The Entanglement well

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Here’s a passage from
“The Entanglement Well”
the sequel to “Pilgrim’s Ark”

… On the floor in the centre of the dome were several concentric raised platforms arrayed like a tower of Hanoi, and at its pinnacle was a circular seat which afforded a view through any of the windows. For any stalwart traveller that followed the tenuous trail to the moon, wayfinders had been engraved on the floor at the outer perimeter. These pointed to lunar features far in the distance. Here, the Apollo landings and the various oceans and seas were rendered incarnate. Homage was also paid to the Luna, Cháng’é and Chandra missions.

Being this close to the lunar south pole meant all directions looked north. What could pass as compass directions had been labelled “earthward” “craterward” “starward” and “baseward”.

The directions that were most astonishing were earthward and craterward. The Earth was a blue crescent permanently stationed just above the lunar horizon, and it was big; thirteen times the area and many times as bright as the view of the Moon from the Earth. Ethan explained that the broad lunar peak stationed just below the Earth was named Atlas.

To the left of that window could be seen the depths of the crater. At over three times the depth of the grand canyon, and with no air or moisture to scatter what little light penetrated its depths, the magnitude and contrasts stupified the mind and left Jase utterly dumb with awe.

At this time in the cycle of the lunar month, a glance to the right looked Baseward. It meant looking directly into the sun and the deeply elongated shadows of the pockmarked landscape and to the lava tube, the entrance to the base.

Starward looked constantly away from the Earth. Gazing Starward was to follow the dreams of poets and explorers. It was also to ponder the ‘dark side’ of the moon. Like a carousel horse looking out to the world beyond, this hidden face would alternate between the sun or the constellations. Unlike its antipodal side, when facing the stars It would never see the face of the Earth shining brightly upon it. The nocturnal dark side would never have the glow of the Earth, but it would yield a spectacular show of stars. 

Because of the almost helical movement of the moon, starward also looked over the solar arrays which gave power and life to the base.

“It’s very impressive,” said Jase, breaking the silence.

“It’s peaceful like you would not believe,” said Ethan, sauntering around to each window in turn.

Jase followed Ethan. “Is that why we’re here?”

“Actually, yes,” replied Ethan. “Here, you and I are two connected individuals, disconnected from all else. If anything can hear us it is probably omnipotent anyway. I wanted to bring you here to talk.”

“Is Macca here?”

“No.”

“You’re scaring me,” said Jase. “What’s so ominous that you had to get me to a remote location at the south pole of the moon?”