In spite of the universe seemingly going out of its way to tell me this is all a bad idea, I have persisted in my goal, and this time I think I have discovered the secret to things coming back where I want them to. It’s crazy stuff, involving the same principles behind the device I use to transmit all this to a place people can read it and not stop me.
I figured out some nifty tricks while working with the device I have that sends information. Information is a tricky and confusing notion, at least for me. I’m not a physicist, I just play with bombs that could destroy reality. But I know a few things. Like, there’s this huge debate over whether or not information can exit a black hole. After all, not even light can escape it.
I’m not so sure that’s true, but for different reasons, involving this technology. Nothing really stays in the divide between universes, which I think is closer to being a barrier. The same properties of the multiverse that render this barrier strong enough to keep things are the ones that also make sure something doesn’t stay between them. I’m not teaching material, but it’s like how certain barriers work in biology and other things. For instance, you’ve got a hydrophobic barrier that repels water, like the phospholipid barrier of a cell wall. Water needs to get across somehow. Most commonly, that involves special fixed channels.
In this case, it’s more like a temporary channel created with energy tuned toward a very specific effect. It doesn’t have to be enough energy to blow up a planet, it just has to be enough to penetrate the barrier in one specific place. It’s the effect of that on spacetime that destroys the planet. With this breach, things like myself or Mr. Fuzzles are expelled into the barrier. I think that either the measures it takes to close the gap or the energy that propels something into the dimensional barrier, where it is immediately, or almost immediately, shunted into another universe. I say almost immediately because I obviously perceived things going through the barrier, but spacetime as we know it doesn’t exist there.
I think there’s a certain equilibrium involved. I don’t think it’s coincidence that somehow I wound up in my old home universe, and yet the other subjects of my experiments don’t appear to have done the same, nor did the people who got caught in the return bombs. Enough matter in me still from that universe that it was the easiest place to dump me, and enough matter from this universe that it sent me right back here when I left.
Electrical signals that carry information can travel similarly, but the effects are much less catastrophic, I think. I think size is everything when it comes to electrical signals of the sort that cause an effect on the magnets in a computer. And just as there can be a temporary link in the internet between two universes, I believed I could create a device that performs the same link that would draw a physical object back, but through the barrier at a different location.
Ugh, I feel like I just gave birth to Stephen Hawking, then lost another dance-off to him. I went between working all this out both theoretically and practically, and sticking me head in some snow outside. Yeah, it’s still going, and still screwing up the weather elsewhere. It might let up soon, since Dr. Creeper’s been spotted terrorizing Toronto. Solve a storm by creating a new storm, I say. That and “A grenade a day keeps the enemy at bay.”
Elsewhere in the world, things continue to be fucked up. The border clashes in Mongolia and China involving Riccan and Russian soldiers seem to inevitably involve China being backed off from investigating by armed groups and refusing to fire on them lest it create a full-blown war. Wouldn’t want to start a land war in Asia, would we?
I just might. The gyroscope is tipping and tipping, but it hasn’t lost full control yet. And rather than let it tip over and protect my own damn self, I’m running around trying to tip it just hard enough in the right direction that it regains equilibrium. I might actually be crazy. Why the fuck am I trying to help anybody on this world? This is why I should have killed Moai and Carl and Venus and Leah and everyone else I have any inkling of non-homicidal feelings for.
Whatever happened to the innocent, carefree days when I ran around, frolicking and showing people their own splanchnic ganglia?
So after either unlocking the secrets of inter-universe travel or being completely wrong, I finally put the topper on this little Christmas tree of crap. I set us up the bomb.
I’ve had some supply problems, but I was able to jury-rig a weaker replacement core for the big bomb. It might warp a few less miles than the standard type, but I think it’ll perform just fine. What made it even cooler was utilizing all the lightning with the help of some rods and capacitors. I don’t normally have the option to play in lightning so much.
It gave me an idea I wanted to test out as well, but the creation of both a full-sized, fully-capable D-bomb and a pair of smaller ones that, together, I call a D-hopper.
And I tested another few devices. Just enough to make sure.
The first time was nothing but a load of crap. I sent directed it to the coordinates of the Oval Office. Apparently I interrupted some meeting between the president and the foreign minister of the Russian Federation. The literal shitstorm was covered by Russia’s news, who were actually allowed in. American press was barred, so it missed out on all the brown money shot. I’d call that one a success regardless.
