KAPITEL EINS

 

1

 

I looked up from the monitor. I had been staring for hours, caught by the dynamics of the story, but now I wondered, what it was all about. I was not really done yet, for the record offered at least the same or even double amount of datas, than which I had actually checked. But I had overseen it before and knew it to be the story of the Neanderthalwoman living among Sapiens, raising her mixbred children.

I asked my superior Alex about it: „Do I have to watch it complete?“

„Sure, that is your task“ she replied coldly. „Watch it, write a summary, watch the next.“

„I know. But it is obvious. I know that story already!“

„You don´t know what you did not see yet. The source had something in mind when adding this to the Ahe“. Thus we called the Archive of Human history on Earth, a collection of uncountable documentaries from Millenias of observation of ancient earth. „If you skip it, someone else still has to do, where you failed.“

„Yeah, I know!“ It was not so bad, it was just, that I thought it more useful, to check out all records from that source by overviewing, and only later, given the frame of it all, go in to check out the details, instead of work through one piece after another in pure buerocratic serenity, missing the very point of understanding the greater picture.

„You are right!“ she said unvincing. „Could be better, would be better. But we have to stick to the method given. That is, what we are doing now. Collect data for science, reorganize the archive by adding summaries and keywords.“

„There is nothing scientific of that record at all“ I explained. „It´s a record of emotional turmoils, no datas to check out.“

„It is an old method, I know. It is a direct heart transfer, telling what the people held important for themselves. A lot of sex sometimes. Did it turn you on?“

She looked directly in my eyes, as to read the answer there if I was about to lie. But I did not, dared not, after all it still was science, even my reaction to it. „It did“ I said truthfully.

„Did you masturbate?“ she insisted on further details.

I felt shocked, uneasy. „Do I have to tell?“

„Of course. How we react is part of it all. How could one understand your summariey not knowing your point of view?“

I sighed. „Yes. Once.“

„You were ashamed of it?“

„Not really. I would have done it anyway. I have no partner yet on this ship.“

„That´s a pity. You´re handsome, you know?“

For a heartbeat I thought she would take a chance on me now, but she didn´t. Hade I made it up, or was there the flickering of desire in her eyes? She dismissed me somehow abrupt and left me puzzled, disappointed and, worst of all, embarrassed. Having no partner, that meant lack of social integration, that meant being less reliable and that could endanger my position. I was all too glad being allowed to work in science at all, cause, you know, science of course is woman´s work, man only occasionally allowed to do some minor or dull work, for which a woman´s time is too precious. But if I would be accounted to be difficult, bearing problems, or being too solitary, I soon could not only lose my work, but be obtained to do therapy and social work in some kitchen or whatever. It was horrible. I regretted to mention the fact of having no partners to Alex, who would take it as a topic of her responsibility to be informed about my relationships from now on.

Best would be, I´d try with some of the woman on my shift or else, but I really had no mind to do so. Go eating dinner, go to the movie, attend some gaming evenings with comrades, check out a date for a night. I did not know, what was wrong about it, but I did not want to have any part in it. Rather stay alone.

 

I had do to another day of watching that case of Sagi, just to know that she had lived quite well among the Sapiens, protected by Enoj, who became her loving husband. They had to go through some difficulties, especially after Sagi had eventually killed Halver during a feast, so that they were expelled from the tribe, but still they had lives nearby and got some sort of support from friends, and as word spread about the strange woman among the tribes, every no and then some stranger came visiting them, always bringing a gift or at least wellneeded help. Of course there was drama, the youngest son being killed of racial hatred, and then the assaults from other tribes during a famine. But they lived through that, and, all´s well that ends well, they lived happily ever after in the end, son and daughter carrying their heir into the lineage of modern man. That, after all, was the whole point of the story.

 

Fabja wanted to speak with me after dinner, which was odd, for she hadn´t spoke to me since her very first attempt to lay a claim on me after our departure for earth, an attempt which I had bluntly blocked, not even knowing why. I just did not want to play games, but in the end there is no telling of the difference between a game and social reality. Of course she was pretty and handsome, all of them were and she hadn´t made it on the ship if not for serious work and being very good at something. Unlike men, who were chosen for being handsome, healthy and strong, which were the virtues of a male, as they put it, together with a proven ability and wilfulness to serve. I never had any problem with that. To obey my duties gave me the satisfaction of being needed, and being needed I felt safe. Most men felt safe if they had a partner, but not me. I felt safe by having a task to do. At least I had got the position as an archivar because of my expertise in earth history, even if they all thought that to be a mere joke. „Haha, that man is doing research? I´d like to do him some research on me!“ It always went like that. I had no mind to give myself away as a mere toy, and therefore I was blunt to Fabja, as she acted like a gamer. Of course she wouldn´t understand that. Women did not understand such things. She took it for granted, that I would feel honoured to be chosen by her, but I was not and told her so. I should not have been doing that, I know it, but I couldn´t help. We were about to spent half our life on this spaceship, if all went well, and I had resolved to spent that time on the solid ground of honesty, even if it meant to become an outsider, It was enough, that some knew my value. My chief Alex, of course. My colleagues Shena and Dera, who were found of each other and used me to back up them, as good as they backed up me in turn. Among the cooks, who were all male, I felt at ease and often I went in the kitchen to chat and gamble around, that really was enough of social activity for me. Now, as Fabjy invites me for a drink at the bar, I wondered why she would do that, but I agrees. This was at least, which was expected from me. There was of course no obligation for men to sleep with any woman, but at least I had to show good humour, for not getting a subject to psychiatric observation. I did not want to be a case, and I took it for granted, that this was some kind of test, if my social functions were still inside the range of a healthy behavior. So I had to be kind. I knew it.

