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Lemuria: Matthew Bishop, #2

Lemuria: Matthew Bishop, #2

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Lemuria: Matthew Bishop, #2

Length:
461 pages
6 hours
Released:
Apr 5, 2021
ISBN:
9781622536092
Format:
Book

Description

The secrets of the past belong to the future.

"Again a big page turner! This story kept me reading well into the night to get to the end. With more accurate facts and detail than before. Well done!" ~ Roos Dahmen

When all over the world, the last isolated living tribes disappear, Professor Matthew Bishop is again, unwillingly, dragged into an adventure that will take him all over the globe.

His personal stake increases when his close friend Jennifer Porter disappears and seems somehow to be involved. Following the hidden clues, and with the help of the Vatican and old friends, Bishop uncovers the truth about the next step in evolution.

It's a truth that doesn't end on this Earth, but could very well mean the end of it, in a journey across three continents and into the heavens.

EVOLVED PUBLISHING PRESENTS the second book in the "Matthew Bishop" series of religious conspiracy thrillers, ideal for fans of Dan Brown and Michael Crichton. [DRM-Free]

BOOKS BY BURT CLINCHANDHILL:

  • Matthew Bishop – 1: Aldaraia
  • Matthew Bishop – 2: Lemuria
  • Matthew Bishop – 3: Atacama
  • James Mitchel – 1: Kursk
  • James Mitchel – 2: 47 Hours
  • James Mitchel – 3: The Mogadishu Encounter

MORE GREAT THRILLERS FROM EVOLVED PUBLISHING:

  • The "Eloah" Trilogy by Lex Allen
  • The "A Nephilim Thriller" Series by Jeff Altabef
  • The "Hellbound" Series by William LJ Galaini
  • Blood or Loyalty by Adam Miller
  • Forgive Me, Alex by Lane Diamond

 

Released:
Apr 5, 2021
ISBN:
9781622536092
Format:
Book

About the author

Dutch renowned author, Clinchandhill, had long-discovered his passion for writing at a young age. Despite past career detours, his love for worldbuilding and the written word were rekindled into a furious blaze. He has since penned his acclaimed political thriller, Kursk, and its equally compelling sequel, 47 Hours. His irrefutable fascination for credible stories and true events is evident throughout all his fictional works, including this latest novel, Aldaraia [Evolved Publishing]. Clinchandhill now writes full-time in the Netherlands, with his beautiful wife of 20 years. In his spare time, he enjoys sipping tea with a good book and delving into his own adventures out on open waters.


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Lemuria - Burt Clinchandhill

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~~~

LEMURIA

Matthew Bishop – Book 2

Copyright © 2021 Burt Clinchandhill

~~~

ISBN (EPUB Version): 1622536096

ISBN-13 (EPUB Version): 978-1-62253-609-2

~~~

Editor: Becky Stephens

Cover Artist: Kabir Shah

Interior Designer: Lane Diamond

~~~

PUBLISHER’S NOTE:

At the end of this novel of approximately 98,104 words, you will find two Special Sneak Previews: 1) ATACAMA by Burt Clinchandhill, the next book (third) in the Matthew Bishop series of religious/historical thrillers, and; 2) BLOOD OR LOYALTY by Adam Miller, the first book in the thrilling The Wayward Sons of the Empyrean series of epic religious fantasies. We think you’ll enjoy these books, too, and provide these previews as a FREE extra service, which you should in no way consider a part of the price you paid for this book. We hope you will both appreciate and enjoy the opportunity. Thank you.

~~~

eBook License Notes:

You may not use, reproduce or transmit in any manner, any part of this book without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations used in critical articles and reviews, or in accordance with federal Fair Use laws. All rights are reserved.

This eBook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only; it may not be resold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, please return to your eBook retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

~~~

Disclaimer:

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are products of the author’s imagination, or the author has used them fictitiously.

Books by Burt Clinchandhill

MATTHEW BISHOP

Book 1: Aldaraia

Book 2: Lemuria

Book 3: Atacama

~~~

JAMES MITCHEL

Book 1: Kursk

Book 2: 47 Hours

Book 3: The Mogadishu Encounter

~~~

www.Clinchandhill.com

What Others Are Saying About Burt Clinchandhill’s Books

~~~

Aldaraia

It is fascinating how the author uses his skill to build suspense. Burt Clinchandhill is a great storyteller with a unique gift for elegant prose, great dialogues, and characters that arrest the attention of readers.

