Warnings: One major one; if you are a purist, this will make you cry for those who love you, and then you will cry yourself to sleep. On another note, there's simply violence and cursing.

Disclaimer: ...I'm taking the easy way out of this. I don't own any characters, places, etc. They belong to their creators and real owners, who would also cry themselves to sleep looking at this, and if I did own anything besides the idea and the words, the world would be very, very sad.


{.chapter o1.}

yes, it... kind of worked?

Monday, June 21st, 2010; the day on which I pretty much royally screwed up everything

"Let's see... time machine project is currently labeled as finished... now to go through the usual routine... for the sixth time...!" Currently a little irritated, I muttered this under my breath, my eyes staring over the upper rim of my glasses, looking more at the silvery-white machine that looked more like a pod with controls wrapping around the outside. It was about time in that I tested it out already, having looked at it five times now, and unless something particularly unusual happened this time, one of two things could happen. Either it would work, or it wouldn't.

I was secretly hoping it wouldn't. There was still a bit I needed to do, and if it worked, then... I wasn't completely sure as to what would happen. So far as I knew, no one but the Time Police could time travel, meaning I was screwing with the natural laws of reality, not that I wasn't screwing with them simply by existing... either way, though, I didn't want to throw caution to the wind if I didn't have to this time. Then I could fine-tune everything and be quite sure everything was in working order {but only quite; absolutions were assumptions, and always bad}, and from there, I could hopefully be able to successfully - and safely - jump through time, or even realities, as space and time were carefully interlocked... why do you think there's such a thing as the 'fabric of the space-time continuum'? It certainly didn't exist merely because it sounded cool, though it may have had a part in it. Besides, it was there; I had even ripped it apart once.

That... hadn't exactly been fun, either, but I pushed that to the back of my mind. "...no missing controls... power cord... is not plugged in... therefore, not powered... fixing..." Actually, I had already checked this thing over five times by now, so I was now hoping that the machine would work, since I had worked on it for a relatively long time, compared to my other projects. I grabbed the power cord and plugged it in the unfilled outlet, and a soft purr rose from somewhere inside the machine. Now to turn it on... My left arm made its way up the control panel, and I flicked a switch. "...and now it's booting up! Hopefully."

So while it was booting up, I checked the date. About a year ago from last week, when I'd first started to test it. That was good - it retained the settings, obviously. I nodded, satisfied with this, and I strode over to the pod, stepping inside warily and closing the durable sliding door. I just needed to check the stability of the small room inside, make sure it would function correctly, and then, I would...

I paused, grimacing as an unusual low-sounding beep could be heard, along with louder and more high-pitched whirring, all with an unsettling mess of static that switched between fading in and out or stopping and starting abruptly, and I proceeded to become a little worried. "This... doesn't... sound... good... not good at all..." Glancing around, I attempted to open the door again, but to no avail. The obvious solution? Try harder. I did just that, trying to open the door with more force and inevitably failing. "Come on, damn you, open, open!"

Unfortunately, at this point, I wasn't sure if it was working or crashing, and my addled mind didn't think of manipulating my size to break out, and nothing else would really work. Then again, if it were crashing, wouldn't it have done that by now? So I concluded that it had to be working... or freezing up. Either thing seemed possible at this point. I froze up when the static strengthened, and the room appeared to tremble.

This was... bad. Very, very bad. So I thought.

The trembling and noise increased before stopping rather abruptly, and I pursed my lips, trying to work the door one final time. Stuck. I bit my lower lip, glancing around and pressing myself against the curved wall. I couldn't exactly wait the machine out - my patience and attention span just wasn't long enough for that - and I'd been a fool not to make an override code in case this happened. It was at this point I groaned.

It was also at this point a bright beam of light, or at least something really bright, filled the room and left an empty space where I had once stood.

~.x.~

...and it was a cloud of dust I found myself in only moments later. I was quite unsure of where I was now; certainly not in the past, so I thought. Not in Superjail, anyway. I was somewhere... outside of there, with blood on the ground, shouts, and the sounds of bullets ripping through the air. The latter two sounded rather distant for now, luckily enough for me. The area itself was a little dark, like it were becoming somewhere late in the evening, but there was still plenty of light so that I could see, and my mind concluded that I was caught in the middle of a battle somewhere in time, and said battle was taking place in the outside world. Obviously.

