And Earth is not our only refuge,” the man said, “But it was the most beautiful.”

“So if they refuse the ultimatum, we all leave and then what?” Alison asked.

“Well, we all leave and then they promptly kill themselves, each other, and the entire rest of the planet for pride and power,” he said bitterly, “That is their decision in every Future we have seen.”

“Does no one live?” I asked.

“No. Not even those with shelters and lots of money,” the King said bluntly, “They all kill each other because the infestation consumes them all. That is how the parasite works.”

“Wait, I thought the problem had to do with celestial drug lords enslaving humans for their body?” I asked.

“It does. They’re using the parasite to exploit humanity’s fears and lust for power in order to maintain the social and political systems they developed to support the enslavement from the inside,” he said, “Why else would humanity blatantly work against their best interests?”

Alison and I looked at each other, then back at the King, “If every future you’ve seen where humanity refuses the Federation’s help ends in humanity’s demise, does that mean the adversary can’t see the future? I mean, otherwise, humanity’s total destruction seems a bit bad for business.”

“Correct. The invading celestial bodies on Earth cannot see the future because they cannot do magic,” the King said, “They are strictly limited to the physical realm because they rejected the spiritual aspects of their existence long ago. So they must use manipulation and mind control in order to gain and maintain power.”

“This is fuckin’ wild, man,” I said.

“Unfortunately, their ability to use this particular form of mind control can enable them to use those who possess magical abilities in order to achieve their vile goals,” his majesty stated.

“So other people who can actually do magic and see the future are being used by space drug lords who can’t, to help enslave humanity,” Alison recapped.

“Yes, but only to a certain degree,” the King said.

“If the people they’re using can do magic, can’t they tell something is wrong?”

“Not necessarily,” the King said, “That parasite I told you about? It places a blockage on the ability to use the third eye properly while it feeds on the fear that is presented in the physical world by the adversary. Almost like how an Earth leech uses its natural pain killer in order to remain undetected on a host.”

“Fuck,” Alison said.

“You said earlier that to get rid of the parasite one has to take a special bath,” I said, “What does the ‘bath’ entail?”

“The bath consists of water as hot as you can stand (without burning yourself), salt from the Earth’s oceans, oils of rosemary, lavender, and rose,” he said, clearly attempting to recall it from the deep recesses of his mind, “and crushed garlic. First, you sit in the bath and pour the water over your entire body, slowly, for one of Earth’s hours. Adding more hot water to maintain heat throughout. Second, you must use the free air to dry yourself. After you’re dry, you must wear a head covering when you go among others to prevent future infection.”

Alison smirked, “I’m not going to lie I wasn’t expecting the answer to be an actual bath. I thought you’d say something messed up.”

The Star Sire looked at Alison and smiled, “Yes, well, Earth humans may find it hard to believe but not every problem has a solution centered in Earth’s current understanding of science. Particularly if the problems are not of that science.”

“That’s fair. I recall Ray Bradbury’s ‘The Martian Chronicles’ mentioned how the Martians recognized that science and spirituality are not only able to work together, but they’re meant to,” I said, “Is that what you meant by ‘Earth’s current understanding of science’ not being sufficient?”

He smiled at me again, “Yes, my Sun. That is precisely what I meant.”

“So the bath takes care of the parasite?” Alison asked, “what happens when it’s gone?”

“Well since the parasite that causes the blockage in their third eye will be gone, they’ll be able to see clearly who is really attacking them. But until the parasite is gone, they will only see those trying to help as the threat and project their fear onto them,” the man said solemnly.

“How will we get them to listen if they see us as a threat?” Alison asked.

“That is why we insist Earth Humans must be notified of the truth by Earth leaders. All of it. No more secrets. The lies and secrecy are now what is fueling the adversary’s ability to control humanity and drive Earth into chaos. Upholding the lies helps the adversary maintain control over the planet’s population,” the King said, “but if your Earth Leaders do not start being completely truthful with Earth humans, so that Earth Humans can face and fight this adversary, the Federation will leave Earth and take all the Star Seeds from the other systems with us. Earth leaders don’t understand that this would include many great minds of Earth. Earth will be left destitute as the only population left on Earth would be those who are infected, those with a lust for power, and those who deny the truth’s existence.”

“Damn,” I said, “it’s so wild to me that something so simple as a hot bath and an honest conversation could change the entire course of humanity’s future.”

“You would be surprised at the simplicity it takes to keep the darkness at bay,” the King nodded.

“Have you read many Earth books? Because some of the things that you say seem to be quite similar to some of the books written here,” I asked.

“It has been my job to follow Earth humanity’s progress as I was their only representative in the Federation… that was until you both were born,” the man said with a gentle look in his eyes.

“But I thought you said it wasn’t until the radio waves-“ Alison began but the king interrupted as if he already knew her question.

“Before Earth humans discovered how to use radio waves and electricity in order to communicate, we only had their books to use to gauge their evolutionary processes, as well as public speeches if we could catch them while visiting. Since I am human I don’t have to use a glamour spell in order to appear ‘normal,’ unlike the adversary. We also possess technology that cloaks us entirely from human detection if we need it. No visibility, no heat signature, no physical detection of any kind, save for the raised hairs on the back of one’s neck as we pass by. So I was able to frequent even Earth’s most restricted libraries. But analyzing every book in order to gauge the evolutionary process of Earth humans was very time consuming. Radio made things very clear to us, very quickly. Before Earth humans discovered radio waves, we were only able to review Earth’s progress every thirty Earth years or so as I do have other planets to preside over,” the man said, “although I do still enjoy Earth’s books the most.”

“What was the original plan?” Alison asked.

