New Intergalactic Circus Causes Controversy

 

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Staros – Andromeda Galaxy

Stian Field Grounds

“Step right up folks! See your first circus featuring wild and exotic species from the Milky Way.”

The long line moved smoothly. Families brought their children with them to witness the amazing sights. The atmosphere was full of excitement as Staroians swapped stories about some of the creatures that were going to be on display.

Publicity for the major event was heavy with side bar stories about the species that were being featured.

Opening day was the culmination of two years of searching for specimens throughout the Milky Way. With the guidance of trainers, the collected species were taught to do amusing things.

The circus was owned by Cosmic Entertainment, the largest entertainment corporation on Staros. The ringmaster, Sen-Set Hak, was the son of one of the owners. It was his job to put the show together.

As the audience swelled under the massive Big Top tent, a group of clowns from Pluto scampered around the center ring on all five legs, to the delight of the growing audience.

Two huge, and hairy three-legged Donarts from Venus were being led around the ring by a tall thin Venusian. He snapped his whip now and then for dramatic effect. His glittering green costume reflected light like a mirror.

Sen-Set Hak stood proudly in the center of the chaos. His bulky 15-foot frame was covered in colored gems that made his jacket and trousers glitter brightly. His top hat, made from the coat of a local mammal, was black with a golden band.

After the seats were full, dramatic music blared from hundreds of speakers. Sen-Set raised all three arms, calling for silence. The music abruptly stopped. The audience followed and waited silently.

“Welcome! Today you’re going to see sights you never imagined. Rare and exotic specimens from throughout the Milky Way are here today…just for your entertainment!”

The crowd roared approvingly.

“Allow me to introduce the Saturn Marching Band, featuring the planet’s best musicians!”

A tent flap opened and tiny musicians scurried out in unison. The tallest was two-feet high, and was the band leader. The little troupe paraded around the main ring in bright yellow costumes playing catchy tunes.

Suddenly two saber-toothed tigers from Neptune’s largest forest, ran into the tent and chased the band members around for a few minutes before their trainer called them off. The terrified band members scuttled out to roars of laughter from the audience.

Another tent flap was peeled back and four circus helpers pulled out a large cage made of a see-through material found in the mines of Mercury. Inside were two Martian warriors armed with crude wooden clubs.

Sen-set gave a signal and the two combatants went at it like honey-badgers from Earth. They were evenly matched. Both were six-feet tall with long brawny arms and short thick legs.

Their heads, which looked too small in comparison with the rest of their body, were covered in black hoods so they couldn’t see. Their fierce shouts and screams of pain entranced the audience.

The fight ended suddenly when one of them could no longer stand. The victor silently stood and waited for the audience expectedly.

A voice from the seats cried out, “Kill him!” Then someone else chimed in, “Kill him!” Soon, almost half of the audience was calling for the defeated Martian’s death. The victor took his hood off and obliged by smashing his opponent’s head in.

The blood stained cage was quickly wheeled out during the pandemonium in the seats. People were crying out that it was wrong to watch two species kill each other! Others said it was entertaining.

In the midst of the chaos a tent flap was pulled aside and a group of a dozen Earthlings charged out into the center arena where they did cartwheels and other physical tricks.

“For your pleasure,” Sen-Set shouted over the loud speakers, effectively ending the momentary controversy in the stands, “…we have a group of Chinese Earthlings renown for their gymnastics and acrobatic shows!”

The group hopped around like fleas on speed. Complex routines kept the audience riveted on their act. Their graceful strength and agility was appreciated by the athletic Staroians…many of whom had already forgotten about the brutality of the prior act.

Among the audience however, was a press pool covering the historic event. A popular reporter from a major newspaper in Staro’s capitol city of Werjet, was composing his article while the Earthlings went through their routines.

“Just what defines entertainment?” he asked, in the first sentence.

As It Stands, entertainment can mean different things, in different cultures, and worlds.

