Salazin didn’t let me ponder his comment, “And maybe further.”
That was probably good, because I was about to ask him where he thought his ship could go. The Moon? Mars?
Winking again, Salazin said, “I have prepared a model for you. Just a concept.”
He gestured toward the door. As it opened, Salazin said, “Behold the Nautilaus.”
As Salazin said, “I had this prepared to scale to help you visual it,” a young woman led in a cart. What looked like an upside-down ship was on it. Two young men pushed and guided the cart from either side. The upside-down ship’s bottom was glossy black. The top was charcoal gray. A red band divided the top and bottom. Nautilaus was in script in that band.
Salazin said, “I know that you’re a visual person but that you struggle to imagine things. I hope this helps you.”
After parking the cart, the three people left. When the door closed, Salazin said, “What do you think, Dylan? Is it not amazing?”
I’d been wondering what I thought. “It doesn’t look inviting,” I said. “It looks sinister.”
I was thinking that his model looked ten feet long and half a foot wide. Before Salazin could reply, I said, “How tall would this thing be?”
“Twenty-four stories?” I grappled again with his planned vehicle’s size. “Ten miles long, a half mile wide, and twenty-four stories high?”
“No, from the red band,” Salazin said. “Sorry, it’s twenty-four stories from the red band. It would be a total of twenty-seven stories tall, but three of those stories are below the ground level.”
“Jesus,” I said.
Salazin was walking and talking, and pointing what I took to be a remote. Tuning out of my bewilderment to his words, I caught, “The top is dark now so that I can have the pleasure of revealing the interior to you.”
The gray top turned lighter, growing translucent and then transparent. When that happened, it displayed a delicate framework on the upper part. It also displayed rolling green hills, a blue lake or sea, and multiple roadways, paths, forests, fields, and buildings. Some of the buildings were clustered like small villages. I saw a golf course, swimming pools, a needle-like building, like Seattle’s Space Needle, and what looked like vineyards, orchards, a ranch with horses and cows….
There was so much to see and assimilate, I felt like my mind was fusing into numbness. Without realizing it, I’d stood and walked over to the model.
Ten miles long, twenty plus stories high, and half a mile wide.
I didn’t see anything that looked like it could be an engine.
I saw Salazin slip to a stop beside me. I could see his face. A grin split it.
“What do you think?” he said.
“I think you’re crazy,” I said.