For new material please visit my main blog, CHEESEBURGER BROWN: SCIENCE-FICTION STORY-WALLAH.


Jeremiah's Secret

I awoke. This, in and of itself, was surprising.

I inhabited a hazy world of white light and soothing voices, defocused and meaningless. Nurse Randa patted my cheek at one point, and I tried to turn to kiss her hand but I was too weak. Nurse Wennel was laughing at something. A machine went ping!

Though I did not notice the transition, it became apparent to me that Nurse Hiwai was straddling me. I wondered if we were having sex. She was thrusting down upon my chest, her face pinched in effort. "Stay with me!" she sang. "Come on now, Simon -- don't let go!"

"Okay," I agreed, and the machine went ping! again.

Simon of Space - a science-fiction novel by Cheeseburger Brown
Dear readers,

It's finally happened: the free version of this science-fiction novel has been taken offline in order to make room for the hard-cover printed edition from Ephemera Bound Publishing, on sale in stores and online beginning Valentine's Day, 2008.

I regret any disappointment. I kept the free version available as long as I could. Pleasure be sure to check out the new edition! See Cheeseburger Brown.com for more information and updates.

Cheeseburger Brown

P.S. You can read more of my free fiction via my weblog or in the complete story achives.


Anonymous argan0n decreed...

Thanks CBB,
Just in time for bed. :)

Wed Aug 17, 01:12:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

I'd say "I told you so about the plate transmitting directly to Olorio and that Pish was a human executive (wish I'd said I'd believed the same about Jeremiah)", but I'm so blown away by how well written this post is that all I can say is "I bow to the genius of CBB; thank you!"!

Wed Aug 17, 01:33:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

And I'm sticking with the rest of my prediction...

Wed Aug 17, 01:35:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous justin decreed...

*stunned silence*

Wed Aug 17, 01:56:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous argan0n decreed...

Holy whaaaaah!

I second edmund. Well written indeed!

Wed Aug 17, 02:10:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

I can't help but equate Jeremiah to a compassionate Darth Vader with that unmasking scene. Even when some of his intentions have been revealed, he still scares the shit out of me.

Wed Aug 17, 02:11:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Sith Snoopy decreed...


You keep blowing me away!

My brain can only take so much! :)

**** Pleasant Sigh ****

Thank you so much. This story has kept me going while dealing with a very difficult project at work. :)

I like one of the comments about Jeremiah being a compassionate Darth Vader. ;)

Wed Aug 17, 02:28:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...


Well, just the Jeremiah part, and only because the narration gave it away on Maja.

I'm so glad Dr. Pemma turned out good! I was hoping she'd come around sooner or later. Hey, do you think Mr. Secret Math can redo Glory's nervous system too?

Small typo:
Believe me when I tell you there in value in that.
(first "in"="is"?)

The way you weave this mind-blowing story and still make it occasionally hilarious... what a rare gift you have.

Wed Aug 17, 03:01:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous converted decreed...

Nice and LONG! :)

Wed Aug 17, 03:15:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Denim decreed...

Wow....great work. Best line: "'Everything I believed in is nonsense.'

I walked over, bent down and smiled at her. 'My dear doctor, that happens to me every other planet I visit.'"

Wed Aug 17, 03:26:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Excellent chapter.. you did promise a Jeremiah revelation..
I'm concerned about the plate xmit'ing to olorio... that would've had to have been bugged after Duncan 'untraceabled' it? Otherwise he would've likely noticed something?
or perhaps been the one to install the bug?
But then the whole "Simon flees the hospital" becomes a contrived issue and his meeting with Pish a setup.
Following that extension would make me think Jeremiah had something to do with Simon's memory loss..

Feh... sometimes I kinda wish I'd waited to buy the whole thing.. :-)


Wed Aug 17, 03:27:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Lilaena decreed...

fooburger -

Duncan cleaned Simon's plate, not his diary. The diary was transmitting to Olorio.

And the "Property of Terron Volmash" must have been a little inside joke on Jeremiah's part - or else he's a big liar and is working with Volmash in some way. I'm leaning back towards Simon as Volmash. The irony would just be delicious.

CBB - loved this chapter. As soon as I read the title I knew it was going to be good, and I wasn't disappointed. Jeremiah's secret blew me away.

Wed Aug 17, 03:59:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

A word on jeremiah's secret; was this a huge surprise to anyone? I'm not trying to will my huge ego and intellect over your people, but it seems I'm doing exactly that. I don't know about all the other readers, but Jeremiah's little "I'm a human executive" confession was just about right and not a huge surprise to me at all. What I LOVED about it was the method used by CBB and his set up of the scene (Darth-Vader like unmasking). Man that was awesome. Bonerrific as usual.

Wed Aug 17, 04:30:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...


Wed Aug 17, 04:46:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Dave decreed...

Excellent, EXCELLENT post CBB!

Question though.. when Simon was going in and out of consciousness, Faeda was wrapping him in her clothing.. was that a dream, or is she really alive somewhere? Hmmm

This gets better and better... DEFINITELY believe this should be put into a book!

Wed Aug 17, 07:36:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

hi CBB, sorry for this again. I'm gonna point them out as I come across them so I don't miss any when going back, like yesterday.

abdomen, a open gash whose loose edges


abdomen, an open gash whose loose edges

Of course, you don't see my progress, but this comment is being written slowly :P

so here:

Believe me when I tell you there in value in that.

should be:

Believe me when I tell you there is value in that.

And now: wow! Great chapter! Truly magnificent. Thanks again, CBB.


Wed Aug 17, 09:10:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous kumar decreed...

Whew! That was a very philosophical discussion. I enjoyed it very much. I disagree on one part, though-
"Your altruism is a statistical gamble tuned to maximize kin selection."
I believe altruism is the self-preservation instinct of the species. Just as the body acts to preserve itself, members of a group act to preserve the group, whether that group is a family, a tribe, a country, or a species.

sheik- If by Mr Secret Math you mean Dr. Zoran, wouldn't he be long dead? If Jeremiah is over 50mil hours old *calculator* that's over 5.7K years.

I can't wait to hear Dr Pemma's story!

I wonder if Captain Ting got his ship outfitted with a set of proper c'nnons yet...

What could possibly have been Olorio's purpose in setting Simon up with a bugged journal? El gaspo! Has Olorio been reading our comments? Anyway, I wonder at his purpose in setting up Simon the way he did. Assuming Blighton was telling the truth, and that Simon was not born Nestor Fell, what was Olorio's purpose in setting him up in the hospital with proper bits and a journal? Did he intend to bring him back to assume the role of Fellcorp figurehead? Or was Simon's flight a part of the plan?

