It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


TwinWorlds (working title)

page: 1

log in


posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 02:44 AM
Morning on Tarvin is a beautiful thing; for the most part we all tend to take these small momentous occasions for granted but not me. I look out at the rolling hills made gold by the lush Grantine reeds that grow so prevalently on the plains of Vertisia as they crawl up to the base of those jagged peaks of the Tayn Rawliss mountain range reaching up to the skies, almost as if they are trying with every fiber of their being to escape this place, beautiful as it is. Today Ryk wants me studying with Galendra “no Spider of mine shall go ignorant of our past” he says. She and I are to meet at I’ve got hours till then but I still feel anxious knowing I must simply meet with Galendra let alone actually study in her presence. I sweat and shake like a nervous schoolboy and I’m sure she notices it. This, of course, makes it all the more awkward. Sometimes I wonder if it’s just Ryk being cruel.

A bank of clouds has rolled in obscuring my view of the sunrise. Oh well, there’s always tomorrow and I’m beginning to feel hungry anyhow. I drop from the window seat overlooking mother’s less than legal vegetable garden beneath the orcwood out in the yard and begin my descent to the lower level of our modest but large home. My father purchased this house three and a half or so years before I was born. My sisters barely even remember him any longer and I never knew the man, though mother and Ryk both seem to think he was the epitome of what a man should be, still I wonder if he would be proud of me, mother says yes but she’s a mother so the verdict is still out on that one.

A waft of Grey smoke greets me halfway down the stairs, Tanya must be cooking breakfast this morning and that can only mean mother has gone into Vertis Proper to do some shopping, I hope she has seen my note. We’re out of hot pickled sausages. I move to the cupboard above the sink to get a coffee cup, the water begins running, stupid sensors, who thought these things were a good idea? Every time I go to get my coffee cup the sink spews a gallon of water, and the global allowance just went down so I’m thinking we should probably take the sensors out before we all die of thirst. Tanya walks in hastily as something is burning on the stove top, she curses and quickly removes it from the frying pan before cursing again more loudly as a grease bubble bursts and leaves my older sister with a rosy little red splotch on her forearm, I chuckle, she shoots me a disapproving glare, I look away still grinning.

Tanya speaks up “want a piece Kal? It’s burned but don’t dogs like it like that?” it’s not amusing. But she seems to think so judging by the smug grin she’s wearing.

“Yeah, I think I’ll pass sis, as always. This dog is more apt to have a few slices of bacon.” I say.

She replies “this is bacon Kal.”

To which I perform a startled jolt and begin to peer suspiciously at the charred meat she has presented me with. “Looks like charcoal.” I say. “Bet it tastes like it too.” I try a small burnt corner and feign vomiting. As I move to the sink to strengthen my jape the sensor takes it upon itself to discharge another gallon of water, I really need to fix that.

Laughing lightly under my breath I open another cupboard, the one with the coffee, as Tanya says “we’re out.” A deep dread fills me to the very core. Now I know where Mother went.

I say with an urgent tone “when did she leave, when will she be back?” Tanya doesn’t appear to get it. I clarify “Mother, when did she leave?”

Moving to the sink to wash her hands Tanya replies in a sing-song manner “about twenty minutes or so before you crawled down from your cave, little brother.” She finishes, “she should be back soon with the coffee.” Rolling her eyes she leaves the kitchen area dumping the charcoal bacon into the waste bin as she moves past it.

I fix myself a small but filling breakfast of fried eggs and un-charred bacon with toast and finish it off with a glass of fresh ice cold milk with just a bit of cream still floating on the surface. Life is simple out here on the outskirts of Vertis District Tarvin a large city by any standard but paling in comparison to the city-states of the Tallando-Graff District of the north or the Basz District which are both over one hundred square miles of unadulterated inner city. I often wonder if those Districts have organizations similar to Webs. Ryk says that information is more valuable than any resource at our disposal, you can use it to make a friend or make an enemy twist in the wind, as he put it to me once, thinking back on that moment I see the validity of his view, so it only seems natural that other intelligence syndicates would be at work in the larger Districts.

