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Timeslip

1. "I think we're live..."

Newscast
      "After the astonishing success of the initial discovery of the so called 'god particle', the Higgs Boson, and then later, the confirmation of the discovery, the boffins at CERN's Large Hadron Collider are now trying to identify the very substance of time itself. They've been called chroniton particles and temporalites. But whatever they call them, they are looking for them. And they're confident that the reconfiguration of the ring that they have spent months doing will unveil the stuff that makes everything in the world, and indeed, the universe, get older with every tick of the clock."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      The search for the evidence of the flow of time had taken many forms deep inside the bowels of the massive CERN complex just outside of Geneva. And one of the cutting edge technicians working on one small aspect of that research was monitoring a row of instruments which had nothing to do with the massive ring of the particle accelerator, but had everything to do with a mind numbing array of sensors and detectors mounted here and there in a circle covering a couple of hundred kilometers around the nearly thirty kilometer circular main tunnel.
      To complicate matters further, there were similar arrays in India, another in South America, one straddled the US Canada border, smaller setups were located in South Africa, Australia, and even in eastern Siberia. All were scanning for the most minute disruption of the flow of an alphabet soup of particles which may or may not indicate something being radiated by the underground accelerator in the Alps.

      The impressively complex displays at the main complex at CERN was being monitored by an equally impressive complex of various sorts of computers, some of which appeared to have been built from spare parts to accomplish their mission, and both were being watched by an endless parade of graduate assistants and lower ranking technicians. On the weekends the displays in downtown Rustenburg, South Africa, and those south of Winnipeg, and in Magadan along the Pacific coast of Russia were manned by whoever was available.
      In all of the locations, they spent a month establishing a range of baselines for every possible condition that could in any way influence the various readings. Such as having the sun directly overhead, during a thunderstorm, or, in one location, when a freight train passed over the part of the mine where the detectors were located.

      Then they all got the message that the system was going live with two opposing streams of highly concentrated electrons. Except that for most of them, they had to wait for the German message to be translated into the local language before they knew what was happening.

      And nothing happened.

      The experiment to isolate the quark-ish types of theoretical particles or photon-ish types of hypothesized waves that caused what the rest of the universe perceived as of the flow of time was running. But it wasn't doing what they thought it would.

      "Attention. There was a slight variance along the boundary between the fifth octet and the fourth and sixth. We are standing down to address the discrepancy. The beams will be re-energized when the variance is corrected."

CERN Co-operation Partner Monitoring Station
Rustenburg, South Africa

      "Ma'am, I thought they'd shut it down."
      "Yes, they're doing some repairs to one of the transitions."
      "Then why are we seeing this pattern on the deep resonance scan?"
      "That shouldn't be there. Have you checked the equipment? That looks like a sensor error?"
      "Yes, ma'am. I did a full shutdown and restart when it popped up. It's real.
      "Let me call Sydney and see if they're seeing it."

CERN Observer Research Station
Minnesota, USA

      "It's not hardware, that is real."
      "OK, I hear you, they're seeing the same thing down south. It came up right when LHC shut down. It's got to be related."
      "Sure, it's real, but what the hell is it?"
      "I couldn't tell you. Keep running the tape on it."
      "The peaks are closer together, now, shouldn't it be slowing down if it was something they did in France since they shut down?"

CERN Observer Monitoring Station
Irkutsk, Russia

      "That was the highest reading yet. Right across the range. And then, it just died, right back down to background."
      "CERN is aware of it. Let's reset the monitors and see if it happens again."

2. "OK, we're going to try this again."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      The consensus was that during the experiment, there had been no unusual readings, but as soon as the error was detected in the ring and they'd shut the particle beams down stations all over the world had detected a very unusual reading.
      Nobody could say whether they were related to the research theme or not, but they were real and widespread, so it was worth doing it again.

