Signal

Jun. 30th, 2010 08:58 pm
vettac: (Default)
Paula drummed her fingers against the desk, her foot tapping in unison, as she waited for the phone call. She glanced at the clock and noted that he was already ten minutes late. He of all people should know how edgy she got when people did not jump to her command.

She chuckled as she listened to herself. Patience was not one of her virtues. She worked constantly to keep that character defect under control because the animals didn’t like it and did not perform well when they sensed it.

She swiveled her chair towards the window. Her office overlooked the serene pristine of the man-made lake surrounding the office complex. She had pulled a lot of strings … and tantrums … to get this office. She always worked better when she had a view. She’d had to remind them that she, Dr. Paula Randall, one of the foremost authorities in the field of zoomusicology, could have chosen any number of organizations to work with, and that they needed her, not the other way around.

In 2069, Paula had published a paper proving the theory that some humans had an inborn ability to communicate thoughts through music.

As one of a handful of people on the planet who had been born with this ability, Paula was very much in demand.

She and a team of scientists, in their pursuit of decoding the musical interaction between man and animal, had designed an animal tank specifically for larger mammals like the whale, whose population had declined to the point that, by 2071, the only ones left were those adopted through organizations like Humphrey Research Institute, an organization well known for donating funds to scientific organizations interested in the field of zoomusicology.

Companies like Humphrey began cropping up around the globe, creating habitats for the remainder of the animal population.

What the public did not know, was that Humphrey Research Institute had a number of benefactors interested in investigating the potential of transferring animal communication codexes into humans who had lost their ability to communicate with the outside world.

Paula’s interest in the field was not for the science, although it was a plus, or for the human potential for communication. She simply liked the music. And to that end, she had designed the communication device that was used to breathe and sing in the underwater tanks, to translate the signal between the human and whale minds.

When she was in the tank, she would insert the communication device. Then she would open her mouth and begin to sing.

The animals would surround her, their rubbery skin rubbing against her, guiding her as she swam around the tank. It was the most serene peaceful feeling that she had ever known.

She learned a lot about their history, the search for clean water and food in the vast oceans on the earth. She learned how, as the years passed, their search for the clean and open space began to dwindle away, and how they were forced further out to sea.

She learned the names of each one of them, and the names of all those who came before them. Over time, as they began to know and trust her, she even learned where they had come from.

One day, six months ago, George, one of the other tank scientists who had gone for a morning swim with the whales, was discovered floating at the top of the tank. When the team pulled him from the water, they discovered that all of his equipment was fully functional. He had simply stopped breathing.

Paula jumped when the shrill chime of the phone interrupted her thoughts and she grabbed the receiver to her ear.

“Robert?”

“Yes.”

“Did you decipher the signal?”

There was silence at the other end. Paula’s heart sank as she realized what it meant.

“I’m coming down.”

“I don’t think that’s a good idea, Paula. She’s really upset right now.”

“All the more reason,” Paula said firmly. “Maybe I can calm her down, make her understand.”

“Paula, why don’t we wait-”

But she had already hung up the phone. She grabbed her wetsuit from the closet and turned to leave the room, but paused for a moment. She went back to her desk and reached inside the top drawer, pulling out a small device, then slipped it in her pocket and headed to the tanks.
***

♪~ Nayla, what happened to George?

♪~ George is George. George is here.

♪~ Nayla, what does that mean?

♪~ George is here … with us.

♪~ But, Nayla-

♪~ Paula come with us too?

♪~ ....... Yes.

***

She learned finally, what they were saying, how for centuries, the signals, the beautiful, haunting melodies, had been misinterpretated. She finally understood.

♪~ You are killing us with your ways. So we have to leave you behind.

Signal

Jun. 30th, 2010 08:58 pm
vettac: (Default)
Paula drummed her fingers against the desk, her foot tapping in unison, as she waited for the phone call. She glanced at the clock and noted that he was already ten minutes late. He of all people should know how edgy she got when people did not jump to her command.

She chuckled as she listened to herself. Patience was not one of her virtues. She worked constantly to keep that character defect under control because the animals didn’t like it and did not perform well when they sensed it.

