Ukl shïkal ûkaj kif ukl Kryonomicon.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Now Available

The Tower is now available from!

That's right, you can now buy this book from this magic link, for only $9.95 plus shipping & handling. So go out there and buy a copy! Tell your friends! And have fun reading it, I know I had fun writing it!

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Monday, April 24, 2006

Back Cover Blurb

Well, after months of procrastination, I have finally almost completed my cover. The book is almost completely edited, and should be hitting Lulu's shelves in a few weeks. Since I just finished writing the back cover blurb for the book, I thought I'd share it with you. Enjoy!

The world is burned, razed by the guns of an alien race known as the kryons. Humanity is a dead and shattered race, lost in fields of glass, the ruins of once-great cities. What once was a might human empire now lies in rubble, scarring the once-beautiful landscape of the Earth.

But not all is lost. The kryons did not finish their mission, for handfuls of people still populate the charred ruins across the world. Most have turned to savagery, seeing life as nothing more than a fight for survival. Some, however, have formed villages, makeshift clans, that work together to survive the new hardships that mankind must face.

And it is the product of one of these villages, a young man named Jude, who will embark on a journey that will change the future of both humanity and kryonity. For not all is as it appears, and it is time that every soul learns the truth about the invasion. The truth inside The Tower.

Ukl shïkal ûkaj kif ukl Kryonomicon.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005


So there you have it. The saga of Jude and the burning of Earth, laid out in a novel greater than 50,000 words, just as I promised.

So now then, for those who have finished reading the book: how'd you like it? Think I should write a sequel? Gonna buy it when I publish it via Lulu? Any mysteries I forgot to answer? Please, tell me what you thought about the book. It will help me out immensely. Or just tell me my letter grade. Feedback is much appreciated.

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Sunday, November 27, 2005


“It was not my job to tell of the things that once past. Rather, it was my job to uncover those same things that took place. It is my task to uncover these things, and to tell of those things that are happening and will happen.

“The world was not razed by kryonity but by humanity. Where we thought they were responsible for the burning of Earth, it was our own folly that was responsible for it. Man turned on man, burning those who were different, but the kryons were our savior.

“The invasion was a necessity to purge the man known as O’Conner from the head of the world. His daughter, the one once known as Cassandra, now lives on, but she has forsaken her family’s heritage. Kysandra now fights for the survival of humanity, not its destruction.

“Humans still dwell on Earth. It is impossible for us to rescue them all. From the former cities to the vast deserts, man will still dwell. There is no way that we can scan the surface of the world and bring them back.

“Yet hope remains, for the tower that we found was not the only tower built by the kryons. Others were constructed, and from the information buried in the ship’s computer, they too held the great human wasp-ships and instructions on how to operate them. With luck, the other Free Councils of the world will be the ones to bring them to Kryon.

“We shall return to our ancestral homeworld of Kryon. We shall meet our brethren there, and remain there side-by-side until both races crumble as the universe collapses. And we shall work to raise the earth back to what it was.

“Mankind shall return someday to Earth. I may not be among them, nor my children, nor my children’s children, but someday, we shall return. Humanity will work with kryonity to rebuild the great cities, and the worlds shall join together in a union which shall span the universe as a great nation.

“Myself and my lover shall meet my other twin, the one known only as The Messenger. Who or what he is is unknown, but we are destined to meet. I know it and have felt it in my wanderings in my mind.

“The journey through the stars will be long and hard, but we will make it. Humanity cannot be stopped, we are a resilient race. No matter what dangers lie in waiting in the deep of space, we shall make it to the world of Kryon.

“We are leaving our world behind, but our ancestral world is still ahead. We shall arrive and return someday. I shall miss this world, but my heart yearns to see that which I have not seen.

“And so I must depart. I have nothing else to say to those that are left, except a single sentence.

“We will return.”
-The Messenger of Earth

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Chapter 66 - Sky

Jude and Tyra walked towards the door first. Jude placed his hand on the door, which slid open smoothly and quickly. They shivered from excitement and entered, followed by Kysandra, Relik, and Krynn.

Relik stared around in amazement. “That,” he said, his eyes widening in excitement, “is really amazingly spiffy.”

The inside of the ship looked just as clean as it likely had the day it was made. The metal still glistened, and the controls still lit up with a faint red glow. Screens beeped and chirped to themselves, unaware of the presence of anyone within the ship.

