Thursday, April 24, 2008

Bees and Nanotechnology

It is a little-known fact that bees developed nano-technology several thousands of years ago.
They realized that there were difficult times ahead, and they had noticed that the prime predator on their planet had developed an interest in their honey stores. One particularly advanced race of honeybees decided that their best chance of survival was to enslave a number of these strange, giant bipeds by means of an hypnotic drug, containing self-replication nanobots, programmed to induce a chemical-dependant, highly-suggestible state in the ape-man's primitive brain.
After many experiments spanning about two thousand years, the correct result was obtained and the formula for the drug was perfected, synthesized and genetically engineered into their DNA, where it would be expressed in their venom. The nanobots took a little longer, but in time, they had them programmed and operational.
The first trials were on a Swiss man named Huber. An unfortunate side-effect was that he became blind, so further research was carried out at the bee-labs and a decision was made to focus on the clergy, as they were mostly well-educated and had a lot of time on their hands. They also had a vested interest in beeswax for their church candles.
Further tests were carried out with variable results, culminating in a mass injection of an American clergyman named Langstroth. At first, this was highly successful, as the reverend gentleman quickly became obsessed with the welfare of bees. Unfortunately, the Colonies Council (known to insiders as The Hive) had under-estimated the inventiveness of this apparently harmless priest, as he soon began work on a project that was to influence the development of the beehive in quite the wrong direction: he took Huber's frames, added lugs and put them in a box, so that he and his human friends could lift them in and out and cause, unknowingly, all kinds of havoc in the bees' sacred brood chambers.
Although the bees could - thanks to the hypnotic drug encapsulated in their venom - influence the behaviour of this alien species towards caring for their welfare to a high degree, the nanobots were, at that stage of their development, insufficiently powerful to properly steer the more intelligent humans with any real accuracy. They came close to it with a young German monk, named Brother Adam, who they directed to create a new race of bee - the Buckfast - which was really a product of The Hive's collective, superconscious mind.
The Buckfast Bee was a great success for a while, but because it was designed to be docile, it failed to inject enough humans to achieve critical mass - the point at which Buckies would take over the beekeeping world and have all injectable humans within its power.
Meanwhile, a rebel faction - thought to be a splinter group from the African contingent of The Hive - began their own project in Brazil, with the aim of creating a bee so uncontrollable by man that he would give up all attempts to subjugate and control the honeybee. The revolutionary leader of this group, one Che Guard-Bee, undertook a guerrilla war in Central America that soon overpowered the defenses of the biggest beekeeping nation on earth and the reputation of his armies struck fear into the hearts of people all across the southern states.
A peace-loving faction of The Hive, meanwhile, was developing a new nanobot that would operate in a less warlike manner. Its aim was subtly to filter ideas into the minds of humans , so that they would become more interested in the preservation of the bees than in robbing them. This bot became known as the TBH-bot, after its creator, Thomas Bee-Happy...