***The following is the latest rough draft excerpt for a novel writing project I’m working on.***
As they drop below the surface, what meets their eyes is more than either had imagined. Below the surface of the planet, as lively as any place they’ve been, lay a large city district. The district is layer upon layer of levels plunging deeper into the planet core. Hundreds of thousands of residents hustle and bustle along well lit streets. The scene is breathtaking and magnificent.
Bars, pubs, mercantile shops, and markets of all shapes and sizes dot the intricate network of levels. Residential high-rises and towers rise at least 30 stories each, pushing through the levels and towering over the vastness of the underground city. The towers reach to the cavern ceiling above, attached to anchors from the surface.
The buildings are all bunched together in a tight knit cluster with a clean grid of roads, street corners and walkways carving their way through the hive. Foot traffic and small, compact vehicle traffic buzzes down these streets and walkways with precision and order.
Neon lights buzz and blink on practically every building, announcing each center’s occupants and merchants. Vivid, colorful holoprojectors show up-to-date news feeds from around the galaxy, while others offer “deals of the century” and “galaxy getaways to the farthest reaches.”
Hydro-lifts and sleek elevators rise and drop at ridiculous speeds as they deliver passengers to their destinations. There’s a fair amount of air traffic for such a seemingly small underground space. Speeders and transit hovercraft rush in crowded lanes to and fro. The lanes are stacked in order of fastest to slowest. The casual driver types are on the bottom lanes, while the faster, more pressing traffic zooms by at alarming rates on the upper lanes.
Residents of every shape, color, race and gender dot the streets, walkways, byways and levels. The predominant race appears to be an odd humanoid slender folk with pale, hairless oval head and large dark opaque cylinders for eyes. Their faces display evenly place wrinkles just below their eyes and gill-like features where noses should be.
The gender is distinguished by the shape of their eyes. The males are more circular in nature, while the females are more pointed at the apex.
Each personage walks with a proud and slow gate, as they observe to themselves the passersby.
It’s a magnificent commotion to behold and not easy to navigate for outsiders. It’s mass hysteria, or more like organized mass hysteria. The underground city extends a few kilometers in length and about half that in depth.
The entire scene is on the verge of exploding with radiance and energy. The site is a beauty to behold.
The hydro-lift continues its descent toward the first level, and their drop-off point. Johnny looks around, surveying the situation. He makes sure no one has noticed them or taken special interest in them.
The lift is nestled against the outer walls of the cavern. The walls are a hardened molten lava rock of the planet core. Some caves extend off behind them with stalagmites and stalactites clustering at the entrances. The walls are thick and moist and water trickles and drips into pools on ledges and in the caves. Iridescent light radiates from a couple of the caves they pass, glowing softly and pulsating.
***Stay tuned for more updates. © Alan “Jedi” Zaugg 2018***