The Atlantean Federation - Cover

The Atlantean Federation

Copyright© 2024 by KKindle

Chapter 58

It turned out that the people with the signs were actually just staunch supporters of the Federation and the signs were welcoming the Federation to their planet. Similar to the crowds that arrived when the Federation revealed themselves on Earth.

Once Mark thought about it, it was probably very similar to when the Atlanteans first showed up on Earth and people flocked from all over the world to the visitor centre they had erected. The difference here was that the general population was obviously aware that there were other civilizations beyond their planet, as first contact had actually happened some time before.

The crowd was wearing masks, mostly, and they weren’t shoulder to shoulder, but they weren’t distanced apart very well as Mark compared the situation at Virgohn with his previous experience during the coronavirus pandemic on Earth in 2020.

Governor Ardala and her security came out of the parliamentary building to greet the group at the base of the large stone staircase. Maren stayed on the shuttle, with the ramp up and the windows darkened. The shuttle dashboard has library access, so she could do other work while staying on the shuttle.

Ardala led them inside and into the council chambers, which was a large rectangular room with 4 tiers, with each tier having 50 desks. Then there was a throne-like chair at the end, with two smaller chairs on each side and then a records table in the front on the lowest level. It was much like a Federation Senate Chamber, except rectangular and had a throne.

Cricket notified Mark, “From what I can tell, the Pro-Fed Party won the election by winning 342 of 351 ridings, it also looks like they require all voters to present identification when they vote, and their online voting system is much like the Federation system, where you can vote in your local election from anywhere in the world at their embassies.

Mark asked Cricket, “Well, that makes me trust the validity of the electoral results a lot more. Is there any chance you can link the library into their information network, or do we need to get Maren?

Cricket said, “We really need to get Maren to do it. I got that info from a drone watching one of their news channels on a television I found in the building.

A man at the front who was sitting in the big throne-like chair then stood up and asked for quiet, which everyone obeyed immediately. Then he started off by welcoming all the new representatives to the council chamber, along with their guests from the Atlantean Federation. He then gestured toward Governor Ardala.

Governor Ardala stood up from her desk just off to the right of front chairs, “Thank you house leader! Fellow members of parliament, our party ran on the promise to contact the Atlantean Federation and to join them if we won, and the people voted overwhelmingly to support this. Yesterday the Federation answered our call, and with us today is Mark Phoenix, the King of the Atlantean Federation and Liyana, his advisor and ambassador and finally Gyges, their security.

The first part of today’s assembly will be them outlining the transition process for Garedon to join the Federation. They have already started by turning their medical bed’s back on yesterday and they are already proving effective against the virus that’s been plaguing our planet and, in most cases, they have also corrected other health issues. Unfortunately, we only have a dozen of their beds, so without help it would take months to treat everyone. With their support, the lives and businesses of our citizens will soon return to normal.”

There was a round of clapping from everyone in attendance, even the few that would’ve been from those ridings where the Pro-Fed party did not win.

The house leader held up his hand, which seemed to signal a call for silence. He then gestured toward Mark.

Mark stood up, “First off, let me welcome you to the Atlantean Federation!”

Apparently that was the wrong thing to say, as several representatives immediately started shouting and carrying on like someone had slapped them, likely representatives of those ridings that were not Pro-Fed.

The house leader held up his hand, but the unruly bunch did not stop their tirade.

He finally stood up and yelled for silence as the security around the perimeter of the room adjusted their stances. He then said, “Like it or not, this was the platform that the elected party campaigned on and the people have voted. Never in our long democratic history have we ever seen such an overwhelming endorsement of any political party. Your future king is speaking, and this is very unbecoming of our people. Might I suggest you refrain yourselves from further outbursts or risk being escorted out of the chamber? There will be an orderly and civilized question period later. Please proceed, my King.”

Mark had sat down, so he stood back up, “As I said, welcome to the Atlantean Federation. I know for many of you there is much uncertainty as the Pro-Fed Party has done all this on their own with no counselling or even the guidance offered by the Federation. Even we are currently not fully aware of their electoral platform and campaign, so we will need to review that.

