C O N C L U D E D,





F I F T Y - E I G H T



8 7 3 2

6 Wally and the Nano-Queen

Part I

Chiron, progressing from a phantom of the Underworld to Pteron-centaur and an alphabetic DUBESOR champion of mankind, had come a long way, indeed. There seemed no end to his advancement. If the previous had not been enough, he was also made a new special species all his own, a BLUE MAN! One of a kind that he was, expressing in his very hue his home the Blue Planet, his new condition, nevertheless, took some re-adjustment.

He still felt rather diminished in size and strength after losing his horse-body, lost in crossfire but replaced with a human chassis by the hand of the Almighty.

And the two human youths he had tried to tutor had turned out rather badly--had they not? One had turned into a Black Crystal now wandering the Earth, the other still alive, walking bipedally, but unteachable, intractable like a stone! Yet, despite these short-comings in his performance in the Upper World, the Almighty had seen fit to favor him mightily.

Regarding his spirit-quest, he was to go even farther. His PQ Plan was superseded in a way he could never have imagined or implemented once he discovered the contents of the little metal box from Yellowstone National Park’s Camp Canyon. Out of a worn songbook on which “Esther Klungstad” was inked tumbled Esther’s hurriedly scribbled letter to a another camp worker, a boy named “Johnguy”. In it she confessed how she had pulled a trick on him, hiding his money box with all his camp savings and telling a friend to tell him where it was as she was leaving camp, so that he would miss the last bus out that day. Though a juvenile production, the letter interested Chiron enough that he explored the book’s contents and found a whole world of new meaning.

What was “Yellowstone” and the various “camps,” --”Theodore Roosevelt,” “Canyon,” “Mammoth,” “Lake,” and “Old Faithful”? By reading the songs he found out what they meant to those who worked in them. he learned their duties, wonderfully colorful team names such as packrats and pillow punchers and savages, working and leisure days, pastimes, jokes, dreams, and joyful spirits epitomized in the song, “Smile Song.”

(Tune: “Battle Hymn of the Republic”)

It isn’t any trouble just to S-M-I-L-E, It isn’t any trouble just to S-M-I-L-E, There isn’t any trouble but will vanish like a bubble If you only take the trouble just to S-M-I-L-E. Chorus Glory-ory-ory, Halle-luly-uly-ay, etc. Glory-ory-ory, Halle-luly-uly-ay, etc. There isn’t any trouble but will vanish like a bubble If you only take the trouble just to S-M-I-L-E. (Use g.r.i.n. grin, g.i.giggle.ee, Tee.hee- hee, l.a.u.g.h, haw.haw.haw.haw)

So this book spoke for the general high culture of “America,” with songs like “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “America,” and “O Beautiful, For Spacious Skies,” praising this great nation toward the book’s end? TZBV, then, was but a part of this grand commonwealth of America, which was composed of “states,” democratic and free, such as “Michigan,” “Iowa,” “Idaho,” and “Amster, sh--sh--sh.” The book proved a treasure chest of information about this Republic of America, circa ANNO 1925. Desiring to sing it, he was at a severe disadvantage, since he did not know the music suggested for any of the lyrics. “Ham and Eggs,” fortunately, could be spoken with good effect, since it consisted of a Leader and group Echo.


(Tune: “Tammany,” Key of D)

Leader: Ham and Eggs. Echo: Ham and Eggs. L: I like mine fried good and brown. E: I like mine upside down. L: Ham and Eggs. E: Ham and Eggs. L: Flip ‘em. E: Flop ’em. L: Front ‘em. E: Back ‘em. ALL: Ham and Eggs. L: Sun ‘em. E: Star ‘em. L: Grease ‘em. E: Sauce ‘em. ALL: Ham and Eggs. L: Round ‘em. E: Square ‘em. L: Poach ‘em. E: Roach ‘em. ALL: Ham and eggs. L: Spud ‘em. E: Grits ‘em. L: Scram ‘em. E: Dice ‘em. ALL: Ham and Eggs.

For Chiron it was a tremendous revelation, that a free people could make so joyous their cookery that they gathered together under the stars at night to sing about favorite dishes. What could have happened to such a happy-hearted people and liberty-blessed citizenry? Could America have perished from off the earth, and for no purpose? Compared to Atlantis, it was a paradise. What a tragedy that it lasted only the lifespan of a damselfly or a daylily in comparison. Why was Good so ephemeral and evil so tenacious? A good question for Philosophy! Chiron was back where he started. But not quite. He had glimpsed a better world reflected in the songbook’s unsophisticated medley of songs. Some were quite moving to his spirit, particularly the one Esther Klungstad had named in her letter to Johnguy, “Day is Dying in the West.”

