The Cycle of Fate

It was 2300 hours, and in the dead of the night, Sarah was browsing through the Library’s comprehensive collection of books.

“1984, read that… War of the Worlds, maybe later… Ah, The Curator, this looks interesting.’’

She settled down in one of the Library’s numerous, cushioned armchairs, set her belongings down on the table besides her, and opened the book…


Background

Our universe tends towards simplicity. However, in certain pockets, such as our own solar system, simplicity is not very common. Our societies have evolved to be extremely complex with many layers. We started out on Venus, the second rocky planet from the medium sized star, Sol. However, as Venus’ resources depleted, and its climate degraded, our society moved to other bodies in the solar system. The Venusians split up, and colonised a whole host of other moons and planets. They genetically modified themselves to be able to live on the heavenly body they chose. These modifications changed their appearances so greatly, that they looked nothing like their ancestors from Venus. As time passed, memories of their great ancestors, the Venusians, also faded from the colonisers’ minds. They began considering themselves Martian or Jovian or Europan. They set up barriers between their states, contributing to the kind of division that caused the downfall of Venus.

In the end though, two major colonies emerged, those on Mars and Europa. On the one hand Europa, was a completely democratic state, where no one individual had more power (the abstract term) than another. The Europans were a peaceful group of people, valuing knowledge above any quality, and dedicating the majority of their lives to the pursuit of knowledge. The Martians, on the other hand, were the complete opposite. In their society, knowledge had no value. They adopted a more kratocratic set of beliefs, valuing physical power more than any other quality. Their state was headed by an autocratic tyrant, whose appetite for destruction was renowned in the solar system.

Chapter One

It was 2300 hours, and in the dead of the night, Sarah was browsing through the Library’s comprehensive collection of books.

“War of the Worlds, read that… 1984, maybe later… Ah, The Curator, this looks interesting.’’

She settled down in one of the Library’s numerous, cushioned armchairs, set her belongings down on the table besides her, and opened the book.

Sarah spent most of her free time reading at the Library. That was what she did for a living. She was the curator of a library, though not a very conventional one. This library was hidden from the public, and had remained that way for hundreds of years. This was made possible in part by its establishment on the only moon of a desolate planet, which by coincidence happened to be an exact replica of Venus.

Sarah had barely finished reading the first chapter when the device on the table besides her, started buzzing.

The device was Sarah’s gateway to the wider world. It was the only way she could know about places beyond the confines of the library.

“Always buzzes at the wrong time” she mumbled, fumbling to pick up the device and to set the book down at the same time.

The first thing Sarah saw as she turned on the device, shocked her. From what she gathered, Mars had launched a hostile takeover of Mercury, the Solar System’s main producer of power, using anti­matter weapons. Since this was in direct violation of the Anti­ Matter Weapon Ban Treaty, the Europans had stepped in to stop the Martians. The Martians, always eager to start a conflict, announced that this was an act of war, and consequently declared war on Europa. Before she had even the chance to process what had happened, she started hearing noises from the other end of the building.

“Where are you Curator?” a man shouted in a questioning tone. Sarah stood up and rushed to where the man was standing.

It was the Secretary­ General of the Federation of Planets.

“Have you received information regarding the current situation?” “Yes. I have. In fact I was just going over the details.”

“So then you know what we expect of you…”


Sarah had barely finished reading the first chapter when the device on the table besides her, started buzzing.

“Bzzz Bzzz Bzzz”

She looked at it for a second, and had the strange feeling of deja vu. The book she was reading had been published 230 years ago, yet it described the exact same situation that was taking place with her. First the coincidence with the name, then with the role of Curator, but now something that was happening with her. There was definitely something wrong about this book.

Sarah picked up the device, and when she turned it on, her worst fears were confirmed, the conflict between Europa and Mars had begun unfolding. Then, as expected, she heard shouts coming from another part of the Library. It was the Secretary­ General, it had to be. She sprinted across the Library as he shouted.

“Where are you Curator?” he questioned.

“I am here, and I know that you have come to talk about the attack on Mercury, but before you say anything else, I want to tell you something.” she said hurriedly.

“Calm down, and then tell me.”

Sarah took a few deep breaths and then started explaining to him what had just happened.

“So you mean that… this book predicted what is happening now, 230 years ago?” he asked.

“Yes.”

“Thus, since all stories have a conclusion, this book must have the solution to our problem?” he reasoned.

“I believe so.” replied Sarah.

Sarah opened the book and flipped through the pages, skimming each one, until she reached the end. But there was no solution. The book, instead, ended with the colonists becoming almost extinct.

“There’s nothing here!?!” Sarah exclaimed

“Let me see.” The Secretary­General said, snatching the book from her hands.

Sarah was lost. Everyone was going to perish. She was going to die. All her knowledge, all her life’s work, nothing could save them. She dropped onto an armchair and just stared at the wall in front of her.

By this time, the General was getting agitated by not being able to find an answer. He beckoned to Sarah, who turned to face him, still distraught.

“There’s nothing in there. Nothing that can save us now.” he lamented

“But it may not be true…” Sarah tried to comfort herself.

“Not even this library can help us. All this knowledge, wisdom, history, nothing!” “Perhaps it could…”

“What are you suggesting Sarah?”

“Have you heard of the ouroboros?”

The General shook his head.

“It’s a snake that eat’s its own tail. It symbolises a repetitive cycle, a series of events happening over and over again”

“So how does this help us?”

“Maybe… Just maybe… we’ve thrust our species into a repetitive cycle of events.”

“And how do you suppose we’ve done this?”

She didn’t reply. Instead, she turned on the device, and swiped her fingers a few times.­


It was 2300 hours, and in the dead of the night, Sarah was browsing through the Library’s comprehensive collection of books.

“The Curator, read that… Don Quixote, maybe later… Ah, War of the Worlds, this looks interesting.’’

She settled down in one of the Library’s numerous, cushioned armchairs, set her belongings down on the table on her left, and opened the book…

Sarah had just finished reading the first chapter, when she turned to face the device that lay on the table besides her. This time, though, it didn’t buzz.

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