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Creation

Why Did I Do This?

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#1 Offline The Otter

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Posted Dec 29 2012 - 07:27 PM

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]Creation[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[What is it?]" The scientist asked, looking at the phial suspended before him. Within there was a small mass of a lightly frothing, clear liquid. It moved, and within, one could almost see solids forming, then dissolving again. It would not stay still, almost like supercooled, liquid helium-it had to move.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[An acidic compound,]" the female near him replied. She looked up for a moment, at the liquid within the phial, before looking down. She opened her left-oriented appendage, and with a single gesture with the other, brough up a holographic display. Within there was a detail of the compound, a molecule arranged in a double-helix shape, with the various smaller molecules comprising it shown in smaller detail, as side windows.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[It is composed of the sugar deoxyribose,]" she said curtly, grasping the window with a third appendage, long and vaguely resembling a tentacle. "[Of similar note are the various phosphorous compounds within, and, lastly, the polymers, and what they are made of.]" She set the one window to the side, opening four more windows from her miniaturized display, and placing them up to where they can be seen.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[[/color][/font]C5H5N5O,]" she said, gesturing to the first molecule. "[C5H5N5],"she said a moment later, gesturing to the second. "[Both very similar, and somewhat prevalent within the compound. Next, we have C5H6N2O2, and C4H5N3O, which are, again, somewhat similar in shape and prevalence.]" She turned to the scientist, one large, vaguely purple-coloured, multifaceted eye focusing on him.

