Larry's home universe, 74-W, belonged to the Multiverse W, which, in turn belonged to one of many optagrammic multiverse clusters orbiting the Gargantua Draconis tetragonic-reality synchrotron — fundamentally a huge fizz of autonomous or semi-autonomous realities, which persistently sprung up and burst like soap bubbles.

Even though firmly insulated against any interaction with one another, all universes containing tangible matter could be reached via the trans-universal binding agents, or  portals, as referred to by commoners. Most of these would materialise in a natural manner. The scientific progress allowed us to artificially manufacture trans-universal portals and use them in either scientific or commercial enterprises. And that’s how I ended up on Situlam Aquae planetoid — a renowned trans-universal stockpile. 
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I am strolling beneath the tall column-shaped portals arranged in a giant circle, set against the dark-blue sky sprinkled with brilliant galaxies glancing from behind the tattered clouds. The fluorescent aurora spreads across the flat horizon, making the shadows splinter into superimposing elongated shapes of different hues, shimmering along the edges. An elaborate system of brightly lit grooves runs from the base of the portals through the freshly mowed field. The translucent planes set along the slots demarcate the divides between different universes. They permeate through one another, creating a luminous see-through maze. 
I don't want to be here. My professor — evidently dissatisfied with the results of my research — sends me over. To gather more data. Always more data … I shouldn't be here. Should be doing my research. Speaking of which … Everything goes wrong from the start. First, the heaps of statistics they kept unloading by wheelbarrows right onto my desk get damaged by the vampire squids rummaging through the fusty volumes. Colleagues don’t collaborate, making up silly excuses. Then, running errands one day, I walk in on Scott holding up my professor's tray at the main university deck. 
'I shouldn't be here.’ I keep scrawling notes in my yellow pad. 
A bus covered by gaudy ads and logos parks in the distance. A bunch of interdimensional tourists pours out and begin running around like headless chickens. 
'Look now. My leg is in 88-W and my hand in sixty … seventy … or something … whatever …' A middle-aged lady in an orange dress races from one portal to the other, stretching her limbs in all directions.
'67-WX.’ Her partner, wearing a tall pith helmet, reads from a bronze info plaque attached to one of the portals.
The orange lady's whole arm disappears right into the silvery plane. The disturbed semi-transparent surface eddies around the entry point. She pulls her hand out and stuffs it into another limpid mirror. The hand glows bright green through the undulating boundary. 
'Look, look,’ she calls out, taking one more selfie with her cell phone. ‘Remarkable, isn’t it?’
'Remarkable, it sure is,’ I mumble under my breath. 
*I* should be holding my professor's tray. Scott should be gathering interdimensional data. Years of faithful service. All for nothing …
‘Coincidence? Or not …?’ I crumple a page and continue writing. 
'Let's take a picture. Another one, another one!' A tall, slim tourist wraps her arm around her friend, dragging him between four intersecting planes. 
She snaps a few pics with a mobile, catching a company of five-dimensional pterodactyls flying up above. The bus driver waits outside patiently, ready to move on. Smoking a cigar thick as a table leg, he stomps his feet impatiently. 
‘A work of art, isn’t it?’ An elderly matron strokes one of the portals with her palm. 
A cold gust of wind unites her bun as she looks up in amazement. The blue-dyed hair flows through the air like a wild tornado. I watch the tempestuous tangle stretching through several universes. 
The tourists load themselves back onto the bus and leave. At last. I walk up to the nearest portal and press my open palm against the cool surface. I must admit, the Situlam Aquae portals are remarkably powerful indeed. A quality build, strengthened with quadruple layers of Leuchtenberg-Hildburghausen‎ force fields. Faultlessly synchronised, the elaborate assembly connects approximately four to five septillion worth of universes. What may sound like a lot to a layperson, wouldn't even remotely compare to the Scarlet Brook portal created by Geoffrey. A single portal connecting the whole multiverse through a single point. Now that's what you call a work of art.
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