On the in between plain Edward faced his dilemma.
His calculations had been precise enough to bring him here, but here wasn’t what he expected.
Though, if he were honest, he hadn’t really known what to expect. Time travel hadn’t been a success story before, and his mathematics and geometry had failed and failed and failed again. Until now, this breakthrough, bringing him to….this.
Time, clocks, choice.
He’d perhaps expected gravel streets of ancient London city, or the battle strewn expanse of the crusades. If not, the bloody guillotine falling on the nobility necks in France, or biblical cities of salt.
He’d expected to go somewhere in time, not to the portal of time itself.
And what of choice now? If he walked up to one of the clocks to touch it, choose it, what would happen? Where would he go? What would he see?
Or would he go anywhere? Was this all there was? The dread thought occurred and chilled his soul, down to its depths, down way below the bone.
The minute hand on each clock ticked on, and on, and on. Was this all there was, really? Was travel in time only travel to time itself? Was the world he knew and the world he imagined nothing more than that – just imagination – just random psychotic images in a fevered mind, just filling in time?
Once you loosed the yoke of the day-to-day and reached here, perhaps all that was and ever would be would be reduced to all it ever was, or ever could be.
Just time, just clocks, just choice.
Let me go back, he wanted to say, back to my home to my laboratory, to my hopes and dreams. But even as he said it he tasted the futility on his tongue. He’d come here, and here was too far away from it all. Too different from it all. He couldn’t find his way back, he couldn’t go home, and he couldn’t go anywhere else. Not really. It was too late.
He didn’t have the time.
(c) Helen M Valentina 2017