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[We believe it may revolutionize life as a whole,]" she said, dispassionately. "[Assuming we mix it with the earlier two compounds we discovered.]" She quieted down as the scientist looked at his creation with interest, the vibrations of her vocal flaps ceasing.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[That would require that we seed it on various other worlds,]" he said, his voice rumbling the entire room, one that the old scientist barely fit in as it was. "[For we cannot make life in such close proximity to us. We do not know how it will progress. It would be too dangerous.]" The young female beside him nodded, the flower-like end of her left-most-oriented appendage closing, the holographic display closing as well.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[We have determined a suitable planet,]" she said to him. "[Located approximately 30,000 light years from the galactic centre, within the Orion-Cygnus arm.]" The larger scientist near her nodded, opening up a holographic display of his own. What he saw was a small, greyish-brown, rocky planet. Currently unsuitable for life.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[We will have to transport water,]" he rumbled. The other nodded. "[And even then, this project may not take hold without a greater sacrifice than just that of our water and our science.]" Again, the female nodded. She gestured to the population records: exactly one hundred and one members of the species remained.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]That was due, in part, to how long-lived they were, and the fact that they had nothing to be afraid of. They had long since grown from being prey, to being the universal predator. And after that, they had evolved into protectors, guardians. They no longer waged war on inhabitants of the universe in which they lived, they merely roamed the interstellar expanse, alone. There were no others with technology like them-nay, there were no others at all! It was a lonely existence. And for one of them, it was going to get lonelier.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[Call the Habitat,]" the elder rumbled, and in the female's purple eyes, a slightly look of apprehension and fear came into view. "[Tell them that we haven't much time.]"***"[My brothers, are we not guardians, protectors, of life?]" the scientist rumbled, his massive form dwarfing all but a few of those who he was speaking to-the entire population of his species. "[Is it not our duty, given to us by our ancestors, to make sure that life can take a hold?]" His multiple eyes narrowed as he turned to another who had begun to speak.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]This elder, the oldest by far of any of them, held a different form than they did. He had only four appendages, two eyes with singular lenses. His skin was ashen, grey, with natural armour grown over multiple areas, like chitin. As well, due to his naturally imbalanced chemical nature, he was considered, by many, to be a hot head. A fighter.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[I remember the old days,]" he growled in an archaic dialect, and it was true. "[I remember when we fought. Against what? Nothing, but ourselves. We were the only life that existed, having already wiped out all the creatures from our home, and still, we are the only life. I remember our home, long since destroyed. I remember the wars. I remember when you all evolved,]" he spat out the words with disdain. "[Thinking yourselves rulers, calling yourselves protectors. And now you have the gall to suggest you create life.]" The others within the room all fell silent, looking to the scientist upon the dais.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[I have heard your words,]" the scientist rumbled, humbly. "[Though I do not agree with them. It is true, we are the only life. We wish to create more life, to inhabit the universe, and hopefully coexist. Such that we will not be needed, and we may finally move on. We also need somebody to watch over them...and as our watcher from the days of old, I would be honoured if you would do so.]" He looked almost disappointed as the elder being near him shook his head.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[You do not understand,]" the older one growled, baring his teeth like one of the old animals from the species' true home. "[Any life will be just the way we were, when we were created. Or when we evolved, however you wish to look at it. Warlike. Death-bringing. Life is its own antithesis.]" He sighed, leaning back. Ah, what it was like, to have air. Not that these younger creatures would understand it.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[I can tell already that you are implacable,]" the elder said, speaking again, interrupting the scientist. "[I can already tell that all of you but me wish to partake in this experiment. Fine. But you do not understand what will be required of you.]" As the others looked about, chattering quietly, the scientist on the dais spoke again, his voice, Earth-shattering, shaking the very room.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[What do you mean, elder?]" he asked. "[What do you mean, we do not understand what will be required?]" The elder looked at him, glaring, and a shiver ran through his large body, a slight amount of mucus expending from his pores. That would have to be cleaned.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[I mean that for life to be created,]" the elder said, quietly, almost as though he was unsure of what his words would be, "[There must also be death, in turn. A sacrifice. Have you ever wondered why we have no Gods, though we still have the word in our vocabulary?]" As the others sat, looking at him, ignorant of their own ignorance, he continued.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[That is because they sacrificed themselves, in full, to create us. Hoping that we would be like them. And there were fewer even of them than there are of us now-that was why they could only seed life on one planet.]" He stopped, looking about.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[Alter your plan. Spread life to multiple worlds, one each in the Milky Way, the Andromeda, the NGC-4414, and UDFj-39546284. Split our population in four, and I, unfit to create life, will remain at the centre of our universe, and monitor the development of these others.]" A quick message quickly passed through those others within the council room, and they simultaneously nodded.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[Then it shall be done,]" the elder said, a single tear running down his cheek. Here was the end of one species. And the beginning of another.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]***[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[It's been made beautiful,]" she said, looking over the planet, the one that she had first selected to be used as the beginning for the life. The others were already at their respective planets, in their respective galaxies. But she felt that she had received the most beautiful planet of them all.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]Nearly one thousand years ago, she had been small. Frail. Now she was large, a mother of many, and soon to be progenitor of many more. She looked at the view of the planet. Now there were sparkling waves of blue interspersed amidst the rust-coloured rock of the planet. They had earlier tried to place water upon the planet next farthest out, but it was too far. It would not last. This planet, though, it was perfect.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[We are one minute exactly until seeding,]" her assistant said, progeny of the elder scientist whom she had worked with long ago. "[Are you ready?]" Without a moment's hesitation, she nodded. She, and all the others of her race, had been waiting for this day. "[Very good. Automated dissolving shall commence...now.]" She smiled, feeling the odd tingle of the acid, now largely produced into a pool large enough to hold the entire population of this ship, about twenty-five individuals, within. Exactly ten seconds later it had swallowed her completely, her consciousness having long since mingled with those of the others around her, and then that collective consciousness itself burned out. Here was pure life, in its newest form.[/color][/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;color:rgb(128,0,0);"]The ship fell gently into the waters, continuing down, down, slamming into the still solid mass that was the sea floor. A crack started, which then promulgated itself. Soon, the various completely solid portions of the planet had been rendered into multiple plates, all of which would, at some point, begin to move. And the seed was expelled from a hatch in the ship like it is from a simple fish, spreading out amongst the waters. Already, the new life had begun.[/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;color:rgb(128,0,0);"]***[/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;color:rgb(128,0,0);"]Alone, in the corridors of the massive, solar system-sized habitat that had once been inhabited by a species, walked a single man. His footsteps echoed amongst the corridors, as well as something else. Sobs.[/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;color:rgb(128,0,0);"]Alone, the elder weeped, as he walked to the centre of the ship, where he was to wait out the long years. He would not get sleep, he would not get rest. He had to watch.[/font]