Day is dying in the west; Heav’n is touching earth with rest; Wait and worship while the night Sets her evening lamps alight Through all the sky.

Refrain Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts! Heav’n and earth are full of Thee. Heav’n and earth are praising Thee, O Lord Most High!

Lord of Life, beneath the dome Of the universe, thy home, Gather us, who seek thy face, To the fold of thy embrace, For thou art nigh.

While the deepening shadows fall, Heart of love, enfolding all, Through the glory and the grace Of the stars that veil thy face, Our hearts ascend.

When forever from our sight Pass the stars, the day, the night, Lord of angels, on our eyes Let eternal morning rise, And shadows end!

Reading “The American’s Creed,” Chiron discovered the exact form of government that America enjoyed. It was totally unlike Atlantis, which was governed by imperial might and imperial decrees, with an arrogant and insensate oligarchy of noble-blooded, privileged classes monopolizing the wealth and everyone else serving them like toadies and slaves, or worse. In contrast, there existed freedom for anyone to be happy and productive in the “United States of America.” No wonder the people loved it, its Constitution, laws, and Flag! It was truly a land of freedom, plenty, joyousness, and camaraderie. A true Utopia, short-lived but glorious! But what made it so? Surely, its Republican form of governance was a major pillar. The same resources, bound to an Atlantean regime, would produce only misery in the same people, Chiron reflected. He could not help but feel some of the ardent nostalgia when he came to “Take Me Back to Those Yellowstone Days.”

(Written for Convention, 1924) Oft I recall, dearest of all, Mem’ries of those happy days; My heart is yearning, for their returning; I hear their deep urgent call.


Chorus: Take me back to those dear savage days, Let me roam down those old mountain trails. I just want to renew, All those friendships so true, That were made in that far golden west. I can picture the campfires bright, All those wonderful, fair moonlight nights;

I’ve been waiting so long, Just to join in that song; Take me back to those Yellowstone days. --by Mildred Lund, Old Faithful ‘22, Mammoth ‘23.

Absorbing a poignant sense of those long-lost, wonderful times, which the songs evidenced were golden, halcyon days, Chiron felt completely in tune with one of the last lyrics: “Abide with me! Fast falls the eventide, the darkness deepens--Lord with me abide! When other helpers fail and comforts flee, Help of the helpless, O abide with me!”

Deepening the reverent, grateful appeal of the people to their Almighty God and Protector of their liberty and Republic, they concluded with “Come, Thou Almighty King.” Obviously, they knew a higher rule than even their forefathers so wisely fashioned for their happiness, and the maintenance of it. In the Almighty’s kingdom they aspired to be--not man’s, however ennobled with the best laws and polity known to Earth.

Then, fitly concluding Chiron’s journey through the little songbook, came “Taps.”

Good-night, we must part, God keep watch o’er us all thru the night. We shall meet with the morn, Goodnight. Day is done, gone the sun From the hills, from the woods, from the sky. All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.

How “nigh” Almighty God was, the Blue Man was discovering every moment. Palmoni appeared again, to show forth a greater revelation, that would enhance the little songbook’s a million-fold. The Book Palmoni opened to Chiron in detail was the same that had empowered him earlier to destroy the Diamond and the Hidden City Crystal. By means of the Book, shown the meaning of the mystery of the many crosses incised into the concrete of TZBV, he avidly embraced the knowledge of the substitutionary sacrifice and atonement of the Most High’s Cross-Conquering Son, Yeshua the A and the Z, for the sins of all. Though he himself had been only half a party to the transgression of Adam and Eve in the Garden--and, then, a very distant cousin to them, to put it kindly--he knew very well that he had been conceived in iniquity, having been hatched under the auspices of the Atlanteans.

Nothing was more reasonable to his mind and soul than his need of such Atonement and Substitute, lest he bear his own guilt before the Almighty at the coming Judgment. His merits? Extensive as they were, he gladly cast them aside, counting them rags for the sake of the righteousness he gained as a free gift from the hands of the Father Creator and His Lamb-Son. Thus, a quadruped turned biped and born-again Blue Man! A spirit of the One who saved him was granted him, and he rose to communion with the Creator who had lifted him up from hopelessly decadent, Atlantean mire and misery. He was even taught a song to sing to the Almighty, “Lord of All Being.”

He had run through his allotted time on Earth, however. Palmoni and his academy of numbering angels escorted Chiron (still wearing his TXBV Detex Clock amulet!) to the Empyrean where he had once greatly feared to go. Farewell, Chiron! Fare thee well!

