By the same author:
The Genesis Enigma
‘When an amazing discovery in the Middle East raises questions about
evolution and seems to offer a solution to impending environmental disaster, the
Arabs, US and Vatican are among those desperate for a piece of the action... In
a word: Exciting’...............The Gold Coast Bulletin Newspaper
Book Review, December ’06
‘You have detailed one of the most interesting and
fascinating plot lines we have been privileged to read in a long, long time.’.......
Author and Publisher, George Shaddock of London Circle Publishing, California,
LiFE Award: Literature for environment
The Genesis Enigma
by Jim Sampson.
“This philosophical thriller demonstrates that humanity
and indeed our planet is facing environmental ruin that can be traced back to
the psyche of humanity itself. It is one thing to fix the direct problems before
us of fossil fuel consumption and contamination of our atmosphere, but it is
another to fix the human psyche itself; so bent on destroying our planet and
everything else on it. This exciting story clearly demonstrates a definite link
between environmental degradation and human violence, greed, over-population,
religious and racial paranoia and economic and ecological vandalism, and
concludes that a commitment has to be made now by all of humanity to avoid
planet earth’s environmental collapse.”
9.30 p.m. Santa Monica Private Hospital,
Horrendous storms lashed the coast of California
creating total havoc. Sixty-three days of merciless mayhem with worse still to
come before it peaked. Massive flooding, the likes of which were being compared
to Noah’s fabled tale, and murderous mudslides just added to the chaos. Over
seventy-five percent of the state was without power. Traffic in the air and on
the ground, along with virtually all business, had been brought to near
standstill with emergency services stretched to breaking point. With nine
hundred and sixty-five people already confirmed dead, there was no end in sight.
People huddled in their homes or on their rooftops, apartment dwellers crammed
down on the lower floors; with no elevators, no stairwell lighting, most were
without utilities of any sort.
The California storms were among countless
others relentlessly battering the entire globe, with over eight million dead
worldwide to date. This unprecedented chaotic weather was a direct result of
upper atmospheric pollution, an aftermath of massive volcanic eruptions in
Antarctica that almost overnight had accelerated global warming to this
Santa Monica Private Hospital was privileged; it
had a generator big enough and with enough fuel to sustain normal operations,
for up to a month. On the ninth floor, environmental scientist Dr Judy Chapman
lay motionless on her bed in a luxurious suite that normally had a panoramic
view of the Santa Monica beach and rugged Californian coast. Outside, the
monstrous storm raged in sweeping motions, the howling wind and torrential rain
bombarding her double-glazed window, obliterating any chance of even a glimpse
of the otherwise picture-book coastal scene. Intermittent brilliant lightning
flashes were accompanied by horrific claps of thunder that shook her bed, and
made the room look almost demonic. She lay there, the storm’s violence her only
constant companion, hoping that this terror was not an omen for the final
operation to mend her crushed spine, scheduled for 6:00 a.m. the next morning.
The gale outside reminded her of that fateful
day such a short time ago, when the treacherous and mountainously stormy
Antarctic seas heaved their plucky little ship one too many times, bringing down
the forward cargo crane, pinning her and cracking her spine.
She struggled to cast that terror out of her
mind and away from the storm, instead trying to focus on the visit earlier that
day of her husband and two teenage children. They had all been there on her
rescue ship when the crane came crashing down and without their quick thinking
she would not have survived at all. Since the horror of the final days of the
Antarctic research mission, not a moment had gone by without her constant
evaluation of what else could have been done to save the lives of other
scientists from their team.
Judy’s only comfort from that ordeal was that
Mother Nature, in unleashing her fury on the world, had opened the eyes of
mankind to the delicate and frail balance of planet Earth’s environment, and its
ability to sustain life as we know it. This violent warning had mobilized
humanity, and every country on earth was now screaming for critical action to be
taken immediately to combat the environmental catastrophe caused by man-made
The pivotal part she had played and the
sacrifice made on her recent Antarctic mission had earned her world recognition.
She had been invited to give the opening address at the United Nations-sponsored
World Environment Summit by Professor Ralph Becker, the summit’s convener.
Although Judy knew what she wanted to say, she was still unclear about how to
say it. She was nevertheless resolutely determined to walk to that podium.
Another vivid bolt of lightning together with a
crash of thunder highlighted the stark white pages of the document propped up in
front of her on her motionless sliding table. This paper, a detailed account of
their entire scientific mission, had been left with her by Michael Van Haas, one
of the few members of their team who had managed to escape with at least his
life. This was their joint thesis, to support his application for a doctorate,
and hers for a professorship, in environmental studies. The sight of Michael,
scarred by shocking facial burns, would be a lifelong reminder of the hell they
had endured during their deadly scientific misadventure.
Not yet knowing the full details of their
desperate fight, and flight from that frozen hell, and knowing that she would
not sleep a wink before tomorrow, she picked up the document and flicked it open
to the first page. She began to read the full account of the journey that had
brought her to this point, and in so doing, taken planet Earth to the edge of an
environmental meltdown, and humanity to the brink of a nuclear holocaust.