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A Missive to the Archivist: A Tale in Mundanity…

15 November, 188~


To our Esteemed Archivist;

As per Babbage Standing Order 1701-D, I must report an incident which was reported to me by a local [s]street urchin[/s] child, Orpheus (no familial nomenclature on file). The tale, which I shall relay as it was told to me is thus:

Orpheus was flying around the Quarry district when he saw a strange fissure open in the middle of the sky. From his description, it resembled “water going down a drain, but upside down and brightly colored.” Despite being near sundown, it apparently illuminated the area around it quite well. Orpheus claims that he has seen similar fissures in New Brittania and Falun, though he seemed hesitant to disclose any further information. I could only manage to learn that a barn was involved. Orpheus tried to keep his distance from the vortex, but some strong gravitational force caused his craft to crash. He was unharmed, and came to the station to report what had occurred. The officer who spoke with Orpheus told me the vortex could be seen for miles, but the next day when I went to investigate, there was no such phenomenon, although remnants of what appears to be a crashed air skiff were discovered in the Quarry. Attempts at finding others who saw this vortex have been unsuccessful. I find it unlikely that this event happened, but it is not unheard of in this city. 

Enclosed is a photograph which seems to support his tale, although I do not know who or how this photograph was taken. Please file this report as you see fit.


Philleas P. Underbottom, New Babbage Police

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  1. Jon Chen Jon Chen December 18, 2014

    This clearly demonstrates the Scientific value of Photography, that it captures the real, the tangible, the measureable — evidence!!  And a nice device at the corner, holding the photographs together — very practical, ingenious.  No doubt at ALL, that additional study will reveal the subject of this crisp, accurate photograph to have been little more than an odd, yet benignly entertaining cloud formation.  And, of course, the sky DOES look amazing — there it is.

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