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Go fix the time loop, they said, it would be fun, they said, it’s your job, they said, so you don’t really have a choice, they said. Which, to be fair, is a pretty compelling argument.
You are M1251H1514421RA, but for this particular assignment’s sake you’re taking on the name Maya. You are currently in timeline 8-Alpha-18208, at point 20121220 of sector Delta, trying to appear as human as humanly possible, and you are not happy about this. You are about as far from happy as you are physically capable of being. But you suppose you have to bear and unwillingly grin it, or however that human saying goes. This is because you really need this job. Like, a lot. No matter how much you hate working with the T.I.M.E. (the Temporal Investigation and Maintenance Enterprise) , you are all too aware that this will probably be the only job you’re ever going to get. Because the Void forbids you become a transdimensional intergalactic space ballerina like you always wanted. Not in this life cycle, not in this economy. But yeah, anyway, here you are. Doing your one and only job, the job you need, and the job you are dreading with every fiber of your interdimensional reality-fluid being.
You are currently scanning your surroundings, taking in the view of what you would consider, at this point, to be a relatively familiar scene. Nothing but concrete and squirming fleshy bodies as far as your relatively weak person impersonating eyes can see. You squint down from your vantage point. Not a single shred of nonhuman life could be-- no wait, never mind, there’s a pampered, scrawny, inbred canine disaster that’s crossing the road with its equally disastrous keeper. You wince at the site of it, knowing all too much about that breed’s history, and how much forced inbreeding and experimenting the poor thing has gone through to get where it is today. You pity the creature, and pity the fool who bought it. You never really could understand this particular selection of offshoot timelines from this universe. The humans did the weirdest of things with their bodies and even weirder things to what they deemed to be their subordinate beings. Though none of this mattered to your assignment. The only thing that matters is that you’re here, again, in this universe, again, in one of its infinite timelines, again, trying to fix yet another problem these stupid, stupid creatures keep creating to make your life miserable, yet again. This universe causes literally the most time anomalies in sector Delta, and you are oh so very tired of having to come here again and again to fix something. You swear to the merciless Void that they’re honestly doing this on purpose. Like they’re just trying to make you regret ever coming into existence. While to most that would seem totally unreasonable, but after the sheer amount of times you’ve had to come back here and deal with these creatures, you are legitimately starting believe this to be the case.
On the bright side, this universe does change very quickly, and no one anomaly happens at the exact same point in any one of its specific timelines. So at least each trip is different. This, however, doesn’t change the fact that you are incredibly sick of coming back here. You’ve seen that same weird giant green lady so many times, and in so many varying states of decay. You’re not entirely sure why that green lady is there, and why it is that she is always the first to go after an anomaly occurs, but you could not care less. Unless she can stop the sheer amount of stupid that this universe also seems to exude, she’s no friend of yours.
You look down at what, to the humans, appears to be a swanky looking calculator watch, something that only the coolest of ‘cats’ and ‘home slices’ would wear. You at least believe this, and believe this to be the proper slang these humans use. However, the slang always changes from visit to visit, sometimes even within the same damn visit. The kids are just so hard to follow these timelines. It’s probably safer to just keep to what ever your translator says, and pray that it’s not busted again.
Anyway, so the calculator watch, shockingly, it’s not actually a watch. Yes. This is a very shocking fact indeed. While watches are a universally constant symbol for time (which is why T.I.M.E. thoroughly enjoys making all of their devices look like watches, simply because they’re a bunch of egotistical assholes), this is just an assignment tracking device, that mostly just reminds you to stay on task, what the task even is, and how close you are to your target. Also it does math. Duh. It’s a calculator watch. Although it doesn’t actually do the timeline time tracking thing, it is capable of solving simple equations with shocking ease. The answers to countless mathematical problems are right at your fingertips. The possibilities are endless. And this fascinating feature is 100% useless (no need to check the math on this one, you already did so, like, several human-years ago).