Even with these happy events in the Blue Man’s life, something vital was needed, even with Mink and Chiron’s contribution, to build the spirit of human beings for the closing, climactic battles that would decicde whether or not Earth was lost forever or forever regained. Unless that happened, all that had been so painfully achieved would be blown away on the four winds. So mighty was the coming foe, so shattering were the Emerald and the Topaz, that nothing would be available to stand up in the greatest hour of peril. There would be no climactic battle and a Victory that would usher in the New Age, a New World, and a New Heaven.

There would be only a bloated Blue Vampire, the triumphant Carbuncle, licking its chops after having sucked out the life essences of every last human being on Earth. Though, before it was twisted irreversibly into a monstrous soul-destroyer, it once led the single surviving family of Noah to safety on the mountains of Ararat, no one could say by its behavior that it was the same Arkstone. Having served to preserve human life, it now turned on the world to destroy what it had formerly saved.

Of course, the Blue Vampire was not the problem at the moment--rather, it was something too small for the human eye to see, the insidious “Nano-Queen” of the Algol. No human could possibly reach and do battle with her in her lair. If not a DUBESOR letterman, then what? Something had to be found, something reasonably intelligent and able to follow simple instructions. A broken-down Cray, reduced to a pedometer, might possibly answer to that job description, but what if the likes of Wally were enlisted in the struggle against the forces of darkness. No one had ever seen the Nano-Queen, leastwise suspected her existence--no one, that is, with human eyes. Able to reproduce at exponential rates, she was now actively seeking a new host--humans this time. The spider-scorpions had served her kind admirably for quite some time, but they and the Gorgons were gone, and only she was left on the playing field.

Already, she had begun implementing her global take-over from a site in the Mountains of the Moon, a headquarters hidden amidst some giant figures carved from granite in the most ancient times.

If anyone was to intercept her before she spun out billions of her kind to serve her will, it had to be done quickly. Once she pneumatically absorbed the entire human population of the world, her immense, grasping intelligence would wipe out any possibility of revival of human destiny, any true return through the East Gate of Paradise,since Earth would be her exclusive domain and shadowland forever. With vast numbers of her kind produced and spread on the winds, all humankind had to do was take a breath and she would be in absolute control! Totally unknown to the prospective hosts, she was an unavoidable checkmate.

Part II

“No, no, not the Nano-Queen!” thought Wally. “I can’t fight such a thing in this condition!” A Voice had just spoken, calling him to do battle for the Almighty against the queen of darkness, but Wally was dismayed.

What could he possibly bring of value to Dr. Pikkard’s old Wargame? Once he had been a magnificent Cray, able to match moves with the likes of the Universe-destroying Red Star. Now all that glory had long vanished, leaving him a travel-worn pedometer that ought to have been retired ages ago! As a matter of fact, he had booked a reservation on a nice cruise in virtual reality--why should he postpone it indefinitely? This gameplaying was becoming just too risky and problematic, as far as he was concerned. What was he against the empress-parasite of the Algol, who could muster billions of her nasty species to her defense at a moment’s notice?

And, come to think of it, why were these insidious invaders exclusively matriarchal? It seemed to betray a pattern. Instead of the nurturing, life-giving, caring attributes normally describing the human female gender, these matriarch-dominated aliens of the Algol and its controlling parasite exhibited destroying, blood-thirsty, tyrannical, and malicious behaviors.

They required the male gender for initial reproduction, but afterwards they produced almost all female workers, comparable to the societies of Earth’s social ants and bees...and furthermore--

Cutting short the pedometer’s self-doubting ruminations, the Wonderful Numberer appeared in a blazing cameo of reddish-gold.

“You are needed now,” Palmoni informed the vacillator. “Choose, Mighty Warrior.”

“But--but--” Wally protested, stalling for a little more time to delay. “Only give me a few more moments to make my final decision on the matter. I still haven’t thought the thing through sufficiently. I really need to consider all the data on the subject before--”

“There is no more time to tarry,” the angel replied, his eyes showing a spark of sternness. “The Lord will be with you to direct your strategy.”

Wally paused, torn with an agony of doubt, fear, and low self-esteem. He was nothing--a zee-ro. He knew it well by now. Why should the Almighty bother to send him against the foe when he was certain to be beaten? It made no sense at all!

“I am the Lord’s servant,’ sighed Wally, giving up. “Do with me as you will.”

Even with such profound resignation, Wally was shocked when the angel did as he had given permission. Palmoni’s hand closed over the pedometer, then began to squeeze uncomfortably hard. Protesting the angel’s treatment, Wally’s pitiful, muffled squeaks and cries for help soon were drowned out as the angel squeezed even harder. Each squeeze made Wally much, much smaller. A final squeeze, and Wally was less than a speck in Palmoni’s hand--an entity so tiny, in fact, that he would find no difficulty meeting the Nano-Queen head-on in a royal audience.

Palmoni lifted his palm, blew a mighty blast, and sent Wally and his wrap-around powership on his way to heaven or hell, depending on battle performance.

