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The Lyles Family

Hunt’s Security Office

Nashua, New Hampshire
Monday, September 21st, 2015, 10:45 am

 

 

      In many respects, the Lyles were an average African-American family of 2015. Samuel had worked for years designing and overseeing the building of underground structures.  Most of the structures were simple, like drainage systems. However, he was one of the designers of the Boston subway system that was opened in 2010. His most important work was for Hunt’s Security, but unfortunately, he got no public credit for it.

      Samuel had been married to Zoe for twenty years.  Zoe was a medical doctor, running her own family practice in North Carolina.  Together they had three children: Mike, Jada, and Marvin.  As residents of North Carolina, they all had a bit of a southern accent.

      Aaron convinced Samuel to bring Zoe to Nashua for the meeting.  Their three children stayed with Samuel’s brother.  Zoe wore a silk dress with black shoes.  She was about five feet tall and had shoulder length hair.  Samuel was only about two inches taller than Zoe.  He was wearing blue jeans, a white shirt, and tan boots.  Samuel had broad shoulders and was very muscular.  After some introductions and a small breakfast, Aaron invited them into a conference room at the Nashua office.  Sarah met them in the room. 

      Aaron started, “Samuel and Zoe, thank you both for coming here today with so little explanation of why.  It’s very important this project remains secret.  We are currently recruiting people to help with this effort. What we are going to tell you must be kept to yourselves even if you decide not to join us.”

      Samuel nodded, “Aaron, you know you can trust me.”

      Zoe nodded, “I’ll keep whatever you say as secret as a patient’s medical record.”

      “Thank you,” replied Aaron.  “As you know, our country’s future and present have been greatly harmed due to the reactive measures taken because of 9/11.  Had 9/11 been prevented or had more Floridian votes gone to the Democratic Party we probably would be as we were before those events.  In many ways, the history of man is spotted with terrors that could have been stopped by removing one person or one event from history. We have a plan that might prevent these people and events from ever occurring.  We have a way to undo small events and eliminate people who will cause a global crises.  I have more details but first I must ask, is this something you would be interested in?”

      Samuel nodded, “I know the great work you’ve done and continue to do for your clients. I also know you’re a good person. I don’t know how I can help you, but if you invited us here, you must have an idea about that and I will gladly listen.  I do agree with you that horrid events like World War II could be prevented by stopping one person.”

      Zoe added her agreement, “I’m not sure what you’re proposing, but I’m not at all happy with how this country has changed, and I’ve been hoping for us to leave.”

      Aaron knew this was going to be tough.  Convincing his children was one thing, but recruiting the Lyles would be a whole different ballgame.  “We have a way to travel through time-”

      Zoe interrupted him, “Impossible.”

      Aaron replied, “That’s what I thought at first, too, until I saw the proof.  If you’re interested in joining this project and can keep this a secret, we’ll show it to you.”

      “As I said before, you can trust me.”

      “We propose to create a subterranean biosphere with a completely isolated and self-replicating food, water, and oxygen supply.”

      Samuel brightened, “A biosphere, a real biosphere?  You want me to design a biosphere . . . underground?”

      “Yes. We want you to design a biosphere, but we also want you both to come and live in it with your children.”

      Zoe asked, “You want what?”

      “We chose you not only because of Samuel’s talents in design but because you are a medical doctor . . . and you have three children.  We want to make a colony.  We need children, we need a doctor, and we need an architect, not only to build and design but to help maintain with the help of the other . . . colonists.”

      Samuel said, “It sounds very intriguing . . . at least to me.  I still don’t understand the purpose.  What is the point in having a time-machine and a biosphere?”

      Aaron explained, “We are going to completely exclude ourselves from society and from the world.  As time progresses, we are going to monitor the changes.  When a disaster occurs that could be stopped by preventing an event, like a nuclear launch, or stopping a person, like a future despotic ruler, we will go back to a time where it is easy to prevent the problem and do so. So for example, had we started before 9/11 we would now be going back to prevent that terrorist attack either by killing the terrorists or stopping the flights.”

      Zoe asked, “So why not do that now, and why separate from society?”

      Aaron said, “I’m not good at explaining this part.  You see, there are certain rules we have found about time travel. These rules are very important when traveling to the past.  9/11 was the major catalyst that caused our inventor to create a time machine.  If he were to go back in time and prevent 9/11, he wouldn’t be able to invent a time machine.  Specifically if he went back he would either forget what he was there to do or be prevented by unseen forces from stopping 9/11.”

      Zoe asked, “So how can you change time?”

      “In a later experiment, we found that if we left notes stating what to do, we could then do them . . . again.  Does that make sense?”

      Both of them shook their heads no.

      Sarah said, “Let me give this a try.  Our friend, who invented the time machine, made a pile of rocks.  After a week passed, if I remember correctly, he then went back a week to take apart the rock pile.  When he got there, he kept getting distracted and was unable to concentrate enough to destroy the pile of rocks.  He tried to knock the rocks over; he said he seemed physically unable to do so! He then wrote a note to himself to take apart the rock pile in a week.  He also put the note in a spot where he would find it.  As soon as the note was placed, he suddenly was able to take apart the rocks and remembered having got the note!  Now to me it sounds rather disorienting, but he further said he had to assume some of the account because really all he remembers is getting a note to take apart the rock pile.”

      Samuel said, “That’s rather hard to follow.  If he doesn’t remember he had trouble taking apart the rock pile, how did he know he had trouble?”

      Aaron explained, “Well, he was rather surprised to find the note.  Even when he went back and wrote the note again, he didn’t understand why he wrote it.  So he repeated a similar experiment a week later but this time returned without taking apart the rocks or writing a note.”

      Zoe said, “OK, I kind of get it, but why can’t he go back and prevent 9/11 after writing a note?”

      Sarah answered, “If he went back, he wouldn’t be able to stop 9/11 because without 9/11 he would never have a motive to create the time machine.”

      Zoe asked, “Why couldn’t he write a note saying how to build the time machine?”

      Sarah answered, “Because then he would never do the research to make the time machine. Without the research there would be no way in any time to know how to build a time machine.”

      Samuel said, “OK, I’m not sure I really can understand . . . but why are you proposing seclusion?”

      Aaron said, “So we get less affected by our changes and the world doesn’t interfere with us.  For example, if a nuke was dropped today that killed us we would have no way of going back in time and preventing it.  In our biosphere, we will be safe from all currently known man-made threats.”

      Zoe said, “You want us to leave everything, take our kids, so we can improve future generations of people we won’t even personally know?”

      Aaron said, “Well, it has never been put that way, but yes.  Will you go with us?”

      Samuel said, “Can you give us some time to discuss this?”

      Aaron said, “Sure, how long do you need?  Should we book you another flight back here in a week or so?”

      Samuel and Zoe whispered to each other.  Then Samuel said, “No, we just need a few minutes alone.”

      Aaron nodded, “OK, we’ll wait right outside.”

      Sarah and Aaron left the room and closed the door on their way out.  While they waited Sarah said, “I feel bad we asked the Millers to wait for a conference call.”

      “I wouldn’t worry about it; we haven’t taken that much time.  Do you think they’ll say yes?”

      She shrugged, “Zoe doesn’t sound too interested.  I guess Samuel does though.  Our chances might not be good.”

      They waited a few minutes, and finally Samuel opened the door.  Aaron and Sarah returned to their seats.

      Samuel said, “I have one concern about this.”

      Aaron said, “What is it?”

      Samuel said, “I don’t know how our kids will react if we say they have to all marry white kids.”

      “Oh,” said Aaron as he attempted to not look astonished.  “Well, I . . . hadn’t thought of that.”

      Sarah saved her flailing husband, “We haven’t decided on all the members yet. While, as you guessed, all the present members are white, that might not be the case when we choose more.  I guess to be honest, race isn’t one of the important factors we are using in choosing.  Maybe you should discuss this with your kids?”

      Zoe shook her head, “Mike is the only one old enough to be dating.  I’m not sure it’s something he has considered.”

      Aaron said, “I can’t guarantee you the races of the other members.  All I can say is that if race isn’t a problem this first generation, it will probably be a concern in a generation or two.”

      Zoe asked, “Because it will be a minimally-sized colony?”

      “Exactly”

      Zoe said, “So in a few generations to prevent intermarriage eventually our children, grandchildren, or great grandchildren will have to marry white children.”

      “Yes,” said Aaron.

