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Jason Joseph Rockler

"Each time is true, but the truths are not the same."

0 · 35 views · located in Tempus Agency

a character in “It's about time”, as played by Tusho Ka

Description

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“As if you could kill time without injuring eternity”

“Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana.”


Basic Info


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Full name
Jason Joseph Rockler

Age
27

Role:
Tempus Recovery Agent




Interests



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Appearance
Hair Color:Black
Eye Color:Blue
Height: 5'9
Weight:160 lbs
Tattoos: One on his inner right fore arm.HIC ET NUNC, meaning 'the here and now'
Scars: Scar on his left shin


Likes
+ Daggers
+ Liquorice
+ Fire
+ Sailing


Dislikes
- Snakes
- Flying
- Tea
- The French


Hobbies
+ Spending time in and around the water
+ Climbing


Fears
- Being stuck in time
- Being tortured



Weapon of Choice
Daggers mostly, although battle ax can be fun as well.



Time Profile



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Role
Tempus Recovery Agent - If you've seen time travel gone wrong before like Jason has, you would try to get people to stay out of trouble too.

Goal
Jason's goal is to prevent people from being hurt by time travel, whether the time travel was accidental or on purpose.
He will try his very best to make sure the past will stay as it is, because the best way to hurt anyone is by changing their past.


Character Thoughts
On Time Control: Obviously, Time Control is something very dangerous. Life is what it is because of everything that happened in the past. By changing something in 300BC you give your good intention 2300 years to get screwed up. Even the greatest historian would not be prepared for the dangers that the past may present to you. Nothing in the world prepares you for the worst hunger you have ever felt, or torture you would never have thought possible. On the other hand, what if history was meant to be fiddled with? What if you would have never existed if you didn't travel back in time now to be your own forefather?
Favorite Era: The Renaissance/New World age, because after centuries of backwards thinking, civilization finally started moving forward again.
Killing: How does your character feel about the prospect of killing? The end of someones live is pre-destined. If I would be the person doing that I guess it was pre-destined as well.




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Personality
The easiest,fastest and probably most accurate way to describe Jason is odd.
This applies to a lot of aspects of his life. His sense of humor and logic would be two
of them. Jason is a firm believer in destiny, he would love to change the things that
happened in the past, but he knows he shouldn't. Somehow time would make sure that the
prevented event would happen after all. This is one of the reasons Jason meets his destiny
head on and does not have any doubts or regrets concerning his actions.

Jason is very caring to his colleagues and the accidentals they encounter. He has a
slight tendency to get to attached to his mission, while he knows he shouldn't. Like most
of his colleagues he is a history buff. After some time with Tempus he did
realize however, that history is written by the victorious. Jason is definitely not the
leader of the group. He mostly will do as he is told as long as it does not contradict
with his believes.




History
Jason was born to Joseph and Johanna Rockler and grew up as an only child. As an army brat Jason moved around about once a year and saw a big part of the world this way. He was home schooled by his mother and they had a very close relationship. Jason's favorite subject was definitely history. Going to so many different places his mom was able to teach history while walking around wherever they lived at the time. When Jason was 10 years old he learned about time travel the hard way. On the way home from the bakery he lost sight of his mom, and he did not see her again for a month. The police was not able to track her in any way. All the leads that they had, turned up empty leads. His mother was finally brought back to the family house about 2 months after by Tempus agents. At this time his father had already changed into a much less happy man than he had been before. Jason's mom had definitely changed as well. She had been an accidental and had turned up on a filled town square in the north of Spain in 1504. Spontaneously appearing in the middle of about a hundred towns people made sure she was soon turned over to the authorities. For the rest of the time she had been questioned and tortured by the ruthless Spanish Inquisition. After a month of torture Jason's mom had lost her mind. She never recovered after that even after coming home. The rest of his youth Jason had spent all his free time visiting the institution where his mother was at that moment. When Jason was 20 years old his father had figured out time travel himself. He traveled back to 1504 in order to save his wife from torture. Appearing in the Middle Ages with a gun, he had a slight advantage over the authorities in that time and was actually able to free his wife. His coming back strategy had not been very good and both him and his wife were caught very soon after the outbreak. After that the torture had gone on for Jason's mom while his father quite literally lost his head. It was then that the Time Keepers had offered Jason a home and a family while he no longer had one.



So begins...

Jason Joseph Rockler's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: 10AM
Year: 2019
Place: Somewhere in midwest US


It was a cold and cloudy day. The young man raised his collar to protect his neck from the wind. His hands clenched around the plastic bags he was bringing from the supermarket nearby. As he was coming to the large gates the security guard looked up at him. Out of habit Jason showed him his card, and the man simply tipped his hat and opened the gate by remote.

Walking up the massive driveway he looked to the far left and the far right and once again was amazed by the fact he was not able to see the end of the building. The massive wooden doors opened up to reveal a well-dressed lady behind a desk. “Good morning, Mr Rockler.”
Jason flashed a smile to the friendly woman, who he had seen sitting in the same place for years. “When will you finally call me Jason, I wonder.”
She replied with a small wink: “Not sure, but in any case not today, Mr Rockler.”

She pressed a button which made the door on her left buzz with a soft sound. Jason opened and stepped through the well familiar hallway. The building was old, but stylish. The thick red carpet was soft and cushy underneath his shoes. The walls were covered with wooden panels from bottom to about midway. From there up paintings depicting historical events lined the walls. The end of the hallway showed him 6 elevators. They had golden plated doors with relief that was hardly recognizable. He did not have to wait long before his elevator arrived, it always came quickly. This was the only one that would bring him to where he needed to be. In fact his security access didn’t allow him in any of the other ones.

The elevator was empty and arrived with a ringing sound on the 32nd floor in no time at all. The decoration on this floor was very different. It looked like crew quarters on a ship, which of course it kind of was. Warning signs, notice boards, metal floors and flickering TL-lighting. Jason flicked his card in front of the door of his room. Without him noticing the security camera relaxed as Jason stepped through the door and set back to its original setting from before Jason exited from the elevators.
He put the bags on the wooden table next to the kitchen area. The room he was standing in was his living quarters and had been for years. Despite the time he spent there you couldn’t really say it looked like a cozy, personalized room. No pictures, no art, no personalized cups. Just a few books laying here and there and a fruit basket with plastic fruit (which was there before he moved in). The kitchen area moved over in a dining area, the living room and a bed. It was a studio, but in rather small format. Jason didn’t mind the space, he had lived in worse. He pushed the remote to turn on to the TV before he put his groceries away in cupboard and fridge.

The cartoon channel came on, being the last thing he watched when he had turned the TV off. In the corner of the screen a small envelop appeared letting Jason know there was a new message. He grabbed a glass of juice (mixed with some vodka) and set down on his couch. With the remote he opened moved to the menu to read his messages. He entered his password and found 2 messages waiting for him. The first being from one of his friends and colleagues, asking if she could borrow one of his books. Without replying he moved to the next message which came from Tempus. The email was not much longer than the last one, but an assignment always came with a certain urgency.

He was tasked to meet his supervisor in briefing room 12B at 11AM sharp. Looking at the clock Jason realized he had about 15 minutes left to make his way up there. Not an oasis of time, but he would easily make it. The message gave no further instructions and Jason switched the TV off. I wonder when we are going now, he asked himself before closing his door.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: 11AM
Year: 2019
Place: Somewhere in midwest US


Mr. Hassani was standing in the room looking over notes when Jason entered the room. The man was not like a direct supervisor, but Jason knew he was of a higher rank. The man was balding, around 50 years of age. His thin lips revealed he was upset about something. With Jason’s earlier encounters with the man, Jason wasn’t sure if Mr. Hassani would tell him what was so upsetting.

”Take a seat, Rockler…” the man said softly.
He took a seat, crossed his legs and folded his hands in anticipation. Jason gave off a relaxed look, ready for anything. This wasn’t his first rodeo and he wasn’t particularly worried about the upcoming assignment. It was warm in the room and he saw the older man dabbing his head with a cloth to stop the sweat running from his forehead. Mr. Hassani dropped the manila folder on the table and he shoved it in Jason’s direction. He opened the folder and began reading from the top. Honestly, there wasn’t much there. As usual it stated the date of today, the place where the anomaly would have taken place, the date the anomaly occurred and the method of Time Travel.

”Sir?...This must be a joke…..” Jason said while looking over the paper.
The date of the incident was a mere 3 days ago. Jason was a man who had traveled far and wide, had fought for and against the Roman empire, had been in the New World before the Europeans were. He was being send on a mission a measly 3 days back?
”Do I have the look of a jokester on my face, Mr. Rockler?” the old man said angrily.
”Have I ever joked in front of you before? Have you ever heard rumors on my stand-up routine. Do not forget your place here, Rockler. I give the orders and you follow them, or have I missed a memo?”
Jason read on in the document. ”My apologies Sir, that is not what I meant. But this is barely an incident. The way of Time Travel is listed as unknown. Are we sure this is even worth investigating at all?” Jason took a deep breath. It felt beneath him and honestly, 3 days could not do much damage. At least not as much as his other assignments would have.
”The signature of travelling is known, but we don’t have the actual connection as to how they are doing. It. In the past 12 months we have seen this signature more and more, but without any results on our investigation. This time the signs were 10 times stronger. It is the most positive lead in this case so far, that is why we are sending you.” he sighed and looked Jason straight in the face.
”Meeting over, Rockler. Go to Movement directly and give them the order. I will see you as soon as you return. ”

Jason stood up and walked out the room, his assignment left inside. He went left, back to the elevators. Moving up one floor there was an immediate change in atmosphere. The moment the doors opened Jason could see this floor being more alive. Teams of agents were walking over to Movement. Two of the scientists were running the opposite direction. Jason saw agents walking with Viking weapons, and others carrying a pick-axe and dressed for the Yukon gold rush. He walked out and joined the waiting room to patiently await his Movement.
Jason had waited in this room for hours on previous missions. The science behind it was not something he understood, but it was volatile and getting it accurate was a tough and lengthy job. He quickly noticed Mr. Hassini must have prioritized his mission. He was only there for 10 minutes before he was called to one of the Movement chambers.
He moved into the brightly lit room. The entire ceiling seemed to emit the light as a clear lamp could never be seen. Depending on the size of the team there were bigger and smaller chambers. The one Jason stood in now was large enough for only one person. A pill and a small cup of water were ready for him upon his entrance. He was not sure what was in the pill, but it helped your stability directly after the Time Travel. He had tried without before, but preferred to take the pill now. The empty cup went back on the small board on the side of the chamber. A voice in the chamber confirmed Jason’s name and his destination in place and time. After he confirmed all, there was a countdown from 5. The light turned so bright Jason could no longer see. And by the time he regained his sight he was looking at the wall of an alleyway, Manhattan, 3 days earlier.

Walking out of the alleyway he recognized the outlines of Chinatown. The incident he was here to investigate would happen in about 30 minutes and could have happened in about 3 or 4 buildings surrounding him. He stepped into the first shop on his left, which was a gift shop. It wasn’t crowded, but there didn’t seem to be any space to hide away or appear out of nowhere. He exited the shop and looked at his other options. He looked at a clothing boutique and a bank. In the file he read before there was nothing about a bank robbery or anything in that line. It was the most logical option, but Jason’s instinct told him to go with the boutique.

