A concert in Kandor

“Do you know how to reach Kandor?” I ask the guy with blue skin and top hat close to me. He waves his two insect antennas before moving down his sunglasses. His eyes are human, but with yellow pupils. He immediately reminds me of the grasshopper from Pinocchio. Or maybe he’s an Andorian.

“You just need to continue down the hill. If you can’t jump, I recommend wings, if you can get a set. Or a bike. ” He points to the closest corner. There, and old copper sign with the shadow of a bike hangs under the retreating sun. No name on it though. I check my wallet, where my ticket to the concert is. Do I have also credit card, or some cash?

“Am I of further assistance to you, human?” I don’t know how to take his last word. Actually I don’t know if I’m here as a representative of my species or as a private person. I thank the grasshopper and cross the empty road to reach the bike shop. It has quite some windows but I don’t choose any model, I simply hop in. A bell rings when I cross the threshold. I find a man staring at me at the end of the room, behind a counter. The dealer, without any doubt. He looks human enough to me, blonde, pale white skin. I look for odd marks on his face, or hidden bumps on his clothes, or anything, but he could be my brother, so to say. I look around. There. The black and blue will do it.

“Hello friend. I think I know what you are looking for.” I come closer to the table. He has a shiny smile. I ignore the words and withdraw my golden credit card. The whole transaction is very fast. “Heading down?” I nod.”Please feel free to return the vehicle whenever you think you will not need it anymore. We’ll return you the money as soon as we can!” I got it, maybe he’s a robot. Or a NPC. Whatever. I jump over it, test quickly the brakes, and let us roll down the hill.

I don’t pedal for around 10 miles. The road is curvy, but the landscape is great, and I don’t care. There are golden clouds, and orange, and the whole circuit seems to be unnecessary. But after the last turn, I see the broken Ark and the first buildings of Kandor. Then I unmount, lay the bike and walk in. Around me, other vehicles materialise, like coming from parallel paths on parallel dimensions. A golden Trabant. A Beetle. A giant bike with a giant man, like the one in that movie, Neverending Story. We all peacefully walk in, a stream of people and vehicles.

You can’t miss the National Kandor Theatre. Imagine any Opera Palace you know, the Staatsoper, the Rudolfinum, something like that, multiply it in size by five, wrap it in floating colourful lights, add a couple of floating crystal dance halls surrounding it (for the people with wings) and you have it. A lot of us are heading there, but I know I’m the only one with a golden ticket. I know it. I just hope she doesn’t commit a mistake playing. But if she does, who cares? I will love her anyway. The place is incredible, and the trip to it was great. If only I wouldn’t be so lonely the whole concert…

The final countdown

It’s been a while since I publish a dragon. There was no special reason for it but one of them is that I wanted to see how my stats were affected by the change. As a result I lost around 1K monthly views with respect to the last year. Is it a lot? I’m not sure – and I feel like I lost my soul. Truth is, I’ve been having dreams again after my holidays – so it was not my muse, it was just stress – but I didn’t have the mood or the memory to write them down.

When I started to write and I found out my main source of ideas were my dreams, I was forcing myself to have a paper and a pen close to me to write down every time I wake up – even in the middle of the night. A keyword was then having the magical properties of Ariadne’s string, and I was most of the time able to find my way backwards to the beginning of my oneiric adventure. Later on, I didn’t need a pen anymore and my memory was proven to be enough. It was a golden age for me. Every week I had an idea, every week, a new tale. My editors were flooded with my contributions. I was barely legal age then. Not anymore. I lost my muscle tone -if it was ever there- and my ability to use the dreamed string to knot something.

I may have spoken about this before. There’s no magic recipe. Just good ideas or good writers. Or maybe you have good ideas and you are a good writer. Congratulations you damn bastard. I don’t classify myself anymore even as a writer, I may have become an ex-writer, if such a thing exist. But I don’t want to be that. I want to come back from the dead, I want to become a zombie writer. How am I going to achieve that? I don’t know but my plan is very simple, write, write, write. So get ready to be flooded with dragons. Or not. This is the final countdown.

PS: I have a few drafts that I may back-post, you are warned.


“So do you like this wine?” – said her. I couldn’t stop looking at her eyes. They were shining since the first sip. She was around thirty, still very gorgeous but oddly not very experienced with alcohol consumption. Maybe because people were scared of her confidence. That was not my case.

“Not really, ” -she laughed, in a very honest and refreshing way- ” I just wanted to get a red matching with the cheese. This Blue Stilton can’t be digested simply with tea.”

