David Carroll felt as though his soul was leaving his body. He laid on the cold concrete for twenty minutes, convulsing and shaking uncontrollably. Travelling in time was not conducive to the health of a human being. Especially, travelling forward in time involved the body getting shredded up on the quantum level and being flung around the known universe until the right location is found be the machine. In theory, the traveller experiences the infinitely large universe in an instance. Carroll never got used to the feeling. The machine erases most of the memory of the travel, but sometimes, the unexplainable images and thoughts come flooding into the frontal cortex. Eventually the painful convulsing subsided but his hands still shook. He tried to take deep breaths as Doctor Jones reminded him. His entire body hurt like hell. He must have laid there on the random sidewalk for over an hour with not one person stopping to see if he needed help. He was used to it.
He checked his wristwatch. It was smashed. His wife gave it to him for his fortieth birthday. She was gonna be mad, he thought. Carroll tried to get up but it wasn’t happening. He continued laying on the ground gathering his thoughts. He felt like he just woke up from a coma. Feeling in his body was slowly coming back. The frosty rain helped. He remembers shooting his target dead and fleeing to the pawn store. He then remembers the pawn guy zapping him back to his own timeline in that rusty time chamber. He prayed to God that the mission was a success. He will know in twenty-four hours.
The street that he didn’t quite recognise was empty except for few sketchy characters walking around. One spotted Carroll and walked slowly towards him like a stray cat in need of a quick feed.
“Just great!” Carroll thought. He still was in no condition to fend off this street punk.
He wondered why he didn’t wake up in a safehouse with Doctor Jones greeting him back.
The junkie looking person was only few metres away when a car screeched out of nowhere shooting him dead. The same car opened fire on Carroll barely missing his head. David Carroll had no choice but to just lay there. He made peace with God when another came out of a dark alley way smashing the shooter’s vehicle making it tumble into a liquor store. Before long he heard several vehicles about a block away. The car came to a sudden stop and a woman exited. Carroll didn’t recognise her. She didn’t say anything as she picked up Carroll and shoved him in the passenger seat like a rag doll.
“Thank you, I guess”
His new friend stepped on the gas as he heard several other vehicles approach at high speeds. Mission: Completed he gathered. Some of the arounds hit the back window of the mysterious woman’s car but it seemed to be bullet proof.
Carroll had no choice but to close his eyes and enjoy the ride.