Zach Hammer laughed as he overheard his co-worker, Paul, talk about the twenty-fifth anniversary of some billionaire inventor sending a car into space driven by a dummy known as Starman. Zach didn't have time to hear the rest of the story about how the car revolved around the sun in an orbit between the asteroid belt and Earth.
He left work to pick up his daughter and hopped in his Tesla self-driving car and set up the work bench to finish the reports his boss wanted completed by nine tonight.
Zach missed the part of Paul's story where the space car hit an asteroid ten years ago.
He reached home in time to pick up his daughter, Lynn, to take her to piano practice. He flirted with the piano teacher, Ms Morris, each session and hoped to ask her for a date soon.
Paul continued the story of how the asteriod, hit by the car, wobbled out of orbit and struck a larger asteroid in the Kirkwood Gap sending it careening end over end altering its trajectory. This astronomically rare event normally takes seven hundred thousand years but happened in less than twenty-five years.
Ms Morris touched Zach's hand as his daughter packed up her music, "Lynn is getting better each lesson, I'm so proud of her."
Neither Paul nor Zach knew that two years ago the larger asteroid, after impact spinning on its axis at thirty-seven revolutions per minute, left the orbit of the asteroid belt and plummeted toward the sun. The long baseball bat shaped object, with a mass of 1500 Kilograms, had a composition of fifteen percent nickel iron and eighty-five percent carbonaceous chondrite.
This was Zach's chance, "Lynn go out to the car, I need to ask Ms Morris a question."
The scientist at the observatory in Chile first noticed the asteroid two days ago, but a rare ice storm took down all outside communications from her location, so she recorded the observation and planned to send out the notification the next day.
"Ms. Morris would you like to go out on a date with me Friday night at seven?"
Communications hadn't come back to the observatory in two days. But that was okay, because three other observatory sites across the world picked up the asteroid's path and raised the warning.
Zach driving to his date with Ms Morris didn't get the warning the asteroid would hit Earth Friday night at six-fifty-eight.
The asteroid burned a wonderful red-orange as it broke the sound barrier entering the Earth's atmosphere.
Zach lowered the convertible top before getting out of the car at Ms. Morris' house.
The asteroid, burned off the carbonaceous chrondrite while traveling at a speed of seventy-one kilometers per second and burned to an object composed of iron and nickel weighing fifteen pounds as it landed on Zach's car creating a three foot crater in Ms. Morris' driveway.
Eclipse of the Triple Moons is Book 1 in the Mountain King Series.