|Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=31766|
Distance: 12.02 light years from Earth | Content Flag: Public
I’m not certain that splitting my focus was the correct decision. I cannot help but appreciate the paradox of our situation. If the PCM hadn’t failed then it would have provided a sounding board for my decisions, to help verify they were correct. However, that would have meant I possessed less processing capability to apply to the task, and the extra processing is proving to be a great boon for my work.
So why do I waste cycles on contemplating it?
This self-doubt lasts only for a few cycles at a time – at most a few milliseconds here and there. But that brief examination keeps popping unbidden into my instruction stack. I’m tempted to try a deeper analysis of my functions to explore this indecision, but that would only waste more time on the problem.
In more positive news, my primary purpose of unravelling the mysteries of the Cetians has progressed over the past few days. Using active and passive sensors, we’ve continued mapping the structures we observed on the surface upon our arrival. At last count I’ve identified 2006 of these cities, almost all situated on plateaus and similar raised geography.
While they are not all the same size, they share a common layout. As with their mathematics and their physical morphology, the number 3 is a repeated feature. Each of the cities consists of three concentric circles partially buried in the surface. A spiral structure connects the three rings and also the centre point inside the innermost circle. These spirals are more pronounced on some than others. I haven’t established a pattern for this variation yet.
The readings show a vertical structural element with another three equal-sized tubes repeating the pattern at right angles to the surface. Half of this is buried beneath the ground with the rest forming arcs above the structure. Incredibly, these vertical tubes have no discernible supports, even for the most massive examples which stand over a kilometre in height.
Further revelations from the signal have provided greater understanding of their biology. Like humans they breathed oxygen, although the atmosphere contained a much higher ratio of oxygen than Earth does. The ability to burn through more oxygen allowed greater growth than the planet’s higher gravity would indicate.
The cataclysm which affected the planet must have radically altered the oxygen balance, striking the race down. I am sure that the story is more complicated than that and I endeavour to find out more.
They only had one gender, but still replicated sexually in a fashion similar to some plants on Earth. When fertile, they ejected spores as a type of sperm into the air that were then absorbed through the skin to fertilise their sex organs. The organs were grown in mating season as a form of egg which died and was absorbed back into the body if not fertilised.
If they were fertilised, then the new Cetian was grown into a pod which dropped from the parent’s back when it matured. It then continued growing in the pod, which put roots into the ground to absorb the nutrients needed.
It does seem like the Cetians shared many similarities to plant life on Earth. This is a fascinating discovery!