Cosmic Strings

Time, there’s always been time, there’s never been time… there’s not enough – Time. Time is our obsession everything has a time limit a life-span, time controls everything around us. Without time our lives would be meaningless and limitless. Imagine being able to play with time cradle it in your hands like a mere pebble; that was to be one science teachers discovery. The opportunity to play with time and all its sources, the opportunity to travel through time. Eager to showcase his epiphany his machine malfunctions, scattering four of his ex-students into four different time zones. How will they get back? Will they survive long enough to come back? Do some of them even want to come back

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2. Chapter Two: II - Anne

Anne

Now this is something I would have liked to see on that tour.

The basement of the building was massive; it had a series of winding corridors and small rooms. I didn’t know what the school planned to do with it, if anything at all but it was truly fascinating. As we walked down the corridor lights turned themselves on, others turning themselves off, it was like a heavenly pathway.

Although I couldn’t help wonder where Mr Porter was taking us, if he was doing something shifty… but I guess then there were four of us and only one of him.

“Are we seriously just following this guy?” Fallon whispered in her usual whining voice; I didn’t think it was possible you could find one person so irritating.

“That guy is our science teacher… I actually think he is going to unveil something really cool. I don’t doubt him for a second.” River mused; her eyes were bright with anticipation. River and I were close friends for particular reasons, one was that she was half-black, half-white and she used this to be really funny. She was like the black guy in an action film, the one who was hilarious and a complete bad ass. She confused me as you could never quite tell what was going on in that funny little head of hers, her brown eyes concealed more than she knew. Although I could read her more than most, she chewed her hair when she was nervous and constantly fussed with it even though it always looked the same. Set, black and straight with a purple undertone.

Even though she was fitter than me due to all the sport she did, she always complained she was fat. I didn’t think a size fourteen was fat at all; she was just curvy and very tall.

“I think he’s a nutcase!” Fallon hissed.

“You didn’t have to come if you didn’t want to Fallon, stop being so prissy for once in your life, stop complaining. Just enjoy it, embrace it.” I contemplated, I was strong in River’s beliefs that this could turn out to pretty awesome and if it wasn’t – we could call it an experience.

Fallon didn’t glare at me for once she just stared at me blankly; she looked nervous more than anything. “What do you think Abigail?”

“I don’t know….” Her voice wavered, I still wondered about her.

We stopped at a large set of double doors, Mr Porter turned around and smiled at us in a way the resembled Willy Wonka before he introduced Charlie to the Chocolate factory.

“Ladies I’d like you to meet my wife!” He joked before leading us into a room full of computers, all the computers from the old school it looked like… or at least parts. Hooked up to form one big technological mess there were several chalk boards and reams of paper hustling across the floor. “Mrs Porter 001”

I looked at a computer screen it was sequencing a long line of code which looked roughly like the one on the pad, constantly substituting numbers for the value of Greek letters and the famous x and nth term.

“What does Mrs Porter do?” I asked

“A number of things, but this bit isn’t important to you….” He trailed of flicking on a switch, in a separate room which could be seen through a window a giant octagon of pylons revealed themselves. “Time travel.” At that moment you could have heard a pin drop. Was he being serious?

Time travel couldn’t be possible; it was fictional, amongst unicorns and faeries. Not that I knew much of time travel, but the fact of it being possible didn’t register in my brain. All of us seemed dumbfounded by it, except for Fallon. She was pouting slightly and had her eyes narrowed, did she ever smile?

“Time travel? Mr Porter time travel is a work of fiction an idea created by writers to falsely promote science…its absolute poppycock!” Fallon laughed, none of us shared her laughter. She seemed bemused by this, well she wasn’t exactly comedian of the week. I just found her rude and childish, she always had some comment or was pulling a snooty face. I didn’t know the need for it. Nobody had really done anything to wrong her in anyway, so I had the impression she was just naturally rude and malicious.

“You NASA nerds think you know it all.” Mr Porter sighed; I gazed again at the line of code that shifted so rapidly. I looked up to the pylons again, they had a candy stripe style curve going up to a point then coils of wire connecting them. “You see Fallon, time travel is not fiction; it’s actually a very simple complex. If you understand time.”

