Seven Ways to Find Yourself at the Transdimensional Multifandom Convention


You and Chris-P always meet at Registration. There’s a loophole where transdimensional doubles can share a badge, so you’ve developed this arrangement, and now it’s your tradition to attend the con together.

It’s always weird meeting your double. First you’ll feel embarrassment, then revulsion. You’ll push down those feelings once you realize you’re projecting.

You’re always so hard on yourself.

Today Chris-P is wearing his Studio Ghibli sweatshirt with his Bi Pride button. He waves you over. “Hey, Chris-U!”

You hug each other. He’s exactly your height, and his stubble rubs against your neck. You even smell identical.

You’ve had a hard year, so you look like shit, but he’s glowing. You’re entranced by his subtle differences: the S-shaped scar on his wrist, the tomato-bright sunburn on his neck, the soft give of his stomach. He’s gained some weight this year. It looks good on him.

Chris-P is more than just your double. He’s all the choices you wish you’d made.

“I got our badge,” he tells you, looping an extra lanyard around your neck. He even got you a matching button. “Where to first?”

You both agree to hit the Dealer’s Room. You like that about Chris-P–there’s never any arguments. It’s as natural and easy as being alone.


The best part of meeting your double is exchanging bootlegs. Chris-P brings you seasons 2-7 of Firefly, and you give him The Witcher, which never got made in his universe.

“You’re not a real Firefly fanboy until you’ve seen the Captain Inara arc,” Chris-P teases. “She puts Mal to shame.”

You’re splitting a room, of course. He’s picking through your suitcase and modeling the Starfleet uniform you brought for your Captain Kirk cosplay. 

“Says the guy from a universe where Henry Cavill quit acting,” you counter. This teasing is part of the ritual. You like to give yourself a hard time.

“Okay, Big Mouth,” Chris-P says. “I propose a costume swap. You wear what I brought, and I’ll wear yours.”

You open his suitcase and laugh out loud. It’s a Spock costume.

You’re from non-overlapping dimensions, but somehow this happens every year.


The Dimensional Double Dance is the ultimate cosplay event. You hit the dance floor with other doubles in complementary outfits, flailing to pop music from another universe until sweat makes your Vulcan ear prosthetics itchy. You suggest a round of beers. You sweet-talk your way into a con suite where a Felicia Day double poses for selfies with fans.

None of your own doubles seem to be famous in other dimensions. Most of them aren’t into fandom at all, and besides Chris-P, they don’t return to the Transdimensional Multifandom Convention once their curiosity is satisfied. But Chris-P always comes back for you, year after year.

At the party, Chris-P almost slips on a squashed cupcake, but you catch him automatically. He doesn’t release your hand afterward.

Falling for your double is such a cliche, but that’s never stopped you before.


Back in your room, Chris-P opens up about Amy. Last year, you’d broken up with her, which sucked at first, but then you met Manolo at a Halloween party, and everything changed. Chris-P stuck it out with Amy. Nothing’s better, but now there’s a baby on the way, and he doesn’t know what to do.

You drink, and you talk, and you cry together. Your Dad died this year, but only in your universe. You’re both still working at the law firm, but Chris-P got promoted, while you’re stagnating and bored. You’re skittish about moving in with Manolo after what happened with Amy, something you’ll only admit to Chris-P. You give each other advice, but mostly you just listen. There aren’t any perfect choices, no way to avoid getting hurt.

Pretty soon, there’s nothing else to say, so you stop using words.


It’s not cheating if it’s with yourself. Technically, it’s masturbation.


On the last day, you sort out your wardrobes, but inevitably there’s mix-ups. Neither of you admit you do it on purpose. You’re in Chris-P’s sweatshirt when you walk him to his dimensional gate. It smells just like him. Why did you think you smelled the same?

“I’ll see you next year,” Chris-P promises. It’s tacky to make out with yourself in public, so he just squeezes your hand.

“Assuming you can find time with the new baby.” You’re white-lipped and anxious. Why does this feel like a breakup?

“I’ll make the time,” he promises, but you know it’s just that: a promise. Anything could happen in a year. If he doesn’t come back, you’ll never know why.

You hug him close. “Say hi to Dad for me.”

“I’ll be back,” he repeats. Then the only person who understands you slips into his portal.

It should be easier to believe Chris-P, but there are no givens in any universe. People die. Shows get canceled. How can you hold onto anything when you can’t even keep yourself?


Driving home, you catch your own gaze in the rearview mirror, and for a moment, it’s Chris-P looking back at you, his eyes full of tenderness. Seeing into you. Understanding you. Accepting the good and the bad. A kinder Chris than the one in your head that never lets you off the hook. A whole universe of Chrises, every choice you ever made, reflected back with unconditional love.

If he doesn’t come back next year, who will show you how to love yourself? But Chrises are born each day, in every choice you make, branching off again and again. You can’t avoid the risk, but you can choose to doubt yourself a little less.

When you get home, you order your badge for next year. You’re already planning your Batman costume.

You have a guess for what Chris-P will choose to be.