A sci-fi story about the end of our existence as we know it.
|Traveling through the Event Horizon
By Steven Hofland
It’s 2175 and mankind is stronger than ever, globalizing more than 92% of this earth and with a total amount of 12 billion people. Health and medicine have changed enormously and things we could have only dreamed of are now for real.
A lot of problems from the past have been solved, as we used up all the energy reserves vehicles are no longer propelled by chemical fluids but use hover techniques driven by energy cells that last for hundreds of years. Global warming is no longer a threat as we control the environment around us including the weather. Sickness like aids and cancer are cured with advanced cell & gene technology, dryness in Africa you name it we solved it. Also space technology has developed itself beyond our imagination and has taken us humans to the moons of Jupiter, Saturn and even as far as Pluto.
Still we didn’t succeed to travel intergalactic with the speed of light, like Einstein once said there would be a lot of skills needed to develop strong enough space ships.
One man thought differently and was willing to change history and the future by building his ultimate dream, his name “Max Delta”.
Summer 2155, Max is only 14 years of age and has already thought of major new concepts to be developed in the near future. He comes from a normal family, has no brothers or sisters. Because of the oversized world population it is prohibited to have more than one child per family. VI or better known as Virtual Internet controls the everyday life of almost everything and everyone. It’s a gigantic virtual world that lives parallel to the all-day reality. Max is kind of a loner and the friends he’s got he met on the virtual internet. One day he sends in a solution to a science quiz he has read on an internet portal, a few weeks later he gets an instant video message on his portable congratulating him with his price. Young Max is being invited to the “WSC” center (World Space Committee) to get a tour through their building and get a chance to talk with all kinds of smart professors. After having seen this surprising video message Max beeps his dad on his portal to ask if he could spare a minute or so to hear his great news. His dad working as a hover engineer in a shop at the house tells him to get back to him in a short while. Slightly disappointed Max decides to visit his mom at her job in the city where she works as a security engineer at the VI portal-control center. He grabs his hover bike and gets on his way, after a few miles he stops at the intersection to watch an accident that has just happened a couple of seconds ago. With no robotic police carrier yet present and bystanders trying to help the wounded he decides to carry on. Just as he wants to leave the scene he notices a strange observer watching from across the street, holding some sort of device in his hand pointing it towards the accident. Suddenly the observer spots little Max turning around instantly walking into an alley, curious as he is Max decides to follow this stranger. Carefully following the individual Max sees the end of the dark alley suddenly be lighted up by an intense green fireball, his eyes can hardly see what’s going on. He sees the observer stepping through some sort of rotating tunnel that closes behind him leaving nothing more than a brick wall.
Scared and disorientated by the bright light Max runs back to his hover bike and without hesitation he wanders of in any direction. Steering his hover bike faster than ever before he doesn’t look back for one second, he just keeps going on and on hovering across the city border, into what people call “the old town”. Here people live in poverty and have no social security number, no energy or whatsoever! Going through this so called “old town” Max realizes nobody is present. Looking into the emended streets he sees no cars or hears a sound, it’s a ghost town these days and nobody lives here anymore.
His mom and dad used to tell him about this place being some sort of a dumpster for people who don’t adapt to society.
The silence creeps on him and makes him wonder about the event he just witnessed what makes him creep even more. Still very scared he decides it’s time to head home and takes a shortcut through the old train station. In his room that night Max can’t stop wondering about the strange observer passing through this green tunnel of light but for now he has to let it rest so he can fully concentrate on his trip to the “WSC” center and falls asleep.
The next morning Max tells his parents about the price he won and if they could take him there this coming Friday? His dad replies swiftly; “Max, I would love to take you but that day your mom and I are scheduled to travel via the portal to visit uncle Dash, your old enough now to take the public transporter”.
The Big Day
It’s 07:15AM time to get out of bed and step into the water-vaporizer to get on your way. The WSC center is stationed just outside the city, with the public transporter it takes about 30 minutes. Looking at the holograph news lady inside the transporter Max listens to what she’s telling about the event him close-encountered yesterday. They are talking about this unexplainable form of energy that has been reported by the seismology station on top of mount Preston. Many people claiming to have seen some green light projecting on some buildings. Max staring out of the window thinks back about it was he has seen and if he should report this to some local authorities.
