As human further technological advances, the egotistic levels skyrocketed, all sense of reason and actions are now able to be explained scientifically. As of a result people began to lose faith in the supernatural and took on the belief that humans are the one Supreme Being. This era was then known as the Godless Era.
In the Spring of 250 Godless Era (GE) shortly after the death of the American President Dr. Mark Williams, a mysterious figure known as Nero De Gaius appeared and took the reins of United States of America proclaiming himself as the Emperor of the United States. Holding claim as the Supreme Ruler since the government failed to protect its people, therefore it is the right of the citizens to rise against the corrupt government and select a supreme ruler throughout such hard times. However being the usurper Emperor Nero de Gaius changed the name of United States of America into the United Federations of Nations (UFN). Raising a formidable force of genetically modified rogue cyborg soldiers, Nero swept through South America, Africa, Europe, Australia, and Antarctica. Opposition had one of the two choices total annihilation or slavery; whereas those whom surrendered without fights were simply taxed heavily as an annexed region of the United Federation of Nations.
Nero later released that he was a human experimentation made by Mark Williams to serve to the best of his capabilities for the future of the people. Built of algorithms he lacked emotional processing, and therefore has taken upon ruling with an iron fist. Those whom resist will be crushed, but in the end it is to his belief that the whole world should scum to his rule. Nero also believed that humans were emotional beings that were prone to mistakes, and therefore unfit for rule. This is why Nero de Gaius’s officer core consists of cyborgs, the reason being that they are prone to make lesser mistakes and are theoretically immortal. Since their limbs, and organs can be surgically replaced whereas even if the humans can replace all limbs and organs they have yet to discover a safe way of brain transplantation. Without the brain or memories a human is never complete. Due to superior military might it is quite suicidal to meet the UFN in open grounds. This was the horrendous mistake the Eastern forces made, causing them to succumb to the superior military forces of the UFN. As the Eastern Frontier Coalition forces fell, many cities put up futile resistance, resulting in genocide of some, and nationwide labor camps to others. As of a result Mengyi rallied the remnants of the Eastern Frontier Coalition, and all that is willing to fight. Together they formed the Black Knights, whom prided themselves as Knights of the Realm, sword and shield of the people. Within half a decade the knights overcame the UFN, and unified the world under one nation known as Virdom. This rebellion was known as the Blitz Uprising; as the rebels knew that they would never successfully defeat the UFN in prolonged warfare they took upon infiltrating various footholds and taking annihilating the cyborg forces no matter the circumstances. Some Neo Japanese corps even went as far as becoming kamikazes to obliterate enemy headquarters.
As the liberation took affect the governmental structures was reorganized into a democratic oligarchy. As war heroes the elections were quick easy and simple. The world celebrated these men and women whom have served their country faithfully therefore the votes went as predicted. The country was divided into provinces that were run by provincial elders, whom were those selected few that voted for the final decision. Their decisions in turn are influenced by the public. As the Town Magistrates report to them about what the Council of Trade wants, who receives petitions from the citizens themselves. This structure ensures that all voices shall be heard in a sense that no one person manages too many. However each representative affects the lives of many. In this environment, each province makes up for what another lacks and the central government will ration the supplies in equally. The excess will then be stored and used for the replicator to make extras in times of dire need. That way no one shall ever starve. All terms of schooling is taught in a traditionally manner where they will be taught through working with several masters of trade, then when they reach the manhood they will be taught the history of the nation, and given the wanderers right to find the love of their life.
My name is Ralphael Yilmaz the First, son of Mengyi, given birth by Irem Yilmaz, sergeant of the Dush Battalion, whom operated under the Black Knights, Dragon Army. As a mixed child of a Turkish mother, and Chinese Father I’ve an olive skin complexion, and brown eyes. Understanding my father is rather difficult at times due to his…improper grammar however thanks to microchip translators, we are able to communicate efficiently as soon as he decides to put it on. Today is the 37th day of summer and the 20 AoC (Age of Change), ironically also my 21st name day. It is the day that I should become a man and receives my wandering rights.
The sun rays beamed across the field’s beads of sweat trickled down my skin, sticking to my bareback as I harvested wheat with my fellow countrymen. A gentle breeze swooned by, I was unable to resist it and took the moment to stand up to stretch, wiping sweat off my brow, I spotted my father, the Provincial Elder Mengyi, and inclined my head in his general direction.
Standing on high grounds of our ancestral burial mounds the elder tilted his head in acknowledgement moments later he broke out into laughter and hollered “My dear son Ralphie, magnificent day is today not. Hmmmmmm?”
Puzzled by the Elder’s idle talk Ralph raised a brow and answered, “While today may be seemingly decent, it is not yet magnificent considering we still require room regulators to adjust the interior structures to the perfect humidity, and temperature level.”
Chuckling at his reply, Mengyi commanded ” My child seize the day, talk, we must talk, come to my chambers as soon as, ready, you are cleansed. Yeesssssss.”
Standing there confuzzled by the elder’s reply I was then gently nudged by a villager, “Go on now child, one should not keep the elder waiting!”
“No of course not, although he did not say when only as soon as I clean up!” Ralph replied. The villager chuckled at Ralphael’s smart aleck reply; he went along his way harvesting his lane of wheat. Despite his words, Ralphie quickly bundled his harvest, and clapped for the flat bedded hovercraft. Tossing the bundle upon the platinum hovercraft carrier he then left for his own chambers. As soon as he unlocked his door through the palm activation panel, Ralphie began stripping, throwing his clothes behind him letting the iRobot to pick up and thoroughly cleanse the cloth.
Upon entering the bathroom’s sliding doors closed and he muttered, “Shower.” Generated by the voice command several palm sized orbs floated in front of him each containing a different scent. Thinking a loud he mumbled, “Which scent should I choose today? Just the other day I was wearing Citrus but so that one’s out of question.” Pushing away the orange orb it returned to its locker in the corner of the room, weaving through his options he finally settled on one of them. “Ah Spice Life, a blend of ginger combined with cinnamon, considering I shall become a wanderer after my meeting with father, I may as well wear something that may make my journey short and simple allowing me to find the love of my life quickly. I mean cinnamon is scientifically proven spice to be sexually arousing for females so it would naturally be the best selection.” Ralph said to himself. Nodding in agreement to himself, he tapped the orb. Detecting contact of human skin of it being activated the orb unraveled filling the room with a layer of mist. The orb itself then served as a brush, firmly washing out the sweat and grim off his body as he stood there. Standing there as the Hygiene probes did its work he frowned, “Wonder what would be expected of me…and what should I wear? Never mind I will worry about that later.”
“Dry me” Ralphie commanded as the probe ceased to brush at his skin. The orb than began to work as a suction cup, seizing excessive water that the human body would not require. The probe soon finished its work and imploded becoming no more than an atom particle in the air. “Ashes to dust, to create something of equal value must be lost…” Ralphie muttered under his breath as he eyed the destruction of the orb. I then stepped out of the bathroom, and stood in front of the mirror then made several commands, “Trending fashion.”
The mirror responded, “Sire the current fashion trend is tribal outfits here are your options.” With those words, several holographic images of Ralphie appeared of him wearing the trending outfits.
Looking around he finally settled with one of them and nodded his head, “I would like that one in black please.”
“That outfit shall suit you very well young master, as you wish the outfit has now been tailored to be fitted to your body and is now awaiting you in the wardrobe” the mirror said. With that Ralphie opened the wardrobe and true to its words, the outfit sat there waiting for him, as he quickly threw on the outfit he made his way towards the Elders’ chambers.
The Devil Eyes Battalion
Sighing as he arrived to his destination he straightened himself up and adjusted his dark wool scarf and muttered under his breath, “Why, does he have to live in such queer setting everyone is living in a futuristic life yet he wishes to be so retrospective…”
Just as Ralphael was raising a hand to knock on the thin screens Mengyi called for him, “You may enter my child. Herh herh herh!” Ears flushed in embarrassment realizing, that his father may have heard him venting he entered the room silently. The elder’s chamber was a very particular room, one filled with stories, and history. It was said to be amongst the few legendary hideouts the Black Knights, used when they began the revolution against the United Federation of Nations.
Every foot of the straw mat that covered the perimeter of the chamber floor bed was personally thatched by the elder and his deceased love, my mother Irem Yilmaz.; the room itself was enclosed by walls colored in soft amber shades which primarily came off of the dancing flames springing from a makeshift cooking pit stuck in the center of the room. What always strikes me curious is of the void pitch black obsidian wall threatening to engulf every soul that passes through the sliding doors. Remembering the reason I was here, I snapped back to attention, bowing my head as I kneeled down raising my right fist to my heart, I saluted Elder Mengyi in the customary fashion, “My apologies to keep you waiting elder, Raphael reporting to duty.”
“Questions, your eyes show me that you have, sat here child.” Mengyi said as he patted on the mat facing in front of him.
“My thanks,” Ralphie muttered as he sat.
“My child its time, I taught you something, more powerful than knowledge, that is. Hmmmmmm.”
Raphael frowned, “Knowledge is power…those are the very principles you raised me with.”
“Power, while knowledge is, it is not the purest form of power”, responded Mengyi.
