She sat at the back, by the window that looked like it would actually open. The desks were a shaky half circle behind a patch of lines and rows, a teacher's desk at the front. Chalk was everywhere, and the schedules and curricula being handed out were on plain old paper in still ink. Ancient stuff for such an advanced class. But then paper was much harder to disrupt than electrons when the magic misfired.
"Okay, class, I'll trust you to do the reading at home, so for now we'll get straight to the practical. Just some warm up exercises, see what you're bringing to it, what level you're at. But remember, the final assessment has to be a group
project, so you should start as you mean to go on."
Someone in full third level robes at the front snorted and spun her fingers in a complicated circle, the first few bars of a Gate college spell. "Seriously? Like there's a group here that can do that? They'd only hold me back."
The lecturer, back to her, rolled her eyes, but the student at the back was the one to speak.
"It is deadly serious. I've walked on other worlds, same as you have. Where I've been, there were dangers I'd never experienced, never even thought of before. Whole histories changed on an instant, or with a doom hanging over them. It's only four Earth's over that they've a rock coming just like killed the dinosaurs, and only days to do anything about it. I've seen it with my own eyes, stood and watched it wander their night sky, and I still don't know what to do about it. They're talking evacuation. That's of a planet just as populous as this one. And maybe they'll come
to this one. Seven billion people, just arriving, overnight. What do you do when your population doubles? Or triples? We think that rock is rare, but maybe the orbital mechanics work out so it almost always hits us. Maybe we're the last lifeboat in the near alternity. How do you cope when there's three, four, five, five hundred of everyone? What's the life support capacity of one Earth anyway? And what if it's you who looks up and finally sees it. The hammer, waiting to fall. What if it's your own Earth that has to think of something, do something, right now? What would you do?" She paused for a beat, then rolled a gesture around the circle of students. "You, plural."
The Three screwed her face up but nodded. The student at the back nodded and tapped the table twice, passing the point on.
Of course, that wasn't a custom of this
***( Read more... )
Okay, so, I only dreamed the first part, and the AU Stargate-by-magic fic under the cut is what I thought up to solve the problems there presented, but... these are really cool problems.
Also, if they do manage to just shift everyone one universe over? You are suddenly faced with yourself. Forget the stupid Stargate rule where you'll get the shudders, pretend there's no rule to time limit things, just, how do you suddenly cope where across the world there's around seven billion life histories shared by fourteen billion people? Because lets face it, most of us would not be good at sharing.
And as for having to choose which AU to go live in...
b u n n i e s.