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I Remember Lemuria, by Richard S. Shaver, [1948], at

p. 168


Under The Pain Ray

"Oooooh, Mi . . . Mion . . ."

Hearing these moans and my name through a fuzzy humming in my ears, I tried to open my eyes and raise myself up. I couldn't. Then, gradually, with the return of consciousness, I realized that I was aching to the ends of my feet. I opened my eyes.

Above my head was the cause of that aching I felt. Now that I was awake and conscious, it wasn't just an ache, it was pain. There above my head was a slowly swinging pendulum, the end of which held a vari-pain ray lens and it was this sweeping motion of the ray that made me feel pain all over my body. I couldn't move from under it. I tried, but the crew of the Satana had too much practice with binding captives in chains for me to do more than tighten a few of the more uncomfortable ones around my wrist and ankles. I could move my head, and turning around I saw whence came the moans and my name. The brave Aesir were chained down alongside me. That was fiendish—chaining Earthmen in range of a pain ray that was nearly killing a fifty foot immortal member of the Elder Races 20.

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They were moaning softly and I felt the tears come to my eyes with pride in these men that old Mother Mu could still produce. Men suffering agonizing torture and just barely moaning—the same as a young boy of, say, ten years being tortured on a crude Jotun rack without making a sound. They must be near crazy with the torment. I was myself. Sathanas, it seemed, did not intend to have his guests miss any of the dubious comforts that he could provide.

I figured that we must be some place in the lower hold of the Satana—no ports were visible, just the blank dull metal walls. There was something missing, though I couldn't decide exactly what.


"Arl! Arl . . . where are you?" I called, thinking that perhaps she might be in the same cell as we, but placed so that I couldn't see her. That hope was destroyed when Tyr, sobbing with the pain he was suffering, said, "My Lord . . . ugh . . . they didn't bring her with us . . ."

"Tyr, what did they do with her?" My concern for Arl made me forget for a moment the awful torment, the horrible spasms of pain that dropped like blood from our bodies.

. . . I don't know . . . Lord Mion! Are we dying? This . . . pain . . . I can't stand it!"

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"Easy, friend Tyr," I tried to comfort him, "they will not keep this up until we die . . . they're too cruel for even that. This is just a sample of what we are in for. Courage, friends."

My beloved Arl . . what had these accursed fiends done to her? How long had I lain in this cell unconscious? Sathanas had admitted some of the foul things he planned for my wife. Had he had time to carry out some of them?

I strained at the chains; I had to get free. I failed. And these poor Aesir warriors were near death with pain. Something had to be done. But what?

I had it. Hypnosis!

These men were of a lower mental calibre than myself, understandable when you realized that I had twenty centuries to develop while they had barely that many years. Hypnosis would serve two purposes—take their minds off the pain they were enduring and fill them with subconscious information that we might be able to use if the scales of Fortune fell in our direction.

I commenced to talk to them, soothing their pain as much as I could with my voice. It wasn't long until they were in that stage half way between total hypnosis and consciousness. That was the best I could do, considering that we were operating under extreme difficulties, being bound and continually swept with the vari-pain beam. From talking about them and their families to fix their interest, I had gradually worked the talk around to technical subjects. I wanted to teach them as much of spacemanship as I could under the circumstances.

"At the mid-space-point between two attracting spatial bodies," I explained, beginning with the most elementary principles of interstellar astrogation, "lies a thin 'zone of neutralization'—a thin zone where all matter is weightless."

"We have heard you mention that before, Lord Mion," spoke one of the Aesir from his bed of artificial pain.

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"Well, friends, that 'zone of neutralization' is important. It is the knowledge and the use of the peculiarities of the way all mass is inertially neutralized there that enables us to journey between the farthest stars."

"Why is that, Mion?"

"Because, starting a star trip anywhere else would be impossible. There would be too much mass to overcome. It would be impossible to achieve the needed acceleration quick enough."

The Aesir were doing their best to follow what I was telling them—but now they could only groan.

"It's like . . . like . . . the difference between jumping off the top branch of a bushy tree and jumping off a wall. In the one, drag at the start slows you down somewhat, whereas, in going off the wall, there is nothing to slow your acceleration. Do you see, friends?"

"Aye, Lord, we hear . ." They struggled to suppress the shrieks that hammered at their lips for voice.

"Now, Warriors, listen carefully. It is there, in the 'zone of complete lack of weight' that all long, interstellar flights MUST begin . . . always remember to be very careful in pointing your ship on the exact course to your distant objective lest your course intersects another path where some object may lie that would destroy you in the event of a collision."

When they had indicated that they understood that, I continued.

"Poised motionless in the exact center of the 'zone,' and pointing in the correct direction, the ship is given full power of all the plates 21 at once. Ordinarily, such instant application

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of all the power at rest would kill all the ship's passengers, but at the EXACT center of the 'zone' ANY acceleration can be achieved without danger, depending upon the amount of power impetus."

Again they groaned acceptance of what I had said.