Bowing his head Raphael responded, “I’m forever ready to learn.”
Smiling Mengyi then attached a microchip translator to his bracelet which and spoke, “Good, good I am glad you’re still humble. Life’s much easier when we can understand each other clearly is it not? Anyhow back on to business, you know how the Black Knights, whom is the sword and shield of the realm, overcame UFN correct?”
“I’ve heard of the event…and lived through it yes…although I don’t…” Raphael replied.
Mengyi raised his hands and waved them at Raphael to silencing him.
Smiling he responded to Raphael wittily. “I did not ask if you know much of it only if you’ve heard of it, what you children have heard was of how I, led the Black Knights valiantly fought them off and raising the Realm now known as Han Jing.”
Chuckling at his words he extended an arm and pulled out two bottles of sake from the cupboards behind his counter. Pouring into, one bowl which he kept for himself and another for Ralphael. As if to keep him waiting he drained his bowl and filled it once more looking at him as if he was an idiot for not drinking and so Ralph joined him for one, two, three, and after what appeared to be countless rounds after Mengyi abruptly broke in to laughter. This time Ralphael stared at him dumbly still unsure what to do. Mengyi pointed at him and laughed even louder.
Angered by the elder’s humiliation, Ralph stood to leave but was then pulled back down to the mat as Mengyi cleared his throat. “A man speaks true to his mind when his tongue is loose, now I will tell you the story listen attentively child because few that lived knows of this tale, even fewer will truly understand it after hearing it. So listen and ask all that dwells within your mind hide no words, hold no grudges, and speak no lie for this is the legacy left by our people we must learn it and reflect its teachings.”
“This is a story of how your mother turned the tides of the war several months after she gave birth to you… While logically it would have been impossible, it was because of her love for the nation, and faith in the cause she was able to overcome the impossible. Her battalion the Devils Eye was renowned for their magical black powders alas they were separated from the Dragon Army by the enemies’ detachment of black riders, expert hovercraft sharpshooters. Stranded and out of our black powders, we were soon captured. Many of them felt abandoned…however they held faith in the cause not because we were seemingly superior to the invaders but because we believed that the Gods themselves would support our cause too…”
Frowning Ralphie piped in, “You lived in the Godless Era yet you would say your men, and you had faith in the gods?”
Rolling his eyes Mengyi replied, “If everyone jumped off a cliff to die for no apparent reason would you follow suit?”
Ralphie responded “No although that’s two diffre-“
“No more different than water and Ice, even when water is iced there is still water at the surface; likewise there shall always be a minority, who will have faith still no matter the odds. Now listen to me, child.” interrupted Mengyi.
Bowing his head in silence he listened as Mengyi continued on with his story.
“They were locked away without a sense of night nor day…many times the men were too scared to sleep often times one would hear the screams of agony of others, or the weeping of one’s in pain…this kept us on the balls of our feet ready to fight in mere desperation. Sometime later it came turn for your mothers interrogation, she returned weary, and beaten sitting by her Battalion she felt the responsibility to raise their spirits. I knew not where she found strength, but she smiled to them full of spirit and told them “my children we’ve won. ” Some men scoffed, others even spat at her. Either way she kept her smile and replied earnestly “These traitors would never be able to bend our wills, nor would they have our homes for we carry it proudly they may win a few grain of dirt or so but they’d never win the heart of our countrymen…no matter how the wind howls no mountain shall fall to thee. No war or actions will change what you are.”
Shivering in fear a young man looked her in the eyes and asked “how is one not defeated when one is caged within the lion’s den?”
This time she trotted, “Was Hercules dead the moment he fell prey to the Neman Lion?, No he fought to the very last ounce of his strength likewise from the day we rose we were Hans, it should be known no Han can be defeated, killed mayhap but never defeated and when Gods of death calls beckons us do you know how a true warrior should answer?”
The pale man shook his head. Chuckling, she answered him, “Why we answer them defiantly not today! For as long as there is tomorrow there is hope. And as far as I know the sun has not yet failed to give us a new day. Only when we have found inner peace may we face our ancestors proudly. Now sleep child we’re all tired the next day shall come forth its very own challenges.”
She eased into a more comfortable position to sleep, however another shaken man in the corner asked me “How’s one to sleep when dead lurks close at hand?”
