Saturday, December 26, 2009

Title change - The Big Bang: Notes from Looking Within is now The Little Universe

The Little UniverseYes, they are the same book. I should have realized The Little Universe was a better title much sooner. The name change was inevitable. The Big Bang was hardly original with dozens of astronomy books under the same title. Then there's the TV show Big Bang Theory, the Rolling Stones album, so many things. Then there was chance that readers would have on first glance, thinking it a science book that they wouldn't like. Hindsight being clearer, The Little Universe says it all much better and with paradox. Now available on Kindle at Amazon or through the website or at any other retailer in ebook and paperback formats.
 
Why can't we get these things right the first time?
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Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The Greatest Good is like water... Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching


The greatest good is like water
which benefits all life without trying to
It resides in the purest mountain snows
and dwells in the lowest of places
Thus it is like the Tao.
-Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

from wikipedia;
Lao Tzu, aka Laozi and many others, was a philosopher of ancient China and is a central figure in Taoism or Daoism. Lao Tzu literally means "Old Master." He is revered simply as a wise man in philosophical forms of Taoism, but revered as a god in religious forms, much like The Buddha is regarded differently by the religious and philosophical schools of Buddhism. According to Chinese tradition, Lao Tzu lived in the 6th century BC and is traditionally regarded as the author of the Daodejing (Tao Te Ching), though its authorship has been debated throughout history.
The above is my own translation of his teaching on water being the greatest good. No, I don't speak any form of Chinese, but from going over many other different interpretations, I believe this is what Lao Tzu was saying;
that we all should strive to be ourselves, without ego getting in the way, to mix among all walks of life both rich and poor, both good and bad (whatever that means) and in between. And that by truly being ourselves, we'll actually be helping everyone around us without even trying (sort of like Forrest Gump.) Perhaps by losing the ego and letting go, we'll allow Spirit to work through us, thus being like the Tao or The Way.

I also believe if you read between the lines in the teachings of Jesus Christ, you'll find a lot of similar themes. Some scholars argue that Jesus appears to have studied Buddhism during his "missing years" between the ages of 20 and 30. Wouldn't surprise me one bit.

What are your thoughts?
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Thursday, December 03, 2009

Jesse Ventura Exposes HAARP

Jesse Ventura
I had the pleasure of watching former Governer of Minnesota, Jesse Ventura, take on a little known yet highly controversial topic on Tru TV last night - HAARP. High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program is a military complex way out in Gakona, Alaska that has 180 antennas and emits crazy amounts of kilowatts into the ionosphere. It can be directed like a beam to super heat sections of the atmosphere as far as 40 to 60 miles about the surface of the Earth.

HAARP secret military science experiment in Alaska
The program is run by the military. They claim it's a harmless weather experimentation device that will better help us understand our ionosphere along with helping satellite communications and finding things like hostile submarines and such. Critics of the program point out that the military is not known for running harmless programs and that they're not being forthright with the full potentials and problems that HAARP may cause.

Nikola Tesla, Austrian scientist and pioneer inventor
The concept for the ionosphere heater was originally thought of by Nikola Tesla, a Serbian-American inventor and electrical engineer who lived from 1856 to 1943. An extraordinary genius far beyond his time, Tesla was regarded by some as a mad scientist. This is probably due to the fact that his discoveries involved transmission of energy, power, electricity and more. His ideas were revolutionary, for lack of a better word. Tesla conceived and designed the AC power system we used today and so many other things that were cutting edge technology, even by today standards, including wireless transmission of electricity. His ideas involved tremendous amounts of energy, which could be used for good or evil. Nikola Tesla despised war and wanted to create weapons that would eliminate war because the weaponry could destroy essentially everything on the planet and even the planet itself. All of these ideas came to Tesla well before the atomic bomb was designed.
One of Tesla's inventions, the teleforce or death ray weapon, attests to his concept of weapons that could end war. Exactly when, how and why the scientists put together the work of Tesla and HAARP remains a mystery that the military is not openly discussing. At least people like Jesse Ventura are finally asking hard questions - like what can this thing really do and shouldn't we all know about it?

What do you think about HAARP? I admittedly don't know much about it, but I sense something concerning that makes me want to know its exact purpose and potentials. There's a book called, Angels Don't Play This HAARP; Advances in Tesla Technology by Jeanne Manning for those who'd like to learn more.

What do you think? Add a comment.
--
Click here for the home page of author Jason Matthews.

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+Jason Matthews

Jesse Ventura Exposes HAARP

Jesse Ventura
I had the pleasure of watching former Governer of Minnesota, Jesse Ventura, take on a little known yet highly controversial topic on Tru TV last night - HAARP. High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program is a military complex way the heck out in (nowheresville) Gakona, Alaska that has 180 antennas and emits crazy amounts of kilowatts into the ionosphere. It can be directed like a beam to super heat sections of the atmosphere as far as 40 to 60 miles about the surface of the Earth. I originally wrote a blog post about this HAARP thing back in Oct 2008, and I realize my own need to learn more about it.

HAARP secret military science experiment in Alaska
The program is run by the military. They claim it's a harmless weather experimentation device that will better help us understand our ionosphere along with helping satellite communications and finding things like hostile submarines and such. Critics of the program point out that the military is not known for running harmless programs and that they're not being forthright with the full potentials and problems that HAARP may cause.

Nikola Tesla, Austrian scientist and pioneer inventor
The concept for the ionosphere heater was originally thought of by Nikola Tesla, a Serbian-American inventor and electrical engineer who lived from 1856 to 1943. An extraordinary genius far beyond his time, Tesla was regarded by some as a mad scientist. This is probably due to the fact that his discoveries involved transmission of energy, power, electricity and more. His ideas were revolutionary, creating the AC power system we used today and so many other things that were cutting edge technology, even by today standards (like wireless transmission of electricity). His ideas could be used for good or evil, but Tesla despised war and wanted to create weapons that would actually eliminate war because they could destroy essentially everything. And this was all well before the atomic bomb.
One of his inventions, the teleforce or death ray weapon, attests to his concept of weapons that could end war. Exactly when, how and why the scientists put together the work of Tesla and HAARP remains a mystery that the military is not openly discussing. At least people like Jesse Ventura are finally asking hard questions - like what can this thing really do and shouldn't we all know about it?

What do you think about HAARP? I personally don't know much about it, and I admit that, but I also sense there is something concerning that makes me want to know its exact purpose and potentials. There's a book called, Angels Don't Play This HAARP; Advances in Tesla Technology by Jeanne Manning for those who'd like to learn more.

What do you think? Add a comment.
--
Click here for the home page of author Jason Matthews.

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+Jason Matthews

Monday, November 23, 2009

Jessica Eleven Daniel - Consciously Birthing


I recently had an insightful tarot reading with Jessica Eleven Daniel, and beyond getting to know an enlightened human being - the things she told me really hit home. The advice helped with my recent focus, as I've been going through a time of uncertainly. The direction has been extremely valuable.

If you're at all interested in a tarot reading or an intuitive reading of any kind but not sure who to contact, please talk with Jessica. Her website is ConsciouslyBirthing.com

I asked her how she would describe herself, and this was her response...
"Intuitive wellbeing counselor. Empath and Childbirth Educator. I practice natural healing alternatives such as herbalism, energy healing and one-on-one coaching, while integrating psychic divinations as well."

To work with Jessica or view her blog visit ConsciouslyBirthing.wordpress.com

Saturday, November 21, 2009

How come the aliens are so shy?

