“The Time Reconnaissance”
Having made countless jumps sideways through time, Gabby Thompson figured her body would be used to it by now… but perhaps there are some things the human body can’t ever acquaint itself to. The dizzy, sluggish ache in her head had become so constant that she somehow didn’t feel like herself when her brain wasn’t pounding.
Gabby tries to focus as she checks the read-out from her scanners; the previous calculations were incorrect, “thankfully” making the jump worthwhile. The Tripolodene mining vessel would have jumped right into the middle of a larger-than-expected gas planet if they followed that damn computer’s numbers.
Gabby groans, and tediously goes down the algorithm, making corrections where needed…
Traveling through time was a complex affair, with a near limitless amount of variables— generations of humankind’s brightest minds dedicated their lives in trying to figure out how to travel backwards and forwards in time, before they realized that the answer to interstellar travel was staring them right in the face.
Utilizing the same theories, it was discovered that vessels could travel sideways through time, laterally, crossing distances spanning thousands of light-years, instantly. The discovery was almost accidental, but brought about a revolution in space exploration and travel for those who can afford it.
However, it isn’t easy— the universe is an unpredictable place, so computer simulations and calculations aren’t enough. You can’t trust the various known or unknown planetary bodies to behave as predicted, as cosmic influences such as uncharted black holes, dying stars, etc, can throw off the necessarily precise formulas required to bring about the bending of time and space.
Gabby makes the estimated jump ahead, hopefully not being devoured by a star herself, and surveys the potential jump-spot— every detail needs to be taken into account, the gravitational pull of every last asteroid or bit of space junk noted and calculated for.
She lifts up her helmet, and rubs her sore temple… she needs to find a different damn job. It all seemed so grand before, the ability to explore the universe at her fingertips, but all of it— the tripolodene mines, the colonies— are just more ways to make money. That wasn’t supposed to be the point of it all.
Gabby’s head pulsates, feeling like it might burst, as she wonders to herself what she thought the point WAS “supposed” to be… and she realizes there never even was a “supposed to”. It’s just how it is.
And she knows Quantum Physicists are a dime a dozen these days, so if she wants to make rent, so better get back to double checking those calculations.
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