Author : Debbie Mac Rory

One doesn’t earn the title of the system’s greatest escape artist without effort. I’ve broken out of all of them, and in record time. Well, except for that one time they placed me in an archaic brick and mortar cell. I think the first hour I simply stared at the walls in disbelief and spent the next laughing so hard I couldn’t even pick myself up from the floor. But this time they’re really outdone themselves.

You see, in my day and age, scientists have tried almost everything. And one of the things they’ve tested exhaustively is time-travel. I can understand the fascination; after all, who wouldn’t want to be able to travel back and, perhaps, find out just who it was who stole the Mona Lisa? No, it wasn’t me. That was well before my time, but I admire their style.

Alas, much to their frustration they found out very quickly that it is impossible to move back in time. Let me explain. Take a book, anyone you like, though one printed on paper. Jules Verne is one of my particular favourites, though for the purpose of this demonstration, it makes no odds who the author is. Now, if you were to take a page from another book, you’ll find it is not possible to simply place the page within the book to yield a new version of the book. The page does not of its own will assimilate itself with the existing book, and will not without some significant external influence.

Just so regarding time travel. All their studies found that though they could look, they could never touch. But an idea, a thought has no mass at all. It leaves no imprint on the world, even if the subject interrupted by their testing brings “their” new idea into practice; providing of course that if doesn’t radically alter history. And so they found a way to transfer an entire consciousness into a past being. A one way trip of course, specially reserved for extremely dedicated historians. And people like me.

I’ve spent hours starting at these fingertips, all etched with curls and whorls and completely organic. When I touch something now, the only information I receive is that from this body’s own sensory system. To be fair, they did show a little mercy in that they left me in a period that has ready access to alcohol and recreational drugs. I suppose they hoped that I’d just drink myself into oblivion.

Unfortunately, being the kind souls they are, they handed me their undoing in their mercy. Far enough forward in time so some basic technologies would be available, though severely limiting my ability to tamper yes, but also far enough that this culture has already mastered the science of genetic manipulation. And being the technological expert that I am, it was a simple matter to hack their systems and set up a preservation order for my family line. It’s the latest craze of this age. They removed most of my hardwire modifications, but not the ones I’d had coded down to cell level. And so I’ve planned a nice little surprise for my would-be captors.

Cryogenics is still beyond this time, and will be for some time if my recollection is correct. And that’s a shame; I would have loved to have seen the looks on the faces of my judge and jury for myself when they see mine over and over and over…

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