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 FUTURISTIC TALES

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PCoquelin

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 8:57 am

"fur-fur"

Among the stars, life was incredibly rare.
Skywise had estimated that there were hundreds of billions stars, in this galaxy alone..
..and, among this incredibly huge amount of stellar systems, only some millions planets probably hosted life.

All along the Palace's travels, fortunately, there happened to be havens, though.
One of them was a blue planet, mainly covered by very salty water, breathable air rich with oxygen, almost an ocean planet, but with manymanymany islands.
High volcanoes' tops, mainly..


..but, sometimes, with beautiful sand beaches and small forests.

Savah's all-too exerted wisdom maintained a cool and peaceful ambience, inside the community, and it was no small task...
And the Palace was a wonderful place to live in, but..
The elves loved resting for some time on such haven worlds, occasionally, and so they did, there, for some months.

The Palace protected the elves from every possible biologic trouble, and it also prevented  contamination of other biotopes by them.
Magic insured it, impregnating their bodies, renewed inside the Palace, and that extremely powerful magical structure constantly (though invisibly) cleansed its landing place and even the local living creatures from everything the elves had brought with them, thus leaving the visited world totally uncontaminated.
Sunstream, among a handful of other elves, had studied biology and micro-biology.. like he had studied everything he could, always thirsty for more and more and even more knowledge, unlike most other elves.

However, here, resting for some days on a beautiful island, he had some time to truly relax, between trees, sand, and the sea.

After some days and nights, fully at peace, he felt something strange.
It tickled like his 'magic feeling'.. yet.. it was not magic.
It took him some time to understand what it was, but he realized, even without the help of the Palace, that he actually felt.. the living creatures, around him!
He relaxed even more, entering a cool trance, and..
Knowledge about life, around, was invading his mind.
Sunstream did not stop, until he had the 'big picture'.
Finally waking from his trance, after some hours, he KNEW how almost each and every life form, on this island, lived or survived here and among the other creatures, the balance there was. He FELT it, he understood it deeply.

It reminded him of his father's view about life, and he suddenly realized why some elves were THAT sensitive to nature and animals, or even to plants, like Redlance.

But, in this limited biotope, he was also detecting some odd things.
There were too few birds, astonishingly few rodents, and they lived very hidden, constantly in fear.
He had also felt some small predators, but they were hidden ; even the elves had not spotted them, yet. And Sunstream felt they were few, but constantly hungry, managing their hunger through stages of pain.

Sunstream explored the forest.
And there, at times, he sat and concentrated... and when he mentally felt one of those small predators nearby, he sent a calming, mental humming, and some simple, peaceful, comprehending thoughts.

He already knew those creatures were extremely fast.
And then, both his eyes AND his feeling eventually worked together.. and he barely distinguished...
...a ball of fur.
Blending so well with the environment, that Sunstream understood these creatures had some 'chameleon-like' power.
And then, it was at another spot !
Sunstream could not even see it moving, at best a blur !
Yet, he managed to follow it, deeper into the forest.
He felt the creature was.. desperate.
And, soon, inside a tree he had to slowly climb to, he found a sort of nest.
He distinguished the two adults, male and female, and he counted four very small cubs.
Sunstream kept *sending* cooling thoughts and feelings, but what he perceived in return was only hunger, pain, and a dire need for survival.

Those creatures seemed to have almost NO individuality, Sunstream sadly pondered.

He saw the two adults staring at him.
They were very elegant furry animals, resembling a little the cats Leetah had, in Sorrow's End, but more elongated, and with a coarser fur ; fine heads able of darting ; very long tails, half their total length ; their eyes gleamed, reflecting light ; they could climb down trees head-first, thanks to their semi-retractile claws ; their teeth were small ; they smelled a little of musk, but their fur seemed incredibly clean ; they round ears seemed to be always listening around, not in fear of other predators, but in order to spot any prey.

So that was why there were so few rodents and birds, here!
" They kill at sound and sight, even beyond their individual need to eat. They share !...
..
They are starving ", Sunstream thought..
And, suddenly, it was like the couple had answered him, by sending :
YES. SAVE ONE.
Astonished, Sunstream realized. They could not feed all the cubs.
Finally, he saw one of the tiny cubs slowly emerging from the nest. By himself ! A male one, still blind.
And Suntream took him. Even his small elfin hand was enough to hold the cub. And the cub almost instantly curled into a ball of fur.

Sunstream remained there for a while, deeply feeling..
The tiny cub in his palm..


..helped him in this.

Now, he perceived it all. The lands had been submerged. The animals had to evolve. These small predators were the very last ones. They had survived by getting a little smaller, muchmuchmuch faster, incredibly discrete (Sunstream noticed the cub was not yet able ro have its fur blending with the environment, probably a taught system). However, because of global starvation, their mind had suffered, as well, with these creatures now mostly feeling and reacting, not really thinking like most normal predators.. but their conscience still could wake up in strong sparks ! Strong enough to send !
They lived long, yet, and they could live even far longer. Their small paws were almost capable of manipulating objects, with a separate and articulate thumb. And they shared.

" You will be well fed. ", thought Sunstream.

Sunstream went back to the Palace, and, after some discussions with the elves who were the most aware of nature's importance, some solution to the problem was found, eventually.
On many islands, in many nests, Sunstream repeated what he had already done, the result being the same.
The rescued cubs were gathered in a sort of nursery, along with some female adults to feed them, the Palace calming their over-stressed brains, and the elves and the Palace insured them all security and food.. and slowly healed their animal minds.

They would become pets, for the Palace elves, or even traded as such to other sentient races, provided they proved they would care for them well.
And the Palace would come back on this word, on a somehow regular basis, in order to restore a better ecological balance.

However, these creatures still lacked too much individuality to even react or answer to a name pronoounced out loud.
But they reacted instantly to some sendings. And they were able to think and to learn.

Sunstream adopted the very first cub he had recovered, and helped it reach maturity, interferring with its mind, all along the process, to educate it more.
He called it "fur-fur", even if he knew it would never answer that name, if he called it out. It was only for Sunstream's own mental convenience.

This small furball later proved to become an extraordinarily useful and dear companion, to Sunstream.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 10:26 am

*hearts I love you furball*

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 10:48 am

May fur-fur lick your nose, as some sort of 'thank you', Embala dear...?

It just loves to.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 11:02 am

Aaawww... Fur-fur! I love you

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 11:04 am

* licking Evil Evie's nose, and purring softly *


Nothing better than this kind of video..



..in order to differenciate cats and genets.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 11:12 am

*bows down* It tickles! *gives soft scratches* Purring is soooo soothing.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 11:17 am

* curling inside Embala's lap *

At least some elf-friends, here, will be educated about genets.

They lived for CENTURIES with us, in Europe, at medieval times, thanks to the muslim invaders who had brought them along in Europe.. before getting dethroned by cats, around the XVIth century.

They had lived for MILLENIAS with ancient Aegyptians, before, as well ( those people were less dumb than us : they lived with BOTH cats and genets, and with even more such potentially useful companions ).

Normal: in order to please us humans, genets kill ANY rodent AT SIGHT, FAR beyond their eating needs, very fast, eating mice head first, and mankind has NEVER known a better protector for grain, all along its history. ( Or maybe only the very best trained rat-hunting dog species ).

And yet.. in the XIXth century, people went stupid enough..
..to consider genets as "pests" and to hunt them as such !

Only because chickens and the like tasted good and were easily killed.
Sillysillysilly

Even up to the point when (nowadays)..
..very few even know what genets are!.


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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 12:08 pm

We get educated about GENETS :-)... fascinating cat-like animals. It was fun to draw one for sure. They must have been amazing and very helpful pets/companions. <3

Fur-fur is ADORABLE. *pets carefully*

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PCoquelin

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu May 31, 2018 12:23 pm

* licks and licks Prayer's nose, and even caresses her cheek with its muzzle *

Just know genets are not related to cats.
They are viverrids, not felines, even if they resemble them a little.

Their eyes have more 'tapetum', a substance reflecting light, thus bringing far more signal to their optical nerve, which means they see FAR better than cats in the dark. They are more agile and faster than cats, with dart-like head movements.
They have a musk-producing gland (called the perineal gland) allowing them to mark their territory.
It does smell musk, yes.. but it's not that bad (I can assure you).
And they are FAR cleaner animals than cats, not even bearing living for long in dirty places.
And.. Yes: the places where princes and princesses dwelt, during the 'Middle Ages' WERE clean places !

