Genes and Other Spirally Things – Prologue

PROLOGUE

Or “A bit of confusing text before the main confusing bit, to confuse the reader, completely”

Here the grass was green. There were no pollutants floating about in the air. All the trees were standing, and there was no sign of the M25. Animals long extinct in the present Britain were alive. Wolves, otters, beavers and bears would all hunt, swim, build dams and roam freely. Only a handful of Neanderthal hunters threatened their natural existence.

Of these, none had much intelligence. While they had invented the spear they were still figuring out if it could be used for hunting, or was it a better idea to use it and invent darts. That would be good for them, as they had already figured out how to brew beer and how to make pork scratchings. Otherwise, this place was an Eden. No taxes, no supermarket queues where people with ten items go to the ‘nine items or less*’ till, and no morning telly.

This place was a veritable paradise. It was a few degrees warmer than it is now and a bit rainier, but you hardly found pensioners freezing to death. You could do what you want, wherever you wanted to do it. Except for when the bears decided you were too close to their cave and bit your head off.

It was so perfect, that a prominent scientist from a well known star only a few days away by their exceptionally fast interstellar crafts, had decided it would be an excellent spot for some genetic research. He would undertake an experiment that would determine why his people evolved from the primitive monkeys. His planet had dumped their entire population of lesser beings onto this planet for aeons. They were mainly animals that were found to be dangerous, and the most vicious was the Neanderthal Humanis. So all the planet’s population was dumped onto the earth that was the second largest project since the dinosaurs were deported.

Seeing that these Neanderthals were the nearest biological neighbours that they had. It was logical to see if a minimal input of superior genetic material would be sufficient to permit an evolution to a higher existence. He knew that it wasn’t ecologically ethical, but the academic accolades would outweigh what was on his conscience. To prove that aliens gave their civilisation a helping hand would definitely prove that his faction was right. While it would not be directly possible to prove this, he could show that it was possible. His only regret was that he couldn’t find another planet he could use as a control experiment for evolution.

He had visited the Earth for the first time about 70,000 years ago when the first genetic alteration had taken place. Since then He had observed a slightly increased cranial capacity, and that a definite tribal structure was slowly evolving. He knew that this experiment was successful, and that He would be showered with praise when he returned home, at least by half the people there. He knew that to prove some people right, others are automatically proven wrong. He would be known as the one, a legend in academic fields as the one who discovered why. It would be the most important discovery since the invention of bread that always lands butter-side up.

He exited his ship, and stepped foot on the soggy moss covered floor. The air, he noticed, was exceptionally fresh. Even when he took a deep breath there wasn’t the faintest taint of sulphur present. It could well be a good place to colonise he thought. Nah, he decided, there’s no Muck Burger cafes in this place. People would never move in. Now all he needed to do was find a few Neanderthal females and fertilise them. Don’t laugh. He had plenty of jokes about fertilising aliens when he was at home. Tranquilising them and then carefully implanting an egg into their womb in a highly delicate procedure is how he did it. It was only after this that He’d shag them.

It was a lonely life He had. After four years of constant travel from home to Earth, and back again in a tiny ship with scenery that all looked the same and the feeling He was getting nowhere (users of motorways know the feeling), He was a bit pi**ed off. Worse was that he was rarely home, and his lover of seven years had found someone new within a few months of him taking up this position. It has been such an attractive post at the time, described as:
‘Breeding Assistant wanted for fieldwork. Must be knowledgeable of latest techniques, prefer someone presently active in research. Involves interstellar travel, own car advantageous. Right candidate will be employed by the University of Baghaar and earn approx. 126,560 creds per annum less union tax’.

He couldn’t believe that He signed an eight-year contract with the University when his own research was beginning to bear fruit. However, he had no expenses in the meantime, and could look forward in exactly 47 months to a very comfortable and early retirement. Then he could resume his social life, minus a few usual survival mechanisms we all posses for polite company.

Unfortunately for him, he was coming down with a particularly nasty case of space psychosis. He had already cleaned his cabin from top to bottom twelve times in two days and was now reading the copy of Gideon’s Bible that had somehow found it’s way to his bedside table. (It’s true what they say, they get everywhere. Some physicists would really like to talk to some of them for apparently breaking some of Einstein’s special relativity laws, this phenomenon is yet to be explained despite the development of supra light speed travel ). He started reading it backwards, and thought nothing of this. Still, a little insanity had never hurt anyone, he thought. Of course Van Gogh’s ear was still seventy millennia in the future.

His ship’s computer was configured to cope with all this. It was trained in the sciences and had extensive knowledge of psychology and psichology. Despite this, it decided against interfering at this early stage of the disease. It was sure that within a week or two, He would become incapable of structured thought that would be needed for destroying the computer’s vital circuits. So, it surmised, He would be a little more receptive to a little constructive criticism and more importantly, less capable of being offended to the point of destruction.

“Well, I suppose it’s back to work. Let’s see what we’ve got in this place.” So He set to exploring the land, looking for a Neanderthal settlement to improve….

*yes, I know it’s meant to be fewer, complain to the supermarkets not me. Take to the sharpie and deface their sign decreeing ‘less’ if you will, or just chill, grab a beer and worry about something more relevant. As to why you’ll work until you’re nearly dead and find that your pension was actually placed on the 3:45 at Newmarket ten years ago**.

**It not only lost. But the nearest you’ll ever get to that pension is a supermarket lasagne.

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