Startup Escalation 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 Trillions A Sequel 2010 .
Superhuman World 2009 is a work of fiction. The characters herein and the commentary about them should not be considered "real".
SUPERHUMAN WORLD 2009
September - November 2009
Now this might be an alien invasion to get worried about. But right now I'm not sure whether to worry more about the aliens or the people fighting them.
(signed) Wyatt Ferguson.
The Infrared Sunbreaker Choir. Commentator: Wyatt Ferguson.
At the Combine where my fiancee Judy works, they occasionally get messages from outer space - in a more timely manner than the rest of Earth knows. On the 31st of August, a message said, The Infrared Sunbreaker Choir Is Coming.
The Trillions. Commentator: Malcolm Dunevoy.
(The following statement is credited to Malcolm Dunevoy, President and CEO of Dunevoy Laboratories.)
As you know, Earth has been under alien occupation since September 8 of this year. On that date, two extraterrestrial ships landed at Manchester, England and Novosibirsk, Siberia. Significantly, these are both sites where giant robots materialized in April of this year.
The ships are roughly two miles long and one-tenth of a mile in cross-section. The ships would therefore fill one American city block - as a skyscraper twenty times as tall as any on Earth. But half that height is buried. Each ship is currently siloed in the ground to a depth of one mile. Their ships' drives were able to hollow out that depth of ground upon landing, through means we are still attempting to analyze.
Radar and spectral analysis says, these ships are hollow - and filled with biological matter of homogeneous characteristics. This indicates, the biomatter is mostly from a single species of extraterrestrials and their foodstuffs. Judging from temperature readings, most of the aliens seem to be in cold storage.
Sources from other extraterrestrial species which have visited Earth agree with this assessment. Names for the aliens on this ship vary, but they are most commonly called "The Trillions". They are considered such a threat to other species, their competitors ignited Jupiter as a warning beacon. This explains some recent spectacular astronomical occurrences.
The standard practice for The Trillions is to keep most of themselves in cold storage, but cover their target planet with their ships. My staff estimates, they would put 420 trillion of themselves on our own planet. If the human population of Earth were that densely packed, it would fit into 4000 square miles - roughly the size of Connecticut.
Indications are, The Trillions have overrun almost all of our Galaxy. To put it in astronomical terms: We own our Sun, and the other extraterrestrials may own the stars you see in the night sky, but The Trillions own the Milky Way.
Our galaxy has at least 100 billion stars. Most of these are said to be occupied by The Trillions. A more proper term for the species is therefore The Septillions. That is to say, the Trillion Trillions.
On September 11, the extraterrestrials in Manchester invited representative humans to tour their ship. Almost all of the ship was off limits, though. The aliens admitted, the ships are filled with living creatures. That would indicate, ten million aliens per ship. That in turn confirms a total species population that just barely starts in the trillions - which the aliens wish to conceal.
The United Kingdom has declined to consider the extraterrestrials a threat. The Russian Federation believes otherwise. Dunevoy Laboratories has therefore completed a contract to neutralize the threat posed by the aliens on Russian soil.
The strength of the aliens seems to be in their population. Our countermeasures were developed to summon a similarly large population against them.
Certain parts of Earth have 125 million mosquitoes per square mile - especially in northern latitudes during the summer. Siberia is about 5 million square miles, which may give it 625 trillion mosquitoes. Dunevoy Laboratories has done research in animal communications, as you know from the cyborg duck I displayed to the public earlier this year. Mosquitoes proved to be a trivial exercise. They mostly say, "Feed me" or "Run!", and they mostly listen to signals that say, "Food this way" or "Run!" Our countermeasure was to deploy transmitters which summoned mosquitoes from throughout a fifty-mile radius against the alien ship. That is to say, eight thousand square miles of mosquitoes, or one trillion mosquitoes.
We expected the exercise to probe the aliens' own countermeasures. But as later analysis would prove, it went better than expected.