      The Lyles whispered some more between themselves.  Then Samuel said, “OK, we want in.”

      Sarah looked concerned when she asked, “Are you sure?”

      They nodded, and Zoe replied, “Yes.”

      Aaron said, “Excellent.  Now we can cover some details.  First, our children (Keith and Kara) will be going.  Second, an orphan who is friends with Keith will be going.  They’re all in school at the moment so you can't meet them now.  However, the other couple in the project that includes our scientist is waiting for us to conference them in.”

      Samuel said, “Sounds good.”

      Aaron turned on the projector, camera, and microphone for the conference call. After a few seconds Michelle and Jared appeared.

      Samuel said, “Is that the Nashua facility?  It’s got to be.  That layout is so typical of Matt’s designs.  I would have made it less utilitarian.”

      Aaron frowned, “Yes, that is the Nashua facility.  I hadn't expected you would recognize it.”

      Samuel said, “Oh, the lack of natural light was actually the big tip-off; also the fact that it was a conference call.  Finally, there’s that hideous look that’s so typical of Matt’s designs.”

      Aaron continued, “Anyway, as you probably already know, this is Michelle and Jared Miller.”

      Aaron then said towards the microphone and camera, “This is Samuel and Zoe Lyles.”

      Through the speaker, Jared and Michelle said, “Hello.”

      Samuel and Zoe replied, “Hi.”

      Zoe said, “Those names sound familiar.  Have one of you done any work in medicine?”

      Jared chuckled, “I have, but you wouldn’t be familiar with my work.  Most of it got patented and then got hidden.  You’re probably more likely to remember us from TV”

      Samuel said, “Not me.  I can’t stand television!”

      After a pause Zoe gasped, “Oh, I remember, you were on the national news briefly . . . something about shooting CTF agents.  I wish you had killed some more!”

      Jared shook his head, “We didn’t shoot them.  Well . . . not with a gun.”

      Zoe said, “Really, why would they lie about that?”

      Jared said, “To be honest, we have NO idea!”

      Samuel asked, ”So what did happen?”

      Michelle and Jared explained what had happened.  Neither Samuel nor Zoe expressed a love for the present government. It seemed to make perfect sense to them why the Millers protected themselves.  They, however, as expected, had a hard time believing builder technology was possible.  After the full explanation of how the Millers got safely to the present, Jared offered to get a builder to show it in action.

      “Let me show you the builder.”

      Zoe asked, “While you’re at it, can you show us the time machine? It's almost as hard to believe you made a time machine than a builder.”

      Samuel said, “I don’t know, time travel has always seemed to me to be possible, but this builder sounds too fantastic to be true.”

      Jared replied, “Well, I'll show the builder, but the time machine is much too involved to show.  Since you’re more willing to believe in the time machine, let me show you the builder as proof for both.”

      The Lyles agreed.  Jared walked out of the room and came back a few minutes later with the builder.  The builder had changed a bit.  The outer sides were now covered with a thick hardened black plastic.  He fiddled with the screen a bit, then got a cup from outside of the camera's view and placed it on the table.  He then pressed the build button and water started appearing above the cup.  The water fell into the cup.  It stopped after filling one third of the cup. Jared then drank the water, put down the cup, and pretended the water was deadly . . . again.

      Michelle said, “Will you stop that.  You really scared Carmen last time.”

      He got up, “Nobody appreciates comic genius.”

      Zoe asked, “So that’s water?”

      Jared replied, “Yes, step forward and taste a little.”  After a moment of nobody saying anything he continued, “You'll all laugh about that later.  Anyway, it’s water.  We can easily make any element and some simple molecules like water and salt . . . which when mixed makes salt water.”  He paused, “Gosh, I’m wasting all my humor on a dead audience.”

      Michelle corrected, “No, Honey, you’re killing the audience.”

      “So, what’s with the good mood today?” asked Aaron.

      Jared looked towards Michelle, “Should I tell them?”

      She grinned and said, “Sure.”

      “She’s pregnant!”

      “Wow that was fast.  Congratulations,” exclaimed Aaron.

      Sarah and the Lyles also said their congratulations for the pregnancy.  Zoe asked, “Have you seen a doctor yet?”

      Michelle replied, “No, but there will be time enough for that later.”

