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"Star Keys" (Mark of the Knights: the Star-chart)

Battles brew. Ghint’e and the Order, clash. Might Prince Kieusiv and Princess Iode’a help tame the madness, bring harmony, as, again, from yesteryear, mystery and fury are unleashed for the Fal-Kayma (War of Ancients) rises from the dead.

O-8 worlds measure energy in decibels, in newtons, in calories. They measure in light years, newton-meters, in kilograms per cubic centimeter, as the pressure of a column of air increases the more we descend to a planet’s surface—if the rocky body happens to have any kind of gaseous mix: CO2, H2O, CH4, O2, H2, typically in space, in asteroid bodies, in earths. Science measures energy (the ability to do work) with marvelous tools. How do you measure a graviton? How do you calculate 8 to 10 photons absorbed by a molecule of chlorophyll each second? How do you determine 10,000 neutrinos (and you can’t see them) whistling through your body every second you live; or, how do you measure the vacuum of space that appears to go on forever beyond the O-8 order, through tunnels to the brane and to reality, to the cosmos? Atomic force microscopes, mass spectrometers, gas chromatographs, transit methods, and more, examine fingerprints. Committed, advanced people like those on Xanthos evaluate the void. There is energy in the void. Dark matter and dark energy encompass space. Too, there is energy in the heart. While, admittedly, the heart can, at times, feel void, empty, and quake, Tee felt. He shook. Gone, Ainia left Tee empty, wanting. How do you measure energy of the heart? Like all intelligent species of the O-8 Order you measure affectation in sorrow, in joy, in tears. A laugh, too, is a determinate of how the heart beats.

Zryon licked lips. “For one-hundred centuries, under Giro-3, Giro-2, Giro-1, lines of Kabahn Daba kept peace. In doing so, societies grew. People prospered. Kabahn Daba kept guard by maintaining a strong defense while offering citizens freedom. Not to be undermined, my son, Theman, is chosen to lead the Way for the new Order.”

“Understood,” said Calipha who helped Kieusiv and Iode’a.

On Xanthos, brothers cast eyes to gleaming architecture.

“Calipha,” Zryon went on, “as our journeyman, you must keep watch. I ask you to seek Omega Yharow, council to Noura…Noura, daughter to Kee Z-5 of Rubadon, and Omega Yharow acquainted with mystery. Our finest illusionist must work with my son, then with 9 knights, too. Deception, trickery, the Dark Art can and will bring challenges. Guide. Keep watch. Light meets dark. Rather than building, bridges might rupture. Omega Yharow must open all knight’s eyes.”

Calipha rocked and blinked. “And I shall. New worlds are tender, susceptible to Ze’s deception, to your lost son’s increasing power.” Sitting in the Tower of So Be Dai, Calipha raised one finger. “I understand my lot, brother. Yharow, I will find. Nine knights, I’ll guide.”

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