The timeline for my gryphon story, so far:
Earth, 2700 CE:
Humans have been engaged in ethical (and nonethical) genetic engineering for centuries now, and Earth is now populated with catpeople. Sentience Level: Highly Suspect -_-
Creating sentient organic lifeforms in a lab has now been made illegal worldwide.
Can't have a repeat of catpeople.
Big mistake, that.
(I'm a catpeople, but they're paying me to write this.)
Earth, 3000 CE:
The catpeople have become civilized, but only 6 days a week. Approximately once per week, your average catperson, with limited self-control, inevitably ends up scratching a human. The exact day is impossible to tell, and the situation itself is highly annoying for humans. Imagine, cats annoying humans.
As if catpeople weren't enough,
Some lunatic in a lab decided to invent a new apex predator in the form of a gryphon. They were promised to be non-sentient, because that's safer, I guess? It becomes popular in some countries, almost overnight. I mean, you can own a gryphon. Next thing you know, people are 3-D printing dragons in their basement. Non-sentient, too, of course! Or at least we think. They were human-sized, too, because that's safer, I guess? Yeah... Things might have gotten out of hand. Now, there's a chimera problem.
Let's slow down and define chimera.
Chimera: noun: any mythical animal with parts taken from various animals. In our case, they were genetically engineered to be entirely new species, and, while it was possible to boost their brain power to make them sentient, doing so would be illegal, so chimeras are usually stupid, or not sentient at all.
To call a fully sentient gryphon or dragon a "chimera" would be like calling a catperson a "housecat."
Although, some of us are into that.
The problem, anyway, gets "solved," more or less, by humans, with guns. But then that gets out of hand, too...
But hey, sometimes you gotta party like it's 2999.
Earth, 3030 CE:
Military use of chimera technology is seedy, at best. You might find one or two cases in the news, worldwide.
Oh, but the hunting!
So many companies got rich quick developing chimeras to resemble wildlife, and monsters, as "game animals."
Build it, then shoot it.
Because sometimes ethics looks the other way.
It's not just game animals. Chimeras exist as pets, too. That was the original intent, after all.
Catpeople are NOT pets, Angry Cat Emoji, HashTag CatLivesMatter, HashTag SixOutOfSevenAintBad, HashTag CatPeopleNotCatChimeras.
A law is passed in the human world that outright bans genetic engineering, with minor exceptions.
Because it's election season.
I mean... It's the truth. These people don't actually care what they're doing. They just want votes. It's politics and social media propaganda.
"Sentient or otherwise, it does not matter. Stop playing God."
That's okay. Catpeople can make themselves, if you know what I mean.
Several species of chimera are driven extinct as a result of the new laws, although 2 particular species (non-sentient, of course) are kept protected in wildlife preserves, located in Arizona, and Utah, USA. The first species, a human-sized avian-feline hybrid called a southern chimera, populates the Grand Canyon and surrounding areas, Kaibab National Park, and Kaibab Plateau, North Arizona. The second, a human-sized reptile called a northern chimera, populates Vermilion Cliffs, North Arizona, as well as its northern front, Glen Canyon, South Utah. Southern and northern chimeras may LOOK like gryphons and dragons, respectfully, but, they are not. Real gryphons and dragons don't exist yet. These chimeras don't even talk! Everybody knows you can actually have a conversation (an awesome conversation!) with a gryphon and a dragon, and they have at least a modicum of self-control around humans. These chimeras will just eat you.
Both of these particular species of chimera are considered apex predators and cannot be reasoned with in their current state.
Grand Canyon, Glen Canyon, nearby forests, and surrounding areas, are made off-limits to humans unless they are escorted by a park ranger, (or have received their own park ranger card.)
Arizona and Utah human population slowly dwindles as people distance themselves from chimeras.
Earth, 3055 CE:
A new territory is added to the country, simply called, "Kaibab," which includes all of the Northern Arizona and Southern Utah landscape, and contains, allegedly, 100% of the chimera population, which numbers thousands of each of the 2 identifiable species, northern dragon chimeras and southern gryphon chimeras.
Earth, 3602 CE:
Chimeras are still very dumb.
"Unilkai," a sentient alien from the Betelgeuse system, invades Earth and immediately claims the Kaibab Plateau, in Kaibab, USA, as his base.
