Nanosecond in the Life

Published 1985 CapitalM

Cloud chamber with streaks from ionized particles
Cloud chamber with ionized tracks

Philip Photon waits in the matrix of his gestation nucleon for the moment of his release.  Beads of perspiration trickle down his charmed exterior.  Will he be able to solve the riddle of his escape equation?

His n-fold twin, Freddie Photon, departs in a relative hurry from the nucleon adjacent.  His chaotic, Markovian dance makes him easy prey for Adam Atom and his molecular gang.  They swallow him within a nanosecond.

“If only I knew how to speed directly.”  Philip’s naivete should not be surprising, even considering his advanced age.  For millions of expulsions, Philip had watched the inevitable feasting of Adam Atom and his molecular gang.  Only one in ten thousand have solved the equation of escape.

While Philip mulls on this, three hundred thousand more photons left, but only a few escaped.

“Riiippple.”  The holding force retracts momentarily.  The nucleonquake allows Philip a test of his solution.  Just enough to see that he wiggles and waves with disconcerting probability.

Too soon, the final quake releases Philip.  He wishes to see the universe, but first he has to avoid Adam and his gang.

The time drags on, seemingly eternal, and Philip’s equation seems no better solved than Freddie’s.  Adam looms directly ahead.  Nothing to do but strive to the last nanosecond.

A bolt of low probability blesses Philip’s path.  A tunnel from the here-and-now to the there-and-then gapes before the fortunate Photon.

Philip, following the path of least resistance, thanks his lucky charm.

Cover Image By Cloudylabs – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

a_fiction Sci Fi

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