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HOW ALIENS GOT HERE

Chapter One

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Long Before Time

Contrary to what many humans thought, especially the most learned in physics and particularly in cosmology, there used to exist lots of traceable clues that the so-called aliens had visited earth at one time or the other. By saying ‘traceable’, I am referring to witness accounts that concurred in various continents of our world.

Humans, as obstinate as ever, refused to accept the obvious, and blindly chased after what they referred to as ‘credible evidence’. This ‘evidence’ was considered to be what was scientifically possible, and whose results could be replicated using the same principles and procedures—over and over again.

But you see, aliens have never been that stupid.

They were extremely powerful beings, and far more intelligent than any earthly person could ever hope to be. They didn’t possess organic bodies like humans, and that was where the scholars went wrong since they were looking for signs of an environment that could support organic life out there on the exo-planets. Those beings—as mysterious as they may appear—knew exactly who we are; how to communicate to us when need arose.

They had a gaseous kind of look; semi-translucent and ethereal in appearance and their bodies could glow, emit light and other kinds of strange radiation. However, they always duped researchers because they had a tendency of disappearing without any trace whatsoever. They resisted and defied any form of investigation whether by instruments or otherwise; the technology existing on earth was just too primitive for such super creatures.

Nevertheless, humans started edging a bit closer to the truth, particularly in the 21st century. The researchers started talking about unseen matter in the universe and called it ‘dark matter’. They further hypothesized that there was some energy too mysterious to be detected on their instruments and called it ‘dark energy’. However, they remained mum on accounts of alien appearances witnessed all over the globe. Reason? There was ether no credible evidence, or simply unacceptable to suggest that extra-terrestrial beings had indeed visited earth and made a fool of our researchers.

Credible evidence was one thing the aliens made sure would never suffice as far as they were concerned. They would always come silently, do their thing and then leave and vanish into thin air. They weren’t interested in being investigated, and they were sure nobody could. If anyone happened to cross over to their habitat (many have done so in the past) then none came back to narrate the truth.

Those beings were mere messengers from an extremely exotic realm known as Alpha Peak. This was a vast area roughly at the center of the universe, known as the safest place to live in. It was barricaded by impossibly high walls of super-secure walls made of unique cosmic energy which no being or force could penetrate. Still, Alpha Peak remained entirely invisible from the outside.

Back to the celestial messengers. They appeared to carry out orders of their respective senders; they never came to do their own bidding. But then that poses the most important question: who were the ‘senders’?

There were two categories of intelligent, superior forces in the cosmos. Originally there used to exist only one, known as the Supreme Living in the language of the first humans who made contact with the messengers.

Supreme Living was a really huge, phenomenal entity who was respected, feared and loved by all celestial beings. He lived in an unapproachable cloud of brilliant energy which gave the universe its form and set all things in motion. It hasn’t been recorded where he came from, he kept that to himself. All living beings knew he was the source of their existence, and everyone was content and grateful….

Well, almost everyone.

Under Supreme Living was a big multitude of servants—millions actually—grouped in ranks. The highest rank, known as the Top Order of Princes, was comprised of the most powerful beings, able to carry out drastic cosmic changes effortlessly. However, they couldn’t do much out of their own authority. They could only carry out tasks over which they were given power, ability and mandate.

Then the unexpected happened.

It was at the very dawn of human existence when the head of this high rank of beings, a most sophisticated, brilliant and super powerful entity started to become angry with the whole system. Rebel, as he later came to be known, thought the Supreme Living was being unfair by enforcing his own will on his heralds; and felt that he needed freedom to pursue his own ambitions and desires. He hated the fact that the Supreme Living had no rival in the whole universe, and started fantasizing a world where he would be the boss. He coveted superiority and more power and ultimately plotted a revolution where he would convince everyone else to protest. This he attempted and managed to get a considerable following.

The Supreme Living couldn’t tolerate lawlessness, so he banished Rebel and his band of protestors from Alpha Peak. He sentenced them to roam the space aimlessly for a finite period of time until the he would convene a hearing for their fate to be pronounced. It was declared that for punishment, they would be cast into NetherEnd. This was a horrible dungeon, one you would equate to the biggest and the most feared black-hole in the whole universe, which was known by occupants of Alpha Peak as the most terrible place to land into. NetherEnd was an enclosed volume where furious stars were trapped, and continued to burn without loss of fuel. Any being cast into it had zero chances of escape.

Rebel was absolutely furious not only for being deported from Alpha Peak, but also because he knew that he would end up in NetherEnd and he knew there was no chance of appeal. The awaiting terror of NetherEnd drove Rebel and his followers insane with fear but since his fate was sealed, he vowed he would never go there alone: he would take as many as he could with him.

His hottest target was Earth.

Just then, Supreme Living started sending messengers to warn humans of the inevitable persecution by the most notorious alien, who was ready to put up a camp on earth and launch his hideous missions.

“You are a dictator,” Rebel sneered, addressing his King. “I can prove that given freedom, the humans can and will follow my style of life while they laugh at yours.”

“Of course many will follow you,” answered Supreme Living, the gigantic, terribly powerful entity whose power set the galaxies in motion towards the infinite corners of the universe. “But not all. Between now and the time of your final incarceration, you are free to prove whatever you want.”

Rebel hid his face from the Supreme Living. No-one could argue with such an entity. Standing in his presence alone was a taxing experience, let alone arguing with him; a spark of his temper could vaporize any matter. Rebel knew this, and he knew the wisest thing was to flee from him.

Rebel made an evil smile. He convened a meeting and gave his followers orders to take charge of all hideous, loathsome activities you can imagine on planet earth and its people. This was the one thing that made the Supreme Living to send messengers on a quest to warn humans of the impending danger of landing in NetherEnd with Rebel and his lot.

Why should humans be afraid of being cast into a black-hole, you might ask? There are far simpler ways of punishing them. After all, they are flimsy, puny and just piles of organic matter.

You can’t be farther from the truth.

If you think that all you are made up of is just organic stuff, then you might be interested to know that three-quarters of your personality is made up of invisible matter. This invisible matter influences the visible and manifests its will in the physical brain in form of thoughts and decisions. Only part of the invisible mind interacts with the physical brain, so this locks out knowledge of the supernatural which otherwise everyone would be accessing freely. The invisible mind is responsible of some known mysterious phenomena such as existence of savants and geniuses, near-death experiences and some form of dreams. When humans cease to exist—which is referred to as death, consciousness departs the physical brain and shifts into the invisible body—which very much resembles those of messenger aliens—and then enters another zone of the cosmos.

Are you telling us we are aliens disguised as humans?

Well, not necessarily. It all depends on your understanding of the word “alien.” Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean humans are not “aliens,” in fact we are more alien than we are earthly. You see, we just acquired organic bodies MANY years when the Living decided to have a different breed of entities on a recently fashioned planet, perfectly fitted with an atmosphere, protected by an ozone layer and styled up with an auto pilot ecosystem. The entire population on Alpha Peak was excited by this development when life thrived on a beautiful Earth.

But Rebel landed here with a vengeance, breathing fire and sulfur, as it were.

Therefore, Supreme Living appointed a number of guardians to patrol over the Earth and make sure things were not getting out of hand. One of those appointed was Remuel, and he is an important part of this story; but more about that later.

The Bad Sunday

The reason why researchers get tired of investigating the “paranormal” is because there is nothing to investigate. Well, at least not to human eyes–or mechanical lenses. Some certain researchers eventually wrote a report finally “explaining” about the part of the brain that is responsible for perceiving illusions. It was a somewhat detailed report talking about how a brain processes images of something that does not exist because it is already deeply engrossed in studying something else. That was supposed to explain the reason why magicians play convincing tricks on people’s eyes.

While that may be true, it didn’t explain why similar images are captured by camera lenses. Surely camera lenses don’t have brains that can be duped, do they?

If the researchers had patience enough—or the creativity required, they could have found important information that could have enabled them to unveil the very core of the hidden realm. They could have—with an open mind—contacted the people who have been at it for centuries, if not for millennia. Some of those people could have enlightened them about many mysterious interesting things that have defied research, among them the extinct species and why exactly they became extinct.

But not to worry; I will give it all to them—right here.

It began one Sunday afternoon when Remuel, deputy to the chief of Guardians who patrolled the Earth, rode on a cloud and hovered over an island in the Far East. He took a moment to admire a garden planted on the perfect landscape, bearing juicy grapes and several other fruits. Well, he thought, the humans aren’t so badly off at the moment.

He was about to glide past when a scene caught his eye: behind the garden was a pool of crystal clear water, and a few girls were bathing in it—stark naked.

“Whew!” he sighed, staring with interest at their long golden hair, the curves of their beautiful bodies and the glow of their healthy white skin.

“Well!” he muttered to himself, edging closer to look at the girls. He watched them scrubbing themselves; they were giggling happily. Finally, they came out of the pool and walked over to where they had left their clothes. Remuel watched them dry themselves with soft towels before dressing up, after which they disappeared behind the garden, laughing excitedly.

None of them saw him, of course. Humans couldn’t see ethereal beings.

After that incident, Remuel flew at top speed towards the stratosphere: he had gone too close to the earth; too close as to risk an unwarranted attack from Rebel’s forces. As he joined his fellow Guardians, he was anticipating trouble but he almost shrunk with relief to learn that everything in the cosmos was operating fine.

In the days that followed, Remuel went on with his duties but try as much as he could, he couldn’t erase the images of the naked, bathing girls from his mind. Not that they were in an exotic place—of course no earthly island could compare to the Alpha Peak, but the earth had a beauty of its own, and these females added an excitement that really touched him.

“There’s something on your mind, isn’t there?” asked Kild the chief Guardian. Kild was of the Central Order, a silvery entity with a head bearing a starry satchel.

Remuel crossed his arms. “Not really,” he said, turning away.

Kild dashed in front of him and cocked his head. “It’s something you saw on Earth, right?” he persisted and went on: “You have a duty to report it to me, you know. Any little hint of threat from Rebel is our responsibility.

“Of course there’s no threat, Chief,” Remuel returned hurriedly.

“There must be!” Kild said firmly, frowning. His eyes seemed to change their usual glow. “Do not risk it, Remuel. You know how devious Rebel has become; so devious that no human can tackle him unaided.”

“Rebel has been on my mind lately, I agree,” said Remuel just to avert the topic. Then he was suddenly sorry of having lied. This shocked him: he had never spoken a lie.

