The disk-shaped capital ship hovered above the power-generating pyramid. Surrounding this power station were filthy slums riddled with extreme poverty, disease, malnutrition and unhappy people. Beyond the city were a few green areas where crops were grown. Beyond the few green areas was a vast toxic desert. Once, an industrial civilization had grown to cover the entire planet, but then green areas where trees or grass once grew became smaller. Massive ecological devastation and industrial pollution spread. The growth stopped. Project after project began to fail. City after city was abandoned. The decline of civilization lasted over a thousand years and was known as the Black Ages. By the year 6280 AD, only one city remained. Centuries ago, the Republic was a powerful city. Now it was a shadow of its former greatness. The citizens had forgotten how to build new machines. The few devices they had were old. The houses they lived in had been built by past generations. There was still one luxurious neighborhood where a small number of elite lived. These were the senators who controlled the capital ship.
Prometheus cared little about the suffering of the world around him. The senators believed that their ancestors were the children of gods. They believed that their race had been genetically improved and guided by the gods for thousands of years. They called themselves "Anunnaki" (an ancient word meaning "Heaven and Earth") and believed that they had a divine right to rule the world.
Prometheus spoke proudly in the senate chamber. "When the Thunder Cult first arrived in our city, we thought it was harmless. We have always embraced new ideas and have been open to improving our ways, but this Thunder Cult offers us nothing to benefit our society. Only misguided people see them as an alternative to us. Some of you have told me that in a democracy, the people have the right to choose. Well, let me tell you-the rules of democracy do not apply to these cultists. They are irregular political personalities. They have no recognized political party. They have no verifiable political charter or mission statement. Such unlawful political personalities are opportunists who only wish to destabilize the very foundation of the Republic. They do not follow the rules of democracy. Instead, they try to manipulate society in ways that are unfair to those who support honest political objectives. They are terrorists and should be treated as terrorists."
The Crowd cheered. Above the entrance to the senate chamber were the words, "Keepers of the Tablet of Destiny." Some senators believed that this tablet was kept hidden in the Temple of Light. Others believed that it was only symbolic. Only the leader of the senate Atlas knew what was actually hidden inside the temple. He said that divine power was contained in the Tablet of Destiny. The temple of the senate was dedicated to the gods of illumination. The senators considered themselves to be enlightened masters of philosophy who bring order to the world. Their main god was the Morning Star.
Senator Prometheus continued. "You might ask me how we can convince the people to realize the truth. They already know the truth! They invited these terrorists into our city. They have openly aided these terrorists. We must arrest everyone associated with these terrorists, because as you all know, terrorists do not act alone. They are inspired by the mass hysteria of jealous and hateful people. Everyone who associates with terrorists becomes infected with this hate. Every method available must be used to make themspeak the truth. If the people do not believe us, they will believe themselves when they speak the truth."
The Crowd became silent. Most were uncomfortable with the fire that Prometheus was lighting. There was no evidence that the Thunder Cult had committed any terrorist acts.
The next speaker was Prometheus's brother. Senator Epimetheus spoke. "It seems that all we ever hear about in the news today is Moloch. We do not even know what he looks like! All we really know is that a few years ago, his priests began to appear in our city. They claim that they came to help people. They claim to have come from the Dry Wasteland. They claim to worship a Thunder God. We do not have much information about what goes on inside the Dry Wasteland. This is an area heavily contaminated by industrial waste that covers most of the western half of North America. Similar areas of extreme ecological devastation can be found in Asia, Europe and Africa. As you all know, Asia, Europe and Africa no longer support human settlements. What makes the Dry Wasteland unique is that people survived in that environment. Do you know what the first Thunder Priest to show up in our city did? He dug a well for people to get water. The people thought he was a hero."
Prometheus disliked his brother's analysis of historical information. He wanted solutions, not just useless gossip.
