The vertex, as many may remember from high school math, is the point of the parabola function where the tangent’s slope is zero. A less impressive (or more meaningful) description is that it is the point at the bottom (or top) of the parabola. If you don’t know what a parabola is, imagine a drawing of a boob by someone who draws like a five year old—usually on bathroom walls and playground equipment.

The parabola is simply the shape of a second order equation. That’s as far as I’m going to talk about math (or try to). How parabolas relate to the real world is far and wide, but the parabola is only a representative of a value in time and space and not a real thing in itself. The connection of this simple math to the known and unknown universe(s) expands to impossible and imaginary equations and atom shattering physics. It is beyond human understanding because a parabola existing as a physical entity is impossible. And we stop wasting time on the impossible. Thinking past that is called Pataphysics—which can be entertaining but not very profitable.

Enter Timothy Waite, already quite ingenious to begin with, but soon to be… just out there. Jacki Monroe is a neuroscientist embarking on a Frankensteinian experiment to erase that pesky faith in the non-existence of impossible things. The experiment was done on Tim and the result was that he, along with a physicist named Ken Martin, invented a device capable of transferring (never call it transporting—Tim gets upset) matter over a billion miles in a blink of an eye. Since it takes light well over an hour to go that far, he invented faster-than-light travel. Vertex Rider is the story of the development of this device—along with the surprising byproducts of this transfer.

Back to the Vertex (the title of this post): The way the machine operates is that the matter within a cube, called the Parabolic Portal, is reduced from a 3^{rd} dimensional composition in our space/time to a 0^{th} dimensional “vertex” associated with a trans-dimensional parabola controlled by something called a Boson Array. The Boson Array is controlled by a microprocessor which is controlled by a high-level program on a connected computer. The electronics controlling the Boson Array “distends” the parabola, along with the vertex of course, to extreme distances in virtually no time. Actually some time elapses, but only nanoseconds. Get it? Got it? Good.

Actually, are you still reading after that? Actually, I could ramble on for pages about that and put it somewhere as a dissertation. Those never get read anyway. Honest, I don’t ramble that much in the book… I don’t think.