Mervin and Mervin were grinning as they thought up a way to lose their guards. The two had already been settled into a hotel room and two guards a blue and a white feline were sitting in chairs by the door. They told them to stay in the hotel room until further instructions were given. Mervin and Marvin however did not want to stay. They wanted to explore and see what the place was all about.
However they had no way of getting out unless they could lose their guards and without their stuff they had no chance. So they were just going to watch the TV. But every channel was about to cover the arrival of the long lost prince. Mervin and Marvin were anxiously waiting their father’s public introduction.
“The King and Queen have just exited the plane and behind them is the long lost prince” Said a voice on screen as the camera zoomed in on Mervin and Marvin’s father and grandfathers. Their father was waving to the crowd although he looked a bit depressed.
Mervin was interested in finding out some things about his father.
“Hey!” he called out to his guards. “Why is everyone making such a big deal out of my dad?”
The white feline was the one to respond. “The population absolutely adores the royal family. The prince was one everyone minds for years when he disappeared. The entire country was mourning him for a long time. A lot of persons held out hope that he was still alive but most accepted that he was dead. Finding out after so long that he was still alive? That must be such a relief although most who remember his disappearance are quite older now. I imagine he is going to be grilled horribly by the reporters over what happened to him.”
Mervin got a good answer but he still wondered. What in the world would make his dad run away from such a marvelous life? He never did hear a valid reason. Something must have happen to his father that made him run away. Mervin then focused on the TV again because his grandfather was at the podium.
“I want to thank everyone involved in helping me recover my son. I have to reveal what really happened in these past twenty five years. My son was kidnapped twenty five years ago by a band of pirates off of his ship. But after finding out who he really was they released him but my son refused to return home. He went into hiding and managed to hide himself in Holy Grace under a false identity. Our efforts to find him were not yielding any results because he did not want to be found. He however did continue to contact us. We kept these details because of the uproar that it would cause and continued to secretly try and find the prince. One week ago our efforts finally paid off and we finally identified him. Today covertly we managed to extract and return him home. He will now address the media and take any questions.” Mervin heard his grandfather say to the crowd. He noticed the crowd had some angry grumbles.
His father took to the mic. “I must apologize for my behavior over the past years. I decided to run from my duties as a prince and I never returned. My actions were unbecoming of one who is to lead the nation. I ran from my duties and caused undue harm and worry to all my subjects and I sincerely apologize for it. I will take any questions now”
“Prince Matthew, Why did you choose Holy grace to hide in?” One reporter asked.
“I found them to be the easiest country to access where no one would think to look for me. Next question please.”
“Prince Matthew, Why did you run away?” Another reporter asked
“I have reasons. But I cannot share them. Next question please.”
“Prince Matthew, The rumors are that you also have children? Any truth to those rumors”
“Yes I have four sons. They will be introduced to the public in few days.”
“Prince Matthew is it true that you tried to murder your father before your disappearance?” another reporter said.
Matthew could not answer such a question. No he could not even acknowledge such a question. He just stood there in silence until his father intervened.
“The Prince is under a lot of stress currently so we are going to end this interview now.” Marcel ushered the prince away from the camera and out of the way. “I will introduce the young Prince’s children in time but for now they are in the country but we are keeping them hidden until further notice. We ask the public to respect that decision and do not seek them out. The royal council will also assemble in regards to whether the prince is fit to lead our country. The prince also has two months to find a suitable spouse or I will choose one for him. He is already twenty years late. Also public appearances will be limited until further notice. If you have more questions please save them for media day.”
The king then walked away from the camera and the video feed cutback to a reporter. Mervin was now more curious than before. What was that question that made his father close up like that?
“Dad was crying. I could feel it. He was crying.” Marvin said out loud. Marvin always had a better feel for emotions than Mervin did so it was no surprise.
Mervin then turned to the guards again. “Did dad really try and kill his father?” He asked the guards. They both looked nervously at each other for a second. “Hey! Answer me!”