He was hurled faster than a bullet through what appeared to the honorary alphabetic champion as black space lit by passing lights of all colors. With no time to think, Wally converged on the Mountains of the Moon and the target: the Nano-Queen Parasite’s hidden base of operations.

Flying at more than ultra-supersonic speeds, Wally contacted the target almost instantly. Then he found himself in a sort of pinball game, bouncing off one molecule after another, before zinging a bull’s eye that included the entire Nano-Queen’s resident colony and secret, secluded headquarters.

He was in! It had to be the place--there was nothing else it could have been, populated by things that made Earth’s worst viruses and bacteria look like harmless blobs of cotton candy.

Displaying the behaviors of a much larger entity’s elaborate immune system, the colony, fortunately for Wally, did not recognize him as an intruder, since nothing like him had been contacted before in the vicinity. Reduced to the dimensions of a microbe but left relatively unmarked and equipped with a single harpoon-shaped grappling arm, Wally found he could maneuver any direction he wanted. He himself was not the streamlined vehicle that encapsulated him. Rather, he was the controlling chip that governed its movements from the inside of the protein’s hull-membrane, so that the protein and locking arm constituted an infiltrating warship.

Evenso, Wally was terrified to the last digital. All around spread hosts of parasite, a multitude of many different castes of heavily armed workers and soldiers that ministered to Her Royal Hideousness, the Queen Mother of all these nasty nanos. The spectacle of ever-moving and surging rivers of crystalline terrors, made all more awful because of grotesque resemblances to things in the “real world”--was overwhelming.

Wally’s first impression was that the Queen had gone to great trouble to replicate Earth’s ruling species, observed or reported to her concerning the Primary World she hankered to conquer, such as chickens, salmon, shrimp, eels, pigs, tongues, sausages, eggs, jars with truffles, jugs, bottles, and fancy cakes.

Long before, a probe of the Blue Planet had revealed to her, not the ruling species as she had supposed, but the mere contents of a lunch basket, ordered from Maxims by a once renowned film director! But hers were not harmless and benign copies in the miniature.

Sporting all sorts of neon stripes and glaring headlamps, bristling with ugly weaponry that dripped with lethal toxins and formic acid, both workers and soldier castes pushed about in every nano-inch of space, alert and poised to drive off and terminate any intruder. What was one little Wally against so many saber-toothed tigers?

Naturally, he cried for help, and it was immediately forthcoming as Palmoni promised back at the launchsite.

O Mighty Warrior, be strong and take courage. You will smite the queen of darkness with your arm, and cast her down from her eminence. Do not fear. I am with you.

Wally could not believe what he just heard. He, a “Mighty Warrior”? And where was the promised help? Here he was, whirled around like an electric car in a carnival by hostile swarms of rival electric cars, with no idea where to go to find the queen!

As if the Almighty had divined his thoughts, the Voice spoke again, cutting into Wally’s despairing thoughts.

You must decrease, and I must increase. Then you will triumph gloriously and not fail.

Nice words! But poor Wally, bumped on all sides by horrific, noxious parasite workers and drones and soldiers, was perilously close to losing it all. How much smaller and weaker could he get? All the weaponry he had was this ridiculous bulb and its single locking arm for a fighting lance! What was he do with it? And why was it shaped like a “y”?

“I’ll never get out of here alive!” he thought. “The colony’s security system, the T-Cell fighters,, will sooner or later detect my alien entity, then swarm to the attack! And I haven’t anything to defend myself! I’ll be poisoned and gobbled alive by the little geeks!”

Truly, as he moved up and across the streams of parasites, trying in vain to avoid contact, they seemed most formidable. Piggish and sausage-shaped T-Cells, particularly, bristled with horrible appendages like carpenter’s power drills that obviously were designed to penetrate the membranes of victims and then inject fiery streams of ammoniated toxins and formic acid.

Wally and the Warrior Pigs and Sausages

Aghast, Wally watched just this very thing happen as the soldiers identified and destroyed a foreign body, a large bacterium of some kind that had blundered down a capillary in the rock into the midst of the colony. In an instant the pigs and cousin sausages were all over it, drilling and injecting, grasping, tearing, pulling off chunks until the bacterium was spread all over the landscape.

It was awful, but Wally thought he could hear the writhing thing screaming bloody murder--but, he told himself, bacteria don’t scream. He was only imagining it, wasn’t he?

After seeing the carnage, Wally moved rapidly away as far as he could get, hoping to put distance between him and certain doom. But as he looked he found himself in even thicker concentrations of the T-Cell soldier-parasites. He wheeled about and started in another direction, but there to he found so many guards concentrated, he turned once again--pressing his single forward pedal with all his might.