I even discovered that one of the (very few) genets' parasites is a parasite that.. kills other parasites !
During the 'Middle Ages', this was well known, somehow, for a genet fur was always placed among other furs.. in order to protect them all from parasites.
Even if they didn't formally understand why, they were practical people, weren't they...?

Unfortunately, at one time, one Pope asked for a whole coat made of genet furs.
Manymanymany, thus.
Which initiated that trend for hunting genets.
Dumbdumbdumb.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:53 pm

*nose to nose with fur-fur then letting him down, fascinated by the fast and dart-like movements*

Sad to hear about the hunting of genets. Mankind produced and produces so many cruel hunters...mad huntings...extinctions.

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PCoquelin

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Fri Jun 01, 2018 2:14 pm

Trade

During one of its first travels, after the meeting with the Thri-Kreen queens, the Palace once approached a strange spaceship.
It looked like a huge medusa, with long tendrils under it.
It did not attack in any way the eerie Palace gleaming and magically floating nearby, simply following its spatial course, and the Palace easily accompanied it.

Soon, the ship emitted signals, that Timmain and the Palace detected and easily converted into pictures, that all elves then fascinatingly observed and studied.
The ones travelling inside that vessel were, indeed, some sort of medusas, coming from a gas giant and living inside its upper layers.

But, along the pictures, there were a multitude of small symbols that the elves did not understand.
However, the pictures were clear : this vessel went to an odd place, towards some gigantic artificial assembly of space stations.. of an incredibly varied set of sizes and shapes and types!
The pictures even indicated where, exactly, in the galaxy, that place was located.
The Palace detected no threat, aboard that vessel.
The elves discussed, and, only some days after having met that vessel, they decided they would help these peaceful creatures.
At their travelling rate, their trip would ask them for some millenias!
Hence, the elves agreed on an answering series of pictures, representing the Palace *popping* itself WITH that medusa ship instantly there.
The next pictures showed that those creatures were surprised by the proposal, but Timmain demonstrated the Palace's extreme "speed" to their attention, and they finally believed it and sent pictures meaning they would give it a try.

Both vessels *popped* instantly in that galactic sector.
Then : inside the considered stellar system, with three suns and many planets.
Finally : close to the space station, that was an artificial aggregate even far bigger and more complex than what the pictures had shown it to be.
Timmain made sure that ONLY the medusa vessel could detect the Palace, since there were a multitude of radiations being emitted from that place, obviously trying to detect intruders. And the Palace had detected some real threats.
The medusa vessel sent pictures, along with manymanymany small symbols, and, even if the elves didn't understand the symbols, the pictures had obvious meaning : the medusas wanted the Palace to wait there while their vessel would attach itself to the giant structure, and it would soon come back to offer them something.
The elves sent pictures meaning they agreed but also that they did not understand at all the small symbols.
Timmain asked, through repeated and varied pictures, that they would NOT indicate, to anyone, in any way, that the Palace was there.

The agreeing pictures came, and the ship did exactly what was pictured.
Then, after some hours, it detached itself from the bay it was on, and it came close to the Palace, and one of its tendrils left something that was barely detectable, well hidden from detection, very close to the Palace, and then it accelerated away, back on its own looooooong travels.
The item was captured by the Palace, and microbiology was checked, but there was no hazard : those creatures knew the risks.

The Palace remained there, close to that giant structure, at least a hundred times bigger than the Palace, hidden from detection, for some weeks, the elves studying the gift the medusoids had left.
To the elves, inside the Palace, it soon turned out to be a revolution !
It was a huger than huge collection of pictures, and even sounds, and, first, everything to learn what the small, accompanying symbols meant.

The elves thus soon learned to write and to read.
And then, with a rate that increased faster and faster, many more domains of knowledge, of ALL sorts !

The elves were soon shocked in realizing how PRIMITIVE, in comparion, their world had been.

But Savah and Timmain were learning, too.. and they quickly reoriented the elves' concerns, even harping on that new notion: philosophy, in order to calm them all down and to have them use all of this for PROGRESS.
Which progress happened incredibly fast, the elves soon learning for the very first time to truly put their minds in COMMON, thanks to the Palace's mental and sharing powers.
They discovered sciences, technology, mathematics, logic, and many thought systems they would never have been able to even imagine.
And they ALL not only understood it all : they INTEGRATED it inside their mind. All together. In a matter of days.

Then, the elves used the information and the Palace's powers to subtly detect what kind of creatures, exactly, lived inside the giant structure, and to collect each and every bit of data they could, from there and from the various spaceships in and on it.

They discovered  there existed scores of thousands of spacefaring species, inside this galaxy, this structure representing barely a thousand planets.
They learned the notions of trade, credits, and so on. And their importance.

After two more days of intense discussions, mainly by sending between themselves, the elves felt themselves ready.

They would trade.


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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Fri Jun 01, 2018 4:06 pm

Patience

They would trade.

But patience was inscribed DEEP into any elf's essence..
..and Timmain and the firstcomers had sought EXPERIENCE.

And no elf had forgotten.. ' the lesson of pain '.

Hence, it was only after a loooong time, after Sunstream had accomplished many missions, that, fully trained and equipped, he accompanied Timmain, herself, into a trading mission, at that huge space station the Palace had discovered.

Timmain had chosen a very adapted appearance, for that occasion, shapechanging herself into a representative of a very special species.
It looked like a great floating translucent egg, twice the height of Sunstream, with floating organic elements inside it, and some minimum cybernetic equipment on it, simply allowing the creature to take and analyse items and to communicate, and some detectors, those creatures being rare, telepathic beings that were extremely intellectual.
They could bear no physical threat, and such a creature (and its huge egg-shaped vessel) would simply "vanish" at the first attack.
And they would not come in contact to anyone for CENTURIES, after such an offense.
Which accident, considering what these beings were in the habit of trading (mainly high level info, or very special robotic tech), was out of question, for most trading species.
Hence, it suited Timmain's objectives perfectly. And she had gathered enough data on that species and their ways.

Fur-fur (the fourth "fur-fur", already, such animals having not the same lifespan as elves) wanted to come along, but Sunstream calmed its insistent sendings, and he had it to sleep, after some caresses and after sending it gentle, soothing thoughts.
HIS mission was far too dangerous for a furball, even as intelligent as his favourite companion had become, to accompany him, this time.
It was quite simple, though.
While the High One would trade and negociate, under her clever disguise that no one had any chance of guessing through, and for looooong...
...he would infiltrate the gigantic station and spy on some species, there, stealing important data.

For, despite their numerous travels and encounters, already, the elves STILL had almost NO clue about the elves that had paid a visit to the world of two moons and fooled the firstcomers. That had finally been confirmed, somehow, though. And it had also become crystal-clear that a few species knew or had hints, mostly kept secret, about a multitude of forbidden planets, a small part of the galaxy, nearly a fourth of it.. that was strictly FORBIDDEN to any spacefaring technological species ! And the track to elves led there.
And, in that section of the galaxy, inside some specific areas, there was magic !
The Thri-Kreen species came from there. But the relations between the Palace elves and them had not evolved. Could not, in fact.
Very few species could travel in between the "tech" and the "no-tech" sectors.
The ones who tried to intrude were almost systematically destroyed, there. Leaving no signal or message, even !

The plan was this : Timmain would trade officially for info related to that special part of the galaxy..
..and Sunstream would steal whatever he could find about it all.
Only Sunstream could accomplish such a mission, for..
..it required an extremely sensitive and well trained magic feeling, in order to spot magic inside that multi-kilometric structure, with metals and strange materials barring the way to detection !
Also, the various atmospheres, inside each inhabited cell of the structure, asked for a complete spacesuit, able to resist high pressures, high temperatures, and even acids !
Fortunately, technology, when combined with magic, allowed Sunstream to wear only a light (though very special) spacesuit, that he had even visually and aesthetically designed according to his tastes. Had it been visible, it would have looked like a very elegant, a very light spacesuit, not even covering his head.. but a special, integrated magical shield, partly emanating from the Palace, did the trick.

