The Richat Structure in the Sahara Desert of Mauritania is easily visible from space because it is nearly 50 kilometers across. Once thought to be an impact crater, the Richat Structure’s flat middle and lack of shock-altered rock indicates otherwise. The possibility that the Richat Structure was formed by a volcanic eruption also seems improbable because of the lack of a dome of igneous or volcanic rock. Rather, the layered sedimentary rock of the Richat structure is now thought by many to have been caused by uplifted rock sculpted by erosion. The above image was captured by the ASTER instruments onboard the orbiting orbiting Terra satellite. Why the Richat Structure is nearly circular remains a mystery.
Anna was relieved to see Sam and Bobby. They didn’t seem threatened by the stranger at all, and their hands were full of books.
“Sam, I’ve been looking for you and Dean. I couldn’t find any traces so I came here to ask Bobby about you. Is Dean all right? Where is he?” It concerned her when the brothers weren’t working together, and especially now, Dean’s absence caused her serious concern. These were bad days for Hunters to be working alone.
Turning to the stranger, she tilted her head curiously. “What sort of doctor? And your… ship?… is getting impatient?” Something was definitely very odd about this man. “Can someone please tell me what is going on?”
Sam felt for Anna and decided to take it onto himself to explain - or at least, explain the bits he understood. Which was more than he anticipated, but less than he would have liked. He stepped off the patio and began bridging the gap between them.
“She’s a help kind of person, Doctor,” he said, letting the relief on his face show, “I hope.”
He looked back at Anna, “Dean and I have been in Canterbury, trying to figure out what’s happening. When I last saw Dean he was with Castiel, so he should be safe. I joined up with the Doctor and he used his ship to get us to Bobby.”
He paused, “Its…a long story.”
Bobby nodded to Anna. “We were just headin’ ta his ship, actually. He can explain on the way,” he said, giving the Doctor a side glance. He felt much better knowing that he was going to get on whatever contraption they would be getting on with an angel. Alien or no, she’d probably be able to give him a nice ass whupping if needed. “Followin’ yer lead, Doc,” he told the man as he made room for him to move passed them.
He turned back to Anna and supplied. “Doc here’s wants ta help us against Lucifer and he’s got ah space and time machine ta help us in. He wants us there cuz he’s not yet up ta date on all of this demonology stuff. That’s where I come in. We’re just headin’ over ta Canterbury ta see what we can do.”
He turned to Sam and said, “It ain’t that long.”
He wheeled passed the pair and down the ramp. “Come on, slow pokes. Let’s get this party movin’.”
He was glad to be out of his house and doing something that felt like hunting again. However, he worried that it was just going to put him in the way.
So long as he took the demons down first, he supposed he’d be fine with that.
The Doctor smiled at the young woman. ”I’m a doctor of…well, everything, I guess.” He pointed at the TARDIS. ”Yes, she gets impatient and she gets testy and sometimes she gets chocolate, depends on the day.” The Doctor grinned and sauntered off toward the blue box.
He pushed both doors open and turned around with a flourish. ”Welcome aboard!”
“You might have to help Bobby over the bump, my dog could never manage it,” The Doctor said.
The Red Rectangle Nebula from Hubble
How was the unusual Red Rectangle nebula created? At the nebula’s center is an aging binary star system that surely powers the nebula but does not, as yet, explain its colors. The unusual shape of the Red Rectangle is likely due to a thick dust torus which pinches the otherwise spherical outflow into tip-touching cone shapes. Because we view the torus edge-on, the boundary edges of the cone shapes seem to form an X. The distinct rungs suggest the outflow occurs in fits and starts. The unusual colors of the nebula are less well understood, however, and speculation holds that they are partly provided by hydrocarbon molecules that may actually be building blocks for organic life. The Red Rectangle nebula lies about 2,300 light years away towards the constellation of the Unicorn (Monoceros). The nebula is shown above in great detail as recently reprocessed image from Hubble Space Telescope. In a few million years, as one of the central stars becomes further depleted of nuclear fuel, the Red Rectangle nebula will likely bloom into a planetary nebula.
