An Eloi Honorable Mention
I pinched the idea. What makes it madder is that I wasn’t quite sure of what I was stealing, and, crazier still, I don’t know from whence I stole it.
The problem of backward-jumping has not hitherto been solved. It involves an obvious paradox. If I go back and slay my own grandfather, what becomes of me?
Then an oddity struck Eben. For the past few minutes that he had been on this intersection the sun had been at high noon! He put his tumb in his eye and peered at it accusingly and then because it was quite definitely the sun and obviously there, he shook his head and muttered: “Never can tell what the goldurned guvvermunt is going to do next!”
Jimmy had the queer feeling, which comes over one at times, he was reliving something that had already happened.
“Now spill it. Just where did you come from?” “Geographically,” said Face, “not very far from here. Chronologically, a hell of a long way.”
Still, it was odd that the lighting system should have gone on the blink on this first ‘night’ of this first trip of the first spaceship powered by the new, stupendous atomic drive.
He was sure it would work. But when he confided his dreams to his sister Martha, she, woman-like, merely sniffed. She called him a goose.
He could feel the supple firmness of her body even through the folds of her undistended pressure suit.
An Eloi Gold Medal Winner
The weather makers put .006 of one percent too little moisture in the air on this set. There’s three-sevenths of an ounce too little gasoline in the storage tanks under here.
“You think so?” The Swami shook his head. “Ah, no. For it is written that there must be a Dictator—not only a Dictator, but this particular Dictator”to rule over docile Europe, and plunge the world in war.”
She’d be Hilda Pietjen, daughter of the prime minister, just another chip in the Nazi poker game. And he’d be dead in a bunker, a thousand years before he’d been born.
He scrambled out of the machine, the delirious feeling of success and power coursing through his veins like strong drink. His eyes traveled about the laboratory, slowly, gloatingly. All of it his. The equipment, the formulas, and most of all—the time machine.
An Eloi Bronze Medal Winner
What did happen to McAllister from the instant that he found the door of the gunshop unlocked?
With the new tri-polar units I can deflect the projection field back through time. That’s where I’m going to attack Levin—in his vulnerable past.
Most people think of time as a track that they run on from birth to death as inexorably as a train follows its rails—they feel instinctively that time follows a straight line, the past lying behind, the future lying in front. Now I have reason to believe—to know—that time is analogous to a surface rather than a line, and a rolling hilly surface at that. Think of this track we follow over the surface of time as a winding road cut through hills. Every little way the road branches and the branches follow side canyons. At these branches the crucial decisions of your life take place. You can turn right or left into entirely different futures. Occasionally there is a switchback where one can scramble up or down a bank and skip over a few thousand or million years—if you don’t have your eyes so fixed on the road that you miss the short cut.
They had wanted a place where no one would disturb them. So they had come out here and pretended to be doing astronomical observations. Actually, they were perfecting a time machine.
This is a story of something that did—or didn’t—happen. Question is, can it be properly said that it did or did not? —Campbell’s introduction to the story
Wait a minute now—he was under no compulsion. He was sure of that. Everything he did and said was the result of his own free will. Even if he didn’t remember the script, there were some things that he knew “Joe” hadn’t said. “Mary had a little lamb,” for example. He would recite a nursery rhyme and get off this damned repetitive treadmill. He opened his mouth—
“The object before you is a Time Machine,” he said with repressed pride. “The result of our Ingenuity and skill. With it we will draw new support to our Cause. Two of my most trusted Lieutenants are to travel into the future to enlist the aid of the races which will be created by us.”
Three A.M. A distant church spire in the city behind us boomed the hour, floating here on the heavy night-air. Abruptly figures were around us in the woods; arriving me. A man carrying the limp form of a girl. From the ship a tiny beam of white light struck on them. Tork! I recognized him. But more than that Blake and I both recognized the unconscious, inert girl. So great a horror swept me that for a second the weird scene blurred before me.
Then as soon as I release you from that pentacle, you’re to bring me tomorrow’s newspaper.
These aren’t the droids you’re looking for . . . move along.