Chapter ten is what I would describe as a ‘full’ chapter. Of course, there is the story line: George continues to travel across level two towards the cross over gate, but at the same time, it develops George’s character further, through small insights into his relationship to his mom, his aunt, and Evylin.
Added to this, the chapter has what I describe as my ‘futuristic fantasy’. This time in the form of how humanity have found a way to travel across the vastness of space by creating and collapsing time cones. I am not an avid space-travel-science-fiction reader (even though as a young boy I used to watch Star Trek). My book should not be about prophecies of how the science part of the world might be, but a ‘backdoor’ way to remind people how beautiful the planet is, now.
Anyway, somewhere in my research to find a hypothetical, (maybe possible one day) method to travel through space, I came across something called Tachyon speed (something that moves faster than light). I remember someone once making a joke about this – with the punchline being darkness, as it is always ahead of light.
Naturally, I named the space fleet after this: ‘Tachyon ships’.
The second part of my futuristic fantasy is being able to ride light cones, (some theory developed from Einstein’s theory of Special Relativity). At the time of reading this, it all made sense, and sounded very convincing. Which simply put means, I liked the idea.
Having done my SF bit, I throw in an antagonistic comment appertaining to the economic reasons for space travel, while honoring the genius of James Cameron, his film Avatar for me, personally, is a sad but true insight into human nature. (Hopefully, he and I are both wrong, although history is against this, revealing profit to be one of the main reasons for anyone going anywhere. I just add the bits about rape and torture, because – my book is not Hollywood, it doesn’t have to have a soft filter on the camera lens of my thoughts.)
After this jab, I go back to the moment of George and Evylin staring into the night sky, with George talking about the stars – astrology. It is something, to be honest, I know nothing about, but would love to. The passion Jodie Foster conveys in the film Contact is how I imagine this scene, with a bit more intimacy (the hand holding) and romance. (smile). This accident of creating the stars to be fixed points throughout the game, was not done deliberately, (maybe subconsciously, as my mind knew it made sense) would enable the players to navigate around the game, no matter which level they were on. Thus, adding more authenticity to the virtual world.
I enjoyed finding out about a few of the star formations, and I hope I have got them right. Before the internet, I would have had to spend half my days in the library, hoping to find what I was looking for. Today, well I am very thankful to Google and Wikipedia.
Private comment: I have heard that Wikipedia is not always correct, and other such platforms of information are more dependable. This may be true, but I also believe that generally, information belongs to everyone and is not a product to be sold. Information should be shared, and well, if anyone finds anything within my book to be wrong, please let me know. What a wonderful way to share knowledge. (smile)
…but back to chapter ten. After the ‘romantic’ evening beneath the stars, George announces he needs to go offline and send his dad a TalkWrite, an invented term, but it is the way I would describe the modern chat room communication. It has the feeling of being spoken dialogue in written form. A new linguistic genre (smile). I also mention again the time difference between the real world and the virtual one, making it more believable with the idea that without friction and physical interference we could move faster. This again, is another crucial point as without it, the events that happen later in the book would not be able to take place (at least not in a fun exciting tempo) and the story would have to be spread out over years. It kind of slingshots the adventure forward.
George tells Evylin he’ll only need fifteen minutes, but is unexpectedly delayed by his aunt, allowing another view at George’s character.
When he returns to the game, Evylin has already left for level three and so he sets out alone, where, yet again, mixed into the next scene is a critical comment concerning the environment. Nothing I write at this point is particularly new or original. We have heard it all before. But this is not the viewpoint from within the story. In the story it is all too late. Humanity did nothing. It continued down the present, destructive path made by my, and my parent’s generation, (this is not an accusation, only something I sadly belief. Looking back at my own timeline, I find there has been so many environmentally harmful decisions and actions made, not to mention inventions, that had started out to be good for the planet. E.g., plastic).
In the book, humanity did not change but adapted, with its leaders, all too busy squabbling over which party is in charge, rather than finding solutions. Talking about budgets and deficits that need to be met and reached at any cost. The planet could pay. In the book I use the term Pied Piper, taken from a Brother Grimm’s fairy tale, about how all the children followed this magical pipe playing figure down to the river, dancing happily to their graves.
And if that was not enough, I then add the scene where George kills a wild boar, protecting its young, and the futility of it, and how George realizes this ‘scene’ had no place in the game. It is the first time that George questions the morals of his favorite online virtual world.
So, like I said: full.
I think this ‘crowding’ within chapters, rather than pure action happens, because I do not simply want to have a fight – almost died – move onto the next level and then fight – almost died, again story. There are ten levels to the game, as mentioned earlier in the book. The story is not about crossing them, but development. Learning through fun. As you read the chapters, hopefully you will enjoy the twists and the many varying characters who you will meet (Pickwick papers – smile) but also learn something. I have a substantial number of footnotes – and maybe I am slightly addicted to them, but I never want to write something that isn’t mine, or not mention something that I researched and enjoyed. Part of the fun I have in writing this complicated story is the research. The more I write, the more I wish I were young again, simply to see more of the amazing things I have discovered.