A First Plan

by Istv├ín Rudas © 2022

Ray sat back after breakfast. Lin had cleared the table, came back with graceful steps and poured them both more coffee. She accepted the offered cigarette and sat down next to him.

"I take your thoughts as a compliment," she said, smiling, "I'm just trying to be the good woman you wished for!" Ray took her hand and kissed her fingertips. He didn't particularly like mental communication, preferring to talk to her. She nodded in agreement and ruffled the hairs on the back of his neck affectionately.

"I've been thinking all the time about what I can do in three days," he said. "War is in people's DNA, it's been like that for thousands of years. I don't know if you can simply tell people to stop fighting wars." Ray sucked on his cigarette and watched the smoke. "I understand some things about hypnosis, but it seems unrealistic to me that hypnosis can make people forget the war."

Lin nodded gravely. "We evaluated that a long time ago, it doesn't work sustainably, it doesn't last." She snuggled up to him and took his hand. "It has to be different." She said thoughtfully: "We've also tried taking away people's weapons, that was before the Trojan War. At the end of the Iron Age, we shattered their spears and swords like glass. For 50 years it went quite well, they didn't carry any More wars. They were determined and invented bronze. People would not stop for a single day from forging new weapons."

Ray thought long and hard about what Lin had said. There had to be something that could be done. He lit the next cigarette. He had to flick the lighter several times before the flame appeared and lit the cigarette. He stared at the stupid thing. A thought shot into his brain and took shape.

"And what if the guns just don't work?" He was still staring at the stupid lighter that didn't always work. Lin sat bolt upright. She thought about it and a whole crush of Jareel thought and discussed the idea.

"It's enough if no weapon works anymore," Ray murmured. "Or if the ammunition becomes unusable. If firearms no longer work, then people have to wage their wars with knives, spears and clubs. That is far too tedious, the wars could only be waged with physical strength, the wars are becoming shorter and regionally restricted ."

Ray leaned back. "Would that work?" he asked Lin. She was silent for a long time, contemplating with the crush. Minutes later she grabbed his hand. "It would be possible to remove the ability to explode from most firearm ammunition. Most other propellants could also be removed from the ability to explode. No ammo, no explosives, no rocket fuel." Lin paused and looked Ray in the eye.

"There would also be many downsides," she continued. "You could no longer launch rockets, not even for civilian purposes such as satellites or space research. The police and military would be disarmed, that would be fatal. Quarries and tunnel builders would have no explosives. These are some of the problems."

"Okay," said Ray, "let's go through each item one by one. Rockets: most are for war, so throw them out! You could keep a single rocket fuel plant operational for civilian space travel and monitor the release tightly. Police and military: for hundreds of years the police officers in England were unarmed, so it works. In addition, many police officers already have tasers, which they could still use. Of course, this is very delicate, but the positive effect far outweighs it. There were quarries Thousands of years before Alfred Nobel, you have to change production, that's not a big price. Tunnels could already be dug in ancient times. High-rise buildings can also be demolished without explosives. All in all, I see huge advantages and manageable disadvantages."

"Nuclear weapons are still a problem," Lin said, "defusing them from a distance is very, very difficult to impossible, we've done a lot of research on that."

Ray thought for a moment. "Correct me if I say something wrong," he told her. "There will be no more rockets to carry a nuclear weapon. There will be no more explosives to detonate the nuclear weapons. It will still be possible to drop the nuclear bomb from an airplane, but it would do little damage. A small local dirty bomb sucks but that's not the way to make a real war, similarly biological and chemical weapons, you can drop them, but such a war would only be local, it's the same with the military, you can unleash upon the enemy with clubs and machetes waging a war the old-fashioned way will be difficult. And violence will probably never be abolished."

Ray met Lin's eyes. "No more nuclear weapons, no more rocket weapons, no more artillery and no more handguns. That wouldn't be such a bad start. I think we should do that. That would be a giant step towards a better future. And yes, violence does not leave peoples mind."

Lin lit two cigarettes and gave him one. "Today before dinner I can tell you if the Jareel can do it technically." They smoked in silence.

"Come on," Lin said, "let's see your spaceship, your apartment is ready!" They let the camera take them into the spaceship and inspected the new apartment. He was amazed. It was right behind the command center, was exquisitely furnished and very spacious. The ceilings glittered and sparkled with their jewels. The bathroom was huge, the bathtub round and ingeniously equipped with massage jets. Functional shower and two vanities and a special closet. Lin explained to him that it had a washing machine comparable, there were hand and bath towels on top, which you tucked in below after use. The next day they were on top again, clean and ironed.

The bedroom was also stunning. Here, too, a sparkling and glittering ceiling that could be switched off. A huge bed. The glass walls reached to the floor and gave him a view of a sandy beach and the sea. Lin amazed him and then said that you could go out on the sandy beach and swim in the sea. He looked at her in disbelief, but she just walked ahead of him, walking across the sand and up to her knees in the sea. He followed her and grabbed her hand. He asked her how that was possible, but she laughed out loud and said it was some Jareel mumbo-jumbo that he probably wouldn't understand. His spaceship had a diameter of 1,500 meters, there was enough space for mumbo-jumbo, she said smiling to the amazed Ray. The sea stretched to the horizon, tiny rocky islets formed a natural breakwater. The sandy beach to the left and right merged into a sparse stock of palm trees, like on a South Seas island. He couldn't believe it. They went back and a confused Ray washed the sand off his feet. It was real sand, no doubt. Lin chuckled as she washed her feet in the bidet after him. "You know that it's meant for something else?" and laughed sweetly as he shook his head and his ears went red as she whispered it in his ear.