At the time, Kaibab Plateau was a popular battleground for northern and southern chimeras to determine which was the superior species. (There was never a clear winner.)
Kaibab Plateau is encased in an impenetrable force field, black as night, and all of the chimeras there at the time were never seen or heard from again.
Many humans in the area, mostly park rangers, went missing.
The surrounding area quickly became a military zone as humans tried to break into Kaibab Plateau through the force field. Because of their human nature, the military officials on-site decided there was reasonable doubt that this force field was alien. Given how many enemies the USA had in 3602, if you can believe the USA has enemies, the military officials thought it was likely another country playing a ruse. Either way, America wants answers.
The force field makes world news and people come to see it, who are then quickly shooed away by the military.
Once, for a brief time, Kaibab was a peaceful, chimera-only oasis protected by the United States government. Now, with the full US military encroached, Kaibab is the absolute worst place to spend your Friday night, whether you are a chimera or a human. Countless chimeras, and humans, end up missing or killed near the force field on a daily basis.
No one's really talking.
Earth, 3902 CE:
The force field still stands, never wavering. Kaibab Plateau hasn't seen the light of day for 300 years.
Humans have made absolutely no contact with whoever is inside. Whoever's in there is not interested.
US troops, camped all around, remain vigilant, slaughtering local wildlife because it's fun and easy, because they have guns, and because they're bored. Southern chimera tastes good, apparently. I guess humans did make chimeras, after all. It shouldn't be so much of a surprise that their inventions taste good. What does that say about humans? I say they're efficient!
Okay, there's my sad attempt at dark humor for the day.
Everyone is beginning to think this is all a big hoax and there is no alien, despite having clear evidence of a force field, as well as constant abductions OF EVERY SPECIES IN KAIBAB, for 300 years.
Earth, 4000 CE:
A video broadcast is made across all news outlets. The speaker, an avian-feline chimera, which by themselves are not known to speak, identified himself as Unilkai. He spoke perfect English and explained that he is dying of natural causes, and he wanted his children, the Gryphons of Kaibab, to inherit the Kaibab Plateau as their birthright. He stated that he would be lowering the force field at his own funeral, and that his son, Sikal, would be in full control of the force field thereafter. He reminded America, and the world, that the Gryphons of Kaibab were sentient people, and American citizens as well, and therefore had certain rights.
Earth, 4006 CE:
A video broadcast is made across all news outlets. The speaker, a gryphon, identified himself as Sikal. He spoke perfect English and explained that he will be lowering the barrier and releasing his father's remains to the United States government. He requested a meeting with the President of the United States.
The meeting went great! Everything they talked about remains highly classified.
It was established that sentient southern chimeras were to be called gryphons, and sentient northern chimeras were to be called dragons. These were the real deal, not some 3-D printed smooth-brained knock-off. They were an alien-enhanced species, every bit as capable as any human, and very willing to prove it.
Sikal reminded the world that the barrier would remain down, and he would be available for talks, but if Kaibab Plateau is ever attacked, the Gryphons of Kaibab have no issue raising the barrier for another 500 years.
The takeaway for the American people is, "Gryphons are among us, and they mean us no harm," and, "trespassing onto Kaibab Plateau is a federal crime."
Sikal founded his first company, The Silver Elite, which develops smartwatches and other wearable technology. This really helped cement his "good person" vibe.
It helped that the smartwatch he was selling was literally designed to make him look human, via a hologram-disguise. And it could also make humans look like gryphons or dragons, or anything else, if you downloaded the DLC. This was very enticing for America's youth.
People started loving gryphons.
Sikal gave a virtual tour of his facility, an underground lab buried inside the Kaibab Plateau. He only showed the first floor where the smartwatches were made. He explained that he would be revealing deeper floors once they are ready. It was pretty vague what that meant. In his own words, "my alien heritage compels me to keep secrets, but all I really want is world peace and the betterment of mankind."
And still, after all that, Kaibab Plateau experienced its first raid. An entire clan of gryphons, the Blackwing clan, killed by humans overnight. Their wings were apparently not black enough. The force field went back up.