Working with the Webs Intelligence Syndicate has proven to be gratifying work. More so than any other work I have performed. Having permemploy on Tarvin is a luxury. Whereas most residents are given menial but meaningful tasks to perform based on a government organized work schedule I have the joy of being permanently employed. In other words, I don’t have to worry about losing out on resource allowances because I wasn’t good enough at my current station.

Everyone from age sixteen on up is mandated by the Tarvinian Royal Council to work sixty hours at least on a weekly basis in order to maintain their resource allowances at a suitable level. If a family uses all their resources for a given month they have to go the rest of the month living in veritable poverty, no power, no water, no food. If a family goes too long without maintaining their allowances, the Family Protection and Child Development Assurance League will allow you to “voluntarily” enroll your children into a development academy. If you refuse? Well…

But that’s life on Tarvin, The T.R.C. keeps us all happy, healthy and fed so long as we don’t use more than they tell us we can use, though I have never once seen a starving Vertis council member. A starving pleeb, on the other hand, is an entirely different story. No one ever complains regularly though, people that voice their complaints are usually never heard from again, given they voiced said complaints where others could hear them. Everyone simply assumes the complainants leaves the District. Though I’m sure their loved ones feel differently. Being an intelligence agent, I know exactly where they go. A titanium hole. Some of them become “terrorist” leaders though they died from starvation in pitch black cold trying to eat the flesh off their own fingers. Others, mere memories.

I never said working with Webs was a pleasant business only that it is gratifying. Gratifying in the sense that my mother and sisters will never have to want for anything, though they must still work based on the Resource Accruement Guidelines, which aren’t actually guidelines at all but rather state mandated work schedules.

Finishing my breakfast I get up from the table and rinse my flatware, down a quick glass of water and head towards the viewing room. The viewscreen is one of the newer paper-thin models which is essentially pasted upon the wall. I pick up the controls and sit on my favorite bagseat. Reclining I turn on the viewscreen, switch it to the global newsfeed.


posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 02:46 AM
A few pointless stories about social servants rescuing pets, a spiel given by a young looking old woman, now a man reporting the latest terrorist activities on Tedin. It seems extremist elements of the Planetary Resistance Alliance are fighting skirmishes on the border of two countries called the U.S.A and Canada. Fighting has been fierce and it seems the P.R.A. insurgents have the upper hand.

Tarvinian forces have never dealt with a threat like this. Rebellion simply does not occur on Tarvin. It seems the insurgents have recently developed a new projectile weapon system. A hand held firearm that, when the projectile strikes its target, a small explosive device embedded in the projectile detonates, turning the target into a chunky crimson stew leaving absolutely no hope for survival. Though only prototypes according to the reporter; they are effective nonetheless. On top of their rapid weapons development programs the P.R.A. insurgents battle using something they call “guerrilla warfare” apparently this fighting technique can be attributed to a warlord from a country on Tedin called China, from centuries before the Tarvin/Tedin planetary brotherhood pact back when the most common name for Tedin was Earth.

The total casualties of the skirmish have not been determined as of yet, however, estimates range in the upper hundreds for Tarvin and only about a dozen P.R.A. insurgents. Though, if the reports can be believed (which they cannot) the Tarvinian Planetary Peacekeepers have taken a high ranking insurgent as prisoner.
In the family study I hear the telecomm bleeping and blooping, its way of letting me know someone is hailing the household. Standing I move through the archway that leads to our study and remove the telecomm from its cradle.

I answer, “Fynns”

A brief moment before Ryk’s grainy voice floods my ears, “Kalvyn, good you’re up, you watching the ‘feed?”

“yeah,” I say, “sounds like the P.R.A. boys aren’t taking ‘please, back down and submit’ as an order. They really hate us.”

“them Kal, they really hate them.” Ryk replies with more than an edge.

Them? Ryk has always had a distaste for the T.R.C. but he has always referred to the collective as ‘us’ never ‘them’. Something has changed.

“them?” I ask.

“yes, Kal, them. You’ve got an hour till study with Galendra, be there.” Ryk says.