This flustered him so much that he dashed off at once, covering half the circumference around the earth in an instant. He was going to stay away from Kild for some time. He turned his gaze back to earth. That place held some interesting things. Would there be any harm in trying to look more closely?

He then noted that it was some minutes past five; the girls would be in the pool again. Before he could think much about it, he was down by the garden in a split second, in time to see the four girls stripping in order to get into the pool once again. This time, however, there was a young man among them, and the girls’ hands were all over his body as they dragged him into the pool. Remuel watched intently as the group played, laughed swam and scrubbed each other; and then he sharply became aware of a nagging spark of desire that he had never felt before. It was a desire to be carefree, to show the women that he was smarter, more handsome and more knowledgeable than any other man. Alpha Peak was not like this; he had a duty to do there and had to report to Chief Kild but here, well….

“Exciting, isn’t it?” said a hoarse voice behind him.

Remuel swung around, his halo flaring up in alarm. Kild was standing behind him, his eyes fixed on the pool. One look at him and Remuel knew Kild was as mesmerized as Remuel himself.

“Uh…what are you doing here?”

Kild didn’t answer. His arms were behind his back, his jewel eyes staring with wonder at the pool.

“Quite a scene, isn’t it?” Remuel said, a knowing smile on his face. He then touched Kild’s shoulder and said, “Time to go, Chief. We aren’t supposed to be here.”

Kild turned to him, a strange look on his face. “But you don’t want to go back, do you?” He pointed at the pool. “You want that, and so do I, Remuel.”

Remuel hesitated. This was wrong, but he wanted to be part of the fun. At that time, the temptation was too big that neither of them remembered any more of Rebel.

“You think we can, Chief?”

“And why not?” Kild said, still bearing the strange look in his eyes. “I think it’s time we shape-shifted into humans.”

In the pool, Zelda clang onto Miguel her boyfriend who had his arms around her waist. The other girls jeered with jealousy.

“You lucky trump,” they said. “Must you steal all the fun?”

Just then, Zelda caught her breath sharply. The rest of her friends followed her stare. On the bank of the pool stood two tall men; both were very handsome and clad in princely garments. One had locks of red hair while the other had his blond hair secured with a band at the back of his head. Both men were grinning at the girls with the whitest sets of teeth the ladies had ever seen.

“Can we join you fellows?” called the red-haired man.

The girls couldn’t answer; they stared with their jaws dropped. The men stripped hurriedly and got into the water. The two girls fell into their embrace while one was left without a companion. She stared helplessly as her friends swam, played and had fun in the water. Just then, a hand touched her shoulder; she turned to see a tall, muscular man with long black hair, clipped beard and dimples on his cheek as he smiled at her.

“Don’t be shy, dear,” the man said. “You and I could hang together, can’t we?”

The girl found this rather strange; she hadn’t seen the man before nor had she seen him get into the water but she was too excited to care. She was in the company of such a great-looking man and this was her chance.

Remuel, excited with his new-found love, turned to glance around his shoulder and saw Fenlow, his fellow Guardian kissing one of the girls. He was astonished to realize that not only Kild but now Fenlow had followed him here.

Well, he shrugged, it was too late now.

The moment the three aliens made love to the girls, all three knew things had changed but none of them realized they had been spied on. When they came out of the water, Kild motioned to the girls to go ahead while he had a short conversation with his friends. When the humans had disappeared behind the orchard, the three strangers were momentarily blinded by the presence of a far superior being hovering above them.

It was Rebel. Having descended from the Top Order of Princes, he looked threateningly huge and fearsome.

“Well well!” Rebel exclaimed, his voice bearing a hint of pure surprise. “Look who got creative!” He put off his glow and stepped on the ground.

“Finally, a disobedience that I didn’t initiate!” Rebel said and let out a blood-chilling howl of cold laughter. “Well, you three are such dirty slobs; you have just bought yourselves a first-class ticket to the NetherEnd!”

Kild was the first to recover. He frowned furiously at the towering figure of Rebel. “Get out of our way!” he thundered, trying to look menacing. However, he knew he was no match for Rebel.

“Or else what!” Rebel demanded contemptuously. “Use your heads; Supreme will reduce you three to dust.” He then stepped aside and stretched his arm to the sky. “Go on, my dears. Perhaps you will be lucky.”

With that, Rebel vanished. The three aliens looked at one another. “Let’s get out of here!” said Kild. He shifted into his ethereal form and shot off into space, followed by his two juniors.

Suddenly, the trio halted. The dazzling gates of the Alpha Peak were firmly closed, and a menacing great Guardian was standing outside, bearing a fiery weapon. He stepped forward as the three approached.

“You three are banished from here,” the Guardian announced. “So are the one hundred-plus who followed your example. You desired what the Earth contains, broke the rules and copulated with humans. Henceforth, you will be subject to Rebel and his hordes, and his fate awaits you too.”

Remuel was shocked. One hundred plus? Had he innocently influenced so many?

Well, ‘innocence’ couldn’t apply here. It had been decided. There was no retreat; all the fallen Guardians could do was to return to Earth and make good their time. So they flew back to earth dressed like wealthy princes, fetched the girls and married them. They offered gold and precious stones to their families, a gesture that had them accepted and hailed. They became famous from the skills they taught humans, and none of the humans could recognize them for who they really were….

… Until after a few years passed…

Chapter Two

Dawn of the Supernatural

A total of two hundred and two aliens settled on earth, two days after Remuel’s incidence at the pool on that fateful day. This happened without humans realizing at first what was happening, but after several months had passed, things began to take an ugly turn on the once docile and innocent planet.

The Guardians-turned-rebels lived a carefree life and owing to their extra-terrestrial nature, won immense admiration of everyone as they came up with sophisticated ideas, knowledge extraordinary skills. The kings appointed some of them to be heads of war forces; others were given authority over fields, agriculture and planning while the rest were appointed to head several different ministries.

Civilization thrived on earth owing to the ingenious contribution from the celestial brains. You see, prior to these forbidden intermarriages, Earth had always been the meek quiet planet whose people woke up every morning to do their duties at peace; their daily timetable was always regular and automatic. They sowed and harvested crop, reared animals, married and got children; and life was going on the way it had always done.

Now that advanced brains had found their randy way into the earth, things began to change drastically. New, more formidable architecture sprang up, new weapons were forged, government intelligence bodies were restructured and incredibly enhanced, impressive farming technology materialized and medical practices were introduced anew, this time thoroughly efficient. For some time, life on earth seemed wonderful and promising.

But not for long. The slimy ugly worms of disquiet were wriggling under, and would soon be surfacing to make life on earth intolerable.

Needless to say, the intermarriages worked greatly in favor of Rebel. Now more than ever, he had a real chance to rival Supreme Living. All he needed to do was plant ever more seeds of disharmony between humans and likewise between humans and the fallen Guardians. It ought to be simple enough.

Putting on a harmless calm look, Rebel got into a wormhole that opened out on earth and eventually stood behind Remuel.

“Oh Remuel,” he called.

Remuel had just kept his tools in the store and was headed for the house to have dinner with Matilda, his human wife.

“Rebel?” he asked, surprise showing on his face. “What are you doing here? Nice to see you stripped half of your tough popular show.”

“Let’s not act smart,” Remuel returned with an exaggerated calmness, forcing himself to relax. “You and I need to talk.”

“Really? About what? Well, do you have news about Alpha Peak?”

Rebel smiled cunningly.

“Forget that place ever existed,” he said, holding Remuel by the hand and taking him into the back yard. “It isn’t good for your health.”

“What do you want?” Remuel demanded wearily.

“Well,” Rebel began, “I really like your revolution, honestly I do….”

“You do?”

“I do. But … I’ve been wondering why you have been doing the common petty stuff with the humans; you could do greater things and earn everyone’s admiration and awe.”

Remuel sighed and asked, “Such as?”

Rebel rolled his eyes. “Don’t be so … human! Do I need to spell it to you? Give them the unreal; show them the impossible. You will be the greatest who ever lived.”

Remuel hesitated. “I—I need the Power of Stages to do that. I don’t have it.”

“I got you covered,” Rebel said, flashing his cunning smile. He put his arm into his garments and fished out a brilliant red stone which he handed to Remuel.

“What you need is to make a negative Proclamation….”

“Proclamation?” Remuel asked, his face turning pale. “I can’t dare that!”

“I said negative Proclamation, you yellow fool,” said Rebel, bursting into cold mirthless laughter.

A Proclamation was a verbal code spoken out while using a particular key to open a wormhole. A wormhole opened via a Proclamation would end up before the throne of Supreme Living. Only the members of the Top Order of Princes—of which Rebel had once been—could pass through that wormhole. The normal Guardians had to access Alpha Peak through the normal allowed gates. A fallen Guardian couldn’t dare access that route since half of his essence had decayed and thus risked to have the wormhole translate him into NetherEnd whose gravitational pull always succeeded in pulling matter with less essence than that of an uncorrupted Guardian. Remuel couldn’t dare try that.

“Negative? Can you explain more?”

“Of course. Just use opposite phrases for the code. That will open a wormhole for the required energy to reach you.”

Remuel stared at the stone; then back at Rebel with open admiration.

“You are … the author of this? You will be the one supplying the energy in the portal once I use a negative Proclamation?”

Rebel winked and tapped his breast. “I’ve a few million messengers working for me,” he said. “They will ceaselessly open all the portals the Earth will need, at my command.”

Remuel frowned. “Do I feel like there is a catch?”

“Of course there is,” Rebel returned. “Humans will go crazy about this and crave for more. In order to achieve more, they will sign an agreement to become my servants and resist Supreme Living.”

“You will give them more once they crave it?” Remuel asked incredulously.

Rebel got to his feet. His eyes were shining mysteriously “Of course not, but they won’t realize that.” He then pointed to the red stone in Remuel’s hand.

“Clone that key; I’ll come back for it tomorrow.”

With that, Rebel disappeared.

Remuel stared at the stone for a moment; then he decided to test it. He extended his arm forward and uttered the words of the code, careful to use the negative version of the phrases. He closed his eyes and thought of the first thing that came into his mind: a jar for water. When he opened his eyes, he saw with amazement two pipe-like gaseous tube formations: one started above him and extended over the roof of his house while the other rose and stretched away in the general direction of the river. The wormholes had appeared!

