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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Curiosity Killed the Cat (10/10/13)

TITLE: Red Accident
By Tim Pickl


"Breaking News: Today, the NASA Mars Rover Curiosity IV broke the record for the longest Martian drive. During this incredible drive, Curiosity discovered concrete evidence of life on the red planet. Dr. Adamson, the lead NASA scientist for the Curiosity IV project, agreed to speak with us online today live via Skype HD+ regarding this incredible event.

"Good Morning, Dr. Adamson. It’s good to see you again."

"Good Morning, Frank. Thank you, I am glad to be of service."

"We have been tracking Curiosity IV ever since it was launched from the International Lunar Colony last year. After Curiosity IV was nearly smashed in the asteroid fields during the long journey, we saw its miraculous landing. We all watched with childlike wonder at how this new probe uses artificial intelligence to learn from its mistakes as it observes the environment around it. Are you surprised, Dr. that after all it went through, that this remarkable rover is still going strong?”

"I am not surprised. We built redundant safety measures into the ship that delivered the probe; and, within the Curiosity IV unit itself."

"The pictures coming back to earth from Curiosity are incredible. Tell us more about the concrete evidence you discovered."

"While taking a soil sample at the edge of an ancient lake, Curiosity dug down deep and discovered ice. You are about to ask me, What is in the ice?"

"Ha—yes, Dr., you read my mind. I 'll bite: what did Curiosity IV find in the ice?"

"Curiosity IV has complete analytic equipment onboard, utilizing the latest technology. She was able to provide the concrete proof that life DOES exist on Mars! I am sending first a photo of the piece of ice. What you are seeing here is a chunk of ice roughly the size of a softball. Curiosity IV determined that the ice was made up of hydrogen and oxygen, much like the water on earth."

"That is amazing. Were there any life forms in the ice?"

"Yes. Curiosity sent back data and from it we determined there were several strains of bacteria that we have only observed in animals here on earth. We are still analyzing all of the data; it will take some time to process it all."

"So, the people who believe that life as we know it only exists on earth are now proven wrong? This is historic on many levels, Dr. Adamson."

"Yes. Frank. It truly is. That is why I am hiding now in an undisclosed location. The media frenzy around this is, simply put, unreal. But, I like and trust you."

"Thank you, sir."

"In this second picture, I am showing you a HD+ close-up of a small, sample core Curiosity IV drilled."

"What is that? It looks like—"

"A piece of string, yes. Or twine. We are extremely excited about this."

"Where is the Curiosity IV now?

"The probe was sent to the northwest of the ancient lake. Observations from previous Mars missions showed a possible cavern in that direction. We calculated that Curiosity IV could sustain that long of a drive AND perform detailed analysis we need to support our discovery of water on the planet."

"What do you think you will find in the cavern?"

"We will know soon enough. I am now sending you the raw HD+ video from the Curiosity IV."

"But, Dr. Adamson, I thought NASA had the live feed cut off, due to National Security reasons."

"No matter, this discovery is too important even for NASA or the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This will change man's view of the universe."

"God created all things in heaven and in earth. God is amazing, and so is his creation. What are we seeing now?"

“It appears that the Curiosity IV is inside the cavern. It is very dark. I sent the command earlier to switch on the HD+ audio, too."

"What was that sound?"

"Definitely an animal of some sort! This is very exciting. The Curiosity IV is now panning the cavern in infrared."

"Oh…my… are those eyes?"

"It looks like hundreds of pairs, yes. The probe is now converting the signal so we can observe what's going on… The animals look like a pack of angry feral cats."

"And… it looks like Curiosity is stuck somehow—it's rocking back and forth. Now the cats are furious, judging by all of the shrieking "

"Good observation, Frank."

"Hold on! I just received a breaking news headline from another source:

"Curiosity killed the cat."

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This article has been read 351 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Llewelyn Stevenson 10/17/13
Fun read
Joanne Sher 10/21/13
Clever piece! Love how it ended especially - suspected you were going that way somehow maybe 2/3 of the way through, but it was still delightful. Thanks for sharing!
C D Swanson 10/21/13
Interesting and captivating read! I really liked it.

Thank you. God bless~
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/23/13
This is hysterical. You had me totally immersed into the story. The exchange between the two was paced perfectly.

The only complaint I have is the comment about God. It felt a bit forced and unnatural especially for a news reporter.

The ending was great. I was expecting a twist like the cat killed curiosity, but I still chuckled and enjoyed this delightful story. You have a delightful knack for storytelling.