I will leave these questions to those of huger intellect. :)

Wed Aug 17, 09:19:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Simon (of not space) decreed...

As soon as I saw the Monty Python reference in the second paragraph I knew I was in for a good ride. The title may have been a bit of a hint as well, though.

Too, I was struck by Jeremiah's intent to destroy the Nightmare Cannon in front of the Queen of Space. Methinks the title of this here blog novel is far too similar for her title to be a coincidence.

Wed Aug 17, 09:28:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...


I knew that Pish wasn't a "real" boy!!!!
but then again I thought that he was a "complete" robot.
but.. I wasn't completely wrong.
Jeff S. (sorry had to shout you out)

woo hoo!!

Anyway, I must say that this entry has savored most of my taste buds. And even if there isn't one till next week I am most satisfied.

Thank you

Wed Aug 17, 09:53:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Christien Lomax (The Cat Whisperer) decreed...

It is possible that Jeremiah is the 17th executive, the one that betrayed them. Is it not? He does seem to have access to Katmari...

Wed Aug 17, 10:03:00 AM EDT  
Blogger cnc decreed...

Hands down, one of the best chapters yet. I like how Jermiah has control over everything yet still turns to Simon for answers. I don't think we've even begun to see what he's capable of.

Thanks CBB.

Wed Aug 17, 10:04:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

I sat in a stone stillness as i read this chapter.
What a great one it was.

I bow my head to you.
You are nothingless than a great writer.
And have exceded the expectations
of many. I'm sure.
I find it an honor to be one of the many that are able to read this.

thank you

Wed Aug 17, 10:19:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Omellette decreed...

Brilliant... Utterly flippin' brilliant...

And, like others here have mentioned, the reference to Vader's unmasking at the end of RotJ is simply gorgeous!

But, like CNC mentioned, I wonder if the "betrayer" is dead. Jeremiah now seems to be a solid citizen, but we've said that before, haven't we...

Wed Aug 17, 10:52:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...


1. Simon is Volmash.
2. Olorio gave him the bugged diary because Olorio wants to get his hands on the nightmare cannon in order to increase the profits and customer base of FellCorp which Olorio actually owns and runs.
3. Jeremiah knows that Simon is Volmash, which is why Jeremiah is Simon's enemy, but he can't move against Simon because that would harm Jeremiah's primary mission which is the executive children (especially Pish.)
4. Jeremiah's mission of furthuring the "race" of human executives requires the elimination of the nightmare cannon in order to keep the exective children from being wiped out again. He needs Simon alive in order to achieve this.
5. Simon's life will be spared, even after the revelation that he is Volmash, due to his connection to Pish and Jeremiah's need to protect the integrity of his primary mission.

Wed Aug 17, 11:31:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Jeremiah counts himself with "the other fifteen", implying that the betrayer was not one of the sixteen (two fell -- whatever -- one line was wiped out, and one was the bad guy, leaving sixteen).

Kumar - I actually mean Jeremiah, since Simon says he holds "the power" in his head (and one of the execs apparently used the Math).

Hmmm... "Secret Math", Faeda's into S and M... makes you wonder...

Oh, and the real best quote of the day:

"You're going to eat?" she blurted. "At a time like this? We could be killed!"

I shrugged. "Well, we can scarcely eat then, can we?"

Made me laugh out loud.

So are we to understand that some of Simon's dreaming -- in the first few paragraphs -- is somehow connected to reality?

Wed Aug 17, 11:47:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

Jeremiah is no solid citizen. He reiterates that he is Simon's enemy, and that the only thing that keeps him from killing Simon is Pish's bonding to Simon.

You can bet the farm that Jeremiah's story about the reason for their trip to Kamari is a pack of lies.

Remember when Corinthia Tag said: "The Nightmare Cannon is not a creative device, but a projective one. To transmit its payload of ultimate suffering it must first record it."? The big question Simon will have to answer is: who recorded the ultimate suffering, and why?

Wed Aug 17, 11:58:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous happycamper decreed...

I stumbled here due to a reference on another blog regarding SciFi Friday and have been thrilled by the story. I now await the new 'episodes' with great anticipation.

My questions:

1. Are there other blogs of similar nature and quality?
2. Does this format allow the story to continue indefinetly like episodic TV or does CBB view this format more as another publishing vehicle for a more traditional story?

Sorry to break the kudos and speculation about what is next but I am facinated by the format.

But, to echo others, if I had this in book form it would be an all night read until the end. Fantastic writing. Keep it up!

Wed Aug 17, 12:00:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Mandrill decreed...

See? I told you.
In response to anonymous' speculations:
1. Simon was Volmash. Whoever inhabited his body before the accident is no longer in residence. What Simon's response to this particular revelation will be we may never know cos it is speculation and may not be true.
2. I agree.
3. Replace is with was again. Jeremiah will not hold the actions of someone who for all reasonable purposes is dead against Simon I wouldn't think.
4 and 5. I can buy both these theories as they still gel with 3.

Wed Aug 17, 12:10:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

If Simon is Volmash and Olorio knows and wants the NC, then who wiped Simon's memory and why? Seems like it would've been wiser to just approach Señor Volmash and say "let me make you an offer you can't refuse".

Wed Aug 17, 12:12:00 PM EDT  
Blogger cnc decreed...

I think Simon wiped his own memory so no one could find the Nightmare Cannon I think he realized the err in his ways and he himself was so horrified by what he did he formated himself to protect himself and the rest of the Galaxy.

Wed Aug 17, 12:29:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Dave decreed...

Happycamper, have you read The Darth Side? Awesome!!!

I'm beginning to believe Simon IS Volmash indeed. That's the sole reason Jeremiah is his enemy, but he needs Simon to find the cannon.

Wow... my head's spinning over this one!

Wed Aug 17, 01:37:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous goldenboy decreed...

I wonder to what degree Simon's regenerated leg works into the overall story.

I'm with you anonymous on your five bulleted speculations and with CNC on your theory on Simon's wiped mind. Now let's see if CBB plays along or if the master illusionist has some more rabbits up his sleeve, so to speak.

Wed Aug 17, 01:39:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous matt decreed...

A bit of philosophy I'd like to bring up:

This conversation between Simon and Jeremiah touches on the one aspect of science that I hate. By delving so deeply into how human beings function, by explaining away all our emotions with evolution and chemical reactions, modern biology is destroying "I think therefore I am." What soul is left to us when we are just fleshy automatons?

