The Council Lottery

It was a regular day, here in VaiJong.  People of the 28 towers were taking care of business. Building reactors for the Imperial Mother Ships,  assembling space mining robots, and the planting trees into the pots.

However there was still excitement in the air. It was the day VaiJong got a whole new administration.  Every year on the first day right after the New Years eve, every adult resident gets an email. An email with results of the lottery.

Rita woke up very early to check whether he won a seat in the council. He hoped for a position in the tower council. That would allow him to have a say about what his children study in school, and the common room behavior rules. He wanted to have a voice in the government of Vai Jong.

When he did check his email, he didn’t believe what he saw. He won a seat in the Supreme  Council. He became one of 800 people, who decide on trade deals and immigration quotas among other things.

All his partners congratulated him. Ikas hugged him. Neo told him he will take his shift for a year. Genti offered to guide him to the Council Meeting room. And Hannah   wished Rita to have a productive year. They all told him, that he will be fine as a council member.

Then Ivati  and Luana came up to him, and sung the national anthem. After that Ikas guided them to kindergarten. It’s just two doors down the corridor. But it’s quite a journey for 22 years old.

Genti guided Rita to the teleport and together they travelled to tower A, floor 1620.

There was a huge crowd of people. All the new council members, all the old council members and all their friends. The place was packed with people.

There Rita met with Egan Dzimani, a council member from last year.

“Hello Mr. Dzimani” Rita greeted him, “How do I go into the council meeting room?”, Rita asked.

“It’s 3 doors to the left, right next to the Dzimanga Vai Jong office”, Egan explained.

“Thank you” ,Rita went to the council room. Egan went with him.

They passed near, “Dzimanga VaiJong” headquarters and stopped at the glass door. It was open, but there was something to be done.

Rita scanned his wrist. That’s how he got instructions on his tree planting job.

“Welcome Councilman Nadzima” , said electronic voice- “Your seat is 155, today on the agenda, formation of committees  and electing the head of council”

Rita entered the room and took his seat at the table. Genti told him quick good byes and headed back home.

When he entered only half of the seats on the long crescent shaped people was occupied. Many of the councilmen didn’t even bother to put on their clothes. They were chatting and getting to know each other.

20minutes later every seat was taken. The council was ready to begin work.

At first, there was a presentation by the previous council members on the current state of affairs.  For that 5 men went to the stage and gave a lecture.

After the other 4 left, Egan explained the duties of the council, to the new people.

He told them that the council must communicate with the Imperial Government, make sure that the people of Vai Jong follow the laws of Imperial Scripture, strengthen the trade links with the other worlds of the galaxy, and manage the Immigration policy to increase the number and the prosperity of VaiJong residents.

After giving an explanation of how the council should function he left the room.

Then Samanta Zonga, Zahuri councilman from tower D, proposed voting to elect the head of the council. He also proposed himself for the job. He was a combat veteran who spent years fighting Calpuris in the periphery.

After that 2 humans, and 3 goblins did the same. Then they had a few rounds of voting. That was done by pressing buttons, on the voting machine.

Rita supported Samanta all the way through. In each round a candidate with least votes was eliminated.  So, when the council voted for the 5th time in half and hour, Samanta was up against Patrick Lin, ice cream seller, whose main plus, was the fact he visited Calpurnia soon after the victory. The others had even less authority. Jason Rock was a ship builder, Jaden Ross was a college student, and the goblins were jewelry experts.

One has to get 401 votes to win. Rita sided with Samanta,and gave him that last vote. Patrick got chairmanship over tourism committee. Rita was handed the post of the environment chair.

Then the committee members were selected. Rita scrolled through the list of members and picked the ones he thought capable.

No other committees got formed today. Samanta had them dismissed. They had office space to pick.

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Do you like your aliens with Blue Hair?

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I am making an announcement. I am a writer.

I have published one Science Fiction Novel.

And I am currently working on another one.

I am a Kazakhstani, but I am writing in English, which is my second language.

My writings are set in the Milky Way galaxy thousands of years into the future.

