Elemoont/Chapter 29

in which the Elemoont and the Tiger–Cat find themselves in the Universe of the triangular Moons and discover mysterious footprints.

While the unprecedented scientific discussion between the lunar elephants and the lunatics continued on the Moon, the Elemoont, and the Tiger–Cat flew on the pirates' ship fragments to the far star, which rapidly increased its sizes.

"Look, it's near!" said the Tiger–Cat to the Elemoont, "That's not a bad idea of us to fly across. Kilometers are awfully long things but they have no the width."

The Elemoont was not confident in it because he heard one day a sentence ‘two kilometer's wide’, but he cannot decide whether the conversation was about the width of kilometers or not and kept mum.

"The whole quintillion kilometers were to that star," continued the Cat, "If we fly every kilometer from its beginning to its end, we'll fly the whole century! However, we pierce them across. And because kilometers have no width or their width is infinitesimal, our way is much shorter."

"Have they no width or it is infinitesimal?" asked the Elemoont who was interested in this question.

"They must not have any width," said the Cat, "But it's very difficult to imagine something having no width; that's why I'm not confident."

"And what can our Computer said?" asked the Elemoont, "Have a kilometer any width?"

"One kilometer has no width," answered the Computer.

"And two kilometers?"

"Two kilometers also have no width."

"And a quintillion kilometers?"

"They have some width. A little."

"How can it be?"

"It's a transition from quantity to quality," hazily answered the computer.

"Do you understand anything?" asked the Elemoont.

"Nothing," said the Cat, "But it doesn't really matter. It's important that we have flown perpendicularly to those long quintillion kilometers. A quintillion kilometers are long only into their length, but it is nothing if across."

"So, we are flying in the Perpendicular Universes!" said the Elemoont, "I heard about Parallel Universes, but I never guessed about Perpendicular ones."

"As you may see they exist," remarked the Cat, "and it is very good for us. In any parallel universe we'll fly parallel with a quintillion kilometers and it is very long!"

"And if we fly perpendicular to them it will be not so long," guessed the Elemoont.

"Yes, it will be not so long," confirmed the Cat.

"But how long it will be exactly?"

"I don't know how long it will be exactly," said the Cat, "Let's ask the Computer: had he met any perpendicular universe on occasion?"

"Very often," said the Computer, "You must not forget that I worked at the pirates' ship. Pirates always flew strictly perpendicularly when they drank much yogurt."

"And what was the result of it?" was interested the Elemoont.

"They instantly overcame great distances."

"I told you so!" said the Cat. "Instantly!"

"We although shorten our journey but do it not instantly," remarked the Elemoont.

"It's because we had set our foreheads against a plane!" said the Computer, "It's interesting who had stood it here?"

"A plane?" was astonished the Cat, "But I don't see any plane here!"

"You cannot see it. It's not a table or a wall; it's a theoretical plane."

"Is it possible to smell it?" asked the Elemoont slightly stirred his long trunk.

"Is it possible to scratch it?" added the Cat showing his claws.

"No and no!" answered the Computer, "You may only set your foreheads against it and even only theoretically."

"It seems me, we had leaned our foreheads against this plane practically," said the Cat, "Look! The star doesn't grow no more."

The Elemoont had a peep at the star and saw it was a triangular! "Things are going from bad to worth," muttered he, "From the Universe of Square Moons we have arrived to the Universe of Triangular Moons."

"That Universe is also of Mr. Red's collection," remarked the Tiger–Cat, "I remember a day when Mr. Red covers it with his magic top hat. Now his top hat gave a crack and all universes had flown away. Maybe it is Mr. Red, who had tried to get all them together and had set theoretical planes everywhere."

"Yes, there was no any plane here yet a week ago," said the Computer, "I know this region very well."

"What must we do?" asked the Elemoont, "Can we break this plane?"

"If it was a wall, we could do it," answered the Computer, "But it is a theoretical plane and we can break it only theoretically. But it will not help us in practice."

"And what did pirates do when they set their foreheads against such planes?" asked the Cat.

"They drank yogurt."

"And then?"

"Then they drank yogurt again."

"And then?"

"Then they sang pirates' song: ‘we are strangers of space, but we want yogurt…’"

"We know, we know," interrupted him the Cat, "What did they do after it?"

"They fell into the Underspace. There are no any theoretical planes there, although there are some other obstacles."

"So, let's fall into the Underspace also," exclaimed the Elemoont.

"It's impossible. There is no enough weight. That time the ship was intact and with all crew on the board, and only one Crocomuzzle weighs about a hundred kilograms. In addition Tusk, and Box…"

"But we, elemoonts, also have a fair weight," said the Elemoont, "although I'm still small."

"And we, cats, weigh too little," sighed the Cat with regret, "Otherwise we'll feel troubles in climbing trees."

"Is the state of affairs so bad really?" was grieved the Elemoont, "And all it because of some plane, moreover a theoretical one!"

"Theory is a serious thing," said the computer, "however, there is a way out. Since it is impossible to fall into the Underspace, we have to rise into the Overspace; but although only fragments have left from the pirates' ship, they are too heavy to lift into the Overspace. We have to use a gruntler-scooter."

"What is it?" asked the Cat.

"It is a motor scooter for Cosmic Gruntresses. The pirates took it as booty and used it as a life–boat. Luckily the explosion did not damage it; or rather the grunting did not damage it when the Big Cosmogrunt had grunted."

"I guess why," said the Cat, "Maybe the Big and Small Cosmogrunts was related to Cosmic Gruntresses?"

"It's unlikely. The Gruntresses are charming creatures; while both Big and Small Cosmogrunts are unable behave themselves."

While the Cat and the Computer had their conversation, the Elemoont had found the scooter in one of the ship's compartments and wheel it out on the deck.

"Don't waste time!" said he. "Sit down on it!"

"I'll sit down," said the Cat," "But what shall we do with out Computer? We must not leave it before this plane!"

"Of course," said the Elephant, "Let's bind it to the luggage compartment."

The Cylindrical Computer was small and they easily coped with that work. The Elemoont took the helm, the Tiger–Cat set himself behind the Elemoont and the Computer gave a command, "Three, two, one…Press!"

"What…press?" did not understand the Elemoont.

"Press the button!"

Here the Elemoont saw in front of him the button with inscription ‘OVER!’ and pressed it. The gruntler-scooter gave a sudden plunge and rushed upwards (or downwards; it is very difficult to make distinction between up and down in the outer space). All constellations disappeared and our friends found themselves in complete emptiness.

"Is it the Overspace?" asked the Elemoont.

"Yes! Now press another button," suggested the Computer.

The Elemoont pressed on the button with an inscription ‘NOT OVER’ and the gruntler-scooter flopped down straight on the surface of the Triangular Moon lifted clouds of triangular dust.

"It's very strange to see triangular craters," said the Elemoont, "However, I don't see any another strange things."

"And I have seen," said the Cat.


"I see the footprints."

The Elemoont looked down and discovered in the dust a clear imprint of a shoe. "Oh!" said the Elemoont. "The imprint is not triangular. Who can it be?"

"Let's follow the imprints and soon we'll know who it is," suggested the Cat.