Remuel raised his eyes to peer into the wormhole. Inside the shimmering tube, he could make out a pale-faced celestial being holding a jar of water out for him. As he received the jar, the wormholes snapped out and disappeared. So Rebel had been right; this worked!

Since that day, Remuel basked in the glory of his new-found skill and in no time, mastered it. When he exposed his new talent publicly, he knew no human could see the wormhole with their eyes, so he enjoyed their applause even more.

When the news reached the King that the man could perform supernatural acts, he summoned him to the palace and employed him as his chief adviser.

That is how magic came into existence.

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Humans Get Beyond

Just when life on earth was beginning to look as charming as it could get, things gradually began to take on a new form. Things had changed a whole lot: extra-terrestrial creatures had creeped into the planet masquerading as normal humans; they had married and now sired children.

The fallen Guardians were now enjoying fully independent life, away from the disciplines of Alpha Peak and although they sometimes fell into a burning desire to go back home to that ever beautiful realm, they knew that they couldn’t turn back the clock. They knew they were doomed. This made them keep on experiencing occasional bouts of bad temper that ordinary people began to fear them. The ex-Guardians ended up turning into cold ruthless persons who were easily provoked into deadly fights and other kinds of unpleasant characteristics.

The one who immensely enjoyed the changes was Rebel, that dark menacing entity who lurked in the shadows and spied on an Earth that was becoming more and more corrupt as years rolled on. Things seemed to be going his way.

The children sired by the ex-Guardians were by no means normal. Their DNA structure was now different and having been cross-bred between ordinary humans and entirely alien beings, the offspring was unlike any other the planet had ever known. One could say that the children of the aliens were even more threatening, more corrupt and twice as ruthless as their mysterious fathers. They took on the mean, selfish nature of humans coupled with the almost-invincible nature of their fathers. The resultant offspring was utterly despicable. However, there was one thing that Rebel—brilliant as he was—had not counted on: that mere humans could find their way into the innermost chambers of Alpha Peak—alone and without his help.

This is how it happened:

There was a tall beautiful girl in the region known as Ruth, was whose looks many young people admired. She was the niece to Ed, a middle-aged man who was well-known for his reserved way of life. Ed was fairly respected and nobody knew of the secrets of his secluded life except for close family members of which Ruth was the closest.

Ruth was coming from the mill one evening when Kild—former chief of the Guardians of the East—met her on the lonely winding road and stopped to smile at her. Ruth wasn’t easily moved; she knew what all men wanted, and Kild was no exception.

“You are looking fine this evening, Ruth. May I carry your bag?” Kild offered.

“That’s kind of you,” returned Ruth, the corners of her mouth hinting a smile. “I am surprised you know my name.”

“You will be surprised to learn that I know everyone’s name in the region, Ruth,” Kild said and smiled charmingly at her. “But the rest don’t matter; you are the one who does.”

Ruth flicked her long eyelashes in a gesture that Kild translated as inviting. Her finger reached out and softly touched his collar.

“What do you want, Kild?” she asked with a voice that sounded sensual to Kild. That got his eyes flashing with alarmed surprise. How did this girl know his name? He looked down at her; her index finger was sliding down his lapel, a coy-like look in her eyes. That alone sent his alien blood coursing through his veins.

“I want you,” he said huskily and pulled her to him.

“Keep your hands to yourself!” she said sharply, backing away, but her smile stuck.

“What do you want, Ruth?” he asked pleadingly.

Ruth looked up into his blue eyes. Kild felt himself getting drawn to her.

“Teach me how to make a Proclamation.”

Kild dropped the bag of flour to the ground, released the girl and jerked backwards.

“What?”

“Come on Kild, you heard me; I know that’s nothing to you.”

“How did you learn about that?” asked Kild, his face now white.

Ruth touched his face lightly, a gesture that almost turned him into jerry. Damn, he thought, it’s so idiotic to be human.

“Will you teach me, Kild?” her voice felt like a song. He was feeling a bit dizzy. He hadn’t realized that women could be so powerful.

He knelt by her bag, took a handful of flour and sprinkled it on the ground. On the white flour surface, he used his finger to write a code, broken into three lines. Ruth squatted beside him and studied the writing, absorbing every phrase and memorizing every word.

“Don’t speak it out loud!” he said sharply, making her stare suspiciously at him.

“I shouldn’t? But what’s the use of it if it can’t be read out loud?”

“Do that when you are alone! At home or wherever, just don’t read it aloud here!” he was now shouting.

Ruth got to her feet and stared into Kild’s eyes.

“Guess what?” she retorted, anger flashing into her eyes. “I don’t need it! Now if you will excuse me…” She picked her bag and began to walk away. Kild grabbed her arm.

“Wait! Do you have to go now? I—”

“I don’t like men who shout at women,” she snapped. “Now let me go!”

Kild hesitated. Was this girl slipping out of her arms?

“I am sorry, Ruth. Here, let me walk with you.”

“I know my way home!” she said stubbornly. “But if you insist, you’ll have to tell me something first…”

Kild crossed his muscular arms and regarded her suspiciously. “What do you want me to tell you now?”

“What is it about the Proclamation that pisses you off?”

“That is one thing I can’t tell you now,” he said. Looking into his eyes, Ruth could see a momentary cloud of fear that went away as quickly as it had appeared. He then smiled brightly at her. “But all the same, I’ve shown you. Now be nice to me.”

Ruth smiled back: a hard, determined cold smile that Kild didn’t like.

“I changed my mind, Kild. Now run away, I got chores to do at home.”

Kild felt a spark of temper flare up in him. If this woman wanted him to be rough, he was damn well going to be rough. His arm went around her and pulled roughly, slamming her body hard against his. She kicked and clawed at him but he was way too strong for her.

“Struggling is pointless,” Kild said, his smile turning cruel. “No-one will hear you screaming and even if they did, none can stand up to me.”

“Let me go, you filthy beast!” she screamed. There was a light in this man’s eyes that scared her.

“It won’t take long, my dear,” he said arrogantly, his voice thick with desire.

“I will use the Proclamation code!”

That seemed to have worked for a moment. She felt his grip falter. Uncertainty registered in his eyes but suddenly, he tightened his grip on her and grinned.

“That bunch of crap I wrote on the ground for you? It isn’t the real code, it won’t work!”

Then Kild raised his eyebrows with surprise: Ruth suddenly relaxed in his arms; her hands stretched upwards and touched both of his cheeks. He looked down at her, pleased that she was submitting herself to him.

“I think it’s the real one, and it scares the daylights out of you, Kild.”

Kild decided to call her bluff. His face bent down, attempting to kiss her. She resisted firmly.

“Let me go or I will use the code. I know that code is real, and you know it too.”

Feeling frustrated, Kild released her. She picked her bag and ran down the winding dirt road; he stared after her and cursed bitterly. He then turned to where he had written the code and stamped at the patch with his foot, destroying the writing. After that, he spat and walked on.

Later that evening, Ruth knocked on the door of Ed’s house and entered. Ed was sitting on a wooden armchair, a scroll in his hands. Ruth closed the door behind her and sat on a wooden stool opposite him.

“What are you doing here?” Ed asked. “Don’t you have work to do in your mother’s kitchen?”

“Never mind,” she said impatiently. “I met Kild earlier today, Uncle Ed”

Ed rolled up his scroll and put it down on a small, battered table. He frowned at her with disapproval. “You shouldn’t be anywhere near such men, Ruth!”

“Relax, Uncle. I met him on my way from the mill. He taught me how to make the Proclamation!”

“What?” Ed said sharply, his eyes narrowing. “What were you thinking, Ruth? You shouldn’t be consulting such men! And certainly not about such matters!”

Ruth told him all about his encounter with Ed without omitting anything. When she was done, Ed sat back, a distant look in his eyes.

“I understand, Ruth. However, it’s definitely wrong to consult those kinds of people. They are not of this world; furthermore, it’s strictly against the Statute.” He stood up to light the candle on the wall. “I suggest you don’t use that code, Ruth. Discard it.”

Ruth got to her feet. “Even if it works? But why shouldn’t I use it?”

“I’ve already told you why. Supreme Living hates interaction between humans and ex-Guardians, and that goes with anything that comes from them.”

Ruth regarded him for a long moment before saying, “I hate them too, and you know it. I just wanted to know if the mysterious Proclamation works.”

With that, she left her uncle’s house and returned to her mother’s kitchen.

Ed sighed and sat on the armchair once more. That girl could certainly have wild imaginations at times, he thought. He reached for his quill and bottle of ink and settled back to continue writing on the vast scroll.

Ed spent most of his time writing. He recorded his dreams on the vast scroll every single day, and hoped that someday, humans would read the scroll and internalize it and not take it for some epic adventure or fantasy. What was recorded in that scroll could definitely pass for fantasy, of that he was aware. However, he felt it was his duty to do what he was supposed to do, and was really humbled that Supreme Living had given him the work originally assigned to Guardians, being a mere ordinary human who barely left his house.

He received instructions at night when he was somewhere between sleep and wakefulness. At that time, he would see celestial beings and feel himself carried by the wind into alien realms, where he was taught about time warps, the ultimate fate of planet earth and about Alpha Peak. Guardians translated to him instructions from Supreme Living which he was to record on his scroll until the appointed time when he would start going out to meet his fellow humans, warning them of the earth’s impending doom.

Ed vehemently believed in his dreams. He was sure what he saw at night was real and was bound to happen. His mystic beliefs spread to his family and eventually to those close to him, and ultimately, the whole region began to become wary of him. They thought he was weird, yet respected him and didn’t want to cross his paths.

After Ruth had left his house, he wrote for some more and feeling tired, sat back and decided to rest for some time. He had barely closed his eyes when a fluorescent cloud appeared in front of him and from within it, he could see the face of one of the chief Guardians.

“My humble fellow servant,” said the Guardian, “Kild is coming for Ruth your niece. Allow her to use the Proclamation so that she may escape, since Kild means to kill her.”

Ed bowed. “Thank you, fellow celestial servant,” he replied, feeling alarmed. “I will do as you say.”

The cloud vanished, and Ed opened his eyes. He got to his feet, opened the door and headed for his sister’s house which stood some fifty meters across the yard. He found the family having dinner. There was Emily his sister, George her husband and their two daughters: Ruth and Esther.

“You are late, Ed,” said Emily. “The food was starting to get cold.”