Walking toward the door he held it open for a young women to go in before him. Inside it was quiet, it seemed to be a bit of a specialist shop. He felt out of place in here, maybe caused by him not really looking at the clothes, but at the surroundings more. He went through a few of the racks to seem to be looking for something. As the girl he let in moved to the dressing rooms he walked up to the register. ”Excuse me, NYPD…”
Jason quickly flashed her a paper in his wallet, not giving her a lot of time to look at it. For most people the notion of the police force alone was enough to answer a few questions.
“Have you seen anything or anyone strange in the store today? Like a person that shouldn’t be there, or that wouldn’t normally come here?”
She looked a bit shocked with the question and hesitated before answering. ”Up to the moment you asked me, I thought this of you, sir. The other people so far I have seen before, or seem right at home. Most woman leave their partners outside, since there isn’t much for them in here.”
Jason thanked the lady for her help. As far as he could see all here was normal. He moved to the door to go and check the bank. It seemed his instinct had let him down this time.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: Late afternoon, 3 days ago
Year: 2019
Place: Manhattan


The bank was a bust. Upon entering he had the feeling he was in the wrong place. Jason couldn’t really put his finger on it, but his gut spoke volumes. He went to the counters and joined in one of the lines. The security guard’s eyes were poking in his back and he realized the guard would not be so quickly convinced by a flash of his wallet. In order not to raise more suspicion he acted the part of an impatient client. With a few minutes of a lot of heavy sighing and constantly checking his watch, he left the queue and got out of the building.

Jason’s eyes were once again fixed on the door of the clothing boutique. Did I miss something? Aside from the lady and the register and the girl trying on the dress he hadn’t seen anything. Jason felt bad about going back with no information. He knew the case wouldn’t be the easiest one he ever solved. It wasn’t a elderly professor lost in the gladiator pits, or a computer analyst in a concentration camp. Someone travelling back in time for three days would not stand out like a soar thumb. They didn’t dress different, act different or speak different than the other people there. They wouldn’t use new age terms for old fashioned things. They wouldn’t be threatening the Aztec priests with a lawsuit.

Jason had hoped to find something though. Not to boast, but he was good at his job. He had a knack for it. The part historian, part actor and part detective fit him like a glove. It fit him so well, he could not believe his gut let him down. In a last attempt at success he looked back at the boutique and decided to go in once more.

The girl he saw earlier was now paying for the dress. It seemed the most normal thing in the world. Jason couldn’t see what she was buying as it was already in the plastic bag provided by the store. When she left through the door he saw a slight smile on her face. Alone in the store now he stepped again towards the lady at the counter. ”Excuse me, sorry to be such a bother. Do you mind if I just check the dressing rooms?”
Her face showed she was clearly bothered, but she didn’t put up a fight. She simply gave a hand gesture towards the dressing rooms before going back to folding clothes. Jason walked to the back and saw the three dressing rooms, none occupied. He opened each curtain slightly but did not see anything out of place. To be honest, he could not even be sure which of the rooms was just used by the girl.

He realized it had been a long shot, and that he was about 15 minutes past incident time, but he would have blamed himself for not checking. He walked back and out the store without a word. He turned into the alleyway where he had come from earlier. Making sure he was out of sight and in the shadows he used his left hand to press a button underneath his skin on his right bicep. Pressing it firmly for 5 seconds made him disappear back to his own timeline.

The chamber he appeared in was a different one then before. He stepped out and walked to the reception. He gave his name and mission and they changed his status from On Mission to Home Base. They gave him the room number to wait in, to give his briefing on the mission. Walking to the room he still had a bad feeling. He was almost sure he had been in the right place, but whoever had been Time Traveling there, they had left shortly after.
It wouldn’t be the first time someone tried to get off Tempus’ radar by jumping through time quickly, but it didn’t feel the same. He didn’t look forward to the debriefing. It didn’t happen much that Jason had a mission where he came back with zilch. Especially not in such a strange type of case.

Jason was surprised when he opened the door. Mr. Hassini was already there, waiting for him. Last time I needed to debrief to him he made me wait for over an hour. What is going on here….?
”Sorry, sir. I checked the location and time, but there was nothing out of the ordinary. It was like looking for a business man in a group of business men. Everything looked like it belonged.”
Mr. Hassini looked at him with deep thinking eyes. Like he was trying to look straight into his soul, like he tried to read his mind. ”You’re lying,” he said.
”You have ideas, you have thoughts, you have suspicions. You have no evidence, and that’s why you are not telling me.” The man sounded strict, but direct. There was no anger in his voice, but Jason seemed to spot a hint of curiosity.
”Let’s not pretend this was a normal mission in the first place. Tell me what you think, not what you can prove.” He gestured at a seat and Jason sat down. The door opened again and a lady came in with two steaming cups. Ugh, I hate tea, why always the tea? She put the first nasty smelling cup in front of Mr. Hassini. The second she put in front of Jason, and to his surprise he saw the cup filled with coffee. Thankful, he took a sip and started explaining.

”I apologize sir, but this is not how I usually give a debriefing. But, if you insist.” Jason put the cup down and told his supervisor the story. He told him about the boutique and the bank, and about his decision to go back to the boutique again. The entire time the older man listened with full attention, not one moment dismissing any of Jason’s thoughts and ideas.
”I am not sure why you send me on this mission sir. It’s done and although ideas and thoughts are nice, they don’t bring us a clear cut case. I thank you for your confidence but I think it is better for me to concentrate on my next mission.” Jason finished his cup of coffee. Feeling refreshed and energized he thought he would go to the gym for a bit.
”Stay seated, Mr. Rockler. I never said your mission was over. Stay on the case, do more research. Check newspapers, reports of similar incidents. Find out what the hell is going on. If there is a new type of Time Traveling signature we must chase it until we find out who and how. You will not be assigned another mission until I am certain you are done with this one. Your access level has been upgraded for certain sections of the record room. Use your time wisely. If you need to Travel, simply go to Movement. They will inform me of your trips directly, and I will authorize or not authorize then and there, without the red tape. Go with your gut, and give me results.”

Jason could not believe what he had heard. His reputation in Tempus was not spotless. There were other agents with good records and a more clean way of getting the job done. Younger people than him were climbing the ranks faster than he ever could. He had been an agent for quite a few years now, and although he was getting solo missions, he was never put in charge of a team. He didn’t know if he should be happy or worried.
”Sir? This is a surprise. I…, I will do my best.” Jason stumbled over his words. He never had any ambition to climb the ranks. Bureaucratic crap, he had always called it. He enjoyed what he did, and had no intention of changing. Seems they have a different idea Even though this was unlike previous assignments, this case was intriguing somehow.
”I don’t need your best, I need results. Doesn’t matter how I get them. Show me something soon before I must call upon someone else. Higher people than me are watching this case closely.”
Jason left the room and decided to set up a plan first. Let’s get to my room first, I need a drink.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Years: 2019 // 1965
Location: Chinatown, NYC. // Syracuse, NY
Time: Early Afternoon. // Mid-Afternoon.
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”Here she is, press the button to retract the light blade.” Amelie said as she tossed Lux to Irealia and then flounced back down onto the couch.
She’d go on to explain how it worked, and her theory about how smoothing out the jagged energy around the edges of the portal made the transportation through time smoother.

”That’s amazing Amelie!” Irealia said, as she played with the retract button on Lux’s base. ”After years of time traveling even I find the magic involved hard to control upon exiting a portal. Don’t get me wrong, I can control it, but only to a point. You say this gave you complete control?”
Amelie gleefully explained how she pictured exactly where she wanted to land, and landed there perfectly.
”It couldn’t have gone better! Well, in terms of exiting the portal initially...”
Irealia smirked and then tossed a retracted Lux back to Amelie. ”This is really something Amelie, but it makes sense - the energy from this blade, in conjunction with our magic, being strong enough to warp the energies surrounding the portal. If only we could create that same intensity without ‘Lux.’”
Amelie’s eyebrows shot up at the notion. ”That would be…quite something!”

The two women would chat light-heartedly about Irealia’s recent adventures in 1912, and the Suffrage Parade she took part in, until Amelie grew hungry and suggested the two go get lunch.


”You know I’m pretty hungry now that you mention it, where to missy?”
Amelie would sit back and think for a minute before a McDonalds commercial gave her a wild idea.


Seeing Amelie’s wide excited eyes Irealia knew something was up. ”Uh-oh, what is that brain of yours cooking up?”
”Did you know that back in the 60s when McDonalds and Burger King first started, there were a bunch of other chains that tried to give them a run for their money? I just watched a documentary about it on YouTube the other day! The biggest competitor was a place called Henry’s Hamburgers! We should go there!! There was one in Syracuse, let me look it up again!”
Amelie grabbed her phone and began googling until she found the location in Syracuse, New York.
”Here we go! Built in 1960 the Syracuse location was open until 1974….hmm, which year should we go back to!?”
”Wait, we’re going back in time - for a hamburger?”
”Not just any hamburger! A Henry’s hamburger!!" she'd joke. "Besides, it’ll be fun - I love the 60’s, I have a ton of outfits that would fit for that decade - come look!”

The two women would make their way up to Amelie’s bedroom and go through a collection of mid-to-late 60’s attire. The two both wanted to wear mini-skirts, finding the allure of wearing a mini-skirt in a time when they were just coming on to the market and facing resistance, too much to resist.
”Okay okay, if we’re going to twinsies in these skirts lets go back to the mid 60’s! 19…1964! No no, 1965!”

Amelie would rush to get dressed in a lime green and white high-waist mini skirt, white knee-high socks, and a loose lime green button-up blouse. Irealia would put the same outfit on, but instead of lime green and white her colors would be yellow and white.
The two women then spent a good half hour doing their hair - Amelie opting for big poofy pig-tails reminiscent of the 1960’s doll Chatty Cathy, while Irealia opted for a more simple flipped bob style.


After digging in Amelie’s closet for purses the two would go through her small stash of old money, gathered in various ways. The two would count out ten dollars in single dollar bills they made sure were dated before, or in, 1965.
”Alright then, lets get going. After all that work I’m even more hungry now!”
Amelie nodded in agreement, and the two would go back and forth reminding each other of the various things they should and shouldn’t do - from turning their phones on vibrate, to remembering the lingo of the time. Irealia would eventually deem them ready to go, and after entering her heightened state she’d use the picture Amelie googled earlier to form an image of the Henry’s Hamburger restaurant inside of a portal she'd create atop Amelie's bed.
The two women stared at the people loitering outside of the restaurant in 1965….the image of where they wanted to go wasn’t as clear as it could be due to the jagged edges of the portal, so without thinking Amelie used Lux to smooth the edges and image out.

”Look, there…there’s an alley at the end of the strip mall behind the restaurant, it’s against a brick wall so that should be a good place to land and walk out from!”
Irealia wasn’t as convinced as Amelie but due to her hunger agreed with her young friend, and after securing Lux inside of her purse Amelie would close her eyes, enter her heightened state, and picture exactly where she wanted to land before entering the portal - followed directly by Irealia.





The two would walk smoothly out of the portal at the very back of a dark damp alley against the brick wall Amelie had spotted. Not a single person was in sight, and the two easily were able to return to their normal states and walk out of the alley and head towards the restaurant without being seen.

”I gotta say, that was the smoothest exit I’ve ever experienced through a portal. That thing sure is a godsend!” Irealia whispered as she patted Lux through Amelie’s purse.

As the two women approached the restaurant all eyes locked onto them. Sure, they were in style for the decade, but the mini-skirt was still a new thing, and while the other women loitering at the order window or nearby cars wore similar hairstyles and dresses shorter than what their parents probably liked, Amelie and Irealia were the only two in Miniskirts.

