Unnatural Recollections #4
Part 1: Strange Places
After returning from Revealing Bay, Law summoned Shelly to the research institute to view their findings. Hundreds of giant shells were laid out on the ground, fan-shaped and perfectly intact, their two halves tightly closed. Their color was dull, suggesting they had been hidden under the sea for many years. Shelly dropped her jaws in amazement, and reached out to touch each one, muttering, “These are the ancestral shells!” Law did not confirm or deny, just stuck his hands in his pockets and described the process of finding the shells. “They were in a seabed of heavy metal waste,” he said. “Do you notice anything special about them?”
Without needing to examine closely, Shelly could tell that all the shells before her had the exact same size, shape, and texture, as if they were clones of each other. “So, which one is the ancestral shell?” she asked. Law shrugged his shoulders. “What about the pearl? The one with a pearl must be the original shell, right?” Law then fetched a large crowbar and called two researchers to help him pry open the shells. As they opened the first shell, it indeed contained a pearl, as large as a soccer ball, requiring two hands to hold up. The second shell, also had a pearl. The third one, also had one. They were all the same pearls. Shelly was completely stunned.
For several days, I thought it was due to the overcast weather that caused the daylight to become unusually brief. One day, while I was on the road, I faintly heard a rumbling vibration in the air. Looking around, I realized that the dark thing in the sky weren’t clouds, but a large group of flying creatures. Later on, I started to see these creatures descending to visible ground level. It turned out that they were all dragonflies, but they were massive, with wingspans reaching four feet wide, twice the size of ancestral dragonflies from two hundred million years ago. They all settled on the treetops, and their takeoffs created a heart-pounding roar.
I observed that the dragonflies weren’t particularly interested in humans and didn’t habitually attack people. Unless a collision happened by accident, causing injury to pedestrians, men and dragonflies could peacefully coexist. However, panic stirred when news broke about a suspected case of death caused by a dragonfly bite. After all, dragonflies were carnivorous insects, who could guarantee they wouldn't develop a taste for humans due to an increased appetite? But the case hadn't been confirmed yet. In fact, dragonflies often fed on their own kind when hungry, and remnants from their battles were commonly seen. Rumour had it that people were studying how to use dragonflies as a means of transportation.
There were a few times when dragonflies clashed into the windows of my 20th-floor apartment, nearly shattering the glass. During the day, the sky appeared dark and gloomy when viewed from within. But at night time, when my wife and I went for walks, the sky was often clear, and the constellations were visible. It was then that I thought of writing a book, and even had a title in mind: The History of Proportions.
For introductory remarks about the work, see “Coming soon! Strange tales from V City”