What I do know is that requests to join the Federation are quite common, from entire planets, to countries, to regions of countries and, after thousands of yahren, we have a very streamlined transition process for this, enriching the lives of billions upon billions of people across 17 planets. On two of those planets there are many political parties similar to the Pro-Fed Party, but they at least have the guidance of our library or have been in contact with us about certain issues.

One thing I will tell everybody is ... relax! The transition process is NOT immediate, it is a gradual process that can take up to 25 yahren, although the record is less than one sectar. The people determine the pace of transition; as they get used to one or two Federation technologies, they ask for more. It is up to the government to determine how quickly Federation amenities get implemented, but a good democratic government will listen to the people.

Right now, the quickest way to get a handle on this virus is to identify those that are infected, but the biggest hurdle is because some infected show no symptoms and don’t even know they’re infected! We have a technology that will enable us to put a green glow around people that are infected. When people are glowing, people around them should naturally give them a wide berth, then the rest of the population can go back to life as usual.

I will turn things over to Liyana, our ambassador. She has a presentation that outlines the transition process and what it means to be part of the Atlantean Federation. Her presentation doesn’t take very long, so if you’ll please relax and listen to what she has to say, we can answer questions after.”

The house leader then gestured to Liyana, who put her holocube on the table in front of her and went into her well-practiced spiel.

Once they finished presentation, the house leader thanked her and then opened the floor to questions. Mark thought it would be a free-for-all, but they had a process where they raised their hands and then would only speak once the house leader told them to. Not as efficient as the Federation system, but much better than what we usually see in most government assemblies.

The first question was from one guy that had ranted earlier, “If you guys are so powerful and can detect the infected people and make them glow, how come there haven’t been reports of people glowing?”

Mark laughed, “Without some sort of press conference or warning to the people, we aren’t going to just turn it on, that would frighten people. At least if it’s in the news or online after the press conference, if people go asking, ‘Why am I glowing?’, they’ll be able to get answers. Plus, we can only scan them if they are outdoors.”

With everyone spaced apart and all had removed their masks, Mark asked, “Cricket, is there any infected in the chamber?

Yes, there are at least two!

Mark then continued. “Being the King, I carry a portable device that can do the detection. I can tell you that there are people in this room that have the virus! Would you like a demonstration of how our technology works?”

The man looked skeptical as he said, “Please!”

“Everyone take off your masks, if you don’t already have them removed, please!”

Immediately, two people started glowing green. One was a guy two seats down from the man that had just asked and the other was a guy on the top tier at the back; as everyone gasped and started scrambling away from the two infected people.

Mark said, “Relax, you are all spaced well apart, but you can see how the glow feature encourages people to keep their distance! I would recommend that those two infected people keep their masks on and we’ll get a medivac down here for the next break to get you treated, then for everyone else ... you can lose the masks, you don’t need them! Just give the infected people their space.”

Once everyone, except the two glowing people, had thrown their masks in the garbage cans and settled down, the house leader resumed the question period, signalling one of the other guys that had their hand raised.

“Are you going to do the infected glow thing around the entire world?”

“We could, but it’s a Federation service and only Garedon has requested to join the Federation.”

The house leader then signalled the next person to ask a question.

“I originally opposed the Federation, as many of the rumours were that we would have to conform to your way of living immediately. After seeing your presentation, I am now in favour of joining the Federation, but I think we need to provide the people a lot more information about it.”

“I agree 100%! In fact, on all the other planets I mentioned that currently have pro-Federation political parties, we have already linked our library into their public information networks, so that anyone on the planet can read through all our laws and find out pretty much anything they want about life in the Federation.

What I propose is to allow my communications specialist to connect a device to whatever public information network you have that will allow anyone to access our library. Then we do a press conference, inform them that infected people will glow and where they can go to get treated and cured; everyone else just needs to give glowing people their space. Then we tell everyone how to access the Federation library to read about life in the Federation and about our laws, which will come into effect in one sectar of the virus being eradicated, our laws are fairly simple and common sense, not bloated like laws often get because you don’t properly enforce the existing laws you have.

As outlined in the presentation, part of the transition process is establishing outreach centres in every town and outreach hubs in the larger cities. A new building like an outreach centre or outreach hub is a more obvious place for people to go for Federation services, plus it will allow us to build much needed medical, transportation and security infrastructure rapidly in every municipality.”