With a combination of "Food this way" and "Run!" signals, we were able to coordinate the mosquitoes to hit the ship as one large mass on September 21. The ship's air intake systems were wide open. As we suspected, the ship had come to Earth to harvest our oxygen for their own needs. And it was venting carbon dioxide. Mosquitoes know that carbon dioxide means living prey, so the ship itself acted as a mosquito beacon.
Half the ship was buried beneath the ground, so the mosquitoes were dependent on the ventilation systems to get there. The systems had filters, but we had anticipated that. Alongside the mosquitoes, we deployed some miniaturized flying "borers" capable of penetrating the filters and opening the way for the mosquitoes.
After the infestation, the extraterrestrials attempted several blocking measures. They had airborne chemicals, but these had apparently been tailored to other species and were ineffective at first. They were also unable to seal their systems because the intakes were already clogged. They were able to electrify their corridors and kill some mosquitoes, but not enough to make a difference. Ultimately they were able to jam our transmissions and borers, but by then the mosquitoes were already in place and knew where the food was.
After several hours, the ship went silent. Russian Army biohazard units confirmed, all active humanoids on the ship were dead. Apparently mosquito bites are toxic to them. They may have breeded in such great numbers purely to compensate for their weak biological systems. The aliens who were in cold storage survived and are now under Russian custody.
Side effects to the Russian civilian population were within expectations. The people and animals of the Novosibirsk area were of course affected by the mosquito swarm, but fatalities were minimal. The mosquito population of Siberia decreased by much less than one percent, so ecosystem impact is negligible.
This does not end the alien hazard. Judging from the performance of their robots earlier this year, no countermeasure works against the extraterrestrials more than once. The mosquito-based countermeasure was of course tailored to the Siberian environment; the aliens elsewhere will have compensated for it by now. If the British Government should choose to develop its own countermeasures, the staff of Dunevoy Laboratories is ready to consult.
Commentary by Wyatt Ferguson.
As everyone on Earth already knows, I was one of the visitors on the ship in Manchester on 11 September, alongside my fiancee Judy Kraaco.
There have been a lot of comparisons of the alien landings to the European colonization of America. That colonization didn't always work, as witness the "Croatoan" incident in the lost colony of Roanoke. But that didn't stop the colonies. And America was not colonized overnight, so we have a while to see how this colonization turns out.
Speaking as a member of the Mashantucket Pequot Nation of Connecticut which operates a famous casino, I have to say we can adapt if we really have to. Our choices may be adapt to them, or exterminate them. If we choose extermination, killing and capturing only half of them seems extremely shortsighted and dangerous.
This may be the end of life on Earth, and it comes with suitable apocalyptic signs. People can read books by the light of Jupiter now, and my Indian nation has pointed out this is like the first colonial landings at Jamestown and Plymouth - which is like the Holocaust to them. But it's amazing how normal life is after the landing. I guess life is good at adapting. I guess it always will be.
Dawn of the Trillions. Commentator: Wyatt Ferguson.
Judy and I are driving to California. A high school friend has invited us to "Cookie's Ranch" which he runs at a five-corner intersection in the town of Creston in the southern Coast Range. This'll look good on my map... We get some time to do this, because the next starship of The Trillions is landing there!
On the way, we stop at the California desert town of Essex. Under the circumstances, it's like Happy Days, except the local equivalent of Mr. Cunningham runs the police, the officers carry around sticks of dynamite, and a match can start a riot.
In all fairness to the officers, they're carrying the dynamite because they confiscated it from militiamen. Some people are just not happy about aliens landing in California.
When the riot starts, Judy and I are in a restaurant. When I see the riot starting, I run out. I trust her to follow me, but she's not there!
But then I see something come out of the building - fast. It lands in a heap on the ground. When the dust settles, I see the Hurrier on top of my lady! He says, "You're welcome." Then he runs off. He's as annoying as ever, but he saved her and I didn't. (12 Oct)
The next day, we make it to the ranch in Creston. It's blocked by swarms of construction workers building new houses - and they're The Trillions! A huge development of ranch houses is their guardian troops' way of living like Earth natives.