“Earth humans were supposed to follow our guidance so that they may join the Federation as their own entity instead of a territory of Orion. They wished to be recognized as a separate entity by the Federation and we were willing to grant it, as long as they obeyed our laws and the rules we set,” the President of the intergalactic Federation continued, “For decades we provided them with valuable information to help humanity’s evolution process but when we realized the Earth was under subterfuge from an enemy force, the plan changed. We then offered the Star Seeds to assist. When the attempts at reversing the mind control were still fruitless, we assumed it was because there was no direct lineage from Orion to guide the people of Earth. We believed a direct genetic connection to the source population of the planet would help fight it, hence your creation. But now we know they have been using a parasite to secure their power over Earth humans. So the plan must change again.”

“What’s Corqit?” Astaria asked quietly.

The King chuckled a bit, “It is a game consisting of hitting a Rumpok through a morkit until one reaches a score of Zeek.”

“Ah! We have something similar called ‘Pealgot’,” Astaria said, “but we use a Porgit instead of a morkit.”

Alison and I looked at each other in great confusion as we both had no idea what either of them were talking about.

I brushed off the confusion and changed the subject, “So what’s next then?”

“I sent the new contract to Earth’s leaders with all the information they need within it,” the man said softly, “we now must wait for their reply.”

“And if they refuse: we all leave, they can’t leave the planet anymore, and then they destroy themselves completely?” Alison reviewed, “it seems a bit harsh doesn’t it?”

“It might have been considered ‘harsh’ if we hadn’t already given them chance after chance to fix things previously and each time they have defaulted. We also cannot risk another planet becoming infested. Especially as heavily infested as Earth is at the moment,” the man said, “We do have other civilizations to consider in this.”

“Damn. What happens if they try to leave Earth if the Federation tells them they can’t?” Alison asked.

“The Federation will treat it as a hostile gesture and terminate the threat,” he said bluntly, “Earth will be considered condemned by the Federation and quarantined immediately.”

“So it’ll become a prison,” I said, “You’re going to trap them all here if they don’t do as you say?”

“Only when it comes to the safety of the rest of the universe,” the king said solemnly, “Earth humans can understand the need to put down a rabid dog, though we wouldn’t be putting them down. We’d only be putting them away. Where they decide to go from there is entirely upon themselves. Though there will be consequences for every action. And as I stated, all futures we see where they refuse the ultimatum, leads to their destruction.”

“What if the adversary hears about the Star Seeds and everything and tries to kill us or something?” Alison asked.

“If any attempt at harm or injustice upon a Star Seed or you occurs,” he said assuredly, “the oppositing party will incur not only the wrath of Orion, but of every Star System in the Intergalactic Federation. And as of this moment, our technology alone surpasses that of Earth by Lightyears. Not to mention our military, medical research, and magical abilities.”

“What about the people here who can’t escape this?” Alison asked, “They have no choice but to stay on the planet and be enslaved?”

“Not at all. The other members of the Federation have designated another planet for the refugees of Earth,” the President of the Federation said, “but the refugees will all be required to follow the requirements set by the Federation or else they will not be allowed to go.”

“So how will you know who is a refugee and who is just lying to escape the fate that they designed for themselves?” I asked, curious to hear what advanced device or magic spell they planned to use.

“We already know who is at fault. Thanks to Earth’s scientific advancements, our own observation drones had remained relatively unobserved in your sky as most mistook them for your Earth’s own ‘drones’,” the King said, “Although it would seem the adversary recently caught on to our casual observation tactics and used it as an opportunity to show the Earth their existence. And as Earth humans’ understanding of the vastness of what they call ‘Alien life’ is primitive at best, Earth humans now assume nearly anything flying in Earth’s sky is ‘alien’ so we’ve had to resort to other methods of observation.”

“Like what?” Alison asked flatly.

“Well, you, my Moon,” the President of the Federation said calmly, “And you, my Sun.”

“So… we are spies?” I asked.

“No. You both were created in order to experience a ‘basic life of a human on the planet Earth’ until I had returned,” the man said, “Considering the Earth humans that made the deal were entirely aware of the intent of your creation, to observe Earth life to detect what is preventing humanity from evolving, No one could hardly call either of you ‘spies.’ The humans involved knew, wholly, the intent of your presence and were responsible for ensuring both your safety and welfare. Instead these humans saw the conditions of your lives and refused to intervene when it turned dark.”

“So now what?” Alison asked, “What are we supposed to do, just wait?”

“Yes,” the King said, “We will wait for the response of Earth’s leaders as to which path they will choose and go from there.”

“So just hang out?” I said, hoping to get a reprieve from the constant chaos my life has been since the start of all this.

“You will find that Atlantis is far more than what you’ve seen. Since the submersion happened, a great deal has been restored and reimagined by modern Atlanteans,” the King said with a smile, “I’m sure you will both be pleasantly surprised at the resources and amenities available to you.”

Alison looked at me and then looked back at the King, “Do we have to wear these the whole time or can we get real clothes?” She gestured to our current garments and folded her arms across her chest.

The President of the Federation smirked, “Yes, my dearest Moon, the boutique is down the hallway and to the left. I’m sure you both would love some real Atlantean clothing. These robes were only required for the armor fitting. Now that you both are properly protected, you should dress for your stations. Astaria can lead you both to the boutique.”

“Oh hey, um one more thing?” I asked trepidatiously, “When is dinner?”

The King laughed and nodded, “I assure you, my Sun, you will be sent for as soon as it is served.”

“Right on,” I said awkwardly as the three of us (Alison, Astaria, and I) made our way out of the Sanctuary and to the Boutique.

Sci FiFantasy
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About the Creator

Arthur Armstrong

A being of duality, poetic irreverence, and maddening nonsense.

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