Author : Patricia Stewart, Staff Writer

“You know, Cyrus, you can’t violate the law of causality. Even a freshman Liberal Arts major understands Feinberg’s reinterpretation principle. I swear, if I’ve lugged this receiver out here for nothing, I’m going to kick your ass when I get back to Earth. Over.” Byran unstrapped himself from the communications console and floated toward the galley to find something to eat. His conventional electromagnetic radio transmission would take fifteen minutes to reach Cyrus, and another fifteen minutes for the reply to return to his one man cargo transport, the SS Grand Eastern.

A half an hour later, Cyrus’ reply arrived. “Stop complaining. You were going to Jupiter anyway. Besides, you need to look at the bright side; I’m going to make you famous. Just like Thomas Watson,” he added with a chuckle. “In addition, you moron, Feinberg was talking about sending messages into the past. Superluminal particles don’t violate any of the currently accepted theories of faster than light communication. Over.”

Byran activated his throat mic and said, “Superluminal particles? I thought your thesis involved evanescent wave coupling, or a quantum non-locality. Over.” He glanced at the chronometer and decided to go to the treadmill to start his daily workout.

Thirty minutes into his regiment, he heard Cyrus’ voice in his earpiece, “Stay focused, Byran. That was last year. Now, I’m working on creating a columnar beam of tachyons. They’re perfect for this application. Once created, they have to travel faster than light. It’s one of their properties. Although detecting them is easy enough, it’s next to impossible to create them with an extremely precise energy level. They’re super sensitive that way. The less energy they have, the faster they go. I won’t be able to send a coherent superluminal communication stream until I can get the power level drift of my transmitter to less than one picowatt. I’m getting close, though. Hopefully, I’ll have the bugs worked out soon. Over and out.”


The following day, the notification indicator on the tachyon receiver aboard the Grand Eastern chimed. Byran pushed himself off of the starboard bulkhead and drifted over to the receiver to read the monitor. The message was a continuous line of characters.


Byran studied the gibberish for several minutes before realizing its meaning. “Holy crap,” he said, as he launched himself toward the shielded safety room. After several hours, he emerged and sent Cyrus a radio reply.

“Thanks for the warning, Cyrus. I made it to the panic room just in time. However, you definitely need to work on the energy level of your particle stream. The characters are not traveling at the same velocity. The end of the message was traveling faster than the beginning. Thank God I’m dyslexic, or I’d be dead. Over.”

Discuss the Future: The 365 Tomorrows Forums
The 365 Tomorrows Free Podcast: Voices of Tomorrow
This is your future: Submit your stories to 365 Tomorrows

%d bloggers like this: