Interstellar Radio Channel 5
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Dizidhud sat at his desk fiddling with his little device with the frontmost of his appendages. It had been years since he’d used the bloody thing, and he was shocked to find it was still functioning at all.

As the gizmo caught different airwaves, a pandemonium was played through the speakers: News reports in innumerable different languages, both known and unknown to Dizidhud, commentaries of sports championships played by teams light years apart, and music that could only be enjoyed by species with the most keen of hearing.

As Dizidhud scrolled through the seemingly endless selection, something caught his ears: An old, familiar jingle.

Were they really still airing it?

He turned back the knob and, sure enough, tuned into Interstellar Radio Channel 5, his favorite station from his childhood.

Back in Dizidhud’s youth, the station was always hosted by Rogers Brown, a human from Earth. Humans were always interesting to Dizidhud. Although they had only entered as one of the United Spacefaring Peoples a few decades before, they had already established themselves as a force to be reckoned with. They were actually rather bizarre. Instead of speaking one world language, they spoke many. They clad themselves with the pelts of lesser creatures from their home world. Strangest yet, their teeth fell out, only for a second set to grow in as they reached maturity.

Dizidhud had always found that last fact disturbing, though any human would probably think similarly of him, with his three spindly arms supporting his plump, bluish-purple body with three beaked mouths that all spoke in different tones.

Regardless of how their species compared, Dizidhud had always loved listening to Brown talk about all the wonders of the universe. All the planets, near and far, and the life they harbored. All their cultures. All their celebrities and historical figures. All their customs and beliefs. It was all just so extraordinarily fascinating.

As the introduction faded out, an enthusiastic but well aged voice came through the speakers, talking in English, an Earthling language.

Hey there, everyone! Welcome back to Interstellar Radio Channel 5, or I-R-C-5 for short!

It was him! Dizidhud shuttered with such excitement it could’ve brought the house down.

Today, we’ll be informing you all on the science of magic. Now, a lot of you folks at home are probably thinking to yourselves: “But Rogers, this is a completely scientific and factual show! Magic isn’t real! Magic and science don’t mix!” and you’d be right! Well, sort of.

For millennia, humans and other similar species have looked at “magic” as an ability only possessed by malevolent entities from other planes of existence. Many were wrongfully persecuted because of their association with witchcraft and sorcery. However, as science and technology has evolved, so has our knowledge of so called “magic.”

As it turns out, there are many different methods of casting spells, lifting curses, and summoning the odd extradimensional being, but today, we’ll be focusing on the method known to scientists as “thaumaturgy.”

So, what is thaumaturgy? To put it simply, it is the storage of energy to be converted into force, heat, electricity, etc. This conversion can happen in a sudden burst once enough energy is stored, or over a period of time while more energy flows in.

How does this conversion occur? It all starts with a circle or, if you’re not the artistic type, an oval. Inside this circle, the thaumaturgist can perform a variety of rituals to store energy within the circle. These rituals aren’t always the most savory of practices, probably why thaumaturgists are usually given a bad rap, but hey, what works works, am I right?

But seriously, folks. Don’t try any of what you’re about to learn at home. Thaumaturgists spend years of preparation so that their spells don’t come out all wonky.

Anyway, thaumaturgic rituals are generally classified under two groups: Sharp and flat. Some of you music gurus out there may have already noticed these names are derived from accidentals in sheet music. Sharp and flat are kind of opposites. Sharp moves towards goals of creation, while flat moves towards destruction.

Let’s talk about each group individually for a little bit. With the main idea of sharp being to create, sharp rituals are notably more tame than flat ones. Sources of sharp energy can include love, happiness, and prayer. An extreme example of a sharp ritual would be a full on orgy, excuse my unprofessionalism, though most will simply go sit in the circle and pray for a while. What god or gods they pray to is totally up to them.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, flat rituals usually call for a lot more… violent methods. Sources of flat energy include anger, fear, death, and bloodshed. This is where things get more on the cultish side of things, though this is not always the case. One thaumaturgist who has asked to remain anonymous said that they performed flat rituals simply by pricking their finger on a needle inside their circle each day. Cool right? I mean, ow, but it’s still better than the alternative.

Now that you know what thaumaturgy is, we can get into its history. The earliest known thaumaturgists were actually from my home planet! Score one for Earth! Anyway, the identity of these people isn’t exactly known, but it is believed that they used thaumaturgy to create life on Earth. It is unknown if life on other planets was birthed through this method, but it might explain why most Earthling creatures are so different when compared to other life.

However, these early thaumaturgists fell from grace in the midst of a civil war, and they were forced to pass down their teachings to humans. Ouch. It was at this point that other species from across the universe began learning thaumaturgy.

One religious movement spawned from this sudden burst in thaumaturgic activity is known as Ortothanism. Ortothans worship a deity known as Rakmou-leusan, the alleged guardian of the universe, and the last of seven gods that gave their lives to defend reality as we know it. Ortothans use thaumaturgy to give blood to Rakmou-leusan as he bleeds at the gates of the Second Hytoth.

Then came the Dark Age of thaumaturgy. For reasons unknown, practicers of the art all across the universe were persecuted for their abilities. Many were killed during this time, which lasted over a millennium.

This turn of events sparked a great war between the thaumaturgists and non-magic users, beginning with the assassination of the leader of the Oidqouk, a species-

Dizidhud had become so enthralled in the broadcast that he didn’t realize what time it was. He looked over to his clock, or what would be considered a clock on Earth.

2:34 P.M!

Dizidhud quickly switched off the little device and scuttled off, anticipating coming back to listen whenever he awoke, and whenever he awoke, he and thousands from across the universe would tune into Interstellar Radio Channel 5.

Tune in and listen to one man who shared a universe with infinite other life forms.

Tune in and wonder.

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