Fabja was, as to be expected, kind and deliberately chatting about our common acquaintances, and I tried to make some remarks to show good will. But I am really not good in chatting about others, so she had to do most of the conservation. But when the turn came to Alex, she wouldn´t let me dismiss the topic with a short statement about her being a good chief, never ill-humoured, fair and engaging, and asked about her whereabouts and even her work.

„I thought you invited me on her bidding, isn´t that right?

She was puzzled. „No! I just wanted to talk to you.“ She did not say, why. It was all too clear, that she wanted to investigate about Alex. I don´t know if she intendedly did not use the lie, that I had frankly offered her, or if she just didn´t catch it in the moment, but anyway, I regarded her to be honest. That, at least, was a ground to stand on to make contact.

„So you want to know about Alex?“ She nodded. „But why?“

Fabja clearly had not intended to tell me what was up, but now she understood that she had to, if I was to trust her at all. Maybe she had thought it to be cheaper, some flattering, some drinks, some sex if it came to that. But she had known me before to be no easy man. Now she sighed: „We shouldnt talk in public about all that“ she finally said. „Would you mind coming with me into my room?“ Now I was to be startled. „No intentions!“ she added, „just for talking!“.

I hesitated, but as I realized, that this could give me some sort of alibi for my social bondages, I agreed. „Make sure we are to be seen by someone!“ I explained my dilemma to her.

She laughed. „No wonder! I could have told you that before? Why are you always so stiff? It is simple, just smile and talk, about anything, you know, don´t take life so serious. You know what? We´ll take another drink, do some laughing, and then these people“ she pointed vaguely across the well visited bar, couples and colleagues for most, „will know that I have put you on my list. Does that work out for you?“

So she gifted us an opulent cocktail and made some nonsense jokes, to whom I laughed heartily, even if I did not get the point. Jokes were lost on me, but it was fun to laugh in itself, and so I kept on laughing for no reason, while she was telling me, that it is just as easy, keep on laughing, be good humoured, make people be your friend. It all sounded reasonable, but as she said: You´re beautiful when you laugh“ I suddenly became alert again and stopped.
„It is simply not me“ I stated. But we were done with laughing anyway, we hushed down the rest of our cocktail in an unseeming hurry, and as we left the bar, she wrapped herself in my arm. In the doorway she turned to me for a short kiss.

„Hush now, it is just for show!“ So we kissed, and in that moment I aroused and was feeling like wanting her. I was puzzled and irritated as she stopped the kiss and dragged me behind her her through the floors to her room, acting drunk when one came across our path. We did not make the straight way and so we eventually run into some friend of hers. „Oh, hi, Evie!“ she greeted her in a silly, giggling voice. „What are you doing here?“ wrapping herself in my arm again, but not waiting for an answer. „She will do the talking“ she assured me, as we were finally approachung to her door. Her fingerprint let it swing open and we were in. She cooled down at once. „So, no intentions, right? Sit down. I´ll make us some tea!“

In the male quarters, there was no device for making tea in the own room. I also did not have a couch with a small table for a bowl with nuts. I wouldn´t have nuts either, cause a male salary could not buy specialties beyond the daily needs. I always felt it unfair, the women earning so much more than men, but then again, I could let me be choosed by one and share in in her luxury, so it just was the way it was, and I had to be content to enjoy it now, as Fabja offered me the luxury she had, not without pointing out the pity of „no intentions“. In fact, she could have had me in that very moment, if she only tried for it, I was regretting my restriction either, but she held to our appointment and seated herself on the stool, for not coming too near to me on the couch. She explained to me a lot of stuff, which I did not really quite understand, for she was a biologist and talked about human evolution, of genetic improvements versus natural development and explained the meanings of some genetic markers and I couldn´t help but watch her breasts, who showed up underneath her shirt.