 

The Voice of God

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“God called the vault “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning – the second day” Genesis 1:8

You’re going to have to speak up Art, “ Flo advised him.

Captain Art Davis stood up, took a deep breath, and bellowed “I am God!”

“That’s better. I have it recorded now. Let me add it to your wrist speaker vocabulary. Where’s your robe?”

“Do I really have to wear that damn thing?” Art complained. “I can see the fake beard, but from what we’ve seen, these Neptunians run around naked. Maybe I should too.”

“You’re missing the whole point Art…we want to impress these aliens.”

“What do you mean by that?

“Listen Art, this is just Day Two. We’ve got a lot more to do.”

The Neptunians were huddled around a fire. Their leader, a short stocky biped with thick arms and a bald head, lit a pipe with a burning twig and took a long hit before passing it on.

His name was Alca, and unlike most Neptunians he was ambitious and sought power. The small band that he had gathered, and ruled, weren’t strong enough to take on the other tribes of Neptune.

Alca was a quick thinker. So, when he saw the two aliens (who looked remarkably familiar) get of their spacecraft one day, he didn’t run like the rest of his band. Instead he went to his knees, an uncomfortable positions for this thick legs, and bowed his head.

The two earthlings approached him. Flo nudged Art and he took his helmet off. “Good to know we can breathe in this atmosphere,” he said conversationally while walking over to kneeling Alca, who was trembling in fear and excitement.

“My name is Captain Art Davis, and this is Second Lieutenant Flo…”

Hold on Art! The recording remember?”

“I wish you’d address me with the proper military courtesy in front of others Lieutenant…”

Really Art? We’ve been sleeping together for two years and haven’t seen a human being since we went on this mission. Kinda late to stand on ceremony isn’t it?”

“Fine.”

Alca looked up at the two strange beings that appeared to be wearing some kind of shell and wondered if they came in peace?

Art pushed a button on his wristwatch and pointed at his chest, “I am God!” he bellowed mightily. The loud roar made Alca shake even more.

He sat up gingerly, and tapped his chest like a good Neptunian hound and said, “Alca.”

It took weeks of working with Alca, and his small band, but Flo managed to establish a crude system of signs and words. She impressed upon them that Art was the God of everyone in their world.

His voice was louder than any mere Neptunian’s. The very sound made them tremble in religious ecstasy.  They were taught that he had all of the answers to their problems. That his word was law. That his justice was supreme.

This went on for 12 cycles (7 earth years) as monuments were made by the Neptunians to honor their new God. All the while, Alca plotted how he could use God to further his aims. He started a cult that claimed to be God’s only true believers.

Finally, Art and Flo completed their mission and left Neptune to go on to their next assignment…Mercury.

As It Stands, earthlings as gods. Now there’s a funny thought!

A Spy on a Saturn Battleship

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The command center board lit up and General Adams turned on an encrypted communication device and listened closely: 

“Major Mark Steel, US Army reporting

I haven’t got much time.

I’m hiding in the deep cargo level of a T722 Saturn Battleship bound for earth. I’ve been listening to bits and pieces of the deck officers conversations and it looks like this is the real McCoy…Saturn is breaking our peace treaty and have put together an invasion fleet!

I’m in the flagship Conquering Star.” Please advise. I’ll contact you again at 17:00.”

General Adams turned off the device and turned to his assistant Col. John Hedy. “Our worst fear has come true, John. Saturn is attacking us despite the peace treaty!”

Col. Hedy had cotton mouth when he asked the general what their next step was? The general knew it was time to call the president. It was up to him.

President Oliver Henderson calmly listened to General Adam then told him to prepare all of the US military forces for war. Then he called the president of Russia. Then China. Then England. Then Canada. The calls took a full day to make.

Only the Big Three countries, America, China, and Russia, had any kind of defense system against hostile aliens. It was still relatively new, and untried. The plan called for perfect coordination between the three countries for maximum defensive strength.

