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James J. Marry

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Palo Verde: The Wanted Poster
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A Victim's Revenge- the devil in details
By James J. Marry
Thursday, June 12, 2003

Rated "PG13" by the Author.

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Recent stories by James J. Marry
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           >> View all 15

Sometimes the door swings botth ways and sometimes it doesn't. Marcus Talbot needs a way to close this door before the Victim's Revenge ravages humanity.

The power of all things dark and nasty stood before him. Marcus Talbot had allowed his greatest weakness to weave him into this mercurial plan and now the power had arrived. Marcus’ greatest weakness had been foretold by Thomas Aquinas in the Seven Deadly Sins. Many would assume incorrectly that his greed had gotten the better of him- incorrectly. Marcus knew that his sin had been pride.
For years Marcus had worked as an engineer. He had worked for communications companies, telephone companies and military contractors on the electronics that make words flow for people to receive them. He was very good at the theory of transmission by frequency through computers and over wires. Marcus Talbot could make the Internet sing and amplitude modulation sound clear over thousands of miles. Then Marcus Talbot had discovered his ability had a better medium- the written word.
His art had begun with a simple Letter to the Editor written to Popular Electronics. The mogul magazine had made an editorial faux pas when they allowed an article written on bit rate to include a comment on the highest available speed to say that 115600 baud was in common use for radio frequency transceivers. Bunk. For common sending and receiving of RF, 19200 baud was commonly in use. The high baud rate would be cost prohibitive to most applications, if not for equipment size unusable. Linear communications commonly used this more effective rate of speed.
Marcus Talbot hadn’t really given the letter much thought. Then the letter found its way into the next edition. The editor’s gratitude was nonplused if not even insulted at points in his reply, but Marcus felt that his point had been made. He wasn’t concerned with the rest of the Popular Electronics audience response. Marcus had underestimated the ripple effect that his letter would cause though.
A few weeks later, the editor called Marcus Talbot and asked him if he would like to write an article on the subject. Seems that the mail and phone calls regarding his position had set a fire stir at the magazine since Marcus had touched an industry nerve. Any means that would reduce the cost for transmission set up for advertisers and signal controls gained great interest quickly in a money-driven economy and industry. The editor admitted that the magazine didn’t have an on-hand expert for the subject though. Marcus agreed to a nominal fee for his services and the editor insisted upon review of the work so the article was written, edited and published two months down the road.
That had been six years earlier and Marcus was now a syndicated columnist for the rag on contract. He had written two textbooks and a science fiction novel and the world had been his oyster. One year ago this month, Marcus Talbot’s renown had brought Mike Wells to his doorstep and Big Red was going to take Talbot down an entirely different sort of writer’s path.
Red had come on to Talbot in a very disarming and nonchalant manner. The ex-military officer had met Marcus at Turner Camp Road in Inverness, Florida. Marcus lived in New Port Richey nearly an hour and a half away. Once a year, Marcus would spend a week bass fishing at the Lake Tsala Apopka fish camp. Big Red had happened to be camp right next door last year and made sure that he was very accommodating to his neighbor. Mike “Big Red” Wells had mentioned his highly secretive project to Marcus over a night of Italian pan-fried he had invited Talbot over to sample. The fish had been excellent.
Over a year of golf, deep-sea fishing and some tickets Wells had procured for Ruth Eckerd Hall concerts, Marcus had fallen to find that the friendship was a valued possession for him. Last month, Wells had wiggled the tastiest of worms at his true prey. Big Red had brought Marcus Talbot in on his here to fore most secret project and Talbot had grabbed the bait with subdued vigor. Now, with the evil energy surging before his own two eyes, Marcus could feel the hook tearing at his jaw. The deed was done and Marcus Talbot was snagged.
Mike Wells had spent twenty-eight years as a naval officer. His talents were entirely administrative at first and developed strongly through his personal relationship ability. By the time Mike Wells had reached retirement, his defense procurement office was the go to number for half of Congress regarding any new military developments. Big Red, as he grew to be known for his 6’4” build and shock red hair and mustache, was a “get it done” captain with resources that successfully saw through the most innovative new weapons program that an ever-innovative U.S. Navy thrived upon.
It was here that Mike Wells first found his keys to the kingdom and he took them with him into retirement. Investors of magnanimous financial credibility were more than ready to loft their desires into cash for Wells’ new company. Money was in high supply for his notion turned high profit potential weapon for an audience waiting for Big Red to provide. The weapon had very romantic feed lines running through it as well.
Mike Wells was going to develop an electronic system, a machine if you will, that could transmit matter from one place to another. When Wells had brought Marcus Talbot on board, the seams in the project were nearly together for the first prototype for the Star Trek inspired weapon. They had just managed to construct a model of the beast named Ursula when Marcus agreed to be the scribe for the task. Talbot would be the eyes and ears of the world before a technology that would revolutionize every industry from communications to travel with its success- eventually. The current model allowed for a window four foot round in order to transfer goods, but it would eventually be much larger and also be capable of transferring manpower hopefully. Marcus was entranced.
Marcus knew that it had been his pride that had blinded him to the potential misconception of the experiments. He had wanted to be the man telling the world about the project because he would be the man. He would be the lead reporter on the biggest story written since the telephone was invented and Marcus Talbot would be the expert. Nobody could ever question his knowledge on the project because no one would know anything about it until it was produced. Marcus Talbot had danced over that thought on several memorable occasions since Big Red had brought him into the mix.
Now this mix had delivered Marcus Talbot to the tabernacle of all despair and nothing seemed to allow for his escape.
The first half of the machine was being built in Denver. Talbot had taken the trips and seen the beast called La Boca. The Mouth seemed very foretelling of the events that had been set in motion now. Wells had described the project as a sender and a receiver. La Boca was to become the sender. Ursula, the receiver, should be completed months in advance of La Boca, so Talbot had been able to spend much of the time covering the development at home. Ursula was being created in Crystal River, Florida one hour north of Marcus’ central Floridian ranch house on a lakefront acre. After the construction was completed on Ursula, Marcus would relocate to Denver for the completion of the pair.
The technology required phenomenal power to be available on the receiver end of the duo. Ursula used computer systems that rivaled the power available to the National Security Administration. Her Re-generator network would not begin to operate with less than 40 million gigawatts of electricity. Mike Wells had convinced the Pentagon to forward his interest with federal energy commission by allowing him to repair a Crystal River reactor that had been shut down in the late 1980’s. No one would ever feel the pull that Ursula would maintain when she was first turned on.
The technology would be phenomenal to describe to any layman’s ears. Basically, Ursula would open a dimensional window with all of her power and La Boca would find that window in time and space. La Boca’s second opening of the continuum would allow a parcel to be placed in the La Boca opening and simultaneously it would emerge from Ursula’s awaiting orifice. There would be no time delay for the process. The package would enter in Denver and arrive in Crystal River at the same moment.
And Mike “Big Red” Wells would become one of the most powerful men on earth.
The problem was that they hadn’t imagined that the dimension they had thought they had found for this procedure would already be in use. It was. The dimension that Ursula had opened in her first test phase had been Hell.
And now Marcus Talbot and Mike Wells were privileged to be the first witnesses to Hell’s door being opened on earth in the form of Ursula. And the beast before the two simple men, grinned an ugly grimace to welcome the men to the first reuniting of the two levels. An unhealthy loud and scratched low bleating sound came from the immense smile laughing at the two men as they stood at their pride and power built Gateway to Sheol.

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