Monday, July 20, 2009

The Six Spheres of Lubanjawi

Under the present understanding of quantum physics (or at least my understanding of the present understanding) the minimal unit of distance is Planck's Length (~1.6 × 10−35 meters) and the minimal unit of time is Planck's Time (~5.4 × 10−44 seconds). These are not arbitrarily short units of measurement, they are natural units representing the physical limits of the universe. Literally nothing can be measured at smaller than one Planck's Length and nothing can happen at shorter than than one Planck's Time. The concept of the infinitesimally small unit of length or an instantaneous event are erroneous. The universe is chunkier than that.

Not so in the campaign world encompassing Asteroid 1618 and the World of Cinder. Scales smaller than 1.6 × 10−35 meters and quicker than 5.4 × 10−44 seconds is where anything becomes possible. Junior gods often pick a small piece of the quantum foam for their early experiments in universe creation. You can fit a lot of cosmos into a Planck's Length, as long as you only allow it to exist for less than a Planck's Time. Most of these universes are completely useless or utterly deadly to the average adventurer, even if you could locate one. But at least one god-made yocto-verse is worth the effort, providing you can get there: the Six Spheres of Lubanjawi.

To an outside observer the Six Spheres are nothing more than a single molecule of benzene, good ol' C6H6. This particular molecule is slightly out of ordinary in that one of the carbon atoms is the isotope Carbon-13, possessing one more neutron than the other members of the benzene ring. But if you can shrink down below the scale of absolute smallness and travel through time to the exactingly right miniscule fraction of a second, you can visit the worlds of Lubanjawi.

At this impossible scale, during this impossible time, the carbon atoms are like unto planets, each with its own hydrogen atom sun. Looking up into the sky, the other worlds hang heavy above, even the most distant carbon atom on the ring appearing larger than the sun or moon appears in our own sky. Thus each of the six spheres has five suns and five moons. The stars in the sky are the other molecules floating in the solution that contains the Six Spheres, they dance in the ever-twilight following the principles of Brownian motion.

One can travel to the other Spheres by means of the Electron Bridges that occasionally arc between the worlds or between a world and its closest sun. Catching a ride on an Electron Bridge is a quick way to eat a buncha d6's in lightning damage, but some wizards know secret spells to enjoy a safe passage between the worlds.

And why would an adventurer want to visit the sub-microscopic flash-in-a-pan universe of Lubanjawi? Because some say that unlike so many other such teeny worlds, Lubanjawi was not a one-off experiment by a fledgling deity. In the whispers between the winds it is sometimes heard that aeons ago a long dead god hid The Most Fabulous Object in the World on one of the atom-planets of Lubanjawi.