The Cold War between the Kiiote and the Yown’Hoo has
become a shooting war.On Earth, there
are three Triads one each in Minneapolis, Estados United; Pune, India; and
Harbin, China. Protected by the Triad Corporation, they intend to integrate not
only the three peoples and stop the war that threatens to break loose and
slaughter Humans and devastate their world.; but to stop the war that consumes
Kiiote economy and Yown’Hoo moral fiber. The Yown’Hoo know about the
extra-Universe Braider, aliens whose own “civil war” mirrors the Cold War. The
Braiders accidentally created a resonance wave that will destroy the Milky Way
and the only way to stop it is to physically construct a sort of membrane that
will produce a canceling wave – generated from the rim of the Galaxy inward.
The Braiders don’t DO physical stuff on that scale – the Yown’Hoo-Kiiote-Human
Triads may be their only chance of creating a solution. The merger of
Human-Kiiote-Yown’Hoo into a van der Walls Society may produce a stability
capable of launching incredible expansion, creativity, longevity and wealth –
and building the Membrane to stop the wave.
The young experimental Triads are made up of the
smallest primate tribe of Humans –two; the smallest canine pack of Kiiote –
six; and the smallest camelid herd of Yown’Hoo – a prime eleven. On nursery
farms and ranches away from the TC cities, Humans have tended young Yown’Hoo
and Kiiote in secret for decades, allowing the two warring people to reproduce
and grow far from their home worlds. Grendl, Manitoba is one such place. No one
but the Triad Company has ever heard of it and the physical plant goes by the
unobtrusive name of Organic Prairie Dairy.
The city Triads never hear of anything they aren’t
spoon fed in their luxury worlds and have heard only rumors of the farms and
ranches. Surrounded by a Humanity that has degenerated into a “duck-and-cover”
society as the Big Boys fight their war, the Triads don’t care about anything
but their own lives. Oblivious, cocooned, manipulated, they have no idea that
their privileges are about to be violently curtailed and all of their biology
ransacked for the correct Membrane pattern. (update: 5/2/2014)
“What enemy forces?” whispered Kashayla from my neck.
I jerked the wheel hard again – but not hard enough to
override the autodriver. “What are you doing up here?”
“Asking questions. What does it sound like?”
Qap, the male pack leader – and my best friend on Earth –
said, “She asks because we all ask. We deserve to know what enemies hunt us.”
Lieutenant Commander Patrick Bakhsh (ret) nodded slowly then
said, “You do deserve it.” He looked through the windshield as I turned a corner.
“But we don’t have time for me to tell you what you really need to know.”
“Why not?” asked Dao-hi, our Herd mother, leaning into the
conference space in the front of the truck.
He pursed his lips, “We just don’t have time. Not yet.”
“When will we have time?” ‘Shay asked.
Lieutenant Retired shook his head and lifted his chin. I
looked outside. It was dark. “What do you notice right now, kids?”
“What do you mean, Elder Human?” asked Dao-hi.
I said, “It’s getting darker.”
“It always gets dark at night,” said ‘Shay.
“Not that kind of dark,” I said. “The city lights aren’t
lit.” Nobody said anything for a while. “They don’t light the rest of the city,
do they, Lieutenant?”
He shook his head, “They don’t, Oscar.” I hated it when he
used my real name. It made me sound like a dork. “You two Humans – and the
other four of the Human Triad members, along with most of your handlers, are
among the richest Humans on Earth.”
“What?” exclaimed ‘Shay. “I’m not rich! I don’t have
Shaking his head, Lieutenant Retired said, “You have
incredible resources backing you, young lady.”
“Still, they are nothing compared to the resources that back
us,” said Dao-hi. “We are a rich people…” The lieutenant laughed. Dao-hi had
been raised with us and studied us. She knew exactly what laughter meant. And
he had a sharp, snarky edge to it. He was being sarcastic. “Why do you laugh,
Human?” Her tentacles lifted out of their sheathes and the Herd behind her
started to press forward, smelling her threatened scent.
He said, “Humans have been carrying you for the past three
years, Herd Mother.”
“What?” she whistled angrily. The other ten, even the tiny,
immatures, Lan-mai-ti, Ked-sah-ti, and Eel-go-pot managed to squeeze under the
hooves of their elders.
“Quiet!” Lieutenant Bakhsh snarled as the engine cut off and
we were all plunged into darkness and cold.