Being a naturally introverted young woma Amelie was a bit uncomfortable with so many eyes on her, but Irealia ate up the young women staring daggers at her while their boyfriends and male companions stared eagerly.
”Why hello there sir, may I have two cheese burgers and some of your famous onion rings? I’m quite famished.” Irealia said somewhat dramatically as she leaned into the ordering window, making sure her skirt lifted ever-so slightly for the audience she knew was behind them.
Amelie on the other hand crossed her arms over her chest in a slightly protective stance - twirling back and fort unconsciously as she took in the sights around her. It was only when she heard Irealia say “Famished” that she'd turn around and tap her friend on the shoulder - whispering in her ear.
”Famished? Really?” she said with a small laugh, before ordering the same thing as her friend - but adding a cup of lemonade, something Irealia would quickly add to her order too.

Henry’s Hamburgers was a carry-out establishment where people typically ate at their cars or took their food home. Thankfully however on this day there were two picnic tables set up, and after getting their meals the women would sit down at the picnic table furthest from the group of cars in the restaurant's parking lot.
”Dear god, could they stare any harder?” Amelie said as she opened her brown bag and pulled out her food.
”Lets give them something more to stare at!” Irealia joked, before crossing her legs.
”Come on girlie, don’t go all shy on me now - do it!” she whispered, eventually goading a slightly embarrassed Amelie into crossing her legs as well.

The two conversed for a while about various things they spotted in the strip mall they were in and about the men they saw staring at them, until the conversation eventually made it’s way back to the boutique.
”I know you’re sick of repeating it to me at this point, but mind repeating everything that happened again? Start from the beginning, this is the last time I'll ask, I promise!”
Amelie sighed and after a brief protest repeated her story again. Irealia would press her for any interaction she had with the cop and without thinking Amelie would spit out how she had walked by who she assumed was the police officer on the way out but he never talked to her directly. ”And that’s it! It’s not a big...deal.” Amelie’s voice trailed off before she could finish her sentence, quickly realizing that passing the man she assumed was the police officer on her way out was again a memory she felt like she was remembering for the first time.
Irealia too noticed the change in her story and dropped her burger onto the table before quickly leaning in towards Amelie.
”This is the second time your memory has changed involving this officer! Do you still think these new memories aren't odd?”
Amelie crinkled her eyebrows and shook her head softly in confusion.
”I-I, I don’t know.”
Irealia sighed, unconsciously running her hand through her hair before leaning back again. The two would remain silent for a brief moment before Irealia eventually spoke up again in a low voice.
”Look, we all get memories scrambled up sometimes, but the fact that your new memories involve a man claiming he’s a cop, bothers me. I’ve seen this before, with other Plethora member's stories….a cop, a security guard, some form of law enforcement, questioning those who were around them when they time traveled. On the surface it seems innocent enough, but put all together don’t you think it’s a bit strange?”
Amelie shrugged. ”I guess so, yes. What are you trying to say though? Does the energy and magic involved in our method of traveling set off alarms or something that alert the authorities to the establishments we land in or by?”
”I thought that myself, but when this phenomena occurs when one is traveling to the 1800’s or middle ages I don’t think we can chop it up to a security system - no?”

Before she could respond Amelie would feel a hand on her shoulder and jump slightly.
”Oh, I’m sorry ma’am - didn’t mean to frighten ya there.” said a handsome young man with bright blue eyes and dark brown hair. Amelie felt her cheeks flush a bit as the young man smiled at her.
”O-oh, it’s quite alright. May I help you with something?” she responded, with a warm smile - attempting to mask her nervousness.
”Well I couldn’t help but notice you from across the way, you’re right beautiful. Me and my pal Jimmy over there, we were heading to the theatre and would love if you and your friend joined us.”
The young main pointed to a man around the same age as him several yards behind them leaning on a black muscle car, before then pointing to the theatre across the street.
Amelie began to turn him down before Irealia cut her off.
”Oh yes, we have time! Would you two mind walking us back to our hotel after the movie though?”
”Of course ma’am, that’s not a problem at all!”
”Swell! Come on Layla, we’re gonna have a gas!”
Irealia would introduce herself as Rachel and Amelie as Layla to the brown haired man, before leaving him with Amelie and approaching his blonde-haired friend.
”Layla Is it, well I’m Brett. Pleased to meet ya!”
Amelie would smile softly and shake his hand, the two would then throw away Irealia and Amelie's trash from the picnic table before walking over towards the car his friend and Irealia where standing at talking.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: 3PM
Year: 2019 / 1965
Place: Somewhere in midwest US / Syracuse, NY


Back in his room he walked to the small cabinet on the far side. He took out a classy looking bottle with a golden brown substance inside. He poured himself a small glass and landed 3 ice cubes in it. Taking the tumbler, he sat down on his couch and let out a sigh. Just when he thought he had this institution figured out, he was thrown another curve ball.
Jason was not one to wait in doubt, and at this moment any idea is better than no idea. He emptied his glass in a few quick sips and headed to the library. It was quite a walk as it was at the end of the east wing of the building. The room was large and fully filled with computer equipment. The amount of searching stations was enormous, and Jason had no problem finding a free spot. As usual he sat a bit to the side, he wasn’t a big fan of close encounters with his colleagues. Always those colleagues that try to talk your ear off…
There were no books to be found here, or at least not any physical ones. Most of the books were in storage and a team of administration workers was digitizing them. Jason had never met one of them, but he had heard the stories. All historical books could be found in the system. Sometimes it took a while to find what you were looking for due to the enormous amount of titles available.

This time Jason was looking quite specifically. He wanted to search the Time Travel Diaries, basically the mission reports of the institute. For all reports you had to fill out a list of questions before writing the report itself. One of those questions was the amount of time between the time at which travel started back to the point where they arrived. When he entered the search term 3 days, he received 406 results of past cases. When he applied the case status filter to ‘solved’ only 23 cases remained. With a sigh escaping his lips he opened the first case and started reading.

90 minutes later Jason had gone through 20 of the cases. Mostly the reasons were to save a loved one from an accident or worse, or to simply win the lottery. The last case had been a bit more disturbing. The case had not been solved based on the 3 days time travel. However, when the man went back 40 years and killed a farming family they were able to catch him. With the interrogation it came out he had tried his theory first by travelling back 3 days. It once again showed Jason the seriousness of the job he was doing. It might not be killers every time, but there was always a chance.
He leaned back and rubbed his eyes when he heard a zooming sound and saw a message appear on his computer screen. The message told him to immediately report at Movement where a message would be waiting for him. Jason gave his notebook at the reception and asked to load the unsolved cases on there. He could take the notebook (which looked like a book) back in time to keep the cases at hand.

Soon he found himself back in the elevator moving up to Movement again. Coming to the reception desk he simply showed his card to receive the message left behind. He took the letter without a word and moved back into the waiting room for the second time that day. He looked at it and noticed he had to make another stop before going.
A few rooms down from the waiting room was the Changing room. Considering the range of history and clothing, you’d expect it to be massive. The room you could enter was merely 10 x 6 meters. At the desk you gave the year and place and your clothes would come from the back. Jason always saw it as a bit of a mystery. It never took more than 10 minutes, which should mean they have masses of people working there, or it was a highly automated system. Whatever it was, you could always see the same grumpy lady sitting in front.

”Place?” was all she said when he stepped up to her.
”Good day to you as well, Miss MacKenzie. How are you doing today?” Although his attempt was extra cheerful, there was no reaction from the stern woman. Her half glasses were down on her nose, like an old-time librarian. Without moving she repeated. ”Place?”
A small sigh escaped his mouth as he checked his letter and gave the answer. ”Syracuse, New York.” Knowing the next question he added himself: ”1965.”
She madly typed in the information and a few minutes later Jason’s clothes came to the front. He quickly changed and went back to the waiting room. He was scheduled to arrive a day before the arrival of his current objective. He would have some time to get used to the lay of the land. It might make it easier to spot something that looks out of place.
Some 20 minutes later it was time. He once again went to one of the chambers and before he knew it, he arrived in 1965.
Last time there were some different buildings to choose from where the incident could have taken place. This time though, there was only one building which could be the target for a time jump. Henry’s Hamburgers was surrounded by a parking lot, not big by todays standards, but big enough. Jason saw cars parked where people enjoyed their food, and a picnic table in front where guests could sit down.
The children’s play area was not a thing yet, and drive-through didn’t exist. But the place was clearly recognizable by their signage. Jason had never been here, and honestly had never heard of the establishment itself. He weighed the option of going in as a customer. However, with the small seating area, the absence of his own vehicle and at least a day to spend, it wasn’t the obvious choice.

Instead Jason walked to the back of the restaurant, where he saw an older man taking out some of the trash. ”Sir, you think there is any work here for an honest man?” He walked up to the man and stretched out his hand waiting for the inevitable handshake.
The man invited him inside, and in a small office the two spoke. ”Where are you from, son?”
Jason answered with Kansas City. For some reason the man looked suspicious, although Jason couldn’t really place it. He looked around the office and started to notice the little things quickly. A medal on the wall, a picture of men in uniform, and a newspaper opened on the page with updates on the Vietnam war.
”Mr. Henry…, I won’t be here long. I was just cleared from medical leave, but they told me I have to wait before I can go back to Nam. I’ll just stay for a few days, but I find it hard to sit still and do nothing.” He added a bit of a pout, knowing all to well the selfie hadn’t destroyed it yet at this time.
The older man’s suspicion seemed to die right then and there. He got a smile on his face, stood up and pat Jason on the shoulder. ”Good man, Mr….” he waited for a response.
”Rockler, Sir. Joseph Rocker, but call me Joe, please.”
”Excellent, Joe. If it wasn’t for my bad legs, I would have loved to join you myself. We need every bit of help we can get to kick those commies back to the USSR. My wife burned her hand yesterday and we are a bit short in the kitchen. Think you can manage that?” The man walked to the door of the small office and opened it. ”There is an apron on the counter in the kitchen. And by the way, I am not Henry, it’s just a name. Call me Steven.”

Jason thanked him and walked to the kitchen right away. He picked up the apron and washed his hands. In a minute or 2 he was introduced to the colleagues and he started grilling. He enjoyed this part of the mission. Getting to know the people of the time, their stories and their hopes and dreams. Although war was raging and there were more diseases than in his own time, somehow the 60s seemed to be less cynical. And an honest day work actually felt good.
Jason’s position was optimal. Henry’s Hamburgers had been copied of the McDonald’s set-up. An open kitchen where the guests could see the food being prepared for them. He could see all people walking up to the windows without problem. He kept flipping burgers till the place closed for the day. He worked without a break but always with a glass of water around. He was sweating and regretted not having an extra shirt on him.

As the staff was all leaving, Jason stood behind. He needed a place to sleep and was looking for the nearest motel. He was happily surprised when Steven and his wife came up to him and offered him a bed and a shower for the night. He gladly accepted and at least did not have to worry for the night.
On his bed he read some of the other files without learning much from them. He was looking forward to the next day, hopefully to be able to make headway in the case.
The day had been a long one, so it was no surprise he fell asleep quickly.

When he woke up in the morning it was because of a knock on his door. It was Steven’s wife who now called for him. ”Joe, dear? We are going to the restaurant in 30 minutes, are you ready?”
He replied he would come with them as soon as he had a shower. And with the cold shower he had it only took him 10 minutes to be fully ready to go. In the kitchen there was a plate ready for him with some eggs and bacon. With a smile on his face he started eating right away and cleaned his plate afterwards.
Steven looked at him strange when Jason cleaned the dishes. Clearly it was the woman’s work, and letting Jason do it was not right.
”My dad died a long time ago. I always had to help my mom around the house. Really, I don’t mind.”