When discussing this once with a friend of mine he said "You know what makes a flower a flower, yet you can still appreciate its beauty, right?" I don't know that I can answer that affirmatively anymore.

I want mystery and unexplainables back!

Wed Aug 17, 01:40:00 PM EDT  
Blogger cnc decreed...


With all due respect, if we knew nothing about who or what we are right now, we'd go no where. It takes someone saying "Why is that?" for anything to advance.

While, yes, it is disheartening to think that science will figure out every part of the human anatomy and physiology, there are still many more questions left unanswered.

Wed Aug 17, 01:54:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous goldenboy decreed...

That's a good point Matt - essentially the scientific breakdown of human beings fails to account for morals, conscience, emotion - ultimately those intangibles that accompany a soul. How can any person look deep within themselves and not acknowledge there is more to them than biology and chemistry?

Jeremiah's analysis reminded me of Data's (Star Trek: TNG) struggle with always trying to bridge the gap between himself, the creation, and the humans that he is surrounded by. While either one of them may be able to replicate everything human, they can never fully become human.

Wow! And all that on a full stomach!!

Wed Aug 17, 01:59:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear Matt,

I can do no better on this point than to quote, in full, the great, late Richard Feynman:


I have a friend who's an artist and he's sometimes taken a view which I don't agree with very well. He'll hold up a flower and say, "Look how beautiful it is," and I'll agree, I think. And he says - "you see, I as an artist can see how beautiful this is, but you as a scientist, oh, take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing." And I think that he's kind of nutty.

First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me, too, I believe, although I might not be quite as refined aesthetically as he is; but I can appreciate the beauty of a flower.

At the same time, I can see much more about the flower than he sees. I can imagine the cells in there, the complicated actions inside which also have a beauty. I mean it's not just beauty at this dimension of one centimeter, there is also beauty at a smaller dimension, the inner structure.

Also the processes, the fact that the colors in the flower evolved in order to attract insects to pollinate it is interesting - it means that insects can see the color. It adds a question: Does this aesthetic sense also exist in the lower forms? Why it is aesthetic? All kinds of interesting questions which shows that a science knowledge only adds to the mystery and awe of a flower. It only adds; I don't understand how it subtracts.


Well said, Dick.

Myself I have never learned a morsel of science that detracted from the wonder of the universe -- only ones that have enhanced it.



Wed Aug 17, 02:05:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Does anybody else ever wonder if CBB reads our speculations and then intentionally twists the story away from them in order to keep making our heads spin? He's certainly a clever one, that CBB.

Here's another speculation regarding Simon's regenerated leg. "The ultimate horror" broadcasted by the nightmare cannon was really a recording of Jeremiah ripping Simon's leg off and beating him with it.

Wed Aug 17, 02:31:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Drkdstryer decreed...

Oh my god CBB, it' jsut keeps getting better - thanks thanks and more thanks.

I'm thinking that the idea of Simon being Volmash is correct, but I just played through Knights of the Old Republic again, so that may be influencing my decision.

Here's an idea noone else has put forward - Terron Volmash may be the betrayer human executive. I really have no basis of thought for this, just something I thought of when I saw that one of the executives was a "bad guy", as it were.

Cheeseburgerbrown FTW!

Wed Aug 17, 02:34:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

YIPPEE KI YAY! holy camoses dude how do you DO IT?!?!?! amazing post, blew my mind. i can't wait to see this no-man's-land that is Kamari Star. fell stem ehed!


Wed Aug 17, 02:34:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Mark it down: Dr. Pemma will betray us again somehow. How believeable was her "I was on their side, but now I see the error of my ways and I'm on your side!" comment? If I was Simon I'd smile and mark her down for destruction by Jeremiah. That is, after I have sex with her.

Wed Aug 17, 02:54:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous matt decreed...

CNC: You are using "progress" as a justification. I think we will have regressed when we can no longer claim we have a soul. Progress can be defined differently and scientific advancement for its own sake, set up as an idol to bow before, is a dangerous thing. How many of the great minds who worked on the atomic bomb regretted it later?

goldenboy: Actually, my point is that science will determine the structure of human beings to the point that there will be no intangibles. Emotions, morals, and conscience will be explainable through chemical reactions and evolutionary pressures. I am lamenting the fact that soon we won't be able to say there is more to us than biology and chemistry.

CBB: We are opposites then. I am a scientist (electrical engineer) who thinks like the artist in that quote. I see the complicated nature of the flower and instead of making me agape with wonder it makes me react as you described the unborn executives reacting to the Nightmare Cannon. They see (or think they see) the reality of something and have no lie with which to guard their psyche from the truth. Understanding the how and why of things leaves me with the question "And the point?"

BTW, Jeremiah refuted RF's aesthetics question with "Beauty is an algorithm for evaluating health." which has been proven scientifically already. RF's question has a dull answer.

Here's a question for those of the opposite persuasion from me: When science has explained everything, when humans understand everything about the universe, what will cause you wonderment then?

BTW, f#@% kick a#$@ story CBB.

Wed Aug 17, 02:59:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

So Simon is Volmash and he wiped his own mind to avoid divulging the location of the Nightmare Cannon, which Jeremiah is going to take to the Queen of Space to destroy and make the galaxy safe for humans and executives?

That all make sense given what we've read, but it's too easy; that's just not CBB's style.

Both Olorio and Faeda acted as if they believe that Simon is Volmash (trying to get him to divulge the key to the location of the NC). If so, why would they both want to hide this fact from him?

Wed Aug 17, 03:08:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

I sincerely hope that this doesn't explode, but personally, I think we are in no danger of science explaining the world. I'm not so sure that science has explained everything as well as we'd like to think it has, especially beauty. I've had plenty of scientific/technical college courses, and people have a way of saying that we know more than we sometimes really do about everything. But that's just the impression I always get when comparing the classroom vs. private discussions I've had with professors.

ie. Things are rarely as cut and dry as we want them to be.


Wed Aug 17, 03:19:00 PM EDT  
Blogger X decreed...

All the comments and theories put forth thus far are interesting. Some believable, others less so.

None of them address the question gnawing away at my mind. According to Blighton, Simon was created. We have seen evidence that his life was also created ('altered' people, no one really knows him, etc).

Who created him and why? If he was created, how does he know the location of the nightmare cannon? If he really is Terron Volmash, why go through the trouble of creating a life through alteration - why not just live the life?

I have yet to come up with a believable theory that addresses these concerns in light of everything else we have seen thus far. It also seems to rule out most of the theories proposed as well.

All that said, once again CBB - great work. I'm sure all will be explained in time, but dammit I want it now. However, patience is a virtue.


