Dr. Emmett Duram stepped into the phase chamber and the door slid closed behind him. He watched Will the technician through the radiant glass, punching buttons, turning dials, moving levers and checking his read-out screens. Will leaned forward and clicked on the microphone, “Okay, I’m all set, Dr. Duram. You ready?” Emmett took a deep breath and stated calmly, “Ready when you are, Will.”
Will typed in the command to start the sequence. He saw the lights dim briefly as the generators kicked in, drawing significant power to fire the beta wave transmitters. It took a lot of energy to create beta waves of such frequency and strength, and they were dangerous and tricky to control, which is why they were limited to twenty seconds at a time. Through the thick protective glass, Dr. Duram’s whole body seemed to blur as the beta waves increased in frequency. Soon the technician saw the tell-tale image-doubling that signaled the phase-shift was beginning.
Inside the chamber, Emmett’s vision of Will was slowly overlapped by a secondary image, like seeing two things at once. Soon the secondary image became the dominant one, and a few seconds later Will faded away totally, leaving Durham staring into a now-familiar room. Emmett stood very still. Phase-shifting didn’t allow for much movement, so you had to just use your eyes. It looked like a fairly ordinary room. Its familiar feel had led them to theorize that the room was in some other dimension, perhaps an alternate version of their own reality.
The room’s view wasn’t perfect, being dark and out of focus, but he could see a small window on the left side and a doorway on the right. The edges of the room’s view were sharper than the middle, which was fairly dim. He looked around, straining to see more. For a second he thought he detected some movement, but then the timer went off and the beta waves subsided, taking the mysterious room’s image with them.
He stepped out of the phase chamber, excited but frustrated. “Well?” inquired Will, “See anything new?” “Nothing new” he grumbled, “There has to be a way we can increase the duration or clarity, something we haven’t thought of yet.” Will nodded,“We’ll keep on trying, Dr. Durham. We’ve gotten this far, right? We’ll figure it out.” Emmett smiled, “I sure hope so.”
It was a quarter to midnight in the old house. Dale sipped his black coffee and gazed at the video monitors surrounding his. The team had been set up for hours, hoping for a repeat of last night’s extraordinary events. The ghost sightings they’d documented in the past had been vague at best; a few blurry images, some brief muffled whispers, random meter reading surges. But last night had been different. So different, in fact, that the team had sworn to stay there as long as they possibly could. He looked over at Reggie, busy tweaking settings on various beeping meters and sensing probes. Meanwhile, Sarah was staring out the window into the darkness, obviously bored. She was like that, restless unless there was something happening. She certainly hadn’t been bored last night.
She got up from her window-side seat and walked over to Dale. “Play it again,” she said, “I want to see it just once more.” Dale smiled, reaching over to click open the video-capture file from the previous night, glad to do something besides stare at static monitors. He clicked “Play” and the screen flickered as the current feed was replaced by the previous recording, though it looked much the same. He fast-forwarded until the time signature read twenty-three hundred hours and fifty-nine minutes, then he clicked “Play” again. Reggie hopped up from his equipment and joined them to watch the video they’d all watched dozens of times already.
A few seconds later there appeared a slight glow between the doorway and the window. It grew a bit brighter and larger, taking on the basic shape of a person. After about ten seconds they could clearly tell it was a man, but the features were fuzzy and indistinct. Sarah’s voice on the recording asked, “Hello, can you hear me?” When the man didn’t react she asked again, “Can you hear me? My name is Sarah. I’d like to talk to you.” A few more seconds passed, then the glow quickly faded to black.
A cold shiver went up her back again as she sat back. “Amazing, isn’t it?” said Reggie excitedly, “The beta readings were off the charts, too! I just hope it wasn’t a one-time occurrence, y’know?” She smiled, “I sure hope so.”