They walked slowly onto the bridge. Behind them, they could see the fighter bay, with space for twenty fighters reaching back. The doors were open, just as they would be if the ship ever had to be used in a battle. Large metal shields were there for air containment if the fight occurred in space.

Behind that was the engine room, with a small control room there should something go wrong.

Stairs also went up from the bridge, up to what were marked on a sign as “living quarters”. This was indeed a battleship, meant for long voyages and not short strikes. The kryons had left the ship there as a way for the humans to reach the world of Kryon.

They looked around the bridge. There were a number of seats, such as for the captain, pilot, copilot, gunners, and mechanics. And sitting on the chairs of each were books.

A number of them walked to the books, which were very thick manuals. They held information on how to work the systems of the ship, specifically the ones that someone who sat in that seat would need to be concerned with. Jude stood in the center of the bridge.

“We are here at last! We have reached our ship, and our journey to the world of Kryon is at hand! We shall depart as soon as we can.”

The people cheered. Over the next few days, Jude decided on who would run the various systems. Relik and Krynn would be pilot and copilot, Kysandra and Sylva would be gunners, and Tyra would be the mechanic.

The living quarters were very nice. They were plentiful, and in fact reached up multiple floors. The ship had not looked that big from the outside. They each were fully stocked with sheets, running water flowed through their pipes, and most of all, there were clothes there.

Clothes were very rare, and no one had more than one pair, as they had to carry their clothes. They cheered when they saw them. There were uniforms to make them look like a bona fide group of soldiers, and relaxation clothes for men and women alike. The ship was clearly arranged for them, and Jude’s discovery made it clear.

Sitting on the bed of the room marked as “captain’s quarters” was a note, written in the aurora-script. It read, quite simply, “we wish you safe passage to Kryon”.

They spent more time there in the tower, practicing their skills in a virtual training room that they had found. They also trained fighter pilots, so that if on their journey they were et by anyone, they would be able to fight them off as best as they could.

After three months of training and learning, Jude walked outside of the ship. The skeletons of the twins still lay there, and he carved a small bit of aurora-script in the bone of Uk’Yan that read, “dream”.

He walked over to a control box in the tower that they had found shortly after the battle. He opened it, and flipped a switch marked “open”.

Slowly, the clear roof of the tower opened up. Jude returned to the ship, and flipped the necessary controls to ready it for flight.

Relik and Krynn sat and fired up the engine. They pressed the buttons, flipped the switches, and turned the dials that they would need to take off. Though they had never done this before, they knew how to do it from countless hours in the training rooms.

Flames shot from the ship as it lifted slowly into the air. They watched on the screen as they lifted out of the tower.

Cheers erupted from the Free Council. They were finally on their way to Kryon. A better world was coming for them, and they needed only journey to get there. The coordinates had been programmed into the ship’s computer from the start, and they were now on the way to their destination.

The ship lifted up slowly out of the atmosphere, and the people looked at the world below them. It was the same world as on the maps that they had seen, from the room just inside the mainland to the gun corporation. They whispered messages to the world they had just left behind, and hoped that whatever other humans were still there would find the other towers.

That night, Jude sat on his bed, Tyra lying on his side. Jude took a pen that had been in his room, and opened a blank journal that had been sitting in the desk. He opened it, and began to write.

The ship coasted off into the inky void.

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Chapter 65 - Raising

Tears flowed down, mixing with the pool of blood below Jude. He lowered his head, and wept uncontrollably. He had not planned for such a thing to happen, least of all when they had finally reached the tower.

He thought back to what Lukäski had said. He had claimed to be the most powerful being ever, able to master death using his mind. But Jude also knew that Uk’Yan, as Lukäski’s twin, was able to hold is soul in check in whatever realm souls travel to.

Jude wondered if he was strong enough to raise the dead. He suspected not, as Lukäski was much more powerful than he, and almost defeated both Uk’Yan and Jude together.

But he also knew that he and Tyra were twins, at least in a spiritual sense, as Uk’Yan had told him. Perhaps that could help him bring her back, somehow, some way. He bent over her, and reached out with his mind.

His probes reached into her mind, now a barren wasteland devoid of thoughts and feelings. Where in other minds he had sensed color, music, and voices, just as in dreams, here he sensed nothing but grey. There was no voice floating in the void, nor music playing.

He probed deeper, searching for any signs of consciousness. And dark in the grey mists, he found it.

A faint wisp of voice sang a dirge in the mist. It was clearly and distinctly Tyra’s voice. She sang in a monotone voice, but sadness did not fill it, nor happiness. Rather, she was distinctly unemotional.

