Search. Destroy. Deceive.


By Tim C. Taylor

Joel flung himself through the gloom to land behind the robot with scant milliseconds to spare. A spray of bullets sought his unprotected flesh, showering sparks from the segmented bodies of immobile machines.

Damn, but this guy was good.

Prone on the factory floor in his position of temporary safety, Joel read the life-form sensor strapped to his left wrist. It showed a white dot with a tiny tail, telling him that his adversary was twenty metres ahead, stationary, and slightly higher.

Inside his helmet, Joel grinned at the advantage this future-tech device gave him. When he eliminated his target tonight, his sponsor would remove the limitation on the detector's range and give it to Joel as his fee. It would be an amazing pay-off, but first he must kill this unexpected obstacle, this defender of the factory Joel had been assured was undefended.

"Hey! Reactionary!" Joel's opponent shouted from behind a wall of packing crates. "You're slow, old man. You must have been born in the twentieth-century to allow yourself to be a pawn of the globalists. Your aging muscles betray you."

So his opponent was some politico trying to psyche him out. Not a bad tactic--if you can hit a raw nerve--but Joel drew confidence from his future-tech device. Besides, Joel cultured an attitude of political agnosticism. He would show this young punk that brains still beat the quicker reactions of youth in this game.

"Do you honestly think that killing the Time Traveler will bring back the good times for your fat-cat paymasters?"

While his opponent made his speech, Joel crawled behind the conveyor unit, and scrambled several meters along to the main control panel.

"Look around you. This factory has been built using his knowledge. Even if you destroy it, the knowledge he brought with him from the future means rebuilding would be inevitable. Give it up! Your cause is hopeless."

Joel stood up quickly and jabbed at the power switch, before throwing himself again to the floor. Bullets flashed overhead. Joel was impressed with the man's speed of reaction, but he had achieved his objective. Around him, power hummed and motors whirred as the shadows came to life.

He ducked as the robot beside him suddenly resumed its interrupted task--swinging a rejected part bare inches over Joel's head and into the reject line.

The robot swung its arm back over Joel's head to select parts from the jumble of dull metal shapes on the conveyor system and assemble them together before replacing them on the moving belt. The completed subassembly passed through opaque plastic strips into the next chamber.

If the noises and motion of the factory confused him then they would confuse his opponent too. But Joel's future-tech could track the distance, elevation, and direction of his opponent, while the other man would be relying on his unaided senses.

Using the bulk of the machinery to shield him from his opponent, he crawled toward the nearest steel staircase. A height advantage should give him the killing shot he wanted. He checked his detector--the young gun was still stationary. Probably re-planning his moves after the passive factory shapes had mutated into an industrial tableau of opportunity and danger.

Joel dashed up the stairs as fast as he could. He imagined a deadly red dot from a sighting-laser dancing on his back, but he threw himself prone on the upper walkway, rolling like a gymnast into a stable crouch without incident. He rechecked his sensor. For a moment, he stared numbly in shock. The enemy killer had attained the upper floor on the opposite side. How could he possibly have reacted so quickly? This guy was making Joel's job difficult. He had not expected any opposition, except perhaps the fear of something unexpected from the Time Traveler himself. Now he had this deadly contest to win first.

Around him, the whir of construction continued, unimpressed by the drama taking place in its midst.

"My name is Oskar," shouted Joel's opponent from the walkway on the opposite side of the room.

Joel placed his gun and sensor together and raised them slowly above his head, focusing on the white smudge on the display until it reached dead center and the tail underneath the dot shortened out of existence. Sensor and gun were level with Oskar's position.

"I will be your executioner for today," shouted Oskar. "Why don't you tell me your name before I kill you?"

Joel squeezed off a volley before dashing towards the heavy steel door leading into the next part of the production line. It was locked!

A sign on the door read, 'Admittance to other production facility blocks is expressly forbidden.' Joel was not surprised; the intellectual property rights in the production line must be so valuable that the workers would have only the haziest notion of their role in the manufacturing process.

He assembled a shaped charge and placed it by the handle. In response, bullets thudded into the door and pinged off the walkway. Oskar would have to be good to hit me at this range, thought Joel, but a ricochet would kill just as successfully as an aimed bullet.

The doorframe exploded; Joel felt the hot wind of the blast on the unprotected area of his face.

