“The Crystal Egg,” H. G. Wells, 1897 — A hen-pecked shop owner discovers an egg that can connect him, visually, to Mars. His wife and step-children want him to sell it, but he refuses. They’re so persistent, he eventually invents a theft of the egg so that he can store it at a friend’s house. After the man’s death, which involves a visit to the egg, the egg is sold by the widow before the narrator can recover it.
Comments: Read in A Century of Science Fiction. Knight calls it another story in which Wells frames the extraordinary in the commonplace.
Author: Wikipedia: “Herbert George ‘H.G.’ Wells (21 September 1866 – 13 August 1946) was an English author. He was also a prolific writer in many other genres, including contemporary novels, history, politics and social commentary, even writing text books and rules for war games. Together with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback, Wells has been referred to as ‘The Father of Science Fiction’.”