"When you give your ship full throttle as I've told you, it will instantly attain vast velocity depending on the power of your ship's plates and how carefully you balanced your ship in the center of the 'zone'. Keep applying power, and in a short time you will find yourself far beyond your starting point. Like a flash you will be in the region of the stars which are unfamiliar to you, traveling at a speed your Earth brains cannot comprehend. If you were watching a spacer accelerate from the 'zone', it would seem to you that the ship had vanished. No motion would be seen. It would be there one moment and disappear the next—disappear into nothingness. Such is the speed of ships that fly between the stars. Using this tremendous speed, you can fling yourself far beyond the light of this deadly, evil Sun and within the regions of space that the Elder Races, the Gods of the Aesir, have chosen as their dwelling place."

"Would not we humans be in danger from the wrath of our Gods for daring to come to them, Lord Mion?"

"No, my friends, once in the general area of the dark planets, you would soon be overtaken by some space patrol and, your intentions being understood, you would be helped in every way to find yourselves a home far from the deadly 'de', a home near those of the Gods. Have you understood?

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All four of the Aesir groaned their answer: "Aye, Lord Mion, we have understood . . . you . . . and will do as . . . you advise . . . if . . . there ever comes . . . the time when we are . . . free of the clutches of this Sathanas."

There were other things I explained to the Aesir, things like how the first light speed is achieved with a light impetus but as the interstellar space ships move into as much as fifty-speeds, the 'ether drag' increases on the order of one unit of drag to fifty units of light speed.

Thus, the required impetus needed to achieve one light speed is increased by one for each additional fifty light speeds. Actually, no body in the known cosmos is ever entirely weightless, but there are conditions where a given mass or body loses apparent weight to the point where its weight is negligible. The best place to achieve this condition of weightlessness is that area that I've told you about . . . the area between the world or other spatial bodies that we term the "zone of weightlessness."

I went on and on with my talking and explaining, more to keep from thinking than from any hope of teaching these long suffering friends over-much. The pain, or rather, the perception of the pain, had gradually increased almost to the point of madness for the victim. No doubt the fiends that served Sathanas were making a thought record of all our sensations and words as the master of this depraved vessel had promised to send to my friends in the Nor Patrol.

"Course must be plotted and ship poised exactly in the center of the zone . . ."

". . . hit such zones every time you pass between worlds . . . maintain acceleration . . ."

The pain never stopped . . . on and on . . . pain . . .

waves of agony . . . some smooth strokes of torment . . .

"Use the devices that the builders have installed to determine the center . . . full throttle . . . trust instruments . . ."

Flashes of memory came and went in the delirium of

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our fevered agony . . . what I said . . . gone . . .

The young Aesir had good minds though very little real education. I could not have taught them any mathematics, even had my hands been free to do so. It would be fortunate, indeed, if they remembered any of the facts of space navigation that I was trying to get across to them. I, myself, am not certain of all that I told them. The longer we were chained under the vari-pain ray, the more our minds slipped from our conscious control. A living body can stand only so much of nerve vibration.

This torment had been going on for hours . . . painful . . . moments of release when it reached the ends of its swings and then that laving with agony again.

It may have been days . . . or weeks . . . I don't know . . . just back and forth . . . pain.


168:20 SIZE OF THE ELDER RACE: The authors suggest that anyone interested get a copy of Charles Fort's "Lo!" In Chapter Nine. he .discusses the findings, BY PRESENT DAY HUMANS, of the skeletons of huge creatures 40 to 65 feet in length. The conventional "scientific" explanation is that they are the skeletal remains of whales washed up on the shore. Fort refutes this sort of p. 169 illogic by pointing out that whales’ skeletons do not have BROAD HIP BONES.

He also mentions a report from the LONDON DAILY NEWS. In it is recounted the dredging up of a large skull from the north of Scotland, of a size that the authorities claimed would fit an elephant, but it would have to have been a large one to boast eye-sockets a foot across. We suggest, for those interested in such research, that it MIGHT have been the skull, preserved somehow (or, perhaps, fairly recently dispatched), but a skull, nevertheless, of one of the ancient Giants that built the caves beneath our world. (Excerpt is from the Daily News, June 6, 1908.)

If the eyes are a gauge of the full size of the completed skeleton, the creature (a member of the Elder Race?) would have to have been at least 40 feet tall.—Author.

171:21 DRIVER PLATES: In the two thousand years since Mutan's visit to Earth, the ships used by him have developed and adopted the drive plate instead of the gas jet drive. Both are rocket drives in principle, but different in detail. The drive is an alloy metal that decomposes into a repellant electric flow very much like gravity in reverse. Things fall away from the plate when certain frequencies of dis-electric are applied to the plate. The resultant impulse p. 172 is rendered useful by a reflecting material, opaque to the drive flow, on the side of the plate nearest the ship. Hence all the repellant flow is directed backward—giving a drive like a rocket in principle but very different in detail. This is the drive generally used in the ancient ships—though there are several distinct types of drives—and ships from widely separated civilizations lying about the caverns, still today existant, and in some cases still usable.—Author.

Next: Chapter IX. Seizing the Satana