Epimetheus continued. "There are rumors circulating that the world is dying. People believe that we are close to the end. They lost hope. Then these strange priests walked into our city with their confident smiles and good deeds. The people feel that there is a chance for life to grow again. The people think they are saints. In fact, the Thunder Cult has no idea how they're going to save the world. Their method of thinking is simplistic to the point of being pathetic. They think that doing good where good needs to be done is good. Each priest follows his own personal visions. They call this walking in the way of their Animal. The concept of the Animal is similar to that used in the Coven of the Goddess. Obviously, the Thunder Cultists are not part of the Coven of the Goddess. The priestesses of the Goddess indulge in pleasures of the flesh. The Thunder Cultist believed in self-control. "
The mention of the Coven of the Goddess brought about angry faces from the members of the senate. Most senators publicly condemned the Coven and called the prostitution of the priestesses immoral. Secretly, most of them would visit the Coven. The senate had made several efforts to close the Coven. They were never successful because too many people supported the Goddess Religion. The senators understood that the people were not powerless. They could get their way if enough of them tried. They feared what would happen if too many people supported the Thunder Cult."
Epimetheus continued. "The common people have spread rumors about Moloch. They say Moloch had a great vision where the Goddess appeared as three Goddesses, Tiamat, Gaia and Ura. Tiamat said she was life in the universe. Gaia said she was life on Earth. Ura said she was the life in people. The name "Gaia" is also used at the Coven of the Goddess. Tiamat is the name of a demon that also appears in the story of the Black Lodge. Ura is a Goddess worshiped by farmers who live in villages around the Republic. Such religions are the result of the imagination of the common people. The peasants seem to have invented thousand of cults."
"What kind of a game is Moloch playing?" Prometheus asked. Then he answered himself. "They say Moloch is a tall powerful man and that the power of Thunder God emanates from him. Ok, so he is pompous fool. Perhaps he would fit in well with us."
Atlas, the senate leader, spoke. "Never before have I seen the people so excited. If we could harness the enthusiasm of the people, such energy would be a valuable addition to our New World Order. We will send ambassadors to meet with Moloch and record what they find. We must ask the hard questions. Would Moloch be a valuable ally if we could get him on our side? Is Moloch truly a danger?"
Senator Menoetius volunteered to lead the expedition to talk with Moloch. While he was away, people were arrested and interrogated. The official report said that terrorists plague the city. Prometheus read these reports and felt they were incomplete. He believed that there was more to the story.Epimetheus thought that most of the people who were arrested had no connection with the Thunder Cult. He knew that the police will always record the story they're told to find. It makes no difference what the person being interrogated said. The results always support the official report. The senators called for more arrests. They used the increasing number of arrests as evidence that the number of terrorists were growing.
Prometheus and Epimetheus sat in their family garden surrounded by their collection of exotic birds. Prometheus spoke. "What would you say if I told you that I had convincing evidence that the Thunder Cultists are agents of the Black Lodge?"
Epimetheus looked rather poker-faced and responded, "Your convincing evidence never convinces me. The Black Lodge is a myth. There is no evil order that secretly runs the world."
Prometheus pounded his fist and said, "Consider the fact that the Black lodge wants to destroy civilization. That is exactly what the Thunder Cultists are doing. All both Groups want to do is spread filth and corruption. They live in the shadows and practice black magic. They bring pain and suffering to the world because they enjoy seeing people suffer."
"The Thunder Cult believes in compassion," said Epimetheus. "You should look "compassion" up in the dictionary. It is an interesting word."
"It makes no difference what they believe! What is important is what they do. Both the Thunder Cult and the Black Lodge worship a Serpent. They are a secret discordian order. They are the sons of demons who worship contradiction. They call the Serpent the OverMind and the SubGenius."
"No. In their myth, the Serpent is the enemy of the Thunder God. The Thunder God is said to be part of a supreme God who is the highest authority in the universe. Have you ever wondered if perhaps the ultimate universal protocols of justice differ from the policies chosen by the senate? Many common people believed that the senate is wrong."
"We represent the highest authority in the universe," said Prometheus, "because we as the sons of Gods intuitively know the highest law. That is why we and we alone hold the Tablet of Destiny. I am uncomfortable with you even suggesting that a higher law could exist. You need to go to the temple and pray for enlightenment."
"Well, if we are all guided by the light of truth, why is it that the senate never agrees onanything?"
"Perhaps some senators have been corrupted. Perhaps they are agents of the Black Lodge," Prometheus responded.
Getting frustrated, Epimetheus said, "It is insane to believe in nonsense when you have no evidence."
"I agree that the Thunder Cult is insane and their beliefs are nonsense."
"No, I am talking about you." Epimetheus pointed at his brother. "You believe every stupid conspiracy theory that your imagination invents."
"You must admit that there is evil spreading in the senate," Prometheus said.
"Most people believe that the main evil in the senate is you," said Epimetheus, still pointing at his brother.