“Really? I thought that was an English cheese.” – She spooned a little of the cheese with the tip of the knife and lick it in a very sexy way. “Don’t the English drink a lot of tea?” – this was my time to smile. I’m more the ironic type, I don’t laugh out loud.

“How do you want me to know? I’m not English!” – She closed her eyes, like when you are looking at the fine details of a manuscript or an old painting.

“Are you sure? How do you know? Isn’t this Europe supposed to be an only country?” – We then both start to chuckle. And after sharing the bottle fo wine we feel so connected that there’s no need to tell each other what we both want to do. And that was the way I used my last bottle of Demon’s blood, the last in this Reality, as far as I know. And it was totally worthing it. And she was worthing it. And I don’t regret it.

Wild wild horses

I’ve been thinking about how to describe this dream from a few days ago. It’s not that it’s personal – it is – but that I seriously think I don’t have the ability to tell you it properly. But let’s try. We are walking down a very populated avenue of a monumental city. Think of a mixture of Budapest and Madrid, with the light of Paris. There are cars but not so many, also rickshaws, balloons, and horse riders. Everybody around seems to be enjoying the weather. We are looking for a cafe in a corner, recommended to my father by someone. There it is. In a lovely corner, where our street crosses with another perpendicular. We walk some stairs to reach some very low balcony, half a meter approximately over the streets, and we take a table. The waiter, a guy that could be a stereotype of a French one, with a white apron and a moustache, comes presto, and also serves us fast. The coffee is delicious, maybe Turkish, I don’t know, I didn’t order it.

“You came to see the Crossing?” the waiter asks us. I inquire about what it is, and he tells us. The Behemoth, a Cruise train, it scheduled to pass through the perpendicular avenue in a few minutes. He explains us that a lot of cruise trains pass through this crossing, but this one is specially gorgeous, so aficionados are gathering. I welcome the entertainment and try to distinguish it amongst the crowd in the direction the waiter is pointing at, just beyond the busy streets. When I see it I cannot but wonder how it moves: the first wagon, red and golden, still around five hundred meters away from our corner, is the size of a 5-stores building, just a couple of stores smaller than the surrounding buildings. The facade of the vehicle is covered with balconies, and some travellers are waving form them. Imagine the Titanic on wheels. There’s no apparent chimney but it looks like a very elaborate steam train. People are looking out from balconies in the surrounding buildings also, cheering up to the few travellers that are looking out. Anyway, the city doesn’t seem to stop because of the passing, and rickshaws and personal zeppelins are still revolving around the vehicle. Then I hear a shout, and I see a group of three white horses – two adults and one smaller, a stallion, a mare and a colt, I pressure, position themselves in front of the first wagon. We are now around a hundred meters away, we can smell the oil of the engine. The train advances slowly but impassible, and the city makes space for it, but the horses seem to be frozen in front, maybe paralysed by the sighting of such a monster. No one reacts. The stallion seems to confront the vehicle but of course, the red rolling building doesn’t stop to his rampant attitude.

Disaster strikes. The people on the cruise train do shout, and the little colt manages to escape, but his parents seem to be slowly sucked under the frontal snowplow, or whatever is that they use to remove small trees and similar while passing. The neighing is breaking my heart. Oddly enough, no one around seems to be acknowledging the incident, maybe it’s common, or maybe it’s taboo, I don’t know. I wait until the Behemoth is gone just to observer, afterwards, the dismembered and bloody pieces of the two horses, now just two white patches with a lot of red stains. The event was terrifying but apparently, not enough for these citizens.

The robot land

I’m on a road trip. To whom I don’t remember, but who cares. Our cabriolet is red, and probably rented. The wind blows gently, but it’s hot. The road is now crossing black, volcanic terrain. I don’t drive and actually I don’t know my driver. Meaning I don’t know anyone like him in the real world. An Italian by the accent. We stop over a gently slope, on some kind of lookup, and as if agreed previously, we park and open the trunk lid to get some cold beers and a couple of binoculars.

