No Time Left For You

Amateur

“I can’t think of a better reason for inventing time travel, can you?”I, Isaac Heinlein, genius and man about town, scratched my chin, my new beard always made me itchy.“Yeah, but it won’t work, Ray. You’ve seen the movies, it never works properly. There’s butterfly effects and parallel universes and, lets see, grandfather paradoxes, time quakes, broken DeLoreans, Red Lectroids—““The Red Lectroids were in the eighth dimension, not the fourth. Besides, it worked in Superman. He flew so fast around the planet that he went back in time. Saved Lois Lane, too.” Ray Haldeman crossed his arms in front of his chest, pleased with his rebuttal.“Superman was a dick,” I countered. “If he could go back in time, why did he only go back a few minutes and save Lois and that busful of kids? Why didn’t he go further back and stop Lex Luthor from starting the earthquake? California was going to fall into the ocean, I’m sure Lois wasn’t the only one threatened. Or why didn’t he go back further to where the AIDS virus first began and use his x-ray eyes to kill it? See, you get a time machine, and the possibilities are endless of what you should do.”“Well… it worked in Groundhog Day. Bill Murray was there for like ten years until he got whatsherface to fall in love with him.”“Andie McDowell. And he had no control over that. That was just the universe being goofy. So, anyway, I don’t think it’s a good idea. Going back just so you can try and talk to a girl is stupid. And you’ll probably cause a time ripple which will ruin mankind and the world will be lorded over by intelligent murder hornets.”“Domhnall Gleason went back so he could get his girl.”I slapped my forehead. “Yeah, and he almost lost his child. Remember? Then he stopped time travel altogether as it was so dangerous. Dude, it’s stupid. Go invent faster-than-light travel or a Langston field or something useful.”At twenty-five years old, we both were leaders in our respective fields. I was always the smartest guy in any classroom I ever attended, until four years ago when Ray Haldeman crossed the pond and joined the staff at Harvard. They couldn’t calculate his IQ, he was off the charts. Truly.But his EQ, his emotional intelligence, they could measure. It was right around zero. I befriended him because I had to, I couldn’t stand seeing him alienate everyone he knew. We worked long and hard until he was finally able to somewhat get along with ‘normies’. The problem was, he had a pretty high sex drive but couldn’t fulfill his desires as he bored most women and scared the others.The one he scared the most was Tricia McMillan-Bradbury. She left Harvard before I ever got to meet her, but she was the one Ray wanted to turn back the hands of time for so he could get another chance. I had only seen one picture of her, but she was undoubtedly one of the best looking women I have ever seen. Our fields closely paralleled one another; she was a bio-science specialist and I studied the DNA arts.Ray was actually right, though. Was there a better reason to go back in time than true love? Yeah, yeah, it would be good for mankind to also go back and kill Hitler as a baby, Stalin, too. And I know people would want me to kill Donald, but if I did that I would have to take Hillary out also. Where would almanbahis it stop?But, no… I can’t figure out the ramifications to our species if I changed the timeline in such huge ways. If I could time travel, I would probably do it for personal reasons, too.50 Years LaterI looked in the mirror again, and I grinned like an idiot. It was one thing to develop the science to stop the aging process and even reverse it. It was quite another to see the effects day by day. Wrinkles disappeared, crepey skin toned up, hair came back and went from gray to its natural color. I had an erection this morning, first one in three years! It wouldn’t go away… I was going to be rich beyond my wildest dreams.The only problem was, it wouldn’t work on everybody. Only about 40% of the population would benefit from this. No matter how hard we tried, we couldn’t crack the code for everyone. Maybe in another hundred years we can crack the last remaining quarks of DNA and get there.Unfortunately, Ray was one of those on the other side of the equation. And although he hid it pretty well, I knew he never forgave me for that. Ray Haldeman, the man who did invent