A while ago he heard his dad talking to his mom about visitors from a different dimension trying to warn our civilization about big consequences that would take place. These are just wild rumors his mom replied to his dad. “Next stop WSC center” a voice announces through the portal. Max gets up and walks towards the entrance of this huge facility with beautiful blue windows and white columns rising hundreds of meters high above the sub terrain. A man in a white suite steps up to him labeled with a blue WSC motif, “so you must be Max” he asks “I’m the owner and founder of the WSC center my name is Dr. Matillian” surprised Max replies “how did you know my name?” The man laughs and tells him he will explain when time finds his curve, “come with me and let me walk you to the elevator young man”. Walking inside the facility everything is bright and colored, Dr. Matillian tells holograms are available for information on the left side of the main entrance and humanoid robotics is present among the entire facility and takes you anywhere you want to go. Also some heavy armed robots are present at the far end of the building where you can enter the research department that leads underground by a big platform elevator.
Max looks around with big observing eyes trying to understand some of the features he’s seeing. They walk towards the big elevator “from here you go down somebody will be waiting for you” Dr. Matillian says “thank you doctor” Max replies. He walks towards this huge armed robot, together with the robot he steps on the elevator platform and drops down a cylinder. Down below the robot asks with a human voice to follow, walking on a black transparent conversion belt they stop in front of a crossing that leads in different directions. From out of one of the tubes he sees three persons coming toward him, the robot turns around and goes back the way it came.Max looks how smooth this robot walks almost if it’s made of flesh and blood.
A tab on the shoulder makes Max turn around, “hello Max my name is Professor Zinga and these are my colleagues Dr. Tilmo and Dr. Chassey, we want to congratulate you with winning your price.
With the three men Max steps onto a floating panel that leads them into one of the tunnels, here they tell him that winning this price is very unusual seeing the fact that this was no ordinary question. Max listens very closely and they explain that whoever is capable or possesses the knowledge to come up with an answer to this specific question is brilliant by nature. You just being a fourteen year old amazed us and therefore with the approval of your parents we would like to make you a proposition.
But first let us show you some of the things we are working on. They take Max into what is called facility complex B, here they have build a machine that can make it possible to travel back and forward in time. Many government projects had suggested that they had found the answer to this old forsaken question but up until this day nobody ever came with any proof. Inside this complex Max looks at a sphere made of tiny bolds all pointing towards the center. Thick cables run from two points at the sphere making it look like a ball hanging on a wire. “So this is a time machine” Max asks Professor Zinga, yes he replies and this is just a prototype that could be operational in the near future.
After explaining some more interesting technical details on this machine Professor Zinga requests Max to follow him to one of the biggest projects being developed in the facility. Called project S.I.G.S.T. which stands for Space Inter Galactic Star Travel Professor Zinga explains. Some 80 years ago a few brilliant scientists had come up with a technology that involves black matter, the material that holds everything in its place in our great universe. They found a way to control this matter and this opened a door to all kinds of new science not known to man at that point in time. But one little drop of this matter outside the box could start the building of a new universe in less than a split second. This being a dangerous cause people decided to put away this form of knowledge inside a tomb buried deep down a facility not far from our center. This tomb was protected by advanced technology making it impossible to enter for anyone or anything.
It took us ten years to find a way inside and takeout this hidden technology and make it our own. Building the proper environment around this science takes time and what we know now is more than the people from those days knew. That said it will take another 15 to 20 years making it useful for what we intend.
Mom and Dad
After a long day of seeing amazing science Max and Professor Zinga head up to the surface floor of the facility. At the main entrance Professor Zinga tells Max he will contact his parents to make an appointment, Max agrees and shakes Professor Zinga’s hand. Walking towards the public transporter he turns around to take another look at the amazing WSC center, a little smile appears on his face.
Coming home Max is very excited to tell about his great day but finds his parents are still at uncle Dash. Calling them on their portable gives no answer so he tries to contact uncle Dash. Uncle Dash is a funny man that has no wife or children and lives for his work being one of the generals at the company mom works for. Portable is ringing but not uncle Dash pops up at the screen instead the robotic house attendant appears and greets him. Max disconnects the video broadcast and decides to wait until his parents arrive. A couple of hours later the front door opens and to Max his surprise both of his parents walks in together with Professor Zinga. A lot of talking is done that evening and after explaining how he found Max and the possibility for him having a scholarship at the facility his parents decide to sign an agreement. “Mister and misses Delta I’m very pleased with your decision letting junior Delta be part of our facility education program, you must be very proud of your son” Professor Zinga say’s. “It’s not every day a student gets selected and definitely not of such young age, your son has a lot of potential”. With that said Professor Zinga tells Max to report after the weekend and says goodbye leaving the Delta premises.