Sunstream was fully equipped, like he had never been, on any mission.

The data-processing equipment he wore was almost an independant artificial conscience, allowing for quick analysis, and even full judgment. It would help him in taking quick and good decisions, moreso that it had been fed the latest and most complete dataset about the species installed there.
The active, 3D map of the station he had was almost up-to-date (everything changed far too fast, in there, for ANY map to be truly complete).

The Palace had taken the huge egg form outside the most extreme detection radius, and it slowly approached the station, that was crowded both by extremely varied extensions and by coming and going vessels.


And it docked.

The trading emissaries were already there, waiting.
Eight species had bought (a high price, each) the privilege of negociating...

But the elves had decided since long to help preferrably the less advantaged spacefaring species, in order to try and fix the huge and cruel global economic imbalance that had been plaguing the galaxy for many millenias. Those emissaries would not be very pleased...

Accompanying the High One in disguise, Sunstream was both physically kept totally invisible, and protected from any detection by the Palace itself.

While the High One was still diplomatically presenting her fake self..


..Sunstream had already chosen a direction, and discretely hacked the access controls. The Palace had even messed with the control lights of the doors, and with the whole visual scenery : the doors looked shut.. while they were opening and then closing themselves. No one saw him enter. No detection system identified the intrusion.

His most important mission ever.. had just started.

< to be continued >

Be patient, elf friends..

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Sat Jun 02, 2018 5:57 am

Sunstream....so sneaky! It's like mission impossible but he will have find a way! He...has to! The story is developing great so far... although I am not very fond of Timmain lately. Too many wounds because of what she said to beloved CUTTER. Anyways...focus is on Sunstream, right? Smile

The pacifist alien eggs are hilarious! Love them! What a mysterious species... great choice of Timmain here.
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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:45 am

@Prayer wrote:
The pacifist alien eggs are hilarious! Love them! What a mysterious species... great choice of Timmain here.

In case it's not crystal-clear, yet, I just LOVE mixing sci-fi universes.

The ones who READ Valerian's adventures already know what this place is and may even recollect what this special egg species is...


But I reward only curiosity and imagination.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Sun Jun 03, 2018 9:18 am

War

Sunstream was also equipped with a multitude of micro-bots, of various sizes and uses.
Mainly for linking his eyes and ears to the artificial conscience, but they could be also of a large number of other uses.
Whatever the elf saw and heard was thus carefully recorded, and then analysed.

Once inside the huge metallic corridor, he saw a group, at the other end.
The micro-bots inside his eyes zoomed, the ones inside his ears amplified the sounds coming from there.. and he saw and heard a group of nine creatures that he and the artificial conscience quickly identified as Jerraks, beings resembling huge bats, but with long legs and walking. They had one representative speaking with Timmain, in the diplomatic bay.. meaning those were its escorts. Armed, which was quite unusual.
The translation of their hissing, mostly ultrasonic talks was coming..
Among all their quick, mainly idle talks, Sunstream perceived this :
" Why have we to stay here..? It's against protocol. "
Five of them hissed their agreement with that remark.
One of them, obviously an officer, hissed:
" That's the risk. That's the main reason we are here and armed. No one comes in through here. "
Guards.
He knew he could not come too close to that group : at the slightest sound, they would activate their ultrasonic echolocation, powerful enough to stun some creatures ! He would be spotted. Moreso that they had a sight extending to x-rays, thus potentially perceiving slight air movements.
Other things were analysed. They were a little hungry. Some of them were a little angry.
There was a service door, near his position, in this corridor. And he detected cables, close behind the wall on his right, linked to the local security systems.
Sunstream unsheathed his saber, and, at a very precise point of the wall on his right, at a precise angle, he pushed the point of the saber through the metal of the wall.
Soon, he had reached the security network and hacked it.
Amused, he picked an appropriate diversion.
He was ready to open (and then hurry inside and close) the service door.

Some moments later, the door the group guarded opened, and another Jerrak entered the corridor, hissing urgently :
" The eggs of Daarb are HALF PRICE ! It's an instant sell ! "
And while the hissings filled the corridor, while the group's attention was fixed there, Sunstream went through the service door.
The maintenance tunnel he had reached led to another, smaller corridor, that was empty.
Near the final door, Sunstream hacked the security system again, in order to have that door opening only when some creature (among the crowd that walked in the huge pathway behind) came close enough to it. It soon worked. The huge alien creature, resembling a walking octopus, even tried three tentacles with eyes inside the corridor after that door that had surprisingly and for no reason opened at its passage nearby. But it saw nothing special and the creature didn't trigger any alarm, merely confused, and then it walked away and the door shut.

Sunstream was already past it, looking at the crowd of representatives of alien species that frequented that trading center area of the " City of a thousand planets ".
Twelve levels of huge ringing pathways. Crowded.
He knew where he had to go, but how to do so.. was quite another matter.

--

Meanwhile, Timmain, in her disguise, was initiating the first trade.
It had been announced, as well as what kind of payment was asked, in return :
preferrably infos about what hid behind the Aksaba nebula, the most interesting and forbidden galactic area.

From the disguised Palace floated a metallic sphere.
It came on the bay, near Timmain.
Soon, all the trading emissaries recognized it : an Adjura. A terrible war machine.

Timmain sadly remembered how it had been recovered.

It was a totally ravaged world.
The elves had gasped in horror at the level of destruction they witnessed, on that world.. at what war, on a galactic scale, could cause.
Vaporized cities. Hundreds millions dead. A wonderful planet reduced to ruins and ashes.
The very few survivors had even been enslaved and would not survive for long.

Sunstream was exploring a battlefield when, suddenly, something had emerged from the mass of ruins and skeletons.
A metallic monster, a war machine, half destroyed but still somehow operational, and the agile elf first tried to flee it, and then to dodge its attacks.
But it was too fast, and Sunstream soon had to defend himself.. and he finally understood, a little too late, that his main chances lied in attacking that awful contraption.
At the price of many small injuries, he had succeeded in cutting, with his vibrating saber at full power, almost all of its last fight appendages and extensions, but there remained the projectiles, and a terrible barbed dart nearly gutted the elf, piercing his abdomen, even as he was jumping and twisting in mid-air to dodge another attack.
Fortunately, the Palace and the elves had intervened just in time, and that horror was 'frozen' by the Palace's magic, and Sunstream's life was saved in extremis.

Then, that machine was studied in details.
It had a very interesting structure, with a multitude of kind of micro-veins in it, and the elves finally understood it was a whole logic system based on circulating fluids, turning this machine into an artificial intelligence, a weak one, but it was nearly impossible to be hacked or interferred with.

Except by the Palace's magic, used by elves who had already mastered many forms of technology.

The species that was responsible for the slaughter was named Ksarr, reptilian, sort of lizardmen, always at war, with an extremely weak moral conscience. They had destroyed many worlds, already.
The elves decided to use that machine.. to turn the odds against that species.
Therefore, they repaired it.. and added some very hidden and subtle pearls of conscience, inside it.
The machine's hidden motivation became to turn against its masters, by a surprise and decisive action, at a crucial point.
It just had to come back into their ugly hands.
That was what Timmain kept in mind, while facing the Ksarr trading emissary, here..

He was not at ease, she perceived, forced to leave all his heavy weaponry, in order to trade.
Timmain felt and guessed much, about all those emissaries.
The Ksarr, unsurprisingly, had its four eyes fixed on the Adjura, even growling of desire and anticipation.

Another emissary, a Ksiffid, a kind of serpentine being, a species supposed to be (at least) temporary allied to the Ksarr was also here and interested by that war machine, and Timmain guessed it would pay with creds. A fortune.

Three other trading emissaries were here only as opportunists, eager to sell back the Adjura to the Ksarr, almost as soon as they would buy it, here.

The other three emissaries were not interested or concerned with that trade.

It went quickly.
The Ksarr stared at the serpentine Ksiffid emissary and ordered it to cancel its offer, whatever it could be.
The Ksiffid hesitated, but it finally bowed in submission, and walked back.
It talked volumes.

And the Ksarr walked towards the translucent egg Timmain was disguised into, and he offered her a data pearl.

