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Mystery of the Ten Rooms, Part 3: Timaeus

Posted on 01 Dec 2017 @ 6:11am by Lieutenant T'Pai

Mission: Crossing Over
Location: Holosuite 2
Timeline: MD2, 2100

Tomorrow T'Pai would be the mission commander on the Mississippi tomorrow, as the Black Hawk began its first systematic testing on the nature of the Convergence Zone. Logically, there would be two practical uses of the time T'Pai had before she began her sleep period.

She could review her mission preparations. However, she recognized that redundancy does become, at a certain point, counterproductive. Therefore, spending the time in meditation would mentally prepare her for the mission tomorrow.

Instead T'Pai found herself once again in Holosuite, examining the grid lines crossing the room, before telling the empty air, ""Computer, activate Holodeck Program Farrar, Mystery, Ten Rooms."

Once again, T'Pai found herself in the Victorian era study that Chief Petty Officer Erica Farrar has created, before her death. Across the room was the door that opened up to the edge of the world, and would continue showing that view until the puzzle of the first room was solved.

All the walls, including the one behind T'Pai, were covered with various books. Real books, that opened up to readable pages. Chief Farrar was nothing if not thorough in her creations.

In the center of the room was a large desk that T'Pai presumed was in a style that would fit with the era of the room. On it was a wooden globe, a few scattered papers, and an open book.

T'Pai walked over to the desk and recognized the book immediately. Her father was the Vulcan Science Academy's leading scholar on comparitive philosophies, and was very familiar with the writings of Earth's Ancient Greek philosophers. The writing in question a dialogue written by the Earth Philosopher entitled "Timaeus."

T'Pai pondered the possibility that Chief Farrar had placed this work in the puzzle after they had discussed the respective profession of their parents.

The book was open, and T'Pai began reading the passage it was open to:

But things which are contracted contrary to nature are by nature at war, and force themselves apart; and to this war and convulsion the name of shivering and trembling is given; and the whole affection and the cause of the affection are both termed cold. That is called hard to which our flesh yields, and soft which yields to our flesh; and things are also termed hard and soft relatively to one another.

That which yields has a small base; but that which rests on quadrangular bases is firmly posed and belongs to the class which offers the greatest resistance; so too does that which is the most compact and therefore most repellent. The
nature of the light and the heavy will be best understood when examined in connexion with our notions of above and
below; for it is quite a mistake to suppose that the universe is parted into two regions, separate from and opposite to each other, the one a lower to which all things tend which have any bulk, and an upper to which things only ascend against their will.

For as the universe is in the form of a sphere, all the extremities, being equidistant from the centre, are equally extremities, and the centre, which is equidistant from them, is equally to be regarded as the opposite of them all. Such being the nature of the world, when a person says that any of these points is above or below, may he not be justlycharged with using an improper expression? For the centreof the world cannot be rightly called either above or below, but is the centre and nothing else; and the circumference is not the centre, and has in no one part of itself a different relation to the centre from what it has in any of the opposite parts. Indeed, when it is in every direction similar, how can one rightly give to it names which imply opposition ? For if there were any solid body in equipoise at the centre of the universe, there would be nothing to draw it to this extreme rather than to that, for they are all perfectly similar; and if a person were to go round the world in a circle, he would often, when standing at the antipodes of his former position, speak of the same point as above and below; for, as I was saying just now, to speak of the whole which is in the form of a globe as having one part above and another below is not like a sensible man.


T'Pai frowned as she read the passage, not sure if it was part of the puzzle, or just something random to throw someone trying to solve the puzzle 'off the trail,' as Chief Farrar would put it.

There was a piece of parchment on the desk, with stylized writing, and a list of Earth cities. Above the list was a sentence that read "Organizing hadrons, but in no particular order"

Below that were a list of cities:

Aberdeen
Beijing
Cordoba
Dover
Esmeraldas
Florence
Glasgow
Hamilton
Istanbul
Junin
Kyiv
Lianyungang
Madrid
Nantucket
Oberhausen
Padang
Quebec City
Rome
Santiago
Tokyo
Ulsan
Virginia City
Weber
Xiangtan
Yakutsk
Zagreb

An investigation of the globe showed all twenty-six cities were not only on the globe, they were marked with small glass dots the size of the tip of T'Pai's index finger.

T'Pai decided she would visit this puzzle another time. For now, she needed to concentrate on her upcoming mission.

"Computer end program," T'Pai order. The Victorian study disappeared, once again replaced with a room layered by grids and line. Without a word, T'Pai exited the room and headed to her quarters.

 

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