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CHAPTER 40: HEAVENS FALLS


    The Tardais and Micah appear in front of an old house. Across the old cracked road before Micah, a sign
stands pointing to the left. The sign is old and weathered, but the text painted on it is still be visible. It reads
Heavens Falls 1 Mile. Micah casually removes his smoldering jacket and throws it on the ground. Picking it
up, he examines the jacket and dusts it off. Satisfied that it has stopped smoking, he puts it back on. He
searches the pockets for a moment, pulls out a triangular shaped object, points it at the old house and the
old house vanishes. He enters the Tardais and it dematerializes. Moments later, the house materializes. A
car motor can be heard from the back of the house, and Micah appears from the rear of the house driving an
old green roadster. He comments to himself before driving toward town.

    "I think this will do nicely!"

    Micah's car slows at an intersection, and a white oval zooms by him. Suddenly a wall of metal falls out of
the oval behind Micah's car. He turns off the engine, gets out of the car, and walks towards the wall. He reaches
out, fruitfully taps it with his knuckles several times and the sound reverberates inside.

    "Seems solid enough." He mutters to himself. "Better set a cam to record this thing. Who knows what it might be."


**************************************************************************
*TARDAIS CAM ACTIVATED:
*
*PREPARING SCAN...
*PHYSICAL MAKE-UP OF 1912 ORIGIN.
*E-SPACE CONTAMINATION
*CONTAINS A TRI-DIMENSIONAL E-SPACE STABILIZER
*ORIGINS OF STABILIZER: TEDLAND (TEDLABS INC. 3072)
*
*DETAIL SCAN: UNABLE TO COMPUTE...
*SCAN CANCELED.
**************************************************************************



    Micah picks up the scanner and turns it off. Promptly returning it to his pocket, he returns to his car and cranks it.
The car purrs to life and Micah continues his drive toward the town. As he drives off, he glances up into his rearview
mirror and notices "TITANIC" written in a bold script across the top edge. Micah stops the car, stares in the rearview
mirror in amazement, gets out of the car and stares at the ship again. This time from farther away, he sees a glow
emanating from the ship. The image of Ted's face forms from within the glow.

    "Ted?"

(    I don't have much time. There's an earthling playing with R-Space. If he is not stopped, the planet will
     be destroyed. You must stop him...)

    The glow disappears, and the Titanic fades away. Micah gets back into the car, cranks it up, and drives onward.



MEANWHILE AT ONDHAVEN:

    Far above the town a dark figured man stands at a castle window watching Micah's car nearing town. Unaware of
Micah's purpose, the man steps away from the window and returns to his array of equipment. The lights in his room
flicker and die. The fluorescent lights are replaced by a luminous white oval floating in the center of the room. The oval
grows wide enough to walk through, but then flickers and streaks off leaving a large hole in the wall.

    He picks up a small tape-recorder and hits record.

    "May ten, eighty-four. Two PM. White oval reforms, grows wide enough and tall enough to step through. At one
fifty-eight, it blasts hole through wall and disappears. It moves away from town and discharges large gray object.
After a minute, object becomes unstable leaving no trace behind."

    The dark figured man stops his recording device and sets it down. He returns to tinkering with his large console of
computer arrays. Outside, the landscape begins to change colors erratically. He stops tinkering and the colors slowly
return to normal.

    "May ten, eighty-four. Two Thirty PM. Reversal of induction coils, now ready to retest system."

    The lights flicker and dim. The glowing disk reappears and goes completely black. It streaks out of the room through
the hole in the wall and hovers over Micah's car.

    "May ten, eighty-four. Two Thirty-Seven PM. Wormhole goes black after reversing induction coils. There was a glimpse
of something on the other side."



CHAPTER 41: FUTURE GHOSTS

    Somewhere in the far reaches of the future, a young boy sits in front of a screen. The screen is filled with information
rapidly flashing by. Somewhere in the darkness above the boy, two voices converse unheard by the boy.

    "How fast is he reading that?"

    "Two pages per second. He's already capable of singular thought, unfortunately that's all he can do. He can't move,
speak or respond to outside stimuli. We can't figure out how to correct these things, and don't even know if we can.
I've had top people working on this problem for a year now.

    "You mean he's sentient?"