      The group in Switzerland brought the opposing energy beams back up to power and began the sequence that would refocus them in the prescribed way.
      "We're getting an error between the second and third octet this time. It just started. Oh, and look, there's another one, between seven and eight." One of the researchers announced.
      "There hasn't been any seismic activity anywhere in the region, but it looks like a misalignment."
      "Remember, even a minor event can cause measurable alignment errors."
      "Nothing has been recorded within five hundred kilometers in the last two hours."
      The lead scientist frowned and shook his head, "Bring it down."

      And again, all over the world, the various monitoring stations reported a surge in unusual readings just as the ring started to power down.
      And, again, nobody was precisely sure what the readings meant or what caused the otherwise stable alignment of the equipment in the tunnel to suddenly slip.

      Once more they adjusted the hardware and announced the restart. But this time the lead investigator wanted to keep running the experiment if the error occured again, "Just for a short time, to see what happens."

      The outlying monitoring sites were told what was going on and got ready for it.

      The electrons were inserted into the giant accelerator in opposing directions and the energy level brought up to just under where the errors had occurred last time.
      "Stable, no variations."
      The order was given to bring the power up.

      Within a matter of minutes first one alignment was reported to be in error, and then another. But this time the lead researcher told them to hold the energy level constant and let it run.
      After a few more minutes there was another announcement, "There's a small variation at the fourth and fifth octet. No change in the other errors."
      "Keep it on."
      Things were stable for some time, then, "another variation, sir, between six and seven this time."
      The researcher stared at the monitors trying to force them to give up the secret. But they simply continued to display masses of numbers and letters.
      "All right. Back it down. Take us to zero." He turned to the communications desk, "Pass the word."

CERN Co-operation Partner Monitoring Station
Australia

      "We're ready, mate."

CERN Leased Monitoring Station
Brazil

      "There. And another one."
      "They're all over the board. More than last time."

CERN Member Monitoring Station
Birmingham, England

      "Crikey, they're gone. It just stopped."
      "You mean it didn't fade off like last time."
      "No, they just quit. We had readings across the spectrum..."

CERN Observer Research Station
Minnesota, USA

      "It just went to nothing."

Central Police Station
Berlin, Germany

      "Attention, everybody on the phone, we have no official statement at this time. Take a report, get their name and number, and we'll release more information when we get it.
      "It's confirmed, sir. Come look at this shot from the helicopter, the ice field is at least fifty meters deep and is covering about fifteen square kilometers. It looks like a glacier. We don't know what happened to the buildings and people that were there. They might be under it."
      "But where did it come from? How can you make something like that without anybody noticing?"
      "I don't know, but there it is, and it appears to be melting."
      "Have somebody get some samples of it and send it to the lab. I want somebody to answer for this."

Far East Press Corps Pool Office
Seoul, South Korea

      "They've clamped the lid down on it tight. And they've cut off all Net access, but some reports are still getting out. This is the last video that was sent from my friend Chashen."
      The screen changed from an email menu to a two minute video.
      "It's got to be a hoax."
      "Like the glacier in Germany?"
      "That's not what I mean, but this has got to be a fake. A publicity stunt."
      "You've seen the other shots, and heard the reports before the Chinese government pulled the plug. They've lot live dinosaurs from the Triassic period wandering around rice patties in three different Providences."

City Airport District, London
England

      "It's gone. The whole thing, terminal and all, the warehouses, the runway, the roads in, all of it. It's a swamp again. The houses that were down there...." the reporter's words failed but the TV camera made up for it.
      What had been a heavily developed area along the Thames had now reverted to its natural state.
      A jet that had been coming in for a landing had to execute an emergency pullout when the landing lights and tarmac beyond had simply vanished leaving marsh grass and murky water in its place.
      There was no sign of thousands of people, cars, lorries, and everything else that had been there that morning.

