A warm sea breeze whispered in Minas’ ears like a lover with sweet secrets to tell. Standing on the terrace of his Knossos II villa, the night glow of an arc light adding an ounce of theater, he embraced the calm safety of a soft and tranquil Cretan night. On the Kefala hill below, the golden glow of the city’s Li-Fi streetlamps reminded him of his early childhood, and of stories his father told of the ancient Keftiu who once thrived here. “All those thousands of years ago, and only now humanity finally emulated the legendary Utopia,” he thought.
A flash of lightning in the distance snapped him back into the present. Eyes refocused, he turned and caught a shadow interrupting the glow of the LEDs. Then, the lithe figure of his wife Kallia appeared from underneath the terrace awning. “Where were you this time?” she asked in a deep motherly tone as she slid behind him on their rooftop pitch overlooking the valley. Minas ventured a big bearded smile as he replied, “Oh, sorry. Was I that detached?” Smiling an all-knowing smile, she winked in sweet condescendence and took his outstretched hand. “Amazing, isn’t it?” Kalli said as they danced a little circular embrace. It was their nightly ritual, you see? Sharing this magic place alongside the ghosts of priests and priestesses paying homage to Crete’s gods.
There are no small parts. Only small actors. – Milan Kundera
Advanced technologies finally spirited the island of Crete to the forefront of modern urban planning concepts about the time Tesla innovations powered up the Greek island’s solar power grid back in the 2020s. The resurgence of Minoan ways surfaced out of a crisis and conflict. Leaders of the Fourth Sphere nations had created a mutation of what 20th-century fascists attempted back in the 1930s and 1940s. But this world conflict was not like the previous one. What stood in the way of global domination nearly 100 years later ended up being small bands of capable individuals, not vast armadas of armor and airplanes.
21st-century capability drawn from reworked ancient technologies powered the individual like never before, but no one could have envisioned how people like Minas’ brother, Dr. Ioannis Liapakis would help rescue freedom via adaptation and learning to overcome by leveraging such knowledge. Early conquests by Fourth Sphere forces were halted by electronic weapons technology 14-year-old tech students could build in a day. Handheld EMP weapons created in the caves of inaccessible southern Crete could down sophisticated aircraft in the right hands, and easily crafted ADAPTIV camouflage made the island’s partisan warriors invisible to the enemy. Dr. Liapakis, a cosmetic surgeon in the peaceful years before the war, evolved his skill set to meet the dire need. But this was years before. The remade Keftiu Thalassocracy explored the inner sea.
Kallia never minded Minas’ being a high priest of daydreaming, not much anyway. The tendency only made sense seeing as how epigenetics inextricably linked the Cretan Foreign Minister to the cataclysmic events of the last great war. Earth’s final military confrontation of 2028-2035 saw Minas’s father Manolis Liapakis command a group of partisans in Crete’s “kill or be killed” defense against the Fourth Sphere globalists, who were bent on squeezing the last drop of resource from Earth. As it turned out, traditional societies like the one on Liapakis’ island were the holdouts, the living glue that held fast against a surge of unrealistic and unsustainable supercapitalism. Kallia and Minas, like many Cretan couples, had a rich history of transformation. And now that the world was finally at peace, the individual became truly free to unfold previously undiscovered horizons.
The Garden is a metaphor for the following: our minds, and our thinking in terms of pairs of opposites–man and woman, good and evil–are as holy as that of a god.” ― Joseph Campbell
The last great war of Earth drifted into distant memory quickly, especially in a world where 12 months had become a digital lifetime. New Knossos and the other Cretan cities that dotted the island’s rugged landscape have come to reflect the irony of humankind’s circular path. Age upon age, humanity had finally returned to that true era of peace and prosperity the Minoans enjoyed. Their ancient Keftiu rituals, traditions, culture, and technology became manifest once again, and Minas Liapakis’ generation was the first to enjoy this near-perfect world in over 4,000 years. The mysteries archaeologists like Knossos excavator Sir Arthur Evans brought into the light, had been deciphered by a new crop of archaeologists. When the adventurous archaeologists Drs. Kristoukis and Driessani unearthed a key to the perplexing Phaistos Disc, the Minoan ritual, and power was unlocked.
All this discovery and the transformation of Crete island, especially the resurgence of Minoan ways, surfaced out of crisis and conflict. Leaders of the Fourth Sphere nations had created a mutation of what 20th-century fascists attempted back in the 1930s and 1940s. But this world struggle was not like the previous one. What stood in the way of global domination nearly 100 years later ended up being small bands of capable individuals. 21st-century technology and knowledge powered the individual like never before, but no one could have envisioned how people like Minas’ brother, Dr. Ioannis Liapakis would help people adapt and overcome by leveraging such knowledge. Early conquests by Fourth Sphere forces were halted by electronic weapons technology 14-year-old tech students could build in a day. Handheld EMP weapons created in the caves of inaccessible southern Crete could down sophisticated aircraft in the right hands, and easily crafted ADAPTIV camouflage made the island’s partisan warriors invisible to the enemy. The otherworldly knowledge of the legend of Keftiu put an end to the old order.
Now the nights are serene, as Minas and his wife held hands on the terrace overlooking the marvel or Knossos II. The soft tantalizing Lyre notes of the kritika rose up to their ears from the central plaza of the palace below. The couple could just make out the colorful traditional costumes of the people dancing the Syrtos, with their hands joined in a collective bond. Neither of them pondered just how much this new world owed to those cryptic Keftiu of the Bronze Age. And as the night crept on, they stared glossy-eyed out into the pervasive peace of another Cretan night. As they embraced under a harvest moon, Minas’ thoughts drifted once again into the past, where the final mysteries still clung to the rewritten pages of history.
“Do you think it will last forever,” Kallia whispered, her lips close to Minas’ ear. “I pray it will, I pray it always will,” Minas replied. Leaning his head against hers, the pair cut a perfect silhouette that embraced the moonlit sepulcher above the city.
Next week – “The Phaistos Key”
Photo credit: Statuette of a snake goddess courtesy the Museum of Fine Art Boston (MFA).