Jude probed into the mist towards where her singing was coming from. He reached out, trying to feel Tyra’s soul still residing in her mind, to try to bring it back from this abyss.

He spoke quietly in a soothing voice. “Tyra, it is I, Jude.”

The voice stopped singing. Tyra called back, her voice eerily monotone in this dead realm.

“Who is Jude? I know not of my life before death.”

“I was your lover, Tyra. I need you to return, I cannot bear the thought of losing you forever.”

“Lover? Tell me more of this alien word.”

“I loved you, Tyra. Our souls were bound as one, we were made to live forever, together. I need you back.”

He collapsed to the ground and wept. He tried to open his mouth and plead with Tyra to return to her former life, and not to stay here in this mist for an eternity.
Tyra looked back at him in confusion. Emotion began to float back to her voice, and a faint gold light pierced the mist.

“I remember this … love. I remember emotions, and feeling. I remember the happiness you brought me, Jude. I will return with you to the world outside of this place.”

The music played and the voices sounded. The mist fled and color returned to Tyra’s mind. Jude felt her consciousness return. He retreated back to his own mind.

The hole in her back was healing. Her finger began to twitch, then her arm, and her body. She shook, blood reversing coagulation and flowing back into her. She sat up.

She spoke, her voice unintelligible as she whispered at Jude. Jude put his finger to her lips, telling her silently to be silent herself. She stood up.

The Free Council began cheering, seeing her back. They knew that somehow, some way, Jude had brought her back to life.

They climbed off of the wasp-ship. Jude smiled at his friends.

“Who was lost in the battle?” he asked. A few names were given to him, but not as many as he had feared, having watched the battle. Many more were injured, but they would heal with time.

They looked around in the room, past the carnage. There was a ship here. They knew that this was the secret within the tower. They walked towards the ship, towards the doors that were the doors to another world.

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Saturday, November 26, 2005

Chapter 64 - The Storm Breaks

“Noooooo!!!” Jude cried out in horror. She wasn’t dead, she couldn’t be, she mustn’t be! No one could survive a hole in their back that large. This could not be, she could not possibly be gone. Gone! She had faded into oblivion.

Jude felt Uk’Yan reaching within his own mind, so he did so. An aurora spread across their minds, and conjoined together. And through the metal at the top of the tower, another aurora was clearly visible.

Time slowed. And yet, Lukäski too was moving at their speed. This was a fight to the death, a fight that would determine the fate of the Free Council, and of the tower, and of the fate of humanity and the Earth. Everything was on the line now.

Jude and Uk’Yan split, running around the wasp-ship in opposite directions. Lukäski shot at Uk’Yan, trying to bring down his twin before the reverse happened. For as powerful as he was, his own twin would be able to bring him down.

Shots were fired, by the kryons, by the Free Council, and by the three fighters. Jude jumped on top of the ship, and stood over Tyra’s fallen body.

He turned down the power setting on his gun, increasing the firing rate.

“It’s time for you to die, Lukäski!” he yelled. “For killing Tyra! For all of the trouble that you have caused the Free Council, it is time for you to die!”

More shots rang out. Explosions rocked the room. Kryons were falling over dead, killed by the Free Council, and humans too were dying at the cruel guns of the kryons.

Uk’Yan had surrendered the idea of simply shooting his twin. He was too fast, too nimble, too cunning. It would not be possible to kill him in such a simple manner. They would have to corner him, knock him out, and then destroy him.

Jude felt a voice within his head. It was Uk’Yan’s.

< Jude, we must corner him. Force him underneath the ship. >

He fired his gun at Lukäski, who reacted with unnatural speed. Shots still moved through the air at their slowed rate, but they were easy to dodge for the three who had sped up.

Lukäski stepped to dodge Jude’s shots, not watching where his foot went. The top of the wasp-ship sloped down, too far for Lukäski’s judgment. He lost his footing and fell.

All three lost their focus, and time returned to normal. But the shots stopped firing, and Uk’Yan and Jude were soon over him, ready to kill him.

“Spare me,” he moaned. “Spare my life, brother.”

Uk’Yan looked deep into his brother’s silvery eyes.

“You’re not worth sparing, Lukäski. You and the rest of your scum companions deserve nothing more than death.”

Lukäski screamed a war cry. Tendrils of thought probed into both Uk’Yan and Jude’s mind. And despite the fact that he was outnumbered two to one, Jude felt Lukäski’s power expanding such that they could not fend him off, not even combined.

