A Voyage to Arcturus
Maskull stared at the table. After a minute he raised his brows, and turned to Nightspore
with a smile. "The message grows more intricate."
Nightspore looked bored. "The valve became unfastened. The contents have escaped
through the open window toward the sun, carrying the bottle with them. But the bottle
will be burned up by the earth's atmosphere, and the contents will dissipate, and will not
reach the sun."
Maskull listened attentively, and his smile faded. "Does anything prevent us from
experimenting with this other bottle?"
"Replace it in the cupboard," said Nightspore. "Arcturus is still below the horizon, and
you would succeed only in wrecking the house."
Maskull remained standing before the window, pensively gazing out at the sunlit moors.
"Krag treats me like a child," he remarked presently. "And perhaps I really am a child....
My cynicism must seem most amusing to Krag. But why does he leave me to find out all
this by myself - for I don't include you, Nightspore.... But what time will Krag be here?"
"Not before dark, I expect," his friend replied.