Greenflower updates

Interesting new discoveries from the Age, and a big headache for me. I’ll repost from the DRC thread again:

Sat Apr 03, 2010 9:30 pm

I’m in the Age, Prof, just set up camp for the “night” and hour ago and I’m writing down a report. I sprayed trees along the road with red paint to mark a sort of path (don’t worry, it won’t hurt the trees) so you can catch up with me if you want; I took it very easy along the road so it shouldn’t be more than a few hours walk.

By the way, there is some sort of creeper I didn’t notice the other day and – wow, it’s just amazing. It grows on the trees, coiling around the trunk and getting thicker on the higher branches, and it GLOWS. The color is not uniform even in the same plant, there are greens and blues and yellows, and it also sheds some kind of wooly seed that glows bright white for a while before going out.
This basically means that the whole forest turns into a softly lit canopy, which makes it very easy to walk at night even without a flashlight, as long as you stay in the forest.

Mon Apr 05, 2010 4:12 pm

the creepers (…) grow on the underside of the branches, and they get progressively thinner when going towards a clearning or opening (which I guess explains why I didn’t see them in my first excursion). My guess is they prefer to stay out of the sun.

Anyway, I walked another few miles yesterday and collected some plant samples along the way, if anyone from the DZS wants to take a look at them. Sometime yesterday ‘evening’* I found a brook running through the forest and I started following it upstream. The water is good (I tested) and very cold.
There was a lot more animal activity near the water – I could hear rustling among the bushes and some distant calls (something like a very small elephant, and some very deep short howls). I didn’t see any animals, but I kept a fire going at night for safety.

The night was fresh but not particularly cold, and monday was warm enough to walk around in a light long-sleeved shirt (never go short-sleeved in alien environments, folks!).
As they ‘day’ went on I could see the lights from the plant getting dimmer, though I could see no sign of sunrise on the horizon – not that I actually see the horizon from here.
There is very little plant-light right now, but I saw some kind of enormous stone up ahead -the first big non-plant thing I saw since I got here- and I want to try to reach it before I get back to the surface. I’ll keep you posted.

* I measured things by my local time, which is KI time + 7 hours

Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:48 am

Ow, my head! well, that was an unexpected turn of events.
First of all, I’m fine and at home. Thanks for the search parties, but there’s no need to worry for me!
Second, do not touch the moss on the rock with your bare hands. I’m now going to explain why.

OK, recap. I finally reached the stone with a bit of plantlight to spare. It is indeed a big one, about 20 metres in diameter, sunk deeply in the ground, and really high. It is also there that I found the first man-made objects in the Age.
There is a staircase carved around the rock, spiraling clockwise up above the treetops. It is not a difficult climb but the steps are sometimes smooth and a bit slippery, and I had to grab the wall for safety sometimes. The rock face itself seems to be porous, and habitat to some small weeds, flowers and the infamous moss. I think what got me in the end were my fingerless gloves – the tip of my fingers must have brushed it more than once. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

About what I guess was halfway of the climb I found a small recess in the rock and there, embedded in the stone and hidden behind some weeds, one of the Nexus hand devices! You know, those things you put your hand into, left to the Nexus books on the stands. I tried my luck and it did indeed react to my KI, glowing briefly yellow (that’s a new one) and saying it had added a link to my Nexus.
My curiosity was thoroughly tickled and I decided to resume the climb, but after a very short time I started to feel dizzy and my vision blurred. I linked back to Relto, and everything went black.

I must’ve slept for almost a day and I felt really terrible when I woke up. It was then that I noticed that the tips of my fingers were stained green-blue and smelled faintly of anesthetic ; I quickly washed them under the waterfall in Relto and the dizzy spell seemed to wear off almost immediately. I still felt very tired and hungry so I got back to the surface to grab something to eat and sleep off the last remnants of the drug.
By then unfortunately it was also time for me to get back to work, where I’m writing this now (just don’t tell my boss!).

My guess is that moss was placed or Written there deliberately as a security measure, to get rid of anyone who arrived there without precautions. I would not advise using that new Nexus link, if indeed there is one, without a Maintainer suit or other precautions.

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