A voice echoed across the trinity of minds.

< Jude, strike him with your fist. Distract him, > said Uk’Yan. His voice was pained, Lukäski was reaching much deeper into his twin’s mind than his mortal enemy’s.
Jude reacted quickly. He punched Lukäski quickly in the face. Blood spurted out from his nose, but it mattered not. Heat exploded around the three.

Uk’Yan had pulled the trigger on his gun, destroying his twin forever. He looked over at Jude, sweat pouring off of both of them from the intense heat.

“Goodbye, Jude,” he whispered. He turned the gun on himself, and pulled the trigger.

Another explosion rocked the room. Jude was blown backwards, burns spreading across his face and arms. The kryons dropped their guns, their leader finally shot and killed.

The storm outside subsided. Not even wind sounded within the room. Jude crawled over to the two bodies. Lying side by side were the bodies of the two twins. So there had been a way to destroy Lukäski, but the cost was heavy.

Jude knew that Uk’Yan would never have told him of such a plan. But now their souls were in check, and neither would ever return from the void of death. They were gone now, twins separated in life and joined in death.

The Free Council had dropped their weapons now too, moving around the room to count the dead. They were not sure as to what had just happened, but the kryons had surrendered, and Lukäski was dead. They did not know of the cost that the victory had come at.

Jude climbed to the top of the wasp-ship, where Tyra’s body lay amid a sea of blood. He lowered his head down to hers, and wept.

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Chapter 63 - Darkening Sky

Jude was on the second group up. The cylinder rose them up to the top of the tower, and the metal there raised itself, revealing the contents at the top of the tower. What they saw was amazing.

The ceiling was the inside of a hemisphere. It was made of metal, but simultaneously transparent, allowing one to see outside. A massive thunderstorm was brewing outside.

The actual room was large and circular. A large wasp-ship sat in the center, and smaller fighters were visible inside of the bay. It did not look like it was the same ship that had razed New York, but it was of a similar make and model.

Tyra was nowhere to be seen. Perhaps she had entered one of the ships? Jude did not know, but a voice called out that answered his question.

“Hello, Jude,” it said. Lightning arced across the sky, and thunder rang out. Rain began pouring down in sheets. “Surprised to see me?”

Jude could not tell where the sound was coming from, so he moved his head quickly from one side to the other. More members of the Free Council were coming up from the elevator, but all stopped just after stepping off, seeing the fear in their companion’s eyes.

The voice called out again. “Wondering where Tyra is, Jude? Don’t worry, I have her nice and safe. Just don’t do anything sudden, or you’ll find that you won’t have a lover much longer.”

Jude knew immediately who it was. He muttered under his breath. “Lukäski...”

He saw someone climb up to the top of the wasp-ship, kryons standing behind him. Tyra was bound up behind the man. It was indeed Lukäski.

“You’ve come an awful long way just to be stopped here, at the tower, now haven’t you Jude? It’s a shame that you have to die now. I really do feel badly for you, really, I do.”

Jude looked at him in disgust. After all that he had been through, from the ill-fated fox hunt to the flight to the tower, everything was in vain. Lukäski had beaten him to the tower.

“You probably thought that I had died, didn’t you Jude? I exploded back on that building, didn’t I? Hah! As foolish as the rest of your race..."

Now everyone was filled with disgust towards him, except of course his kryon army. Where the army had come from, they didn't know.

Jude decided to try to ask Lukäski about it, if nothing else to try and catch him off his guard. He and Uk'Yan could easily react fast enough to destroy Lukäski, and much of his kryon army.

"So Lukäski, I know that your army was destroyed by us a while ago. Where'd you manage to dig up more kryons to fight on your side? Been mindwashing stupid savages throughout the cities, have you?"

Lukäski shook his head. He made "tsk" noises, and shook his finger at him, as if reprimanding a small child.

"No, fool!" he shouted. Everyone, including his own kryon warriors, jumped back, startled by his sudden exclamation. "I brought them back! They were dead, just as I was after you killed me on the building, and now they are back! Back from the abyss in which your soul shall be after this, our final meeting! I have mastered death! You, just as everyone else in this pathetic group of people, the 'Free Council', or whatever you fools called yourself, have no idea the power that I can raise! You cannot destroy me! No one can!"

Jude stared back at him. He laughed, and that laugh soon grew into a deep, rumbling sound. Lightning arced across the sky, and thunder shook the entire tower.