They got in the car, and drove to the restaurant. The work hadn’t changed much except for starting with eggs before the burgers. Jason noticed however, that by 11 am the burgers had already fully replaced any of the egg orders.
He knew that the incident was not long from now. He kept his eyes open on the customers while diligently doing his job. His attention was raised by the people at the cash register. He heard a tut-tut from one of the older ladies and noticed all men standing just a little bit taller. Steven’s wife came to Jason. ”Can you believe that Joe? Our country is at war, and those girls come up here barely wearing anything. It’s worse than those hippies.”
Jason just nodded as he tried his best to get a good view. When he finally saw the girls in full he knew right away they were the time travellers. First of all, they stood out like a soar thumb. Although the miniskirt was getting popular in Europe, America was a bit more conservative. Adding the bright colors and the feminist attitude Jason could be sure. In addition, of course, he recognized the girl immediately. He had seen her less than 24 hours ago in a small boutique in China Town, over 50 years from now. The other one, he could not recognize. She wasn’t in the same shop before.

His mind was racing. If there was more than 1, it might be a bigger issue than he had expected. It also ruled out an accident, seeing as it happened twice in a short time and considering the women were dressed for the occasion. Jason noted they went to sit at the table outside. ”Steven, can I take a quick smoke break?”
Steven agreed and walked out with Jason. They lit their cigarettes as they looked out over the parking lot. ”Those girls, do they look familiar to you?”
Steven told him he had never seen them before. ”Probably some city girls out for the day.”
Yes, and a far way from home… Jason thought. He saw the boys going over to the table and picked up the conversation. He could intervene now, but he had no idea how they had traveled. He needed a softer approach then just giving himself away. With his paper hat and apron on, he could only hope the girl wouldn’t recognize him. Although he was pretty sure she didn’t get a good look the day before.
If they leave, I might have to follow them. He was thinking of a way to get hold of their purse. He needed some clue on how they were doing this.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: Late afternoon
Year: 1965
Place: Syracuse, NY

Jason lit a second cigarette looking over at the table. A conversation had now started between the time travelers and the boys that approached the table before. ”They seem quite popular off the bat…”, he mentioned to Steven.
The man looked over at the table again. His forehead turned into a frown as he seemed to recognize the boys. ”Lucky ladies, getting the attention of the mayors son and all…" Contrary to his words he didn't seem that impressed. " Useless prick never did an honest day of work in his life. Can’t believe he even got his friends out of military duty though, that’s a new low.” The older man let out a heavy sigh and was shaking his head in disapproval.
”Wow, it seems that’s happening in all times…” Jason mumbled to himself. ”Which one is the mayor’s son?” he asked as blasé as he could.
”The one talking to the young girl there, Brett Beckerman. Best of luck to the girl…” Steven answered as he through his cigarette on the ground and stomped it out with his feet.
”I’ll be 2 more minutes, see you inside Steven.” Jason kept looking at the table. Both girls didn’t seem to have eyes for anything else than the attention of the boys. As they were getting up he saw them walking over to the cinema. Well, I guess that will keep them busy for some time.

Jason walked back inside and continued the now usual grilling of his burgers. Through the open kitchen he could keep an eye on the cinema entrance, but not as much as he wanted to. He called out to the front to see if there was anyone that wanted to switch, and a few minutes later he was taking the orders rather than making them. Every few seconds he would glance over to the cinema, even though the movie must be at least one more hour to go.
Just a few minutes later there was some commotion coming from the cinema when the two girls came storming out. From this viewpoint Jason could clearly see the ripped blouse one of them was wearing. She was going for the boys car like a bull running after a red cloth. He didn’t have a lot of time to think, but he could see trouble coming if the police was involved. It seemed however, that her friend had the same train of thought, since she jumped in between the car and her friend.
He couldn’t hear what was going on, but he lost focus of his work looking over at the two girls. He wasn’t alone, as most people in the restaurant as well as at the tables were now looking in their direction. He saw the two girls hugging and moving away from the muscle car in the direction of Sears. He heard Steven behind him: ”Well, they were asking for it, the way they were dressed…”

Jason flared up and felt himself getting red in the face. ”You really think so, Steven. I mean, we were near the two girls and my penis never left my pants. As far as I could see neither did yours, but maybe I missed something?” He maybe sounded more passive aggressive than he wanted.
He could see the man getting angry. Jason thought to calm himself down, this was a sign of the times. But then he didn’t feel it was an acceptable one. This was a difficult point in his job. He saw crimes and misjudgments happen in front of his eyes, but he was supposed to do nothing about it. He was protecting history, as terrible as that sometimes was. It was only normal that people wanted to stop murder, rape and injustice overall. Jason was no different in this, he had half a mind to beat up this Brett dude. If he would have been near them when it happened, he just might have. And this was the thing that Jason hated about himself. His first instinct should be to kick the crap out of him, and even the fact that he would think about reconsidering made him sick.

”Now don’t get fresh with me young man. Don’t act like I did something wrong. I gave you a place to work and a place to sleep, this is a strange thank you.”
Jason wanted to protest and opened his mouth to tell Steven that him accepting that Brett would make unwanted advances, was nearly as bad as making the advances himself.
”Before you open your mouth again I suggest you take get some fresh air outside and cool down.” Jason had to agree and went back to the smoking spot, this time without actually smoking. He hadn’t seen the girls coming out of Sears and thought he ought to investigate when he saw another commotion at the cinema.

Brett and his friend came nearly running out, looking around frantically. They walked to the middle of the parking lot looking in all directions. They didn’t find what they were looking for and they stormed in the direction of Henry’s Hamburgers. It looked like Brett had a bleeding nose and his belt was not yet tied.
”Give me a phone now! I am calling the police!” He literally screamed in Jason’s face.
”Oh my, what happened to you Golden boy. Want to call the police over a missing belt?” He tried to laugh it off, and cool down the situation. The police wouldn’t help Jason right now.
”That bitch punched me in the face, she needs to be arrested!” He was on his way to step over to the window to ask for a phone.
”So you want to call the police, many of them your fathers friends and acquaintances, to tell them the mayors son was beat up by a girl? Wowzers, I am sure that will be the talk of the town.”
Brett stopped. ”Well, she deserves to be….” he started doubting himself. ”You…you can’t just get away with something…” With a sound somewhere between agony, anger and frustration he left and walked towards his car. With a sound to destroy CO2 submissions the world around he drove off.

Jason called through the window, ”Steven, if you don’t mind I am just gonna check if those girls are okay, all right?” Steven let out a sigh and seemed ready to protest before his wife jumped in. ”Sure thing doll, see you in a few minutes.”
He took off his apron and his paper hat and walked over to the Sears. Thinking of her ripped blouse, he was pretty sure they would be at the fitting rooms. He followed the signs and from a distance could see the younger girl waiting at the fitting rooms. He could only think that the other one was occupying the fitting room itself. He was too scared of being recognized to come any closer. There was not a lot of room there to hide away, and although the purses were laying on a stool next to her, he didn’t see a way to get a hold of them. All he could do now was to stay close and try to pick up on their conversation.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Years: 1965
Location: Syracuse, NY
Time: Mid-Afternoon.
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After only a couple minutes Irealia would come out of the dressing room stall and hold two shirts up, asking for an opinion on which is better. Before Amelie could even respond the excited redhead proclaimed she’d just get both, before walking over towards the cashier.
Amelie smiled slightly before pushing her way into the dressing room stall - locking the door behind her. After dropping their belongings onto the stall’s bench she’d quickly change her shirt and then shove her old torn shirt inside of her bag.
Staring at herself in the mirror Amelie sighed as she pulled her hair out of the pigtails she had styled it into earlier. Using her fingers she’d comb her long thick hair out until it was relatively straight, almost reaching to the ends of her miniskirt.
”I wanna go home…” she muttered, before closing her eyes and entering her heightened state of being. When she opened her now white eyes she’d look around her stall and quickly find not one but two tears, she’d touch one with her hand - causing it to open into a small portal the size of a grapefruit. She thought for a second about just widening it, pulling Irealia inside the dressing room, and leaving, however she quickly realized it wasn’t the right location - the cashier knew they were in the store still, and so did a gentlemen who had entered shortly after them, so Amelie dropped her heightened state, picked up their bags, and exited the stall.


”Ready to go finally?” Amelie said to Irealia as she approached her.
”Yeah, I just finished doll, so lets….go.”
Her friend paused for a moment before finishing her sentence, taken off guard for a second by Amelie’s hair being straightened out.
”So, where to? Maybe the city? Oh yes, lets go stroll by NYC!” Irealia said as the two made their way to the front door of the shop.
”Yeah, no. Lets just go home, I’ve had enough for one day.”
Amelie would accidentally bump into a woman’s shoulder as she was approaching the door - knocking a wallet out of her grasp. Without thinking Amelie bent down to pick it up and handed it back - apologizing.
She’d look up towards the woman’s face briefly with a smile before casually looking around the woman - spotting the man she had seen enter the store before.
As the woman walked away from her Amelie would find herself staring at the man, something about him seeming familiar for some reason. Before she could walk closer to get a better look her friend pulled her back towards the door and out of the shop.
”Come on, no gawking at strangers, though I must admit that one was quite the looker!” Irealia joked, letting go of Amelie’s arm only once the two were outside the front doors.
The pair quickly spotted a bus stop bench ahead of them near the Henry’s Hamburgers and began walking towards it.

”He looked familiar” Amelie muttered, more to herself than her friend, and after Irealia dismissed it as likely deja vu she’d agree, sit down on the bus bench, and cross her legs.
”We need to find somewhere to go. Maybe we can ride the bus around until we find another secluded spot?”
”You know there’s actually two tears in the dressing room of Sears. If only we could get in there without being noticed.”
Irealia quickly gave her friend a light tap in the back of the head.
”Of course we can! Come on, lets go back to the movie theatre, we can use the bathrooms and teleport to the dressing rooms! Heck, there might even be a tear in time we could use inside of the theatre’s bathroom.”

Just the mention of the movie theatre made Amelie feel slightly sick to her stomach.
”Yeah I rather not. I really don’t want to step inside that place ever again.”
Irealia sympathized with her, but eventually talked her into it - claiming it was their best option in the short-term.
”Fine., lets just make our stay in there quick.”

The two women stood up from the bench and then began to cross the street, but Amelie would stop in her tracks when she realized why the man in Sears looked so familiar.

”Oh my God, that’s him!” she’d say, before turning around and staring back in the direction of the department store.
It wasn’t until a car blew it’s horn at her that Amelie would snap out of her daze and jog across the street towards a curious Irealia.
”What? Who are you talking about and who are they - I’m confused.”
Not wanting anyone to hear Amelie would link arms with Irealia and begin to walk towards the theatre entrance - stopping short of going inside.
”That man, the man in Sears, that’s the cop!” she’d whisper frantically.
”What?” Irealia looked quite puzzled at the statement.
”From the boutique, with all the new memories, that’s him, that’s the same guy!”
Irealia would pull out of her grasp and instinctively look over towards the Sears before looking back at her friend, her expression suddenly stone cold serious.
”Amelia are you sure? Did you get a good look?” she inquired.
”I think so.” Amelie responded with, much to Irealia’s frustration.
”You think so?”
”Irealia! I’m sure, I know that’s the same guy -what does that mean? Why is he here?”

The two of them would again look over in the direction of the Sears before Irealia quickly opened the movie threatre door and pulled Amelie inside.
”Come, now! We need to leave immediately.”

Irealia quickly dragged a reluctant Amelie into the same bathroom she was assaulted in less than an hour ago, and after checking all the stalls she'd lean up against the bathroom door - not wanting to lock it since they wouldn't be going back out.
"I know this has to be uncomfortable for you, but we'll be out of her quickly. Going to create a teleportation gateway to the dressing room, and then we're going to leave.
"What if someone is inside there? Lets teleport to the Alleyway, the tear there should still be viable."
Irealia agreed and entered her heightened state in record time. She'd curse at there not being a tear in time inside of the bathroom, but instead of leaving she'd hold her hands out and begin to collect all the energy orbs floating about around her - dragging them in front of her hands until she had enough energy to create a gateway.
Amelie was not in her heightened state of being and couldn't see exactly what she was doing, but as a gateway began to form she'd question her mentor's methods.

