GENTLEMEN, WE HAVE COMPANY Tom Mazanec Tuesday June 12, 2012 press release NASA today announced that the Hubble Space Telescope has detected a satellite of the dwarf planet Ceres. The satellite, provisionally named S/2012 (1) 1, appears to be highly elongated, approximately 30 kilometers long, and revolves around Ceres once every 3.12 hours. From the Bad Astronomy and Universe Today forum June 12, 2012 WTF!? Ceres could not have a satellite even 1 km in diameter and not have it be discovered years ago. What in the name of Galileo Galilei is going on here? Friday June 15, 2012 Message delivered in eastern Liberia over every radio on all frequencies in local languages: "This area has been chosen for ur-species collection of Liberiictis kuhni for uplift. Any attempt to interfer with collection process will be met with lethal force." Message is repeated every minute throughout day. ************************************************************ Saturday June 16, 2012 A 7 meter tall cone enters the Earth's atmosphere over eastern Liberia, but veers off towards the Atlantic. It flies over the ocean, trailing a blinding blue-white flame and a sonic boom as the hypersonic rocket streaks toward the northwest. Approaching Miami, Florida, it turns around and lands on the beach, making a round patch of mucus colored glass under it when the flame goes out. A cluster of police cars soon arrive, as they try to hold back the crowd of curiosity seekers already gathering. Out of the cone comes a voice repeating over and over "We seek political asylum." ********************************************************* Officer Ted Lucas came out of the police car and walked up to the cone. "What is that thing? Who the hell are you?" he said into the bullhorn. "We are time travelers from 3007 AD. We seek political asylum in the United States. We have critical information for your nation." "What are you here for? What critical information do you mean?" "We came to Earth from an O'Neill Cylinder in orbit about the asteroid Ceres. Our mission was to find and take several Liberian mongooses from Liberia to Ritchtikcyl, the cylinder, for genetic engineering. I am Kappa Janrin 3939 Crossarchus, the pilot of this craft. Lambda Gabmor 871 Crossarchus is a guard on this vessel and, like me, is a member of the Beneist Underground. He shot the other guard in the leg with his laser and we took over this shuttle and landed here. Will you grant us asylum?" Lucas did not understand half of what he had heard, and he did not like the half he did understand. "You shot someone? You took over the UFO? You're aliens or something?" "We are from the future. No, we are not extraterrestrials, but we are not human either. We are Mammaloids, specifically cusimanses. Our cylinder contains almost 3 million Mammaloid mongooses of 12 genera, half Crossarchus. It is here to colonise and develop your solar system. We two are here in America to help your species have a position in the future of the solar system." "You're here to take people into space, you say, Mr. Crossarchus?" "Do not refer to me by my genus name. To refer to a Mammaloid soley by his genus name is insulting, like calling him a toon. Call me Kappa Janrin. And me and Lamda Gabmor are here to help humanity have a place in the future better than what our government has in mind. They intend to leave humanity trapped on Earth as a reservation, while they grow our population into the quintillions and become a Kardeshev 2 civilization. As Beneists we wish a solar system of thousands of uplifted animal genera, both mammal and otherwise, with your species on an equal footing. Do we have sanctuary?" "I'll have to take you to the station. They will have to straighten this out." "Very well." A few moments later an opening irised in the side of the cone, and a ramp flowed down to the ground. Down came three creatures, the ones on the side holding up the middle one. They were dressed in silvery iridescent uniforms, with a helmet globing their heads. Those heads were covered by dark fur, with long snouts. Ted Lucas thought "Shit! This is going to be a mountain of paperwork!" ************************************************************ "I am detective Armstrong. What is your, ah, name?" "Call me Kappa Janrin. Are you related to Neil Armstrong?" "No. And I ask the questions. First, what the hell are you?" "I am a time traveler from the 31st Century. I am also a genetically engineered Mammaloid." "Mammaloid? What is a Mammaloid?" "We were created to be slave soldiers in World War Three. The first Mammaloids were conceived in 2019, the last year of the war. We fought another war with humanity in the 2090s, when a theocracy in America tried to exterminate us. Humanity lost. Hard. We fought yet