“right. Ryk why-“

A boisterous click invades my ear canal. He knew what I was going to say, he usually listens patiently to my complaints regarding study with Galendra, bastard. Ryk seems somehow different today. I must have words with him in person before I resign the evening.
Last I heard, today’s assignment is a quick ‘listen in’ at a local restaurant in Vertis proper nothing too overtly serious or dangerous. In the Intel game, however, things can go bad real quick. You have to become a nobody, a nothing. Suspicious people attract attention; I’m never a suspicious person. I was trained by a man that is widely considered to be a living legend in the tight knit intelligence community. Ryk Razer, my father’s best man. My only true friend on this planet.

posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 02:49 AM
Returning the telecomm to its home, I make my way back to the viewing room, the time display in the bottom right hand corner of the viewscreen reads ‘’ less than an hour, Ryk. I head up to my cell to wash and dress for my study hall with Galendra. After my shower I go to the closet, still drying my hair, to pick my clothing for the day. Looking outside it seems there is a brisk wind blowing judging by the ballet the branches in the orcwood tree are performing, its nearing the middle of Harvest so it will be chilly outside.

Appropriately, I choose a black and yellow coat with slight rubbery ridges running along the sleeves, a simple black under tunic and a pair of pleated black work trousers. The coat is one of my favorite garments, personally. Galendra once said it brightens the flecks of yellow in my light green eyes, plus I think it looks great with my dark shaggy hair. I take a final look in the mirror before departing my washroom, I should really have a shave but I don’t want to be late to study hall. Actually, I want to be early, Galendra admires punctuality.

Returning to my cell I take a seat on the edge of my bedding to slip on my boots. they are made from sturdy synthetics like most materials on Tarvin, but the soles of mine are a super soft polymer designed specifically to cancel out noise when I move in them, once I even jumped from a crate of about two meters only to land on the concrete floor below with nothing more than the sound of a shadow passing. They work phenomenally.
From the lower level I hear the portal open from the outside, yes I really can distinguish the difference; it’s part of the training.

Mother calls out, “Tanya, Litia?” she says, “Kal?” both sisters would be at work by now.

“Up here mother, in my cell. Have you got the coffee?” I ask plaintively.

“of course Kal, oh, I also seen the note you left on the preserver. I got the really hot ones your sisters hate so much.” I can hear the smile even if I can’t see it.

I reply gratefully, “Thank you Mother how thoughtful of you!”

Sliding the secondary boot onto my left foot I stand, straighten my coat and begin the descent to the lower level which still slightly reeks of burned meat. Mother is waiting in the kitchen. Already brewing is a pot of coffee, it smells insidiously delicious. I kiss my mother on the cheek and proceed into the viewing room once more where the viewscreen is babbling about some man out of Gloori District which has been detained on suspicions of being a “supporter and cohort” of the P.R.A. I ignore it for the most part and glance at the time display which now reads ‘’ I better get going. But not before I have my cup.
After I enjoy my coffee I feel much more apt to tackle the day, though still queasy over the encounter to come, I bid farewell to my mother and exit the house through the rear portal which leads to our hangar where I keep my scooter.
Outside, it is colder than I had anticipated, at least 12 barriks, natural for this time of year but unwelcome nonetheless though still not cold enough to cause a freeze. I zip my coat to keep the wind at bay. The large double portals of our hangar are not closed entirely as per usual when Mother opens them. Inside I reach immediately to the left; the action is rote by now, flipping the switch that activates the lighting. There is a flight of stairs crawling to an upper level; I follow them to the top.

To the right is my father’s old Transer Model Number Two, an antique worth more than its weight in food. I stare at it for nearly a full minute only breaking the trance when I hear Mother’s voice yell my name from below.

I answer her call “up here Mother, readying my scooter.” I lie.

“Kalvyn, there’s no need to lie, you always prep your scooter before you resign the evening.” She knows me far too well. Because I’m most like my father she says. It’s true, I can tell.

“you know, Kal, it’s yours whenever you want it” mother says arriving at the top of the stairs.

I glance quickly, unbidden at Father’s Transer, it’s red enamel gleaming in the light peeking through the portals on the lower level, motes of dust apply a certain aesthetic to my view as though the Transer were tearing through a cloud at mach speeds. I know the Transer Two can’t go that fast but still.

“I know it Mother, but I can’t, I just can’t. I mean, I’ve never even sat in the thing, for Ura’s sake.”

