Tag Archives: Fantasy
The increasing sea level went undetected until 2015. By then there was nothing to do but watch it
rise. Not that any course was viable had the increase in temperature been detected earlier. Mankind came to the realization he had no control over the climate, for better or for worse. That alone was in God’s hands. Not to say global warming wasn’t real, but there was nothing anyone could have done to prevent it and nothing anyone could do to stop it.
North America’s western coastline stabilized at the Sierra Nevadas. The Appalachian Mountain range became the new East Coast. Tributaries allowed water to infiltrate the country’s interior, turning the Mississippi River into a tidal basin and the Great Lakes into the Great Lake. The Sea of Cortez migrated over halfway up the Colorado River. This intrusion engulfed two-thirds of the area between the Sierra Nevada and Rocky
Mountain ranges forming Grand Canyon Bay. Worldwide the story was much the same. Cities built higher than
two thousand feet above pre-twenty-first-century sea level remained.
With the upward push of water, the atmosphere also welled up, warming the planet
and setting off a
chain reaction that would further reduce the polar caps. This caused the water level to rise, fueling the vicious cycle until the last remaining vestige of ice was reduced to liquid.
After nearly a decade of unrest and political upheaval, established governments and factions alike came to the identical conclusion. Survival depended upon unity. What remained of the human race had finally gotten it right.
The scientific community did a respectable job of collecting and processing the massive amount of pollution seeping from sunken cities, refineries, and tank farms. In time, the planet did what man could not and digested the remaining toxins.
Travel by road or rail was limited but still possible. A handful of usable airports remained, but with so many waterways, sea-going vessels became the most practical way to transport not only people, but goods and services as well.
While the all-consuming need for oil created countless problems for the former world order, a limited need for fossil fuel still remained.
One drilling platform remained, simply because it supplied all the crude the world needed. Enter the planet’s last oilrig, the Omega Z, dubbed “OZ” soon after its conception. Maintaining this aquatic city was a constant undertaking.
This daunting task fell to a select few.
It Seems to Me That Stuff Plays Such a Large Part of Our Stuff That the Stuff We Value Gets Stuffed Away Where No Stuff Should Be Stuffed, Rendering It Useless Stuff
I’ve been toying with a story idea I’d like to run past you. It would parallel real life and go something like this:
Kelly awoke startled by her bed-blaster alarm clock. She slid out of her Sleep Letter Bed and onto her new Lumber Bum apple-wood, pre-finished, laminated floor. Kelly washed her face with Spring Clean, brushed her teeth with Tarter Boom and combed her hair with Spray and Fill.
“There you are,” she said, placing her hand on her newly purchased make-up device. She sprayed an even coat of base with her air brush, followed by Lusty Eye mascara, Double Dip lipstick and a last minute dollop of Pimple Prep.
She slipped into her designer little black dress, designer 6” black heels and headed for the kitchen designed by Likea. She popped four Waste Away Fat Busting tablets, downed a quarter sized Weight Be Gone bran muffin, then headed to work.
Kelly arrived at work sporting her new BNW with no-hands parking technology. She worked until midday designing designer socks with open-toe technology. She devoured an alfalfa sprout salad for lunch and then returned to work designing brass-infused energizing socks.
Completing her day’s work, she stopped by the local gym to wile away several hours in the relaxing grip of top-of-line designer-weight machines.
Back at home she dines on a light meal of no nitrate hotdogs, gluten free bread, organic peppers and onions, organic sauerkraut, organic chili, organic cole slaw, organic tomatoes and organic cheese.
After removing her designer wardrobe, designer make-up, and scrubbing and brushing in reverse, Kelly lays down on her unbelievably comfortable air mattress. As she begins to doze off, an audible hiss followed by her sinking into her bed ensues. “No matter,” she says. “With the lawsuit I have against my diet pill manufacturer, the rodeo clown and those tainted alfalfa sprouts I eat everyday, I’m a cinch to get a settlement that will get me enough cash to afford that cloud-floating bed.
