Journey to the Other Side
What is on the other side of a black hole?
Who would be desperate enough to try to find out?
"Crazy!" Rod Cash said.
"What?" replied Steve Stone.
"You can stop worrying. I'm crazy and the wild and crazy ones
never get caught," he bragged as he increased the small ship's speed to
1600xlight speed. He knew the pirate ship's FTL (faster than light)
engines couldn't maintain 1600xlight speed long without overheating.
"The Alliance frigate can out run and out gun us!" Steve Stone
said. He leaned forward in his copilot seat to check the pursuit on the
"Shut up and we'll lose 'em. We have enough stolen loot in the
cargo bay to be rich for the rest of our lives."
"They just increased speed to 2000xlight speed," said Stone.
"We'll be within their weapons range in five minutes! You said they'd
never follow us into the Sagittarius constellation deep space. How do
you plan on getting away?"
Cash didn't answer but quickly punched some new coordinates
into the computer of the small two-man freighter. Then he hit the
course change engage control.
"How do you plan on getting away?" Stone said again.
"I have a crazy idea. We're going straight into the middle of
the V4641 black hole. They'll never follow us there."
"What? The black hole gravity will crush us like a tin can!"
Stone's outburst was deafening in the small, cramped two-man control
"Not if we fly through at faster than light speed. We'll find
out what is on the other side. No one has tried that yet. Scientists
have only tried sending probes through at slower than light speed."
"That is suicide, you maniac!" Stone said. "What makes you
think there is anything on the other side of a black hole? If they
catch us, I only get ten years in a penal colony. You're the one who
murdered those two people on Space Station #5."
"You forgot the three people I bumped off on Mars colony. Mars
still has a death penalty." Cash said with a laugh.
Stone quickly unbuckled his safety harness. He stood up to
wrestle the controls from his crazy partner, but Cash had already had
his electric sidearm out and pointed at Stone.
"Smile, buddy," Rod Cash said. The two fugitives silently
starred at each other in an angry face off in the small control room.
Stone slowly backed away and sat down in the copilot chair.
"Aren't you gonna smile?" Cash repeated.
Stone didn't smile. He was too busy screaming as the small
pirate ship dove into the heart of the deadly V4641 black hole. The
ship immediately zipped through to an unknown side of the black hole.
"We're still alive. Is the ship OK?" Cash said as he dropped
the ship out of light speed.
"The ship is in one piece," replied Stone as he scanned the
region. "But this space looks exactly like where we came from. "Wait --
the Alliance ship is here on the other side of the black hole! They are
sending us a message."
The message downloaded to the video monitor: "This is
the Planet Group Militia. You are ordered to surrender."
Cash franticly punched in new coordinates and turned the ship
"That is weird," Stone said. "They called themselves the
Planet Group not the Planetary Alliance." He scanned the militia ship
and found that the strange cigar shaped ship was twice the size of an
"They certainly weren't the welcome wagon," said Cash as he
hit the light speed switch and piloted the ship back into the black
The small craft rocketed safely to another side of the black
hole. As Cash dropped the ship out of light speed, he was dismayed at
the scanner viewer showing two pursuing ships waiting for him.
"They have two ships now," Cash said as he deftly maneuvered a
"It isn't our enemies chasing us anymore," said Stone.
"What do you mean?"
"We discovered what happens if you go through a black hole.
Apparently black holes are like a portal to an alternate universe or
realm. Theoretically there are an infinite number of alternate
universes. Each one is just slightly different. Each time we go through
the black hole we travel to another alternate universe that is slightly
different than ours."
"Let's get out of here and try again until we find an
alternate universe that doesn't have the law trying to catch us," Cash
loudly as the ship plunged back into the black hole.
The ship shot out to the other side of the black hole to
another alternate universe. As Cash dropped the ship out of light
speed, he was disgusted to find three pursuit ships were waiting for
them. The dark box-shaped vessels did not look like any earth ship he
had ever seen before.
