To Jump or Not to Jump

Your rating: None
No votes yet

It’s weird, right? I mean, it’s like I have my memories, but they’re not my memories. Or are they?


I was just one of many people that recently jumped timelines within the past year thanks to a group of physicists.



The more I thought about the process and the outcome, the more questions I had.



About a year ago, my husband and I decided to jump timelines. Truth be told, we both thought the idea was ludacris: him more than me, yet we signed up for the research study anyway. We mostly did it to prove the other one wrong but also with the hope of a better life. It’s not like our lives were bad. No, it was actually pretty darn good. We made a comfortable income, had friends who really cared, and were successful in our own right.



But there were things we didn’t have. We had been married for a long time and had yet to conceive a child. To be a mother had been my dream for as long as I could remember, although some of those memories are fuzzy now. We also just wanted better for ourselves. There were so many places we wanted to visit and causes we wanted to support and family members that needed our help, but it just wasn’t possible - not then at least.



What’s odd about quantum jumping is that there’s not a machine you hop into or a chant you do. It just sort of… happens. That doesn’t mean we didn’t try all sorts of things.



I remember the night we first talked about timeline jumping. This memory was burned into my brain, unlike so many others…



“I don’t know why you follow those people,” my husband smarted off as he looked at my computer screen.



I was sitting in the living room, aimlessly scrolling through social media post after social media post while I streamed a familiar show.



“You can’t jump timelines or any of that crap their spouting,” he spat as if the idea was a personal insult. “I think most of them just like to hear themselves talk.”


You see, my husband is a no-nonsense sort of guy. He likes facts and figures, not theories and concepts.


“While I agree that some of them regurgitate info to make themselves seem more important, some of what they say is actually based on science.”



“Sure,” he said through pursed lips.



“I mean, can you tell me for certain whether or not we’ve ever jumped timelines?” I asked curiously, but he no longer wanted to entertain the conversation, so he scoffed and walked off. I’m sure there was an eye roll in there somewhere.



As if my computer was listening, an ad appeared. It read: “Participants needed: University researchers require participants for quantum physics research study, involving the multiple timeline theory.”



After a few questions about this, that, and the other, we were signed up. 



Before we knew it, we were in a cold room, surrounded by a team of researchers. The hum of computers and gadgets echoed in the silent room. Absentmindedly, I played with my auburn, curly hair and looked at my husband, a stocky, charismatic man in his mid-thirties. He was sat next to me in a metal chair. 



“Once this plan is set in motion, there’s no going back. You understand that, right?” Said a slender, official-looking man that was easily a foot taller than me.



We both nodded in agreement.



“Great. Just sign here.”



“So, how do we actually go about timeline jumping timelines?”



“That’s all part of the study,” he informed us.



For weeks, nothing happened. We tried some of the more esoteric theories on how to quantum jump, like the ones that my social media acquaintances claimed to know how to do. When those didn’t work, we were put through scientific test after scientific test. After every experiment, came a series of questions and medical tests. They also hooked us up to just about every machine known to man.



In one of the meetings with the researchers, my husband had remarked, “I thought y’all knew more about all this. Shouldn’t we have jumped already?”



A squat, stubbly haired man with skin of warm mocha swiveled in his chair to face us. He addressed us in his deep voice, “Nobody said this was going to be easy. We’re trying to do something that’s never been done. The simple fact that we are observing you two attempting to quantum jump could, in fact, be causing an interference.”



After two months, our lives had improved. We were healthier, happier, and wealthier, but we still felt like we were on the same timeline we had always been on, but how do you ever really know?



It took us a while to realize that somewhere along the way, we had, in fact, jumped timelines. As our lives changed for the better, we wanted more… more of everything. I’m almost embarrassed to admit it, but we became greedy - not greedy in the sense of wanting more and more money but greedy in the sense that we came to expect getting what we desired and quickly too.



What clued us in were all the little differences in the things around us, like cereal commercials that never happened or company names that were slightly different. Our own memories were fuzzy when it came to certain topics and moments in our pasts. As we questioned our friends and family, we realized that many of them remembered situations very differently. But there were a few that retained similar memories as to the ones we had. It made me wonder if they had jumped too or if we had brought them with us.



Either way, we could no longer deny the fact that we were on a new timeline. At the heart of it all, once we had fully committed to making the jump, we made it.



My question to you is this: would you take the plunge.


