Four Seconds To Midnight
Johnathan Lane’s consciousness came back slowly. He was completely emersed in the chrono-pod, in the pink goo. The white, carbon fibre chamber resembled a fancy bathtub with a hatch. At first, Lane’s head was a total blank. He never got used to travelling in time even if it’s six hours into the past. Humans are made to travel only into the future, one second at a time, whatever that means. He was still wearing his standard black suit and tie. He imagined that this pod is what the womb must feel like, warm and blissful. He heard the final beep on the pod before the hatch slowly opened. He prayed to whoever was listening that he was back in his safehouse. He was in need of a hot shower and a drink. That wasn’t to be. As the soundproof hatch opened, he heard gun shots. He lost his weapon and barely got away with his life. Someone desperately wanted him dead. That was a long list.
It is best to keep moving when one finds himself in a gun fire. Instinctively, Lane sprang out of the pod and took cover. He wasn’t in his safehouse, room 701 at The Plaza. It was a dirty large warehouse. Lucky for him, the pod was bullet proof and gave him few moments to get a beating of where he was. It seemed to be day time, two goons shooting frantically at him and a dead woman in a lab coat with a gun shot wound. He checked the weapon that was next to the dead woman, empty, of course.
At the sight of Lane, the goons stepped up the hell fire of bullets. Lane checked his pocket watch from his pant pocket, the time was stuck on four seconds to midnight. Something went wrong, but he didn’t have long to get back to his home time. The dead woman was a good shot but not quite good enough. Lane could see where her rounds were embedded. The pod couldn’t take any more of their bullets. It was powered by a very unstable mystery fuel cell.
Lane closed his eyes and breathed slowly. Time seemed to slow down then stopped entirely. Lane pointed the dead woman’s gun towards where she took the shots. Her rounds reversed back into the pistol one by one. The goons’ bullets also flowed in slow motion backwards back into their automatic rifles. When two rounds reversed back into the gun, Lane stopped his trance like state. Exactly at that moment, the machine gun fire continued back in his direction. Jonathan held his breath and took two shots, aimed at each of the heads of the trigger-happy goons. The machine fire stopped as Lane heard heavy thud of two bodies hitting the concrete floor.