As he sat on the table to eat with them, he became aware that their eyes were constantly on his face; they were sensing that something was wrong but no-one attempted to ask him yet. Ed waited until the meal was over before addressing Ruth’s parents.

“I’ve got to talk to Ruth,” he began, pushing back his plate. “It’s important.”

“It’s okay, Ed,” said George. “We can leave you two alone for a moment.”

Before Ed could talk, a foot smashed into the door savagely and threw it into the room. The family remained frozen as the wooden door crashed in a heap on the stone floor. A group of evil-looking men stormed into the house, and Ed recognized Kild as he stood tall and towered above everybody else.

“Too bad, it seems we are late for dinner!” Kild sneered.

George grabbed his wife and two daughters and pushed them behind him.

“What-what do you want?” he asked, failing to hide his fear.

“Nice of you to ask,” Kild said sarcastically, stepping forward to face George. “We want Ruth your daughter. I believe she owes me a favor.”

“You won’t touch her!” George shouted angrily. “You’ll have to get through me first!”

George saw a bright flash of metal as a sword jumped into Kild’s hand and in a fraction of a second, felt the deadly sharp blade pressing against his neck.

“That I’ll gladly do,” said Kild, his voice turning ugly, his eyes menacing. “Oh, and I’ll touch her alright. Stand back if you value your life!”

“Stand back, George; it’ll be alright.” said Ed, seemingly unmoved. Everyone turned to look at him.

“Well, well!” sneered Kild, glancing at Ed. “Someone seems to talk sense at last.”

George hesitated but Ed’s reassuring look comforted him. He stepped back and clutched his daughter’s hand.

“You won’t get your way with her, Kild,” Ed said calmly. “You know that, don’t you?”

Kild’s mouth tightened with fury as he turned to face Ed.

“If I don’t, then I’ll kill her anyway!” he thundered. “I won’t have anyone stand up to me!”

He grabbed Ruth’s arm and touched her neck with the tip of the blade.

“Do it, Ruth,” said Ed. “You have my permission.”

Kild hesitated. He didn’t seem to know what Ed was talking about. Ruth took advantage of the momentary distraction to do what she had always wanted to do. She looked up and shuddering, recited the Proclamation code as she had memorized it earlier; word by word, quickly, before Kild gathered his senses. What happened next was astounding to everyone in that house. There was a flash similar to lightning followed by a deafening bang, and then the room was filled with smoke. A huge, seething wall of hot fire enveloped the room and its glare threw Kild and his men to the ground where they lay writhing, frothing at their mouths. George stared with wonder and amazement as the house wasn’t getting burnt by the flames.

George and his family turned their gaze upwards, where the roof seemed to have disappeared. Above them was a fantastic scene: thousands of Guardians stood exposed, shrouded by super-brilliant clouds in the starry night. Among that crowd of celestial beings stood Ruth, and she seemed to be transformed into an illuminant person, too brilliant for human eyes to look at. Before anyone in the room could react, the scene closed up and all the family could now see was the rough beams of the ceiling; so everyone turned their eyes back to the floor.

There was no-one on the floor. Kild and his band of hordes had vanished.

“Oh Gosh!” Emily exclaimed, terrified to her core. “What on earth happened? Tell me Ed, what happened to my daughter?”

“She will be back, Emily,” said Ed calmly. “She accessed the Grand Wormhole and got into Alpha Peak.”

“Wormhole?” George whispered. “What is a wormhole?”

Ed pulled a chair and sat down. “You can say it’s a sort of portal that opens up into another world.”

“How did she do that? And which world has she disappeared into?”

Ed still appeared calm. “Earlier today, she met Kild on her way from the mill and tricked him into revealing the code for the Proclamation. Since that time, Kild has been seething with anger, furious with himself for exposing the code that can be used against him. Therefore, he decided to kill Ruth, but a Guardian informed me about it in a dream; he instructed me to let Ruth use the code.”

“What will happen to her, Uncle?” Esther asked, a scared look in her big gray eyes.

“She will be back, child. Do not worry about her; Kild won’t bother her again.” Ed then looked at George and said, “The Proclamation translated her into Alpha Peak where she will be safe from Kild and any other corrupt half-man for the moment.”

Emily and George nodded their heads. They trusted Ed and were sure he was right in all his counsel. They hadn’t the slightest doubt that their daughter was safe and would be back soon.

“She will come back, but changed,” Ed went on, “You must listen and do as she tells you, and you all will be safe.”

George sat at the table across Ed. “I don’t understand. What was the fire all about?”

Ed laughed. “The Grand Wormhole either translates you into Alpha Peak—or if you are a corrupted Guardian—into NetherEnd. The fire you saw was attracted by Kild and if he had been the one who proclaimed the code, NetherEnd would have pulled him into its belly. If Kild wasn’t here, we wouldn’t have seen the fire at all.”

“You mean NetherEnd is … really made of fire?” asked Emily.

“It’s more than fire … it’s made of star material, deadly gases and unquenchable flames: all in a super-huge enclosure. Nothing can escape it.”

When they were still talking, a glowing cloud materialized at one corner of the room, startling them; the brilliance of it filled the room and rendered everyone speechless. Then suddenly as it had appeared, it faded off and in its place stood Ruth.

She stood with her eyes closed but what was fascinating about her was the fact that her entire body and garments were shining with a warm glow. George and his family sat glued to their chairs, staring at her. Ed was looking intently at her, a smile on his face.

Ever so slowly, the glow faded and eventually vanished, and Ruth opened her eyes. She looked surprised to see her family members; it was as though she had believed she had died.

Her parents and sister ran to her and embraced her. Ed remained calm, a proud smile plastered on his lips.

“Where did … Kild go …?” Ruth asked hesitantly.

“It’s okay, child,” said her father reassuringly. “He disappeared, and won’t be coming back.”

“Tell us Ruth,” Ed said anxiously. “Where were you?”

Ruth walked to the chair, sat down and wiped a stream of tears from her eyes. Her experience had taken toll on her emotions.

“I—I can’t explain, Uncle … it was like entering into a dream world, only that this time it was no dream.”

“I know, child,” said Ed. “It’s wonderfully overwhelming to be in the celestial realm. Tell us how it was.”

Ruth got to her feet and gestured excitedly with her hands, her lips trembling.

“I never thought it would be as fabulous as that! I flew past exotic-looking worlds with hundreds of thousands of people. I rose until I entered the domain of the Guardians, and rose further into the core of Alpha Peak where I met the greatest entity I have ever witnessed ….” Her voice trailed off as a stream of tears flowed from her eyes.

“Supreme Living?” Ed whispered, mesmerized.

“Yes,” Ruth answered when she could control herself. “He was like … the sun … with beams of light extending towards the horizon. He called my name, and I fell. I couldn’t bring myself to look at him.”

Her family members remained transfixed, listening with ever-rising intrigue.

“He said, ‘I have saved you from Kild, Ruth,’” she went on, “and then he touched my arm. After that, I was able to stand on my feet. He said, ‘I did it because you didn’t submit to Kild, and have never corrupted yourself with the forces of the fallen Guardians, whom I once appointed to protect the Earth from harm.’

“I asked him, ‘who are you, Sir?’ and he said, ‘I am Supreme, I am Living, and no-one will ever disrupt my plans. Do not be afraid, continue with your upright spirit, and I will always protect you from harm.’ He then told me, ‘Any celestial being who disobeyed me will end up in NetherEnd, and any human who corrupts themselves with the ex-Guardians risks contamination and a similar fate.’ I then asked him, ‘Will you cast them into NetherEnd?’ He answered me, ‘NetherEnd will draw them like a magnet, and they have no chance of escape. When in the near future, the Earth gets blown-up by comets from a nearby galaxy in a violent explosion, wormholes will suck-up ex-Guardians and cast them into Black Holes which will merge into a giant one, namely NetherEnd. Therefore, Child, work with your uncle and urge anyone who will listen to keep clear of the practices of those celestial beings.’

“He then went on, ‘I am the only one who can offer protection from the inevitable fate of the Earth, but in order for that to happen, humans must listen, believe and act according to my instructions.’ I then asked him when the Earth will experience the explosion, and he answered me, ‘I can’t tell you when that will happen, but it will, and when it does, all the uncontaminated humans will be rescued and placed on the world that you saw on your way here.’ After that, he let me come back here.”

Ed said dreamily, “Just as I have always thought … but I know for a fact that very few humans will listen to us.”

Ruth looked at his uncle sadly. “Uncle,” she said. “I believe every word of what that entity told me, and I am grateful that he saved me from Kild and better, allowed me access into Alpha Peak. Because of that, I am ready to listen to him and become his messenger.”

Ed placed a hand on Ruth’s arm.

“That, my dear niece, is the right mentality. Thank you for enlightening all of us, and together, we will work for Supreme Living, king of Alpha Peak.

Rebel watched the unfolding drama with mounting interest, and was thoroughly annoyed at Kild. He descended at once and appeared to Kild later that night in his house. Kild was startled when he saw Rebel’s shimmering shape towering above his table, a murderous look in his eyes.

“What brings you here?” Kild snarled. “Don’t you know how to knock?”

Rebel descended till his feet touched the floor. He leaned forward and glared at Kild.

“Watch your foul mouth, you brainless idiot,” he growled, his eyes resembling two burning embers.

Kild shifted uneasily. Rebel’s closeness gave him the jitters. “Take it easy, Rebel…”

“Shut up!” Rebel thundered, and his mere voice hurled Kild against the stone wall. Kild landed in a heap on the floor.

“It’s ‘Master’ to you from now on,” Rebel said coldly. “And that goes to the rest of all your ex-Guardian friends. I won’t tolerate anyone getting soft and revealing sensitive codes to humans! I won’t tolerate it!”

Kild looked terrified for the first time since he had returned from George’s house.

“Okay, Master, it won’t happen again I swear!”

Rebel grabbed the front of his cloak and lifted him effortlessly until he was floating on air. “You will do better than that, scumbag,” he said in a frozen voice. “You will convene a meeting of all ex-Guardians; I want to talk to them. The Earth is my domain and it’s time I put everybody else at their place. Things will run my way from now on!”

Kild blinked nervously.

“Step on it!” shouted Rebel. “Fly off and gather them!”

At that, Kild shed off his human body and got into his full alien form and with a flash, disappeared. Rebel shook his head. These fake empty-headed Guardians, he thought, they’ll do anything for a woman!