The blue feline answered this time. “We do not know if he did. There was a rumor that he tried and failed and that was why he was sent on the cruise. But that was just a rumor. Some people said the prince tried to kill himself and threw himself overboard. No one but some of the royal guards and high ranking officials know what went on just before his disappearance. The public was kept in the dark. Which is quite surprising since we have such free access to nearly everything the royal family does. Who knows what really went on? You should ask your grandparents.”
There was a knock on the door. The guards motioned for the two to hide while they answered the door. Mervin and Marvin hid in the bathroom while the door was answered. They only heard a few muffled sounds and the sound of a lot of bags being brought in. Once the coast was clear they were allowed out of the bathroom.
Mervin and Marvin were excited to see that their stuff from home was brought with them. Marvin quickly went for his computer while Mervin went for his chemistry set. They were both up to their normal mischief in no time. Marvin however wanted more information about what would make his father cry and he knew Mervin was even more interested than he was.
“Marvin.” Mervin whispered to his twin. “I think we can ditch those two and try and find some stuff out. Let’s walk around and try and find out if anyone knows anything. These guys probably aren’t old enough to remember what happened. We should find some older furs that could give us information. I already have a sleep potion whipped up. I just need a distraction. Could you do that?”
Marvin nodded then ran into the bathroom screaming about something getting on his hands. The two guards ran after him to investigate when they reached the bathroom door Marvin threw the potion below them and it knocked them out in no time flat.
“Good work Marvin!” Mervin said. His brother nodded as he walked over the unconscious bodies of their guards.
“You know we could get in real trouble for this.” Marvin had to interject.
“I know. But we are not going to learn anything unless we find out ourselves. Dad and granddad probably won’t tell us anything and we could also find out why dad was in hiding if we are lucky.” Mervin responded.
“I don’t know still seems risky. Let’s at least take our phones. I can program them to work while we start investigating.” Marvin suggested.
“Alright let’s also take some disguises. No one should have a picture of us yet. Let’s go” Marvin said to his brother and then got dressed in the shades of other clothes that they were provided if they needed to leave. They left the hotel room as covertly as they could and went to find the information they wanted.
Meanwhile at his hotel Merlin was listening to a talk show that was talking about the prince’s return. He was pretty interested in the rumors of why his father would not return home. He wanted to learn more but not like this. He was stuck in a motel room somewhere in the city. He was instructed to stay away from the windows and not to answer the door. His guard was out retrieving his stuff and clearing it with the motel manager. He would be here for a few days. Merlin was unsure of why his brothers needed to be separated. But he found his answer when someone on the news mentioned that hotels and motels around the region were being checked for a group of four young boys to try and identify the princes.
Merlin figured that they were separated to try and prevent people from finding them. But why would people want to find them so bad? He needed to find that out. Just then his guard a black dog had brought in his bags with help of some bell boys.
“Hey can I ask you a question?” He said to the dog.
The dog put his hand in the air as he paid the bell boy. “Yea sure.” The dog answered after making sure no one could hear him.
“I heard a lot of persons are searching for the me and my brothers. Aside from the obvious reasons why would they want us anyway?” He inquired.
“I suppose you do not know much of what goes on here seeing as you are from Holy grace. We are a target for a lot of terrorist who absolutely hate the way our country is. If they could get a hold of a member of the royal family they could bend the king to their will as he loves his family more than his position. Well there is another trait of the royal family that everyone wants them for but…” The dog paused
“But? What trait is that?” Merlin inquired.
“I guess you probably have not used it. The royal family has always been the smartest furs in the country. And they have been the most innovating computer programmers in the last seven hundred years.” Merlin was stunned that was a very amazing revelation. “Many businesses would kill just to have a piece of a program written by a royal family member. Outsiders want their experience and knowledge since Gaskland is home to the largest information sector. Your father is a good example. He managed to outwit hundreds of the world’s best computer techs and it took his own father to crack his code and find him. It is a testament to their skill and the reason why outsiders have trouble getting citizenship without a long waiting period.”
“Why would programming skills matter when becoming a citizen?” Merlin asked.
