Copyright © 2012,
Robert G. Pielke
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Sample Chapter For A NEW BIRTH OF FREEDOM: THE TRANSLATOR by Robert G. Pielke
Edwin Blair’s headache ebbed and flowed as remnants of what-used-to-be
clashed with the influx of what-now-is deep in the cavernous recesses
of his mind. At least, he thought, as my memory evaporates in the passage
of time, I should expect the rebellion of one against the other to
do me less and less harm. Although no one was looking at him at the
moment as he leaned against a shady tree, were they to do so they would
perhaps have noticed a hint of bitterness on his visage as the word “time” passed
through his ruminations. He had neither expected nor wanted any of
the Pests to survive. For as long as he could remember, his mantra
had been—and he chanted it to himself—the only good Pest
is a dead Pest. With all of them dead, he reasoned, a new future would
develop without the horrors these Pests would mete out. They simply
wouldn’t exist in this modified future. But he soon realized
this would bring about a self-defeating dilemma. They have to invade
the planet where and when I come from. Otherwise, I’d never have
come back to the past to stop them in the first place. He clenched
his teeth at the thought and sighed. We can’t kill them all.
Maybe that’s why previous attempts to change the future have
failed—if there were any. It’s just not possible to exterminate
them. Logic trumps everything. The surviving Pests change things. If
they somehow escape and warn the all the others about what I’m
doing, they could prevent me from doing anything at all, and I’d
have to start all over. But I have to do something. He shuddered and
looked off toward the fourteen imprisoned Pests. There’s one
thing I know for sure, however. We don’t need their eggs.
Everything now depends on you following through with your plan. You may have lied to the others about your intentions, but you can’t lie to me. If you are reading this, then we have been successful.
At least I think so. He looked up again, put the pen into the inkwell filled with a pale pink liquid sitting on the ground next to him and rubbed his eyes. Then again...will I even believe I wrote this to myself? He picked up the pen and tried to smile, looking this time toward several of his companions that were getting ready to consume coffee and a few hardtack biscuits, perhaps even some pudding. He nodded to them before returning to his journal.
Only the continuing threat of the Pests still lurking in the two prisms is supporting this truce. It’s more fragile than it appears. They think the danger is over, but it’s just begun.
John Hay noticed Blair’s glance from several paces away and
pointed to his own steaming cup of coffee with raised eyebrows. He
shouted, “Mr. Blair, can I get you some?”
If I’ve really succeeded, then all these changes should be reflected in the historical records on the computer—the fight with the Pests and this truce—but if not then something’s gone terribly wrong.
He stopped writing for a moment and shook his head. I’ve got to get back into the computer soon. I shouldn’t have even turned it off. I don’t like logging in while people are watching. I should probably change the pass-code, but it’s based on my wife’s birth date so I’m not likely to forget it. Should I take the chance?
The only thing I know that’s changed is my memory. The historical records may not have changed at all, but I’m slowly losing my memory of them…and everything else too, it seems. My guess is that the changes I’ve made to the history I used to know so well are rapidly affecting future events—too rapidly. As a result, my memory about them is no longer referring to anything, yet it continues to try.
The sounds of hooves slogging through the rain-soaked grass and the clattering of wagons startled him but didn’t interrupt his writing.
The courier traffic is beginning to intensify, and as the circus gets larger it will become unmanageable. Maybe today Lincoln will issue the martial law decree he promised...or threatened…depending on one’s perspective.
He wasn’t planning to write much—just enough for his words
to be a reminder of what he had to do. If I have to try again, I have
to make sure these same people are included…did I write that
list of four names to myself on a previous attempt? Was it me? If so,
nothing has changed. Am I just repeating everything over and over in
an infinite circularity? He paused and looked over what he wrote. How
can I know? Have I written this before? I have no memory of earlier
attempts…but that means nothing.