For less than one thousand orbits, the people of Kami worked with tin and copper to make bronze. Iron ore was once thought to be inferior. In more recent times, scientists mixed iron with carbon to make steel. The study of metals was not the only area of advancement prioritized by Kami’s government.
All throughout her life she, young and charismatic Queen Joō the Twelfth, championed valiantly for new scientific discoveries. As did the eleven proceeding emperors before her.
Advancements were made in vital areas of hope, including city planning, hydroponics, flotation and buoyancy, and deep-sea diving. The question of survival was top-of-mind not only for the Queen, but every person on the tiny planet of Kami.
It was 660 orbits ago, the science of astronomy became a worldwide obsession. It was the judicious Professor Garasu who first spotted it through the Looking Glass Scope. Later confirmed by other scientists and astronomers, it was undeniable: Several large asteroids from Iwa’s Belt were thrown off their ‘natural’ orbit and headed towards Kami.
Queen Joō was informed:
Less than three orbits until the asteroids would come crashing down into Kami’s massive oceans that covered seven-eighth of the planet. The impact was estimated to erect over 9,000 lengths-high harbour waves. The waves would cover the remaining one-eighth of land with ocean water… Forever.
Projections for long-term survival were bleak. The enlightened people of Kami were at peace with whatever Fate had destined.
Plus 660 orbits ago, before the discovery and establishment of the Imminent Holy Impact, Kami was a dark and bleak planet. There was famine, disease, mass psychological violence, and extreme inequality. Many sages believed the shift in the asteroids’ orbit was both a comeuppance and a blessing. They proclaimed, ‘the asteroids are the final seal of God’:
- a punishment, for the many kilo-annums of godlessness. And,
- a gift, uniting them into the era of Collective Psychic Enlightenment.
The sages hurriedly prepared the people for The Great Upload. Many looked forward to uniting with loved ones up in the Celestial Heavens Beyond.
Queen Joō gracefully strolls through the palace gardens tending to the people’s flowers. Ever since childhood, this was her favourite pastime.
“Today more than ever, the asteroids look magnificent and colossal.
There are three months left until impact…”