Nile Delta north of Cairo, Egypt
      "Nobody panic. The security forces are on their way. Stay calm, nobody will get hurt."
      The older woman with the group didn't understand a word the policeman said, but she was wise enough not to do anything rash or sudden and told her people to do the same.
      In a few minutes a van of military security officers arrived and restrained the crowd of onlookers who had surrounded the group of fifty or so oddly dressed people that looked like part of a living history exhibit.
      "Does anybody recognize the language they're speaking?" The ranking officer said to the crowd of curious locals.
      "I do, sir." An old gentleman with a tour group said. "It is Hebrew, but it is hard for me to understand, it is a different dialect than I ever heard before."
      "What are they saying?"
      "I think they are talking about getting back to their quarters."
      "Quarters?"
      The old man listened again as several of the newcomers talked at once.
      "Yes, sir. They are slaves."

Waterfront
Mobile, Alabama, USA

      "Nobody knows where it came from."
      "Fully rigged clipper ships just do not appear out of thin air."
      "This one did, ma'am. We've got the closed circuit tape from the wharf. It wasn't there one minute and then it was."

3. "Well, that's interesting."

Newscast
      "Reports are coming in from all over the world. Whole sections of countryside have disappeared including parts of several cities and towns. Wooly mammoths and dire wolves are roaming in parts of the Northwestern US. In the Caribbean a pirate ship fired on a marina with live shells causing many injuries before a Dutch coast guard ship sank it. Cave men have turned up in France and large salamanders have been washing up along the Ganges in India, and there are unconfirmed reports of space ships being sighted over Canada and Greece. As to the cause of this phenomenon, it may be premature to say it is from the aborted experiment at the Hadron Collider, but that is where all of the speculation now rests."

CERN Observer Research Station
Minnesota, USA

      "Every eighteen minutes, almost exactly eighteen minutes seven seconds, there is a huge spike, and then...."
      "And then the news talks about something else that shouldn't have happened."
      "Yes."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      "We still don't know what the readings indicate. It appears to be some sort of scalar wave. But where they are originating from is unknown. They are appearing very nearly simultaneously all over the world. And their appearance is directly related to the, unfortunate events, that have been reported world wide."
      "Scaler waves of what? Radiation, electrical pulses, what? Longitudinal waves cannot just appear on instruments out of thin air like that."
      "All we know is that they are being picked up in detectors that had been deployed to find temporalites by measuring irregularities in the data stream from various atomic clocks situated around the world."
      "It looks like they've found it."
      "Yes, now we have to stop it. But I have no idea how."
      "I imagine that's what they're talking about upstairs."

Number Ten Downing Street
London, England

      "Gentlemen. And Ladies. I just got off the phone with both the President of the United States, the President of Russia, and the Prime Ministers of three other countries. They are all asking the same questions and nobody has any answers. There is a CERN office full of Boffins in Birmingham that we are paying, get hold of somebody up there and get to the bottom of this."
      "I'm sorry, sir. We can't."
      "Why not?"
      "Birmingham isn't there any more. From what I've heard, there's some Celts up there, but no city."

Palazzo Senatorio
Rome, Italy

      "I know it's an aqueduct. And I understand the historical significance. But it hasn't been here for a thousand years and if we don't do something to divert the water that it is producing it is going to flood out half the Metropolitana."
      "We're working on it. We've got both underground lines stopped and are running buses between the central stations. But the thing was built to withstand a siege."
      "Use explosives if you have to."
      "We did, it didn't work. The demolitions unit has called out for more, they're going to try again as soon as it can be flown in."

Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico
Mexico City, Mexico

      "From where he is sitting Mister President, our people are trespassing in his realm."
      "If somebody were to have told me two weeks ago that I would now be in negotiations to prevent a war with the king of the Maya, I would have had him removed and sedated."
      "Yes, but what are we going to do about it?"
      "What can we do? Start evacuations until we figure out how to undo what has happened."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      "I'm sorry I'm late, I had to drive an extra hundred kilometers to get around a lake on the way here."
      "What lake?"
      "The one that is between here and the hotel. Or at least, it is now. What's this theory you've got?"
      "We think we can stop anymore transformations. But we don't know if we can reverse things that have already happened. Or even if they can be reversed."
      "OK, tell me."
      "We start the beams back up and hold them steady."
      "That's it?"
      "Yes. The events that coincide with the eighteen minute burst of scalar waves started after the last run. We believe that if we restart the experiment and hold it steady that the phenomenon will cease."
      "But it was causing alignment errors in the ring."
      "We think it may be related, perhaps one directly caused the other. But it's the only theory we've got right now."
      "And what happens when we have to stop again? Or the ring fails because of compounding errors."
      "Then we get more dinosaurs."
      "Alright. You've got my preliminary approval to get it fired up again. Bring in your people and put everything back the way it was. We'll try it and... and just hope it works before another spaceship crashes into the Med."
      "Sir?"
      "You probably haven't heard. With the last round of events, a space elevator, you know, one of those things on a tether that they say can ferry stuff into orbit came crashing down and almost hit a couple of French ships in the Mediterranean."
      "From the future?"
      "Well, yes, unless you know somebody that's built one recently it has to be from the future. Probably a couple of hundred years. They're still trying to piece together where and when it is from. The crew that was on board were all killed and it was pretty badly damaged."
      "We'll get started right away."

CERN Observer Research Station
Minnesota, USA

      "Standing by, six minutes to next burst."
      "The LHC is at fifty percent power, they're pushing it to get to full before then."
      "I don't think they're going to make it."
      "Maybe close enough is good enough."

CERN Observer Monitoring Station
Irkutsk, Russia

      "Three minutes. All readings nominal. If it is going to go, it should go soon."

CERN Leased Monitoring Station
Brazil

      "Here we go, scalar readings starting up. ... more ... Hang on. This is different."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      "That's it, all stations are reporting that the wave started to build, then it held steady. Some locations are reporting that it is going back down slowly."
      "How slowly?"
      "Fractions of a percent per hour. They can only detect it on a spectrum stretch out."
      "But at least it hasn't spiked. So we did it."
      "It appears so, but how long can we hold the beams at this power level?"
      "We're at eighty five percent, and we've only got one alignment error so far. So..."
      "So. You don't know."
      "No, sir. I don't even want to try to guess at how many unknowns and variables we're working under at this point."

4. "You're not going to like the answer."

Temporary Executive Residence
Washington, DC, USA

      "There's been more, what are we calling them? Reversals? Yes, the Jewish slaves in Egypt are gone, and the Viking ship that was blocking the Seine just outside Paris isn't there any more and the river is back to its modern course as well."
      "I didn't hear that before. Are you saying that the river had changed course?"
      "Yes, Mister President. The course of the river has changed over the years. And when the transition occurred and the ship appeared, the river was in its channel from approximately 900 AD."
      "But there were no Vikings?"
      "No, just the ship. And now it is gone, and the river is back where it was."
      "Did the slaves and the ship appear at the same time?"
      "No, sir. There doesn't appear to be any correlation. Just as when the Anasazi city disappeared in New Mexico yesterday. The Clipper ship in Mobile appeared within hours of it, it is still there."
      "I see. Did CERN have any idea when everything will get back to normal?"
      "No, sir, Mister President. They didn't think that any of this would happen to begin with. And they can't explain how it is, how it is un-happening. There doesn't appear to be a pattern to the reversals."
      "So they don't know why the Anglo-Saxons went away but the city didn't come back."
      "No sir. The Celts may have gone back to where they came from..."
      "Celts, that was it."
      "Yes, sir. Their settlement vanished two nights ago, them and all sign of them, but the site of Birmingham reverted to nature, there is nothing there of the city."
      "And they can't explain that either."
      "No, sir. The only thing they are sure of is that they may not be able hold the ring at its current power level much longer. They had another section fall out of alignment about an hour ago."
      "If I haven't lost track, that's four now."
      "Yes, sir."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      "We're starting to get variances in the readings on the beams."
      "Is there another misalignment?"
      "It's not showing up on the board, but it is possible, they shut the auto-diagnostic program off because it was going to shut the system down because of the errors."
      "All right, I've got the specs up, let's see if we can adjust the octets again without crashing the entire thing."