Making his foes look like a blur of electrons on his viewscreen, he rocketed through the midst of the last high barricade of guarding soldiers and found himself flying above a landscape that resembled a moon’s.

Drier than a desert, where rain never fell nor could fall, with outcroppings that resembled giant stone arches on a plain, he thought at first that he had slipped off unwittingly into limbo, an anaerobic realm where no creature could possibly find means to exist except septic things that needed no air.

It was the most horrible sight of his entire career--this unending desolation, a shadowland that held no reason or logic, a nightmare that defied anything conscious and living.

He had lost all bearings by this time, and had even begun to feel the company of hostile parasites was preferable to this vast nullity, when he sighted a shape like a colossal planet ahead, moored to a gargantuan arch that rose above the center of a vast pentagon composed of what appeared to be shrubbery, all geometrically configured and regimented according to rigid, classical 18th Century taste of which Voltaire himself would have approved.

What sub-solar system is this? he marveled. Had the Nano-Queen created this for herself? Was this her idea of a royal palace and gardens? Where did she get the design? Is it--yes--it’s Atlantean, modeled from the concentrically-designed world capital that was said to be called Poseidia!

He had to find out more, so he kept forward momentum and approached the marvelous spectacle.

The floating palace itself--a crystal of some sort? He could see, despite the magnitude, that it was designed with geometric planes. Polygon? No! Pentagon? Hexagon?

Flying closer, he saw that it had far too many sides. He kept counting as he flew closer while maintaining an orbit. He was amazed! Twenty? Was this an icosahedron?

And it was the size, apparently, of a long-lost Jupiter! All for one little queen-parasite!

He was still seeking to catch a glimpse of the queen gazing out one of the window-like planes, but there was little chance of that--a thick, muttony, mucilage-like growth covered the crystal much like seaweed covered and smothered corals. Approaching closer, he examined the icosahedron’s bizarre exterior growths in more detail, realizing with a jolt that the crystal’s covering writhed like an octopus’s and pulsed with energy and life. Alive! Flailing the void around it with innumerable sensor-packed arms, the “seaweed” was the icosahedron’s living and intelligent exo-body, brain, nervous system, and reproductive facilities stretched over an absolutely dead crystalline frame! Wally discovered. Sally ports spewed parasites of all kinds and sizes that protruded from the exo-body. And those “gardens” beneath her were yet another form of parasite, stationed in such a way that they resembled shrubbery!

His brain-circuits spinning with the increasing data, Wally quailed in his resolve as he saw that this was the Nano-Queen herself! A particularly virulent radiolarian escaped from some other solar system’s backwaters and turned Mega-parasite of the Universe! A reproductive, aggressive juggernaut, she could sweep all before her, and apparently was about to do just that.

“Yiiiiiii!” he cried. This was beyond his worst imagining. Lacking a getaway turbo button but pushing his monopedal-protein powership to the limit, Wally rocketed out away from the scene. But it was too late. He found himself approaching rapidly converging attack squadrons of SWAT teams, the fighting pigs and sausages, followed by mop-up crews of sponge-like eggs and fancy cakes, that all came equipped with transmitters relaying information to the Queen. Even if they couldn’t catch him, since he was so speedy, they might be able to overwhelm him with sheer numbers, forcing him into a corner somewhere in the sub-reality the Queen had carved out for herself. And before then, she’d probably have cranked out a million or so anti-Wallys that would be just as fast and able to swing alongside him and lock on with poison drills.

These were the certain outcome of what he had already observed, and his fate loomed in his mind as he fled back away from the barrier of uncountable pigs, sausages, and other vermin.

Before he could think what to do, the Queen’s immensity grew in his vision to former Jovian dimensions.

“Lock on, Mighty Warrior of the Lord!” a Voice suddenly instructed him.

Then came the empowering verse from the War Book:

The Lord watches over the strangers, he relieves the fatherless and widow, but the way of the wicked He turned upside down.

At that instant he was flying toward a waving appendage that attached to a major gaster producing the Queen’s fighting forces. She sighted him, however, and the appendage, recoiling, turned to sweep him into oblivion. She missed. He shot past, then turned, streaking back to catch the underside of the queen’s port arm, where it happened all the ports had y-shaped apertures that rounded out more or less as they began producing soldiers.

“Lock on, Mighty Warrior!” the Voice repeated. “The Lord of Hosts is with you!”

Dropping down to the surface of the exo-body, gagging on the horror of making contact with the oleo-like viscosity of the Queen’s body, that was further disfigured with sucker-like protuberances and eye-like sensors numbering in the millions, Wally moved to obey though every atom in his chip strained to turn tail and run for it.

