(To start from the beginning: Divine Pi - Installment 1
Divine Pi - Installment 2 and Divine Pi - Installment 3)
|picture found at www.bigquestionsonline.com|
“Why haven't you called?” Mira chided.
“I've been busy. Look, you must look!” Ziven became excited to show her his proof books. He grabbed the first one from the breakthrough with the images in it. Proudly he opened it to show her. She studied it meticulously, turning the pages slowly. Ziven antsed about like a child at school and she stood perfectly collected. I could see the light in her eyes transform from chastisement to bright wonder. She had the passion, it was quite apparent.
“How is that my sister? Not since your Nobel Prize has work been created of this magnitude. I'm at the doorstep, Mira. So close, so close to finding the Divine.”
“Ziven,” she paused and squinted her eyes, “I will never understand why you insist on believing in divinity. This work, this work is stunning. You need no deity behind the numbers to see that.”
“But Mira, surely you haven't abandoned all faith? What could be more proof than this simplicity buried in the complexity of Pi?”
“Ziven, we are children of science. Think clearly. And besides, for whatever reason you pursue this, it does not excuse you from the duties of life.”
“Duties? Duties? What have I neglected that could possibly claim significance enough to priority above this?”
“Family,” she said softly.
“I'm sorry sister. I should have called. But we can take a dinner tonight and tomorrow we will visit our dear Beta.”
“If you had called Ziven, you would have known by now that I have not much time left.”
“What is this time left? What meaning is that?”
Clearly shocked, Ziven merely stared at her stuttering nonsensically.
“But. No. No. It will not happen.”
“Ziven, I do not choose this. It is there and it will stay.”
“But you are getting treatment no?”
“No. It is far too penetrant. I want to live my last two months in peace, surrounded by the people I love. Which includes you.” She pointed at him.
“But I cannot stop my work right now. I cannot pack it up and move it. What shall I do?”
“You need to make a choice Ziven. I have room for you in the Connecticut house.”
“So far. So far from my work.” I could see the pain on Ziven's face. Then he brightened a bit, “I am on the verge here. I tell you it is true. Any day now, any day. I could stay here and finish in just this week, maybe two at most. Then I will move into your house for the rest of the time and you can help me analyze data. That would be splendid no?”
“I'm sorry Ziven if I cannot rouse that much enthusiasm. Truly the work has merit. But it could wait couldn't it?”
Ziven huffed petulantly, “But I'm so close. Please understand.”
“You were always the obsessive one. Even as children, long after Beta and I had dropped some project in its hopelessness, you continued, continued. Not often with success I may add. So blind your vision.”
“I mean no disrespect. But I simply must continue. I think somewhere deep you comprehend this. I will come. I promise you. I am sorry. ”
She turned and walked to the door. As she walked through its frame, I barely heard the final thing she uttered, “I'm sorry too.”
We did not know it then, but she was to be the last human voice he would hear. Ziven slept a disturbed sleep that night, waking frequently with nightmarish shrieks, “What can I do?” At four in the morning finally he sat up in bed giving up the illusion of rest.
“She will be there. I will go. I will finish here and go. So close, so close.”
He moved slower that morning, warming his engines, the cogs of his mind grinding deliberately, carefully. But by midday, he had unearthed something in his numbers cranking out from the computers. He began laughing, then crying. I watched as he raised his hands to his head and, as though his fingers were moving of their own volition, they entrenched themselves in his thick peppered hair. Every action slower and slower, the universe, my universe, was glitching into stagnant space. He stood there, the tears rivering down his cheeks, his eyelashes glistening, and said nothing, simply caught in some frozen grace. And then I saw, no felt, space folding into itself. I sensed myself crumpling as it were one moment and then...how do I describe it? It was like being tucked into the inner sanctum of a flower and then having it burst open, outwardly curling forth into the air, like birth.
The core of the fold had formed an array of hyper shapes; there were infinite number of them like looking from one mirror into another. How dizzy I became with existential thought and the swirl of the room.
Ziven stood there, in love with numbers. Light flooded over him as the hyper-arrayed fissure emitted a luminescence, lovely as some liquid chemical, whorling around him as he stood at the epicenter of this phenomenon. I looked on, aghast, unable to move. I heard him whisper, the final, baffling words of this great mind,
“But of course!”
And then it all ended. Just like that. One moment he had been standing there, and then, as though excluded from some secret society, the fissure contracted leaving me and taking Ziven.
Now that the proverbial dust has settled, I have thought about humans and how much we hate them and their penchant for destructiveness and waste, how foolish they can be. In spite of that, I think I like them. I miss Ziven. I do hope that he has simply traveled somewhere new. I wish he might return someday. I'd like to know what he meant.