He waited, dazed for several seconds, before racing through the cloud of dust and debris and into the vast open space beyond. Joel kept running hard, while looking around for a decisive tactical advantage, weighing and discounting options. The automated line was clattering away in this area too, so his advantage of the life-form sensor remained. The sub-assemblies emerged from the room he had just left through an opening guarded by vertical plastic strips dripping with condensed steam. With luck, Oskar might try to get through that route, and the steam cleaning would kill or disable him. But Oskar was more likely to attack through the smoking doorway Joel had just blown.

The conveyor below fed the cleaned components into the mouth of a massive red machine that belched noise and heat before spitting the result out to the waiting packing robots. The finished product looked impressively futuristic: inexplicable folded down attachments, a heavy mix of matte and glossy textures, readout panels arranged in geometric shapes. Ultimately, Joel thought it looked like a small metal box, like a child's lunch pack marketed to tie into a movie set in the future. Nothing there he could use to win this fight.

Still running hard, Joel considered hiding in one of the packing crates to ambush his pursuer. But it might take too long to get down the stairwell and into position--better to gain more time by moving further into the factory. If Oskar came after him, he could emerge from a hiding place to place the winning shot; if not then he would double back. He had to extract the maximum advantage from knowing where his opponent was without the hindrance of needing to be in line of sight.

Ahead was another door. He resolved to move deeper into the building, to win more time to set up the killing ambush. Another shaped charge blasted it into a passable state. Bullets pinged off the walkway as Joel leapt through. He would have to be quick to win his advantage.

Footsteps sounded behind him.

The upper walkway matched the sweeping curve of the wall; if he just lay prone and shot back the way he came he would probably take out his enemy before being shot himself. Too risky. He wanted the odds further weighted in his favor. He had no intention of making dramatic sacrifices for a cause, like some tacky film star; this was just a job.

He came to a tightly spiraling downward staircase. He bounded down several steps in one go, using the handrails to avoid tipping over into the commotion below.

"You can't run from me," shouted Oskar from the walkway he had left moments ago.

Suddenly, Joel's feet found the factory floor and he needed to move. Fast. But where to? He leaped onto the conveyer belt, bouncing awkwardly off a robot arm as it disassembled a finished device back into its component parts. He began to wonder at an assembly line that built something only to take it to pieces again, but was interrupted by pain from the blow from the robot arm as it erupted through his ribs. He rolled over and off the slowly moving belt before the robots tried to disassemble him.

He mastered the pain long enough to scramble behind the sturdy fixed base of a lifter device with four independently rotating arms stacked vertically like a rattlesnake's behind. He drew deep breaths of greasy air as he administered a medi-pad to the armor above his ribs and waited for its effect. His armor complied with the latest medi-thru standard, forming temporary capillaries that sucked the ointment through to the skin underneath.

He needed to get away fast before using his sensor to double back in ambush, but first, he checked the detector to locate Oskar.

Oskar had already reached ground level and was stationary, about thirty feet to his right. Had he jumped? Joel glanced upward, but there was no sign of any rope. With luck, Oskar had fallen and was lying injured--and vulnerable.

Oskar's track remained as a white dot: he was not moving.

Joel allowed himself the luxury of relaxing.

It could be a bluff, but an inert Oskar was no threat in that position. This had been harder than he expected, but he still had what it took to win out against anything thrown at him.

He reached for his gun, placed aside when he administered the medi-pad, but jerked to an abrupt stop when a pencil-sized red dot appeared on his gauntlet. He shut his eyes tight, but the shame of failure would not be blocked so easily.

"Reach for the gun," said Oskar, "and I'll turn your hand into a smoldering stump."

The voice came from three meters to his left, too far for Joel to rush him and expect to live. His mouth tasted of coppery blood--the taste of defeat. To view death in combat as the best he could hope for was a brutal comedown. Anything would be better than the humiliation he expected this cocky little punk would love to put him through--prior to killing him anyway. He breathed in deeply, one last time, and tensed his muscles in readiness to spring at his attacker.

"Whoa there boy," said Oskar. "We've been set up. Indulge me long enough to explain. Then, if you so choose, you can kill yourself in a suicide attack."

Joel willed his heart to slow its pounding death beat--to power his racing mind, not his cramping muscles. This fool loved to talk, using every opportunity to preach his politics. Was that a weakness Joel could exploit? Mercenaries had no room for scruples, or ideals--intellectual pretensions made the job more difficult--which meant Oskar could not be a pro. Maybe this would become Joel's greatest death-cheating exploit. He gingerly raised both hands slowly and turned around. "All right. I'm listening."

