Time After Time

Not too long ago I revealed my ability to time travel and how I did it.

I also mentioned that I would follow up with a second adventure.

Just two weeks ago I traveled. Again.

If you recall from the story Time Travel, err…, Chuck, Velma, and Daphne sit at the end of the tables that are positioned near the main entrance to the lunchroom of the school where I work. And—also as mentioned before—I knew I had to do something along the time traveling thing again. So, I did.

Okay, here’s a quick reminder of a few things: First, Chuck, Velma, and Daphne sit at the end of a table that is near a main entrance of the lunchroom. B: Chuck was not there the first time I time-traveled. And lastly: There is a set of doors set in a position that are not visible by Chuck, Velma, and Daphne. These were used by me last time to sneak back into the lunchroom.

This time I was going to up the ante. This time I was going to have a dimensional disruption. This time, I would need some help. (my wife often says that)

On this most recent occasion, I wore articles of clothing that would allow me to change my appearance: A vest and a wristwatch. This endeavor would also require an extra person—I was not going to leave my things just sitting in the main hallway. The staffer I was going to have assist me was occupied during the time I needed them. Fortunately, there was another staffer (she was having a rough day) and I got their help—it made her day.

Everything was planned. I would do my regular routine of diabetic assistance and then move along to my assigned classroom. Sure enough, things went smoothly. As I walked toward Chuck, Velma, and Daphne I noticed that the situation should work out just fine. All the 7th-graders were already either in the lunchroom or outside for the break. There was hardly any traffic into or out of the lunchroom. Good.

As I walked toward them, Velma noticed me and said, “Hello.” Some conversation took place between the four of us. After some shared words, I informed the group that I needed to move on to my class. We said our goodbyes and I walked out the door. Once I was in the hallway I walked as quickly as I could to the other set of doors.

I was met by my cohort in confusion and I took off my vest and wristwatch—I never wear a wristwatch. I also left my notebooks and such behind. Now, as an alternate version of myself, I reentered the lunchroom as: Myself.

Now that I was from an alternate timeline, I could reengage Chuck, Velma, and Daphne.

“Um… Hello, um, everyone,” I announced. I then proceed to attempt to engage them in conversation as though I had never met them. I did not do well. Once everything was extremely awkward, I walked away—awkwardly. It was awful. Now, I needed to hurry back to my vest and watch. After I quickly reset myself, I was back in the lunchroom, headed for the trio.

“Hey, Mr. Bagnall.” They were used to this. Too used to this. But, I’ve only done this once before. Haven’t I? Timetravel quandaries…

Once, again, again, I began to talk to the trio about my time-traveling troubles, “Hey, have I already gone through here?”

“Yes.” “But you didn’t have your vest on.” “Or your watch.” “Yeah.”

“Wait, what?” I was immediately curious and concerned as to why I was dressed differently.

Chuck, Velma, and Daphne began to explain how they had already witnessed my arrival and departure—twice. The second time, however, I was dressed differently. This revelation caused me noticeable alarm. I needed to know details: What was said? How I was dressed? What was different? That sort of stuff.

Luckily, the students were happy to oblige me. They began to inform me of all the oddities and differences between the now me, the earlier me, and the earlier-earlier me.

“This is bad. Very, very bad. He’s not supposed to be here.”

“Why?” Good question. Velma always asks good questions. Although, I think this time she was just humoring me.

I extracted my cell phone from my vest pocket and made a call, “Hello, Sally? Yeah, this is me. We have a serious breach. Put me through to Ralph.” While I was on hold I explained that the other version of me wasn’t supposed to be there. We had a real problem.

“So, it’s not his day?” Velma understood the complexities of time travel. She had a good head on her shoulders.

“No. He’s not supposed to be here.” I leaned in close to punctuate the ‘supposed’.

“You mean he shouldn’t exist? Like, at all?”

I had to go. Ralph was on the line. As I began to speak to Ralph and inform him of the dimensional breach. I looked at my watch—which was a fancy and unique design—and began to relay my duplicate’s last known position, “Yeah, he seems to be moving East. I need a containment team.” At this, I began to move out of the lunchroom, leaving a visibly perplexed and concerned Velma. Chuck was indifferent to the whole thing. And Daphne, well Daphne had already gone back to reading her book.

I think I lost them. I need a new plan.

This isn’t over. I can do better. I was off my game. Still, I feel like I disappointed someone. Maybe it was me? Maybe it was you, reader? (I hope not. if it was, I’m truly sorry)

Next time, I think I’ll secretly fill one of my vest pockets with a small treat or something that is easily duplicatable. Then, walk past them and leave them all one. Then come around and do it all exactly the same way. Over and over. That should do it. Right?

I’ll let you know how that goes.

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