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The Way Back Machine

Chapter 01 , 02

Chapter 2

           Well, sir, did those new rheostats I picked up do the trick?
           I really don't know how to thank you enough, lad. I should have this thing up and running within the next day or two.
           That much damage?
           Oh yes. The current to some of the most sensitive pieces in this thing has to be adjusted just perfect. I just hope we are lucky enough that we didn't damage any of the irreplaceable components.
           That is right, lad. Some of the most intricate parts of this entire machine are one-of-a-kind items.
           Did the inventor die, or something?
           Don't rightly know. Got them from a garage sale in Roswell, New Mexico. Old friend of mine was getting rid of a bunch of military surplus he had obtained in a special sale.
           Wow! So you ended up with high tech military secrets?
           Sure did. They are also in code.
           Yeah. There is a special code language on these items. Took me five years to finally figure it out. Quite an interesting coding sequence with an outrageously complicated substitution cipher, but I figured it out.
           You mean these weird alien-like symbols on the side, here?
           Yup, that's them. Pretty smart of the government to use those symbols. Helped to spread the alien hysteria in the sixties.
           Yeah, but that died out in the seventies, didn't it?
           Pretty much, although that is why I was able to get this stuff so cheap.
           So what happened to your old friend, then?
           Can't rightly say. Lost track of him shortly after I bought everything. Had a lot of federal agents stop by my lab trying to find him. Turns out he was a really good scientist, but he got a bit upset with his bosses. I'm not a snitch, especially to those lying feds. Told them I just stopped by for a cup of Earl Grey, and left. Didn't see anything out of the ordinary.
           Wow, sir. I didn't think science was such a dangerous profession.
           Oh, it is, lad. It is. Why, the government will try and get rid of any scientist that doesn't tow the line. I bet ya my old friend invented something that would hurt the oil industry. Oh, yeah. That will get you on a hit list quick. Yup, I even had to get creative about this project to get the grant money.
           What did you tell them?
           I didn't really lie, I just told them I was working on a universal translator.
           Just because I left out the fact that it could also translate conversations that were held in the historical past, doesn't make it any less of a universal translator, now, does it?
           So the universal translator is yours, then?
           The case around it, the circuit boards and all that, but the main module is government.
           Pretty risky, making your machine dependent on a single piece of government technology, isn't it?
           Heck, no! I got an entire box of those chips. They came in packages of a dozen. He told me they went into some special helmets, but he sold out of those the day before. Probably some new helmet so the troops don't have to have translators with them in combat.
           So what did you do to get the grant?
           The first chip I used, I tied that into a dummy chip which I made from some cell phone parts. It just relayed the information from the test model, to the real chip in my lapel pin, to their receivers. So when they popped opened the back and checked inside, they were none the wiser. Worked more than well enough to get me my initial grant.
           Wow, so what about the other tech you bought? What type of project do you think the government was working on?