"Then why do so many senators follow me?"
"Because they think your methods work."
Menoetius returned after a few weeks. His report was not what the senate had wanted to hear. Menoetius spoke. "Moloch is really nice person. He sent his Priest to help the world because he realized that the world was in trouble. In his culture, when someone is in trouble they help that person. They are a people who share food even when there is little. They live in small domes and under rocks. They are constantly moving to avoid the storms of toxic salts. They use very little technology and follow a religion that emphasizes discipline. Each keeps all his possessions in a small bag. They say no man should own more than he can carry. They have lived this way for centuries. They seem to be happy living this way. The harsh conditions of the Dry Wasteland seem to have produced a unique form of people. They are physically strong and have an intelligence that is on average higher than people who live in less contaminated area. They preach kindness and practice hard work. They give, but they never ask for anything in return. Moloch has no interest in being made an ally of the senate. He knows nothing about history or politics and feels no need to be part of it. His system of values does not include any need to manipulate other people. The Thunder Dreamers respect other people's ambitions and goals and do not wish to control anyone. They think each person should walk in the way of their personal Animal. Moloch does not wish for fame and glory. He is happy simply being with his friends and family. The Moloch priests do not understand Western culture. They have never read Plato or Shakespeare or Tolkien. They have their own literature, which they developed in isolation during all those centuries. The priests of Moloch are dedicated to the beliefs expressed in their books."
The report made the senate fear Moloch even more, because they knew then that Moloch could not be bought. Prometheus spoke. "Moloch will never be a useful ally. He does not share in any of our values, and we offer him nothing that he wants. This Thunder Cult is of no use to us, and their presence is causing too much instability. We have some serious problems to consider. The Guardian went on strike last week. The strike only lasted half a day, but how could this happen? The Guardians were bred to serve and protect us. At one time, they would give their life and limb for us. Now they want more job security or a reliable retirement plan. They think that we are about to go out of business. They think we are going to take whatever is left and leave. Perhaps they are right. The presence of the priest of the Thunder Cult is giving people too much confidence. That is why they are rebelling. Don't they see the power of the capital ship? Our ancestor built fleets of those vehicles. They once filled the sky. We can regain that glory! Send the capital ship to the Dry Wasteland and kill the terrorists. Killing Moloch is the first step in rebuilding our New World Order."
Some senator complained that by destroying Moloch they were destroying a great opportunity. A vote was cast, and the majority supported the war against terror. Atlas ordered the capital ship to attack.
After the vote, Prometheus followed Atlas out of the chamber and spoke to Atlas. "Some people may disagree with our decision. They do not understand the big picture. We might not be right all the time, but we must make those decisions. We carry the weight of the world. Our political opponents may wish to question our actions or bring a formal complaint against us. Laws must be written to prevent such a disruption. No one but us knows the price we pay. No one has the right to question what we do. We do what must be done. We hold the Tablet of Destiny. We have the power of eternity."
"Thank you for your kind words," said Atlas.
Prometheus then said, "Human animals are nothing more than mindless Robots. We have the gift to be greater than these animals. We have greater visions that are not limited to their shallow worldview. I have read Plato and have seen the very forms of truth themselves. Greatness comes from tradition. We have inherited all the glory of the great Western civilization. Kingdoms may come and go, but the tradition lives on! Moloch does not have this tradition. Moloch is a fool! We are the chosen race who rules this world. We are a gift to lower forms of man; without us, they would be lost. We show men how to be greater than men. This is the gift we bring. The sons of gods once lived as many clans, artists, scholars and priests. Our ancestors were the warriors. They conquered the world. They proved themselves worthy and were given the Tablet of Destiny by the very gods themselves."
"It seems strange," Atlas mentioned. "We admire the virtues of the fighter, but then we create a society where such a warrior could not exit. We create a society where people are protected and controlled. We end up with people who rely on us and do not have faith in their own abilities. Keeping the people this way is how we stay in power."
"We have the right to destroy the confidence of lower people," said Prometheus. "We are philosopher kings. Only we have the skill to know what is best."
Atlas then said, "Throughout the ages, politicians have made policies that are supposed to benefit the people. They could be for public safety or public health. Each politician believes that what he is doing is for the best."