How come the aliens are so shy?
Why aren't the aliens making themselves known? Surely they must know about us and surely they must either be here or have been here. How do I know? Isn't it obvious?
Think about it. There are billions of stars in our galaxy, the Milky Way. Our sun is just one of those stars, and since most suns have at least a few planets orbiting them, there are trillions of planets in our galaxy alone. Multiply that by billions of galaxies, and we can safely assume there are a trillion, trillion planets in the universe. Even if just a tiny percentage of them have life, and just a tiny percentage of those with life have intelligent life, then there are still billions of planets with intelligent life forms in the universe.
Okay, so we have a likelihood of billions of planets with life in the universe. Of those, probably the majority of them are more advanced than we are. Why shouldn't they be, since our known history only goes back a few thousand years?
Remember that the electric light bulb was invented in 1879, about 230 years ago. The steam engine in 1775, a bit over 300 years ago. The first satellite was put into orbit in 1957, and the first man to venture into outer space was in 1961, less than a mere 50 years ago. Now we send up satellites all the time. It's estimate that over 26,000 satellites are in Earth's orbit, while several satellites had ventured to the far reaches of our solar system and some are heading beyond.
How did we go from inventing the light bulb to 26,000 satellites in orbit in 230 years? If we had another 230 years of evolution, or perhaps 1,000 or more, might we be able to visit other galaxies? Seems likely.
Did you also know that the broadcasts we make with radio and television signals go out into the far reaches of space? For over 80 years humans have been beaming signals around this planet, signals that also happen to go out in space and then on forever. We've been broadcasting our presence for 80 years, and at the speed of light those signals have traveled for 80 light years to thousands of nearby galaxies. Anyone with the intelligence to receive our signals can certainly find us.
We also know there have been thousands of UFO sightings, history of primitive tribes strangely knowing all about the universe and the procession of the equinoxes, ancient mysteries such as the buildings of the pyramids and Puma Punku and Stonehendge, claims of alien abductions, Roswell, etc.
So, it's extremely likely there are aliens nearby who know about us. Why wouldn't they make themselves known? Y'know, like come out and introduce themselves and have coffee or smoke the peace pipe or something. I'd like to offer a few scenarios that seem to make the most logical sense, because if there's one thing we assume about aliens, it's that they're logical. (thank you, Mr. Spock)
Option #1 - They don't know we're here. For the reasons above, I'd give this less than one out of a million chance, so let's just get real and forget this option right now and move on.
Option #2 - They prefer to observe and report. This code is similar to how many of our biologists handle wildlife observations in the field. For the most part the rule seems to be, "Take nothing but photos and leave nothing but footprints." Maybe alien observers have this code of conduct as well, like biologists in the field just observing and reporting. I could get behind this theory, at least for some of the aliens.
Option # 3 - There may be a universal policy that states "non-interference with teenage societies." To me, we might be considered "teenagers" as far as societies go. We're smart enough to make rapid changes and add our input into the world (i.e. the light-bulb to the satellites thing), yet we're stupid enough that we just might destroy ourselves and the majority of life on our planet with us (the nuclear holocaust, biological mass extinction, global warming cataclysm things). We're in a major balancing act right now, and the scales could be tipped either way - will we destroy everything we love (including us), or will we act responsibly and save our futures (and the Spotted Owl)? Perhaps alien code dictates that "teenage societies" need to be left alone to either mature and be a welcomed race to the intelligent universe or to destroy themselves and thus save the universe from their sub-par genetics. I think this option has some merit, that aliens don't going around saving everybody just cause they need saving from themselves. Maybe they're in a watch-and-see mode for a few decades.
Option #4 - It's not in the alien's interest to inform us of their presence. Maybe the aliens are having a grand ole time here, because we don't know they're here and they're aliens! Maybe they're making a killing in the stock markets and buying up ocean-front property around the world and getting laid every night by major hotties. Maybe all that might come to a crashing halt if we knew who they were and where they'd live, because maybe… we'd freak out and want to kill them. Hmm, that option kinda makes sense the more I think about it. They're living pretty high on the hog and don't want to jeopardize that sweet lifestyle. Sounds good.
Option #5 - They've been there and done that and then the shit really hit the fan. Maybe they know that if they tell us about themselves, all hell will break loose. People will panic and die right on the spot from fright. Nukes will be deployed in countries believed to be popular alien neighborhoods. NASA and FDA will work frantically to develop a virus that will eradicate them or irradiate them or something really bad (sort of like Kryptonite but this is serious, folks). This option sounds a little less believable but still a possibility.
Other than that, I can't think of anything right now. Maybe they're just waiting for Dec. 21st, 2012 when everybody is expecting something big to happen. Maybe they think that'll be a really funny joke, or maybe we'll be more prepared for something by then.
I guess until they come out of the "proverbial closet," I guess we'll just have to go on living life as usual. By the way, in case you're wondering… I'm not an alien. I'm just a guy like any other guy trying to make sense of a situation that doesn't make a whole lotta sense. Think I'll go back to the drawing board and see if any other options come to mind.
--
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Monday, November 16, 2009

