Sunday, April 13, 2008

The Best Laid Plans

Long ago, in the distant and forgotten past, the lion men had been forged in the depths of the underground crevices where lava was hot enough to fuel the never ending power hungry experiments of the Eagle men. Work in these underground laboratories knew no day and knew no night. One group of Wizards worked as two other groups of wizards rested. The work never stopped for they knew that there was not much time.
Cloudbearer was a chip of the old block, the venerated supreme wizard, and although the father was perpetually dissatisfied with the performance of his son, Cloudbearer, was indeed, a prodigy. It was on one of those usual days, after the not so uncommon reprimand by has father, having shut his ears long before his father had uttered his first word, Cloudbearer bent over his microscope.
Something he saw troubled him, something he knew that couldn't be, or rather something that couldn't come so easily. He rose from his stone bench, looked up, closed his eyes, stretched every muscle in his avian body that he could stretch. He felt that he did deserve a break, after two sleepless nights followed by his father's harangue.
Having done that, he returned to his work-bench, squinted his eyes again, and peeped through the same old microscope at the same old spiral structure.
He knew that the only person who he could really go to was his father. In the blink of an eye he was back in his father's room, and before his father could complete the first word of his continued reprimand, he, in his excitement shouted, "Look, father, what I have here!!"
A week later the rocket was launched, and in its heart a single titanium tablet protecting the very secret of the Gods, and a prayer, "Go to the world, be fruitful and multiply." It wouldn't be long before they could move off their dying planet. Very soon, another planet would be habitable. All they had to do now was to track the trajectory of the rocket, and then wait, anxiously for centuries, feeding on the diminishing resources of their own planet, battling the growing heat.


Millions of centuries passed. Cloudbearer was totally forgotten, not even a statue remained. Evolution took its course, the Eagle men were no more, but their successors managed to retain the knowledge that was once learnt. However, their ability to make further progress deteriorated, and much of their energy was so directed towards their daily chores so essential for survival in that inhospitable climate, that there was not much room left for any other activity.
Meanwhile, where once a pristine rocket had landed, bearing the very seeds of life, great changes occurred. The pristine DNA that was once deliberately planted was no ordinary DNA born by mistake, from a chance union of the elements; rather it was made by the Gods to be fruitful, to multiply and to mutate. The planet, once filled with vicious and caustic gases and liquids, was slowly but steadily changed to a beautiful blue-green planet.
However, there happened something in this beautiful planet which the Gods themselves had never planned or predicted. Somewhere, deep beneath the blue oceans, a DNA muted and the first animal cell was born. Quickly it multiplied until the sea was swarming with trillions of them. In some deep trench of the ocean, they grouped together. Evolution was now faster than ever. Species appeared and disappeared. Some of them broke the phase barrier and jumped out of the sea onto the dry land. There was mayhem everywhere, creatures both big and small; suddenly the once quiet and beautiful planet was full of activity, full of movement, full of the thumping sound of stamping feet, full of the crunching sound of powerful jaws and sharp teeth.
Centuries rolled by. The planet saw its ups and downs. But the greatest change was yet to occur; the very power borne by the very Gods was yet to be acquired, a power that the Gods themselves were slowly losing - the power to think. The inevitable could not be stopped, and as soon as that ultimate divine power was acquired, the face of the planet changed faster than ever. Unknown to the Gods, the once green and blue planet that they once planned to forge, through their primordial DNA, had turned into something similar to their own - dry and scorching.
For the second time the rocket blasted off, this time never for ever, never to return, carrying the entire planet's life with it and travelled towards what they had planned to be their new abode. But they arrived too late - too late to stay, too late to turn back.

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