Cube One

The trouble with returning boxes

I was watching the news last night and saw something that really upset me. I don't get mad too often these days so my body doesn't know what to do when it happens. I stayed up all night, kicking around in a fuss. I read more online about what I had seen on the news. That just made things worse. I got a couple hours of sleep and then I was back at it.

What set me off was this report about some guy in Nebraska of all places had found a pitch black cube, probably a half liter in size and weighing maybe a pound, in his basement or something. The important bit is that this cube, some time after the guy moved it, would always return to this exact same spot in his basement.

The guy figures this out and starts doing "experiments," moves the cube and waits for it to come back into place. First thing he tries is just making sure whoever he's living with isn't jerking him off so he treks that cube out of town, all the way to Wyoming, the capital of of all places. He drops it off, heads home and is greeted by this cube sitting in his basement. It beat him home.

Next the dude figures that it is supernatural but only when he's not looking. Classic staring contest montage: dude makes it like five minutes let's say without blinking while he's sitting across from the cube somewhere in Wyoming again. Boom, in a flash, it's gone. He calls home and it is back in his basement. Seems like a waste of gas to me, it's just gotta be not in the exact place, right?

"Okay, this is a thing," the guy says. "So what makes this location so special that the cube always returns to it." I don't think cubes are aware of human constructs like latitude and longitude but this guy pulled on those threads for awhile. Nothing came out of it. The house itself wasn't special either. It was just built. The people constructing the house didn't notice apparently. I don't buy that for a second. If the cube had always been there, someone had to have noticed it coming back day after day.

The guys gets some sense to stop slicing up the ozone layer with his dumb midnight trips to Wyoming and buys a camera. Now he's on about, "Well the cube always returns to rest on this basement floor. So if I dig up a hole underneath will it return there instead?" Like this cube's supposed to stick to the ground. He places the camera, then moves the cube away, and when it pops back into place it appears in mid air at the usual altitude and then falls into the little crater this guy's clawed out of his man cave. It keeps going, resetting itself. If he'd put some dots on it he'd have himself a nice auto-rolling die I suppose.

Then the opposite test: if you put something where it's supposed to appear where does it go. Spoiler: it goes exactly there. From what his guy can tell the matter previously occupying the space is just gone. It's not shoved away to make room. It's just erased. Dude's football didn't even have time to pop, it just wrapped around the cube like crusts of a sandwich from a kid who didn't like the crusts. A fish bowl of water just lost that much water to be refilled with the cube. So that means the air that was there all those other times was just being erased too.

Gotta give this guy credit: he managed to convince other people to give a shit about this. These days you can practically fake anything and with a budget, man, those magicians can script and wire up anything these days. But yeah, this guy found some scientists that were adamant about disproving the internet blog spam about this black cube. If the cube was real, it was breaking some fundamental laws. So now this cube has dozens of people running tests on it. Must be a crowded basement with everyone coming and going. Scientists are flocking from all over the world to this random dude's basement in Nebraska to watch this cube teleport back to square one day after day.

That's basically all they know now, or at least what the news is reporting about it. That's the thing with "science" these days: show people something they can't explain and they try to suppress it until it fits their view of the world. Like where do these people get off, thinking of the world as anything but random chance and unmitigated chaos.

So why's this news pissing me off so much? Well, I have one of those cubes too. It sits right under my living room couch. When I moved into this place the previous owner told me about this cube, told me to cover it up because it'd be an eyesore. I hadn't own a house before. I thought, "Sure, everyone must have one of these things." You know, like a boiler or something. If I knew I could get famous just by filming my cube get back under the couch, maybe I would have.

I feel really stupid. I've been living here like eight years. If there's only two of us then I had a massive head start on this. Now if I come out and say I also have a teleporting cube everyone's gonna think I'm trolling. If they do believe me then I'm gonna get a bunch of nerds in my house too. The news won't be paying top dollar for the second teleporting cube story. I won't get well known so the government will just throw me in a cell somewhere so I don't spill the beans.

I'm still conflicted though because maybe they run all the tests on my cube and my cube turns out to be cooler or whatever and I become more famous than this other one. Now I've gotta decide what to do. I hate doing work, and that's what this seems like. I kinda want more cube owners to come forward so it's not so risky but then I won't get much out of coming forward, so time is of the essence.

That's what's going on with me, mom. What do you think I should do here?