"Yes, you are right. The Common people need the glory of the Republic to protect them. They need us to lead them. All the common people are criminals. Some of them are only guilty of minor crimes. But do not forget that every minor crime that is not reported is a threat to public safety. The people must be monitored and probed. They must be forced to confess their crimes where the public can see and hear them. They must testify against anyone who has committed a crime. They will not be allowed to protect family and friends with silence. They must speak the whole truth. This confession must not just be done once. Their whole life must be devoted to continuous confession."
Atlas understood the value of Prometheus's words. He wanted the Republic to return to its former glory, but he warned, "If we enforce the law too much, we risk turning a large section of society into documented criminals. A person who has such a criminal record will have difficulty being accepted by people who want to avoid legal trouble. They will be left on the street as unwanted trash. These people would have no choice but to commit more crimes to survive. We would end up creating more crime."
"No," said Prometheus. "We would not segregate a section of society or limit our law enforcement to outcasts. Our law enforcement would be fair to all, and we would embrace the people who reform. The reformed criminals will become the builders of our great society. We could put a camera in the temple of light, and at least once a week each citizen will come to confess in front of the camera. This will be broadcast for everyone to watch. Everyone would see the crimes, and everyone would know that the only solution is to join us and build the future. Top experts would be trained to determine exactly what proper behavior for each citizen must be. These experts would evaluate each citizen's behavior and choose penalties for those who violate the code. The penalties would be designed to encourage an offender to reform himself and choose the correct path. Eventually, every process in a person's family and social life would be regulated. We have over 4,000 years of psychological and sociological studies that we can use to design the ideal culture in which everyone would be happy as they live the best lives possible. We would give the people true freedom, which is the freedom to follow their destiny in harmony with the Tablet of Destiny. We could start by making the Coven of the Goddess stop their unnatural practices."
Atlas stopped walking and said, "Four-thousand years of
psychological and sociological studies have created more
questions than answers. What if the people do not need us? What
if they can and should work out problems for themselves? What if
we are getting in their way and making the problems worse? Some
studies on human behavior indicate that people are naturally able
to build a healthy culture without authoritarian
"Yes," said Prometheus, "those are important questions. We should ask them another day. Today we are in a war. This is not just a war on foreign terrorists. This is a war to hold our society together. We must stay the course. We must not second-guess ourselves. We hold the Tablet of Destiny in our hands, and we must be faithful to its purpose. We must be what the gods have chosen us to be."
"Those Thunder Cultists still have the confidence to act freely," said Atlas. "They have not been domesticated. What if the gods found them to be more worthy than us?"
"That is why they must die. We are the ones who once ruled, still rule and shall rule again. We will give one clear message to the world: Join Us!" No alternative will be allowed. Our city has survives while others have failed because we are the strongest."
Something about Prometheus's enthusiasm disturbed Atlas, so he said, "Let me show you the Tablet of Destiny."
Prometheus had never seen the tablet and felt that being allowed to see it was a great honor. Long ago, every member of the senate was allowed to see the Tablet of Destiny. They would be shown the tablet in a ceremony. This ceremony had not been performed for many generations. While they entered the temple, Atlas told Prometheus that during the ceremony a student was told that he would see more than just a tablet-he would see one of the gods who guides the senate. Prometheus almost smiled and could not wait to see what would happen. Atlas placed his hand on the altar. A voice said, "Access allowed." The altar opened, and Atlas took out a small box and handed it to Prometheus. Prometheus expected to see written words on a slab inside the box. He expected to see a legal document or perhaps a certificate of authenticity, or maybe a validation seal or a technological artifact. Instead he found a mask. "What the hell is this?"
Atlas responded, "The mask represents the lies people want to believe about themselves. It is called a false face. Instead of a god the student would find a man who is wearing this mask. The man would take off the mask, and the student would be told that all the myths were lies. The students would learn that there is more to the world than what they thought was true. They realize their minds own limitations. When the Republic began to rot away, the senate felt insecure and no longer wished to see the truth. We hid this mask from ourselves because we want to believe the lies. We have closed our minds. We are no longer the enlightened elite. Instead all we have are delusions of superiority."
"You have shown me nothing. For ages people have known that kings are descended from gods and we are descended from kings."
"There is something else you should know: this mask is the mask of a servant. Servants had to wear this mask because the ruling families considered the servants ugly and did not wish to see their faces. We are not descended from the kings and queens. Our ancestors were their servants. The original royal families went out of business. Our ancestors moved into their homes. We are an imitation of kings. We are descendant from peasants. The mask was kept as a reminder that we, the Senate, are not the sons of gods. We are the sons of the tired, the poor and the huddled masses."