Right then, something in my head clicked. "Yes! It... kind of worked!" I cheered this only moments before I realized I was still potentially in danger. I then tried to tell myself to shut up, if possible. I at least got up to my knees before a low male voice rang through the air as the sounds of battle neared me.

"Fire in the hole!"

Shoot, a grenade... most likely. I wasn't familiar with these terms, but I was familiar with explosives, and that familiarity told me to get the hell out of there as soon as possible. Scrambling to get to my feet, I didn't dare look back as I turned and tried to flee from the battle I'd found myself in, and damn it all if I was going to die in the next hour. This seemed all too likely for me as I ran, stumbling along the way. Have to get out. Then I can think more clearly.

I was negatively surprised when I noticed a red laser dot on my lower back, and I let out an irritated mix between a sigh and a groan. Great! Now I was sentenced to death here. Or, at least, I definitely would be if that laser guide belonged to a sniper rifle.

Of course, as soon as I was sure I was going to die, the dot pretty much disappeared. Wherever it was now, it wasn't at least trained on my back. That, or it had been turned off and I really was going to die.

~.x.~

Luckily, I didn't die yet. However, after many more minutes of running, stumbling, and making sure I wasn't going to mindlessly run into some other death trap, I slowed to a halt, panting and no longer paying much attention to my surroundings. Of course, by this point, if anyone were to try killing me now, not even adrenaline would've be able to save me from a rather untimely demise. That is, to say, I had likely been screwed over big time, and I fully well knew it.

Which was why I groaned upon seeing an aircraft land a few twenty-some meters away from me. Great, just great. I backed up a little, glancing at the craft for a moment before glancing around once more. Maybe this was pushing it, but maybe I could force one last getaway... again, this was a maybe, but a very strong maybe. All I'd have to do is turn around and make a run for it, and hope for the...

...best. My face fell when I felt cold metal hands grab my wrists, and I winced, squirming slightly. I managed to glance over my shoulder to see a dark purple robot {at least, it looked like a robot} that looked uncannily like me. Actually, I saw two of those robots, and I blinked. They didn't look like they were going to kill me... especially since the butts of their guns were aimed at my neck. "What the..." I started to murmur, before I cursed under my breath. Shit shit shit. So much for running...

The 'robo-Wardens' allowed me to weakly struggle for a moment before roughly, but still carefully, striking the lymph nodes in my neck. Within moments, I was out stone cold.

~.x.~

I woke up quite a bit later in a dark room, and I was very quick to try moving, but this didn't turn out so well. I muttered darkly under my breath, wincing; I'd been tied to some chair. My wrists and ankles were bound, and my knees and elbows were also bound uncomfortably to the legs and the back of the chair, respectively. They seemed to be like rather strong and thick cords, but it still chafed my skin. Rather, the skin that could be chafed.

As I continued my efforts to wriggle my way free {after having found that I simply couldn't shrink and escape that way}, I could barely hear the sound of footsteps, and I blinked, trying to get a better look; and failing, because the room was still dark. After a few minutes, the steps gradually getting a little louder, a door swung open. Despite the fact that I was struggling, I could see that it was a male human, wearing some kind of cape, and looked like he had glasses that looked amberish in color for a split second before the door closed and the light disappeared again.

"I wouldn't do that if I were you," the newcomer spoke, and I could hear the sound of some other chair moving. I noted that the voice sounded strangely like my own, except noticeably lower in tone. This was starting to become odd already. However, I forced that to the back of my mind. One way or another, I'd get the information I wanted.

"What, do you expect me to not struggle when I'm bound to a chair?" I was quite irritated right now. Things hadn't been going well for me for the past few hours, but hell if I was going to cooperate with some guy I couldn't even see!

For some reason or another, the other laughed for a second about this before regaining his cool demeanor. "No, but not when you could potentially be electrocuted, either."

I sniffed sharply. "Some electric chair you've got, then." When no reaction came from the other - and I wasn't electrocuted - I did my best to fidget, continuing on, "Look, all I want to know is what the hell's going on here!"

"And then that makes two of us. Tell me what I want to know, and I think we'll get along just fine..."

I unwisely decided to speak up once more. "Oh, I see, I'll help so much because I was there. Look, I don't have the answers you wa-" Without warning, surges of electricity ran through me, and I failed to keep silent, yelping before falling silent for a moment before I hissed, yelling as well, which was a little surprising, given that my muscles were locking up.