Wed Aug 17, 03:52:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Well, maybe Simon is made up.

And the person that made him up is the real Volmash.
And he created Simon so that the people that were looking for him would find Simon thinking that it is volmash and not the "real" Volmash??
That would clarify the whole deal about Simon not knowing anything.

Or, Simon could have been at the wrong place and time and found out who was working with volmash within his company and in fact who he was and they tried to wipe out his mind.

And one quick question (out of the blue)
if Simon has two kids and just lost his wife why isn't he trying to find them. ya know a little comfort would help...


Wed Aug 17, 04:18:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Wasn't his wife a shameless prostitute?

Wed Aug 17, 04:21:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous kumar decreed...

matt- Surely you find joy in your experiences as a scientist? When you learn something new, does it make you happy to have gained knowledge, or sad to have lost the mystery?
When people first put biological material under a microscope and discovered cells, do you think they glumly said to one another, "That explains so many things! Well... there goes the joy in my life. There's no more mystery, and nothing more to discover."
If anything, each discovery uncovers more mysteries, and the solution to each new mystery uncovers yet further mysteries, like the widening branches of a vast tree. When you reach the leaves at the end of a branch, do you know all there is to know about the tree? If, through some great expenditure of effort, you count and catagorize every leaf, do you know all there is to know about that tree? No! Where did it come from? Where do the seeds go? What happens to the leaves when they fall? Why do the same type of trees grow in different shapes?

My meandering point is this- Science will NEVER explain everything, because reality is not finite. There are always undiscovered levels of complexity to be found. While your appreciation of a thing might change as you learn more about it, it should not lessen.

Wed Aug 17, 04:23:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

I'm with X; we don't have a clue yet.

Much as the scientific disciplines haven't really explained much of anything, and our heroes' philosophical monologues are merely opinion... there's still waaayyy too much we don't know.

Wed Aug 17, 04:26:00 PM EDT  
Blogger cnc decreed...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Wed Aug 17, 05:01:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Nikola decreed...


Did you ever wonder how Blighton survived in all those different sized and shaped suits? Might it be in Executive fashion? What if he's the rogue?

Wed Aug 17, 05:15:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Gwen decreed...

What if Olorio's the rogue?

The best lines of the day:
"You're going to eat?" she blurted. "At a time like this? We could be killed!"

I shrugged. "Well, we can scarcely eat then, can we?"

Wed Aug 17, 05:42:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Irish Wolf decreed...

"With all due respect, if we knew nothing about who or what we are right now, we'd go no where. It takes someone saying 'Why is that?' for anything to advance."

Or, as Dr. Asimov observed, the most exciting developments in the sciences aren't accompanied by someone saying "Eureka!", but rather by someone saying, "Gee, that's strange..."

Anyone concerned about science explaining the innermost workings of the entire universe needs a better acquaintance with quantum mechanics, string theory, and brane theory.

Oh, and CBB - once again, I stand in awe of your skill and talent as a writer. Had I any money, there'd be a sizeable contribution to your tip jar right now.

Wed Aug 17, 07:27:00 PM EDT  
Blogger tee decreed...

holy jeebuzz, cbb, you must need to rest after that gajillion word post...

i can only say "wow" so many times.


Wed Aug 17, 09:11:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Albus BumbleGore decreed...


Don't encourage CBB to rest! Flog him to take us to Kamari!

Or we'll need order another carton of orange sticks from CanadaPharmacy!!


Wed Aug 17, 10:26:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Jim decreed...

1. Are there other blogs of similar nature and quality?

Happycamper, I know what you are saying about the format. I too am almost as fascinated by the format of this blognovel as I am enthralled by the story.

Unfortunately, though, other than CBB's own Darth Side blog, I've NEVER run across another blognovel that has even a similar combination of the ingredients that make SoS the highlight of my cyberspace experience. Some of those ingredients are:

1) CBB's talent. Let's face it: there are alot of good authors out there, but it's rare to find an unpublished author of MFDH's caliber who is willing to give away his work for free. Miraculously, he is as talented at storytelling as he is at constructing prose and developing good, memorable characters.

2)CBB's productivity: besides talented, CBB is very *prolific*. The whole experience would be very different if he were publishing a chapter a month? At a slower rate, he probably would even turn out a better story, but part of what makes the SoS experience so fascinating is the antecipation of checking in on a daily basis to see if a new chapter has been posted.

3) Realtime episodes: The fact that the story is being written and dumped on us in realtime, without the chance for CBB to go back and edit previous chapters as the storyline evolves is a tremendous limitation; but at the same time, it adds a dose of excitement to the whole process (for me anyway). The readers *know* that the story and much of the plot is being written on-the-fly; it's almost like live "Reality TV" (although I hesitate to make that comparison!). Anything can happen: CBB could screw up and write himself into a corner (though I don't expect that to happen!). I suppose someone could write the whole story and then blog it episodically ... but it wouldn't be the same.

3) Reader participation: this factor adds an extra dimension to the whole experience, combined with the above factors. For example, there is always the chance that CBB will actually change the storyline in some way in response to reader feedback: either because someone found a whole in the plot that needs filling, or because someone proposed an interesting theory, or because he perceives that some storyline is far too obvious.

The other thing is that CBB managed to leverage the popularity of his Darth Side blog to gain a substantial readership for SoS. Maybe not as many people as he wanted or expected, but I think his numbers are still probably orders of magnitude higher than what most blognovels manage unless they were by a well known and established author.

However, I've yet to see an established author with the courage and energy to try what CBB is doing. I doubt anyone will try it, but I would love to know if there are any others out there. I think there is a tremendous self-marketing potential in the format: blog a novel in realtime, then go back and edit it and publish it (traditionally).

I hope CBB will make it to that level and then *continue* with this format in future works (but with 100% dedication to writing instead of having to divide his time with "real" work!). He's got a good start on his fan club already!

Wed Aug 17, 10:41:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Jim decreed...

My last comment was kind of long winded, but I still want to add an additional comment:

You know a story is good when it starts pushing people's buttons ... provoking philosophical, religious and political discussions !

heh! keep it up, CBB!

Wed Aug 17, 10:47:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Matt: Clearly you are a bad student of the sciences if you feel that science is not creating more questions than it answers.

Wed Aug 17, 10:59:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear Anonymous,

If the issue were simple and so "clear" it wouldn't be a matter of philosophical inquiry, would it?



