The Distant Planet A novel

Edinburgh, Scotland, 3456 AD.

When Connor McDonald wakes up from a deep sleep, he finds that his whole world as he knows it has changed. As he immerses himself in his new environment, he meets aliens, robots, and other non-human entities, who live and thrive in the country of his birth.

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2. The Distant Planet-Part Two

****

Edinburgh, Scotland. 

The Second Year of the Cause

I

Penelope shifted uneasily in her bed. She dreamed of the bombing ruining her life. "It's ​horrible​", she told Declan Anderson. He stared at the blackness of the city; he saw the broken shards of glass. "Life is full of disasters", he told his partner. Penelope, who wanted to be a scientist, glanced at the I-scope. "Scotland isn't ruined...yet", she said. She saw more robot soldiers walking down Fredericks Road. They wore heavy armour, and E-scanner guns in their robotic hands. "Stop staring out of the I-scope", Declan said. He continued to sleep, as he waited for the war to end.

II

Connor turned the light on.

"You don't have to be inside here like survivalists on rations". He saw that their eyes were murky. Joan entered the room. "The bombing has stopped". He nodded. Joan smiled at the patients. "It's going to be fine, everyone. There's safeguards for your security". A young girl spoke. "But my mother's alive. She's in Glasgow". She walked towards the beds. "What's your name?", Connor asked her. "Cheryl", she answered. "I'm Connor. You're safe with me". She nodded. "For a year we've eaten canned food from the Storage Room. But it's low. We need to go outside to find more", Connor stated. Joan shivered. "How low?", she wanted to know. "We have a day's lot of food. I'll go outside, and buy some for the group". He walked outside, and headed out of the Hospital. Then, as he breathed in the fresh air, Connor headed down Baxter Road, and reached the shops before the bombs resumed to hit Scotland again.

III

Ivan sipped his warm coffee. 

"I'm running for President of Scotland", he said. He smiled at his wife. "Politics is dangerous, dear", Martha said. He ignored her remark. "We're in the Second Year of the Cause. And nothing has changed", he admitted.

"You can change Scotland for the better".

"THE BUTTON was turned on. It was a security lapse not of my doing", he told her.

"Someone caused World War IV. Maybe it was an inside job". Ivan shook his head. 

"From now on, all security matters shall be part of my campaign". Ivan kissed his wife, and strode boldly towards the air-raid shelters that was a relic of World War II in the 20th Century, a long time ago. 

IV

Jennifer Schofield knocked on the back door of the Scotland Hybrid Department. "Come in!", a man said. She used her E-scanner to go along her hazel eyes, as a form of identification. The man, Alfred Schwinn, said: "We have guards watching us. That's why it looks like the front door isn't guarded. Please follow me". Jennifer, who was nineteen, had applied for a job on-line, since the war had taken its toll last year, during The First Cause happened. She saw several people charging their E-scanners to creamy walls; she smiled at them. "We need a new Research Assistant for the overseeing of the hybrids. They're in the Deane Chambers", Alfred said. Jennifer nodded. "Do they change?", she asked him. "Yes, it's part of their DNA structure; its part of their haemoglobin that's changed into another form entirely", Alfred told her. "Another form? Will they attack us?". Alfred shook his head. "Some hybrids are in the Iron Room. It's guarded by cyber-soldiers in case there's an incident. I pay three million dollars a year to safeguard the facility". Jennifer nodded. "When can I begin?", she asked him. "Now", Alfred answered her.

V

Stella Roberts was alone...as usual. She grabbed her black gown with her small hands. She decided to wear it for the Scottish Ball tonight. The E-taxi was waiting for her. "Miss Roberts, it's five o'clock", Ed said. "I'll be there in five minutes' time". Once she was ready, she walked in her white shoes. She opened the cyber-door by using her eyes; she heard the clicking sound of the door closing. Stella grabbed her E-purse. Then, as Ed opened the passenger-side door, she smiled at him. And he closed it, then drove towards the Glasgow Cryogenics Ball in the middle of town.

VI

Alain Caine Harris stared at the woman who was in Interrogation Room #445b.

"So, it is ​true. You sold your gold to the highest bidder". The woman, Sara D. Courtney, smiled.

"I have my reasons", she stated.

"You were greedy".

"Talk is cheap", Alain shook his head.

"The war has changed Scotland forever. Prices on the Glasgow Stock Exchange is up​; prices will go through the roof because of the fate of the world", Alain yelled. Sara grinned. "You think you're better than Earl Thomas Lang?", he asked her. "Earl is my Uncle. He's a gold, silver, and bronze E-trader; he's worth over five hundred billion dollars", she answered. Alain checked his I-scanner. When he reached the article of Scotland's Top 300 self-made billionaires, he found what he wanted to know. "You stole from him when you turned eighteen", Alain stated.

