#33 The Problem With Power

On the way back to the Mini-dome, Kenom couldn't help but wonder if he had done the right thing, substituting one false belief with another in that poor Flecton's brain. But he assured himself that the Godforce and the LEB theory was a far better belief system then the organic, God based Philosophy. One gets to the truth in steps, he thought, perhaps this step is a necessary one in the evolution of the clear thinking brain.

After the "blaster cap incident," Kenom didn't leave the Mini-dome much. Word spread rapidly about his "Special Patrolman" status and Kenom felt uncomfortable about all the attention he was getting. He had become somewhat of a celebrity. He and Enew went to the Central Dome Image Projection Center one night to see a new image projection that was sent up from Zimtel. It had just won all sorts of awards and was all the rage on Zimtel. But he felt uncomfortable the entire night, everyone seemed to be looking at him with a, "so that's the new Special Patrolman" look. He felt very self-conscious.

People still talked to him, but now he wasn't sure if it was him or his celebrity they were talking to. The Flectoids were the worse. They lived by status. It had always been a mark of prestige to have a High LEB Zimtellion patrolman visit one of their domes, but now, to have a "Special Patrolman" in for a visit was tantamount to having the creator of the universe stop by. Kenom seldom even went over to the Central Dome any more either. He stayed clear of level #1 completely because the one time he did go there, everyone stood at attention when he walked in. His treatment was well beyond what he had expected, or wanted. He had expected respect for sure, but blind obedience to authority was something that appalled him.

There were also the usual requests for help. Fleck-masters who wanted to get this or that done, the voice and message transfers with all sorts of flattering comments, plus the never ending party invitations. Most of these things were ignored or replied to with a voice message made by Enew, which said, "Thank you for your message. At the moment, Special Patrolman Kenom is quite busy with important war duty matters. He regrets that he cannot respond at this time. He is very appreciative of your call and will do what he can to get back to you. Thank you."

Kenom hated this situation. He had become a prisoner of his status. He could only be of use now if there happened to be a Figgnon attack, then his authority would be needed in a real way. Now he had too much power to deal with the small day to day problems at the compound. Just his intervention would cause the smallest problem to be escalated into the realm of a "serious compound incident." Some would cherish that kind of power, and indeed there were those in the compound that envied him for having it, but Kenom felt neutralized and ineffective. He felt he had become something much more then he was, and he was not pleased with his new status. He now had great power, but no power to change how others perceived that power.

He didn't ask for this power, but by showing that he had it people now blindly subjected themselves to it. Before this happened, he could pull out his badge, assert his power, then put it away and continue as if he had none at all. That was effective use of power. Power used sparingly, to remedy a specific situation. That was much better then broad power. Broad power corrupts broadly. It is a lesson few have learned.

Kenom spent the rest of his duty time reading the computer disk essays and books he had brought with him. He also started tending a small organic plant that was left behind when Enew packed up Master Wo's organic life support package. It was a small miniature tree from the organic planet Ezel. It was at least a hundred year-marks old and Kenom found it to be very beautiful, in an organic sort of way. He had become quite attached to it. He also had time to do a lot of thinking, which gave him his greatest pleasure. Enew spent his time watching the Zimtel channel on Universal-vision. It seems that Zimtel Universal-vision channels could be picked up on Ob after all, -with the aid of a de-scrambler box, supplied to him by Major Finon. Some perks of having a friend with power.

Before they knew it it was time to start getting things ready so that they could leave. Enew was busy packing and getting things ready, he handed Kenom a stack of electro-messages and said, "Here, you should answer some of these. I think the whole compound has sent you a farewell message. There have also been a lot of voice transfers for you. You may want to get back to some of them.......Oh, and the major voiced you too" "Thanks said Kenom, "I'll get right on it."

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