           Time travel. Has to be time travel. Nothing else would explain it. After all, there aren't any aliens out there.
           Why do you say that, sir?
           It is all a government conspiracy to keep the good people of the world scared. That is what the governments do. Keep people scared so they don't fight their rulers. Then they blame everything on something else to get the people riled up and willing to fight and kill whomever the enemy is. Used to be done just for population control. Send a few hundred to a thousand people to a foreign land, and that is a thousand less mouths to feed. Now the government just does it to get their kick backs from the corporations that manufacture weapons that the government invented in the first place.
           Well, I can agree with that. I am familiar with the Industrial Military Complex. Still, it sounded like the people we have been listening to may have been aliens.
           You have a good point, lad. Yet as a scientist, I do not have enough data to confirm or deny such a claim. Still too many variables, although my hypothesis is leaning more towards the Druids. Logic dictates that aliens would have had reinforcements come and check on them every so often. I can NOT accept that. Nope, just can't do it. The reason the government stopped doing the alien conspiracy thing is simple. Not profitable to the Industrial WAR Complex. Much easier to sell weapons because of a tangible and visible threat than an invisible and unproven enemy.
           Hmmmm, haven't thought about that, sir.
           Don't worry, lad. You will start seeing what is going on, I am sure; after all, you have a lot of potential. You are turning into the best assistant I have ever had. Why if this goes well, I will have to put your name on the follow up Grant next year. That is when the funds for this lab finally runs out.
           I would be honored, sir.
           I know that, lad. I know. Who in their right mind wouldn't want to be associated with my name?
           Well, there is George.
           Oh, him. All I can say is you can't teach a turnip to be an oak tree. He was great for manual labor, but couldn't even figure out how to play a game of chess.
           Yup, never could get the knight moves down. Always screwed them up along with castling, and don't get me started on en passant.
           Yeah, that pawn in passing stuff confuses a lot of players.
           Sure does. Just shows how limited their individual brains are. Clearly substandard. But then again, even the World Chess Federation has their dirty little secrets, too.
           Oh yeah, the Lombardy family is credited with the creation of modern chess, but they only standardized it. It is what the french were doing in history at the time.
           Oh, that's right. I remember learning about that.
           Very good. Shows you listened to your professors.
           Yeah, they tried to standardized everything from artist paints to zuffolos. They ended up with the credit for a lot of things that were made in history.
           Not quite right there, lad. Those zuffolos were credited to the Italians. But pretty much correct. It was Alfonso the Tenth's manuscript that they plagiarized, but they didn't care. After all, King Alfonso the Tenth was a Spaniard.
           Yeah, you can get a copy of the manuscript and excellent translation online in pdf format now. Heck, they are releasing all kinds of good information.
           So when are we going to fire this machine back up, sir?
           Well if all goes well, hmmmmmm, now sound good?
           YES, SIR! Oh my, I'll be ready at my station, sir!
           Very good, lad. You just wait over there and let me do a few more adjustments, and we shall hear what happened.