Wed Aug 17, 11:26:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

Matt: "I think therefore I am." is exatctly what keeps science from intruding on true wonder. All the scientifc explanations we have now, and even what jerehmiah discussed, does not begin to explain why we have consciousness.
Even in this story, the only explanation their science has seems to be hidden in the Secret Maths.
Even if our science finds the answer to this, even if it discovers or disproves souls, that knowledge will not detract from the experience souls or consciousnes create.
You are electrical engineer, you understand curcuits, but your understanding does not interfere with the operation of the curcuit. Likewise understanding the soul will not affect the effects of the soul.
Knowledge of a flower will no hinder your wonderment at it, if you pay attention to the flower.
This is because flowers have an effect on souls. Knowledge can get in the way, but only if that is where your consciousness goes.

Thu Aug 18, 12:03:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Hi Jim,

Interesting thoughts. A couple of gut reactions:

Unless you have a mega-best-seller, chances are you aren't going to make much as a book author. I wonder... if the reader base continues to increase and people actually contribute even half of what they would pay for an ink version, could this format prove more profitable than traditional publishing methods?

You know a story is good when it starts pushing people's buttons ... provoking philosophical, religious and political discussions!

Nah, that's hardly what makes it a good story (think Last Temptation of Christ and Da Vinci Code).

Thu Aug 18, 12:40:00 AM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

Oh and on the story:
Fanatstic, I actually got distracted and fell behind, so I got the past two chapters in one sitting, which was unbelieveable.

Random Thoughts
Poor phi, very neat high allat, the people of the citadel are scientologists? I don't think Dr Pemma was in on anything.
If March Peebles started fellcorp, then is March Peebles evil? That doesn't wash. I think Peebles/the storyteller was telling the truth, and is good, and fellcorp/olorio has just run away from him.
Does it strike anyone else as odd that Simon absentmindedly strangled Faeda to death? Granted he was being stabbed, but the robot-like actions that led up to that are also weird, he suspected he had been drugged, what was it really?
Perhaps he has been programmed with an agenda, (HA 'Perhaps'!!)
What I mean is some subconscious programming that made him kill Lady Aza.
'property of terron volmash', Hmmmmm. property?? That is just weird.
Must re-read everything....

Olorio is almost certainly NOT volmash, if only because Simon believes it.
Simon is not Volmash either.
There will be another conference with the fellcorp incoropoation at Praxiteles.

The Doom Cannon will go off again, before it is destroyed.

Thu Aug 18, 12:56:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Denim decreed...

Best part of Jeremiah's revelation? The scene about the human executive on the train:
"No," replied Jeremiah firmly again. "Sir, they are the natural descendants of the human race."

"'Descendants'," quoted Omar scornfully, "you sound like one of them, robot."

Thu Aug 18, 06:19:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Dave decreed...

I'm starting to believe, that Simon IS Volmash.

He may have been in a position to know that Simon was a made up character.
He would have had the means to get his mind erased, only so much, and he left himself clues about the location of the cannon.

Hmmmmm... and also, yes, when IS he going to sleep with the good doctor? *L* She's the only female around that he hasn't slept with!

I just thought of something....
When he went to work the first day, and the girl was under his desk to.. umm.. well, you know... do "the usual", how did she know, IF he was made up? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Thu Aug 18, 08:00:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...


I think you highlighted one of the key exchanges of the whole story. The nagging question in my mind is if the natural descendants have decided that we're crowding their Space. If Pish and the New Kids learn to adapt and reproduce naturally, what do they need humans for?


Thu Aug 18, 08:15:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Because they love them,
even though people may not be needed.

The way I see it is this:
Jeremiah and his kind are created to be better than people.
They do not feel the pain that people do and for that they can't have their emotion get in their way. over all they are what I beleive their creater wanted "a better race".

Have you never admired something and wanted to cherish it because it was better than you. Maybe that's what it is, people feel, grieve, laugh, cry, eat and drink. All the things that they can not do. At least not to the extent that people can.

Although, they could still take over the world and stick "people" in cages!! like we go to the zoo Hey, we do it to animals.


Thu Aug 18, 09:10:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Jim decreed...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Thu Aug 18, 10:40:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Jim decreed...

Hi Sheik,

Unfortunately I think you are right; in particular, writers of science fiction tend to have to be very productive to earn a living. How many science fiction books make the ny times list of bestsellers? (epic fantasy seems to have a slightly better chance, but there are SO many unknowns compared to successes...)

Which is why I think that the idea of a mixed system may be ideal; just about everyone I have ever known prefers to read a real, physical, dead-tree book than an e-book on their computer screen. Seriously, if I had the choice of continuing to read SoS for free, blogged at the current rate, or buying the book, I would certainly buy it, even knowing that I was "missing out" on half of the fun of following along in an episodic format.

In literature these days, word of mouth is far more important to a books success than the publisher's marketing efforts, mainly because the publisher will rarely invest much energy in promoting a fledgeling author. That's where I see the greater potential of the blog: jumpstarting the word-of-mouth campaign. Of course, it will only work if the author is genuinely talented and dedicated, (and the planets are aligned in his/her favor!).

Cory Doctorow (www.craphound.com) is an example of a modern sf author who is leveraging the potential of the internet to its maximum, and demonstrating that the two mediums can be complementary: he gives away his books for free in electronic form, and has shown that sales of his books in paper form has actually increased.

I think the potential for income through donations is probably minimal; realistically, in the world of fiction blogging, the Darth Side was probably about as successful as anyone could hope for. Yet clearly, donations weren't enough to guarantee CBB an early retirement!

Anyway, I'm just hanging around to see where this all goes. I think it's going somewhere!

Thu Aug 18, 10:42:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Happy Camper decreed...


Your thoughts are greatly appreciated. I am sad to hear that there are no other blognovels of similar quality that anyone has run into. I will, when time permits, check out CBB's other work.

On the subject of the format, its almost the literary equivilent of the the guy on the corner with a guitar and the guitar case open at his feet..... And now that I have made that mental comparision, I am going right now to drop a few bucks in.

I hope everyone who enjoys SoS does so as well. CBB has a family and must eat. I hope that we can feed him enough to allow him to focus on creating such a wonderful experience for years to come.


Thu Aug 18, 11:22:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

I have a few questions related to the plot that don't appear to have been brought up yet.

1) Did Duncan know that Pish was an Executive? He must have known that Pish wasn't his original son, but how informed was he?

2) Was Duncan's trouble with the law related to protecting Pish? Was Duncan possibly wanted for an act that Jeremiah commited?

3) Dr. Pemma said that she deactivated the transmitter on Simon's diary. How did she know to whom it was transmitting? Did Olorio tell her or let something slip in a conversation? Is she guessing? Was she involved in Olorio's plan, and if so has she really changed sides?