About the Author: 
I’m on a perpetual journey of learning and exploration. While I am a fantasy and paranormal novelist through and through, I have begun writing short stories across genres. I am very excited about this new venture and the opportunities for expanding my abilities.
Share this fiction

Quantum Theories: A to Z

P is for ...
Planck's Constant

This is one of the universal constants of nature, and relates the energy of a single quantum of radiation to its frequency. It is central to quantum theory and appears in many important formulae, including the Schrödinger Equation.

C is for ...

The rules of the quantum world mean that we can process information much faster than is possible using the computers we use now. This column from Quanta Magazine ​delves into the fundamental physics behind quantum computing.

E is for ...

When two quantum objects interact, the information they contain becomes shared. This can result in a kind of link between them, where an action performed on one will affect the outcome of an action performed on the other. This “entanglement” applies even if the two particles are half a universe apart.

D is for ...

Albert Einstein decided quantum theory couldn’t be right because its reliance on probability means everything is a result of chance. “God doesn’t play dice with the world,” he said.

B is for ...
Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC)

At extremely low temperatures, quantum rules mean that atoms can come together and behave as if they are one giant super-atom.

D is for ...

Unless it is carefully isolated, a quantum system will “leak” information into its surroundings. This can destroy delicate states such as superposition and entanglement.

T is for ...
Time travel

Is time travel really possible? This article looks at what relativity and quantum mechanics has to say.

F is for ...
Free Will

Ideas at the heart of quantum theory, to do with randomness and the character of the molecules that make up the physical matter of our brains, lead some researchers to suggest humans can’t have free will.

E is for ...

As the world makes more advances in quantum science and technologies, it is time to think about how it will impact lives and how society should respond. This mini-documentary by the Quantum Daily is a good starting point to think about these ethical issues. 

B is for ...
Bell's Theorem

In 1964, John Bell came up with a way of testing whether quantum theory was a true reflection of reality. In 1982, the results came in – and the world has never been the same since!

U is for ...
Uncertainty Principle

One of the most famous ideas in science, this declares that it is impossible to know all the physical attributes of a quantum particle or system simultaneously.

H is for ...
Hidden Variables

One school of thought says that the strangeness of quantum theory can be put down to a lack of information; if we could find the “hidden variables” the mysteries would all go away.

L is for ...
Large Hadron Collider (LHC)

At CERN in Geneva, Switzerland, this machine is smashing apart particles in order to discover their constituent parts and the quantum laws that govern their behaviour.

Q is for ...

One quantum bit of information is known as a qubit (pronounced Q-bit). The ability of quantum particles to exist in many different states at once means a single quantum object can represent multiple qubits at once, opening up the possibility of extremely fast information processing.

L is for ...

We used to believe light was a wave, then we discovered it had the properties of a particle that we call a photon. Now we know it, like all elementary quantum objects, is both a wave and a particle!

A is for ...
Alice and Bob

In quantum experiments, these are the names traditionally given to the people transmitting and receiving information. In quantum cryptography, an eavesdropper called Eve tries to intercept the information.

W is for ...

The mathematics of quantum theory associates each quantum object with a wavefunction that appears in the Schrödinger equation and gives the probability of finding it in any given state.

N is for ...

When two quantum particles are entangled, it can also be said they are “nonlocal”: their physical proximity does not affect the way their quantum states are linked.

S is for ...

The feature of a quantum system whereby it exists in several separate quantum states at the same time.

P is for ...

Quantum mechanics is a probabilistic theory: it does not give definite answers, but only the probability that an experiment will come up with a particular answer. This was the source of Einstein’s objection that God “does not play dice” with the universe.

H is for ...
Hawking Radiation

In 1975, Stephen Hawking showed that the principles of quantum mechanics would mean that a black hole emits a slow stream of particles and would eventually evaporate.

C is for ...

The most precise clocks we have are atomic clocks which are powered by quantum mechanics. Besides keeping time, they can also let your smartphone know where you are.

U is for ...

To many researchers, the universe behaves like a gigantic quantum computer that is busy processing all the information it contains.

G is for ...

These elementary particles hold together the quarks that lie at the heart of matter.

Z is for ...
Zero-point energy

Even at absolute zero, the lowest temperature possible, nothing has zero energy. In these conditions, particles and fields are in their lowest energy state, with an energy proportional to Planck’s constant.

