The Machine


Director Shaw tried to convince Avery not to take on such a huge personal risk by becoming a test subject to the Machine that would make transversing to Alternate Realities anything but a pipe dream but Avery’s mind was already set to protect her son from the risk by taking it on herself.

The Director immediately called Aurora and Dr. Clarke to her Office and they were surprised to see Avery there and even more shocked to learn that Avery would act as a test subject in the stead of a Reality Warper that could create entirely new alternate realities.

“Director Shaw, I do not think this experiment will be a success considering Protector Alison has no reality warping abilities. I propose that we keep searching for the right test subject rather than subject Miss Alison to experimentation that only places her life in danger,” Dr. Clarke stated.

Aurora agreed. “The risk far outweighs the price and in this case, as Dr. Clarke so rightly put it, she does not possess the necessary qualities to even be considered for this experiment,”

“I may not be a Reality Warper but I have traveled to Alternate Realities before that were entirely different from our present reality and as a result of my interaction with these alternate realities, I gained a new ability- quantum jumping. I believe for this reason, I should be able to travel to an Alternate Reality. It is a huge chance to take but what other alternatives do we have?”

“Avery, you are a mother. Putting your life at risk for this experiment is unwarranted especially since we do not know for sure whether you can safely travel to another Alternate Reality,”

“History proves that I can. As I have already pointed out, I have traveled to two separate alternate realities and lived to tell the tale. Besides, why should I receive special treatment when the other Reality Benders you enlisted clearly were at the same risk as I am in. I am not afraid of taking on this risk. I do not take this risk lightly and I have every intention to fight for my life to make sure I return to my son safe and sound,”

“And what are we going to tell Emre if something happens to you?” Aurora asked her.

Avery shrugged her shoulders and nonchalantly replied, “Emre knows that in our line of work, we Protectors constantly put our lives at risk. If I die, he would understand that it was in the line of duty for good.”

Aurora shook her head. “Emre would not stand for this. This… it is unjustified… Immoral even,”

“If Emre cannot stand for me to do my job, well, that’s on him. It is my life and therefore my decision. So take it or leave it,” Avery stated stubbornly.

Aurora looked up at Director Shaw who shook her head clearly indicating that there was no convincing Avery.

“So when do we start?” Avery asked the two scientists.

“In… a week. We need time to deliberate and find ways of doing this safely,”

“Very well, Dr. Clarke. Once you are through, you know where to find me,” Avery stated and left.

Dr. Clarke and Aurora were very opposed to the idea and debated with the Director about the matter for several hours after Avery had left the Director’s office. It became clear that without Avery and without finding a substitute test subject, the experiment and therefore all their hard work, was all for naught.

Aurora and Dr. Clarke took another week trying to figure out how to set up the experiment in a way that would not endanger Avery’s life anymore than it should have. Aurora constantly had to fight the urge to protect her daughter by involving Emre but some part of her still held onto hope that the experiment could still turn out to be a success and therefore, she held her peace.

After yet another week, Avery was called into the Secret test room and Aurora once more stated her objections. Dr. Clarke informed Avery that she had been given access to all the files pertaining to Avery’s special quantum jumping ability although some details were still classified.

After the relevant documentation authorizing the scientists to conduct experimentation on Avery were completed, Dr. Clarke explained, “Our best bet at having a successful experiment lies in your quantum jumping ability but so far, little is known about how it actually works. All we do know is an emotional trigger is what allows for the ability to activate. However, we do not know what happens to you in-between the time you jump and when you return to present reality. This is what worries us most about the experiment, Protector Alison.”

“I’ll be fine, Dr. Clarke, really. I will do whatever is in my power to ensure I return to my son in one piece. I do everything that I do because of him so I will live for him,”

“You can still back out of this honey… You don’t have to do this,” Aurora stated worriedly.

“No backing out, mom. I’m no quitter especially since we haven’t even began. Let’s do this,”

Avery was plugged into all the necessary medical equipment to monitor all vital signs which were all normal at the start of the experiment. Dr. Clarke then stood right next to Avery with an injection filled with an unidentified clear, colorless liquid. She hesitated but then soon injected the liquid into Avery’s system.

“Doc, what did you hit me with?” Avery asked worriedly, her heart rate spiking.

“Oh, you’ll find out soon enough,” Dr. Clarke stated grimly.

Within a few minutes, Avery’s pupils began to dilate and then she began to shake violently before losing all her senses. When she came to, she saw her son in a room adjacent to her own with Director Shaw, Dr. Clarke and Aurora all looking at him like he was the prize horse at a Rodeo.

“Mom, what is going on?” she asked Aurora from across the room. Aurora merrily skipped towards Avery and stated, “We decided to go with Blaize for the experiments after all. You’re practically useless. We spoke to Emre about it and he consented to it as well,”

“The whole point of me volunteering was to spare Blaize from this. And where the hell is Emre and why would he consent to such a hellish thing without consulting me first?”

“There was simply no time to waste. The consent of one parent was more than sufficient especially since you were unconscious. Anyway, time’s a wasting honey. You just rest your pretty head and leave the rest to Dr. Clarke and me,”

“No!” Avery screamed in horror.

“It’s okay, Mama. I’ll be okay,” Blaize stated waving enthusiastically at her. Soon, she began to lose her eyesight again but despite her screaming protests, there was nothing she could do to save her son. She was unable to move, restricted to her bed by unbreakable restraints. Her struggles were futile and in a few seconds, she could hear the unmistakable blood curdling screams of her son.

Her son’s agony was the last straw that led to Avery consciously quantum jump. Her entire body suddenly shrunk down to a sub-atomic level and soon, everything in the Present Reality gave way to a formless void. Only Avery’s consciousness remained as her body entered a sub-atomic state.

Determined to save her son in a blind panic, Avery willed herself to go to the very moment experimentation had began on him and drew a blank. It then dawned on her that Dr. Clarke had injected her with an undisclosed clear liquid and that the sudden change of heart to use Blaize as a test subject had been nothing more than a horrid hallucination brought upon by the liquid, aimed at triggering her abilities.

The knowledge that her son was not in actual danger helped calm Avery down quite a bit but then she was stuck the void with no actual idea of how to get out of there. She remembered the promise she had so boldly made- that no matter what, she would try and live for her son but given her predicament, she had no idea what she would do.

Stuck in the timeless void with nothing more than her own consciousness, she began to conjure up countless memories of her son and the wonderful moments they had had leading up to that point. Her consciousness then began to focus more intently on certain memories than others and these memories played out in more vivid detail.

Avery wondered whether the key to escaping the void was to focus more on the memories playing out in vivid detail and therefore willed herself to imagine what her son could be doing in the Present. What time was it? Would he be back from school? Would he and his father be practicing dueling in their backyard?

Her consciousness then began to form images based on her imaginations so much that every other memory faded away. Suddenly, the sub-atomic particles that once formed her concrete physical body began to vibrate quickly, all aiming towards a singular purpose- traveling to the imagination of Blaize back from school, play-fighting with his father in their backyard.

Her concrete body suddenly materialized from a portal opening up in the sky with Emre acting quick enough to catch her before she collapsed on the ground.


And so concludes this part of the Machine… Stay tuned for more… Links to previous entries in the tale are listed below. Enjoy!

  1. The Machine Part 1
  2. Part 2
  3. Part 3
  4. Part 4


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