Also, in response to Dave, the girl under the desk was a reporter/agent for Blighton, as we found out at the ball. She already at least suspected that he had a significant memory loss and may have been counting on that to deal with any awkwardness. Or, she might have been planting a bug and Simon arrived at just the wrong time.

Thu Aug 18, 01:04:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

I doubt Duncan is wanted for some Jeremiah crime, since he talked at some length about how he needed to take responsibility for his actions (whatever they were) as if it were something *he* had done.

I'm pretty sure Dr. Pemma was in on the whole "steer Simon this way" plan, since the way she talks indicates that she expected him and had a plan for dealing with him ("you were supposed to be ____ and not ____", etc).

Thu Aug 18, 01:19:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

Thinking on it more, it was Dr. Pemma that gave him the diary.

Also interesting is that Olorio probably now thinks that Simon is dead, since that is the last entry he heard.

Thu Aug 18, 02:38:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Dr Pent gave him the diary, back in the hospital on Samundra. Of course he was probably in on it too, unless he was an unwitting pawn.

Thu Aug 18, 02:43:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

I don't think Dr. Pemma was in on Olorio's game from the start. I think her expectations of Simon came from an expectation that the CEO would be completely self-centered (and being ticked off about him abusing her absolute control over the ship).

I agree with the shiek about Duncan having committed the crime himself, but what kind of crime would the galaxy's greatest chef be involved in to bring that kind of heat? An assasination attempt? The Nightmare Cannoli?

Thu Aug 18, 03:02:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Mmmmm... Nightmare Cannoli...


I can see what you mean about the Doc; her actions could be construed either way.

I think she's just a really uptight -- and skilled -- doctor who considers her work (i.e. healing) more important than anything else in the world.

Thu Aug 18, 03:46:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

I am thinking it is time for a new post.
It seems that the longer we wait the more people analyze things.
although all the suspicions are good i think i would like to know whats next.....

Thu Aug 18, 03:57:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Lilaena decreed...

lol the Nightmare Cannoli!

I think it's safe to say that everyone Simon has met thusfar has been hiding something from him, or isn't who they represent themselves to be. Everyone.

I doubt Dr. Pemma is an exception to this rule.

Thu Aug 18, 04:37:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

Shiek, I agree with your assessment of the doctor.

Lilaena, I don't think Omar and Greskin Mile were hiding anything from Simon.

It's definitely time for a new post; that or I need to spend less time in front of CBB's patience bars!

Thu Aug 18, 05:08:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Cheeseburger Brown decreed...

Dear all,

Re: time for a new post

I'm fighting a pitched battle against a series of Japanese luxury vehicles which need rotoscoping. Once I'm through this batch I'm a-typin'.

At somepoint I will also have to schedule some sleep. Crushing on a deadline fellates.



Thu Aug 18, 05:44:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Jim decreed...


You just go about your business and don't mind us. We'll try and keep ourselves entertained while we're waiting!

Thu Aug 18, 07:48:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

Gah, right, Pent. I told you I needed to re-read everytihng. This is a problem I don't have so much with books, because I get it all at once.

I trust Pemma greatly. I see her as a Star Trek style doctor. "I'm a doctor damnit, not an engineer" She's all about healing.
She might have personal issues related to the horror, but that is not surprising.
She probably has more to fear from our merry band than they do from her.

Thu Aug 18, 10:43:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

For some reason, every time I see the title of this episode I expect to read about an underwear store run by everyone's favorite killer robot... er, executive.

And by the way, why do they call them that? Are they actually "running" the human race?

CBB, wait until you have *two* kids and *three* jobs; I never drank coffee until baby #2 decided we didn't need to sleep -- ever...

Seriously, sleep if you can. Besides, the comments are now longer than the post; let's see if we can double it before the next one!

Back to jobs 2 and 3...

Thu Aug 18, 11:15:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Irish Wolf decreed...

CBB, I concur with some of the others - take care of your family's needs first. We'll still be here, debating the implications of the story thus far, when you get back to us...

...although I have to admit, I hope it won't take a week or so... :)

Fri Aug 19, 03:16:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Lilaena decreed...

I think it's safe to say that everyone Simon has met thusfar has been hiding something from him, or isn't who they represent themselves to be. Everyone.

Edmund, I shall qualify that statement with "with the possible exception of Greskin Mile" but Omar had the nose bleed thing too so there was something there he was hiding from Simon, unvoluntarily or not.

Anyway, I'm anxious to hear for what crimes Duncan was arrested for. Poisoning someone, perhaps?

Fri Aug 19, 05:44:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Phy decreed...

And by the way, why do they call them that? Are they actually "running" the human race?

Speculation of course, but I figure "executive" connotes higher quality or very shiny, in the sense of executive seats at an event, or executive toys for your desk at work.

Fri Aug 19, 10:12:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

So does that mean that Pish will stay a little boy??
And if so, How will he not notice that he isn't getting any older??
And does he already have the knowlage that Jeremiah has just hidden with in him??
Is that how he knows if people are bad or good??

Fri Aug 19, 10:24:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...


Yes, Omar obviously had Fellcorp computers in his head, but I think they were there to keep him from analyzing what he had been told about Simon too thoroughly.

I'm also wondering why Jeremiah allowed himself to be taken by Nilo's thugs back on Samundra. He could have easily thwarted the robbery, but didn't.

I think Olorio is on Jeremiah's team.

Fri Aug 19, 10:42:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

I'll be very curious to see what kind of story Jeremiah tells Pish about what's going on...and how Pish will react.

Fri Aug 19, 10:44:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

If the executives can reproduce, then I'm pretty sure they can grow too... so why wouldn't Pish grow up? Remember, the medical scans only saw what the "projectors" wanted them to see.

As for Duncan poisoning someone... I can't really see that in his character.

Jeremiah/Olorio teaming up? Hardly. Besides, what would that have to do with the whole episode at Nilo's? The only possible Yatti-serving element of that scene was when Simon got his diary back, but if J hadn't been gone, those thugs never would have taken his stuff in the first place.

I wonder if we're going to learn more about this effeminate-sounding "Boss Preen" character. Maybe he shops at Jeremiah's Secret?

Fri Aug 19, 12:05:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

I think the incident at Nilo's was a test of Simon's loyalty to Pish. Jeremiah's already dispatched all of the tough bad guys. All Simon has to do is overpower Nilo, whose arm he breaks.

If Simon retrieves Jeremiah, then he's a good protector to Pish, which serves Jeremiah's (stated) purpose. If he hadn't, Jeremiah would have found him, and it probably wouldn't have been pretty.

