In the infinite universe there are many potential possibilities for intelligent life. Or should I say, infinite possibilities. That’s common knowledge. At one time, I was of the impression that alien life was just that – alien. Different. Unlike myself. But the love of a woman, a very special woman, matched with memories...memories I forgot I even had - memories of another very special woman, a mother that I gave up for dead, said something totally different to me.
When I lost Laura, I thought I lost everything. But that loss was nothing more than the catalyst - the very thing that opened everything up. Losing Laura turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me.
Through the starry void, an egg shaped transport was flowing, no, streaking, from New York City on its way to an alien planet. The young woman inside was both bewildered and sad. She was crying. She was forced by circumstance to leave the only man in her life she had ever really loved (even though she had basically just met him).
Just a few hours earlier she was flipping through Bride’s Magazine for the first time in months, and a huge smile had erupted from deep within her.
Now she had learned she was destined to be a queen, with the power to blow up the Earth with her very essence.
This is not fair, she thought to herself. I want Jay. I want Jay. Somehow I will get him back. Somehow. I have to. I have to...
After flying through outer space for what seemed like an eternity, but in reality were only a very few hours, Laura saw a huge green planet loom in front of her. With a dull red glow all around, the silvery transport came down lower and lower into the airspace of this planet, until it reached the twinkling late night lights of what looked like a small town or village below.
On the planet, the chief ambassador was on a cell phone talking to the queen.
“Yeah, she just entered Zarthan airspace”, the woman said. “I’m going outside to meet her right now. I’ll call you back after she goes to bed. Yeah. All right. Jay’s probably takin’ it real hard...I know, Angie...OK, Angie...Yes, Angie...OK, Angie, I’ll handle it, all right?...OK. Bye, Angie.” Click.
Then the spaceship glided waftily upon a huge lawn. It was a humid yet cool night. Clouds were forming overhead.
Laura got out of the ship, and small sprinkly droplets of rain immediately began to fall. Facing her was a magnificent palace, the likes of which she had never seen in person. It looked like maybe Buckingham Palace or Versailles, but much weirder, almost Seussian in its eccentric opulence. The light from inside of this palace blazed out of the windows, illuminating the expansive stone patio before it with a crystalline silvery bluish-whiteness. These windows were larger, the spires more intricate, than Buckingham Palace, Versailles, or any of the grandest royal mansions anywhere on Earth.
On this large patio, in front of a massive stone fountain, bigger even than the one in “Friends”, stood a young, large-boned medium-skinned Black woman in her mid 20’s. Her red hair was woven in intricate braids, and even though it was night, she was wearing sunglasses exactly like the ones Jay had worn.
Sprinkles of rain were gathering on them, and after she put a cell phone in the pocket of her Nike shorts, she took the sunglasses off.
She was wearing a jumbo-sized New Orleans Saints hockey-style jersey and had a strange necklace on, a necklace made of silvery-gray rock beads and a stone-gray metallic round medallion, which looked like a sun design with snakily undulating rays coming out of the center, with bumpy circles on the rays, similar to fractal designs.
Standing behind her were several attendants wearing elaborate Edwardian clothes.
“Laura Vasquez,” she called out in a honey-rich voice. Her smile was reserved yet warmly self-confident.
Laura walked slowly towards the woman, still in a state of ontological shock.
“Welcome home, your highness,” the woman continued. “Welcome to the land of Zartha.
“My name is Shakita. I am your boyfriend’s cousin.” The woman stuck out her hand, and Laura gingerly took it and shook it politely.
“Cousin?...OK...ummm...Is Jay an…alien?” Laura asked with the most puzzled and bewildered look.
Shakita cocked a jaunty, wide-eyed, toothy grin. “Girl, you mean like YOU? The answer to that is…yeah!
“Our family comes from a Zartha person who traveled to the Earth centuries ago. And Jay is in that family, but he doesn’t know that yet. Come on inside before we get all wet.”