Locking-injecting module extended, it was only a moment before he would crash into her headfirst when Wally saw the Queen’s reply to his insulting attack materialize at a thousand ports. Spewing forth into the combat zone, they were infinitesimal, of course, but so was he. Locusts! was his first impression. But as he darted to avoid the closest ones, he saw how horrid they truly were. Heads crowned with golden skulls and orange neon eyes, hairy breasted, teeth like saber-toothed felines, breastplates of ivory, winged and making a terrific racket together like chariots racing, all sported a wicked tail that could penetrate his hull and administer the fatal sting.

Locusts from hell, the Bottomless Pit! What else could they be? So this was his end. Since there wasn’t time, she would not bother with a Wally look-alike, she was turning out against him reserves, special forces intended for use in confronting and overcoming mightier foes such as the Atlanteans. As he took evasive action, meanwhile keeping his sights on a crash-landing, the monoclonal nano-locusts swarmed to head him off.

But their effort was not enough to stop him. Much smaller and faster, he plunged right through the cordon of their Oosterschelde, and suddenly all Wally sensed was darkness--a palpable kind that seemed like pitch covering him with smothering ooze. Floating in a glycerin-like soup, his powership began to glow as bright as neon so he could see where he was.

It was good he hadn’t noticed what happened to him. On impact he had lost his powership and been ejected and injected simultaneously. Wally, reduced to an infiltrating enzyme, glowed bright green and was now swimming on his way through a maze of huge, spiraling helixes of DNA. Programmed for this stage of the operation, he didn’t have to plan his movements, just observe. Set on automatic pilot, he watched himself sail up and down the DNA, unzipping ribbon-like nucleotides, and then recombine them with his alien gene protein that contained new instructions. Within a short time Wally’s work was producing dramatic results. Wally-fighter cells that the Queen could not recognize as intruding enemies poured forth from the ports of her main arsenal’s gasters.

Mission accomplished, Wally wandered on down into a gaster and then out a port, without anything moving to stop him. As he was drifting along, he sensed the vast convulsion going on around him. She had detected the insult to her DNA but was powerless to stop the process, except to issue a warning that flashed from cell to cell of her exo-body and to each worker and soldier in her vast organization.


Despite the brave words (and an impressive name picked up from the Atlantean royal family line), she had already decided the best part of valor was to pull up stakes and flee.

It was none too soon. She was being attacked by armadas of tiny but highly effective Nano-Queen-terminators. The icosahedron let go of its mast and sailed off, drunkenly careening across the plain between granite molecules somewhere in the nose of Thomas Jefferson.

Attacked by her own manufactured legions, she bled from countless wounds.

Soon she was losing flotation, as supporting gases leaked from through her perforated shell.

Flailing at relentless waves of foes, she lost vital fluids as well, further draining reserves of strength. Though still a Jupiter in size, she was fast losing cohesion. Unable to sustain internal pressure and keep herself from imploding, the Queen began to disintegrate.

Meanwhile, showing no mercy, the Wally antibodies literally pulled the monster-parasite apart. Crystal planes flew in every direction. Crashing, they tore long trenches in the plain. Scattering hull fragments, the Nano-Queen expired, her carcass swarming with antibodies while all her ignorant armies milled about helpless and stupid, totally unable to identify the enemy.

And Wally? Would he remain entombed forever in the stone face of Jefferson?

Palmoni must have been tapped on the shoulder. He looked surprised, then flew off to the monuments in the Mountains of the Moon. Installed there in bygone ages by the Grand Taty of a powerful Per-aa, the figures looked rather weather-worn now. Faces were no longer much distinguishable from the stone from which they had been carved with so much effort and ability by Borg the Moth, as the master sculptor’s name came down to the latter-day world.

However it was accomplished, Jefferson convulsed visibly, and Palmoni had the microscopic Wally safely in hand. The Wonderful Numberer squeezed, this time holding a chunk of granite. He squeezed until he reduced the rock to powder. Then he raised his hand and blew the fine particles into the air like a mist. Released, Wally flew free, right into the splendid light--the light of long-deserved retirement aboard a cruise ship--a final ARGO manned by greater champions than the ancient Argonauts of the Greeks--but not before he was taught two new songs, “Be Not Afraid,” and “The Lord is Our Leader.”

Wrapping red-gold garments about himself, Palmoni paused, meditating on something known only to the Almighty’s Six Angels of the Dire Night. Was he pleased now that Wally had completed his course successfully on the gameboard? Did this mean that the game was won? No, it could not mean that, by any stretch of the imagination. There remained much territory to be regained, if there was to be a true win. Who next would fight in the army of his Master, the Lord Most High, the A and the Z? Who? Or was it, like in Wally’s case, another What?

Even the Wonderful Numberer could not tell. The Almighty did as He pleased, and His wisdom was beyond all knowing. It was almost, almost as if He chose to stack the deck against Himself!

