The Higgs Boson Anthology: No Matter What by Tom Bladon

[Copyright & all rights you could possibly conceive of strictly belong to Tom Bladon]

“Ah, Dr. Dubois, sit down will you. So tell me are the rumours correct?” the director asked. “Have you detected the elusive Higgs boson? If you have it will be a feather in all our caps.”

“Well sort of. From the results from our experiments last week there is something that could be the Higgs boson.”

Dr Dubois was not looking as excited as he should.

“So why are you looking so glum? You’ve not made a black hole have you?”

“No nothing like that. It’s not quite as the model predicted.”

“Still good news then.”

“Well not quite.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well we have put the amended details for the discovered Higgs boson into the Standard Model, and to make the Standard Model work, we have had to make some adjustments. Once we did, the new revised model fits all our data pretty well, extremely well but…”

“So you have a Model of Everything?”

“I wouldn’t go quite that far. We’re desperately looking for a flaw in our logic but the experimental data and theoretical predictions match.”

“Why? It’s great news isn’t it?”

Dr. Dubois shook his head. “Something unexpected about the nature of the forces of the universe fell out of the model.”

“So what was that?” the director asked after a slight pause.

“Well in the early days of the universe, all the forces were one force. Then as the universe cooled, gravity split off from the other three.”

“Well yes.”

“Then the strong nuclear force, split from the other force.”

“Yes I know, and then the weak and the electromagnetic, split. So what’s the problem?”

“Well they’re not finished splitting.”

“I don’t understand.”

“The forces, there’s one split still to happen, the electromagnetic force has to still to split into two. When the universe cools enough that force will become two separate ones.”

There was a pause before the director asked “Are you serious?”

“Yes I am deadly serious and when they split, atoms will no longer exist. They will fly apart or at least electrons will no longer orbit the nucleus. Well we’re not sure what will happen, but matter as we know it, will no longer exist, never mind life.”

“So when does this happen?”

“Well our calculations need refined and it depends on the age and rate of expansion of the universe and upon the current background temperature. And it may not happen everywhere at once, the universe is a… Anyway our best guess is give or take half a billion years about half a billion…”

“So we have half a billion years before matter starts falling apart.”

“No you don’t understand.”

“But you said…”

“No our best estimate, give or take half a billion years, is half a billion years ago.

~ by yearzerowriters on April 20, 2010.

8 Responses to “The Higgs Boson Anthology: No Matter What by Tom Bladon”

  1. […] No Matter What by Tom Bladon […]

  2. Super. It’s like relationships and our own health. We think we want to know, we KNOW we want to know, and then we find out and realise we didn’t want to know.
    Dan

  3. Love this. The way you knit in an explanation of the elemental forces is great, and essential to your story. Wonderful piece of speculative scifi. And your conclusion that physical reality has already collapsed goes hand in hand with my own submission.

  4. yes…very good — wished the wrong wish from the genie.
    And after the final split, the consciousness force will be fully understood, and how we all commune. Obviously. heh. Great work Tom.

  5. Hello,

    Glad you like it.

    PD Allen, the idea is that we discover that we’re living on borrowed time and matter may suddenly collapse around us, not that it already has. Just thought I should clear up my intentions.

    • Thanks for the clarification. In my story, the collapse happened in the past and what has continued since is a collective illusion. Of course, it feeds on the Hindu idea of Maya – that what we call reality is an illusion.

  6. Ahhhh… We’re all going to die! A good read. I liked the ending.

  7. […] No Matter What by Tom Bladon […]

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