On Earth, there are three Triads intending 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. All three intelligences hover on the edge of extinction. The merger of Human-Kiiote-Yown’Hoo into a van der Walls Society might not only save all three – but become something not even they could predict. Something entirely new...
The young experimental Triads are made up of the smallest primate tribe of Humans – Oscar and Kashayla; the smallest canine pack of Kiiote – six, pack leaders Qap and Xurf; and the smallest camelid herd of Yown’Hoo – a prime eleven, Dao-hi the Herd mother. 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.
“We had nearly fallen into stagnation when we encountered the Kiiote.”
“And we into internecine war when we encountered the Yown’Hoo.”
“Yown’Hoo and Kiiote have been defending themselves for a thousand revolutions of our Sun.”
“Together, we might do something none of us alone might have done…a destiny that included Yown’Hoo, Kiiote, and Human.” (2/19/2015)
The Kiiote Qap, lead female of the Pack, said, “Prove that if we worked together, we could accomplish something none of us had managed to do apart.”
Ali-go, a Yown’Hoo Herd male I’d only known to speak one other time, said, “Gravity Modification, foundational mathematical functions that led all three peoples to the advancement of faster-than-light equations, techniques that led to the super-miniaturization of major fusion components – we have all of those. There is only one thing we have not created,” he paused. Right then I knew he was going to be a Herd-father someday. He had the flair for the dramatic that was required of the males of their species. “Immortality.”
The Triad stared at him, blinking stupidly. Finally, the Herd Mother, Dao-hi said, “We were chosen to somehow discover immortality?”
Lieutenant Commander Patrick Bakhsh, whom we called Retired, said, “You don’t have to figure it out yourselves. In fact, the predictions are that this first set of Triads – you folks and the group in China and the group in India – will die without accomplishing anything.”
‘Shay and me went, “eep!” together.
The Herd reared as one – even the smallest males – pawing the air wildly, squealing like rusty hinges.
The Pack dropped to their four feet, sat haunches down, lifted their heads and sang at a pitch so high, that ‘Shay and me felt hairs rise on our necks.
My great uncle, Rion shouted, “May it never be!”
We all turned to look at him. I stared longer than everyone else, as they looked away. Finally I found my voice and said, “How can you defy the predictions and plans of the Corporation?”
Retired scowled angrily and said, “He’s a fool, he is. That’s how he can defy the predictions!”
“I’m not defying them – I aim to change the coefficients, variables, and operators.”
“That’s what I mean! You’re going to…”
“Change the future,” ‘Shay said suddenly.
“What?” I couldn’t keep my mouth shut.
She turned to me, faced me, grabbed my shoulders and said, “He’s taking us somewhere that we can make a difference! We can change everything – change our future.” She let go of me and spun to the rest of the group. “We don’t have to die like like…like…”
Retired’s arms crossed and locked over his chest as he shook his head. He said, “You don’t have to die like normal people; like the people who live in the houses around your Dome Home; like people on whom the entire planet has laid its hopes and future? Is that who you don’t have to die like, young lady?”
She looked up at him then hung her head. She waved in the direction of GURion. “You have to have a plan.”
My great uncle nodded slowly. “Aye. I have one.”
“What plan…” yipped Qap.
“…do you have?” snapped Xurf.
“I can’t tell you exactly. I can only lead you into it.” It paused. “First of all, it’s not my plan. I’m just a lowly…”
Retired made a brushing motion toward him, like he was trying to sweep snow off the hood of his bakery truck. “You’re not lowly anything. You’re a post-state-of-the-art artificial Human. Scanners from any of our peoples would be unable to tell you from a real Human. You’re forced by your programming to appear to us as a plastic manikin. But you can look like me or ‘Car here if you decide. You may not have conceived the plan, but the ones who set you on the path to its fulfillment trusted you with executing it.”
GURion opened his mouth, closed it with a snap, then said, “You’re going to have to trust that I am operating from a very long-range, deeply-laid plan.” He turned, sweeping the Triad with its extra members with his gaze. “You have to follow me and not ask questions.”
“We have to follow and never question you?” Dao-hi said.
My robot great uncle grinned then and said, “Of course I expect you to question me! What are you, a bunch of robots?”
There was dead silence for an second, then we all busted out laughing.