The aliens have gotten attention, of course. A New Age drive-in church is having services in their honor. And there are dust motes swarming around their ships. I'd guess The Trillions have improved their anti-mosquito defenses since the Siberian landing.
In the nearby country store, I buy two beers. This makes me eligible for massive barter. People are stocking up on survival supplies, and talking about a concentration camp up in Napa, if only they can take enough prisoners to populate it. Yeesh.
Two more high school friends are there, acting rowdy. Judy and I go sleep in the basement.
The next morning, an alien woman comes down and starts pouring water in bowls - but it's really carbolic acid. It's giving off enough carbon dioxide to choke us!
I grab a nearby conch in case I have to conk her. I hope Judy's awake.
But the alien spins around and shoots a green cloud at me! I'm coughing too much to do anything as she targets Judy.
As we both cough, she explains. The cloud contains microorganisms which feed on carbon dioxide and turn it to oxygen. Judy and I are now no longer dependent on environmental oxygen levels. The Trillions gave up that dependence long ago; that's how they deal with lack of vegetation on the planets they colonize.
This is presumably a good thing for our bodies (though we'd best get a second opinion). So, as the acting ambassadors of Earth, all we can do is advise The Trillions not to do that again to Earthlings without warning.
Afterward, we continue to San Francisco to get a sense of public response. I think my mage/militia contact "Black Brady" knows I'm in there, but we studiously ignore each other. I may have mentioned, militiamen don't like me. Good thing I have my wide-brimmed hat. (13 Oct)
Iv. Commentator: Wyatt Ferguson.
People are really proud of what their survival gardens have grown this year. Next year could be rough... (3 Nov)
Remember when Jupiter caught fire in September? There's fallout... literally. Planetoid-sized fragments are headed toward the inner system.
The old Superhuman World 1996 had an asteroid threat. We called it Diabolus (= "thrower of stones" in Latin). We've chosen a different name this time: Iv ("sky-god", and son of "Iv Piter", or Jupiter).
I'm mostly zipping around the world in my usual style, trying to hold the plan together. Meanwhile, my fiancee Judy's youngest daughter is on the beach, and it's flooding. Judy wanted to see her family one more time before the end, but she might have cut it too close.
Earth is ducking in toward Venus, but it's going to end up out near Mars. The orbital mechanics are pretty impressive. (21 Nov)
Judy has a cabin in Maine. There the temperature is swinging between 42 and 65 degrees, and the trees are blooming. (21 Nov)
I'm posing for photos at a charity event in a bar at 2 am, with the sun shining in. The days are already out of sync. (28 Nov)
We're guessing the Infrared Sunbreaker Choir threw this planet at us, probably to wipe out the nests of The Trillions. They hate The Trillions as much as the Russians do. But I don't think the alien and Earthling enemies of the Trillions will be making common cause soon, if the aliens are going to throw planets at us. I suppose Earth will be assembling a mission of vengeance, and all that good stuff. But for now...
I'm finishing my job. I put my maniacal roaming and journalling tendencies in the service of Earth this month. I worked hard, with a bunch of people I don't usually get along with. I'm tired. My boss is letting me out of work early today for Second Thanksgiving, but I don't have to be anywhere until tomorrow. Maybe I'll just go home and drink and cry. I feel like we all just want a good cry. (30 Nov)
The Book of Ends, or, What Have We Learned This Year?
I'd intended The Trillions to be a metaphor for migration and overpopulation. I therefore planned them to be more scary than I've written them. But history shows, population effects are long-term and ultimately solve themselves, even if we don't like the solution. Also, in any sort of world with constant crisis, the current crisis always comes first. Most of my characters know this, even if I don't.
Starting this year, the Superhuman World website has accepted concepts from the Usenet group rec.arts.comics.creative, and responded with stories in their contests. The "talk to the (mosquito) animals" concept came from Martin Phipps, and tied in with The Trillions which became an entry in Contest #3.
All characters in this fiction and the phrase "Superhuman World 2009" are copyright © 2009 by Eiler Technical Enterprises. The map of the Superhuman World is based on one from Henry Bottomley's map software which is well worth a visit.
(signed) Scott Eiler