The second time involved a nice, innocent gift. Master Academy has a nice new lawn ornament featuring a snowman’s head on a pike. I doublechecked it on cameras. It made it through nice and clear.
So it is time.
After that mess, throwing together a signal intercepter on the fly was a cakewalk. One quick trip to a local Walmart got me the parts I needed and a cake. I needed a cake. I need all the cakes. I’m tired of thinking straight. I’m tired of helping people. But why am I only telling that to y’all when I could be telling the world? That’s the question that drove me to interrupt CSPAN in the middle of coverage about the recently-passed healthcare bill. I think it’s called the American You’re-Fucked-If-You’re-Raped Act. Does it actually matter? It’s time to paint over some shades of black.
“Is this thing on?” I began my interruption of the regularly-scheduled broadcast with the traditional opening and the camera pointed at my crotch. “Easy there, big fellow. Let’s not hog the spotlight.”
I lifted it up to show off my lovely helmet with its three “eyes” arranged in an upside down triangle above a set of grinning fangs, the helmet behind it spreading out like a samurai’s with jagged, fan-like sections zigging and zagging around the back. I held the camera out enough to catch me waving at it. “Hello there, boys and girls. You might wondering ‘Who is this incredibly handsome and well-endowed man on my TV screen,’ and ‘How do I know about those two qualities if he’s wearing armor?’ First, I’d like to begin by informing all of you, every single one, that it’s because I plowed your mother.”
With speeches, you sometimes break the ice with a joke. With evil monologues, it’s better to go for a nice insult. It also gave me time to make sure I was playing in a lot of important places. I’d stolen the show from Congress, but even they got to watch.
“I am the one and only, the great and devious, the savior of humanity and the devil on its shoulder… I am Psychopomp Gecko. You might think I returned from the grave, but the truth is I never left it. I’ve just been digging it deeper and deeper to hold the rest of humanity. But then I got to thinking. Got to just chill for a bit without people coming after me. See, I’m tired. Over and over again, I do this world a service. When I do petty crimes, I’m awesomely entertaining. Does anyone laugh? When I point out the flaws of the world, does anyone accept the criticism? When I save the world, does anyone thank me?”
I shook my head, then adjusted the camera to get a good look at the D-bomb. “This is another weapon of the same type I used to defeat the aliens. This one, interestingly enough, has the power to take out an entire country and leave the rest of the planet more-or-less intact. Aim it a little lower and Earth loses a continent. I have rigged this thing to be able to teleport anywhere in the world my heart desires. As a demonstration…” I raised a smaller bomb, a D-hopper couple. One press of the button and I’m giving the finger to a crowd of power armor soldiers in my memorial. Another press and I’m standing on the floor of the House of Representatives.
I may have decided to break my own rule about not trying to use my home universe for teleporting this once.
I panned the camera around so everyone can see. “So it’s a bomb that can go anywhere, that I can access from anywhere, and, before anyone decided to get clever, that includes the planet’s core if something were to happen to me. I’ve created my fair share of dead men, so I know a thing or two about their switches. My heart stops, we all go boom. The bomb is tampered with, we all go boom. My brain waves get too inactive, boom again. Radiation poisoning, liver failure, chlamydia, a damn rag full of chloroform on my face and it’ll be Vengaboys time all over again! Boom, boom, boom, boom.”
I spun around, my arms wide, soaking in the hammy glory. Oh yeah, I haven’t gotten to do this in too long. As an added bonus, I could practically hear the groaning in Empyreal City. Some years back, I made that song play all over the place. I was drowning them in an earworm. Some people got PTSD from this pop shit.
“What do you want?” cried out someone.
That elicited a chuckle from me. “Good question. Nobody asks that with any sincerity. Hasn’t anyone considered that I want a little bit of safety and security myself? Maybe a world that isn’t diving headfirst into world war?”
“World war? There’s no damn world wars here. This is the problem today, people exaggerate and blow things out of proportion!” An older man stood up nearby. Balding, with grey hair. Probably fucks a staffer and gets away with it because he’s been serving since before the polio vaccine. Opening his mouth like that did nothing for his chins.
