MARTIAN Jihadist


MARTIAN Jihadst: PARADISE

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MARS 2

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

The great cat was in full stealth mode as it tracked the monstrous armored beasts migrating across the hot barren landscape. While it wouldn’t think to attack one of the full-grown members of the heard, the young ones that hadn’t matured into their thick protective hides were a delicacy worth pursuing.

Up ahead, the nearly empty flattened terrain veered downwards into a tree filled draw. If any water could be found so late in the dry season, it would be there.

The cat raised up its head to pick up the various scents. It was briefly disappointed. While the lingering smell of the heard was present, it was fading. The animals had obviously arrived at the water hole, and since departed.

But it picked up another scent. To the apex predator that constantly cleansed itself, it seemed more a foul stench–identifying it as the straggly, hairy creatures that sometimes walked upon two legs. As a food source they were a last resort. Their substance consisted mostly of skin and bones, but if enough of them could be caught…it was better than going hungry.

And they often kept to the trees. Even so, if they were lingering around the water hole, they had to come down to drink. So the cat moved slowly into the draw, through the high dead grass and past the first few dry thorny trees. Creeping low to the ground to remain undetected, the first thing it spotted was the large mud hole–beset with large pad marks from the beasts that recently wallowed there. The thirsty heard had consumed every last bit of the life sustaining liquid, before departing for the next destination. –One that might offer a better opportunity to drink.

With any luck, within the next few hours, or the next few days, enough of the precious water would seep back up to the surface to satisfy the cat’s great thirst?

In the meanwhile, it spotted its next meal. A pair of the two-legged creatures was on the ground, completely preoccupied, searching through piles of fresh dung for undigested nuts.

The cat wanted them both and plotted its strategy. –Though it didn’t take long. The creatures were incredibly stupid and easily panicked. All it had to do was disable one, then chase down the other, before its fated prey reached the shelter of the trees.

The clever feline raised itself and rushed outward. Both its intended victims were male. The first was knocked down with a lightning quick lunge. The cat engulfed the two-legged creature’s entire head in its powerful jaws and crushed its skull. Without hesitation, it chased down the other.

Before reaching the first branch, the low-browed, barely-emerging human’s right knee was snatched and crushed by its vicious attacker. It wasn’t killed outright. In the intense heat, the cat knew its victim’s flesh would quickly decay, and it intended on enjoying the meal at its leisure. So the scanty, late afternoon lunch was simply left helpless, mindlessly howling in excruciating pain. Its deceased companion was callously dragged to the shade of the nearest tree and set upon–making his own terrifying fate all to clear…making him scream all the more.

Up above, within the withering foliage, a hackle of fierce screams erupted. The cat looked lazily upward. There in the trees sturdiest branches, an entire troop of the creatures was howling down defiantly. It was all very annoying, but at the same time, reassuring. There was clearly a food source right there in the immediate vicinity. And each of them would have to come down eventually…to try and drink.

What it hadn’t noticed was the suffering female in the abandoned nest of a large predator bird, which had migrated northward for the duration of the dry season.

About to give birth to her first offspring, her screams had nothing to do with the shock of seeing her cruel, occasional mate so violently killed, and presently being devoured. She wasn’t even aware of his plight. She was locked in her own life and death struggle, as fewer than half her kind ever survived the terrible ordeal.

But there was no mercy on this level. There were no miracles, or niceties, or hope, or even the slightest kindness. There was no knowledge of one’s soul, or an eternal afterlife. There was only endless despair, and the constant fear of everything that ever made a noise. Here, their kind were the cowardly hunted. Their kind was the bottom of the food chain–while their own hunger was constant. Their kind, naked and clueless, froze in the winters and baked in the summers. With the enormous biting flies and venomous insects, their great miseries seemed never-ending. And when the baby started to come, its mother’s single scream raised high above all the others, still mindlessly shouting their hopeless distress upon the unwanted predator.


What else, could they possibly do?


The soul that had once been Loather Airs looked down upon the terrible scene with the same frantic fear he had once so enjoyed causing his own many victims.

So this was his fate. He had been sentenced to 700,000 lives in Hell for his wicked, murderous ways. Broken down, he would serve 100,000 lives in each of the realm’s, Seven Domains.

