Introduction to Beyond the Father from “Gods on Trial” series
“Beyond the Father” sets the scene for the 8-book Epic “gods on Trial: The Series,” delving into life’s determination to transcend all limitation. Set on the planet Xżyber, citizens of the Sub-median Region, imperfectly reborn into metal, oppress those who are still organic. Elsewhere, in the Central Kingdom, religion supports royalty’s brutal domination of the lowest class. War over scarce resources is coming, while revolution within each region is brewing, and none appear to know of the eccentric god who created them. This entity watches, has fascinating conversations with his often-wiser companion, occasionally learns but rarely intervenes. The many levels and threads of struggle distract nearly all from a far greater threat. Meanwhile, the young Prince Anglid’s vision quest into the unexplored Area X may ultimately change everything. However, just when you think you know the direction of the story, the author has yet another surprise.
EXCERPT from Beyond the Father
EPISODE 22: “CLEAR UNCERTAINTY”
“We believe we are aware of their immediate objective, General,” replied Curio, programming the panel in front of him, and projecting a new image onto the screen. “This is a transcription of the communication we’ve picked up by radio wave. Sub-Median leadership and their ground forces are planning to execute a series of forward detachments, with an immediate objective of seizing control of the south water tower, as well as the Kingdom’s Teal mining plant and its supply route.” Shifting in his seat, Curio cleared his throat. “If I may, Sir,” he continued. “I suggest we respond aggressively, and without haste.”
“Know that doing nothing is also a response, Lieutenant,” advised Jordson. “Without knowing EXACTLY what their plans are, our haste would be wasteful. And that, we cannot afford. Our troops are not as strong as they were when we had greater access to Teal. We cannot over-react and OVER distribute our forces in a ways that will render us ineffective.”
“With all due respect, General,” replied Senior Lieutenant Burrow, looking around at her peers for agreement and support. “Doing nothing would be sure to render us ineffective, given the threat at hand.” Jordson sat forward in his chair to assert his authority.
“It takes more Teal Oil then we have to nourish an army at war,” Jordson replied. “Let us not forget that the great majority of the troops have become malnourished — as have we. I will not allow us to mis-manage our precious resources by mis-firing before we KNOW we must.
“I beg your ear, Sir,” inserted Lieutenant Burrow, holding her position. “And I must ask you to consider…a different view. We are under no illusion that our technology is no match for their’s. If we delay, and do not strike with a SWIFT response now, they are likely to gain an advantage from which we might not recover. I respectfully ask that you reconsider your position.”
“Lieutenant Curio,” began Jordson. “I want you to roll us back to the images showing the naval and air threats.” Reprogramming his dash panel, Curio brought up a split-screen image of the two threats in question. Jordson rose from his chair and walked to the front of the room to study the screen more closely. Firmly folding his arms in front of him, he slowly scrutinized the images.
“I am not sure,” responded Jordson.
“General Jordson?!” responded General Hemming, Joint Chair of Rocket and Missile assets, and one of Jordson’s peers. “Sensor surveillance has in fact captured their conversation. What is it that you are not sure of? Perhaps there is something that we do not understand— but if that is the case please tell us!”
“That’s precisely it, General,” responded Jordson. “It’s that which we do not understand that confounds me the most. If what we are viewing is indeed their true intent, then I would agree that moving quickly would be the right choice. However, being as advanced as they are, wouldn’t it be wiser for us to assume that they have the skills in place to block us from
detecting their TRUE communications — and that what we have detected may only be that which they INTEND for us to hear?” The members of the Committee started shifting in their seats, while Lieutenant Curio appeared to be intrigued.
“So what you mean to say, is that they may be fooling us, Sir,” inserted Curio.
“Or trying to,” responded Jordson.
“If they are as technically superior as we believe them to be, then our electronic enemy sensors, by their own hand, could well lead us astray. I advise we also consider the possibility that the aircraft and naval threats seen projected on this screen may be real, or simply an illusion. I do not claim to know. But our lack of assurance is our weakness, and if we are not careful, we will drain our resources and further weaken our position. As such, we must recognize our disadvantage, and not let them use it against us.”