29 August 2015


There to the east, the sky now glowed. Though it was still dark where they were, indigo filled much of the eastern sky. Then the infusion of gold in the indigo strengthened in intensity, and the whole eastern sky turned a dark bronze, then a dark green; then it brightened, until a blackish green was shot with gold, and brightened again until it was infused with greenish black, or rather a mix or mesh of gold and black, shimmering like cloth of gold seen by twilight. An uncanny sight, clearly, as many of them cried out at it. 
Then the burden off on the eastern horizon lit up as if set on fire, and their cries grew louder than ever. It looked as if the great plateau were burning. This strange fiery dawn swept in vertically, like a gold curtain of light approaching from the east.  Overhead the charcoal circle of E winked on its westernmost point, a brilliant wink of fire that quickly spilled up and down the outer curve of the black circle. And so Tau Ceti reemerged, again very slowly, taking a bit over two hours...Gradually the sky turned the usual royal blue of Aurora's day...
Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson (2015)

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