“Ignorance is bliss but knowledge is power. Go figure.” JSM

 

Chapter Six

 

I was bored one night a few years ago, sitting around watching Big Bang Theory, and one of the characters in the show proposed a topic of conversation. In short it was along the lines of, “When I get back, let’s discuss how the Civil War would’ve been different, had Lincoln been a robot sent from the future.”

I started thinking about that scenario. “Who would do such a thing?  Who could do such a thing? OK, extraterrestrial beings could send a robot, maybe, in a way far away future of course, perhaps.  It would have to be futuristic, right?  Stick with futuristic. Advanced technology it is. A machine able to see every possible reality based on one specific change in the time line.  A high tech oracle of sorts. Maybe a higher plain of existence?  OK.  Interdimensional beings. The ability to warp time and space and repair a paradox if needed. Master manipulators.

“But why would someone do such a thing?  Send a terminator Lincoln back in time?”

Then my imagination veered all over the place. Did robot Lincoln have to replace the real Abe, and save his life; surviving the assassination?  Or maybe… robot Lincoln had to save Booth and the two characters have to embark on a journey together, because in the future, the lineage of Booth is vital to the existence of the advanced race of beings, based on a simulation provided by their oracle.  If Booth lives, the predicted war of the future that seems inevitable, will never happen.”

Knowing upfront it was a proposed topic of conversation on a TV show, and nothing more, I still allowed my mind to explore the fictional setting. Just for giggles.

Weavers of the past and future. A singular action along the timeline affecting future events. A potential cascade of chaos, or repairing the time-stream and righting all wrongs.

The name stuck. Weavers.

A social media question was once posed, (paraphrased) “If you had the opportunity to go back in time and right a wrong, fix a ‘mistake’ or tell yourself in the past something specific, knowing it will or could change your future, what would it be?” My answer was school related.  I would have completed my college experience, come Hell or high-water.  My-only-regret. I believe that if a Weaver gave me a chance to relay a message to my younger doppelganger of the past, I would tell him to let nothing get in the way of college completion.  NOTHING. You must complete school!

I believe that my life would only be greater in the here and now, had I finished. Icing on my proverbial cake. I’d probably be better off financially overall and have higher education on top of everything. Knowledge being powerful.

Having a degree in my field of choice could provide employment options and varying choices. Having a degree indicates devotion and time spent in gaining knowledge and experience, and having an opportunity to make that knowledge applicable in a job setting I enjoy. Something to be proud of.  A potential multitude of beneficial choices.

Choices are so vital.

When only provided with two options, with a fifty-fifty chance of success or falure either way, the mind races.

Roughly an hour from the border, what was once a 55mph stretch of nothing, transformed to 15mph in a matter of minutes. The tiny car plodded along in the deepening snow.  Any touch of the break, was cause for sliding. With the high beams on, it was like sitting in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon in hyper drive.  Visibility a couple hundred feet, or less.

The rest of the adventurers in the caravan, now gone and far away.

Cresting the top of a hill, the pitch on the other side seemed gradual and easy to manage, but as I tested the break on the initial decline, the car skidded to the side and fishtailed.

Back under control, I started my way down the low, but long hill.

The descent was tolerable at a slow speed. The radio now off and the only sound was that of the windshield wipers and the heater on high.  Towards the bottom of the slope, sitting parked in the break down lane, was a vehicle with blaring red lights on.

I whisper, Good. Someone’s waiting for us. Alright.  Just piggyback them to the finish line. 

Then the vehicle backed up. However, it didn’t stay in its lane.

The driver cut the wheel, put the back-end of the long goliath truck into the lane I was crawling down, and crept backwards to cover both lanes towards a fire road on the opposite side of the street.

In that one moment, watching this monster slowly back up and creating an impenetrable wall of steel before me, oblivious to my approach, I slammed down on the horn, flashed my lights and the breaks locked up.

Now trapped in a slide, moving the steering wheel to barely any effect and the small car gradually picking up speed down the remainder of the hill, I was able to conjure two immediate options: Take the impact as is, just let the car go and hit the monster broadside, or, cut to the left and attempt to put the nose of the car into a snowbank.  Zero room on the right for a third option and the windows of opportunity were diminishing as the car only picked up more speed.

My only choices were a preexisting piled high snowbank on the left, directly beside the fire road the monster was aiming for, or smashing into the truck’s side wall.

I made my decision and in hindsight, I should have frantically searched for a third option.

Once colliding with the snowbank and coming to an abrupt stop, the new sound was that of grinding metal and windows breaking as the salt dispenser attached to the back of the monster decided it wanted to be in the passenger seat beside me.

The slowest accident I’ve ever been involved in, and the first of two that night.

The weekend had only just begun.

 

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