Beyond The Skies - Prologue

"And so, the brave explorers Tim and Jimmy have brought science and peace to the new world, eliminating the savage Morluk rebels and helping the the more gentler Morluks live in peace and harmony with the rest of the human traders. Join us next week as we follow Tim and Jimmy to another new and yet exciting world, in hopes of bringing the wonders of human culture and science to them!"

"Turn that hogwash off," came a voice from behind of Matthew, and he recognized it instantly as his grandfather, judging from the gruff and grumpy tone of it. The projection disappeared back into the small black box from which it came from with a wave of his Ah Kong's hand, mildly annoying Matthew. The Adventures of Tim and Jimmy was his favorite cartoon show, he loved their soldier suits and their space battles, but his Ah Kong never seemed to like it.

Propaganda, his Ah Kong would call his favorite cartoon, a word that Matthew did not understand. It must have been an old word that old people like Ah Kong used for every TV show out there, since he also used it for the night news that his daddy watched, as well as the other dramas and movies depicting space exploration and battle.

"Did you know how it was last time?" Ah Kong's grumbling voice continued, as he pulled up a chair beside Matthew. Matthew could sense another back-in-my-days story coming, and he wanted to go play Explorace with his friends. He would have ran away if given a choice, but his daddy warned him about being disrespectful to Ah Kong. After all, Ah Kong had been a famous scholar during his younger days and when he talks, Matthew should just sit and listen because those are words of wisdom, according to his daddy.

Wisdom. Yet another word the young brain of Matthew could not understand. He did understand the sit instruction from his daddy, on the other hand, and so he sat there grudgingly, eager to get it over and done with. He has worlds to explore in his games, and he cannot let his friends get over him.

"Back in my days, we humans are so much more afraid, so much more humble," Ah Kong finally began, and it was a sentence that Matthew has heard several times, but has still yet to grasp its meaning.

"When we visualized alien species, we always thought that they would be more powerful than us, more advanced, and that we need to constantly be on our guard, to seek peace. But now the depiction have changed, that the aliens are weaker than us, that we are the superior species, until it sickens my core," Ah Kong continued, his voice rising slightly in frustration. Matthew nodded blankly, knowing from years of experience that the less he says, the faster his Ah Kong's story will end, which was all that mattered.

"It kind of reminds me of the colonization of our forefathers so long ago, where they sailed the seas in search of new lands to settle, only that this time we're sailing the empty dark void of space. But the story is still the same old. We paint ourselves as the superior species going in, and in the process, sparking off wars and a whole lot of conflict. We have grown arrogant, my boy, our entire species, like how we used to be in those early days." Matthew tried to keep up with his grandfather's story, but in his mind, he was already battling the ant like aliens in Explorace together with his friends, nailing the high score again. It was a sudden exclamation from Ah Kong that brought him back.

"That's it! Perhaps what we need is a new force to keep us in check, to stop us from tearing each other apart. And I know of just the thing to do," his Ah Kong loudly declared, before hurriedly picking up his things and heading for the door.

"Ah boy, perhaps one day you will understand where I am coming from," his Ah Kong turned to him and said, before leaving the house. Matthew was confused, but happy at the same time that Ah Kong's story ended earlier than he expected. He would have the chance to play Explorace with his friend now, and little did he know then that it would be the last time that he would be seeing his dear Ah Kong.

To be continued... 


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