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Our future, our universe, and other weighty topics

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Probe From Another Universe: A Science Fiction Story

The probe from another universe suddenly appeared high in the Earth's atmosphere, at an altitude of 10 kilometers. With a good portable telescope, you could see the probe as a strange glowing sphere in the sky. The probe continued to hang mysteriously in the same spot in the upper atmosphere. After weeks of anxiety, the visitors from another universe finally broadcast their intentions.

At the White House, President Joe Hunt listed to the transmission that was picked up and broadcast worldwide.

Do not fear us. We have come in peace. We offer great benefits to your primitive race. We can give you the solution to your most pressing problems.

Mr. President, can I have a word with you?” asked General Stack.

Don't bother me,” said President Hunt. “Those weird visitors with that probe in the upper atmosphere are finally telling us who they are.”

You may think that we are visitors from some other planet in your universe. But we are not. We have come from an entirely different universe, a universe very different from yours. Our universe is not mainly empty space, like your universe. Our universe is almost entirely water. There is no empty space anywhere in our universe.

Mr. President, I must insist on having a word with you,” said General Stack.

Dammit, don't bother me,” said President Hunt. “I'm listening to creatures from another universe, for God's sake.”

You may be surprised by how suddenly our probe appeared in your universe. This is because we opened up a space-time wormhole that allows instantaneous transport between our universe and your universe. So now we will be able to travel to your universe, and you will be able to travel to our universe.

Mr. President, don't you remember we launched nuclear missiles against that probe?” said General Stack.

What the hell – when did that happen?” asked the President.

We already got your authorization,” said General Stack. “Remember we asked for permission to launch a Type Red preemptive counter-measure, using a Full Triad implementation?”

Oh, for God's sake, I can't believe you got me to authorize that using all that confusing military jargon,” said President Hunt. “I didn't even know what I was agreeing to. No problem, just recall the missiles.”

But Mr. President, nuclear missiles cannot be recalled once they've been launched,” said General Stack.

Ten minutes later, the nuclear missiles exploded in the upper atmosphere. The probe from another universe was blown up into a thousand pieces.

If the voters ever find out I blew up peaceful visitors, my re-election prospects may be killed,” lamented President Hunt. “Let's hope the voters forget about this.”

Within an hour after the mysterious probe was destroyed, it started to rain very hard. It keep raining for the rest of the day. It was like a summer shower that wouldn't let up. The rain made the sad mood of the day even worse.

When President Hunt went to bed, he assumed that the rain would be over by the time he woke up. But when he woke up the next morning, the rain was still coming down full blast. His advisers notified him of record flooding in Washington D.C.

The full-blast rain continued throughout the day. Hunt wondered: is this some divine punishment for the destruction of the visitors from another universe?

Hunt called in his science adviser, a man named Ed Fulton.

What's going on with all this rain?” asked the President. “Why does it keep going full-blast?”

I have a frightening idea that might explain that,” said Fulton. “I think water may be pouring through the wormhole that was opened up in the upper atmosphere.”

Water from a wormhole?” asked the President incredulously.

Don't you remember what the visitors said before they were destroyed?” asked Fulton. “They said they were from a universe filled with water, in which there was no empty space. They also said they had opened up a wormhole from their universe to ours. When we destroyed their probe with our nuclear weapons, maybe we didn't destroy their wormhole. Maybe their probe was kind of like the plug on the end of a fire hose. So we destroyed the plug, and now the fire hose – the wormhole – is still there. And it's causing water to pour forth from their water-filled universe into our universe.”

Oh, my God,” said the President. “I know what I can do. I'll have the military launch more nuclear missiles to try to blow up that wormhole.”

Missile after missile was launched, but none of them did any good. The water continued to pour forth through the wormhole in the upper atmosphere, passing from the water-filled universe into the skies of planet Earth. The result was non-stop rainfall, like a summer shower that just wouldn't stop.

Soon it was clear that all of Washington D.C. would be underwater. President Hunt moved the White House to the top of the new World Trade Center in New York City. He looked through the windows as more and more of New York City was submerged by the great flood.

When it became clear that all New York City would be submerged by the flood, the President and some top aides got in a helicopter that took them to a base in the Rocky Mountains. Sad news reports came in of city after city being submerged by the flood.

After several months it became clear that even the Rocky Mountains would soon be underwater. The president's helicopter left the mountain base, and landed on an aircraft carrier. With almost the entire country underwater, the only survivors were those living on aircraft carriers or other ships.

On the aircraft carrier President Hunt gloomily walked the deck with General Stack.

"How much food do we have on this carrier?” asked President Hunt.

Only enough to last us for eight weeks,” said General Stack sadly.

Isn't it ironic?” observed President Hunt. “On this aircraft carrier we got all this fancy stuff that we don't need, but we don't have the simple thing we do need. We have the finest fighter-jets ever made. Worthless. We have the finest electronic equipment ever built. Worthless! But we don't have the simple thing we need: a few hundred fishing rods with long lines.”