another war in the 2160s, which humanity lost again, even harder. We lived in space and mankind lived under the Earth's surface after this war. We developed the solar system and kept humanity trapped on Earth. Meanwhile, an anonymous poster placed 365 poems in Esperanto on the Web, one each day, in 2039. The poster claimed to be channeling God. I believe this. I am a Beneist...a Sky Beneist." "Sky Beneist?" "Lalibro 157 speaks of punishment after death for sins. I believe this is temporary. Star Beneists believe it is permanent. By this time we had turned Mercury into two Dyson Hemispheres around the sun as an ultimate power source...and weapon, controlled from Mars. In the 23rd Century there was a 12 year civil war on Mars, over what to use the weapon for, mere deterence or destruction of Homo sapiens. The deterence side, who respected humanity as our creators, won." Detective Armstrong shook his head. "You mean, we...made...things like you? Big, talking dogs or something?" "I am a cusimanse Mammaloid. There are no dog Mammaloids...genus Canis is represented by Canis latrans, the coyote. Others are beavers, kangaroos, aardvarks, pangolins, deer...hundreds of species. But all the Mammaloids who have traveled to this century, into this particular timebranch, are members of the mongoose family." "Hoax. This has to be a hoax." Janrin reached up and removed his helmet. He bent over the table and opened his mouth in Armstrong's face. He closed his mouth and said "Feel." The mouth just twitched, and the voice came from an object on a collar ound Janrin's neck, Armstrong could tell with the thing so close to him. Again the mouth opened. Armstrong felt the sharp fangs and soft, moist tongue. Janrin sat back down and closed his mouth. "The Third World War, in the previous timebranch, began in 2013, after the Islamist Summer led to the Second Oil Boycott and the Hyperdepression. The war saw 20 mushroom clouds in that timebranch. In this one, it might see 20,000." "War? You're going to attack us?" "The authorities on Ritchtikcyl do not intend to actually attack you unless you attempt to expand into space on a more determaned course than you are taking now. But they intend to take biological samples of the 99% of present species that were exterminated in the Second Human-Mammaloid War to place in the Bishop Rings and McKendree Cylinders they intend to build. Any interference will be met by lethal force" "Then what war are you talking about next year?" "In the original timebranch China and the Muslim nations cooperated in trying to put the West 'in its place.' The war that resulted killed 100 million humans, and gave birth to my people. In this timebranch, it could start tomorrow, since we have traveled here and introduced alterations in the situation..." "And you want to kill or enslave us or something? Or what?" "I do not want to harm you. I am a member of the Beneist Underground...although some of us are Christians. Both religions are proscribed on Ritchtikcyl. Our government is not exactly at war with your world, but it is not exactly at peace either. It wants humans restricted to Earth, while us mongooses colonize the Solar System, the Galaxy and ultimately, the Universe. On the other hand, I want to uplift the hundreds of mammal genera on this world into Mammaloids, as well as thousands of non-mammals. I want a chorus of voices spanning the Cosmos, with yours as one, instead of the twelve on the Ritchtikcyl and the two which became extinct before they could be uplifted." "And how do you propose to accomplish this?" "I must speak to someone in authority, in your federal government. As soon as possible. I do not know what is happenning on Ritchtikcyl. I only knew of the few members of the underground in my cell. But me and another were on that shuttle to Earth, and we succeeded in taking control. With this disruption in their plans, the government on Ritchtikcyl will try to react, while the underground tries to take control. The cylinder may be destroyed in the struggle, or one side or the other may win. In case the authorities win, I must try to help your race advance as fast as possible. The shuttle contains a nanofab to create artifacts. Me and Lambda Gabmor will try to help you use it to advance your technology. It is your best slim hope." "I'll be glad to hand this hot potato over to the Feds." Armstrong picked up the phone and began pressing keys. ************************************************************ Monday June 18, 2012 Lambda Gabmor looked at the FBI agent across the desk. "I will give you all the assistance I can. Kappa Janrin is more experienced with the nanofab than I am, but I can help. Your government has possession of our laser can try reverse engineering it. The