Saturday, 22 August 2015

One Final Adjustment

Reality sucks.
No, really.
They’ll fire me out, and then, a moment later, reality’ll suck me back.
Sure, the physicists prefer to talk about it attracting, or having a heavy quantum pull.
They tried sending the smart ones, the squared off ones, the ones that would have been astronauts or nanonauts back in the day, but they couldn’t hack it, came back broken up. No. Literally. In bits.
They say that I don’t know physics from shit, and they’re probably right, but I’m the one they send when stuff needs Adjusting.
They also tried the prisoners, the expendables, the dregs, but they failed as well. A good job, I always thought.
I mean, imagine if someone whose whole family has been sent to the camps got the chance to make an Adjustment. What might they change?
No glass smothered cities from the Sneak Attack, no mutations that took a hundred generations to breed out, that’d be great, right?
But, did they really think it through in the early days? One malicious Adjustment and, what?
No victorious war of Pacific Independence. No all-powerful Party. No Hegemony.
So anyway, it’s me that gets strapped into the Gizmo. Strapped so tight I’m singing with the girls for a week after I come back.
But I’m the only one that ever has come back.
I guess the acid helps. My brain is already so fucked up that even the enormous pull exerted by reality can’t touch it. Anything I see on a Journey can’t be as weird as what I am trapped inside my skull with every damn day.
The further back you go, the higher the energy cost at the launch end. Well, I‘m going so far back this time that the lights will dim all over Chongqing Province tonight.
Some Party theorists think that this might even be the final Adjustment. The big one. Over a light year from reality.
If I can prevent the Despicable Enemy from launching the Sneak Attack, we can fight the war later, on our own timescale, when we are ready.
The lights start to flicker. The temporal implant fires up and screaming agony engulfs my cortex, repeating the only things I must remember.
Destination – United States of America.
Temporal target - Early 21st century.
Duration – One whole minute.
Mission Parameters – Minimal. Just me, him, and an old style Riot Gun.
Watch out, President Trump, there’s trouble on the way.

410  words

This story was written for Ruth Long and Cara Michaels' Flash Mob Writes flash fiction contest, 1 X 25

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