"Oh no! Look at the radio video monitor," said Stone. The
creature on the video screen was not entirely human. There definitely
were two arms, a head and hair. However, the face had one eye in the
middle of the forehead.
On the monitor a message in a strange language was downloaded:
A quick check on translator showed that the computer did not
recognize the language as any of the major languages on Earth. They had
entered an alternate universe where man had evolved very differently.
"We're never going to find the way back to our universe!"
Stone said. "What kind of special hell is this?"
"We have to try again."
"No, you fool!" said Stone. "Every time we try, we keep
getting farther and farther from our universe and our reality!" He
jumped up to grab the controls, but Cash pulled the trigger before
Stone realized the gun was out. The strong electric charge instantly
tore apart the Stone's central nervous system and left a sickening
smell of burned flesh in the small control room.
"Then you get your wish and don't have to come with me," Rod
yelled at his former partner.
He steered a 180-degree turn and dove into the black hole
again. As he came out the other side into a new alternate universe, he
was relieved to find no ships waiting to arrest him. He scanned the
system and found no sign of pursuit ships. He was alone.
"Jackpot. I took a chance and I'm a free man," he said.
He dragged Steve Stone's limp, lifeless body to the airlock
and stashed it inside. Without remorse or hesitation, he hit the eject
control and jettisoned his former luckless partner into the cold, black
tomb of space.
"You bugged out a little too soon, buddy," he mumbled. "Too
bad you don't get to enjoy your share of the loot."
Returning to the control room, Rod Cash set a long-range
course for earth. He hit engage and fired the FTL engines. "It's worth
the long trip to see if I can finally stop running and sell some cargo
on Earth," he thought.
Twelve months later, Cash dropped his ship out of FTL and
moved to a low Earth orbit. He was surprised to find no radio messages
from his home planet. Orbiting around the night side of the planet, he
was dismayed to see no lights from modern populated cities. He refused
to think the worst and speculated that the black hole had dropped him
into an alternative universe in which mankind was slow in building
It seemed logical to use the shuttle-lander to get a closer
look. Powering up the shuttle, he forced himself to think optimistic.
After all, a life on an uncivilized Earth would still be better deal
than facing a death sentence. As the shuttle dropped out of the clouds,
he had his first glimpse of a vastly different world than the earth he
knew. The vegetation looked unfamiliar and there was no sign of
villages or human life. He set the shuttle down on a grassy plain of
what should be Western United States.
As he stepped down the shuttle's steel stairs to his mother
planet, he found himself in a strange, alien world. The mid-day
temperature was a hot 100 degrees and the air was seemed to be
strangely acidic. The plant life looked alien to him. In the distance
were several flying reptiles.
Searching for answers, his confused mind thought of the theory
of a cataclysmic asteroid crashing into the earth in prehistoric times.
He reasoned that in this alternative universe, an asteroid never
crashed into the earth drove the dinosaurs into extinction. On this
earth, the mammals never rose to prominence and human beings never came
"Crazy," Rod Cash said to himself. This place was too wild and
crazy to live in. In a daze, he sat down on a large rock and looked
around in equal amounts of amazement, horror and disgust. He considered
another trip back to the V4641 black hole to try another alternative
universe. But each time he tried the black hole, he seemed to get
further and further from his reality. He realized that he was probably
doomed to a life sentence of never finding his way home. All his life,
his bold and creative thinking and self-centered resourcefulness had
given him an edge and kept him ahead of the game. For the first time in
his life, Rod Cash didn't know what to do.
The twenty-foot-tall Tyrannosaurs Rex dinosaur that was lazily
dozing in the sun, smelled and heard something. It quickly stood up.
Then it leisurely jogged over, opened its jaws and scooped up the
strange, little, two-legged creature.
© 2017 Gordon Rowlinson
Bio: Mr. Rowlinson hails from Massachusetts.
E-mail: Gordon Rowlinson
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