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´╗┐Title: Of All Possible Worlds
Author: Tenn, William
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Of All Possible Worlds" ***

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                        Of All Possible Worlds

                            By WILLIAM TENN

                        Illustrated by GAUGHAN

           [Transcriber's Note: This etext was produced from
                 Galaxy Science Fiction December 1956.
         Extensive research did not uncover any evidence that
         the U.S. copyright on this publication was renewed.]



              Changing the world is simple; the trick is
             to do it before you have a chance to undo it!


It was a good job and Max Alben knew whom he had to thank for it--his
great-grandfather.

"Good old Giovanni Albeni," he muttered as he hurried into the
laboratory slightly ahead of the escorting technicians, all of them,
despite the excitement of the moment, remembering to bob their heads
deferentially at the half-dozen full-fleshed and hard-faced men
lolling on the couches that had been set up around the time machine.

He shrugged rapidly out of his rags, as he had been instructed in the
anteroom, and stepped into the housing of the enormous mechanism.
This was the first time he had seen it, since he had been taught
how to operate it on a dummy model, and now he stared at the great
transparent coils and the susurrating energy bubble with much respect.

This machine, the pride and the hope of 2089, was something almost
outside his powers of comprehension. But Max Alben knew how to run it,
and he knew, roughly, what it was supposed to accomplish. He knew also
that this was the first backward journey of any great duration and,
being scientifically unpredictable, might well be the death of him.

"Good old Giovanni Albeni," he muttered again affectionately.

If his great-grandfather had not volunteered for the earliest
time-travel experiments way back in the nineteen-seventies, back even
before the Blight, it would never have been discovered that he and his
seed possessed a great deal of immunity to extra-temporal blackout.

And if that had not been discovered, the ruling powers of Earth, more
than a century later, would never have plucked Max Alben out of an
obscure civil-service job as a relief guard at the North American
Chicken Reservation to his present heroic and remunerative eminence.
He would still be patrolling the barbed wire that surrounded the three
white leghorn hens and two roosters--about one-sixth of the known
livestock wealth of the Western Hemisphere--thoroughly content with
the half-pail of dried apricots he received each and every payday.

No, if his great-grandfather had not demonstrated long ago his unique
capacity for remaining conscious during time travel, Max Alben would
not now be shifting from foot to foot in a physics laboratory,
facing the black market kings of the world and awaiting their final
instructions with an uncertain and submissive grin.

       *       *       *       *       *

Men like O'Hara, who controlled mushrooms, Levney, the blackberry
tycoon, Sorgasso, the packaged-worm monopolist--would black marketeers
of their tremendous stature so much as waste a glance on someone like
Alben ordinarily, let alone confer a lifetime pension on his wife and
five children of a full spoonful each of non-synthetic sugar a day?

Even if he didn't come back, his family was provided for like almost no
other family on Earth. This was a damn good job and he was lucky.

Alben noticed that Abd Sadha had risen from the straight chair at
the far side of the room and was approaching him with a sealed metal
cylinder in one hand.

"We've decided to add a further precaution at the last moment," the old
man said. "That is, the scientists have suggested it and I have--er--I
have given my approval."

The last remark was added with a slight questioning note as the
Secretary-General of the United Nations looked back rapidly at the
black market princes on the couches behind him. Since they stared back
stonily, but offered no objection, he coughed in relief and returned to
Alben.

"I am sure, young man, that I don't have to go into the details of your
instructions once more. You enter the time machine and go back the
duration for which it has been preset, a hundred and thirteen years, to
the moment after the Guided Missile of 1976 was launched. It _is_ 1976,
isn't it?" he asked, suddenly uncertain.

"Yes, sir," one of the technicians standing by the time machine said
respectfully. "The experiment with an atomic warhead guided missile
that resulted in the Blight was conducted on this site on April 18,
1976." He glanced proudly at the unemotional men on the couches, very
much like a small boy after completing a recitation before visiting
dignitaries from the Board of Education.

"Just so." Abd Sadha nodded. "April 18, 1976. And on this site. You
see, young man, you will materialize at the very moment and on the
very spot where the remote-control station handling the missile
was--er--handling the missile. You will be in a superb position, a
superb position, to deflect the missile in its downward course and
alter human history for the better. Very much for the better. Yes."

He paused, having evidently stumbled out of his thought sequence.

