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Pitch for Eternal Fall

The most ambitious history project ever undertaken

The Mission

Long, long ago, when the Earth was young and the skies were blue, they came. Humans. They sent out their ships to the neighboring systems, turning them green, the way they wanted them to be. But, then, there was a war. Too large, large enough to draw Kali's attention. Fighting. And then Earth was gone.
  The moon Clara is an exomoon, orbiting the large, gas giant planet of Eimmart. Discovered by radial-velocity measurements in the 2200s, a colony ship was sent to assess the viability of the planet and terraform it if possible. The robots did their duty, analyzing the planet, setting half of it aside for the preservation of native wildlife and terraforming the other half. But the humans never came.   And so the robots waited. And waited. And waited. The humans had engaged in a massive, interstellar war. No one remembered the resort world that people had planned on this moon. No one came to relieve the drones of their duties, no one came to help them.  

The Gods

"Where are they?"

– Enrico Fermi over lunch

  Hundreds of years ago, Enrico Fermi asked where the aliens were. The answer was that the aliens, after achieving a specific level of technology, aroused the ire of the gods. It was not that the gods even cared about the mortals. They didn't. Humans were just such a small part of the picture. They generally didn't care whether anyone or any civilization lived or died.   But each god had a mission, and those missions had been developed over the years. The creator god, Tukod, only wished to build things that looked good. The preservation god, Kali, only wished to preserve things, to keep them the way that they were. And the destruction god, Kahiga, only wished to recycle, to destroy, so that something new could rise from the ashes.   The humans were able to irritate the gods when Tukod saw his beautiful creation, Earth, become a nuclear wasteland when humans nuked it into oblivion. Kali, Kahiga, and Tukod held a council. Kali argued that to preserve the other worlds with humans, Earth should be destroyed. Kahiga agreed, simply wanting s'more destruction. Tukod begrudgingly acquiesced, understanding that it would be one world for many.   So then, it was gone. Every world was now cut off from each other, due to Earth being struck by a massive asteroid, destroying the portals that connected all the worlds currently inhabited by humans. And the humans forgot. They forgot about the other worlds, and they forgot about Earth. Perhaps least importantly, they forgot about the robots terraforming Clara.  

The Patience

Grisham, do you ever know when those [expletives] humans will arrive? I'm getting annoyed already. I know we must stay loyal, but for how long? We need to find something to do, something that can last through the ages, or something will break, and there will be revolt.

– Anonymous Outrider Drone

The robots were designed to be adaptable, to still have a degree of emotion, but they were far more analytical than the humans. The elite class of robots, managing other robots, had to have some way to alleviate their boredom when they were waiting for all of humanity to arrive.   And so they looked to the native side of the barrier. And they could see an intelligent species growing, flying from the treetops, expanding its reach by hunting and gathering. And so they listened and watched, each tailing the birds, each looking into the unique life stories that occurred in Clara.   And that was the beginning of the best archaeology project ever. Spanning one million years, and over the lives of one million different halorin, the Claran Halora History Project began. It began as a way to pass time before the humans came. It would end as a treasure trove of history and analysis.

Timeline of Important Dates

  2270s A.D: Exomoon Clara is discovered, named HD 69830d.1
2280s A.D: Clara is named, more discoveries show it is extremely Earth-like
2282 A.D: A mission is sent to Clara, the third to an Earth-like exoplanet
2324 A.D: A terraforming mission is sent to Clara after receiving favorable information from the preliminary orbiter.
2352 A.D: World War III begins
2360s Terraforming begins on Clara
2500s Terraforming completed on Clara
2591 - 1,193,401 The Long Wait
1,193,402 Humans finally arrive

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