A silence falls on the hangar that nearly deafens me. I look to my mother. Tears are beginning to well in her eyes and I feel that cold stone in the pit of my stomach turn, seeing my mother like this is almost enough to make me hate Father. Why did the bastard have to leave us? I feel immediately guilty upon completing the thought, Father was no bastard, not by a long shot.

“don’t cry mother.” I say moving to embrace the woman that birthed me all those twenty-two seasons ago. “you and I both know Father had his reasons for leaving, there was nothing that could be done, Ryk said-“

“Volga damn what Ryk said Kal, he’s the man that sent your father away! You know that Kal, you know that.” She says with anger in her eyes. She continues, “Still you work with the man.”

“He swears it’s what father would want and all I want is to believe Father would approve of me.”

“he would Kal.” She says, beginning to weep now. I hug her once more, tighter this time kissing her on the cheek before disengaging the embrace.

Holding Mother at arm’s length I say to her quietly, “I know mother I believe you.” Not exactly a lie but nor is it the truth. “what is it you came out here in the wind to tell me, Mother?”

“Right,” she says rubbing at her now red and puffy eyes.
“Ryk was on the comm he wants you to report in at Webs earlier than he told you last evening.”

“Really,” It is not a question, I’m a too dumbfounded for questions. Why would Ryk ask me to report earlier than scheduled? Between his behavior over the comm earlier and now this, I am beginning to feel uneasy about the rest of this day. Ryk has never had me report early.

“and what time am I to be there Mother?” I ask dutifully.

“now.” Comes her response.

“Now!” has Ryk gone mad? What about study, what about Galendra? “did he give any reason as to why I need to be at Webs immediately, this doesn’t make sense Mother, Ryk has never asked me to come in early.”

“none, Kalvyn. Just said he needed you there now. His words.”

Needed me?

“Right. I suppose I had best get moving then.”

I give my mother another hug and kiss her again on the cheek before mounting my Deltax 3200 airscoot. I press a small button on the control panel, on it is a pictogram of an airscoot with lines below it indicating takeoff, a portal begins sliding upward into the roof allowing me to maneuver the airscoot out of the hangar with ease. Pressing the ignition my deltax screams to life with an electronic whir like a breeze of lightning caressing your face, a brief static charge makes my hair stand on end then I’m off; out of the hangar and onto the windy Vertisian plains.

posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 02:50 AM
Vertis proper is less than a ten minute ride on my Deltax. There is something freeing about opening the throttle out on the plains. Pushing the airscoot to its limits, approximately fifty knots of wind blowing through my hair around the plastiglass windshield that protects my face from anything that might be unlucky enough to get caught up in the vortex of my airscoot.

Arriving at the border of Vertis District I slow the Deltax to around seventeen knots. Cruising the wide thoroughfares at a height of about three meters. The pleebs below look up at me as though I were flying a sow. Most of them see me daily, but still they never get enough, on the outer ring of Vertis District council members are rarely seen, most of these people have never even ridden in a flightcar let alone driven their own airscoot.

The most these pleebs see of flightcars on a regular basis are the black specks zooming about the inner ring where the Council Chamber and all its members live in the nearly mile high tower that houses all Vertis District Tarvinian Royal Council members, of which there are seven-hundred for Vertis alone, larger districts like Tallando-Graff house even more.

Ahead I see the headquarters of Webs. Slowing to less than ten knots then stopping completely, I flip the switch labeled with a pictogram of an airscoot with lines above it, another static whir and the Deltax begins hovering in place as I twist the throttle lightly the airscoot begins to land with the grace of a Novus bat. I park the vehicle and flip the switch back to its original position. Dismounting the scooter, I reach into my pocket and pull out the airscoot controller pad, press the button that shows the pictogram of a little man being zapped by a stylized lightning bolt and head inside to see what has Ryk in knots.

posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 04:53 AM
Great story .. looking foward to see what happens next ..

posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 11:01 PM
Alright, pat, since you seem like the only one interested, here is chapter two.


posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 11:02 PM
“what is this exactly?” asks Roger Stevens, Commander-in-Chief of the Planetary Resistance Alliance.

“well, sir, what we appear to be looking at here is a Tarvinian Close Combat Vessel. As of right now it has not entered our atmosphere but it is indeed stationary above Washington. We don’t expect them to attack, they will wait for us to do that.” His second in command, Georgie Weathers, reported diligently albeit shakily.