"No one could possibly stop you? What about your twin, Uk'Yan?"

Lukäski screamed. He made a quick signal, and a shot was fired. Tyra dropped to the ground, blood leaking from her back.

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Thursday, November 24, 2005

Chapter 62 - Window to the Past

They woke slowly the next day. No sunlight was entering the room, rather all light was streaming in from the ceiling. It remained constant throughout the night, evidence that it was not sunlight that was filling the chamber.

The people, as they awoke, wandered around the room, looking to see what all was in it. They could not find anything other than the plaque in the room, besides the metal tiles. And they were all bolted together, impossible to move or shift.

Jude read and reread the plaque, hoping to figure out what exactly it was that was hidden inside the tower. The plaque mentioned a gift, but the room was empty. What exactly was going on?

He decided to try a different approach. He lay down on the ground, closed his eyes, and focused his mind. He could feel the walls of the tower around him, and his mind groped around for something unusual, whether hidden in the walls, the floor, or the ceiling that was impossibly high above.

A strange signature was coming from behind one of the wall panels. Jude felt his way to it. It was a device that seemed to be activated by thought. Jude probed at it with his mind, and suddenly the room began to change.

Jude snapped out of his trance. The people had already ran against the walls, staring up at the ceiling in awe and wonder.

A hologram was projecting downwards. Floating in the center was a world, the same that Jude had seen on the map in the building when he had first seen the aurora-script. It was Earth.

It spun slowly around its axis. Cities were clearly visible on the surface, and the impact of humanity was evident across the face of the world. The hologram adjusted itself so everyone saw the same picture.

It was a city. There appeared to be a celebration taking place, when an explosion rocked the region. The hologram moved back out of the city.

Spaceships were gathering around the planet. They did not resemble the ships that Jude had seen in the children’s book, and so he was left to believe that they were kryon ships. They did not strike, but sat and watched, unwatched by Earth.

Earth, meanwhile, was at war. Planes razed city after city, and the people watched even New York razed by the humans.

The picture of the Earth was replaced by a picture of a man’s head. The man resembled Kysandra, although in all actuality, it was likely Kysandra who resembled the man. A name flashed underneath his head. “William O’Conner”.

He began to speak, his voice sounding like a masculine version of Kysandra’s.

“I come before the people of the world with the gravest of news. Aliens have attacked Earth. We are powerless to stop them, we simply do not have the means since we ensured world peace by disbanding the armies.” (This was clearly a lie, but had the year been the year this had been recorded, it would have been very believable). “We have no choice but to submit.”

The face faded away, and the ships descended upon Earth, which had reappeared. They stayed for a short time, then flew off. But some kryons remained. They built great towers, all resembling the one that the people now sat in. They rose from the rubble of many of the great cities of the world.

But nothing seemed to happen, and the kryons instead left in their ships, leaving the survivors in their wake. As true as it was that it was impossible to rescue all of the humans stranded, it seemed as though they were simply deserted.

The hologram faded. The people began talking quietly amongst themselves. They did not know what had just happened, but it did not seem to explain anything.

A great, low rumble began sounding from above. They looked up. Something was blocking the light.

It was a massive cylinder of steel. It lowered itself with a grinding noise, slowly reaching down to the floor. It touched it, and then a single section at the bottom shot up.

Inside was another hologram. This one resembled The Messenger. It spoke out to the people in the human tongue.

“Enter and elevate,” it said. It vanished from their sight. Tyra walked towards it, and put herself into it.

She heard a voice within her head. “Hold still,” it said.

The ground underneath her began rising, and then shot up with startling ferocity. So this was how they were to reach the top of the tower.

The people began entering the elevator, in groups of up to ten at a time, to reach the top, and to find out what was waiting for them there.

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Chapter 61 - The Tower

They looked down in awe. Although exhausted from the flight to the tower, they had finally reached their destination. It had not been a rumor, the tower was real, and there was an entrance to it.

Still, no one had the energy to move their legs to enter the tower. Night was falling, and they knew that they had to in order to survive the night, but they were still exhausted from the run.

Jude stood at the top of the hill. He called out to the people of the Free Council.

“We made it,” he said, in a calm voice that rang out throughout the rubble.

Cheers came from the crowd. And although no one had the energy to go down the hill to the bottom, they began running again. They ran down the hill, glee taking over their thoughts and feelings. They were here at last.

