A group of astronauts aboard the MWWV Elephant travel to Osiris IV, a planet with an atmosphere believed to be similar to Earth's. Earth is dying out, so there are reconnaissance missions to other planets in order to determine whether they can be colonized.
When the crew of the MWWV Elephant arrives at Osiris IV, the planet appears to be devoid of intelligent life. Mysteriously, there are life forms that seem to have been derived from Earth's biosphere and there are indications that a technologically advanced civilization once lived on the surface of the planet. Finally, the astronauts discover the remnants of a civilization BELOW Osiris IV's surface: Millions of miles of inter-connected steel corridors that once housed a very scientifically-gifted race of beings and remnants of their highly developed machinery and inventions.
The only life that remains in the corridors is a deadly mutation of the original "alien" species: quadripedal predators that are somewhere between lizards and tigers. The astronauts must fight these creatures, but eventually analysis of the beasts' blood samples leads to the discovery of a way to create clones of the Luminads in their pre-mutated state...
Osiris is a Class K star first cataloged in 2018 and given a number designation. The star was later selected as a target for colonization in 2358 and named after the god Osiris. Osiris IV was identified as having an oxygen-rich atmosphere with water, although calculations indicated that the world should have been outside of the circumstellar habitable zone of Osiris and so far from Osiris that there should be no liquid water on Osiris IV.
Terraforming of Osiris IV began in 29,430 BCE when artificial life forms of alien origin arrived and began to prepare the planet for human habitation. The main goals of the terraforming project was to warm the planet, thaw the oceans and establish an ecosystem with algea, plants and cold-tolerant animals. Osiris IV was originally colonized in 15,139 BCE, a time when the equatorial parts of the surface of the planet were becoming habitable for cold-tolerant land mammals. During the original colonization, humans and other mammals from Earth were first housed in an underground base and genetically engineered for improved cold tolerance and adaptation to conditions on Osiris IV.
The crew of the Elephant must solve the mysteries of Osiris IV.
See the main meta page for characters in Subterrestrials.
- Many of the characters in Subterrestrials are crew members on the MWWV Elephant.
Leland Movish, Senior Secretary of the Interplanetary Federation for Colonial Research (Earth branch) in Los Rebeldes, Texàs (formerly Austin, Texas) <-- Once a part of the contiguous United States, Texàs was absorbed into Mexico in a conditional end to the Tejano Uprising of 2051-55.