Rebel Reacts

High above the stratosphere, two hundred and two ex-Guardians paraded in front of Rebel who assumed his full stature, exhibiting a level of might that no-one else could rival.

He stood with his behemoth arms crossed, his gigantic shoulders as majestic as shoulders of a mountain; his face had the glare of a star and when he opened his mouth to speak, asteroids exploded and shards shot off into space. The humbled ex-Guardians stood in line and listened to him anxiously.

“Listen to me, ex-Guardians,” he began. “I didn’t mean to spoil your exciting evening on Earth, but it is really important that we have a nice talk tonight.”

Looking at him, Kild wanted to tell him to cut the crap and go straight to the point but he knew he couldn’t get the courage to utter the words.

“While you did well to break from the confines of Alpha Peak—where the big guy was denying you your freedom—I am not particularly happy with the way things are moving.” Rebel went on.

“You see, as long as you are operating on earth, you will have to do so under me; you will have to follow my rules. Get used to the fact that Earth is my domain; you will do what I tell you to do. Is that understood?”

Heads nodded in unison but Kild shifted uneasily. He wasn’t liking Rebel’s self-imposed supremacy at all. Rebel noted that stepped forward in three long steps and stood high above Kild.

“Is there something you want to say, Kild?”

“Well,” Kild began nervously. “I don’t want to be offensive, but, what’s the point of … well … what I mean is … we became free from Alpha Peak, only to end up in another prison …?”

Rebel cocked his head, re-crossed his arms and made a sly smile.

“I will try to be as friendly as I can while explaining this to you, Kild. Firstly, try and use your head: you are indeed free! You have the chance to be admired and revered by humans, just because you have a myriad of skills and special abilities that humans don’t! Now, remember I am the one who gave you that ability. You have basked in that glory long enough, haven’t you, Kild? Now answer me!”

Kild said reluctantly, “Yes we have.”

“Good. Now, it’s not like I am putting you into another prison. All I want is to show you how you can use that and even more knowledge to gain supremacy on earth. Who wants that? A show of hands please!”

Hands shot up. Rebel was pleased to see how the poor souls coveted power.

“There!” he said. “You all want more; I can give it to you. All I need to do is one thing: put boundaries between yourselves and the mortals. Do not be stupid enough to reveal some secrets that will work against you! Think about it, anyone getting too soft is getting one thing in return: NetherEnd!”

That caused a stir. Celestial beings feared that word extremely and so did Rebel but right then, he had to use it in order to make the threat sound real.

“Hush now!” Rebel thundered. The silence that followed could be hit with a hammer.

“Do not—for the life of you—teach humans anything that would bring them into contact with the king of Alpha Peak. That will be a danger to us and our influence will be dimmed.” Rebel glanced at Kild before going on, “One of you leaked the secret of the Proclamation to a woman who used it to access Alpha Peak. In the process, NetherEnd closed up on him, damaging a considerable part of my arsenal during the passage. This I will tolerate for now but no more.”

Kild visibly relaxed, seeing the matter had been laid aside. Rebel continued talking and his brilliantly cunning side took over; he promised to them great gifts and authority over human institutions. He further promised to give them codes for unlocking the potential power of stars and promised to teach them how to use those powers in order to access faster-than-light technology. This technology would allow humans to peek into the future and discover part of their destiny. No-one would resist that power; Kings and queens would beg to have it; they would part with anything just to make sure they could access what seemed impossible.

One might ask; why would Rebel be willing to disclose so much of his knowledge? Well, because this would make him invincible. With so big a crowd following him, Supreme Living didn’t have a chance of convincing many people otherwise. He would spread his teachings throughout the planet by simple distortion of facts, by promising to humans what they desire most: comfort, luxury and care-free life.

But would he deliver? Not really. Once the human body underwent metamorphosis and gained entry into the cosmic realm, it would already be contaminated, and branded to be Rebel’s own. That way, Rebel was sure of a landslide win.

But even Rebel had his limitations.

He may have immense power over humans and other celestial ‘suckers’, but he was no match for the king of Alpha Peak, who had indeed taught him all he knew. Rebel may have the power to convince the huge crowd who followed him, but deep inside, he knew Supreme Living had authority over him, and would throw him into the most feared dungeon after the earth’s ultimate doom was past. This was one fact that he loathed, and would frustrate Supreme until the last day. He just didn’t care how much it would cost him or how many humans would become contaminated: all he thought of and desired was frustrating Supreme.

Fortunately for humans, Supreme Living had his own plans of which Rebel—his biggest foe—didn’t know about.

Supreme had a store in Alpha Peak where future events were housed in ultra high-energy adjacent cubicles. This store was known as the Room of Destinies and no-one else apart from Supreme himself could enter. If Rebel’s faster-than-light technology was like a trickle of water, then the Room of Destinies was like a swollen, raging river. The cubicles calculated and precisely recorded events thousands of years before they would take place, using a top-secret algorithm unknown by everyone else apart from him. The Room was kept off-bounds to prevent a catastrophic paradox that would tear the universe apart as traversable wormholes fused. Alpha-Peak citizens had only a faint clue that such a room existed but didn’t have the slightest idea where it was.

Future events unfolded clearly before Supreme; nothing was hidden from him. This was so because he was the author of the so-called Destinies. He knew what decisions were right to make, and through the Room of Destinies, understood the exact effect those decisions would have on nature. This enabled him to have a zero margin of error. In human terms, you could equate that with perfection. If humans—or any other being for that matter—could learn that secret algorithm, then they could achieve perfection. They would be invincible and all-knowing.

But Supreme reserved total exclusive rights to such technology and that was a well-appreciated fact in the celestial realms. So long as he was the one at the wheel, the universe was safe.

But Rebel was not giving up without a fight, not even if he knew he wouldn’t win the fight; nevertheless was determined to make his presence felt and his might admired and revered by humans for several ages before the impending galactic explosion happened. His tactics were simple: prey on human weaknesses, namely self-centeredness and greed, by promising unreal goals that humans would never achieve. As long as humans didn’t realize they were being taken for a ride, Rebel would ‘reform’ as many as he could and in the end, he would have a following large enough to rival and threaten Supreme. That he half-believed and half-fantasized; he didn’t have a clue how he would stand a face-off with Supreme but something could be thought-up sometime. Besides, there was plenty of time to think about it but in the meantime, he had better enjoy himself while he could.

Chapter Three

Ed Ascends

Back to the infamous ex-Guardians….

Rebel kept his end of the deal. He used the Power of Stages to illustrate supernatural skills known as Dark Art and awarded some to the ex-Guardians who pledged their loyalty to him. In a nutshell, Dark Art was practice of supernatural acts by use of special keys and codes which aided in opening a complex network of wormholes; these wormholes would serve as pathways for Rebel’s Special Forces to carry out instantaneous commands on demand.

In turn, the ex-Guardians taught these skills to humans but the latter practiced them in sheer ignorance, doing stuff they never understood, and whose consequences they didn’t realize. Since humans didn’t realize the behind-the-scenes process of supernatural command execution, Rebel was content enough to have them guessing while they continued to contaminate themselves without realizing it.

Supreme Living was thoroughly infuriated by Rebel’s raw usage of negative codes to mislead humans into moral decay, since the corrupted humans were using the skills to oppress the innocent ones and to cause damage upon them. The practices were marred by sheer trickery, dishonesty and cunning but for Rebel, things couldn’t be running in a better way.

Although Supreme was determined to honor his promise which he had made to Rebel that he would grant him due freedom, he nevertheless couldn’t stand by and let his tricksters do everything they wanted.

He sent a Guardian known as Elevated to descend and seek Ruth.

“Ruth,” Elevated called out to Ruth who was busy washing clothes by the brook. Turning, she caught sight of the tall, calm-looking Guardian clad in incandescent bluish garments. She recognized him immediately; this Guardian had been her chief usher in Alpha Peak.

“Elevated!” she exclaimed excitedly. “What brings you here?”

“I was sent to you by Supreme Living, to urge you to communicate the Proclamation code to Ed your Uncle. Supreme has some work he wants done, and Ed will do it.”

Ruth bowed her head in acceptance.

“Yes, Guardian, I will, at once.”

“Thanks for being obedient,” said Elevated. “Supreme is happy with you.”

“Is he? I am thrilled to hear that!”

“Just do your part, Ruth,” he said and then leapt into the air. “All the best!”

Ruth found Ed resting outside his house under an oak, proof-reading a previous entry in his scroll. When he saw her, he immediately knew something was important had come up.

“Good morning child,” he said. “What brings you here?”

“Elevated paid me a visit a short time ago.”

“Elevated? Have you told me about him before?”

“He is a top Guardian who serves in Supreme’s executive office. He acted as my usher when I went up into Alpha Peak.”

“Oh, was he? What did he relay to you?”

“He wanted me to give you the Proclamation code so that you may have a one-on-one conference with Supreme.”

This surprised and intrigued him. He had never been to Alpha Peak in physical form. Therefore, he copied the code hurriedly and memorized it, wished Ruth well and then dismissed her.

The details of Ed’s entry into Alpha Peak is somewhat beyond the scope of this story. All the wonder and amazement of stepping into a surrealistic domain that seemed too ecstatic to be real was powerfully overwhelming for Ed’s human personality. However his ushers clothed him with a strangely sophisticated garment that made his body more stable, and his eyes more tolerant to the advanced, pulsating light.

Yet still, his new garments were not strong enough to enable him to enter into Supreme’s inner chamber and he felt like he might drop dead in the wide brilliantly lit passage if he went further.

“No need to fear, my dear son,” said a voice from behind him. As he turned to see the one speaking, a hand rested on his shoulder. The feeling he got from that hand filled his entire being with the most fulfilling feeling of relaxation he had ever known. It made him want to stay there—standing—and forget his past, future and all his concerns … so long as that magical hand remained on his shoulder, he wouldn’t ever need to think of anything distressing.

“You are the only man I can trust, Ed,” said the voice. It came out of a calm face which looked neither young nor old; with penetrating, knowing eyes that made Ed feel strangely hypnotized.

“Thank you, Sir,” Ed finally found his voice. He couldn’t think of anything else to say for the moment. He felt that his arguments, his reasoning and his opinions couldn’t count here in the domain of beings that knew things beyond explanation.