 

[font="georgia, serif;color:rgb(128,0,0);"]Alone, he weeped.[/font]


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#2 Offline Zox Tomana

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 01:16 AM

Oh hey look, a story by an Otter.

 

First impressions on first read through: aliens (who do not possess DNA, and may or may not be carbon based), panspermia, kind of a different thing going on with the quotations (which you have informed me over chat designates translation, which is cool but even unexplained it made the story seem more alien for me), and a different kind of take on what it takes to seed life.

 

I like this story, mainly for the Elder who remains to monitor the results of the younger generation's idea. He seems to reject their scientific view of life, and goes to their ancestral beliefs to explain what it takes to create life. Despite his reservations about creating life, he brings his wisdom to the table so that his people can fulfill the duty they have taken on to preserve life. Lonely, but a good  guy.

 

Also, love the DNA and chemistry, but you forgot about RNA which is also crucial to life as we know it, not to mention the wide array of proteins and enzymes used to transcribe, translate, and replicate DNA/RNA (though all that may be in the "two earlier compounds"). But I actually only have one problem as far as actual story content goes.

 

 

 

[font="georgia, serif;"][color=#800000;]"[We believe it may revolutionize life as a whole,]" she said, dispassionately. "[Assuming we mix it with the earlier two compounds we discovered.]" She quieted down as the scientist looked at his creation with interest, the vibrations of her vocal flaps ceasing.[/color][/font]

 

 

 

--------

 

She's talking about something revolutionary, but she's dispassionate? I get it if they've 'evolved' past emotions, but you'd think something this big (they are talking about seeding a whole new form of life, for Pete's sake!) would elicit some kind of reaction even from the most reserved of people. Beyond that, this is good.


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#3 Offline The Otter

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 01:21 AM

Like I said, they've basically evolved past emotions. They're scientists, through and through, and they don't want to muck up a creation by going all hoopy-whoopy over it.

 

And yes, I did just coin my own phrase there.


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#4 Offline Legolover-361

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 07:59 PM

I enjoyed your story mainly for its premise. One of the mysteries of our universe is how life originated, and watching people write about possible origins is oft entertaining. Your inclusion of chemical compounds in the first section of Creation and your usage of braces to indicate translated speech (a technique I actually saw in at least one Timothy Zahn book) were nice touches.Unfortunately, critique you I must, so critique you I will.Your plot, while enjoyable, didn't quite set up the climax wherein the Elder protests the creation of new life. You write about the examination of DNA, then the meeting, then the creation of life, but it's too quick. I can't feel much pity for the Elder because I don't fully understand why he would be against the ascension of his own species or what he's surrendering to become.This alienation (do forgive the pun) is present throughout the rest of the story. You don't provide many details, instead leaving much to the imagination; this can work in some cases, but in this case, your plot feels shallow because of the lack of additional details. Perhaps you intended for mysteries to be left unanswered, in which case you could have at least hinted at the present of such questions.In general, I did enjoy the story, but I feel it was too quick for me to become emotionally interested.
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#5 Offline Basilisk

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 08:11 PM

An interesting tale, it brought to mind Lovecraft's Elder Things. Though the comparison is far from perfect. 

 

That said, I don't really understand what one is supposed to draw from the story. I don't quite understand what it is trying to say...if it is indeed trying to say anything at all. The Elder in particular, I get the feeling I was supposed to sympathize with him. But he came off as bitter and out of date honestly. 


