By @AndrewG

Pulled into a series of confusing and strange scenarios, our protagonist must discover the secret of his past and his future.

Chapter 6

Scenario Five: The Present

I woke up at 3:34 A.M, on July 2nd, 2037. A tapping was coming from the window, and so I stood up to see what was going on. Before I could reach the window, however, a cold hand grabbed my shoulder forcefully. “Not so fast”, a voice rang out to me, chilling me down to the marrow in my bones. All of a sudden, I was back in the lab that I saw. A voice told me to stand up, and so I did, and I turned around to face Brent.

With a bit harsher of a voice, Brent said to me, “Time. Seemingly unmalleable, yet not. You discovered that, right then and there. Something about what you saw, or at least what you thought you saw, made you discover time travel.” He paused for a second, scrutinized the face that I was making, and continued, “You look confused. I was too. It turns out that you, after discovering the secret to time travel, discover the bleak future that laid ahead, and in an effort to stop it, you killed my son.”

I replied, almost offended, “Why would I have killed your son? I don’t even know who he is.” He answered back sharply, with, “Does the name Edward Somnat remind you of anyone?” I immediately recoiled, remembering. Edward Somnat. Father of Julian Somnat, leader of the Etherean Nation.

It was all coming back to me now. I had discovered a secret to time travel, and after experimenting for years upon years, I found the answer. It was simple, impossibly simple, but now I couldn’t remember. I had traveled to the future, past, and everything in between; but what I saw in the future terrified me. I realized that I had to stop it, so I went back to the past, tracing Julian Somnat’s ancestry, until I found Theodore Somnat, founder of the Etherean Nation.

Etherean Nation, or EN for short, is a organization founded in 1876. Their primary goal is power. Nothing more, nothing less. After the Flu Epidemic of 2040, EN saw its opportunity and seized it, taking over the United States. They, with the many assets of the US, managed to take over the whole of the Americas, with the capital city, Hope, taking place of New York City.

The EN committed many atrocities unparalleled by any other dictatorship. Anybody that opposed them was immediately captured or worse. The main reason why I killed Edward Somnat is because of what I saw in 2176. On the 300th anniversary of the EN’s founding, a leader, supported by technology developed by scientists that had essentially been enslaved, decided to take over the world as a whole. He launched 5 Decimator 17-A6’s, each with a warhead with five times the power of the Tsar Bomba v2, the previous record holder for explosive power in a bomb. Most of Eurasia and Africa were decimated, except for a nuclear silo in northern Siberia. The few nukes remaining were powerful enough to destroy the 3 largest cities of the EN, essentially toppling its leadership.

Over the next few decades, humanity began to bounce back, but the strain of nuclear winter and overall destruction of the environment created a harsh and almost inhospitable planet instead of the blue planet we had used to call home, causing all of humanity to flee to the rest of the solar system. The sudden shock of remembering everything that I had forgotten made me almost fall unconscious. I turned to Brent and asked him, “Why am I here then?” He replied with a sour expression, “I found the secret to time travel, just like you. After you killed my son, I was able to travel back in time and capture you, based on a few of your notes. Then, my scientists here at EN HQ were able to access your memories and make you run through them, kind of like a computer simulation. Or scenarios, if you will. Unfortunately for us, we couldn’t find the exact memory of the moment where you discovered the secret to time travel, but now we can.”

The next thing I knew, I was back in the machine. Something started whirring inside, and as fast as I could blink, I went back to sleep. All I could see was what seemed to be a fast slideshow of all of the memories I had. Almost like I was about to die and I was living through my life again. I saw my first steps, my first word, and my first day in school. I saw my graduation, my acceptance to college, and then my graduation from college. Then, the slideshow began to slow down, until it reached July 2nd. Then, I was back in control.

I woke up to a tapping. Except the tapping seemed fake and it seemed to come from somewhere other than the window. It felt like it came from inside my own head. I tried not to stand up and walk over, but it was useless. Although it seemed like it, I was not in control of my own body. I brushed the curtains to the side, and then I saw it. It was a little note, in messy handwriting and black ink, that read:

To Edward:

I’ve found it. I’ve found the secret to time travel. The person who is, or was, at least, going to kill you has had it stuck in their mind forever, and it’s so incredibly simple. His name. That’s all you need. You’ll know what to do.

Good luck, Brent

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