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31 January 2017 @ 09:22 pm
Daily Drabble Day #31  
The crew of the M.A.S. Aparctias waited patiently for the results of the first scans to come back, but Perseus didn't need to see them.  He already knew what they would reveal.  He might claim that a visual analysis was enough - green continents, blue oceans, a thick, cloudy atmosphere.  The odds that the planet wasn't habitable, as far as he was concerned, were low.  Hell, he'd seen ancient 2D pics of Mars from before it had been terraformed and colonized, and it had looked like a rusty bowling ball.  If he'd been able to grow up in an undomed, untented surface city, if he'd been able to eat fruit grown in orchards right there on the surface, if he'd been able to swim in the Hellas Sea, then there wasn't anything they wouldn't be able to do with this absolute corker of a planet beneath them.

The results came back.  Plant life, fresh water rivers and lakes, nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere.  Hell, the gravity was .97g - a bit heavy for the Martians, but that's what weight rooms were for.

It was three months before they made landfall, and the first thing they did was build a forum.  They would all bunk in jettisoned pods for quite some time, as they were little more than a place to change clothes, bathe, shit and sleep - but they needed a central location for a number of reasons.  For business, for religious services, for simply eating together at the end of a long day.  Their first forum was little more than a crossroads and half a dozen utilitarian buildings.  But by the time Perseus had been planetside for a decade - having forgotten the lightness of Martian g by then - the forum had become the crown jewel of the colony.  Brick-paved streets, marble buildings (there was no marble on the planet, but the labs made a fair facsimile), and what had become a tourist attraction in this neck of the galaxy, the opera house.  Perseus had never been big on opera himself, but he never missed a performance.  The acoustics, the lighting, the people all around him - it was more of a religious experience than any visit to the Temple of Zeus, more hallowed than any recitation of the Chief Priestess of Athena.

For a long time, everyone just referred to the planet by its original designation: 18 Delphini f.  Which just became Eighteen, of course.  "Hey, Eighteen to Chryseis!" you might shout.  But twelve years after planetfall, it was decided that an official name should be chosen.  By that time, the population had nearly quadrupled, and the original team of colonists - scientists and engineers - were far outnumbered by a group of people who actually cared about the name of the rock under their feet.

It became a contest of sorts, what to name the planet.  As the majority of the original Martian colonists were New Pagans, the majority of the submitted names were Greek in origin: Arion, Arcadia, Elysia, Borea (a nod to their still-orbiting ship), Nysa.  There were more prosaic entries, as well.  Perseus was especially taken with Sujeira, which was just Portuguese for dirt.  (And what had Earth been named for, after all?)  However, the winning entry was a bit of a surprise.  Drawn from an obscure old-Earth religion, it referenced the home of God in all the heavens, the brightest star.  "The home of the gods," people said to each other with a smile as they perused the list of entries.  And what was 18 Delphini f, if not the home of the gods?

So it was that they named their planet Kobol.
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cath822cath822 on February 1st, 2017 04:49 pm (UTC)
Man, I'm impressed that you stayed with this all month. I gave up alcohol-free January on inauguration day.