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Aorist rods were devices used in a now happily abandoned form of energy production. When the hunt for new sources of energy got particularly frantic, one bright young chap suddenly spotted that one place which had never used up its available energy – the past. With the sudden rush of blood to the head that such insights tend to induce, he invented a way of mining it that very same night, and within a year, huge tracts of the past were being drained of all their energy and simply wasting away.

Those who claimed that the past should be left unspoiled were accused of indulging in an extremely expensive form of sentimentality. The past provided a very cheap, plentiful and clean source of energy, there could always be a few Natural Past Reserves set up if anyone wanted to pay for their upkeep, and as for the claim that draining the past impoverished the present, well, maybe it did, slightly, but the effects were immeasurable and you really had to keep a sense of proportion.

It was only when it was realized that the present really was being impoverished, and that the reason for it was that those selfish plundering wastrel binderzunks in the future were doing exactly the same thing, that everyone realized that every single aorist rod, and the terrible secret of how they were made, would have to be utterly and forever destroyed. They claimed it was for the sake of their grandparents and grandchildren, but it was of course for the sake of their grandparents’ grandchildren, and their grandchildren’s grandparents. The Starship Billion Year Bunker was built to dump them all in a black hole but crash-landed on the bottom of an ocean and broke in half instead.

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