“Please tell us Mr Porter.” Abigail piped in her voice brightening at the idea, I noticed River had begun to wander and was eyeing up the pylons behind the maxi-glass. I couldn’t gather her expression, whether it was a look of trepidation and distress or curiosity. I didn’t even bother to look in Fallon’s direction.

“I’ll explain In simple terms for your less knowledgeable selves. You see timelines are stupid. Time isn’t in a line, a shape or any fixed structure for that matter, time is like a liquid a mess of events in no set order, and it changes shape and constantly rolls over and adapts to fit its container. So all these films about disrupting the timeline are ridiculous. You can’t disrupt the timeline because time isn’t in a fixed line or shape, if you change something everything around it adapts, but yet it doesn’t change volume or get rid of anything or add anything…it just changes shape.” He explained.

“If time is so unpredictable, then how do you suppose to manipulate it?” Fallon questioned.

“I didn’t say it was unpredictable.” He pointed out, he ran over to the screen where the line of code was and signalled towards it. “Time is like anything else, it has certain regular behavioural patterns. Everything about time is based on probability and sequences, so I did a lot of work and tests and found its formula. Fallon said it looked like nonsense and that’s because it is nonsense… time is absolute complete nonsense and it shouldn’t work, somehow it does.”

“How would you make all this work, obviously there would be a lot of things to consider in practical time travel.” Abigail continued to speak, so we found something that had sparked her interest.

“Here’s where my little inventive side comes in!” He squealed like a five year old, running and handing us each a duffle bag. “This bag contains everything you’d ever need, dry food, money and clothing… the clothing adapts depending on what time zone you’re in as does the money. Then we have sunglasses time travel is very bright. Then we have heat pills which will aid in regulating the temperature of your body for half an hour, time travel is also very cold. Then are these anklets which can be used for short bursts of communication, help with stability and a series of other things”

We all put the goggles on mockingly, fashioning our anklets and shoving the bags over our shoulders.

“So theoretically how could this work?” Fallon continued to criticise

“You mean scientifically how will this work?” He corrected, to which Fallon scoffed; can I hit her yet? “The answer to that is Cosmic Strings; cosmic strings were formed in the early stages of the universe I believe. They are string like objects which cover the expanse of the full universe; they are under immense pressure and travel at speeds that defy Einstein’s theory of relativity.”

“So these Cosmic Strings travel faster than the speed of light?” I asked, I didn’t know the exact speed of light but I knew it was fast was it three hundred billion or something?

“Correct. These cosmic strings, which are thinner than an atom, generate an enormous amount of gravitational pull on any objects that pass near them. Objects attached to a cosmic string travel at incredible speeds, and because their gravitational force distorts space time. One string could pull you into a portal that I have structured, similar to a black hole and again could whip you out through something I call a white hole… clever isn’t it?” He explained, I had to gather myself to see if I had retained the basic knowledge of his explanation and although I may not have, it didn’t matter much anyway. Because for a start I was hopeless at science I had always been more of an English and Art child. Yet I understood every word because the passion he showed, the way he explained it I had a feeling that it just could work or be somewhat close.

Fallon was screwing her nose up, clearly she wasn’t impressed. It irritated me deeply, even if this was all twaddle she could at least show interest, or embrace it. But she had to point out the fact that she knew it all just because she’d worked at NASA for a few months, she clearly had no imagination or sense of adventure. Abigail was seemingly interested, although I couldn’t tell as her face was never very much expressive, not what I had seen of her so far. She seemed slightly distant all the time, always nervous to say something and it just made me wary of her.

River’s air mirrored what I assumed mine to be like; her eyes were glowing and smile beaming. She and I were definitely hopeful of this to work, imagine being the first time travellers? The first people… women nonetheless to conquer fantasy and displace it with reality.

“May we go look at your machine from the inside?” I asked intrigued to stand under the pylons and ponder the potential possibilities of time travel.

“Be my guest, just go through that door.” Mr Porter offered.

