Chaos theory cosmic love.., p.1
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       Chaos Theory Cosmic Lovely, p.1

           Penelope Fletcher
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Chaos Theory Cosmic Lovely


  Cosmic Lovely #1

  CHAOS THEORY

  Penelope Fletcher

  Copyright © 2012 Penelope Fletcher

  All rights reserved by the Author.

  Smashwords Edition

  British English

  Cover Design

  Penelope Fletcher

  All characters and events in this novel are fictitious and resemblance to real persons, living or dead, are purely coincidental. No part of this novel may be reproduced, stored or transmitted without the prior permission in writing from the author, unless brief quotes for reviews.

  PenelopeFletcher.com

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  PART ONE: CONTACT

  I am human and let nothing human be alien to me.

  Terence

  1.

  Starless Operative Zeke Hutchinson, “Z” to his compatriots, “Son” to his commanding officer, was about to let loose and piss his one-piece.

  Comforted by the presence of the prayer beads tucked safely into his breast pocket, hidden from its usual placement around his wrist due to the formality required, he prayed to the Cosmic Virgin for deliverance.

  He had that sinking feeling. The warning he wouldn’t be taking the shuttle off Home World to his birth planet to visit mama, as he’d been promising these last six months.

  He wished he had spent the time and credits he’d considered too precious to waste in a confession booth before deployment.

  What were five hundred credits for a truly repentant soul?

  Should of, would of, could of.

  “The General’s eye keeps twitching,” Zeke whispered to S.O. Jakob Valiant, who stood rigid in formation beside him. “He’s pissed or stressed.”

  Valiant’s navy beret sat at a cocky angle. It was a violation of dress code, but Valiant was too relaxed to worry about the pithy fine of a hundred credits. His one-piece fatigues were standard issue taupe and made in the prior approved radioactive resistant nylon. At least he had the foresight to zip the suit to the neck, considering he usually wore the top half undone and tied around the waist.

  “I wonder why,” Valiant muttered. “It’s not because aliens are threatening to enslave our planet.”

  “What do they want?”

  “Not too bright today, Z?”

  Zeke resisted the urge to grin. He was used to Valiant razzing on him. He never teased back, Zeke didn’t have such a ready store of insults, but he scuffled with the best of them. His usual response to his friend’s teasing was to plant a fist in his face. “I’m going to remember that.”

  “Yeah, yeah, I’ve heard that before.” Valiant’s lips twitched. “Stellar. The task of enlightenment falls to me. You’ve got to read between the lines. These aliens arrive and pluck our world leaders from under their security detail without batting an eyelid. They’re returned whole, but terrified, can’t physically move their lips to speak, and are locked down in medical for psych evaluations. Then the Alliance Commander-in-Chief orders all military personal in reserve on Quadrant21 to quietly rendezvous at a top-secret facility. A cluster-fux rumoured to hold the last nuclear warheads known to man. Not only was this base a myth before tonight, it’s located in Quadrant103, one of the most hostile terrains planet side. Soon as the last man trained to wield a weapon, or fly a jet set foot off that piece of land, Quadrant21 was entirely cut off by a government imposed Quarantine. The military was then advised it’s about to be wiped off the map and declared a DeadZone by a freak disease they refuse to name. None of that seems odd to you?”

  “How do you know all this?”

  “I listen.” Valiant tapped his ear. “I’ve been paying for extra sense upgrades. I haven’t got a family to support like you. How is your mama anyway? Still making those delicious apple dumplings?”

  “She’s steady. Asked after you once or twice. What does what you’ve said have to do with what’s happening here?”

  Valiant shifted restlessly. “Stars, if we weren’t in formation I’d slap you. Some disease isn’t about to destroy Quadrant21. Our entire unit hasn’t been called here to witness this event as an ‘honour.’”

  Zeke exhaled hard through his nose. “Our unit is trained to deal with … situations like this.”

  “They needed all of us?”

  The Starless’ primary function was covert operations. It was their job to manipulate, infiltrate, and occasionally assassinate. This kind of protection detail was left to the recognised military units. The Starless were sent when all other negotiations and plans had failed. They were sent to wipe out anything they were pointed at by any means necessary as quietly as possible.

  They were ghosts in a world that proclaimed peace and prosperity.

  Zeke’s unit had never been convened like this. The Starless were not called upon without serious provocation. He knew some of the men from previous missions, was blood brothers with the deadliest man in the unit, Valiant, but never had there been a need for all of them at once.

  But who was he to question his commanding officer?

  Zeke was briefed on this mission and he’d made tracks to the lavatory. When was he supposed to have demanded the answers to a series of complicated political questions? Before he projectile vomited his breakfast, or after he’d fallen to his knees in prayer.

  Valiant had acquired classified information on the mission he risked his ass on.

  Listening never hurt anybody.

  “Alright, I’ll bite,” Zeke murmured. “Why would they put up a Quarantine?”

  “To blackout communications and keep the rest of the world from realising what’s happening. Figure it out already.” Valiant sighed. “Why did hostile forces invade in the past?”