New Moon Manifesting - Nov. 16th 2009

Today is 11-16-09, the new moon. That means I'll be working on my monthly list of what to focus on, improve, bring into my life, etc.
Because the New Moon is the bestest time to accomplish that. I've been on this program for about 6 months, and believe me, it works.
The FREE conference call is at 10pm EST / 7pm PST. The conference call number is 616.712.8000 access code: 855226.
This conference is still flying a bit under the radar so you will get personal time with the hostess, Jana. There is also a very powerful group meditation to bring energy into the dreams of the participants.
A must for anyone working on improving their lives. Who isn't?
More info at http://newmoonmanifesting.com/

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Edgar Cayce and Akashic records

Edgar Cayce, sleeping prophet, famous American psychic and founder of the A.R.E.

Years ago I saw a tv documentary about the psychic, Edgar Cayce (1877-1945). It so fascinated me that it became the psychic link I needed for Whitney and the spirit guides in my novel, The Little Universe. I read books about him and joined the foundation he began back in 1931, the ARE. Much of the below information comes directly from the Association for Research and Enlightenment's site. And for the skeptics, they should note that Cayce had a 6th grade education in Kentucky in the late 1800's, yet in his trances he had absolute knowledge of human anatomy, medicine, world history and more. Styled by the method and spiritual info from his readings, comes the contact from The Grandmother to Whitney in my novel, The Little Universe.
Edgar Cayce is known as the "sleeping prophet," the "father of holistic medicine," and is the most documented psychic of the 20th century. For over 40 years he gave readings to thousands of seekers while in an unconscious state, diagnosing illnesses and revealing past lives and prophecies yet to come. People flocked from all over the world for a session with him, especially people in need of healing.
Cayce was born on a farm in Hopkinsville, Kentucky in 1877. His abilities appeared at childhood, able to see and talk to his late grandfather's spirit and often played with "imaginary friends" whom he said were spirits on the other side. He also displayed an uncanny ability to memorize the pages of a book just by sleeping on it. These gifts labeled the young Cayce as strange, but all Cayce really wanted was to help others, especially children.
Later in life, Cayce discovered that he had the ability to put himself into a sleep-like state by lying down on a couch, closing his eyes, and folding his hands over his stomach. In this state of relaxation and meditation, he was able to place his mind in contact with all time and space, the universal consciousness also known as the super-conscious mind. This is where he accessed the "Akashic records," the collection of all thoughts, actions, events, matter... the all there is and ever was. From his meditations, he answered questions as broad as, "What are the secrets of the universe?" and "What is my purpose in life?" to as specific as, "What can I do to help my arthritis?" and "How were the pyramids of Egypt built?"
Many people are surprised to learn that Edgar Cayce was a devoted churchgoer and Sunday school teacher. At a young age, Cayce vowed to read the Bible for every year of his life (in fact, one son claims it was the only book he ever read), and at the time of his death in 1945 he had accomplished this task. Perhaps the readings said it best, when asked how to become psychic, Cayce’s advice was to become more spiritual.
Although Cayce died more than 60 years ago, the timeliness of the material in the readings with subjects like how to discover your mission in life, develop your intuition, explore ancient mysteries, and take responsibility for your health - is evidenced by the hundreds of books that have been written on the aspects of his work as well as the dozen or so titles focusing on Cayce's life itself. Together, these books contain information so valuable that even Edgar Cayce himself might have hesitated to predict their impact on the contemporary world. In 1945, the year of his passing, who could have known that terms such as "meditation," "Akashic records," "spiritual growth," "auras," "soul mates," and "holistic health" would become household words to millions?
This vast array of subject matter can be narrowed down into the following categories: (1) Health-Related Information; (2) Philosophy and Reincarnation; (3) Dreams and Dream Interpretation; (4) ESP and Psychic Phenomena; and (5) Spiritual Growth, Meditation, and Prayer.
Further details of Cayce's life and work are explored in the classic book, There Is a River (1942), by Thomas Sugrue, available in hardback, paperback, or audio book versions.
Members of the ARE, the nonprofit founded by Cayce in 1931, have access to the entire set of 14,306 readings in a database residing in the member-only section of the website. The readings can also be found in their entirety in the onsite library, located at in Virginia Beach and open to the public daily. For more information on A.R.E., please visit the About A.R.E. page.
If anyone wonders where a fair percentage of the knowledge within Jim's Life and The Little Universe comes from that deals with spirituality, alien wisdom, past lives and more... Edgar Cayce had a huge role in showing me the other side.
Please visit thelittleuniverse.com to read more on these metaphysical novels.