She swiveled her chair towards the window. Her office overlooked the serene pristine of the man-made lake surrounding the office complex. She had pulled a lot of strings … and tantrums … to get this office. She always worked better when she had a view. She’d had to remind them that she, Dr. Paula Randall, one of the foremost authorities in the field of zoomusicology, could have chosen any number of organizations to work with, and that they needed her, not the other way around.

In 2069, Paula had published a paper proving the theory that some humans had an inborn ability to communicate thoughts through music.

As one of a handful of people on the planet who had been born with this ability, Paula was very much in demand.

She and a team of scientists, in their pursuit of decoding the musical interaction between man and animal, had designed an animal tank specifically for larger mammals like the whale, whose population had declined to the point that, by 2071, the only ones left were those adopted through organizations like Humphrey Research Institute, an organization well known for donating funds to scientific organizations interested in the field of zoomusicology.

Companies like Humphrey began cropping up around the globe, creating habitats for the remainder of the animal population.

What the public did not know, was that Humphrey Research Institute had a number of benefactors interested in investigating the potential of transferring animal communication codexes into humans who had lost their ability to communicate with the outside world.

Paula’s interest in the field was not for the science, although it was a plus, or for the human potential for communication. She simply liked the music. And to that end, she had designed the communication device that was used to breathe and sing in the underwater tanks, to translate the signal between the human and whale minds.

When she was in the tank, she would insert the communication device. Then she would open her mouth and begin to sing.

The animals would surround her, their rubbery skin rubbing against her, guiding her as she swam around the tank. It was the most serene peaceful feeling that she had ever known.

She learned a lot about their history, the search for clean water and food in the vast oceans on the earth. She learned how, as the years passed, their search for the clean and open space began to dwindle away, and how they were forced further out to sea.

She learned the names of each one of them, and the names of all those who came before them. Over time, as they began to know and trust her, she even learned where they had come from.

One day, six months ago, George, one of the other tank scientists who had gone for a morning swim with the whales, was discovered floating at the top of the tank. When the team pulled him from the water, they discovered that all of his equipment was fully functional. He had simply stopped breathing.

Paula jumped when the shrill chime of the phone interrupted her thoughts and she grabbed the receiver to her ear.

“Robert?”

“Yes.”

“Did you decipher the signal?”

There was silence at the other end. Paula’s heart sank as she realized what it meant.

“I’m coming down.”

“I don’t think that’s a good idea, Paula. She’s really upset right now.”

“All the more reason,” Paula said firmly. “Maybe I can calm her down, make her understand.”

“Paula, why don’t we wait-”

But she had already hung up the phone. She grabbed her wetsuit from the closet and turned to leave the room, but paused for a moment. She went back to her desk and reached inside the top drawer, pulling out a small device, then slipped it in her pocket and headed to the tanks.
***

♪~ Nayla, what happened to George?

♪~ George is George. George is here.

♪~ Nayla, what does that mean?

♪~ George is here … with us.

♪~ But, Nayla-

♪~ Paula come with us too?

♪~ ....... Yes.

***

She learned finally, what they were saying, how for centuries, the signals, the beautiful, haunting melodies, had been misinterpretated. She finally understood.

♪~ You are killing us with your ways. So we have to leave you behind.

Waves

Jun. 19th, 2010 09:30 am
vettac: (Default)
He stood silently on the rocks that jutted out from the shoreline, watching the waves crash against the rocks, spewing foam and churning sand along the beach.

It was early morning, and even the regular joggers had not made their appearance. This was the time that he liked to come, when the morning belonged to him and no one else.

He used to come out here as a child, when his father was still alive. The two of them would wake up early and go downstairs to the kitchen, treading softly so as not to wake his mother. His father would prepare their breakfast to go: apples from the garden, country cheddar cheese cut in bite-sized cubes and wrapped in long pieces of waxed paper, and a thermos filled with water and ice cubes from the freezer. They would whisper and giggle together as they stuffed the food into his father’s fishing bag. Then they’d tiptoe out the back door, and once outside, both of them would burst out into relieved laughter at not being caught.

But his mother had never been a morning person, so she’d never wake up to disapprove of the two of them sneaking out so early in the morning to walk down to the beach.

