Five Dimensional Thinking was the fourth story in the Bernice Summerfield anthology Life During Wartime. It was written by Nick Wallace.

Summary Edit

Marshal Mushtaq Anson has been interrogating Irving Braxiatel, trying to get information about something. He hasn't made any progress, so he lets Benny visit Brax, hoping to learn something from their conversation.

Brax tells Benny the Axis think he has a time machine. He also tells her that Anson led the conquest of Hulzarr Prime and is an intelligent man.

Later, wandering the grounds, Benny comes across Bev, who is carrying a clipboard. She is pretending to study the architecture, but in reality she is marking out the gaps in the Axis sensor net. She also shows Benny some Hulzarrian carp in the fountain; the carp secrete nerve toxins that Bev is hoping to use against the Axis.

When Benny next meets with Brax, there are Axis guards searching for something throughout the room. Brax ignores them, focusing instead on holograms of operas and viewscreens of planets occupied by the Axis. He asks Benny if she sees the pattern, and when she doesn't, he starts destroying the viewscreens. She leaves.

Benny visits Brax again, and this time he is calmly cooking. Benny still can't figure out what he means by a pattern.

In her rooms, Benny studies the holographic Hulzarrian opera that she took from Brax' rooms. Bev enters and boasts that the resistance have mapped the sensor net gaps and that Benny's rooms are now off the sensor net. Suddenly the pieces fall into place and Benny rushes to Brax'.

When she arrives, she finds both Brax and Anson dying, poisoned by the Hulzarrian carp that Brax had prepared. Benny learns that the pattern seen by Brax is that a future version of himself is behind the Axis occupation. He thinks that by killing himself he can prevent the occupation from happening. After several fruitless arguments, Benny suggests to Brax that his body can survive extreme trauma, and what if this action is what leads his future self to help the Axis? She asks for the antidote, and he gives it to her. She forces it into Anson, and Brax takes some himself.

Benny thinks that Anson won't kill him for this, because he knows Brax wants to die. She figures he'll just get a month of solitary, plenty of time for him to work out how to overthrow the Axis.

Characters Edit

References Edit

Notes Edit

  • This story is narrated by Benny.

Continuity Edit

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