The humans have survived the climate change with the assistance of an alien race which gave them advanced technology. Together with the blue haired Zahuris, the humans built an Empire which spans across half of the galaxy.

The empire gave the humanity and other species multiple thousands of years of prosperity.

The novels do not tell the big story, but instead focus on the lives of the individuals living in this setting.  I write entirely in POVs

My first book is about a girl from Holy Terra who have moved to the world of Kadjar with her family. There she turns into a different person, she even changes gender identity.

Here is a link to my book – “Kadjar Planet of Happiness”

The Ant kingdom. Excerpt from Best City on Diatama

 

Ants are awesome. They are the reason I wake up every morning. Rosa 13th, year 1 was the best day of my life! It was the day, I started my first job.

I was to work with newly established kingdom of Emma. The peculiar nature of ant biology dictates, that in Ant Mounts the leader is always a dantu[1], and all of his subjects are his descendants. Ants are so old fashioned, in their society they have clear status distinctions between a singular dantu at the top, a bunch of junior dantusi [2]and guntusi[3],and all the worker ants being ersta[4]. Among Kadjari, the genitals do not matter. We are all equally masculine. We are all Kadj Tengosi[5].

Ants they are more backwards then Terrans. However, it’s not their sociology that fascinates me. It’s their universality. The workers can be assigned jobs of multiple kinds, and they do all of them equally well. They are not bipedal apes with their division of labor.

Another thing that I like about the ants, is the fact that they communicate through smells. That could never work with humans. Some of us use perfume too much. Freaking Martians. They don’t have any natural smells left in them. As an honorary goblin, I don’t understand why humans do it, at all.

However, that day humans did not matter. Because I put my doctor suit on and headed towards the Ant Mount ready to run some medical exams. There I met with the King, glad that I took ant language class at college. Well not a class, it was a study of how ants communicate.

Ants do not have vocal chords so they can’t communicate with sound. Instead they communicate with smell. The pheromones can convey complex meanings however they are easily contaminated by other particles in the air.

To ease our communication with the ants, the clan of La Vey has invented the ant communication device. Those were little pistols which shot pheromones, so there are a bunch of capsules attached to the gun and you could push buttons to send the pheromones into the air.

It took 4 months, but the research team did create the Ant-Kadjari dictionary. So, all species of Diatama would be able to communicate and build an understanding.

[1]Dantu- Kadjarian word for vagina, also refers to biological females. Word only used to sentient beings in the context of sex and in medical circles.

[2]Si- Kadjari plural ending

[3]Guntu- Kadjarian word for penis, also refers to biological males. Word only used to sentient beings in the context of sex and in medical circles.

[4]Ersta-Calpuri word for a being without the means of reproduction. Also used in Kadjari and common tongue.

[5]Kadj Tengosi-Kadjari Children of the dragon.

 

Zonga Princess, Chapter 1 continued

Zongas fought for the Crown of Rimmat for its entire existence. The Crown was an imperial tool to keep this world out of Calpuri hands. This world could be used both as an imperial spring board to attack Calpurnia system, and as a Calpuri short cut for entering the core. First of all, threatening the Tutmossian system. Therefore, this world is a constant battle ground. Something that everybody wants. Just to keep the Empire busy when they are not attacking this system, Calpuris started distributing secret aid to the rebel groups, like they do all over the periphery. That has led to existence of long-term rebel strong holds.

The “Free Nation of Erari” or at least their central provinces were the most notorious of them. It has managed to exist for thousands of years, and even created a real economy. Although it still was fragile due to war and isolation.

When Aura was delivered to the city of Takor Nama (From English Taker of Names), the city was celebrating a birth of Shiva festival. The whole city was decorated with flowers.

She was paraded through the town, at the end of the divine procession. Her capture was regarded as a major victory for the Free Nation, and cheered the nation up, after losing the town of Tirania to the Ragnaks. It was their stronghold in the northern mountains. And the closest controlled location to the sea. That was a major loss. Free Nation, had to give up on a dream of having a sea port.  Also, northern mountains contain loads of valuable minerals.

