Robin Maxwell, a historian, screenwriter and bestselling novelist, is writing a full-length novel for grahamhancock.com that we will be releasing as a serial publication — chapter by chapter — periodically.
With tongue firmly in cheek, her story peels back the veil of existence and looks behind the scenes of our current tumultuous times and the strange, precious multiverse we inhabit. At the center of it all, Ed and Helen are cosmic coders who discover that Ed’s Earth Simulation has gone completely out of control. But there is worse brewing. Much, much worse…
Below is Chapter 5 of I Am Your Creator Dude.
Enjoy, and stay tuned for more chapters to come. Read:
“I just read your brilliant ‘I Am Your Creator, Dude!’ Your story is great! Funny, clever, thought-provoking and entertaining.” – Graham Hancock
Ed and Helen were silent, just this side of wrecked and barely able to put one foot in front of the other as they stepped onto the Infini-Train. They did feel the invisible doors whoosh closed behind them. Again the car was largely empty – all but a single figure standing in the center of the aisle between the parallel seats. Or more rightly standing on one foot, frozen in a Hindu dancer’s pose, the other leg raised and bent at a 90° angle in front of the other, a blue, 4-armed, naked-except-for-a-leopard skin half-tunicked man. Deity, some would say.
Shiva the Destroyer.
“Hey,” Ed greeted him.
Helen nodded her hello.
But Shiva did not reply. He just stood there like one of the millions of statues that had been fashioned after his likeness inside the Earth Sim. He was a popular guy. Good looking and with quite a bod, Helen often observed. They were both relieved he was traveling without the cobra he usually wore around his neck. The snake really was a little much.
Ed and Helen sat down not far from him and stayed silent, lost in their own thoughts until Shiva sighed theatrically and crumpled into a seat across from them. His normally serene (or dangerous) expression was one of defeat, and now he wrapped all four of his arms around himself comfortingly. The blue skin was pale, almost wan, and his ripped musculature seemed almost flabby in resignation.
“I guess you heard,” Ed finally said.
“Yes I did, Baba. I heard that someone has managed to steal my gig right out from under me. How can this be? I am the destroyer of all things. I. What will happy to the Cycle of Life, Death and Reincarnation?”
“He is so full of himself,” Helen whispered so only Ed could hear. Despite her admiration for Shiva’s physical beauty, she’d never been a big fan. And his “my karma killed your dogma” jokes really grated on her last nerve.
“I cannot wrap my head around such a catastrophe,” Shiva said to no one in particular. “All will be nothingness. There will be no there there.”
The train was slowing to the first stop at Deity Drive.
“You must come in and help me break it to the others.”
“So sorry, Shiva,” Ed said. “We really don’t have time. We’re going into the game to stop the…the…”
“You can stop it?” Shiva asked with a flicker of hope brightening the blue of his face.
Helen put a hand on Ed’s arm. “We can,” she said with a confidence that Ed honestly didn’t feel himself.
“You must come in, just for a minute,” Shiva said, using all four arms to raise Ed and Helen from their seats and hustle them off the train. His door opened into a garden paradise with a green glade and flower-festooned waterfall off to one side, the mouthwatering, fragrant aromas of cumin, cardamom and garam masala, and gigantic snow-covered mountain range in the distance.
“Where is everybody?!” Shiva called out into the landscape.
“God, I hope they’re not here,” Helen said quietly. She was not fond of Shiva’s chaotic family of aspects. Aside from the Dancing Destroyer, Brahma the Creator, and Vishnu the Preserver alter-egos, there were three more fem aspects of the Indian Trident. The Goddesses Saraswati, Lakshmi and Paravati were a kind of bossy that put Helen’s bossiness to shame. To be fair, the Hindu pantheon was a sight better and a lot more colorful than visiting the Christian Holy Trinity down the road in their Temple Mount and Wailing Wall re-creation. It was a constant war zone, what with repelling Allah and his Muslim minions day after day after day, who believed the Mount was theirs. Father. Son. Holy Ghost (nobody’d ever figured out how to explain that dude). Spending any amount of time with the Trio just made you want to scream. Jesus was a nice enough guy, but he complained non-stop about the mayhem perpetrated on humanity and all the living creatures of the Earth in his name. Look, he wasn’t wrong. It had turned into a real shitshow, complete with lions chowing down on his followers at the Coliseum. Back when Ed had coded the Nazarene, he’d thought, “Now this one is a keeper.” And look what happened.
“Nobody home but us chickens!” they heard coming from the glade – a cheery voice if there ever was one. Ganesha – he of the big Buddha belly and elephant head, owning the supreme confidence of a god that could sweep away the most monumental of obstacles – came striding out to greet them still dripping wet from his waterfall shower. He waved to the three of them with his trunk. Clearly he hadn’t heard the news.
“You better tell him,” Ed said to Shiva.
“Tell me what?” Ganesha came to standing in their midst and put his long gray proboscis around Helen. Of all the Hindu bigwigs, Helen was most fond of the Elephant Man. How could you not like a being who promised to make everything better?
“Son,” Shiva said, pulling Ganesha aside and, in a quiet tone, gave him the bad news.