“We all could be like a team of time travellers; we could call ourselves the Cosmic Strings!” River giggled, Adjusting her bag and goggles doing a slightly odd march into the room with the pylons in, us following her. I closed the door behind us so we could get the full effect of the place. It was intense, the machine wasn’t even doing anything but it glared down at us with intimidation. Every step I took was with trepidation. The way the coils of wire loomed across the ceiling, leading back to the pylons which looked bigger up close. The ceiling of this  room was high and they almost touched it only leaving a few meter gap; all of a sudden I didn’t like the idea of being a time traveller.

Not that I’d get the chance, I doubt it would work anyway.

“This is silly,” Fallon sighed, sitting on the floor and fiddling with her anklet. Abigail sat beside her and huffed out a sigh also. I thought Abigail was really interested in this; I had a feeling she was slightly intimidated by Fallon and was following her a bit too much. River was simply running her fingers across the bumps of the pylons, following the trails of wire on the ceiling as if trying to work out how it all worked. “How would this thing even work? It doesn’t fit within the boundaries of science!”

“One thing you should know Fallon is Science is everything! Science is creative, science is amazing and science is frickin beautiful! Something so broad does not have boundaries I don’t care what NASA says, all they do is send probes onto random planets.” I snapped, she was really starting to grate on me. When NASA did something ambitious and meaningful then she could judge.  “Even if it does turn out to be nothing, can’t you just have some fun and have a laugh with it? We’re here so we might as well.”

“Ummn guys…I can’t-“River panicked, I looked over to her position she was stood around the pylon; I walked over to see what she was doing. It appeared the belt of her dress was stuck to the pylon. “My belt is stuck.” She panicked, I helped her undo her belt even though she was no longer stuck to the pylon her belt still was.

“Mr Porter should it do that?” I asked, he signalled that he couldn’t hear me through the glass; I went to open the door. It was stuck; I began to pull and tug at the door, it wouldn’t budge an inch. “Guys, the door won’t open help me!” I cried, we all began pulling and tugging on the door, even with the four of us the door didn’t move.

“That’s not stuck, that’s locked!” Abigail snapped Meanwhile River began tapping on the glass and communicating with Mr Porter through a sort of game of charades.

Locked, why would Mr Porter lock the door?  Was this some kind of joke? Maybe Fallon was right and he was a physco… wait Fallon right? Not likely. By the look on Mr Porters face as he was communicating with River, he wasn’t sure what was happening either. He began to press buttons and frowned checking all the dials, we all knew something wasn’t making sense here. Something was wrong.

Abigail began panicking how she was claustrophobic which was a cue for Fallon to start ranting about this “hunk of junk”. I was merely concerned, why would the door lock and the pylons steal River’s belt? Well the buckle of Rivers belt was metal; perhaps the pylons had some sort of magnetic quality which could be explained due to the gravitational force required for space travel. But River had been around those pylons for a good five minutes, surely they would have taken her belt as soon as they came into contact?

Unless they’d only just been activated.

“Mr Porter said its nothing to do with him, he’s not doing it!” River stated.

“I think the doors locked because the Pylons have been activated, tell Mr Porter to turn it off.” I wheezed, my voice began to rise into a panicked squeak. Fallon began snorting with laughter; apparently my panic was unnecessary due to some stupid law of science she knew. “Shut up Fallon!” I screamed, my voice broke slightly in the middle. Was I crying? I was crying, and by the looks of it Abigail was crying too.

“Mr Porter didn’t activate it… but stay calm I’m sure Mr Porter will sort it out after all he did-“ There was a spark of electricity along the coil of wire interrupting  Rivers speech. Then everyone began screaming and panicking, even Fallon. “Calm down everyone, come in a circle grab you bags and goggles!” River instructed, putting on her own goggles there was another spark of electricity and the room went dark the pylons oozing an eerie blue light and a small wind began to pick up.

“What’s happening, I’m too young to die!” Fallon screamed.

“Take the heat pill now! Do it now!” River instructed, since we had no real reason to argue we did as we were told. “Now listen to me only to me ignore everything else, it seems we might be time travelling but you must…”

“What! This is madness! Absolute madness!” Fallon screamed.