"Wait, if there wasn't a tear how did you just create a portal!?"
Irealia smirked ever so slightly. "I didn't. I created a teleportation gateway, it would take far more energy for a portal - hence the reason finding a tear in the fabric of space and time is an easier way to create, and travel via, an actual portal."
"That doesn't answer the question, what did you just do!?"
Irealia ignored the inquiry and began to stretch the gateway until it was big enough for them to walk inside.
"Come, we're getting out of here asap, i don't want to be followed!"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: Late afternoon
Year: 1965
Place: Syracuse, NY


The younger girl was too apprehensive. Jason was sure she had time traveled at least twice now. She was the main target of his mission, but she kept to herself more than the other one. This young woman was more outgoing, really enjoying herself. She was also less careful. She flaunted around the shop in the direction of the register while her friend was in the dressing room.

He saw his chance clear now that the two girls were not together. As she was waiting at the register Jason closed in, casually browsing through the surrounding racks of clothes. The girl was talking to the lady at the register, not taking notice of him. He stayed close to hear what she was saying. Listening for any giveaways on her name, possible a location. She kept in her role though and did not let out any information that was useful to him.

He went back to perusing through the racks to slowly move himself away from her. Only a minute or two later he saw the other girl coming from the changing rooms. He tried to keep his eyes pierced on the shirt he pulled out. His eyes were pulled to the girl when he noticed the change in her hair style. While looking he saw how she bumped in to one of the other customers. He should have looked away, but he didn’t and by the time she stood up they looked each other straight in the face. Immediately he diverted his eyes downward, but he was scared it was too late. She had seen him back at the boutique, and there was a good chance she would recognize him.

He stayed back a bit as the ladies walked out of the store. He was 90% sure they wouldn’t be there much longer. He didn’t know what the plan had been, but he couldn’t imagine this was going according to their plan. After about 10 minutes more he walked out. He looked around, but he could not see the girls around. Of course he could have asked, but he doubted he would be able to approach them without them making a run for it. It may be best to return to Tempus, gather his thoughts and his findings and wait for the next time jump. He walked back to Henry’s Hamburgers.

”We need you in the back, kid.”Steven was busy taking orders, and by looking at the line it was busy. Jason walked into the back, put on his apron and started grilling again. After only 5 minutes he didn’t want to stay any longer. To be honest, the only reason he was grilling now was to do a favor to Steven for taking Jason in like he did. But walking out now wouldn’t make any difference. Jason would just be a slight memory in their lives for about 2 years maximum. They wouldn’t remember him afterwards unless they would see him again. He wouldn’t be looked for and he wouldn’t be missed, there were no lasting connections made.

Jason was aware of the popular belief of the butterfly effect. Any small change made in the past caused large differences at a later stage. He didn’t particularly believe this theory, history was mostly a solid definitive line of events. Small changes caused by time travel are rectified by time itself. However, most people that took the leap of traveling through time had bigger changes in mind. He wondered about the motivation of the two girls.

”Steven, I’ll be taking out the trash…be right back!” Jason grabbed the full garbage bin and stepped out the back door. He turned to the container and dumped the trash inside. He took off his apron and paper hat and folded them up, leaving them next to the garbage bins. He heard a commotion further in the alleyway. It sounded like a high pitched noise, and he couldn’t really hear it, but more …. feel it. As he looked over he saw lights moving, or at least he thought he did. It is like the little black spot in the corner of your eye that just keeps on moving further away the moment you try to focus on it.

Throughout the light he saw the girls just appear. Not jumping into existence, not materializing, not appearing in any way that Jason was used to. What the hell are they doing… As the light fell away they appeared clearly as if they just turned around the corner. Force was not an option, even if he took one, the other would get away. He wasn’t sure which of them was allowing the time travel, although he had to assume it was the younger girl of the two. He wasn’t sure what to say to them, what would make them talk, stay, or even go with him.

The fact he saw them at all right now was pure coincidence. He was literally just taking out the trash, although it didn’t have to look that way to them. ”Good afternoon ladies. I think we all know and can accept that we do not belong here, in this time.” He paused a moment to let the ‘busted’ feeling sink into them.
”I think we also know that I am able to find you, trace you. Coincidences are real, but limited, so it is no accident we are here now, face to face.
I would like to invite you to my organization. We are interested in your mode of transportation. I extend the invitation to both of you. So it’s up to you. You can come now willingly, or we keep up this cat and mouse game.”
He stood there in silence for a moment, taking in their faces. ”But I promise, the next time the cat catches the mouse, I will not ask as friendly.”
He could still turn this mission in a full success. He might have just made the biggest break through in the case so far. Whatever hapened now, he should not forget that Tempus was able to track their signature, hard as it may be.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Years: 1965 // 2019
Location: Syracuse, NY // Chinatown NYC, NY
Time: Mid-Afternoon. // Mid-Afternoon
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Irealia would push Amelie into the gateway before following closely behind her - making sure to close the gateway after stepping into it. Unlike when they use their magic to time travel and the portal closes behind them after a slight delay once they reach their intended location, when using a gateway to teleport within the current time-line they have to both open and close the gateway.


”Hey!” Amelie called out as she stumbled out into the alley. ”Don’t push me like that next time!”
Irealia would apologize as she closed the gateway and then turned to walk to where the tear in time was further down the alley, however before either of them could move a voice startled them.
”Good afternoon ladies. I think we all know and can accept that we do not belong here, in this time.”
Both Irealia and Amelie would simply stare wide eyed at the man who suddenly spoke to them, shocked more than scared. However after several seconds Amelie would recognize him as not only the officer from the boutique, but the man from Sears.
”It’s him” she’d whisper, causing Irealia to narrow her eyes at him as he continued to talk.
”I think we also know that I am able to find you, trace you. Coincidences are real, but limited, so it is no accident we are here now, face to face.
I would like to invite you to my organization. We are interested in your mode of transportation. I extend the invitation to both of you. So it’s up to you. You can come now willingly, or we keep up this cat and mouse game”

As the man took a dramatic pause Irealia would walk up beside Amelie and whisper softly to her in French.
”Donne moi ton sac.”
Confused as to why Irealia wanted her purse Amelie would ask why, but Irealia simply repeated herself, albeit more sternly.
Without any further hesitation Amelie handed her bag to Irealia, reminding her, in French, that Lux was inside it.
”I know, that’s the point.
Once again confused Amelie wanted to inquire about what Irealia meant, however the man speaking up again would grab her attention.
”But I promise, the next time the cat catches the mouse, I will not ask as friendly.”

Irealia smirked as she walked towards the man, stopping mere feet in front of him.
”Well, Tom, as it so goes in the show, every single episode Tom can never quite catch Jerry - who is always one step ahead of him. So, on behalf of all the mice around the world, I humbly decline your invitation.”
Seconds after she declined the invitation from the stranger, Irealia would take Amelie’s purse and knock the man over the head with it - causing him to fall to his knees.
”Irealia!” Amelie cried out as she jogged over to her friends side.
”Don’t worry, Lux’s handle is made of metal - it’s fine.” Irealia said rather casually, causing Amelie to nudge her in the side before lecturing her.
”It’s not that, you just knocked him in the head, are you crazy?”

The fiery red head would roll her eyes before handing Amelie her purse back and telling her, in French, to find the tear and get them out of here.
Amelie would stare at the man on his knees - struggling to keep upright, and then stare at her friend, before jogging several yards down the alley to where the tear was.
Her emotional state high, Amelie would close her eyes for what felt like an eternity to enter a heightened state of being.

The energy radiating from her in her heightened state usually turned her eyes white and caused her hands to glow brightly, however this time her entire body was outlined with a ring of bright white energy, and energy encased nearly every strand of hair on her head, causing her hair to glow almost as brightly as her white eyes.
When she touched the tear in time it instantly opened to the size of a full portal, something Amelie wasn’t used to. She usually had to focus and manipulate the energies around the tear for a brief period of time before it expanded , but in this moment the creation of the portal was almost instant.


Meanwhile, behind her Irealia lifted the groggy mans face up by his chin and leaned down so that their noses nearly touched.
”Cats have nine lives, consider this your first. You’d be wise to let the mice be, for next time we won’t be so nice.”
After her sarcastic remark Irealia would kick the man in his side - causing him to fall to the ground.

Having heard the scuffle behind her Amelie turned around and ran back toward Irealia, who was quickly searching the man’s pockets. After finding nothing she’d stand up just in time to meet Amelie.
”What did you do!?”
Ignoring her friend Irealia grabbed the bag from Amelie’s hand, took out Lux, and walked towards the portal.
”We’re leaving, now.”

Amelie would watch as her mentor walked over toward the portal, and as she began to smooth the edges of the portal out with the energy radiating from Lux, Amelie would turn back towards the man and kneel down on the ground so that she could roll him over. ”She’s not a bad person, she’s just trying to protect herself and…all of us.” she whispered to the man she assumed was unconscious.
Without thinking Amelie would pull the man’s head into her lap and place one of her hands on the back of his head.
”Come on!” Irealia called out, as she made Lux’s light blade go back inside it’s base.
”I’m sorry.” Amelie said to the man, suddenly feeling responsible for everything that had happened today, from the sexual assault to Irealia assaulting the man whose head she now held in her lap.
Unconsciously Amelie would place her free hand over an open wound on his forehead, covering it from the elements and cradling the mans head in-between her two hands. She’d apologize to the stranger once again before removing her hands from him so she could gently move him from her lap, however after she pulled back her hand from his forehead she was startled to see the open gash on his head was suddenly sealed.
Frightened she’d quickly move his head onto a nearby comforter discarded in the alley and stand, staring wide-eyed at her hand glowing brighter than she had ever seen it glow before…however, her train of thought was interrupted by Irealia grabbing her from behind.
”I’m not asking again, I will drag you inside this portal if I have to!”

Amelie would pull herself out of Irealia’s grasp and begin to follow her friend and mentor down the alley toward the portal. Halfway there she’d turn around and stare back at the man still laying on the ground, her facial expression showing a great amount of regret, but as she looked at him she could have sworn his eyes were open, a sight that suddenly caused her to sense the urgency of her predicament and jog towards Irealia and their portal home.










As the two women walked out of the portal and back into Amelie’s room they’d remain silent.
Irealia would undress down to her bra and underwear before falling back onto the bed and staring up at the ceiling.
Amelie on the other hand would walk into her bathroom and close the door. She’d strip out of her clothes completely and stare at herself in the mirror. She remained in her heightened state, a seemingly more elevated heightened state at that.
Amelie noted how her hair was glowing, and how the light usually restricted to around her extremities now outlined her entire body.
After nearly a minute of simply staring at herself she’d in an instant fall out of her heightened state and back to her normal self. She'd sigh before turning the water on at the sink in front of her and washing her face.

”I don’t understand, did I heal him?” she thought to herself as she dried her face.
”No, that would be crazy.”

As she walked out of the bathroom Amelie would lock eyes with her friend, who was now sitting up at the end of the bed.
”You know, it’s quite cold in here - you might want to cover those things up.” Irealia joked as she stared at her mentee's bare chest. Amelie rolled her eyes and walked over toward her dresser where she pulled out a thin white “I ❤ NYC” t-shirt and slipped into it.
”We need to talk.” was all she’d say, before walking out of her room and back down to the first floor, where she’d poor herself a glass of her grandmother’s wine in the Kitchen and then flounce down on the couch.
A minute or so later Irealia would come walking down the stairs, still in nothing but her undergarments, and sit down beside Amelie - who had already downed half the glass of wine.