With the Palace's help, Timmain quickly passed the security codes and read the content, with the pearl still in the Ksarr's hand !
After some moments, she knew what information was offered, and she might even have declined the payment.
Moreso that the info was rather poor, even if it must have asked much efforts for the Ksarr to obtain it.
But she decided to play along, and she followed her role in disguise.
She asked if any other emissary had the info she wanted, but all they had to offer was creds or services.
And the transaction was accepted.
So, she asked for the passwords, and the Ksarr emissary emitted them, thus making the pearl readable, and gave it to Timmain.
The translucent egg took the pearl and activated some cybernetic tools and detectors, as if probing and reading its contents, for long.
Meanwhile, the Ksarr was checking the war machine, and was astonished at how well it had been repaired, but the species Timmain had chosen to impersonate was renowned for its ability on special robotics, and Timmain delightfully noticed that the Ksarr's detectors and various testors did not find, after looong and intense moments, the changes the elves had brought.

This ONE war machine had caused scores of thousands victims, already, on many battlefields, on many worlds.

Timmain thought :
" Soon, these 'conquerors' will discover another aspect of that collection of atrocities, of that huge diversion and terrible regression called..

..war. "



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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Sun Jun 03, 2018 1:50 pm

Fun

That huge place.. was too crowded, Sunstream estimated.
And too surveyed, with various scanners constantly scrutinizing the multitude of representatives of hundreds sentient species who walked on the multiple, large pathways.
Sunstream could not simply walk among them, even invisible ; he would be bumped into and possibly detected.
He had to find another approach.

The micro-bots were recording everything he watched and heard, and the artificial conscience was analysing it all.
And then he noticed the energy rails.
He quickly programmed some micro-bots to insure the suit, at his feet' level would guarantee strong isolation.
And he calculated a jump down on one of these rails.

And he jumped, landing very precisely on it, while the rail was less wide than his palm, gleaming with high energy levels.
He knew he could only afford half a second of contact, for each step, but it was more than enough for an elf as trained as he was.
And he walked at a good pace, almost dancing on the rail, invisible. Each step hurt, but he could manage such pain.
However, Sunstream soon realized that it created small sparks, that alarmed the maintenance drones. But not the security systems.

All the while, the artificial conscience was analysing everything, and it began offering some conclusions and options to Sunstream's attention.

It was clear that two wars were brewing, considering the various tensions between some species, here.
And some merchandises had had their prices changed rather surprisingly, of late, which meant that some specific, easily deduced, events had occured, in this sector of the galaxy, and even beyond. Most of them rather unpleasant events.

At a time, Sunstream had to jump above the eye pedoncula of a gigantic gasteropod-like creature, tall enough to have its head hovering above the rail. It was followed by some small humanoid creatures, slaves held in control by the constant threat of cruel neuro-whips. He knew those slavers.
Two missions ago, he had offered to some of their humanoid slaves the means to rebel against their masters.
He delightfully thought : " Soon, there won't be so many 'tourists' like this one coming in such places as this... They will be far too busy facing their slaves' rebellion.. and they won't be able to stop them ! "

Sunstream had reached half the length of this rail when what he half expected happened : the maintenance system had shut that rail down for control.
Fortunately so, because the elf saw a transport cell suddenly irrupting towards him but stopping at only a short distance, under the rail !
Now, Sunstream could walk more coolly, and observe more, and think.
But he would have his feet healed by the micro-bots later on, he decided.

First and foremost, he wanted to reach the most interesting spot, which was also the one located the farthest, from here.
Then, he would continue his mission in a somehow reverted path.
But how could he reach that section in time !?...
He had tried and plan much, but he admitted now that he had underestimated how the security systems had evolved, since the dataset had been fed.

And then, reading the listing of analysis offered by the artificial conscience, he figured some unexpected and funny option...

He jumped to an empty balcony, one level below, and had his burning feet healed. The process had to be quick, hence playing with his nerves and muscles, very painful, but he had learned to face far worse pains, and he quickly recovered. He could walk again in a matter of minutes.
He was not here for "shopping", yet he paid a visit to a leisure shop and he discretely stole a specific equipment.
Then, he jumped two levels below, and followed a group of creatures, youngsters from various species who seemed to have a good time together, and were hurrying towards a specific place, for a specific occasion.
The mercantilist ambience, here, strongly displeased many of the youngsters, and they had to find ways of having fun.. in using their parents' wealth.
And one of those ways was.. races. Preferrably forbidden races, with forbidden vehicles, crossing forbidden sections, at forbidden speeds.

Sunstream followed them all, undetected, and he observed the map of the next races.
Perfect ! At one point, the very next race came very close to the section he wanted to reach. He wouldn' even have hoped for it !

While avoiding the agitated crowd of youngsters, he hacked his way to the place where some race vehicles were stationed.
Sunstream chose one that was rather adapted to his small humanoid form, and he collected info on its owner.
The artificial conscience brought him a complete enough analysis on the considered species to elaborate a quick but efficient plan.
Meanwhile, the elf hacked his way into the sport vehicle, and unboxed and installed and set the piece of equipment he had stolen.
A quick contact with the saber, and it was programmed.
Just in time.. for the youngster was arriving in the vehicles' bay !

It looked like some sort of ape, heavily covered with long, brown fur, two legs and four arms (two very small ones hidden within the fur). This species clearly originated from a forest-covered planet, and was called Wookiee. Once adults, after some centuries of age, they were tall, very strong AND agile creatures, with high reflexes, and they often were very good pilots and techs. Their home planet was at the opposite of the galaxy, "behind" the forbidden sectors, and it was noted that it had some problems with a "galactic empire" of some sort... The youngster was named Tvrromceee, best transcription as their groaning language went.
Sunstream had noticed he was young, but a good pilot, already, with high bets on him.

Sunstream hid himself in the vehicle, on the other seat.
All the youngsters were now getting inside their various racing vehicles, and preparing themselves, when..
..the young Wookiee received a beeping insistent signal, on a bracelet he wore, and he quickly extracted from his vehicle.
Sunstream saw him cancelling his race and hurrying out of the bay.
But the elf had immediately re-activated the race, for this vehicle, and he strapped himself at the standard passenger seat.
His equipment had extracted the recorded races and Sunstream selected one corresponding to the current circuit and following his needs.
He would "only" have to keep an alert eye to slightly correct the run, all along, especially according to the other vehicles' trajectories and tactics.

And the race began.
It quickly went very fast, and often extremely fast, at some points, and Sunstream's power of attention and reflexes were trained hard, even if he wasn't actually piloting completely by himself.
It was fun. With hot pursuits, dodging obstacles and other vehicles, strong accelerations and daring moves, and Sunstream had a really good time.

But soon, the elf switched to 'manual' drive and turned out of the race circuit, at a steep angle, into the sector he wanted to reach.
He chose an abandoned bay for the vehicle, and he activated the equipment he had stolen and set in it : the vehicle would end the race, ending last, of course, but the vehicle's data system would then be completely "resetted", as if coming from the industry line. The young wookiee would probably be very angry and growl hard, but he would have no problem having his lost race not taken into account, by pointing that "someone" had implanted a resetting item in the vehicle's controls.

The vehicle left the bay and went back to the race, without Sunstream.

He forced his way into empty, ancient tunnels, to the area that interested him the most.
There was almost no breathable air, here, but the reserve maintained by the magical shield surrounding his body would insure a good autonomy.
At worst, the micro-bots could produce oxygen, if needed.

There, near a special door, he would have to start concentrating, for wakening his "magic feeling".

But first, he let his mind revisit the race he had just witnessed, the thrilling maneuvers, the joy he had felt. The ambience created by the youngsters.

And, with a mischievous smile on his face, he thought, before entering the relaxing trance :
" Life wouldn't be worth living, if we didn't have some..

..fun. "



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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:34 am

Magic

Sunstream was now inside a conduct leading into a very ancient domain, home to two creatures.
They were extremely ancient.
Each one was the size of a whale, with two jaws, a large grey body, and many fins and projectable spikes.
They spoke the common galactic tongue (as well as many other languages), but very slowly so and with an extremely bass tone, mingled with infrasonic resonances.
This species, named Hoooanz, had participated in creating this "City of a thousand planets", millenias ago, and the ones living here were probably older than Timmain, Sunstream estimated.
Their domain was entirely filled with a special liquid, fortunately at a reasonable pressure and only a little cold temperature.. but the liquid posed Sunstream a problem : it would end up ruining his suit. And he would not be able to breathe, in there, for more than two hours or so.

