Excerpts From Lee Baldwin’s Coming Novel: Aliens Got My Sally
UFO Pulp Fiction for the Modern Mind
Speculative Tech Fiction, also understood as science fiction, with smatterings of UFO abductions, bug-eyed monsters and luminous tractor beams, etc., now in 2017 includes the tale of an archaeologist who learns that her trusted professor made off with her best work and launched a scientific excavation. He keeps her in the dark and thousands of miles from the dig. Her discovery of his deception while falling headfirst into a pre-humanity alien mineshaft leads her into multi-layered adventures that question the nature of existence.
Excerpt Scene One:
This passage sums up a major point of the book: the current phase of intelligent life on Earth is coming to an end, to be replaced perhaps by a cybernetic intelligence. Or maybe something incorporeal. It’s going to get real different.
Anna dreams beneath tarnished starlight. She recalls the majesty of the star-strewn firmament as it rose above the dunes on Thiele, and how it feels to be back on this sickly Earth. She sees herself as a mechanical thing, at the level of hunter-gatherers who followed age-old magic of the full moon across a continent toward the vernal equinox. Holy trees and roads from ancient past, stained in dragon’s blood.
“Horsepucky,” she says from her scientist heart, gazing where a faded Mars stands high in the sky. “Neutralinos are where it’s at.”
She’s always thought the keys to power would be summoned from beyond conscious reckoning yet spoken from the lips of human masters. Now she recognizes these will not be Homo Sapiens, but Cuz Folk, the XH Sapiens who own and operate this galaxy. And humans are fit only to prepare their food.
Two young women come to her as she lies alone. With stroking fingers on her fevered cheeks they lead her to a place within herself that cannot be known but only felt. As the hands soothe her, all terror and despair fall away. She sees in the majesty of creation the way that biological beings form a part, that whether or not biological intelligence gives way to cybernetic organisms which ultimately attain consciousness, there will always be a place for humanity in the world’s memory. And whether or not the ultimate human being is an individual or a conscious hive, it is true that the future of intelligence is present in them today, invisible to those trapped within their biological lifeways but recognizing that they belong.
The above is with thanks to astrophysicist Paul Davies, who through his artful and disciplined reasoning led me to share his vision that humanity is likely a serious latecomer to intelligent life in the universe.
Excerpt Scene Two:
Miss Lewis; The document you submitted, Encoded Lattice Chains in El Dorado’s Golden Raft, contains 87% duplicate material from a document [TITLE REDACTED] published by [AUTHOR REDACTED]. Please contact the University Office of Student Conduct to discuss this issue.
Gutted, Anna stares at the accusing paragraph. This is impossible! Her doctoral thesis is one of several drafts on her use of data visualizations to decode text strings from numerical lattices of real objects. Her chest hammers. Everyone on her doctoral committee has seen this by now, including the man she will soon face, Gonzalo Sandoval.
Excerpt Scene Three:
Sticky-wet, numb and exhausted, Anna sprawls on the floor of a vast underground cavern. Her arms are limp as rope. Next to her droops a disgusting fat hose, which stopped moving when she slurped out the end of it. The thing is like an enormous undersea plant rooted in the wall, a gummy elongated tube with a wiggly bundle of protoplasmic fringe at the opening. Its hollow orifice suggests a giant prophy.
The climbing helmet’s display indicates breathable air outside. A sucky sound as she removes it. She’s all-over drippy and now discovers she smells like honey. She’s hours hungry, but is reluctant to taste this goo on her skin. The cavern around her is a lofty space the limits of which she cannot see. Distant corridors extend into other hollowed spaces. It suggests an art museum stretching far in all directions.
Movement nearby. Anna sits up and sees people. Thinking herself fallen to the depths of the earth, she’s shocked to find space around her, and light, and delicious breathing air, where people and various animals zip through the high, vaulted enclosure. The people ignore her. In the distance she sees openings with sunlight and sky. If that is sky, Anna has never seen it so blue, and hungers to run in that direction.
Near her a majestic metal statue bathes in light from somewhere above. A female form, tall but with gleaming chromium skin and the oddest elongated head, as though an overgrown banana balances on her slender neck with a divine face at one end. The cheeks are perfect rows of brass pistons with shiny connecting rods. Her nipples curve upward like smooth cup hooks from small polished breasts. She wears a colorful asymmetric skirt and sash that falls from her waist. The overall effect is steel-hard and powered like a truck. Despite these oddities, the statue is beautiful, possessed of feminine confidence and a latent energy as large as the sky.
Anna notices other oddly-shaped objects that could be animals, sculptures or kitchen appliances. Some are in motion, odd little quadrupeds in unusual colors, plus some regular humans and numerous very weird humans, distorted like the macabre images she saw during her long fall. Humans! But some of these forms, moving or still, could be gnarled trees. The scene reminds her of a fabled era in human history when life became a masquerade, a superstitious attempt to avoid an illness unto dying.
Throughout this odd crowd radiates a bee-buzzing hum. With lips slightly parted, the creatures buzz at one another, a jiggly-blurry sound that’s more like tuneless singing than speech. If Anna were an audio geek instead of an archaeologist, she might theorize the sound is a carrier wave for high-frequency info modulation.
“Where did she come from?” The chrome statue says in buzz-speech. “She’s not from one of our infusion ponds.” Naturally these sounds make no sense to Anna, and for her don’t even stand out from the hum.
“A volunteer, Celtyne,” buzzes a passing sorta-human who zips through without stopping.
“Well, get her out of here. She was not chosen.”
“She came through the honey worm,” says a small head that appears momentarily through a trap door.
“What! That’s not possible. This honey worm is on vacation.”
“Well, there she sits, gooping up our floor.”