The year is AD 3587, and Jonas’ life is turned upside down when he’s sentenced to be executed by the government after his adopted father and mentor is arrested for Time Travel crimes.
Running not only for his life, but given the enormous task of saving the world from its own future, Jonas must put his trust in the spotty information of the journal his father left for him, leading him down a path that seemingly spirals out of control.
But help comes in the most unlikely of places, and Jonas finds that you can’t hide from your destiny; and that family ties don’t necessarily have to be conventional to be full of love, especially in times of need.
The third book in the "Time Series" following “An Expedition of Love” and “The Artifact,” weaving the plots of these two stories into the greater picture. Find out what happens to James and Samantha after “An Expedition of Love,” and discover why Wahya was transported into Morgan’s lab in “The Artifact.” There’s a reason for everything!
Book 3 in the "Time Series."
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This book is copyrighted by Gwen Thames.
Use of any part of this book without express permission from the author is prohibited.
CHAPTER ONE: THE SENTENCE
Supreme Court of the United Republic of Europe
“How do you plead, Armas Falco?” The judge’s voice echoes in the scientist’s head. That along with the thud of his heart nearly blocks out the murmur of the trial panelists who stare at him in contempt. He knows they’ve already made up their minds and that whatever he says won’t make a difference now.
“Guilty of all charges, Your Honor.” The gray-hair man in his fifties states plainly, his glasses doing nothing to block the penetrating gaze he sends to the woman in the judge’s seat of honor.
He hears a few gasps from the box of fifteen panelists, but doesn’t look their direction - focusing on the Judge’s stoic face instead. By all counts, he was guilty as charged, though half the population of Europe knew that such trials were really witch-hunts in an attempt to bolster votes in parliament and put the government in control of the Time Travel sector.
Other like-minded scientists knew that once the government got their grimy hands on the monopoly of Time Travel, all the rules that were being enforced now, would go out the window. The crimes he was being punished for now, would be common-place, only under the guise of national security and the public would lose access to everything that had been accomplished over the past 30 years.
Armas knew that he had no choice but to plead guilty, but that his admission would end the transparency that the scientific progress of Time Travel had garnered over the years.
The Judge’s gavel thuds heavily, “Armas Falco, I hereby declare that your licensure to conduct Time Travel will be revoked permanently and immediately. For your crimes, I sentence you to 50 years in prison. For it will take at least that long to undo the changes you’ve made to history.”
The intimidating woman glares at him as she finishes her sentence, “Finally, with the inability to reverse the damage you’ve done to the life of your apprentice, Jonas Falco, and those who his acquaintance and interactions have affected, I call for his arrest and execution, so that no further damage can ensue.”
Armas hadn’t expected this last part, and stands abruptly - his haft-witted court appointed lawyer’s mouth agape. “No! Not Jonas! Your Honor, please!” Armas pleads. “He’s done nothing wrong!”
“Dr. Falco. Silence!” The judge cuts him off loudly. “Your apprentice’s mere existence here is an abomination and a threat. He will be executed. That is my final sentence.”
Armas, even angrier than he already was, shouts above the din of the panelists, all of who have begun chattering at the unexpected call for the younger man’s execution, “This whole court is an abomination! You are killing innocent people all in the name of justice and security! The AISE is a farce, can’t you see?!”
The gavel pounds again, and Armas feels a large hand encircle his bicep as the guard begins to drag him out of the courtroom. He wants to pull away, to continue to beg for Jonas’ life, but he knows that would do him no good - he must remain free enough while the guards take him away to give Valerie the signal. And she should be waiting just outside the courtroom.
Allowing the guard to handcuff him, his scowl is evident as he walks behind another guard out of the massive room, past the panelists who glare at him, their voices low in condemnation. He only has a moment as he enters the marble floored atrium towards the waiting police cruiser outside.
Spotting Valerie, his aging accountant, to the side, hovering behind a statute of Lady Justice, he gives her the signal - a simple tug on his right ear with his cuffed hands. Valerie nods, frowning as it’s apparent that things didn’t go well, obvious with him being escorted out in handcuffs and now the signal.
She swallows noticeably. He gives her a thoughtful smile and mouths “thank you,” thinking that he may never see Jonas ever again, whether or not his plan is successful. He thought they might question him at the least, maybe even arrest him at the worst, but not this!
As they make their way outside, Valerie inches closer, trying to look like part of the crowd of onlookers and protesters. A news reporter sticks her microphone in Armas’ face, and asks if he has anything to say for himself. Ignoring the camera, he catches Valerie’s eye instead as she appears at his side in the throng of people pushing against one another, while the officer tries to get him down to the sidewalk.
As they near the street, Armas pretends to trip, plunging towards Valerie and says hurriedly into her ear, “They’re going to execute Jonas! Get him out of here!”
Seeing her eyes go wide, as her face drains of color, Armas is satisfied that she heard him. He’s confident that she’ll set things in motion just like he’d planned - so long as she warns Jonas that he’s up for execution and gets him to safety.
The officer uprights the lean scientist, and he focuses on a new camera, saying more to Jonas than anyone else, hoping the closest thing to family he has will be listening to the news, “Perhaps what I did was wrong, but I did it from the depths of my moral judgment and heart. And for the good it’s brought me, I don’t regret those choices. We all have to make a stand! Don’t let the extremists get hold of Time Travel!”
And with that he ducks his head as the officer pushes him into the back seat of the cruiser and cuffs him to the inside. Watching Valerie disappear into the crowd, he closes his eyes and prays she reaches Jonas in time.
Time... It’s all he has now!
It’s all the world has now...