Science Fiction Story Development Musings: K. AND THE HOMO CEPHALOPODS

The homo cephalopods, or whatever they actually call themselves, are a long-existing species inhabiting a world somewhere far from earth by millions of light years. A land-based civilization, their actual population is unknown, but it is probably somewhere in the billions. They have progressed in technological advancement in seemingly subtle ways. The outside human observer would find it difficult to discern what is actual technology versus extremely efficient evolutionary adaptation of the h. cephalopods to their natural environment. They make use of some created tools with their eight appendages, with just one tool having multiple purposes. In short, they are materially very efficient.

An earlier evolved subspecies of h. cephalopods resides deep under the oceans of this planet of concern. Their population is comparatively smaller than their land dwelling descendants. Contact between these two societies is rare and considered particularly taboo among the above-water kind. However, on occasion, intermingling between them has occurred, leading to many episodes of recorded lore by each set of beings and a small population of half-breed homo cephalopods arising from some of these encounters. These comprise a rare and often especially adaptive and gifted group.

Homo cephalopods, as I shall keep referring to them out of convenience and sheer ignorance (until one or more of them conveys their true nomenclature to a human being), shall be encountered through inner space, namely via shamanic journeying by a very attuned person traveling to the Upper World. It is there that a certain non-binary individual will come upon these sophisticated, mysterious beings. I shall refer to this shamanic journeyer as K., though their name may change during future writings. K. will mentally-astrally ascend to the world of the h. cephalopods and witness an incredible sight.

It will be instantly deduced that the human is in astral form, so the h. cephalopods will reciprocate in kind, journeying mentally so as to properly attend to this out of body visitor. Through K.’s eyes, we will be introduced to what appear as human-sized, and larger, octopus-like entities. These hermaphroditic creatures will likely allow a particularly precocious one of them to approach K. Rapidly gathering information from each brain within every one of hier suction cup-filled tentacles while touching the earthling, s-he will then process it in hier larger central brain. Hier leathery skin and dark, almond-shaped eyes will surely at first be frightening to behold for K.

K. will wonder at the combination of exoskeleton and strong, pliant tissue that comprise the outer body of a homo cephalopod. Since evolving from the ocean over millions of star revolutions of their world, h. cephalopods developed extremely hard shells over their heads and sections of their tentacles. Their marine counterparts do not have these, rendering them comparatively more vulnerable to injury, though they are far better at maneuvering their bodies through small passages and camouflaging themselves to blend in wherever they happen to be.

Sections of this exoskeleton are shed from time to time, to accommodate growth of the h. cephalopod. This aspect of anatomy used to act as armor for the race during their now ancient history of warfare and small scale territorial disputes. Homo cephalopods eventually achieved homeostasis for their kind via peaceful means. A critical mass of them realized large-scale cooperation would save their population and result in more innovations for the overall betterment of the civilization. K. will unknowingly come upon a flourishing society ready to welcome contact with other beings.

Within the same solar system as the planet of the homo cephalopods is another world inhabited by a large mantid peoples, with three particularly dominant species roughly about as tall as human beings. There are green mantids, tan ones, and then those more mixed in coloration, with shades of red, blue, and purple being the predominant hues on those belonging to this third species. There are a range of much smaller, less advanced mantid genera, probably in the hundreds, residing across this primarily arboreal jungle of a world, though there also exist large swaths of savannah land. The tan-colored species of enormous mantids reside in this latter habitat.

All of these insectoid beings have always been war-like. They comprise a beautiful but cruel and hazardous network of societies battling for dominance over the entire land and resources of their verdant planet. The homo cephalopods have been aware of this neighboring world and its comparatively less advanced populations for a while. They have felt reticent to try and assist them with changing their destructive way of life. However, it is possible that the three dominant mantid groups will finally confederate and battle to the death against the underground dwelling tarantula-like creatures, a recently-discovered culture of giant, deadly venomed spider beings inhabiting the vast tundra of the planet’s north pole region. Interestingly, h. cephalopods have been in telepathic contact with these other eight-legged entities. This offers a sliver of nascent hope for peace to possibly occur between the mantids and these advanced arachnids. The h. cephalopods continue to discuss among themselves the best ways to approach helping the neighboring races of their shared solar system.

