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…All suspects are present and have been accounted for; excepting O  …

— The offended {fired upon by one Gus McKinney} Ÿ€Ð weren’t prepared for anything that offensive.

A perceived harmless bug bite turned into a nasty inflammatory welt. Ÿ€Ð controllers retreat to regroup. Their original objective was to find out whom or what was responsible for O, but instead they run into this, seemingly chaotic and overly defensive world.

But it is not the only unmanned probe that was sent out. The other {distinguishable/known} worlds in this end of the Universe have been scoped-out with varying results.

Suspect #1: Those quiet Eridanians are not merely quiet, but downright silent. On the list of possible suspects, they were the first to be visited and the least likely to produce something such as O .

To that end, they happen to immediately precede the return of the McKinneys + Cerella to Eridanus, came and went without a trace like shadows passing in the dark. So back it goes.

Suspects #2-3-4 etc..: There are several habitable systems that need to be logged for progress, but none have progressed beyond elemental physiology; plant, animal or sentient. All in all, the empty goldfish bowl remains so.

Prime suspect: The Seljuk are another matter. Before galactic peace, they and Ÿ€Ð imperialists had a healthy squabble over a cluster of Class M planets, which were in free space and ripe for colonization. It got so ugly that it left a bad taste for both groups. Fleets were decimated, billions of lives lost and in the end.

Without a clear-cut victor and not enough incentive for either party to bother continue hostilities, withdrawal to respective galaxies was in order.

Reconnaissance from Seljuk territory yields a disturbing find. The system’s sentinel outposts are electronic wastelands, short-circuited stations of no use to the builders. The force that caused this damage had to be fearsome, prompting yet another prober to head for home. They arrive after Defender leaves. It is just as well, for had they bumped into each other, blame for Seljukian misfortune would have been unduly assigned.

All suspects are present and have been accounted for; excepting O which they endeavored to clarify most.

The Ÿ€Ð are a reactionary bunch. IF there is a next time, they WILL send out attack crews.

“Are yea friend or foe?” That question has yet to be answered.


Friend or Foe Album Cover – Menomena

Episode 46

page 50 (end ch. 4)

Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #95

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Alpha Omega M.D. – Episode #95

…In the time it takes to land a mother lode bass, Reverend Watkins gladly introduces Mr. and Mrs. James Ferrell to his temporary and mixed congregation…

Wedding Bells-001

In the time it takes to land a mother lode bass, something Reverend Watkins knows something of, he gladly introduces Mr. and Mrs. James Ferrell to his temporary and mixed congregation. And unlike the new game of baseball, where raucous players and fans protest the umpire’s questionable judgment by booing and perhaps defaming his mother, these proceedings conclude with polite applause; though there is a noticeable gap between Agnes Ferrell’s white satin gloves, her heart not being quite right.

oddsOn the other hand, Martha and John are delighted, seemingly reborn in each other. It was not this way two days ago, which would point to the existence of miracles. So wide was the chasm between them, that the distance earth and the sun seemed closer.

Martha’s catatonic comportment, a distant empty stare, has wound itself up like a spring loaded retractable shade. She has pulled herself together for Abbey, the girl’s only mother figure.

Likewise, John seems to have set aside his other world, Laura and Maggie Lou apparently on the way to a stable life of their own. In the reception line they are fourth and third from the end, a line punctuated by the newlywed couple.

    Chances are no one would have predicted this good looking and happy sequence of people, back as late as 1896, when Abigail Smythwick was a daughter of one of the last plantation owners in the Panhandle, James was pegged as a better candidate for the priesthood than a career in law, John Ferrell’s amorous tryst made him a better candidate for “Adulterer of the Year” and Martha’s ignorance of her husband’s doings and daughter’s taboo love interest nearly cost her her sanity.

Alpha Omega M.D.

Episode #95

page 88