~ Romuald Dzemo for Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews

~~~

"Aldaraia is a riveting ‘must-read’ for anyone who likes adventure, religious mysteries, and conspiracies similar to The Da Vinci Code."

~ Michelle Stanley for Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews

~~~

I give the author a true high-five for this novel, especially since he tells the tale by utilizing various timelines, which is difficult to do, even for the masters of the written word.

~ Amy Lignor for Feathered Quill Book Reviews

<<<<<>>>>>

47 Hours

"47 Hours... is a work of immense quality, right from the very first line. The author’s grasp and narration of political history and Latin American political culture is insightful and/or incredibly well researched, and you suspect that this book was a long time in the creation—the outcome was definitely worth the investment.

~ Matt McAvoy

<<<<<>>>>>

Kursk

A combination of politics, drama, tension, and adventure as captured in the book will keep you captivated and hooked from cover to cover.

~ M. Festus

BONUS CONTENT

We’re pleased to offer you not one, but two Special Sneak Previews at the end of this book.

~~~

In the first preview, you’ll enjoy the Prologue of Burt Clinchandhill’s ATACAMA, the next installment (Book 3) in this Matthew Bishop series of conspiracy thrillers/religious mysteries, set to release in late 2021.

~~~

[Cover Image Coming Soon]

~~~

TO REMAIN UP TO DATE ON THIS SERIES,

PLEASE STAY TUNED TO OUR WEBSITE HERE:

MATTHEW BISHOP Series at Evolved Publishing

In the second preview, you’ll enjoy the First Chapter of BLOOD OR LOYALTY, the first book in the thrilling The Wayward Sons of the Empyrean series of epic religious fantasies by Adam Miller.

~~~

~~~

OR GRAB THE FULL EBOOK TODAY!

YOU’LL FIND LINKS TO YOUR FAVORITE RETAILER HERE:

THE WAYWARD SONS OF THE EMPYREAN Series at Evolved Publishing

Table of Contents

Copyright

Books by Burt Clinchandhill

What Others Are Saying

BONUS CONTENT

Table of Contents

Dedication

Note from the Author

Lemuria

Introduction

Prologue

Chapter 1 - 10 Sachem Street

Chapter 2 – Gone Fishing

Chapter 3 – Occidium One

Chapter 4 – Stammbaum der Primaten

Chapter 5 – Specola Vaticana

Chapter 6 – Kajaq

Chapter 7 – Naegleria Fowleri

Chapter 8 – The 12 Races

Chapter 9 – The Space

Chapter 10 – Trinil

Chapter 11 – 5261

Chapter 12 – Neurogenesis

Chapter 13 – B&N’s Hideaway

Chapter 14 – The Monument

Chapter 15 – The Business Card

Chapter 16 – OostNoordOost

Chapter 17 – Chemoreception

Chapter 18 – The Theater

Chapter 19 – Number Twenty-Six

Chapter 20 – Santet Susuk Konde

Chapter 21 – The Observer Effect

Chapter 22 – The Flying Spaghetti Monster

Chapter 23 – Stars

Chapter 24 – The Wedekind Experiment

Chapter 25 – Autism, Asperger’s and ADHD

Chapter 26 – The Paperless Office

Chapter 27 – Properties

Chapter 28 – The Three Islands Dilemma

Chapter 29 – The Intron Design

Chapter 30 – Toilet Paper

Chapter 31 – Darwin Island

Chapter 32 – The Wall

Chapter 33 – The Core

Chapter 34 – Lemuria

Epilogue

Interview with the Author

Special Sneak Preview: ATACAMA by Burt Clinchandhill

Acknowledgements

About the Author

More from Evolved Publishing

Special Sneak Preview: BLOOD OR LOYALTY by Adam Miller

Dedication

For Mom and Dad, together again.

Note from the Author

All scriptures, architecture, locations, science, historical figures and (religious) organizations in this novel are real.

Introduction

‘Man is not distinguished from the animals by a special kind of soul, or by any peculiar and exclusive psychic function, but only by a higher degree of psychic activity, a superior stage of development.’

Ernst Haeckel, February 16, 1834 – August 8, 1919

Prologue

Reserva Indígena Mashco Piro, Peru, One Month Ago

The treetops flanking the riverbanks of the Purus River in the Peruvian rainforest lit up all colors of green under the first rays of sunlight that day. The early morning sounds of the Red Howler Monkey and the Andean cock-of-the-rock—Peru’s national bird—gave the place a deceiving friendly atmosphere. The last time modern men set foot in this area must have been when the rubber baron Carlos Fitzcarrald, in the late 1800s, slaughtered much of the Mashco-Piro tribe with his private army. He forced the survivors to retreat from the riverbanks into the even more remote forest areas of what is now called the Mashco-Piro Indigenous Reserve.

When a soft rumbling sound filled the air in the distance, the cock-of-the-rocks and Red Howlers fled the trees at the riverbank as fast and far as possible into the thick woods. Within seconds, the sound grew to a deafening rumble.

In an instant, a gray Bell UH-1 Iroquois helicopter cleared the treetops and stopped dead in midair some thirty feet over the Purus riverbank. Its gust cleared the shore of all loose objects. The helicopter’s sliding door opened and a uniformed soldier, sitting opposite a blonde-haired woman, pointed down. The woman looked on her tablet screen for a second before nodding and shouting, Yes. The soldier gestured the pilot, and within seconds the helicopter descended to the riverbank and with a bouncing thump landed on the graveled shore.

The uniformed man quickly jumped out, bending his head, avoiding the now slowing helicopter rotors and shouted something toward the woman. As he stretched his arm into the open door, she grabbed onto it and jumped out. Dr. Lindsey Wilson—never shy—was a stylish, slender, straight-postured attractive woman in her early forties. Today, she wore a blue Patagonia jacket and shirt, Levi’s blue jeans and Fendi T-Rex combat boots. Her hair danced wildly under the chopper’s blades. She took a backpack from the helicopter as the soldier reached into the helicopter again as another hand, this time belonging to a man in a gray business suit, grabbed onto it. He jumped out and fell to his knees while landing on his brown Oxford style shoes. The woman chuckled.

As if you belong here, Iggy, she said, smiling at the short, nearly bald man, and then immediately took off for the tree line. The two men followed her quickly. At the tree line she stopped, took her Surface tablet and Iridium satellite smartphone from her backpack, and fidgeted with her screens for a minute or so. We have connection. She looked and pointed into the tree line. The clearing should be a short mile in that direction.

Why didn’t we see a clearing from the chopper? Ralph Ignatowski asked.

The uniformed man cocked his head. The trees out here can reach up to two hundred feet tall and have a one hundred-foot-wide canopy. So, a clearing on the ground can be entirely overgrown from a bird’s-eye view.

Are you coming? Lindsey asked, wildly gesturing her arms.

Take it easy, Lin. Ignatowski waved hands up and down. The waving accentuated the middle-aged man’s narrow shoulders making his slightly overweight belly dance a little up and down. We’ve got all the time in the world. He turned to look at the uniformed man, who glanced at his watch.

You’ve got a little under three hours to get back here if we’re to make it back to Puerto Esperanza before dark.

Lindsey pressed a few buttons on her watch. We’ll make it in time.

The soldier nodded and walked back to the helicopter.

Shall we? Lindsey asked and, without waiting for an answer, hiked into the woods.

The light beneath the enormous trees’ canopies was remarkably bright, and on the ground beneath their feet was little to no remains from broken branches. Lindsey, who was fit, picked up the pace while Ignatowski followed in her footsteps at a slower pace.

Are you coming, Iggy? I don’t want to leave you behind. She walked a short distance back toward Ignatowski, who threw his jacket over his shoulder, revealing big sweat spots under his arms.

Ignatowski looked up into the burning sun. Why do they make these jungles so hot?

Well, not to correct you Iggy, but....

Ignatowski shook his head, knowing what would follow.

A jungle is something completely different from a rainforest. A rainforest like this one has a thick canopy from tall trees. They make it hard for light to reach the ground, so plants have a hard time flourishing. A jungle, however, has a thick undergrowth of plants and vegetation making it hard to penetrate. So you should consider yourself lucky to be in a rainforest instead of a jungle.

Oh, shut up and keep walking. Ignatowski slapped his forehead.

Lindsey laughed out loud but knew when to shut up.

For some thirty minutes, they followed the heading. Lindsey read from her tablet without a sign of any recognizable markings or paths on the ground. Nothing indicated a single soul had ever been there before them, and although the typical animal sounds slowly returned, the past half hour had been tranquil. Probably because we scared all the wildlife away with our helicopter, Lindsey thought.

There it is. Lindsey pointed to a clearing about one hundred feet ahead. As they neared the clearing, a two hundred-foot-wide circle—made of only cane and mud—appeared, looking like one big spherical pointed rooftop. The ten-foot-high rooftop, without any walls, led all the way to the ground, where it hit the sandy bottom. At about every ten feet of circle was a small opening, like a doorway.

It’s the shabono, Linsey called out. Before leaving for Peru, she had read about shabonos. Usually, constructed of wood and palm leaves, built with a thatched roof surrounding a central open space. Up to fifty families would live in one shabono, each in their own unit separated by cloths. Lindsey stepped into one of the openings under the roof.

Watch out! Wait a minute, Ignatowski cried out after her, but it was too late. Lindsey had disappeared into the shabono. Ignatowski picked up the pace behind her as fast as he could, and after a few seconds, panting—wondering why he didn’t listen to his wife when she tried to get him back to the gym—he also cleared the door. There was Lindsey, in what looked like a room with pieces of cloth serving as walls. She was on her knees, checking out a stack of palm leaves rising from the floor on wooden logs.

A bed? Ignatowski asked, kneeling next to her.

I guess so. And look here. Lindsey picked up a primitive doll, created from twigs and straw, from a log table next to the bed.

Amazing. It’s a kid’s bed. Ignatowski pointed to two slightly larger beds a few feet away. But where are they?

That’s why we’re here. She approached the cloth separating this room from the next. Carefully, she pulled the fabric a bit to the side and looked behind it. She sighed deeply as she pulled the cloth all the way to the side. Another room, very much like the first one, was also empty, with the exception of a clay oven, primitive kitchenware and some wool clothing. The room seemed intact.

In three big steps, she walked to the next curtain and opened it with one big pull. Empty again. She then walked through the shabono and out to the center of the inner circle, followed by Ignatowski. She fell to her knees. With her head to the ground, she looked around the circle, peeking under the rooftops. No legs or feet, she thought.