"And he pulls the red switch toward him," Gomez, the dandelion-root
magnate, reminded him sharply, impatiently.

"Ah, yes, the red switch. He pulls the little red switch toward him.
Thank you, Mr. Gomez, thank you very much, sir. He pulls the little
red switch on the green instrument panel toward him, thus preventing
the error that caused the missile to explode in the Brazilian jungle
and causing it, instead, to explode somewhere in the mid-Pacific, as
originally planned."

The Secretary-General of the United Nations beamed. "Thus preventing
the Blight, making it nonexistent, as it were, producing a present-day
world in which the Blight never occurred. That is correct, is it not,
gentlemen?" he asked, turning anxiously again.

       *       *       *       *       *

None of the half-dozen men on couches deigned to answer him. And
Alben kept his eyes deferentially in their direction, too, as he had
throughout this period of last-minute instruction.

He knew who ruled his world--these stolid, well-fed men in clean
garments with a minimum of patches, and where patches occurred, at
least they were the color of the surrounding cloth.

Sadha might be Secretary-General of the United Nations, but that
was still a civil-service job, only a few social notches higher
than a chicken guard. His clothes were fully as ragged, fully as
multi-colored, as those that Alben had stepped out of. And the gnawing
in his stomach was no doubt almost as great.

"You understand, do you not, young man, that if anything goes wrong,"
Abd Sadha asked, his head nodding tremulously and anticipating the
answer, "if anything unexpected, unprepared-for, occurs, you are not to
continue with the experiment but return immediately?"

"He understands everything he has to understand," Gomez told him.
"Let's get this thing moving."

The old man smiled again. "Yes. Of course, Mr. Gomez." He came up to
where Alben stood in the entrance of the time machine and handed the
sealed metal cylinder to him. "This is the precaution the scientists
have just added. When you arrive at your destination, just before
materializing, you will release it into the surrounding temporal
medium. Our purpose here, as you no doubt--"

Levney sat up on his couch and snapped his fingers peremptorily. "I
just heard Gomez tell you to get this thing moving, Sadha. And it isn't
moving. We're busy men. We've wasted enough time."

"I was just trying to explain a crucial final fact," the
Secretary-General apologized. "A fact which may be highly--"

"You've explained enough facts." Levney turned to the man inside the
time machine. "Hey, fella. You. _Move!_"

Max Alben gulped and nodded violently. He darted to the rear of the
machine and turned the dial which activated it.

     _flick!_

       *       *       *       *       *

It was a good job and Mac Albin knew whom he had to thank for it--his
great-grandfather.

"Good old Giovanni Albeni," he laughed as he looked at the morose faces
of his two colleagues. Bob Skeat and Hugo Honek had done as much as he
to build the tiny time machine in the secret lab under the helicopter
garage, and they were fully as eager to go, but--unfortunately for
them--they were not descended from the right ancestor.

Leisurely, he unzipped the richly embroidered garment that, as the
father of two children, he was privileged to wear, and wriggled into
the housing of the complex little mechanism. This was hardly the
first time he had seen it, since he'd been helping to build the device
from the moment Honek had nodded and risen from the drafting board,
and now he barely wasted a glance on the thumb-size translucent coils
growing out of the almost microscopic energy bubbles which powered them.

This machine was the last hope, of 2089, even if the world of 2089, as
a whole, did not know of its existence and would try to prevent its
being put into operation. But it meant a lot more to Mac Albin than
merely saving a world. It meant an adventurous mission with the risk of
death.

"Good old Giovanni Albeni," he laughed again happily.

If his great-grandfather had not volunteered for the earliest
time-travel experiments way back in the nineteen-seventies, back even
before the Epidemic, it would never have been discovered that he and
his seed possessed a great deal of immunity to extra-temporal blackout.

And if that had not been discovered, the Albins would not have become
physicists upon the passage of the United Nations law that everyone
on Earth--absolutely without exception--had to choose a branch of
research science in which to specialize. In the flabby, careful,
life-guarding world the Earth had become, Mac Albin would never have
been reluctantly selected by his two co-workers as the one to carry the
forbidden banner of dangerous experiment.

No, if his great-grandfather had not demonstrated long ago his unique
capacity for remaining conscious during time travel, Mac Albin would
probably be a biologist today like almost everyone else on Earth,
laboriously working out dreary gene problems instead of embarking on
the greatest adventure Man had known to date.

