Glitch

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01

 

“What takes you so long just to get coffee for us?” said someone over the phone, sounding half aggravating.

 

“You’re asking like you don’t know that we won’t survive a day without James being clumsy. He just spilled the coffee over his shirt and now we’re getting a new one; the coffee and the shirt,” said an undisturbed woman called Alessia to Benjamin, who was now waiting for James to reorder the coffee for their teammates. 

 

“Not even surprised. We’ll wait for you so we can start discussing the hiking plans to Vietnam,” said Ben and straightly ended the phone call, then continued, “How could James survive everyday by spilling or dropping everything nearly every hour in his life?”

 

“His clumsiness and genius brain surely need to be studied,” stated Kaito, the other man who centralises his focus on the computer.

 

The woman in the same room as Kaito and Ben giggled, “If our quantum GPS succeeds, I will definitely tolerate James’ clumsiness in every dimension of my life.”

 

The three of them patiently wait for James and Alessia while discussing the progress of their system, the next vacation they’re excited about, and what to eat for dinner. James, Rei, Alessia, Benjamin, and Kaito are five comrades who met during their undergraduate era and possess two frantic fondness; quantum physics and hiking. They continue the exploration journey of quantum physics at Daunt Research Centre, an independent research institution in Australia.

 

02

 

James was the one who initiated the creation of the Quantum Global Positioning System, an extended version of the general GPS used by most humans daily. “Quantum physics on a GPS. We are definitely aware that satellites used to calculate distances between destinations on Earth are well-equipped with an atomic clock, which heavily relies on quantum physics.”

 

He feels thrilled explaining the branches of ideas to his four teammates, “Imagine. Start imagining if we could make an ‘unusual’ GPS that allows us to detect positions and provide destinations to other dimensions.”

 

Ben chuckled, “Are we going to be a new avengers team now?”

“I nearly laughed, but look at him,” Kaito said, making Ben turn his eyes to James. His intention to tease James instantaneously disappeared.

 

James continued, “Let’s focus on the superposition of quantum sensors. The quantum particles used in the context of sensing could enhance capabilities of precise measurements. We’re going to instill the particles to be entangled so it becomes highly correlated to detect positions and changes in versatile environments with high sensitivity.”

 

All of them are getting used to James’s unanticipated ideas, but this one has made them flabbergasted. Rei, as James's partner-in-crime in discussing incredible concepts, responded, “Your idea is also sensitive to interference. The amplitudes of the quantum particles might be constructive, or destructive. It could lead to unprecedented accuracy and unpredictable journeys. It’s not going to be an easy one.”

 

“That’s what we’re looking for. Unpredictable journeys. Additionally, nobody said this was going to be easy,” James stated without a single hesitation.

 

“I think we now know what to do with our next project,” said Alessia, marking the moment of legitimation by knocking on the top of the table five times, like she usually did when starting a project in the university.

 

03

 

Kaito expresses his fondness towards the magnificent side of Vietnam, straight after he’s strolling the city of Hanoi alongside his four best companions. Every time they’re planning to hike different mountains across the globe, they will take turns deciding the place. This time, Kaito’s idea to hike at Fansipan, Vietnam’s highest mountain was chosen after they conquered Mount Rinjani in Indonesia last 2022. After spending some time in the city, they started the journey by reaching the village of Cat Cat and camping for a night before starting climbing. 

 

Right before their journey to the top of Fansipan, Ben took something out of his bag and showed it to Kaito. The beta version of quantum GPS. The small rectangle box equipped with its power source has been turned on by Ben. “Let’s try this gear”.

 

“Do not even start, Ben,” Alessia showed her disagreement but was ignored by him.

 

“Ben, the system has not been completed. The protection of possible interference is still not successfully planted and we haven’t found the relevant substance to it,” James responded.

Ben raised his eyebrows, unbothered, “That’s what we’re looking for, isn’t it? Unpredictable journeys.”

 

Four of them renounce and just follow Ben’s reckless movement using the system. As they’re climbing, it starts raining and slippery with Rei and James routinely slipping every ten minutes. The quantum GPS keeps navigating through the same direction as the normal GPS system activated by Alessia until it leads them into a new alternate universe without them realising it.

 

Kaito suddenly took out his phone and captured a phenomenal scenery seen approximately 50 metres in front of them. “Do you see what I see? A silvery blue river.”

 

His statement made the rest of them feel uneasy, and Ben realised something. “It glitches. The system glitches”, he said while shaking the box, when it was completely useless.

 

James gulped, “Don’t tell me.. We are now in a different dimension.”

His statement makes them alarmed about the fact they’re going through at the moment. Everyone knows GPS signals may occasionally experience dimensional drift, causing navigation systems to provide directions that cross into alternate universes.

 

They never know the Earth they are living on possesses seven different realities. They didn’t realise their journey had just begun.

 
About the Author: 
I am a Data Science student in Sheffield. I regularly express my fondness toward arts, books, and vinyls. Tea time and sleeping are my two most favourite activities.
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