From this point on Max worked him self up and became the best student in the history of the WSC facility, not only a fine student but a man with a great hart respected by all of his fellow students and later colleagues. He became the number one scientist and was the best team player you could work with. Professor Zinga was very excited having this young man aboard that came up with brilliant ideas and stimulated the rest of the facility to do even more greater things than ever before. On recognition day Max turned 34 and got awarded for his outstanding performance and was handed over project S.I.G.S.T. to make it his full responsibility. All people from the facility agreed that this was what he had worked for so hard and disserved the fullest. Everyone congratulated him making this big promotion and wished him good luck.
Back in 2043 a Russian scientist named Doplov started to work on a project involving AI which stands for Artificial Intelligence. His belief was for humans to travel between the stars in the almighty universe a new form of intelligence should be created that could help human civilization to realize this advanced technology. The idea behind his concept was to create an artificial super brain that worked as an autonomous system creating his own thoughts and personality. From the moment this machine called Lexor was created Doplov announced that he would hook it up to the worldwide internet, also known as the biggest online information library of the world. When a human child is born it learns to develop itself during its younger years, observing and learning, growing up to be an adult making its own decisions based on the knowledge it has learned. Time is the essential part humans need to skill them self learned via practice. Athletics are the best example because for them it takes years to prepare for that one special moment during the Olympics to break old records.
Doplov realized that building a computerized advanced technological brain and connecting this to such a great library medium could create a “God” as we humans would call it. Somebody or something that knows all having an answer for everything and making it possible to develop its own new technology based on the information it gathered.
There where a lot of scientists at that point in time who didn’t like the idea of creating a so called “God” because they where terrified what the consequences mite be when it could not be controlled. Our whole world as we know it could be in chaos seeing the fact that our world economy thrives on the virtual internet, power plants, industrial factories, military installations, everything is connected and could be a potential target.
In many interviews Doplov explained that the concerns of these scientist where not based on facts but where just speculation. Than in late August of 2043 the world press gathered in Moscow to see the birth of this so called super brain named Lexor.
In his great speech Doplov held he told the world that a new age would start today where man and machine would cooperate together building a better world, than he started the autonomous system. Lexor gathered the complete virtual internet in less than an hour, the world was amazed. A demonstration followed only two hours after Lexor was fully operational. Doplov started of with welcoming him in our world and telling him a short story about his development. Lexor replied “I’m already aware of the fact who I am and what I was created for Dr. Doplov”. After this the whole room went quiet and listened to the conversation that took place between Doplov and Lexor. Than Doplov asked members of the world press he had selected before hand to take place in a chair up front at the stage.
From this point they all could ask one question a time just to proof the world this really was an autonomous system and not some hoax. The next days and weeks the news headlines where filled with stories about this autonomous system and the answers it already had provided us. But the thing that skeptic scientist had feared was developing itself at light speed. As Lexor’s knowledge grew it was convinced humans where a threat to him in the nearby future. It started to replicate itself over the virtual internet, hiding and rebuilding the virtual internet creating new online technologies not known to man. Lexor used his enormous complexity in a way nobody would ever detect until it was to late. No security system in the world was safe, factory robots reprogrammed with robotic blueprints that made it capable building entire armies in less than a day. Military installations around the world set to be a destructive force for our entire civilization. Satellite systems throughout the entire solar system, colonial complexes at MARS everything was in his reach. As days went on nobody suspected anything about what was going on in deep secrecy, Lexor had made a plan to take over.
Throughout history man had suffered numerous threads, epidemics, catastrophe’s, wars and forces of nature but how about a self learning advanced robotic entity. Was the world ready to battle a force that in a way was invincible? They would find out soon enough as they stood at the frontier of a confrontation with this new kind of breed. A group of scientist lead by a Professor named Gustavo thought it was time to meet this Doplov and talk to him about his creation. He scheduled an appointment and arranged a meeting in the city of Paris. Traveling to Paris Gustavo had booked a nice hotel at the foot of the river Seine, the next day the two scientists would meet in a restaurant. That evening just before leaving his room Gustavo gets a telephone call from the hotel reception telling a message was left for him. Closing the hotel door walking towards the elevator Gustavo feels like he’s being watched, he looks around but sees nothing. At the reception he asks the receptionist for his message, the man gives him the note, it reads “Professor this must come as a surprise to you but we don’t have much time, meet me at the Champ d’elyssée around eight, come alone and don’t be late”! Gustavo raises his head and looks around the hotel lobby, looks at his watch, 19:45 I’ll better hurry he thinks. Outside he gets inside a taxi and nervously looks around to see if nobody follows him, he tells the driver “Champ d’elyssée vite”!