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"Shall this great kingdom, that has survived, whole and entire, the Danish depredations, the Scottish inroads, and the Norman conquest; that has stood the threatened invasion of the Spanish Armada, now fall prostrate before the House of Bourbon? Surely, my Lords, this nation is no longer what it was! Shall a people, that seventeen years ago was the terror of the world, now stoop so low as to tell its ancient inveterate enemy, take all we have, only give us peace? It is impossible! ...My Lords, any state is better than despair. Let us at least make one effort; and if we must fall, let us fall like men!"
 
-William Pitt the Elder, before suffering a fatal stroke on the floor of the House of Lords.

#6 Offline The Otter

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 08:18 PM

I just love writing things to leave people with questions that don't pertain to the story at all.

 

It just makes my little experiments so worthwhile. : D


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#7 Offline Basilisk

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 08:23 PM

Wait. Come to think of it, you seemed to imply this race, with all it's wonderful technology would have to die to create new life.

 

....Uh. Why? The lack of water? Plenty of that stuff on Pluto. Bring it here and watch it melt. Other solar systems have similar planets. Lack of food? Surely if they have the power to create life they have the power to clone slabs of food to eat. That bit doesn't make any sense.


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"Shall this great kingdom, that has survived, whole and entire, the Danish depredations, the Scottish inroads, and the Norman conquest; that has stood the threatened invasion of the Spanish Armada, now fall prostrate before the House of Bourbon? Surely, my Lords, this nation is no longer what it was! Shall a people, that seventeen years ago was the terror of the world, now stoop so low as to tell its ancient inveterate enemy, take all we have, only give us peace? It is impossible! ...My Lords, any state is better than despair. Let us at least make one effort; and if we must fall, let us fall like men!"
 
-William Pitt the Elder, before suffering a fatal stroke on the floor of the House of Lords.

#8 Offline The Otter

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 08:40 PM

The best part, I've got Basilisk asking the questions.

 

Don't worry, my friend, you'll learn, if you keep up with all of what I'm soon to do.


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#9 Offline Basilisk

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 08:48 PM

If you veer into high fantasy with this, I'll sic the Nightgaunts on you. :P


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"Shall this great kingdom, that has survived, whole and entire, the Danish depredations, the Scottish inroads, and the Norman conquest; that has stood the threatened invasion of the Spanish Armada, now fall prostrate before the House of Bourbon? Surely, my Lords, this nation is no longer what it was! Shall a people, that seventeen years ago was the terror of the world, now stoop so low as to tell its ancient inveterate enemy, take all we have, only give us peace? It is impossible! ...My Lords, any state is better than despair. Let us at least make one effort; and if we must fall, let us fall like men!"
 
-William Pitt the Elder, before suffering a fatal stroke on the floor of the House of Lords.

#10 Offline The Otter

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 09:00 PM

Once I manage to put my story notes into a cohesive whole, I'll tell you whether or not that happens.


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#11 Offline Aderia

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Posted Dec 30 2012 - 11:14 PM

"[Alter your plan. Spread life to multiple worlds, one each in the Milky Way, the Andromeda, the NGC-4414, and UDFj-39546284. Split our population in four, and I, unfit to create life, will remain at the centre of our universe, and monitor the development of these others.]"

 

Would aliens really use human terms for those galaxies?

 

I think that was my only nitpick.

 

The scientific style of this story, while I'm definitely not the most sciencey person out there, I appreciated. It made the story stand out even more. I definitely like the idea of the story. Do you plan to expand this?

 

I really can't say very much, other than that I approve and that you also need to enter December's FFC XP

 

I look forwards t reading more from you, hopefully something I can lend more insight to, since all this science is beyond me. =P


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#12 Offline The Otter

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Posted Dec 31 2012 - 11:32 AM

Well, seeing as those were the galaxies they were talking about and this is all translated...:lol:

 

Technically, those are human designations for all four galaxies. But yeah. Translations woo.


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