The neighborhood kids liked Meritus Kane, even though they were told to stay away from him because of his questionable stories about the rocket and his space travels, he had been revered by them as a hero. There were indeed what looked to be scraps of metal and other unknown parts of engine components laying around and Meritus could identify them all, of course with a story attached as to how they came to be abandoned on his property. He claimed to have been the only surviving command pilot of a three man crew on a journey to the other side of Mars — the dark side — and was not expected to ever return to Earth, however upon his visit to the red planet he had encountered a colony of inhabitants who helped him survive and ensured his safe return back to Earth. The other two crewmen had evacuated from the crippled module too soon and were instantly sucked out into the black void of deep space, never to be seen again. He had been able to land as a free-fall with what was left of the spacecraft after eighteen months in space, the lack of gravity had worked to his advantage, keeping the spacecraft from smashing into pieces and killing him. Members of the Mars colony came to his rescue after they witnessed the near catastrophe on the barren sandy red surface. Meritus further claimed that he had gone on to stay at the Mars colony for another eight months while a new rocket was being built for his return back to Earth. He learned that the inhabitants would travel there from the Moon to further the development of a gateway passage between the Moon and Mars colonies. Meritus finally claimed that he had been sent on a doomed mission that had been written off as no longer vital for the survival of mankind, leaving his mission to be scrapped and abandoned — mid voyage — by a blasphemous incoming reign whose intentions were to keep the population on Earth from leaving, and to suppress any news nor knowledge of space exploration. Setting off a chain of unprecedented events that included the separation of space exploration from any established power in office, whose interests had become focused on mass surveillance, the marketing of bulk collection and metadata for the purpose of corporate, financial and global control. Getting Meritus back to Earth safely would be of great importance, sending information back with him about the interplanetary colonies and his experience. As for the neighboring residents, the amazing adventures of Meritus Kane was just too bizarre to be believed, and at his age of eighty eight, they considered him to be lost in the haze of old age, where reality sometimes gets interrupted by distant memories that have been short circuited through the ravages of time.
There had been large numbers of society that had already left Earth, thereby creating conflict between the people and the authoritarian entity. Allowing people to abandon Earth and colonize on other planets, meant losing control of a population already doomed, and that was seeking a new world far away from the impending fallout on Earth. A new space exploration program had evolved, creating a war between the aging officials — with their draconian law — and the tech-savvy cyber-sci-warriors who viewed space exploration and colonization as advancement not only for the future, but for mankind as well. They were known by their presence on the dark web as Ludja, proclaiming their radical resistance movement against corporate America and the bureaucratic haze of endless policy and propaganda.
The day came when a young boy Andar, whose fascination with the old man and his rocket would come to know Meritus, and after spending time together talking — something no one had ever taken the interest in — Meritus had something he wanted to share with Andar. Reaching into his pocket he pulled out a shiny gold round badge with the inscription : Commander Meritus Kane, Mars 2080, with a rocket encircling a red planet, and underneath were inscribed the words : Excom Tridex Space Exploration Team X. On the backside of the badge a gold key was fixed in place by a special made clip. He pinned the badge on the young boy’s shirt and with that he then stood up and gave him the official salute, after which Andar then stood up and returned the gesture with glee, sealing their bond and uniting them together as fellow patriots.
A few summers had gone by, and after hearing of Meritus’s passing, the boy — who by then had matured into a young man — scurried over to Meritus’s house and was then met by a team of men from Excom, bearing the Tridex Space Exploration patch. They wanted to know more about Meritus Kane and what they had talked about, while other workers were clearing out the scrap metal and other various engine components. They had been placed there by Meritus as a distraction, should anyone come along after his death, however the real treasure of evidence had been safely stored away in an underground vault. Andar had been briefed by Meritus about what might happen after his death, that suits from the deep state would come snooping around and that he was only to speak with members from Excom. Their interest however was to protect the memory of Meritus Kane and to document his mission for history. His return to Earth had been kept secret and had only been covered by the underground news network known as Cyber Edge because the mainstream media was controlled and censored exclusively by the reigning officials and their political agenda.
The men from Excom wanted to know where the key was, and assured Andar that he would be aiding their cause if he complied. He did, but with the agreement that he would accompany them to wherever they were going. Well they didn’t need to go far because upon removal of the key from the backside of the gold badge, set off a blinking pale blue light at the center of the badge where the red planet was located, letting them know that they were within range. With that, Andar led the men from Excom into the house and down to the basement where another pale blue light was blinking on the concrete wall. One of the men holding the badge, held it directly in front of the small blinking light and it stopped, exposing the keyhole inside, he then stepped aside while another member of the four man team inserted the key while the other two men waited for the opening in the floor that would reveal a narrow stairway down eight feet into a small eight foot by eight foot concrete vault. All the information from Meritus’s voyage was in there, including how he made it back to Earth and the sound bites that would prove he had been abandoned for dead on the dark side of Mars. There would be presumed consequences if the information were to be disclosed, however unseating the aging regime would rely upon using the underground dark web and enlisting Ludja to rally up the resistance whose presence had become widely known throughout the tech-net world, furthering the assault on the draconian political reign.
Although he had been rejected by an agenda that had abandoned him, Meritus Kane had simply grown old in a changing world that could no longer hear him, nor had a place for him, that had been taken over by a political machine built throughout decades of inherent family rights and passages. The veil of deceit had been embedded in the population along with targeted political marketing and mass surveillance while the decaying society gave away their freedom and privacy through the bulk collection of metadata until ultimately, they had all become a mistress of the deep state.
Meritus Kane was given full honor at his private ceremony, located on the Excom property and attended only by the team from Excom and Andar, who would go on to establish himself with the resistance, the dark web and Ludja. From there, the official site — unidentifiable for the purpose of exposure and disclosure — Marlek, would manifest itself to continue the assault on the corporate political arena and their draconian agenda.
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