Neom 5.0 Mustaqbal (first sci-fi story based in Saudi Arabia & published on Amazon)

Omar Benhamadi put the processor in his briefcase. He had to deliver his client at 9 o'clock. The commute between his hotel and the Saudi city of Neom would not last more than twenty minutes. But, he was in a hurry to deliver what he owed to his clients.
He got out of his room and went down to join his three collaborators who were already waiting for him in the lobby of the magnificent Talaat Moustafa Resort in Taba.
Omar thought it was an important day for Condor. It took decades of persevering effort to find a place in the field of telecom. In the beginning, at the time of Abderrahmane, the company, based in Bordj Bou Arréridj in Algeria, merely assembled parts from China. Then it had gradually developed its own models, eventually making a respected place in the world of New Technologies of Information and Communication.
Algeria had become a great technological nation since the liberation of the country, at the time of the second hijra, called "peaceful." Education, customs, everything had changed in Algeria and in the region.
Today, Condor held a unique patent. The company's researchers had managed to develop a processor that consumed no energy. Condor equipment and laboratories no longer used batteries, no batteries, no connecting wires. Their devices worked continuously, for years, without any worries. It was a revolution in the world, a new Tesla phenomenon. Several companies, hundreds, had worked on the problem in the world, only Condor had succeeded.
Several multinationals had made offers to buy the patent.
Al-Hamd Technologies, the Saudi giant, had made the most interesting, a proposal that could not be denied; not only was the sum offered hugely, but Condor was offered a percentage of sales for several decades. Al-Hamd Tech was one of the world's leading players in its field, and it was installed, of course, in the heart of the tech world: Neom.
Omar came out of the hotel, the heat was already significant outside, but the foggers kept the atmosphere pleasant, amidst the rose bushes that covered the front steps of the hotel.
The property was on the shores of the Gulf of Aqaba, ideally located opposite Neom. The Algerian entrepreneur still admired the panoramic view of the Saudi city whose towers shone under the sun. He had visited the Saudi town several times, and he frequented his many annual fairs, but each time he was surprised. The skyscrapers of Neom were not only beautiful, but they were full of technological treasures. Everything was revolutionized almost every week. This city was unique, dizzying. Above all, more than anything, Omar appreciated the atmosphere of the town. In Neom, people lived in an enchanting setting, free from all material contingencies. Spirits could devote themselves to create.
Omar and his colleagues went down a few steps to the pier to the boat that was crossing the Gulf.
Neom had acted like a magnet all over the Middle East. Half of the population of Egypt and Jordan had gathered on the shores of the Gulf of Aqaba or on the Jordanian border to pick up a few crumbs from the myriad of business, tourism and innovation opportunities offered by proximity from Neom. Here everything was modern too. The economy was prosperous, the businesses thriving.
Neom had transformed the Muslim world and made the entire planet evolve. The Umma, the Muslim community, had observed for decades, with a mixture of pride and envy, the insolent wealth of the Arabs of the Gulf. This opulence was that of the oil that had flowed on these small and great kingdoms.
Neom had been something else, it had been a vision, the idea of what an unlimited future could offer the Arab world. For the first time in centuries, a great Arab nation showed leadership to the world. This success had been the bet of a daring prince and some mighty men, a bet transformed at the price of many struggles against obscurantisms.
No other territory in the world had offered so much opportunity, freedom, and intelligence as Neom. In this vast territory was concentrated all that the planet counted of geniuses. Researchers and businessmen from all over the world were scrambling to see even dust of Neom's mirage. The city always lived one step ahead of the rest of the world. Everything was rich, beautiful, intelligent, fascinating.
Arab populations had observed, at first skeptical, like the rest of the world, this new city, incredibly open, resembling nothing of what was known until then. Suddenly, people realized the opportunity and rushed, causing a humanitarian emergency. Hundreds of thousands of people walked through the desert to enjoy this earthly paradise. They had clashed with walls, soldiers, and borders, threatening to set the region on fire and blood.
The Saudis had chosen to react with the sense of traditional hospitality of the desert people. They offered hospitality to the newcomers. It was necessary to put order, organize flows, ensure security and, above all, respond to hope. With the countries of the region, the kingdom coordinated help and assistance. Many missions had been sent to foreign nations to educate and show which bridges to take. Students, especially, were flocking. Because, everywhere in Middle-East, young generations enjoyed social networks more than pathetic hate speeches from psychopathic beards.
Students spent a few years and decided, often after much hesitation, to return to their homeland to change everything. Neom's experience had indirectly brought down many corrupt governments, languishing in sexist and vicious traditions they called religious. New generations of young foreigners, trained in Saudi universities, took power in their country, opening up many areas of freedom, emancipation for women, justice, and prosperity. The first Muslim nations thus reformed quickly raised their heads. Jabal al-Lawz, the site where the city was built was perhaps where the golden calf had been worshiped. But, Neom was not the golden calf, Neom was the dazzling reflection of a world that no longer wanted to tolerate living in ignorance and stupidity. Against all the odds, people had chosen to understand. The many scholarships offered to Muslim students by the Saudi kingdom had acted like a purifying river. Nepotisms, mafias, and obscurantisms had been swept away by the street, ridiculed by the concrete alternative offered by Neom. The Muslim world had understood that if it wanted to regain its place in the world, it had to free oneself from the yoke of censorship.
Huge, ultra-modern suburbs had been built in the desert, with regular shuttles to Neom, mobilizing hundreds of thousands of associations to educate, train, and refine the impatient flow of the hungry. Neom and its suburbs had formed one of the most significant human concentrations in the world.
The enormous running costs of the city had endangered the kingdom but had been, fortunately, primarily offset by the vast profits generated by the discoveries made almost daily in the laboratories and universities of the city. Knowledge, boundless energy, was a much more promising asset than the oily and messy rocks that had brought the kingdom out of the silence of the desert. The whole of Arabia, and by extension the world Muslim community, had once again become a pivot of the modern world.

