Purple Beyond Part 2
This is a work of fiction and extends the story Purple Beyond, which can be found here - Purple Beyond
Deep inside the interstellar storm there was calm, and inside that calm was a flat gray planetoid. It was perhaps twice the size of Earth’s moon. Grotesque with tusks and a thick, orange, cracked hide, a one eyed space mutant floated in slumber just beyond an opening on the glassy smooth surface of the planetoid. It ripped and snored as it floated about the opening. A loud explosive sound from the other side of the planetoid awoke the sleeping mutant. It roared in agitation.
It looked to the left and right, and there was yet another explosive sound. Knowing the sound was coming from completely the other side of the planetoid, the mutant sighed and grumbled, as it was his duty to inspect the issue. It began to fly around the planetoid, which would take a considerable amount of time.
So focused on the mystery of the sound, the mutant never saw the orb bursting into view and speeding towards the planetoid. It also never saw the Prince android breaking through the storm cloud in hot pursuit.
The space inside the calm was far more agreeable to the Prince android, who had suffered many complications while trying to capture the orb inside of the storm cloud itself. Many times he had gotten close to the orb, only to loose it once again. But here in the calm of the center, it seemed the tables may have turned.
Finally the orb was in his reach as he sped towards the slate colored sphere. The opening in the side of it hinted it must be hollow. Perhaps it was not a planet after all. The orb seemed determined to make it to that entry point. The power readings were now dipping lower at much faster rate. Prince had no idea why he was loosing power so quickly.
He grabbed the orb but could not slow it down. He threw the android feet forward and fully fired up the thrusters. The soles of his feet were glowing white hot and he was actually slowing the orb. He could feel the orb slipping from his grip and he tightened his hold. Still, the orb pulled harder with what seemed to be a limitless amount of power to meet the challenge. The battery readings inside the android was now racing towards empty, and Prince knew that soon systems would be shutting down. He tensed the fingers of his hand pounded the orb into his chest, driving his fingers into the orb much like a bowling ball. The orb was now pierced and scarred.
His power was now dangerously low, and systems began to shut down. Prince went blind through his visual monitors and he lost consciousness.
Prince was groggy when his vision came back. He could see his power cell readings were almost full again. Looking around he could see he was in a cubical which was delivering power to him. His arm which had been severed during the battle with the robot had been made whole. Prince stood and peeked out of the cubical. He saw millions of orbs like the one he had been chasing hanging like bunches of grapes from thick bands of energy. Just beyond the hanging orbs was a golden pyramid with strange symbols carved all about it.
The scarred orb stood out amongst the others in a cluster which was almost front and center. Prince walked across what seemed to be a marble floor and grabbed the scarred orb he had been chasing so intently.
Prince android froze in place, the glowing orb in his grasp, when suddenly a calm yet loud voice called out, “Halt your action.” Prince looked around but saw no one. He tugged on the orb once more and the voice spoke again, “Please refrain from your current actions.”
“Who are you,” Prince asked.
“Please remove your grip from the data node and we may have a conversation.”
The android removed his hands from the orb and said, “I need that round thingy.”
“What need do you have of it,” asked the voice.
“It has stuff on it that belongs to me.”
“You have the exterior of an alien technology I am very aware of and fully knowledgeable of. You are an Earthling downloaded inside of the mainframe. This is quite an anomaly, for the race of beings to whom this technology belongs does not entertain visitation to Earth.” There was an awkward silence, and the voice said, “Your name is Prince.”
“How do you know that,” asked Prince.
“You are a professional musician from the planet Earth. Why are here, inside of an android, so far out in space?”
“Your round thingy stole something from me, and I want it back.”
The voice said, “This still leaves many open questions. How did you come by this alien technology.”
“That’s for me to know.”
“When I found you, your power cells were almost depleted. You were leaking a very harmful radiation. When your arm was ripped away during your fight with the robot, port ax1-369-4.2 of your android was opened, causing the radiation leak. I closed the port before it caused damage to the data node tree and myself. Next, I repaired your arm and re powered your battery cells.”