It had been their special time together.

But one morning, when he was twelve, his father had gotten up earlier than ususal and had not come to wake him up. When he had awoken on his own and gone to his parent’s room, he’d found that his father had already gone.

He rushed to get dressed and hurried out of the house, following the route that the two of them would make every Sunday morning for as long as he could remember.

When he got to their stretch of the beach, there was no one there.

But on the sand was the bag that they always carried with them.

With trembling fingers, he opened the top and found a slip of paper, folded in half with his name on it.

And he knew that his father would not be coming home.

Waves

Jun. 19th, 2010 09:30 am
vettac: (Default)
He stood silently on the rocks that jutted out from the shoreline, watching the waves crash against the rocks, spewing foam and churning sand along the beach.

It was early morning, and even the regular joggers had not made their appearance. This was the time that he liked to come, when the morning belonged to him and no one else.

He used to come out here as a child, when his father was still alive. The two of them would wake up early and go downstairs to the kitchen, treading softly so as not to wake his mother. His father would prepare their breakfast to go: apples from the garden, country cheddar cheese cut in bite-sized cubes and wrapped in long pieces of waxed paper, and a thermos filled with water and ice cubes from the freezer. They would whisper and giggle together as they stuffed the food into his father’s fishing bag. Then they’d tiptoe out the back door, and once outside, both of them would burst out into relieved laughter at not being caught.

But his mother had never been a morning person, so she’d never wake up to disapprove of the two of them sneaking out so early in the morning to walk down to the beach.

It had been their special time together.

But one morning, when he was twelve, his father had gotten up earlier than ususal and had not come to wake him up. When he had awoken on his own and gone to his parent’s room, he’d found that his father had already gone.

He rushed to get dressed and hurried out of the house, following the route that the two of them would make every Sunday morning for as long as he could remember.

When he got to their stretch of the beach, there was no one there.

But on the sand was the bag that they always carried with them.

With trembling fingers, he opened the top and found a slip of paper, folded in half with his name on it.

And he knew that his father would not be coming home.
vettac: (Default)
[Fiction] Friday:
Prompts are published each month to give you plenty of notice. Spend at least 5 minutes composing something original based on the theme or challenge. No editing allowed.

June 11th: Include this in your story: “I wish he’d knock on my door instead……..”




I huddle in the corner of the bed with my blanket draped around me. The power had gone out over an hour ago, and none of the hotel staff had come to check on anyone on our floor. Granted, we were on the tenth floor of a hotel in the middle of nowhere on an island at that time of year when not many tourists frequented. But that was no reason not to make sure that the guests were okay.

Okay, Steph, everything is going to be fine. I take a deep breath and pull the blanket closer around me while I wipe the sweat from my brow.

I hear a voice in the hallway and I perk my ears to listen.

Someone is knocking at the room adjacent to mine and calling out in a deep male voice.

“Hello, is anyone in there? Is everything okay?”

Obviously, no one is there, but he continues to knock, waiting for a response.

I wish he’d knock on my door instead, because I would certainly not keep him waiting. I am so ready to leave this place.
vettac: (Default)
[Fiction] Friday:
Prompts are published each month to give you plenty of notice. Spend at least 5 minutes composing something original based on the theme or challenge. No editing allowed.

June 11th: Include this in your story: “I wish he’d knock on my door instead……..”




I huddle in the corner of the bed with my blanket draped around me. The power had gone out over an hour ago, and none of the hotel staff had come to check on anyone on our floor. Granted, we were on the tenth floor of a hotel in the middle of nowhere on an island at that time of year when not many tourists frequented. But that was no reason not to make sure that the guests were okay.

Okay, Steph, everything is going to be fine. I take a deep breath and pull the blanket closer around me while I wipe the sweat from my brow.

I hear a voice in the hallway and I perk my ears to listen.

Someone is knocking at the room adjacent to mine and calling out in a deep male voice.

“Hello, is anyone in there? Is everything okay?”

Obviously, no one is there, but he continues to knock, waiting for a response.

I wish he’d knock on my door instead, because I would certainly not keep him waiting. I am so ready to leave this place.

July 2012

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