Even if he didn't come back, he had at last found a socially useful
escape from genetic responsibility to humanity in general and his own
family in particular. This was a damn good job and he was lucky.

"Wait a minute, Mac," Skeat said and crossed to the other side of the
narrow laboratory.

       *       *       *       *       *

Albin and Honek watched him stuff several sheets of paper into a small
metal box which he closed without locking.

"You will take care of yourself, won't you, Mac?" Hugo Honek pleaded.
"Any time you feel like taking an unnecessary risk, remember that Bob
and I will have to stand trial if you don't come back. We might be
sentenced to complete loss of professional status and spend the rest of
our lives supervising robot factories."

"Oh, it won't be that bad," Albin reassured him absent-mindedly from
where he lay contorted inside the time machine. He watched Skeat coming
toward him with the box.

Honek shrugged his shoulders. "It might be a lot worse than even that
and you know it. The disappearance of a two-time father is going to
leave an awful big vacancy in the world. One-timers, like Bob and
me, are all over the place; if either of us dropped out of sight, it
wouldn't cause nearly as much uproar."

"But Bob and you both tried to operate the machine," Albin reminded
him. "And you blacked out after a fifteen-second temporal displacement.
So I'm the only chance, the only way to stop the human race from
dwindling and dwindling till it hits absolute zero, like that fat old
Security Council seems willing for it to do."

"Take it easy, Mac," Bob Skeat said as he handed the metal box to
Albin. "The Security Council is just trying to solve the problem in
their way, the conservative way: a worldwide concentration on genetics
research coupled with the maximum preservation of existing human lives,
especially those that have a high reproductive potential. We three
disagree with them; we've been skulking down here nights to solve it
_our_ way, and ours is a radical approach and plenty risky. That's
the reason for the metal box--trying to cover one more explosive
possibility."

Albin turned it around curiously. "How?"

"I sat up all last night writing the manuscript that's inside it. Look,
Mac, when you go back to the Guided Missile Experiment of 1976 and
push that red switch away from you, a lot of other things are going to
happen than just deflecting the missile so that it will explode in the
Brazilian jungle instead of the Pacific Ocean."

"Sure. I know. If it explodes in the jungle, the Epidemic doesn't
occur. No Shapiro's Mumps."

Skeat jiggled his pudgy little face impatiently. "That's not what I
mean. The Epidemic doesn't occur, but something else does. A new world,
a different 2089, an alternate time sequence. It'll be a world in which
humanity has a better chance to survive, but it'll be one with problems
of its own. Maybe tough problems. Maybe the problems will be tough
enough so that they'll get the same idea we did and try to go back to
the same point in time to change them."

       *       *       *       *       *

Albin laughed. "That's just looking for trouble."

"Maybe it is, but that's my job. Hugo's the designer of the time
machine and you're the operator, but I'm the theoretical man in this
research team. It's my job to look for trouble. So, just in case, I
wrote a brief history of the world from the time the missile exploded
in the Pacific. It tells why ours is the worst possible of futures.
It's in that box."

"What do I do with it--hand it to the guy from the alternate 2089?"

The small fat man exasperatedly hit the side of the time machine with
a well-cushioned palm. "You know better. There won't be any alternate
2089 until you push that red switch on the green instrument panel. The
moment you do, our world, with all its slow slide to extinction, goes
out and its alternate goes on--just like two electric light bulbs on a
push-pull circuit. We and every single one of our artifacts, including
the time machine, disappear. The problem is how to keep that manuscript
from disappearing.

"Well, all you do, if I have this figured right, is shove the metal
box containing the manuscript out into the surrounding temporal medium
a moment before you materialize to do your job. That temporal medium
in which you'll be traveling is something that exists independent of
and autonomous to all possible futures. It's my hunch that something
that's immersed in it will not be altered by a new time sequence."

       *       *       *       *       *

"Remind him to be careful, Bob," Honek rumbled. "He thinks he's Captain
Blood and this is his big chance to run away to sea and become a
swashbuckling pirate."

Albin grimaced in annoyance. "I _am_ excited by doing something
besides sitting in a safe little corner working out safe little
abstractions for the first time in my life. But I know that this is a
first experiment. Honestly, Hugo, I really have enough intelligence to
recognize that simple fact. I know that if anything unexpected pops up,
anything we didn't foresee, I'm supposed to come scuttling back and ask
for advice."

