Money from my own pocket

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Written as a response to the writing prompt "You realise that every time you've lost money in your life, it was just (a very broke) you from the future stealing it from yourself" from u/thewildjr on r/WritingPrompts.

Submitted: October 15, 2018

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Submitted: October 15, 2018

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"I will leave you to it then."

The yawn could almost be heard through the words as the IT administrator waltzed out of the room. Something about the elongation of the vowels and drooping intonation.

Leave me to it ?

That was a time machine prototype, not some coffee machine. Sure, they hired some low level technician to replace the power supply, but this just was not something that could be left alone with a stranger to the laboratory. Good research had been stolen from less.

If that were my lab...

If. I did not exactly have a lab anymore though. Not much of anything really. Just that depressing job. Low level technician. Low enough down the ladder that people would not take notice of a name they'd seen in Nature's pages for the better part of the last decades. They had probably also seen it in the news more recently. That damn monkey...

So. Here I was, the great researcher stuck fixing the power supply for a time machine prototype.

Well, the fixing was done at least. Cyan rays lit up the experimentation room as the machine roared to life. If that IT guy saw that now, he would probably go pale in the face. Yes, I knew how to start up the prototype. In fact, if he were to check the main reference on the prototype's technical report he would see a name eerily similar to that of the low level grunt he had brought in.

I also knew how to operate it.

The corner of my lip pulled up uncontrollably as I contemplated what to do first. Of course I would do something with the machine. It was my technology after all.

Snap up that activist mole in my lab ? Too dangerous, there was not any indication of how time reacted to changes, let alone something that drastic. Things were rough right now, but I was still breathing at the very least.

Give myself nice lottery numbers ? I would need to know past lottery results for that. And convince the past me to play the lottery too. It probably would not help either, I barely avoided jail myself, but the fine killed my assets. They had have sued for more if I had had the money.

A shame, I could really use the money now.

Oh.

I did not need the money then. Therefore... I could steal from myself. Likely the saddest theft in the history of mankind, but a viable solution nonetheless.

Let's see. When would I have had too much money ?

There was that time after I accepted that seat on that company's scientific board.

That time I got so sucked into research I lived like a monk for 4 years straight too.

Also that one time I did play the lottery.

The pages of the notepad I kept with me grew fuller and fuller as I remembered more times of feast.

That was a lot of money now that I actually considered it. Probably more than I could have been personally responsible for. Where had it gone ?

I left that scientific board because the company insisted they had wired me the money but could not produce proof.

I did not actually remember my account being that full after those 4 years of intense research.

Actually...

Oh.

Oh!

The pages of the notebook rustled loudly as I checked every item on my little list. Invariably, money never quite appeared the way it was supposed to after those events. There could not have been some crazy thief stalking my financial my entire life, could there ?

Had I already stolen from myself ?

The more I thought about it, the less absurd the idea seemed. Brilliant !

If I did this I would be able to instate a fixed time loop. If I did not, it would prove either that timelines are dynamic or that multiverses can co exist. That obviously meant I had a moral obligation to go steal from myself. I could not let either of the prats wailing about those theories at every conference be proven right, after all. Especially the one with the cumulo nimbus in lieu of a haircut. If any of those two suddenly found themselves leading experts of the field, it would be dead within weeks.

Glancing over at the long list in my hand, I got started on entering the coordinates in the prototype. I better not miss any event.

For science.

And tonight's dinner.


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