I'm going to be rich! I'm going to be rich! I'm going to be FUCKIN' RICH!!!! Oh my god, he actually got a hold of alien technology, and he doesn't want to believe it! All I need are some electronics classes, and I'll be able to DE-engineer this shit, no problem. Fuck! Warren did better at putting boards together back in junior high than this old fart. If that nerd could do it, so can I. Gotta get a pack of those translator chips, and I'll be all set. Oh, he's almost ready. Got to get my head back into the game, here.

           Alright lad, in three... two... one... Press the red button!

And done. Not sure what these screams are all about just glad they don't last long. And... the sound of snoring along with the professor doing a little jig. He's happy. Seems like he got this thing fixed. I'm going to have to go over every inch of this machine. Footsteps? Yeah, footsteps. I can even hear the people walking by the area. So now we wait. I knew I should have talked to the professor about that fast forward button. Definitely have to have him make that before I take this money maker over. Still, I have to gain enough of his trust to let me go into the parts room. Wonder what other types of alien tech is in there, but it's got that huge ass ancient lock on the door! Hell, the key for that damn thing has to be bigger than my damn cell phone. Wonder where he keeps it. Hmmm.

           I can't believe I am going to actually do this.

Whoa! Where the hell did she come from? I didn't even hear her walk up.

           I know you wouldn't ever harm me, but why am I always so scared to be around you? I tremble just looking at you. You are not large; you are not brutish or mean. Why am I always so frightened just having you look at me? I can do this. All I have to do is touch his... No. I can't do this. Damn. Maybe if I wake his slave boy, instead. Yeah, that will work.
           Sorry, sorry, could you wake-- yes, that is it. Please?
           What is it?
           Sir? You are already awake.
           Silky? I thought that was your energy I felt. What's wrong, young one?
           Sir, I'm... Ahhh...
           Calm down, young one. You are radiating your fear, and that has a tendency to make me angry so please, calm down.
           I'm sorry, sir. I can't help it.
           I know. It is instinctual.
           Yes, Silky. Instinctual.
           But why? You haven't done anything to me or anybody. Why do I feel this way?
           Well, that is a long story which we can get to some other time. Tell me why you needed to wake me?
           Oh, that, yeah, ummm... We have a problem, and my supervisor said you were the only one that could help.
           I've been getting a lot of that since my arrival here. But you still haven't told me what is wrong, Silky. Focus.
           Oh, yes, sorry, ummm... There were a pair of expired shells that we were supposed to pick up tonight but, well, ummm...
           Nothing unusual so far.
           It's... It's... Well, the shells are really skittish and panicky for some reason.
           I take it that the expired shells were the parental units for a family unit?
           Yes! How did you...?
           It is fine, Silky. Here, look into my eyes for a moment.
           Yes, sir.
           Now calm yourself... relax. Relax your breathing just a bit more. Yes, that is better. Now let's continue.
           I just felt a wave of calm come from you. How did you do that?
           I just shared my emotions with you, that is all.
           Shared your emotions?
           Yes, Silky. It's the same thing that you do when you are afraid, but try to hide it.
           Wait, if I hide my emotions you can sense them?
           Yes. And now you are feeling embarrassed, with the nervousness and fear coming back. Calm down, hon. Silky... Silky... HAI!
           OH, what-- Oh, sorry, sir. I just started to think about all kinds of things, and well...
           It is alright, Silky. Now why do they need my help?
           My supervisor said to wake you and request your help. The shells are too skittish and panicky. Really overwhelming, and Lightbringer went to help Rockrider on some kind of, not too sure what he called it other than a wild idea about stone that makes no sense, so he has nobody that can calm them down. Wow. I remembered most of the message!
           Very good, Silky. Tell them to have the mask I sent over there ready, and I will get this taken care of right after nightfall.
           Yes, SIR!
           Oh, and Silky!
           Yes, sir?
           Have them get Bitchy and her other ancients friends. I think it's time to give everyone a class.
           Yes, sir! Anything else, sir?
           No, Silky, that will do. Think you can remember it all?
           I will do my best, sir!
           That is all I can ask for. Now, off you go.
           Yes, sir. Thank you, sir!
           You mean everyone has forgotten how to speak with their emotions?

Who's that?

           Oh, you caught most of that, did you?
           Yes. I may not be able to articulate well in these shells yet, but I can still understand emotions for now.
           I know. That is to your advantage currently, but that ability will fade in time for you.
           Maa speaks to me this way, too.
           Of course she does. You have the oldest soul here. Another reason these shells think she and I are gods, oh joy. Too bad all the other eternal companions have forgotten.
           True, but they did not return to an animal shell a second time.
           That was your choice, not mine.
           We both know it had to happen.
           True, but they don't. I need you to stay here.
           I don't need you ending up in another shell. It frightens the primitive shells when you arrive in a new shell whelping and howling.
           Not my fault I expire so painfully.
           Actually, it is.
           We will work on it. It also causes problems when I articulate with you and answer your unspoken questions.
           Oh, but...
           Yes, but...
           Oh, all right.
           I will be back in a little while. Here.
           Oh-oh! I get to draw. Oh, oh, oh! Drawing is fun!
           There ya go. Use that wall.

Oh my God... The machine is following him! All kinds of voices, so deafening, so hard to focus on any conversation. OK, that's better. Sounds like he's walking down a corridor, now.

