Time Keeper

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Literature Text

Time Keeper
Copyright © 2008 Bonnie Watson

He listened to the hypnotic rhythm of the swaying pendulum, its every pass counting the seconds, its every hum of air brushing against his body as it pulled into the extent of its hinges. Then the air split, like thunder pounding the sky around him. Tick. Another pass. Tock. The pendulum was the largest he had ever seen, solid gold as it hung from the center of the grand ceiling. It was his sanctuary, his prison, a private place to meditate after long hours of staring at tiny screens along the upper portion of the Time Machine. He oversaw the very structure of Time itself. He was its keeper and second in command under the Master of Time.

The pendulum swung dangerously low. To move at the wrong moment could prove fatal, though Time Keeper feared little else other than the model clock held captive in the Time Master's office. He remembered the day he built it, when it was completed, and the moment of his death. It was the moment the large hand struck its first chime, and in that moment lightening from a nearby storm struck the old farmhouse. Electricity sparked its way along the overhead wires connecting house and barn to the main line. He had been in the barn that night. In the modern world, that had been his sanctuary. But that one strike was his last breath - at least in a human sense.

Another swing faintly grazed his stomach. The pain would come soon if he did not move, though nowadays pain was all he had left to feel human once again. Now the tick of his mechanical clock held in the Master's office kept his heart beating.

So much for being human. He sighed as the sharp pendulum's point slit a line across his belly. He felt like screaming anyway. It would be a good release from all the hours in his own office. What I'd give to remember my old life.

The first stroke of pain sent shivers along his spine. It mattered little if his clothing got ruined. He was Time Keeper. Forwarding and reversing Time was what he did best.

Now if only I could manipulate Time enough to travel like the Time Master. He smiled at the thought. I could return to Earth.

He laughed, his rich voice carried around the room in a brilliant wave of echoes, eventually mocking him in the distance as they turned to screams.
To control Time is a long, boring experience. Who would have thought pain could bring release and once again feel... normal?
© 2008 - 2024 bonbon3272
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bloodrose83's avatar
I really like the premise behind this. In so short a space and time-frame, the reader can still feel commiseration and sympathy for someone caught in an extraordinary situation not entirely of his own making. Thinking of submitting this to any magazines anywhere? I think you could do well with it. :)