    "Basically yes. The only way to teach him is to have another android program the complicated coding. We're just
beginning to create involuntary movements. Unfortunately, he's the only android of this magnitude we've ever built.
The only one in twenty-seven years that has actually lasted this long. We build another one every year, and every
year its the same. They get turned on and turn into a smoldering bit of rubble within the first week. This one was
the first to show signs of intelligence. He's a genius up in his head, but he's totally devoid of all environmental
actions. There's..."

    A sudden burst of light illuminates the boy's dark room. A siren blares, and the fluorescent lights flicker on.
The room is now empty. The chair is darkly scorched and smoldering.

    "My god what happened?"

    "He couldn't have gotten up and walked off, could he?"

    "Not a chance, he doesn't move remember?"

    "Where'd he go then?"

    "No idea."


MEANWHILE IN THE PAST:

    Micah's car stops in the town square. Micah stares at the lifeless gray village. Time is stands still, and the only
part of the village not lifeless is a mountain on the other side of town. He looks up at it and drives toward it. Suddenly
the dark disk reappears in front of Micah's car, and he quickly skids to a halt. The disk quivers slightly and moves to
a hovering position above the car. Moments later, it spits out a small figure and vanishes.

(    31527ABG52357.)

    "What now?"

(    Translation to English?)

(    You can hear my transmissions?)

(    Yes I can. Who and what are you?)

(    I am 4-273-45. I am an android from Earth. I am capable of thinking, computational output and
     incapable of movement.)

(    I've never liked being called by a number. Is there a name you call yourself?)

(    Yes. I call myself Sil, what's your name?)

(    My name is a difficult matter. I have three names throughout time. My future name is Theodore Amaz Jhan.
     My past name is Zhermos. You can call me by my present name, Micah. It will prove less complicated if we
     run into one of my other counterparts. An android of sorts that is one of the last of his race, the Niads.)

(    Interesting. Could you help me become mobile? I get so tired of being moved by other people,
     when all I wish for is to be capable of moving on my own.)

(    Where are you?)

(    I seem to be face down in some kind of seat.)



CHAPTER 42: WORMHOLES OF DEATH

    The man in the castle begins to tinker with the array again. The landscape flickers to gray for a moment and
returns to normal. The village becomes alive again. He turns a few dials and time freezes again. The only part of
the village with color is Micah and his car. The man is curious about this and picks up his recording device.

    "May ten, eighty-four. Reactivation of system successful."

    A red disk appears in the room and shoots off through the roof. It hangs over the castle like a large storm
cloud gathering strength. Suddenly, the red disk falls and consumes the entire mountain. Down in the village,
life returns and the red disk fades away. Micah turns the car around and heads out of town. Parking the car
inside the Tardais/house, he looks in the rearview mirror and finds the boy lying face-down in the back seat.
He sets him against a wall in the main room, and prepares for take-off.

(    What was that?)

    "That was R-Space. A nasty type of space that tends to leave a mess behind. The man in the castle was
trying to harness it's power. It became unstable and... It's gone now. Let's get out of here before someone
gets suspicious."

    He presses a button on the console and the house returns to it's original blue appearance, then dematerializes
into time/space. Satisfied that they are safely away, Micah heads to the back room and retrieves his toolbox.

    "I think this ought to help with your immobility."

(    Do you know how?)

    "That is something that will take time. Fortunately, time is something we have an infinite amount of."

(    What are those things in the back room?)

    "Things I'm tinkering with."

(    I have created similar devices in blueprint form, though I am unable to make them. My creators couldn't
     access my internal systems, but he knew I was alive. He could never understand how I was different from
     the others. The others didn't have the will to survive. Would you like to see the blueprints I've made?)

    "Sure."

    Micah seems to see something in the boy's eyes and then becomes slightly nervous. A console panel
somewhere beeps and several screens flicker with diagrams.

    "The blueprints you've made are for a Tardais. More importantly, this Tardais."

(    How can that be? I've never been inside this Tardais of yours.)

    "It's not mine, but an old friend's. He was killed many years ago. You somehow contain his essence, creativity,
and some of his memories too. I now have an obligation to help you."



CHAPTER 43: THE QUEST

    Micah returns to the Tardais console and types for several minutes. Their destination, Habdens School of Magic,
a small dot in the line of infinity. Micah will soon realize that his journey is a quest for the one thing that can tell the
story of Ted... The Ted Legendary... and perhaps Ted himself... The Tardais shudders a moment, and a fuzzy
hologramatic representation of Ikor forms in the Tardais control room.

    "Hello Micah, or do they call you Ted now?"

