Peers Ch. 04byjjcole©
After they learned about the impending catastrophe Claudia went to Natalia's room and they assigned themselves tasks. Natalia began to search for a group of five Pacific islands in a cluster near the equator. She found several but none satisfied the parameters that had been laid out.
"Some of the islands may still be below sea level," Claudia said.
"Right, let me bring up my map of the Pacific basin."
"How much pressure do you think our shield will be able to handle. Five hundred meters of sea water equals tremendous forces," Claudia wondered.
Natalia said, "We would need to handle five hundred meters at first but the seas could rise above us another hundred meters then settle back as the tsunamis die out and the seas freeze. We may be above the frozen sea shortly after the comet impact. I wonder if the shield can handle all those fluctuations."
Claudia commented, "The person compensating for that is going to be busy, I hope you are good at it."
"What makes you think it will be me?"
"You are the only one that can predict the volcano and the tsunamis we will have. I did not see anyone else on the roster that could."
"Except you. You have been in submersibles."
"I was a passenger in a submersible. So were you in Iceland. It may need to be both of us." "Mizuki is and oceanographer and Moesha is a pilot, we will need them too. Let me go get them."
After Mizuki and Moesha joined them Natalia said, "I wonder if Mom knows the elevation above sea level for Cel?" "In the animation it looked like at least a thousand meters."
"That would make the island about a hundred kilometers in diameter if the animation is true to scale. Claudia said."
As if she had been listening Mom walked in and handed them a DVD copy of the animation they had just seen.
She said, "Click on the number symbol to get your measurements. This second disk has the maps of the cities and duchies and the list of the species on Cel. You will need to name the city, the towns, the boulevards, the river, the lake and the bay of your own duchy by the way. First come first served.
"Penza and Vancouver are taken,' Natalia said.
Vienna and Hong Kong are taken," Claudia said.
"Ponce and Thies are taken" Moesha said.
"Kobe and Felicity are taken," Mizuki said.
"Only thirty eight more names to go for each of you," Carmen giggled.
"Think in terms of historic people you admire for other names and the names of places that will no longer exist. Note what the island in your territorial bay is set up to do. Mizuki please use the name Felicity for your island. And oh, I love you guys," she said and kissed them before leaving.
"Thank you Mom, love you," the ladies said.
"I wonder why we have been selected for special treatment?" Claudia asked.
"Did she seem to be disappointed in the others to you?"
"Yes she did now that you mention it. I wonder why?"
The four ladies installed the discs into their laptops and after many minutes of tweaks and program runs Natalia announced, "We will be living in somewhere in Polynesia,"
"I loved Bora Bora" Claudia said.
"Me too," Natalia, Mizuki and Moesha said. "I hope we have the time to get back there with our husbands."
"Oh yeah. Taking Mom there was fun but it would have been a lot more fun with a husband."
They laughed and began naming the places they had been and found that Natalia and Claudia had been to the same ten places and Mizuki and Moesha the same ten places, but each were the only one to go to five different places. Those five were all connected to their areas of expertise.
Moesha had been to Star City for cosmonaut training before the program was scratched. Natalia had been to Iceland to watch the birth of a volcano. Mizuki had been to Tohoku to study the effects of the tsunami that had hit there and created a new sub-sea map.
Claudia had been the only one to visit Antarctica and she had in fact created a program that would give parameters for a large melt down due to global warming but that was not nearly the size that was expected. She began to alter her program to account for the vaporization of the entire ice sheet at once.
Natalia said, "We will likely be the only part of Polynesia above water well before the comet impact and that would be because of the shield. I hope we have a viable reef to save with us." They concentrated on their puzzles and worked as if they had always been a team.
Marc and Hu had gone to Hu's room and resumed searching for the mothers of their future children. They had both signed into various social and professional media networks and asked the women how they were doing. Carlos and Jim joined them and Carlos began tweaking their laptops to find them faster. He set each up with an automatic response and alarm then all resumed their search of the galaxy for the bringer of doom.
The DVD they got from Mom seemed to indicate the section of the galactic arm the other star was in.