faster-than-light travel, was aging hard and fast. It wasn’t fair that the man who made Steven Hawking look like a third-grader had to die like everybody else. I mean, we made some improvements for him so he will get to 100 pretty easily, but that’s it. Whereas in a few weeks, I will look and feel like I’m 25 again. And when I hit 150 or so, I can rejuvenate again.Ray had been trying to have me over for lunch for several weeks, he had a new invention he wanted to show me but I kept putting him off; I was just too busy with forming my new company, Age Not. Finally, I found time to go and see him at his office downtown. I hoped he wasn’t going to be too mad at me.The sprawling complex of Haldeman Inc. could be daunting to the uninitiated, but I had been there many times. The architecture was designed to impress: gigantic structures and offices that eschewed any of the traditional styles. No, these “buildings” twisted and turned and flowed as if gravity wasn’t an issue for them. In fact, rumors persisted that most of the buildings were floating on stasis fields instead of steel and concrete. But we hadn’t invented stasis fields yet, so we all thought.Anyway, I arrived at the 185th floor with my aide de camp, Andrew Martin, to visit Ray. Ever the awkward host, Ray demanded that I have some scotch with him, even though I stopped drinking 15 years ago. But he was so animated, so excitable, I gave in and joined him for a toast to his new invention. It was good to see him so happy.“Well old boy, what is it?” I hoped he was going to say he invented telekinesis or something. That would be cool.“I’ll show you, it’s right over here. Get the door for me, would ya? Andrew, you have to stay here so you won’t steal anything. thanks.”I marveled that the world’s smartest man didn’t have automatic doors for his wheelchair to pass through easily. Made no sense.We entered a medium-sized area that looked like a rather standard laboratory; computer terminals at long desks, various pieces of equipment that I couldn’t begin to fathom their purpose, blinking lights and people in lab gear. Probably not telekinesis, almanbahis yeni giriş I muttered under my breath.Over in the corner sat four reclining chairs that reminded me of dentist chairs from the old days. Above them was a rusty-looking bell-shaped object of apparent great age.“Okay, what am I looking at?”He beamed at me enigmatically.“It’s… a time machine.”“Um, really? It looks like four chairs. And how do you get them to eighty-eight miles per hour? They aren’t even pointing in the same direction.”“I know it doesn’t look like much, but once I got past the idea of building a vehicle, the rest of it came easily. Of course, I had to design a new form of calculus for it. That’s what about half this campus is devoted to, supporting time travel.”“So… it works?”“Absolutely! We’ve gone back now one full hour into the past. We’re working on the final details of a major breakthrough, though. Here! Sit in it!”“Well I don’t know…”“Come on, you’ll be fine.” He guided me to one of the chairs and I hesitantly sat, then reclined.“It’s simple, really. The thing that people never got is that you can’t just travel in time, you also have to travel in space.”Metal clamps that must have been hidden under the chair suddenly flipped up and over, locking around my wrists and ankles.“Ray! What the fuck!” I struggled, to no avail. I was trapped in the chair. One of his flunkies came over and shot an air-injection into my neck. Ouch.“You see,” Ray continued. “The planet is moving through space all the time. Since ten seconds ago, the planet rotated and moved forward. If you don’t account for that, you could materialize inside of a wall, or a mountain, or 200 feet up in the air!”“Ray, I’m done. Let me out!”“Any of those situations is sub-optimal. So we had to develop a Universal Positioning System so we can go anywhere in time and space, and put our travelers safely on the ground.”“Ray, that’s awesome. I want to go now.”“Clarke! Over here with those. Good boy.” Clarke carried two gold bricks and proceeded to strap them to the sides of my hips.“Those will be worth almost two million of the old Dollars. I’m not just going to send you back there empty-handed. That ought to be enough to establish yourself at Harvard.”“Harvard! Why am I going to Harvard? No, wait, when am I going to Harvard?”