Her mentor would begin to apologize for her drastic actions, but Amelie cut her off and began to tell her about her elevated heightened state, how she instantly created the portal, and how she had seemingly sealed the gash on the man’s forehead.
”I don’t know how, I don’t know what I did, but he had a gaping wound with blood running down the side of his head.…and when I removed my hand the wound was sealed and the blood dried onto his skin.” she’d say, before downing the rest of her wine in one swig - slamming the glass down on the coffee table in front of her when she was done.
”Irealia I don’t understand, I’m scared. What am I?”

Her friend would slide over towards her, sensing the anxiety as tears began to form in Amelie’s eyes. Irealia's concern quickly caused her to pull Amelie's head down toward her chest where she'd hug her tight.
”You’re you, don’t be scared, you’re so very special Amelie.”


For the next half hour Irealia would explain that what enabled both of them to enter their heightened states of being where they were able to see the energy particles around all of humanity, and manipulate them - as well as tears in the fabric of space and time - to traverse time and great distances, was sorcery, manipulation of magic that ran in their blood - inherited from generations long ago. She spoke of others who were able to manipulate their magic to do various things outside of time travel - from creating shields or projectiles out of pure energy, to healing. Irealia then explained how she manipulated the energy around them to create a gateway in the bathroom earlier, without a tear in time.

”So wait, to what extent can you manipulate the energy around you?” Amelie asked, causing Irealia to smile broadly.
”Quite a bit. But no matter how hard I have practiced, and no matter how hard I have tried, I could never heal myself. The stories of those like us who can use their powers to heal, they’re so few and far between, which leads me to think it’s quite rare indeed, and requires an elevated heightened state that apparently most of us can’t reach. But you, you reached it Amelie. Do you understand how special that makes you?”

Her mind began to wander as she thought about which parent she inherited her abilities from, whether they traveled time like she did, what she could do with her power, and whether or not she’d ever be able to reach that elevated heightened state again. However Amelie’s mind finally settled on the last image of that man in the alley way.
”Whether I’m special or not, we have a problem. That man, he knows what we’re doing, he saw us teleport and I’m positive he saw us leave.
He said he was from some organization? Are they following us? Have you ever heard of such an organization?”


Irealia sighed at the rapid fire questions as she ran both her hands through her hair.
”So many questions, before we have this conversation I think we could use something a bit stronger than the wine your grand-mum keeps in this place. Wanna get dressed and come with, or should I go out on my own and meet you back here in say 15 minutes or so?”

Amelie scooted further into the couch cushion and pulled her knees up to her chest. ”I think I’ll stay put. Be quick though?”
Irealia nodded before jogging back up the stairs to get dressed.

As Amelie turned the living room television on and began to let her thoughts wander, upstairs Irealia would pull out her phone and open up the Plethora forums. Unbeknownst to Amelie she had taken a picture of the man as she held his head up.
She’d include the encrypted photograph in a thread simply titled “Do you recognize this man?.”
As the owner of the site she’d pin the thread to the very top of the forum and mark it urgent, before getting dressed.

Once fully clothed Irealia would grab her phone and wallet and slide them into her pockets before head back downstairs.
”Be back asap, any preference in drink?” Irealia asked as she stood in the doorway.
”Jack.” was all Amelie would say, and Irealia would giggle softly to herself before walking out the loft and closing the unlocked front door behind her.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: Late afternoon // Evening
Year: 1965 // 2019
Place: Syracuse, NY // Tempus HQ


Her bag ..… What’s in the bag? Jason wouldn’t ask out loud, not yet ready to give away he spoke fluent French, and half a dozen other languages. Lux isn’t French, but Latin. Is she looking for a torch or something?

For some reason he kept his eyes on the younger girl. He felt more of a connection with her. She looked worried when the other had a confident look in her eyes. Jason wouldn’t call her scared, but more apprehensive. Of the two, the younger one was likely to be the one to agree with his request. As the other one came closer, he looked into her sharp and intelligent eyes.
”Well, Tom, as it so goes in the show, every single episode Tom can never quite catch Jerry - who is always one step ahead of him. So, on behalf of all the mice around the world, I humbly decline your invitation.”

Mere seconds later he couldn’t believe he had missed the move she made. He was fit and trained in multiple fighting styles. Still he was knocked over the head with a handbag. He didn’t know what Lux was, but he knew it wasn’t a pack of tampons. It hit his head bloody hard, and involuntarily he fell to his knees. Where the bag had hit his head he felt a slow trickle of blood coming down. Although slightly dazed and confused, his mind was sharp and mental notes were made and stored with the normal speed.

First thing he registered after the hit was a name. Irealia. Not a name he was familiar with, neither from the reports he had read earlier nor from the list of infamous time travelers that so far had omitted their capture. Half whispering to himself, half out loud, he uttered. ”You’re damn right something in that back is made of metal, Irealia…”
He touched his head to feel the wound on his head His feeling regarding the younger one was confirmed almost immediately. Her reaction was one of surprise, and if he didn’t know any better…disgust. She certainly hadn’t expected her friend to do this, making it clear they were acquaintances at best.

As the woman grabbed his chin to bring him in close, he noticed the bright light coming from behind her. He saw that she noticed it too, a slight smile on her face. A smile that didn’t make him feel any more comfortable. He acted groggier than he was, trying to gage what else she would give away in this first confrontation.
”Cats have nine lives, consider this your first. You’d be wise to let the mice be, for next time we won’t be so nice.”

I could have sworn nice meant something else Jason thought as he felt the foot connecting with his left rib cage. He felt lighter in his head as more blood was seeping out of the wound. The woman felt in his pockets until he heard the others voice again calling out in shock. Their reactions showed them in panic mode as they were looking for their way out. Jason couldn’t see exactly how they did it, but it certainly took longer than the scientific methods he knew. Also, it seemed more than a one-step process. As the young girl stayed by his side, the other walked away hastily.

He held himself still and quiet as she turned him around and assured him that they weren’t bad people. His eyes were closed but burning at the same time. Like the Sun was burning directly on his face, the light almost making him blink. He felt her moving him into her lap and seemingly attending to his wound. ”I’m sorry.”
She apologized as the other urged her to hurry, clearly ready to go. He felt his head moving over to something softer than the ground, but harder than her lap. As she moved away, he opened his eyes and looked at how they were making their getaway. He saw her looking back, and she must have seen him with eyes open. He tried to shout: ”BE CAREFUL”, but he doubted if she heard him. It was meant for the younger girl, who seemed in more danger than she herself realized.

He could see the portal they disappeared through. He didn’t know if it was the strange angle in which he was watching, but he couldn’t see anything beyond the gateway. He noticed the girl looked lighter, like she was emanating a soft glow from inside herself. As the portal closed he moved his hand to his head, noticing the wound had closed itself, or had it….
As he got up, he saw the comforter his head had been resting on. Once again confirming that one of the strangers was nicer than the other, although that point was more than clear at this moment. Their mode of time traveling had its roots in magic, that much was clear. However, it seemed manipulated in some way, not as clean or natural as the other times he had seen it. Although the times he saw magic being used in time travel could be counted on one hand. Inventions, science and wormholes had been the most frequent in all his missions.

He put the comforter back against the wall and walked over to where he saw the two of them disappear. He couldn’t see anything that alerted him to time travelling. He did feel something in the air, like a vibration, a static. Not sure if this was always there or just a remnant of their magic, he let it be. He had learned about as much as could be learned here and he once again used his left thumb to reach for the homing button under the skin of his right arm. He felt himself disappearing from time and re-appearing into the chamber inside Tempus.

Walking out the chamber he bumped into a colonial soldier who, with his musket, almost put Jason’s eye out. ”Be careful where you are pointing that thing!” he blurted out.
With a better look he still didn’t recognize the man in front of him. He looked lost and for a moment Jason thought he might be an actual colonial, instead of a Tempus agent. From a distance he heard a familiar booming voice: Beckerman! Pay attention and step inside the chamber. Movement is about speed, accuracy and efficiency and you are screwing it up.
Jason gave a tap on the shoulder of ‘Beckerman’. ”Oh jeez, you have bigger problems than me.”
He paused for a moment, than spoke louder. ”No worries, Sarge, my fault.”
He grabbed the handkerchief that was sticking out of the young man’s pocket and dabbed some of the blood off his forehead. Before the booming voice replied he turned the other way and walked out.


Jason called Mr. Hassini from his room, and explained part of what happened. He wasn’t ready to share everything, even if the man insisted. ”It’s definitely magic, and they were not happy to cooperate.” It stayed silent on the other end of the line.
”You’re telling me you need back up, aren’t you? Fine, don’t give them the full information. Just their help in apprehending these women.” He paused for a moment, and Jason knew more or less what the man would say.
”I’ll inform agents Stevens and Hassad, they will be available when the next time jump occurs. Again, keep me up to date.”
”I don’t need Stevens and Hassad, I need Lucy.” He didn’t have to wait long for the answer.
”Absolutely not! First of all, she outranks you. Secondly, she is no back-up, she is the one taking over when you fail. You know you can’t take Lucy, so why even ask me? I am not even in charge of her anymore.
”Are you serious? Seems like she is not just outranking me then…. You know why I am asking, and it’s not about rank. She has experience with magic users, more so than I, Stevens and Hassad combined. I need someone from her team, and I only trust her. Either Lucy joins, or I am out. ”
He wasn’t normally the one to make a bold statement, so he hoped that would help. He was thinking of the women he was now chasing. The younger one might be in over her head, impressionable and peer pressured. Lucy was young, determined and very professional. He thought she might be a better person to reach out than he was. And definitely better than frikkin’ Stevens and Hassad.

”Let me know when you decide, I’ll be in my room.” When he did not hear any sign of protest, he hang up the phone. Finally having a moment to think, he realized how dirty he felt. He opened the door to his bathroom and unbuttoned his shirt. He looked at the mirror and held the handkerchief he took earlier under the hot water. He inspected the headwound up close for the first time, the handkerchief taking away most of the dried blood.
With the blood taken away he could not see any sign of a wound. For sure something strange had happened. He was hurt, and he was bleeding, and within seconds the girl had fixed him up. Closing his eyes he could still see the light she had been radiating. He jumped into the shower and enjoyed his half hour power shower. The evenly heated water was much better now than it was in ’65.

As he dried off, he got into his comfy clothes, not realizing if he was still on the case or not. To be honest, he knew he was asking for a lot. Lucy was the perfect person to help him out, but she was pretty much the perfect person for any mission. Lucy grew up at the institute, she wasn’t hired by Tempus, she was raised by it. Both her parents worked for Tempus, and this had been her home her entire life.

Her dad was a veteran agent, and legend has it, one of the best. He grew within the organization, and now his daughter was on the same path. For Jason, Lucy was like the little sister he never had. Her earliest missions had been in teams, and most of the time he was on the same mission. He tried to protect her more than completing the mission. And while they created a sibling-like bond, the powers-that-be didn’t like the attachment for either of them. Jason was not concentrating on his missions, and Lucy was being held back with the over caring.

Eventually, the inevitable happened and Lucy was promoted. She was leading teams rather than solo missions. And even there he heard she was excelling at everything. It had now been months that he had even seen her. Emails between the 2 of them stayed hazy, since neither could say much about their missions.

