The Advancement of Mateo Matic (2019)

This is the story of a couple who are only able to live for one day every year. Every 24 hours, they are sent forward in time exactly 365 days. In volume 5, the two of them travel to the solar systems nearest planetary neighbors, where they witness colonists start new civilizations. If you have not already, please read volume 1, volume 2volume 3, and volume 4.

October 6, 2213
And like Jon Snow before him, Mateo Matic was suddenly returned from the dead. He could only move his neck a little as he gasped for air, and he could feel a tingling in his fingers...

October 7, 2214
Mateo was devastated at the news. Just like his father—who was, ironically, not really his father, as Mateo erased himself from history long before he was erased from time—he tore the place apart...

October 8, 2215
Vitalie was watching Mateo and Leona intently during breakfast, with a big smile on her face. Étude was there, but was notably less excited. Ramses was off doing apparent work somewhere, but that wasn’t fooling anyone...

October 9, 2216
Mateo and Leona learned from Serif that it had been centuries since the universe of Ansutah was created by the fourth pocket dimension on the interstellar ship, The Warren. For her, however, it had only been a few years...

October 10, 2217
Mateo woke up in a bed with a terrible headache. He reached for his head, where he found some kind of cap on it that he figured he better leave alone...

October 11, 2218
While the three of them were brunching at a restaurant named in honor of Horace Reaver, a group of Dardieti workers were disassembling and packing the Muster Beacon on the roof of the Intake Building...

October 12, 2219
Many years ago, in another timeline, the powers that be gave Leona and Mateo the ability to survive space travel; a gift which remained with them in the new reality...

October 13, 2220
Welp, things were pretty much all fixed up in the Colony Site Alpha dome on Bungula when Leona returned to the timeline in 2220. There was no air filtration system for her to repair, nor any cataclysmic aftermath for her to suffer through...

October 14, 2221
Leona, Brooke, and Sharice spent the rest of the day trying to figure out how the former could get back to Mateo, and barring that, contact him...

October 16, 2222
As promised, Leona spent the rest of her time in 2221 working with the Bungulan scientists on a way to observe one of her jumps to the future...

October 16, 2223
Leona woke up everyday feeling a little bit uncomfortable. For the last several months—give or take a few wibbly-wobbly detours, and memories from alternate timelines—she had been a time traveler...

October 17, 2224
Following a year of therapy with Administrator Eight Point Seven, Leona was feeling much better. She started thinking about her existential crisis from a physics perspective, and a philosophical one...

October 18, 2225
Sharice Prieto was holding her hands over Leona’s eyes, and guiding her down the hallway...

October 19, 2226
Sanaa was right that the terrorists’ plan would work. At midnight central on the night of October 18, 2225, Leona jumped forward exactly one year...

October 20, 2227
After a small group of human Ansutahan refugees stole the Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and laid in a course for Gatewood, the rest of Ansutah was in the midst of war...

October 21, 2228
Many years ago, back in the version of reality where Mateo Matic did not exist, Leona was on her way with a crew to a rogue planet called Durus...

October 22, 2229
While he was gone, Greer Thorpe managed to alter the time bubble, so that the entire continent of Comron was experiencing real-time, while the rest of the universe was moving at an incredibly slow rate...

October 23, 2230
Unlike people in Mateo’s past who claimed to have fallen onto his pattern, Cassidy appeared to be the real deal, though she didn’t act like she had any previous knowledge of it...

October 24, 2231
Everything seemed to have worked out great for the human Ansutahan refugees. At least, for most of them. By the time everyone on Comron was evacuated through the universe bridge, some of the Maramon warriors who were near the border of the temporal bubble when it was established were able to break through...

October 25, 2232
The timeline, when it came to the universe of Ansutah, was hard to follow. One thing Mateo was told was that its timestream flowed completely separately than that of their own. If, for instance, Mateo were to go back in time and change history, so that the events on The Warren that led to Ansutah’s creation never happened, it wouldn’t matter; Ansutah would still exist...

October 26, 2233
This was a new beginning for Gatewood, and its new inhabitants. While the refugees were settling in, Kestral and Ishida were beginning a new job they called Project Topdown, which was evidently given to them through their dream instructions...

October 27, 2234
So named Project Stargate, also known as the Quantum Seeder Network, was a real thing. They were going to be sending truly massive module ships across the galaxy, on a course that would ultimately last tens of thousands of years...

October 28, 2235
Mateo had to take medication to get to sleep that night. This wasn’t the first time he was being sent into a mission without any clue what he was doing, but it felt different...

October 29, 2236
Mateo went to bed early that night, so he could be awake and alert come midnight central, and the next year...

October 30, 2237
As soon as Mateo and Cassidy fell back into the timestream, several of Goswin’s guards tightened up their circle around them. They were still awake, because she wanted to see what it felt like to jump forward in time when she knew it was going to happen...