But the front line had remained stable for months, since that defeat, due to formidable fortresses built by a Calpuri engineering contractor. The Forts protected the passes through Amidala mountain range, the highest on Rimmat. There were only two Calpuri architects, the rest was done entirely locally, using the equipment dropped in from space.  All the heavy machinery had to assembled in place of work, and some big chunks of metal were smelted locally. All the construction materials were local as well. So, we weren’t totally incapable of building things. We just lacked the expertise for knowledge intensive manufacturing.

Any way   Aura’s main objective was to harass the populace, and attack Calpuri drop off sites. The population was harassed via attacks on infrastructure, like blowing up a railroad, or a hotel, or a water well, or a hundred.  Her people also made it a lot harder to receive care packages from Calpurnia, 5 landing units were blown up from land just in this decade, a couple times a delivery ship was forced to turn back. And Calpuris send one ship every 2 years for all rebels of Rimmat. So, the capture of such terrorist was a major victory for the Free Nation. Her actions cost us estimated 1.2% of GDP per year. She was the most dangerous person on that planet. She was also a daughter of highly influential Ragnak Clan Lord, Vanat Zonga. Who was also the supreme commander of Zonga troopers, most fierce enemies of the rebels all over the periphery.  The Imperial Government, would pressure the King of Rimmat, to retrieve her.

They wouldn’t want Aura Zonga to fall into Calpuri hands.

However, the government of the Free Nation, had decided not to kill her right away, and only transfer her to Calpuri hands after the trial, if Calpuris so request. They were aware of the capture off course, but had more important things to do being a galactic empire. Besides President Robert Morrison wanted to prove his voters that he always upholds democratic values. We are a democratic nation, and everyone here deserves due process. No matter what they do. That’s humanism, which extends to all of sentients.

 

The Zonga Princess. Chapter 1.

“Now, that you didn’t kill me you have to treat me like a warrior princess that I am.” said

Aura Zonga, daughter of Zonga Lord Vanat, Captain Lieutenant of Zonga Troopers, Commander of Sabotage, and Special Operations squad N47, after being Captured by Rebel Special Squad, composed of defector Sky Troopers.  They were the ones who gave us all this valuable information.

She demanded comfortable luxurious accommodations in rebel place, because she is the daughter of Zonga Clan Lord. Aura is the youngest of his 3 children Remi, Tias, and Aura.

When Aura was captured she was 160, and has spent 48 years in the troops. Tias was 190 and was a military surgeon with 65 years of experience. Remi was 220 years old, and worked at the Logistics division with responsibility of supplying the troops fighting on Erari continent of Rimmat.

Aura was considered hero of the Empire, she was brutal soldier of the Zongas, killing hundreds of people a year, together with her squad. Rebel civilians were absolutely horrified of her. They considered her a reincarnation of the devil. The rebel leaders wanted to try her for war crimes.

When she was caught she was like: “How could you judge me, just for being my father’s daughter”.

She also said that if they were afraid of her, they should absolutely terrified, when her father comes to visit. When the rebel leaders told her. She asked what is trial?

She was surprised why they didn’t kill her right away, or didn’t use her as a negotiation tool. That she would understand. Trial by jury with a lawyer, she didn’t. She considered that barbaric and unnecessary. “Why don’t you kill me already, idiot?” She shouted. For a while she thought that dumb red bloods were just dumber than usual. But, then they started to explain her the concept of criminal justice. Her lawyer had to start with the idea of justice, and had to explain what a court is 10 thousand times. Aura replied with: “We don’t need courts, we have surveillance! We always know exactly how guilty people are.”  Humans can be stupid sometimes. But the idea of having a court, instead of an AI, seemed a good fit when the AI’s were lacking. Still they had enough evidence to execute her already. Yet, they insisted on giving her a due process. They even provided her with common tongue translation. When she clearly spoke Rimmatian, with a horrible accent only a few could understand. Also, there was an issue with her not being a human. And a tree worshipper. While they were trying to reconstruct the old faith of Christianity out on Rimmat. It didn’t really work out. People felt it stifled their creativity. So, they made Jesus a brother of Shiva. Both of these were declared sons of Zeus, their Martian ancestors would be proud of such creativity.