Your mother scoffed at that question, and disrobed a portion of uniform disclosing chest full of wounds from the interrogation leaving him with the answer “Live today as if tomorrow there is no more, and you will understand that today is no more than a dream. If you’re able to face the abyss with comfort then you’re truly the best of the best. No weaponry shall be able to tame thee.” With that she sat down and fell sound asleep exhausted by excessive energy exertion. The others soon followed suite howling their loyalties challenging the treacherous soldiers to torment them. One by one each warrior found their inner peace and soon fell to sleep. The next morning, your mother was nowhere to be found, rumor had it that the United Federation of Nations executed her that very night. However no body was to be found. A week in the Devils Eye battalion began a mutiny from within the jail cells broke out and assassinated Nero De Gaius, however it was at the price of the entire battalion…to some it was simply decisive border skirmish although in reality the Devil Eyes Battalion gave us victory. Our supplies were wearing thin, and the people were at the edge, the United Federation of Nations has an inexhaustible source of supplies, though they have only one man that assumes controls of total leadership.”
There was an odd silence, a silence shared by the two men within the room. Mengyi then smiled, “Do you understand the morale of this tale?”
Ralphie shrugged, “I do not understand…how this has anything to do with me receiving my wandering rights…”
Mengyi nodded, “The story has everything to do with your wandering rights or more of the purpose of your wandering rights. The story tells you to be strong like your mother, do not fear the unknown, fight for what you believe in, do not judge too logically, listen to your heart. Like the obsidian behind us, it symbolizes the future it is dark as abyss, unknown, and mysterious. It promises nothing yet gives everything. Those who fear perish; those who embrace the unknown will triumph. My generation fought for a cause to bring us peace and prosperity, you too have a cause, a destiny that lays ahead of you my child. Your cause is to teach your children, to have morals of a human to be just, and good. Fight, makes mistakes, loves, and forgives, learn to embrace what you do not, and do not fear what you do not know.”
Field of Flowers
Howling in amusement the elder requested “Do me a favor my beloved son, go out to the field find me the largest flower with in the field and bring it back to me, however once you move on you to judge the size of another flower, you will not be allowed to come back for the previous one.”
The apprentice then bowed his head in obedience muttering, “As you wish”. With that I rushed off under the roaring sun to complete his master’s orders.
Hours Later as the sun’s glory began to wane so did the Ralphael’s confidence. Alas he returned empty handed. Humored by Ralphael’s sour face his father joyously asked the child as he saw him enter “My dearest son, have you brought me what I’ve requested?” Ralphael’s brows furrowed in a mixture of rage and shame glaring at the straw floor bed he said in frustration “Father, I return empty handed, unable to complete your task punish me as you will, but I must say I’ve walked the fields searched all there is to see to no avail. I treaded carefully through the grass lands yet no matter how I searched I could not find the biggest and best flower…because every time I stopped and look at a flower, I’ve my doubts that there is another flower out there that could be bigger, better, and brighter. In the end I simply ran out of choices since I was not allowed to return to the previous fields of flowers.”
In turn the youth bowed his head expecting punishment. Instead the man seemed to lighthearted and grinned wolfishly. “Son you’ve truly learned the essence of love and to find the perfect mate. It is to find one stay with her be content even during the hardest times you shall stand by her as she and you age look back to the numerous memories to assist you in being loyal to her and count your blessings during the toughest times. Best of all never regret or let go, for in love there is but two choices fix it or cut your losses and move on. It may be logical to move on but one would be emotionally empty if they did so. Remember words that are spoken out of anger never disappear. Like nails hammered to a wooden post, scars would always be there; even if you pull out the nails it will still leave marks that can never escape the eye of a human. But there will always be chances to make up for it, there may only be once chance but if you look back do not see them as failures see your past as a series of experiences that made you stronger. Just like in the darkest moments of the Godless Era Rebellion when the sun sets we would look back and see how so many lights lingered, those lights were all lights that guided us gave us hope.”
Ralphael’s face brightened as Mengyi’s words dawn him and replied enthusiastically “father would it be that true love is blind then?”
The old man’s wrinkles set in, and he sighs smiling far off to another realm not bothering to reply he simply said be off son it’s time you made your own mark on earth…..just remember these very words Kiss longingly, embracing shamelessly, be quick to forgive, never forget what made you smile waste no time for tears for life is too short to mourn too long…..”
Go now my child, the road is long but whenever you feel alone look back for every light you see lit, you’ll know that there are just as many ancestors supporting you even if it’s not physically they are with you in spirit. “It was once said by a wise man IT does not matter how slow you go as long as you don’t stop” With those words, he helped Ralphael and pushed him towards the sliding doors.
Ralphael smiled inclining his head in gratitude he said, “I will not fail you father. Thank you, for everything. Ashes to dust, to create, something of equal value must be lost, I will give my future my emotions, in hopes that it will return to me a woman destined to be mine…” With that he walked forward empty handedly to begin his journey as a wanderer of Virdom.