"You have shown me nothing!" Prometheus said again. "The main point of the ceremony must have been to show the student that we have the responsibility to be what gods are expected to be. The ceremony proves that the myths were all true."
Atlas said, "Our ancestors did build a civilization that was greater than what the previous kings had built. We filled the skies with fleets of capital ships. But all that glory has been lost. We only have one capital ship left, and it is over 600 years old and falling apart like everything else in the this dying world. You sit in your garden with your collection of exotic birds and ignored everything outside. I do not know if the Anunnaki ever existed, but I do know that we are not Anunnaki. We are parasites. The world is dying because of us. Our kind has robbed the Earth and its people of all its resources. We are going out of business because there is nothing left for us to steal. We can no longer find the resources to support our projects. Those thunder dreamers might be the last chance that mankind has to survive, and we just sent a capital ship to destroy them."
Prometheus laughed. "Have you ever heard of the United States? It was an empire that ruled the world 4,000 years ago. They started off as defiant warriors who challenged the British Empire. They wrote their best ideas on a scroll. They became the dominant empire. Then they forgot what the scroll said, and their society fell apart. We must not forget what our nation stands for."
"We had the potential to do anything," said Atlas. "Our ancestors could have created a world where everyone could enjoy life, liberty and happiness. Instead our nation turned into a paranoid police state. The land of the free and home of the brave became a prison full of fear. This is what happens when people in government begin to believe their own illusions. This is what happens when fools like you and I begin to manipulate other people. We do not know what we are doing. Therefore, it would be a great benefit to the rest of humanity if we would just leave people alone."
Still laughing, Prometheus said, "The people let governments abuse them when they stopped being fighters and became the meek. Only two kinds of people have ever exited-masters and slaves. I will not let you turn me into a slave."
"You are missing the point, Prometheus. The common people are capable of solving problems themselves without us making it harder for them. They do not need us to interfere with every aspect of their lives. The human culture simply needs freedom to grow. Furthermore, governments should be an optional service. People may choose to use features of this societal service, or they may chose to disregard those features. No one should be forced to live under any law that he does not want. The law should never be enforced. No gods gave us the right to rule. We need to accept the possibility that perhaps the people do not need us at all. The truth is that we have sinned against the world, and there is no punishment in hell that could compensate for what we have done."
Prometheus grabbed the mask and said, "We are still gods! You have shown me nothing. Anarchists and dreamers like you are nothing new. The problem with your way of thinking is that it fails to provide realistic solutions. Our way has worked for centuries because it works. I will keep this sign of the gods to prove you are wrong."
Prometheus walked out of the temple and never returned. The Capital Ship killed many people, but was unable to confirm if it had killed Moloch. They could not scan for his bio signs because he had never been recorded. When the Capital Ship returned, something was wrong. The maintenance crew could not fix the problem. The technical skills to fix the error had been forgotten centuries earlier. Atlas ordered the ship away from the city. He knew this problem had happened on other ships before. The explosion could destroy the entire city.
Atlas spoke. "The capital ship was destroyed while fighting the Terrorist. Their lawless actions took the capital ship from us. Only they are responsible for this tragedy. We have been too nice to these terrorists, and now they are driving us to greater action. The people need us. The people need us to protect them from the terrorist. The only way we can have national security is to send more troops into the Wasteland. We must draft all able-bodied young men to protect our interests."
"Now you sound like my brother," said Epimetheus. "I always thought you were the reasonable one, Atlas, but now you want us to continue to attack these imaginary enemies. We destroyed the Capital Ship by sending it to attack empty caves and villages full of innocent people. Everything you just said is meaningless now because we have nothing to enforce our rules. Most of the Guardians did not show up for work today."
Atlas responded, saying, "Assemble the loyal Guardians who did show up! They will become our elite guard. We must not allow a cynical attitude to tear us apart. This is not the time to doubt our purposed. We must support our troops. Remember the heroes who fight and die for us in this war."
With those words, the senate applauded. Epimetheus looked around and asked, "Is that all we have become, tyrants who bomb women and children? Then we invent stories to give us the right to torture the innocent. How can you all pretend to care? Don't you actually care?"