I think Jeremiah and Olorio are in cahoots because Olorio is so nonplussed about Simon commandeering a ship and heading to the Citadel. He's inside Simon's decision loop through Jeremiah, who can take control of the situation any time he wants (and isn't that what he's doing right now on the bridge of the Naego?).

Fri Aug 19, 01:14:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Interesting, but you're forgetting that Nilo also had two armed bad guys with him when Simon showed up. Also, did anyone else notice that Nilo said five guys were in the room... but there were only three corpses?

As for Olorio and Jeremiah, I really, really doubt it. It just doesn't fit with the sort of individuals they are; they have totally different goals. Also, I think it's not in Jeremiah's nature to lie, but rather to omit. What that means, I don't know, but I still can't see the two of them in bed together.

Do you really think Olorio was bewildered about Simon's decision? I would think he *wanted* him on that ship.

Fri Aug 19, 01:58:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

And how did Simon just happen to end up stumbling upon Jeremiah/Pish?

He followed a bird into the forest, then ate berries a bird was eating.

On the way to see Lady Aza, he saw people dressed as birds doing some ritual, and describing Aza: "Her dark hair was short and feathery, brushed forward like a bird, and ornamented with silver clasps."

If you need something to read until the next chapter:
John Dies at the End - a bizzare but very good story.

I also recommend the movie 'The Iron Giant'

Fri Aug 19, 02:17:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...


Yeah, the missing 2 thugs made me wonder, but I figured they may just have run from the death machine, or CBB mistyped.

Both Jeremiah and Olorio (and Faeda, too) are keenly interested in what Simon REMEMBERS about the bird. Which means they both know that he SHOULD remember something. That implies they have some common inside info regarding the Nightmare Cannon and Simon's identity. The obvious assumption is that Simon is Volmash, but that's not the only possibility.

Okay, my patience bar is gone, so back to work.

Fri Aug 19, 02:20:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Finally, some PWOT crossover readers!

I thought I was the only one (except Lance, of course).

The interesting thing about the bird memories is that Jeremiah's interest takes a very different tone from that of Faeda's and Olorio's inquiries. I think whatever common information they have is a result of having similar intelligence on the circumstances of Simon's accident.

Besides, Jeremiah is fifty million years old, answers to a different authority, and needs nothing from the likes of Fellcorp. In fact, it could be said that he is above all of their concerns. What could possibly make him want to join forces with a slimy, selfish character like Yatti Olorio? It just doesn't make sense... at least not until CBB drops another bomb on us.

Fri Aug 19, 02:26:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

Fellcorp may be highly profitable, but the money is not its greatest asset. The company is in the enviable position of having millions of people clamoring to let doctors put programs into their brains...using algorithms of unknown origin.

An arch villain couldn't ask for more!

Fri Aug 19, 02:52:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

Could they be the same two thugs that atacked them on annapurna?

Jerehmiah is fifty million hours = 5703.97764 years old.
(And who knows how he is accounting for relativistic effects? My guess is he used hours to mean time as he experienced it, not 'historical' time.) He might know the brid is important based on knowledge of the doom cannon, or any of a million things he has learned.

If anyone is the good guy in this story, my money is on Jeremiah. (Pish is perhaps a more obvious choice, but OTOH he is an 'untested' design..)

Simon was the victim of ultimate suffereing, as his brain (and perhaps his real family) was picked apart. The Bird unlocks the memory of this experience.

Fri Aug 19, 03:22:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Jim decreed...

Anyone have a theory as to why / how Jeremiah changed his accent after Monkey messed with him? (Other than that CBB must have realized that having a major character speaking constantly with a bizzarely unintelligible accent throughout a long story would be tedious to say the least). Obviously Monkey couldn't have changed his "language module", since he wasn't a robot.

Also, I wonder why Jeremiah didn't do anything to defend Duncan when he was arrested/abducted. He certainly had enough firepower to at least have put up a fight.

Three possibilities right off the top of my head:

1) CBB had yet to fully develop Jeremiah's role in the story, and he was still just a robot at that time.

2) Jeremiah didn't want to call attention to himself, and risk being exposed. This is a reasonable possibility, but strange considering that, if the "secret" he just revealed is true, his inaction may have jeopardized his entire plan with respect to Pish.

3) There is much more to the Duncan abduction scene than it appears to be on the surface. Duncan and/or Jeremiah new that Simon would show up there somehow, and were actually waiting for him. Perhaps Duncan's arrest was faked, or Jeremiah betrayed him.

For someone so superior, Jeremiah has done surprisingly little either to guide, aid, or hinder Simon's quest up to now. It could be that he must leave Simon free to see where he would lead them... but then why did he reveal himself now?

Fri Aug 19, 05:54:00 PM EDT  
Blogger cnc decreed...

3) There is much more to the Duncan abduction scene than it appears to be on the surface...

That's where my money is. Although I'm probably wrong, I still think Duncan has a big role in all this and it's all just around the corner. But I am usually wrong.

Fri Aug 19, 06:41:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...


Bingo, baby! Option 3 all the way!! Whyhave Pish staying with a fugitive when you can get him set up in a life of luxury with legacy rights to the helm of Fellcorp?

Fri Aug 19, 07:01:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

I have recently re-read the arrest scene. I don't think Simon saw Jeremiah anywhere at the time, it's possible jeremiah was in a remote part of the farm, and even a human executive can only run so fast.
There did appear to be a substantial delay between when the arrest happened, and when Jeremiah found Simon Pish and Fartles. What was Jeremiah doing during this time?
I think he showed up just after they fled, and killed or subdued all the police. Maybe Duncan is waiting at the farm right now. I'd say maybe Duncan was killed in the fight, but the police appeared to be using nonlethal weaponry.

Fri Aug 19, 10:03:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

hal·cy·on (hăl'sē-ən) pronunciation
1. A kingfisher, especially one of the genus Halcyon.
2. A fabled bird, identified with the kingfisher, that was supposed to have had the power to calm the wind and the waves while it nested on the sea during the winter solstice.

This seems to be a natural imagery for a religion that helps people overcome the horror. But how does it relate to Simon's bird?

Fri Aug 19, 10:31:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

Hey! Hey! Triple digits on the comments!

CNC, I also think Duncan may have been a convenient placeholder dad until Simon arived. Notice how soon after Simon recieved Pish's approval that the police showed up. Who could have dropped that dime? Yup. The Jster.

I like Duncan and I hope he reappears to help the good guys win. Using the Nightmare Cannoli, of course!

Sat Aug 20, 12:11:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Indrax, you forgot the sleep-aid medication (you know, the stuff George Bush Sr. was taking when he threw up on the Japanese Prime Minister).