The palace was brilliant. The ceilings were at least 20 feet high. Everything inside was massive and opulent and a pervasive crystalline light seemed to illuminate the considerably vast halls. The palace seemed to be very, very old, but there were items inside that were clearly of a highly advanced technological design. Everything, from the walls to the windows to the furniture, seemed to be designed in spheres or circles.
“Oh my God,” Laura marveled, “this place is so beautiful...” Then she saw it. On an elaborate small wooden table, were several pictures of Jay in his MIB uniforms. One of them caught Laura’s eye and she became tremendously animated.
It was a picture of Laura and Jay, arms around each other and smiling for the camera. Jay was in his black suit, and Laura was in the same clothes she had on right now.
“That picture on that table!” she said, pointing and shaking her finger at the 8” x 10” picture, sitting in an ornate silver frame, in which Shakita had placed the photo about an hour before. “That’s me and Jay! Oh, my God! Kay just took that picture TONIGHT! In New York! On his cell phone! Just - just a few hours ago at, at this apartment building where these worms live!!!
Laura then looked at Shakita with an incredulous staring frown. “How the hell did that end up HERE?”
Shakita smiled and said, “I’ll get to that. Come on, down this hallway.”
After walking down a long, long, long corridor, they went into another large room with a lavish round bed. “This is where you will sleep. Have a seat.”
After sitting down on the luxurious satiny sheets, Laura continued excitedly, “All right, please, pleeeeze tell me what the hell is going on here. It’s bad enough my boss gets killed by some weird woman with things growing out of her fingers on a mission to kidnap ME, and then I find out after all these years that Ben is an alien - was an alien, and now I’M an alien, I’m some princess or something, and I have to leave New York on a spaceship. And how the hell are Jay’s people from this planet? Why is that important? Why the hell am I even here? He’s a cop, he was investigating Ben, he was trying to find this Light of Zartha – and it turns out that I’m it? Why is that?”
Laura began to cry a little bit at this point. The rain outside began to fall just a little bit harder.
Shakita glanced at the rain falling outside, then smiled, took Laura’s hand and said, “Hold up, girl, calm down. Let’s back up and let’s take all this from the beginning. A little background might make you understand everything that’s been happening to you the last few days. It may even help you understand what’s happened to you your whole LIFE. So listen up.
“In the beginning of time…”
“Whoa,” Laura said. “The beginning of time? Do we really have to go back THAT far?”
Shakita gave Laura a smirkly, slightly exasperated look. “Yeah, we do. I have to.”
“Sorry,” Laura said, looking down for a second. “Go on.”
Shakita continued. “In the beginning of time the universe decided to express itself by making things, planets and stars and all that stuff. One of those planets was Zartha. Now Zartha was uninhabited for millions of years, but about 2500 years ago there was another big explosion of energy. Pieces of that energy landed on Zartha and became animated beings of light. Pure, cosmic LIGHT. Beings that could think, feel, communicate, love, all that stuff.
“These light beings are the S’aa. They came to this planet as a bunch of shooting stars. Big balls of bright blue star light. They had to turn down their star energy in order to take on a human form. They did that and after a while they started families. They married other beings, other kinds of life forms that sprung up from the ground, the plants, the water, all that stuff...well, your mother is a part of one of those families. So are you. You are of the house of the S’aa. You are a being of pure cosmic Light wrapped all up inside of a human body.”
“But – but… I have…insides.”
“Sure you do, baby…and they work just like a human’s insides do…with a few exceptions. It’s ALL made of light. That’s what’s so cool about it.”
“How do I know all of this is even real?”
“How did you know the Men In Black were real, before last night?” Shakita said, with a patient smile.
“I guess you have a point…but why…I mean…why ME?”
“You are the latest in the line of the S’aa, born of a mother from right here on the homeworld, to come along at the same time the Sun of Zartha came along.”
“So, me and this Sun of Zartha have some connection? What IS the Sun of Zartha?”
