by H.E. Taylor
|Chapter 58||Table of Contents||Chapter 60|
Asteroid Disaster January 27, 2058
Last week I got a late night call from Rhamaposa. He was stone cold sober and didn’t waste time with preliminaries.
“We’ve lost contact with the Daedalus group.”
“We’re not sure. We’re waiting for the 24 hour summary.”
Because of the distance and the danger involved, UNGETF had insisted on an automated video summary which would be transmitted by the computer every 24 hours. It was basically a compressed stop-frame video record. The algorithm tracked movement, auditory stress levels and the initial interactions of two or more people.
“When is it due to arrive?”
“In a little over 6 hours.”
“Then we see.”
“We have to tell people.”
“Oh, we will. How much other material gets released and in what context remains to be seen.”
I was listening to the radio that night after I went to bed. There was a report that contact had been lost with the Daedalus. No details were offered and no speculation.
No further public reports were made. At the next UNGETF meeting, Rhamaposa told us the automated video summary had ceased. Whether it was the truth, I do not know.
Whatever the truth was, there would be no asteroid at the L1 point. With the space elevator still stymied by lawsuits, the moon option had become our only option.
The cruel attention of a desperate planet turned to the moon colonists.
Excerpted from _The Bottleneck Years_ by H.E. Taylor
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Last modified September 23, 2013