nanofab will not produce one, or any other military grade weapons." "Was that what happened to the other one? His leg was nearly blown off." "Yes. Steam explosion, from boiling blood. A laser pistol will leave a finger sized fulgarite in sand. The power cells in that big handle will give 9 shots." "Can you reload it?" "It is easier to change the handle. Soldiers also have backpack power cells with power cords to larger 2 handed lasers, that can fire 99 shots or 9 high-power ones." "How do we know your guns are not booby-trapped?" "They are not, to my knowledge. That is a good question. I know the larger ones are. You may want to study them by volunteers in an isolated laboratory." "And you are here to invade Earth? Nuke us?" "We are not here to invade Earth, but we are here to invade the rest of the Solar System. We used nearly 100,000 cobalt bombs in the Second War, but we would not use such weapons here...we value Earth's biosphere too much. If your species proves too troublesome, we will likely use replicative nanobots...inorganic viruses. There are four we have that I know of...Golgotha, Gehenna, Gomorrah and Gotterdamerung. There may be more. Computer simulations project they would kill eight or even nine out of every ten humans in four to six weeks." "You hate humans that much?" "I do not hate humans. Edward Langley and Justin Marino were humans. But the government of Ritchtikcyl has no love of humans. They will only tolerate them as long as they stay in their place." "Who were Langley and Marino?" "Langley was the geneticist who devised the Z chromosome that turns mammals into Mammaloids. Marino was the biologist who developed the method of gestating the very first Mammaloids in wombs of other species...cows, at first. Later we were grown in artificial wombs, then by normal sexual reproduction among ourselves." "What do you intend for us?" "I want a Solar System Civilization of thousands of terragen species, of which Homo sapiens is one in equality, numbering a quintillion. The Alpha and Betas of Ritchtikcyl want fourteen mongoose genera to number a quintillion, with cusimanses more equal than others, and humans in their few billions trapped on Earth." "Cusimanses? What are those? And what do you mean 'more equal'?" "Since Alpha Baldab 84 Helogale and his disasterous New Economic System, all Alphas and Betas have been cusimanses. That is my species. We make up just over half the population of Ritchtikcyl and just about all important positions. Some of us call other mongooses 'stubnoses'. The others call us 'flutesnoots' when they can get away with it." "You are going to enforce some new economic system on us?" "Not even the Alpha would do that to you. When it was instituted, we issued money in denominations of 1 to 500 munits. Ten months later, we issued kilomunits. In 14 months megamunits. In 17 months gigamunits. A month more and we had teramunits. Two weeks later petamunits. After nine days examunits and five days zettamunits and three days yottamunits. The following day he was impeached and deposed." "You know that in some detail." "I was taught that in some detail. Probably to convince me how stupid other mongoose species are. Of course, most cusimanses were stupid enough to vote for him as well." "But I am supposed to believe that you two are different?' "We are. I do not know how to prove that to you, except our gifts of technology we have given you. If me and Kappa Janrin wished to harm you, we would not tell you of the antipathy of our rulers. Do you have any other proposed method to assure our cooperation?" "No. And we have to do something fast...we tried to cover you up, but the videos of your ship have gone viral, and conflicting cover stories have only fanned the flames. We will have to trust you, I am afraid." The DJIA dropped 1293.42 points that day, forcing the closure of the Exchange. ************************************************************ Tuesday June 19, 2012 "At this rate, I should meet the President in a few more days." The representative from the State Department smiled slightly. "Perhaps." he said. "But what we have to cover now is this war you said will start next year. You say 20 nukes will be used?" "I don't know when or even if the war will start in this altered timebranch, but in the original one, North Korea destroyed Seoul and America destroyed Pyongyang, Israel used two nukes on its own territory to stop Muslim Coalition forces, Pakistan used seven nukes in Kashmir, followed by seven nukes by India, and China cynically took out Guam, at which the United States nuked Xiamen only although China had already established Fuzhou as a backup base. The Coalition also created an enhanced smallpox virus using interleukin-4, but the result was so