(This is an excerpt from my Science Fiction/Comedy novel in progress -- The Adventures of Danger Dave, a story of Galactic Exploration and High Adventure, produced and broadcast by 21st Century Weasel Entertainment.)
One word to sum up a man: his desires, his career, his very reason for existence; also his cue. The galaxy needed a hero. This person would fight the good fight, protect the weak, help those in need, stop injustice, feed the hungry, and bring order to chaos. Such a hero was finally found.
This is not her story.
Until a true Galactic Hero could be found, humanity needed an icon, a scapegoat, a diversion, an escape from reality – in short, an actor to play the part of Galactic Hero.
This is his story.
Dave Doright was born in the early 21st century to wealthy, powerful parents. They claimed upper Manhattan as their home, but they lived in Hackensack, New Jersey under assumed names to give their children a "normal" life. Dave spent most of his youth in a London military school for boys. His education included warfare (blowing things up was fun), chemistry (sorry about the lab and the surrounding four square blocks), history, calculus, and astrophysics (second star to the left – no, Dave – your other left), and diplomacy. Acting lessons were required as an integral part of diplomacy. Dave was a natural actor.
He was given all of the benefits and opportunities available to one of his position in society, except freedom. The explosion of technology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries brought many benefits to society, but at a heavy price. Personal privacy was becoming extinct. Dave eventually graduated and returned to the U.S. He joined the military as an officer in the new Space Corps to escape the prying eyes of Earth – to boldly go into the Jaws of Death, if necessary. However, after 4 years in the Space Corps, Captain Dave Doright was restless and bored. If only he could find a way to explore space and have fun at the same time…
Meanwhile, back at the branch offices of the newly-formed Space Entertainment Division of the all-comedy network 21st Century Weasel, someone had an idea. Now, this was not an unusual occurrence, as ideas continuously spewed forth from the minds of young executives and their pets faster than water spewed from the Hoover Dam. This particular idea, however, appealed to everybody. It was a revolutionary new concept, stolen from several other concepts. It had been well over a century since the Roswell crash. Flying cars were becoming popular for the middle class. After the flying saucers had landed, and completely and utterly destroyed absolutely nothing – not even the UN building, life went on as usual for most of the population. A small percentage, like Dave, actively pursued the new Space Frontier. Many people were curious, but had real lives to live. And so, The Idea was born: a new concept in 3-D television, pioneered in conjunction with space exploration. Fast forward a bit, and "The Adventures of Danger Dave" explodes from New Hollywood, in patented "Better Than Life 3-D"™ technology.
Dave Meets BOB (Binary Omniscient Brain).
"Oww", muttered Dave as he charged through the alien rainforest while trying to keep his legs crossed. "I shouldn’t have had those bran muffins with my Star Luck’s coffee this morning. Computer: Time, please."
"The time is 0932 hours, 2 minutes after your previous request," announced his wrist computer, with a large amount of sarcasm in its voice. Dave couldn’t help being polite to the machine, especially since it acted so darn human, but they could be annoying at times. Who designed it, anyway? Engineers. They never did know when to stop tinkering. I wonder if my new Communications Engineer is the same way?
"Computer: Ship’s Roster. Communications Engineer. Summary."
"Yes, Sir!" snapped the computer. "Coming right up, sir!"
Oh, God, now I’ve offended it. He? She?
"Summary: Communications Engineer Maria Isabella Sophia Santiago. Last reported age: 24. Female. Single. Cancer. Compatibility with you: less than 15%. Not a good choice for a life mate, although…"
"STOP. I did not ask for a matchmaker. Stick to relevant facts, please."
"Relevant to what, sir?"
"She is my new Communications Engineer."
"I know that, sir. Please re-state query."
"Forget what, sir?"
I don’t have time for this, thought Dave, as his stomach and other organs threatened to revolt.
"Shuttle Atlantis, open hatch, extend ramp."
Dave quickly waddled up the ramp and sprinted for the bathroom.
"Set coordinates for rendezvous with Scout Ship Magellan. Hit it…and Hurry!"
Will Dave make it to the bathroom in time? Will his shuttle outrun the Galactic Mafia hot on his trail, or will Dave and his shuttle both explode? Stay tuned to find out, but first, a few important messages from those fine folks who brought you today’s quality entertainment, including Star Luck’s Super Stations – your home away from home. Find coffee, friendly casinos, 4-star hotels, and state-of-the-art entertainment centers, where you can watch Danger Dave 24 hours a day, every day."The Adventures of Danger Dave, Galactic Hero" Copyright © 2000, Carl Erick "Rick" Carlson