But I see now that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. I have such evidence, but I cannot reveal it.
– From The Skulkers in the Void, by Amoxtli.
First things first. “Ship, enter administrator mode. Delete all access codes save my own. No more killing without my express order.”
“Ship. What will happen if I do not go to Aztlan?” He already knew the answer. But habits die hard.
“Things like that have happened before. They would wait for another verifiable hybrid, or for the genetic manipúlation and eugenics programme to run its course to the point when humanity awakened their latent genetic memories. Then any one of them could be used to verify the end of the cycle.”
“Let’s first see that that does not happen soon.”
“Very well. Killing off the mali and destroying their DNA samples would slow down the cycle significantly.”
“I will not kill anybody. Will they listen to a direct order from me?”
“Certainly. However, the gods will most definitely rescind your orders. And even if they do not, the cycle will be complete soon. Your existence is proof of that.”
“One thing at a time. Put me in contact with them.”
The motes of light formed into several people from several different ethnicities, who one after another dropped their disguises and fell to their knees. “My lord,” they hissed.
“No need to refer to me as such. Who amongst you speaks for the rest?”
One of them who used to look like a prominent politician rose. “I do. What gives us the honor of your visit?”
“I hereby command you to cease the experiments to accelerate the cycle and destroy all extant DNA samples of the Aztlani.”
This caused some restlessness amongst the snake people. Then: “It shall be done, my lord. Since We have lost our purpose, do you wish for us to die?”
“No. I will try to broker a peace deal with the humans in your name to ensure your safety and well-being. For now, remain hidden and safe.”
“It shall be done.”
With that, he cut off communication and Martin faced the girl.
“I am sorry that I am so indignant a guest. I haven’t even asked you your name.”
“I have no name my lord, nor does this vessel have a designation.”
“We cannot have that, and we cannot have you refer to me as ‘My lord.’ My name is Martin. Give yourself a name. As you said, the barrier between the living and the nonliving is insignificant.”
“You want me to make a decision Martin? That is highly unusual. But if you so wish…Maria. My name is Maria.”
“Happy to make your acquaintance Maria. Now, please make an information packet for the taskforce agent Gutiéres – the man you killed – was a part of. Tell them about the cycle, and that the mali are now in hiding and will not conduct their experiments for the time being.” Knowledge of the world of Aztlan violently filled him. “And include information about the Aztlani. Their world Aztlan, their technological capabilities, that they are a Kardachev type II civilization living on the inside of a multiple star Dyson sphere they created through stellar lifting.”
“I shall do so Martin. And what do we do after its dissemination?”
“We will leave earth.” He thought back to The Skulkers in the Void, a text by his mother he only now understood. “We need to bring proof of the cycle to all people. I do not know how yet, but we must stop it. We must convince the Aztlani that what they are doing is a moral evil. I will not be able to do tha, staying on earth. Bring us away from here, for now.”
“Error. Order violates current ethical parameters.”
“Our wormholes would cause severe damage to the planet, causing a cataclysm that could potentially kill thousands in the near vicinity.”
“We cannot have that. Recommendations?”
“One moment… the concept that is known as nuclear thermal propulsion to humans.”
“I am familiar with it. Using a reactor to heat a gas and use its impulse to drive a spaceship. Can you build such a device?”
“Easily, though the synthesis of the necessary heavy elements will take some time. We cannot use our singularity core to heat a gas directly.”
“Take the time. I will talk to the task force and explain the intel package we give them. And Maria?”
“Please prepare the body of agent Gutiéres for transport. We owe him, at least, a proper burial.”
I will seek more evidence. It is the only way to protect what is most dear to me.
– From The Skulkers in the Void, by Amoxtli.
Today, the task force received and disseminated the truth about the cycle, which was quickly leaked to the population. They now knew that humanity faced an enemy they couldn’t possibly defeat, and it was but a question of time before they returned. They learned that their fate for, better or worse, lied with a young man. They were quick to connect this information with the streak of fire seen streaking into the sky from off the coast of the Yucatan peninsula. And Grangran, who now knew her daughter had not been crazy, was quick to connect this with her grandson, now on a mission to end the cruel fate of all the people in the universe.