10/06/9,975,002 03:00
How did I get here? 
After thousands of years of banging at heaven's door, I've finally made it. Here I am, twenty-five thousand years ago to the day — a free-from-vanity PhD student assisting my ancient professor during one of his incomprehensible to the ordinary mortals' tests. 
The professor is a ten-foot giant with a thatch of unruly white hair and a bushy white beard. A long white lab coat is loosely slung over his broad shoulders. It wafts gently about with his every move like the cape of a mythological demiurge. The experiments are carried out on the university's space station hovering majestically over the artificial quasar's high orbit. We're working in the middle of the station's columned courtyard, lit by the many-hued starlight visible through the transparent dome rising up above us. The bright points reflect in the polished metallised flooring creating a flashing glow of light that we're wading in. The professor hurtles from one piece of machinery to the other. I do my best to keep up, holding a large tray filled with many surreal-looking tools which he picks up and discards as he operates the various equipment pieces. It’s an incredible honour. Not many PhD students manage to be given the responsibility of holding up my professor's tool tray. It's an incredible honour. 
'How familiar are you with the subject of the Great Convergence, lad?’ The professor seizes a screwdriver from the tray, at least that's what I think it is, and continues recalibrating the eight-barrel dark-energy cannon.
'Very much, Professor,’ I say in a shaky voice, doing my best to hide my elatedness. 
This is it. Aeons spent studying. Burning the midnight oil. The Great Convergence had become so ingrained in my thoughts I could hardly think about anything else.
'They say that it shouldn't have happened. Or that it should, only in a different way.’ The professor wrestles with a particularly obstinate screw. ‘One way or another, the Great Convergence research is getting traction. Time to jump on the bandwagon and get a cut of that sweet, sweet funding pie before others get a whiff and beat me to it.’ 
‘I’m sure the scientific reward will be just as substantial, Professor,’ I say. 
‘Not at all, my lad. It's too complex to tackle,’ he says. ‘Nevertheless, I predict the hypothetical requitals will untether the stampede of sponsors ready to jam the funds down the academia’s yawning maw for as long as we retain their trust that we’re onto something.’ 
‘I’m not afraid of hard work, Professor.’ I sweat in excitement. ‘However daunting, I do believe it’s possible … to learn the principles governing the Great Convergence. To master the quintessence of existence. Unearth the building blocks of nature. Look into the eyes of the beast. Hypnotise it. Discover … everything!’ 
‘Everything, yes … Well, if the argument is convincing enough, I should be able to control the grants’ flow. He who controls the grants, controls the university. He who controls the university … Oh, the fragrance of power.’ The professor inhales noisily. ‘Anyhow, I’m sure you’re aware, my boy, that I require unquestionable obedience, loyalty and unabated industry on your part?’ 
‘I wish for nothing more than to be able to sacrifice myself on the altar of scientific progress, Professor.’ My shaking hands make the implements on the tray rattle. 
‘Poetic. Very well. I keep it in mind, then.’ The professor tosses the screwdriver back onto the tray at the least expected moment. 
The tray heaves to the side and the implements scatter at my feet, making a terrible noise. I fall to my knees, snatching at the gear and placing it back on the tray. The professor pulls a large lever on the side of the cannon with both hands, heedless of me scurrying hysterically about. 
‘Compliance aside, skill and talent are also of advantage in academia.’ He says as I pull myself from the floor, holding up the tray with the tools again. 
It turns out — to the growing disappointment of the professor — I wasn't able to find some of them. 
'There, Herr Professor.' Scott — the new PhD student who just joined the university — crops up out of nowhere wearing his impeccably white lab coat. 
The stars shine down vertically at the newbie, producing deep and dark shadows under his gibbous forehead. The disproportionally large black glasses, covering up bushy eyebrows, rest on his toucan-like nose. Scott outstretches a stubby arm, presenting a long, thin rod with a cubical end. 
'Glad there's someone I can rely on.’ The professor grabs the rod which he inserts into a socket on the mechanical dashboard, turning the various dials and knobs on the side of the cannon. 
He releases the safety switch and pulls the trigger. The cannon recoils. There's a deafening boom on the horizon. Another dead star falls from the bleeding heavens. The professor scrawls one more 'v' on his clipboard. 
'You'll go far.’ He lightly pinches Scott's cheek. ‘Speaking of which, how familiar are you with the subject of the Great Convergence, lad?’
'Not very, Professor. I've just transferred from the Langenburg‎-Oettingen Academy of Hypothetical Dialectics, where I've been assigned an auxiliary research position. Well below my capabilities. Needless to say, I would consider it a great privilege and honour to serve your agenda with unquestionable obedience, loyalty and unabated industry,’ Scott blurts out comically, straightening himself up.
‘Come by my office later on, lad.’ The professor smiles broadly. 'We'll discuss the research opportunities.’
'Herr Professor.’ Scott bows low and struts away. 
I keep standing by, weighed down by the tray getting heavier by the minute.
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