Inside the door where the projector was, I could see a padded envelope. Obviously, these items had all been left with the sole purpose that they be discovered. The keyboard placed behind the computer unit, with the folder. The picture on the screen, and now this envelope.
I reached up, and removed the envelope, bringing half a dozen cobwebs with it.
It wasn’t sealed. Inside, was a small black book, with the letters MF neatly hand-written on the front cover.
On the first page, in what looked like the same handwriting were the words ‘For the future’.
On the second page, again in the same handwriting, began what appeared to be a letter.
March 1st 1974
To whom it may concern,
I am honoured to be writing this to you, on behalf of my colleagues here in the United Kingdom Space Agency. I hope this finds you well, if not rather baffled. Please continue to read on, and hopefully all will become clear.
My name is Margaret Faith. I am one of four people who have made this Agency a reality. We are a small unit, not connected in any way to any government body or national firm. We are enthusiastic for exploration, and hope to be one of the first groups to discover planets outside of our solar system.
I am what could be termed as an intuitive thinker, I can tend to see things as they may be, although they are not like that as yet. For instance, I know that by the end of this decade, the United Kingdom will have its first woman Prime Minister. I also knew that by the end of the last decade, man would have stepped upon the moon, although I kept that one to myself!
I’m classed as the secretary to this little group, although I’m actually one of the financial contributors as well – it doesn’t come cheaply to have a dream on the scale such as this.
The other contributors, Michael Rae, Gordon Standish and Leonard Hutchinson-Oaks all share my dream. Our dream.
In 1970, we gathered together and decided to pool our finances and technical knowledge – the three lads are excellent engineers – and put the agency together. We bought all of the required equipment ourselves, built the craft and the radio and photographic equipment to our exact specifications, and set out our plan for the future.
Not for us, I hasten to add. Between us, we are now 320 years old, so we can only set the wheels in motion. Hopefully, we may get to see the results when they come back – only time will tell with that one.
Now – our dream. I know that there are other planets out in the universe. One doesn’t need to be intuitive to know that. I also know that there is one planet orbiting a star in the Draco constellation, in particular Psi Draconis, whose traditional name is Adh-Dhi’ban, or the Two Wolves. It is a world mostly covered by water, and it has an atmosphere – so my intuition tells me. Whether there is life is another question, and hopefully the probe we send will gather that information for us.
We have set the wheels in motion, and hopefully we will be the first to discover new planets. We may be pipped at the post, but we feel we need to try. We launched our rocket at the end of February from the deserted hills of Derbyshire, I don’t think anybody was aware.
The probe is set to find land when it reaches the planet, and send back images through a radio signal. The computers here are set to receive that data, and transfer it into an image on the overhead projector.
We are so hopeful that this dream will come to pass.
We hope that one day, in the future, somebody will be looking at land on a new and distant world.
I know that day will come – and I hope that I get the chance to see it for myself. If not, it was worth a try anyway.
We can’t achieve our dreams if we don’t at least try.
If you are reading this letter, hopefully you are also seeing the image from our dreams.