Time is notoriously tricky stuff.
It’s a pretty slippery concept, even for the brightest of brainsteins. One of the most difficult concepts there is, in fact. Very hard to grasp indeed – in quite a number of ways.
Where does it come from? Where is it going? Why is it there? What, actually, is it?
Some of the tippy-toppest of top thinkers have even suggested that it doesn’t actually exist; that time is an illusion caused by… er, well… they’re not quite sure what it’s caused by – let’s just call it “energy” of some sort, that should cover it. Moving on…
It flows – though we don’t know how, or why it chooses to flow in the direction it does; it can be stretched and warped – if luminaries like Roddenberry or Asimov are to be believed; it’s very probably infinitely long – not that anybody’s ever likely to measure it; it stops when you’re in love – which is nice; but it slows down when you’re moving and it speeds up when you’re not – which is daft, surely.
It also slows down when you’re bored and speeds up when you’re not. And that simply has to be the wrong way round.
Someone should complain.
You can make it, you can save it, you can buy it, you can spend it, you can waste it, you can serve it, you can tell it, and you can run out of it.
But one thing you can’t do is escape it.
Or so they say…
… from chapter 16
The indeterminate manlike being was at the far end of the Happy Valley, busily talking to a tree.
Nothing unusual in that you might think. Perfectly normal behaviour for a future seeing, psychic, shaman type character, you might think. Mystical seers and prophets and the like are always talking to trees, communing with the plant spirits, invoking dryads, and all that sort of thing. Talking to wood isn’t strictly a pursuit of the psychically inclined however; mad people do it all the time. Dotty Kings and potty Princes aren’t immune either.
None of them, however, no matter how spiritually enlightened, mentally deranged, or royal, has ever actually held a proper two-way conversation with a tree. They might have imagined they did, or had vivid dreams of doing so, but none of them actually did.
Even the ones who wrote poems about it.
Here’s the first five chapters in PDF format for Adobe Reader. I hope you enjoy them.
The Long Lost Future (Sample).pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [559.6 KB]