Thursday, February 25, 2010

FFF #22 - Your Highness

What follows is my contribution for Friday Flash Fiction #22 - Four Words





Even though I told Cormac to enjoy his time off, he came up with a challenge after all. Thank you sir for the prompt.

Here we have another SciFi attempt. Or is it just another weak effort on my part to find God again? I also decided to attempt a dialog only piece. The process of metal protection mentioned actually exists, even though I am sure I have it all wrong as to how it works. It is just a story after all.

Your Highness

"Jones, I thought we were supposed to to be looking for a non-corrosive solution to this problem. Just look at the oxidation taking place under the lens of the microscope. This new material you came up with is corroding faster than the last batch we created."

"Patience Professor, patience. The alloy combination I came up with needs more time to congeal with the particulates and moisture in the air. Certainly some corrosion will take place. I warned you this would happen. But what looks like corrosion is actually the final phase in the transformation of man-made inorganic material into an organic material even Mother Nature would embrace.

"Right. More of your SciFi wizardry.....atom sized robots or something. What is it you call it again?"

"Nanotechnology. And it is not Science Fiction.........Look, you agreed to help us with this once you found out where I came from and what I had to offer. I can just pack up and leave you here stumbling around like the old fool you are. There are others with similar letters behind their name who would jump at this opportunity. I picked you to become the "famous Nobel Prize Winner" who will save the World for future generations. You will become the father of Nanotechnology. It is all part of the plan. But let's get something straight. This is not so much Nanotechnology, as it is a major step in it's development. Without this one innovation, Nanotechnology will not exist within the time frame we have set up. It is imperative that you understand it enough to bullshit your way through an explanation. So pay attention."

"Well then, carry on sir."

"Okay, so here we have what looks like a basic piece of steel. As you have just pointed out, it is beginning to corrode even faster than it normally would. Up until now, your approach has been to defeat corrosion by just mixing various metals in various ways without any real consideration to how corrosion works. My method and process takes corrosion and uses it against itself. Exposed to the elements, this piece of steel will form an outer layer of corrosion...what you people call rust. But only in the outer layer of molecules. Once this has happened, the corrosion will stop as the outer layer of rust forms an impervious protective cover to any further chemical breakdown of the alloys inside. It ain't pretty, but it works."

"I read your formulas. I read your explanations. I have listened to you and tried my best to understand, but ......."

"Don't panic Professor. All you have to do is be able to bull shit your way through this like you have the rest of your life. You were chosen just because of your almost magical ability to fool all the people all the time. Trust me. History will thank you and honor you. But only if you follow my directions."


"Control? Techfred Williams here. There seems to be a glitch occurring in Alternate Future number 4."

"Uh, Is that not Techfred Jones' mission?"

"Yes Control, he just arrived and was debriefed yesterday. But there is a spike in the viability index numbers that bothers me."

"Get him on the horn immediately."

"Yes Sir. Techfred Williams out."


"Well Professor......"

"I prefer "Your Highness"."

"Uh okay. Well "Your Highness", you really screwed up this project. I laid out specific instructions and you tossed them as soon as I left the room. I will admit we never anticipated this omnipotent tendency of yours, but there it is. Five minutes after I have gone, you go all manic and start believing you are the World's Saviour. To your credit, you obviously have some talents we did not anticipate."

"Like controlling the World?"

"Yeah, like controlling the World."

"So what is it you want Jones?"

"Nothing Prof....uh Your Highness. Just stopped in to ask you if you remember the microscope and what you saw in there?"

"It is burned into my memory."

"And you do remember the instructions I left you?"

"Of course. All I had to do was alter them some and well, you are calling me "Your Highness" now."

"I see. I would have thought you were smart enough to remember some of the basics of scientific endeavor. When experimenting, stringent procedures must be followed in order to get reliable results. You wandered off the reservation Professor and I am just here as a courtesy to tell you we are pulling the plug on this experiment."

Until next time...............


Randal Graves said...

I think this is an attempt for you to test your pet scientific theories on us, to see whether we think you're mad or not. Just remember, they already used transparent aluminum in the movies. ;-)

Beach Bum said...

The History Channel loves to show doomsday scenario shows to the point that I get dizzy from the ways people have dreamed up the world will end. I often think that if this much effort was put into solving problems but well you know....

But the end of the world by nanotech gray sludge that consumes everything both organic and inorganic while reproducing itself from the material is particularly disturbing.

Great story, got a feel for how the mad scientist types could set something like that loose!

David Barber said...

Great story Mike. Nonotechnology. It could be the future. (Have your read Michael Chrichton's, Prey?) Scary stuff and you pulled it off here bud.

Doc said...

Your dialog approach really sets of an amazing story to begin with. I think this might be a really strong suit of yours that you have yet to really exploit.

And don't knock yourself for doing SciFi. It ain't easy. If it was, everybody would do it.

Great tale all around, and thanks for the well wishes. Demons have been wrestled and I'm back on solid ground.


Crybbe666 said...

Agree with Doc about the dialogue. I always find it hard to make it seem real but you have done a fantastic job.

"Well Professor......"
"I prefer "Your Highness"."

That cracked me up...reminded me of classic British humour!!