Thursday, October 3, 2013

To Change the world


A man, I’d guess him to be in his 70’s, walked up to me as I was gardening.  He was dressed in a brightly colored shirt, and blue, bell-bottom jeans; and yet he did not look at all out of place.

“Excuse me Mr. Allen? My Name is George. People call me Gip.”

“How can I help you Gip?”

“I simply ask that you lend me your ear for a moment, if you don’t mind?”

“Not at all Gip, you've captured my interest.”

“Good, good, Mr. Allen… as I've mentioned, my name is George, George Wells.  My father was Herbert George Wells… H. G. Wells.”

I was in shock, but my fascination drove me forward, as if I was galloping on the back of my thirst for historical knowledge. “Mr. Wells, your father passed on in the 1940’s, and I dare say, you Sir, followed on into that great unknown in the 90’s.”

“No-no, late 80’s actually as I've come to learn of it, but it makes no matter. It is 1978 as I start this journey. You see, Mr. Allen, just before his death, my father was given … a machine, a time machine.  A very real, very functional, time machine.  I have not dared use it until now. I have been to 2053 and there I found the great cataclysm so many have warned about in their writings for so many centuries. But as I journeyed back, back to 2029, I found an essay you had written, a powerful and moving essay to set the world on a path of peace.  But your essay was not selected for the National Society of Literary Excellence, simply because it called President Kane by name.  Please, Mr. Allen, remember. In writing your essay, do not call President Kane by name. Only then will you be selected for the Journal. It will change the future. It will change things… for the better.”

“National Society of Literary Excellence. I’ll have to remember that.  I, guess I’ll have to work for Mr. Kane’s campaign as well.”

“No, Mr. Allen. The election of 2028 is rigged. Just do not yield to temptation, do not name him, or your work will be squashed.  You must let your work breath and grow.  All future generations depend on it, Mr. Allen.”

“I’ll do my part George. Can you come back in late 2028 to remind me, perhaps give me a draft of my essay so that I can get every word right?”

“I’m sorry, Mr. Allen.  I cannot bring items out of their element. As it is, time travel takes its toll on the human body.  Now, I hope to have the strength to return to 1978, and live out my years in relative peace.”

“What will become of the machine?”

“I’m going to destroy it, Mr. Allen.  I can’t bring myself to trust any other human being with such power, and there is no greater good that can be done with it, other than that which remains for you to do.”

With that George turned away and walked through an invisible doorway at the edge of my garden. In a flash of light he was gone. Gone back, I presume, to 1978, while I am left here to wonder what the hell I will write when I am in my 70’s, to save the world from its eventual self-destruction?

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