Quantum Future


The rain poured down in the park. The gray skies let out the backlog of several weeks of humidity.

Alli sat on a bench, under a black umbrella. She watched the ducks paddle around in the man-made pond.

She wore black leather shoes and gray slacks. The clouds rolled low, descending on the plaza, forming a fog that hugged the spires of buildings.

The fields, below the myriad hills, were water-logged and flooded. Raindrops fell into the silver water, between the fiery green blades of grass, poking up through the deluge.

Alli thought of the esper lab, the Zener deck – and she thought of Nealy.

It had been raining all morning, without letting up. Alli got up, rainwater sloshing off the umbrella and landing around her shoes, getting her socks wet. She took off in the direction of Midtown.

how it should be

Probability Map


Ran walked out the bar and down the street. She felt the wintry night wind on her neck. She was headed in the direction of Midtown.

Several cars drove by. Someone stopped at a red light too long, and a taxi cab driver leaned on his horn – even though there were signs everywhere warning commuters not to honk.

She kicked a beer bottle cap. It ricocheted off a trash can and rattled down the sidewalk, before falling into the gutter.

A town car pulled up to the curb. One of the tinted passenger windows rolled down and a blond woman poked her head out, “Hey you, where are you going?”

Ran wiped away her tears, before turning around, “Me? Uh, Williamsburg.”

“Really?” the woman said, “It’s that way.”

“Um,” Ran stalled, “I’m new to the city.”

The woman laughed, “Get in; I’ll show you around.”

Ran shook her head, “I’ll pass, thanks.”

“I used to live here,” she said, inclining her head, “I just got back. You know what, if you ever want to have fun, here’s my card.”

Ran took the business card from her slim, manicured hand, “Thank you. I got lost on the way back to the hotel.”

“Point taken,” she said, “Cheer up, OK?”

The window went back up, and the car pulled away, tail lights disappearing into the night.

Ran turned the card over and saw only a name embossed, in bold letters: ‘Dallas Pace.’

She shrugged, flinging the card behind her. It fell in a puddle and floated over the reflected moon.