The Wonderful Numberer knew he had good reason to think so. Chiron, for example! He was a monster created by the Atlanteans for their intellectual amusement. Then the Almighty chose him, preserving his life. He gave Chiron a measure of honor in the Underworld, then led him forth after a time back to the Upper World. There he put him in a safe place until such time as he was needed. The Almighty then enlisted him in the War as a full-fledged admiral! If that wasn’t enough, the Lord God took the man-fragment after an accident that severed the man and horse portions, and from it fashioned a “Blue Man.” Unthinkable--a “Blue Man.” What next? Species for every color of the spectrum?

Chiron was not only a new species but he was granted a spirit of the Christ. And then, the most shocking transformation of all came when they escorted the triumphant champion to the celestial spheres of the Second and First Heavens. Christ intercepted them en route, appearing as YAH. His wings cast shadows across the galaxies, and unapproachable masses of dark clouds and fire rolled before and around him.

They were so surprised they dropped Chiron, or, rather, the Blue Man flew forth out of their hands on his own.

The clouds parted, and YAH and the Blue Man circled each other, while to astonished eyes a most amazing change came over the former beast-man from Atlantis--he flowered. Where Chiron had been a glorious blue, five-petalled rose flew, only it was more starlike than a flower, blazing with a pure and intense blue radiance blinding to the angels.

Whirling like a dervish round the Lord, Chiron was also singing his new song! But it was no mere voice of a terrestrial creature--it was praise of the Almighty beyond the hearing range of mortal humans. Slowly, as Chiron’s music increased in intricacy and depth of feeling that ravished the angel’s hearts, the Lord and his new rose-stone, with the Blue Man at the center, receded from sight beyond the furthest galaxies and pulsars toward the highest Heavens.

Palmoni had seen only one thing greater than this spectacle--Christ Himself, the Son of God, becoming via the Spirit of God and a pure Jewish maiden an infant human in a sheep stable on the Blue Planet! This was the Mystery of the Ages revealed--the Desire of all Nations, promised long before by the Almighty to a despairing, fallen Adam and Eve--good news, indeed!

If only the world had believed, it would have passed through the East Gate and become the Garden of the Lord once again, a regained Paradise of Eden! But most did not believe, and the Good News was changed and perverted, and finally was lost. Countless men and women were imprisoned, tortured, and executed at the stake or on the gibbet after trying to restore the truth, put to death by religious authorities whose positions were threatened if the people believed in God’s Son over them. Finally, the star-stones invaded, the first being the Sardius, or Carnelian--the infamous Red Star! It seemed all downward from there--nothing but repeated disasters until the Almighty saw fit to raise up His champions, both men and women--but only only men and women, a butterfly and a Blue Centaur! Manifesting Himself as the Alpha and the Omega, the Aleph and the Tau, and lastly the A and the Z, Yeshua had enlisted alphabetic lettermen as His warriors to bring the War of Heaven to a close!

Palmoni, shaking his head at the divine choices of Providence he dimly sensed would be every bit as strange and wonderful as Christ’s own account and these “human lettermen,” rose in his cameo of red and gold, soaring swiftly heavenwards.

As he flew something strange happened. It was as if a ghost of a long-vanished people and land were speaking to him. A few verses of an old song came to his mind, not from the Book of War, no. It was something mankind had sung at the close of many a good time long before in the lost Golden West:

...Good-night, we must part. God keep watch o’er us through the night. We shall meet with the morn. Good-night.





7 Michael’s Last Trump

Meanwhile, on Earth I, Michael slipped on a sultan’s elegant, most thoughtful gift, a Neiman Marcus charm bracelet made from precious, platinum-coated bits of the R.M.S. TITANIC hull. It only took a moment from a packed schedule, but the seventyish world unisex pop star turned world peace leader was treated to a Columbus-like discovery, the approach of not only another Universe but a Black Hole capable of swallowing everything.

Attracted to the distress call emitted by the bracelet’s charms--the electric guitar, drum set, sax, Baldwin piano, cymbals, bass, speakers, violin, and trumpet--Ba-342, the tracking drone of the hapless, long destroyed Z-ImZcy of the Anti-material Universe, the Black Hole and Universe headed toward Michael but was deflected by his sequined elbow and landed in his rising teacup just as he took a sip.

Palace of Versailles, Paris, European (World) Union.

Facing a huge array of mirrors and cameras, just as the tea went into his mouth and into his throat Michael’s face turned ghastly white, whiter than the walls and furniture and also a strong contrast to a brilliant, red stone glowing on his finger. Pulling at his high collar, he grabbed at his throat. The cup fell, dashed its contents on gold sequined shoes that went with his gold sequined suit.

