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Mishiida Alexander

Stalking Shadows



“Enlightenment cannot be preached.”



Chapter Thirteen: When it hurts like love

Humans are highly allergic to the knowledge that proves them wrong. In spite of its projected positive outcome, enlightenment happens to be the knowledge with that negative first impact. It always challenges what a person has come to believe as true or complete. It is hard to say whether enlightenment is the understanding of that which forms the real or complete truth, or it is the understanding of the fact that what one knows as true is actually wrong. There is no hard and fast rule that enlightenment will bring along with it a complete knowledge. It is often the first step in gaining complete knowledge. But what makes it different from any previous knowledge is that it breaks the shackles binding a heart unwilling to question what it believes, explore what it doesn’t knows, and is closed to the thoughts of an internal change of opinion. Complete knowledge, or rather a step towards its attainment, is only incidental to enlightenment.

But people hold dearly what they believe is theirs, as a property. Relationships and knowledge they are both a property owned by a person’s heart. “It belongs to me” or “he is mine” are not expressions denoting equal rights. They do not have the same underlying feeling as “we are together”. Similarly “that’s what I believe” does not include the audience. The last one is a virtue of a leader who can make people follow, but not when everyone else is themselves a leader heading in a different direction, or a follower of another leader. “He is our leader” has the same connotations as what has already been said. Enlightenment always challenges that leader inside everyone, and everyone has a capacity to fight and protect what they believe belongs to them. And this is why when one man finds enlightenment, he cannot make the rest accept it unless the rest either see it for their selves, or he is a good orator of his beliefs. It is hard to make people let go what they believe is priceless, and accept what they are unsure of as to its worth.

This however does not mean that enlightenment is for the finder as keeper. In fact, enlightenment itself drives a person to share it, for otherwise everyone is lonely with their beliefs if they are the only one holding them. And loneliness is uncomfortable. The choice however to be made is between the vehicle. You can preach it, or you can present it. The first scenario is akin to heading towards an adversarial territory in an armoured vehicle, and the latter is a lonely furrow in an open cart with everything on display for anyone and everyone to observe. Needless to say which one is more productive, and which one is destructive. We the fourth witnesses know this, Surpavitar knows this, but quite a few others need to understand this.

“But what would he be doing with just a handful of his scientific staff?” Sir Whittington asks Sir Aldridge as we spy on their conversation, to get an idea as to what really happened barely ten minutes ago.

“If he’s got hold of alien tech, he would only need a handful of scientific staff to run an entire facility,” Sir Aldridge replies, “Rest of the work would only need skeletal labour on automated machines.”

“So he could very easily be running an entire facility at a completely unknown location! Indeed clever,” Sir Whittington nods his head before adding, “So that’s all we’ve got so far; a handful of staff missing from his eight different facilities across the globe.”

“He’s probably done that to make it look like a normal vacation or reshuffle,” Sir Aldridge replies, “No one will ever be let on to his secret this way.”

“I hope your men quickly find out some hint about his new location before it is too late,” Sir Whittington’s comment sounds a bit disturbing. Which one of the two is really calling the shots over here?

“We should hear something soon from at least one of the locations,” Sir Aldridge quips as he shakes his martini and walks towards the edge of the balcony overlooking the lush green fields, “That lucky bastard!”

“So he lives for another day,” Sir Whittington laments as if really let down by the turn of events.

“We’ll get him,” Sir Aldridge comments.

“What will you get first this time,” Sir Whittington asks as he joins him by the edge, “Him or his empire?”

“Whatever happens first,” Sir Aldridge smirks. And as the two toast their drinks and enjoy the view, let us just leave them here alone with their darkness and get to a place where a new dawn must have just broken.

Why is it that a dawn always breaks and dusk only falls? Maybe the difference is in the effect that the two cause. While a dawn brings along with it energy that is infectious and gets splattered around into the hearts and acts of the man, beast, bird and vegetation alike, dusk is energy-less just like all of them at the end of a long day. A falling glass has the force of its weight that scatters the splinters in all corners; a falling feather however is discreet.

“Keep laying down love,” Mrs. Rai tries to comfort Mishiida as she finally wakes up from her long sleep. Mishiida however appears really concerned. She looks around as if looking for someone, her one hand rubbing her eye and the other clasping the edge of the bed. “Oh! He was here with you all the time,” Mrs. Rai perhaps understands what Mishi is looking for, “He slept here by your side on this chair, and never left only until now, that too because he is specifically under the instruction of Mr Surpavitar Singh from today.” And Mishiida looks at Mrs. Rai with a surprise, something she shares with us.

“He says he's getting ready for us,” Mrs. Rai continues, “But I think he's getting ready for something much bigger than what we all can comprehend.” Mishiida grabs Mrs. Rai’s hand in her hands. Mrs. Rai reciprocates and continues, “I am a mother Mishiida. It is a mother’s hunch. And a mother’s hunch is never wrong.”

