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Pause For Thought

The first thing I did on waking – in my flat – was to put the bracelet containing The Device back in the safe. And I wrapped it back up in the chicken foil for good measure.

I needed time to think. Last night’s drive in the Aston had been very exciting and all that – actually, I had felt the most alive I had ever been in my life – but commonsense had to prevail if I was going to survive this thing.

My new existence was comfortable. I had a good income and no need to work. This left me free to travel where and when I wished. All I needed to do was keep my head down – not change anything – and I could enjoy the best music in the world. Anywhere, anytime.

But was this enough? Sitting in a variety of seats – watching other people perform. What about me?

They say the worst thing that can happen to someone is that all their dreams come true. Well, this life was a dream all right. But I was destined to be an observer, not a doer.

It seemed unlikely The Device could take two people – it tuned into the brain and no two people’s brains are the same. Thus my journey though time would be a solo one.

And if I met someone on my travels, like Moonchild (but whom hopefully next time I would not be related to) my relationship with them would last no longer than a day. I had heard of rock musicians who had spent each night with a different girl for years. It sounded great – until you thought about it…

Then there was another consideration.

Thanks to my encounter with Edward 8, my new life had cost the lives of millions of people. Stalin said one death is a tragedy – a million is just a statistic. But I was not that callous.

Maybe I could not stop WW2, but having inadvertently made it twice as bad – at least in terms of the numbers dead – I had to do something. If not, my life of gadding about time, taking in the world’s most extraordinary entertainment – would slowly destroy me.

It would be a life wasted. And one which had been created on the back of the destruction of millions of my fellow human beings.

It was a monstrous wrong which I had had no part of inflicting on them – but one which I and only I had the power to reverse. And there was just one clear route to that end…

I had to kill Hitler.

But given the trouble I had already got into, doing apparently safe, mundane things – this would require a lot of thought.

First, I needed to research the man. Pre-1936, his history was the same as it had been in my old existence. He was born in a village called Ranshofen, in Austria, near the border with Germany, on the twentieth of April, 1889. He had stayed there for about three years, after which his family had moved to…

But did I need to know more?

I knew he had fought in WW1, which meant he would likely have been more than I could handle, by then. No, if I was going to do this thing, it had to be…

Oh, crap.

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