Atlas responded, "We are not an aggressive people. The goal of the senate has always been to help all people enjoy the prosperity that we enjoy. The people in the wasteland should not think of us as the enemy. We will bring peace, freedom and democracy to the people of the wasteland. The law of the Republic for which we stand is the ultimate target of history. Let me tell you what is written on our Tablet of Destiny."
The senate sat silently with open eyes, eager to hear what was written on the tablet.
Atlas spoke, "There is much written on the tablet. Let me tell you about five words. They are truth, goodness, beauty, justice and love. Each of these absolute forms is a point on our eternal star. I do not need to prove what I say; each of you has always known in your hearts that this is true. Each of you knows that this is what we give the world."
Later that same day, Epimetheus spoke to Atlas in private. Epimetheus had talked to his brother and knew that the Tablet of Destiny was a hoax. He wanted to know why Atlas lied to the senate.
"We have always been that way. That is how people like us have survived for thousands of years," Atlas said. "Over the centuries many civilizations have come and gone. Every one of them was ruled by people just like us. If Moloch takes over this world, he will become just like us."
"Look at The Thunder Cult," said Epimetheus. "They survive harsher conditions than we do and still practice kindness. I should go the Dry Wasteland and talk with Moloch. Perhaps he could teach us to care for people rather than fear them."
Atlas then said, "Just look at yourself in a mirror. Do you think you could survive a day in the Dry Wasteland? You are not a powerful barbarian. We invent a culture of fear because were weak and afraid. We need the Republic to survive."
"But Atlas, why have we allowed the situation to spin out of control? Our intention might have originally been good. Couldn't we have done something to keep ourselves on the right track? Surely rational men like us can find a solution. We know the difference between good and evil. As men in power, we have the responsibility to make the right choice. Let's stop lying to ourselves and fix this."
Then Atlas said something very strange. "Long ago, the most powerful people in the world would gather and hold a ceremony called the Cremation of Care. Very few people alive today remember the power of that ceremony. Even the Black Lodge considered the ceremony too evil and would not attend it. But not even the Black Lodge could stop the masters from burning care."
Epimetheus thought about this answer then shouted, "No I refuse to believe you! Evil will not always win. There is good in the world. Someday someone who is better than us will do better than us."
Atlas shrugged. Without the Capital Ship, the senators lost confidence. They felt vulnerable without their weapon of mass destruction. Most of the senators retired to their private estates. They no longer operated as a unified corporation. The Republic was over. The streets were strangely quiet. People had expected a riot, but without the police to antagonize the people and concentrate the mob, no riot ever occurred. People peacefully collected whatever supplies they needed. Many people shared with each other and formed small tribes. People in these tribes began to plan their futures. Many people felt a new sense of purpose that the police had not allowed them to feel. They felt confident.
Prometheus sat in his office and stared at the mask. The lights in the room were growing dimmer. Prometheus tried to call the building maintenance to fix the lights, but no one responded. Emergency power would last a few more days, and then there would be darkness. Prometheus refused to accept that the sons of gods were just going to walk away and let Moloch take over. Moloch was nothing more than a human who crawled out from under a rock. "I am Prometheus the Anunnaki, and the last of a great blood line of Kings. The gods live through me."
Meanwhile in the Dry Wasteland, an old woman ran to reach a rock shelter before the storm of toxic waste covered the land. Several people were huddled in the shelter and there was no room for anyone else. A young student named Nickar stood up and said, "You can have my place."
"Do not give me your place. I am old and do not have long to live. It is better that a young man like you should live," the old woman said.
The young man said, "I am strong enough to survive this storm. Here, take this bag of water. I can always find more."
The young man walked out into the storm. He had never seen the shelter so crowded. Some of these people had come from as far as the eastern barrens. They had evacuated their homes after hearing stories about whole villages bursting into flames and a giant saucer-shaped ship. The young man knew that such weapons were built centuries ago. They were used as instruments of fear and hate. He could not think of any reason why someone would choose to use such a device in his day and age. His teacher Moloch told him about a republic whose leaders had access to incredible technology and knowledge. He would travel one day to the outlands and learn more about this relict of the past. For now, he was traveling north to see if his family was safe. This student of Moloch would one day become a senator of the new Republic. He would sponsor scientists and artists who would start the second renaissance. He would become an ally of the Goddess Temple and live to see life grow on the Earth until the land was green again. Even the evil Archon of the Black Lodge would respect this human.