Earth’s defense system circled the globe scanning for targets for the massive laser arsenal to eliminate. Each country’s defense system had to be careful to change orbits so there were no collisions.

Each firing platform also carried Atomic Bombs, and Hydrogen Bombs attached to jet-drones that could be controlled from Earth’s command centers. The combined firepower of the defensive network was mankind’s only hope.

17:00

“Major Steel reporting

I heard two deck officers talking about how easy they expected this invasion to be.

I also heard one say Saturn’s Premier Warlord Sheth Zorneath is aboard this flagship. Apparently it was he who talked Saturn’s ruling Kellith-Ashur Lords into breaking the treaty.

What are your orders?”

General Adam’s deep voice was soothing and clear, “Mark we think we’re ready. What I need you to do is when the attack starts turn on your open emergency channel and wait for further instructions.

You don’t mind me calling you Mark, do you major?” 

“Not at all sir.”

“Ralph. My name is Ralph. Good luck soldier.”

The attacking space armada approached earth at cruising speed. Russia’s spy satellite spotted them first and relayed the news to the others. The fighting platforms made rapid sight adjustments as the fleet got within range.

An opening salvo from six American and Chinese platforms struck two of Saturn’s Aircraft Carriers, disabling, but not destroying them. The return fire from the fleet pulverized all six attacking platforms.

The rest attempted to regroup at different coordinates. Some were able to fire all of their ordnance before being destroyed.

General Adam’s hands were shaking as he flipped on the secure communication device connecting him to Major Steel. This was it! One last chance…

“Mark…earth is doomed. They’ve knocked out our defenses. Is there anything you can do?”

Affirmative Ralph! I’ve been scouting things out, and I’m sure I can get to the control room and sabotage this big tub. Tell my wife I love her, and we’ll meet again somewhere in eternity.”

Col. Hedy ran into General Adams office to bring the good news; “For some reason there was a star-shattering explosion and the enemies flagship was destroyed. The remaining fleet has fled.”

As It Stands, I enjoy reading and writing spy/hero stories.

Beware the Treacherous Tides of Titan

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Surfers from the Milky Way and the Andromeda Galaxy are drawn to the tides of Titan, Saturn’s largest moon, like moths.

Considered the most treacherous tides in two galaxies, it is a must ride for any surfer who had aspirations of making a name for himself (or herself) to shoot the tube on Titan’s Tides.

In a recent issue of Solar Surfers, some of the dangers were described in chilling details. For those unaware of the challenges, Titan’s oceans are full of carnivorous creatures ranging in size from an inch to four-hundred feet long.

The article, a first-hand account from a Mercurian surfer who survived a full ride, warned that lone predators, like the foot-long Teethers, wait until they see a surfer waiting a long time for a clean-up set to attack.

Decisiveness was crucial, the article emphasized.

Buzz, considered one of the three best surfers on Earth, set his copy of Solar Surfers down and checked the official drone provided by The Inter-Space Surfing Federation for validation.

Without the drone recording him it didn’t matter what he did…no one would ever know if he put on a spectacular show.

After registering his DNA with the drone he picked up his long board and walked towards the distant waves. The golden sand beneath his feet glittered beneath the blue Titan sky. A small patch of purple clouds gathered in the north.

Buzz looked up at the clouds and thought about the article he just read. It pointed out his best chances for avoiding sea creatures was during the short light cycle – a period of three hours of daylight.

He checked his waterproof wrist computer. Everything looked good. The water was pleasantly warm as he paddled out.

The waves were jacking as he rose with each swell. The hallow and intense waves grew higher as he paddled on. Then he was beyond the waves and paddling on a calm sea. The water around him shimmered with all the colors of a rainbow on Venus.

But he knew he had to make a move soon. He paddled back and forth impatiently trying to spot a clean-up set. Waves so immense they had no equal in two solar systems. Then he saw what he wanted.

The purple clouds were now overhead. Buzz wasn’t aware of that, his eyes were riveted to a spot deep behind the peak of a massive hollow wave.  Man and board shot through the wave’s tube to the other side of the peak!

