What you will find here

This is a place to examine plans filled with hope; plans which promise a refuge from chaos; plans which will shape our futures. Veterans with and without PTSD, Pentecostal Presbyterians, Adjudicated Youth, and Artists-Musicians-Writers: I write what I know. ~~~ Evelyn

Friday, June 6, 2014

Excerpt from Bedina's War - As Needed Chapter Three

My Childhood

From The Memoirs of Dyshena Tupelo

I suppose the best place to begin my autobiography is with my

birth and continue from there. This chapter shouldn’t take long.

I was born one-hundred-forty years ago. As this is now 60 New

Alliance Era, I hope you can figure out the year of my birth.

I was born into a large clan on GandhiLab; seven brothers, twelve

sisters from multiple parents. My mother had two husbands; each of

my fathers had had previous wives. I was blessed with a contented

childhood. I took the Exam at age six and survived. I never realized

until much later how many of us did not survive the Exam. Their

names expunged from DataLab; their faces forgotten by their friends.

The Exam was a great wrong. I’m glad it has been eradicated.

I grew up in a time of peace. As I developed, I became a voracious

lover of political intrigue. I learned languages and customs as easily as

I learned to free-fall or type.

I loved GandhiLab. Perhaps all men love their homeland as

passionately. There is an emptiness within me where she used to

exist. No matter what I do, nor what I’ve done, I can never again walk

GandhiLab’s corridors, rest in her fall spaces, work in her gardens. I

have never loved anything as deeply as I loved my home. No, not even

my wife; and I was a fool in love for her.

You might ponder how a man could love a place more than he could

a woman. It is a different kind of love, and yet, the loss of GandhiLab

is greater and more terrible than the loss of my wife or the loss of my

one true friend.

But I get ahead of myself.

Birth, the Exam, childhood, adolescence. Yes, here we are. Puberty


hit me late but hard. I grew much taller than anyone else in my clan.

Hard to believe it now, shrunken with age as I’ve become, but by my

twenty-first birthday, I was 1.75 meters, a good head taller than anyone

else I knew.

I remember the first time I met the woman who later became my

wife. “You lying son of a whore, you’re much too tall to be a sp’lab!”

She called me a sp’lab to my face. I think that was the first time

in my life I’d heard that label applied to me personally. As the years

passed, she called me Space Lab National or Spa’Lab to my face, but I

have always believed that nothing I could say or do would ever change

her opinion of my people.

I began training for the Diplomatic Corp at puberty. My first off-

Lab assignments went well.

As I mentioned, I was taller than most Spa’Labs, and I discovered

I could infiltrate where others could only intimidate. Dye my hair, pop

in colored contacts, and I could pass as any Commonwealth Native the

Corp needed me to be.

I learned a lot in my travels, but what baffled me most were the

prejudices that kept us apart. Sayings have grown up as if to excuse the


Sp’lab kept secrets.

Blind as a Coustevean.

Awkward as an Andovean’s handshake.

Harmless as an Erinyes’ Child.

The first seven generations born on Cousteau were blind, due to

too pure a ratio of oxygen in the underwater biospheres.

Andoveans have two sets of palms with four fingers on each


Erinyes’ Child.

The old man looked away from his keypad and studied his companion’s

face. Ageless, she looked no more than seventeen. Harmless. She looked

meek and mild and naïve and angelic.

He shook his head and turned back to his keypad.

I wonder, as you read this, if you have ever heard of Erinyes. The

first scripture an Erinyes child is taught is To learn how to live, one must


first learn to die. And like the Exam Space Lab Nationals forced upon

their children, Erinyes natives subject their children to the Death. At

age five, they are placed in suspended animation while centuries of

knowledge are imprinted on their brains. The process takes thirty years,

but their bodies do not age. Only their souls. The next thirty years are

spent in physical training. By the end of the Dance, as the second thirty

years is called, their bodies have seemingly aged only a decade.

“What are you staring at?” Acacia had put down her weaving and

was smiling at her master.

“An angel. I’m smiling at my angel.”

“Save what you have written and come to bed.” She stood up and


“You look like your grandfather when you smile. Have I told you

that?” He pressed the proper sequence of keys and the keypad was

camouflaged by the desks’ marble surface.

“Many times.” She stroked his cheek. “But it pleases me to hear it.”

Excerpt from

Bedina’s War

© Evelyn Rainey

Comfort Publishing

ISBN 9781936695881

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