“Well it is the reason you guys are here and not in the inner sanctum. There are five steps to take to become a citizen. Application, validation, implantation, verification and completion. This applies to you and your brothers because you guys were born and raised outside of the city. When someone applies to be a citizen here. They have to get the usual background checks and documentation. Once that is validated they can live in outer sanctum but cannot enter the inner sanctum. That is until they have a neuron implanted in them. It takes time for someone especially an older person to get used to having a neuron in their head seeing how it is a huge piece of technology. Everyone who has one needs to know skills that are basic to us but advanced to other countries. Once they get hooked up to the network and have adjusted to life with a neuron they can enter the city and verified and complete becoming one.”
“I heard dad say something about us having neurons and granddad say that would make things faster. He even said he activated ours. What are Neurons anyway?” Merlin inquired.
“Most outsiders call them a curse. But those who know call them a huge blessing. They are basically a bio chip that is in your brain that connects to the internet and forms a long range and quick connection with machines and other interfaces. The inner sanctum is probably similar to a sci-fi movie from holy Grace. The chips allow us to move around our lives peacefully. Outsiders think we are being mind controlled but that is not true. The neuron has eliminated all crime in the city but that is because of what it does. I basically triples our brain power. If we have a though in our brains the neuron enhances it to a point where could expand on it quickly and see different outcomes. The chip does this for everything. If someone thinks about committing a crime the chip shows them the possible outcomes and the likeliness of failing. With our police force the chances have been zero so no one tries anything. It takes a strong mind to be able to control a neuron but only if it was installed in late years. Neurons are normally installed at birth so the child grows up learning how to use it and adjust to it. By time they grow into a young adult the Neuron is a basic part of their biology. I assume they are waiting to see how well you and your brothers handle them”
Merlin tried to focus now. He wanted to see if he could notice the neuron. Weirdly he did notice something but he always thought it was natural. He realized his neuron was probably semi active his entire life. That was the reason he was so good at algorithms. He was sure he could operate it once it connected.
Slowly he realized he found it in his head. In his thoughts. And now he brought it to the forefront. And soon as he did his eyesight changed. He was looking at the world through a computer screen. There were buttons to interact with certain things so he tried to get it to work with the television. Just by thinking it he changed the TV channel.
“Awesome!” he said out loud.
“That was basic. Try interacting with your laptop. It should be neuron compatible if your father programmed it. Try operating it.” The dog suggested.
“Okay” Merlin focused in on the laptop that his father bought him. The dog was right he could control it. He needed to see how well he could control the neuron. He started up a program and tried to beat his record in speed typing. He opened a word processor and started mind typing. In only thirty seconds he had written a thirty page essay.
“Thirty pages in thirty seconds. Slow but not bad for a first time.” The dog obviously had hooked up to his laptop as well.
“Slow? How fast are you?” He had to ask.
“The average is seven pages per second. I can do eight. The royal family however averages thirty per second.” The dog said to a stunned merlin.
“Thirty times faster? Could anyone’s brain really think of ideas that fast?” he asked.
“I said it before. The neuron enhances our ability greatly. You will get used to it soon.”
Merlin turned back to his computer he was going to spend some time learning what the hell this neuron was and how he could use it to the fullest potential. He already knew he was going to enjoy it here.
Meanwhile Marshal was still being driven to his hotel. He was being taken to a remote cottage on the beach. He had no idea why but for some reason his injuries would cause alarm and give him away almost instantly. So they were going to keep him out of common sight. The beach where the cottage was is a private beach for members of the royal family and high ranking politicians most of which were trusted so they would not expected any trouble.
But Marshal could care less about where they were hiding him than why he could not see Andy. Andy had already been treated and was about to taken into by a refugee camp. Apparently he was being interviewed right now and rumors were already spreading that he has a connection to one of the prince’s so if Marshal went for a visit he would be discovered quickly. He still did not understand why being discovered was such a bad thing. He was a prince. A freaking prince! He should be able to where he wanted. What was the reason he needed to go into hiding?
He was told that in coming days he and brothers would be assessed and that their neurons would be activated. He would introduced after his brothers. There was more to being a prince in this country than he knew. He needed to find out. There was a reason they were being hidden from public. Some major reason.