He was riding pigdog, clutching the board with both hands, when he made a powerful sweeping move that allowed him to establish even more speed and go in the direction he wanted. Towards the shore. The drone, faithfully recorded the heart-stopping ride.

He didn’t feel the first strike when he was waist deep in the water walking towards the shore. He grabbed his board feebly when the second, and third strike, took away the lower half of his body!

The drone meanwhile recorded Buzz’s last moments. It was programed to return in four hours to the Inter-Space Surfing Federation headquarters. When it arrived, the Director viewed the film – like so many others – and confirmed his death, time, and place.

Having to contact the family was the hardest part of the Director’s job. Surprisingly, most of the families said the same thing, “Well…he died doing what he loved the most.”

As It Stands, I was thinking of rock climbers here on earth when I wrote this piece.

Welcome to the 2320 Milky Way Olympics

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“Hello! I’m Stu Jones, and the guy sitting next to me is Jerry Rider, welcoming you to the 2320 Milky Way Olympics!”

Stu: “Well Jerry, is there one planet that stands out to you? A sure pick to dominate in these games?”

Jerry: “No. It’s too close between the big three; Earth, Mars, and Jupiter. These three planets continue to invest heavily in their athletes.”

Stu: Speaking of athletes, who are the top runners?”

Jerry: Earth is going with last year’s winner, Shaun Silverton. Mar’s has an exciting and upcoming runner in Vis Opti. Jupiter’s entry, Pah Zee, has improved his times since finishing 2nd overall in the 2316 Games. 

But I got to tell you Stu, the runner to watch for is Els Xeen from Saturn. He’s got the longest legs among all the contestants. He’s new to running, but is catching on fast. This is his first Olympic appearance.” 

The crowd in the enormous stadium suddenly broke out into cheers. Athletes from all the planets in the solar system solemnly walked out in colorful groups. When they had all taken up their place the crowd grew silent.

The Games Commissioner, Gart Vita from Mercury, welcomed everyone from her skybox above.

“Greetings! Peace! The Milky Way Board of Commissioners thanks you for attending and entering your greatest athletes in these time-honored Games.”

She waited patiently until the roars of applause died down.

“We must never forget that these Games bring us together as a solar system. The bonds we forge here aren’t forgotten as we communicate and trade with each other in peace. Our safety and futures depend upon the open flow of cultures and species.

Now, let the Games begin!”

Crowd roaring.

Jerry: As always, it’s good to be here.

Stu: I want to let our viewers know that there’s been a rule change in the Boxing category. Those contestants that have more than two arms, are now going to be handicapped with heavier gloves and small weights around their ankles/tentacles.

Other than that, everything remains the same.”

Jerry: Thanks Stu. I can’t wait to see the 500-pound Heavyweight Division. Is anyone every going to beat Mej Hei Mon from Neptune? 

Stu: I doubt it Jerry. I think you could drive your LX Space Cruiser right into him and he wouldn’t blink! You know what I’m looking forward to watching?”

Jerry: “That’s easy, Gymnastics. Any special reason why for these Games? You always do.”

Stu:I’ve got information from my sources that there’s going to be a credible threat to Mar’s 2316 winning gymnastics team. As you know they put on a masterful performance and experts are predicting they’ll do the same this time.

But..the Venusians have come up with several totally (from what I hear uninhibited) routines that are mesmerizing species across the solar system!”

As It Stands, Olympics, humor, and a path to peace. How much better can it get? 

 

A Visit To A Pet Store on Uranus

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Pet Paradise, Ganth Mall,

Iloth, Uranus, circa 3210

“Fetch! Good boy!”

“That’s when to start them,” Lord Veturan complimented the trainer/trader Daid-Et.

“Three-year-olds can be very trainable with the right routines.”