“You’re going back fifty-one years. You’re going to get Tricia MacMillan-Bradbury to fall in love with me.”“I… I am? How?”“That’s your problem, Isaac.”“But…. But my wife! What about her?”“She’s your seventh, right?”“Well, eighth if you want to get technical. But that’s not the point! I don’t want to go! Why are you doing this?”“Isaac. You are the only person I have managed to have a relationship with. I have to rent whores as well as friends, but they don’t like me. Nobody does.”“Well… lets just say that’s true. Why don’t you go after Tricia yourself? If you put five percent of the effort you expended on this into her instead, you guys coulda been married forty nine years by now!”“You are speaking rubbish, my only friend. We both know that my social non-skills will kill the deal. So that’s your job. Fix me back then, or convince her, or force her, or something. We will be watching you. That’s what that injection was for, markers in your almanbahis giriş DNA.”“Wait… do you know if this works out in the end or not? I mean, you have a time machine, can you go back and find out if I succeed?”“No, we have to wait until you act, since you aren’t in the continuum yet. We have to wait real-time. You have exactly 30 days, friend.”“I guess I should have worked harder on that rejuvenation shit, huh.”“Yeah, I guess you should have. 30 days, my friend. Or we will find you via the markers, and, uh… terminate the experiment. Good luck.”“So… if it works you’ll bring me back, right?”“That’s the breakthrough we’re still working on. But don’t worry, we will figure it out.”I tried calling out to Andrew, but they stuck a bite block in my mouth so I didn’t bite my tongue off. That’s probably good, I reasoned.I blinked.~~~And I arrived.In the dark. Sitting on… grass… in a… cemetery. Ahh, pretty smart. Plop me here in the dark so I’m not seen.I stand up, I’m not even shaky but I do feel weird with a gold bar strapped to each leg. I’d like to tell you about the trip through time, but honestly, I didn’t feel a thing. I don’t even need any No-Nozh, which they don’t have here yet anyway.I scouted around a bit, and determined I was in Mt. Auburn cemetery, about a mile from Harvard. The place was locked, which was actually good. I need to do something with this gold. I’m not a financial genius, but I know you can’t just deposit two gold bars into a bank. And I remember we had pawn shops way back when… I mean way back now… who bought gold. But they aren’t going to just give me a suitcase full of cash, either. So, I found a shovel and buried the two bars in two separate holes near an out-of-the-way maintenance shack.So there I was, in a city lost in time, not a nickel to my name, and a stupid goal with a do-or-die finish.Fortunately, I knew a guy who could help me.~~~I waited nearby at the Blackbird doughnut shop for me. I am a creature of habit, so I know I would be here soon. And sure enough, here I came, dirty-bopping down the street with my earbuds in and backpack on. I looked pretty good, I must admit. Was I worried about space-time catastrophes, about messing up the continuum by meeting my former self? Not really, I didn’t make me come here so I can’t take too much responsibility for what happens/happened/ will happen.I stepped up to me. I had run a lot of scenarios through my head of how to approach myself, and finally settled on the truth.“Good morning, Isaac. I am you, from the future, and I need your help or we will both die.”Needless to say, one of me tried to run away from the crazy-sounding me.~~~“Who are we dating, now?” Young me was pretty convinced by now, but I wanted to drive the point home. We were walking back to the cemetery to get the gold.“Jennifer Parker.”Ah yes, Jenny.“Have we, I mean you, have you nailed her yet?”“That’s none of your business!”“Our business, remember? Anyway, as I recall, Jenny likes it slow and romantic at first, but after her first orgasm she turns into a wildcat and you can do anything you want to her. I mean anything! She’s the first girl we do anal with.”“How do you… oh right. How long are we together?”“Not too much longer. You know Harlan Dick, from physics?” Younger me nodded. “She’s already fucking him. Tuesdays and Thursdays while you’re here.”“Damn, I really liked her.”I handed young me a shovel and pointed, we each dug up the gold bars.“Wow, it’s heavy.”“See? Told ya. Now let’s go find Tricia.”

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