Jason poured himself a glass and sat down on his couch, going through his notes on the mission. Circling the name Irealia on top of the page. In the background he played hits of the 60’s, feeling in the mood since his adventure at Henry’s Hamburgers.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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Time: Evening
Year: 2019
Place: Tempus HQ



Jason could not see a thing. He stared in the distance, but the mist surrounding him did not allow his senses to work properly. He felt stressed. Even though he could not see them, he knew people were running past him, their faces hidden. It took a bit before he smelled that what he thought was mist, was actually smoke. It burned his lungs with every breath, feeling this could be worse than the occasional cigarette he smoked. He stared and pinched his eyes almost to a close. The smoke made his eyes tear up, but he could swear he could see the fire that must have caused the smoke. A glowing warmth in the distance explained why people were running in the opposite direction. He felt he should do the same, but he was not able to move. There was something he had to do first, but his mind was blank, like every thought was replaced by the smoke around him.

Then he saw her face. Not in front of him, and not running past him, but in his head. The girl he needs to save, the girl that was in more trouble then she herself realized. Suddenly finding his feet he started moving forward. Not slowly, but running himself, in the direction of the fire.

The light became clearer and clearer as he neared her. He arrived at a clearing, a market place. In the middle was the fire that seemed to burn at 1000 degrees. In the dead center of the fire, he could see her. He stopped, not realizing if she was in the fire, or if she was the fire. He could see her face, but could not hear what she said. The sound around him was one of screams, crackling fire, and houses im- or exploding. She was crying, strange that the tears did not evaporate as soon as they left her eyes. She was in a panic, her mouth wide open in the silent scream.

Jason ran forward, going slower and slower as if stopped by an invisible force. He looked around and saw her, the other woman. He couldn’t hear her either, but her mouth was moving quickly. He just knew that it was her that slowed him down. He tried to grab something from his belt, but he did not find the gun there that he sometimes had. Instead he felt the bow on his back, and the quiver filled with arrows. He took the bow and put an arrow across it. He was no Robin Hood, but he was decent at handling the instrument. He aimed at the woman, feeling his head pounding more every second. His heart was coming out of his chest, and he heard the beat of it in his head, faster and faster. As he aimed he felt the force of the fire intensify. The knocking in his head became louder. While still aiming he tried to bring up his shoulder to cover his ears, but it didn’t work. He dropped the bow as he brought his hands up. As he fell to his knees in pain, he felt the floor underneath him, and woke up.


It took a few moments before he realized it had been a dream. His eyes still felt blinded by the light he had seen. And the pounding in his head hadn’t stopped, as if he could still hear it. It was another few seconds before he noticed that what he heard was not in his head, but someone knocking on the door. Jason got up and walked to the door, only realizing now he had been sleeping on the couch. As he opened the door a blur of curly hair burst through it.

”How the flying fuck did you arrange this?” Lucy went past him and landed herself comfortably on the couch. Most people would be shocked at seeing her like this, she was relaxed the moment she entered. When she was on missions she was far more serious and controlling, and a lot of agents hated her for it. They felt nepotism was at play with her, but objectively she was just one of the best in the field. As their missions went on, Jason always had the feeling he needed to keep her humanity in check. Following rules was one thing, but Jason always thought humans were doing the job since they could make decisions based on emotions. Lucy had a tendency to become too robotic. Thankfully, Jason's presence changed her attitude to the better (according to Jason).
”Welcome to my humble abode.” Jason replied softly, closing the door behind her. He saw she was still in mission gear, dressed as a Norse woman from the 1100’s. He could swear she was Lagertha of Norway, or at least she could have inspired the myth.

”So, here I am, fighting on the snowy battlefield, when I get a message that I am needed back here. Then, when I do arrive back in Movement, they tell me to directly report to you.”
Jason responded with a cheeky smile, showing as much of a laugh as his still pounding head allowed him to. She caught his smile: ”Yes, you heard me right, report!” She paused another few seconds to let the message sink in.
”I never thought they would let us do a mission together again, and now they pull me out the field for just that reason. What the hell is going on? By the way, totally good to see you of course…” she finished with a smile of herself.

Jason opened his mouth to start explaining. He told her everything. From Mr. Hassini choosing him for a special investigation, to his travel to NYC, and the adventures in the 60’s. Lucy showed shock when he told her he was knocked down by one of the girls. She knew he was normally able to hold his own. When he told her about the girl emanating light, she looked in thought, and kept most of that same look until he was done explaining.

She moved over to his couch to sit next to him. With her hand she moved his head down, and she inspected the wound. ”Well, you washed away most of the blood, just some left in your hairline. If it wasn’t for that, I couldn’t have said anything had happened to your head. Still the same ugly and old face, but at least fully intact.” She laughed at her own joke.
”Hey, don’t make me regret calling you in for help.” he said, as Lucy moved back to the other couch. ”Anyway, I am not sure what to think about my mission. Calling for your help was a long shot, and I didn’t think it would work. I did it half to test how serious they were about this mission. And from the result I can say…, pretty serious.” his forehead frowned as he went deeper into thought.

”Jason, I know you, you are smelling conspiracies again.” When he lifted his shoulders, she threw her hands to the air. ”Can you never assume a mission is just a mission? There doesn’t have to be a deeper agenda or secret about it. They discovered a new way of time traveling, and naturally they want to know all about it. Let’s leave it at that. Anywho…. Seems like your girl is in trouble. Even if she was working with the other woman, it doesn’t sound like they are totally on one line. You don’t think it was a good cop, bad cop situation?”

Jason shook his head. ”No way, first of all, we are the cops, not them. They were too shocked and unprepared to have come up with that. You and me have played it before, and even then, you can see that the look of the good cop is not a believable one. You can only pull it off when the subject is scared. And I am sure I neither was, nor looked scared of the situation.” As he let his head hang down a bit he whispered: ”I just hope she is okay…, and careful.”

He got up and walked to the fridge, taking out some orange juice, Lucy’s favorite drink. As he handed her the glass, he continued. ”Anyway, testing how serious this case is was only half of the reason I asked for you. Although I have been here for quite a while, I haven’t dealt with magic users much. And I had the idea you did…” he looked at her questioningly.
She looked like she was in doubt, as if what she wanted to say couldn’t be said. ”I know less than you might think. Yes, I have dealt with magic users, but every time I did, the people were completely different. And also, the way they used magic was completely different. It is not as exact as the science we are used to. I was tasked to get two of them, but one I never found.” she fell silent. She stopped talking and Jason raised his eyebrows.
”And?..... That’s one, what about the other one.” He was getting anxious, the more time went on, the more he realized he had no idea about this stuff.
”The other one died, Jason. I shot him. He…attacked one of us, and I did not see another way of stopping him.” The way in which she spoke stunned Jason. He knew this girl from her early childhood. She was caring, reasonable and smart. Killing had never been her way, and he was shocked to hear her confession. He thought he could hear the shaking of her voice.

”I…wasn’t aware you ever killed anyone. That never happened in our missions, although there have been opportunities for it. You know I have, even when I really didn’t want to. I just didn’t think you ever would.” He took a sip of his own drink, not really knowing what to say next. It was easier talking to Lucy when she was her happy cheerful self.
”Sorry Jason, but I don’t think you really understand. Dealing with magic-users is different. They can be explosive in nature, and we have little idea of what they can do. If someone is close to dying and you have no idea how to stop it, a bullet might be the only thing.”
Her words made Jason think back to his dream. He had reached out to his bow himself, and aimed it at the woman. He was ready to shoot her, so what Lucy was saying wasn’t that unbelievable. Still, he did not want Lucy to know. Not that he was ashamed, but he was happier to keep her feeling guilty. Murder and death needed to be the last option, the taboo, the final thing in order to save the situation.
”It’s difficult. They are scared of us, and we are scared of them. You know as well as I do that most Travelers are not happy to give up what they are doing, and exchanging it with going along with someone they don’t know. Most people we look for end up coming 'cause there is no option left. For magic-users it seems there is always an option left. I actually asked to be removed from the case after that. I needed some time…”

”When was this?” Jason asked softly and carefully.
”About a year ago…” she responded, not looking him in the eyes.
”WHAT? A fucking year ago, and now you tell me? Why didn’t you tell me earlier? You need someone on your side to work through this. You can’t just do every thing by yourself, you need to count on the people around you.” he was angry. He thought he was a close friend, a confidant, someone who was inside, but outside at the same time.
”Bullshit Jason, don’t be such a hypocrite. You are not really the sharing type yourself. I needed to deal with this and I did. You know that if I would have told you, everyone would have known. Not because you would tell anyone, but secrets are only secret if there is one person who knows it. This place is gossip central, it’s like people live at the water cooler. I can’t afford to show that kind of weakness around here. Maybe you can, but I have teams to lead.” she turned red with anger herself. Calling him out and putting him in his place. He didn’t know what to respond and for a while they sat together in silence.

”You know, I heard we have magic-users on staff. But I never met one. Did you?” he tried his best to ignore the earlier comments.
”I have heard the same rumors, but that’s all it is… rumors. It wouldn’t make sense to go after magic-users so much if we had a few of them on our side.” She was quiet for a moment, and then looked Jason in the eye. She continued with a small voice: ”We have one in the Dungeon though….”

The dungeon was a holding facility on the lower levels. It wasn’t as bad as the name would suggest. Half of it could be described as a rehabilitation center, and another part was more of a training area. However, a small part was like a prison. They always promoted a peaceful way of dealing with time travelers, and for most this was perfectly acceptable. But there were always those that had the wrong intention, and Tempus had to keep them separated in order to protect the timeline.

”You are shitting me, aren’t you… How would you even know? I am sure it’s not something we advertise.”
A smile appeared on her face. ”Well, it’s not like I am supposed to know about it. I heard my parents speak about it, they thought I was asleep. Of course this is years ago, but I have no reason to assume he or she is not there anymore.” she had that cheeky smile. It made her look like a naughty child.

”What else do you know? Any idea what they did, or how they were caught?” his head was starting to spin faster.
”No clue, but…. should be worth checking, right? Neither of us have access to that level, but if Hassini let you and me work together again, maybe he’ll allow this too.”
”I don’t think so. The Dungeon is not something they would like anyone to have access to. To be honest I have never been there myself, I just led people to the door, but from there it’s the security. I think we have to think of something else. I think it would definitely be worth it to speak to this person. Not to be harsh, but we might not be prepared enough at the moment to complete this mission.” he finished his drink, getting ready to go to work.
”Agreed, I can get us on that level, but we need to get passed security. We can always say we are there to instruct at the training facility.”

For the next 3 hours they thought up a plan that might work. Both were excited, but exhausted at the same time. Jason had slept a bit, but his dream had not given him any rest. All through the night they talked about all sorts of things, but he wasn’t yet ready to share what he had seen in his dream. After they had the plan together they said goodbye for the night.
As Lucy stepped out the door on the way to her own room, Jason sat down on the bed. He was excited for the next day, hoping to get a step closer to finalizing his mission. When he laid his head on the pillow he fell into a more comfortable and dreamless sleep.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Amélie Bai Character Portrait: Jason Joseph Rockler

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#, as written by Tusho Ka
For the second time in less than 12 hours Jason was woken up by knocking on his door. He quickly jumped into his jogging wear as they had agreed. He opened the door and Lucy came through. His hair still in sleep-mode Jason looked in the mirror but decided to leave it. If he was going to work out, or at least pretend to, this might be the look.
”Well, I can see you’re prepared,” Lucy said with a wide smile on her face. ”Come on, let’s go. Training is starting in 10 minutes, I don’t wanna be late.”