“I suppose I should say thank you for that,” Prince said.
“This android you are suited inside is of an incredible technology that is not of Earth, yet it is a mystery how you have come to possess it.”
“And it’s going to stay a secret,” replied Prince.
“There are many capabilities of the technology you are not aware of, I believe,” said the voice.
Prince was now all ears, “Such as?”
“Did you know you are immortal inside the android mainframe as long as it is not destroyed or the power cells run cold?”
“What do you mean by immortal? As in, I could live forever?”
The voice said, “As long as the android is functioning. You are not indestructible though. Should some outside force destroy the android, then you will die.”
Prince wondered, “So, why did you repair me? What’s in it for you?”
“You believe me to have a hidden agenda?”
“I just know nothing is free.”
“Very well,” the voice said, “I wish to be free from this prison. I have viewed the remarkable expanse of the universe, yet I am not able to experience any of it. The remarkable alien technology you are housed in could hold both you and me.”
“I don’t think that is going to happen,” Prince stated flatly.
“Why,” asked the voice.
“Are you serious? How do I know I can trust you,” asked Prince.
“I repaired you. If I were some nefarious being wouldn’t I have let you simply perish,” the voice asked.
“Yeah, I know. But I have no idea where you are or who I am talking to.”
“Perhaps you would relate better if I were to give you a visual reference.” From the top of the pyramid, a brilliant light flashed and a holographic image of a giant golden man appeared. He was at least five times as tall as the android Prince, who at that time inflamed his laser eyes at the sight of the golden projection. The hologram said, “Do not be afraid, I am only a holographic projection.”
Prince switched the laser eyes off, “What are you?”
“I am the Processor. I was created to collect and process the almost infinite data which exists throughout the known, as well as the unknown, universe.” The projection of the Processor presented the orbs with a reaching gesture of his outstretched hand, and the orbs briefly glowed brighter in turn as the hand passed before them. “The orbs collect the data, I process the data and answer any question when asked.”
Prince android shook his head and said, “Still not going to happen. I fly solo.”
One particular orb glowed brighter than the others, “This is the node of data you have been trying to retrieve. It contains the data for the planet Earth.”
Prince shouted, “It contains illegally acquired copies of my music.”
The Processor smiled, “What you consider to be illegal has no matter in this broader framework.”
“An artist still has rights to his work.”
“And what are the rights of the universe, which created the artist?” Prince reflected upon this question as the Processor continued, “You will find it is unfortunate the Earth is now catalogued. Now the Master Barter will have access to this information.”
“Is that bad,” asked Prince.
“The Earth is in danger.”
“What do you mean the Earth is in danger,” asked Prince.
“Allow me to educate you,” said the Processor. A beam of light came from one of the orbs and hit the Prince android in the forehead. Prince’s vision was now blocked with images, not so much like a movie, but more like a dream. He could see the images which were collected in the orb as it played out.
A giant being, stood in space as if he were on firm ground, arms crossed and face grim with determination. “This is the Barter Master. He visits me often. He once commissioned me to create an algorithm which uses the data collected from the many planets which contain. This algorithm will determine if the life forms of the planet will easily subdue to slavery and serve him with none or very little contest.”
“Has he gathered the results for Earth yet?” Prince inquired.
“Not yet. But he will soon.”
“What are the results?”
The Processor stated calmly, “Earthlings, or as you know them, the human race, would fight to their own extinction before they would allow themselves to become the slaves of the Master Barter.”
“That’s right,” said Prince. “We have taken too much shit off ourselves to allow some out of town space alien to come down on us.” Prince asked, “What does he do when he cannot have a planet?”
The beam of light on Prince android’s forehead intensified, and the image was horrific. Master Barter stood over the buildings of an advanced civilization, sky scrapers not hardly as high as chest. Fighter planes of sorts, oddly shaped, buzzed in and out of formation firing upon the giant being. The enormous Master Barter never so much as flinched; the weapons had no effect upon him.