I think Jeremiah knew it was time to go, since his missions as explained are (1) retain suitable parent for Pish and (2) find/destroy NC. The latter wasn't being accomplished by staying there.

If anyone can make the Nightmare Cannoli, it's Duncan! I wonder if it'll be anything like the giant killer éclair that the restaurant industry tried to use on Homer Simpson...

Sat Aug 20, 01:01:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

Shiek, you crack me up!

So who do you think shows up first:
1) Omar
2) Jia
3) Duncan
4) Nursa Randa (Simaon made me do it)

Sat Aug 20, 01:05:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

(Twiddles thumbs)

Sat Aug 20, 01:06:00 AM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

I did not know that there was a sleep aid called halcyon. I was very very confused for a minute there.

Sat Aug 20, 01:20:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Technically it's Halcion... and it's obvious that none of us anxious insomniacs has been using said drug...

Anon, thanks, whoever you are; I vote for Duncan, since he's been away the longest.

Also, when do we find out if Duncan knew Jeremiah's true identity?

Other random thought: it seems that the Citadelites had been fitted with Fellcorp mental meds; did these fuel the riot, or was the legendary instability of the Aza family to blame here?

Sat Aug 20, 02:48:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...



Sat Aug 20, 04:58:00 PM EDT  
Blogger J. Francis Lehman decreed...

Well, I'm out of superlatives.

I've just finished reading this episode for the second time.

This should be a weekly serial on the SciFi channel.

CBB, when you've finished the story, you need to send it to whats-his-name, JMS, the guy who did Babylon 5.

You are a truly gifted storyteller. I hope someone is smart enough to pay you very handsomely for the right to share your work with the world.

And I reiterate (and echo those who've also said) that, had I picked this up as a novel, it would have been devoured in a single sitting, like a Labrador Retriever left alone with the Christmas ham.

Sat Aug 20, 09:46:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...


You eat dogs?

Sat Aug 20, 10:50:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous' evil twin decreed...

Sometimes ham just isn't enough!

Sat Aug 20, 11:00:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Edmund decreed...

Hopefully this long hiatus means that CBB is writing and banking multiple episodes for our amazement.

It's either that or rotoscoping is really complicated...

Sat Aug 20, 11:21:00 PM EDT  
Blogger razorsmile decreed...

matt said...
By delving so deeply into how human beings function, by explaining away all our emotions with evolution and chemical reactions, modern biology is destroying "I think therefore I am." What soul is left to us when we are just fleshy automatons?

Belief in the existence or lack thereof of a soul often permits atrocities that may not have otherwise occured. See white folks and black slaves for details.

Fuck the soul and all the manifest destiny connotations it carries with it.

When discussing this once with a friend of mine he said "You know what makes a flower a flower, yet you can still appreciate its beauty, right?" I don't know that I can answer that affirmatively anymore.

Sun Tzu has this to say:

"If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle."

Substitute the word "universe" for "enemy" in there and you have a pretty solid understanding of the place of science in our lives.

I want mystery and unexplainables back!

The universe is inherently untrustworthy. Burying our heads in the sand will only get us kicked in the ass.


Line of the day: "You're going to eat?" she blurted. "At a time like this? We could be killed!"

I shrugged. "Well, we can scarcely eat then, can we?"

Possibly the best entry so far.

Sun Aug 21, 12:00:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous sheik yerbouti decreed...

Belief in the existence or lack thereof of a soul often permits atrocities that may not have otherwise occured. See white folks and black slaves for details.

So whether you believe in the soul or not, you have the potential to commit atrocities... can't argue with that.

Sun Aug 21, 12:28:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

(If A or not A, then B) then B

A nice definition of a tautology you got going on there. Also, an interesting discreditor of many forms of formal symbolic logic, in a way.


Sun Aug 21, 01:41:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Janshi decreed...

See, you've done so amazingly well in the creating of this chapter that I actually can't write any speculation, because my mind is just going crazy imagining everything thats gonna happen! Gah, this is so COOL.

Sun Aug 21, 04:34:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Janshi decreed...

Oh, and everyone's been talking about how there are no other novelblogs out there that are equal to the great CBB.

Well, why not MAKE one then?

We should all make storyblogs/novelblogs/whatever you may wish to call blogs.

It'd be fun, and if we ever wish to get into publishing, then for certain we would have at least a few readers, neh?

Sun Aug 21, 04:55:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous matt decreed...

razorsmile, what I really want when I say I want to think we have souls is free will. If we are just governed by biological processes, then are we truly conscious? Even when we can wonder about whether we are conscious or not, if there is no part of us separate from that which obeys the natural laws of the universe how can we have free will?

Sun Aug 21, 07:42:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous decreed...

I dont remember who asked (and I'm too lazy to check, so blah) about jeremiah's voice changing, but I have an idea about that one.

After the Vader-esque unmasking, Jeremiah's exec voice was different from the robot voice. I think there is just a voice modulation device, taking his human voice and robot-izing it. It would still have a voice box with accent or what have you. I figure monkey just changed the accent box, like any other robot.

Either that, or jeremiah changed it on his own realizing that simon would assume monkey changed it. I dont recall if CBB states monkey changed it or not.

Sun Aug 21, 09:57:00 PM EDT  
Blogger indrax decreed...

Souls do not guarantee free will. I believe we have free will, I also suspect that the universe is ultimately completely deterministic. How can we have free will in a deterministic universe? The key is in the definition of the self. I choose to read Simon of Space instead of watching TV. On the one hand, this is an inevitable consequence of millions of reactions in my brain. On the other hand, that brain/body is who I am. I am free to choose, but I would have to be someone else to choose differently. Sending the choice into randomness, or to the soul (which will just make the choice some other way.) is unneeded. However it works, I am me, and I choose to read Simon of Space

Free Will and Consciousness are seperate issues. I do not wonder if I am conscious, I know I am. It is the one thing I experience directly, it IS experience. That I am conscious is the one thing that cannot be an illusion.

I can imagine a person that is conscious, but does not have free will. (A robot that actually experiences things)
I can also imagine a Being that has free will, but no consciousness. (an oracle of some kind, a magic 8-ball?)

In short, I don't need souls to explain either consciousness or free will. Trying to fit souls into any modern worldview will, I believe, cause needless complication.

Sun Aug 21, 11:06:00 PM EDT  
Blogger tree decreed...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Mon Aug 22, 01:48:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous eddie decreed...

So... tired...

Must... continue... reading...

Wed Aug 31, 02:25:00 AM EDT  

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