Shuffle sat back from his workbench and rubbed his eyes.
He had been leaning in to the same fiddly design for hours and the sheer effort of concentration was stitching a knot in the centre of his forehead.
He knew he couldn’t give up, it’s just no one had told him how hard this was going to be.
His father Chaos and his mother Lucky just did this sort of stuff at the breakfast table like it was nothing. A quick squint of the eyes, a wave of the hand and whoosh ! There it was. New matter.
Dad’s brother Entropy was the family genius though. He was the creating force behind some of the compounds that everyone just thinks have been here forever – things like water, salt and Kraft Singles.
Dad said Entropy had some sort of condition that meant he kept on growing all the time so he couldn’t do the detailed work any more, he said these days Entropy was working on whole systems of galaxies, building huge factories instead of just single atoms and molecules.
It sounded cool, but Shuffle thought it must be lonely up there weaving wormholes and juggling gravity. Kind of made you grateful for just hanging out with a friend, playing some tunes, maybe going to a party and playing at being a DJ.
“Right. This stupid matter isn’t going to invent itself”, thought Shuffle, so he cracked his knuckles, stretched his back and focused all the energy he had on the space just above the surface of the workbench.
The air grew brighter and energy spat and sizzled, trying to stop him from catching it and turning it into matter. The plasma was dripping now, little globs of white sticky stuff escaping the shape he intended for them.
“No fucking way” he thought and pushed the drops back into the shape that was so nearly forming in front of him and then all of a sudden the air popped and an object fell onto the worktop.
Shuffle looked at it in amazement. His very first creation. Right here, in his very own room.
The family business was safe. He could do it ! The sense of relief was overcome by the rush of celebration. He had to tell someone. Show someone.
“Mum ! Mum ! Come up here ! I’ve done it !”
Lucky walked into her son’s room and looked at the new thing.
“It’s lovely dear”, she said.
“What is it ?”
“It’s called an iPod Mum”
“Well whatever it is, it’s lovely dear. Well done” and she kissed him on the head.