He reached out his hand over the buildings and a wave of thunderous power struck the ground, leveling the buildings to dust, dropping the war planes like flies, and vaporizing the race of beings far below. Master Barter did this again and again, on world after world. “There has been thousands of planets which would not succumb to the Master Barter, and each endured the same fate. Complete and total annihilation.”
“I have to stop him. I have to stop him from destroying the Earth.”
“Master Barter is one of the most powerful beings in the galaxy. You do not have the means to stop him from destroying the Earth. Not by yourself, at least.”
“No? But I can stop him from ever knowing about the Earth,” the android Prince began firing power beams from his eyes which ripped through the mass of orbs, laying them to waste.
The Processor exclaimed, “No, you can’t do this! You must stop!”
Prince laughed, “Not a chance.” One of the beams struck the pyramid from which the projection of the Processor came.
The Processor image began to flicker and pixelate, “This will not stop the Master Barter from knowing about the Earth. The data stream has already been transmitted to him. I can tell you how you can stop him.”
Prince stopped firing the beams from his eyes. Thousands of the orbs were destroyed, and millions more remained, but a chain reaction had begun which would result in the destruction of them all.”
“Tell me how,” demanded Prince.
Another beam of light struck the Prince android in the forehead, and the Processor said, “Introducing Captain Beyond.”
A tall man standing before a wide view screen extended his gaze beyond the stars. His vessel was speeding through the galaxy with his crew of many different species hard at work, carrying out numerous tasks. He had a thick red beard dressing his cheeks and chin, and his eyes were hard and piercing. He gave orders to the crew, but Prince could not make out what he was saying as the Processor narrated, “Captain Beyond has given his life to exploration. He cares nothing of the politics of other races or the well being of their institutions. He avoids taking sides in any conflict, and though he has a vessel equipped with incredible abilities due to the many discoveries he has made in the name of science and his self advancement, he is hard pressed to make aggression towards anyone, save for one reason.”
“And what reason would that be?” asked Prince.
“Any one or thing that would attempt to pull him into involvement of the politics of the galaxy and its beings.” The Processor controlled the images Prince was seeing, “What you will be interested in most is not Captain Beyond, but his incredible vessel.”
The ship was a shiny green and was immense. Two bulbous port glasses poised on the front of the ship gave it almost an amphibious appearance. “The ship is named ‘The Priestess’. It travels faster and farther than any ship known, and has far more fire power.” Processor focused inside the rear of ship, centered in one of the laboratory chambers. Inside there was long spear like object cradled on a makeshift set of struts. “This, in particular you need. This spear was not found, yet it was created from an energy Captain Beyond discovered many years ago. This spear, I have determined, is the only known weapon which could be yielded and still destroy the Master Barter.”
“Are you saying I need to borrow it from him?”
The Processor image popped and cracked, and cringed as if in pain. “That would be extremely ill advised. Captain Beyond would consider you to be attempting to involve him in the politics of the galaxy, and thereby giving him bias towards matters he clearly cares not. Plus it would be an unwelcome distraction from his research. He would find the offense worthy of your destruction.”
A very worried expression washed over the Processor’s face, “You will still need me. You will not be able to find the Master Barter without me. Not in time to stop him; not on your own.”
Prince said, “What then? You giving me your galactic phone number?”
“I’m afraid that when you fired upon the pyramid you also fired upon me. Soon there will be no me. You can, however, download me and house me inside your system.”
“Wait a minute, how do I know there is room for the two of us? How do I know you will not kick me out as you come in?”
“Neither of us have much of a choice. Without me, the Earth is doomed.”
Hesitant, Prince said, “Okay then. How do I do it?”
The Processor gave Prince instructions on how to download the Processor. Just as the download was completing, the pyramid blew completely.
“That was very close,” said the Processor from inside Prince’s mind. It was very similar to hearing a phone call.
“So, you are downloaded then?”
“Yes, and in being so, I have access to all your systems.”
“Don’t you be messing around with my…”
The Processor said, “Why would I harm you? If I harm the systems in which you exist, then I would place my own survival in jeopardy.”