When he arrived at the cottage his luggage was already there waiting for him. He realized all his stuff from home was there. How did they manage to get everything so quick? He looked for his phone to try and contact Andy. He dialed Andy’s number but got no answer. After he hung up his bodyguard a white husky came up and took his phone from him.
“This is traceable. I thought they would have dealt with it but they rushed this one. Just be patient and behave until your grandfather sorts everything out.” The husky ordered him.
“Why do I have to hide? What is it you are keeping from me?” He asked.
“Your situation is special. You are the oldest and that means heir to your father’s throne. You are especially vulnerable. Also if you do not pass the test for citizenship then you will not be allowed to enter the inner sanctum. And your Neuron was not activated yet. It will activate in three days. You will be introduced in one week.” The dog said in an angry tone.
“This sucks. One hell hole to another. But why can’t I see Andy. I should be able to see him!” He demanded again.
“Wow kid. As I said. You should give up on seeing him. That kid right now is a media target. The first kid rescue from Holy grace in over ten years. He probably is being interviewed. How did he get rescued from holy grace? He was rescued as a favor to you! You think that the media has not caught unto that? They already know he is probably dating you! He is probably being watched by anyone who wants to get to you. You are a target. Remember that. The royal family knows all of the nation’s secrets. And you have access to such information. You think the countries who want us destroyed who already have agents stationed in our country will not be mobilizing? They are already out looking for you.” The dog yelled at him.
“Why? There should be no reason. Heck I know nothing about how the country is run or any secrets!” Marshal was quite annoyed now.
“You know everything already. You just are not aware of it. Neurons are valuable. So valuable that few citizens can leave the country once they get them. Those that leave are targeted fiercely. The royal neuron is more powerful and has unlimited access. And guess what? You are not hooked up to the system yet which means you do not have the defenses yet. You saw the power of the royal guards. They can move over three thousand meters in less than a Nano second. Most neuron users can do some sort of the same feet. I can travel five hundred in a second. You cannot do anything like that. You really think a kid like you who cannot do a fraction of things a five year old can will hold up out there. Just sit down and wait.” That was that. The dog refused to acknowledge anymore questions that Marshal might ask.
‘What the hell is this neuron?’ Marshal thought to himself. He needed some information. And the husky was not going to give it to him. He went to his computer. Having unrestricted access to the internet was something new to him. So he was going to use it.
He quickly started up his laptop and noticed something weird. The interface was different and it was already connected to some weird network. That was peculiar. He quickly tried to log into the communication program he wrote for communicating with Andy. He did not know how his code was cracked. It was not as good as Mervin and Marvin’s but his was still way above anything anyone in Holy grace could have figured out. Someone must have helped them. Someone with connections.
Whatever happened to get them caught was the work of someone competent enough to track him down. He should probably try and perform some forensics on his chat program. He started trying to see if anyone accessed it and found a hidden entry in the access logs actually quite a few of them. He started to decode a couple and realized that it was his father accessing his chat.
‘Well that is unfortunate’ he thought to himself. His dad probably knew about him and Andy for a while now probably since they started dating a year and a half ago.
He realized however there was another person to access his program that should not have. And he could not identify then. Something was up this guy managed to hide all details about himself. He should not have been able to enter the program without some sort of permission. His father knew all his passwords so access was easy for him but who else could have done such a thing?
That was a mystery. And it was going to take a more powerful computer than he had to catch this guy. So he gave up and went to watch TV. He turned it a news channel to try and get some information himself.
On the TV right then was a news report about the new refugee’s connection to the prince. They speculated that the prince was probably discovered to be gay as expected. The royal family has been gay for the past three hundred years. But what was interesting was the mention of these kids being the first natural born of the royal family in three hundred years.
‘Natural born? What the hell did that mean?’ Marshal thought to himself. He really wanted to know more. But suddenly the news channel had some breaking news.
There was a report that the new refuge had been taken by a group of terrorist while being transported to a secure facility. That was pretty bold of them but they wanted this guy badly. Suddenly there was message on his computer from Andy. He quickly opened.
‘We have Andy. Ditch your guard and meet us this afternoon at Parachute beach.’ Marshal looked at his guard real quick. Nothing was going to stop him now.