The end of Chapter VI of “Through the Gates of the Silver Key” written by H.P. Lovecraft and E. Hoffmann Price ended with the Randolph Carter’s consciousness co-occupying the body of the Yaddithian Wizard Zkauba and leaving Yaddith as the bholes were destroying that world. Carter devised a way to leave Yaddith with a light-wave envelope, a technology that is typically limited the transportation of a consciousness through time and space. To accomplish this goal of retrofitting the light-wave envelope for a physical body, Carter had to develop a drug to suppress the consciousness of Zkauba.
The Yaddithian Wizard Zkauba and the human Randolph Carter by Mara999 (www.deviantart.com)
In addition to a mode of transport for the physical body of Zkauba, Carter had to anticipate how a Yaddithian would survive on Earth. For example, a number of times Carter mentioned he need to immunize the Yaddithian body against bacteria and other potential pathogenic microbial life. However, there is no mention if the Yaddithian body harbored microflora that had the potential to introduce virulent alien diseases to humans or other species on Earth.
The introduction of any alien disease-producing species, whether from another continent or another world, has the potential to quickly spread through and negatively impact a population that has never been exposed. Some actual examples of this include the West Nile virus, which was originally from the Nile delta region and the Zika virus, which was originally identified from the Zika Forest of Uganda, Africa. In both of these cases these viruses eventually made their way to North America, via mosquitoes, where they quickly spread. However, in the case of the Carter – Zkauba Yaddithian no potential disease-bearing microorganisms were documented. Nevertheless, Carter took precautions against Earth-bound microorganisms impacting his Yaddithian body. It is interesting to note the immunization that Carter used was a “bacterial agent” but nothing else yet is known about this material.
Randolph Carter Nug Soth by Yumegari (www.deviantart.com)
In addition to taking precautions against disease, Carter also had to acclimate the Yaddithian body to the gravity of Earth. Since the Yaddithian were described as having some type of exoskeleton, they can be thought of as some type of alien invertebrate. Yaddithian were described as being approximately the same height, although somewhat squat, as humans as well as being bipedal. This is in sharp contrast to the substantially smaller-sized arthropods on Earth and do not walk solely on two legs. The size limitations of Earth-bound arthropods are largely due to the Earth’s gravity and existing oxygen concentrations in the atmosphere. Approximately 300 million years ago (the Carboniferous period) when the atmospheric oxygen reached their geologically maximum concentration of 35%, insects were in fact larger. Some of these fossilized dragonflies (of the genus Meganeura) have a wing span of up to 65 centimeters or slightly over 2 feet! In contrast, today the concentration of oxygen in our atmosphere is approximately 21% and dragonflies are a lot smaller.
A comparison of a human and the dragonfly Meganeura (www.prehistoric-wildlife.com)
Carter’s adjustments to his Yaddithian body were most likely conducted to acclimate to Earth’s heavier gravity and/or lower atmospheric oxygen concentrations relative to Yaddith. More than likely without such adjustments, Earth gravity would crush at least selection portions of the Yaddithian’s exoskeleton resulting in suffocation. However, these adjustments may be more complicated than we original hypothesize. For example, Yaddith may have been smaller than Earth and thus have a smaller gravitational field; however, a lower gravity could make it more difficult for the development of an oxygen-rich atmosphere. In addition, we are assuming that the Yaddithians use oxygen for respiration. It may be that Yaddithians used some other gaseous substance for respiration and Carter had to modify his respiratory system to breath oxygen. However, if Yaddith did have a lower gravity than Earth, then it would generally have a more difficult time retaining any gases that would otherwise drift into space. Perhaps the dholes exerted a gaseous waste that was utilized by the Yaddithians for respiration. In any event, Carter’s physiological modifications to his Yaddithian body allowed him to survive on Earth. Next time we will discuss the light-wave envelope transport technology. Thank you – Fred.