Kysandra was the first to reach the bottom, then Relik, and Jude. Uk’Yan brought up the rear, still tired from the sheer number of people who he had helped in the flight to the tower.

The doors were metal, just as the rest of the tower was. They had no handle, and the people did not know how to open them. Jude went and stood before the doors.

He spoke in the kryon tongue. “Open,” he said. The doors stayed where they were. There was no sign of a motion sensor, nor instructions written in any language of how to enter.

Tyra spoke. “Open,” she said, this time in the human tongue. That had no effect either.

Despair swept through the group. Yes, they had reached the tower, but now they were locked outside, with no hope of entering it. How were they supposed to bypass the doors and enter the tower?

Krynn, who was still remarkably energetic after the run, volunteered to run around the tower in search of another pair of doors. He left, and arrived again in twenty minutes or so.

“There are no other entrances,” he said, his face dropping in sadness. “We must figure out how to open these doors.

Uk’Yan walked towards the doors. He placed his hand on them, and closed his eyes. He entered into a trance-like state. Jude knew that he was trying to identify how to open them by using his mind.

He walked back over to Jude. “Jude,” he said, “Place your hand on the crease between the doors. Speak ‘open’ in the human tongue, as I speak ‘open’ in the kryon tongue. The simultaneous actions should open the doors.”

They both walked to the doors, placing their hands on the crease. They spoke, and a loud click sounded throughout the still air.

They back up. The doors were opening slowly, and an unimaginable light poured in from the tower. In just a minute, there was a passageway large enough for the group to enter the tower from.

Jude was the first to enter, followed by Uk’Yan, and then by the rest of the Free Council. They stepped slowly into the tower.

The inside was one enormous room, reaching up beyond where the eyes could see. Light streamed in from the top. The walls were made of plates of metal, erratically bolted together, forming a strange collection of shapes on the walls. The building appeared to have been made in haste, however it rose perfectly straight into the sky.

On the far corner was a plaque. Jude, Uk’Yan, and Tyra went over to examine it. It was written in aurora-script, in the kryon tongue. Jude read it out in the human tongue.

“To the humans who shall find this place: may the gift inside save your race. The dead shall walk.”

They returned to the rest of the Free Council with the news. No one knew what else to do, so Uk’Yan and Jude walked back to the doors, which were still open.

Wind was beginning to blow through the doors, and it was beginning to rain slightly. Uk’Yan and Jude walked to opposite sides, and spoke “close” in the two languages. The doors closed as slowly as they had opened.

They were now inside of the tower. Nothing appeared to be happening, and so the Council spread out across the metal floor to sleep.

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Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Chapter 60 - Flight

Morning had come. Storm clouds were gathered over head, just as they had been in Jude’s dream. He jolted, then moved his hand up to rub his face. Light was streaming down upon the Free Council through the one hole remaining the clouds. Even the area above the tower was concealed by darkness.

Tyra, too, was waking up. She looked at him, her face an expression of concern.
“Jude,” she said, “I had the strangest dream. You and I were in a glass field, and were visited by Survivor, Lukäski, and The Messenger. I - ”

Jude put his finger up to her lips. “I had the same dream,” he said. “It was no dream, but the subconscious bond between ourselves and those three. The time has come Tyra, the storm shall soon break. And when it does, chaos will try to overtake us.”

Kysandra was awake, and was listening to their conversation. She crawled over to where the two of them were talking.

“This is very bad news indeed. Lukäski must be on our tail. We must reach the tower before the storm breaks – literally. The darkness and chaos of the storm would be the end of the Free Council.”

Jude, Tyra, and Kysandra went around, waking the people up one by one. They stirred slowly, but when Jude went to the center of the area and called a meeting, they all forgot their weariness and joined around him.

“This is the gravest of news that I can present to you. An ill omen has befallen us. The storm that gathers above us is ready to unleash chaos upon this land. Lukäski is hot on our tails. We must make for the tower.

“It appears that the storm will break at some time during the night, leaving us today to travel to the tower. Everyone must run. The distance is too great to walk it in a day. If you cannot keep up, keep running. Your very lives may depend upon it.

“That said, Uk’yan and myself will gladly help any that are in need.” (He and Uk’Yan had spoken briefly about this manner just after Jude woke him up.) “The road is dangerous, and we must be swift, but we can do it. The fate of the Free Council depends upon it. We leave in fifteen minutes, no less. Eat lightly, and pack up your things.”