Outside, despite the thick metallic hull, the elf has spotted magic, in there. Strong. At a precise point.

Sunstream was ready, with still a good reserve of oxygen, and the conduct he was in filled itself with the liquid.
Sunstream's skin was still chemically and biologically protected by his magical shield.
And he followed the current that renewed the liquid, in the vast domain.
The microbots made sure he produced no bubble, while breathing.

The place looked almost like a wonderful coral lagoon, with various, reparted lights simulating day and night, on a ~19 hours basis.
For now, it was night, but there still was phosphorescence, allowing Sunstream to admire that place.
These creatures swam very slowly, massively, barely moving their fins, swimming in long curves.
They didn't have eyes, per se, but they perceived moves inside their liquid domain, and they heard very well.
And a part of their huge body could become a sort of gigantic eye, but when they triggered that, that "eye" also emitted gamma rays at a dangerous rate.

Sunstream used the entrance current at best, as long as possible, in order to reach the place where he had felt magic with only a minimum of swimming moves.
He expected other creatures, in there, but his detecting systems informed him that all the other swimming animals.. were, in fact, well imitated assemblies of small bots. Primitive bots commonly called "aïts", and used by many sentient species.

The elf saw a sort of miniature coral reef, with manymanymany objects, of various sizes and natures, placed and somehow 'stuck' on that decorative coral structure. Some place for exposing their huge treasure, he guessed.

Floating, he relaxed, concentrated, and felt where the magic was.
All the while keeping an eye to the swimming Hoooanz, he very slowly swam closer.
And, after repeating that process, and loooong moments, he finally identified which object was magical.
A ring, made of gold, with a small gem on it.
Sunstream didn't like at all the aspect of the spikes that held all the objects exposed here...
So, he grabbed a fallen, dead spike, and used it to sloooowly collect the ring from the alive spike.

But now, the two creatures were swimming a little faster, and.. towards him.

Sunstream knew his only clean exit was through a purge conduct that was located more than a hundred meters away, a little down from his current position.
He gave his body an impulsion, as fluidly as possible.. but it was not discrete enough : one of the creatures stopped short and agitated its appendages, and three huge spikes were thrown from its body to where the elf was.
" Fast ! ", Sunstream realized. He had curved his own trajectory, inside the liquid, and he had been right doing so.. or he would be dead, by now !
The liquid was not very dense, which increased the projectiles' speed. Sunstream had also noticed that those spikes were also somehow self-propelled, with some sort of organic gas emitted behind them, accelerating them.
Sunstream had barely dodged one of them.

The slow, deeeep, low voice shook the whole elf's body :
" STOP, INTRUDER ! "

The elf noticed that many bots (in the semblance of various animals) were now exploring the area where the objects were exposed.
Sunstream noticed that they could not see or detect him.
Fortunately, because he would have bet MUCH.. that some of them were armed, somehow.

Sunstream knew he was in deep trouble.
But these creatures were very slow, taking all their time, and the elf relaxed, and he analysed everything the artificial conscience had collected.

And he suddenly had an idea.

However, it was a daring move, and it asked for some work.
And, while the creatures were talking at him and between themselves, he programmed the microbots that accompanied him.
It would require more than half of them.

" PUT THAT RING BACK. NOW "

Sunstream didn't move at all. He was accomplishing the programming by his eyes' moves, on a virtual screen.
The other creature projected three other spikes, but nowhere near the elf.

Those tries were analysed, and the conclusion came : they could not detect the elf in any other way than noise and vibrations caused by impulsions.

Without moving, he let one "aït", disguised as a small fish-like creature, come close to his unsheathed saber, and he quickly hacked its simple circuits.
The artificial conscience had already understood their patrolling ways, and it could be used for something else, entirely..
The fake "fish" went on swimming around, but, soon, it came back around the elf.

The other Hoooanz was intrigued, and it asked
" WHY DID YOU TAKE THAT RING ? "

The other one soon added :
" YOU MAY BE INVISIBLE, BUT WE WILL SPOT YOU. OR SEE YOU. "
The threat was made clear, when Sunstream saw the specific part of their bodies slowly beginning to gleam.

But all of this took MUCH time. Far more time than Sunstream needed.
But his breathable air reserve was getting very low. And his suit would soon take much chemical damage.

He had the time to hack two other artificial swimming creatures, for a total of six "aïts". That would be amply enough.

" WE MAY APPRECIATE VISITS, BUT WE HATE INTRUDERS. CAN YOU COMMUNICATE ? WHY DID YOU PICK THIS PRECISE RING ? "

" WE CAN KEEP YOU ALIVE AND MAKE YOU TELL US. IT WILL BE VERY PAINFUL. "

The two creatures were very slowly coming closer, and extending some appendages.

The programming was ended, and Sunstream projected half his microbots away from his suit, forming a well calculated "outline" silhouette, moving as if he the elf was swimming away fast, fleeing the creatures' approach.
Sunstream could not communicate with the microbots, hence the importance of programming them well.

The two creatures slowly reacted and followed that silhouette they detected.
And then they repeatedly threw spikes at it.

" YOU CANNOT ESCAPE. "

But even that virtual "outline" swam fast, dodged, twirled in the liquid, and evaded the creatures' attacks.

Meanwhile, these massive creatures' moves had caused small currents to appear behind them, and Sunstream used that, with the propulsive aid of the six hacked "aïts", that he now "rode" somehow. The elf made absolutely NO move, but the primitive bots disguised in animal forms, were pushing him towards the sector where the purge system was.

And Sunstream soon hacked and triggered the purge systems, and he escaped the liquid domain.

After some swift swimming out of the danger zone, he emerged in an abandoned maintenance zone with a rarefied atmosphere, and his microbots quickly insured him a little more oxygen to be breathed, and chemically did their best to restore his suit's integrity.
All the while, Sunstream was slowly walking to an old pentagonal door.

The local alarm resonated. Soon, the security troops would intervene.

Sunstream decided it had been enough dangers for this day, and, using the 3d map, he chose a quick escape route that soon and rather easily allowed him to reach a very ancient, abandoned "space balcony", a place with a view to interstellar space.

From there, he *sent* to Timmain and the Palace elves :
Can you come and get me? Urgently, please, for I do not have much air left...

Soon, he saw the Palace floating, ouside, still disguised in its "egg" form..
..and the Palace's magic had him teleported back inside it.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:26 am

" What is 'magic' ? "

The Palace was still disguised as an "egg", and slowly leaving the stellar system where the huge and ancient aggregate of space stations called "the city of a thousand planets" was, in order to keep to the plan.

Like he often did, when coming back from a hard mission, Sunstream was bathing coolly, relaxing, with Brill cuddled to him, her hand on his heart, meaning : " Do not take such risks again, beloved... "
With them, naked, in the warm, soothing water of the iridescent pool created from the very structure of the Palace, lied Timmain, Skywise and a few other elves ; the Palace elves loved coming here, dressed or naked, to relax and softly talk, and to think or meditate.

Sunstream was one of the rare Palace elves who had studied intensively almost each and every science and technology.
He had shared his mission's details and results with Timmain and everyone, here.
Now, he pondered, holding the strange ring he had stolen in his right hand.
What he *felt*, about it, was disturbing, troubling. He had problems even in expressing what his 'magic feeling' told him about it.

He had already repeatedly studied the question of 'magic', when compared to what sciences said, especially physics, and he still could not make clear sense of it all.
So he tried and express with words where his mind was, for now, about it all.

" So far, it SEEMS that what we call 'magic' is "but" a play on probabilities, from the tiniest levels up to the largest ones.
We elves are able to manipulate those probabilities and thus create effects that look extremely strange to most other sentient beings... "
He was admiring the Palace's inner decorum, ever changing, with each and every elf intervening according to their individual or group tastes, turning such rooms into places of pure wonder, where the elfin mind could find strong echoes to their hearts and very essences.