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Big Bang available in for any electronic reading device. Kindle, etc.

My first novel is now available for immediate sampling and sale in multiple ebook formats, readable on virtually any ebook reading device.
Smashwords Author Profile: http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/JasonMatthews
Book page to sample or purchase The Big Bang; Notes from Looking Within: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/5033

Please check these out and support me as a writer. Thanks.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Jim's Life; Journey to Soul Ascension - free novel download

Jim's Life; Journey to Soul Ascension is finally ready to read. As a bonus, before publication I'm offering a free novel download for anyone interested. It's a PDF format and it just takes a few seconds and voila, free novel.

If the thought of reincarnation, seeing chakras and auras, energy healing, Second Coming stories sound interesting to you, then please take a look within.

Jim's Life; Journey to Soul Ascension - free novel download PDF

Monday, July 27, 2009

Support Our Truth bumper stickers

There's a new bumper sticker that I believe is important. In the midst of a sea of "support our troops" bumper stickers, I felt it was time for one that spoke to the other side of this coin. It's called "Support Our TRUTH", and it can be found on zazzle at this web address;

http://www.zazzle.com/support_ourtruth_bumper_sticker-128055803139818045
--
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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Vote4mystory changes are coming

We had a slower start than I had anticipated with Vote4mystory. Now we're looking to make some changes that will hopefully make things better and easier for the authors out there who'd like an alternative way to market themselves and their work. We still believe we have a unique design that is bound to do great things. We just need to tweak the recipe or something.
Ideas are encouraged and appreciated. Thanks.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Vote4mystory.com - the best short story contest ever

Vote4mystory has a couple of new things going for it.

The first, is that the featured writers page now posts links for every author's story and website (if they have one). It's a great and inexpensive way to cross-link, increase webtraffic and move higher in search rankings.

The second, is that there's 9 great categories to choose from. Tales From Traveling, Action/Adventure, Fiction, Mystery/Suspense, Romance, Children's Stories, Humor, Pet Tales/Animal Stories, and Life's Moments.

So visit the new Vote4mystory.com and let the world read your work.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Read an excerpt from Jim's Life

Jim’s Life; Journey to Soul Ascension

The wise fisherman cast his net into the sea. When he drew it up, it was full of little fish. Among them the wise fisherman saw a fine large fish. He easily chose that one and threw all the little fish back into the sea. Let those with good ears hear this lesson. - Gospel of Thomas


Iggy trudged one step at a time across the sandy terrain of the outback. James Ranck lay like a crumpled heap in his arms. The rover was far behind them in several pieces by the splintered gum tree. Iggy looked down. Master James didn’t appear to be alive. No signs of breathing showed in his chest, and his broken limbs hung straight to the ground with no resistance. They swung loosely in tempo with Iggy’s steps. The robotic unit was distressed by the look of it. His emotional programming would have created a mournful sound from Iggy’s voice box if it were still working.
The crash had damaged Iggy as well, including his transmitters. Wires protruded from an open shoulder joint. Dirt covered his metallic frame. He had lost some power too, and without his solar cells recharging he wondered how long he might hold out. What are the chances of getting home? Iggy thought. Iggy had carried a few children before, but they were much smaller than Master James, a fifteen-year-old who felt surprisingly heavy. He walked for hours in the afternoon sun. With each step Iggy debated internally if he could make it back. He also wondered what the reception would be if Master James was dead.
Iggy resented the burden he carried. How did I ever get assigned to this boy? Iggy had been designed for professionals like architects, to be used in their creative processes. Instead, he got sold to a mechanic and then given to the man’s son. He hated the nickname. For a thousand times, it was Ignatius! I’ve never asked for anything else, and still James can’t even do that.

