The Omicron Matter – Knowledge Discovered – Millicent Examines a Shattered Lab

A new entry in the Omicron Matter – Knowledge Discovered. A hole is now in the pond ice. Millicent dispatches the drone to examine the submerged lab.  As the drone explores, more and more strange information comes in. The stops at wall with a most disturbing image.

For those who are new to the Omicron Matter, the book home page is a place to start.

Look for more tomorrow.

Authors note

Hard science fiction folks will enjoy this section. I brought in a few science bits. In a previous life, I studied radioisotopes in the context of geochemistry so it was fun to revive a bit of knowledge. The geography that the drone traverses relies heavily on the Prologue to the Recruiting Matter (the hotlink in this paragraph will take you there). This chapter should stand alone, but the Prologue will give more context.  For those of you who are wondering when this seemingly interminable chapter will end – I have six more sections. However, the ending will have important information.

Thanks for your support.

Millicent – Examining a Shattered Lab

Created by Anita Tabaczkikewicz

Created by Anita Tabaczkikewicz

The group all watched transfixed as the droned lowered into the open hole. As the drone lowered , the water level of newly exposed pond rose. The slow entry prevented sloshing and did not exceed the 10 inches of ice.

Millicent said, “Start recording immediately and proceed down.”

Charles said, “Acknowledged. Water has high concentrations of heavy Hydrogen[1], Cobalt, and Element 63[2]. Radioactive is low and primarily alpha[3] particles with some beta[4] particles.

The group looked confused at the information. Millicent said with some impatience, “There are some materials and ideas that will be new to you. Charles has provided an assessment of the water. Cobalt, you all knew. The others are substances or energy types that have not yet been discovered here.” She looked over at the now untended trench and then said, “Eleanor, get a team together  and open up that masonry box under the path. Keep Simone close so she can examine the cable we think is there.”  She then turned her focus back to the screen on the notebook and saw a flash of a wall.

Rachael pulled over and said, “Sit down, stoop over or I will run over over your toes.”

Millicent smirked and moved to a bench and Rachael watched the screen from the side while others gathered around to watch the image Charles’ drone returned.  Millicent commanded, “Turn the drone around.” There was a pedestal that was 20 feet away.

Rachael said, “I know that.” She flipped through one of the notebooks in the satchel and showed Millicent the diagram of the pedestal with the whirling concentric circles.

Millicent said, “Scan area for sections of partial circles.”

Charles said, “I’ve found multiple matches.”

Millicent replied, “Mark locations for retrieval but continue with the survey.”

The drone moved towards the pedestal. To the left, a large thick table was on its side. Near there was the remnants of a console. The side towards the pedestal was shredded. The top was a tangle of wires as if somebody ripped off the top. Millicent said, “Nobody scavenged afterwards? Did they?”

Jason said, “Not that I know of. Stephan said the pond filled almost immediately. He guessed they had some sort of fire suppression that must have started the filling and the storm finished the job.”

Millicent’s expression darkened. She said, “Circle the pedestal and return.”

The drone circled around the pedestal. More pieces of equipment of various shapes and conditions were scattered around the room. The drone headed back toward the house and passed through a set of broken doors.  In the hallway were dozens of jars. Rachael said, “Leyden jars according to the lab book.”

Jason said, “They would hold electrical charge temporarily.”

The screen showed broken pieces of the door: hinges, chunks of the door frame, a large rectangle of heavy wood. Off to one side was a large, heavy round pole capped with iron and handles on the side.

John said, “That looks like a battering ram.”

Liam said, “Aye, it does. Now how do you know about those?”

John shrugged, “Same way you do…raids on Republican sympathizers.”

The drone moved along the hall way. As it reached the end, the far wall came into view. Silhouettes of human figures were shown on the wall in dark blue color.

Millicent heard Jason exclaim, “Blimey, what the hell were those?”

Millicent said calmly, “People, I suspect. There was far more to that lab explosion than meets the eye.”

[1] Heavy Hydrogen – Combined with water is also known as Tritium. It is a byproduct of radiation exposure. It is also used in fusion reactions

[2] Element 63 – is Europium, a rare earth metal. Found in high concentrations in Fluorite and  Bastenaesite. Fluorite is a relative common phosphate mineral that uncommonly has Europium. Bastenaesite occurs in bauxite region and bizarre volcanic rocks called “carbonotites”.

[3] Alpha particle  – one of three types of radiation. The lowest energy form. It can be stopped by clothing or even skin.

[4] Beta Particle – One of the three types of radiation. Higher energy than alpha particles, but can be stopped by thin foil. Interacts with water causing the “glow” of reactors that are underwater.


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