CERN Leased Monitoring Station
Brazil

      "Yes, we're showing increases all along the scalar scale."

CERN Observer Research Station
Minnesota, USA

      "There's blips all over the place."

CERN Observer Monitoring Station
Irkutsk, Russia

      "Wait a minute, check the equipment, is the power on?"
      "It looks like it? Why?"
      "Everything just went flat, no, wait, look at the tracing, they went negative for a second, then flat."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      "What just happened?"
      "There was a power surge, but it was off the scale, I mean, down and off the scale, almost as if the polarity had been reversed for a split second. And now we're back to minimum, it just shut itself down. All beams are in standby, the ring is, idle."
      "How is that possible?"
      "This is out of my league, sir, you need to call the theorists."
      "I'd rather go to the dentist, but, you're right. Keep monitoring. I'll send the message."

Federal Building
Mexico City, Mexico

      "It's not all gone, Mister President, but most of it is."
      "How about the King and his warriors?"
      "They are gone, sir. And most of the current village is back, people and houses. My contact was checking with them to see if anybody is missing."
      "Do they know where they went?"
      "No, sir, most of them don't realize they left at all, to them it is a week ago."

Number Ten Downing Street
London, England

      "Birmingham is back and appears to be in one piece. From what we've heard, the people there know something unusual happened but they don't know anything else."
      "I know, I just got a call from a friend of mine. He said it felt like he'd just been startled awake from a very deep sleep, but he was in his car in the parking lot of his office, where he had been just before he saw a flash of light and felt a tingle like a slight electric shock. And then nothing until half an hour ago.

Palazzo Senatorio
Rome, Italy

      "There are a few people still missing. And, there are some German soldiers who keep saying they are in service of Emperor Frederick the First. Frederick Barbarossa, he was a Holy Roman..."
      "I recognize the name. Why are they still here?"
      "There's a theory going around that they had been separated from their unit when it went back to wherever it came from."
      "So some guys from, what, eleven eighty, are stuck here?"
      "Looks that way."

CERN Co-operation Partner Monitoring Station
Rustenburg, South Africa

      "I just confirmed with four other sites, everybody is getting readings that are within the range of nominal for their site. It looks like we're back to usual."
      "From the news sources, all of the dinosaurs and glaciers are gone too."
      "Let's hope it's over with then."

CERN Laboratory
Meyrin, Switzerland

      "The system records show that we never began the tests. These settings are for the initial run up to ten percent power when we were establishing the monitoring station baselines."
      "In fact, the system date and time is wrong."
      "It went back to where all of this started."
      "It appears so."
      "So what do we do? Start over?"
      "I don't think we want to do that again. Pull up the research into the variable spin quark. I think we've gotten enough data on chroniton particles for now."
      "Agreed."

Newscast
      "The science update comes with news from Switzerland tonight. The lead researcher at CERN has announced that they will be investigating an unusual property on a type of subatomic particle that was discovered several years ago. In the press release they said this decision has nothing to do with the recent series of unfortunate events that occurred world wide when they were conducting original research into the theorized particles that make up the flow of time itself. And I, as the science editor for this station, agree with their decision. Thank you. And now, here's Jake with Sports."

end Timeslip

[NOTE: No Mayan Kings, dinosaurs, or anybody else, were harmed in the writing of this story. All characters are FICTIONAL. Overall this Piece Is A FICTIONAL STORY, enjoy it as such.
Thank You the Author. ]

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