by John R. Plunkett
This story is more or less a sequel to Hands Across the Sky. But it does not continue the story of Rand and Onca. Rather, it speaks to another part of the story of which Rand and Onca's is but a segment.
Shadowy conspiracies are more a projection of one's own fears than any refection of what's actually happening. People who are afraid see bogeymen in every shadow and around every corner. Terrorists understand this; all it takes is a few shocking, horrific displays to put fear into people. Fear inflates what is in fact a very small, highly isolated group into a vast wave of evil and destruction bearing down on everyone. Fear strips away rational thought, and people do irrational things to escape it. In that way a small, isolated group- such as mentioned previously- can control the destiny of an entire nation.
Actual conspiracies suffer from the same problems as any other communal activity. There are disagreements over goals and means. There are personality conflicts. The priorities of the group, and that of individual members, changes over time. People put their personal interests ahead of the common goal. Lastly, and most important, people just can't keep their mouths shut. The real conspiracies that dominate our lives aren't secret at all. They happen brazenly, right out in the open. We are trained to ignore it, or think that it's normal and proper. As soon as anyone bothers to look, it's obvious what's going on and who's responsible.
|Story and characters unless otherwise noted:||©2009 John R. Plunkett|
|The planet Chakona, its environs, and the Chakat race:||©1999 Bernard Doove|
|Admiral Kline:||©1996 Boyce Garald Kline Jr.|
|Sex:||* TBD *|
|Violence:||* TBD *|
|Language:||* TBD *|