  “Religious and economic reasons, but we all know it was about securing land and any precious substances like oil and natural gasses. Thank the Virgin for BlueAtom8.” Valiant snorted, but even he paled thinking of the ugly, blood soaked past of humanity. “Mock it, Val, but you have to be relieved we don’t have that problem anymore. War was one of the reasons all governments fell under the New World Order. Not our brightest moment, but the alternative was shit too. Admit it’s not that bad. The Alliance could be worse. After world war five, our planet couldn’t take much more. We needed to do something.”

  “It wasn’t the people who started those conflicts.” Valiant frowned. “It never is. We fight the battles when the ones causing the problem hide underground and send innocent people to die.”

  Zeke didn’t like feeling like a pawn. He was a good soldier. His curiosity just got the better of him. Not that curiosity counted for anything. He’d learn about atrocities, but not have the valour to act against any mayhem unless ordered to.

  That was the difference between a soldier and a hero, he supposed.

  “Where’s your patriotism?”

  “Don’t need that. One earth, one people.”

  Zeke subtly motioned his head towards the scene below. “I think the word applies now more then ever.”

  Spotting his commanding officer glaring at them, Zeke elbowed Valiant. They straightened their spines and stared ahead.

  The first drops of water from the sky might as well have been bombs from the reaction of the squadron. Rain bounced off their clothes and ran down their laser rifles.

  Zeke and Valiant clamped their lips together. The panic was acute, not that they let it show.

  The atmosphere had been compromised by radioactive waste. Quadrant6 was safe, but they were standing outside it on the OutRim border, and were not in a SafeZone.

  Their commanding officer barked, the clipped order to cover their heads music to the ears.
>
  Zeke, Valiant, and the rest of the unit pulled their hoods, and snapped on their masks, protecting their eyes, nose, and mouth. Harsh, relieved breathing burst through the mask’s communication unit. The headgear stifled, but was better than acid rain soaking into the pores.

  Valiant tapped Zeke’s arm twice, part of their secret code and the operatives slyly turned the transmissions unit in their masks onto a private frequency. The soldiers were arranged in a block formation, and Valiant and Zeke had been quiet enough to hold a conversation, but if they spoke without changing the transmission frequency to private, the whole squad would overhear them. At least with their facial movement obscured by the headgear they didn’t have to try and speak without moving their lips.

  Valiant spoke first, his voice smooth and deep with a smokiness that harmed him none when it came to picking up women. “Do you remember what happened to the natives of the invaded territories?”

  “Slavery. At the end of the twentieth extermination was easiest.” Zeke winced. “Remember what happened to the purebloods?” He shuddered. “The zero tolerance policy on biochemical warfare is the one thing the Alliance has unquestionably gotten right.”

  Weapons that focused on the eradication of living organisms at a molecular level had been destroyed after what happened in the aftermath of world war four.

  At the end of the twentieth century, there was an alarming and unexplained increase in racial hate groups. Some speculated relaxed opinion after an enforced order from government to lighten up on sentences for racial crimes contributed to simmering racial prejudice, and bred a generation of repressed and confused. Young men and women with a lack of identity who clung to the only thing recognisable to the naked eye; skin colour.

  Dirt on the graves of those who died in the last war had barely settled before political unrest had the people in a mess.

  The last of the Amazonian rainforest disappeared and the world worried about the loss of twenty percent of oxygen-enriched land. The rest of the world’s rainforests and jungles became a premium to fight for.

  The threat of yet another campaign pushed aside rumours of terrorization happening within civilized borders.

  Racial hate groups ran shantytowns and advanced segregation. A genetic purist insulted the leader of a group of powerful supremacists, and after that, things got bad. There were denials the anarchy that followed was caused by this feud, but many accepted the power struggle between these two groups sparked the beginning of a dramatic shift in world politics.

  The weapon had been designed to destroy people of a certain genetic composition, but mutated and destroyed all peoples with pure genetic bloodlines.

  It was the most terrifying and destructive terrorist attack the world had seen. A third of the global population died. Martial law was enforced, and used to set up Quarantines in infected areas. Though the disease was targeted to pure bloods, the fear it would continue to mutate and destroy everyone amounted to hysteria.

  Even those with mixed genes who were only carriers got locked away.

  The stubborn starved to death waiting for salvation. Those unable to handle living in Quarantine were gifted suicide kits. They had come to realise the government would never risk the disease mutating and spreading.

  They wanted out.

  People of all races fell in line after the bodies were cleaned up, and mass cremations had black smoke burning holes in the sky.

  The irony? The purists and supremacists destroyed themselves, and in one move made mixed blood superior to the weaker pureblood since it was more susceptible to genetic contamination.

  The people left standing, aptly named the Lost Generation, wanted peace and equality, but had to face yet another world war. The governments tried to lay blame for the terrorist attack on each other, and fought for the right to lay claim to the other planets in the solar system ready for colonization made possible by new technology.

  War raged on the planet’s surface and below in the depths of ocean waters.

  In the end, when three of the world’s five super powers came together, submission was demanded from the others, and a single government was presented to the people.

