Author: James Eustace
The lights had been flickering in the study for quite some time, but it wasn’t until the room itself seemed to switch off that Greg was concerned enough to call the power company. “Don’t worry,” the lady on the phone reassured him, “we’ll send someone round.”
Within a few minutes there was a knock at the door and Greg opened it to see a helmeted man dressed in high-vis gear. “We’ve had reports of reality problems here,” the man said, flashing his ID.
Greg was confused. “Reality problems?”
“Oh yes, sir,” the man replied, walking past him into the house, “it happens from time to time. Which room is the issue?”
“Where did you say you were from again?” Greg asked, following him down the hall, “The power company?”
“Never mind,” the man said, ignoring his questions and instead brandishing a small handheld device that was all bleeps and whirrs, “my machine’s picking it up anyway.” He marched on through the house into the study, which had by this point reappeared.
When he got there he sucked his teeth as he studied the device’s monitor. “You’ve got a big problem here,” he said.
“I do?” Greg asked, worried.
“Definitely,” the man confirmed, “you’re being removed from our plane of existence.”
Greg looked at him blankly, as the room vanished again. “I’m what?”
“You can’t think it’s normal for your study to keep disappearing, right?” The man added, as the hallway room joined it, wherever it was.
“I don’t, but I thought it was just a power cut,” Greg protested feebly, “the person at the power company…”
“Your house is made of electricity is it?” the man asked.
“No,” Greg replied, feeling stupid.
“Listen,” the man said kindly, “I know this will probably come as a bit of a surprise for you, but our universe’s existence relies on a trans-dimensional energy field.”
“A field?” Greg looked at him blankly.
The man sighed. “Some people call it a ‘field’, some call it a ‘being’. Whatever term you want to use it seems as though there’s less energy to go around at the moment. No one really knows why, but not as much energy means not as much universe, so some things are starting to drop out of existence, particularly things that don’t attract energy, or don’t keep the being’s interest or whatever terminology you want to use. Boring things. Like you.”
“Like you,” he repeated.
All this talk of inter-dimensional beings had got Greg thinking. “You’re not really with the power company, are you?” he asked.
The man shook his head.
“How…” Greg trailed off.
“How can you fix things?” the man asked.
“Well, it would help if you could do something interesting or exciting. Make yourself stand out.”
This time the whole house flashed in and out of existence.
“And quickly,” he added, a trace of urgency in his voice, “you don’t have much time.”
“Do something exciting?” Greg thought for a moment, “I guess I could…” His voice trailed off again. And, this time, so did he, along with his home and all his possessions.
The man found himself standing in an empty lot. He sighed and walked back to his truck.
“No joy?” the woman in the driver’s seat asked as he climbed into the cab.
“Imagine being literally too boring to exist,” she said, as they pulled away.
“Where to next?” he asked.
“An accountant in Lubbock.”
Clever and fun. Nicely done.