What are you doing? Ignatowski asked.

Confirming your earlier findings from the satellite images.

Ignatowski frowned. How?

I was looking for legs, but it seems that you were right. There’s no one left. The place is completely abandoned. Just as before.

Just like on the satellite images, Ignatowski confirmed. All gone, but probably still alive.

Alive? Lindsey asked.

If not alive, where are they? Where are the bodies? Ignatowski quickly turned his head around the circle. Not here, I’d say.

We need to look outside, in a bigger circle. Lindsey quickly walked through the shabono and some distance away from the slanted roof. She looked left and right, but everywhere she looked, the ground was bare and untouched. No graves. If you go right, I’ll go left. Let’s circle the outside of the shabono and see if there are any clues as to where they could have gone. Look for signs of digging, footsteps, tire marks.

Tire marks? Out here? Ignatowski shook his head.

You never know, Iggy. Maybe dirt bikes or quads. Who knows? Just look for anything that stands out. I’ll meet you halfway. See you in a few minutes. She started walking left, step by step, looking left and right, up and down, inspecting every inch of the surroundings.

Ignatowski watched her for a few seconds and then turned in the other direction and started circling the shabono.

Sand, branches, more sand, more branches, Ignatowski thought after a minute or two walking, looking at the ground and listening to the Red Howler, whose crying noise indicated its return to the location.

Suddenly, a loud sound, like a cry of fear, sounded over the shabono’s rooftop. Ignatowski instantly stopped, and instinctively turned his ear in the direction of the sound.

There it was again, this time followed by Lindsey’s voice crying his name. Iggyyyyy. Lindsey’s voice sounded loud again.

Ignatowski looked left and right for a second. He was over halfway around, so he rushed as fast as he could, circling the shabono. Even in his condition, it took him under ten seconds to reach Lindsey. As soon as he saw her, he stopped dead in his tracks. He froze as a darkly tanned man—dressed solely in a loincloth—wielding a wooden spear ran toward Lindsey.

Stop, Ignatowski cried out as loud and fiercely as he could.

Chapter 1 – 10 Sachem Street

New Haven, CT, 6 Months Ago

It had rained for almost fourteen days without interruption. Water now ran through the streets of New Haven’s Yale University campus. With darkness setting in early this afternoon underneath the black clouds, the big raindrops lit up golden from the orange streetlights. On Sachem Street, the banners used at yesterday’s demonstration were soaking wet, dripping, hanging from the facades of some of the old buildings. ‘This is an emergency,’ ‘No more delay,’ ‘Divest Harvard’ and ‘Fossil Free Yale.’ Students and climate change activists from Yale and Harvard had disrupted last night’s annual Yale-Harvard football game. They had stormed the field at halftime to call the university’s attention to divest their investments in fossil fuels. Some five hundred protesters sat midfield, chanting John Denver’s Take me home, Country Roads. After thirty minutes, police cleared the field again and placed forty-two demonstrators under arrest. Both universities had declined to divest on fossil fuel for years now. Yale had made some pledges over time but up until now without any significant change.

Two signs, ‘Harvard & Yale complicit’ and ‘Our future demands action now,’ hung from the balcony of the historic Hill House Mansion at 10 Sachem Street, which sat directly across the street from the Peabody Museum of Natural History. The black-painted letters on the banners trailed out and dripped on the floor, obscuring the text and smudging the marble entry to the building.

Originally, the building had been a private mansion built in 1835, but it had been converted and had been used for academic purposes for decades. The original entrance at 158 Whitney Avenue, with its almost neo-classical architecture, reminded of its colonial past, with its yellow stones, large windows and four columns baring the traditional balcony. The newly added expansion was straight and more Bauhaus style, giving the building its current ambivalent look. Next to the Sachem Street entrance, the lights dimmed behind the large steel-framed windows. In the room behind it a focused beam on a projection screen read:

Linguistic Anthropology and

Artificial Intelligence