Image Credit: ESA, Hubble, NASA; Reprocessing: Steven Marx, Hubble Legacy Archive
Anna was tired of hiding from the angels, and demons were lurking everywhere. She had finally decided that her best course was to find the Winchesters and discover what had been going on since Lucifer’s cage had been opened.
There was just one flaw in her plan. She couldn’t find them. She suspected Castiel’s work, and it was a smart move, but that didn’t change the fact that she was back to square one. She finally decided to seek out Bobby Singer to see if she could convince him to tell her where the guys were. Odds were slim, but it was worth a try.
So she traveled to North Dakota, quicker than light, arriving in the yard of Singer Salvage Yard just in time to see the front door opening. She expected Bobby Singer, shotgun in hand, but instead she saw a tall guy in a brown tweed jacket.
A quick check was enough to confirm he wasn’t a demon, but not much else. “Who are you?” she asked, surprised. “Where is Bobby Singer?”
Sam shook his head and tried to keep from thinking too much on what the Doctor said - after this was all over, he was taking a vacation from the giant apocalypse-themed bad guys. It was going to be back to basics after this. He hoped, anyway.
He was more than prepared to follow the Doctor out of the house, but his movement stopped when he heard a familiar voice. He blinked and stepped forward to look over the aliens shoulder.
“Anna?” He said, pleasantly surprised - it had been a while since they saw the angel, “What are you doing here?”
Bobby gave the Doctor a very unhappy look for not knowing. “So yer sayin’ that nothin’ is fixed. Great,” he grumbled. “So it’s ah toss up if half the damned planets gonna be destroyed or if we’re gonna stop it and yer tellin’ me that you travel through time and ya don’t know?” he snapped, his irritation obviously growing. “And don’t think you need to tell me its something that can’t happen,” he growled, ready to push his way passed him. He was right. The earth was in danger and they needed help. More than that, his boys were in danger. Maybe that shouldn’t matter more than the rest of the world, but he be damned if it didn’t.
He was tempted to shove the man aside when he heard a familiar voice call his name. Who was that? Who’d be asking for him now? There were hunters that would call, but she was in his yard. Thankfully, Sam let him put a name to the voice.
“Anna?” he pushed his way around the Doctor, politely, and wheeled his way out to his porch. “What are you doin’ here?” he asked. He had to admit to some relief. If she was around this odd Doctor guy and not warning Sam and Bobby about him, then he was at least more alright in Bobby’s book. He still didn’t trust him. Trusting creatures with motives they didn’t know got them into this mess. Ruby was a demon, sure, but she was singing the same tune the Doctor was.
“You need some help?” he asked the angel.
The Doctor sighed at Bobby’s reaction. It was difficult to explain. The fact that nothing was fixed was in a way a very good thing, though probably not the way Bobby would think of fixed. He smiled at the young woman…but she wasn’t…maybe…hmm.
“Hello, I’m the Doctor,” he said to her. ”Um…,” he looked around and it seemed Sam and Bobby knew the young woman. Which was good, he supposed.
“We do have a thing we need to be getting to and my ship is probably getting impatient,” he said looking at Sam. ”Is she a help type person or a friend type person?”
One of the most violent and wondrous cosmic events is starburst, in which hundreds of millions of stars are born all at once. These are far rarer nowadays than they were in the early universe, but they do still happen… and the massive energy released during these periods can alter the future histories of entire galaxies.
That’s the finding of new research from Hubble astronomers. Using the space telescope to study 20 nearby galaxies undergoing starburst activity, they discovered that the cosmic winds generated by starburst had effects that extended far beyond just the immediate vicinity of the newborn stars.
Read more at io9.
Image credit: NASA, ESA, L. Calçada