A War of Time
This is a story idea I've had for a while that I would love to turn into an open collab! Read on for more details.
Human beings are wondrous creatures. Intelligent. Curious. Ambitious. They can build incredible machines and accomplish magnificent feats. But, the fact remains that their power is finite. They are confined to the physical laws of the universe by rules that cannot be broken.
Rules that should not be broken.
But what happens when one of those rules is broken?
I can tell you.
In what to you is the future, humans discovered a way to traverse space faster than the speed of light. This was mankind’s highest achievement. For so long, light-speed was the speed limit of the universe. Even traveling at such a speed would still take a man thousands of lifetimes just to travel across a single galaxy. But we wanted more. We wanted to see the wonders of the universe within one lifetime. So we found a way to break the rules, to travel across space even faster than light.
The funny thing about space and time is that they are fundamentally connected. They are interwoven into what’s called the “fabric of space-time.” You cannot have one without the other. So when we found the key to traversing space faster than light, we also found the key to traversing time.
When we obtained this power, we knew immediately that it was not one humans ought to have. While we sought only knowledge and progress, we knew that our fellow man were all-too-often driven by greed and ambition. If they controlled this power, they could become the self-imposed gods of this universe, bending space and time to their will.
And so we hid it. We used the device to seal ourselves away where no one could find us. Where no one could find it. We watched over the universe from our vantage point, able to see everything everywhere and at every time from the place we called the Observatory. We became the Guardians of Time, our sole purpose to ensure that no other human discover and wield this power. We vowed to protect time from those who dare abuse it, to keep it safe and untouched.
Unfortunately, one among us did not honor his vows. His name was Rivius. In the beginning, he had no malice in his intentions. He saw mankind once again ravaging itself by war. Humans slaughtering each other and destroying the earth for trivial reasons. He thought he could lead them to a better future. To solve mankind’s problems. And so, he presented his idea to the Council of Sages. My fellow sages and I rejected the idea, reciting our oaths. Rivius grew angry, accusing us of being pacifists when we had the power to save mankind.
For a while, we let him be. Decades passed, though to us they feel as but hours. The rage within Rivius grew, his heart succumbing to darkness. Finally, he snapped. After murdering most of our people, he stole the device, the ultimate power to control time. But it was not complete.
Each of us sages held a key, and only with all keys could the device be operated at full power. Rivius hunted the sages and slaughtered them, my comrades, obtaining all the keys except for one.
When Rivius finally found me, I was sure it was the end. In one last desperate act, I locked us both out of the Observatory. With my people slain, I fled alone to a time as far as my chrono-staff would take me. I landed on a desolate earth recently ravaged by war. I knew I would not be safe for long.
Rivius found the point in time I had fled to. He knew when I was, but not where I was. Without the Observatory, neither of us could see all things from all times. So he summoned an army he had built from a future point in time and brought it to our time. He began scouring the earth, hunting the final key that hung around my neck.
I knew attempting to flee through time once more would only lead to a chase I could not win. He had a chrono-gate with the power to transport large armies through time. I had a staff that could summon but one person at a time. I grew desperate. Finally, I made a decision.
I had to break my vow.
And so, I did. I began stealing people. From far in the future to far in the past, any worthy warrior I could find, I kidnapped and brought them to my time as fast as my chrono-staff would allow. Some understood my cause and agreed to fight, but the vast majority of them did not. They wanted to return to their time. I told them I was unable to bring them back to their times unless Rivius was destroyed and the chrono-gate returned.
But in the grand scheme of things, I found it to ultimately be for the betterment of mankind. And now, here I stand, with but several hundred warriors who begrudgingly follow me versus the tens of thousands of Rivius' army.
I pray that we win, because this is no time to lose.
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