Border Guards

by Greg Egan

Probability contours.


The scent of the grass, the shouts of the players, the soles of his feet striking the ground, resonated with every other moment he’d spent the same way, bridging the centuries, binding his life together. He never truly felt the scale of it when he sought it out deliberately; it was always small things, tightly focused moments like this, that burst the horizon of his everyday concerns and confronted him with the astonishing vista.

In the city of Noether, Jamil decides on the spur of the moment to join a game of quantum soccer to celebrate his emergence from sadness. During the game, he encounters a stranger, a woman who’s travelled further than anyone in Noether, and who has witnessed the one thing that nobody in the city has ever faced: the death of another human being.

Publication history

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Border Guards / created Monday, 12 April 1999
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Copyright © Greg Egan, 1999. All rights reserved.