"He gave some gold for my birthday on March 9. It was a gift". Alain smiled uneasily. "Tell me about the Stein Account?", he asked her. Sara smirked. "The Stein Account is a TOP SECRET account for Hungarian Jews to keep after the Six-Day War of 1967 ended. It is sacred to the Jews in Isreal", she answered. She looked around to see whether or not she was photographed; she wasn't. "You're born in Glasgow?", Alain asked. "Yes, I'm a Jewish-Scotland lady. Now, are there any kind of questions? I need some tea". Alain nodded. "No, that's all...for now. You can leave". And Sara walked out of the Interrogation Room, and headed to her apartment.

****

VII

Bert Daniels smoked a E-cigar. 

"What do you want now, Jennifer. I'm old...and the war's dragging on and on, and on", he asked her.

"It's the Second Cause, Bert. It's the New Wave of...". Bert sat in his brown chair dressed in his green pyjamas...and brown slippers. "You know everything about The Cause; you were responsible for...". Bert sighed. "I was fighting for a just reason for assimilation between humans, robots, aliens, and hybrids; I was fighting for something that changed history when I was twenty. Now I'm eighty-six. I have seven wives, sixteen children, and thirty-four Grandchildren. And ​now you're here to do what exactly? Retirement is a luxury". Jennifer nodded. "Then what now? Dealing with a new year of wars". She sighed, then she opened the front door...and left the old man to sleep.

VIII

Emily approached Grant Westwood's house. She knocked on the front door. "Grant! It's me!", she yelled. The E-door was scanned for intruders. "Go away!​", he said. Emily knocked on the door. "It's Emily! I want to join The Cause". Grant blinked. "You're too young to be joining us; you have to be seventeen". She sighed. "I know Chase Parker". Grant stared at her. "Chase is a loose cannon. He will press THE BUTTON if his father finds him", Grant stated. And he waited for her to leave before the darkness arrived in Scotland.

IX

Connor arrived at ​The Cosmos Grocery Store. ​He saw dozens of robots scanning the prices with their machines. He grabbed a red bucket, and begun to shop. 

"Can I help you?", Sandie Rice asked.

"Yes, I need steaks, lamb, vegetables, coffee, and tea", he answered her. 

"Most of the store has limited supplies since The Second Cause has caused all of the prices to skyrocket". Connor, who had three thousand E-dollars with him, made sure he could afford everything. Half an hour later, he used the E-scanner to pay for the groceries. Then he left the store...and headed to the Storage Room where he would have dinner with the doctors, nurses, and survivalists.

X

The Old Scotland Hotel was open. Bethany gazed at the moon. "I hope you wouldn't demand something from us", Sir Charles stated. He warmed his cold hands with the E-fireplace. "Food is a priority; we need a lot of food", Bethany stated. She saw the cyber-soldiers marching down Baxter Road; she was prepared for World War IV. And, as she served Sir Charles his Earl Grey tea, the matter of The Cause was being discussed inside.

XI

"Frankly, I hate The Cause", Lord Rupert de Lowell said. He looked at the group of moderates. "But we can't do anything", Kerry Black, said. She wore a grey gas mask on her face; she was eager to breathe in the nasty air that was reminiscent of The Blitz. The past was something that didn't go away. It was the future which proved to be a problem. "The Cause was something that was unforseen", Greg Scholes, III, said. He smoked a E-cigar. "I can control the political damage at the polls. It's a race between myself and Sir Charles. He isn't popular these days". Kerry focused on the I-screen video player; the player was twenty year's old. "It seems Sir Charles has a fifty-fifty chance of winning the election. He wants and end to The Cause. He thinks the war's going on too long", she said. Lord Rupert sighed. "As I expected. There's a sense of resignation in his voice", he stated. Kerry pressed the END button, and focused her attention on making sure Scotland was free again.

XII

Alain Cain Harris attended the Board Meeting of the Scotland Haemoglobin Society. He saw Margaret Robertson, the secretary, smiling at him. "Early day, Alain. It's four o'clock in the morning". He yawned, as he sipped his third coffee. "It's the matter of The Second Cause", he stated. She looked at him. "Will the Cause war pay the medical bills in Glasgow, and Edinburgh?", she asked him. "Maybe; maybe not. Ivan is funding a campaign to be President of Scotland; he is going to win", he answered her. Margaret stared at her E-scanner. "Bert, this is Margaret. Alain is here for the four-thirty meeting", she said. "Tell him to wait", Bert said. She smiled. "Take a seat, Alain. Maybe you can read a E-scanner magazine". And he nodded, and sat down on a dark red chair in the spacious Waiting Room.

XIII

Jocelyn smoked an E-cigarette. 

"It's not your fault", Eugene Quentin said.

"Scotland is dying. ​I'm giving blood to the Society's lab". She strode forward towards the grey double doors. Three robot guards stood at attention. Eugene sighed, and followed her outside to the waiting E-taxi, that took them to the lab.

