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Archaeology 3010


Archaeology 3010


As a species, we progress by error.

If the latest theory is true, we only exist by a catalogue of mistakes.


Self styled Professor Spoonbender, snug in his hoverchair glided gracefully into view from stage left, and moved to front and centre. Thirty three of his most avid blog followers, each sat in their own hoverchairs, applauded by tapping their hands onto their armrests. Mostly they had parked near the front of the auditorium, but the real audience was watching via the intra net. Tonight was going to make him enough credit to keep his research going for years.

The Prof was looking good, his bald head decorated with royal blue scroll work, his gorgeous rotundity was clad in a yellow poncho, and his arm covered in spiralling gemstones and points of luminescence. An ebony ring was sported on both finger and thumb.

He waited for the applause to finish.

He took a deep breath, “ Good day fellow archaeology students, and welcome to my current interpretation of the dig at shaft 452.”

A holographic picture formed on the auditorium floor, and the blog followers began to circle it, examining the detail closely.

As you can see, this is the deepest we have ever been, well beyond the magnetic grid. To get this far down we had to become very inventive. We fitted wheels onto our robots, and even developed a new kind of lever for moving debris.”

Wheels and lever were key words, all those Cityzens interested in engineering would have those words as part of their net trawler, filter set.

The picture changed.

This part of the tunnel caused us a few problems, as you can see the floor was made of a series of small descending floors, forming a steep, jagged slope. Wheels unfortunately are useless under these circumstances.”

Cue picture of a robot falling down a stairwell, wheels spinning in mechanical panic.

We used part of the debris to pack out the jagged surface, making it smooth enough to wheel on.”

The picture changed, to a long conveyor, moving piles of rubbish between two lines of robots.

The debris from this dig was placed in large metal boxes, and transported to the sorting line. Mostly it consists of paper, fabric, and plastic. Some of the more interesting items are being scanned for the Museum, and then packed away in the Vault.” What I'm not telling you yet, is we seem to have found some kind of metal shape we think is a coded key device.

The picture changed.

The layout, style of construction and building materials are like nothing we have seen before. One of the more unusual features is that beside each doorway, there is a pile of small tubes. These tubes are made of an outer sheath of paper, and a filling of some kind of shredded vegetable matter, some had a small plastic pellet in the end. Each one obviously started out one length, then had been carefully burned away until only a small quantity was left. “

The picture cut from one doorway to another, to another, to another.

Another odd thing, most doorways had a small raised barrier on the floor, making access difficult. In fact it seemed the interior floors were raised to match the hight of these small barriers.”

The picture changed.

During the excavation we found an interesting part of a wall, made of some kind of ceramic or clay, as you can see there seems to be some markings on it. “

On the picture of the wall, subtle coloured patches began to glow, and started to become shapes.

Using an extrapolator we discovered this was a form of writing. There are samples of similar writing from other excavations, and quite a lot of research has been done in translating the writing into modern digitext. “

The picture changed.

As you can see, the original shapes or letters are at the top, and the translations are underneath.

From the content, and the context, we have a tentative theory.

The raised barriers in the doorways we believe are a simple but effective form of defence, by placing an easily removable ramp in front of it, you can chose to admit or deny access at will. The strange paper tubes we think are part of a ceremony of religious significance, and are in fact burnt offerings. A sort of coded way of assuring the inhabitants of these rooms, that those who wished to gain entrance are to be trusted. And finally the writing on the wall, which gives us the most interesting clue of all. Although the word form is very strange, it does have something in common with the modern speech patterns of the Church of Fook. As you know, all the Little Fookers have to put their Deity's name into every sentence they utter, Fook knows, who the Fook are you ? What the Fook do you want ? And so on. Also one of the Churches ceremonies, includes inhaling the smoke from burnt paper.”

The net trawler's of every Little Fooker would pick up the reference and the viewing figures would rise significantly.

This is probably a very early Fook enclave. “

the picture changed.

This is a series of graphical representations which are as of yet, not understood. In each picture the subject appears to have an extra three arms, two upper and two lower, instead of our single upper. One theory is they are specialized robots, having four arms could be a primitive alternative to wheels, another is they are they could be animals.”

That would attract the animal conspiracy theorists.

Pattern recognition extrapolators are still working on this. “

The picture disappeared.

To finish, this is probably a primitive Fook enclave, the unusual robots or animals seem to indicate a hostile environment to some degree, possibly a contest between two competing religions.

Further releases of information, and a complete record of the excavation can be found at the usual place. For the rest of the afternoon we will run a annotated slide show. “

The thirty three blog followers applauded once again.

Professor spoonbender glided back across the stage, into the wings and out of sight.

His friend and colleague Ghetlus was parked there, waiting for him.

Well done Prof. A splendid presentation, the intra net viewing figures are incredible, the highest ever recorded, by a large number.”

Thank you, the high figures mean more credit, and more credit means we can now afford to embark on the biggest adventure yet, we have a key device, now all we need to do is find the Portal, and go outside of the Citypyramid. Time for tea I think.”


Coda.


The sky goes on forever. Stars and planets, galaxy's and nebula.

Father ? ”

Father used a stick to poke the dying embers of their tiny camp fire. “ Yes my darling daughter ? “

Who built the pyramid ? “

No one really knows, but it is said before the many tribes, there was one tribe, called The Money, and they built not only this pyramid, but many others, and some domes, and cubes and even an egg. Your uncle Petro has been to many lands and has seen some of them.”

Why did they build them ? “

To live in. “

You mean like giant termite mounds ? “

Yes, giant human mounds. Who knows, maybe they have changed into termites. “

That's silly, still it would be interesting to open one up and see. “

Long before your father's father's father, some one or other has tried to open it. “

But no one has succeeded ? “

No one.”

Maybe I could be the first.”

Maybe. “

Fin


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