Brison Ranck flipped the meat on the grill. He sprinkled salt from a shaker and worked it into the sizzling slabs with the tips of his fingers. He adjusted the angle of the solar receiver to catch more light of the setting sun. Now that it was February and late summer, the Australian sunset came much earlier than the past few months.
Flow chopped vegetables as she watched her husband through the kitchen window. She reached over the stove to stir the rice pudding, James’ favorite desert. She sipped her glass of red wine then checked the clock. Six-thirty. Ten minutes after James was supposed to set the table. The knife took some of her anger out onto the carrots.
Brison caught her eye and held up five broad fingers, indicating the time needed for the meat. Flow nodded and checked the clock again. James had his faults, but being late for supper wasn’t one of them.
Brison came in with the steaming steaks as their juices bled into a puddle about to run over the plate. He walked with great care not to spill on the carpet. Flow watched him in his balancing act, appreciating her gentle giant moving so delicately.
“How we doin’?” Brison asked.
“Two minutes, love.” Flow stirred the pudding with a wooden spoon while she put the veggies in a small oven.
“No response from Iggy?”
“Not yet.”
Flow took another sip of wine and stared at the clock. She became lost in thought until the oven’s timer sounded. She took the greens and carrots out and placed them on the table.
“Anything else?” Brison asked as he lit candles on a table set for three.
“No, nothing.”
Brison served himself the largest of the steaks, Flow the smallest and the middle one for the absent boy. He poured his wine and added some to Flow’s glass. He checked the time and looked out the window. Twilight was taking over with no sign of their son.
“What do you think, Bris?”
“He’ll be in,” he assured her and sat down. “Something must’ve happened to the transmitters. Iggy’s with him. Not to worry.”
Flow sat in compliance. Brison sawed into his steak and placed a large piece in his mouth. Flow sipped her wine then stabbed at a carrot. They ate in silence.
Minutes later the evening sky had become fairly dark. Flow’s steak had a few bites in it while Brison had nearly finished his meal. They heard their dog bark from outside.
Brison jumped from his seat and went out the front door. Flow followed and stood by him on the threshold of their home. The two of them peered into the dim horizon.
“See anything?” Flow asked.
“No.”
The barking persisted.
“Shep in his pen?”
“Yeah.”
“What’s that?” Flow pointed at an object that appeared to be moving toward them.
Brison squinted but found nothing. “Where?”
“Right there,” Flow insisted as she extended an arm out in front of his face.
Brison found it. Sure enough, something slowly approached from a hundred meters away. They walked cautiously out into the yard.
Brison demanded, “Who’s there?” No answer. He squinted as he moved further out toward the entity. “Who is that?”
The dark figure came closer. It made no sound except the shuffle of dust under its feet.
“This is private property,” Flow said. “Who’s there?”
The curious figure silently closed the gap between them. Brison’s fists tightened instinctively. Flow held him at his shoulder.
“Want me to get the laser?” she asked.
Brison shook his head. He didn’t know what it was but he wasn’t afraid. Shep barked incessantly as Brison moved ever closer toward the dark figure.
Eventually Brison realized he was looking at the family robot as it trudged awkwardly through the desert night. It’s Iggy, he thought with relief.
“Iggy,” he called out. “Where’ve you been?”
He strode to the robot with Flow just behind him. As they came closer they noticed Iggy was carrying something and looked like he had been through hell, with dust all over him and several wires hanging out. How odd everything seemed. It took a moment in the darkness for them to realize that the lump in Iggy’s arms was their son.
Flow screamed, “Oh God!”