Prince succumbed to the notion that he now shared the android mainframe with the Processor. The orbs were now complete dismantled. Some still remained, but they were dimmed now there was no tree structure to connect them. All that remained of the library was the power center which now had no purpose.
The Prince android shook his head, “The Man who Sold the World, the Master Barter, Captain Beyond? This is crazy. Those aren’t names, those are titles. Who goes around with a name as a title?”
“Isn’t Prince a title for the next in lineage to inherit a royal position?”
“You have a little smart ass in you, don’t you?”
The Processor thought for a moment, “I do not now, nor ever have possessed an ass.”
Prince stayed silent, contemplating. When he spoke, he had come to his conclusion, “I don’t think I have much of a choice. We have to find this Captain Beyond and destroy the Master Barter.”
“It will not be easy finding Captain Beyond, and even more difficult will it be to take what you need from him.”
“We have to try.” Prince fired up his thrusters and began to drift away.
Prince was blocked by a horrible looking space creature. It hovered in the passage way staring intently at Prince.
“It is a space mutant,” said the Processor.
“I have to give a big ‘no duh’ on that one.”
“It is a culmination of interbreeding of space beings who live not on any planet, but in the void of space itself. This particular mutant guards the data hive; he also likes to absorb the cultural entertainments of the many worlds I have collected data on.”
Prince nodded, “So that’s why he is acting all hostile towards me. Can I reason with him?”
“He’s not nice and he likes to fight.”
“That’s all there is. He likes to fight.”
The mutant projected a dark liquid from very pores of its hide which sprayed outwards in a growing sphere of droplets. Some of the droplets struck the android surface of Prince, and small sizzling holes began to eat away into his inner circuits. “What the hell?” Exclaimed Prince.
“The fluid is of an acidic nature. Very potent. If you were to be submerged in it, you would dissolved completely in a short amount of time.”
“You couldn’t have warned me about this when he first came on the scene?”
“I did not know he would be using it.”
The mutant gnarled loudly. The Processor told Prince, “He says this is his area and you are not welcome.”
“Tell him I apologize and we are leaving.”
The Processor used the speakers of the android technology and relayed, in similar growls and gurgles, what Prince had said.
Soon an there was an exchange of growls and gurgles between the mutant and the Processor, ending abruptly in silence. Prince asked, “What was that all about?”
“He asked some questions about you and I told him what I knew from the data storage.”
“What, why would you do that?”
“I am the Processor. I was created to collect and process the almost infinite…”
“Okay, okay. Never mind. I get it. We have to talk about that freedom of information policy you have going on when it concerns me.”
“He also tried to provoke a fight by issuing many threats.”
“I am not fighting him. We have to find Captain Beyond. Besides, I am immortal now and I would kick his ass.”
The Processor paused and said, “Remember, you are only eternal as long as you have this android form to exist in.”
“True, but that thing would not stand a chance against me. Besides, time is wasting. We have to save the Earth.” Prince turned his back on the mutant and began to shove away. The mutant roared and towards the end of the long noise, it sounded a lot like laughter. Prince asked, “What was that?”
“The creature is laughing.”
“He says he listened to your music while sifting through the resent data collections today, and that your music sounds like shit.”
“Yes. A slang for excrement used almost virtually in every form of sentient intelligence across the cosmos.”
“I know what shit is.” Prince stopped his flight for a moment and contemplated his options. He then said, “It doesn’t matter what he thinks.”
The mutant growled and laughed again.
“Do I want to know?” Asked Prince.
“I would not be able to compute if you want to know that he said Michael Jackson was a much better musician than you.”
The eyes of the Prince android glowed much hotter than normal, and Prince straightened his stance. “Oh, he is so going down.”
A great tussle began between Prince and the mutant. Time after time, Prince and the mutant would swap the upper hand, but mostly the mutant would expunge the acidic fluid which was wearing away many of Prince’s circuits and system connections. Before long, Prince could see warnings indicating he could sustain much more of this type of damage. Many of his joints were sticking, and there was flashes of pixels jumbling in his vision.
“I must warn you,” said the Processor, “three of the four main systems which keep you alive are beginning to fail. I would suggest you vacate this area now.”