By the time Aura was captured she had one prosthetic hand, and 4 prosthetic toes on the left leg. Her second in command had a whole prosthetic leg. The rebels didn’t have access to such luxuries. They were left to die.  That’s how most of her victims died.

Erari is a smaller continent in the Western Hemisphere of Rimmat, local equivalent of North America. The steppe nomads live on Astarton (Calpuri-flat in the middle), local equivalent of Eurasia.
Erari rebels consider themselves more sophisticated than nomads, but also a lot closer to the human spirit than the Ragnaks (Rimmatian= slaves of the law, from Calpuri Ragna=lawyer).  That’s how they called people loyal to imperial authorities, those who prayed to god emperor while following the Calpuri cult of the trees. It was combined with human cults of personality and ancestor worship traditions to create the Imperial faith.

By the laws of “Free Nation of the Erari”, tree worshippers were banned from holding positions of power. Including being judges. However there had to be jury of her peers, and they did make sure that 4 out 12 were tree worshippers, and the rest followed proper Erari religion. The Hindzaamsy, there were 8 such temples in the capital alone, it also had 2 tree worshipper shrines in the park. Those were following pure Calpuri tradition. Among them half were humans, half Ostarte. Her Jury was entirely Ostarte, since they had to be her peers. Judges however only were human. Since there was no Ostarte law school in the republic, because all known Ostarte lawyers were Ragnaks loyal to the king in Arad Gurd (Common Tongue from English Arid Ground).  Those kings came from an old line of Martian traders, which in turn descended from American Walton family.  At least that’s how family tradition goes. They are very proud of it.

Asteroid Battle.Excerpt from “Operation Azares”

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Our fears taught fate how to kill us. A Calpuri Squadron, has tracked us, and tried to attack our ship. We crashed into a rock, and exited the ship. Two landing modules, landed right in front of us. Thank god for our heavy armor, or we would end up floating in space. But, that was the only good news.  We were outnumbered 4 to one. Literally, the entire surface of the asteroid was covered by enemy soldiers and robots. One couldn’t move a step without having to kill.

We had no choice, but to fight. The Calpuris started first, by vaporizing Max and Patricia. We fired back and knocked 4 of their robots from the rock. That was followed by a massive Alpher attack.  We lost five other men, within three minutes. Rita was torn in half by two battle droids. Madoka fell from the rock and into outer space. Then I saw a battle droid crash into him. Rest in peace. Cond tried to rescue him, and burned in hellfire. That freaking droid was loaded with it. Galdan and Fang burned down with her, so did a couple Calpuri soldiers. Rita tried to run into the Calpuri ship, and was cut in half by a laser sword. When the fire evaporated. Only Leff, I, and Dua remained alive.  Calpuri soldiers had retreated. They would deal with us later. Meanwhile we were free to die on our own. The whole damn rock was littered with burned metal, and frozen body parts. Cond’s fried up legs, Madoka’s shattered fingers, and Rita’s hands. The thermometer showed -260C close to absolute zero. Nothing lets you survive this for long. Even our space suits, would eventually give in, and let our bodies turn into icicles.

We were stranded on a desolate rock, in the middle of nowhere. For god knows how long. Surrounded by remains of our team. That’s what hell actually looks like. I was about to rupture my space suit, when we were attacked again. A single landing module with 5 soldiers on it. We rushed towards it, trying to escape. Next thing, I know I was vaporized.

The Documentary Part 1. Excerpt from “Envoy’s Daughter”

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

When I came back from Upper Plateau, the Emperor graced me with a new mission.  I had to collect the information about the Lejian Mega clans, and their relationship with Martians.  I also had to present the information to the wide audience, in a form easy for them to understand.  I was supposed to expose the inequality and inspire action.

After a long discussion with Aisha, I have decided to make a documentary series.  I have wanted to publish a book, but Aisha told me a better plan.  The masses are easier to engage, if you show them visuals.

To kick start my research, I have read the Imperial Encyclopedia for 5 hours every weekday.  I read all the articles about 15 great clans of Leji.  And I made notes on all of them.   I have made a list of clan lords for each of clans and typed a paragraph about each one.   I have spent practically all of my time in my office.  No one was allowed to disturb me, while I read, and made notes.

