So I ask you please not to use without my permission, which is pretty much a formality but it won’t cost anything to be polite.

The Imago is the beautiful last stage of another miracle of evolution that aspires above all else to transcend its own watery universe and to fly beyond into a form of heaven, just as we do ours. In the real scheme of things, the Imago must be every bit as important as we think we are and possibly more so, in that it is closer to its ultimate evolution than we are.

The same would apply to those arrived from Ochre, whose sole reason for existence becomes as startlingly clear as our need to catch up on the likes of Imago, and further stir evolution within ourselves by singing our own songs of aspiration, simply because we can. Destiny is not deaf to song but is guilty of being far more selective out there in the Draco Constellation than here at home, and even more selective with Grace Reid.

She celebrates being thirty years old with the gusto typical of any woman who has spent the last twelve years raising a son without his father, while being discredited as a dangerously insane pariah who can’t seem to decide which species she belongs to. But then, it was never going to be easy playing the part of a lone superpower facing down all others that play major and bit parts in the re-incarnation of Global Corruption they would like to call tomorrow.

Grace was too naive to remember that she needed to occasionally show her fangs to maintain a fearful image, but it seems that even virtual alien relationships can grow cracks wide enough to be open to abuse.

Grace is offered her own route to virtual immortality and also immunity from the torment of deluded demons, who have constantly demanded that she deliver the impossibility of an all inclusive tomorrow, regardless of Destiny’s timeless and meticulously laid plans.

The final book of The Catalysis Trilogy further exposes the delusion that we were ever as important as we thought we were in this tiny section of universe that we will most likely just populate temporarily. Destiny will decide our longevity and will not be guided by merit alone, which in our case is probably just as well.

The vastly altered reality that we awoke to after Ochre (Book 2) appears ripe for an imposed future that will perpetuate the entropy of chaos and conflict, regardless of who we really are or what we do. But just as there will always be greater and lesser people than us, some of us are either more or less evolved than others. So our conflict has always been between the two species that we have both evolved to become and which can no longer live as one.

We were guilty of looking at evolution in isolation and not as an agent of an often wilful Destiny that doesn’t always apply logic. It does seem that our flawed and therefore inferior factions continue to exert implausible influences over what shape Destiny should ultimately give tomorrow. Such an unlikely symbiosis suggests that our survival was never going to be an automatic gift, and that the odds are now being stacked one side.

Only a select few have been assured virtual immortality that comes with unexpected access to limitless stars and automatic protection against extermination by a single cause. Something for those of us who remain behind to ponder along with our more mundane and fragile futures. 

Just as the question, “Are we alone in the universe?” was unambiguously answered in Catalysis - Book 1, we are further reminded that we are far from being the masters of our own destiny.

Soshyant is the untimely son of Grace and Berhane and has inherited his parents gift of almost limitless mental travel that could also be a form of genetic insanity. He can see and then enter the time between Planck Frames or Staccato Frames, as the Spoke Artificial Intelligences, who are his only friends, call them. Soshyant no longer considers himself a child and has grown protective of his mother, who he prefers to keep at home.

Home is a giant alien star ship twenty two kilometers across and only recently arrived from Ochre, or so they say. That was before his time but Good Speed is where he has spent most of his childhood, especially since the governments clamped down on the Human Conventions. That’s where people choose to live under The First Law and independent of the ‘so called’ Global Economy. 

The problem with Soshyant is that he was born before his time, or so his father said. But even at eighteen and apparently autistic, Grace Reid was not someone to be denied what she wanted.

Catalysis and Ochre condensed the history of a minute fraction of space time only 50,000 lightyears across to give the human perspective of it. Imago is the splash that now takes it further into the universe, with real  and flawed people on board.

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Imago - Finale of The Catalysis Trilogy

Published October 2016   ISBN - 978-0-9926814-3-2

Not all tomorrows will survive today. However, Destiny has gone to great lengths to deliver what She believes is ours to us.

A few words about the IMAGO Cover Artwork.

First of all, no Mayflies were injured or illegally detained during the making of this cover. That’s not to say we didn’t piss one or two off in the process.

Gina and I went out on the 3rd of May 2016 to gather our digital specimens and because the book wasn’t due to be published until October, we transferred them to a deep freeze viz a viz: a flash drive.

Because the Imago stage of Mayfly only lives for a maximum of three days, I didn’t expect to get a second chance because sunny Mayfly Days are few and far between in Ireland and I contented myself with the belief that we had exactly what we wanted in our collection. So I continued writing while Gina spoiled me and also undertook the editing.

As soon as I saw our preferred candidate, I had to give him a name and called him ‘Imagin’ because he fit the picture I wanted so precisely, even though I had to warp him a little in preparation for the artwork that would wait until September 2016. That’s because I dread working with Gimp only once a year. You see, I tend to forget a lot of what I learned from doing a cover the previous year.

That can happen when you put something complicated away for twelve months at a time.

I think ‘Imagin’ is a simply fabulous specimen and we were delighted to be able to immortalise him just as we did those others who survived the many catastrophes and disasters that make up The Catalysis Trilogy.

The biggest problem for me was how to get his water distorted reflection into the cover because the water was a separate exposure. Sometimes, it’s too easy to think too much because the mirrored image of the 3D book cover does the job just nicely, don’t you think?

We’re planning a birthday party cum memorial for him next May 3rd. YAY.