Anyway, back to the actual task at hand, since you seem to be oh so incredibly awful at staying on track .You check your assignment tracker to see where your target is, and the faded green screen just blinks up at you. The device seems to be showing you that your target is located somewhere to the left of the tall concrete temporary vehicle storage structure you warped onto. Though it’s hard to tell in this lighting, as a faded grey dot blipping on top of a chalky green background is nigh impossible to make out in the harsh sunlight. You would think that the T.I.M.E. would have far more advanced bits of technology as, being from a plane of reality that transcends all time and space, they are literally ahead of every timeline in existence. However, you’ve had the sneaking suspicion that the T.I.M.E. really enjoys messing with you. Perhap your loathing for the company is mutual after all.
Anyway, wow are you bad at staying on track. You’ve already started at least four paragraphs with the word ‘anyway’ in trying to progress the story before you go off on yet another tangent. You’re pretty sure the readers are waiting for you to get on with things. You would apologize to them if you actually cared. The longer you put the damn assignment off the better, you always say. You are honestly the God Emperor of procrastination. However, your inability to focus and complete the damn task is making this a terrible story, and your job kind of depends on you… like… you know… doing a good job? So, like, shouldn’t you do your damn job?
Yes. The answer is yes.
Do your job.
You do your job. Or at least start to, by trying to find a way off this vehicle storage unit. You weave your person impersonation body through the rows of countless and blindingly chrome human cars in order to find an exit. Even though you understand why you had to warp to closest secluded area instead of right next to the target, you and your laziness really wishes to just warp like on top of the target and like warp whatever it is out of there, and be done with things. It would certainly be more convenient and whole hell of a lot easier than what you actually have to do. With assignments, especially ones where you have to fix these awful, obnoxious, and possibly never ending time loops, it takes a whole lot more than just scaring some stupid time traveling dumbass into never time traveling again like most of your other assignments. At least with those you can just frighten them, then like go throughout each timeline that they exist in and sabotage anything that would lead them into ever conceiving the idea of time travel. But no, with time loops, you instead have to hunt down the trigger, determine how the trigger was created (which normally takes forever, although you are being who exists normally outside of time, so the concept of forever doesn't exactly affect you… still doesnt stop it from sucking though), and do everything in your power to make sure that the trigger won’t go off again. From there the timeline usually unwinds itself, straightening out the tangles and kinks, and continuing down its merry little path of infinity. The trigger normally is an object affected by a really large ripple from either somewhere else in this timeline or another. Probably either the premature termination of a timeline, or an idiot somewhere tearing time, space, and reality itself to shreds by creating a paradox.
Regardless, whatever caused this particular trigger to appear is not your assignment, and thus not your problem. Your problem is finding out why whatever the trigger is became a trigger, and how to stop it from triggering any more reloops. The constant relooping causes the fragile timeline to form knots, and thus kind of glitch out, making a whole lot of weird stuff happen both at this point and throughout the rest of the line. Your assignment is to stop the timeline from tangling to a point where the only solution is termination. And Void knows how much you hate terminating timelines. It’s messy and annoying, and your superiors always yell at you for doing so since you ‘had to let it come to this’. Your goal for today, no matter how long ‘today’ is, thanks to this time loop, is to not terminate this timeline, and hopefully get this over with as soon as possible.
As you stumble down the stairway you found and into slightly more manageable lighting, you can’t help but frown down at the blinking dot that’s started moving from its location. Unless your target, the trigger that’s causing this whole ordeal, is a rolling bouncy ball (which to be fair has happened before), it shouldn’t be moving. Triggers are supposed to be inanimate objects. However, with the way your target seems to be moving, maybe this one time it is a person after all, or at least the trigger is on a person. Yeah… that’s probably it.
Ugh. That just made everything like 20 times harder. You quickly type into your calculator watch. Yep. 20 whole times harder. Great. Just great. You are now painfully thrilled by this stunning new development. Emphasis on painfully. Much like how you are being painfully sarcastic about being thrilled. Painfully.
You sort of wish that you too could be terminated right about now. It would be far more pleasant than interacting with the person carrying your trigger and like asking them everything they did with the trigger. From there you would need to deduce how the Void you’re going to get them to not interact with whatever it is, and maybe resolve everything. Maybe. Honestly you’re at a point where you don’t even know if that’ll work. Void do you hate human interaction. Void do you just despise your job. Void do you hate your existence. Void do you just want to go back home. You should have just become a transdimensional intergalactic space ballerina, like you always wanted. Void you wish you did.