           Sir! Thank you for coming. I don't know what to do. Last time they got this bad it took weeks to calm them back down. Not sure what happened to the couple. All we know was that it was sudden.
           Well, that is why we came up with this process.
           Yes, sir, but the grief from the offspring is so overwhelming, and it is spreading. It is starting to cause fear and panic again.
           All right, well once the ancient ones get here, we will take care of it. Give me that mask, and let me know when they get here.
           Yes, sir! Your wife is already here.
           Good, she is in the back.
           Of course, sir.
           Why am I not surprised. This is going to be a long night, I'm sure. Is there anything that they do remember? It is a wonder that they have made it this far.
           Oh, good, you made it.
           Silky is doing much better. Still has a lot past incarnation fear in her, but that is not that unusual for such a quiet and timid soul.
           Yes. These shells look so peaceful once the soul leaves for the next shell. I know it doesn't really matter, but I, too, feel the emotion of loss now. These shells are troublesome. It's my fault you know.
           How is it your fault that these shells are troublesome?
           Not that, the death of the two primitive shells.
           Well I was doing so well I thought, but...
           I got angry again and glared at them. They shuttered, clutched their chests, and fell over. Much like the others. But I can do it to the shells that work here, and they don't do that. It has to do with the soul, doesn't it?
           Yes, it does. The shells working here have scavenger souls. Mostly jackal and vulture souls with a few hyena thrown in for good measure.
           You know, I never thought it would cause so much problems.
           Well, you were a fearsome predator.
           But that was much more than one ice age ago.
           You know I could fix all this. It would only take me a thousand cycles or so to work off the Karma.
           No, Gaia was very specific on that fact that it has to happen one more time.
           But it would be so much easier if I...
           I can not falter on this. You know that.
           Just offering. My place is not to understand, so if this is the course of action we need to take, then so be it. I will obey as I swore to do.
           As you always have, once you choose to listen back then.
           You saved me from endless soul cycles of having to eat bugs during ice ages. I'll do whatever you need.
           You are faithful. Think you can explain all this to the others?
           I will do my best. How much am I allowed to tell them?
           Do the same thing you have always done. Tell them the truth, if they ask. You do not have to divulge everything. It will make no difference, for all will repeat what they did wrong anyway. Such is the nature of Karma.
           Except for those that learn, which is why you have gathered the specific ancients you wanted here, those that you trust. That is where I find fault in this.
           You think that those who are wrong will not pay for the wrongs that they keep repeating?
           No, I know they will pay in the long run as you and Gaia have deduced. But I could make this so much quicker.
           To achieve the level of technology we need for our future, we have to do this. That is why Gaia and the collective chose this course of action. I know we are almost half way to the next major Karma reset, and you know as well as I do the visions we all saw. Our window is only so--a few thousand cycles long. If we do not advance these shells, we will never be able to escape until the next Nova, and neither Gaia nor the collective want that to happen without a solid line on the next biosphere. We have to be very precise with any corrections, and Gaia wants those souls that keep causing these problems gone. Permanently! Ancients, or NOT!
           You won't get any arguments from me. Having my shell's eternal organs ripped out by birds of prey incarnation after incarnation doesn't endear them to me. Gaia isn't upset with me, so the devolution of souls going to happen makes no matter to me.
           The guilty cannot improve if they think they are correct, now, can they? Gaia knows full well that some of this problem has to do with the energy source we call the sun, but the total chaos prior to every major Karma reset is keeping the souls from advancing towards interplanetary travel, once again. These specific souls will be terminated. They are faulty, and Gaia wants them gone.
           Your will is my command, as always, Maa.
           I am going to leave now. Handle this as you see fit. They all know I will not be around in form much longer, so you do need to expedite this. Do the, shall we say, the best you can do.
           You know, I think I may have found the humor in a lot of this. Even in about what I'm going to say.
           That is?
           As you wish.
           You know, I always liked it when you used that. I am going to enjoy monitoring all this. I really am.
           I know.
           So what did she say?

Fuck! What--? Damn they are going to have me jumping out of my skin.