I turned my head toward him slowly. “Really? You’re pulling that shit. Maybe you oughta legalize some weed to take care of that glaucoma. Or better yet, shut up before I really blow things out of proportion and drop a legislative bombshell on the floor.” He shut his mouth, saving me from looking at quite so many folds on his face. “Good, because what I came to talk to y’all about today is what everyone else wants. Because Russia wants something. And China. And Ricca. And the U.S. Of A. You want what is in my head, even if you don’t know it yet. Because I can leap tall galaxies in a single bound. I can scorch entire planets with a wave of my hand.”
I swept my hand around the room, causing several people to flinch. Then I pointed to various suited white guys around me. I must have landed in the Republican seats. “And you, and you, and you… can’t do jack. While I hold the knowledge to destroy a star. So why am I here?”
I looked around, giving the question a moment to soak even as I jumped up on a desk nearby, kicking over papers and folders full of women. “I want the American Dream. I want to sell out and settle down! Strap a sword and pistol by your side, Froggie, because it’s time to go a-courtin’. I’m giving one lucky country the chance to buy me out. You get the bomb, you get my knowledge of trans-universe travel, hell, you even get two Slap-chops for the price of one for all the tea in China or anything else you can imagine to pay me.”
“Pay?” asked another a generic white guy in a suit that won his high school’s award for least distinguishable even when he’s alone.
“Yes, pay!” I turned and pointed at him, stomping on a phone and making the jowlsy Congressman nearby wince.
“You’re a madman!” said a representative from the great state of liver failure if the spots are any indication.
I hopped off and sauntered on over. I pulled him close and caressed his bald head. “See Spot. See Spot drink. Spot gets too many damn bottles of scotch as birthday presents.” I laughed and pushed him away gently before reciting a different sort of literature. I really am a fan of this world. “’But I don’t want to go among mad people,’ Alice remarked. ‘Oh, you can’t help that,’ said the cat, ‘we’re all mad here. I’m mad, you’re mad.’ ‘How do you know I’m mad?’ said Alice. ‘You must be,’ said the cat, ‘or you wouldn’t have come here.’”
I spread my arms, making sure the camera could still get me in at least a little of the shot. “Welcome to MY cold war.” I sighed and hopped up to sit on Al Coholic’s desk. “Now, what am I offered for all the powers of the multiverse?”
Damn, it feels good to be a gangster.
Meanwhile, back at the lair, my sensors reported a disturbance in the universal barrier. I had a bad feeling about that. I patched myself into the optics of the drone I brought back, which had only been partially reassembled and left in a pile in the corner with scraps.
The figure that walked around the lair wore close-fitting armor painted so black it looked like a walking hole. I couldn’t make out any more details about it than that. It absorbed the light so thoroughly, I couldn’t make out any lines. It stepped over to the dimensional bomb and knelt, examining it. Reaching out to touch it, the person’s hand went right through it. They swept their hand back and forth, then up and down until they picked up the holodisc and shut it off.
There’s a bomb, but I didn’t want to just leave it where anyone could get to it. It’s a bomb. It’s dangerous. Someone could get hurt. No, I left it in storage. As far as anyone else knows, it’s a crate of porn-strength bed springs.
The person in the stealth armor stood up and suddenly seemed to grow. The slim suit transformed, this time into thick and bulky armor. They walked and moved as gracefully as if nude, though. The armor was round, like a large armadillo doing the ballet. He or she or they or it pulled out a disk that glowed in a circuit once before turning their head toward the drone. There was no seeing past the visor, which looked almost as deep and dark as the other armor. That dude pressed it back against the chest armor where it meshed so perfectly as to be indistinguishable, then whipped out a sword from its right hand. Something glowed on the end and shot at the drone, the image disappearing.
It reminds me of a pairing sometimes used by the special forces of the country that used me back on my old world. Over here, they have a spotter and a sniper. Over there, it’s a hunter and a killer.
This is going to be a problem, depending on how quickly they acclimate and how many they bring over altogether. That person doesn’t look like those cursed rangers, and they’re all the way over in Vancouver. Good thing I’m camped out in the refurbished Watergate hotel under an alias now, keeping an eye on my dark web site as offers pour in. Wow, China actually offered all the tea. The British are going to be so miffed.