The Lonely Tower of Ellay

Outside the great salt plains of western Nortemerica stands a beautiful brick tower of unknown age. Estimates range from two to five thousand years old but it is in perfect condition. No hints to the purpose of the tower can be found inside. A curving ramp, punctuated by openings just large enough to stick an arm out, wraps around the interior. The ramp levels to create platforms by the openings, just wide enough for a person to stand. At the top is a circular spot with a 360 degree view of the surrounding plains.

Archaeologists best guess is that the tower was built for defense, but there the theory ends. There is nothing to defend. No settlement exists and no natural resource worth defending sits nearby.

Surviving records only refer to it as an outpost of the Citadel of Ellay.

However what may have been there in the past is largely unknowable. All that can be found near the tower are traces of a huge explosion that would have incinerated everything within several kilometers. However the tower itself appears to have been unaffected by the blast.

And that leads us to the strangest detail of all. The brick of the tower can be dated and is certainly several thousand years old. But it is in fine condition. Too good. The entire tower, sometime after it’s construction, was sprayed with a complex carbon polymer that protects the brick from degradation. It protects it so well, that only in a few rare places can scientists even get to the brick to analyze it. I these few places where the sealant was either misapplied or worn away, the slightest cracks reveal an aged and crumbling brick. But everywhere else the brick appears merely old but in excellent repair.

In one case the sealant gap was big enough to allow an entire brick to be eroded, but the sealant around the brick was not, yielding an almost invisible case. This technology would seem to have been perfect for windows, but was never used in that way. The gaps in the tower are wide open to the air, and there is no evidence here was ever any covering.

The concrete used inside to make the ramp and platform, reveals little more information. It too was sealed and without gaps. That means it has been impossible to date it to see if it is contemporary with the brick or a later remodeling. The polymer seal is impenetrable to any modern solvent or force. Only lost Delian technology could have moved or broken it.

Still, archaeologists continue to comb over the site, hoping for a sealant crack, or a tidbit of material that escaped destruction to give them a bit more information on the lonely tower of Ellay.