The Aeolian Master - Book One - Revival
wondering why a beautiful, classy, intelligent, upper echelon G-staff woman would be going out with him.
Probably nothing more than being a good host while he was on Galactus or maybe the Galaef wanted her to
keep an eye on Ben. No. That thought didn't please him. He knew how he was starting to feel about her.
Lyil said, "Since I've met you, you haven't talked much about your expedition."
"Since I've met you," replied Ben, "I started losing interest in it."
Lyil, in her ever-calm manner, permitted herself a small laugh. "What a nice thing to say," she said and
paused. "Still I am interested. The myth of the Aeolian Master has been around for hundreds of years, and
there have been times when I wondered why a myth from an insignificant planet on the edge of the galaxy could
have endured for such a long time, or why it would become popular in the first place."
"That's a point which most people never consider,” said Ben. “If a myth can become this well known
throughout the Galaxy and retold for hundreds of years by civilizations who have forgotten where the myth
originated, or the name of a planet which they have never known, then there must have been something very
significant at the core of its conception. I believe that what we will find on this expedition will have a bearing
on the future of our technology."
Lyil slowly nodded her head. "So here you are, about to find out, about to travel to the edge of the galaxy to
explore a famous myth to see if there is really something worth exploring."
"I’m sure we will find a computer complex beneath the surface of Ar, one which was built by the Ancient
Earthians, and it's also possible there's a dead man in a suspended animation chamber.
"One of the documents which we retrieved from a dig discusses briefly the advent of suspended animation,
and how they were experimenting with it. There isn't a lot of detail, but from what I could make out, they were
studying it before the colonization of Ar. And later, there was mention of a computer complex on Ar with a
suspended animation chamber."
"So," said Lyil. "if you find it, what a great discovery that will be. You'll be able to get a better look at what
Earth was like, especially if the computer still holds information."
"That’s right," said Ben. He paused, "that is if . . . " Ben paused. He was thinking about the Galaef. He
didn’t know him very well—only what he had read about him in the media, and then the meeting which only
lasted a short time in his office. Was he the rock that he appeared to be, or could those around him sway his
"If what?" asked Lyil.
"If the Galaef doesn't change his mind and bring back the survey crew."
"Preposterous. What would motivate you to think such a thought?" Without waiting for an answer, she
added. "He has already put a lot of money into this project. I assure you he's not going to back out now."
"How much influence does Thorne have over the Galaef?"
"Very little. Why?"
"Because Thorne was dead set against this project. He basically told the Galaef it was beneath his station to
get involved. And I wonder about his reasons. Has Thorne always been against these kinds of projects?"
Lyil grimaced, "No,” she said. “And, in fact, he even headed up an archaeological project of his own on one
of the old computer planets."
"So," said Ben, "you're telling me he does have a personal motive for the Galaef not becoming involved in
Lyil contemplated and then said, "I don't know."
Ben shrugged. "I don't either, but it looks that way."
"I don't know why he would care." Lyil looked at her watch and then stood up. "It's really late," she said.
"Yeah, I guess it is." He knew she had to go to work in the morning.
He stood up and moved close enough to give her a good night kiss. Impulsively he pulled her close, until he
could feel the warmth from her body as it was pressed close to his. He let go of her hands and slipped his arms
around her. And with one hand sliding through the wavy red hair to the back of her head, he held her gently as
he pushed his lips to hers and kissed her deeply. His other hand moved slowly down her back, until it was in
the concavity above her hips, then he pulled gently until her hips were pressed firmly against his.
She opened her mouth and accepted his kiss. She put her arms around his back and stroked and kneaded his
muscles, then she held him tight as if she never wanted to let go. Her breathing quickened and her chest heaved
in and out.
She put her hand on his check, then, without warning, she stepped back breaking the engagement with a look