"Good choice."

Joel turned round to appraise Oskar. He wore body armor; throwing knives were strapped to his waist; and both hands held a slug accelerator gun. His hair was close-cropped blond; his eyes were intense, intelligent, and focused on Joel.

"Let's play a guessing game," said Oskar. "I wonder why you were facing over to the far side of the building. How was it that an experienced professional killer was so relaxed during a firefight that I could sneak up behind him with ease?"

The longer Oskar talked, the more likely his attention would slip, leaving an opening. "Perhaps," said Joel, "you have an active sound damper?"

"No. You can do better than that. Sound dampers may be practical on aircraft, but hardly in our line of work. Maybe the answer is simpler... you are simply outclassed."

Joel studied Oskar's hold on his gun. It was loose, but controlled; the barrel pointed unerringly to Joel's unprotected neck. He had no doubt that Oskar's aim was accurate.

"Or then again," said Oskar, "the answer could be more intriguing. Try this guess. There is a future-tech device strapped to your left wrist. It is currently reporting that I am thirty feet behind you."

"What?" Joel found his mouth was as wide open as his eyes; he felt embarrassingly like an overly dramatic mime actor.

"I can see you that you recognize my point."

Only one thing made sense to Joel: if he could persuade Oskar that he was not his true enemy, he may yet live.

"Enough talk," said Oskar. "Kick your weapon towards me, and then take off your armored jacket, helmet and left boot. Do it slowly or I will kill you. But don't waste time. We may both be under observation."

Joel obeyed.

"Now follow your sensor to where it tells you I should be."

Joel's journey led him to a black gauntlet lying upside-down on the factory floor. He picked it up and inspected it. Grafted onto the palm was a side-lit polymer device showing a centered red 3D arrow. The format of the display was different from that on Joel's own life-form sensor, but it was clear that this device served the same purpose. To emphasize the point that they had both been deceived, he moved Oskar's device around in a large circle: the reading altered its form in sympathy with his motion.

"A directional indicator homing on a radio pulse is neither advanced technology nor of any use," said Oskar, lowering his gun. "What is your name? Who hired you, and why?"

"The name's Joel. Chand hired me to kill the Time Traveler. I don't know why. I don't ask questions--it gets in the way of business." Joel pocketed Oskar's device. It was time to test the balance of their new relationship. "I want to keep hold of both of these so Chand can see them and realize his error before he sees me. I want him to chill with fear before I kill him."

"So," said Oskar, "you're a perfect specimen of free market murder, not some anti-globalist at all." Oskar put his gun down on the floor and leant against a stack of packaging crates. "We were told the hit would be politically motivated. Not something we could afford to ignore. My task is to eliminate you, and then verify the Time Traveler is safe."

Joel was beginning to worry less about Oskar and more about the hidden puppet-master who tugged at their strings. He looked into Oskar's pale blue eyes, trying to read his future there. To his shame, he could not discern any more than cool disinterest mocking him. He lowered his gaze to the floor, pausing on the way to re-consider Oskar's deadly looking throwing knives with a new respect.

"And here is another mystery for you," said Oskar. "Look around. Doesn't the factory strike you as odd? I bet inspectors and shareholders saw the first two sections of the assembly line, but not this one. This is the disassembly line. Why place the finished product into packing crates--only to take them out again and return to their constituent parts?"

"Because this whole factory is a sham," replied Joel. "Nothing but a façade to lure massive investment. Which means--"

"Which means we need to find the Time Traveler, somewhere in the bowels of this building, and ask him a few friendly questions."


A hurried glance at Oskar told Joel that the younger man was just as surprised as he was. He had not known what to expect with the Time Traveler, but whatever it was, it was not this. A sweep of rooms deeper and deeper inside the factory had led to a featureless thirty-foot steel-lined corridor terminated by a high security door with a single high-density polymer window. He peered intently down the corridor at the handwritten note held by a shaking hand at the window.


Whoever held the note must have noticed their arrival; by the time Joel had activated the image enhancer in his visor and focused on the far door, the note had changed.

'DON'T COME CLOSER. I know you are Oskar and Joel. I know why you are here.'

It had to be the Time Traveler, thought Joel, but why this charade?

