Observation, was the first thought to whip through my head. Quantum-level collapse of the space-time whatever, was the second. Neither of these were particularly useful thoughts, so I stood and waited for either more thoughts to show up, or for the Prism to do something other than be blue. Or for Creepy to do something other than look at the Prism and say hmm.
“Hmm,” he said again.
“Did you see it change colour?” I asked him pointedly.
Creepy snatched the X-ray specs off and squinted at the Prism. “Of course,” he said. “Makes sense.”
I sighed and wondered, once again, why I had even bothered to ask.
Creepy put the specs back on and resumed twiddling. The Prism remained blue, although I thought maybe it was brightening or dimming in response to whatever Creepy was doing. That, however, was probably my wishful imagination.
Eventually, however, he lowered the X-ray specs and sighed.
“So can you see anything in there?” I asked.
Wonder of wonders, he handed me the X-ray specs. “See for yourself,” he said.
I pulled the antique specs onto my head, squinted through the cola-brown lenses, and then half-heartedly turned the knobs on the rims. The first thing I noticed was that, the tinting from the glass notwithstanding, the Prism did actually seem to still be yellow through the X-ray specs. I tried not to read too much into that, but I was of course unable to prevent myself from theorising about the X-ray specs seeing through layers of time rather than layers of matter, thereby intersecting the pastel-yellow-light permanow of the Prism rather than the blue one that had asserted itself for some reason in the human-eye visible spectrum.
After a while, however, I concluded that there really was no way of seeing inside the Prism, if indeed it had an inside. Not with X-rays, anyway. Or at least, I further concluded, not with whatever X-ray specs actually had, since they clearly didn’t have actual X-ray generation capacity.
I considered suggesting we go to the hospital and liberate an actual X-ray device after all, but I realised it probably wouldn’t do any good. It might allow us to see some other unhelpful and opaque variant of the reality bounded by the Prism’s dimensions, but it still wouldn’t get us any closer to figuring out what the thing was.
I lowered the specs.
“Hmm,” I said.
“That’s what I said, Hatboy,” Creepy replied.
“You know what I think we’re looking at here, Creepy?”
“A Prism,” Creepy said positively.
“Ah, well as to that, yes,” I allowed. “Yes, I suppose we are. But on another level ‑ ”
“Still a Prism, I think, Hatboy,” Creepy pointed out. “We just looked with X-ray specs.”
“What I think we’re looking at here, Creepy,” I said, “is a lesson.”