Hu was a mathematician and computer program author and began to crunch numbers for the known timeline and try to locate where that star was now. The boundaries of both solar systems would already be colliding.
Hu said, "It should be somewhere here," he showed Marc on his laptop screen.
Marc had already tapped into the space telescope-managing site and had already inserted himself into the Q for time on it. Marc was a permanent member of the group with access and had priority. His next turn would be in ten minutes. He would then have one hour.
When Marc's turn at the telescope came up he pointed it at the area Hu had calculated but could not find the other star in any image. Marc reminded him that the star would actually be closer than it appeared and Hu recalculated for a spot before where the star was before now. Still nothing was there.
"Below the galactic plane," Marc remembered Dad saying. "In space there is no up or down except relative to the viewers position. "Reverse what you have."
Hu did and Marc pointed the telescope at the area and they found, Pluto. Their disappointment vanished as soon as they realized that Pluto would be feeling the effects of the encounter first since its orbit was inclined relative to the other planets. For the first time in years Pluto was in fact now further from the sun than Neptune.
"I need to get with the guys doing gravitational work in space, the guys finding planets. Hu, I may need you to copy their programs. The star must be too dim or behind another or both."
"Or directly behind Pluto. And by the way, I wrote those programs."
"Damn you're good," Carlos exclaimed. "I can get into the files of those groups, lets see what they have."
Carlos was the greatest hacker in the world. He had access to any system that was noteworthy and had never been detected.
He got into several archives of the most active planet searchers and asked for the latest data of the point in space they were searching. Marc and Hu began to think that with the help of Carlos and Jim they would find the star soon. Natalia, Mizuki and Claudia had convinced Moesha that she should adjust the pressures on Cel as the seas rose and sank around them. Natalia would keep track of tsunamis, Claudia would monitor ice formations, and Mizuki would predict the angle and speed to be adjusted for.
It was evening before anyone noticed and all eight were hungry so they adjourned and went out to Claudia's Moms house. They brought dinner with them.
All loved Claudia's Mom and she loved them. She seemed to know a lot about the coming events. Natalia called her Mom and the two Moms talked like they knew each other although they had never met. Moesha called hers and the three Moms' were soon comparing the ridiculous antics of their daughters. Mizuki's Mom was not in a time zone they could comfortably call and neither were the men's Moms. The other three got their phone numbers and promised to call them.
They spent the night, the women all on Claudia's bed and the men scattered on sofas and recliners, except for Hu, Claudia had led him to her mother's bed and left him there. All slept well. Eventually.
After breakfast at Claudia's they returned to the hotel and each couple went to their own rooms and fucked for a while. They spent time cuddling each other. For the first time in their lives they were not confident in their abilities and needed the cuddling.
Soon they had resumed their tasks. At mid-day the ladies sent the men to pick up lunch and Hu and Carlos did that for all. Moesha remembered that Akira was also a pilot and went to get her but was stunned to realize all of the rooms on the other side of the elevator were empty. The others were shocked.
Late that afternoon as space images began trickling in and sea level calculations began to coalesce on their laptops Grandma reminded them that they had tickets for an opera that night. They had left the doors to both rooms open and Grandma spoke to them from the hallway.
"We might skip that, we don't have anything that makes sense yet," Jim said.
All felt a hesitation from her then she said, "If you don't go I can't go. I was going to join you in your box seats."
"We will be ready," the wives said with big grins. They considered it an honor to have her company.
They made it in plenty of time. Grandma stayed between Natalia and Claudia and apparently held their hands. They had no problems getting to their box. The opera was Arabella and was a favorite of all of them but especially Grandma. They could hear her laugh and sing to herself. The women caressed her often although none could actually see her. It was a fine evening for all of them.
They talked Grandma into coming along with them for potato soup. The waiter was told they expected a friend to join them and he brought nine bowls. Grandmas bowl became empty at a slow steady rate. Natalia's was empty in a flash then she helped herself to some of Marc's bowl. Claudia put her arm around her bowl to protect it. They could hear Grandma gasp and then giggle.