The sign was replaced so quickly that Joel barely had time to read it. The replacement was in a much smaller script.

'Chand has set us all up. He planted a bomb on you. It's triggered by proximity to myself. He wants you to fight to leave evidence of armed struggle as an explanation for the destruction of his factory. He wants to destroy proof of his fraudulence. That means killing me and razing the factory. I have decrypted his communication traffic, so I am certain of this.'

Oskar shouted back his suspicion. "Why hasn't the bomb exploded already? We are at opposite ends of the same corridor. Surely that's close enough to kill us all."

If Chand wanted to kill the Time Traveler, a long corridor would be ideal to channel a significant proportion of the blast. Whoever was behind that door would be incapacitated enough that, if still alive, the flames or smoke from even a small incendiary device would certainly kill him. And this bomb was supposedly powerful enough to bring down the entire building. There had to be a reason why the bomb had not yet exploded. Or perhaps there was no bomb.

Joel read the new note in the window. 'There is no need to shout. I have bugged the area. A cleaning machine is holding this sheet of paper so I can be as far away from you as my prison will allow. Please wait for the next sheet before acting.'

"I understand now, Oskar." Joel's hand scrambled inside a jacket pocket to retrieve Oskar's sensor device.

"Of course," said Oskar. "It's obvious."

Joel wanted to ram obvious down Oskar's throat. But his gun still hung from the other man's waist. He could not decide whether Oskar's arrogance was a calculated façade to keep him off-balance, or whether he truly felt this need to illuminate lesser mortals.

"DevTech has a stock market valuation of trillions," said Oskar, "but has yet to make a single sale. To those who want to believe, they promise convincingly of patents, licenses and sales distribution channels. It may be class-one bull, but it's been enough for the speculators to continue injecting funds. I guess they had trouble translating twenty-eighth century knowledge into practical twenty-first century products and panicked."

"And now Chand wants to cash in his equity before it implodes," said Joel in disgust. "We're just here to supply a convenient alibi. And these false sensors must be the bombs. I trust everything else I'm carrying."

"Too right. We think we're good, but we're nothing but convenient cannon fodder. Here!" Oskar slid Joel's gun across the overly waxed floor towards its rightful owner. "We're on the same side now," he said softly.

The note at the door had changed 'Wait five minutes and then blow the door. Behind the door is a box. Place the bombs inside and close the lid. After that, you might like to run away.'

A sudden hot breath of fury raged over Joel. He was so used to being a loner in total control of the situation, and the Time Traveler's message was so patronizing. Joel threw his fist at the wall in a wild angry punch, but the smartfoam in his gauntlet denied him the sharp release of pain.

In less than an hour Oskar had reduced him from an assassin, secure in the sense of his superiority, to a pliant bit player slavishly following the orders of his own target--the Time Traveler.

And the worst of it was that Oskar had been one step ahead of him all along. The youngster was genuinely the better man.

He watched resentfully as Oskar gathered the bombs in his hand and strode casually down the corridor.

Joel heard himself call out, "Be care--ful." He choked back the warning too late. Why should he care what happened to this arrogant punk? His contract was ruined. There was no reason to stay.

He looked to the corridor behind him. It offered an easy escape.

A shrill scream of pain jerked his attention back to his unwanted companion. Oskar lay at a crazy angle on a bed of four-inch spikes that had erupted over a section of the corridor floor. He jerked as volleys of needle-tipped darts thudded into him from the walls at either side.

Joel sped to Oskar's aid.

Oskar's armor protected his legs and torso from the floor spikes. He curled to present as small a target as possible, but could not escape the darts altogether.

Joel shot from the hip at the dart launchers. No effect.

The spikes passed right through Oskar's unarmored feet, holding him fast like a Sunday roast on a carving dish.

Joel tried to spring into the air, up and over the bed of spikes, but as he launched he slipped in the blood pooling beneath Oskar and clumsily crashed onto the trap himself. He rolled and rolled, aiming for the far side of the floor trap. He thanked his foresight at insisting on full maintenance of his armor before this job. The blastguard-lined cells hardened on impact, preventing penetration by the spikes, while loosening quickly enough to give him the flexibility to roll like an armadillo.

The darts were another matter. The armor cells held the dart's impact, but a charge would blow once the armor loosened, ramming the head of the dart deep into flesh. They were far more effective than bullets.