           Maa wishes me to teach, so I must teach.
           You know, I am really glad you showed up when you did.
           Why is that, Bitchy?
           I couldn't understand much of what I felt between the two of you.
           If she had wanted you to understand, you would understand. I do not speak for her. She speaks for herself.
           Yeah, I know. It is just that all of what we are doing is not making much sense to me.
           Hence the class I am about to give.
           So we are about to learn why we have to go through all this shit again.
           I will answer what I can.
           What you can, or what you want?
           While you would say that depends on the question, I say that depends on what you want to know. If you have a question, I will answer it. May not be the answer you want, but I will answer it as truthfully as I can.
           Maa does know you.
           Alright then, I only have one question for you. Can I use the cow mask?
           Go right ahead, Bitchy. After all, that is your soul animal.
           Yeah, well the people of the great valley treated me very well. I liked that form. What about you?
           I'm more of a raptor type myself, but I can be about any predator if I need to be.
           That explains a lot. It really does.
           Is that why you don't trust me?
           No, it is because Maa said we have to trust you.
           Fair enough.
           So what are you planning on teaching?
           How to project emotions so we can calm these primitive shells down when they get out of hand.
           I teach some of my priestesses to do that. It helps when delivering the offspring.
           How large of a radius can you project?
           Not really sure. Never really thought about it.
           Any of the rest know how to do it?
           Well there is that soul that spooked all the primitive shells when they first got here.
           Very funny.
           No, I mean it. I was really impressed! You not only made over fifty of the warriors drop their weapons and run--that in itself was impressive enough--but to have over half the village run for their lives at the same time! That was really impressive! How'd you do that, anyway?
           That was called anger, and if they hadn't attacked without provocation then it would not have been a problem.
           Then there was the other time, a couple of moons ago, when you...
           Bitchy, do you really want a repeat of all that? If so, you are heading in the right direction.
           Yeah, I could feel you getting a bit upset.
           The strong emotions are harder to control than the weaker ones.
           That seems to be working very well. Bitchy, what are you doing?
           I am projecting the emotion of a mother towards her innocent child that lays sleeping before her.
           If that is what you teach your priestesses then I-- we will need you, and them, to do it among the shells as soon as possible. That worked real well; calmed me down, right away.
           So basically you're telling me we walk through the area doing that, and we should be able to calm the shells?
           Yes, and please.
           I will get right on it. My eternal companion will stay here to keep me informed, and if needed ask some questions for me.
           Not a problem. Just get them calmed down, and thank you.
           You know, we can do this as a team.
           Yeah, I know.
           Just so you know that.
           Get going, Bitchy.
           Kira, stay here. You know what I'm worried about.
           Yes, Mistress.
           The rest of you girls know what has to happen. Let's get this done.
           Sir? Can I ask you a question?
           Of course, Kira.
           Is it true, what the other eternal companions are saying?
           Well that depends totally on what they are saying.
           They are saying that it is spending too much time in animal shells that causes us to regress.
           Yes, yes it does.
           So that is why your eternal is that way?
           Yes, and as all of you should know, he did it to verify it.
           It's fine. Do not feel sorrow. It needed to happen, and there are no regrets. Maa and I will find a way to fix the problem.
           You felt my sorrow, didn't you?
           Yes, yes I did. You project well.
           But I wasn't trying to project.
           That is where the problem is, Kira.
           It is something peculiar I have found out about these shells over my time. It seems the more you try to hide your emotions, the more they radiate out of the shell.
           That's IT!
           I'll be right back! MISTRESS!
           What is going on, sir?
           Oh, was just explaining some basics about emotion in these shells to Bitchy's eternal, and I must have answered a question before the class even started.
           That actually happens a lot with them.
           Good, at least they have good communication skills.
           Definitely. That is why they made it, being in animal shells and in these shells without regressing.
           That tells me why Maa is so fond of her.
           Was that her task during the last age of cold?
           Sure was, Har.
           The others will be here shortly, sir.
           Good. As soon as possible, get the bodies of the two that died in Maa's presence.
           As you wish.
           Wow, I was a bit agitated about being woken, but I walked past Bitchy's group, and I'm like, 'what do you need, boss?'
           Yeah, we all have to talk about these shells and our emotions a bit, tonight.
           Oh, great, the classes begin.
           You remembered. I'm impressed.
           We have only been around each other for a thousand or so rotations. Not everyone has problems with remembering past incarnations.
           Like you said, not everyone has been around me for the last thousand incarnations, now, have they? However, these shells tend to remember things in specific ways, and you haven't been in that one for that long now; so let's just say, it is interesting.
           So I take it you sent Maa's pick for our future on a quest of some sort.
           I will explain that, too.