Getting ready is a step towards getting a result; the first one in fact. But getting ready is not the same as knowing or determining, for what is in one’s hand is a decision. The result of that decision is however beyond one’s control. But this uncertainty is not the bane of those who prefer to blame themselves for their predicament, than find something or someone else to lay the blame on, whether real or imaginary.

“What do you think of the light and dark?” Surpavitar strolls around Alex who stands firm with his hands folded.

“Light represents good, and dark represents evil,” Alex replies.

“Wrong!” Surpavitar quips, “They both represent truth, for they are both a part of the existence.”

“But,” Alex is dumbfounded by the reply.

“Light of enlightenment dispels the darkness of ignorance, but the light also exposes flaws that can affect relationships, or expose friends to enemies,” Surpavitar replies, “Dark can hide enemies and friends alike, and sometimes the cover of the darkness enables us to hide the pain of truth that would be destructive rather than productive for those that we hold dear. They both serve a purpose. It is the purpose which is evil or good.”

“How do I differentiate between the two purposes?” Alex asks.

“You identify the possible results and then judge which result would lead towards a more just future,” Surpavitar replies, “Sometimes results could be unjust or harsh for those who bear the immediate brunt. But results have to be weighed in the context of a future, for we all may live in the present, but we all will leave behind a future, like our present was left behind for us by our past.”

“But will I not be judged for my choices?” Alex asks.

“We all are judged by our peers, but remember,” Surpavitar explains, “A true warrior never judges others before he has judged his own actions and choices. And after that, he should only judge the actions of the others to weigh the results they might bear. It is the results of their actions which should determine yours, and not their intentions or appearances.” Alex bows his head to acknowledge the wise words. Surpavitar continues, “And now you’ll learn to spin without letting your head to spin, for you spin to keep an eye out for all your enemies, but your mind needs to stay clear and focused to be able to respond.”

Clarity of mind is possibly a hypothetical state that can never exist, for to have clarity of mind one needs to ensure there is nothing clogging it. And the last thought of the process, “is there anything clogging it,” is itself a question clogging it. Perfection is not what is meant. It is the lack of interfering intentions which is presumed.

“When you set your neighbourhood on fire, it will ultimately burn down your own house son,” Mr. Garcia senior talks sense to his son, “I don’t have any sympathy for you, for you are a scoundrel who deserves all the pain in the hell to be inflicted upon you at the same time every moment for the rest of the eternity. But I feel for that gracious lady who’s lost the only light of her old age. How will she live?”

“She’s dead,” the junior Garcia’s revelation shocks us as much as it does the old man.

“What,” a heart broken sigh escapes Garcia senior's lips.

“Her heart stopped the moment she heard the news,” and for the first time we see water build up in Jackie’s eyes.

“Now why don’t you decide to kill yourself you demon,” Garcia senior however is inconsolable.

“I have,” the Mr. Garcia we’ve known so far replies as he gets up with a conviction writ large on his face, “I’ve decided to live myself to my death.” And he starts off towards the exit.

“You always saw your mother in her,” Mr. Garcia senior mumbles in a chocked voice, “How could you let this happen to her?”

“I didn’t,” Mr. Garcia stops in his stride, “But someone did.” But before he could say anything else, a door knock catches everyone’s attention. “What happened,” Mr. Garcia asks his secretary as he steps out of his father’s suite, anger writ large on his face.

“Sir, Mr. Roberto Alvarez called from Adelaide,” the secretary informs him, “His men caught a few people getting too close to our local activities.”

“Make them sing their master’s tune at the fruit of pain,” Mr. Garcia keeps it to the point.

Pain has many levels. From insignificant it could rise to torturous and then unbearable. But only when it rises to the point of irrelevance does a man become unstoppable, for then it is pain that becomes his strength, and relief becomes a distraction.

We finally manage to track Mr. Roberto Alvarez and his white suit getting off his limousine at a deserted warehouse at the edge of the desert in South Australia.

“These were on him,” Menzies rushes forward to hand Mr. Alvarez the items recovered from the one apprehended.

Mr. Alvarez quickly glances through the stuff as he walks into the warehouse, next to the man tied down to a chair. He pulls out an id card and looks at it before quipping, “Inspector Gustav Fernandez, ASIO! That’s interesting, ‘cause the last we knew you were serving a six month sentence for a petty robbery in Adelaide Gaol, Mr. Russo Van Derrick.”

“Oh, so you know me,” Russo replies with a vain smile.

“Today is not about what we know Mr. Derrick. Today is about what you know,” Mr. Alvarez replies, “And what should be much more important to you; at what cost would you share your beautiful little secrets with us, pleasure or pain?”