Joel was already losing blood and his left arm was limp. At least his vital organs should be protected by a double layer of armor; he hoped Oskar had the same level of protection.

As Joel reached the far side, the dart guns ignored him, returning their attention to Oskar. Breathing calmly and deeply, he rapidly undid the catches on his torso armor. Trusting to fate, he leant over the spikes no more than he had to, and laid his armor over Oskar.


A dart pierced Joel's side just before he got out of range. Agony! The dart's head blew itself right through his body and pinged off the far wall.

Joel prayed that the extra protection would keep Oskar alive long enough for the supply of darts to be exhausted. Not much of a strategy, but it was the best he could think of.

The pain from Joel's wound had rapidly dulled to numbness. Not a good sign--the nano-medics, shunted into his bloodstream earlier by the medi-pack, must have determined the pain threshold had been exceeded, and shut down the nerve signals. He sat down and reached for the catches to his leg armor.

"No time for that," said a voice though his helmet audio. "He might blow the bombs manually at any moment. Leave your friend. Get the bombs and stick them in the box my side of the door."

Joel reached his protected arm over the deadly zone and tugged the bombs free of Oskar's grasp. The darts were awakened to a new level of ferocity, but aimed for the hand and wrist without major penetration. At least it kept the darts off Oskar for a few moments.

As he ran, Joel fished out some explosive to blow the final door off its hinges.

"You know, your radio encryption is pretty good," said the voice--Joel guessed it must be the Time Traveler. "It took me ages to break in and turn your receiver on, and that's with the best cracker I could pick up in the twenty-eighth century."

The surrounding wall blew out; the door thudded to the ground. Joel rushed through the smoke and into a deserted office room of paperwork, monitors, unwashed coffee mugs, a discarded pizza box, and a small metal box lying on the floor in front of him.

The box was pierced and supported by a fragile looking framework of bent metal, cannibalized electrical components, duct tape and a portable processor block. Joel felt a wave of dismay fall through his body from head to feet; he had hoped for at least a fireproof safe to contain the worst of the blast. Assuming the bombs were not a ruse from the Time Traveler.

"Hurry, Joel!" said the Time Traveler.

Despite the horror of the situation, he felt the same sheepish prickling at the back of his neck he had felt at school whenever he did something foolish and the class turned to mock him. He placed the sensors in the silly box and closed the lid.

The door to an adjoining office was wrenched open by a pale, sweating middle-aged man with graying stubble and black puffy outlines to his eyes. The Time Traveler. The man who would trigger the bombs beside him.

He looked from the Time Traveler to the flimsy looking box. If they went off, there would be no way...

The bombs exploded.

He could see the flash of the detonation through the gaps in the box, a split second before the blast engulfed them all.

But the explosion stopped almost as soon as it had begun, leaving only a whiff of ozone, and an awakening of the processor block display into a frenzy of flashing numbers that meant nothing to Joel.

"Don't worry," said the Time Traveler. "The spring bonds have absorbed the energy. For now. My name's Miguel. No time for introductions, I'm afraid. Your friend needs our help."

Joel noticed that Miguel was carrying another jury-rigged device in his hand; it looked like a wire-frame model of a stubby gun.

"Bring the box out into the corridor," said Miguel. "Do it quickly."

Unsure of what Miguel was planning, Joel obediently picked up the box that should have been blasted to scattered slag. It was light, and hummed gently. He felt the vibration increase in intensity. Or was that his imagination fuelling his paranoia?

"Of course," said Miguel as they hurried toward Oskar, "I should be using multiple dampers." He placed his hollow gun on the floor and gestured to Joel to place his box behind it. "And to be sure, the energy wave I'm about to release should be fully coherent." Miguel plugged the gun into the box. The processor display on the box scrolled information and then flashed red. "But I never really understood all that stuff about mirrors." He turned the rim of the gun frame as if focusing a projector lens. "How are you supposed to reflect an energy wave? I don't know, and I don't suppose you do either."

Darts continued to lodge in the prone figure in front of them. The ammunition supply was enormous. Oskar could already be dead.

The processor display showed a steady green.

Joel tensed.

Miguel unplugged the gun from the box.

"What's wrong?" asked Joel. "Why have you disconnected it?"

"Because that's the only way to turn it off." Miguel swung the gun frame around and plugged the two together again. "And I've dealt with that wall."