The chimera’s trunk sagged dispiritedly. He looked over at Ed and gave him a WTF glare. “Wait a minute…wait a minute! There has got to be a solution to this problem.”
“That’s why we have to leave right now,” Helen insisted.
“No, no, no,” Ganesha argued. “You know what they must do, Father,” he said to Shiva. “Who they must see.”
Shiva energetically tilted his head from side to side, giving him the great Indian head wobble, a nonverbal equivalent of the multipurpose Hindi word achha that in this context meant, ‘Yes, yes…’ “Come with me,” the blue man said. He and his son started for the Himalayan Mountains in the distance.
“No, sorry guys, we really haven’t got the time.”
But in the next moment and true to form, Ganesha performed his demolishing obstacles “thing,” and in 30 seconds flat they’d crossed the distance and shot 15,000 thousand feet up the slope of Annapurna. Now they stood at the half-snowed-in mouth of a cave where just inside was a wizened old yogi who looked like he’d been sitting in that full lotus for about 800 years, clothed in nothing more than a loincloth.
‘Brilliant!’ Ed said to himself. If anyone had a solution to the question that was burning a hole in his brain, it was Swami Beyondananda. Science could only get you so far. “Oh Ancient One”, he said, trying not to sound like he was begging. “How do I stop the destruction of the Multiverse Entire?”
The old man looked back at Ed,opened his mouth with – surprisingly – a very nice set of teeth and replied, “If I knew the answer to that, would I be sitting in a cave in my underpants?”***
Ed groaned, but Helen wasn’t allowing him a moment’s respite. “You didn’t really think…?
“I was hoping.” He felt her pulling him down the steep and narrow icy path.
“Can you help us out here, Ganesha?” Helen shouted back at him and his dad, now glaring down at the chagrinned old Beyondananda who had conveniently escaped into a samadhi trance.
The last thing they saw was the Elephant God’s trunk giving the swami an annoyed bop on the head. But in the next moment, Ed and Helen found themselves, miraculously, back on the Infini-Train and just now pulling up to their stop.
“It was worth a try,” Ed told her.
“No is wasn’t,” she said, sullenly. “It was 10 minutes we didn’t have to spare.”
“You really are a bitch sometimes.”
“And you really are an idiot.” But when she saw Ed’s shoulders droop, demoralized, she put her arm around him and gave him a sweet kiss. “But you’re my idiot.”
Back in their bedroom Helen, her sweats down around her ankles, was rooting around her pants drawer for something else to wear.
“What’s wrong with what you have on?” Ed inquired delicately. She still looked ready to snatch him bald.
“Your pandemic is over. I can’t wear pandemic apparel down there.”
“Who said the pandemic is over?”
“Everybody!” she shot back.
“Well everybody’s wrong.” Ed couldn’t hide his irritation.
She sighed and pulled her sweats back up. “You sure had me fooled.”
“I know.” Ed actually felt bad about the confusion he’d caused. The mutations that had out-paced Ed’s original coding (and the mad scramble to name them all – the fucking “Kraken”, for god sake). All those moronic politicians and their lapdog media types. They just couldn’t help themselves finding the juiciest clickbait, no matter what the science showed. He was a little guilty about the mask fiasco. Wear them. Don’t wear them. Leave PPE for doctors and nurses. N-95s shortages. Derision and violence against sims who wore them. Resentment of the few who still wore them against the vast majority of Sapiens who’d thrown them away claiming “fatigue” or “freedom.”
Helen held up a pair of sunny yellow Capri pants for consideration.
“I don’t think so,” Ed said.
“Too frivolous for The Suck,” she concurred and instead pulled on her skinny black slacks.
“Just hurry up. We need to get in there,” he said, heading to their office.
She found him standing pensively over the globe game.
“You thinking about the deadpool?” she asked.
“How can I not? Some of my greatest-evers. Socrates. Leonardo. Hawking. Turing, Nicola…”
“Oh Nicola,” Helen opined. “Imagine how furious he’d be to see the dufus who co-opted his name for a dorky looking car.”
He was a favorite of hers, and she often gave Ed grief for the inventor’s bad end. Had his scenario played out differently – if his free energy gizmo had been allowed to distribute wireless resonance across the planet, the Earth game would have been a different world altogether and not the hot mess it was in right now. But she knew that Ed didn’t like having his nose rubbed in his mistakes – how many times in history he let the bad guys win. Sometimes she wondered if her fiancé had a mean streak in him. That he screwed things up for an adrenalin rush. In any event, she took her life in her hands if she questioned Ed’s creative choices too often.
Now she watched as he opened the “Departed Genius File” and scrolled through the faces. They just weren’t going to have time to visit.
“God, I’d give anything to trip-out with Terrence one more time,” Ed lamented. “Or even listen to him spout off the longest run-on sentence in the known universe.”
“Oh stop whining. You’re going to fix what you fucked and then you and McKenna can turn into a couple of giant mushrooms and talk gibberish for all eternity. Just…let’s go.” She gave him her idea of an encouraging smile. “And tuck in your shirt.”
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