“The rogue Guardians are planning to wreck havoc on earth,” the face went on talking. “Rebel has given them powers to carry out vile activities that will eventually lead to senseless loss of human lives. I won’t let that happen, so I am giving you the mandate of being the protector of the innocent.”

Ed suddenly came to his senses. He seemed to realize that a huge responsibility was being put on his shoulders and he knew only too well that he wasn’t that strong.

“Me?” he asked, feeling puny and insignificant. “How can a mere, weak man protect fellow humans from powerful, advanced beings?”

“You are just another man until Supreme Living touches you with his own hand,” said the entity. “Then you become untouchable; ex-Guardians will fear you and Rogue will steer clear of your way. All you need, son, is to have some faith.”

“Really?” Ed asked. “I can’t imagine the magnitude of such a possibility but I believe you can do it, though I don’t deserve it in the very least. What I wonder is: why don’t you assign that responsibility to a Guardian? You have multitudes of them.”

“I know,” answered Supreme. “But humans will never be at ease interacting with celestial beings as they would be around a fellow human being. They will listen to you; they will believe your words and this will save their lives. I don’t believe in influencing people by instilling fear, these are tactics of Rebel and come to no good. However, not all will listen; you will face resistance but don’t let that demoralize you. Some people will just never change, not even if they realize they’re headed for doom. It’s unfortunate but true, and there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Ed was in the hyper-smooth tubular wormhole headed for Earth after his conference with Supreme when something blocked his way. He felt the extreme pressure thrusting him forward lose momentum and ultimately came to a halt before a dark menacing entity. One look at the hostile-looking figure and he knew what it meant: trouble.

“I had to appear inside this particular wormhole myself to believe it,” said the dark figure.

“Rebel?” Ed said, standing firmly on his feet inside the shimmering tube.

“Who else did you imagine it would be!” said Rebel, releasing a cold mirthless laugh. “A human just made history by entering Alpha Peak! The shame of it is, he is only being misled by the pseudo-Supreme!”

Ed felt a spark of temper in him.

“Oh, lay off, Rebel,” he retorted. “Let’s stop the lame games; both of us know who ‘pseudo’ as well as the misleader is.”

Rebel regarded Ed first with surprise and then with contempt. He crossed his arms and cocked his head.

“Stubborn little fellow, aren’t you?” he sneered. “What makes you think you could ever mean anything to anyone?”

“To you I may not, but to humanity I will make a difference. I will expose your lies, disrupt your traps and send your messengers packing.”

“You?” Rebel asked unbelievingly. “You can do that? You have a big imagination, you know.”

“That I will have to agree: I do have, especially after acquiring strength from Supreme Living. Now get out of my way, I have a planet to take care of.”

“Not so fast!” roared Rebel with a voice that startled Ed. “I have power to snap shut this wormhole with you inside, for a thousand years. By the time you come out, the earth will be devastated and laid waste. Think about it: your sweet little family weeping for you more that from the pain inflicted on them by ex-Guardians, while they end up believing you abandoned them. Ed, the wise, the caring, the noble: he departed his unsuspecting family!”

Ed hesitated as he pondered on the threat. For a faltering moment, he forgot about the reassuring and strengthening words of Supreme. Right now, he thought about being shut down in a mysterious tube in time-travel, and the thought made him sick. He thought of George’s family who really trusted him with their lives … he simply couldn’t afford being locked up inside a wormhole!

“You know it, don’t you?” Rebel pressed on; his face lit up in a sinister crimson glow that made Ed step back. He extended his arm and touched the shimmering roof of the wormhole.

“A simple tap on this tube and it will snap up, Ed.”

“No—!” Ed’s hand rose by reflex to protect his face. Before he could gather his senses, Rebel’s fingernail shot through the surface of the wormhole, stirring an angry, writhing bout of white-hot energy that turned over and over like a cloud of smoke in turbulent winds. Ed could see the churning energy cloud multiplying and slowly filing up the space between himself and Rebel, and he could feel the searing heat burn his skin. So now he couldn’t reach Earth! For a moment, he felt destitute and lost. Seeing his expression, Rebel feigned a sad look.

“All this can be cleared up, Ed,” Rebel said in an exaggerated smooth voice. “Just go back to your docile earthly life and forget everything else, Ed. Do it now before the tunnel closes up!”

Ed stared at the energy cloud: it was tuning into a bluish-white wall, starting from the roof towards the floor. A few more minutes and he would never reach earth. Frantically, he turned back, and was so dismayed to see a similar phenomenon taking place a few meters behind him. The Wormhole was closing him in!

“What are you doing?” he shouted at Rebel, whose figure was becoming blurry when viewed through the forming energy wall.

Then Ed saw Rebel squat and push a piece of leaflet through the narrowing gap remaining under the forming energy wall.

“Recite those words any time you are ready, and the wormhole will open up and expel you onto Earth. It’s the only chance you have.”

Ed stared at the leaflet. On it was the inscription:

I denounce any counsel from Alpha peak and declare myself free under Universal Law of Liberty, to seek my destiny. I trust the author of this proclamation and deem these words true.

Only that and I will be free? He wondered. He suddenly felt weak and exhausted, and sat down heavily, his face in his hands. Slowly, he turned to glance at the newly formed energy walls on either end of where he was. Rebel’s figure was fading fast.

“Now, Ed!” Rebel insisted urgently. “If you wait much longer, the energy walls will harden and that Proclamation will lose its power!”

Holding Rebel’s leaflet between his fingers, Ed bent his head forward and closed his eyes. He felt like he needed to act but he didn’t know what sort of action he ought to take. If he recited this phrase, he would be … well, free.

Or would he be? Supreme had told him: “The rogue Guardians are planning to wreck havoc on earth.”

How could he sit by and let that happen? Supreme had—

Then he remembered.

… you become untouchable; ex-Guardians will fear you and Rogue will steer clear of your way….

Of course! He was untouchable! How could he let Rebel brainwash him into conceding defeat? This was all a ploy to scare him into believing that he was doomed.

He sprang to his feet. “Supreme,” he whispered, “This is for you.”

Uttering those words seemed to fill him with new strength. He extended his hand towards the newly-formed shimmering wall and commanded, “By means of the power bestowed on me by Supreme Living, King of all cosmos, open up!”

What followed was sheer magic. Out of his hand emitted super-bright streaks of light that hit the energy wall and shattered it with a deafening hiss. Turning, he destroyed the wall behind him also, and the usual thrusting force returned and started propelling him forward.

In a split-second, he was standing in front of his house on Earth in the middle of the night, and he noticed something eerie; his whole body—including his garments—was shining in the dark. Before he could think about it, a voice spoke behind him.

“That was a nice display of power.”

He turned and saw Elevated looking calmly at him.

“Rebel will now stay away from you,” the Guardian went on “But his plans will persist. His forces will hunt you night and day but you don’t have to worry. Remember: the worst thing you can do is to let fear overpower you. Be strong and everything will be okay. You have been given the power; use it, and do so in humility.”

Ed bowed in gratitude. When he raised his eyes again, Elevated had vanished.

Rebel’s Milky Way Dilemma

To say that Rebel was infuriated by Ed’s triumphant landing would be an understatement. The small old man had more than damaged Rebel’s ego when he shattered the high-energy blocks Rebel had designed to close Ed up in the wormhole. Thinking that a mere human could exhibit such power was unimaginable and utterly humiliating.

He had to stop the human. No-one could stand up to him. No-one! Feeling emotionally drained, he resigned into his home in the stratosphere and entered his house: a huge ethereal pavilion sitting on mighty golden pillars whose base was foamy clouds of dark energy. He wanted to sit down for a moment, relax and strategize alone; this was one of those times that he felt he didn’t want any creature anywhere close to him. Rebel had in his house a minute version of one of Supreme’s cubicles contained in the Room of Destinies in Alpha Peak. However, his cubicle was nowhere close to any of those in Alpha Peak. It was a time machine all right, but one with limited abilities: it couldn’t record all information needed for a specific event; it could only ‘stream’ and record events that were marked ‘IMPORTANT’ on the counter.

That particular night, Rebel was surprised by a series of beeps coming from the machine when he entered his celestial house. Frowning, he went close and touched a switch and instantly, a huge gas-like display sprang up from it and stood floating above the machine.

On the display screen appeared a man wearing an apron and sitting on a weird-looking chair, inside a weird-looking room. Rebel leaned forward and pushed a switch. White letters appeared on the display:

3086 C.E., San Diego, Edwin Bolt.

For a minute, Rebel stood blank and then suddenly, it all occurred to him. This was far in the future, and this was a scientist working in his remote home garage in a country known as San Diego! He had to watch this. Crossing over to his armchair, he sat and studied the scene carefully.

Edwin Bolt the scientist was working fervently, constantly pausing to wipe sweat from his brow. From what Rebel could garner by reading the alerts on the display, Bolt was working on a sophisticated machine that was anticipated to repair an unstable Milky Way Galaxy.

Rebel got to his feet and impatiently pressed the reverse switch.

Rebel learnt that the event had started when Edwin, a solitary scientist living in the suburbs of the future San Diego, flew to Iraq and discovered scrolls buried under the ruins of an ancient civilization. The leader of the expedition was Paul, Edwin’s close friend and the chief archeologist. When Edwin’s crew had brushed the last speck of dust from the aged tattered scroll, both Paul and Edwin had spent hours in the lab scrutinizing the details of the scroll and had finally contacted experts to help them translate the ancient text. A few weeks later, Edwin had decided to keep it and study it further.

This was the year when Earth was facing a severe crisis; not just Earth but the entire galaxy. NASA had disintegrated after facing disagreements on how to handle a looming apocalypse, one that no-one had expected: the nucleus at the center of the Milky Way was expanding in an alarming rate, swallowing stars into what appeared to be a super-massive black hole formation, but still one that had never happened before. In three years, a quarter of the Milky Way had vanished. It was predicted that in nine years—that is 3095, the entire galaxy would be gone. The earth’s scholars nearly lost their minds, desperately trying new technologies aimed at stopping the catastrophe but when NASA collapsed, governments and scholars went into a panic.

That was when Edwin, the scientist who worked alone, found the scroll in Iraq and after understanding what was written on it, gave birth to the idea of integrating the message from the scroll into his machine. Not that he was that hopeful (and what was recorded in the scroll seemed ridiculous) but with the galaxy headed for an apocalyptic black hole suction, one could try just anything. That was when Rebel’s time machine got him.