“Fallon look at me; look at me only at me straight in my eyes.” Ordered River signalling her eyes with her fore and index finger. Fallon began hyperventilating but shut up and listened to River, we all did she was the only one out of everyone who seemed to still be thinking rationally. “I don’t know how long we have so you need to listen carefully, when that thing goes into full swing we need to hold hands and not let go! Wherever we are going the most important thing is we don’t lose each other you understand? You can’t hesitate because the portal will probably chew you up if you don’t catch onto it, it’s time to be brave. We are the Cosmic Strings, we’re in this together! You understand?” We all nodded in response, none of us could muster enough energy or nerve to speak. I honestly didn’t know how River was managing.

Its scary, scary knowing that you can look at a person, knowing you will, can and have to trust them with your life and theirs with you. You know that’s the only way you can survive, absolute trust. Especially scary, having to thrust copious amounts of faith on people you don’t know, even worse on ones you struggle to tolerate. But at that one specific moment, its like Anne, River, Fallon or Abigail didn’t exist we were all one person: a unit.

There was a moment where time seemed to slow, I could feel the wind was still strong but it whipped around my face slowly. I could see the rays of light slowly moving from corner to corner; the slight feeling of Abigail’s hand on mine and the slurred slowed voice of River signalling us to jump into the plethora of colour and godly light. The biting chill of the air scraped across my skin but didn’t have any effect on my temperature I was simply aware of it. We swirled hopelessly in what felt like a downwards motion through the rabbit hole, there wasn’t a way to explain it except it was colourful bright and loud. Like a million voices all speaking at once, a whole fleet of planes rushing past my ears. My emotions began to hurdle about dramatically, like I was seeing everything I’d ever experienced and anyone had experienced in a split second.

I glanced down the line of us: River at the front holding on to Fallon’s hand, Fallon and Abigail in the middle and me floundering hopelessly on the end. The sheer look of panic on Fallon’s face was enough for me to anticipate what would come next, a crack of weakness and she let go of Rivers hand. River screamed and attempted to grab back, but was pulled away in a different direction until I could no longer see her; I was the next to let go out of sheer shock and worry. Would she die? Would River die?

 

Although as I felt myself caroselling away from the others, the more important question was, would I meet River in death? Because even though I’d never experienced death before; I was pretty sure this must be what it felt like. 

Now this is something I would have liked to see on that tour.

The basement of the building was massive; it had a series of winding corridors and small rooms. I didn’t know what the school planned to do with it, if anything at all but it was truly fascinating. As we walked down the corridor lights turned themselves on, others turning themselves off, it was like a heavenly pathway.

Although I couldn’t help wonder where Mr Porter was taking us, if he was doing something shifty… but I guess then there were four of us and only one of him.

“Are we seriously just following this guy?” Fallon whispered in her usual whining voice; I didn’t think it was possible you could find one person so irritating.

“That guy is our science teacher… I actually think he is going to unveil something really cool. I don’t doubt him for a second.” River mused; her eyes were bright with anticipation. River and I were close friends for particular reasons, one was that she was half-black, half-white and she used this to be really funny. She was like the black guy in an action film, the one who was hilarious and a complete bad ass. She confused me as you could never quite tell what was going on in that funny little head of hers, her brown eyes concealed more than she knew. Although I could read her more than most, she chewed her hair when she was nervous and constantly fussed with it even though it always looked the same. Set, black and straight with a purple undertone.

Even though she was fitter than me due to all the sport she did, she always complained she was fat. I didn’t think a size fourteen was fat at all; she was just curvy and very tall.

“I think he’s a nutcase!” Fallon hissed.

“You didn’t have to come if you didn’t want to Fallon, stop being so prissy for once in your life, stop complaining. Just enjoy it, embrace it.” I contemplated, I was strong in River’s beliefs that this could turn out to pretty awesome and if it wasn’t – we could call it an experience.

Fallon didn’t glare at me for once she just stared at me blankly; she looked nervous more than anything. “What do you think Abigail?”

“I don’t know….” Her voice wavered, I still wondered about her.

