Monthly Archives: August 2017

No. 611

Lynn Lightman was either alive or dead. Kurt Lightman had no way to know.

He had been milliseconds too late activating the device. The bullet had frozen in time, halfway through his sister’s chest.

Everything else was frozen as well, but so long as Kurt wore the pack and kept the batteries charged, he was isolated in the exact instant he’d pressed the button.

By his own calculations, Kurt had been active for six years while the rest of the world hadn’t even had a chance to blink.

Kurt had already used his Moment, as he had come to think of it, to exact revenge on the man who’d pulled the trigger, although the home invader would never be alive long enough to experience the pain that Kurt had inflicted on the immobilized body.

He had also taught himself medicine, trying desperately to save her. He presumed that the surgery had ended positively. The bullet, still hypothetically kinetically-charged, was locked away where it would expend itself against a steel wall if Kurt re-started time.

Lynn lay on the cot in his laboratory, but Kurt could not check her heartbeat or brain activity without unlocking the Moment. If he pressed the button again, and she didn’t wake up, there would be nothing more that he could do.

So he waited.

And waited.

No. 610

The world record for a fall without a parachute is 33,333 feet. That’s an oddly specific number, I know. That’s why I remember it. I don’t remember the woman’s name. I think she was Russian, or Ukrainian, or something. Eastern European, anyway. I’m pretty sure that she has since died. That seems unfair, somehow.

I’m procrastinating, so I take out my phone to check the facts. Her name was Vesna, and she was twenty-two when it happened. She was Serbian.

I’m thinking about falling because it feels like I am. Like Vesna, I don’t have a parachute. I, for lack of a better description, sold mine. Then, I turned the proceeds into a flaming disaster. It’s 2017, and yesterday I bought a travelling circus. Exotic animals. A train, which I think runs. A tent. And a name that means very little to millennials.

You could say I did it on a whim, or that I’m a thrill-seeker. Perhaps those things are true. I was certainly more confident in my choices twenty-four hours ago. Now, I’m waiting to give my keys to the lady who bought my car, and she’s late. It’s given me time to think about Vesna, and my stomach doesn’t like it. After Car-lady arrives, I’ll have my two suitcases, my “investment”, and 279,069 miles of railroad track in North America to ride around on.

You may wonder how I know that particular number, also, but I’ve just Googled it. I’m starting to wonder if Car-lady will show up. Oh man, I wonder if she wants to buy a Toyota and a big top?

No. I’ve got this. Vesna lived. I like road trips. Tigers are cool. I’ve got this.

I might barf, but I’ve got this.