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Bēhance

  • ARTEMISIA
    In-Development

     

    "The further life emerged and gained intelligence on earth, the further it yearned to connect; seeking deeper and more intricate bonds within itself and its surrounding organisms, as part of its chemical composition and livelihood." _Benjamin Colmes. 

     
    Summary
    It is 2155. A young man's ship crashes into the golden dunes of the Moroccan desert. Unconscious, 27-year-old Caleb Mann is taken to a nearby Berber village where he awakes inside a somber clay hut, attended by the twelve wise men of Touggana. Caleb is pursued by an unusual dark force that is out to snuff him and the rest of life on Earth. He must embark on a perilous journey across a futuristic, unfamiliar world where he is compelled to battle a ruthless cult bent on remaking the world.

    Author
    Ayoub Qanir

    Storyboard
    Ayoub Qanir

    Illustrations
    Alex Andreyev

     
    Short Story (Excerpt)

     Desert of Touggana, Morocco

    Spring, 2155

        Caleb drifted in and out of consciousness, his skin tingling clammily beneath a cool sheen of perspiration. As he passed between worlds, between the present and the past, he struggled to keep her in his mind?s eye.

        He could feel the Earth?s magnetic pulse, the tranquil hum beckoning to him. But for every alpha wave bathing his spirit in endorphins there existed a disconcerting echo. Blissful melody. Then dissonance. Music, followed by static. He was lost. Could he ever find her? He clung desperately to her small mouth, grinning, to the tiny wrinkles at the corners of her eyes, also smiling, to her narrow wrists and her dainty hands, dancing in time with her hips. Her soft, bronze-colored skin shone in the murky twilight.

        She?s here. She has always been here.

    A jolt of pain brought him upright as he gazed down at his flight suit, which was streaked with blood and flecks of black soot. He looked up and saw nearby the rumpled remains of a parachute still tethered to his torso. Several dozen meters beyond that lay the smoldering hulk of a ship he?d never seen before. Or had he? Sleek. Angular. A dark projectile blazing against the ashen sky. The machine looked built for speed. Built for war. 

        The greatest power lies in the connection of all matter.

    The phrase did not belong to him but came unbidden, from someplace else. He frowned up at the strangely luminescent sky, searching his memory. Whose words were these?

    He tried to take his feet, but a wave of nausea sent him to the ground, and as he struggled to regain his equilibrium, a sickly feeling ? a sound inside his head ? pulled him violently downward, like a synthesized note plummeting toward the depths. Swarming, shrieking stars rushed at him from his peripheral vision, and the leaden sky shrunk to a tiny dot before being swallowed whole by darkness.

    Adele.


     

    To Be Continued...