"How's your goddamn math going to help us out of this now?" she practically spat the words onto the soft earth that they were talking across. Their feet sunk into the soil, making dirt cling to their shoes and stick into the ground as they traveled across.
"Shut up," Jamie spewed back. It was just a harmless experiment, one that he was trying to do by following a guideline that he normally ignored before. Instead of looking at his numbers, and thinking about what calmed him, he went on through with his experiment using his numbers in a whole new way that he hadn't tried before.
Many hours ago, that it almost seemed like an eon ago.
Hours of labor and work had finally paid off. If all his calculations were correct, then he had finally managed to build something using just metal, wires, electricity, and his numbers. The numbers that got him through life every day and every night. Specific numbers, he wasn't just any old fool who chose random numbers depending on what worked best. No, the challenge was to use numbers where they needed to go, to solve the problems that they create by being there as well.
First was sixteen. It was the age that his parents met and fell in love. He didn't believe them when they first told the story how their first and only love was each other, but they wouldn't say anything else about the fact so he was stuck with that number. So the 'machine' as his parents liked to call it was sixteen feet across.
Second was six. The first time that he ever had an interest in numbers was when he was six. His parents used to tell him that he would sit around and count all the numbers in the house, meticulously counting everything over and over again just to be sure that he didn't miscount the first time around. He couldn't remember a time without numbers in his life. And so Jamie's machine became six feet tall.
Third was twenty one. That number marked the important things in life, because if it was good enough than you should have more of it, and to get twenty one you have to have three and seven, and those were both prime numbers. So there were twenty one buttons that all had their specific purpose on his machine.
Fourth was nine. He was nine when he was declared a mathematician by not only his parents but also everyone he came in contact with. When his parents introduced him to people he was introduced as 'Jamie, he's a mathematician.' So his machine became nine feet wide in length.
Fifth and final was three. The amount of people that were allowed in his machine at all times. No more than three people could ever be allowed inside it at all times, no matter the circumstances that were surrounding the situation. Even though it was sixteen feet across he wouldn't let any more than three people, including himself, inside his machine.
He considered himself lucky that his parents understood, that they let him build a machine in the garage because his room was too small to fit it, and how they would always buy him metal and wires and everything that he ever needed.
Yet as he built his machine there was one thing that he could never get rid of or destroy, and that certain thing came in the form of a girl, a girl named Tina. Apparently she had caught word of the mathematician who lived on the same block as her, and that he had a weird machine that she should check out, because they had lived on the same block and gone to the same school for as long as he could remember. At first she had been such a thorn in his side, constantly bugging him and getting in the way while he was trying to actually work. Yet she eventually learned his ways, stepping out of the way when she needed to and asking questions when she felt the situation was right.
However that did not stop her from still being annoying in Jamie's eyes. His parents of course absolutely adored her, thinking that it would be great for their son to have a normal friend. He completely disagreed. When his machine was finally finished, he was proud, but of course it was all ruined by one annoying voice.
"So, what is it again?" Tina asked. There was no hesitation in it, as she forgot again what his machine was even though he had told her on countless occasions its function. Jamie heaved a sigh, slouching a bit.
"It's a transporter Tina. Everything is perfect. Anywhere in the world that I want to go, and I can be there in a second," he explained again, a hint of pride coming into his voice at the last part. Tina smiled, he might act like he was annoyed by her questions, but really she knew that he liked being smarter than her, and he enjoyed flaunting it.
"Sweet. So where are we going first?" she asked, taking a step inside the open door. He scampered in after her, trying to reach out and grab her to stop her from going in farther. She avoided his touch easily though.
"We are not going anywhere. I am going off to see the world," he uttered angrily. Tina shot him a skeptical look, but didn't make any move to come out from his machine.
"You are such a spoil sport," she pouted, crossing her arms. Jamie's resolve didn't even crack. He simply stared her down, crossing his arms.
"Get out," he almost snarled, earning himself a surprised look from Tina. Yet she looked just as confident that she would win this battle instead of him.
Tina went over to the panel, gently running her fingers over the buttons that were there. She pressed down on some of them, but they didn't react to her. Jamie went over angrily, pulling her hands away and forcing them to her sides.
"Enough already! You can't go, end of story!" he yelled at her. Tina was shocked, her eyes growing wide and she took a defensive step back. Jamie felt his heart tighten at the sight, but he ignored the feeling.
"Why do you have to be so mean?!" she wailed, pushing him roughly back against the console. He stumbled and lost his balance, reaching out for anything that could keep him steady. His hand gripped something and he managed to keep his feet on the ground without falling on his butt. Jamie looked at Tina and saw her reach the door, right before it slammed shut on her face.
"Let me out Jamie!" Tina screeched, pounding her fist against the door. It wouldn't budge, and nothing she was doing was making it work.
All around them the machine began to hum, coming to life and shaking in its spot. Jamie held onto the console, determined to stay on his feet while the floor vibrated underneath him. Tina on the other hand had nothing to grab onto, and with a crash she fell onto the ground with a crash. She didn't try to raise herself up again; she stayed lying there, unmoving besides the movement that his machine created.
Finally, his machine stopped and everything was still. The door slid open with a click, and the light of day made its way through again. Jamie let himself fall to the floor, and he crawled over to Tina, who still hadn't moved from her place.
"Tina?! Are you okay?" He shook her should, eliciting a low whine from the back of her throat. He breathed a sigh of relief, at least she was still alive.
"What happened?" she mumbled out, bringing up her hand and moving to lie on her back.
"When you push me I feel on the lever, and it must have been activated my machine," he explained.
Tina pushed herself up with the light help of Jamie, and eventually got up. Together they moved towards the door, looking outside at the green valley that they were situated in. It was a simply green valley, yet as they walked out the door and looked around, it became all too apparent that there was nothing in sight besides the green grass.
"Jamie…what exactly does your machine do?" Tina asked. Jamie noticed her hands were shaking, very lightly, but shaking nonetheless.
"It's a transporter. Takes you anywhere in the world, remember?"
And that was where they left off. Apparently in Rural Scotland, where they located, did not have power to get the transport working again.
"Take it from me; you should not have pulled that lever," Tina spoke up again. Jamie groaned, wanting to plug his ears with something, anything.
"For the last time, you pushed me, so shut up!"
"Even now, you're still as mean as ever."
They couldn't see the machine behind them anymore. Silence refused to stay though, as Tina spoke up again.
"Jamie, how come after everything and we're still in the middle of nowhere, it feels like we're being followed?"
They stopped walking. Night was beginning to fall, and the emptiness was beginning to penetrate their very essence.