Just starting up another season of Phone Guys. More of the same, of course. Nothing new or different about it.
Hey, it’s nearing Halloween again. How am I gonna do some aliens with a spooky flavor this year? Something less ridiculous than Jack O’Spiders? We’ll how about if the aliens are the victims of the spooky stuff this time:
The planet Tirgal is under attack. The dark hordes of the Hated Dead have broken out of their underworld imprisonment and now the Skeleterrors are rampaging through the cosmos, and the unfortunate homeworld of the Tirglanes.
Tirglanes are a three-legged, three-armed, three-eyed species whose diet is comprised mainly of berries and nuts. They live in tight-knit family units in large stone structures, with the different families doing different jobs in the communities. If a community has any kind of leadership, it is generally a family that has proven themselves skilled as leaders.
Delipo was a typical Tirglane citizen, living in a largish town with a family of garment weavers. But then the Hated Dead arrived and demolished the town, so now Delipo and family are refugees, seeking some place of safety in a world that has none.
Hossak is a warrior on the front lines of the battle against the Skeleterrors. Having served in a number of wars between cities on the planet, Hossak is a skilled veteran, but this fight against the cosmic undead is something unlike anything the Tirglanes have ever seen. Skeleterrors seem to be orbiting the planet, coming down in swarms whenever they have recharged whatever form of energy it is they use. Hossak and the other warriors occasionally do repel the attacks, but it is just as common for the Skeleterrors to just leave after they’ve apparently sated their desire for destruction for a time. Hossak is growing weary of seeing allies die, but refuses to stop fighting.
The figure of a humanoid skeleton should have no inherent use as iconography of death on a world with no humanoids, but it does now that the Skeleterrors have attacked. Cerrikar is a necromancer who uses the symbology of death to power spells, and has found that the use of Skeleterror imagery has unlocked a lot of new spells hitherto unknown on this world. But is this power worth the risk of the utter destruction of the planet? Cerrikar is not sure, but plans to keep using the power until a decision is urgently needed.
A Fact About Tirglanes: Occasionally albino Tirglanes are born and they are considered blessed. Usually trained to become travelling bards, they are rewarded handsomely for their services and treated as honored guests wherever they go. Though many Tirglanes memorize the poems that tell the history of their world, albinos are the ones who know the most.
I don’t know why I didn’t think to look into the Smurfs franchise for a beekeeper sooner. I mean, they have Smurfs for everything. And sure enough, this guy exists:
He exists, but just barely. Beekeeper Smurf appears only in a video game* called the Smurfs Village Game, which means that even the profile on the Smurfs wiki considers him non-canon. As such, there’s not much information. Here’s what I do know:
Beekeeper Smurf is already a Smurf, and lives in a world full of magic and adventure. But sadly, we have no proof that he has ever contributed to the magic or adventure in that world. He appears to just be a mostly decorative feature in the game, and mostly a non-entity in the village. The only very interesting thing about him is that his bees seem to be very small, judging by the size of his hives compared to his three-apples-tall frame. Even the two bees we see hanging around him seem too large for those hives, so either it’s tiny bees or he just has a handful of extremely efficient ones. That’s all we have. He’s got jars of honey, though, so whatever the case, it works for him.
2 Honeycombs out of Five.
*Full Disclosure: I didn’t bother the play this game. That sounds like I’m not doing my due diligence as the world’s foremost Fictional Beekeeper Reviewer, but I say the fact I spent half an hour researching this at all is a sign of my credentials.
And note that this is the last of the 2016-2017 season of Phone Guys. Next week, a new season begins.
The planet designated “01.000” doesn’t know how it came into existence, but it does know lots of things. It is a fully inorganic world, a giant machine that, as far as it knows, has always existed as such, though it understands the unlikely nature of that. In recent times, it has decided to create life, biological life, from scratch, mostly for its own entertainment and experimentation. The results had, for a long time, been rudimentary, but now it wants more. It wants to create a biological entity with enough intelligence to actually converse. To provide new thoughts to the planet that has thought on its own for so long.
Kurnden was the first Biological Intelligence that 01.000 created, originally calling it 02.000. The lifeform, a four-legged creature with tusks, was designed to use sound to communicate and eventually began to develop words for things that 01.000 had not thought needed designations, including giving itself the name Kurnden. It greatly enjoys philosophical thought and discussing the nature of existence, which is exactly what 01.000 was looking for in a companion.
Wanting to replicate the success of the original, Kurnden 2 was cloned from the first, though the process was slightly physically defective. The planetary computer detected these flaws and planned to terminate the creation before it was born. Kurnden argued this, saying that the flaws would make the clone different from the original, and that would provide the new viewpoints that they wanted. Kurnden 2’s flaws, unfortunately, include a shortened lifespan. Kurnden 2 knows it will not live as long as it should, and that knowledge of its own mortality does indeed bring thoughts that had not occurred to Kurnden.
Kurnden 3 was created when the computer planet feared the flaws in Kurnden 2 would require a replacement. As a result, Kurnden 3’s perspective is also quite unique, as it simultaneously feels superior to its flawed fellow clone, but is mournful that it’s “sibling” will die. It provides insight to a kind of cognitive dissonance that the other Kurndens and 01.000 are not familiar with.
A Fact About Kurndens: The Kurndens have no means of reproduction and, at the moment, more of them can only be created by the machine planet 01.000.