May 19, 2014

First Contact

cover art by Howard V. Brown
It was four years ago when I blogged about the type of first contact story that I prefer. Since deciding to write myself into Exode, I've been having the fun of discovering the story of my own first contact with aliens.

For the Exode Trilogy, the back story tells us that aliens have been visiting Earth for millions of years and we humans were created by the aliens. Thus, in a sense, we Earthling are way past first contact. However, we all have the opportunity to become aware of the presence of aliens among us.

In my case, achieving awareness of our human condition has been a rather complex multi-step processes. Here are some high points .....

1) First and fundamentally, I was born with a lucky combination of genes that gave me a brain with some capacity to do more than just be a passive host for alien nanites. Thus, I've always had some limited capacity for neural/nanite-mediated contact with aliens.

2) Trysta spent much time and effort studying our Reality (the Buld Reality) before it came into existence. I have to assume that she either saw me in the role of "the Editor" or she selected me as the person who would become "the Editor". I believe I first met Trysta about 40 years ago. Trysta's shape shifting ability makes it difficult to know for sure.

3) When Thomas and Izhiun gave me their nanites, my mind nearly fractured. It was a puzzle: why did they select me as the recipient of their little "gifts"?

A whimsical book cover inspired by
Angela's exposure of the important role
played by Overseers in the Buld Reality
Only slowly have I made progress in untangling this mystery. I now know that I met Thomas 35 years ago. I have to wonder about the possibility that he was acting with the guidance of his mother Trysta when he brought Izhiun to me.

4) My collaboration with Ivory began less than a year ago. Her first email was rather cryptic and we had to dance around for a while before we could confirm the security and fidelity of our communications. Frustratingly, just when I was attaining some small degree of proficiency at working with Angela through Ivory as our intermediary, I lost contact with them.

Over the course of a few months, we were able to sort out some of the hints that Parthney had given me through the medium of his information nanites. For example, at first I could not understand the differences between the Buld Reality and Ekcolir Reality.

The Urak Intervention
by Ivory Fersoni
(click image to enlarge)
Parthney is a creature of Buld Reality and he did not know the significance of the long chain of Interventionists that preceded him to Earth. By delving into the information stores that exist in the Sedronic Domain, Angela was able to see that constant fine-tuning was needed through the long history of human civilization in order to make sure that the Buld Reality would turn out as it has.

I've previously blogged about Meropa, who seems to have been an important early force among the Interventionists. An artificial life version of Meropa apparently first assisted an Interventionist agent on Earth during the establishment of Eridu as an urban center. Angela has traced Meropa's tenure on Earth through many additional Interventions at Ur, Urak, Shuruppak and other Sumerian cities.

Exactly what were the terms of truce between Trysta and Grean that brought an end to the Time Travel War? Did Gohrlay's 10,000,000 year struggle for Humanity yield any positive outcomes for we humans or were her efforts simply smothered by the vast technological superiority of the Huaoshy?

More importantly, does the answer to that question depend on the skill with which I am able to tell Gohrlay's story? In a sense, R. Gohrlay became entangled in a chess match with Grean. I usually refer to their epic battle as "The Time Travel War". Frankly, a game of chess does not make for riveting fiction.

The events in John Bunner's novel The Squares of the City was apparently based on a chess match that he translated into human actions. I think he failed to make the human conflict of the story (and all of the deaths) believable.

I'm still struggling to understand the motives of Grean. At first I could only view Grean as a puppet of the Huaoshy, but I've started to reconsider. If Izhiun, Thomas and even Ivory and Angela have all decided (did they, of their own free will?) to conform to Huaoshy ethical standards which dictate that we Earthlings must be left alone to sort out our own problems, then I can't sustain resentment over the hypothesis that we humans are mere pawns in the intergalactic game being played out by the Huaoshy.

The Pek
The pek have a knack for becoming almost invisible. They don't flaunt their extraordinary technological powers. Parthney was able to provide considerable information about the Interventionist side of the Buld Reality, but it has been more difficult for me to obtain insight into how the pek deployed their own chess pieces: the Overseers.

The silly magazine cover (to the left on this page) plays with the idea of first contact between humans and the pek, here represented as sentient board pieces engaged in a spirited game of laser chess.

Ivory tried to convince me that the pek have not been on Earth during the past million years. However, I imagine that some pek could be just a step away from we Earthlings, within the Hierion Domain. The pek are artificial life forms, composed of zeptites and able to take on any convenient physical form. How would any of us know if we had contact with a pek? For that matter, how would we know if pek zeptites were residing inside our brains and guiding our thoughts and behavior?
More book and magazine covers.
Image credits.
I went looking for an image that would represent the artificial life version of Meropa during the age when "she" was on duty helping human Interventionists get civilization rolling in Mesopotamia. My search ended when I found "Temple of the Unknown Goddess" uploaded by ThornErose to the deviantART website (see image to the right). I tried to transform the head gear from Egyptian to Sumerian and provide a bit of a science fiction feel with the sky.
Super Science Stories 1949

1946 cover art by William Timmins

Assignment: Meropa, J. L. Forrest writing scifi, Clarke in Columbo

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