Shakita gave a laugh. “Connection? Girl, the two of y'all have a LOVE connection!” She gave the “two and two” sign from the semi-legendary Chuck Woolery TV series. Laura showed mild amusement.
“Let me continue,” Shakita went on. “And, by the way, the question you need to be asking is not ‘what’ is the Sun of Zartha, but ‘who’ the Sun of Zartha really is.
“Now listen to my story…
“About a thousand years after that first energy blast, there was a massive solar explosion, a solar gamma ray superwave, which reached our planet. It was a big-time destructive cataclysm. Now, cataclysms happen. That's a fact of life in the universe. This one was so strong the solar flares actually came down and started huge explosions and fires and volcanic eruptions - and burned a lot of us up.
Laura recoiled with a shuddering frown. "Oh, my God, that's terrible!"
"It was terrible. But like I said, that shit happens. It happens to every planet. It happened on Earth, that's why most of the dinosaurs died down there. The electromagnetic energy here on Zartha was so strong and so charged up, one of those solar flares formed itself out of a mass of cosmic solar dust, and became a living humanoid being, just like the beings of light did. That being was T’ola’an.
“T’ola’an knew that his energy caused huge destruction and killed thousands of people. He was sad about that and he was remorseful about that. He stayed to help fix the damage he caused, and the survivors eventually forgave him - and they accepted him as their god and their king. He liked it here, but after a few hundred years, he got lonely and wanted to look for other people in the universe who liked him, who liked people like him who were made out of the power of the sun. So he went on a little expedition. He went to Earth in his sun chariot. He went to the continent they call…Africa.“
“This is getting kinda weird,” Laura mused.
“Wait, it gets better.
“Lord T’ola’an took a wife in Africa. West Africa. He took a few wives, as a matter of fact. These wives took on some of the powers and abilities of their husband by being intimate with him; he transferred his DNA to them. The children had even greater powers. His DNA had the sun energy built right into it.
“The families continued along, all down through the centuries. Some of them were taken away as slaves. Jay and I are the descendants of those people. We are T’ola’a. We are the Sun People, the children of the great Lord of the Sun. Look…”
Shakita produced a Louisiana driver’s license with her personal information printed right on it. Laura found that itself out of place on a planet several million light years away, but then she saw the name:
Shakita Angelique Tolan
“Your last name… it’s…”
“Tolan. It’s really T’ola’an but spelled differently over the years. We kept our family identity throughout the centuries. Even during slavery.”
Shakita then imagined herself earlier that day driving down I-10 in New Orleans in her red Chrysler 300. “Down in New Orleans our family lives in secret. We sorta kinda blended in to regular human ‘Earth’ society but we still practice our knowledge and our special rituals and prayers in secret. We teach each other how to make the sun rise strong in us, to know the power and the awesome energy of the solar flare that we are born with. And we make floats for Mardi Gras!
“Here on Zartha they consider us a founding family, a ruling family, for obvious reasons. Anyone in our family, anyone who is T’ola’a, can come up here, anytime they want to, move here and live here permanently, no hassles. The respect for our people up here is that strong, girl.
“The sun is in our BLOOD. It’s who we are.”
When Shakita said that, Laura thought she saw her eyes light up with a dull coal-red glow. What she did not know is that her own eyes began to light up with a pale whitish-green glow at that moment.
Shakita noticed that but said nothing, just smiled knowingly.
“And Laura...the Light is in YOUR blood, girl. It’s who YOU are.”
Laura shook her head, still a little overwhelmed at it all. She stared for another moment at this strange young woman and began to speak again.
“You know, I feel like I’ve known Jay my entire life. I felt so comfortable around him, so safe and protected...he was so sad to see me go tonight. He looked like he was about to cry. I told him it wasn’t fair. It wasn’t fair that we were falling in love so soon, and having so much fun together. If you can call a murder investigation fun, but...but it was. It was the most wonderful feeling I’ve ever had in my life."
Laura looked up, sighed and furrowed her forehead in a puzzled frown. "And that’s the weird thing about it," she said, "because they sent him to investigate, umm…”
“What happened to Ben,” Shakita finished.
