The Blue Stone
I woke up to a lot brighter light than I would expect at 7 in the morning. Unless, oh no. I accidentally hit the off button instead of the snooze button on the alarm clock again. I don’t know why I’m recording what happened during this time. At this point I’m probably recording these events so this can be evidence for if my boss strangles me to death for coming in at 10 instead of 8 three times this week. In my defense, I just can’t find any of those schedule alarm clocks that know your schedule and wake you up at the right time for your job. So that means I’m stuck with these antique clocks that switch off if you hit the wrong button when you’re very clearly groggy and unclear of your surroundings. As you may have guessed, this situation has happened many times before and my boss has been getting more and more frustrated each time. At this point it’s just a way of life to get chewed out by my boss for being late.
Anyways, my name is Harry Iggins and I’m one of many researchers trying to find a way to circumvent the speed of light to make travels across space much quicker; because right now, you have to be put in a state of a sort of hibernation so you don’t die of old age during the trip to some planet or moon hundreds of light-years away. But currently, we have absolutely no idea at all of how to do it. We are lucky enough for the Cosmos Federation to give constant funding to the Lightspeed Research Organization or LRO for short. But right now, as our search is bearing no fruit, the federation which governs almost the entire universe is quickly losing faith and the patience to keep funding us. If we don’t find a big breakthrough soon, everybody who works here will lose their jobs. Not to mention that there’s another company who’s pouring money into their research division so they can finally get to the parts of the universe nobody else has been able to travel to by achieving great enough speeds to get to those galaxies due to them traveling away from us at an incredible speed. If the Onimous corporation ever gets the answer, they’ll make sure that they’re the only ones with the information in order to monopolize the market on commercial space travel.
So here I am. Stuck as one of hundreds of researchers just scrambling around with absolutely no idea of what to do. As far as we know, there isn’t any way we can possibly do it.
But then I saw something incredible. I was walking home from the lab on planet SP873 which has a very earth-like atmosphere and I was looking up at the sky and at the sunset and saw some small, glowing blue rock hurtling at an insane speed. But immediately after the sun started to go under the horizon, something invisible hit the sidewalk next to me with incredible force. Then the blue object came crashing towards the exact spot where the invisible object crashed. But there was no blast from the blue rock; instead it just stopped. By then the sun had fully set and the street lights turned on. I knew I had to pick it up; but it could be an unstable radioactive isotope. I thought it’d be good to go tell my boss about it and bring him to it. So that’s what I did. I raced back to the lab and knocked on my boss’ antique doorknocker. The door swung open to the very agitated look on his face. He exclaimed in a very grumbly voice, “Iggins?! What on this planet has you knocking on my door after the end of the work day?!”
“Sorry to trouble you sir, but I just saw the most incredible thing!” I said.
My boss then asked,“Alright, where is it?”
To which I replied, “On the sidewalk.”
He responded quickly. “Why didn’t you just take it to me?”
“I was worried it might be radioactive.”
“Oh. Well anyways, let’s go see.” He said in a much more relaxed tone.
So we walked on over to the smashed chunk of sidewalk with the still glowing blue rock in the small crater. I then told my boss the story of it and how mysterious this thing was and how we should run several analysis tests on it. He seemed to believe me and agreed that we should analyze it. But first we had to get some anti-exposure gloves to handle the substance. He told me to stay here and keep watch on the rock-like thing while he went to fetch some gloves. He said someone might try to take it. So I waited, and waited, and waited some more. Once he finally came back with the gloves we decided to have one person see how heavy it was. I then tried to pick it up; it was way too heavy for me to pick up, so my boss tried himself and he was a very big and bulky man, but even he couldn’t pick it up. So he went to go get the heavy lifter exosuit. It was a yellow robotic suit that you wore and it enabled you to pick up things up to 1 ton! When he came back with it on it was able to pick it up and bring it back to the lab. But as we were headed back, I saw out of the corner of my eye three shady figures that seemed to be watching me and my boss. But I thought nothing of it.
As we went to the lab and called everybody in to work an all-nighter, we put the rock on a scale and found out that it weighed one-thousand pounds! In order for that to be true, this thing would have to be incredibly dense for it is only a foot around.
As the other scientists started arriving, each and every one of them asked why it was that they were being called back so late at night. We didn’t say anything; we just pointed toward the blue stone. They just started going on and on about how it was just a blue rock and how it was just something they could find and pick up on the sidewalk. So we asked people to try and pick it up off of the digital scale. For everyone the result was the same; they couldn’t pick it up. They then thought we bolted the rock down as some kind of prank. So my boss then used the HLE (Heavy Lifter Exosuit) to pick it up and there was no sign of any bolts. They then finally believed us. So we started the work. We looked through as many digital archives in stones we could find and there wasn’t anything at all about a stone that matched the description of the one we had. We had to assume that we had discovered a new substance. So we had to see what was inside this thing. but we couldn’t cut open the only one of these we had. So we put it in a thing to analyse it and see what it was made of. While it was in there and we were waiting for the analysis, the security cameras spotted some shady figures headed towards the front door. The system then immediately alerted us to their presence. We looked at the camera feeds and noticed that they had an Onimous co. uniform. They must have been the ones that I thought were watching from a distance. Then there was a loud bang on the door. They yelled to open up for them because they said they were scientists here. But we had done a roll call and everybody was here so we replied that. They then said that they were just transferred here from the SP34 system and they had heard about the all-nighter they were supposed to work. We then replied that we saw their uniforms and we insisted that they go away. We then heard beeping and we all ducked for cover from a time bomb. 3...2…1…beeeeeep and it blew up the door and only a few minutes after, they were walking in and insisted that we hand them the stone. We didn’t budge so they then started to wreck some of our equipment yelling at us to give them the stone. One of us called the police saying that there were three men in here smashing up stuff demanding that we give them a blue stone that we were researching. A few horrific minutes later the robots arrived and they said,“Cease and desist immediately or we will have to use force.” The three men stopped immediately and were calmly arrested and taken away. We were then able to finish the analysis and find out that these rocks were made of super-condensed photons and can travel faster than the speed of light. The next day we submitted the research data and they started to clone the stone and put them in spaceships so they could travel faster than light.
As for the Onimous corporation? They went bankrupt very shortly after the Cosmos Federation started putting out the reliable faster-than-light spaceships. And our lab? We shortly afterwards began searching for a way to improve the stones’ speed. And we lived pretty happy for a long time afterwards.