Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A dream - degenerate matter

We were traveling through the void, the ship and I. How long we had been traveling, I can't say. Time didn't seem to have much meaning for us, as the stretch of awareness which I was currently experiencing had just seemed to fade in from black oblivion, condensing out of nothingness. When I tried to remember back to something else, I only encountered the frayed ends of existence. It didn't matter.

The ship's representation appeared before me on a large computer screen. It was just an abstract jumble of lines which vaguely formed the features of a face. Noticing the screen for the first time, I took note of my immediate surroundings. Everything around me was gray and featureless, and I found myself strapped into a comfortable reclining seat. I turned my attention back to the face on the screen.

"We are going to encounter degenerate matter soon. I won't be able to continue, it will be the end of my mission. You must be my eyes."

"But how?"

"I will give you mine. You will be in contact with me until the last second. I will relay you all information that I can gather."

Suddenly my awareness was outside the ship. I could see it in front of me, heading for a bright object which was radiating fiercely in all spectra. Then I saw myself. I was a ring of components sailing along behind the ship, recently detached. As I watched, another ring detached from the ship. I knew that this ring was the ships' eyes. I willed my ring towards the eye ring. We touched, and together formed two rings which joined at a common tangent. My view backed away until I could encompass the entire system. We were heading straight for a dense ball of degenerate matter, the source of the radiation. With the ships' eyes, I could see every band of the electromagnetic spectrum, from gamma radiation to radio waves, as the energy was thrown violently into space. This energy acted like a kind of wind, and with my 'infinity' configuration, I was able to spread out like a sail and catch these rays. The powerful rays buffeted me violently, slowing my forward velocity and eventually reversing my direction. The ship, however, had also spread itself into a new configuration. It became a sparse net which passed the battering ram of energy through it evenly and cleanly. The ship actually sped up as the gravity of the degenerate matter gained more and more influence, and slowly the core became visible.

Seeing with the eyes of the ship, I magnified the dense ball until I could make out it's structure. It looked like a cluster of red spheres, all of them close together and touching, with a soft, snowy material acting as a kind of mortar that held the spheres together. I only got to observe the detail closely for a few seconds before the ship slammed into it at close to the speed of light.

The explosion was spectacular. I have it all recorded. As I play it back in slow motion, I can see the cluster of spheres starting to expand as the ship impacts it's surface. A tiny explosion bursts forth, lighting the snowy material and causing much of it to evaporate. As the explosion gains force and grows, the spheres start to unravel until they become flat hexagonal planes which meet and join, forming a kind of soccer ball pattern. This new configuration continues to expand, and even with the video slowed down to millions of frames per second, the speed with which it grows is marked. My view zooms out as the sphere grows, keeping it within the viewframe. Finally, a critical threshold is reached, and the hexagonal structure flies apart, releasing a bright, surging turmoil of energy. Once this energy is free, the explosion increases it's expansion exponentially. The shock wave finally reaches me and I am pushed violently away. The explosion continues to grow and grow, until it encompasses the entirety of existence, and I am finally pushed beyond the boundaries of the cosmos. As I drift aimlessly and eternally, once again surrounded by void, I realize forever that I have witnessed the birth of a new universe.

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