The inner circle of holistic-nutritionist doctors, aromatherapists, chiropodists, masseurs, psychics, choreographers, and makeup people turned to stare in horror as their leader and idol rose, gasping for breath as if something were lodged in his throat. Fortunately, an ordinary cameraman knew what to do. Dropping his cam-corder used to tape a painting of a vast-bewigged Louis the Sun-King showing off his leg, he threw his arms around the choking man, tightly hugged his middle and suddenly pressed in at his abdomen.

The offending particle, which seemed to have the effect of a dozen super hot chili peppers, flew out Michael’s thoat and he could breathe again. Unaware he had nearly served as the venue of two colliding Universes, gasping his way to a siphon of aloe vera and tangerine juice, Michael sat collapsed into a Louis Phillippe chair and after a few minutes recovered his strength and voice.

Everyone watching heaved a vast sigh of relief too. A lot--world peace, in fact--was hanging on Michael’s voice. He was scheduled to arrive in Israel in a few hours and deliver an address to the Israeli Knesset. As EU Vice Premier, Michael had all the leverage he needed to get the touch, suspicious, usually uncooperative Israelis to listen, though even the U.S. had, some years back, given up on the Mideast peace process.

Squadrons of Swiss bodyguards in riot gear and the latest weaponry stepped forward once the doctors gave the nod that Michael was all right and could proceed with the agenda.

The unthinkable--Michael’s taking seriously ill and the capsizing of the World Peace Initiative--had nearly occurred, but there was no time to dwell on “might have beens.” The world press was beating on the door for details of what had already leaked out. But there was no time to go into it, the diplomatic tour de force must continue on to its appointed destiny in Jerusalem.

Michael, his body primed with the right mix of anti-oxidants and stimulants, looked great--far younger since his latest make-over. His makeup people and a great deal of collagen-build therapy and plastic surgery had also done wonders. He looked great, and felt on top. It was his day, and soon the whole world would witness his finest hour--the signing of his Initiative inaugurating a New Age.

He had gone far, indeed! He had parleyed pop star earnings in excess of 39 billion U.S. into a political career that catapulted him from his Dream Ranch to the equally rarefied echelons of international diplomacy. With a transfer of citizenship and a billion or so here and a billion or so there, he facilitated and smoothed his way to the EU’s vice premiership after taking Dutch citizenship at the Hague that left the plainer Dutch gasping for weeks after from the media blitz and spectacle. Now he would surely be in line for the Nobel Peace Prize. He was about to do the impossible, get the intractable and suspicious Israelis to sign a peace accord guaranteeing their territorial integrity forever in exchange for placing the hotly contested Golan Heights under U.N. control. With that accomplished, an epoch of peace would ensue that would last as long as the Sun.

“The Sun? I am the Sun--the Sun-King, a gilded olive branch in my hand for all the people of the world!” he thought.

He liked the idea so much as he strode between hundreds of bodyguards to his car and screaming multitudes of fans, reporters, and secret police that he decided to commission gigantic statues of himself, set high on pillars, to encircle Paris, Rome, London, Chicago, New York, Atlanta, Tokyo, Bangkok, Mexico City, Beijing, Cairo, all like the one stipulated in the Peace Treaty that would be set in the fully restored Jerusalem Temple. Would the Israelis, and their radical conservative Hasidim, swallow that condition of the Treaty? They’d have to! The alternative was, of course, annihilation. Hooked up by world television and Internet, the whole world would see the unveiling of his billion dollar gold image, stunningly real on a gold crystal display that fit the contours of his body perfectly. Then everyone could see him, how great he truly was!

“Michael the Magnificent” wasn’t good enough a moniker.

Once he had sent a Titan-sized mannequin with his designer face and looks sailing up the Thames to London to herald a new CD. That was child’s play--a media spin for a new CD’s release. Now he would show the whole world the Sun-King, with golden splendor radiating from his figure and head--just as peace emanated from his brilliant mind.

Yes, the world needed an Image like his, to be set up in every public and religious venue. It would unify all the political and religious systems of mankind make everyone one in spirit!

He could do it. He was the Cyber-Christ, the Cyber-Mohammed, the Cyber-Vishnu Avatar--all in one package everyone could identify with!

His bodyguards and secret police got down to work as trumpets blasted. They sprayed the wildly celebrating crowds of mostly younger people with tear gas and dum dum bullets to make room as Michael proceeded to the waiting stretch-customized Jaguar X1000 (only one model, with a price tag of fifty million, produced).

Safe inside, the doors slammed shut, and he was whisked away.

The Vice Premier and his “World Integrated Managed Peace Initiative” were off to Tel Aviv--the little choking incident in the Hall of Mirrors completely forgotten.

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