           Good, because you lost me on that one.
           No problem.
           So where are the rest of the Ancients?
           I'm here!
           We have one more in the area, currently. Takes a while for her to wake enough to get moving. She just transitioned a few days ago.
           Ah, yes, that can be rather difficult.
           It isn't that hard with her priestess' help. She remembers rather quickly that way.
           Yes, I do like the concept of having priestesses.
           Yeah, so do I!
           Your shell is talking on that one.
           You are staying over near all the young shells?
           Yes, they take REAL good care of me.
           I'm sure they do, Swift. I'm sure they do. So what do you have there behind your back?
           Oh, yeah. I made my own mask!
           Why do you have to be so difficult?
           My question is, why do YOU have to be so difficult?
           Look, you two. You argue like eternal siblings. So Swift, what is that?
           Well, it was Maa's idea. Said if I wanted to be unique, I could combine different animals; so I made my mask this way.
           Well, that does explain a lot. She is having me do that with something, too.
           I think it's a great idea. I will be more memorable to these shells that way.
           Oh, I'm sure you will be memorable, with or without the mask.
           Oh, look who finally woke up.
           Why have we been summoned?
           Maa wants me to teach.
           I understand. Whenever you are ready.
           What about the Counsel and their keeper?
           They are busy following Bitchy around in awe of what she is doing. Their keeper is away on business.
           Good. That will keep them busy for a while. We are going to have to do something about all this, and the mask idea should work out the best.
           I agree. So what are you going to tell us?
           Well, it is about the emotions and these shells.
           Yeah, I have been wondering about that for a long time. So why are these shells so skittish?
           That is fairly easy, actually. Their souls are that of prey. Most of them have only been in these shells for two to five incarnations, at the most. Those that are learning quickly, they are those that have been in these type of shells longer.
           So these primitive shells are reproducing faster than animals?
           No. Why do you say that?
           Well, we only get young souls now.
           Not really. You are still getting older souls. It's just that they reverted and do not remember their past lives. It happens when the souls stay in animal forms too long.
           I don't like that about these shells.
           Yes, and none of us do. Yet emotions tie into that, also.
           Here; let me begin by saying that these shells have the same instinctual reactions as the animal shells they were in the most, in past incarnations or the last incarnation, in some cases. Karma dictates when you elevate a soul to the next higher animal type. It is hard to explain. Their reactions and the ability to feel emotions are nothing more than what all other animals can do. These shells are animal in nature, after all. That is the simplest way of explaining it. These shells cause problems for predator souls because of that. How, we don't really know, but there is a problem.
           What do you mean?
           While there are those of us that have the ability, hiding emotions doesn't always work well with these shells. For example, the more you try to hide emotions, the more the emotions radiate outwards. The stronger the emotion you are trying to hide, the more it radiates out.
           That isn't what happened when you arrived.
           No, no it wasn't. But as a predator soul, my survive mode projected my anger. Works wonders to cause fear among those you wish to slaughter, and these shells are very susceptible to fear.
           That's not the only thing!
           Yeah, Swift, I know.
           The thing is, we can use our own emotions to help control and work with these primitive shells. But we also have to learn control, and I know I am not really the one to talk about that. But we do need to learn to take control of the situations with these primitives and not let our own emotions cause chaos and panic.
           Oh, like what I did. Shortly after we got here. In that village down the river.
           Look, I have never seen one of those things before, and... Damn if I didn't freeze up like a child when it came out of the water! It was HUGE!
           Yeah, I will be using part of that beast for my part of the story.
           I have taken on some strange creatures in my incarnations, but nothing like that!
           Well Swift, I am glad you leaned that you are not indestructible. Your screaming when you came into your next shell was deafening. Also, why we have to do all of this. These primitives believe we are Gods, now.
           Well isn't that what Maa wanted? After all, we have shell priority.
           Yes, but we could have had an easier time of it. Ishtar got off so easy.
           Back to class, sir?
           Oh, yeah. Right.
           I'm back. Did I miss much?
           Not really. Just talking about how swift Swift was not swift in his last shell.
           Hee, hee. I kind of felt bad for what they brought back. It was in a basket, all smashed, and really--
           Alright, enough! I can still feel it, I swear I can! I can't even get close to one of those creatures without trembling.
           That feeling is called respect. Just thought you should know.
           Why don't we have them build a place we can be, without us overly affecting these primitive shells?
           That is also in the works. That is what I sent Rockrider to do, actually.
           Yeah, what is going on with that? You said you would explain.
           No problem. These shells tend to remember those things that are emotionally significant to them.
           I can attest to that!
           We know, Swift, we know. Rockrider really doesn't need to get the stone in the method I sent him to try. It will just cause him to remember things he knew in past incarnations, and a specific event is the key, for that event was very emotionally significant to him. In turn he will not only be able, over numerous incarnations, get the structures done Maa wants completed, but...
