Canterwood was famed for its trees, the Academy for its tree house. The
children learned their final lesson in this tree house, though none of the
Elohim or adult B’nei Elohim were present as teachers. It was a lesson that
had been taught and learned by countless children since the dawn of time.
It was called “Doctor” or “I’ll Show You Mine & You Show Me Yours.”

Seven year old Inge had straight hair so blonde it was almost white. The
eyebrows over her baby blues were nearly white as well, giving the appear-
ance at first glance of having no eyebrows at all, yet her face was pep-
pered with brown freckles for spice. By lot, she was the first one who had
to strip. Everyone had the same shirt, jacket, and tie, but the bottom half
of their uniform depended on gender. Inge dropped her pleated skirt and
panties, and everyone could see the freckles extended over her whole body.
They saw the fat lips of her labia, which was news to some of the boys.
Nelchael said, “She has two butts!”

Abdiel Larund was the next name pulled out of the hat. He dropped his trou-
sers and undershorts without a shred of body modesty and then the girls
learned what boys had.

Dafla Firegem was a budding bodybuilder but when she doffed her uniform,
going completely nude, her muscles were not so bulky that they overrode the
feminine layer of fat on her skin, which was also darker than any of the
other kids, even Shy Bear. Her body was beautiful, but Dafla would always
be what cruel kids called a Butterface. That is, a great body, “but her

Shy Bear was a few years older than the rest of the children. He was old
enough that some tentative hairs were beginning to grow around his geni-
tals, and this “lesson” in the tree house had excited him to the point that
his dick was standing straight up at attention. So the children learned yet
another new thing.

Hope Felton never needed to go to the bathroom, so she had never seen what
the other kids did in there. Seeing the variety of genitalia on display in
the tree house was a completely novel experience for her. Now it was her
turn, and it dawned on her, too late, that perhaps she had made a mistake
by agreeing to participate in this impromptu lesson.

The other children sensed her reluctance to strip and poured the pressure
on. At length, Hope did remove her skirt, and what everyone saw was a girl
as anatomically incorrect as a Barbie doll. But maybe everything was hid-
ing. The other kids ordered Hope to drop to the floor and put her legs in
the air, which she did, but no help there. Hope was a zero holer. “How do
you pee? How do you poop?” they asked.

“I don’t,” was the honest reply, and what followed was an even bigger mis-
take than Hope agreeing to attend the session. The children could have kept
it all quiet and just forget about it. Instead they shunned Hope as though
she was a monster and evacuated the tree house like it was on fire.

Their frantic questions filtered up the chain of adults and in short order
Victoria and Mark Felton in Taurus City knew their careful plans to keep
Hope convinced that she was a real human girl were in complete disarray.

“You had a good mix going with that class, Rabbi,” young Edgar Shybear told
Yeshua Bat-El after all the other children in the class had already been
sent home. “So your over-reaction to the tree house thing has me puzzled.”

“And your willing participation in the tree house thing has me puzzled,”
Yeshua replied. “You are an extraordinarily intelligent member of the B’nei
Elohim. At Taurus City you had unfettered access to images in the Swarm.
Certainly there can be nothing of basic human anatomy that remains a mys-
tery to you.”

“You are absolutely correct, Rabbi, and yet the investigation was something
undertaken by the whole class. Should I have absented myself and damaged
our group dynamic?”

“Rather, you should have argued that the inquiry not proceed at all.”

“But why, Rabbi? I have never detected a Puritanical streak in you, despite
what might have been retrojected upon you by your alleged followers on

“There is a thing you don’t know about Hope,” Yeshua said, “a thing that
not even Hope knows about herself, and it is important that she doesn’t
learn that thing just yet. But no, I am not a Puritan. Your inquiry in the
tree house would have been commendable under any other circumstances.”

“Can you tell me what this mysterious thing is that you withhold from Hope,

“I cannot do so, but the fact that you still have not sorted it out tells
me we might still be able to salvage something from the Hope project. Your
mother will arrive soon to take you home to Taurus.”

“Actually, Rabbi, I have decided I will not go home,” Edgar declared.

“And why not?”

“Nothing less than self-preservation, Rabbi. When my father died Jill saved
him with the Purple Cable. Jill essentially became my father. But now when
I see Mike with Jill, or Chayn with Jill, or Mike with Chayn, or the three
of them all together they just creep me out. All of their movements are
coordinated. They finish each other’s sentences. I’ve thought about it and
thought about it, and every time I do I come to the inescapable conclusion
that my father’s personality is like the flu and he’s spreading to take
over all the B’nei Elohim.”

“I completely understand,” said Yeshua. “And if you can accept it, Edgar,
you were not the first to discern these problems. The Hope project is actu-
ally intended to address that very thing. But I see you are not convinced,
so I will only ask, where will you go?”

“East, Rabbi. Up the Wall of God and beyond to the lands of House Larund at
first. After that, it’s up for grabs.”

“But you do not know the secret way up the Wall, Edgar.”

“I’ll figure it out, Rabbi. Everyone tells me how clever I am.”

“Then I will not hinder you in any way. I would only ask that you would
accept a new name from me, so that I can follow your subsequent career. I
have no doubt you will have a very large impact on things going forward.”

“And you will say nothing to my mother when she arrives, Rabbi?”

“Robyn will know only that you are no longer to be found, and when she
probes the future she will not mark the passage of a son named Edgar. But
only if you accept a new name.”

“Then choose an new name for me, Rabbi, and I will accept it with grati-

“Edgar Shybear, henceforth you are Ithuriel, which means Brilliant One of
God. Go in peace with my blessing, but go quickly, for Robyn will soon ar-
rive expecting you to return with her to Taurus.”

Seconds before her ship was destroyed Chayn found herself standing before
Yeshua beside the Sacred Pool. “So you find yourself playing the Judas role
today,” he said to her.

With trepidation Chayn asked, “What shall become of me now, Lord?”

“You are free to go, actually. Happy Birthday. You’re B’nei Elohim, so you
get a second chance. But you’re a very unusual case, Chayn. We know that
Jill dominates your will. What is Chayn’s culpability now? What would be
the point of a reward and punishment system applied against one who is pos-

“When you say punishment, Lord, are you talking about hell?”

“Not even Mastema is twisted enough to decree eternal torture as just ret-
ribution for a finite set of sins committed over a human lifetime. Even
that thing about burying the Antero princess alive is so much bluster. No,
dear, hell is a purely human invention. I won’t hold you to account for
what Jill did to you against your will.”

And so Chayn bowed to Yeshua with genuine respect and departed on foot into
Canterwood, time-frame unknown. Soon she found she had no more power to
control beasts, which meant she had to make other arrangements to deal with
the food situation. To remain incognito from the other B’nei Elohim, Chayn
radically altered her appearance and began giving her name as Joy.