Earth, 4009 CE:
The humans involved in the Raid of Kaibab Plateau have been brought to justice by a jury of their peers. Gryphons were only allowed to attend the trial virtually, and on mute.
Despite the barrier being up, business for The Silver Elite was as good as ever.
And, after a vote, the gryphons agreed to lower the barrier again.
Earth, 4040 CE:
Sikal announces on social media that he is in a relationship with "a dragon named Cg."
Moments later, a follow-up post, "Dragons are real, too! Heart emoji."
Aside from that post, there is still no real evidence for the existence of dragons to date. After that post, people were occasionally found in the local news as, "Death by Northern Chimera," because they foolishly went in search of dragons.
Earth, 4041 CE:
After way too much pressure by social media, Sikal posted pictures of himself and Cg on a date at the Grand Canyon. Cg looked just like a northern chimera, only way cuter. "I hope he doesn't eat me!" Sikal posted jokingly. That's right. Cg was a guy. They were gay. Everyone assumed by the photos that Cg was a girl. Woops!
Earth, 4044 CE:
Pressured by social media, Cg tells the world all about dragons. His English is excellent. He claims he is from a particular clan of northern chimera that Unilkai experimented on, 400 years ago. Cg confessed that his clan keeps to itself and no one will ever find it. Cg also admits to being the first member of his clan to date a gryphon, so it's a hot situation on all sides.
Earth, 4056 CE:
Gryph's character arc begins. He's 25 years old when the events in the books start to unfold, and the stories are mostly about his adventures. He is identified as Sikal's clone, which makes Gryph is a gryphon. (He picked his own name.) He may or may not have a son named Bane. He's in a really complicated relationship with a human woman, "Kilmera," who really does love him. He loves her back, but he also loves Skye. Or, loved, rather. It's complicated.
Gryph's boyfriend, Skye, comes back from the dead. It is discovered that Skye's clan was destroyed by humans, but Skye himself was not, and was instead experimented on by humans, and later escaped to join "Mask," a terrorist organization, who helped make it Skye's mission to cleanse the world of the human plague. After everything he's been through, he has every right. Nyaa~!
Mask, with Skye's help, detonates a bomb that sends all humans to a parallel version of Earth, leaving Earth-1 a barren wasteland of gryphons, dragons, CATPEOPLE, and other chimeras. Oh, and bees. I guess everything, really. Except humans. "Bye Felicia," and all that. Okay, so it's really not that bad.
The humans? They're on Earth-2 now.
Gryph's girlfriend was a human.
DUN DUN DUNNNNN
Earth-2, 4056 CE:
Kilmera, a human woman, arrives on a version of Earth covered with sentient gryphons that looked exactly like Gryph.
What are the odds?
These gryphons did the exact same thing to Kilmera as they did with every other human that popped in to existence in their world.
Hunt down and kill it.
The gryphons of Earth-2 had no idea what was going on, what these "human" things were, why they were popping into existence right in front of them, what they even wanted, nothing. These gryphons were terrified. But, more importantly, these gryphons did not give a fuck.
Kilmera, who was already panicked from having been torn away from her gryphon boyfriend, is now being hunted by someone who looks exactly like her gryphon boyfriend. And he wants to rip her in half. And not in the fun way, nyaa~!
Again, what are the odds?
She barely gets away with her life.
For years, and years, she tries to remind herself that these gryphons are not HER gryphons. She wanted, desperately, to love her gryphons again, but these gryphons were making that experience unbearable. There were so many of them, and they never reacted with anything other than violence, every time they caught her. She almost died over, and over, and over again. But she didn't.
Earth-1 4076 CE:
Kilmera returns from her personal Hell on Earth-2, dressed in gryphon bones, wearing a gryphon skull headdress, not interested in finding Gryph, AT ALL, but instead interested in bringing her people home to a normal human world, away from gryphons.
The catpeople can come, too.
But obviously, anything resembling a gryphon will cause massive PTSD in any surviving humans, Kilmera included.
Did I mention Kilmera's biological son is half-gryphon?
Kilmera has no son.
About the author
I like gryphons :)
Previous project: Have a look at my original animation, based on my Vocal story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSUAtVCQaTg
Current project: Another OA based on this: https://vocal.media/fiction/the-silver-elite-v4g8gx0urz