The Nebula Was Empty
Mary E. Lowd
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Copyright © 2011 by Mary E. Lowd
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The nebula was empty. Cold. Proto-star matter, so many dust motes, drifted, dully refracting the light of nearby constellations. The dust motes didn't even swirl. There was nothing to disturb them into motion, except for the nebula beast herself. In earlier times, during her youth, she frolicked -- expanding space here; squeezing tight there; watching the space debris splash about. She chased the dust motes between her many dimensions, but now she was too sad to make her own fun.
The beast let out a somnolent sigh and stretched her stiffening body, tired from inactivity.
Even then, the dust motes didn't move: she was stretching only in the fourth and seventh dimensions. When she settled back into her lonesome repose, the fourth dimension snapped directly back into place, but the seventh dimension jostled the third which got briefly tangled with the second. Then the dust motes moved, shifting out of space that had grown smaller and rushing into the newly empty space.
The beast watched the motes hopefully, but when she realized it was only herself who unsettled them, she sighed again.