Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Microstory 842: Band Together

I’ve seen enough weird stuff in my career in the agency that it’s pretty hard to surprise me. I’ve encountered ghosts, monsters, aliens, and people with special powers. Everything has a logical explanation, whether it follows the public’s understanding of science, or not. Even time travel has its set of rules, and by the time the first temporal anomaly was discovered, my division had already come up with protocols to deal with it. This last assignment I’m working on has me all confused, though, because while it seemed a classic case of past life resurgence, there appears to be a time component as well. My subjects can’t explain what happened to them, but from what I gather, they were first born a few decades ago, but die in a bus crash a few decades from now. This means that a version of each of them is already out in the world, living their lives as thirtysomethings in a local band, still trying to get a record deal. Somehow they die in the future, and instead of being reincarnated sometime later, their souls were transported back into the past, and now they’re teenagers. Nothing like this has ever been recorded before. Our researchers have been looking into it since they first started claiming to remember their past lives, but they can’t come to any sound conclusion on how this happened. What’s clear is that there is definitely a still-living band, and that these teens are genetically identical to its members. Now, like I said, we have protocols for this. Normally, we would send any traveler from the future incapable of returning home to pocket dimension that a race of friendly aliens designed for this very thing. Theoretically, they’re meant to live out the rest of their days in there, and leave the timeline undisturbed. But my superiors don’t think this is fair to do to the band, because they didn’t ask for this, and returning them to their original point in time would be just as dangerous to the timeline as leaving them here. Besides, since they were born and spent the majority of their new lives totally oblivious to the fact that they were reincarnations, we don’t really have the right. So the agency made a decision to use them positively. Recruiting people who have information on the future is not unheard of, but it requires special permission, from a very picky committee. They approved a program, however, that would allow these children to continue learning music, while also training to become agency assets. They chose me for this, because I have considerable experience in both fields, and they felt I would be a good influence on the youngsters. I hope they’re right about me, because I’m not totally convinced I can do this.

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