The first weekend of the school year I and Layla, went to the Alley of the Presidents, and recorded all of their stories.  On Dork 14th, we went to Sakuradzima, and listened to the life story of Ivati Nadzima.  We also went to the Foundation Museum and made notes about the founding fathers.  A day later I went there again and made notes about the first colonial expedition.

On, Soldar, Din 1st, I have started my research on the Martians.  I went to the Foundation museum, they had nothing on the Martian settlers.  I went to the National History museum, they only had two dozen artifacts to represent 15 thousand years of Martian presence.  Layla told me, if I want to find out more, I have to visit Martian towns.

We have gone to Kivat and went to Arrival Museum.  There I learned that first children of Mars came here, during the reign of Rumi Lindar.  The cities of Kivat and Gegendorf were founded as exclusively Martian communities during the reign of Darth Nadoma.  After leaving the Museum we went to the First Settlers park, where we have recorded the story of the trip from Mars, from the founder of Kivat, Patrick Johnson.

To finish the work on the first film I and Leff have gone to Mars, and spent two months there, visiting museums, historic locations, and listening to statues.  After coming back, I put everything together, and showed the film to my family.  I wanted to release Guests from Marsimmediately, but Aisha said it would be better to release everything at once.

Next year, I have researched the professional life of Martians on Kadjar.  I went to Gegendorf Museum of Martian pride.   I saw that Martian settlers, and their descendants, had peculiar social status on Kadjar.  They all worked in Medicine and Education, the other fields were closed to them.  Kivat and Gegendorf were the only town, where descendants of Martians own stores and work in government, everywhere else they could only be doctors or teachers.  Most of Kadjari teachers, college professors, doctors, dentists, and nurses have Martian last names.  I had Leff look through the employment records of schools, hospitals and kinder gardens.

It was determined that Martians were locked into comfortable middle-class prison.   A Smith or a Johnson would never become a policeman or bureaucrat.  A Lindar or Dzimani does not even need a resume to get accepted.  That’ s what people told me, both online and in personal conversations.   I have checked their data, I have looked at employment rosters of City Halls, and Police departments all over the planet.  I have made inquiries to every major clan.  And I saw those claims confirmed.  There was discrimination on unimaginable scale, and everyone had to face the truth.   Thus, A Doctor or Nobody, was created.

While working on the second film, I discovered something huge.  There were entire provinces, where no Martians were allowed to settle.  They could visit those lands but they could not relocate.  Even if people lived on Kadjar for generations, they were considered Martians, they were denied housing just because of their last names.

After hearing that, I have decided to go further.   I have visited every province of Kadjar and talked with people of Martian descent.  They were present everywhere.   Thousands of people in Martian free zones have descended from Martians who married into Terran, Vijer and Lejian clans.  I have looked at life stories of thousands of people both living and deceased and saw a clear pattern.  A person ceases to be a pariah, if his last name changes.  So, the third film was titled,As good as Last Name.

Unknown

The rest of the month was calm and uneventful.  In the morning, I went out into the steppe and collected insects, to give a present to Jafar.  In the afternoon, I had dragonball practice with Malik and Rosa.  The most important, and most interesting part of the day was the evening.  Every evening the elders gathered around and told the stories of their past, their thoughts and beliefs.  Many people gathered around to listen.  They all formed a circle the elders as they discussed and taught their wisdom.  The elders initially shared pleasantries among themselves and then eventually began the story of the night pointing at the fireplace.

“Do you see that log burning?”  elder addressed the crowd.

“Yes.” everyone said in unison.

“That is a metaphor for good and evil.” elder began his tale, “The fire being evil, the wood being good.  Fire is change that destroys the good wood but in return we are benefited by light, heat and energy to cook and make things:  it is irreversible but necessary.”  Elder has explained the function of evil. “Eventually, evil causes the demise of us as we run out of well.” I looked into the fire slowly burning through the logs. “But see this. If I were use my laser and make the fire burn through the wood, a part of it would break off and not burn as a result stopping the fire prematurely and ending our benefit from it.  If I were to burn the piece of wood with liquid fuel it would burn brighter, hotter and faster but also finish the wood sooner.  This teaches you a valuable lesson:  too much evil at any one time causes it to die killing everyone with it.  It doesn’t matter how much good we have the amount of evil must be managed in order for us to survive.” Elder gave us his wisdom. Everyone nodded in agreement. Everyone except me.