“So what do you propose we do about it Georgie?” asked Commander Stevens.

“Sir, with our current technology we can’t exactly reach the CCV to engage, it’s just too far away. The closest we can get to space without help from the Planetary Brotherhood is just breaching the troposphere. This, as you know, does nothing to help us now, sir.”

His unease was palpable but Roger was used to that. Though intellectually superior, Georgie always seems to feel pressure when conferring with the commander. Roger couldn’t blame him. Commander Stevens is a man that simply oozes confidence but asserts his unyielding authority every chance he gets.

Looking into Georgie’s eyes Roger instructs, “I want every man possible monitoring this damn thing Georgie! Do not, I repeat Lieutenant, do not let this thing slip away! If it moves so much as an inch I want to know!”

Shaking more violently now, Georgie replies, “Sir, yes sir! Consider it done sir!”

“Good, now get out of here before you piss all over that beautiful eagle Lieutenant Commander.” Said Stevens gesturing at the carpet meticulously placed on the floor.

“Sir!” was the lieutenant’s only response before turning abruptly on his heel and exiting the Oval Office.

What I wouldn’t do for scotch right about know. I don’t know how they all expect me to do this sober.

The Tarvinian “relief” force had arrived on Earth seventy-three years ago, as of last week. Since then they have taken nearly all of Europe, Arabia, Asia and half of Africa. Lord knows what those Martian bastards are up to down there. No one knows; not even Simon Suns, the President of the Planetary Brotherhood, or in other words Europe, Asia, Arabia and half of Africa.

The bastards were beginning to move into Canada but Roger and his Army were succeeding at keeping them at bay, for now that is.

When the Martians, or Tarvinians as they call themselves, reached earth it was 1808 A.D. and the steam engine was just becoming widely used. The first country they began to invade was Russia which, surprisingly, gave in with almost no fight, governmentally anyhow. Most civilians fought against the Tarvinians until their dying breath, though the governing bodies denounced the behavior as “barbaric”.

From there, the reign of the Martians began to spread all across Europe. They took all of Eastern Europe by storm, felling Germany and France with little to no resistance. When you offer salvation not many deny the handout. Arabia and Africa must have been a breeze for them, not to mention an unneeded ego boost, but being hailed as gods, it’s easy to understand.

Then, in 1834, the Planetary Brotherhood Treaty was signed basically giving half the globe to an invading alien force. What were the people of that time to do? The Martian technology was beyond anything ever witnessed on earth at the time, most worshiped the aliens as gods. Others, like the legendary Fathers of the New World, seen them for what they were, an outside force conquering and enslaving everyone on Earth.

But… since then we have learned so much, even if it was all because of those aristocratic bastards.
Standing, Roger takes several small steps toward a cabinet pressed against the east wall of the Oval Office, the door on the cabinet opens with a creaking whine, Roger looks to the door of the Office, still no one. Reaching inside he makes to grab a carafe of bourbon, thinks better of it, settles for the wine, a French vintage from 1799 a wonderful wine. The bourbon calls his name again. He sighs with self disappointment, replaces the wine and grabs the bourbon in one meaty fist.
“To hell with it then.” Roger mutters under his breath as he jerks the bourbon from its home.
No sooner had Commander Stevens begun displacing the glass topped cork stopping up the carafe did there come a sharp rap on the door.

Damn it all.

Roger quickly re-closes the carafe of liquid courage and stashes it in a drawer beneath his desk. “Enter.” He bellows, irritated.
It’s damned Georgie again. “What is it now Lieutenant Commander? Has the Tarvinian CCV made its move?”

Speaking slowly Georgie replies, “Sir, no Sir! It is not that Sir. Something else.” The poor bastard is still shaking notices the Commander.

“Well then, care to explain why you are standing in my office with your legs crossed Georgie? Couldn’t piss on your own? Needed a little encouragement? Well? Speak up soldier!”

Looking unbelievably uncomfortable the Lieutenant Commander of the PRA says, “Sir, it is Balwyn, Sir! He has returned from London and seeks a conference with you, Sir.”

“Balwyn? But Georgie, you told me last week Balwyn stopped checking in. We thought the bastard went back over. You said it Georgie, now you’re telling me that report was inaccurate? Is that what you are saying here Georgie?”

