THE QUANTUM TRAIL

Your rating: None
3
Average: 3 (3 votes)

I’d been after him for 2 years. A nasty spin operator, that one. Me and my horse, Hamilton, had been following him down The Quantum Trail from Heisenberg to Dodge City and still he escaped me. The uncertainty was maddening. I still remember that chilling night when he robbed our home and assaulted my wife. It left a terrible scar - destroying our commutation relationship and our marriage.

I left my job as sheriff to pursue him. A couple of days later, I found an old energy operator named Niels, who remembered him from a a night’s drinking at the Lonesome Bar in Particle City.

“He was a mean hombre. Had a gamma ray pistol tucked into his belt and a sneer on his face. I said to him - ‘listen fella, do you want to be a particle or a wave? In Particle City, you can’t have both a pistol and a sneer. It’s one or the other.”

The mean hombre just twirled his gun, downed the dregs of his beer and sneeringly sauntered toward the door. “I’m both a particle and a wave, have a gun and a sneer, and that’s how I stay alive.” And he walked out into the night.

Niels told me that the mean hombre seemed to be heading south. I sped in that direction down The Quantum Trail. Eight hours later, and nary a clue to the whereabouts of MH (that’s what I got to thinkin’ of him as I didn’t know his moniker), I stopped for the night at a run-down hotel - The Paradox.

I was greeted by the owner, Nadia Neutrino, a good looking broad with an oscillating shape that defied her electric neutrality. “Yeah, I remember him, the guy with the laser pistol and the sneer. We had a good time together - terrific orbital angular moments. But he had to leave the next day, said that he had a job waiting for him. From the curl of his lip and his double-slit eyes, I knew he was up to something bad.”

I asked her if she knew where he was headed. “Down the Quantum Trail,” she said. “There ain’t much around these parts until you get to the town of Schrodinger. They have a lot of nice stores there and the Matrix Bank is the largest one in the county.”

I knew then what MH was up to. He was going to rob the Matrix Bank. I saddled up Hamilton and set off for Schrodinger. If I could get there in time, I could set up a trap for that no-good villain. All I needed was a cat, poison, an alarm, a Geiger counter and a hammer.

I reached Schrodinger that afternoon and found all was calm. I went to the general goods store and bought some rat poison, a fire alarm, a hammer and a box. I was lucky that the Geiger Chain had a store in the town and I bought one of their radioactive counters. I picked up a stray cat on the way to the Matrix Saloon.

I sat myself in a dark corner table and ordered a Compton Cognac (the best medicine I knew to loosen up my buzz.) Inside the box, I attached the counter to the hammer positioning the hammer on top of the bottle of poison. I put the cat in and attached her paw to the fire alarm switch and gave her some catnip. I sealed the box.

I sashayed over to the Matrix Bank and asked the guard for the manager. “Sorry ,Mr. Max is out. It’s All Planck’s Day and he’s the leader of the parade. The Quark and Lepton bands are in competition, and Mr. Max will decide this years’s winner.”

Perfect! Walking over to Mr. Max’s empty desk, I hid the box in the closed-in knee hole. I walked out the door and settled in one of the rocking chairs, popping a wad of chewing tabac into my mouth. It was an hour later when I heard the music of the marching bands as the parade turned the corner.

As the parade passed by, one of the marchers headed into the bank.This must be MH! I fell in behind him just in time to hear him say.
“O.K. you varmints. Loosen up and listen up!. I’m here to rob this here bank and if anyone tries to stop me I’ll use my gamma-ray pistol.” With that, he shot a warning blast towards at the ceiling.

As he neared the teller’s cubby, a loud alarm rang out. MH stopped in his tracks. (Little did he know that the radioactive counter inside the box had detected the gamma-rays from his pistol, dropping the hammer onto the poison bottle, breaking it, the contents of the bottle killing the cat, the cat’s body falling upon the fire alarm switch and sending off the alarm!)

MH stopped in his tracks, and in that moment I sprayed him with my Dynamic Casimir Emitter. He crumpled up. It was little-known that he suffered from photon phobia, but I knew about mean hombres. I lassoed him up, slung him over Hamilton’s back and brought him to the jail.

It made my day!

The citizens of Schrodinger were grateful. They still celebrate that day every year. And I, Al Einstein, as mayor of the town, lead the parade.

About the Author: 
At 85, I still love to write and was intrigued by the contest's nomenclature. I spent 10 years in cancer research and 20 years as a H.S. Chemistry teacher. I am now giving talks on Astronomy to my fellow senior independent-living dwellers.