However, Sunstream's face came back to his 'old gloomer', thoughtful look, and he asked Timmain :
" High One, WHAT is 'magic', exactly..? "

Timmain, too, was watching the global scenery, but Sunstream perceived She was answering to him, by the very way she had been watching everything and everyone, in silence.
Sunstream noticed that Skywise was now smiling mockingly.
And Timmain even laughed, and replied :
" Of ALL elves, YOU would be the one to ask this question, my dear student !... "

A long silence ensued, only troubling Sunstream more, but then he felt, in his heart, what Timmain meant.
Oh ! He had been studying many things, but.. many elves already KNEW what magic actually was ! Unlike him.
Timmain helped him :
" We.. " ( She meant the firstcomers ) " .. 'acquired' what we call 'magic' by CARING for the poor, over-used remnants of our abandoned homeworld. With the few surviving descendants of creatures that had once lived and thrived on our world. THIS woke what we ALREADY had in us, all along... what MANY sentient beings possess, even without being aware of it. That ability to interfere with reality, be it physical or spiritual. "

Those words had awakened memories, in Sunstream's mind : the scenes from the Scroll of Colours that HE had explained, mentally guided by Timmain, in order for HER words to be mostly understood, after that ugly battle against Guttlekraw's trolls.
After his many missions and researches, it all made far more sense, to Sunstream.
Even more so with the global, cool ambience, here, inside the Palace, with almost all elves opening their hearts and sharing much, peacefully, willingly, freely so.

But this ring he was now staring at.. a contrario.. made less sense than ever !
He even felt somehow.. disgusted by it !

Timmain had perceived his thoughts and feelings, and she added :
" WE... play with 'magic'... OUR way.
Other sentient beings and.. 'Powers'.. " ( Timmain had hesitated, and Sunstream was at a loss to understand what that word meant ) " .. USE 'magic'.. in very different ways. We know it, now. "

After some intimate sendings, Sunstream gently separated from Brill's intimate contact, and concentrated, for his 'magic feeling' to work better, on this ring, here.
He was doing so only reluctantly, feeling suddenly responsible for discovering more, far more.

After long, tense moments, his eyes closed, he said :
" Artificial. They extracted 'magic' by force. It was directed.. derived from a powerful source.. No ! From various sources... "
Some more moments and he added, astonished :
" HUMANS made it !.. No : transformed it.. Nonono : they gathered magic essences into this specific form, for.. detection.
It helps in SEEING things. But there seems to be a sort of 'lock'. A strange mechanism... A... "contract" of some sort.
It's linked to a word that has to be pronounced.. while wearing the ring. I can almost..
Yes ! "
Sunstream opened his eyes. Brill was now emerging from the pool, wanting to spend some leisure time with other elves.
Sunstream smiled at her, and soon went back to his task.
He stared at the ring, and put it on his left thumb.
And the ring adapted, deforming all by itself, to fit his finger !
Sunstream pronounced a strange word, totally unknown to anyone, here..
..and he suddenly saw through the walls, through everything, even the Palace's walls.. but Sunstream's scientifically educated mind..
..soon identified the type of vision.
" X-RAYS !.. Total sight. Well... No. Not that far away, not the stars' light. But through flesh and walls, yes. Even thick ones. "
He removed the ring, and pondered.

And he finally exclaimed :
" What a waste ! Of efforts, of magic ! Only for this... "

Timmain, in turn emerging from the bath, concluded with :
" Our hearts, ALL of them.. create magic and GUIDE its use.
You feel it now.

Think well of what this item reveals about the ones who created it.
Keep in mind that it seems that the 'real elves' we seek... play along within that system. "

Skywise, thoughtful, soon left the bath, too.
There were other elves joining or leaving the pool, but Sunstream paid no attention, now, feeling totally alone, mentally deeply into his reflections.

There was no heart in that 'magic' he had felt. A neutral effect.
That 'system' was highly mercantilist, based on precious metals and gemstones.. Greed.
They saw 'magic' and such items as mere tools.. or weapons.. Expressions of power, mainly individual power.. Hence ABUSES of power.
Magic had been wasted, deformed.. Even forced, trapped INTO that thing and this use. ABUSE of 'magic' !
He guessed.. a universe dominated by humans and this.. PERVERTED 'magic'.. but with the real elves and a few other sentient species existing and dealing with it all. A logic of privileges, ranks, hierarchy.
Since loooooong !

The more Sunstream reflected upon it, the more...
The whole picture did not please him..

..at all !

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:41 pm

Well..

Next time I get inspired to write, I'll deal with some..


..nastybad galactic empire.


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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Fri Jun 08, 2018 5:14 am

I'm wondering if I should wait for other elf-selves to gather into a team...?

Mostly youngsters, like Sunstream, I guess...

Youngsters dream bigger..



..no matter what their era or their life is.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Tue Jun 12, 2018 5:29 am

Yayy, more TALES! Thank you so much PC! I will read them as soon as my kids are sleeping. ^^

I already read 'War' and 'Fun' ...both are splendid! I always kept myself wondering at the seaside last week imagining how the 'apes' would look like...so much fun to read!

You know how to spark imaginations which leaves one wondering for days. Fantastic.


...and may I just say, the sound of "Tokyo Drift" after the race with the 'apes' was hilarious! XD
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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:10 am

@Prayer wrote:
I already read 'War' and 'Fun' ...both are splendid!

Thank you, dear friend!

Take your time.

Maybe now you envision better my "Sunstream" elf-self.

I write..



..when I write.

It may take hours, days, weeks, months, for me to write something, here, and I'm no writer, and English is not my native luggage, so pleeeeeze excuse the typos and mistakes and awful style.

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Fri Jun 15, 2018 6:46 am

Honestly, you are a great author! Native 'luggage' not important, we speaking English, and well it be so. English luggage grateful for we must. ;-)

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:03 am

Teams

From the departure from the world of two moons on, the Palace elves had organized themselves.
Each and every elf had abilities, talents and preferences.
Savah's wisdom proved as efficient as ever, NO order being needed, all along, just like in Sorrow's End.
Almost all elves SHARED, very often, their skills, freely and willingly so, in order for ANY task to be more than simply accomplished : it would be perfected, honed, even turned into new systems, allowing everyone to have less or far less efforts, next times, to accomplish it, as well as  other linked tasks.

Life soon became 'easy', each elf having only a small fraction of their time to spend in non-leisure time.

But new, more complex tasks always appeared : instruction, exploring, studying, spying, preparing plans for trade, and so on.
Many elves wanted to participate in missions, and Timmain's deep wisdom made them accept some selection processes, specific or global trainings, and such hard work.. yet most of them WANTED to accomplish that work and to PERFECT by themselves.
They worked by and for themselves.
Most were non-violent, and chose defense, in most aspects of combat training.
A few, among them Sunstream, had chosen more active or aggressive ways, and were training themselves accordingly.
The Palace could adapt itself for nearly ANY kind of training, constantly securing all elves aboard.
Which didn't mean that such trainings were painless, on the very contrary.. for the elves PUSHED themselves very hard.

Once educated in the field of study called 'martial arts', most elves adopted many techniques coming from various humanoid species, and developped their own integrated, very passive system..


..essentially based on dodging, avoiding, diverting attacks, and on limiting their consequences and the energy required for most gestures. It also developped their personal speed, their agility, and their precision, bare-handed and with well-chosen weaponry.
They soon understood that the development of their muscular power was very limited, so they focussed on stamina, instead, learning how to deal better and better and even better with pain, accepting it, accepting even wounds, learning from experience which pains and wounds were acceptable, and up to which (more and more precise) levels, according to the dangers they would face.
What each elf learned or discovered, during such physical hard studies, was soon shared with all, around, by sending what they had understood, as well as the gestures, the corresponding feelings, how to limit the muscle pains, how to coordinate.

Thus, at any time, any elf could decide to learn more, and many elves would willingly share what had been discovered before.
Of course, some elves had some preferences, but assembling teams for specific missions was not very difficult.
In time, all elves had understood that sharing skills and means solved most decision problems : they were their own 'chiefs', deciding in common, and very quickly so, and extraordinarily efficiently.. who would do what, with which weapons or tools, which one had the best skills in this or that circumstance, and so on. No elf feared any judgment : on the opposite they asked for it, almost constantly, only many other elves' clever judgments being able to tell them which levels they had reached and what level they could hope to get, some day.

Teams thus built themselves, for various tasks and missions, but the process followed a very OPEN logic, each elf perfectly able to leave or join this or that team, at any time. Savah's advice was less and less required, and when it was, everyone considered her simply as a rightful referee.
Conflict was rare, in the Palace, and it became rarer and rarer, and with only slighter and slighter potentially problematic consequences.

