Tears of Orpheus 9
Pearl sized balls of computronium discovered on the baseline+ colony of Orpheus 9 by the Universal Rescue displacement drive vessel Anderson.

Orpheus 9 ceased all transmission 57 years ago after encountering an ISO. The Tears (1.25 million, one each for every member of the colony) appear to have an architecture reminiscent of that used by the Immanentization Crusaders for capturing and storing the mindstate of Pol Potbot when e took over the independent Haydrik Orbital near Negentropist Space.

The Tears are encrypted, apparently with S4 style algorithms and are believed to store the uploaded colonists in some form of virtual reality. Analysis by the Newman Institute of the final transmission suggests that the colony encountered the perversion known as YahWeh; if so it is suspected that the colonists are being tortured in some manner.

The Anderson and er crew have collected all of the tears and are accelerating toward the nearest wormhole. Their intention to travel to the TRHN, whose cryptographers have offered to release the colonists and reinstate them in physical forms.
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Development Notes
Text by Ben Higginbottom
Initially published on 10 June 2002.