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When I moved to arise he roused and opened his eyes. “Well, Well, Well, the sleeper awakes! Welcome to the enchanted land of Oz my boy! Cinch up your nut-sack, suck in your gut and get ready for the ride of your life! It is my pleasure to inform you that you have been selected, you win the Booby-prize!”
At this I sat fully up and looked at him quizzically as I fought to comprehend his words. I still felt foggy, adrift, as if I had just awakened from a very deep sleep. Mustering my intellectual acumen I adroitly responded “Huh?”
“Your enthusiasm overwhelms. Just wait until you comprehend the magnitude of your good fortune this day. Just wait! Why SHE chose you I’ll never understand, but she picked you out of a field of thousands. She promised you travel. Already a taste of that, I guess, though you hardly realize it yet. Much more to come. You’ll see!”
“What was that you said about Oz? Oz is fictional! Or did you stuff me on a jet and we’re in New Zealand?”
At that he erupted in laughter. This gave me a moment to shake off the lethargy of my awakening, and as a result when he sobered a bit, I was more engaged.
“No Jets. Magic! Or may as well be.” His mirth subsided and he became a bit more serious. He motioned me to join him on a rock adjacent to his, and then continued in a more serious tone, suddenly sounding a bit like a college professor presenting to a class.
“Almost exactly 500 years before you were born, the most advanced scientist of his day, a man named Leonardo da Vinci speculated about the possibility of flying machines. He imagined helicopters and aircraft with wings. Aeronautical engineers universally agree that aircraft built to his designs probably could have flown if he had a proper power source, and proper materials with which to build the structures he imagined. Leonardo could not even dream about the possibilities of jet engines and routine passenger flights at supersonic speeds. Yet earthly aircraft routinely operate on the same basic physical principles as the fantastical flying machines he described. In just half-a-millennium, all his wildest dreams have not only come true, but have been far, far surpassed.
Today Earth’s most advanced physicists speculate about theoretical constructs such as the Einstein-Rosen bridge, and screenwriters create elaborate imaginary worlds incorporating a colloquialization they call ‘Wormholes’. Now I pose to you the question, what might become of these physicists’ speculations, given another half-a-millennium or so?
As for where we are, no this is not Mr. Baum’s mythical land, and it is not New Zealand either. Don’t worry about where it is, for now. Worry about preparing for what is to come.”
“I see,” I said as I absorbed his words. Mocking the verbal capital letters he had used, I responded, “SHE chose me, and magically transported me to a mystical, far away land where I am to train and prepare for a grand quest, a great adventure, a Hero’s Journey!”
“Hah! You got it!” he ejaculated, laughing heartily.
“So what is this mystical quest? Rescuing a Princess in Distress? Steal an Egg from the Roc’s nest? Slay Talos in Cydonia? Recover the necklace Brísingamen, or Odin’s Draupnir? The promise included high pay as I recall, what is to be my payment? My weight in precious stones and gold? Eternal life? The pulchritudinous body of SHE who chose me?”
“All that and more, my boy, all that and more. Whatever you can imagine, all that and more. If you survive that is.
The short answer is, I do not know. The question has come up a few times, and I have outlined a second story, tentatively titled ‘Chromosome Conspiracy‘ and done a little work on it. But it takes many many hours of hard work to turn an idea into a book. Writing 60,000+ words is HARD!
The way to encourage me to proceed on the sequel is to buy this one. If this book hits the market and sinks like the Titanic, well, I may find motivation to continue lacking. Even if you don’t buy it, Facebook likes, participating in the forums, a few encouraging words will go a long way.
I don’t expect to sell a million books overnight. I do hope I sell a few. It’s ONLY 99 cents on pre-order. So come on gang! Let me know I am not wasting my time.
The Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/ChromosomeQuest
My Personal web page with more information is http://wa4otj.wix.com/wa4otj
A short excerpt from Chromosome Quest to entice the would-be reader. At this point, the hero has just met ‘Petchy’, who plays the role of the ‘Mentor’ in the classic Heroes Journey format. He has awakened on the planet, and they are walking from the portal location to the castle through the forest..
My companion evidently noticed my vigilance as he commented at one point, “Fitz my boy, you can relax a bit. The woods are generally quite safe in the daytime. But never, ever under any circumstances let yourself get caught out here after sunset. Not even close to sunset! Always be in a secure shelter long before nightfall, as failure to do so is certain death! There are three kinds of serious predators, all quite vicious. Fortunately they are all nocturnal. You do not want to face them, trust me.”
As we walked, I considered a million questions, not so much reluctant to ask them, as struggling to decide what to ask first. Are we on another planet, as it appears? That was certainly implied. How did we get here? I know the answer to that one, I guess, Magic! Do we get back home the same way? Do we ever get back home, period? I settled on a more mundane question to begin. “You seem to know my name, but I don’t know yours.”
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This “Heroes Journey” tale has everything! Portals to other worlds, genetic manipulation, furry Cat-People, a hapless Hero, a buxom red-headed Heroine, a bad-ass Villain, castles, amok computers, great battles, and Dinosaurs! Can’t leave out the dinosaurs!
Oh, yeah, there’s plenty of sex too! Well, not with dinosaurs. Maybe we’ll hold that one for the sequel.