They rounded the foot of the Quentulus Quazgar Mountains, and there was the Message written in blazing letters along the crest of the Mountain. There was a little observation vantage point with a rail built along the top of a large rock facing it, from which you could get a good view. It had a little pay-telescope for looking at the letters in detail, but no one would ever use it because the letters burned with the divine brilliance of the heavens and would, if seen through a telescope, have severely damaged the retina and optic nerve.
They gazed at God’s Final Message in wonderment, and were slowly and ineffably filled with a great sense of peace, and of final and complete understanding.
Fenchurch sighed. “Yes,” she said, “that was it.”
They had been staring at it for fully ten minutes before they became aware that Marvin, hanging between their shoulders, was in difficulties. The robot could no longer lift his head, had not read the message. They lifted his head, but he complained that his vision circuits had almost gone.
They found a coin and helped him to the telescope. He complained and insulted them, but they helped him look at each individual letter in turn, The first letter was a “w”, the second an “e”. Then there was a gap. An “a” followed, then a “p”, an “o” and an “l”.
Marvin paused for a rest.
After a few moments they resumed and let him see the “o”, the “g”, the “i”, the “s” and the “e”.
The next two words were “for” and “the”. The last one was a long one, and Marvin needed another rest before he could tackle it.
It started with an “i”, then “n” then a “c”. Next came an “o” and an “n”, followed by a “v”, an “e”, another “n” and an “i”.
After a final pause, Marvin gathered his strength for the last stretch.
He read the “e”, the “n”, the “c” and at last the final “e”, and staggered back into their arms.
“I think,” he murmured at last, from deep within his corroding rattling thorax, “I feel good about it.”
The lights went out in his eyes for absolutely the very last time ever.