The darkest hour is just before the dawn. - Anonymous proverb


Nurses and robotic units bustled in and out of the Global Alliance hospital room. They connected the boy to a multitude of devices and medicines. Brison and Flow stood in the office of Dr. Sandra Maynard, the head of St. Teresa. They leaned against each other and somberly watched a holographic image of their son lying deathly still in bed. With the activity about James, his face was all they could clearly see. It was bruised and badly cut, more like a swollen blob of purples and reds than a human face. From inside the comfortable office they absorbed the grave reality of the situation. The buzzing sounds of machines, the sterile smells of antiseptic and the bright lights on the other side of the door were a stark contrast from where Iggy had returned their son. Flow wiped her reddened eyes while she mumbled to herself all the reasons why this shouldn’t have happened. Brison squeezed her free hand.
When Dr. Maynard came into the room the parents turned eagerly. She removed the thin hospital gown and gloves then tossed them in a receptacle.
“Mr. and Mrs. Ranck, sit down, please.”
“Just tell us how he is,” Brison said.
Maynard lowered her eyes and motioned to the couch. “Please.”
They hesitated before obeying. Flow braced herself for the worst while Maynard pulled a chair over to face them.
“He was gone when he got here, but we were able to get a pulse back.”
“He’s alive?” Flow asked.
“His body is alive. EEG shows preserved brain activity but no reactions to external stimuli.”
“In English,” Brison said.
“Your son is brain-dead.”
Brison couldn’t believe it. “No. No, it can’t be.”
“Unfortunately, there’s not much we can do. I’m very, very sorry.”
Flow expressed panic in fragments. “No… oh no… this… this can’t...”
Brison shook his head, refusing to accept it. “There must be something that can be done.”
“Brain death is typically irreversible. Especially after several hours. He’s on life support, but that’s the way he’ll remain.”
“What are his chances?” Flow asked.
“For recovery? Mrs. Ranck, there have been extremely rare cases, but I need you to realize… it’s not likely.”
“He’s a fighter,” Brison said. “Do whatever you can.”
“We already are. Just be aware of what he’s up against.” She squeezed the couple’s hands and stood to leave. “You may stay here and watch him as long as you like.”
Minutes later, Brison led Flow down the hospital corridor. She moved numbly. Her mind spun with the turn of events. Two hours before she was angry at her boy for being a bit late to dinner. Now she wondered if she would see him conscious again.

The sky-car drifted down into the Ranck property. It hovered a meter over the ground and settled in front of the walk. Brison looked over to Flow and caught her staring at something.
“Who’s that?” Flow asked.
Brison faced forward, surprised that he hadn’t noticed the Federation car parked just off the driveway to his left. “Dunno.”
The Rancks got out of their vehicle as the front doors of the Fed car opened. Two men in dark suits emerged. One of them held up an illuminated image displaying his credentials as a Federal detective.
“Mr. Ranck?”
“Yes?”
“I’m Randall Hutchins. This is Burnum Jerara,” the elder man said. Hutchins was old with pale complexion. The younger Jerara looked Aboriginal with very dark skin.
“Something I can help you with?” Brison asked.
“Do you have any idea why we’re here?” Jerara said. His platinum eyes and teeth gleamed against his black skin, two indicators of cybernetic body parts that were still uncommon among the native Australians.
“No, officer.”
“It’s about your son,” Hutchins said.
Brison was confused. “We know he’s had an accident. Is that why you’re here?”
Hutchins looked away momentarily. “We’re aware of that. I am sorry, but no.”

Flow poured coffee into four mugs as the men sat around the kitchen table. Though it was too late for coffee, Flow didn’t expect to get much sleep anyway.
“Thank you,” the officers said in unison.
Randall Hutchins, a Cyborg of half man and half machine, accepted his mug with his artificial arm. Randall’s internal sensors indicated the Rancks were upset but not nervous, that they likely knew nothing of the event.
“We’re sorry to hear the news of your son,” Randall said. “And yet, your family being Simplists, we have to conduct this interview. Do you know if James was with Abigail Walkins earlier today?”
“She goes by Missy,” Flow said. “Her middle name. I don’t know where James was but it’s possible. Her folks live down the road.”
“The Walkins are also Simplists,” Jerara said. “Are your families close?”
“Not really,” Brison said. “They’re a bit more devout.”
“A bit?” Flow reminded him.
“About a hundred times more.”
“They’re good people,” Flow said. “Just extremely devout.”
“And the kids?” Hutchins asked. “James and Missy?”
“Her parents don’t like Missy in our home,” Brison said.
“Because you’re liberal with technologies?”
“Right. Sometimes the kids see each other outside.”
“How long have they been mates?” Jerara asked.
“For years. ‘Bout the same age.”
Hutchins gently raised the difficult subject. “Does it surprise you then, that Fed rescue responded to a life alert after Missy was raped and nearly strangled?”
“That couldn’t have been our James,” Brison insisted.
“So her memory has already been checked of that?” Flow asked.
“Yes.”
“And what did they find?”
“Even if I had that information, I couldn’t disclose it.”
“Officer,” Flow said, trying to remain composed, “there’s something Fed should know about Missy.”
“What is it?”
“She’s not entirely sane. She lives in a fantasy world.”
Brison summed it up. “She’s nuts.”
“How so?”
“She fabricates things… a twisted sense of reality,” Flow said.
“Twisted enough to alter her perception?” Jerara asked.
“I believe so.”
“Anything’s possible,” Hutchins said. “That’s why Burnum and I are here, asking you questions, asking the Walkins questions. Missy’s having forensic tests done.”
“And James is being evaluated by Fed investigators,” Jerara added.
“In the hospital?” Flow asked in disbelief.
“There’s no other way.”
Hutchins tried to calm her. “Mrs. Ranck, please don’t worry. Our investigators are familiar with the needs of patients. Happens all the time. In some ways, they’re better suited for it than hospital staff.”
Brison ran his hands through his ruddy brown hair and lamented, “Oh, Christ. This is just what my son needs now.”
“He’ll be fine, Mr. Ranck.”
“How do you know that?”
Flow needed him to be a rock. She said quietly, “If something happened, I can’t believe it was rape.”
“Was anyone else with James at the time of the accident?” Jerara asked.
“No,” Brison stated. Flow shot him a look and pinched his leg under the table.
“How did you find him?”
“The rover’s transmitter. I tracked it in the car.”
Flow sipped her coffee and wondered, What the hell is he doing? Randall’s emotional sensors detected deception for the first time.




