History's Secret (author only serial)

Written by: dannyo77

A RUDE AWAKENING

John drummed his fingers agitatedly on his armrest. After thirty-six hours of flying since he left his base camp near the Bolivia-Peru border he was understandably eager to disembark.

A sense of relief flooded through him as he strode briskly through the last of the quarantine stations. He left the busy airport and hailed a taxi. He handed a slip of paper to the driver with the address to his hotel in Gloucester scrawled on it as he loaded his baggage into the boot. It started to rain as he climbed into the passenger seat.

He barely finished showering and shaving when the hotel phone rang.

“Hello?”

“Dr Foster, your driver is waiting for you outside,” said a friendly concierge.

“Already?” John looked at his watch. “OK, please advise I’ll be down in a moment.”

Anxiety enveloped John while driving to the lecture theatre. How would the world receive his discovery? His field of expertise was the ancient civilisation of the Inca, and he felt extremely lucky that his dream of discovering a new site became a reality just six months ago. But the discovery unveiled many surprises in the months that followed. So much that he begged – no, insisted - that he be allowed to present at this year’s British Archaeology conference held at Oxford University.

The evening passed with collegial banter and average wine. A bead of sweat rolled down John’s cheek as he mounted the stage with trepidation. He connected his laptop and tapped the microphone. It was time.

“Good evening fellow archaeologists and enthusiasts of ancient cultures,” he began, pausing. After a deep breath he proceeded to tell everyone of his work unearthing a new dig deep in the Bolivian rainforests.

 “And so, friends, this exquisite and unmolested site, which appears to be a tomb or grave, has revealed never before seen styles of artistry, wholly un-Incan burial artefacts, and a stratigraphic date range much, much older than any previous South American archaeological finding. I believe we need to consider that we have discovered a new civilisation.”

An excited murmur rose in the audience as John continued, “I have left the best evidence for this claim until last.” John clicked through to a new slide on his presentation.

“Common among the skeletal remains is these.” He pointed to the screen with a laser. “Perfectly shaped bone prosthetics made of metal that were, so far as we can tell, inserted into the individual bodies well before death.”

He clicked through several slides displaying examples, leaving the silence to create anticipation. A trickle of sweat ran down his nose and dripped onto his notes.

“And these strange and complex objects frequently found in the cranial cavity of the skeletal remains,” he pointed to a picture of a small square plate with ornate patterns on it. “In every single case of this object being present, there was also a precise and perfect incision in the back of the skull that would accommodate the article. We have no other conclusion but that these are neural-enhancement devices of some sort…” the audience went silent, “they may, in fact, be a prehistoric circuit board that was inserted into the brain by this ancient race.”

A thousand opinions burst forth in a raucous cacophony.

Dan Oliver (NZ)

Comments

First - congrats on writing a sole author serial. This is the precursor to, I hope, writing a novel and being published. This is an exciting subject to pick and especially as you can tell the whole story as you see it yourself. I would watch out for two things that I picked up in this preface. Leave an extra line between obvious scene breaks like the one from Taxi ride to shaving and between pausing for breath as he starts his lecture and then coming in at the end of it. Without a shown break it causes a slight hic cup in the reader's mind. Also it would be good to know what John's surname is and what he looks like. Apart from that this is really well written and has me wondering (which I am supposed to do) as to whether this will be an Indiana Jones adventure of discovery or a Sci Fi story or even a mixture of both. This is cleverly laid out and there is enough mystery and speculation to whet the reader's appetite. There's also a nice use of vocabulary that denotes a maturing writer. I'm looking forward to the next chapter. Refreshing new plot idea, Dan.
I think this is just great reading. I love watching sci-fi, loved Indiana Jones [who didn't!], love the whole mystery of how humans or the world evolved. I don't write in this genre but i am willing to give it a go and also look forward in seeing where it goes. Wonderful starter, Dan.
You will be disappointed to know, Roseyn, that this is an author only serial. I share your disappointment because I would love to write a chapter too. More and more of us are now at this stage so all we can do is sit back and enjoy the read - then go write one of our own.
Thanks for the feedback guys. Ray, always appreciate your suggestions and corrections - thanks very much :)
Oops! My bad. How could i not have seen that! Still loooking forward to reading it, though. Have fun Dan!