K. will journey several times to the world of the homo cephalopods. They will show them many places and things on their lands, including clutches of h. cephalopod eggs. These are cooperatively laid and attended to by several adults, with babies hatching and already familiar with each other within a wide radius, having telepathically communicated while still embryos with their fellow hatchlings. All tentacles of each creature pick up sound and tactile vibration signals at the start of gestation, the central brain then storing and slowly translating them throughout the cycle of development. A basic language is then already known by each new h. cephalopod upon hatching.

The knowledge K. takes with them from each shamanic journey back into their physical waking life on earth will be dense and take time to understand and carefully, selectively disseminate to their fellow humans. Fortunately, they belong to a circle of open-minded journeyers, led by a particularly wise and astute shaman and healer, with whom K. can slowly begin to impart some of this wisdom. It is possible that others within this close-knit group will each then also journey to the planet of the homo cephalopods when they next choose to go to the Upper World. Maybe the group leader will ultimately have all members simultaneously journey to this mysterious place K. initially came upon. From there, this small delegation of sensitive humans can begin to share select information of peaceful higher consciousness to others around them. In turn, perhaps even more people will then shamanically travel directly to the h. cephalopods and pass on their deep learning– occurring during these inter-species astral exchanges– far and wide across America and the world.

(This all comprises the framework of a story, or set of stories, waiting for me to write.)

Snippet For LIVES OF L.

L. arrived at her parents’ home feeling the tightness of trepidation in her gut and throat. Bracing herself to hear her mother’s misgivings about her latest ventures, she walked up the brick steps and knocked on the pristine white door.

“Come in, L,” her mother trilled in a Southern drawl from down the hall.

L. took a deep breath and walked inside. This had never been home for her, L.’s parents having bought the Tudor style house about five years ago. The place was spotless, ready for a spread in BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS.

“Hello, Mom.”

“Hello, L., my dear. How are you?”  The question felt rhetorical, a mere formality.

“Honestly, I’m doing really well, settling into finishing some final papers and looking forward to working with some clients at a clinic,” L. replied as confident-sounding as she could.

Her mother Lorenda looked at L. blankly for a moment, then smiled wanly and blinked. “Well, alright, then. You’re really sure about this plan?”

“As sure as the moon will be full in two days, yes, I am, Mother.”

Lorenda extended her left arm out from her side, indicating the nearby sitting room. “Let’s have some tea, hon. Earl Grey or green tea?”

“Green tea, thanks.”

They walked into a spacious, yet cozy room filled with antiques and tasteful paintings. The Van Gogh above the fireside mantle did look lovely there.

Snippets For a Possible Story

Damp ground gave way under padded paws loping along beneath a shimmering canopy of leaves and fading sunlight. The screech of two scarlet macaws above pierced the silence, giving voice to the feline’s growing rage.

There, just ahead, she spotted the intruder, his scent filling her nose and throat.

********

An unbearable stinging in her left hind leg pushed a deep growl from her throat. She whipped around to bite at this sudden pain. The ground swayed upwards out from under her, like the time she’d tried to cross the nearby river after heavy rains, only far more wrenching than even that. Her limbs grew fluid and useless. Darkness closed in fast, pulling her into a paralysis that surely was oblivion.

****
“Be gentle, Eric, Tayla. She’ll be groggy for a while tomorrow. I’ve never seen such a large female. Let’s make sure she’s healthy, tagged, released. Don’t want to piss off any of the locals, and well they should be if she gets hurt or worse,” Rufus stated before kneeling down to help his two assisting zoology interns.

********

She sensed herself gathering substance in the space around her, filling up a hollow numbness with feeling once again. Her eyes opened to dusk’s golden light spilling through open spaces in trees and vines above and to the side of the trail. She stood on all fours, yawned, then bent her front legs down while tilting her back upwards in a mighty stretch.

She was alive.  And hungry.