“Sir, yes, Sir Commander! It was mine own blunder. I take full responsibility Sir, if I may speak freely Commander?

Rogers gives a brief nod to assure acquiescence.

“That is not important right now, will you see Mr. Fynn sir?”

“Send the Martian in Georgie, let’s hear what the bastard has learned.”

On that note, having shown as much courage as he could muster for one day of interacting with the most brilliant military mind on Earth at the time, young Lieutenant Commander Georgie Weathers exits the presidential Oval Office.

He returned minutes later with the Martian turncloak, Balwyn Fynn, in tow behind him, looking as though he had just lost a drinking contest to death himself.

posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 09:10 AM
a reply to: CagliostroTheGreat

Thanks .. it seems bit quiet in this forum at moment think everyone occupied up in some the other forums .. your story coming along nicely

posted on Jun, 26 2014 @ 03:08 PM
a reply to: Expat888

Thank you, my good man. I certainly appreciate the feedback. Thanks for reading and glad you liked it!

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 10:40 PM
Nooooo! It's not over is it? I'm sorry I'm late to the party, but this story is great! Please continue.a reply to: CagliostroTheGreat

posted on Sep, 24 2014 @ 05:48 AM
a reply to: lokin

Cagliostro having some problems with web access at present ..he said will be back once it sorted ..

posted on Oct, 22 2014 @ 08:18 PM
a reply to: lokin

Hey glad you liked it! I was out for a bit there, like pat said, but I'm back now, to say thanks for reading!

OK lokin, here ya go, if you're ever back on to read it, chapter 3.
edit on Cpm8Wednesday2220142031Wed, 22 Oct 2014 20:22:20 -05002014 by CagliostroTheGreat because: eta

posted on Oct, 22 2014 @ 08:28 PM
“Fynn, you have got to be s####ing me!” Rages Commander Stevens.

“I’m afraid not sir.” Says Balwyn Fynn in that irritating Martian accent that grates on the Commander-in-Chief’s nerves like nails down a blackboard, something like the bastard child of Arabic and French.

“God in heaven help this nation then, Fynn. When are they planning to drop this thing, Martian? Where?”
In the twenty minutes that had passed since Georgie Weathers had presented Mr. Fynn, the Martian, had detailed to the best of his extensive ability to Commander Stevens a Tarvinian plan to essentially Blitzkrieg the Northern most colonies of the States, Maine, New Hampshire, they would fall to the Martians, unless the Commander-in-Chief did something and now. The Tarvinians plan to use a form of land assault vehicle equipped with a massive cannon and several Pulse Guns capable of shredding a man to bloody ribbons using extremely low frequency waves. The Tarvinians were apparently throwing everything they have at the States now.

After the initial attack, the Martians, plan to ‘Rod’ D.C., effectively exterminating any last vestiges of resistance on Earth.

If we lose.

“I don’t know for certain when they plan to launch the attack Sir, but like I said, the target for the Rod is D.C. and I don’t think I need to go into details there, when they drop this thing its from orbit Sir, and when it hits pay-dirt, if I may use the Earth expression, the resulting shockwave will literally decimate everything within at least twenty-five miles, this is the best they have Sir.”

“understood Fynn. Louise, fetch me Lieutenant Weathers please. Mr. Fynn if I may be blunt with you, or even if I may not, point of fact is I still need a man I can trust, are you a man I can trust Fynn?”

“I don’t know Sir am I?”

Looking slightly miffed Stevens replies, “I like you Balwyn, that’s why you’re a Martian and not hanging from a sycamore. That and you play for me. Remind me Fynn, what was that little organization you used to run back on Mars?”

“Tarvin Sir, it is called Webs.”

“Right, Webs. Because you’re all like little f###ing alien spiders crawling around sucking the blood from each other right, Fynn? Especially the weak ones huh, Fynn? Well, I got some blood that needs sucking and you’re just the spider to do it.”

posted on Oct, 22 2014 @ 08:32 PM
Galendra is waiting for me at the reception desk, as usual, chatting up Helyn, the secretary. As I walk in their conversation stops abruptly. Galendra looks me dead in the eye, what is that grief? Pity? Whatever it is I don’t like it and it is not a look I am used to getting from Galendra.

