Dr. Stone imagines his own wife, dead in their bedroom. He remembers the desiccated blood pouring out of the Piedmont doctor’s wrist.
Meanwhile, Dr. Leavitt meditates in a yoga position. “A new form of life,” she thinks to herself. “like Rudolf Karp’s bacteria.”
“Fools!” says Karp, in a memory of Leavitt’s. “They refuse to believe life exists in meteorites! I showed them at the astrophysics conference what I just showed you. But, no – – even with a microscope, they’re blind. What do I have to do, hit them over the head?”
Leavitt nods her head.
Meanwhile, Charles Dutton sleeps on a bed. He dreams of a graduate seminar at Berkeley, where he drew an image of a man looking through a giant microscope at a plate of microbes, with a word balloon over the microbes saying “TAKE US TO YOUR LEADER.”
His graduate students laugh as he signs the artwork at the bottom of a blackboard.
“I’m glad you’re amused, gentlemen,” says Dutton, “but it might just turn out to be true. During this sym-“