This was the lowest level, and he could see why. It couldn’t possibly be worse for the souls forced to endure such unrelenting hopelessness…over and over, for such vast amounts of time.

Yet, he wasn’t alone. And his wasn’t the worst sentence given at their judgment. Nor was it the least. Two others were there along with him, watching the same horror show down below–to which they would each, soon become part. –Even if it was in different quadrants of the Universe–because traversing any immense distance took but an instant.

Airs had recognized both his hell-bound companions. One of them he knew quite well. It was the soul previously known as Robert Morlock.

The other was another homicidal sadist, like himself. A self-described, Martian jihadist, it was an obscure term, found more in Earth’s third millennium period than in any recent times. Few people on either planet had any idea what the word even concerned. But the man’s gruesome crime had been well publicized–on both worlds. He had walked into an Earth Mars Transport Center wearing a powerful explosive device, woven brazenly beneath his heavy clothing. It was a new, undetectable designer chemical. He had dedicated 20-years of his life making it completely foolproof–to stage that one event–for the sole purpose of killing all those people.

Such gifted intelligence…so tragically wasted.

He hadn’t known a single one of his victims. None had ever done him the slightest harm. But when he detonated his gruesome package, during the disembarking of an Earth Transport, it was delivered with a fierce, irrational, consuming hatred for every single soul there. His last prayer had been, that he would be able to kill everyone in the building…for god’s own greatness!

–Even when he truly knew, within his own guiding conscience, that to take any human life, or commit any vile act in God’s name, was the worst offence imaginable. The structure had been filled with a thousand newly arrived passengers. There were twice as many bystanders. Over 400 innocent, men, women and children had been ruthlessly slaughtered…over a baseless whim.

The twisted reasoning raced far beyond the scope of any prevailing memory. That kind of murderous rage came straight from the dark past, when, time after time, Earth’s very survival had teetered on the absolute brink–for its never-ending religious aggressions.

The visual he left behind had been equally antiquated, threatening that his sacrifice was but the first of many being planned by a growing band of fellow extremists–if Mars didn’t reverse its strict ban on the practice of his illicit faith. Ironically, he simultaneously demanded that the identical ban on Earth’s other major religions, remain intact.

His initial sentence had been 250,000 lives in each of Hell’s Seven Levels. Despite their Heavenly Advisor’s sternest warnings, he continued loudly protesting his harsh judgment, proclaiming that he was god’s truest servant. He demanded eternal paradise for his bold action–among other, more amorous awards.

Having absolutely no patience for such self-righteous nonsense, the Heavenly Adviser had clearly heard the twisted excuse far to many times. The man’s continuing blaspheme and clear lack of any remorse resulted in his sentence being duly doubled, on the spot, giving the mass murderer a total of 3,000,000 lives–all to be served in Hell’s dankest, lowest level–where there would be no intelligence to be wasted. There would be no future lives with fire, crude language, makeshift clothing, or stone tools. He would find no refuge in caves, or basic shelters, or meaningful companionships, as were allowed in Hell’s higher realms. His only hopes were to die quickly, with a minimum of suffering–for the next 3,000,000 lives.

He would quickly come to realize that suicides only added to the total. Due to his unruly rants, he had also been muted–thus, making it 3,000,000 lives, at least, before he would ever speak another discernable word.

Robert Morlock, on the other hand, had been sentenced to 10,000 lives in Hell’s lowest level for using his wealth, power and influence to spread hatred, fear and intolerance toward Earthlings–for the sole purpose of vastly increasing that same wealth, power, influence and hatred.

The Martian jihadist was set to be the first to depart. That’s why they were there, awaiting his first Hellish birth.

The traumatized trio watched, along with their Heavenly Advisor, as the drama played out down in the draw. The mother-to-be howled in unbearable pain as the infant finally dropped from her womb and into the nest.

Suddenly, the extremist’s spirit was no longer among them. His energy had been duly transferred. He was Hell’s problem now…and would remain so, for a very long time, indeed.

“Welcome to paradise,” their Heavenly Advisor sarcastically bade him good riddance. She had just judged their crimes. She knew exactly what they had all done. Clearly, she had absolutely no sympathy, for any of them.

There, within the abandoned nest, the homicidal fiend that once bullied over all the females in his hateful, violent little world, and over all their God-given equalities, had just become one.