He lowered his hand, signifying the end of the meeting. People stirred about, gathering their things. Many broke open a can of food, and split among up to six or seven people. In fifteen minutes, they were gathered around Jude.

“My people, may we reach the tower together.” They began running.

They started slowly, so that they would not grow tired by the end. Most of the people were in good physical condition, due to the hardships faced by the people who lived after the invasion, but a run of this distance was still a long distance.

They had not been running for half an hour when the first person began to show signs of weakness. Jude slowed down to catch up with Uk’Yan.

“Are you able to support him, or shall I?” he asked, wondering about how to help the man.

“I can bear the burden fine, Jude,” replied Uk’Yan. “We must keep moving.”

Uk’Yan slowed down so that he was at an even pace with the man. He focused his mind, keeping with his running, and slowly split the burden between the man and himself. The man was back up to the average running speed in no time.

In the next few hours, others began deteriorating. Jude and Uk’Yan were nearly exhausted from their efforts to keep the group moving, but they carried on. Every step was a burden, every step could be their last, if they slowed.

The tower loomed closer and closer. It was just as Jude had envisioned. A massive metal cylinder rose into the air, three hyperbolic supports reaching down from the middle section to the ground. A top room was clearly visible at the top of the tower, high in the clouds.

The run continued. They did not stop, for if they did, they would not be able to start again. Slowly, Jude and Uk’Yan became the most troubled people, for they bore the burden of many.

Night was beginning to fall, and still the Free Council ran. No one had fallen yet, but many were on the verge of collapse.

Jude called out in a pained, exhausted voice. “We are nearly there!” Indeed he was right, as the tower was nearly beside them.

They began to run uphill, as the land turned. They ran for at least fifteen minutes up, their legs slowly turning to useless pieces of muscle and bone. They crested the hill.

Below them was the tower. A set of double doors sat at the base, waiting for someone to enter. They had reached it at last.

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Chapter 59 - Clouds of Night

His body hung motionless in the void. Colors swirled around him, and voices sounded. Jude was in another dream, but this one felt more realistic than the other ones he had had, and this one was clearly going to be the most important one yet.

The colors parted and the mist dissipated. It was nighttime. Stars were shining overhead, and the aurora raged, spreading its beauty across the glass fields. The moon was high in the sky. Jude stood next to Tyra in a wasteland.

Clouds began growing from the horizon, moving in a circle centered upon the moon. The voice of Survivor rang out.

“My children, the test is coming. Inside the tower you shall learn many things, but you shall be tested. Your willpower will be pushed to its limits. And the dead shall walk.”

His body suddenly grew out from the glass around the lovers. He placed one hand on Jude’s shoulder, and one on Tyra’s. His face was emotionless, and his body seemed only like an animated corpse.

“Lukäski will strike. Clouds will gather and storms will break. The danger is only just beginning, Jude. Tyra, you shall be tested as well. Saving your friends is one thing, but sacrificing yourself to do it is completely another. May humanity smile upon you both.”

He vanished. He did not so much fade or sink as morph. His face changed into one full of emotion, with red hair and shining silver eyes. He grew abnormally tall for a man, and looked down on Jude. It was Lukäski.

“The time of reckoning has come, Jude. We shall soon see who is the more powerful one. It will be me who triumphs, Jude.

“Humans are stupid and kryons reckless. Neither deserves to have control of either world. Through diplomacy and force, I shall conquer this world. We shall rebuild the great fleets of humanity and fly to the kryon world. You cannot stop me, I am invincible.

“I have learned the secrets of life over death. My body cannot be destroyed, nor can my power. I have no weaknesses, Jude. Your time has come.”

His body began changing. He shrunk down to normal human size, and his red hair changed black, long, and ragged. He looked Tyra in the eye.

Tyra recognized him immediately. “It is The Messenger, Jude,” she said, not moving her eyes off of him.

He nodded to her, but then turned his attention to Jude. He looked him head to toe, and then began to speak. His baritone voice surprised Jude, and the authority within it was unearthly.

“We are well met, twin. I am The Messenger of the kryons, as you are of the humans. You are not a Messenger truly, at least not yet. You must learn more about the worlds and about the history of the races.

“But you must also free the human race from the bondage of Earth. The world is burned, and will likely not return for a millennium. Someday it may be colonized again, raised back to its former glory. But until then you must rescue what humans you can.

“Beware of Lukäski, Jude. If anyone shall be your undoing, it is he. And do not think too heavily on him until the time is right. Until we meet again, Jude, farewell.”