She falls asleep watching her 50 inch HD TV and the soothing sounds of the bountiful items she may partake of and the legal advice she may seek when the half gallon of ice cream she ate everyday for a year causes unsightly bumps in her little black dress. . . “C’mon man,” Kelly says, “its the circle of strife.”
Long before I penned my first word, I found myself gravitating toward science fiction, fantasy and adventure. As a kid, I would marvel at the stop-animation used in movies through the eighties, and scarf up the multitude of novels available for the taking. If I was awake, there was a sci-fi book in my hand.
As I began to write, I could easily find subjects for my work in nature. A search through creation could yield a veritable plethora of subject matter. Throw in a vivid imagination, a quirky sense of humor, a dark side so the good guys will have something to fight and you have the perfect recipe. This formula will guarantee an upside down, knee slapping, bad vs. good, destroy the world, (if you’re not careful) nail-biter of a finished type novel. . .Whew!!
Unfortunately, situations come in to play that are as morose as those written everyday without a thought of these tales making their way into our everyday lives.
In memoriam: On a bright September 11th morning 16 years ago, terrorist murdered over 3000 people, at the world trade center towers, the pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania. Harvey and Irma have devastated Texas and Florida, with Irma still pounding away. When healing can begin, both states will likely take years to fully recover. But, you know what I’ve seen in these situations? They bring unity. There are none of the differences; just people helping people. Maybe we should give it a try. I think that’s how God originally intended it.
Belac, Ben, Eve, Pete and three of Belac’s men took turns lowering into the cave through the hole used to steal the Andor. Seven others remained above to trace the same path that the ones below would traverse.
Belac handed each of his men two wooden branches and kept two for himself to use as torches. Once they were lit, he spoke.
“You must remember the Andor is not to be touched. It must be carried by the poles inserted through the rings on each side. This is also the same for the Shadow Ones. If they touch the Andor they will cease to be.”
As the group moved deeper into the cave, they struck the ceiling with a long wooden rod. The men above would place an ear to the ground to follow them as they progressed.
“We will halt for a moment,” Belac said. “The torches are growing dim and we must replenish the fuel supply.” He opened a bag and pulled several strips of cloths smeared with a black substance that smelled of petroleum. He wrapped the cloth around his torch. At once, the fire light increased. He did the same for the three of his comrades and then the group continued on.
“Will the torches help us against the Shadow Ones in the caves as we search for the Andor?” Ben asked.
“In a minor way,” Belac replied, “if your skill is such that you are able to touch them with the flame.”
“Is this the reason we have the torches instead of using the night vision instilled within us?” Ben asked.
“We will rely on both.”
The group continued deeper into the underground lair. As they traveled through the tunnel it divided, heading in different directions leaving a menagerie of catacombs. They came to a halt with no clear direction to search.
Belac pulled more of the strips from his bag and wrapped the torches increasing the light throughout the immediate area.
“Gather the group closer together,” Belac ordered. “We must intensify the light into a single component, to battle our enemy.”
Several shadow creatures danced in and out of the groups vision as they moved closer and then further away from the firelight. As they did so, the torch bearers would swing their burning weapons in unison, causing portions of the creatures to disappear and forcing them to back away.
The group moved with intent following the retreating creatures, all the while developing an insight of where their quarry lay.
“I sense we are growing closer,” Belac said, extending his hand to stop Ben, Eve, and Pete’s progress.
Belac’s three men took the lead, their torchlight fading. Volton, who traveled ahead of the rest, left the ground without warning. Amar reacted, thrusting his torch into the shadow creature holding his friend. The flame startled the creature, causing the spot it touched on its dark form to disappear; however, the gesture came too late as Volton slammed into the ceiling hard enough to shatter his spine and flatten the back of his head. He fell to the ground with a sickening thud that left him twitching as his involuntary nervous system protested one final time.
“Everyone back!” Belac bellowed.
Parallel Dimension I
“State your purpose,” Orac demanded.
“I believe my purpose is known to all present,” Cahotic replied.
