My question is simply "What happened to Mercury?"

Now I realise that whatever 'fixed' the Sun to stop it destroying everything might have come after Mercury was gone, but I was wondering if anybody had more interesting ideas as to what happened to it?


  • The simplest explanation, I think, would be that it got blown up, perhaps a casualty in some interstellar war. The debris then could have fallen into the sun. I never favored this explanation, though. What with all the ultra-high tech flying around, something more exotic is required.

    In particular, I assume that Mercury is more or less intact, but is simply somewhere else. Perhaps Mercury was terraformed and heavily colonized, and then the decadent future people who lived on it jettisoned it from the solar system so as to steer it somewhere else, like a planet-sized spaceship. This may have been the equivalent of a luxury cruise ship for them, or, perhaps they were evacuating to escape the advent of some terrible cosmic horror.

    Alternatively, perhaps Mercury was shunted into another dimension. Depending on the technological level of the party responsible, this may have been similar to the evacuation/luxury cruise theory, or this may have been a more cost effective way of effectively destroying it. Producing and delivering an anti-matter bomb sufficiently large to level a planet may have actually been more expensive for an invading alien army than to just push Mercury into another dimension.

    Another theory, once again assuming a hostile outside force: perhaps Mercury was "abducted," for scientific study. Ultraterrestrials could have pulled Mercury into another world so as to study humans (or whatever was on Mercury at the time) in their natural habitat, similar to how one might transplant an anthill into a formicarium. Similarly, aliens could have abducted the planet for study, perhaps with the use of powerful tractor beams or a miniaturization device. It occurs to me that this wouldn't even have to be for study. Perhaps powerful aliens might consider a developed planet a valuable product for sale on the galactic market. Maybe this was enemy action, and they intended to hold it for ransom.

    Yeah, that's just about all the ideas I have. Personally, I prefer Mercury to have been abducted by ultraterrestrials, as it begs the question as to what, exactly, is powerful enough to study one of the previous worlds like we might study ants? I hope you find these theories interesting.
  • I actually had an idea this morning while doing my daily thinking with the aid of hot water (taking a shower).

    The Sun is getting hotter as it consumes it's fuel. This will make it brighter and put out more radiation. This is the problem that has been mysteriously solved, to allow life to continue to exist 1 billion years from now.

    What I came up with was: Mercury was fitted out with tech that would both protect it from the Sun and siphon a small amount of the Sun's energy to produce fuel. This fuel is pumped out into the Sun, keeping it's levels balanced and as such is stops getting hotter/brighter and deadlier to life as we know it.

    It was then moved into the Sun itself and sits now as a solid core keeping the Sun ticking over at it's current state. By the time this was done, the light/radiation levels had already changed a little, which is what has caused some of the changes to plant life that features in the game.

    Anyway, it's just a thought.
  • I heard a rumor: A merchant in Navarene carries a spherical brown stone around, about a foot in diameter. Rather he makes his Aneen carry it, as it's quite heavy. It is unusually warm at all hours of the day. He claims it was once another world, orbiting closer to the sun. He's asking an outrageous sum in shins or trade for it. Of course most people call him a fool and a swindler and move on.
  • Here's an idea, how about one of the previous worlds moved it so that it orbits Venus, or it orbits the Earth--maybe much further out than our moon. Maybe it is almost as close and the planetary engineers that did it put some devices in orbit to keep it from affecting the tides. Or maybe you want it to give the Earth strange tidal patterns. To make it even weirder, if it orbits the Earth, is to have it exist partially out of phase so that it appears at random times as the ancient "generators" that keep it out of phase intermittently fail. Imagine the effect of a planet appearing out of nowhere in a full eclipse of the sun and all of a sudden the tides go crazy. As an added bonus with the last option characters with the Out of Phase Foci can see Mercury whenever that phase.

    And for anyone that asks, "why would you want Mercury partially out of phase and orbiting Earth?" That IMO is the very sort of "we have no idea what theses previous civilizations were thinking" line of thought that makes this game cool. One of the things I see people do in various forums about this game is come up with some awesome weird ideas and then try to rationalize them--that is a huge mistake IMO. The lack of explanation or rationale (at least one we or the people of th Ninth World can fathom) is what gives this game such a unique feel. I have to stop myself from doing it because that is how we are, but come up with some ideas and try not to rationalize them. One of the best "explanations" I think a GM can give in this game is a shrug--"You have no idea why this past civilization wore their hats on their feet, but there it is..." (That's an extreme example to be silly, but you get the idea).
  • It was nano-engineered into a partial Dyson sphere 3 ages ago.

    Unfortunately, this was incorrectly designed and the power that was captured by it, caused the catastrophic collapse of the inhuman civilization that was on earth at the time.
  • Anyone with a powerful enough synthscope can see the pylons floating up there in the darkness. Some are even close enough to spot unaided on a clear night. They stretch out in a ragged silvery line, marching toward the sun. They never reach it. The trail ends abruptly in an empty corner of space, lonely children of a project forgotten a billion years ago.
  • An ancient horror entered our solar system long ago, and attacked the civilization at the time.  This creature killed or drove mad all life on any planet it passed.  As it neared the sun, and the societies of these "people" collapsed, the people of Mercury devised a final desperate plan.  Used to funnel heat and light out to the other planets, mercury was used as an energy harvesting station for the solar system.  As the creature passed near Mercury, the pre-set machines turned all that heat and power inward to the planets core.  Mercury exploded as it's core overheated.

    While the plan worked, that age ended with mass extinction.  It is said that if one looks close enough that you can still see a few blasted remains of Mercury.  Those that have the ability to look closely whisper that there is something else still floating among the remains.
  • For some reason, the word "Sunskipper" came to mind reading this thread.

    Mercury is still there, bolstered by unknown art to remain solid as it "skips" off the surface plasma of the Sun. In reality it doesn't quite dive in, but does have an irregular orbit so those on the dark side see the Ring of Fire (ie. ALL of the horizon) surge and wane.

    Now I just need a scenario to get a group there...
  • Technically, when our sun starts to die, it will begin expanding, Mercury will be the first to go. Whatever civilization there was at the time, if they're the least bit as bureaucratic as ours, they dragged their feet until the solar system lost a planet, then fixed the sun.
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