by Craig Scott
Stephen hurled his pointy stick away in disgust. He would kill for an electric screwdriver but it was another billion years before some clever primate invented stone tools. Who was he kidding? He couldn’t program his VCR and this mismatched pile of metal represented the most sophisticated machine in the world today. Or was that tomorrow?
A time machine.
Why was he always getting into trouble? He didn’t mean to. Robbing that store was his friend’s idea yet it was he who barely escaped juvy. Maybe his mother was right and he was a screw-up. That’s why she sent him to live with his uncle, the family’s one success and the world’s greatest scientific mind. Well he wasn’t fixing the contraption and rescue wasn’t likely. Even if his uncle constructed another prototype he would have eons of time to sift through.
Stephen stared up at the nearby volcano and his resolve hardened. He wouldn’t be responsible for screwing up history. His mother wouldn’t let him hear the end of that. Even he couldn’t mess up hurling himself into a volcano.
Dr. Reynolds carefully scraped away the last layer and sighed.
“What happened here?” His assistant asked.
“It’s just like Pompeii. The body was covered by ash and was preserved.”
“That skeleton’s human?”
“Below the tarehera ash layer?”
“That’s dated to 12 million years ago?”
“What’s that mean?”
Dr. Reynolds felt the first twinges of a blossoming headache. “The creationists are going to have a field day.”