A Journey in Other Worlds HTML version
bell," he said, pressing a button and jerking a handle marked '8,' "the champagne
cocktails will be on the desk."
"I see you know his ways," said Stillman to Bearwarden, drooping his eyes in
"Oh, yes, I've been here before," replied Deepwaters. "You see, we navy men have to
hustle now-a-days, and can't pass our time in a high-backed chair, talking platitudes."
At this moment there was a slight rumbling, and eight champagne cocktails, with the
froth still on, and straws on a separate plate, shot in and landed on a corner of the desk.
"Help yourselves, gentlemen," said Bearwarden, placing them on a table; "I hope we shall
find them cold."
"Do you know," said Deepwaters to Ayrault, while rapidly making his cocktail disappear,
"the Callisto's cost with its outfit will be very great, especially if you use glucinum,
which, though the ideal metal for the purpose, comes pretty high? I suggest that you
apply to Congress for an appropriation. This experiment comes under the 'Promotion of
Science Act,' and any bill for it would certainly pass."
"No, indeed," replied Ayrault; "the Callisto trip will be a privilege and glory I would not
miss, and building her will be a part of it. I shall put in everything conducive to success,
but will come to the Government only for advice."
"I will send a letter to all our ambassadors and consuls," said Stillman, "to telegraph the
department anything they may know or learn that will be of use in adjusting the batteries,
controlling the machine, or anything else, and will turn over to you in a succinct form all
information that may be relevant, for without such sorting you would be overwhelmed."
"And I," said Deepwaters, "will order the commanders of our vessels to give you a
farewell salute at starting, and to pick you up in case you fail. When you have
demonstrated the suitability of apergy," he continued, "and the habitability of Jupiter and
Saturn--,which, with their five and eight moons, respectively, and rings thrown in, must
both be vastly superior to our little second-rate globe--we will see what can be done
towards changing our orbit, and if we cannot swing a little nearer to our new world or
worlds. Then we'll lower, or rather raise, the boats in the shape of numerous Callistos,
and have a landing-party ready at each opposition, while a man or two can be placed in
charge of each projectile to bring it back in ballast. Thus we may soon have regular
"As every place seems to have been settled from some other," said Cortlandt, "I do not
see why, with increased scientific facilities, history should not repeat itself, and this be
the point from which to colonize the solar system; for, for the present at least, it would
seem that we could not get beyond that."