We stopped at a large set of double doors, Mr Porter turned around and smiled at us in a way the resembled Willy Wonka before he introduced Charlie to the Chocolate factory.

“Ladies I’d like you to meet my wife!” He joked before leading us into a room full of computers, all the computers from the old school it looked like… or at least parts. Hooked up to form one big technological mess there were several chalk boards and reams of paper hustling across the floor. “Mrs Porter 001”

I looked at a computer screen it was sequencing a long line of code which looked roughly like the one on the pad, constantly substituting numbers for the value of Greek letters and the famous x and nth term.

“What does Mrs Porter do?” I asked

“A number of things, but this bit isn’t important to you….” He trailed of flicking on a switch, in a separate room which could be seen through a window a giant octagon of pylons revealed themselves. “Time travel.” At that moment you could have heard a pin drop. Was he being serious?

Time travel couldn’t be possible; it was fictional, amongst unicorns and faeries. Not that I knew much of time travel, but the fact of it being possible didn’t register in my brain. All of us seemed dumbfounded by it, except for Fallon. She was pouting slightly and had her eyes narrowed, did she ever smile?

“Time travel? Mr Porter time travel is a work of fiction an idea created by writers to falsely promote science…its absolute poppycock!” Fallon laughed, none of us shared her laughter. She seemed bemused by this, well she wasn’t exactly comedian of the week. I just found her rude and childish, she always had some comment or was pulling a snooty face. I didn’t know the need for it. Nobody had really done anything to wrong her in anyway, so I had the impression she was just naturally rude and malicious.

“You NASA nerds think you know it all.” Mr Porter sighed; I gazed again at the line of code that shifted so rapidly. I looked up to the pylons again, they had a candy stripe style curve going up to a point then coils of wire connecting them. “You see Fallon, time travel is not fiction; it’s actually a very simple complex. If you understand time.”

“Please tell us Mr Porter.” Abigail piped in her voice brightening at the idea, I noticed River had begun to wander and was eyeing up the pylons behind the maxi-glass. I couldn’t gather her expression, whether it was a look of trepidation and distress or curiosity. I didn’t even bother to look in Fallon’s direction.

“I’ll explain In simple terms for your less knowledgeable selves. You see timelines are stupid. Time isn’t in a line, a shape or any fixed structure for that matter, time is like a liquid a mess of events in no set order, and it changes shape and constantly rolls over and adapts to fit its container. So all these films about disrupting the timeline are ridiculous. You can’t disrupt the timeline because time isn’t in a fixed line or shape, if you change something everything around it adapts, but yet it doesn’t change volume or get rid of anything or add anything…it just changes shape.” He explained.

“If time is so unpredictable, then how do you suppose to manipulate it?” Fallon questioned.

“I didn’t say it was unpredictable.” He pointed out, he ran over to the screen where the line of code was and signalled towards it. “Time is like anything else, it has certain regular behavioural patterns. Everything about time is based on probability and sequences, so I did a lot of work and tests and found its formula. Fallon said it looked like nonsense and that’s because it is nonsense… time is absolute complete nonsense and it shouldn’t work, somehow it does.”

“How would you make all this work, obviously there would be a lot of things to consider in practical time travel.” Abigail continued to speak, so we found something that had sparked her interest.

“Here’s where my little inventive side comes in!” He squealed like a five year old, running and handing us each a duffle bag. “This bag contains everything you’d ever need, dry food, money and clothing… the clothing adapts depending on what time zone you’re in as does the money. Then we have sunglasses time travel is very bright. Then we have heat pills which will aid in regulating the temperature of your body for half an hour, time travel is also very cold. Then are these anklets which can be used for short bursts of communication, help with stability and a series of other things”

We all put the goggles on mockingly, fashioning our anklets and shoving the bags over our shoulders.

“So theoretically how could this work?” Fallon continued to criticise

“You mean scientifically how will this work?” He corrected, to which Fallon scoffed; can I hit her yet? “The answer to that is Cosmic Strings; cosmic strings were formed in the early stages of the universe I believe. They are string like objects which cover the expanse of the full universe; they are under immense pressure and travel at speeds that defy Einstein’s theory of relativity.”

