take the passive rout, begin your large scale project of errecting a world shield.

I think I made the right decision. I usually do. I really am very, very clever. I'm not an aggressive person, really I'm not, so it's fair enough that the robots and the weaponry and all that jazz faded from my mind as soon as I'd thought about them. A shield will be cool! Wow! It won't block out our - my - world's glorious rays or anything like that. The only slight problem is that the other planets will twinkle at night as well as the stars but, hay, it's a small price to pay. I'm so clever I can still tell a planet from a star at night with my naked eyes anyway. I can compute in my head where they were a few days ago, how quickly their apparent speed is, how elliptical their orbits are and all that. I can. I can do that because I know about Astronomy, you see, and I have a good memory and a BRILLIANT understanding of Mathematics.

Wow. Wow! I really do know my stuff. Wow! I have just travelled round the entire planet, dear reader. I did use teleports part of the time, I must admit, but mostly I walked, I sailed, I swam, I travelled in buggies... I've seen life, mate - I've seen life. Creatures you wouldn't imagine. Did you know there are fish who can survive out of water for a long time? Did you know that? There are some, believe it or not, on Earth but here there's this one absolutely humungous red one which hovers about on land. It's absolutely unbelievable! It was looking at me with this great big eye. Well, I've given it a treat, anyway - it's probably never seen anybody or anything quite like me. Well, enjoy, my friend - I'm glad I made your already-lovely world even lovelier!

*          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *

It's now been three months since the shield went up. I'm still having a good time but I've got this slight pain in my left shoulder. It's not a big deal but I wonder where all the medical supplies are? That's not my number one strong point. I mean I'm good, of course I am, but I'm not... well, you know what I mean. I'm surprised a doctor didn't insist on staying down here with me, you know, in case I got ill or something. And the communicator's never gone off. I mean not that I wanted it to. I love myself very much as you know and I don't need anybody else but I just sort of... well, they could have called me just once to make sure I was all right. I suppose they knew how ingenious I am and that I'd be OK looking after myself - that's probably what it was. I'm probably just feeling low because of the shoulder.

*          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *

It's now six months since I completed work on that shield. I finished reading my last book last night. It was a real achievement. I read terribly quickly, you know - people are always surprised. I say "people"... there's no-one here, is there? Not that I miss them... well, not all the time. That communicator still hasn't gone off. There's probably a problem at their end. Inferior technology, you see. There's definitely nothing wrong at mine. I've been checking it carefully every day for the last three weeks and I've overhauled it twice. No, there must be a problem with their link otherwise they'd have sent a message - you know, just a quick hello, or something. I wonder how they're getting on without me? They're probably struggling with all the technical stuff. Maybe that's why they've never called me on the communicator or sent me a signal or, well, anything at all.

I am lucky, though, it's such a glorious world. And it's lucky to have me.

*          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *

Six months and two weeks since the Coming of the Shield. I think maybe the shield is actually blocking out communications. Otherwise they'd have been in touch. No reason they wouldn't be. I mean I'm not a nasty person, am I? I'm not boring; I'm quite a fun person... well, obviously I don't drink and dance and all that but that's not fun for me. I'm very knowledgeable. People should be grateful for that. Maybe it's that I have no sense of humour? People have said that... well, in the old days when there were other people to say anything and I wasn't just staring at the damn walls, sealed in with no company but myself because the Rainy Season has started and if I were to go out during the next four months the pressure of the water would actually kill me on this stupid planet. Who's ever heard of an echo-system doing that? Oh, how RIDICULOUS!

I remember this guy called Ken. Sometimes when he had lunch we'd all have lunch at the same time and it was fun. He had a sense of humour. I suppose I was envious in a way because when he told a joke everyone laughed. When I told jokes that I thought were clever, nobody laughed. Now I think about it my jokes aren't as good as Ken's were. Mine are cleverer, of course, but I've never laughed out loud at one of my own jokes... maybe I don't have a sense of humour. I don't know. Why am I prattling on to this diary about senses of humour and Ken and lunches...?

Goodness I'm bored. I never knew the meaning of it until now. There, I've admitted it. I thought it'd be great just being me, myself and I. I don't even get so much pleasure from kissing the mirror anymore. I mean it's just a piece of glass, isn't it? Cold old glass.

The trouble is I'm not sure I can get the shield down until the Rainy Season's over. I've been monitoring space traffic. It's become really really faint over the last few months. I hope my shield doesn't mean every spacecraft in this sector is put off by this world. I'm so lonely. Come and visit me, someone.


The End

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