“There” he says, after sweeping the land for a good five minutes, while I stare at the infinite. “I found a group. Look with me.” I take the googles and look in the direction he’s pointing. After focusing, I see them. Machines. Barely humanoid, similar to the Star Wars attack drones, but less clumsy and with more limbs. “Are they them?” I ask. “Yes they are.” He answers. “Do you see how they dig with the first set of arms? I believe those are actually the mouths. The second set they use to build their offsprings. They grow them on their backs. But it’s a collaboration effort, one makes a piece, then he passes it to another. You get it.” I sip my beer. He leaves the binoculars hanging over his chest.”Isn’t the Government unhappy about them?” He chuckles. “The Government? They don’t know what to do. If it’s not going to produce money, they are not interested.” I sip my beer, and decide to throw away the empty can as far as I can, hoping maybe to hit one of the robots on the head. Of course I don’t manage, but my gesture speaks by itself. “But they are self-replicators, right? Aren’t they dangerous?” My driver starts heading back to the car. I follow him. He takes a soda, and drinks it without looking at me. With a sad voice he says “We hope not. Actually, some of us believe that they are repairing the land, that they are some kind of long-lost pollution cleaning system. If this is true, they will simply deactivate after the job is done.”

I look again to the robots. They don’t look specially dangerous in fact. “I see.” I say. “So you’re letting them clean your mess.” My driver looks at me, angry. “My mess? It’s their mess! The politicians created this wasted land! They didn’t care about us! They only wanted more money, and they didn’t care about the consequences. So we are grateful, and if needed, we will even give them resources, if we manage to communicate with them. We have now a name for this area, la terra dei robot, the land of the robots.”

Tuesday Morning dream

I think these pieces may serve to perform some kind of autopsy of my mind state in the future. Allow me to explain. I got two nephews, twins, that unfortunately I didn’t meet yet because I was not sure (or not allowed) to travel to their city. Now that the crisis looks like it’s about to end, I start again to consider paying a visit to my sister. I don’t think it’s going to happen until I have some kind of certification of being inoculated, but this is not stopping my mind to wander about, specially during my sleep.

So in my dream there I am, landing on my motherland after almost two years. Of course the world was still spinning during my absence, and what was supposed to happen, happened. I feel the new normality is not different from the old one, in any case, people go out earlier and bars and cafes are more populated than before. Touristic areas have another feeling that I will call ancient, since all the travellers look all from around, not from another continent.

The meeting with the family will be on a big mall, close to a recovered area of the city. One of the godfathers, probably the ex-general, has booked one big party room that should not be difficult to find. It’s a new trend, apparently. This way, you know for sure who was there, in case of contagion. The promise is of a place with children toys, as well as bar, catering, and live music. I arrive early, so I stop by on a cafe on a bifurcation just to observe the people passing by. Suddenly someone taps on my shoulder and says my name. One of my friends from my youth. I’m following him on the social networks, so I’m not surprised of how he looks. He tells me he’s there to meet a couple of friends from his band, and he insists he needs to introduce them to me. Not very convinced about, I gulp my beer and I follow him. We take a service corridor that ends up on a backyard, the opposite to the facade of the mall. There is barely a path between what looks like plied-up discarded containers, construction tests -I mean broken concrete pieces, or ruins of the old building- and gravel mounts. I hesitate, but he keeps pushing me through the war zone.

Just to end up on another back door of the same mall. There his friends, fully geared with musical instruments, are waiting for his lead guitar. My friend introduces them to me, then we enter the building through a service corridor that ends on… the place the ex-general hired. They were the courtesy band of my big family reunion.

Friday Morning dream

I woke up quite early, just to sleep again after. We are not yet free from the Corona routine, so when my alarm rings I tend to evaluate my daily working load, and if it’s not a lot, I go back to bed for another hour or so, my usual commuting time. This time I dreamt.

It’s hard to merge the scattered images, but I want to leave a record of it. I was on holidays on that marvellous place that mix it all. It has a beautiful shoreline, a boulevard scattered with bars here and there, yellow sand, clear blue sky. Now that I’m awake I can identify on it places I know pretty well on of Spain, Greece and Italy. The pandemia was there also, but somehow receding: some people wear masks, but most of the people were barefaced. I was alone. Something about leaving my family with the grandparents or something like that. Or was it a dentist appointment. I was not expecting to meet them any time soon, so I was exploring downtown.

Dreamed cities are odd. I took a bus that delivered me where the Monument was. The Monument consisted on five yellowish, quite eroded marble fangs, or maybe ribs, around five stores high, so quite high, surrounded by other, smaller, twisted and curved towers that the visitor was allowed to climb. I don’t remember any explanation around, but for me that it was the remnant of a previous civilisation, whatever it means. There was no reason to think they were humans, but of course, it was a dream, so it could be whatever. I went up the higher, and from the top I looked down and I saw her. Not my wife but my blonde schoolmate. I don’t see her since 20 years or so, and I guess the same goes for her. I wave from the top and she waves back, to quickly signal me to come down. That I of course do.