“So, you are saying that good does nothing by itself and depends on evil to provide us with benefits?’’ I questioned his logic. He just called evil absolutely necessary.

“I am saying that both are needed in order for us to benefit, and evil cannot exist without good, and yes, there is a difference between the two as many have wondered before.” Elder replied to me. We looked at each other’s eyes across the flames.

“But doesn’t every action have both good and evil to it? It doesn’t fit the wood – fire analogy there. Unless each action produces both wood and fire.” I pointed out the flaws within his argument. The world is full of dualism, everything is exactly as good, as it is evil.

“Wise! Ultimate word of wisdom:  the deeper you dig into the words of wisdom the more you find inaccuracies in them.”  Elder agreed with me. “At the end of the day you would have to decide for yourself how far should you dig into the well of wisdom before you are satisfied with what you find and make use of it.  Having said that you have proven me right that they must both coexist.” elder told me not to go deep into philosophy.  For this subject drives people crazy.

“True, but I may have proven you wrong when it comes to good being by itself like wood without fire, which actually never happens.” I had to make sure that he was mistaken. Good can’t exist without evil.

“Precisely.” all elders said together in agreement.

“That is all for tonight.  We are aware that some of you found this debate confusing.  You came for a story but encountered a revelation.  We would leave it to you to realize what just happened.  We would discuss it further tomorrow.” Tribal chief ended the discussion.  That was the end of the gathering. People needed time to sleep.

Two years of Darkness. Excerpt from “Operation Azares”

Two years of Darkness. Excerpt from “Operation Azares”

Years 8 and 9 were hard for our expedition, we were travelling through a starless void, the outside view was impenetrable darkness with no visible stars. Sometimes it seemed like we weren’t moving at all. The enemy wasn’t seen anywhere on the horizon, it seemed like they had forgotten us. Everyone had forgotten us, we were stuck in this endless void.

Off course the star map, and ship systems were telling us a different story, we were moving, and moving rather fast. We were actually approaching our destination. I had to remind that to everyone, we weren’t lost, and we weren’t stuck, but it sure seemed that way. If one looked outside, or on our small sector of the map. No stars, no planets, no nothing for hundred million km around us.

This perceived failure, had almost ruined the team from the inside. Rita had panic attacks which lasted for hours, filled with shaking, shivering and swearing out loud. Max tried to dull his feelings with going into VR, once he didn’t come out of the machine for an entire week. We had to take him out by force and spoon fed him, so he didn’t starve. The tools, we had helped us go through it, but they had to be used wisely. And together with optimistic tales. Tias knew what to do, every evening he gathered us around and told us, that we are going to win, that we were going towards our goal, and doing meaningful work to end the war. He made everyone listen to loud uplifting music while piloting. He also made us meditate every night before sleep. This helped, and the team continued to function. There were arguments and fights, but nobody killed anyone or did any injuries. That was kept under control. Minor hysterical outbursts, nothing unexpected, some damaged paintings, one torn up portrait of Dua, and a couple of food fights, nothing more damaging than that. Soon, the despair went away and we were our old optimistic selves.

By the time we reached the Magellan cloud, we were all very mindful people. If, not for that, we could have fallen victim of our psychology. For even Ostartes have feelings, we are not machines. These feelings were expressed, understood, and calmed down. “Tristan Nadoma” exited the void, and got into the Magellan cloud. That was a cause for a celebration. We decorated the ship with ribbons, and sung victory songs. For we won this battle, and almost won the war. We were much closer to Azares than to any other known world. However, we didn’t have very good maps of the Magellan Cloud. Still, I knew we were heading the right way. Azares was almost in our hands. The lizards had to be preparing us a welcome. If they were aware of us coming their way. We were coming to the high negotiations.