The house leader then chose another person for the next question, “I understand why security, medical and transportation services are first, since they are essential services as explained in the presentation, but that is going to cost many people their jobs. There’s going to be a lot of angry people.”

“From what the Governor has told me, many people have already lost their jobs or businesses, the outreach centres help communities by providing food, washroom facilities, recycling, access to the library, medical and being a transportation hub. It also provides offices for mayors and municipal officials to relieve the taxpayers from having to foot the bills for utilities, maintenance and so on. We also allow existing security personnel the opportunity to go through a sped up training program, as they will need to enforce the Federation laws, and we provide a lot of help in that regard. The way we enforce the Federation laws, there will be a dramatic decrease in crime and security will be very busy.

As for anyone that loses their jobs ... the Federation is about living, not working! Yes, everyone will have to do some work, but throughout the Federation most jobs are only a few centars each day. Volunteers handle public service jobs that are paid by donations or taxes and require no skills or experience. This system keeps people involved in their community and gives them a sense of pride, plus makes sure that everyone makes some money. It also makes for better places to live ... would you trash your community, if you were the one that’s tasked with cleaning it up and maintaining it?

As for transportation ... yes, transportation between municipalities is no longer needed, but in larger centres people still need transportation to the outreach centres. Like I said, it’s up to you, the government, to decide which Federation services and technologies get rolled out and when.”

The house leader then signalled the next question.

“I used to be a public servant, I take some offence to you saying anybody can do public service jobs with no experience. Not all public service jobs can be done with no experience or skills! What do we do about them?”

“My apologies if it offended you, I intended no offence! With the level of technology and development on this planet, I don’t doubt there are many jobs that require some skill to do them properly, especially for maintaining your archaic networks of roads, power plants, electrical grids, water and waste management systems, and stuff like that! None of those exist in an established Federation community, but if it requires a skill or competency, that’s where private companies with employees that have those skills come in. This is part of why we allow up to 25 yahren to integrate everything the Federation offers. It’s not just to make life better for citizens, it’s also for the health and well-being of your planet!”

The question period continued for a while longer, with most of the questions being details that were explained via the library.

As the assembly broke for lunch, Mark had Maren link the Federation library to Virgohn’s information network. After lunch, the assembly was going to sit down and go through the Federation library with Liyana, while Mark and Ardala were going to do a press conference to announce the Federation arrival and the plan to eradicate the virus and tell everyone how to access the library to learn more about Federation life and laws.

Lunch was a fairly simple catered affair, mainly just a variety of sandwiches, but they did all the eating in a conference room. A good sign that the government wasn’t being entitled and wasteful.

Ardala, Liyana, Mark, Elise, the Vice Governor, and the two infected men went outside onto the steps of the parliamentary building where there was already a group of reporters waiting. Upon seeing the Governor, they started assembling as the Governor approached the podium that was built into the midpoint of the steps.

The Governor approached the podium, “People of Garedon, the Pro-Fed Party started shortly after the Atlantean Federation visited our planet and showed the wonders of their technology years ago, but our former governments tried to go it alone ... and look at where that has got us!

If elected, our goal has always been to join the Atlantean Federation, even though we had never actually spoken to them, since the previous Federation representative said the option was always on the table if we ever changed our minds. With the global viral pandemic and the subsequent economic disaster started by the former government, we won the election with an overwhelming majority. Then, upon the transition of power, I sent a message to the Atlantean Federation, and they were more than happy to help.

With me today is Mark Phoenix, the King of the Atlantean Federation. Please welcome him to the podium.”

There was a round of applause as Mark stepped forward, “I officially welcome Garedon to the Atlantean Federation. We will sit down with your government and go over the transition process. I realize it worries some of you that the Federation is just going to come in and immediately change everything, but you can relax, it is not a sudden hard transition that is going to change everything you know. Federation living takes time to transition completely into, as it takes time to rebuild all the archaic infrastructure that you currently rely on. Typically, the transition process to full Federation living can take up to 25 years, although some planets have done it in under a year. You get to determine your own transition pace!

Effective immediately, everyone can now access our library, which is THE resource for living in the Federation. It explains all our laws, how things work and pretty much anything you could want to know about life in the Federation.