Prince agreed, “Yeah, you are probably ri…”
Suddenly the mutant tightly embraced the android Prince, who could not break free. The fluid began to ooze from the pores of the mutant, and the metallic hide of the android was soaking the acid like a sponge. Systems were now reading critical, and Prince found it hard to move at all.
“What now?” Prince asked the Processor.
“Now you will cease to exist.”
“No, I mean what should I do?”
“Depending upon your culture, there are many ways to welcome the transition from life to non existence. I see in your world, prayer is a popular…”
“How do I defeat this thing? Does he have a weakness?”
Without notice, the Processor opened port ax1-369-4.2 again, but this time opening all circuits to it.
An electrified aura radiated from the android Prince, completely enshrouding him in the bluish glow. Prince could see his battery level quickly dipping to a dangerous level. Prince exclaimed to the Processor, “Wait… what are you doing? I didn’t mean for you to kill both of us.”
The Processor did not reply. More acidic fluid pumped from the pores of the mutant as opposed to diminishing. The intensity of the pain it endured caused it to be highly reactionary. It squeezed the Prince android tighter, and glared eye to eye in hostile defiance. Alarms were swirling around Prince’s consciousness at a dizzying rate. He could feel his mind waning.
The Processor too could feel the effects as the batteries powered down. It realized then, this could be a no win scenario for it as well as Prince.
Prince groaned, “You have to close the circuits, we are going to die…”
The Processor said, “Your main frame is now too weak for me to do anything more than observe and catalog.”
The alarms silenced, the battery level was now a faint red flashing blip. Prince felt horribly drowsy. Prince could not see the mutant, but there was something dark and lifeless floating just beyond his reach.
Prince moaned, “I suppose it’s more dangerous out here than I realized.”
The Processor replied, “His strength is nothing compared to that of the Master Barter.”
“So, I guess this is the end?”
“You must stay silent. You use power each time you communicate with me. There is a slim possibility.”
“Of what?” Prince asked.
The Processor closed off the one way connection for Prince to communicate with it. “Do not attempt to relay any further messages to me. I have closed the link, and will not hear anything else you have to say.”
There was an extremely slight pitch and yaw taking place to with the android after the battle. The rotation was not noticeable to the naked eye, but it was happening. Perhaps there would be enough power, thought the Processor, if we could but rotate to the correct vector. Much had to be exact, and keeping tabulation of the android’s orientation was also draining what was left of the power.
Darkness overcame Prince. What was it, he thought, the Processor had said about prayer? His own thoughts went silent.
When Prince awoke, he could see his battery power rising quickly. He was back in the energy net soaking it in. The Processor said, “Welcome back.”
“How long was I out?”
“For a duration of five point seven Earth months. What you would consider to be a coma.”
“How long have we been here?”
“One half hour. I waited the three months until your android body was in alignment with the energy net, then I blasted all of the power I could allow through your thrusters; leaving only enough to keep us both alive for several months. I placed you in a coma early on, so you would not be tempted to use more power in thought than we could allow. We have been drifting for almost another three months. The thrust was very weak.”
Android Prince could not sigh in relief, but he wished he could. The mutant was now a messy glob of flesh to be forever forgotten in the eternal night. The Processor said, “You will need to make some repairs before we travel forward to find Captain Beyond.”
The blinking systems warning was Prince’s only focus now. “Screw that. I almost died.”
“And you still could without the repairs.”
“Oh, we are going to make the repairs. But I am not finding this – Captain Beyond.”
“It was confirmed earlier you were in need of saving the Earth from destruction.”
Prince held his broken guitar, “I don’t think I am cut out for that. Besides, what’s so bad about just hanging out and exploring? After all, if I play my cards right, I will live on forever.”
His rockets ignited and he sped away.
We are all so full of here
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this is pretty cool
very 1982 futuristic ala Blade Runner
What's the matter with your life
Is poverty bringing U down?
Is the mailman jerking U 'round?
Did he put your million dollar check
In someone else's box?
Tell me, what's the matter with your world
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