Rebel frowned. The scroll? Of course, Ed was the author of the scroll! It must have been something he got from Alpha Peak! He controlled his excitement for a moment and decided to watch the scientist work.

Then a strange thing happened.

The scientist pushed three consecutive buttons on his machine. Milky Way lost its rotational speed for a moment and then resumed with a slower momentum than before. Its nucleus seemed to shrink, and then it stopped growing.

The scientist’s little machine had saved the galaxy!

Rebel didn’t care to see how the earth jubilated at that achievement; he snapped off his monitor and sat to think.

“Of course!” he thought to himself. “I get it now!”

It meant that if a scientist could be inspired by the scroll written by Ed, if he could succeed in stopping the expansion of a black hole, then the same technology could be modified to seal NetherEnd for good!

How would this be possible?

There seemed to be only two options: abduct Ed and force him to confess the technology—or the secret, whatever that might be; or else stalk Ed while he wrote; and copy the secret. He wasn’t sure abduction would work. Ed had freed himself from the blocked wormhole through powers bestowed on him by Supreme; he could do the same if Rebel abducted him.

There had to be a way, and he wouldn’t rest until he had found one. He had to look out for Ed’s one weakness and prey on it, and he felt that instilling fear would do it; after all, he had almost succeeded in the wormhole by instilling fear into the human.

Ed had more visits into Alpha Peak after that and his knowledge of the extra-terrestrial widened each day. He also managed to get a following, initiated by the family of George his cousin, and later spread in the region though slowly at first. Of course there were those who rejected him and scoffed at the mention of aliens existing in the world. Some thought he was getting a bit soft in the head. Aliens? Duh! Aliens who cared about humans, and had intentions of interfering with their lives? That was utterly ridiculous. Come to think about it, they said, this weirdo is starting to spread cruel rumors that are potentially harmful; the society ought to be safe from such a man. Many felt he should be locked up but none dared to be the first to take such action.

The next day after Rebel saw the “sneak peak” into the future on his mysterious machine, he visited Kild, determined to assign him the duty of dealing with Ed.

“I have a very important thing to discuss with you, Kild,” Rebel began, descending slowly and finally planting his feet on the floor. One look at his serious face and Kild knew something big was up.

“What is it this time?” Kild demanded, his voice betraying a mixture of annoyance and curiosity; then hurriedly added, “I mean … what is it, master?”

“I want you to keep tabs on Ed,” Rebel returned, scowling. “Keep a close watch on his scroll and what he writes; I want an exact copy of what he writes henceforth. I want daily copies as soon as he updates his scroll!”

“What’s on your mind, Master Rebel?” Kild asked anxiously.

“Sooner or later, he is bound to record something that will be of utmost importance to us, Kild. I need it.”

“Something in his scroll … important to us? And … how did you discern that?”

“Because I can tell the future!” Rebel snapped. “Now will you do it?”

Kild got to his feet. “I will assign someone to it….”

“Be mindful who you assign!” Rebel said sharply. “They had better be good.”

“Remuel will do it,” Kild said in a bored voice. “If he can’t, no-one in the cosmos can.”

Rebel headed for the door and paused to look at Kild.

“If you do this nice,” he said in a calm voice, his face expressionless, “we might finally find a way around NetherEnd.”

The word made Kild jerk backwards.

“What? How? You are not considering a petition, are you?”

“Of course not, you brainless idiot!” Rebel snarled viciously. “What do you imagine I am, a sissy? I won’t present stupid petitions to anyone!”

Kild stared at his hands stupidly. Rebel scowled at him and then vanished.

“Whew!” Kild sighed. “Good riddance!”

The Duel

Remuel was not particularly happy about the extra assignment. It interfered with his usual routine of having fun on the docile virgin planet earth. It meant he had to stalk Ed and look over his shoulder as he wrote on his scroll. Duh! What a dull job!

But did he really have to spend time eavesdropping ‘live’ as the scribe wrote? He could let him write all day, visit him at night in his ethereal body and take a peek into his scroll. The idea pleased him; but Kild had given him specific instructions that he wanted updates of the scroll as soon as they were recorded. Did that mean he had to spend his time eavesdropping?

“Have some hope,” he told himself, “the old fella most likely gets his inspiration at night.”

The thought made him relax a bit. However, he felt a bit uneasy snooping in the house of a man who had a close relationship with Supreme: the big guy might notice him snooping and come up with a way of frustrating Remuel’s attempts or worse still, arrest and lock him up! The thought made him shudder. It was not unknown for Supreme to lock up some gravely-errant Guardians in awful prisons up there in dreadful corners of Alpha Peak. It was unclear to him whether stealing and copying Ed’s scripts qualified to be ‘gravely errant’ or not, but Rebel had promised him full immunity once he got what he wanted from the scroll.

It seemed that Ed was getting some super-important secrets from Supreme Living—probably top secret information— somehow powerful enough for Rebel to fuss about.

Therefore, Remuel began his surveillance activity that very night when he felt Ed would be busy writing stuff. When he arrived at his house, he was disappointed to find the old loner in bed, fast asleep. He was unsure whether to wait or go back and then return in the morning; he knew he should wait but he also knew that tonight, his human friends were holding a party and there would be lots of exciting activities taking place. There would be drinks, dancing and girls … Remuel couldn’t have enough of the girls, now that he had assumed a human personality. It was like Kild to show up and tie him up to a dull boring job ….

Ed stirred, sat up and rubbed his eyes. He lit his oil lamp and reached for his scroll. Remuel edged closer, not in the least alarmed since he knew humans couldn’t see ethereal beings with their eyes.

CHAPTER 16

Heed O humans,

To the voice of the great Supreme

Who lives and governs with Truth,

He showed me the secrets of the sun

The moon and the stars;

The movement of the Grand Cluster

Sixteen thousand days shall the sun shine

Before the Cluster vanishes

Whoever comes across the message of this scroll

And trusts in the words hereof

Shall sustain the Cluster

For four thousand days …

For the humans who follow the deceivers

Will perish when the Cosmos tears the Cluster Asunder …

Ed placed his quill on the table and then sat on his bed yawning.

Yada yada yada, Remuel mumbled to himself. All they do is write code and more code; why can’t they write plainly?

“You wouldn’t know that, Remuel, since you lowered yourself to the level of the creepiest humans. You wouldn’t understand a thing about that code.”

Remuel swung around, startled to the core, and stared at Ed, who stared back at him with contempt.

“You—you can see me?” he asked, feeling shocked.

“I can see right through you,” Ed answered calmly. “And I can tell your intentions for tonight are bad. What do you hope to achieve?”

Remuel recovered fast from his shock. He mustn’t betray his emotions to this human.

“I came to pay you a courtesy call, Ed. How’re your celestial visits going?”

“Quite well, Remuel. However, you don’t want to know too much of it, do you? I was under impression that you got bored with Alpha Peak.”

Remuel leaned against the small table and regarded Ed, an amused smile on his lips.

“Not exactly, Ed. It’s Supreme who got bored with us—”

“—after you decided to corrupt yourself with humans!” Ed cut in defiantly.

Remuel lost his smile, and after a few futile attempts to smile again, gave up and shrugged.

“You now are basking in a new—and false—glory here on earth but you know the future, don’t you?” Ed pressed on. He could see that Remuel wasn’t liking the topic at all. Ed took advantage of that to bug him even more.

“After seeing your fellow exGuardians locked up in the dungeon up there, I can’t help wondering how lucky you are, prowling Earth and planning to wreck havoc while you should be there with the rest of the sorry guys.”

Remuel’s eyes registered fear for the first time.

“You saw them?” he asked, failing to hide his nervousness. “You really did?”

“I did all right,” Ed said sadly. “They fell bait to Rebel, who wanted to use them to cause mass killings of innocent humans. Supreme didn’t hesitate to arrest them; he threw them in the terrifying dungeons.” Remuel hesitated. Rebel, always Rebel! That guy was becoming the cause of everyone’s predicament, sitting relaxed while waiting for others to do his dirty work for him! So it was true, there actually were imprisoned Guardians up there!

“You’ve been learning lots of stuff up there, Ed,” Remuel said after a pause.

“Perhaps you would know if … if there was a way around … uhmmm….”

“NetherEnd?” Ed asked, raising his eyebrows expectantly. Remuel nodded.

“Honestly, I don’t think there is, Remuel,” Ed said. “At least not for exGuardians. For humans, there is always the chance to file petitions of honest apologies coupled with an earnest will to transform, and Supreme pardons them. For celestial beings, well … I don’t know.”

Remuel’s eyes flashed with feeling. “You aren’t sure if he would accept petitions from me?”

“I wouldn’t count on it, although I really don’t know. You see, Supreme is not a predictable entity. However, the only way to tell is by asking him directly.”

“I can’t!” Remuel said bitterly. “I can’t, you hear that?”

“I can try, Remuel,” Ed said, sitting up.

“You can?” Remuel asked, baffled.

“I said I can try, if you honestly desire pardon.”

“I do, Ed.” Remuel said, and his expression bespoke anguish.

“One thing I need to know, Remuel….”

“What would that be?”

Ed looked closely at Remuel and asked slowly: “What brought you here? The truth, Remuel!”

“Rebel is interested in your scroll,” Remuel said. “He wants a copy of what you record—daily.”

Ed frowned. Now that was strange.

“What does he want to do with it?”

“I don’t know, but rumor has it he wants to use the scroll to neutralize the threat of NetherEnd—for good.”

That puzzled Ed. However, he knew only too well that Rebel was the greatest trickster in existence.

“Oh, does he? Now how does he plan to do that?”

Remuel shrugged. “Kild didn’t tell me how; I doubt he knows either. Rebel likes to keep some things to himself.”

“Typical of him. Yet you fellows keep following him blindly. Now, do you believe that he can carry out a mission as phenomenal as NetherEnd, Remuel? Does Rebel sound like someone whose promises you would trust?”

“Not that I like to trust that shrewd conniver,” said Remuel, absently materializing into his human form. “But he is too powerful for any exGuardian to handle.”

Ed stood up and faced the alien.

“Be honest with yourself, Remuel. If you really believe that Rebel is worthy of being spoon-fed the secrets meant for the benefit of all humans, you may take the scroll to him. While you do that, meditate about the gravity of the harm he can do to the masses, and how Supreme would react to that.”

Ed pointed to the scroll and looked at Remuel’s shiny black eyes.

