For millions of years Iba immersed herself in education. Every word, sound, or action, had a diktat, from the teachings of life by her mysterious and often volatile siblings, the Elder Immortals, to the algorithms provided by the elaborate Artificial Intelligence (AI) machines. Iba loved to learn new subjects, or rediscover old forgotten ones. Now she had an opportunity to speak with the MA Kind, the latest and most advanced beings. Iba just couldn’t wait to meet them. Her professor had told her last week that she had been selected to speak to one of the New Nine members, the first MA Kind ever created.
“One of the New Nine!” She excitedly exclaimed, as Iba shifted excitedly from one foot to the other.
It was the overall thoughts of how much of a blessing education had been to Iba that gave her an extra pep in her step as she negotiated the fragrant floral campus of Lady Margaret Hall of Oxford. As she moved along within the stream of the world’s future mental champions, Iba’s mind drifted to the past.
Iba happily recalled the teachings of the earliest tribes of the Neanderthal and those important lessons of Cro-Magnon men that would follow. How she had migrated north from the region now known as Ethiopia Prime, along the banks of the great and ancient river Ni, a river that no longer exists due to the violent discussion between tectonic plates of the continents and the immense bodies of earth’s waters. Iba remembered that when she walked along banks of the river Ni, you could not see the river’s other side. She remembered that the Ni’s water had nourished many types of dinosaurs before man’s appearance, and much later the earliest of mammals, reptiles and birds dwelled by the fecund waters. It was hard to leave that place, but she did, as there were more lessons to learn and suspicions about her unchanged form began to attract attention.
Iba later settled with a tribe in another lush and fertile land which later became Saudi Arabia, and there, centuries later her schooling changed yet again, because of Islam. It never bothered Iba whether she studied with male or female or a mix of male and female, just as long as she studied.
Her pursuit of education eventually took her from Saudi Arabia and brought her to early Saxony England in 999 A.D. and after some 1200 years she found herself at Lady Margaret Hall of Oxford. She loved this campus, and happily dwelled there; her head stuck in computers or on rare occasions, and with bliss, stuck in some book or ancient manuscript she had not seen in thousands of years.
Today as Iba neared the hall where she would be teaching as an associate professor, she heard the unmistakable sound of laser and gunfire. The onslaught of lead bullets of various calibers and deadly laser emissions of different colored light was followed by the macabre screams of adults in a chorus of all ages and genders. The discordant sound pulled Iba’s mind to the present, as students, professors and administrators surged in random directions of panic with only one thought in mind, to find safe shelter or escape.
Through the panicked crowd Iba saw Nichole Ashmond, a five-time winner of the Mountain Survival Competition, a three-month ordeal of survival in the harshest places on earth. Nichole was also rumored to be an active white supremacist, although that was just talk.
Unlike everyone else, Nichole’s strides were deliberate and not panicked as she made her way to the gymnasium electrical shelter; in her hand she gripped some type of remote control. Once inside she peered with a leering face out the single window in the door at the scattering crowd. Up in the sky a hacked security HD moved with malice, dispensing deadly rounds of bullets and laser fire into the dense crowd.
Iba sprinted to the shelter door, her Immortal legs carrying her swiftly. Nichole immediately saw Iba approaching quickly wearing a Muslim dress. Iba nimbly hurdled the fallen and the dead. Nichole mouthed a muffled command and the HD focused its laser fire at Iba while the ballistic onslaught continued spraying into the panicked crowd, large caliber bullets neatly vaporized limbs or cut people into large pieces.
Iba did not duck as a laser blast connected with her arm. She did not scream nor did she curse; she was nowhere near mortally injured as she began to heal instantaneously.
“You’ll have to do more than that little one.“ Iba screamed as she slammed through the door.
Why did I even bother running to you? Iba thought as she looked at Nichole’s face of rage.
“You can’t stop me, you sand nigger. You’ll never stop me. A lot of nigger lovers are going to die today and it’s your fault.”
‘Yes I will! You big bitch!” Iba screamed and for that instant she was angry, truly angry.
Rage left Iba’s body like a shot, and when it got to Nichole it removed her mouth so that there could be no more profanities or screaming. The rage continued to feed on Nichole taking massive bites out of the physically fit woman. Upon the eighth bite Nichole was all but gone.
“Now finish your meal and go.” Iba said to her rage, her hands spread upward to a darkening sky, and in a flash her rage moved past her exploding though the shelter door to the outside.
People continued to scream as they saw the door of the shelter consumed by something vile and angry. Those that were nearest abandoned their hiding places, deciding that the HD’s bullets and lasers were a better fate then the thing that emerged from the shelter.
The HD hardly got two more shots off before Iba’s rage was upon it. The hacked security HD writhed in mechanized distress as it too was consumed, its once deadly lasers and bullets dissolving into nothingness.
Over the cries of the wounded, and the approach of first responder’s sirens, brave people rose to their feet and looked at Iba.
Iba’s communicator chimed, and a southern voice calmly spoke, “Girl, it’s time to come home now.”
“Yes, sister but for the record, that bitch had it coming.” Iba said.
Footnote from the author.
Description of Iba - The Seeker of Knowledge:
Iba, an Elder Immortal (EI), is a true academician and seeker of knowledge. She is one of the most curious of the Elder Immortals, thereby giving her a more human-like essence. However, as the reader can easily see, Iba is endowed like all Elder Immortals with immense power, and when coupled with undisciplined passion can yield truly terrifying results. Even after years beyond count the Elders Immortals can be moved to great passion.
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Visit Iba in my novel, Origins - Testament of the One.