~~~

One Step Beyond

~~~

Dr. Jennifer Porter

The conference room looked old with its open fireplace in the back and antique oak floor. On two rows of seats, some thirty young men and women talked loudly and exchanged papers.

Good afternoon. A woman’s voice sounded from the front of the room behind a wooden lectern. The woman, in her mid-thirties, wearing a yellow dress, looked younger. Her narrow eyes, long blonde hair, and the constant slight lift of the corners of her mouth gave her an open and friendly look. She had been a little under the weather the past few days but felt too proud not to show up for a presentation of what felt like her life’s work. I hope you can all hear me because we don’t have a sound system available. I’ll try to speak up. My name is Jennifer Porter, recently Dr. Porter, but Jennifer will do just fine. I know you all had a long day here on campus, but I hope you’re a little wiser than when you left your homes this morning. I’m here for your final twenty minutes of introduction at Yale University. It’s good to see you here in the Anthropology department. Anyone have any idea of what we do here?

A young man in the back raised his hand.

No need to raise your hand. Just speak up.

You study human behavior, the young man shouted.

Okay. Anyone else?

This time, a young woman spoke up from the back. You study patterns in behavior.

Cultures, another young woman cried out from the same row.

All correct, Jennifer confirmed. And with a press on the remote on the lectern, she changed the slide on the screen.

Anthropology

‘The scientific study of humans, human behavior

and societies, in the past and present.’

And there you have it. So, if you don’t like people, I guess you’re in the wrong place. The room laughed, and Jennifer felt her shoulders lower a bit. She’d never felt comfortable presenting for large crowds. Even when she knew she had all the knowledge needed to give a sparkling presentation. It always took a first joke and the appropriate reaction from the crowd to break the ice, to make her feel comfortable. From here on, she knew and sensed it would be easy. Again, she changed the slide on the screen.

Fields in Anthropology:

Sociocultural

Biological

Archaeological

Linguistic

Now, these are the main fields of anthropology I like to recognize. There are many more to be named, such as economic, political, applied, art, media, music, film, medical, nutritional, psychological, kinship, feminism, gender and even sexuality and many, many more. You can all regard them as subsets of the four main fields. And my specialism is Linguistic Anthropology. Another slide appeared on the screen:

Linguistic Anthropology

The understanding of human communications,

verbal and non-verbal, across space and time.

The social uses of language,

and the relationship between language and culture.

Now. Let me ask you a seemingly off-topic question. Can a computer be intelligent?

For a few seconds, the potential students looked left and right at each other, but the room stayed silent.

Let me add something. Can we agree that one of the primary manifestations of human intelligence is language?

Many of the youngsters now nodded and mumbled confirmation.

Some would even say that the acquisition of language is the most significant intellectual accomplishment of humankind. So, now I ask you again: Can a computer be intelligent?

They have a language, so yes, a young woman in the front row replied.

Jennifer smiled. If what I stated before was true, you must be right.

The young woman smiled back.

And yet—Jennifer glanced at the young woman again, who now frowned back—computers only understand what we tell them to, and generally they don’t understand us, and we don’t understand them without translation, and here the problems begin. There are many more problems that we need to address before we can call a computer intelligent. Problems such as communication, perception, knowledge, planning, learning, reasoning and thinking. Regarding thinking. An image appeared on the screen.

You all heard of the Turing test? About half the students raised their hands. For the other half, Jennifer continued. In 1950, Alan Turing developed a test to determine a computer’s ability to show intelligent behavior impossible to differentiate from a human. In this example, human C is the interrogator. He’s given the task of trying to determine, between A and B, which is the computer and which is the human. Officially, the interrogator is limited to using pre-defined written questions. Though much debated, if we take the test for truth, computers have already won and proven their intelligence in the past decade. And that brings me to my special interest.

Human and Computer Awareness

vs.

Evolution

I’m sure you’ll agree when I say that there are many levels of intelligence. I only have to look around the room to see there are smart people and.... Jennifer paused for a second. And let’s say there are smarter people. And no, I’m not going to tell you who is who. She smiled, and the room grinned back.

Humans are the only animals on Earth who are aware of their mortality or awareness, she continued in a severe tone. No other animal is aware of its existence and eventually at the end of it, at its inevitable death. Neither do computers. Now, what does that mean? To be honest, I’m not completely sure myself. The room giggled again. "No, really, all I can say is that some think that intelligence equals awareness of his own mortality. That would mean if we can teach a computer—or better, if a machine can learn by itself—that its life is evanescent, it would create, by definition, consciousness and could be considered intelligent.

On the other hand, if this is true, animals will probably never be regarded as intelligent, because I don’t see anyone soon explaining to my dog that he is mortal. Jennifer took a deep breath. I guess what I’m trying to say is that studying here, or wherever you wind up, I expect your study will create as much, or even more, questions than it will answer. And with that note, I have one thing I would like to give you before you leave here tonight. One thing to think about when you’re at home tonight, sitting on your couch watching Netflix or playing a game on your Xbox or swiping on your phones. She swiped the screen of an invisible phone in her hand. Think about this. With a push of a button, large red letters appeared on the screen.

Evolution = Extinction

Whatever definition of intelligence you’ll use, in our time, we will see computers become more and more intelligent. We will see them grow, learn how to communicate with us and with each other. We will see them take over more tasks from us. They’ll drive us, cook our food, grow our crops, heal us, build our houses, probably even write our books and create our music. Computers, Artificial Intelligence, combined with nanotechnology applied in robots, will evolve. A new form of evolution will rise. You ever think of that?