"I hope you do," Bob Skeat sighed. "I hope you do know that. A
twentieth century poet once wrote something to the effect that the
world will end not with a bang, but a whimper. Well, our world is
ending with a whimper. Try to see that it doesn't end with a bang,
either."

"That I'll promise you," Albin said a trifle disgustedly. "It'll end
with neither a bang _nor_ a whimper. So long, Hugo. So long, Bob."

He twisted around, reaching overhead for the lever which activated the
forces that drove the time machine.

     _flick!_

       *       *       *       *       *

It was strange, Max Alben reflected, that this time travel business,
which knocked unconscious everyone who tried it, only made him feel
slightly dizzy. That was because he was descended from Giovanni Albeni,
he had been told. There must be some complicated scientific explanation
for it, he decided--and that would make it none of his business. Better
forget about it.

All around the time machine, there was a heavy gray murk in which
objects were hinted at rather than stated definitely. It reminded him
of patrolling his beat at the North American Chicken Reservation in a
thick fog.

According to his gauges, he was now in 1976. He cut speed until he hit
the last day of April, then cut speed again, drifting slowly backward
to the eighteenth, the day of the infamous Guided Missile Experiment.
Carefully, carefully, like a man handling a strange bomb made on a
strange planet, he watched the center gauge until the needle came to
rest against the thin etched line that indicated the exactly crucial
moment. Then he pulled the brake and stopped the machine dead.

All he had to do now was materialize in the right spot, flash out and
pull the red switch toward him. Then his well-paid assignment would be
done.

But....

He stopped and scratched his dirt-matted hair. Wasn't there something
he was supposed to do a second before materialization? Yes, that
useless old windbag, Sadha, had given him a last instruction.

He picked up the sealed metal cylinder, walked to the entrance of the
time machine and tossed it into the gray murk. A solid object floating
near the entrance caught his eye. He put his arm out--whew, it was
cold!--and pulled it inside.

A small metal box. Funny. What was it doing out there? Curiously,
he opened it, hoping to find something valuable. Nothing but a few
sheets of paper, Alben noted disappointedly. He began to read them
slowly, very slowly, for the manuscript was full of a lot of long and
complicated words, like a letter from one bookworm scientist to another.

The problems all began with the Guided Missile Experiment of 1976,
he read. There had been a number of such experiments, but it was
the one of 1976 that finally did the damage the biologists had been
warning about. The missile with its deadly warhead exploded in the
Pacific Ocean as planned, the physicists and the military men went
home to study their notes, and the world shivered once more over the
approaching war and tried to forget about it.

But there was fallout, a radioactive rain several hundred miles to
the north, and a small fishing fleet got thoroughly soaked by it.
Fortunately, the radioactivity in the rain was sufficiently low to do
little obvious physical damage: All it did was cause a mutation in the
mumps virus that several of the men in the fleet were incubating at the
time, having caught it from the children of the fishing town, among
whom a minor epidemic was raging.

       *       *       *       *       *

The fleet returned to its home town, which promptly came down with the
new kind of mumps. Dr. Llewellyn Shapiro, the only physician in town,
was the first man to note that, while the symptoms of this disease were
substantially milder than those of its unmutated parent, practically no
one was immune to it and its effects on human reproductivity were truly
terrible. Most people were completely sterilized by it. The rest were
rendered much less capable of fathering or bearing offspring.

Shapiro's Mumps spread over the entire planet in the next few decades.
It leaped across every quarantine erected; for a long time, it
successfully defied all the vaccines and serums attempted against
it. Then, when a vaccine was finally perfected, humanity discovered
to its dismay that its generative powers had been permanently and
fundamentally impaired.

Something had happened to the germ plasm. A large percentage of
individuals were born sterile, and, of those who were not, one child
was usually the most that could be expected, a two-child parent being
quite rare and a three-child parent almost unknown.

Strict eugenic control was instituted by the Security Council of the
United Nations so that fertile men and women would not be wasted upon
non-fertile mates. Fertility was the most important avenue to social
status, and right after it came successful genetic research.

Genetic research had the very best minds prodded into it; the lesser
ones went into the other sciences. Everyone on Earth was engaged in
some form of scientific research to some extent. Since the population
was now so limited in proportion to the great resources available, all
physical labor had long been done by robots. The government saw to it
that everybody had an ample supply of goods and, in return, asked only
that they experiment without any risk to their own lives--every human
being was now a much-prized, highly guarded rarity.