      Zoe said, “I should give you a checkup before I go. Also, you should start taking prenatal vitamins.”

      Michelle nodded.

      Aaron changed the subject by saying, “So the visit to Switzerland went well.  It’s a very beautiful country.  The land proved to be perfect for our needs and I’ll buy it.  Samuel, how soon can you start working on a design? My son has some research he can forward to you about biospheres that is fairly extensive.”

      Samuel said, “I can look at it now.  I just wrapped up my last project a few days ago.”

      Aaron smiled, “Excellent.  I’ll encrypt the data and e-mail it to you.  In addition, CTF knows I went to Switzerland.  If you get asked by anybody, you are working on a new building for our planned expansion into Switzerland.”

      They concluded the meeting by discussing the next people needed for the colony. Sarah reviewed the candidates she had found thus far. 

      “Out of the list I have one couple who are a veterinarian and a programmer.  They have three children and live in Michigan.  Unfortunately, we have no connection to them.  The only thing of importance on how they would feel about joining is that the veterinarian’s sister was the wife of one of the passengers on Flight 127. The sister disappeared shortly after the plane was destroyed, and there seems to be a CTF file on her, but I couldn’t get a copy.”

      Flight 127 had been shot down by the US Air Force.  It was a US flight from Michigan to D.C.  The plane had broken radio contact 30 minutes before its arrival.  It was shot down as it got close to the capital city. Evidence was later found that the plane had been abducted by terrorists who planned to crash it into the White House, which at the time was where the president was staying.  However, news reports stated that even before the plane was shot down, the president had been escorted to a safer location.

      Aaron nodded, “This will be tricky.  We don’t know them so how do we get them to come here?”

      Sarah said, “The vet is the owner of her business.  The programmer works at a large embedded software company.”

      Michelle offered, “What if you say you have an exotic pet you need help with?”

      Sarah shook her head, “That wouldn’t get the programmer to come here.”

      Michelle said, “What if you say it needs long-term care?”

      Aaron said, “No, then they’ll want us to send it to them.”

      Jared said, “Why don’t you tell them we need his programming skills to work on a new classified invention?  Then say you are willing to pay for them all to move and even to move the vet practice!”

      Sarah said, “That could work.  The veterinarian is self-employed and could always relocate.  The programmer, on the other hand, probably would like a new challenge and better pay.”

      Aaron said, “Sounds great.  Let’s try to get them in here.”

      The meeting began to wrap up.  Jared and Michelle left.  Before the Lyles left, Aaron gave them some parting information.  “Remember, everything we talked about, especially the Millers, is secret.  Stay with your family and we’ll relocate you as soon as we’re ready to start building the colony.”

      Zoe said, “I really should check on Michelle.”

      Sarah agreed, “You’re right, we’ll have you both over for dinner.  You can examine her then.”

      Zoe and Samuel agreed and then left.  Aaron was pleased.  The colony now had twelve members and one to be born in several months.  Aaron and Michelle would have tried to have another child, too, but when she gave birth to Keith, she had had her tubes tied so she would not become pregnant again.  They had not expected they would want to have another child.  They kept silent about it to prevent upsetting each other. 

      As more people got added, the danger of being caught by CTF increased.  The Hunts and Millers, of course, had every reason to be trustworthy.  Even if Kara or Keith decided they did not want to go, they would never get their parents in trouble.  Carmen was more of a risk, but in many ways, she was the lowest risk as she got along so well with the Millers.  In fact, in private Michelle had told Aaron that Carmen was already like a daughter to them.  That relieved Aaron and Sarah because they had realized that she was the main reason Keith wanted to go.  It would be tougher to get Keith to go if Carmen was not going or if Carmen became like a sister to him.  With her being close to the Millers, she could be a friend to Keith.  Samuel was a low risk as well because he already knew they were in the business of hiding people from CTF.  Zoe had no personal reason to keep the secret, however she seemed to share Samuel’s opinion.  Zoe didn’t seem like she would get led by Samuel’s opinions; she was an equal partner on decisions.  When they decided on something important, they did it together. Therefore, the big risks would be in the next invitees.  Prudence would have to be strongly exercised.

Copyright (C) 1998-2001 East Coast Games, Inc. and 2001 - 2006 Forest J. Handford

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