Sunday, March 19, 2006
“It’s about time,” says GRWK as he gives out a semblance of a smile with the folding of his feeding organ’s flap.
“I’m sure our superiors are having a hard time preparing our medals of honor.” BHJK seems to be enjoying the involuntary movement provided by the strong undercurrent.
GRWK jerks his rounded torso in an undulating fashion that playfully hits BHJK’s side. In retaliation to the humorous gesture, BHJK shrugs in a way to elicit a shivering look. It’s a known fact that the cold waters of the ocean gives them an uncomfortable lukewarm feeling.
“Everything’s in place and I guess there’s nothing more to do.”
“Nothing more,” interjects BHJK as he moves a little farther from GRWK, “except to wait.” BHJK gathers momentum by opening his silky webbings to propel himself upward in a playful manner.
Despite being forewarned by mysterious messages, deep sea creatures appear dumbfounded with the sight of miniature elephants with bat wings. A mild sting stymies a giant octopus that tried to defy the warning. The two alien beings seem to have an invisible shield that protects them from savage predators.
“Yes,” GRWK unfolds the flap of his feeding organ and starts to siphon the stray bits of algae as he catches up along with the speed of BHJK. GRWK fixes the gadget on his back as if to check if it’s still working.
“When we arrived, I thought all the while that…”
“Quirk, that’s a quirk in our research method. High intelligence, compared to ours is definitely not present in this orb. Perhaps we should have sent a missive to this effect so they would have the idea of overhauling the outdated exploration system.” GRWK glances at BHJK, a gesture of invitation to his untimely meal. Nearing the surface, the numerous bits of algae appear like manna from heaven. BHJK politely declines by half-closing his visual organs.
Both beings brace for the worse. The searing heat of the Pacific is getting into their nerves. BHJK is the first to manifest the symptoms of reverse-hypothermia. His bloating face is a sure sign of physical discomfort.
“I didn’t imagine that it would be this hard.” GRWK is emitting a slower frequency. It is evident that their telepathic communication is being hampered by the sudden change in temperature. “In case we lose each other..”
“Why the grim thoughts?” BHJK throws a glance at GRWK who is continuously feeding on the morsels of native ocean flora.
“I mean, the communications.” GRWK sidles directly under BHJK while folding the flap of his feeding organ. His silky webbings are now fluttering faster like wings.
“We had prepared for this. Potential problem analysis, preventive action, contingencies. What have we missed?” BHJK sets his sight up above.
“Oh, nothing short of that,” GRWK grimaces in pain. “Our mission is accomplished even before it is accomplished.”
“You are babbling. I guess you are suffering from… what’s that term?”
“What term?” GRWK is slowly being left behind by BHJK.
Sunlight is already visible, an indication that they are nearing the surface. A horde of sea creatures continually block their way. A big black swimmer circles BHJK, inspecting him like a suspicious parcel in the customs area. The swimmer opens its mouth to show its set of white sharp teeth. But before it can get a few inches nearer, the swimmers feels like hitting a glass wall.
“High temperature causes constrictions in the veins. I really can’t remember the word for it.” BHJK is moving faster. His excitement is fuelling his desire to accomplish the mission as soon as he can so as not to prolong the agony. “Anyway, do you think it is worth the sacrifice? Everything we did for the superiors?”
“I guess so. The next batch of explorers will just be too glad to claim this as territory of our great race.” The word sacrifice seemed to have given back GRWK his waning strength. “The only intelligent beings, that’s as per our close scrutiny…”
“Oh, yes, I can sense them. There they are in the surface now. How I wish we could get out of the liquid to witness their voluntary termination. It’s easy, so easy to fool them.”
“They are simply stupid blockheads,” GRWK pronounces the last two words in a higher frequency to profess sarcasm. Only gilled blockheads would wish to get out of the water unless he wants to commit suicide. “Their mass death is… what’s the term? Is it triage” GRWK is soaring side by side with BHJK now.
“No, triage is not the word. It means another thing.” BHJK slows down like a train approaching the station. “Triage is something like, it refers to… ah, yes, triage is a selection process. To choose between those that may die and those that shouldn’t.”
“It’s not triage then. But what?”
“What what?” BHJK is exerting effort in sending his telepathic message to GRWK.
“The word for dying all at the same time?”
“Why the word meanings? Is there nothing better to talk about before we totally sign off?”
“With the length of time we had spent together? Nothing much to discuss I guess.” GRWK tries to control the surge of energy that is contorting his body. Like BHJK, GRWK is already with a bloated body.
“They are here, I mean, they are already there, about to plunge to their end.”
“I can sense them too. Hundreds, no thousands or maybe more. All of them I guess.” GRWK closes his visual organs and the rest of his appendages like a turtle closing shop in its shell.
“Hey, how do we celebrate our success?”
“Celebrate?” GRWK shakes a bit while BHJK seems to have lost all the energy inside him. The ocean tide has completely taken control of their mobility. With their minds still active giving them the luxury of engaging in a senseless conversation, they have come to terms with the hibernation forced on them by the rising temperature.
The sacrifice is worth it, according to tradition – sacrifice of the few for the benefit of the many. And the centerpiece of their mission is the ultimate sacrifice of expending all their energies in convincing, telepathically, the sentients in the alien world. With the sense of accomplishment, GRWK and BHJK are only too happy to die in exchange for the success of their mission.
On the surface, thousands of native creatures are blindly moving towards the deep waters. Acting like misdirected robots, the creatures appear to be suicidal in rushing to their ill-fated destination.
The bloated bodies of GRWK and BHJK start to rise to the surface of the waters. But before sunlight could hit the lifeless bodies, a swarm of sharks breaks in for an impending feast. It’s a long wait but it’s worth it, the sharks seem to echo back to each other.
Two guys aboard a motor boat are observing the event. The one with eyeglasses is scribbling something on his note pad while the bearded one is transfixed with the binoculars set upon the shoreline.
“They never learn,” exclaims the one with eyeglasses without taking his sight from the note pad.
“Stupid blockheads, I say. Come to think of it, sounds funny but it appears like there is a force, a hidden force or something from nowhere that is directing the show.”
“What do you mean?” The bespectacled guy looks up then shakes his head before going back to his writing chore. The plastic pen with indelible ink is carelessly transcribing numbers and words on the yellow note pad.
“Well,” the bearded one scratches his chin. “Animals have instincts, right? And the first and foremost of the instincts is survival, right? How come these stupid blockheads keep on repeating history? There’s something forcing them to do it. Like, er, someone pushing them to their deaths.” His binocular-aided sight keeps on scanning the expanse of the shoreline.
“It’s an anomaly, perhaps in their genes or maybe it’s second nature to them.”
“That’s what the textbooks say of it.” The bearded one trains his binoculars away from the shoreline just to break the monotony of seeing the senseless carnage. From afar, he espies a large black shark seemingly enjoying something delectable. “But textbooks can be wrong. Am I right or am I correct?”
The one with eyeglasses nods, completely ignoring the humor. His sight continues to jump from the shoreline to his note pad so like a scorer in counting the number of lemmings that are being drowned.