Dr. Evan Mallet and Dr. Justin Stockum have been best friends for seven years. Seven long, long years, with an uncountable amount hours logged in the lab. They worked at California Institute of Technology where they received a grant in theoretical physics to test for the possibilities of time travel. Seven years ago, they came up with the equation, an equation too long and too confusing to say.

 

“It’s almost finished, Justin. A few more adjustments and we’ll be ready for the initial tests.”

 

That day seven years ago – when Justin was hit with a bit of brilliance and sickness at the same time – was when he figured out time travel, figuratively speaking.

 

“Fantastic.”

 

It almost seemed out of the blue seven years ago; Justin looked like he lost consciousness for about twenty seconds, but snapped out of it and waddled as fast as he could to the restroom panting and crying “Oh. Gosh. Oh. Gosh.” Evan didn’t know what to think of the situation. He sat there waiting–patiently–asking if Justin was all right. When he finally returned to the lab, Justin had figured out the equation – all the math checked out.

 

“Alright. I believe it’s ready, Justin. Go ahead. Install the Central Fusel Lodge.”

 

“I think we should test out an apple first. I’ll put one in the machine. AH. I’m just so giddy, it’s so wonderful to see this day finally come,” said Justin. He always had been ahead of the curve compared to Evan. Evan was never jealous–he understood Justin was brilliant–but he was disappointed it was not he who created the equation for time travel. When news had broken out about the equation, celebrations were held in their honor; Justin, however, received a tad more credit. The Stockum-Mallet Paradigm – that’s what it became known as, what the world knew it as – it could have been The Mallet-Stockum Theorem, if only Evan solved it.

 

“The apple is in place. Goggles secured, Evan. Three. Two. …One.”

 

A flash was seen. White noise encapsulated the room and echoed a couple seconds.

 

“It’s …gone. It's gone. Evan. Do you know what this means!?

We’ve figured it out. We've actually figured out time travel,” Justin exclaimed.

 

“Let’s try another object. What should we try next?” Evan questioned as he examined the room.

 

“A chair. My chair.” Justin stated.

 

He grabbed his chair, wheeled it over to the machine, and quickly ran back to a safe distance.

 

Three. Two. One.

 

A flash. White noise encapsulated the room and echoed a couple seconds. Nothing was seen in the machine. It was empty, again.

 

“Okay, Evan. I’m ready. I’ve been waiting for this day – mentally preparing for it. You can’t change my mind. I’m going to go back in time myself. This process is not going to take us seven years, again. Maybe it’ll only take three with my knowledge of the failures and accomplishments we’ve had. Today has been a momentous day for science, Evan.”

 

“I’ll see you in the past.”

 

Justin walked over to the machine, stood there nervously, praying he’d be alright. Evan gave a final salute and pushed the button.

 

Three. Two. One.

 

The flash blinds him. White noise echoes in his head for a couple seconds. His sight fills black and his sense of balance is naught as he hears Evan say, “Are you all right, Justin? Come now, we’re so close. We just have to account for a few anomalies here, and a few other variables. Looks like we could have this done by the end of the year.”

 

Justin comes to and claims, “Oh. Gosh. Oh. Gosh.” His hand covers his mouth as he runs toward the bathroom. Minutes pass by as he hears Evan talking through the door making sure he is, in fact, okay. With his hands wiping away at his mouth, he opens the door, walks toward the whiteboard and writes down some information. Evan looks at what Justin wrote, ponders and does some quick calculations.  “No. Wait. Yes. Okay, now this. Alri…it works. Justin. How’d you fix the equation so quickly?”

 

“I don’t…know. I’m not entirely too sure. That moment I dazed off, something happened to me. My eyes filled black. I felt…cold, but I wasn’t cold–if that makes any sense. I just, I…I don’t know. It just came to me, I guess,” Justin stammers.