XIV

Alain opened the door.

Bert stood in his majestic black leather chair. 

"I only have one hour to tell everyone the bad news", he said. Alain shifted uneasily in his seat, along with the ten other members. "What is it about, Bert?", Madison Westwood asked. "As you know, cryogenics is the future of living. Freezing people for a long period of time makes money for the Glasgow Cryogenic Corporation. Because Ivan cut the budget last year, we're low on E-currency. That's why all of the precious metals must be bought at a higher price than normal. Gold, silver, and bronze metals will be burned downward via the crushing machine that will be done by robots. The Second Cause will be fought for the metals in the next decade". Bert drank some water from a glass. Alain assessed the situation. "What about World War IV? Everything costs money", he asked him. "There's no time. We must prepare for World War V in the year 4,000". Bert heard a loud knocking on the double doors. "ENTER!", he added. Suddenly Maggie Thorpe, the Vice-President of the Scotland Haemoglobin Society appeared. "Bert, there's new patients who are giving blood at the lab", she said. He nodded. "Prepare for the transfusions, Maggie", he said. She smiled at Alain, and left the group of people alone to conclude their meeting.

XV

Connor had felt old. He didn't want to be underground forever. "I'll be going to the surface. If anyone wants join me, they're welcome to check out the lab", he stated. He wore a gas mask on his face. Then he opened the Iron Door. He saw twenty I-rifles that were on the silvery surface. He took one of them out of the deep chamber, and wore a grey suit. He was wearing black boots on his feet. By five-forty-five in the early morning, the two moons were still dark in the dim sky over Scotland. Connor heard the swishing sound. As the doors opened, Connor saw several Anti-Radiation barrels marked: ​WARNING: IMMINENT DANGER. ​He saw sixteen cyber-soldiers armed in full armour. They were equipped with I-rifles in their gloved hands. "HALT! STATE YOUR BUSINESS!", one of them shouted. "Connor. I want to talk to Colonel Franklin Younger about The Second Cause". The soldier dropped his weapon. "Follow me, Sir". And he hopped onto a E-jeep, as a dark plume of smoke billowed from the hard ground.

XVI

Primrose gazed out of the windows. She heard the loud bombing outside the Boarding School. "We have to go", Ethel said. She looked at the dark office of Miss Garrison. The door was closed. Primrose stared out at the two moons in the night sky. "​They must stop!​", Cara said. She looked at the Scotland News E-scanner. "The war's continuing to ruin the country. Father and Mother say that The Second Cause is worse than last year". She looked at the bunks in the small, dingy, room. Two lamps illuminated the blue curtains near the windows. "What can we do?", Francine asked. Primrose took a long, deep, breath. She walked towards the E-robot that was stored in an old trunk underneath her bunk. "Simon Anders would know what to do", she said. "The robot", Ethel said. "It's a robot that's programmed to search for hybrids", Primrose walked to the arched walls. "It's here", she added. "What is it?", Francine asked. "It's The Leukaemia Room", Ethel answered. She looked at the closed door. "Mother had the disease when I was born. Father saw her die in bed; it was during The Great Scourge of Glasgow". She looked at the stone key that was slightly broken. "And now we're all fighting the disease as the bombs come downward on the city", Francine shivered. "It's all collected in the Glasgow Times ​app on my old I-phone", Primrose stated. Before they could do anything, she grabbed her robot in her small, right, hand. Then she told it to take them to safety. 

***

XVII

Colonel Franklin Younger smoked an E-cigar. "So, you're concerned about The Second Cause?", he asked Connor. "It's part of the War Papers of Glasgow. I wrote a thesis in college about it", he answered him. "You think there's going to be World War V?". Connor looked at the map on the mahogany table in the middle of the Mess Hall. "Wars don't come all of the time. And they're expensive. Besides, The Second Cause is a function of open hostility between humans, aliens, and hybrids. And robots. We're not functioning as a whole people". The Colonel shrugged. "From the nineteen thirties to now, all wars have cost us billions of dollars. And we lost several of them. In Glasgow, we're trying to fight the alien threat". Connor scanned the map. "The haemoglobin labs are short of people who want to give blood", Connor said. "All blood diseases are rare now", the Colonel said. "How is that possible?", he asked him. "It's part of the genetic manipulation scheme, or GMS, for short. We manipulate the blood stream of human patients in the labs. And they're new again", the Colonel stated. "How new?", Connor asked. "There's the shifting of DNA that infects new blood. Once humans are infected, there's a waiting period of twenty-four to forty-eight hours before the process continues all over again". Connor nodded. "Can I be part of the process?", he asked him. "Yes. Do you have a medical background?". "Yes, I can oversee the labs". And he shook the Colonel's right hand...and the end of the Second Cause had taken its eventual toll on everyone.

Page 2.

 

 

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