    "I prefer Micah, its less confusing."

    "I see. I bring an urgent message from Ted. He is being held captive at the center of an impenetrable maze.
You must save him. He has very little time. I have programmed the Tardais coordinates to take you there, farewell."

    The hologram fades away and the Tardais lands in front of a large archaic door. Beyond the door, an endless
sea of maze. Far in the distance, a castle... Inside the castle, Ted. The maze is riddled with memories, traps to
slow down any who attempt to enter the castle within... Micah enters, and the memories flood in. Micah's mind is
transported to the far distant past as his body continues toward to the heart of the maze. Micah's essence rushes
back into past memories, an observer of what has been.

    These are the chronicles of the Ted. In the time before time began, the Niads reigned all of space with peace
and justice. When time began, they became the watchers, intent on recording the events of all space/time.

(    Micah, remember what you must do. Concentrate on the present. The here and now.)

    Micah revives temporarily, long enough to determine his bearings and continue onward. Another memory
surfaces. An ancient text written in an elegant hand forms in the pages of a large tome.

    Time begins: We send forth the last of our race into the universe. He is the center-point of our recording.
His name is Theodore Amaz Jhan, son of Ikor and Arin Jhan. These three, and their future echoes will change
non-time forever.

    Micah claws through the memories and returns to the present. He has walked into a dead-end and stands
amongst a pile of bones. Turning around, he walks in the other direction. Taking his bearings again, he walks
onward. Another memory surfaces, the memory of a very young voice. Behind the voice, more text appears
in the tome.

    "I am Ted, last of my race. I have been sent to the planet Earth to begin my quest."

    In the beginning, there was Ted. He had his beginnings like all others, but he was born at the beginning of time
itself. He was given the wisdom of the elders, but was killed and diluted in a reincarnation. He was taught the great
magic in hopes that he was the messiah of the shining time. Little did they know of his reincarnation or of a dream
that would create a savior and a monster.

    "Ted, you had the dream again, didn't you?"

    "I did. What does it all mean?"

    "Is it the same as before?"

    "No, this time there was a foreboding darkness."

    "One day the knowledge of the elders will be revealed to you and the dreams will be understood. Get back to sleep,
you need your rest."

    "What about the darkness?"

    "Don't worry about it now Ted. It is only a future echo, a possibility. Goodnight Ted."

    "Goodnight headmaster."

    Micah fights the memories, and returns to the present. A white light emanates from him, and the memory traps are
enveloped within the light. The labyrinth walls change colors, and Micah walks onward.

(    What now Sil? Sil?)

(    Micah, he can't hear you.)

(    Ted?)

(    Yes?)

(    Where are you?)

(    I am trapped within the center of the maze. The planet Aaer...)

(    Zhermos, so we meet again? You are trapped within my realms. There is only one way out of this maze
     and that is through me. Ted is the ultimate prize. You have ten days to save him, after that, you will be
     trapped within the maze forever.)

    Micah walks onward and reaches the center of the maze. Within the center, a small room with an entry-way
behind him.

(    There's nothing here! Where's Ted?)

(    You have traversed through the twisted maze, but you still must journey through the desert wastes of the
     Niads... Your home. We will wait for you in the Labyrinth Castle. The hot climate will cook you dry,
     or the Evil Below the Ground will grind your bones. Remember you have ten days.)

    From an echo on the wind, Micah can faintly hear Ted's voice.

    "Micah remember your childhood. You played in these deserts as a boy. I remember them, and you are part
of me. Remember the castle ruins you played in, the one with odd walls within. It is what you seek."



CHAPTER 44: WITHIN THE DESERT

    Crom, the planet of Ted's youth. The last home of the Niads. Ted's memories surface within me and I can see
Ted's whole life laid out before me. I focus toward the castle of my youth and come to stand at a gate set into a
large rock face.

    He pushes the unlocked gate open and enters. Torches line the walls, and eerie shadows fall across the floor.
On the far side of the room, a door hangs open. Micah walks toward it and enters. Within is a small landing, beyond...
an impossible labyrinth. He closes his eyes and steps forward. He hits the landing with a thud, and is momentarily
dazed. After a moment, he regains his inner confidence and peers over the edge of the landing. He whistles a moment
and comes to the conclusion that its a long way down. He stares around and walks toward the side of the landing.
He walks down steps and comes to a lower landing. Spotting a door off to one side, he heads toward it, opens it and
steps through. Within, another maze lies before him. He continues to walk in a downward direction finding it difficult to
keep his bearings. He suddenly stops and leaps off the landing he is standing on. Falling down through the labyrinth,
the room vanishes. His surroundings change to a large sand dune. Micah stands at one end, and facing him from the
far end is a dark shadow.