However, there remained some very special tasks and missions that required some individual skills, some specific means, and, especially, some dedication to the tasks at hand.

And information was being patiently gathered and analysed, and led to some conclusions.. and to some brand new types of missions.

Sunstream was FAR from being the 'best' agent there was, objectively, but he was deeply responsible, highly dedicated, and he had proven his worth in many missions, successful or not, and what was coming led Timmain to meet him 'in private', in order to expose to him, first, what was coming.

But, out of respect, Timmain had to warn him, and, in a lock-send to him :
The next missions will have to interfere with the 'galactic empire' on the other end of the galaxy.
There, two sides oppose : one that could be our ally, one, that 'empire', that IS our enemy, in most conceivable ways.
That 'empire' is mainly led by humans, and yet.. it was, for millenias and until recently, a very powerful and peaceful 'Republic'.
You have studied all these notions, and you know most of the information gathered and guessed about it all, there, but..

Sunstream was surprised by Timmain's hesitation.
What is there, High One? What danger do you feel?

As always, your feelings warned you well, my student. Yes. There is a grave danger.

A long silence, when Timmain organized her thoughts, for Sunstream to activate his MIND, with what she was about to reveal.

Only I can use the Palace's power to detect it. 'Magic' exists, there, but at a global, universal level. Yet it has been tampered with, used.. many times, during many millenias, but less and less often. At times it was used at incredible levels of power, creating imbalances so huge that, even from THAT far away.. I have felt and still feel them ! Now, this power is used at very low levels, when compared to those eras, but I detected that some individuals still concentrate very strong links to it. They call it 'the Force'... and I have to train any elf who wants to intervene there.. in very special ways, concerning 'magic'. In three fields of study, called 'Feeling', 'Effect', and 'Control'... You already figure what these vague expressions encompass...
Suddenly, a deep sadness invaded Timmain's sending :
And, a few days ago..
I felt that a whole planet had been abruptly destroyed, there.
From the information gathered so far, its name was Alderaan..


..and it was destroyed by that 'empire'.

Sunstream was deeply shocked and horrified, but his mind kept working.

He remembered his own conclusions about the 'magic' ring he had stolen, and he deduced by himself the very nature of the danger Timmain would not expose directly :
Some elements of that cruel 'empire' have ABUSED of that 'Force' they are linked with. Probably only a few did so. Recently. And they obtained and maintained their personal or global power by worsening that abuse, with time...
And..
You guessed there may exist a link between that 'empire' and the 'real elves' we seek.

Indeed.

And, since that 'Force' is global, universal, but may be abused THAT much.. You do not intend the Palace to be exposed. Since you asked ME to come, since you lock-send with me.. You want ME to go first, in a pod. But it is extremely dangerous, even so, and you want to train me by yourself, in some new, odd ways.

Timmain's look proved that Sunstream was right. She added :
I shall not have to train you too much on 'Feeling'. THAT path you already master. But you know your levels in 'Effect' and 'Control'.. are still to be developped or perfected. You ARE limited, dear student, and you know many of your own limitations in the many uses of 'magic', already. The training is not THAT special, just.. a little different from the approaches Savah and I have followed, up to now. You, of all elves, have the highest ability at feeling 'magic' around you, and thus.. at establishing links with that 'Force'.. just like any elf, here, creates links with the 'magic' of the Palace we live in, some of them without even fully realizing it.

Why not form some teams?

It may happen.. AFTER someone collects enough information. It will first be a series of extreme spying missions.

Sunstream pondered, feeling the High One was still hesitating deeply, guessing there was something She wanted HIM to understand by himself, something very important...

IF I accept such missions, I must NOT be captured. And the enemy obviously CAN capture or neutralize me... And the Palace will keep far away.
Hence, the only way for me to not expose our existence... is to be ready to commit suicide, isn't it, Timmain? You asked me, because you know only I .. have always felt THAT responsible.. to even envision such a thing, didn't you?...

A tense silence, and..
You are right.

Some long moments passed. Sunstream *sent* to Brill, and the long mental, intimate dialogue that followed.. finally evolved in a way that made Sunstream decide himself.

I accept.

___________________________________________________
            
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PCoquelin

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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   Sat Jun 16, 2018 4:38 pm

Think!

Savah's teachings had had some special, unexpected effects on the young Suntop, in Sorrow's End.
Before each lesson to come, he envisioned his mind to be like a surface of sheer sand, ready for anything to be drawn on it.
Each time he faced stressful situations or hard decisions.. his mind woke up and forced him to think. Fast. With crystal-clear thoughts popping into his brains.

Before Timmain, the adult Sunstream would still react this way.
He told Her :
" I accept...
But I first have to explore some questions... with as much help as possible.
A cocoon to help me concentrate. The Palace's collective mind. Everything we know and guessed about physics and 'magic'.
And YOUR help, as well, High One. "

Timmain knew why he asked that, yet even She was a little surprised by the urgency She now felt inside Sunstream's mind, about questions he had been studying for years, now...

Yet, she finally agreed, and she called all elves, by an open sending.
Timmain made sure the help would be at the same level as when Suntop had become Sunstream : all elves would cooperate, eager to help, and the Palace would amplify their hearts' love and will.

Sunstream equipped himself with the very best artificial conscience the elves could find, and set it to explore the science dataset, subject : fundamental physics, from every source found, each and every theory to be compared, analysed, and HE would choose, explore the abstract paths... and link to the subject of 'magic', in ways no one had ever tried.

His concentration was triggered so much, already, that he stumbled... He needed help to prepare physically, for being cocooned, and Brill was the first to support him. Even while his mind was entering the abstract trance, he deeply felt her contact and love, and it helped him dive straight into the huge volume of abstracts to be explored.

The last thing he heard, and only barely so, was :
* We do, we do, we do ! Busybusybusyhead Highthing soon remember-know-see ! "
The preservers were always willing to put any elf into a cocoon, and they knew the purpose of this cocooning.

Once cocooned, Sunstream soon perceived the difference in the passing of time, between his thoughts and the speed of the artificial conscience his brains were directly connected with. His mind was slowing down. But he decided to keep a part of his conscience slow, receptive to the love he felt all aroud him.. and another part, the one able of abstract reflection, accelerated and deeply linked with the artificial conscience.
He began trying manymanymany links and comparisons between the incredibly different theories gathered so far.
The love the other part of his mind felt.. helped him in focussing, keeping a good heart at his work, no matter how long, how tedious, how boring it could have appeared to be to the other part of his mind, without this emotional help. That busy part would almost constantly feel impassionate, happy to simply be able to try such a thing ! Sunstream ENJOYED it sincerely and absolutely.

There were strange exceptions, even to some 'laws', in many physics theories.
Sunstream cherished such oddities. THEY would be the KEYS for trying to find any other way to understand the universe.
Sunstream had understood what was the mindset to have, in order to explore such an abstract domain of knowledge.
First, he had to ADMIT doubt and uncertainty, in order for many questions and new hypothesis to emerge.
He admitted that. He even integrated doubt and uncertainty, thus recognizing how IGNORANT he still was, about a multitude of things.
" I do not know. " Now, he had no trouble at all admitting it, even out loud. Because he wanted to know.
Then, he had to proceed with rigor and precision. In order to spot new potential exceptions, inside many recorded seemingly 'regular' curves and experiments. In order NOT to be fooled by this or that interpretation of his or others'.
The artificial conscience provided the occasional (relatively to its extremely high computational rhythm) help at logic and mathematics.

Many elements, in very different theories, were identical, of course, but there were manymanymany interpretations hiding, behind seemingly 'correct' physics equations. The human beings from Earth had explored many subjects, in physics, for instance, even if it was crystal-clear they were FAR from being able to understand an eighth of the theories needed for spacefaring.
The funniest case would be Einstein's interpretation behind his theory of general relativity : Sunstream's mind stopped for a moment at it.
His equations merely DESCRIBED, mathematically, a deformation, be it of light or of everything else (except forces).
His INTERPRETATION was that space and time were not two very separate dimensions, but were linked into a thingie named 'spacetime'.. that was deformed by the force called gravity.
Even cocooned, when comparing this with many other theories, Sunstream wanted to burst into laughter.
As if the speed of light was the same in each and every milieu ! Most spacefaring sentient species knew it was wrong.
But he calmed down, and he realized why Einstein had made that mistake.
And it was so huge, so funny, that he dug for a moment into this human being's biography. And then he realized, half guessing, that it was no mistake at all : it was intentional ! Einstein wanted other scientists to debunk his interpretation. But Sunstream also realized why the other human scientists never did so. They had merely stopped at his equations... that appeared to be absolutely right !
It was, in fact.. a lesson, for the curious and imaginative mind !