The room stayed silent.

I do think of that, and when I do, my biggest question is how we, humans, and AI are going to co-exist. Humans are the dominant species on Earth. We’re at the top of the food chain and, more importantly, we are the only ones. Ever wonder why? Take a quick look at human evolution. In the last million years, the Homo naledi, Homo erectus, Homo heidelbergensis, Homo neanderthalensis, and Homo sapiens at some point in time all co-existed next to each other. They all lived together, one big happy family. Or did they? One thing is for sure. Only one species survived: us, the Homo sapiens. Jennifer paused to see if there was any connection in the room as to where she was going. She recognized mostly frowning, questioning faces, which she remembered from her early days studying. She looked at her watch and then pointed to the screen and read aloud. Evolution equals extinction. Everything ends. Human evolution took place over millions of years. AI evolution is in its infancy, but is snowballing. I told you. In our time, we will see computers become more and more intelligent. We will place this intelligence into robots and then.... She paused for a long moment.

The room stayed silent, anticipating the climax.

Then, we’ll need to learn to co-exist, as intelligent species. Something humanity hasn’t been able to do in millions of years. She took a deep breath and gave a big smile in an attempt to alleviate some of the tension in the room. After a few seconds, she said, Thank you for attending. I hope I made you curious and left you with enough questions to think about when you’re at home or maybe even come back someday and study anthropology. I have a few minutes left to answer some questions, so anyone?

A young man rose from his chair. You draw a glum ‘rise of the machines, Terminator-like’ future. Do you really believe robots will take over the Earth someday? The boy sat down again.

I don’t know what your Terminator-like future looks like, but what I’m sure of is that.... Jennifer fell silent. After a short moment, she shook her head.

Are you okay? a young woman in the front asked her.

Jennifer slowly bent her head down, her fair skin turning even paler.

After a moment, she spoke slowly. Yes, thank you. Sorry. What I meant to say was that there’s one thing I know for sure. If we don’t find a way in which....

From one moment to the next, she felt her head grow heavy, her eyesight blurred, sounds muffled and her knees grew weak, all immediately followed by a loud thump. In a fraction of a second, she realized it was the sound of her own body hitting the floor, which was followed by complete blackness.

Dr. Porter. Hello?

Jennifer.

Can you hear me?

Someone call 911.

Chapter 2 – Gone Fishing

Otter Creek, VT, The Present

Otter Creek, Vermont’s longest river, snaked its way from the Green Mountain National Forest to flow into Lake Champlain, 112 miles farther west, crossing Vermont’s state line with New York. As the sun rose over the tackle and bait store at the Hillcrest Campground and Cottage at the end of the river, a twenty-year-old blue Jeep Wrangler drove into the empty parking lot and parked close to the river.

I love this car. Matthew Bishop lovingly padded the doorknob.

How did I let you talk me into this? Walker James Monroe asked in his throaty British voice. The black curator of early books and manuscripts at Yale’s Beinecke Rare Book Library had been dragged out of his bed five hours ago by his friend, who had insisted on taking him on a fishing trip. At four in the morning, he whined. The usually well-clad conservative was forced out of his favorite suit and tie and forced into jeans, a sweater and sneakers, instead of his preferred Oxfords, Derbys or Bluchers.

Oh, don’t be a baby, Bishop replied. It took me a lot of years and energy to convince you to come with me on a fishing trip, so I strongly advise you to enjoy it. You know, when I was a boy, my father used to wake me up at three in the morning every other Saturday to go fishing with him and my uncles.

Nuts, Monroe complained. My father was kind enough to take me to the Knightsbridge National Art Library in the Victoria and Albert Museum. At three in the afternoon.

Bishop and Monroe had been colleagues at Yale University for almost ten years now. As a professor of Mathematics and Philosophy, heading the department of Comparative Literature and Religious Studies, Bishop worked closely with Monroe a couple of times over the years. In his early forties now, the curly red-headed Bishop, always with his three-day beard, steel blue eyes and tall, slender posture, was still considered by his students one of the most attractive, eligible bachelors on campus. Unlike the bald, dark-eyed Monroe, Bishop preferred a more casual clothing style. When giving lectures, he usually wore a sweatshirt or turtleneck with cargo pants or straight jeans—occasionally with tears in it—and loose-fitting sneakers, preferably no socks.

Do you have any idea how much ‘Otter Creek’ we passed on our way up here? Monroe complained again while Bishop unloaded all kinds of gear out of the back of the Jeep.

Here. Bishop threw a beige piece of clothing at Monroe, who caught it against his chest with a loud ‘oomph.’

What’s this? Monroe asked, unfolding it.

It’s a chest wader. Put it on. It will keep you warm and dry when we get into the water.

Monroe held what looked like a bib and brace in front of him. Flattering, no doubt. His British accent sounded snooty. Of the two friends, Monroe was always dressed to the teeth. His tailored suits, handmade shoes and even jewelry and watches always matched perfectly with his dark complexion.

The reason we had to come all this way to the north end of the river and left a lot of Otter Creek behind us, is that this time of year the water in the south is relatively warm, but here in the north the water is cold, and that makes it an excellent breeding ground for the brown, brook, and rainbow trout. And if we are fortunate, maybe we can even catch ourselves a landlocked salmon.

Monroe started to unbutton his trousers.

What are you doing? Bishop laughed and flapped his hands. Over your clothes. Just take off your shoes and step into the wader. Put the suspenders over your shoulders, and you’re good to go.

Both men got into their clothing. Bishop took a fly-fishing vest from the car, put in on Monroe, and handed him a rod. "You

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