The Dark Tower, Cometary Globule in Scorpius

Bright rimmed globules and their more evolved cousin the cometary globule represent fascinating dynamic structures formed by the interplay of cold molecular clouds and hot ionizing stars. Typically the head of the globule faces a hot O-type star. Intense radiation from the star boils away lower density gas from the head. The evaporated rim of gas becomes ionized by the stars ultraviolet flux forming a bright glowing rim we associate with many of these globules including CG4. Intense stellar winds from the ionizing star evaporate gas and dust away from the head forming the “tail” and completing the cometary shape. The globules are known to be the birthplace of low mass stars. Stars form within the globules by the mechanism known as “radiation driven implosion”. This process occurs when ultraviolet flux from a hot star compresses surviving clumps of cold molecular gas eventually causing collapse and core formation within the dense compact clouds. Lower and intermediate mass stars ultimately form from the compact gas and dust within the globules.

Copyright: Robert Gendler

Adam likes hot chocolate, but only when Lucas makes it for him. The hot chocolate is always at the right temperature when Adam receives it, and he will always put in 15 of the mini marshmallows (7, then 8). That was how he first drank it after they first met, and to him it was the best hot chocolate he has ever drunk, so he would never drink it in another way.

Lucas listens to Adam share about cometary tails and satellites. He even listens to the sound of deep space as captured by Voyager, and afterwards Adam talks about ionized gas and interstellar plasma. Lucas was charmed when Adam talked about space in their Skype conversations, and now that Adam’s here to see the splendid night sky over Lucas’ home, his enthusiasm has only grown tenfold.

Lucas’ son, Marcus, doesn’t understand Adam and his need for routines. He thinks it’s weird that his dad has shacked up with Adam. He’s met Adam only twice. That he is so blunt about it actually reassures Adam, because for the first three months when he and Lucas were talking over Skype Adam has fretted about Marcus and his response. Marcus doesn’t disapprove, he just doesn’t understand, and that is alright. So long as Adam doesn’t have to guess at what Marcus feels. Lucas tells Adam that when Marcus gets a job and finds someone he loves, he’ll come around. Adam trusts that Lucas knows what he’s talking about.

Adam is out of his element. The townspeople speak English, but they sound different, and the cereal is not the same, and the mac and cheese taste wrong. He came because Lucas is here, and he wanted to meet Lucas more than he didn’t want to leave New York. Beth helped him set up the meeting and made all the travel arrangements. Adam sometimes wakes up scared, and he huddles into Lucas or the sheets and just wraps himself up until the inside of his head is silent. He wants to go back to New York, but he also wants to stay here with Lucas and observe the stars.

Lucas doesn’t tell Adam that he’s applying for a work visa to go to New York and work as a teacher in an international school. He’s not sure it’ll succeed, but he wants to try. Adam’s friend, Beth, has thoroughly warned Lucas of what will happen if he should break Adam’s heart, and is also helping him with job inquiries.

Perhaps they’ll make it work.