Sahara Light: a Novel. Part III. Chapter XVI.

22 Mar

The devices connected together for light reception were placed on a large platform in front of the rostrum by scientists from the Light Institute. They had been brought to the oasis on the two vehicles used in transporting the equipment to Arethusa. Everyone present was able to see the large screen set up behind the rostrum, facing out toward the assembled crowd.

The casino-owner, Endymion, raised his arms to the sky, then lowered them as he began to speak in a loud baritone voice.

“Citizens of Arethusa, you all know me and my sister. Our ancestors came to this oasis of ours at the time of the Great Migration from Greece. We have always been loyal members of the community. Today, all of us suffer under the first dictatorship ever imposed upon our capital city of Gamara. I say imposed, no one elected the tyrant named Nessos Asriom.”

An audible murmur arose among the scores of listeners upon hearing the name of the man with dictatorial power over all of them. Was this approval or disapproval of his revolutionary words?

“My sister and I summoned this popular assembly in order to tell you of an invention that we believe should belong to you, the people. It must be kept out of the selfish, grasping hands of the so-called Prostager of Gamara, who claims supreme, absolute power over everything in this section of the Sahara Desert.

“This is a momentous breakthrough in photonic science. When you witness it in a few moments, it will take your breath away, say its scientific creators. This discovery surpasses what was achieved with the introduction of Echolight before the recent catastrophe in the vertical city.

“After this inaugural demonstration, there will be a brief message from my sister, Callisto. She plans to tell you about the revival of the ancient Artemis cult of worship that has had its birth here at Arethusa. You shall be called upon to participate in the renascence of the faith that was so strong among most of our ancestors back in the homeland of Greece. But I intend to let her speak for herself once the light from afar has been viewed by all of you. She knows the old faith of Artemis better than myself or anyone else who lives here on the oasis.

“At this time, I am about to turn the switch of the devices that will receive transilient light sent from the faraway station of the Light Institute of the desert. These apparati will then send the rays into the lamp in a visible form, created out of the invisible rays emitted from that remote location. The light transmitted to us is invisible to the human eye. It will be coming to us in a new form that is transilient and transient, but is capable of penetrating through solids, liquids, gases, and the common air that we breathe. This is a form of light that holds electronic force and power that can be diverted and put to practical use.

“All of you are welcome to come up here during the demonstration to see for yourself that the light is not being generated from anywhere nearby, but travels to us from a considerable distance over the desert.”

Endymion approached the table and turned on the switch. A loud sighing arose out of the crowd as the lamp lighted up with a brilliant white illumination. After a short while, those present lined up to see the marvel closer. The radiant lamp continued to spread its borrowed light after everyone had stepped up to witness the fact that the lamp did not generate its own light and energy, neither did it receive its rays from any independent source in the oasis. This was a transposed and transported kind of light, unknown till now, in strange colors never experienced before by any of the local people who were seeing it.

Finally, after the lamp had been viewed and examined by everyone, Callisto went to the rostrum to appeal for the renewal of the old worship of Artemis.

“We must reveal ourselves publicly,” she shouted. “Gamara and the entire desert must carry this strange new light called transilient in all directions, so that people far and wide become familiar with this all-penetrating, translucent light that can go anywhere we wish it to.”

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