A tale out of a sleepless night…

Sometime last week, I woke up in the middle of the night and could not go back to sleep. So I got up, brewed myself a cup of coffee, and sat down to write the following tale that spontaneously manifested itself into my mind. Whatever its merits, it’s a refreshing change from my usual writing fare.


When Space And Time “Click”
By Henri Thibodeau

As his helmet clicked on and he heard the familiar sound of his suit pressure slowly stabilizing, Major Gordon had an uncanny feeling that something was not quite right, which he dismissed without another thought as he stepped towards the airlock.

Light years away in a different time, young Lizzy also had an uncanny feeling that something was not quite right as she clicked her left boot onto her brand new snowboard, which she dismissed without another thought as she started sliding toward the top of the slope.

Something uncanny was indeed afoot as the Multiverse was slowly speeding towards an untimely temporary collapse upon itself. Or something like it.

Stepping out of the airlock, Major Gordon landed into what he would have described as a 20th Century public shower-room, had he known anything about this long-forgotten period of human history. Sliding on what he would have identified as a wet bar of soap had he had any concept of such a thing, the Major fell backwards toward the wet tiled floor onto which he landed with an ominous thud that no one could hear as he fell into unconsciousness.

Lizzy was no less fazed as she slid into the same shower-room, empty except for that strange huge form lying on the wet tiled floor and into which she abruptly bumped before being hurtled into the air towards a shower head that received her head in a flash of light she barely had time to notice before she slid into unconsciousness.

Stranger things have happened, Tom would have said, had he been there to say it. He was not.

When Major Gordon opened his yes, aside from a numbing pain on the back of his head where it had collided with the inside of a helmet that had obviously not been designed to accommodate a backwards fall on one’s buttock, he could also feel an uncomfortable pressure on his chest.

Lizzy slowly came to, her head hurting like she had hit a steel shower head straight on. As she hazily remembered she had, she also felt something wet and sticky sliding down her right temple.

“Great, I’m bleeding”, she thought as she tried to move, realizing she was sprawled backward over the strange form into which she had bumped. Then she felt being unceremoniously shoved aside onto the cold and wet tiled floor of this incongruous shower-room that had sprung out of gods knew where in the Multiverse.

“Can you hear me?”, she heard coming from the form that looked like a cosmonaut out of an old history book, now standing over her.

“Do you know where this place is?”, the voice asked again.

Major Gordon could not tell if the young girl lying on the floor understood him. She appeared to be as disoriented as he himself felt, and she was bleeding from a deep cut on her forehead. He fumbled through his belt kit and procured his first aid tube.

“Here, let me help you with this”, he said as he bent towards her.

Lizzy did understand the strange cosmonaut, although his English dialect sounded rather contrived. He seemed as disoriented as she herself felt. She let him treat her wound with a nondescript little metallic tube which he applied to her forehead.

Not a trace of her injury remained, aside from some dried specks of blood still sticking to her hair, when she looked at herself in her pocket mirror after completing a most exhilarating slide on her brand-new snowboard.

As for Major Gordon, he dismissed the whole episode as nothing more than temporary disorientation as he stepped onto the unfamiliar soil of Beta Zeticulae and probably onto the electronic pages of future space exploration historical accounts.

The Multiverse is unfathomable in its designs, as Tom would say were he here to say so.

***

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