We exchange all our lives in a quick information burst. Married yes/no, children yes/no. That type. I can’t and I don’t plan to write down that context here. Then we go for a coffee to the boulevard. After the coffee we go for stronger drinks. Suddenly I’m eighteen again, long hair and all, and we want to join the concert happening close to us on a bullfight arena, a death metal band, Abaddon or something similar. But I have no money. She then somehow seduces the guys at the door and they let her enter, leaving me outside looking around like a lost puppy. She doesn’t look back and after a few minutes of somehow dummy contemplation of the security setup, considering to gatecrash myself in, I give up and head to the beach with my tail between my legs. Then I wake up.

Saturday Morning dream

There is a restaurant I used to go before the Pandemia. It’s called “the Golden Lion” and it’s in a building with other functionalities: on the top floor you had yoga classes, for example. I don’t live nearby so I never joined. It’s iconic, anyway, and very easily identifiable by the golden door.

It’s us that we go for some lunch outside and we decide to try to go there. Here you better make a reservation in any case, but I got a hunch that we were going to find a table. When I arrive, the dining area is divided onto two areas, one with big long tables and the other with the traditional, round ones. We’re lucky (I don’t know what time is in my dream) and we get a nice table, were we can monitor the golden door, so I will be able to call the attention of the waitress, and the new dining area. I order a beer, she orders sparkling water. Then I see another waiter placing big, square salad dishes in the middle of the long tables. The long tables don’t have chairs around, they are quite separated, and there’s no customer there yet.

Our drinks arrive. I’m tempted to ask the waitress, but voted against. I tend not to be very friendly with the locals, I had disgusting misunderstandings previously. I don’t want to speak about it here, it’s out of place. I sip my beer and stare at the salads on the long tables. They don’t look tasty, they appear just like decorated forage. Then it appears. A gorgeous black stallion comes, followed by a brown-haired mare. They place themselves close to one of a table, and start biting with an expert look the herbs. Then the waiter (this place has a waiter and a waitress) arrives, places himself between both horses, and whispers something onto the ear of the black stallion, that replies him with a happy whinny. I’m tantalised, so much that I don’t look around. The waitress, understanding my surprise, chooses that moment to give us an explanation.

“Yes, you recognised them. They are our new green deputies. Handsome, aren’t they? I’ve voted for them, they promise a greener transport, and a tax on dirty humans. Would you like to meet them?”

I decline the offer. More horses come to join our two new “green deputies”. The waiter brings fancy buckets of water (I believe it’s water) and soon they’re noisily nicking and wicking. Just like people. “Looks like this became the Land of the Houyhnhnms… we need to read more press”. Then I wake up.

Travel blog: exploring Ara, on Koi-5

Approaching Koi-5 is already an adventure per se: the neighbourhood, around 1.800 light-years from Earth, is still vastly unexplored. The system caught the attention of the humans for the first time at the beginning of the XXI century (here the original article) practically at the dawn of the interstellar travel. Ara is small for an Earth-type planet, and the fact that lays on a ternary system made it pass undetected during the first 10 years SARA (Solar Array for infraRed Astronomy) was on service, right before the interstellar era.

The first thing one notice when approaching the planet is its colors. mainly red, green, blue and yellow, dashed by white clouds, all of it evenly distributed. It resembles a candy of some type, or some kind of gemstone. Illuminated by three suns, it does not really has a night, just cold and warm years (the year being 50 days long) depending of how close is the secondary start, Koi-5B at that moment. The third star, Koi-5C is coming closer to Koi-5A each terrestrial year, however, calculations say that the perihelium for the trinary will not happen in at least another 200 years. So don’t worry about it. The other object in the sky is the warm Jupiter “Apollo” (aka Koi-5Ab) that despite of being far, acts as a climate regulator in a similar way the Moon from Earth, given its considerable size. Eclipses on Ara are unfortunate but needed.

As most of the other planets on that neighbourhood, life on Ara is not similar to ours but still mostly edible. The main animal symmetry seems to be ternary, maybe influenced by the three suns. The United Planet Exploration Council authorised a stellar hub on Ara around 50 earth years ago already, meaning the entertainment possibilities are quite established over the surface. One may be surprised on how tasty the local dishes have become in such a short period: do not leave the planet without tasting a barbecued Gyurk tripod, the meat has a very interesting oyster aftertaste and the consistency of fresh tofu with the flavour of something similar to frog. Ask for it with a bottle of cold Muru, elaborated with the famous square grapes, fermented. If you prefer non-alcoholics, you should definitely try a fresh red pumpkin. The size of a coconut, the liquid inside has natural bubbles and a surprising feel of a XX-century Cola. And if you don’t want to eat anything at all, or simply you don’t have time, look around and capture one of the colourful flying Kopes, seeds of the famous Rubi tripods. Ruby Tripods are very ephemeral creatures, but they are allowed everywhere across the Milky Way. Your friends will enjoy such a souvenir.