Caleb, Ben and Eve joined Pete and Orac.
“Mount up,” Caleb said, “and do not remove your eyes from them.”
Pete complied and climbed onto his horse.
“Prepare your weapons,” Caleb ordered.
“I need no other than these,” Orac stated, holding up his fists.
“Now, Caleb,” Cahotic chastised, “is that a proper welcome for old friends?”
“Orac,” Caleb said, motioning to the giant.
Orac backed up to meet Caleb. “Yes?” he said.
Caleb leaned over and whispered into Orac’s ear.
Orac smiled and then nodded, returning to his previous spot.
“Make ready,” Cahotic said, “and separate the necessary parts. We must renew our supply of gel.”
The riders pulled their swords and moved forward. The line was staggered in a stepped orientation, allowing each rider to shield the one behind. As the first aberration moved onto the snow-covered ice, an inaudible cracking ensued. Caleb sensed the ice give under the great weight, as the second rider followed his predecessor.
“Now, Orac,” Caleb ordered.
Orac bent over, slamming his mammoth fists into the ice. Cracks developed in the crust, spreading from the epicenter in spider-like fashion. Orac continued his barrage, crawling further onto the ice as he decimated the concrete water. He felt two points of pressure along his back. A small figure wrapped in fur vaulted from his flank and onto the rear of the first rider’s beast. He wielded a spear with a fine bronze tip attached to a smooth brown shaft. The newcomer plunged the spear with no ill effects, hitting pieces of armor and plated green scales. The first rider and his steed dipped to the left and then to the right. An ear-splitting crack echoed through the forest, and the rider sank. As the creatures continued their descent, the small figure jumped from the rider. With uncanny agility, the strange fur-covered form bounced along small chunks of ice, floating in the stream until he reached the bank. Astonishment enveloped The Three, uttering not a sound as they watched this acrobat.
The second rider attempted to turn and make it back to solid ground, reaching the bank as the ice collapsed beneath him. The animal sank to its midsection before it could gain a hold with its forelimbs, the aberration it bore slid off its back. Steam drifted upward from the pair as the water permeated their bodies.
“Orac!” Caleb yelled. “Enough.”
Orac ceased his assault and circled around to return to his comrades.
Caleb turned to Ben. “Gather wood for a fire,” he said.
“What about the . . . ?” Ben asked.
“Wood,” Caleb barked, “and quickly.”
Ben, Pete and Eve dropped from their horses as the ice gave way, plunging Orac into the frozen slush.
The first rider was now chest deep in the center of the stream. Huge bubbles from underneath exploded as the beast that bore him disintegrated. The rider himself silently melted into the stream, his head exploding in small puffs as if boiling in a cauldron.
The second rider’s mount, using its front claws, inched itself onto the bank. Its rider plunged his sword deep into the beast, allowing it to pull him along. The pair breached the water’s surface, both formless from the midsection down, their remaining torsos dissolving in a mass of tiny gurgling eruptions.
The topic of my blog post this week is something I swore I would never do, if for no other reason than I loathe the subject matter. My favorite genres when I write are science fiction, fantasy, and action adventure. When it comes to fantasy I avoid kings, queens, knights, castles, dragons, damsels in distress and unicorns with extreme prejudice!
Well, it looks like the old saying rings true once again, never say never. And I mean never ever say never because you can bet it will return to chomp unmercifully upon your major gluteus muscles, as just happened to me. I made the mistake of asking a female (my newly acquired daughter) her opinion on the theme of my next blog. “Unicorns,” she said. So here is my offering, even though it manifested into a negative presentation. I’m forming a fact-finding blue ribbon commission to study the feasibility of changing the unicorn name to “Unihorn.” Of course, we could always replace the horn with an ear of corn and keep the name as is. Think about it and just imagine – we’d finally have something (though a bit ridiculous) that actually makes sense.
If you’re wondering about “my newly acquired daughter”, that’s fodder for another blog, but the story is quite a sweet one.
Until next week, Happy Trails!