virulent it killed before it could become contagious." "And you fought two wars with Mankind?" "America had a second space age in the mid-21st century...a couple asteroid missions, a Mars expedition and, most important, a Moon base. But a defect in the recycling system poisoned the Base's air. Instead of recrewing the base with humans, the United States used "disposable" Mammaloids. Later, America was taken over by a Theocracy which tried to kill all Mammaloids. It even attacked other nations that did not turn over any Mammaloids in their territory. All except Israel, which they held specially blessed by the Bible. On Earth, only those Mammaloids who made it to Israel, or were successfully hidden in other nations, survived. But when America attacked the Moon, a gamma ray laser destroyed the invaders. Then a tesla cannon, a giant mass driver, bombarded American cities until the country collapsed. It would be as if the Warsaw Ghetto invented nuclear bombs and ICBMs and destroyed the Third Reich." "And the other war?" "Some of us loved humans, those who survived on Earth through the heroism of humans who protected us especially. But many lunar Mammaloids hated humanity, and vowed to destroy it. The leader of the moon was a female hyena named Meega-13 Crocuta. She became increasingly vicious as the decades passed, even as the remaining Mammaloid population of Earth was evacuated to the Moon. We began secretly colonizing asteroids, tricking humanity into thinking we were colonizing the dwarf planet Ceres. Tensions rose. Many humans sought safety underground. Then war broke out when a giant meteorite took out Sydney, Australia, and we were blamed for it. In fact, we were responsible...a secret project had diverted the meteoroid toward Earth. A team of Mammaloid astronomers discovered this, and announced this. Meega killed them, and a riot broke out. Alpha Meega called out for killing all Mammaloids from Earth, and shooting any within reach with her laser, until her bodyguard shot her. But the war was on. We killed the 60% of humanity on the Earth's surface, as well as any animal bigger than a rat. "Mad Meega" so shocked the population that we almost called off the genocide, but a human battleship found one of our colonies and destroyed it, radicalizing us again. Over several decades we had turned Mercury into a Dyson sphere around the Sun, with an equatorial gap for the planets. We used this as a laser to vaporize Pluto, then demanded Earth surrender or be destroyed, using the same language as our ultimatum that the Theocracy rejected. But this time, Earth surrendered. The next century the population of Mars was reduced from 50 million to 5 million in twelve years in a Civil War over whether to end humanity, but the Quilt of Life won over the Exterminators. Then over several centuries, we converted Venus into a trillion O'Neill Cylinders and populated them with a quintillion Mammaloids. We had planned to transform humanity into Mammaloids at one time, but when we had the ability we forbore, no longer afraid of a species we outnumbered 100 million to one." "Quilt of Life?" "The pro-human faction, although even that faction, at the time, kept humanity "contained" on a planet made a Protectorate.. But it was a close thing. The Quilt of Life only won the critical battle of Pavonis Mons, with its control of the Dyson Sphere, because of the superiority of the Exterminators weapons. If the base had fallen for even a few hours, Earth would have been turned into a giant comet." "You mean superiority of the Quilt's weapons, don't you?" "There is an old story about a space war won through the superiority of the losing side's weapons. As one example from the Martian Civil War, the Quilt of Life used bullets guided by infrared, which tended to hit the target in the torso. The Exterminators used radar and computerized pattern recognition in their bullets, targeting the head. Brain impact was more damaging to the soldier than body impact. But the bullets were fragile and expensive. The Exterminators did not have nearly as many as did the Quilt of Life, and most of those malfunctioned when they were fired in real field conditions." "And one of those cylinders traveled to the past?" "Billions of cylinders have traveld to neighboring stars. Millions have traveled into the past, some as far as the time of Christ. We intended to come about 1950, but for some reason arrived in 2010, and spent two years 'catching up' with the sun's motion." "But we have never seen any other cylinders. They must have failed, been destroyed." "Each cylinder traveling into the past creates a unique alternate timebranch. You would not see any of the earlier, or later, arrivals. Any timeships coming now, if there ever are any, would