Paradox Metaphor
Chapter 19 -- Rand Speaks
by Steve Donohue

In the morning, Downes returned to the Continuity Office feeling much more alert. His first order of business was to meet with Rand and see if he had become anymore tractable. He was surprised to find the doctor still there, but McGrath explained that it hadn’t been easy to break Rand. Apparently he had managed to use some self-hypnosis techniques to prevent the drugs from having their desired effects. They’d only been able to get truthful answers out of him in the last few minutes, and he was pretty groggy.

"Very well then" said Downes. "Shall we begin at the beginning Mr. Rand?"

"Sure," said Rand, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the Earth..."

The doctor stepped in and gave Rand an injection using a very long needle. It looked painful, but Rand just lay there giggling as if it tickled. He kept quoting himself in all different strange voices, and he was making fun of Downes’ voice most of all. After a few minutes, the doctor signaled that Downes could continue his questions.

"Very funny Mr. Rand. Why don’t you tell us what you were doing just before you were abducted."

"Went there to see myself."

"How did you know you’d be there?"

"I didn’t really, I just hoped."

"Why did you hope that?"

"Daha said he’d take it away."

"Daha? Who is Daha, and what was he going to take away?"

"The pictures. Steve said he’d dig them up."

"What pictures?"

"The pictures from Winter Camp I."

"I see, was that in 1977."


"So you think you used the time machine to hide pictures of Winter Camp I somewhere. Were there any pictures before this?"


"And did you see yourself?":

"Yes, but the old me didn’t see me."

"So was the old you there to hide pictures?"


"And did he do anything else?"

"No, he just buried them and ran back to that pod."

"I see, and for how long have you had this plan?"

"A long time. Maybe 8 years."

"So the future you has been planning this for almost 40 years."

"If you say so."

"Where would you go when you were done if it were you?"

"It is me."

"Just answer the question please."

"Back to where I should have been."

"Good, thank you Jeff."

"You’re welcome."

Radke and Downes left the infirmary and headed to the conference room leaving McGrath and the doctor to look after Rand. They found Doubleday and his team there when they arrived. The whiteboard walls of the room were covered with dozens of scribbled calculations and at least four different scenarios regarding Rand. As they entered, Doubleday started to switch seats to give Downes the head of the table.

"That’s all right, we’re not going to stand on ceremony," said Downes as he sat in a nearby chair. "We just spoke to Rand. Apparently he took some pictures of an event called Winter Camp I and was dropping them off. The one we have knew he’d made that one of his goals in life, so he was hanging around the area, hoping to see his future self. Based on the timing involved, I believe this Winter Camp I was in ‘77 and that his second displacement was probably to get the film developed."

Several jaws dropped around the table. Doubleday was the first to speak "You mean all of this was for a few pictures of a Scout camp?"

Downes nodded gravely. "Apparently. It must be quite a camp, eh Doc? Anyhow, what have you and the boys worked out?"

Doubleday cleared his throat and began to explain the solution they had arrived at.

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