Joel followed the implication with his gaze. The section of wall housing the dart guns was a jagged edged hole. He swung round to look at the opposite wall, to be rewarded with a view of a coruscating shimmer in the air where Miguel directed his gun.

The wall disintegrated to leave nothing but a hole.

"But..." said Joel. "But if you've got the knowledge to build that contraption, why didn't you build it earlier and escape?"

"Because I had neither the power source nor the desperation to try. Let me put it like this--could you build an automobile without any parts, fuel, or the tools to construct one and extract the other? Of course not. I only knew how to build this because we have to make one for a power systems project at university."

"Hello." Oskar's voice called weakly. "Can you give me a hand please?" Joel was amazed to see Oskar had thrown a pathway of armor suit over the spikes, and crawled to safety on the far side of the corridor.

Joel raced over the pathway and applied what first aid he could to staunch Oskar's blood flow and reduce the risk of infection. He was probably doing little that Oskar's nano-medics had not already accomplished, but he felt more comfortable doing something he understood.

"Miguel," gasped Oskar. "Why not sell that--box?"

"Good heavens! It's not safe. Not safe at all. I had to guess how the focusing works. And it should have a proper network of dampers, but I could only find enough parts to approximate one. The thing is a death trap. Probably explode at any moment. Ahh," he must have read something in Oskar's eyes, "I can see your point. Time for us to leave."

Each grabbing an arm, Joel and Miguel dragged Oskar out of the corridor and back into the main section of the building; they left two red stripes of blood, and Oskar's screams ringing in the air. He can't have been using nano-meds, thought Joel.

"Hey!" Oskar frantically tried to wriggle out of their grasp. "Will you stop and carry me by my legs."

Back in the corridor outside Miguel's rooms, the dampening field finally failed, releasing the stored energy from the bombs. The shock wave from the blast threw the three men into a heap on the floor.

Joel painfully drew himself up to sit against the wall. No more firefights or explosions tonight. Not for a long time. He was looking forward to a well-earned rest.

"I can't believe we lose it all," said Miguel.

"What do you mean?" asked Joel as he removed his helmet and tried to shake the ringing out of his head.

"Chand. He gets away with it. We end up with nothing for our troubles, except for our lives--and then only for a short time. We should approach your authorities, but your activities are scarcely legal. Besides, even in this age, I expect he can buy his way out of trouble. We are dead men walking."

Joel laughed. He looked over to Oskar, who had also removed his helmet, and saw the crease of a smile in the skin around his companion's eyes.

"Tell him," said Oskar.

"Professionals in our line of work always record our--er--activities. It costs nothing to take the unedited footage, and it's a good source of secondary income from the less scrupulous content providers."

"Besides," said Oskar, "it makes good motivational material for new recruits to the libertarian struggle. Owww!"

"Serves you right," said Joel. "Keep quiet until the clotting agents have taken hold."

"So," said Miguel tentatively, "you have enough evidence to ruin Chand. But doesn't that just encourage him to kill us?"

"Not a problem," said Joel. "We lodge our material with a few registered bondholders, for release on the death, kidnapping, or unlawful damage to any of us. Chand will pay all the fees. In fact, he will provide a tidy income for all of us--providing he gets out of the mess of a business whose shares are based on a factory that doesn't make anything."

"Yes, I like that idea," said Miguel. "It could buy me obscurity. I suppose Oskar will want to continue to be the muscle for his libertarian group, but what will you do with the credit, Joel? Is it time to hang up your gun?"

Miguel had a good point--finally he might earn enough to settle down. Oskar had humiliated him, and shown contempt for Joel's maturity--just as he would have done at Oskar's age. Reaction speed wouldn't be an issue if his life was wife, home, and children. This was his chance to retire for good.

Nevertheless, it was Joel who had survived intact that night. Oskar was hors-de-combat, which made Joel the better man. He grinned at that thought.

"You're right," said Joel, "Age is creeping up on me, and it's time I did something about it. If Chand pays up, I can make up for that with ligament augmentation, neuro-juice implants, and artificial eyes with zoom and infrared capability. No one would ever best me again."


Tim C. Taylor lives in a small English village with his wife. Their ancient and beloved cat (21 years old) recently passed on, leaving a cat-shaped hole in their lives. Tim's fiction has been published in the magazine of the British Science Fiction Association: Focus.

E-mail: Tim C. Taylor

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