be from our altered future." "Dear God. Well, I'll warn the President about-" A man walked in the room "Sir" he said, handing over a paper, "I have urgent news. Three spacecraft have just taken up geosynchronous orbit around Earth from the direction of Ceres." ************************************************************ Kappa Janrin, Lambda Gabmor, a human General and several human guards entered the radio room. The technician said "They have been broadcasting to every radio in the Florida peninsula for over an hour, demanding to talk to you two and someone named Lambda Balrog 69 Crossarchus. We have modified a satellite dish to transmit to the vessel above the United States." Kappa Janrin took the microphone. "This is Kappa Janrin. Me and Lambda Gabmor took over the shuttle and took it to America. Lambda Balrog was injured in the takeover. We have sought political asylum in the United States." "This is Kappa Vortek 211 Crossarchus. You are to return to the Ritchtikcyl in your shuttle." "Kappa Vortek, look. We will return Lambda Balrog in the shuttle. He will lose his leg if he does not get placed into a chrysalis machine for regeneration. But what do we face in Ritchtikcyl? Death?" "Alpha Negnor is not Mad Meega. He does not intend to kill anyone who opposes him. Besides, he was surprised by the scale of the uprising. Over a tenth of the cusimanses on Ritchtikcyl turned out to be Beneists or Christians, and over a third of the other genera. To kill that many means civil war, and on a cylinder that means death for everybody." "Do you still intend to keep humanity trapped on Earth?" "For now. Janrin, we cannot let them off planet now anyway. They are less than a year before the Black Easter attack on South Korea that started the Genesis War in the original timebranch. Yes, things will be different this timebranch, but this is still a species on the edge of war. We will not allow them into space for now. If that shuttle is not returned, I am authorised to destroy it with a nuclear missile." "General Masterson, you will have to allow Balrog to take the shuttle back to Ritchtikcyl. They do not want you to reverse engineer its propulsion, which would open up the Solar System to humanity. If you don't, they will take out half of Florida. And Balrog needs his leg regenerated." Janrin clicked the microphone again. "The shuttle and Lambda Balrog will be returned. Me and Lambda Gabmor will remain on Earth." "You have one hour to comply." Janrin turned to General Masterson. "You must see to it immediately. He is not bluffing about wanting that shuttle back. Have you succeeded in replicating the nanofab?" "We just completed assembling the components when I came to get you." said General Masterson. "You can replicate the nanofab as I showed you. Then you can double the number each day, if you obtain the chemical feedstock. You need the 12 elements I listed, but they can be in any chemical compound form. Theoretically you could give each family on Earth a nanofab in a month. It will take longer in practice, but still far faster than in the original timebranch, when it took most of the century to develop the nanofab. Then the families can nanofacture anything in the nanofab's catalog out of common materials. You will have to be careful introducing this technology...the social and economic stress of nanofacture was a contributing factor in the rise of the Theocracy in your nation." "Will your people tolerate us having nanofab?" asked General Masterson. "I believe so. They are really just concerned with keeping you out of space. They also do not want you to start a global war, at least until they have obtained specimens of genus Dologale and Liberiictis to gengineer into Mammaloids, since such a war could result in their extinction earlier than before. Nanofabs will make your civilization solar powered, lowering the oil boycott power of the Arabs, making war a little less likely. But you will have to abandon space beyond the Moon's orbit for at least awhile. The government does not want a human Koshmarego, especially after so many citizens turned out to belong to the Underground, but they will not stop at plagues killing six billion instead of seven billion if they feel threatened by the Human Race. And remember that this is the same century as the Theocracy. There are religious fanatics in Christianity and Islam now, whose grandchildren tried to annihilate the Mammaloids. Maybe, if me and Gabmor can help you avoid our Genesis War, your World War Three, humanity will have a future in the Milky Way. Then maybe the future of the galaxy will be a chorus of 15,000 sapient genera, instead of 15. But for now, let's try to stop World War Three." General Masterson nodded. "Yes, let's try." he said.