The only immediate change that comes from joining the Federation is access to our medical and security technology, so you will see a drastic reduction in crime when that begins, but our first goal is to combat this contagion that’s been crippling your economy and lives.

Years ago, the previous Federation representative illegally sold Garedon twelve of our medibays, which are currently scattered around the country. The medibays have proven they can easily remove the virus and, with Federation citizenship, we can immunize you against this virus and every other contagion and sickness the Federation has ever encountered, plus fix many other health issues you may have.

I’ve been told that governments have been trying to get a handle on this virus by asking you to wear masks and keep a certain distance apart, which is an excellent step when you can’t tell who is infected! Well, it isn’t difficult for us! As a demonstration of our technology, we will put a green glow around anyone that is infected with the virus, with a caveat that our technology can only detect you when you are outdoors, so please go outside, without a mask, as soon as you can to get scanned.”

There were gasps as not only the two men on the steps, but one of the news crews also glowed, both the reporter and the cameraman.

Cricket, can you dispatch two medivacs to my location please, we have 4 people that need to be treated.

Mark continued. “For any employers and business owners, I would highly recommend that you and all your staff step outside to get scanned and then do not let any customers or staff that are glowing green into your place of business. If you follow those simple steps, we should have this virus under control within a few days’ time!

If you glow green, keep your distance from others, then make your way to a medibay location for treatment. For remote locations and small towns, we will bring in medical shuttles from across the Federation to assist in this process and for any areas with large numbers of infected, we will use our shuttle busses to transport them up to our ship for treatment. By tomorrow we should have a schedule and listing of treatment locations available.

Again ... Welcome to the Atlantean Federation!”

Ardala stepped back up to the podium beside Mark, “Thank you, my King! Once you’ve been outside to get scanned and do not glow green, you can take off your masks and return to normal living, you’re not infected.”

There was a collective gasp of relief as they removed their masks.

The reporters all began asking questions so Ardala pointed at one reporter and he asked his question, “So tomorrow we’re going to have spaceships flying in from all over the universe to help us out?”

Mark answered, “Yes, there are currently 17 planets in the Federation and every planet is going to send whatever shuttles and personnel they can spare to help with this. Becoming part of the Federation means you have a lot of friends out there!”

That same reporter then asked another question, “I remember when the other Federation guy was here, he said we were remote and that it took a month to reach us. How are you getting here so fast?”

Mark laughed, “Well, the Federation has advanced since then. One of our latest innovations is the ability to travel between what we call hyperspace gates. It used to take 21 days of faster than light travel to get here, whereas the trip last night took less than a minute.”

Another reporter asked, “Will we be able to travel to the other planets?”

“Of course! Citizens are welcome to travel to any Federated planet and now with the hyperspace gates, even the most remote planets are easily accessible.”

As two medivacs swooped in and landed beside Maren’s, Governor Ardala interrupted, “Sorry to cut this short, I know you all likely have lots of questions, but the government also has questions and the Federation probably has lots of questions for us as well. We’ll hold a press conference again tomorrow morning when we have determined where the treatment locations will be.”

Liyana and Elise went back into the building, while Mark and Ardala, along with the two infected politicians, continued down the steps to the cordoned off area with the shuttles, Mark then asked the infected news crew to get treated in the other. The medical technicians simply asked them for identification before putting them into the medibays, theoretically making them Garedon’s first Federation citizens.

While they were waiting for the treatments to finish, Mark noticed Ardala appeared distracted and almost uneasy, so he suggested sitting down in Maren’s shuttle while the others were being treated. Once inside, he asked, “It seems something is bothering you ... are you having second thoughts now?”

“About joining the Federation ... No! I seriously thought that if we joined the Federation, I would more or less be resigning and the Federation would take over.”

Mark laughed. “Nope, that’s not the way it works! When a region or planet joins the Federation, we leave the people that have a knowledge of the history, people and land to govern. Therefore, we push setting up outreach centres and then recommend the government move into those facilities. It puts you closer to the people you are governing, it gives you self-sustainable buildings that aren’t a burden on the taxpayers, plus it gives you access to our computer systems, communication network and library, so there’s lots of help with governing and implementing Federation services.”

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