Short Story: Significant Decisions

It could come down to this.

He had two choices. It was what you might call a classic two-roads-diverging-in-the-woods situation.

Both roads could lead to wonders beyond the realm of human imagination. Both roads could lead to a painful early death involving a tragic snowglobe accident. Or riches. Or tortures that violated the Geneva Convention. Happiness. Horrors. Wonders. Supernatural beings taking his very soul.

There was really no way of knowing.

A classic damned-if-you-do-damned-if-you-don’t situation.

An impossible choice. But it was a choice that he had to make. A decision that could change the course of his life forever.

Maybe even the course of all humanity.

They say that the flapping of a butterfly’s wings can cause winds to blow thousands of miles away. If that’s truly the case, then this decision could have effects that rippled through the fabric of time itself. Ripples that could alter the makeup of the universe.

In thousands of years, scientists could be debating the existence of a newly discovered particle. A particle that could very well be brought into existence by the decision in front of him.

They say you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. Maybe this was his shot. His chance. His time. His moment. His Alamo. His Waterloo. His Battle of Thermopylae.

The hands of destiny and fate are too strong for any man to defeat. No amount of pilates or guided meditation could possibly prepare a human for the momentous decision that he had to make today.

But this decision would lead to other decisions. Other choices. A cascade of events that would soon be beyond his control. An avalanche. A stampede of life. A raging river overflowing the levees of his carefully constructed existence.

There was only one right path. And only one left.

He knew what he had to do.

“Dude, are you just swiping right on every chick on tinder?”

Short Story: The Perils of Time Travel

A bit inspired by Dr. Who

“But Professor, you said that meeting yourself would drive you insane!” Jenny shouted.

“Yes, it’s one of many dangers of time travel, but I have no choice,” the Professor said, her hair flipping wildly as she worked the controls of the time machine. “We have failed. I have to go back and help myself or the Universe will be destroyed. Maybe this time, we’ll get it right.”

The machine dematerialized and materialized again a few dozen feet from, and a few minutes before its original position. Now there were two time machines on the platform of the station suspended above the black hole.

The Professor turned as she stepped out of the machine, “You stay here, Jenny. No sense us both risking our sanity.”

Another Professor, this one a few minutes younger, stood outside of her own time machine with a confused look on her face, “Well, clearly we screwed things up bad if you’re here. And our mind is clearly already gone.”

“What do you mean?” asked the slightly older Professor.

“In case you’ve forgotten, OUR name is Jenny.”

“Nonsense, two people can have the same name.”

“Yes, but there is only room in our time machine for one person.”

“Nonsense, it’s much bigger on the inside.”

“No it isn’t, I should know. I’m you. That doesn’t even make any sense. Just because we can travel through space and time doesn’t mean we can ignore the laws of physics.”

Short Story: A Day on the River

It was early morning on the Oconee River, the type of day that was perfect for fishing. A man and a woman sat in a canoe. They were holding fishing rods, but both were too distracted by all the alligators to make use of them.

“I’m not sure about this river anymore. It’s getting scary,” Missy said.

“I know. But don’t worry, they’re more scared of us than we are of them,” Jack said eyeing the long body drifting past. A bit of algae was growing on its side, and there were a couple of sticks hanging off, but it didn’t seem to care.

They waited until it was gone before speaking again.

“But they scare all the fish away. Or eat them,” Missy said.

“Nonsense, we still catch plenty,” Jack said. He sat still for a moment, “In fact, I’ve got a bite right now.”

A flurry of movement later and the fish was out of the water.

Missy was too distracted to care. She gasped and nodded her head, “There’s another one. And it’s got a baby with it!”

“Don’t get too close, they’re protective of their young.”

“You ever eaten any?” Missy asked.

“It tastes like chicken,” Jack half-joked. “But seriously, we don’t need to mess with them. They’re dangerous.”

“I’d climb a tree if they were after me.”

“Actually, it’s a little-known fact, but they can climb trees.”

Missy eyed the creatures warily, “Really?”

“Yeah. They don’t do it often, and it’s mostly the younger ones, but they can climb. Trees, fences, whatever.”

“Holy shit.”

“Holy shit is right. If any more kayakers come all us gators are gonna have to move.”