“So these Cosmic Strings travel faster than the speed of light?” I asked, I didn’t know the exact speed of light but I knew it was fast was it three hundred billion or something?

“Correct. These cosmic strings, which are thinner than an atom, generate an enormous amount of gravitational pull on any objects that pass near them. Objects attached to a cosmic string travel at incredible speeds, and because their gravitational force distorts space time. One string could pull you into a portal that I have structured, similar to a black hole and again could whip you out through something I call a white hole… clever isn’t it?” He explained, I had to gather myself to see if I had retained the basic knowledge of his explanation and although I may not have, it didn’t matter much anyway. Because for a start I was hopeless at science I had always been more of an English and Art child. Yet I understood every word because the passion he showed, the way he explained it I had a feeling that it just could work or be somewhat close.

Fallon was screwing her nose up, clearly she wasn’t impressed. It irritated me deeply, even if this was all twaddle she could at least show interest, or embrace it. But she had to point out the fact that she knew it all just because she’d worked at NASA for a few months, she clearly had no imagination or sense of adventure. Abigail was seemingly interested, although I couldn’t tell as her face was never very much expressive, not what I had seen of her so far. She seemed slightly distant all the time, always nervous to say something and it just made me wary of her.

River’s air mirrored what I assumed mine to be like; her eyes were glowing and smile beaming. She and I were definitely hopeful of this to work, imagine being the first time travellers? The first people… women nonetheless to conquer fantasy and displace it with reality.

“May we go look at your machine from the inside?” I asked intrigued to stand under the pylons and ponder the potential possibilities of time travel.

“Be my guest, just go through that door.” Mr Porter offered.

“We all could be like a team of time travellers; we could call ourselves the Cosmic Strings!” River giggled, Adjusting her bag and goggles doing a slightly odd march into the room with the pylons in, us following her. I closed the door behind us so we could get the full effect of the place. It was intense, the machine wasn’t even doing anything but it glared down at us with intimidation. Every step I took was with trepidation. The way the coils of wire loomed across the ceiling, leading back to the pylons which looked bigger up close. The ceiling of this  room was high and they almost touched it only leaving a few meter gap; all of a sudden I didn’t like the idea of being a time traveller.

Not that I’d get the chance, I doubt it would work anyway.

“This is silly,” Fallon sighed, sitting on the floor and fiddling with her anklet. Abigail sat beside her and huffed out a sigh also. I thought Abigail was really interested in this; I had a feeling she was slightly intimidated by Fallon and was following her a bit too much. River was simply running her fingers across the bumps of the pylons, following the trails of wire on the ceiling as if trying to work out how it all worked. “How would this thing even work? It doesn’t fit within the boundaries of science!”

“One thing you should know Fallon is Science is everything! Science is creative, science is amazing and science is frickin beautiful! Something so broad does not have boundaries I don’t care what NASA says, all they do is send probes onto random planets.” I snapped, she was really starting to grate on me. When NASA did something ambitious and meaningful then she could judge.  “Even if it does turn out to be nothing, can’t you just have some fun and have a laugh with it? We’re here so we might as well.”

“Ummn guys…I can’t-“River panicked, I looked over to her position she was stood around the pylon; I walked over to see what she was doing. It appeared the belt of her dress was stuck to the pylon. “My belt is stuck.” She panicked, I helped her undo her belt even though she was no longer stuck to the pylon her belt still was.

“Mr Porter should it do that?” I asked, he signalled that he couldn’t hear me through the glass; I went to open the door. It was stuck; I began to pull and tug at the door, it wouldn’t budge an inch. “Guys, the door won’t open help me!” I cried, we all began pulling and tugging on the door, even with the four of us the door didn’t move.

“That’s not stuck, that’s locked!” Abigail snapped Meanwhile River began tapping on the glass and communicating with Mr Porter through a sort of game of charades.

Locked, why would Mr Porter lock the door?  Was this some kind of joke? Maybe Fallon was right and he was a physco… wait Fallon right? Not likely. By the look on Mr Porters face as he was communicating with River, he wasn’t sure what was happening either. He began to press buttons and frowned checking all the dials, we all knew something wasn’t making sense here. Something was wrong.

