May 7, 2014

The Man

The Man who Upset the Universe
When I first decided to insert Isaac Asimov as a character into my fan fiction sequel to Foundation and Earth, I just wanted to have fun with the idea that Asimov could have a close encounter with a positronic robot and through that experience be influenced in his career as a writer.

Later, when I realized that Foundations of Eternity is part of a larger trilogy of science fiction novels, I discovered that Asimov had a more important role to play on planet Earth than simply being the guy who helped Grean end the Time Travel War with R. Gohrlay.

There is a strange attractor that controls the fate of Earth and Asimov is at a focal point in time where his actions can determine the fate of Humanity. In the Foundation Reality, Asimov is a science writer, documenting the amazing progress of 20th century science, including the development of the positronic robot industry.

cover art by Michael Whelan
During the war, Asimov tries to spy on his own government's secret military research. He positions himself in the right place at the right time to receive a swarm of nanites from a damaged positronic robot. Those nanites transfer memories from the robot and Asimov learns about the future of the Foundation Reality. The nanites also function as a "physiotime generator" allowing Asimov to survive Reality Changes unscathed.

However, in that Reality, Earth is made dangerously radioactive by the scheming Spacer's Amadiro and Mandamus, with the complicity of R. Giskard.

With the help of Asimov, Grean carries out a Reality Change and in the new Reality things go from bad to worse. Earth suffers through a devastating nuclear war in the 20th century. In that Reality, a time traveling Asimov helps his younger self become a famous science fiction author who creates a saga of the future Foundation that is significantly different from the one that we know. When John Campbell dies in an accident, the time traveling Asimov smoothly takes his place and the "older Asimov" mentors his younger self, providing information about the Foundation.

Strange attractor of the Ekcolir Reality.
Of course, Grean is not content to let Earth be cooked in a nuclear furnace. Grean triggers another Reality Change, bringing into existence the Ekcolir Reality. As the name implies, Ekcolir, a male Ek'col, romances Trysta and plays a fundamental role in ending the Time Travel War. Within the Ekcolir Reality, Asimov is born into a 20th century that is dealing with catastrophic sea level rise. Asimov becomes an environmentalist and crusader to put an end to fossil fuel use and rising green house gas levels.

Nereid hermaphrodite
In the Ekcolir Reality, during a confrontation with an Observer, the nanite swarm is transferred out of "the older Asimov" and into Trysta's son, Thomas. The "younger Asimov" establishes a collaboration with the Nereid Interventionists. The Nereids provide Earth with a technological solution to the global warming problem:  with their mastery of hierion physics, the Nereids can easily control the energy output of the sun. This technological trick stops the melting of the Antarctic ice cap, however carbon dioxide levels keep rising on Earth, leading to a catastrophic change in ocean chemistry and a mass extinction event. The bumbling Earthlings never learn to control their own technological excesses and they destroy themselves before ever reaching the stars.

Trysta viewing the Buld Reality.
The Ekcolir Reality is part of a Reality Chain, a sequence of successive Realities that can give Humanity a chance to reach the stars. Working in collaboration with Trysta, Grean guides the people of Earth into the Buld Reality, the Final Reality, the universe as we know it.

In the Buld Reality, Thomas hands-off his nanites directly into the brain of John Campbell. Asimov in mentored by John Campbell, and Asimov writes his great science fiction saga about the Foundation, the version that we know.

Eventually, Thomas retrieves his nanites from Champbell and retains them until many years later when he gives them to "the Editor" of the Exode Trilogy. Thus, Asimov plays a key role in launching the Reality Chain that leads to our Reality and the nanites that pass through Asimov to Thomas and on to "the Editor" allow the people of Earth to become aware of the secret history of Earth. Sadly, that story can only be viewed as science fiction.

Next: more on the good Doctor's travels through time.
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