W is for ...
Wave-particle duality

It is possible to describe an atom, an electron, or a photon as either a wave or a particle. In reality, they are both: a wave and a particle.

M is for ...
Many Worlds Theory

Some researchers think the best way to explain the strange characteristics of the quantum world is to allow that each quantum event creates a new universe.

J is for ...
Josephson Junction

This is a narrow constriction in a ring of superconductor. Current can only move around the ring because of quantum laws; the apparatus provides a neat way to investigate the properties of quantum mechanics and is a technology to build qubits for quantum computers.

R is for ...

Since the predictions of quantum theory have been right in every experiment ever done, many researchers think it is the best guide we have to the nature of reality. Unfortunately, that still leaves room for plenty of ideas about what reality really is!

S is for ...
Schrödinger Equation

This is the central equation of quantum theory, and describes how any quantum system will behave, and how its observable qualities are likely to manifest in an experiment.

A is for ...

This is the basic building block of matter that creates the world of chemical elements – although it is made up of more fundamental particles.

Y is for ...
Young's Double Slit Experiment

In 1801, Thomas Young proved light was a wave, and overthrew Newton’s idea that light was a “corpuscle”.

R is for ...

Unpredictability lies at the heart of quantum mechanics. It bothered Einstein, but it also bothers the Dalai Lama.

K is for ...

Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) is a way to create secure cryptographic keys, allowing for more secure communication.

O is for ...
Objective reality

Niels Bohr, one of the founding fathers of quantum physics, said there is no such thing as objective reality. All we can talk about, he said, is the results of measurements we make.

I is for ...

Many researchers working in quantum theory believe that information is the most fundamental building block of reality.

M is for ...

Quantum physics is the study of nature at the very small. Mathematics is one language used to formalise or describe quantum phenomena.

S is for ...

Researchers are harnessing the intricacies of quantum mechanics to develop powerful quantum sensors. These sensors could open up a wide range of applications.

V is for ...
Virtual particles

Quantum theory’s uncertainty principle says that since not even empty space can have zero energy, the universe is fizzing with particle-antiparticle pairs that pop in and out of existence. These “virtual” particles are the source of Hawking radiation.

T is for ...

The arrow of time is “irreversible”—time goes forward. On microscopic quantum scales, this seems less certain. A recent experiment shows that the forward pointing of the arrow of time remains a fundamental rule for quantum measurements.

T is for ...

This happens when quantum objects “borrow” energy in order to bypass an obstacle such as a gap in an electrical circuit. It is possible thanks to the uncertainty principle, and enables quantum particles to do things other particles can’t.

C is for ...

People have been hiding information in messages for millennia, but the quantum world provides a whole new way to do it.

S is for ...
Schrödinger’s Cat

A hypothetical experiment in which a cat kept in a closed box can be alive and dead at the same time – as long as nobody lifts the lid to take a look.

Q is for ...
Quantum biology

A new and growing field that explores whether many biological processes depend on uniquely quantum processes to work. Under particular scrutiny at the moment are photosynthesis, smell and the navigation of migratory birds.

Q is for ...
Quantum States

Quantum states, which represent the state of affairs of a quantum system, change by a different set of rules than classical states.

X is for ...

In 1923 Arthur Compton shone X-rays onto a block of graphite and found that they bounced off with their energy reduced exactly as would be expected if they were composed of particles colliding with electrons in the graphite. This was the first indication of radiation’s particle-like nature.

A is for ...
Act of observation

Some people believe this changes everything in the quantum world, even bringing things into existence.

I is for ...

Some of the strangest characteristics of quantum theory can be demonstrated by firing a photon into an interferometer

T is for ...

Quantum tricks allow a particle to be transported from one location to another without passing through the intervening space – or that’s how it appears. The reality is that the process is more like faxing, where the information held by one particle is written onto a distant particle.

G is for ...

Our best theory of gravity no longer belongs to Isaac Newton. It’s Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity. There’s just one problem: it is incompatible with quantum theory. The effort to tie the two together provides the greatest challenge to physics in the 21st century.

K is for ...

These are particles that carry a quantum property called strangeness. Some fundamental particles have the property known as charm!

M is for ...

Our most successful theories of cosmology suggest that our universe is one of many universes that bubble off from one another. It’s not clear whether it will ever be possible to detect these other universes.

Copyright © 2024 Centre for Quantum Technologies. All rights reserved.