Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer

There’s a blue moon above and it’s nothing more than that. Here on Libby, the moons are blue. The rocks here are all shades of blue thanks to a chemical process that occurred during the creation of this planet.

The vegetation is blue because Alistair Peabody was a hopeless romantic as well as richer than several star empires. When his little blue companion of twenty years coughed her last, he swore he’d make a world in her memory. He bribed and cajoled and financed takeovers and had technology stolen.

He set out to make Libby the blue heaven he’d promised to make for his girl. A place where the lonely could come to be eased, the dying could come to find peace, and he could visit when the memories got a little overwhelming.

Over there is the mausoleum he built for her body, and it’s as surprising as the rest of this place; tasteful, delicate, a true work of art. The blue marble shines with an inner light that even the scientists were at a loss to explain. I’ve guessed that it’s a side effect of the white marble innards slowly being turned blue.

Libby started with a dozen work teams: over two hundred people. It now has a population of eight, and will never have more. The blue motif Alistair determined for his memorial needed to go deep, and he implemented some truly ground-breaking technological solutions.

Unfortunately, the pigmentation thingys proved to be very good at blue. After turning themselves blue, anything and everything else turned blue. Animals. Insects. Spaceships. Biscuits. People.

And that blue is contagious. Blue from Libby will attempt to turn everything it comes into contact with blue. It’s the first human-created, galactically recognised technopestilence.

So I’ll sit here and sip blue coffee laced with blue rum as the blue bats flit about my head and my blue hair remains without a trace of grey despite this being my ninetieth birthday. And no, I have not the slightest clue how I can still see. My eyes are orbs of blue, but they still work. It’s something the scientists stranded here researched until they died – still without the slightest glimmer of a solution.

Damn you, Alistair. I only signed on to design the formal gardens around the mausoleum – the ones that no-one will ever visit.

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