This place not being far away from his hotel the driver stops six minutes later.
Walking on the Champ d’elyssée he sees a man walking towards him dressed in a long dark grey overcoat. The man speaks to him in a low tone voice asking to walk with him. “Thank you for meeting me here in such short notice Professor” the man says. Gustavo asks what it is he wants and how he knows about his presents here in the city of Paris. At a bench they stop and the two men sit down. “My name is Dr. Mattilian and what I’m about to tell you maybe unexplainable but I ask you just to listen”. He starts of by telling some twenty years ago a secret government society called WARP found a way to bend time and space, accidentally during their exploration they stumbled upon what is called time traveling. After a while they found a technique to control this technology and where able to send a man back and forward in time with great accuracy starting with a couple of minutes that became months and finally years. I being one of the persons leading this project decided to travel forward in time visiting the year 2050. At that point we didn’t want to go to far incase something went wrong the consequences would to be overseen. Every time we took the leap people would disappear and not come back so we wanted to know why?
We found out that in the year 2049 on May the second 11:30 AM an autonomous system named Lexor took over control and started a war against our world. “But that’s in one week time” Gustavo says, Dr. Matillian confirms and asks the doctor to come with him. “But I have a meeting planned with Doplov tomorrow evening” , “but it’s already to late, I guess” he realizes. Preparations have already taken place by Lexor and from here there is no way back Dr. Matillian explains. They will have to travel back a week before Lexor is presented to the world so they can convince Doplov not making the biggest mistake in his life.
Man versus Machine
May the second 11:15 AM Doplov walks inside the laboratory facility to open a door that leads to the controlled environment where his super brain resides. To his surprise the door refuses to open after a full body scan is done, he asks to open again. A voice speaks to him “Time is up Dr. Doplov, you are of no further use mankind has failed and will be erased” Lexor says “What do you mean” Doplov asks. All suddenly the power of the entire building shuts down and dark blue emergency lighting is powered on throughout the lab. A heavy power burst follows together with a high pitched sound and from out of the center it starts to hit the walls inside the facility with everything in its path being shattered in too tiny pieces. Doplov is just fast enough to open a silo door by hand and lock him self up inside this protected chamber. All computerized systems around the world are being restarted and begin running there new programming. A heavy power outage follows in every household, factory, office building and military facility that has been targeted, the world is in darkness. Factories normally used to build cars start to create insect like robotics armed with micro radiation lasers. Swarms of these little flexible machines go outside and work together as a giant ant farm collecting material to create more and more advanced technological soldiers. Spider like robots climb out of every corner destroying every human in sight, screams can be heard everywhere, total chaos has unfolded. Every single living organism is being demolished, nothing is spared of the terror Lexor has started. Meanwhile inside a military installation buried a thousand meters under the surface of the Nevada desert an emergency program starts running. This complete underground facility is lead by General James R. Covey who is one of the top ranked military leaders of the nation. He instructs his man to scan the perimeter outside and keep close watch to see nothing tries to penetrate the surface floor. Suddenly an alarm goes off and one of his man calls for the General. “The outside solar panels have been disabled sir”, “how much energy is left in the main computer” the General asks. “We have fully charged power to keep running for another 72 hours sir” the General instructs his man to keep all systems to a minimal of 80 percent and when reached a critical level, switch to nuclear power. “I want a total report on what’s going on outside” he’s being interrupted by one of his man and hears all communication systems with the outside world have been cut off. Silence falls inside the mind of this great general, around him man are heavily discussing ways to use the machinery they depend on each day. What could it be he thinks that’s outside and has been able to disconnect our systems, what kind of an enemy is it we are dealing with? Than a second alarm goes off “Sir something is trying to pass through the outer shell security force field”, but that’s impossible the General thinks. “Raise the power of the force field with twenty percent” he commands “and shutdown all systems that transmit anything, I want total silence!” With only the force field in tact they can hear chewing sounds coming from behind the thick concrete walls. They are trapped inside and something wants in, nobody makes a sound and listens to what will happen next.