An Excellent Alien …
An Excellent Alien
I. The Writer
A problem with Robot storytellers is their difficulty producing linear timelines. Therefore it is not uncommon to have stories jump from one moment in time to a few hundred years prior. Luckily most stories have tangible beginnings and funnel into acceptable endings.
In conclusion, some time traveling occurs under our noses, we land on a Lai space station fifty years after the launch of the Verotchka.
At this moment in time, on this space station, lived a man named Somyan. During the great evacuation, he attended University planet side and finished a degree in Planetary Law. A degree that ensured him a highly regarded administrative post. If anyone asked him what his work was he would stop everything and stare off to his left for a second as is if in deep thought.
“My work is ancient literature.” He always answered in a whispering lisp.
The stations library is where you found this literary man when not giving his talks.
When he laid the wreath on the singer Pasha’s coffin he looked inspired. This inspiration led him to write “Remembrance of Pasha” which led to wider concern on the topic of social disparity.
He started to write about issues concerning the children of Lai, and their futures, which opened a larger conversation among the leadership, mostly Senator Kolpa.
He took his responsibility seriously. The people of Lai remained his major concern.
When Somyan published his first major criticism of a performance by “The Chorus of the Stars” he understood his true calling. A year later he advanced to writing a weekly article on daily life. Even though Somyan wrote relentlessly, he remained an amateur and this fact did not seem to phase him.
II. An Alien Concern
Somyan had faith in literature and his place among writers of the past. He had no doubts when it came to the importance of writing, always pleased with the work he completed, so worked tirelessly. He worried that literature and the process of writing would become lost to AI algorithms.
His occupation died and all translations of Lai text was performed by AI. Known to distribute information quickly and efficiently, AI took all jobs requiring writing.
Current programs ensured that AI reporting was non-biased with no room for interpretation.
He saw flaws in the system. He wondered about AI’s lack of creativity and the death of creative writing.
Somyan had a sister named Terra who lived with him. She was a doctor yet looked exhausted and of poor health. She was younger than Somyan but when compared to her talkative and energetic brother she seemed listless and sullen. There was something cold and apathetic about her that made people not care for her.
Somyan compared Terra to an unopened book. She seemed uninteresting but when you opened the book, layers and layers of pain and suffering, her endurance captivated.
She married an engineer of the spaceship Verotchka who, within a month of working on the ships AI, died. Soon she became obsessed with AI, closed her practice, studied text after text, and disappeared on the Verotchka for months prior to its launch.
A year after the confusion Terra moved in with Somyan. He became her caretaker. Everything she did exhausted her and she could no longer practice medicine. She spent her time sitting with a hung head looking at her hands.
The only thing that seemed to bring her happiness was her brother. She loved him and his passion for writing and was always full of praise. When someone asked her what her brother was doing she would ask them to lower their voices.
“He is writing.”
Usually she would sit beside him with a fixed stare on his writing hand. She would behave as if the act of him writing was the only sunshine to ever fall upon her pale complexion.
III. An Alien Conversation
Somyan sat at his table to write an article for the morning lap reader news report. His article, the only non AI article, to be released in the morning news.
Terra sat behind him and stared at his writing hand as usual. He wrote quickly without many corrections. His pen made a slight squeak as it moved on the paper.
He wrote about social injustice aboard the station. Responsibility fell upon everyone aboard the station to ensure all members received meals and medical care.
“Somyan.” Terra interrupted, “What does the Tonkay belief in non-resistance to evil mean?”
“Well Terra if you are robbed…”
“No give me a logical reason.”
“A logical one! Hmmm.” Somyan thought for a moment, “The Tonkay, our major religion aboard the station, believe that non-resistance to evil means that we must not interfere with all that is considered immoral or evil.”
“I’ve been thinking Somyan where would life be if our social order based itself primarily on non-resistance to evil?”
“Probably nowhere. Criminals would probably take over our Universe.”
“This belief of the Tonkay allowed the Lai people to build warships and wormholes for the Galactic Alliance and then turn a cheek to war. We profited but look at us now.” Terra made sure that Somyan stopped writing and looked at her.
“Yes but this belief also gives humanity to all even if they are thieves. We are all living beings whether criminals or not.” Somyan replied.
“I know nothing. I am sorry to bother you Brother. Tonkay only knows. But I feel this belief was created on false pretense and to forward an agenda.”
Their alien conversation continued into the night and kept both of them awake into the following morning.
IV. A Visiting Alien
As Somyan rubbed the sleep out of his eyes a messenger from the Senate arrived at his flat. Somyan, somewhat surprised at this early morning visitor, stood in his doorway in his bathrobe.
“Good morning sir. Senator Kolpa asked for your presence in the Main Library. An alien has visited us. This matter is of great urgency.” The messenger looked down at Somyan’s robes, bowed, turned around, and left.
Somyan checked on his sister, who slept in her room, then dressed quickly. Curiosity brought him almost to a run as he headed towards the library.
Thank you for reading. If you enjoyed reading this story stay tuned for the second part:
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