„I din´t make it up“ I finally admitted. „What is the point?“

„What do you know about human evolution?“

„On Earth or on Sirius?“

„Earth of course. Where are we heading to?“

I felt stupid. That was the thing I hated most: Feeling stupid for not knowing something that I couldnt have known. So I tried to convince her of my education. „First humans on earth were the Erectus, but they were only half witted. The first one to control fire was the Heidelberger, but normally we regard to the Neanderthaler as the first intelligent human species on earth, preceeding the Sapiens, who replaced them. What do you want to know?“

„Do you think, it all went naturally?“

I did not get her point. „Yes, of course, why not? Superior replacing the inferior. As far as I can see!“

„You know the evolution of culture?“

„So far. The Neanderthals may have had some embellishments and body painting. It was the Sapiens, who brought in figurines, paintings, needle work for fancy dressing. Agriculture went with clay-potting, then smithing weapons along with writing and patriarchy, fighting kingdoms, emperors and Imerias arising and vanishing, later on industrial revolution along with pollution and massextinction of biology, great wars, the ruling of economic leaders. There still was a transcendending war to come, for the problems of distribution and social organization remained unsolved unto the last ambassador ship has left. Alex told me, that some believe, they might have destroyed life on earth as we arrive.“

„Might be, who knows?“ she said. Travelling through space hat to do mostly with just waiting. It took us half a year to get out of our solarsystem, before we could achieve Nearfastaslight- tempo, Eneffel, as we put it. We had been on this ship for several months now, and were just about to leave our solarsystem by now. Soon we´d be starting the Eneffel engine, but so long we were still bound to Sirius. „Indeed, there are a lot of questions about the evolution of mankind on earth,“ she continued. „As civilization had such negative impacts on life on earth, questions had been raised if either the education of writing and forging came too early to bring forth a working social system, or if else the whole thing was corrupted even before the regular intervention, stating that even agriculture, whose existence is the precondition for contact, has came somehow rootless and surprising to earth. The Sphinx and Gobleki Tepe give proof for some kind of appearance, but we are to act, if none of this ever had happened. The records are corrupted and now I am simply wondering. Could be stupid to go there with a false pretext, you know? I am not the first to ask, if there evolution was speeded up by someone.“

It was a vast accusation I had never thought of before. What I have heard about humans history on earth had always made perfect sense to me, only that I asked sometimes about the restricted sources, that for some political reasons were kept secret. But it was not in my area of responsibility to give heed about that. So I repeated my school wisdom: „Humans on earth were taught metallurgy and writing, to build some pyramids and make them learn obey their Gods. If humanity on one planet reaches some kind of selfawareness and start to make for chief and kings, they are to be educated, to prevent a dark age of turmoil, fear and violence. Which had apperently been done, but did not prevent much, for human history on earth was a history of turmoil, fear and violence since then. But what went wrong?“

Fabja tried an explanation: „There might have been some experiments, undue interventions, intermeddlings with the natural ways... “ I admired her daring to put it all in question. What could life be, if not restricted to what we were supposed to think? Was it freedom or chaos? Now again, she could have used me without any resistance from my side, but she held to our appointment. As for now, it was the topic, that filled her hearts desire. „I thought, perchance Alex would know about these things. But of course she would not tell me anything if I ask officially. Perhaps you ...“ She interrupted herself. Her intentions were clear now, even if I got no clues of the politics behind it. „Sorry, I don´t know what I am talking about. I got no plan, it is just curiosity.“ I was disappointed. She had been closer to truth before. But what was I to expect?

„I can´t tell you either“ I said drily. „But I learned a strange story recently.“ I gave her a summary of that tale about the Neanderthalwoman.

„Men!“ she sighed later. „You come up with a scientific question and they answer with a love-story. Always emotional, never just reasonable.“ She looked at me. „No offense, I liked your story. In fact, I´d like to hear more about it, if you want to tell me ...“

I knew what was coming next. Despite of our appointment she would give it a try. Woman always do. They want to have sex, that´s how things are. Of course she wouldn´t push it, but just ask if we are still bound to what we have said earlier, and if I insisted, she wouldn´t touch me. But I insisted not. In fact, I longed for sex myself, and Fabja was not a bad choice. I should have been gambling on it, taking some advantages first, but I still disliked to play any games. I felt like yes, so I kissed her as she approached to me, let her unwrap me and lay me on her bed, as she climbed upon me to serve herself. She didn´t need to arouse me, for I was vast standing, and had to force myself not to ejaculate before she had allowed me to. Then she turned aside, kissing me good night. „Thank you, my dear. You may stay, if you like!“ So I stayed till the morning, finding myself hoping that she would love me, and fearing, she´d dismiss me again. In the end, there was no telling. As she was about to wake up, I quickly made for my own room, for not to stand in her way.

 

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