“Oh, Kal.” She says nervously.

“what’s going on Gal? I heard Ryk needed me here as soon as I could manage, is something wrong?”

Helyn busies herself at her workstation, like everyone that works for webs she has the luxury of permemploy so she can afford to slack off a bit but it’s not a habit anyone on Tarvin is likely to fall into. Galendra glances back at Helyn, is she stalling? Just then Ryk bursts through the portal that leads toward the office regions of the Webs complex.

“Kalvyn! With me,” I follow without question Ryk’s blocky face is stern and taciturn he has bags under his slate gray eyes and his clothes are wrinkled suggesting he may not have gone home to resign the evening. “Kal we have a serious problem,” he continues, “it looks like the TRC is moving ahead with operation new world.”

“Wait, what? Ryk you have to be kidding me. We can’t-“


“What? Ryk that is the second time today you have referred to the TRC as them, do you realize what could happen to you if-“I feel cold calloused hands grip my throat as my air supply is suddenly cut short. These hands have killed.

“What are you going to do Kal? Snitch?” I shake my head vehemently; I would never do that, not to Ryk. I have never seen this look in his eyes before. Wild, almost animal, he is serious. The vise lets go of my throat, delicious air fills my starving lungs as I collapse to the floor rubbing my throat wondering what in the firmament could have possibly possessed Ryk to do that to me. He has said before that I am like a son to him and I know that’s true. He is really on edge because of this and I need answers. He called me here for a good reason and I want to know why, now more than ever. He grinds one fist into the other and without another word slams his left fist directly into a plasteel filing cabinet immediately drawing blood. Ignoring the gash on his fist he lets the blood fall where it may and gruffly says,
“Kalvyn, I did not mean for things to go this way, please let me apologize,”

“No need Ryk, I was out of line.”

“You were not Kal, I was. These Blood-mongers have me bent and it’s not your fault.”

“Just tell me what is going on here Sir, I need to be able to help you, I want to help. Whatever it is. I don’t like the TRC as much as you, I mean, I know we work for them but only because we would starve otherwise. Or worse. Are we really talking conspiracy here? What are you planning?”

“Kal, the TRC are going to level a place on Tedin called Deecee, Full of innocents. First they are going to send in shock troopers with all the goodies they take with them, then…” he chuckles slightly, ruefully, under his breath and his eyes fill with that feral look again. “…then, Kal, they’re going to kill them all. Men. Women. For Claria’s sake Kal, children! Innocents the lot of them, all dead. All for what? Conquest?” He scoffs, incredulously, “Industrial expansion? It’s a joke Kal and WE are the punch line.”

“I don’t get it.” I say, but apparently Ryk isn't in the mood for wisecracks. “This is bad Ryk. The TRC think they can bring down the Americans? They must be crazy or just really sick of waiting for them to give up. I never thought they would actually use Volga’s Hammer on them. The only people on this planet that even know of the Rod are the TRC, me, you and a handful of others I’m sure and we only know because we are spies. Claria.” I curse, “What do we do Ryk?”

“I tell you the truth Kal, that’s what I do.” I have to admit, at first this confuses the life out of me but with a sudden shock I realize what he is talking about. Balwyn Fynn. My father.

“About Dad.” I say quietly almost inaudibly. Maybe he didn't hear maybe he read my lips at any rate he says “yes, Kal.” I begin sweating; more from nerves than the infrastructure artificial environment management unit kicking on and blowing warm air throughout the complex, humming like a pleeb with a paycheck.

“He is on Tedin as we speak Kal. In Deecee. I just got a relay from him, first in nearly two seasons, he is the one that told me of the Rod, the plan to attack the US, decimate its population then drop Volga’s Hammer on Deecee, a brute display of power, something we are not exactly renown for. The pleebs won’t even know what hit them. It will be over in the bat of a lash.”

“So who is Father working for us or them?”

“Who do you mean Kal? The TRC or the Americans?”

“Aiya,” I groan “I don’t even know anymore Ryk, who the damned am I working for?”

“Us Kal, you are working for Us.”

“Yes, but who are we?”

He ponders for a brief moment and I see him smirk a bit beneath the gloom of this morning’s mood. “Webs.” Is his only response.

top topics


log in