This was written as a journal assignment for a class I took.
Hugo Clabby is a charming and eccentric fellow with quite a mind for design, and a rather large helping of sour luck. As a young man, Hugo was a dedicated pupil of Horology and clockmaking, and one of the most honest students in his university. That is until one day, when he was falsely accused of illicit academic charlatanry, and furiously impugned by a rogue professor. Hugo, at his wit’s end, fled the college, and chose to pursue the extralegal discipline of time travel.
Much to his own bewilderment, Hugo had a remarkable knack for such a study. In a stroke of utter brilliance and daftness, he managed to construct a machine unlike any the world had ever known. This machine could reach into the Voide, pull out the very chains of one’s existence, and transmogrify them into physical, tangible matter! Hugo refused to stop there. He soon discovered that these specimens could be altered in their physical form – rearranged, tweaked, shifted, or destroyed. Hugo could see how a person’s life would look if their history was entirely rewritten. Then, almost by happenstance, he discovered that these physical copies of a person’s life, now deformed and manipulated, could be placed back into the Voide, overwriting the life that was already there.
Hugo can change the actual existence of a real person.
Now, he can’t just poke around at people’s lifelines however he pleases. Even what seems like a minor alteration could affect him and his world in awful ways. This means that sharing his discovery with the public is out of the question, unless he’s looking for folks knocking at his door, demanding a revision of their history. Not to mention, his machine needs a piece of a person to locate their lifeline. Something like a strand of hair or a drop of blood. Not too many people are keen on parting with their hair or blood for a strange man toying with unspoken science. Perhaps Hugo should consider abandoning his research and inventions to spare the world of what could come from them. This was his plan, until one day he came home to find his lab notes had been stolen, and a letter was left on his workbench that simply read, “You don’t deserve this power.”
Who wrote this message, and how could Hugo find him? Whoever it was, they must have been able to understand his lab notes and realized what his machine could do. If they can understand the notes, they can create another one of these machines! Anyone who would choose to thieve this research must be planning to do terrible and selfish things with it. Hugo may have no choice. He may be forced to use this machine – this terrible, inhuman contraption of his – to stop the thief from erasing every tale and every life the world has ever known. Let us pray to God that Hugo minds his step, for the happenings of the world are more connected than they seem.