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“Des,” the village elder seated cross-legged next to him begins with faltering English and a serious, almost painful expression:
“We do not…know time.”
Here, they couldn’t watch the sun rise and set, nor the planets move through space, nor the stars light up the night. Whenever their sun peeked out from under clouds, it was always directly overhead—it never seemed to move. Apparently, there weren’t any seasons to their years, nor would they even know what a year was, so how could they possibly know time?
“I gave you the watch,” Des replied.
Itar opened and proudly displayed the pocket watch.
“With the watch, you know time,” Des explained.
Itar closed the cover. “Des, we do not…know time,” he said hesitantly.
“With the watch, I can teach you time.”
This circuitous conversation made Des tired, and now he also felt somewhat nauseated.
“Des, we know time.”
First, Itar doesn’t know, and now he does?
“How do you know time?”
Itar folded his arms and rocked. “The time-keeper.”
Des folded his arms as well, and the two men sat silently, unable to communicate. He doesn’t know time, but he does know time. He has a timekeeper. Itar looked discouraged, which was how Des felt, too.
Then it dawned on Des: Not ‘know,’ but ‘no’—We do not have any time.
He touched Itar on the shoulder. “No time?”
Itar said, “No time, yes.”
“Why no time?”
“The beasts return.”
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"Be on the lookout for not only Expedition Beyond, but any future novels by Roger Baggs. They’re sure to be entertaining and a good way to spend some time."
--The Tavern's Vault
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Roger Bagg was born in Baltimore, Maryland and does have a birth certificate from Baltimore City Hospital. He is a practicing veterinarian near Boulder, Colorado and jointly owns a small animal hospital. His outside interests include camping, hiking, jogging, skiing, hunting and most other activities except skydiving and bungee jumping. He is a motorcycle enthusiast owning both a Kawasaki and a Yamaha.
You can find out more at http://www.fictionstudio.com.