Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Living Planet

The Living Planet
                We set course for the living planet. A single living entity the size of a planet, it survives on atmospheric water and through symbiotic relationships with organisms living on and in it. It would take five days to reach it from the planet of Thion, our home planet. Our crew was small, only five astronauts. An engineer, a doctor, a biologist and two explorers, I am one of the explorers.  We maintained ourselves through the trip by playing card games, studying manuals describing the atmosphere of the living planet, and generally remaining in good spirits.
                We slept in the cabin when we became tired. We worked out in the small weight room to remain healthy. Every night, if you call it night (space is always the same) we made our own dinner from dehydrated food pellets, just add water. We were excited to be visiting the living planet, none of us have seen it before, this will be a new experience.
                Two days of travel remain; soon we’ll be gently landing on the surface as to not cause any damage. Our biologist became sick during our travels. The doctor tended to him and we each went about our ways.
                One full day of travel was left. Soon we’d be out of this small ship and roaming around the living planet. The planet could be seen in the far distance, a green sphere hanging in the perpetual darkness of space. Surrounding the planet were three bright stars and one moon, orbiting the oversized creature.
                We began our descent to the living planet. Huge pores dotted the surface of the planet and tall fungi stretched out from some of them. We came to a gentle landing, the planet shook with the discomfort of having a space craft land on it’s skin. The hatch opened and we ran out. The surface felt warm and squishy under our boots. We looked around.
                Huge flying lizards dotted the sky and red pools of liquid covered parts of the surface. From some of these pools sprung large two headed turtles. The biologist noted all of the life forms and swabbed the surface to test for bacteria. He cautiously walked to a red pool and dunked a small bottle into the strange liquid, gloves protecting his hands from any caustic effects.
                We grouped together near the ship to formulate a plan for exploring the planet. The doctor and engineer went off together; the biologist, myself and the other explorer went in a separate direction. Our main goal was to document the life on the planet and more importantly to communicate with the living planet and learn about the rich history of this enigma. How did the planet evolve? Where did it come from? Is it male or female? These were all questions on our mind. But our first step was to learn about the life on the planet, from there we may be able to discover if the planet can communicate with it’s inhabitants and symbiotes. We continued on.    

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