If Allah brings you to it, Allah will bring you through it. - Qur’an


Missy lay in bed at a Federal hospital room about ten kilometers from the one where Jim was. Her glazed eyes fixated on the ceiling as she held Mr. Dangles, a large, purple, stuffed monkey her mum had sent in for her. As a Simplist, Detty Walkins was not permitted to be there. Instead, her holographic image sat on the bed next to Missy and mimicked the efforts of wiping away the last remnants of her daughter’s tears.
Detty wished she could pull the covers a tad more over her daughter and the stuffed animal. Her hologram continued the act of stroking Missy’s blond hair with the back of her fingers. Time stopped. This wasn’t supposed to happen.
Detty’s image turned away from her daughter and whispered angrily, “You had no right to sedate her without my permission.”
“We had every right,” a Federal computer voice answered.
“You’ve committed a terrible sin. There will be an inquiry.”
“That is your right. Our agents can assist you-”
“We’ll use our own agents, thank you.”
“Your daughter’s own life alert brought about Federal involvement. She will resume the rights of a Simplist, but only after she is fully released from Federal custody.”
“There’s more to it than that!”
“I’m okay, Mum,” Missy said. “Try to relax.” Missy felt horrible, not only for herself but for her parents.
“I’m so sorry,” Detty whispered. “This never should have happened.”
“Then why did it?”
“I don’t know. I wish you could be at home with your dad and me tonight.”
“But everything happens for a reason. I know it does.”
“Not this. It’s the devil’s work.”
Missy clenched her jaw and half-rolled her eyes.
“Mrs. Walkins, visiting time is ending,” the computer said.
From above the hospital ceiling a clap of thunder split the night sky. Its reverberations rumbled within the room. Moments later, heavy drops pelted the roof and created a steady patter throughout the upper floor.
Detty stared at Missy’s eyes. She’d always found them mysterious, one blue and one brown. My beautiful child. Why this?
She managed, “G’night, Missy.”
“G’night, Mum.”
Detty’s hologram faded from the hospital room.
At the Walkins’ house, Missy’s image disappeared from the living room. Detty turned from it, furious that the image maker had been installed in her all natural home. She went down the hallway, her emotions about to spill over. She opened the bedroom door and found Donnick waiting expectantly.
At the hospital, Missy lay awake. A tear welled up in her blue eye, large enough to blink it aside. A crack of lightning burst in the skies and flooded the room with flashes through the window. Then the calm of the rain returned, and the room powered down to its dimmest sleeping level.
“Help me understand,” Missy whispered in the darkness. “All I want… is to understand it.”

Ten kilometers away, lying in his hospital bed, a peaceful aura of blue light enveloped Jim. He was oblivious to the people and equipment working to keep his new body alive. Sleep. Breathe. Forget. Die and be born again. By now he had lost all consciousness of his previous existence. No memory of the lab. Nothing of his past friends or The Grandmother. He lay in a restful coma like a blank slate with no past and no foreseeable future. Sleep. Breathe. Forget. Die and be born again.