“Did you know Ben?” Laura asked.
Shakita looked down for a moment and sighed. “Yeah, he was one of my mentors. He was pretty high up here on Zartha but we couldn’t tell you his true identity. And he was never allowed to tell you the truth himself, not at any time during your whole entire life. The queen assigned him to look after you, when you were a baby. We all loved him, and we’re all gonna miss him, but he’s in a better place now.”
Laura had to fight to keep from crying again. This was truly an emotionally trying day and night.
“Jay took command from the moment he came to the pizza shop,” Laura continued. “He told me he would do everything he could to get to the bottom of why that weird lady killed Ben. And I was in his world, with his boss and all his little alien buddies - especially those worms! They cracked me up, they were so sweet…” And now she could not hold back the tears. Laura began to weep again, softly.
“I can’t believe this! I’ve only been with him for a few hours...and I love him…I love that man!” She began to cry harder. The medallion around Shakita began to glow red.
“Shakita, that man damn near saved my life. Jay rescued me from those crooks tonight, the ones that busted into that apartment. He fought this one guy off with a bunch of pipes. Those guys thought they had me, but I wasn’t scared. I knew Jay would come and save me. I knew it.”
“I read the report, I know all about what happened,” Shakita said. “Jay did the best he could. He’s a professional and he acted with honor and excellence tonight. That’s what I’m tryin’ to get to. There’s a reason why those guys and that lady were after you. And there’s a reason why YOU knew deep down inside of you that Jay would save you. There’s a reason, a BIG reason, why all this is goin’ down, Laura –“
“Shakita, look, I HAVE to have that man in my life. I’ll just DIE if I can’t be with him!”
“Girlfriend, you see… that’s my point. You don’t know how right you are about that. You DO need to have Jay in your life, Laura! That’s the whole POINT. That’s the WHOLE, entire reason why you’re up here on this planet. Because you DO love Jay, and Jay loves you. Don’t you see, girl? That’s why you’re here.”
“See, Jason – that’s his real name – his mom is pretty damn close to pure blood Zarthan. In order for the prophecy of the Light of Zartha to be fulfilled, a male child – a boy—had to be born to a female in the divine royal bloodline of our family so he could grow up, become a sun god, marry the Light and have a son or a daughter, a prince..the Child of the Light. You followin’ me?”
“I think so, Shakita.”
“Jason was that child. Jason was that boy. We believe he is the reincarnation of our great Lord T’ola’an himself.
“So, therefore, Jay IS the Sun of Zartha.”
“whoa…” Laura mused.
“That’s right, your boyfriend, my cousin, Jason LeRoi Tolan Edwards, is royalty to this planet, Laura. His mother just so happens to be the Queen of Zartha, and I’m the chief ambassador. I’m the connection between here on homeworld and the family’s operations in New Orleans.”
“whoa…” Laura mused again. “JAY is royalty? But...he’s an agent...a - COP!…”
“Well he ain’t gonna be a cop for much longer. He IS a sun god, Laura. I’m serious. A sun-god. Like in the comic books. He can do all the things we can do and more. He has the power of, what is it, somethin’ like five or six thousand high-intensity solar gamma ray bursts just waitin’ to come out of him RIGHT NOW. Each one of those bursts ALONE is capable of puttin’ out 30 times more energy in one second than the sun back in Earth’s galaxy puts out in 100,000 years.”
Laura gasped. “Well, if I’m the Light of Zartha, then...what power do I have?” she asked with some trepidation and hesitation.