Eventually, the pain came to stop abruptly, and this time I kept my mouth shut, much as I would've loved to talk my captor to death, and instead settled for glaring at him. It? I wasn't sure, but anyway, I wasn't stupid. Especially since I was now shaking since my nervous system had been screwed up a little.

"Actually, I think you do. You answer my questions, and maybe I'll consider answering yours. Fair enough?" I could practically feel that the other was grinning, which, while strange, I ignored.

Reluctantly, I sank into the chair, frowning. "Fine. Ask away." Honestly, I didn't like the sound of this at all, but I really didn't have any other choice, so far as I knew.

"What year is it?" The other asked, and I blinked. What? The older-sounding male tacked on, "And we're recording, by the way."

My eyebrows furrowed. "What kind of question is that? Not to mention that I don't know..."

"It's the year 2025. Now what exactly were you doing in the midst of battle?"

I frowned. I didn't really want to risk lying, but... what the hell was this guy after? "Running away? I didn't exactly mean to throw myself in the middle of a conflict that's not my problem, for your information. Stupid machine...!"

There was a pause, and I instantly started berating myself for letting such an important piece of information slip. After a little bit, my captor spoke up once more. "You... didn't happen to use a time machine... did you?" I noted that the other sounded quite apprehensive. But again, this was ignored.

"What? How did you..." I fell silent, shaking my head. This was crazy. How did he know? However, I opted to answer now. I didn't want to be shocked again, really. "... yes... I did. What of it?" Everything, probably, I thought sarcastically.

The other cursed under his breath, and I barely heard him mumble, "Oh, wonderful. So much for hoping I had captured a civilian instead..." After a moment of silence, he continued on in a louder voice, "Then it's just as I thought. Wonderful, just wonderful..." He didn't sound terribly enthused, I noted, but I didn't ask anything yet, but my eyebrows were raised. This was... different. Then again, neither of us seemed pleased with this new situation. There was a sigh from the still-muttering male. "I'll explain one thing to you right now... Warden," he sounded vaguely unsure, but seemed to ignore the pause and resumed, "We're essentially the same person. Well, not even essentially, we are the same. You haven't figured that out yet... but... never mind that." I heard a snap of the fingers, and the lights came on.

From that moment, there was a bout of silence. Think of it like looking into a mirror, but neither really liking what they saw. I was really quite intrigued by this, seeing that I'd been face to face with my future self this whole time. And it was myself, no less; we shared the same physical traits, mostly. The other's skin was a bit darker, and the lenses of the glasses were now an amberish color, and save for a few obvious things, we otherwise looked quite the same, though the older male appeared to be much more calm than I probably was. As I noticed - and decided to pay a little bit of attention to - the other Warden's {well, I didn't quite believe we were really the same person yet, but it was really hard to fake a gap in the teeth, so...} manner of clothing had moved away from the bright, noticeable colors to more neutral blacks with accents and a purplish cape. And really, really tall boots; about a little shorter than knee length. Important, no, but highly noticeable.

No pun intended, of course. After a moment of deciding exactly what words to use, I spoke up, frowning slightly. "What. The. Hell."

The room fell silent again, and the older Warden - I wasn't sure what to call 'older me' quite yet - broke the aforementioned silence with a sigh, and he idly rubbed his gloved hands together. "Alright. I'll go ahead and untie you." He slipped over to behind the chair I was bound to, getting to work on untying the thick knots. After a minute or two, he stood up, tossing a communication device on my lap. I was still extremely confused, though, and I didn't know what to make of any of this.

I twisted around, eyebrows furrowed slightly. "Hey, what...?" It was drawn out longer than I meant to, but by that time, the other had already started walking towards the door.

"Take a look around the... the jail before you contact me. We'll discuss some matters then. Just... stay out of the way. I don't want you to screw anything up. Not yet, anyway." There was silence, and we both stared at each other for a moment before the older shook his head, muttering under his breath once more, and walked out of the room.

I blinked, standing up and massaging my elbow with a vague wince, holding the device in my free hand. "Alright, then..." In a considerably quieter voice, I murmured rather unenthusiastically, "I suppose it did work... even if I did get catapulted forward some fifteen years... great."

No, I was not at all enthused by this. Not at all.

{.end of chapter 1.}

-your Warden