Kiv Meets Neptune
This is one page of the Metaphoriuminomicon
Quotes of the Day
- ... we grow new homes!
- Bringing barren worlds to life,
- Colonies where life's upward spiral supports all spacefaring creatures.
- ― SolSeed Sabbath Ritual for the Viventibus Mundos season
Contemplation for the Day
You are riding your elephant in the shadows of the dark outer areas of a massive ornate domed room. On the floor of the dome, at its center you can see Goddesses gathered around a statue of their meta-Goddess, Theá Me Plokámia. They are conducting a service, celebrating their highest aspirations for a living galaxy. But it is hard to hear them out here in the cold dark rim of their too large cathedral.
You come across a small girl. She is shivering and crying, as blue as ice. On the floor, in front of her, there are a few instant win lottery tickets, torn open and discarded. She is a world Goddess, you can tell that, but she has no tattoos and there is no glow in her eyes. She is emaciated and tiny. Your elephant could crush her with one foot.
Concerned, you jump off of your elephant, walk over to her and squat beside her. “What is the matter little girl?” you ask.
She looks at you, tears in her eyes and speaks and her voice is the voice of a Goddess but weak and quiet, “I didn’t win.” She indicates the small pile of instant win lottery tickets. “I never had much of a chance. I am too cold, too small.”
“There is hope as long as there is life,” you recite without much thought, “What is your name?”
“You call me Kiv, 2004 Kiv18; I am nothing to you, so little that you don’t even give me a real name. I am just a number and my number never came up.” She sobs.
You hear the Goddesses at the center of the dome raise their voices, “Atmospheres, Technology, Adaptation, Spacefaring Life.”
“My atmosphere froze to my skin. Never technology, never adaptation, never Life.” Kiv moans.
Your elephant trumpets in sympathy. She wants to make things better for Kiv. She wants to Bring Life to Kiv.
You whisper to your elephant, “She is just 56 kilometers in diameter, in an unstable orbit, near Neptune. How could anything ever live there?”
As if in answer another Goddess arrives dropping down from above and landing on the floor in a squat like a superhero. She is covered in timers of various sorts, hourglasses, sundials, digital timers, sundials, stone circles, clock towers, pocket watches. She is made out of them. Her eyes are clockfaces, her nose the central spike of a sundial, when she opens her mouth her teeth spell out a time in white flaps on a black background, flipping out the seconds as she speaks, “I am the Goddess Tempa, personification of time. Someone has shown no faith in the unfolding possibilities of the future. Who is it?”
Shyly you reply, “I asked how anything could ever live on Kiv…”
Tempa replies, “Ever? Ever? Ha! Never say never. I am the only truly infinite god. Every possibility will happen. I will see to that.”
Kiv looks up with Tempa, with new hope in her eyes, “You mean that I will give rise to Life?”
“Well not this you, necessarily.” Tempa replies uncertainly, “I mean an asteroid just like you at some point in the future will give rise to Life, somewhere, if not in this quantum fluctuation, then in some other.”
Kiv begins to sob again.
It occurs to you that while Kiv may never give rise to life, she could still contribute to supporting Life, “In order for Gaia to colonize all of these worlds,” you gesture toward the gathered Goddesses in the center of the dome, “she will need to develop species which will be able to survive cold hard vacuum. Isn’t it possible, Tempa, that such life will colonize Kiv, this Kiv, and she will become one of Gaia’s children?”
Tempa looks at you startled, “You are an agent. Your agency can bring many possibilities into existence. That is definitely one such possibility.”
Kiv looks up with hope in her eyes again, “You mean these chances were just the chances of my giving rise to Life. But only Gaia, out of all of the Goddesses in the dome gave rise to Life herself, yet many have become children of Gaia.”
Kiv begins to jump up and down waving her arms, “Hey send a spaceship this way, Hey over here”
You and your elephant look expectantly toward the centre of the dome watching for spaceships heading out this way. You watch and you can hear the ticking of Tempa’s many clocks as the ages pass. Slowly Kiv’s enthusiasm wanes as she waits and waves her arms until she stops and looks at you and then at Tempa. “Why would they ever bother sending a spaceship to me? I am too small and too cold to bother with.” She slumps down and begins to sob again.
“Well time flies,” Tempa says looking a bit uncomfortable and flaps her great wings and flies away. Time continues to pass, even without the presence of its personification. It works that way.
As you continue to try to comfort little Kiv, Neptune approaches. Not Neptune the god of the Earth’s oceans but Neptune, the god of Neptune. The planet Neptune is a much bigger and, in many ways, more important place than Earth’s thin oceans. This god is a giant. He walks in circles around the outer edge of the dome, his feet thundering on the solid metaphorium floor. Kiv stops sobbing and watches as he approaches transfixed with fear.
Just before he arrives a tiny spaceship loops around him and lands on Kiv’s shoulder. A few spacesuited people get out and wander around so tiny themselves that they make ants look big. You can hear their radio broadcasts as they speak to each other. Anchor the ship. This planetoid will supply us with all we need for our journey to the Oort Cloud. Kiv seems confused. She looks at the spaceship which should give her hope and then back at Neptune who is barreling almost straight toward her. As he passes Kiv, without missing a step he kicks her and her tiny spaceship clear across the dome and much farther into the darkness at the edge. He doesn’t even seem to notice what he has done. As he passes you see pinned to his back a sign that says, “No Shortfall of Gravity.”
You leap onto the back of your elephant, ride around Neptune and chase after Kiv. It takes a long time but you eventually find her much deeper in the darkness at the edge of the dome. She is marching purposefully, covered in little domes and trailing a series of small spaceborne habitats. You can see huge trees growing in many of the domes, well huge compared to the size of the little people living among them. “Kiv, where are you going?” you ask, surprised to see her in such good spirits.
“I am no longer Kiv.” the little Goddess replies, “I am Starfarer, goddess of interstellar world ships. I am going to Destinyation.”
“Where is Destinyation?” you ask puzzled, looking ahead and seeing only darkness in the outer reaches of the Dome.
She points a slender finger forward and you see a dim red star ahead. Behind you, vaguely, in the sudden silence, you hear the Goddesses at the center of the Dome chanting, “Our story began with Gaia, the galaxy mother.”
“How?” you ask.
“Neptune’s gravitational kick sent me on my way.” she replies, “It was unavoidable, my Destiny. But these little humans and their machines foresaw it and seized their opportunity to reach another star. I am no mere star hugger of a minor goddess like Gaia or Ares. I am the Alpha, the beginning, the origin of Viventibus Galaxia.”
Her words reverberate in your mind as you stare at the dim red dot. The Goddesses at the center of the dome continue their distant chant, “The Exponential Growth that leads to a Living Galaxy.”
“They don’t know it but they are chanting about me,” Starfarer laughs, “They are chanting about me and my children.”
You look back at the Goddesses. Their ritual flame at the center of their focus, a flame bigger than any of them, a massive bonfire, is a dim light, almost as dim as the red dot ahead, Destinyation. As you glance back and forth between the two you become dizzy with the incredible perspective and then slowly you awake back in your normal world, without a metaphorium floor beneath your feet or a metaphorium dome above your head.