Abigail began panicking how she was claustrophobic which was a cue for Fallon to start ranting about this “hunk of junk”. I was merely concerned, why would the door lock and the pylons steal River’s belt? Well the buckle of Rivers belt was metal; perhaps the pylons had some sort of magnetic quality which could be explained due to the gravitational force required for space travel. But River had been around those pylons for a good five minutes, surely they would have taken her belt as soon as they came into contact?

Unless they’d only just been activated.

“Mr Porter said its nothing to do with him, he’s not doing it!” River stated.

“I think the doors locked because the Pylons have been activated, tell Mr Porter to turn it off.” I wheezed, my voice began to rise into a panicked squeak. Fallon began snorting with laughter; apparently my panic was unnecessary due to some stupid law of science she knew. “Shut up Fallon!” I screamed, my voice broke slightly in the middle. Was I crying? I was crying, and by the looks of it Abigail was crying too.

“Mr Porter didn’t activate it… but stay calm I’m sure Mr Porter will sort it out after all he did-“ There was a spark of electricity along the coil of wire interrupting  Rivers speech. Then everyone began screaming and panicking, even Fallon. “Calm down everyone, come in a circle grab you bags and goggles!” River instructed, putting on her own goggles there was another spark of electricity and the room went dark the pylons oozing an eerie blue light and a small wind began to pick up.

“What’s happening, I’m too young to die!” Fallon screamed.

“Take the heat pill now! Do it now!” River instructed, since we had no real reason to argue we did as we were told. “Now listen to me only to me ignore everything else, it seems we might be time travelling but you must…”

“What! This is madness! Absolute madness!” Fallon screamed.

“Fallon look at me; look at me only at me straight in my eyes.” Ordered River signalling her eyes with her fore and index finger. Fallon began hyperventilating but shut up and listened to River, we all did she was the only one out of everyone who seemed to still be thinking rationally. “I don’t know how long we have so you need to listen carefully, when that thing goes into full swing we need to hold hands and not let go! Wherever we are going the most important thing is we don’t lose each other you understand? You can’t hesitate because the portal will probably chew you up if you don’t catch onto it, it’s time to be brave. We are the Cosmic Strings, we’re in this together! You understand?” We all nodded in response, none of us could muster enough energy or nerve to speak. I honestly didn’t know how River was managing.

Its scary, scary knowing that you can look at a person, knowing you will, can and have to trust them with your life and theirs with you. You know that’s the only way you can survive, absolute trust. Especially scary, having to thrust copious amounts of faith on people you don’t know, even worse on ones you struggle to tolerate. But at that one specific moment, its like Anne, River, Fallon or Abigail didn’t exist we were all one person: a unit.

There was a moment where time seemed to slow, I could feel the wind was still strong but it whipped around my face slowly. I could see the rays of light slowly moving from corner to corner; the slight feeling of Abigail’s hand on mine and the slurred slowed voice of River signalling us to jump into the plethora of colour and godly light. The biting chill of the air scraped across my skin but didn’t have any effect on my temperature I was simply aware of it. We swirled hopelessly in what felt like a downwards motion through the rabbit hole, there wasn’t a way to explain it except it was colourful bright and loud. Like a million voices all speaking at once, a whole fleet of planes rushing past my ears. My emotions began to hurdle about dramatically, like I was seeing everything I’d ever experienced and anyone had experienced in a split second.

I glanced down the line of us: River at the front holding on to Fallon’s hand, Fallon and Abigail in the middle and me floundering hopelessly on the end. The sheer look of panic on Fallon’s face was enough for me to anticipate what would come next, a crack of weakness and she let go of Rivers hand. River screamed and attempted to grab back, but was pulled away in a different direction until I could no longer see her; I was the next to let go out of sheer shock and worry. Would she die? Would River die?

Although as I felt myself caroselling away from the others, the more important question was, would I meet River in death? Because even though I’d never experienced death before; I was pretty sure this must be what it felt like. 

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