October 31, 2238
It was time to leave. Mateo first went to Dardius to retrieve the Muster Beacon, so he could save Serif’s people. He then went to Gatewood to make sure they really were saved. Then Cassidy showed up, and he felt very protective of her, but he was otherwise pretty useless here...

November 1, 2239
The first face that Leona saw when she returned to the timestream was Eight Point Seven’s. She had been given a new android body, which looked just like her original substrate. Last year, Leona had had only enough time to manufacture a basic robot model, so she must have given herself skin later on...

November 2, 2240
The Christmas Colonists, as they would come to be called, arrived on Varkas Reflex on December 25. This was just under the wire for the 2239 projection date...

November 3, 2241
It took some doing, but Sanaa did manage to warm up, and open up, a little to Leona. Leona did the same to her as well...

November 4, 2242
The present leader of Varkas Reflex was a transhumanistic individual named Eliseus Bulle. He would not be in this position for long...

November 5, 2243
The military in the mid-23rd century wasn’t what it used to be. Borders were erased from the map, so there weren’t any good reasons to make war. Well, there was one. Aliens...

November 6, 2244
Before Leona disappeared from the timestream, they went back down to Hokusai’s lab, and read newcomer Pribadium Delgado into yet another situation...

November 7, 2245
Mateo and the rest of the crew were having their regularly scheduled breakfast bonding experience—which Weaver instituted to maintain morale—when Thor held up an envelope...

November 8, 2246
When a future version of Arcadia Preston—who was evidently good now, and using her not-so-gentle nature to protect various other universes from the white monsters of Ansutah—asked Mateo if he could handle tricking her past self, he was confident he could...

November 9, 2247
Hokusai Gimura was waiting for Leona, right in her face, when the latter returned to the timestream. “Did Pribadium, like, fall onto your pattern, or something...

November 10, 2248
Located nearly twelve light years from Earth, Tau Ceti enjoyed a strikingly high number of low-mass rocky planets in orbit, but only one of them coalesced satisfactorily within the star’s habitable zone...

November 11, 2249
Sanaa and Eight Point Seven were long returned by the time Leona’s day of the year appeared on the timeline. They, in fact, had spent a lot of time traveling, and were currently birdwatching a few kilometers away from what Trinity was calling Homebase...

November 12, 2250
A year later, Leona came back to find the warehouse having been fully revamped to accommodate Tamerlane’s needs...


November 13, 2251
After her talk with Eight Point Seven, Leona felt that she needed to get away from people. Fortunately, she had a whole world to explore. Unlike the other exoplanet colonies, Thālith al Naʽāmāt Bida was fully habitable, so her movements didn’t have to be restricted...

November 14, 2252
Leona was maybe a meter and a half in up in the air when she jumped forward in time. She hadn’t expected the shuttle to be gone, and since she wasn’t prepared for it, she didn’t have time to land on her feet...

November 15, 2253
When Leona and Briar got back to the shuttle, it was even dirtier and duster than it was just a few hours ago. There was no overgrowth on the craft, but that was because they had landed in a fairly barren spot...

November 16, 2254
Though the life Briar’s mother ended up living wasn’t the one he would have chosen for her, given the opportunity, he couldn’t be sure she would feel the same way...

November 17, 2255
During Leona’s interim year, Trinity received a letter in Sanaa’s handwriting, urging them to not look for her. She didn’t explain what had happened to her, or where she had gone, but she was clear that their plan had worked...

November 18, 2256
The adjoining of Radiant Lightning, and The Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was totally finished when Mateo returned to the timestream...

November 19, 2257
In movies, people often remained standing when a cop or surgeon had to deliver bad news to them. Their knees always buckled, and they always regretted it. She still had hope that what her friend was about to tell her wasn’t the worst news she could receive, but Leona still sat down, just in case...

November 20, 2258
Perhaps death was inevitable, for anyone and everyone, and everything. Even those who managed to upgrade their substrates, or even transfer their consciousnesses to new ones, were going to end one day...

November 21, 2259
Leona didn’t wake up from what was meant to be a nap until thirty minutes to midnight. Of course, by then, it was way too late to launch the AOC. The safest place to be for a time jump was either on the ground, or in outerspace. Somewhere in the middle just wasn’t worth the risk...

November 22, 2260
To say that Cassidy was upset about being left in the dark about Mateo would be an understatement...

November 23, 2261
A couple months ago, Hogarth and Hilde decided to use the Nexus replica to visit the planet of Dardius, and prepare for the living memorial services. They were met with suspicion and reluctance, as no one there knew who they were...

November 24, 2262
The problem with time travel was that there was no such thing as total safety. If one were to imagine a world without it, finding a secure location wasn’t necessarily easy, but it was at least possible...

November 25, 2263
Now was the time. They were finally going to Dardius. In a show of good faith, everybody agreed to give Pribadium’s completely new form of teleportation a shot...

November 26, 2264
All right. So Mateo and some of his friends were stuck on a planet as many light years from Earth as they were in the past...

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