“Way the hell more than that,” Shakita said with a serious grin. Laura gasped again, shocked. “Trust me girl, you DO. That’s why Serleena and her crooks were after you tonight! That’s why they busted into the apartment to kidnap you! Jay didn’t know it, but he was protecting the Light and that Light is YOU. And really it’s him too. You see, your Light is part of the Big Bang energy they talk about in school. Our family’s sun energy, T’ola’an’s energy, is a part of that same Light, a pretty big part. The sun ain’t nothing but a big huge ball of Light.” And here Shakita began to get animated as if she was talking about something wonderful and joyous happening. “The Light people and the Sun people, both those tribes, are on the MOVE, girl. They are coming closer together. Here on Zartha they are marrying each other more and more. They recognize and honor each other’s version of the Light. We NEED to keep that going, as much as possible.
“So now that you’re up here safely on Zartha - thanks to some excellent detective work by Jay, now HE needs to get up here too. Because really Jay’s the one who needs to be up here just as much as you do - if not MORE so.
“And he needs to get up here pretty soon or his power will get too much for the Earth to handle. He needs to come up here and marry you, be the leader of his people that he was BORN to be...that means to rule right alongside you as king of this planet and help you give birth to the Children of the Light.”
Laura could not believe what she was hearing. “I’m... I’m - I was planning on going to film school...I have plans for my life, Shakita. I want a career in Hollywood. I want to make films.”
“Films? Girl, you will go through enough drama just being queen. And Jason will have enough drama being king. Enough for a million movies.
“Look, Laura, I’m tellin’ you, girl, whatever plans you had for your life, they just changed. Big time. Even if Serleena hadn’t messed things up, we still would have sent for both of ya, the plan was already in the works. Serleena, that’s the lady who killed Ben, Serleena got tipped off to the plan somehow and we had to rush all this a little bit as a result, but at least we got you here.”
“You mean Jay would have still met me at Ben’s?”
“The plan was for Ben himself to send both of y'all up here!”
Laura looked stunned. Shakita just smiled and went on.
“All the knowledge of the entire universe is already IN you. There’s no need for you to even go to college. And you can forget about going back to Ben’s. That’s OVER. Officially. Effective immediately.
“Laura, you got the power to create entire PLANETS - even galaxies! Why would you want to fool around with making movies? Why would you want to fool around with making PIZZA?”
Laura looked disappointed for a second.
Shakita continued. “Let it go, girl, just let it GO. You and Jay have a destiny to fulfill. You have to get Jay up here to Zartha to help you rule his people. The people here on Zartha need him to show them how to get it done around here. They already know who he is. They consider him a divine prince. They love that man, Laura.”
“All right, let me get all this straight,” Laura said. “You mean to tell me that Jay is a Zarthan, these people are HIS people, and he’s SUPPOSED to be up HERE, too, with ME?”
Shakita smiled a bright smile of confirmation. Laura’s disappointment melted into a deep smile of joy that rose up from within her. This night, which just an hour before was the saddest of all nights, was turning out to be one of the happiest in her entire life.
The rain outside let up a little bit.
But Laura had some further questions.
“Shakita, how will Jay know all this? Does Jay even know? Is he even aware of what he is?”
“No, baby, Jay does not know. This whole night, being with you, right now to his mind it’s just another murder case involving aliens. Just another day on the alien crimes unit. To him, officially, you are not his future wife and queen; you are nothing more than a witness to a murder that needed to be protected. The Knowing in him is probably making him question that right about now.
“You see, Jay’s bosses have kept the truth about his heritage, his identity, from him all these years, since he was a little kid.
“But we in the family knew. Our mothers, and that includes YOUR mother, too, Laura...they wanted to bring him up, to raise him up the right way, to teach him that he was really Lord T’ola’an, but the MIB got scared. They thought Jay might grow up and abuse his power and try and take over the universe. The MIB took Jay from his mother and forced her to go into exile. They threw her in JAIL, girl.”
“Oh, my God…why? What did she do?”
“Well, she really kinda agreed to it...there was a lot of internal drama goin’ on here on Zartha at the time and she didn’t have full control of the government, she barely had control of herself. She was in a deep, deep depression and was tryin’ to run a planet and keep it from destroying itself... It was a big, big, big mess.