           How is that?
           Rockrider built a very large structure in a land far from here, many incarnations ago. I was witness to its beginning and actually befriended him then. Which takes several of my incarnations, as some of you know. What is about to happen will let him remember how to move large stone. Granted it will not be exactly how he did it then, and it will improve over incarnations, but it will all begin with what is about to happen.
           So having people around us that know our souls will help keep our memories going.
           Yes. But it will not last forever.
           Why is that?
           There will come a time when we will have to part for a good number of incarnations. It will be the will of Maa. For now though, about projecting your emotions... What I need each of you to do is pick an emotion. An emotion that is soft. Something that will not cause panic or fear.
           I know what emotion I'm going to pick!
           Always choose the same one, don't you, Swift?
           If I am going to be stuck in these shells, I may as well enjoy it.
           That is something that will never change about you. But as an example of pushing out emotions...
This is why our language causes so much problems. Do you all understand now?
           YESAH SUREI.
           Good. Now all of you go out and practice on some of the shells. Try and do it in seclusion at first, but test what you can do.
           Woah... those were... wow. What you just did, that was really intense! Can I wear my mask?
           Go ahead; in fact, we will all end up wearing the masks, and some of us, more than one. We cannot risk directly gazing at them for right now.
           Because some of us will end up being their leaders over many of our incarnations, and the soul tends to pick similar shells types. Granted when that occurs we will not require the masks, but for now we need to wear them. The longevity and fragility of these shells around us and the ones we occupy require it. As soon as I can check the bodies of the recently terminated shells, I can better explain. But our direct visual interaction in anger seems to be harming these shells; so for now, it is what must be done. If your shell expires, we can still have one of us take your place until you are found, or we can have you around whichever shell we make wear the mask, if you are in a child. These primitive shells have no sense of direction for our emotional language, which is also a big reason why we really need to NOT argue in front of these primitive shells. It overloads their senses. You need to understand that these primitive shells... They can barely articulate with each other compared to other more advanced shells, like the ones Ishtar has. Because of this, our emotional language influences them greatly. Remember, we are trying to do this in an effort to leave us clues on what we need to remember in the future. These primitive shells are all we have to work with, so we need to make the best of it all. Hopefully we will advance these shells enough to get the technology where we need it, before the next major ice age begins.
           How much time do we have?
           Seven thousand rotations or so till the ice is all gone. It has never taken long to heat up after all the ice is gone on this biosphere. Maa and Gaia know better than I, really. That is not that long in the broad aspect.
           No, no it is not. But in these shells, it is.
           Yes, I do agree. The spans of moons, let alone rotations seem much different than I remember.
           So basically we are going to be running around in these masks until we can get them to record things with these pictures, and just stop?
           Yes, but as Maa dictates. We will start the stories out as Maa dictates, too. She doesn't want to overload these primitive shells. So we will be elongating this entire process over the next four thousand or so rotations.
           We will be stuck here that long?
           Not really. As you noticed, none of Maa's other husbands are here. They too, will be in the entire thing, playing the roles Maa dictates. Just like I have to leave on my next incarnation and go check on Ishtar. We do as Maa wills.
           So we are to repeat what happened last time?
           My mistress doesn't like this plan.
           No doubt. Neither do I. But if that is what Gaia and Maa want, that is what they get. Do you or Bitchy want to argue with Maa?
           Good. Everyone go try it out, and if you have any questions, or make any discoveries, feel free to come and communicate with me or Bitchy. Please. Also, do not forget to tell the others about any updates and changes as soon as they get back. Communication is key right now.
           You know I can get these female shells to do whatever I want, don't you?
           Yeah Swift, you always were good at that, now weren't you?
           It helps having the muscles and such for some reason, although I must admit that I kind of like it when they are afraid.
           It's your predator soul.
           Yeah, well gotta go project some emotion! I love my job!
           So, sir, one last question, please.
           Of course, Kira.
           Well, I will wait until everyone else leaves the building as per directions.
           Very well. Har is just getting out of range now, so go ahead.
           You do know that the Counsel's keeper caused what happened last cycle.
           Yes, as does he; yet he, nor any other soul, knows what actually went wrong.
           So why is he still with us if he is going to do the same thing?
           If I knew that, Kira, I would be as wise and have the foresight of Maa and Gaia combined. I would more than be willing to endure the Karma to fix the problem. But if Maa informs me that it will not work, then I will not argue the point. I do keep offering to fix it, but I know full well, it will not be allowed. I also know that I never wish to anger Maa, especially by disobeying her wishes.
           I will let my mistress know.
           As you will always do.

To be continued......