“There,” said Ed. “Copy any part you want!”

“I have already copied, Ed.”

“Go on then, Remuel, and remember the consequences of your actions.”

Remuel shifted his weight to his left leg. “What do I have to lose that I haven’t lost already? Is there even a point of giving petitions while everything has been decided?”

Ed heard the bitterness his voice and felt sorry for him.

“Listen Remuel. I remember seeing Rebel executing one his negative codes one familiar Sunday. Using the Power of Stages, he surrounded a garden in the east with a luring energy to make human girls appeal to you—celestial beings who’ve never had a need for physical intimacy. Before you realized it, you had already signed your own deportation from Alpha Peak.”

Remuel stood there looking flabbergasted.

“You saw that?” he asked in an astonished whisper.

“Of course I did,” Ed replied calmly. “Supreme showed it to me.”

Remuel closed his eyes, bent his head down and wiped his blow. When he spoke, his voice was ice-cold with rage and disgust.

“He did that to me? And I’ve been running around carrying out orders for him?”

“Yes, that is how it happened. However, you are also guilty for not being willing to resist the temptations. We all have that power.”

“I am guilty of course,” he said, staring out of the window into darkness. He then turned and faced Ed, who was surprised to see a concerned look in his eyes.

“You had better go back to sleep, Ed,” he said. “I will be on my way.”

“Are you going to take to him the scroll you memorized?”

“I won’t.”

“You won’t?” Ed asked, raising his eyebrows. “And why not?”

“I may have been stupid once, Ed, but I won’t be stupid this time round. Guess what? I will live my life opposing him, and thank you for opening my eyes.” He then pointed to the scroll and went on: “You can be sure Kild will send someone else to copy it, if not do it himself. How will you handle it, Ed? Kild is efficient, ruthless and thorough.”

Ed got into bed and covered his feet. “Don’t worry about it, Remuel. You have taken a noble decision and may Supreme remember you.”

Remuel pulled the hood of his cloak over his head. Before he could talk, a light flashed in the room momentarily and Kild suddenly appeared. His face showed annoyance and impatience.

“Did I send you here to chat, Remuel?” Kild snapped.

“I changed my mind, Kild,” Remuel said, standing between Ed’s scroll and Kild. “I am not working for you any more—nor for Rebel for that matter.”

Kild stared at him, and then burst into mirthless laughter.

“Oh, you don’t say!” he sneered. “And where do you plan to run and hide? You know you can’t return to Alpha Peak; Supreme will grab you and throw you into the dungeons!” “Then I will gladly suffer the punishment than stoop so low right now as to obey Rebel!” Remuel then pressed his palms together in a pleading gesture and addressed Kild anxiously. “Look what Rebel reduced us to! He engineered our fall, using negative energies to control us in the garden!”

Kild turned and scowled at Ed, who was sitting calmly on the bed, his legs covered. “Did this man feed that garbage to you, Remuel?”

“It’s the truth, Kild, and you know it.”

“I don’t care!” he snarled. “Now get out of my way! I’ll take the scroll!”

Remuel crossed his arms.

“No. You won’t touch it. No-one will,” said Remuel calmly. “Beginning now, I am a self-appointed guardian of innocent humans.”

Kild smiled coldly. “Do you know how pathetic you sound? You long lost your guardian power, you stupid clown! I can strike you down this very moment! Get out of my way!”

Remuel firmly stood his ground. His body underwent the ever-intriguing metamorphosis and now he stood tall, muscular, silvery and glowing.

Like in a flash of lightning, a deadly flaming sword appeared in Kild’s hand. He swung it forward in a swooshing arch and struck Remuel on the neck with full force. Remuel staggered back and fell on one knee. If that blow would have landed on a human’s neck, it would have chopped it off instantly.

Remuel grasped the blade and pulled with all his strength, jerking Kild forward. As soon as Kild’s body was close enough, Remuel reached for his neck, grabbed it and squeezed. Spark-like radiation seemed to fly out of the two bodies as they dueled in an extra-terrestrial fight. Suddenly, Ed saw Remuel being thrown back onto the floor, and then the brilliant flash of the blade as the sword went for Remuel.

Remuel suddenly went limp. When Ed looked down, he saw that the sword had been pushed through Remuel’s body, pinning it to the stone floor. Kild straightened and reached for the scroll.

Then Ed witnessed something strange. Someone kicked Kild and threw him against the far wall with a mighty force. Kild crashed on the floor and remained there, shaking. Ed turned to see who had intervened.

Elevated—the chief Guardian— stood on the floor, bent and pulled the sword out of Remuel’s body and threw it to the floor; then held him by the hand and pulled him to his feet. Remuel opened his eyes and blinked several times, then recognized Elevated.

“Thank you, Chief,” Remuel said.

“Thank yourself, Remuel, because you risked your life for the sake of the venerable Scroll containing Supreme’s words. Therefore, Supreme couldn’t abandon you.”

Remuel looked flustered. He turned to look at Kild but the latter had disappeared.

“Ed will present your petitions, and you will be pardoned but Supreme will give you a light sentence for the consequences of all you have done.”

“What will that be, Chief?” he asked excitedly?

“You will abandon your earthly duties—including wife—immediately and make right of all wrongs you have done. Supreme will then let you become what you have already pronounced yourself: a self-appointed guardian over afflicted humans. You will guard them, fight for them, labor for them and suffer for them. Will you accept that, Remuel?”

“I will, Chief, but … Rebel and his forces will seek me and destroy me.”

“They won’t; attempts will be made but they won’t be able to really destroy you. If you pull through faithfully, your power will ultimately be restored.”

Remuel beamed. “Is that right?” he asked.

“Yes,” Elevated answered. “Let’s see what how much fight is remaining in you. However, I warn you: it’s not going to be easy. You have lost so much of your celestial essence when you fused with humans; so, your purification and restoration is not going to be easy. It’s going yo hurt.”

Remuel bowed his head. “I will do it with honor, Elevated. Nothing will strengthen me more that the truth Ed has revealed to me tonight.”

“May all be well with you, brother,” Elevated said, and then turned to Ed. “Take charge of Remuel, Ed. You will give him orders, and he will serve you.”

Ed nodded politely and then asked: “What is all the fuss for, about my scroll being needed by Rebel?”

“It is about the distant future and destiny of the universe. I haven’t been given the details of that; Supreme Living himself will inform you accordingly.”

“I understand. What will Rebel do to this scroll?”

“He won’t touch it!” Remuel cut in sharply. “I won’t let him!”

“That is commendable, Remuel,” said Elevated with a smile. “You and I will guard it now while Ed seeks audience with Supreme.”

“Now?” Ed asked, suddenly alert.

“Yes, brother, go now. He is waiting.”

Ed put his hands together, whispered the Grand Proclamation and disappeared in a flash.

EPILOGUE

“Son,” Supreme began. “Difficult times are awaiting your planet, and the most troublesome is not coming from outer space, but from the people themselves. Those who will allow themselves to be manipulated and lied to by Rebel and his forces will turn into despicable beings; they will only conceive thoughts of violence and crave harm and damage upon their fellow humans, physically and emotionally. While the larger part of the planet is prowled by unruly people, those who are humble will suffer the onslaught.”

Ed bowed his head. “Master of justice, you know that all I got, I inherited from you. I am happy that you have told me these things, but I am grieved that my brothers and sisters will suffer. Yet I know you can stop it if you so like.”

“What can stop them,” said Supreme, “is TRUTH, like it stopped Remuel and changed him.”

“I am touched by his royalty, Master; and because I know you are fair, will you pardon him?”

“I will pardon him, but with the order explained to you by Elevated the Guardian. Once he has completed his cycles, I will accord him his former abilities. I am fair all right.”

“Tell me then, about the scroll?”

“Rebel wants to use Chapter 16 of your scroll to seal NetherEnd. In order to do that, he needs to know the figures recorded in the chapter; he would then use a sophisticated method by aid of the Power of Stages. If he succeeds, NetherEnd would be sealed up.”

“How dreadful!” Ed lamented. “Will you let him do it?”

Supreme handed out a brilliant little pebble to Ed.

“Use this pebble; draw a circle around the chapter. This will distort its image in Rebel’s eyes; he will never be able to copy it.”

Ed closed his hand around the pebble.

“You are just, O Master,” he said. “What, if I may ask, was the reason for making me record the chapter in the first place?”

“Because it will save the galaxy in the future when its nucleus will start becoming unstable and start swallowing stars. A scientist, aided by your scroll, will use an inspired algorithm to stop the nucleus from forming a huge, dreadful black hole.”

Ed was dumbfounded. He could not fathom how anyone could have so much knowledge as to calculate such a distant future. The entity talking to him read his thoughts.

“Do not be doubtful. Predicting fate and foretelling the future is my business,” said Supreme. “I don’t use small-time tactics such as those of Rebel; I use my own self-made algorithms that no-one can fathom. So long as I am in-charge, your planet is safe.

“Go then and start talking to people, tell them the truth; some will hear you and respond. Others will not, but you have to let them be.”


As per the words of Supreme, Ed faced one of the harshest ridicule he had ever witnessed. He stood at marketplaces and shouted to people. To those who were caring to listen, he told them everything. However, the majority of the populace rejected his teaching, calling him a demented man. Aliens were on earth masquerading as normal men? Nonsense, they said.

Nevertheless, he got quite a following. A considerable number of people, led by his niece and her family followed him and implemented his teachings to the letter.

When Rebel saw that the group was gaining fame and recognition, he put pressure on exGuardians to persecute Ed and his converts. The exGuardians in turn influenced leaders and instructed Kings to adopt strict laws and ban extra-terrestrial teachings and beliefs. Some members of Ed’s group were captured and killed in torture-houses. The rest fled and lived in caves to escape the wrath of the kings, who saw them as threats to their kingdoms. However, the group never died out due to Ed’s diligence and Remuel’s vigilance. Supreme provided the necessary protection and the group, though persecuted and harassed, went on with strength renewed daily.

The most saddening is that human DNA fused with that of the aliens to produce utterly despicable breeds of people who have ever set foot on the planet. However, all they did, the struggle of Ed and his group, the royalty of Remuel and the malice of Rebel in his vicious quest to overcome the ancient systems as well as science of the future, and many other happenings, all these are subjects for another story… one that I will narrate shortly.

The End


Short Stories | Science Fiction | Paranormal |


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