Challenge #01678-D217: More Than You Need to Know
"Of course it's a work of Art. Nobody understands what it is. -- Anon Guest
It was large. It was made of an assortment of materials. It was in the centre of the room, and therefore important. And it moved in the breeze. Sails and counterbalances shaped and painted like planets swung about in orbits devised by, apparently, one of the few minds who could understand five-dimensional mathematics.
Alas, this was a Graveworld. The society these people had built had also collapsed under its own weight. Or its own social burdens. Whatever had wiped them out, it left the buildings and the infrastructure mostly intact. And amazingly free of attempts by Nature to overwhelm it. Erosion had done its work to some of it, but the plant life stayed away.
"I've cracked it," cheered B'naz, their expert in xenoliteracy. "I've got their language and phonemic encoding."
"Well? What does this say it is?" asked the team leader Kortan.
"Untitled, artist unknown," read B'naz. "Found inside a warehouse in the unemployables ghetto when it was slated for demolition. Materials unknown, but some of the armatures are made out of Damascus steel, meaning that the creator rediscovered the secret, as a savant, and likely took it to their grave."
Kortan waited. "Is there more?"
"Just which building company donated it, Ma'am. Nothing more about the creator."
Suspended planets wheeled and turned in the breeze. Of all the corroded works in the remains of this gallery, this one had stood the test of time and the elements
: Three of those minds aren't allowed to have sharp objects lest she hurt herself.
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