“They wanted to keep Jay from being initiated into the secrets, the rituals.., So we had to wait. We were forced to allow him – and you - to be taken from the family and grow up outside of our love, our influence…We were just waiting for the right time. And that time is pretty much right about now.
“What’s more, you SHOULD feel like you’ve known him your whole life - because you HAVE.”
“What do you mean by that?”
“We made sure to MAKE you and Jay fall in love.”
“Say what?” Laura had an incredulous smile on her face.
“Yeah, girl, when you were a baby, the High Command sneaked you down to New Orleans. Jay’s mother made him hold you in his own arms.”
“Oh, my God…Is that true?” An excited grin flashed on Laura’s face. Jay KNEW me when I was a BABY?
At that moment a wave of mental activity immediately hit Laura like a subway train. Images flooded her mind that had not surfaced in twenty-five years. She gasped hard and stared at Shakita, who only responded with another giggle, which suggested she actually knew what was happening inside Laura’s brain.
“Oh my GOD. I think I actually remember that. Oh my GOD. That little boy I played with…that was JAY!. I think I remember that. Oh my God. I always knew him!
“Why, Shakita? Why was I playing with Jay when I was a baby?”
“To get the Knowing started - W’aa s’ala’ack.”
“You keep mentioning this Knowing. What is that?” Laura asked.
“The Knowing is when two people with Zarthan blood meet up and all kinds of special changes happen in them, romance changes, spiritual changes, hormone changes, body changes, the whole nine yards. Changes that bind one to another in love and matrimony. When the Knowing begins, it NEVER ends, until their spirits join with one another and return to the infinite stars from which they came.
“The Earth can’t handle two people of high blood having the Knowing. The electromagnetic field on Earth ain’t strong enough to handle it. The love energy is way too damn intense. It’s like an electromagnetic superwave. It messes with all the ionic charges in the atmosphere, the ozone layer and all that stuff, and causes rains and floods and earthquakes and stuff like that. That’s why you had to leave ASAP, and that’s why Jay has to leave as well.”
“So Jay and I were meant to be together…” Laura’s eyes began to glow again and there was a deep, delicate smile.
“From jump, my sister.”
“Well, I guess this beats getting into NYU. This is the greatest night of my life. So what do we do now?”
“We have to wait a couple of days. Let him miss you a little bit, let him cry a little bit, so the Knowing gets stronger and stronger inside him and he can’t stand to be without you one more day. Jay will begin to remember who he REALLY is, slowly, little by little, and he will freak out about that.
“Now also, it’ll let you get used to things up here. You have a lot of training to go through yet. We need to start activating all YOUR powers. When the time is right, YOU have to actually send for Jason. YOU have to send for him. Send that same car down there you came up here in. You’re the only one on this whole planet with the authority to do it. You’re the queen-elect, the bride-to-be. I can’t do it, not even Jay’s mom can do it, and she’s the queen.
“Then the Men in Black MUST tell him about his heritage, they’ll see that his energy is off the damn charts and they HAVE to let him come up here. They have to let him come home.”
Laura showed a bit of caution here. “But what if they try to resist? What if they don’t tell him I sent for him? What if they don’t let him come here? What if they try to keep him in that...police job?”
“Girlfriend, look,” and Shakita gave one of those sister-to-sister looks. “They HAVE to let him come up here. It’s part of the intergalactic treaty we have with Earth, so they can’t break protocol like that. We have priority with him. We were on earth hundreds of years before they even got started. No, no, no. I do NOT think they want to deal with 2,133 angry Black women or a planet full of 3 and-a-half-million people who have better technology and more power than ANYTHING any aliens from any planet let those people have. OKAY?
“Your man WILL be up here by this time next week. That’s BOND.”
Laura seemed comforted by this but began to wonder…”Shakita, I’m real curious…If Jay is really in love with me, and we’re…bonded, is he making it rain?”
“Girl, the Knowing always changes the ions and shit in the atmosphere, big time. It’s probably raining cats and dogs in Brooklyn right now.”Navigation
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Sun of Zartha