Many Worlds Theory

Entry by: Alex Fleet

20th November 2015
Our Other World

My new one comes near, sidles up close to me and we float, the two of us together.

She suckles hungrily, her pristine body demanding the goodness I supply to her. Nearby is the one who fed me when I was tiny, the one who taught me all I know, gently nurturing me and guiding me, along with the others she was with at the time. I’ve returned to her with my own offspring; it is good to be with her again. Those I am with now will help my own young one: we help each other.

After a while, we rest peacefully, the group dozing, a couple of the elders keeping watch.

In due course, a few of the little ones grow restive, move across and bump each other, flick each the other back and before we know it they are chasing each other, play fighting in amongst the older ones of us. We all set off again. We’ve heard of a shoal nearby and a couple of the scouts disappear into the distance to investigate.

The others are all around us as we head towards the sun. Some have been with the group for a long time, others have only recently joined us after a meeting of several groups. It’s interesting seeing how they attempt to fit in and their communication is strange, their dialect making it difficult to understand them at times.

After a while, the scouts come back and the message is quickly relayed and we speed off towards the shoal. We split into pairs and small groups. I’m at the back as I can’t move too fast with my little one, but others will come in towards the shoal from the left and right, from above and below.

In a fury of flashing scales and hissing water we gather them together, a seething mass of fish rushing around in a panicked circle. Whichever way they go we are there.

Then we feast.

We are replete. We cruise slowly, then when a larger cousin comes gliding past, the more energetic give chase, leaping behind and beside him. Then he is replaced with another game. There is the tortuous whir from a shadow on the surface, speeding rapidly above us. Several of us give chase, and they are quickly with the speeding silhouette skimming over the wave tops above us.

I’ve been there myself. It’s fun! We ride the white churning waves that the shadow makes, leaping and darting, diving beneath the water’s surface and leaping out again. Always there is the noise from the shadow, whining, whirring. We can’t hear what is going on around us because of the noise and we avoid the shower of bubbles at the shadow’s tail. We know it will cut us to pieces if we touch it.

Sometimes the shadow stops and we swim around it, looking out the water at this other world, beyond the surface. We breathe the air from above the surface, but we cannot live in it. On the shadow, floating above us on the surface, there are those who seem to live only on the surface and are dependent on the shadows to support them on the surface of the water. Occasionally a few of them come down into the water and join us.

We hear them make noises to each other so we know they communicate with each other.

They might shout at each other ‘It’s a Bottle-nose’ and ‘Dolphin’ but to us it is a meaningless jumble of screams, like the cry of the birds, caught on the wind.

Because these creatures of the shadows cannot live where we live, but want the fish we also look for, they have to let down nets to scoop up the fish. There must be a lot of the shadow-world-others because they take a lot of the fish. They take some of us, too, at times.

They seem to be clumsy because sometimes they can’t hold the end of the nets: they let them go and the nets float away. Usually we can see the nets when we are swimming along, but other times we get tangled up.

Sometimes the shadow-world-others help us. Not too long ago, one of the others in our group was caught up in a fishing net. One of the shadows came past slowly and the one trapped in the net went up to see them.

Those on the shadow leant over the side and cut him free with sharp things. He was very lucky. Usually if one of us gets trapped we look after him, but we can’t untangle the nets and after a while a shark will come along and even though we fight him off, eventually he will make a meal of our friend.

We miss them, the ones who no longer are here. Sometimes we live with them for a long time and for them not to be with us is very upsetting.

We know that the others from the shadow world must feel the same, so when one of them is in our own world and gets distressed, sometimes we help them back to their floating shadow and we’ll protect them from the sharks too, if they come near.

We treat them, those from above the surface, with respect when they enter our world. I can’t recall any of us ever harming one.

They visit occasionally from where the seabed comes up and disappears upwards out of sight towards the sky. That is where they live, another world we can only see from the edge of our own world. They have two long, narrow flippers which they can use to walk on, then a further pair which they use for doing things with.

In some places where the seabed goes up into the air, these four-flippered things come and drop stuff into the sea. I don’t think it is for us to eat. Usually it is dirty and smelly. Maybe they don’t want it any more.

In some places, the water doesn’t taste so salty, I think it is water that comes into the sea from this other world above our own surface. Usually there is the same sort of stuff in that, too. Some of it floats on the surface, most of it is down with us, below the surface. Eventually it sinks to the bottom where it forms a sort of a layer. It is usually light in weight but very strong. If a turtle pokes its head into a loop of it and can’t get out of it, the ring stays there until the turtle dies. Sometimes there will be a sheet floating in the water and it looks just like a jelly-fish – which the turtles like to eat.

Very occasionally some of the four-flippered creatures try to clear the stuff that is washed up along the edge of where the seabed goes into the sky. We don’t know what they want it for. We have no use for it. All this stuff floats along and often we see the fish eating it. We’ve tried it and it doesn’t taste of fish, but inevitably in the excitement of feeding we must swallow bits of it. Some of the bits are really small. So I suppose the tiny fish must eat that stuff. Then they are eaten by the bigger fish. Then we eat them. Hey: I’ve just thought: if the fish are eating it, I guess we must be too because it will be in them. I wonder how small the bits go and how small the fish and stuff are that eat it.

There’s all shapes and sizes, brightly coloured. The birds find it very tempting. They come diving out the sky, plunge into the water and swallow chunks of it, then fly back to wherever they live. They must be full of the stuff.

I think it is something to do with those from the other world, those who live out of the water.

They don’t know much about us.

We don’t know much about them.

Except that the stuff they chuck into the sea is all around us now, floating above and below us, down into the depths, little tiny bits of bright colours that don’t taste good.