The future is strange. Our children should have never opened this Pandora’s box we giddily call time travel. Those words would feel like fifty pounds of lead if we understood their gravity. Travelers can change the past and no one knows what’s changed, including the Travelers. There’s a feeling of ennui that sweeps over those affected. Something was compromised. It’s something precious we never knew we had: time integrity. The perceptive Romanian philosopher, Emil Cioran, nailed it when he wrote, “Ennui is the Echo in us of time tearing itself apart.”
I envy the days beyond the reach of the Travelers, where the the sanctity of time is a given. The egg is not cracked. The contents are unknown. The further in the future you go, the more radical the change, and there ennui hits the hardest.
I’ve said it before, but, time travel is really time intrusion. Violating time integrity is mankind’s greatest transgression. Remember, no one knows what’s changed. You may wonder, How would we know if an action broke time integrity and changed the future if no one can detect the change?
The Travelers have theories about the possibility of changing the future. However, they never noticed any changes. They started wondering if there was something they were missing. My father, Max Hope, began keeping a journal. He would write a description of his life and his world before leaving his native time. Then, he would write an account of his visit in the past.
He never detected any differences. It dawned on him that changes propagating through time would affect his journal too. Max had another idea. He discovered you could transport yourself to timelessness. He wondered if this space might be a way to preserve his journal contents.
The next time he traveled back in time, he made identical journals and brought them with him. He jotted down an account of his visit in both journals. Upon leaving the past, instead of returning to his native time, he visited timelessness and dropped off one of the journals before returning home.
Upon his return, Max immediately traveled to timelessness with his journal and compared the two. he discovered that his account of his visit was the same. However, the accounts of his world before he left differed. The journal he dropped off in timelessness described a world he didn’t recognize. He realized the journal he brought back to his native time must have changed. He also realized his memories must have changed to match the reality he returned to. Max continued logging and preserving duplicate journals. Eventually, he noticed that accounts of his visits to the past were also changing.
My father was the only person who understood the that Travelers were changing time vectors and they were doing this regularly. He also understood the nuances of cause and effect through time. I would like to tell you what he did with that knowledge but that’s for another time.