  This new world order was embraced without question.

  The people wanted peace. They needed a chance rebuild what they had lost. That was exactly what the old governments gave them.

  The Alliance.

  It was argued social, and economical casting had replaced racial segregation, that the CatEyes, StarChildren, Colds, Delphians and MainLanders were more isolated then ever before, but those people were conspiracy nut jobs who were silenced if they got too noisy. After all, if a family had more credit in the bank than another they would naturally be able to live in better conditions, with quality air and food. Those with low credit lived in quadrants that were less sterilized and overcrowded.

  Zeke was dubious. Was Valiant saying the Alliance used the people’s fear of the past to set up a fake Quarantine without questions being asked?

  They were causing panic to create a blind eye to the most the significant event in the history of mankind; first contact with extra-terrestrial life?

  That intergalactic war was imminent?

  “You’ve got me uneasy. Happy now?”

  Valiant jerked his head to the glowing spaceship not two hundred yards away. “Those aliens are a hostile force pretending to be friendly. I overheard the General talking earlier. They have ten ships strategically scattered across our solar system, and they got them there without us realising it. Rather than hailing us, they used stealth tactics. They kidnapped our world leaders who were returned looking as if they’d seen the gates of hell. These aliens,” Valiant’s dark brows lowered, “the Novae the General says they call themselves, have nefarious intent towards the people of the Alliance. If they are the invaders, what does that make us, genius?”

  “Natives,” Zeke answered slowly, remembering the previous answer as to what happened to the natives of invaded lands.

  “We ravaged this planet. It’s why we colonized Mars, Neptune, and Jupiter.”

  “Yeah,” Zeke said, relieved. Thinking of Neptune, his birth planet, a pang of homesickness twisted his gut. He reminded himself why he was proud to do his job. He kept his loved ones safe. “There’s nothing left on Earth for them to take. They must be friendly.”

  Valiant sighed. “Stars. Crack shot with a rifle, but dumb as a brick. There is something left.”

  “What?”

  “Us.”

  2.

  Scratching her side boob, Kali Loklear yawned and stumbled into the brightly lit kitchen. She squinted at the morning sunlight, and her nostrils prickled at the sharp tang of percolating coffee.

  At least it was warm. Not that her toes would have been cold, she was wearing her favourite socks, and the HeatMe was up full blast.

  She shuffled past her father pausing to kiss his temple. Dark hair peppered with silver tickled her nose. He patted her hip affectionately, eyes glued to his TalkMe, and the news feed scrolling across the screen.

  Kali’s voice was rough with sleep when she croaked, “Sunshine, Papa.”

  Coffee cup to his lips, Creighton’s olive eyes flicked up. The cut of his strong jaw softened. The laughter lines carved into his cheeks, and the charming wrinkles creasing the corners of his eyes relaxed as he gifted his daughter with the gentlest of looks. A familial caress tinged with wonder that showed he thought his child a miracle.

  “Sunshine, princess. What mischief are you plotting to give me gray hairs with today?”

  Hopping onto the stool, Kali laid her diamond-shaped face on the cool surface. She tucked her fisted hands into her stomach. “Mischief? Me?” She snorted. “I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’ll be watching HoloVids and eating leftover dumplings.”

  Creighton allowed his gaze to lift to his daughter’s face again. “Do you want me to call your father in here?”

  “No,” she muttered and slouched into herself, concaving her stomach and archin
g her back. Kali sat up. Smiling brightly, she attempted to look motivated when what she wanted to do was curl up on the island and use her father’s arm as a pillow. “Today is going to be spent trolling the IntraWave, applying for employment and eating the bountiful tray of fruit you see before you.”

  “Stellar girl.” Creighton took a sip of the liquid sloshing in his transparent mug. Sucking a breath through his teeth at the bitterness, he flicked the tip of his finger across the screen of his TalkMe. He frowned at what he read, muttering about inflation or some such.

  Kali grabbed an open box of cereal and grimaced as she shook it. As soon as she touched the box, it turned her favourite shade of green, and an advertisement for the latest MiniComUni design flashed up.

  Creighton caught the advert. “You need a new ComUni?”

  “I was browsing the other day with Max. He wanted my opinion, my unit is standard.”

  “I created breakfast for you. Check the FeedMe.”

  She wiggled happily in her seat. “Yum.” Sliding off her stool, she padded around to give him a goodly smacking kiss on the cheek.

  Kali all but danced to the machine to find a trio of golden dumplings on a pristine ceramic plate.

  Her father spoiled her. She threw an adoring look over her shoulder.

  From the CoolIt, she grabbed a jar of chocolate spread and a jug of juice already created in the MakeIt, which was great. She hated fiddling with the settings; she never got ingredients amalgamated in the MakeIt tasting good.

  Creighton managed a veritable art form when he created meals.

  She picked up the knife thoughtfully left on the side for her. Dipping the dumplings straight into the jar would have been her next move, but her father would blow bosons if she did that in front of him.

  She used her hip to close the CoolIt door, and her foot to flip the FeedMe closed.

 

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