Brig-Glis is a "badenstadt"--a bath town known for the recuperative powers of its health-promoting natural mineral hot springs--that had seen glimmerings of economic and religious notoriety in centuries past. It sits located on a key mountain pass into Italy while it is also near many ski resorts and even a military air field.
"Wallis" is the German exchange for the French word "Valais" which is used to name the region in which Brig sits--which is one of the 26 Swiss political districts or "cantons." I preferred the poetic ring--and Germanic rather than Gallic insinuations--of the German word better. There are no other deeper meanings or significances associated (intentionally) with the name I use.
"Brig-Wallis Preparatory School for Boys."
Prep schools have always fascinated me--their purpose (both the obvious and the hidden) as well as their role historically. The fact that schools originally only existed to cater to certain demographics--to help create and perpetuate lines of separation between an elite group or class with its elite knowledge base and their elite circles of friends and associates fascinates me. Scribes, priests, accountants, doctors, lawyers--any profession or craft that attempts to hide or control resources--the whole human drive to separate and isolate, control and hoard--people and information--fascinates me.
Many members of my family attended prep schools or boarding schools. Even some of the colleges they attended were institutions intended to be exclusionary--"club"-like, if you get my meaning. As a matter of fact, the way I see it, the boarding school served as an extension of the exclusive clubs that gentlemen "of means" (land and property "owners") used to socialize and discuss business with other men deemed worthy of their company and intimacy. For recreation these wealthy elite created their urban gentlemen's and athletic clubs; for their families they built idyllic exclusionary country clubs. For their children they created an exclusive network of private, self-endowed, residential and commuter educational centers--modeled after the world's private "higher" education centers--the so-called universities--of which the boarding school is one. Secret (and some not so secret) rituals and rites made these institutions exclusive to certain demographics. Religious affiliation, ancestry and bloodlines, and, of course, wealth. The so-called nouveau rich could sometimes vault their way into a club or school by the sheer force of their economic weight. The "old money" and the old bloodlines--the "blue bloods"--who are usually quite preoccupied with protecting their property, status, and influence--might resist mightily but, in the end,
we all came from the same beginnings beating bones over our kill in order to impress others.
The wealthy elite are too busy to raise their own children. They have their own duties and preoccupations (and interests, habits, and addictions), their own schedules of country clubs, world travel elitist destinations, board rooms, athletic clubs, gentlemen's clubs and ladies philanthropy causes, cocktail parties, soirees and salons--all the exclusive private places in which all of the world's major decisions get planned and made.
To the wealthy elite, their exclusive schools were established as institution for in loco parentis day care, cultural literacy, and meeting grounds for children of "their own kind" but also as another means to ensure that people of "their kind" had exclusive and prolonged contact, relationships, and even competition, and, most importantly, that they forged future partnerships, allegiances, and marital unions, with children from other families of their same elite "master" class. Boarding schools and the prep school world serve quite perfectly as a means to get children out of the way of the adults while also serving the purpose of keeping their children safe, stimulated (both intellectually and socially), and surrounded by others of their own kind--in accordance with their own rules (which are not the same rules you and I are raised to espouse).
In Brig-Wallis Preparatory School for Boys I remain true to these patterns only I take it a step further: I pose the question of What if there really is a ruling class not only dictating the movement and behaviors of resources and people but that is also assigned with the management and direction of a particular "plan" that has been devised for human development! What if the state of the human condition, of progress, the lines of history--as well as the potential for future development--were all devised by a person or race or species or ruling class--and that that vision were being guided and maintained by a secretive band of people who have been given the means and the tools to pull all the strings necessary to do so? This then leads to all kinds of interesting questions as to who could these people be, how could they maintain their secrecy, what means or tools would they need or could they have at their disposal that might help them be successful in their duties, and, most of all, how are the next generations of this group found, tested and trained?
Using the premise that this might not be the only human species to have walked a planet in four-dimensional space-time, I surmise that our particular species--which we are taught to call Homo sapiens by elitists within a particularly (and currently) dominant scientific community--is but one of many that have been attempted on this planet (all of which have either failed, gone extinct, or left the planet) and that ours, too, is "doomed" to fail--but that the means to each failure is planned, is controlled and guided, is overseen by certain clandestine (or overt) herders or masters or dictators.
That is the premise behind The Osiris Plan story: that a small, hidden but they have to be vetted, trained, and tested to prove worthy of their service in this master role--but they cannot know the fullness of their potential future while going through the training and testing because of the potential for damage they could cause to the secret "behind the scenes" role that this group plays were they to turn against the group by trying to expose, undermine, or destroy the group.
I chose Switzerland as the setting for my story because it seems to have been a country that has served as a playground for the European elite for quite some time. With its year-round beauty and isolationist nation pride, Switzerland has been used as a resort destination, private escape, and for its secluded private institutions for children by the small circles of the European (and especially British) aristocracy for a couple of centuries, and, lately, for families of the super wealthy.
At a fairly young I age I became aware--through film, literature, and general conversation--that Swiss boarding schools were the pinnacle of privacy, exclusivity, and the much revered "jet set." Thus, it was quite natural that a Swiss boarding school became the setting for this most exclusive of exclusive boarding schools--a school so exclusive, so elite, that even members of the ruling elite might not know it.