When they returned to their hotel floor grandma turned off her cloak and they saw Grandma for the first time. Grandma was nude except for the collar her cloak emanated from; the cloak was all she had worn. Her body was slim and gangly by Earth standards and she had small bumps where her tits would be, yet somehow she was still very feminine. She was a lot shorter in stature than her husband and her gray skin had a greenish/blue hue. The alien woman was cute the others thought.
The girls immediately caressed her and marveled at the softness of her skin. The men marveled at the slow expansion of breasts and the appearance of nipples. They saw a furrow appear between her thighs. Grandma was getting horny.
The men turned and headed to Hu's room. The women thanked them and took Grandma to Marc and Natalia's bed. The women made love.
The men found they each had over one hundred replies from women they had sex with and began to reinforce their friendship with them so they could keep track of each other.
None were surprised the women were engineers, chemists, or teachers. Many were married; one that wasn't was an ex-lover of Hu that was now a lesbian. Hu sent her a photo of Claudia. Another single woman was Jung Li. Another was Jim's lover in Vienna. Another was Carlo's off and on lover Cindy in New York City.
The men re-thought the whole process and sent all of them a photo of themselves with their wife.
About forty minutes later a nude Claudia walked in and told the guys, "They said to hurry."
Before they closed the door to their room they saw Claudia rapidly making Hu nude from the waist down.
The women ravaged their men immediately and after enjoying a big orgasm each woman said, "I love you madly," and immediately fell asleep.
It took the men a few minutes to finish undressing from their formal wear and breathe normally before going to sleep.
The following morning after they each fucked, Claudia, Natalia, Hu and Marc went to eat breakfast together. Carlos, Jim, Moesha and Mizuki had a breakfast date with Jim's Austrian lover Greta.
At the restaurant Natalia's group listened closely to the languages being spoken and settled on Spanish as their language of the morning. They discussed the location of the alien star, the home they had only seen as an animation and wondered about their assignments.
Claudia said, "Apparently we are recruiters. We need to find people that are close to ourselves. Right now there are eleven couples as citizens and it needs to be at least two thousand people."
"I think you are right. In fact I think we found six when we were in the club, the couple from Cuba, the couple from the Netherlands and the girls from Poland," Marc added.
Natalia commented, "Yeah, all could speak German and the girls also spoke Russian. The Cuban couple is opening a restaurant here; Cel could use restaurants. The Dutch are in finance and are here to close a deal and the Polish girls are auditioning for symphony orchestras."
"I wonder if we will be assigned to recruit only in our fields or if we can recruit anybody in any field. The eight of us are scientists and that may be who we will be assigned to recruit but musicians and chefs seem to be essential fields too," Hu said.
"If not I hope someone will be assigned to recruit chefs and musicians."
"Grandma loves opera, I think we can assume musicians will be recruited."
"How old do you think she is?"
"No, idea, at least as old as Mom and Dad are."
"Couldn't you tell when you two made love to her?"
"No more than our wrong guess for Mom. We had no idea she was almost sixty. By the way Claudia is seven weeks older than me which means I will always be younger than her."
That remark got her punched in the arm by Claudia. Their husbands ignored them the best they could. They thought they heard a gasp but it wasn't from Natalia, she was giggling.
Hu said, "The spacing of ages would mean there is only one incubator for each stage of development. We are indeed rare creatures."
"Yes you are," they heard Grandma say. "My age will remain a mystery."
"Did you drink my milk?' Natalia asked accusingly.
They heard grandma giggle then moan; Natalia's arm had disappeared inside her cloak. The others laughed and resumed eating their breakfast but soon Claudia's arm disappeared too.
They had learned the night before that that her cloak was an optical illusion; there was nothing solid there. She was as naked behind it as she had been the night before. After a few moments Grandma said, "I hope you don't mind me tagging along with you. You are my favorite peers."
"Anytime," all said.
"Where are we going today?"
"The Ferris wheel and the Danube boat tour."
"Good, I will be easily unobserved on both of those."
Marc was watching his sausage gravy disappear. He ordered two more as all kidded Grandma about her propensity to larceny.
They had a nice day and the ladies took some advantages of Grandma knowing all she wore was the cloak. Grandma did not mind at all. Carlos and Moesha joined them on the river tour and she joined the others in sexually tormenting Grandma.