Sunstream used that lesson for other science works from other sentient species.
And, with the help, both of the Palace elves' collective mind and of the artificial conscience, the big picture 'soon' became clear, to him.

Sunstream didn't know it, but he had already spent three days in the cocoon.
However, Timmain was lnking minds with him, and she shared with everyone what discoveries Sunstream was obtaining.
Most elves were neglecting their common tasks to witness it and to help. It was terribly exciting. They often intervened, proposing this or that approach, new hypothesis, ideas for experiments... that, once approved, were easily conducted by the Palace's means. 'Magic' was helping science.
Skywise offered his help, astronomy being an obvious way of testing possible links and new theories, and he was often sending pictures and measurements, his head near Sunstream's cocooned head, Brill with her hand on Sunstream's chest.

Sunstream's ultimate moments of reflection were extremely short, and he abruptly asked to be 'un-cocooned'.
Skywise did it, cautiously, moreso that his hands were trembling with excitement.
Timmain had not shared Sunstream's conclusions. Even She was still.. pondering them and their consequences.
Everyone was eager to hear Sunstream expressing them.
And Sunstream summarized it all, in an open sending, accompanied with some clear - though abstract - pictures :

The universe is made only of energy and structures.
A global bath, with various local energy densities.
Matter is but intricated structures, at each and every level.
These structures are like the ones 'waves' can create, in the sea.. - Sunstream was looking at Brill.

But, in fact, NOTHING is 'material' : we, our bodies, this Palace, the air we breathe, the water we drink, the planets we live on, the stars, their light, EVERYTHING, at EVERY level... is but energy replicating itself through that global bath of energy.


The ripples extend WITHOUT END.. - Sunstream was now looking at Savah, reminding her of a bowl of water and ripples...

..and everything is LINKED, EVERYWHERE !
This is where 'magic' and physics describe the same thing..

Skywise, shocked, interrupted :
" WHOA ! Slow down, cub ! You don't mean... "

Yes, Skywise ! I mean this : what we call 'magic' is our brains' abilities to connect to the resonance frequencies of all those 'ripples', all around, replicating a multitude of structures... thus allowing us to - even without being aware of what we are doing - interfere with the probabilities for this or that infinitesimal event to occur.But since we can affect the resonance frequencies, this goes almost instantly up to a FAR larger scale than light or mere atoms !

Timmain questioned :
And time ?...

Sunstream now had a great smile :
Yes, High One ! Even through time, because the universe has NO beginning or ending, it cycles, like an eternal Circle. But what happens now.. has resonance, 'echoes' all along the future.. which is also this universe's past ! Hence the Palace is powerful enough to travel from one timeline - no: from one time CIRCLE, to another !

Coming back to talk, removing his equipment and handing the artificial conscience to the elves around, he said :
" All the corresponding equations are set. Now, pleeeeeze, all ! TRY to INvalidate my work.
Here's what my conclusions predict : ... "
And the elves carefully listened to manymanymany physical AND 'magical' predictions.

Then, the elf, trembling, resting in Brill's arms, concluded :
" Now, I could use some rest... "

The next days were a chaos of experiments and observations.
Savah and Timmain had real trouble keeping everyone's excitement in check.

And no experiment, no observation, no measurement could invalidate the equations Sunstream had obtained.
His theories seemed to explain everything measured and observed, as well as all the previously observed exceptions, from the particles' level to the galaxies' level.

After some more weeks of intense checking, again and again, Skywise and some other elves who had studied sciences for long came back, both smiling and in shock, to announce the final results to Sunstream.

He was now calm, after some rest, after some days and nights with Brill, and after long and deep mental discussions with Timmain, and, impassively, he merely nodded at what they said.
His voice was different, deeper, expressing deep meditation :
" Do not be fooled. My equations may be correct.. yet my interpretations may be wrong. It will ask for more scientific minds to go deeper. "

He had a strange laugh, and he added :
" I would have been fooled, myself, without the help of some dead human from that 'Earth' planet, that Albert Einstein.
He had an appropriate saying, you know :
' No amount of experimentation can prove me right. One experiment would be enough to demonstrate I'm wrong ! '.
Think about it, my friends... "

Some hours later, Timmain asked him :
" Are you ready? "

Sunstream's eyes strangely sparkled.
Secretly, he had used the last moments spent in his cocoon.. to operate some subtle changes to his own brains, gently but extremely quickly and precisely, to adapt his brain cells to some resonance frequencies...
And now, it was bringing some results.
" More than ever, High One. I will only need the presence of Brill and Korafay. "
And their spiritual images appeared, almost as if they were physically here, at his side. Both were amused of being 'convoked' this way.

Timmain was astonished, and then shocked, when she realized, some short moments later...
" You did that all by yourself ! It was.. "

" Dangerous, yes. And painful. But their love helped me...
Soon, I will travel with them... "

Timmain gasped:
" But your training... "

Sunstream laughed :
" ...is not required anymore, Timmain. Just know I focussed on 'Feeling' and 'Control'. The 'Effect' parts will be strictly limited to extremely precise effects on my saber and on my own moves and discretion. I already changed the structure of my saber, for it to enter the resonance far better. But I will trigger a FINAL, HUGE effect, that will.. get me back here, in this place and time, only a few heartbeats after the moment I will leave for my missions. There will be no need for suicide, in any case. And I shall judge by myself on the nature of my actions, against that 'empire'. "

A few hours later, Sunstream prepared himself, a sight system on the left eye, his saber on the right hand, both Brill and Korafay being spiritually convoked at his sides, and he travelled, with them, through space and time, partly in spirit, to the crystallized core of that planet Alderaan, at some precise time, a few hours  after the destruction.

Through his sight instrument, beyond the expanding cloud of huge debris, he saw a dark moon.
He soon understood : " An artificial structure. A huge space station. Extremely powerful pulsed lasers coupled with accelerated ions jets. The planet's shell could not resist. "
He also felt that presence, there, aboard that dark station. Cold. Hating. Powerful.
But, closer, he also felt some other kind of presence.
Those millions human beings who had died, here, only some hours before...
Their spiritual existence, all those human essences were shocked, wandering around.

The once underlying carbon layer of the planet was now crystallized into a chaotic, dirtied diamond surface, and Sunstream felt the huge power of resonance that it coud create.
He mentally explained the situation to Brill and Korafay, and their spirits and their love helped him in gathering almost all those human 'souls', around.. inside the diamonds. This spiritual work cleansed and illuminated that part of the destroyed planet's surface..


..and those 'souls' would soon find peace, inside that spiritual 'Palace' Sunstream, Brill and Korafay were offering them all.
It took but a few heartbeats to accomplish this.
After that, he hid the affected surface of the core, released Brill's and Korafay's spirits, with some last intimate sendings, and he teleported himself..


..into that ugly battle station.


Inside the Death Star, Darth Vader was walking back to the command center, to order the ship to travel to Tatooine...
...when he suddenly stopped in his tracks.

" WHAT. WAS. THAT !? ", he mentally exclaimed.
He had never felt the like. Like a huge group of jedi suddenly appearing, and then their presence fading away.
His helmet slowly turned to the place, in space, where the planet Alderaan had been, before getting pulverized by the Death Star.
Was he going crazy?!...

" Impossible !... No one may have survived that ! ", he thought.
Yet, arrived at the command center, but detecting nothing on the scopes.. he ordered the Death Star to remain here for some more days, and to enforce the Tie fighters' patrols and to widen their perimeter.
Was it premonition?... Was something ancient buried in this planet?.. He wondered.
He guessed he had to wait and see.

___________________________________________________
            


Last edited by PCoquelin on Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:29 am; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: FUTURISTIC TALES   

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