No light came from within The Stone. Nor had it done so for close to a million years. The only reflections of light on its surface in the deep, dark cold of interstellar space were the twinkle of distant stars.
One such twinkle became a steady glow. Over the millennia, this pinpoint grew and The Stone began to feel the warmth of the star as it approached.
As The Stone spiraled in, it passed the lifeless outer planets many times, being pulled this way and that. It briefly noticed as the fifth planet was torn apart in a cataclysm. It sensed the fermenting life upon the third planet and with great effort caused itself to be drawn into its orbit.
For countless eons, The Stone observed the turmoil below as the planet completed the process of birth and adolescence. A large piece of debris that remained of the fifth planet put things back several million years when it collided with the third planet. The Stone continued to search the surface for signs of life.
At one stage, it fleetingly thought it detected the energy of others of its kind, but that was not The Mission.
Finally, The Stone determined that the time was right for entry, so it allowed itself to fall into the welcoming embrace of the swirling mass of blue, green and white below. It plunged into the atmosphere, glowing white from the friction and taking on what energy reserves it needed.
The angle it chose let The Stone skip down through the thickening layers, bleeding off speed and circling the globe several times. Not wanting to cause damage or to damage itself, The Stone had selected a large sea for its landing. Most of the intelligent life forms seemed to be amphibian.
With several loud sonic cracks and a howling hiss, The Stone entered the water. As it settled into the ooze, The Stone began the long wait and started to call … I am here.