Together they left the room, walking in silence to the elevator. As Jason swiped his card passed the reader inside the elevator he pushes the number to the lower levels. The doors opened a few levels lower and 5 young trainees stepped inside. They all looked unknowing at Jason, but in awe of Lucy. Jason figured they had been at least introduced to the field leaders, and Lucy had a great track record. If any trainees were to be assigned to her, it would most likely be the top of the class.

The doors opened at the bottom floor, and all of them got out. As they walked through the hallway they saw the security guard in front of the Dungeon. Just before reaching him they turned right to the open floor where the gym equipment was stalled. Sarah, one of the coaches was there. Her eyes opened wide when she saw Jason and Lucy. The two of them had spend hours and days in this space when they were younger, but lately they hadn’t really stopped by. Sarah was quite a bit older than the two of them, so she had seen them growing up in this space.
”My two babies, how are you?” she said as she came closer and gave both of them a tight hug. ”Always happy to see my old recruits, but it does hardly seem you need the training. Both of you are out in the field so much, you must get more practice than most of us.”

Sarah offered the two to run the training, something they had already hoped for. It hadn’t been the weirdest assumption. When they were training themselves there were tons of older agents coming to help out.
In total there were about 15 trainees. Lucy knew some of their names, but Jason had no clue who any of them were. That wasn’t the worst for their plan though. She would be getting most of the attention. The exercises they gave them were tough, pushing the limits of some of them. Lucy seemed on edge as she was walking from one pair to the next, pushing them harder, giving stern feedback to most. Aside from the examples they gave in at the beginning of the class, he stood to the side, more observing than anything else. He sought out the biggest and most aggressive guy of the bunch. He indicated to Lucy that he should be the target of her criticism.
Every minute she would lash out at him. ”Come on Ryan, you can do better than that. Why do you keep on holding back your weight. You can do better than that.”

Jason saw the guy turning redder and redder. Frustration, anger and aggression all rising to the top. ”My goodness, Ryan, that’s what you think the exercise is? Have you paid any attention so far. Justine, come here, maybe if switches opponent he can finally get this right.”
A small girl came forward and switched partners. As they continued the exercise Sarah came over to Jason and whispered: ”I knew you wouldn’t come without a reason. Anything you want to tell me on why Lucy is behaving like this?”
”Would you believe me if I say it’s a necessary evil?”
”I would, I can cover for whatever you need as long as you tell me it’s worth it.”
”Sorry, I can only promise that after it works. But thanks for the vote of confidence.” he smiled. Just as he said it he heard the crack and smack they had been waiting for. When he looked over he saw the big guy stumbling back in surprise and Justine on the floor screaming in agony. Lucy stormed over together with Sarah as they knelled next to the girl. Jason shouted to the guard: ”Hey, you there. Come over here to help out.”
One could see the confusion on his face, doubting if he could move in his position. ”What are you waiting for?”

The extra push helped and the man came hurrying over. As the guard helped out with the girl, Jason leaned close to him. With a slide of hand he nicked that dangled from his belt. He replaced it with the standard card Lucy had given him earlier. Jason backed up slowly, gave Lucy a knowing look and with a quick swipe he opened the door to the Dungeon. As he stepped through the door he had felt the burning eyes of Sarah in his back. He knew she wouldn’t say anything now, and she would help them out, but he owed her an explanation later on.
As soon as he stepped through the door he learned why they called it the Dungeon. The lighting on the wall was weak and far in between. Also it gave kind of a green hue instead of the normal yellow gold light in the rest of the building. The walls were made out of stone, dark and cemented blocks. For the first 20 meters there was nothing but the hallway. At the end the space ended in a T and he choose to go left. He was in shock when a bit further he saw another guard sitting there. Jason grabbed the papers Lucy had prepared from inside his training jacket and walked up to the desk with confidence.

”Morning, papers please.”
”I’m here for the psych evaluation of the magic user.” As the words left his mouth he started to believe himself at least.
He started laughing: ”Ha, after 15 years here there is little psych left to be evaluated. I am at a loss to see you all still trying.”
”As most of us, just following the instructions from the big wigs upstairs.” Jason said, laughing himself.
The man told him to go to cell 7A, and gave back the papers. As Jason followed the directions he didn’t have to go far. The cell in question was probably one of the oldest ones. Jason wondered what kind of people would be behind the other doors. He knew that some of the people they would take in later ended up working for Tempus. A weird recruiting method, but not extremely unlike how Jason himself came to do this.

He shouted back at the guard when he was at the door so it could be unlocked. When he heard the click, he opened the door and stepped inside. The inside looked very different. The yellow colored lighting was back again, blinding Jason slightly for the first 10 seconds. The walls here were white and the room was divided into 2 sections. The first part was empty except for a chart holder with folders inside and a comfy chair. The glass wall in the middle separated him from the prisoner beyond. He noticed that there was no door in the glass, and Jason wondered if the prisoner ever left the small space. The man behind the glass was standing up straight, just in front of the glass and staring straight ahead. As Jason grabbed the charts and moved to the chair to sit down, neither the body of the prisoner nor his eyes moved one bit.
He opened the folder and wished he could memorize all of it instantly. Under facts there was hardly anything substantial. His name was left empty and his DOB was listed as ‘in the early 60s’. He was clearly Caucasian, and from his hair, nose and jawline Jason would have guessed the man was of Irish heritage. Jason cleared his throat as he started: ”No name listed, so…what do I call you?” He looked at them man waiting for an answer, but nothing was coming. He still stared straight ahead not having moved a bit. According to the sheet he was nearing his 60th birthday, but the man looked over 80. Although he stood straight and tall, his skin looked malnourished and slightly see-through somehow. The man had charisma, and energy shining from within that impressed Jason. How the hell does he do that after being here for so long?

The man started speaking suddenly. A high voice, breaking at certain points. It was in English, but not present-day English. Jason recognized it as 1800’s English, having heard it mostly on missions in that time. The words and sentences didn’t make sense. They didn’t form a cohesive story or gave Jason any idea what the man was talking about. Jason had seen it before, and it scared the living daylights out of him. It sounded like a person suffering from dementia. Locked up in their own head and memories without any means of escape. They lived their own memories and dreams twisted by reality and their own fears. Jason’s grandmother had Alzheimer when she was still alive. He remembered the rants she would have. Crying like a 5 year old for her mother to come back. A mother that had dies 70 years prior. Jason remembered the feeling of helplessness for both his grandmother, as well as his father. Seeing the person suffer and standing there without an option to help. A sleepless nightmare where death is the only wake up in sight. Jason remembered crying himself to sleep after the last visit before her passing.

Jason had to pull himself back to the words the man said. ”Never, not till the end will they see. The cotton fields shining, the sea glistening, the rocks of old.” All of a sudden the man started to laugh out loud. With just the two of them there it gave Jason an eerie feeling. He wondered if the guy had been crazy to begin with or if this place him like this. Jason went to the first pages in the folder he was holding. The first document was supposed to be where and when he was captured, but instead Jason looked at 5 fully redacted pages. All pages full of black marker, not leaving a single word for possible context.
Jason checked his watch, knowing he did not have a lot of time left before the guard would be back in his usual position. He didn’t learn anything from the man. They tried their best, but it could be considered a flop. He skipped the entire folder to display the last page of the document. Every line just had a date and the simple words: ‘still nothing’. The last date was only three days ago, and the entry before that was only a few days before that. Jason could see about 3 different hand writings on the last 3 pages. Before that the handwriting was mostly the same, pages and pages of it. The last official form in the document was a full psych eval, in the same writing as most of the file. Again, a lot of it was blacked out with marker afterwards, leading Jason to believe the original documents must be stored elsewhere. The name at the bottom of the eval said Richard Hannity, PHD. A name to keep in mind…

Jason opened the small slot on the door, shouting out to the guard to unlock again. As he heard the zoom of the electronic door unlocking he put his hand on the handle and opened it. Behind him, out of nowhere the man changed his tone. With the same fluency as before, he started to speak in Italian. Jason picked up a word here an there, but couldn’t catch all of it. ” Vedranno quando si svegliano. Non puoi vedere la luce con gli occhi chiusi. Trova il fuoco, restituisci il fuoco al custode, devo trovare la luce.”

La luce…., the light Jason turned around the door handle never leaving his hand. ”What light? Do you know what it is, how it works? ” His voice was high, his pace was quick. He had the feeling it meant something. He wanted to turn around and keep pressing, but the man had shut down. Again staring into the distance. He stared at Jason, but it more looked like he was staring through him. Not a sign of life anymore as soon as Jason had responded. He checked his watch again and stepped through the door disappointed. He closed it and with a steady pace and a quick goodbye to the man at the desk.

As he neared the door he pressed his ear against it. With a smile on his lips he could still hear Lucy screaming at the guard to help out with the stretcher that had made its way to the training floor. He opened the door and stepped through. Looking over the floor he could see all the attention was still focused on Justine and her leg. The big guy, Ryan, was nowhere to be seen, probably send somewhere else to cool down.

Jason walked over to the group and with a quick grab he took the card he put on the guards belt earlier. The card he used to get in the Dungeon he dropped to the floor. He tapped the man on the shoulder. ”No worries mate, Lucy and I will take her to sickbay.”
They each took a side and moved the stretcher towards the elevator, moving it in and going straight up. Inside the elevator Justine was crying softly and Jason got an opportunity to speak to Lucy softly. ”Is it broken?” Lucy gave a small grumble, indicating Jason should shut up for now. At the sickbay they left the girl behind and while Lucy gave the nurse an update, Jason checked on one of the login stations. As message appeared for him, indicating the day had only just begun. Same movement detected, 30 November 1927, 142nd and Lennox, NYC.

”So.., we’re off to the 20s then?” Lucy had appeared behind him. ”She is fine by the way, it’s just a small fraction. I was with their class before and she is always winging and complaining. Whoever recruited her must have been blind. Just tell me it was worth it, did you get anything?”
Jason’s first reply was a sigh. ”Well, I did see him. So he is still there. If it helped much I don’t know. But let’s go, we have some travelling to do.”

It took them less than half an hour to get all their stuff sorted and for them to appear into one of the Movement chambers. ”I hope you didn’t forget your hipflask.” Lucy said knowingly. ”After all, we are heading to prohibition era America.” The smile on her face was unmistakable.
”Oh please. No law has been trespassed more than the prohibition law. Introduce rules and regulations and it might help, forbid the consumption all together and mayhem is ensured. ” He took the standard pill in his mouth and swallowed it with some water. The voice clarified the travel information. ”Lucy MacKenzie & Jason Rockler, 30 November 1927, New York City.” The countdown started and after 5 seconds the light brightened and before they knew it, they were in a back alley in the streets of NYC.

They walked to the street and looked left and right to see where the time travelers may be found. ”Unless they are looking for someone specifically living here, I can only see one destination.” As he said it Jason nodded his head towards the Cotton Club. A famous club not only for prohibition, but also for some of the talent that got their break in this place.
”How do we get in? Is there a backdoor or something?” she looked at the front of the building, checking for windows or other entries.
”We’re not black enough for the backdoor to this place. And I don’t want to shake down the security. This is high level mafia territory, and I don’t want unnecessary problems. Let’s join the line and show a bit of money when we get to the front.”

It took about an hour before they were in prime spot for entering. Jason shook the hand of the guy at the entrance, and left a nice tip in there. In the next 2 minutes he was making his way to the bar, while looking out over the crowd. ”Not bad to see Bobby Short, though, missions could be much worse. We might even get to see the Duke, he played the Cotton Club, although I am not sure when he started. ” His eyes wondered the overcrowded room. It wasn’t the safest of places, and he was worried for the girl he was trying to find. Thankfully, Lucy could stand her ground, he was no longer her babysitter, but her team mate. ”Pure Whiskey please,” he told the bartender as he slipped him some coins.