The little boy went over and sat at massive Lord Veturan’s feet, waiting for a treat. The Jarian Knight pulled out a thick cookie from a bag hanging from his side, and tossed it to the boy who deftly caught it with his mouth.

Now off with you Ra Ra!” Daid-Et told the boy, as he skipped off with his cookie.

“What breed is he again?”

“Asian, my Lord. Comes from good stock. He’s got the blood of a couple of Chinese emperors of note.”

“But what kind of pet will he make?”

“A very entertaining one, My Lord, his breed is famous for their acrobatic powers and willingness to obey any command.”

“When will he be for sale?

“In one more year, great lord.”

“What else have you got that’s ready to go right now?” Lord Veturan inquired.

“Thank you for asking Lord. I have a set of twins from earth’s Zion Park in Utah, USA. They’re nine-years old and have had all of their shots.”

Males, or females?”

“Males. They’ve were neutered two years ago and are very calm. They have good bone structure and will surely be very strong. Here’s their cage. Ne Ne…Obo…wake up! You have visitors!”

The two boys stood up while trying to wipe the sleep from their eyes.

“I see what you mean. Good bone structure. What kind of pets do they make?” 

“The best, wise Lord. They’re known for their loyalty, strength, and playful disposition. As you know, twins are very hard to find these days.”

“How much?” Lord Veturan asked.

“For you kind sir, a mere 300 Uranium Qutreels.”

“You old bandit! Here’s 200 Uranium Qutreels. Have them delivered to my ship before nightfall.”

On the way back home to Saturn, Lord Veturan watched the two boys playfully wrestling over a toy he tossed to them. He thought about his wife and what a great birthday present he was bringing her.

He was hopeful they would live longer than the her last pet, who only made it sixty years. It was hard to part with the lovable beasts. They were almost like family.

As It Stands, humans could make good pets…with a little training.

Why Egyptians Left Pluto To Go To Earth

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From the Notes of the Royal Scribe, Cneas Na:

“In the pages of the Milky Way Chronicles you can find where Egyptians once lived on the icy dwarf planet Pluto.

Yes, it’s true.

Their technology allowed them to survive underground in one of the coldest places in the solar system, at roughly minus 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Always industrious, the first Egyptians had created an atmosphere that could sustain life. They lived in massive domed colonies that were temperature controlled and had oxygen.

It took a million years for the first Plutonians to evolve and control their atmosphere. Their early engineers and scientists were worshipped by following generations. Then the cults emerged and began fighting with one another.

Once famous for their tolerance, Plutonians broke into factions ruled by dictator-like priests. Each cult demanded that it’s followers facefully serve the priests demands without question.

But there was one cult that still valued the freedom to speak, and to be treated as an equal. It’s followers had the smartest scientists and engineers on the dwarf planet.

There came a time when the cult decided that they were tired of living underground because of the bitter cold surface of Pluto. They also didn’t want to get involved in the increasing hostilities between the other cults.

The chronicles note that a great space craft was built and the members of the cult arrived on earth during the final part of the Neolithic period beginning c. 6000 BC. Their arrival corrisponded with what earth historians call the Naqada III period in Egypt.

The Plutonians quickly adapted to the language of the desert nomads and farmers alongside the Nile River in Upper Egypt.

During this time in history, sometimes called the “Zero Dynasty” the Plutonians referred to themselves as Egyptians.

In the time which followed prehistoric Egypt and coalesced around 3150 BC (according to conventional Egyptian chronology) Upper and Lower Egypt became united under (once Plutonian) Menes.

Some historians refer to him as Narmer.

Menes was the first of the builders to bury sections of the great space craft that originally brought them to earth, beneath large mounds. His successors built the Spinx, and the Pyramids, to permanently guard the sacred ship’s six sections.

Some modern day historians and archelogists believe that the Egyptians had help from aliens to build their mighty monuments.

But, they are belittled by their peers who are afraid of admitting that there are other intelligent beings in the solar system.

I wonder if they’ll ever find out the truth?”

As It Stands, the truth is out there!