The first trip should have been the last and they knew it before they’d even started out. They were terrified before they’d even set out and not one of them knew exactly what they were getting themselves into. The prospect of traveling through dimensions which were not their own was so thrilling that the scientists forgot to think about the psychological affects these differences would have until it was too late to back out.
In their suits, they stood near the Tesla-like orbs which would emit low voltage electricity just long enough to force them through into another dimension in the same location. It was something like moving a file if files were people and computers were dimensions.
They had no idea what they would be walking into. They didn’t know what the world or the people on the other side would be like. They didn’t even know for sure that there would actually be humans there. Nothing was certain and now they had to go through with what they’d planned to do from the beginning: interdimensional travel.
There was no plan on how to get back aside from building another transporter on the other side which could send them home. They weren't sure what they were going to do if the remains of the known transporter broke while they were traveling but they knew it was a massive possibility. They had lost contact with the alternate team months before but the systems still showed the computers and transporter were online, though they were damaged. This knowledge nearly scrapped the entire plan until the most generous donor filed a suit with the government and the scientists and lab were forced to continue with their contract unless the machine on the other side went down entirely.
Now, here the stood on the very day they were required to stand in the tapped circle on the floor and wait to go somewhere they'd possibly never come back from. They shook, sweated, cried, and begged to just go home and forget that this was ever an idea. They pled ethics. They tried to file injunctions. But, when they'd made the contract air-tight for their own safety they had also managed to seal their own fate with the requirement that services paid for would require delivered product. And they were the product. Them and this damned machine they'd tried to get rid of as soon as they came to the realization that there was no way out of this.
This attempt landed them in the cuffs they were currently standing in, with a guard who'd volunteered to go with them for their own protection and to set them free once they'd all traveled over. He wasn't sure if he'd be allowed to live once they'd gotten there, but he wasn't sure he'd cared either. John was a bored person to begin with. There wasn't much of anything he found interesting with the exception of possibly leaving and not having to come back for a while. He supposed if he were stuck there with a bunch a nerds, at least some of them were pretty enough for a good fuck when he got bored again.
The machine started up and sent static through the air, filling the room with an almost burnt smell which grew stronger by the second. They'd begun to hope again that the machines, either one, would just explode and take them all with it before they left. They'd hoped for naught, though, which they knew. They'd built this thing to last. They'd built it to work. They knew what they were doing when they put things together. And now they knew they had to go and there was nothing more to be done.
The room flashed and the group found themselves standing in exactly the same room, but something was off about it.