Chapter 2 : A Hopeful New Dream

As Selah and I settled into our new relationship, I, of course, got to know her family. Her mother had passed away when she was little, so she had been raised by her father and uncle. The rest of the year was amazing. I was able to spend time with her, despite her being busy with work.  I was an engineering student, so I was able to understand the mechanical side of what she and her father were working on. Eventually, her dad came to trust me and asked me to join the project team. Things were amazing. I was able to work with one of the world’s foremost scientists and spend the days with the love of my life. Everything felt right. You see her father was a well-known scientist who developed the technology that saved the planet. In our time big industry has stripped the planet of valuable resources. We had no clue how much damage we had done to the Earth. Then a powerful company called Lemoy Industries had developed a way to mine the core of the planet for the rarest of ores and materials. At the time it was celebrated with the hope of providing humanity with a future. The innovative technology would save industry and millions of jobs. What none of us realized was that the earth’s core was in a liquid state. The equipment and wellheads sticking into the core created drag and gradually began to slow the currents in the core eventually it caused it to cool and slow to almost a standstill. The governments of the world ordered Lemoy Industries to remove the drills at once, but the damage was done, it was too late. The earth was dying, and we killed it. All for what we thought was a better future we ended up almost trading our existence. Thankfully, there was a crazy scientist who had a solution. 

 Selah’s father was Dr. James Stromworth. When things looked like it was the end, he was the only one who had the ability to come up with a solution. He convinced the world leaders to give him control of the mines and he dropped what the media dubbed nanite bombs into every single well. He managed to deploy thousands of these payloads in days.  All programmed to use the materials in the core to build a massive machine that would heat and keep the earth spinning. They completed the work in a few months, and it was just in time. It was nearly the end for all of us. He was the savior of the earth. His labs continued to produce the nanites as fuel needed to keep the core going and every government in the world pitched in to cover the cost. One man had the world in his hands. And thankfully for us all, he was a good man. Maybe that’s why we got along so well. He reminded me of my great Grandpa. The kind of man you could only hope to grow up to be. A good honest man who always put others first and was never afraid to try something new. 

After things were under control and things were running smoothly with the Core. He turned his sights on helping people. It was during this time he lost his wife. She was injured and lost the use of her body. The entire planet was riddled with earthquakes and violent weather. Millions of people perished and millions more were left handicapped or in a coma. It was on her death bed that his wife Jennifer made him promise to use his brain to make sure no one had to go through this again.  He spent the next 10 years working to develop state of the art cybernetics. New legs, arms, organs, and spines. In the course of the 10 years, he had found a way to restore so many of those who had thought they would never be able to live again. There was even a religion that popped up to worship him as the new savior. He absolutely hated it. Said they were a bunch of morons mystifying his hard work and science. Working with Dr. James was a dream. I spent my days building body parts for people in need. Every prosthetic had a story with it. There was a real purpose to life. 

Life couldn’t get any better.   Here I am a kid that grew up on a farm in Texas raising cattle and growing crops. Suddenly I’m working side by side with the woman I love building these amazing prosthetics and giving people back their lives. I was living a life my Grandpa would have been proud of.   As Selah and I grew closer I became part of the family. We all knew it was a matter of time before we became engaged. Her dad would tease me and ask “When was I going to man up and marry her and give him some grandkids.” He would remind me he was getting old and wanted to enjoy them. They didn’t know it but I had the ring and had been planning to “pop the question”. A few days later my opportunity came. Dr. James was speaking at the university Selah and I met at. So, I arranged to meet her in the diner we used to go to.  I even ordered the same food that we ended up wearing that morning when we met.  She came in and sat down, looked at the table, and couldn’t stop laughing when she saw the food waiting there. I had the ring hidden under her napkin so when she picked it up the box was there open looking up at her. She started crying, screamed yes, and jumped across the table to hug me. Of course, the food went flying and we ended up with eggs and sausage everywhere, but it was worth it. She grabbed me by the hand and led me out of the diner. She wanted to rush off and show her dad. 

We Jumped in a taxi and headed to the lab. It was a sunny morning at the lab, Dr. James met us at the front desk. We were trying to figure out if he knew already. She rushed up and told him the news. He was so happy and gave us both a big hug. He looked at Selah and told her he thought it was time to bring me in on the project and that he needed a new set of eyes on a problem he had. I was confused, I had never heard anything about a “project” other than the ones we had been working on.  He said he needed a mechanical engineer not afraid to think outside of the box, to look at a problem he was having. Despite the mystery, I was, of course, elated and more than eager to help. That is when he got serious. I had never seen this man look this serious. He calmed me down and told me directly, I can never discuss this project with anyone, that this project was dearer to him than anything outside of his family. He said it was something that in the right hands could save millions but in the wrong hands could pervert humanity at its core. All I said was that I trusted him and would do whatever it took to help. He smiled and welcomed me to the family. I did not realize it at the time, but that conversation would change a lot of things.