(    My maze... You destroyed my maze. I am now the only thing that stands in your way of
     Ted. To save him, you must pass through me.)

    "I don't have to beat you... I know your secret. You're dead. You can't haunt me anymore..."

(    True, I can no longer hurt you. To pass me, you must pass the star of seven. First is the maze without and the
     maze within. Second is the test of wisdom. Third is the test of courage and might. Fourth is the test of skill.
     Fifth is the test of tests. Seven by far is the worst... You will remember what all others have forgotten. You have
     conquered the first four and have three remaining yet to traverse. If you fail, you will surely die.)

    The shadow fades away. Ted appears at the far side of the room. Micah runs toward him, but is stopped suddenly
by a wall that appears from thin air. Two doors form in the center of the wall, and Micah walks toward them. Between
the doors, carved into the wall, a clearly visible riddle.

Choose between us two.
One to life, and one to death.
One question each you may
ask to seek the truthful door.
One tells false and one tells
true. You must decide,
but do be wise for one
holds death inside.
Beware...

    "Door one. If you are the door of death, would you lie saying you are the door of life?"

(    No.)

    "Door two. If you are the door of life, would you lie saying you are the door of death?"

(    Yes.)

    Micah stands before the doors in deep thought. He decides that his questions were the test of mind, and figures
that the test of tests is the actual decision. He moves toward the first door, but stops and thinks a moment. He runs
the answers through his mind for a moment and comes to the final decision to go through the second door. With a
trembling hand, he opens the second door and walks through.

(    You chose wisely... Farewell.)

    Micah enters a small white painted room. The door closes behind him, and disappears. The room appears to not
have any exits. Painted on the far wall is the phrase, "You will remember what all others have forgotten."


MEANWHILE IN THE TARDAIS:

    Sil remains where Micah left him. His fingers twitch and move. A hologram of Ikor appears. He catches Sil's gaze
and an invisible transfer of data takes place between the two. Sil's body twitches, he slowly stands up and tries to speak.

    "Tha...ank y."

    "No need to thank me. You contain the knowledge to save both Ted and Micah. I know where they've been taken.
Set the Tardais coordinates for Crom. Micah has traveled back in time to several years before Ted's early youth.
You must hurry, there is little time."

    The hologram of Ikor disappears and Sil staggers over to the Tardais control panels. He types in the coordinates
for Crom and staggers over to a couch in the back room. He slumps down on it and enters the Dreamscape.
The Tardais travels onward.

(    Welcome to the Dreamscape Sil. I am Theodore Jhan, a future\past distortion of Micah. You must find Micah
     before the planet Crom is eradicated of life. You are his last hope. Go...)

    The Tardais lands, and Sil returns from the Dreamscape. He rushes back to the Tardais console panels, looks at
one briefly before muttering and exiting.

    "I hope this is it."


MEANWHILE WITHIN THE MAZE:

    "The thing that all others have forgotten is that I am the far future, using my past and present selves to defeat the
evil shadow. Only the future remains in the end."

    The white room fades to black. The floating sensation returns and the open floating room reappears. Ted sits in a
chair at the far end of the room.

    "Ted?"

    "What Micah?"

    "Am I really your past, or am I your future?"

    "Micah you are the one who was foretold to me in a dream years ago. My past was you, my future will be you.
In the end, you will be the lone survivor, the one who returns to the beginning of creation, the only one to journey
back to the void of non-time. Once again, thank you."

(    No Micah, you have not yet won. Remember that this planet is eradicated of all life. You too will be
     destroyed in its firestorm. Hahahaha...)

    Suddenly from the place where the shadow had stood, the Tardais materializes. Sil trudges out and urges Micah
to enter. Up in the sky, a dark green cloud forms the future/past destruction of the planet Crom. Back on Tedland, a
statue carved in an enormous slab of Deltrium appears facing the Lake of Dreams. Below the statue, four lines of text
are engraved in the slab, a reminder for all eternity.


    The journey has come full circle. May the essence of Ted never be forgotten and may his spirit always bring
light to the darkness that hides within us all.

Micah Jhan,

The Creator and Destroyer of Worlds.