There were less than a hundred thousand of them, well below the danger
point, it had been estimated, where a species might be wiped out by a
new calamity. Not that another calamity would be needed. Since the end
of the Epidemic, the birth rate had been moving further and further
behind the death rate. In another century....

That was why a desperate and secret attempt to alter the past was being
made. This kind of world was evidently impossible.

Max Alben finished the manuscript and sighed. What a wonderful world!
What a comfortable place to live!

He walked to the rear dials and began the process of materializing at
the crucial moment on April 18, 1976.

     _flick!_

       *       *       *       *       *

It was odd, Mac Albin reflected, that these temporal journeys, which
induced coma in everyone who tried it, only made him feel slightly
dizzy. That was because he was descended from Giovanni Albeni, he
knew. Maybe there was some genetic relationship with his above-average
fertility--might be a good idea to mention the idea to a biologist or
two when he returned. _If_ he returned.

All around the time machine, there was a soupy gray murk in which
objects were hinted at rather than stated definitely. It reminded him
of the problems of landing a helicopter in a thick fog when the robot
butler had not been told to turn on the ground lights.

According to the insulated register, he was now in 1976. He lowered
speed until he registered April, then maneuvered slowly backward
through time to the eighteenth, the day of the infamous Guided Missile
Experiment. Carefully, carefully, like an obstetrician supervising
surgical robots at an unusually difficult birth, he watched the
register until it rolled to rest against the notch that indicated the
exactly crucial moment. Then he pushed a button and froze the machine
where it was.

All he had to do now was materialize in the right spot, flash out and
push the red switch from him. Then his exciting adventure would be over.

But....

He paused and tapped at his sleek chin. He was supposed to do something
a second before materialization. Yes, that nervous theoretician, Bob
Skeat, had given him a last suggestion.

He picked up the small metal box, twisted around to face the opening
of the time machine and dropped it into the gray murk. A solid object
floating near the opening attracted his attention. He shot his arm
out--it was _cold_, as cold as they had figured--and pulled the object
inside.

A sealed metal cylinder. Strange. What was it doing out there?
Anxiously, he opened it, not daring to believe he'd find a document
inside. Yes, that was exactly what it was, he saw excitedly. He began
to read it rapidly, very rapidly, as if it were a newly published paper
on neutrinos. Besides, the manuscript was written with almost painful
simplicity, like a textbook composed by a stuffy pedagogue for the use
of morons.

The problems all began with the Guided Missile Experiment of 1976, he
read. There had been a number of such experiments, but it was the one
of 1976 that finally did the damage the biologists had been warning
about. The missile with its deadly warhead exploded in the Brazilian
jungle through some absolutely unforgivable error in the remote-control
station, the officer in charge of the station was reprimanded and the
men under him court-martialed, and the Brazilian government was paid a
handsome compensation for the damage.

       *       *       *       *       *

But there had been more damage than anyone knew at the time. A plant
virus, similar to the tobacco mosaic, had mutated under the impact
of radioactivity. Five years later, it burst out of the jungle and
completely wiped out every last rice plant on Earth. Japan and a large
part of Asia became semi-deserts inhabited by a few struggling nomads.

Then the virus adjusted to wheat and corn--and famine howled in every
street of the planet. All attempts by botanists to control the Blight
failed because of the swiftness of its onslaught. And after it had fed,
it hit again at a new plant and another and another.

Most of the world's non-human mammals had been slaughtered for food
long before they could starve to death. Many insects, too, before they
became extinct at the loss of their edible plants, served to assuage
hunger to some small extent.

But the nutritive potential of Earth was steadily diminishing in a
horrifying geometric progression. Recently, it had been observed,
plankton--the tiny organism on which most of the sea's ecology was
based--had started to disappear, and with its diminution, dead fish had
begun to pile up on the beaches.

Mankind had lunged out desperately in all directions in an effort to
survive, but nothing had worked for any length of time. Even the other
planets of the Solar System, which had been reached and explored
at a tremendous cost in remaining resources, had yielded no edible
vegetation. Synthetics had failed to fill the prodigious gap.

In the midst of the sharply increasing hunger, social controls had
pretty much dissolved. Pathetic attempts at rationing still continued,
but black markets became the only markets, and black marketeers the
barons of life. Starvation took the hindmost, and only the most agile
economically lived in comparative comfort. Law and order were had only
by those who could afford to pay for them and children of impoverished
families were sold on the open market for a bit of food.