He just glanced at the tiny kitchen, it wasn't interesting. Lin told him that the kitchen was mainly for the dishes, the food was ordered and "hocus pocus" was cooked and served. She explained to him with a broad grin, of course it would be cooked on earth, the Jareel teleported the meal to the spaceship in the blink of an eye. He nodded in the affirmative, realizing that the chef must forget that he had cooked. Lin grinned from ear to ear. "I order from the chef, steal the meal in a flash, pay him well and let him forget. That's how they cook here, my dear!"

The dining room was large and bright, behind it were two comfortably furnished rooms. There he could read and listen to music. All he had to do was call up a piece of music and it played out of invisible loudspeakers. There was also a desk with a big screen where he could access the internet. Here, too, the walls showed the sandy beach and the sea, on the other side a meadow and a forest. "You can go there too," he asked, "Hocus pocus?" Lin smiled and nodded in confirmation. Her smile was so adorable that he stepped up to her. "The kiss is for the sweetest woman I've ever met!"

He sat down by the screen and said he wanted to see the New York Times. The front page promptly appeared and his gaze fell on the date. He's been here a week, he said to Lin, time just flies! He flipped the pages for two minutes, reading the headlines, the world's troubles were unchanged. He switched off and sat down in one of the comfortable armchairs. Lin sat down with him.

"Something is bothering you," she said, "I'm not reading your mind because you don't like it. Can you tell me what it is?"

He nodded and thought about it, she took two cigarettes from the wooden box that was spread all over the apartment. They smoked in silence and Ray organized his thoughts.

"It is typical for us humans that we judge the other person in fractions of a second when we meet. That's how it is, it's in our DNA. For example, if a teacher steps in front of a school class and he is a head shorter than the students, perhaps still inconspicuously dressed, then he will have a hard time, no matter how good he is as a teacher." Lin nodded in agreement.

"Now look at me. Slim and slender, medium height, unremarkable face, beardless. If I wear a suit, an impressively good suit, then I can act as a lawyer. But never as a crime boss." He paused and gestured in the air. "How am I supposed to appear in front of the most powerful people in the world, for example in a lawyer's suit!?" He stared sorrowfully out to sea, the waves calming him a little.

Lin grabbed the back of his head and ruffled his hair. It was a very loving gesture. "The Jareel can do anything. It won't be a difficult task. The easiest would be to have you appear in any shape or dress at a meeting or a televised address. All you have to do is tell me what you wish for!"

Ray said he'd like to think about it. He closed his eyes and thought. The first thing that came to mind was Michelangelo's Moses in Rome. One of the most impressive male figures he had ever seen. But the horns, which the great sculptor must have formed with care, repelled him. He dismissed the thought. The second thing that came to mind was the imposing Zeus statue by the sculptor Phidias at Olympia. He said it out loud and Lin could follow his train of thought. She said it could be done with ease. He deepened the thought. If a living god appeared among the people, that would be really impressive, even for an uneducated head of state. "Cross the statues of Moses and Zeus as muscular giants six feet or better two and a half meters, long white locks of hair and long beard like Moses. A white tunic trimmed with gold and a golden staff with a thunderbolt on top. Something like that." Ray looked uncertainly at Lin.

She smiled and looked into his eyes. "It's an easy task, it's really easy to do." She thought for a moment. "For a TV appearance, it's enough to change your image on the show. But I can also give you the look if you have a face-to-face meeting. It's just a question of whether you want to be changed temporarily or permanently! "

"Temporary only!" Ray replied like a shot. "I'm perfectly happy with how I look, it's just to impress the world. And such a living god is impressive, I'm sure!"

Lin said they would do a dry run tomorrow and then decide what Zeus should look like. Ray nodded in satisfaction, that was a good plan.

They went to the command center and looked at everything, it was now finished. He went back to the throne room at the end, he was really stunning. He turned the lights on and off, walked through the huge hall and took a good look at everything. He asked Lin to sit on the throne. She cooed, grinned, dropped her sundress and sat naked on the throne. He whistled shrilly and laughed, didn't she want to give the televised address?

They exited the spaceship and drank an aperitif before dinner. Lin snuggled up to him and he exhaled the smoke through his nose. "It will work," she said abruptly and Ray didn't know what she meant. "The Jareel can do anything, they can disable any kind of ammunition, explosives and rocket fuel too." Ray blinked and nodded, that was very good news. She continued, "It will take them a total of two Earth days to set everything up. The mission will take less than half a day. You can rely on this information!"

Ray digged deeper and was told by Lin that the Jareel had already tried everything out in the field on Earth. Small arms ammunition could be crippled just as easily as artillery ammunition. They disabled and detonated some US and Chinese missiles. There was only one hell of a fire in the launch pads, otherwise no damage was done. Likewise, there were some fires in the nuclear missile silos, and with that it was possible to disarm humanity to a large extent. But not in the blink of an eye, it would take half a day.

Ray hugged Lin. "That's wonderful news," he said, "we can work with that!"

They talked all night after dinner, finalizing the plan. Lin had good ideas, they needed careful choreography. Fanfare and theatrical fog at the beginning, Lin would stride around the throne scattering flower petals. He would deliver his brief address to every television channel in the world, then more theatrical fog and fanfare. They fine-tuned and formulated his text, which he learned by heart but, just to be on the safe side, could also read from a projection. A few espressos and a dozen cigarettes later, they went to bed.