If you are on Ara for tourism, not for a short break, you will not be dissapointed. The planet is quite porous and with a relatively uniform tropical climate, so grab a snorkel or take an oxygen pill and go into one of the cenotes around the hub. Underwater you can still help to identify the vast amount of sea creatures, most of them resembling fishes with three eyes, but also fantastic and colourful, pulsating jellyfishes. And if you want to rest, just hang a hammock somewhere and ask your robot to bring you a Muru, while enjoying the always changing daylight of Koi-5A and Koi-5B. But remember, even now, most of the planet is unexplored, so don’t go far without launching your satellite! And have a nice time in Ara!


This is the end. Is it? Not yet. Drink from the Canteen, or go back to the Monster that started it. Or ask a question to the narrator. Who’s the narrator by the way?

“I think we can stand here. But you better not. Come and have a look to what is producing the shine we saw and let me know if you think we should stand.”

Janus crawled to a position to the right of the warrior, trying as he was doing to hide most of his body behind a broken column to the left of the end of the road. Carefully and slowly, he lifted his head above the masonry and looked over. The slope continued down. He moved his eyes away from the floor, focusing beyond the immediate area around them. Down the hill. Down the hill. Down the hill. Silver coins here and there, spread like the sand of a beach over grassed land. Down the hill. Could it that be? Yes. Is it? Yes. A big, fat, silvery, multi-headed dragon the size of a small tavern was laying over, partially buried, on what looked liked a lake of coins the same colour of his skin. That of course was producing the shine. The small disks were all spreading around him and the surrounding slopes, giving the sorcerer the impression they were just scales or flakes from the big lizard. Here and there, a bigger object protruded. A jar, a helmet, a sword. A full armor. All on the same metal, all as shiny as the owner. He wondered how long would it take him to gather such a mountain of currency. Given his current earns, more than a lifetime, most probably. Because being a dragon, was this a small or a big treasure pile? For a moment, he considered the question. Then he tried to remember. What’s a dragon anyway? Some kind of big brother of an iguana? What do they like beside money? Are they allergic to something? Like the vampires are to garlic? Oh, he definitely should have studied the subject beforehand.

“Gorgeous, isn’t?” Sir Reg was whispering. First time since he first met him on the roads, what looks like an eternity ago. That humble behavior was a new facet of his personality. Was it caution? On a Laria knight? “Do you think he’s sleeping? Because I need to wake him up if I want to kill him. I can’t kill a sleeping creature. Even if it’s a dragon, it deserves a dignified death.”

Janus looked to the dragon. To the details. Their bat wings were partially unfolded, creating the sensation there was a half dismantled silvery tent covering his body, their masts ending on sharp claws. Four claws, two on each wing. More than enough, he thought. Three horned heads, kind of distributed, one closer to their position, the other one opposite to it, one in the middle. Actually the eyes of the closest head were visible under partially closed lids: they were big, and golden. The legs, if any, were hidden on the pile of money, but the tail was visible, lazily rolled around a column at the other side of the hole he was using to sleep, ending up on an arrowhead with dented borders. Probably he, or she, could kill a horse with that on a glimpse. Like a human killing a cockroach. Or a skewer with a cow instead of just a piece of meat.

“So what do you propose to do?” The sorcerer was scared to ask. Sir Reg was a nice guy, he will not use him as a bait for the dragon, will him? He shivered. “Don’t you think we should continue looking for an exit? Such a big thing obviously needs a big way out, don’t it? And if there’s a way out, we can use it. Because it’s no dishonour if we can both agree it’s not honourable to kill a sleeping dragon.”

“Yeah, we could totally explore around before he wakes up, or we wake him up. Or wake her up, whatever it is. I don’t know.” Sir Reg rolled to his right, away from the sorcerer. “I don’t know if I’m ready also to fight a dragon. I was expecting to wait until my sixth or seventh adventure to do that. You know, start killing some salamanders, then a hurakon, then maybe a Uberstink. A small one. Yeah, it’s way too early for me… but I’m no coward, I assure you!” The last words were not a whisper anymore.