a tale in weekly parts
(formerly Albert and Jarvis)
In episodes 1-88, Albert and Jarvis told the story of a bitek construct that had been in the lives of the Grahamson family for three generations. Appearing in the form of a shepherd's hut (Jarvis) and its elderly occupant (Albert), an earlier experiment had resulted in the birth of Aloysius, a non-manifesting human/bitek hybrid. Alice and Alex, the two children that Aloysius had fathered with his wife, Magdalen, displayed strong bitek capabilities from an early age, though Alice was significantly more precocious than her younger brother. Albert and Jarvis nurtured and enhanced these capabilities through many adventures until the point where, to prevent a global catastrophe, the two needed to act together. The action needed more power than the two possessed. To produce stonger hybrids, Alex's seed was used to produce a young in a distantly related hybrid female in another dimension, while Alice was impregnated using her own bitek components. Albert and Jarvis absented themselves from the lives of the Grahamsons to allow Alice's pregnancy to progress in a safe, normal environment.
You can see the full story so far at this link.
“Now you’re all at it,” Al complained.
“All at what, o father of mine?” Alice asked, her tone a study in sweetness and innocence.
“You know exactly what, young lady. Bloody shimmering!”
Albert looked Al squarely in the eye. “There are things we need to do, Al; things that take time. To carry out Zak’s enhancements needed between four and six days.”
“And you’re telling me that with all your power you can’t do it faster?”
“I’m telling you that to do it safely, without any risk to the boy, needs a minimum of four days. In the end, it took five. Now, you have a choice, Al. Either we phase out of time, do what has to be done and return at the same point in time; what you so eloquently refer to as ‘shimmering’, or we lock ourselves away for the five days it took. Your choice.”
“So you’ve been away for five days?”
“We’ve been away for five days.”
And what exactly happened in those five days?”
“Would you like me to have the Eddies update your comms node and transmit full details to you?”
“I would, yes.” Al blanched. “Oh my God! The poor kid.”
Madge looked worried. “What just happened?” she asked.
“I’ve just been bloody upgraded before I could get the word yes out.”
“And now I know that they’ve made young Zak the same as Alice and Alex.”
“More so,” Albert said, “better, stronger, faster.”
“Don’t tell me; it cost six million dollars, lol.”
Alex looked at his father. “Don’t try to be down with the kids, Dad. It’s not you.”
“What are you talking about?”
“I think he means stick with ‘ha ha ha’,” Madge said.
“Way to spoil a joke, dear heart. Meanwhile, what does Zak think of all this?”
“I consider myself the most fortunate of souls, Granddad.”
“Most people go through life searching for their purpose. All the religions in the world try to answer the question on everyone’s lips, ‘why are we here?’ That’s why they were invented.” Madge, who had been brought up in the Catholic faith, scowled. Zak continued, “Many people, maybe even most people, die never having found a purpose. I am fortunate in that I know my purpose.”
“And that is?”
“I am to join with Zara, who is my second cousin, and we will have a child. That child will be strong enough to do what is needed to stop humanity destroying itself.”
“Yes, yes, yes. I know about all that. What I don’t know is when is all that supposed to happen?” Madge asked.
“That’s a difficult question to answer, Grandma.”
“Because you don’t know!”
“Because of the way—”
Albert interrupted Zak. “We’ve told you before, Madge. Time is an allusion.”
“And black is white and up is down. You’ll be telling me next that heaven and hell are the same.”
“Inasmuch as I question their existence, they are,” Albert replied.
Madge stormed out of the room in a grade A huff!
“How old were you when they upgraded you, Alex?” Zak asked.
“About your age. But I didn’t have the preparation you’ve had.”
“We’re refining our methods as we go on,” the family heard Jarvis say, “we did better with Alex than with his sister, and we’ve come on a long way with Zak.”
“Are you saying my son won’t have the adjustment issues we had?”
“I’m saying that we hope and expect that his transition will be smoother.”
“How is my cousin doing?” Zak asked.
“Yeah,” Alex added, “how’s my daughter? Whom, incidentally, I haven’ yet seen!”
“We’ll arrange a meeting,” Albert said, “I think Zak and she should become acquainted soon. Arranging it may be complicated, though, by the state of time on Terra. Leave it with me.”
“Albert, if you’re doing better with Zak than you did with Alex and me,” Alice asked, “can’t you just go back and do us again?”
“Can’t be done.”
“It would take too long to explain.”
“Too long? Time is an allusion, remember? Isn’t that what you keep telling us? Come on, let’s step out of time and you can explain it to us.”
“Okay, I’ll tell you. The Eddies won’t allow it. It’s against the law, they say.”
“There are laws? Who knew? Whose laws?”
“That’s the thing. We don’t know. We are subject to the Eddies and they, it seems, are subject to a higher power.”
Just as Albert said those words, Madge stepped back into the room. “So there is a God!” she said.