Episode 26 – Corpus Bugaarium

Layan’s Cabin – The Valleys

Tag: The blue cavern. It’s real. We’ve been there. That’s were we found the stones.

The boys then recounted to Grandpa, how they had found the small cave with Layan’s graffiti, the same one where he had found his small stone and then how they had carried on, squeezing their way through another lava tube, finding the blue cavern filled with glowing blue stones and crystals. When they got to the part about the huge insect shells Grandpa finally interrupted them unable to contain his shock and surprise.

Grandpa Snow: Shells you say? Bug shells?

Jaak: Yup – loads of them. All different sizes, some as big as us.

Grandpa Snow: Holy excretumus! The stories must be true!

Grandpa sat back in his chair looking as if someone had just slapped him across the face with a fat catfish. There was silence for a few moments as he processed this new information connecting it with some of the old stories he had been told as a boy around the fire circle gatherings.

Layan: I remember some of those stories. Grandpa used to tell me stories when I was a boy about huge bugs that used to crawl out of the cracks in the rocks in the dead of night – devouring all in their path. I always thought they were just stories to try and discourage young boys from exploring unknown caves and getting themselves stuck or lost. Not that it ever stopped me!

Jaak: Grandpa Snow, what must be true? What is it about the old stories?

Grandpa Snow: Corpus bugaarium.

Both Jaak and Tag looked at each other clearly confused.

Tag: Cor-bug-what-ee?

Grandpa Snow: Corpus bugaarium. Dead bodies of bugs.

Grandpa paused to let what he just said sink in – then he continued

The old legend tells the story that many generations ago, an ancient race of nomadic inter-galactic bug like creatures once colonised and roamed the valleys here on Cyanos – the people living here in those days called them the Bugaari. They came here so their queen could lay her eggs in our planet’s warm volcanic caves, using them as a hatchery to raise their young. As they grew they would shed their skins, leaving behind a shell – or their corpus bugaarium.

They came out at night swarming from every crack and fissure and devoured all the living vegetation that they could find – trees, plants, crops, everything. Eventually, they had eaten so much that the surrounding forests and land were stripped bare. Having exhausted all the available vegetative resources here on this planet, they were forced to leave and find another suitable planet to continue feeding their voracious appetites.

Grandpa Snow: The Bugaari have never been seen or heard of since, and despite the whispers of rumour that surround those early ill-fated miners the cavern that the bugs used to hatch and raise their young has never been found.

Jaak: Except that maybe now it has.

Grandpa Snow: If what you say about this blue cavern is true then yes. It may well be that you have found their old nest, the hatchery and nursery where they raised their young. This would explain all the different sized insect shells.

Tag: But what about the stones? What do you think they could be? Do you think they are something to do with the bugs?

Suddenly he paused and screwed up his nose

Ewww! Maybe they are fossilised bug poop!

Jaak was looking at the stones still laying on the table.

Jaak: Eggs. They might be fossilised bug eggs. That would explain why there were so many of them in the cave – but if they are, then why didn’t they hatch? How did they become stones …and what about their powers? Where does that come from? The bugs?

Layan: Well, at this stage we can only make guesses, but we can make informed guesses. You said that the cave was also filled with blue crystals. Cave crystals are formed from volcanic energy. The volcanic energy that comes from below the surface of our planet comes from the very core itself. Planet core energy is incredibly powerful – harnessing it has always been the challenge.

It is possible – that once the Bugaari left and their last clutch of eggs were left untended, they were changed over a long period of time by the planet’s core energy. Over time the eggs may have absorbed enough of this energy to become petrified into stones, but also to have retained that concentrated energy within them. If my theory is correct, then it would very much explain a lot about the stones that we have not previously understood. That of course may explain some of the science – but it still leaves questions about the way they behave and the unexpected effects that they have in certain situations.

Jaak picked up his stone and turned it over in his paws. As he did so it began to glow.

Jaak: Concentrated planet core energy eh.

Layan – you do think these are safe to carry around? After all there was … well … the accident.

Layan paused before answering Jaak. He knew that he was talking about the Tet explosion that had happened many years ago, intertwining the paths of himself, Jaak’s dad Altai and eventually – Jaak.

Layan: Yes, Jaak – I do think that they are safe. They have never been known to do anything harmful when on their own like yours.

What you need to understand about the Tet explosion is that I do not believe that it was fundamentally the fault of the stones. The core reactors of the Tets contain a number of stones linked together. It was the way we were using them, linked in series like we do with batteries. The problem was we were using them in a way that we did not have a full understanding of at that time. The stones are incredibly powerful. The problem was compounded because we were behind the power curve, playing catchup. The mistake was missing an important step, and then being too eager to carry on regardless. While it is impossible to eliminate all risk, you can and should have a good look first before you take the leap onto the next step.

My advice is to keep the stones secret and continue to be alert to anything different they might do and to treat them with respect.

The gumbo bowls were empty and only a few crumbs remained of the bread. The conversation for now had come to a natural pause.

Layan suddenly sat up straight and looked at Jaak and Tag with a boyish grin.

Layan: So! Who is up for a ride home in my new buggy?

Previous: Episode 25 – Grandpa Snow
Next: Episode 27 – Bump

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