But the Blight was still adjusting to new plants and the food supply
kept shrinking. In another century....

That was why the planet's powerful individuals had been persuaded to
pool their wealth in a desperate attempt to alter the past. This kind
of world was manifestly impossible.

Mac Albin finished the document and sighed. What a magnificent world!
What an exciting place to live!

He dropped his hand on the side levers and began the process of
materializing at the crucial moment on April 18, 1976.

     _flick!_

       *       *       *       *       *

As the equipment of the remote-control station began to take on a
blurred reality all around him, Max Alben felt a bit of fear at what
he was doing. The technicians, he remembered, the Secretary-General,
even the black market kings, had all warned him not to go ahead with
his instructions if anything unusual turned up. That was an awful lot
of power to disobey: he knew he should return with this new information
and let better minds work on it.

They with their easy lives, what did they know what existence had been
like for such as he? Hunger, always hunger, scrabbling, servility, and
more hunger. Every time things got really tight, you and your wife
looking sideways at your kids and wondering which of them would bring
the best price. Buying security for them, as he was now, at the risk of
his life.

But in this other world, this other 2089, there was a state that took
care of you and that treasured your children. A man like himself, with
_five_ children--why, he'd be a big man, maybe the biggest man on
Earth! And he'd have robots to work for him and lots of food. Above
all, lots and lots of food.

He'd even be a scientist--_everyone_ was a scientist there, weren't
they?--and he'd have a big laboratory all to himself. This other world
had its troubles, but it was a lot nicer place than where he'd come
from. He wouldn't return. He'd go through with it.

The fear left him and, for the first time in his life, Max Alben felt
the sensation of power.

He materialized the time machine around the green instrument panel,
sweating a bit at the sight of the roomful of military figures, despite
the technicians' reassurances that all this would be happening too fast
to be visible. He saw the single red switch pointing upward on the
instrument panel. The switch that controlled the course of the missile.
Now! Now to make a halfway decent world!

Max Alben pulled the little red switch toward him.

     _flick!_

       *       *       *       *       *

As the equipment of the remote-control station began to oscillate into
reality all around him, Mac Albin felt a bit of shame at what he was
doing. He'd promised Bob and Hugo to drop the experiment at any stage
if a new factor showed up. He knew he should go back with this new
information and have all three of them kick it around.

But what would they be able to tell him, they with their blissful
adjustment to their thoroughly blueprinted lives? They, at least, had
been ordered to marry women they could live with; he'd drawn a female
with whom he was completely incompatible in any but a genetic sense.
Genetics! He was tired of genetics and the sanctity of human life,
tired to the tip of his uncalloused fingers, tired to the recesses
of his unused muscles. He was tired of having to undertake a simple
adventure like a thief in the night.

But in this other world, this other 2089, someone like himself would
be a monarch of the black market, a suzerain of chaos, making his own
rules, taking his own women. So what if the weaklings, those unfit to
carry on the race, went to the wall? His kind wouldn't.

He'd formed a pretty good idea of the kind of men who ruled that other
world, from the document in the sealed metal cylinder. The black
marketeers had not even read it. Why, the fools had obviously been
duped by the technicians into permitting the experiment; they had not
grasped the idea that an alternate time track would mean their own
non-existence.

This other world had its troubles, but it was certainly a livelier
place than where he'd come from. It deserved a chance. Yes, that was
how he felt: his world was drowsily moribund; this alternate was
starving but managing to flail away at destiny. It _deserved_ a chance.

Albin decided that he was experiencing renunciation and felt proud.

He materialized the time machine around the green instrument panel,
disregarding the roomful of military figures since he knew they could
not see him. The single red switch pointed downward on the instrument
panel. That was the gimmick that controlled the course of the missile.
Now! Now to make a halfway interesting world!

Mac Albin pushed the little red switch from him.

     _flick!_

Now! Now to make a halfway decent world!

Max Alben pulled the little red switch toward him.

     _flick!_

Now! Now to make a halfway interesting world!

Mac Albin pushed the little red switch from him.

     _flick!_

... pulled the little red switch toward him.

     _flick!_

... pushed the little red switch from him.

     _flick!_

... toward him.

     _flick!_

... from him.

     _flick!_





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