“Shit can get real hard sometimes,” but Russo sounds a bit defiant, “But you don’t realize until you pass it.”

“Is that a prophecy you would like to make for yourself today Mr. Derrick?” Mr. Alvarez quips as he takes another puff from his cigar.

“It was a warning,” Russo replies as our eye catches sight of what Mr. Russo has probably already noticed.

The first shot hits Mr. Alvaez in his back, fired from the high angle of the topmost corner window. The next barely misses him as he dives to the floor and rolls away. Chaos ensues as ten assailants fire shots at six men holding up the Garcia flag, including the one already hit. Russo of course is now dead in his chair, a result he probably hadn’t contemplated. But it appears these men have come determined to wipe out the Garcia ground level force in South Australia.

Menzies ducks and rushes around behind the wooden crate where Mr. Alvarez has found protection. “Are you alright,” he asks Mr. Alvarez who has pulled out a shiny little silver and ivory lined revolver of his own.

“I’m fine,” he replies as he tries to overcome his visible discomfort. He then grabs his walking stick, holding it from the wrong end, and using its shiny metal handle as a mirror, he tries to investigate where the enemy gunmen are positioned. He notices three men making ground progressively towards their safe spot from his side. “Here, use this to see how many have you got,” he passes the stick to Menzies who does the same. The two roll out on to either side and with quick shots take out five of the ten assailants. With two having already been taken out by their three remaining men, it doesn’t take long for them to clean out the remaining.

“Hello Mr. Whitaker,” Roberto Alvarez calls Mr. Garcia’s secretary, “I am sorry to disappoint Mr. Garcia this time, but I promise my men won’t rest until they provide you with all the details that we are missing so far.”

“Mr. Alvarez, I hope you appreciate the seriousness of the predicament,” Jason Whitaker, Mr. Garcia’s secretary replies, “We had been counting on your able leadership down south.”

“I assure you once again, no stone will be left unturned,” Mr. Alvarez replies as Menzies puts a new cigar in his mouth and lights it up, “But looks like I will be indisposed and unable to oversee this operation myself now. But I assure you, ample procedures will be set in place to take care of your every need. Give us twenty four hours.”

Needs however are seldom satisfied, for every need ends at the beginning of another need.

It is hard to imagine which house amongst all those lit below on the ground doesn’t have overpowering needs. But is it really their individual needs that are more important, or is it the needs of the society that they are a part of, that are more important? What if all their needs are satisfied but their society is left in a state of disarray, where the entire community collectively suffers a malady worse than their individual states prior to their wish fulfillment? Will such a social pain not afflict their individual existence? These are overpowering thoughts, and we could have easily wasted the rest of this earthly night dwelling upon it, but how could we miss those three small stealth vessels sneaking out of the sky and into the space. It feels like we have finally and unexpectedly stumbled upon the three we had been hoping to catch up on. Why not we just follow them and see where their sinister designs are leading them? But more importantly, should we use our celestial power to understand what they are talking about when we catch up with them? Maybe not today!

And there we finally are; Rhea, the ninth largest moon in the Solar System, a rock and ice mass that spins around Saturn. What a place the Tyrenes have chosen to hide.

Uh oh! Given the glares of the Tyrene soldiers and a chat given by one of their officers to the three; Pfzarida and Draztida, the two Penancthians, and their Tyrene accomplice; it looks like there’s trouble in paradise.

Oh boy! Was that a roar? Commander Urzartyre, the leader of the force has himself rushed out of the Rocky cave to confront the two men. Duck!

That hit would have flattened us, if only we could feel the physical forces, but it has barely grazed the skin off Pfzarida’s face, while Draztida cows in a corner. It’s an interesting venting spree to witness, but what a shame someone had to interrupt it midway. Now what is he showing to Urzartyre on his fancy little gadget’s screen? What’s that floating blue blip on that screen? Perhaps we are going to find out very soon, provided we follow the ten soldiers Urzartyre has ordered to go somewhere. This is getting interesting.

Wow! Isn’t that a Penancthian craft that’s heading towards the Earth that these ten Tyrenes are chasing in their stealth crafts? Who could be in that craft? Let us not wait for the Tyrenes to find it out before us. Let us just make a dash and get into the craft.

Oh well! We forgot that the Penancthians love to wear a full face helmet when they fly their crafts. At least we know it’s a man; from what it looks like. But is he heading to catch up with Mishiida? Possibly! But what is he talking about with that Penancthian Commander whose face is blowing out like a three dimensional hologram from his dash board. Never mind! It’s too late to find out now as some glitch has shut him up. And we know it’s a glitch for else this person here wouldn’t be so frantic in his efforts to get it working again.

Wow! Was that a hit? The Tyrenes have attacked.


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