Six months ago I finished work on A Guide to First Contact. I write fiction to explore ideas; in the case of Guide, I wanted to provide the backdrop to the workings of non-human intelligences. Fairly hefty stuff, huh?
My touchstones in this were the Classical Greek triumvirate: Socrates, Plato and Aristotle; various writings by Idries Shah (to add a more or less contemporary Sufi dimension) and Darwin. I provided an occasional nod to the works of others, e.g. Jean-François Lyotard, Fritz Zwicky and the normal suspects from the SF writing community.
As novels go, it is substantial; and in order to keep the narrative pacy, the less direct sections were relegated to the appendices.
Appendix II is an investigation by alien entities into the events leading up to the Human Incident (the events leading up to the Human Incident are narrated in Guide). Appendix II consists of:
Deposition – an overview, from an alien point of view.
Communards – a data record from a reality simulation known as RUSH.
Bahati’s Papers: The Nature of Civilisation
Bahati’s Papers: Why Khwarezm?
A brief synopsis of matters involving Triste and Shoe may provide a useful perspective for Communards: In a post apocalyptic Earth, Triste meets Shoe. She is fécunda and believes him to be human. Normally this would make them antipathetic to each other, however she conceals her nature from him for her own reasons. In the ruins of New York they discover RUSH; a virtual environment simulator. RUSH is a technological relic from before the collapse of civilisation. Triste and Shoe enter a recreation of late nineteenth century Paris. Montmartre was then an intellectual hotbed and this is recreated in RUSH. Triste enters into the spirit of this as recounted in Communards.
Bahati is the architect of RUSH. The pensitelae (hanging cloth creatures) are an alien race with a penchant for mischief. They have acquired much in the decades since the fall of the West, including Bahati’s Papers. They wouldn’t have made these papers available from the goodness of their hearts.
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Appendix II – Deposition
In accordance with the Settlement, I Gracie, former fulsorexa;
and I, Hope, former fractitium; do make the following deposition.
We are resident xeno-topicologists. This submission is in support of a Request for Clarifying Detail of the events leading up to the Human Incident. Earth authorities have refused access to much relevant material. Our deposition is made up as follows:
Under the terms of the Settlement, we were granted access to the RUSH environment. A quasi-legal recording has allowed a reconstruction of this Montmartre exchange. Please note that despite our best efforts, time and place detail has been lost due to experiential overlay in RUSH.
Genetic casts of the participants have proved problematical. Nothing is available for participant Thierry. Other evidence points to the involvement of personae self-identified as Shoe and Triste. Their genetic casts suggest fécunda and unknown respectively. It is suspected that either or both may be participants. Further enquiries have proved inconclusive.
This curiosity surfaced as a result of negotiations with the pensitelae. The human self-identified as Bahati was a contractor for Xhenogie Corporation. According to public records, this human had dealings with a number of organisations including: Exoscape, Ginny o’ Tek, NEO, Staples, Xhenogie Corp and Yasmin-Orkerd. We continue to research this detail.