The body of The Messenger melted into glass and flowed along the ground until it vanished. The mist began swirling again, and colors began to surround Jude and Tyra.

They embraced and kissed. They were near to the tower. Soon, they would unlock the mysteries of their world, and free humanity. They would meet their brethren, the kryons, someday.

Jude looked to the sky. The clouds had advanced upon the moon. They now circled it in a thick blanket, and the moon was almost obscured by them. The aurora had stopped.

A storm was gathering.

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Chapter 58 - Jubilation

They walked further during the next few days. Some were beginning to grow weary, but they excitement of the importance of the tower drove them onwards. The land here was torn up worse than usual, and few buildings still stood. Rubble lined the streets that waited forlornly for the humans to return.

The weather was beginning to get cold and raw, and the people scavenged the rubble for warm coats, hats, or anything else they could find to keep themselves warm. None had any clothing of that sort, for it would be far too difficult to carry. Many had not even looked for clothes since the liberation from the Order of Vengeance.

Jude and Uk’Yan were coming to know each other better, and Uk’Yan was learning the human tongue at a surprising rate. Jude estimated that he would be able to talk to everyone else in only a month or so.

Tyra and Jude were rarely seen separate, and while Jude was trying to teach Uk’Yan the human tongue, Tyra was trying to learn the kryon tongue. She was not doing as well at it as Uk’Yan was at his language, but she still could read small portions of the Kryonomicon and carry on basic conversations with Uk’Yan.

Together, the three of them, along with Krynn, Relik, and Kysandra, discussed the matter of Lukäski and his band of kryons. They wondered how he managed to raise up a group that quickly of kryons to join him.

It also appeared that they were being followed. Lukäski had not been seen since the incident at the weapons company, but his signs were everywhere. And the personal message to Jude on the rock was seen as the clinching proof that he was coming.

They also discussed the matter of the four words, “ukl mort tÿr undâr” and what they could mean. Uk’Yan seemed convinced that it was an omen of things to come, though how it could be such a thing he did not know. Perhaps Lukäski had planted the message in Jude’s brain when they had their first confrontation.

But what could the message mean? Kysandra was being needlessly pessimistic about it, believing that Lukäski would somehow bring back the dead to fight against them. This was clearly impossible though, as death was irreversible. Uk’Yan’s interpretation was that the dead were the spirits of the dead, and the walking referred to was simply that they would have their vengeance upon O’Conner.

Of course, O’Conner was dead, and therefore they were lead to believe that under Uk’Yan’s interpretation, something would come back to harm Kysandra. But precisely what this could be was not known.

In the past day, someone had claimed that they, too, saw the tower. They walked further, people wanting to see it. And then they crested a hill, and suddenly the people cried out in joy. There it was, clearly lying at the horizon. It was only a small metallic cylinder rising above the horizon, but it stood high above the rubble that surrounded it. They were going to make it to the tower, and unlock the secrets that were within.

The person who had seen it before cried out, “There it is! The tower lies within our grasp!” The people cheered as they crested the hill and saw it.

They began dancing, and sang impromptu songs about humanity. Some got down and prayed to whatever powers that be lie above. People wept and people laughed, and the group had a happy demeanor for the first time since the motel was destroyed and their friends burned.

Jude, hating to spoil the celebration, raised a hand and called out, “We must keep traveling! We must reach the tower before Lukäski does!” He, Tyra, and Uk’Yan began walking away from the crowd towards the tower. The celebration did not cease, but rather it simply followed Jude down the hill.

A ruined city waited below them. The skyscrapers had long crumbled and the buildings lay dead, but it was a city indeed. The tower grew slowly closer, and they continued their journey.

Night fell, and the people had no choice but to stop and find shelter. No buildings lay standing, and they could not simply find a building to sleep in. They made makeshift huts of rubble and entered them to sleep.

Jude found himself lying outside, staring at the aurora and the stars. He wondered from which star the kryons came. Tyra lay beside him.

“Tyra,” he said, turning his face to his lover. “What do you think is in the tower?”
Tyra shook her head. “I don’t know, I know only that the answers are there. Just as the Kryonomicon illuminated many things that were darkened, so the tower will make it clear.

“But I also believe that in the tower is hope. We will be able to rebuild this world, and bring a new day to our children. May you sleep tight, Jude.”

She turned over and fell asleep. Jude shifted closer to her, and wrapped his arms around her, and fell asleep.

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