Arrival of the Dragons by Centauran

Arrival of the Dragons

by Centauran in Fantasy

Encyclopedia Galactica (Ed.3), pp 1834-1835.

Teknicia: Until the discovery of the ruins on Khalabba, only unreliable and fragmentary evidence existed to support the legend of this extraordinary floating city. It was a protoype, apparently; created to house a burgeoning humanoid population, though once initial fears had been conquered, it rapidly became a desirable residence for the rich and famous of the planet.

Powered by a novel fusion system, the city's ion-scavenging 'roots' dangled beneath it, glowing a deep violet in the night sky, while the metropolis itself, housing some five million souls, gleamed a crisp, electric blue.

Despite fears from many sectors, Teknicia proved a great success, and plans were soon under way for four more of the orbiting habitats ... until one day, a strange phenomenon was reported by the planet's foremost astronomers. At the limits of resolution, telescopes revealed the rapid approach of what appeared to be a swarm of gigantic creatures, shaped uncannily like the mythical dragons at the center of Khalabban folk-lore.

Over the following months, the habitat-building schedule was placed on hold as the visitors drew closer and closer, their enormous size finally becoming apparent when they began to gather around Teknicia and eventually settled upon it, their numbers almost obscuring it from view.

It is doubtful whether the so-called dragons ever really knew that human life existed in the shining place they had chosen as their new home; their nest. Over the next two decades, the planet watched in awe as scores of dragon young were born and raised, their comings and goings soon so commonplace, that the Khalabbans learned to ignore them much as they themselves were ignored.

Inevitably, systems failed and Teknicia began to die, its glow dimming noticeably day by day. The human population had left long before, of course, and finally, when the last of the lights went out, so too did the dragons, the swarm as enigmatic and uncommunicative on its abrupt departure as it had been on arrival.

The recovered records report that Teknicia finally broke up and crashed into the ocean, and that no more floating cities were ever built.

(Vue 6 Esprit, Apophysis and Photoimpression.)

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