She told them Jim and Mizuki were ravishing his friend and would not be joining them. "Jim really likes her and fortunately so does Mizuki. They will not be joining us tonight either."
That evening at the symphony Grandma sat on Marc's lap and told Natalia that he had an erection for her. He did not but said nothing.
Natalia whispered, "I will kill both of you if you try anything funny."
All chuckled quietly, after all their seats were right behind the orchestra.
After the concert they returned to the restaurant for potato soup and ordered seven. Claudia asked the waiter to please send the chef that made the soup to them so they could thank him. A young girl that looked fourteen but was in fact eighteen years old came to their table and thanked them for praising her soup.
The group asked her to sit with them and tell her the secret. She did sit with them but all she would tell them was that the peeled and cubed potatoes soaked in a bath of herbs overnight before they were cooked.
She said her name was Anishka and was from Kiev but was a student at the Liszt school in Budapest. She was in Vienna to make some money so she could continue her studies. Her parents were dead and her grandmother had raised her. She hoped to become a concert violinist and was coerced by the ladies into reciting the awards she had won.
The others saw her as an intelligent, happy young lady. Her life had not been that happy but apparently music had kept her together. All the peer loved her.
She had begun the visit speaking German then switched to Russian then to English when Marc had asked her a question in English. Hu had no luck with Mandarin however. They assumed she also spoke Magyar.
They heard Grandma say, "This is your first recruit. Offer her a scholarship to the school; tell her it will cover her studies for four years even though she will be with you before two."
They did and it took the girl a few moments to process the information then said, "Yes!" and kissed everyone she could see at the table.
"Wait, are all of you just trying to seduce me?"
"Yes, but we will wait until you have your scholarship. In case you wondered we love to make love to women."
"I could tell that from the kisses. I have not tried that but will with you when you want."
"Thank you, " the three ladies said.
They made a date with her to meet at the hotel the next morning and take care of scholarship business then she returned to the kitchen while the others went walking back to the hotel. By then all had learned Grandma's best speed and had adjusted to her slower pace.
"Still two hundred and forty to go. Artists are not part of your quota but are always welcome," Grandma said.
"So, we do not get credit for her, huh." Natalia said.
"No, and you were more interested in learning the secret of the potato soup than in her music career."
Moesha said, "Well, OK. Carlos and I have prospects we met at the club."
"The Polish girls are the only ones that fit the parameters. They will likely be at the auditions tomorrow. Bring them to the hotel then tell them they also have a scholarship in Budapest. Civilizations begin with artists."
"What was wrong with the Cubans and the Dutch?"
"Too old. Our age parameters are between the ages of sixteen and twenty-six. They are in their late thirties. If you run into a genius that should be saved for the sake of humanity we will consider them. Minimum age five to maximum age fifty. Mom, Dad, Grandpa and I make those calls."
"What if they are just simply the kind of people you think will be of immense help with others?" Marc asked.
"Yes Marc you may include Mr. Wu and his extended family. Hu you may bring Mr. Sullivan and his extended family, Claudia may bring Madame Olga and her girls. Natalia may bring Miss Markham and her girls. Moesha you may bring Ms. DuPree and her partner Lily and their assistants. Carlos you may bring your godfather Ruben and his assistants. All of you may bring your Mom's and one person they select. We do need people like that."
The men blew her kisses in the general direction of her voice. The women kissed their side of her cheeks.
Grandma continued, "All must also be fluent in at least three of the six Earth languages you speak. We have a list of over a thousand people for the four of you to interview. So do the other couples but they are recruiting for their own shelter and are mostly looking for generalists, theorists, and thinkers. We hope each group will find all thousand from your lists will be suitable but we do not expect that. You will need to discover as many as you can yourselves as we just did.
You have five months to find scientists, engineers, and computer experts, then another four months to find town managers, airport and marine dock managers, cooks, fishermen, farmers, ranchers, metallurgists, welders, butchers, heavy machinery operators and so on. Many of those have already been recruited and in fact many are already on Cel. You may get specific requests for people from them.