After the collapse of the United States, during the great catastrophe, the second hijra was launched peacefully from Neom. Far beyond the boundaries of the Abbasid empire, governments had readily pledged allegiance to the Saudi kingdom, the source of their democratic inspiration. Knowledge offered only an outlet for peace.
Omar remembered the teachers' accounts of centuries of tribulation in the Muslim world, the frustration of these young countries consumed in survival and tricks, victims of all the crooks and profiteers in the corridors palaces. The latter had struggled, tried to keep their privileges before sinking into oblivion and contempt, as in Algeria.
After the difficulties arose hope, life had prevailed. Today, Omar lived in a country where everyone ate his fill. The economy was flourishing, driven by the dynamism of a young and generous nation. The genius of the peoples of North Africa had finally found its way, driven by massive investments in education and infrastructure. Economic and intellectual successes were logically linked, making it one of the most dynamic places on the planet. Omar thought of his family's business, Condor. Several hundred researchers were currently preparing for the future, sheltered from ultra-modern laboratories, equipped with the most advanced technologies. So was the world, the road turned for everyone. Today, the African world was taking his revenge. Europe had colonized Africa for a time, as Muslim Africa had conquered Europe previously. After the great earthquake of Nadi Essanouber and the sinking of the northern shores of the Mediterranean, Algeria had been able to rebuild and rise from the ashes.

Omar was lost in his daydreams, and in the contemplation of Neom, he came out of his dream as he approached the pier. He and his staff sat down in a limousine waiting for them nearby. Al Hamd Technologies' sign appeared in discreet golden letters on the doors. The car was driverless, hardly anyone was driving to Neom. Omar and his colleagues were welcomed by a perfect synthetic voice who welcomed them: "Hello, gentlemen. We hope you have had a good trip. We welcome you to Neom. We will have the pleasure of welcoming you to our headquarters in about ten minutes. Omar was surprised not to have been greeted by a human, but Neom had stripped himself of all these useless rules. The machines took care of the physical tasks, the time was precious. What's the point in spending time mobilizing an employee for a drive?
Omar Benhamadi did not have the leisure to continue his conscious thought, he soon slumped on the side, like all inside
the car. A potent sleeping gas had all knocked them out smoothly, leaving them no chance to react. The limousine moved away quietly from the quay.
Omar and his men were not found until the next morning, in the middle of the desert, on the borders of Saudi territory. The briefcase was gone. There was no trace, no testimony, and Mr. Benhamadi and his men had no memory of their arrival in Saudi Arabia, or even of their stay at the hotel on the Egyptian side.

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