Untraced in Air

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Science Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

A business man named Michael Bronstein is boarding his private jet from Washington DC to Geneva, Switzerland. Upon take off, the impossible happens and he desperately tries to figure out what exactly happened afterwards. He develops multiple fears and mental illnesses and secludes himself in a penthouse in Geneva unable to return home. Here's what happened.

April 29th 2013

Ever since that day, flying had become my enemy. Whether it’d be in a helicopter, an airplane, a private jet, I don’t give a damn, the idea of me up in an avian machine had become my worst nightmare. And not just that but everything and everyone had become my enemy. Growing up, I’ve never been an incredibly smart man, but I’ve been very successful and spoiled in my life growing up in a rich family, living off of my parent’s accomplishments, but nothing could prepare me for what happened while I was up flying in my first private jet. I’ve talked to and asked university professors, scientists, physicists, doctors and many more people about what I experienced on that jet and they could never give me a proper response for it. The scientists, doctors and professors claimed it to be a result of hallucinatory drugs on my part and some professors even laughed at me right in my face. The physicists never gave me a straight answer. They asked me a bunch of questions I didn’t understand, but I think they thought I was talking nonsense as well; at least they didn’t directly humiliate me.

I’ve spent countless hours up at night haunted by time. Since the incident, I’ve thrown out all of my clocks, all of my phones and pretty much wherever I could see time ticking by, carelessly eating away at the fabric of my reality. I used to have a lot of friends, but now I can’t even trust them; they might not even trust me. I don’t even go out much anymore; life is too fragile to risk going outside. I’ve become so elusive and “scary” to everyone around me that when someone mentions a clock I become engulfed in fear and it’s difficult to handle. My fear of time, Chronophobia, itself isn’t too bad, but it all originated from my original fear which is my fear of flying, aerophobia, which is what I’ll get to. When anyone mentions a plane or even if I see a plane, I lose consciousness sometimes and other times I hear voices. These were haunting voices, telling me things, really terrible or odd things. They even showed me things. It was the same voice that told me to get rid of my clocks and other various things as well.

I attempted suicide; it was a selfish thing to do to the people I loved, but it was the only thing that’d escape me from this nightmare. It failed twice and I couldn’t go through with it. I went to a psychiatrist and therapist; they both gave me a medium dosage of lithium and told me I had manic depressive disorder and paranoid schizophrenia. They sent a man to my penthouse whom I called my “butler” to watch over me because of my state as well. My parents were beside themselves when they heard the news and my girlfriend left me a long time ago because of what happened.

The reason why I’m so messed up now was not because I was afraid of heights, hijacking, turbulence, crashing or any other fears directly associated with the fear of flying: I developed this isolation and fear because of a scenario which is considered today as virtually impossible by many. Thinking about it both intrigues and scares me to death in ways you wouldn’t understand. I’ve tried to understand it, I really did, but even people who are beyond smarter than me apparently don’t understand this occurrence completely too. It’s like in a movie or a documentary. I may have made the largest discovery in history and I didn’t even realize it. My life would not be as messed up as it is today if I hadn’t of gone on that flight to Geneva, Switzerland. Let me tell you that this is a not a normal way to develop a fear.

My name’s Michael Bronstein and it was my first ever trip in a private jet. I had gained millions by investing in the correct stocks when I graduated from college and eventually became a business magnate for a number of large corporations in Washington DC, United States. I was a rich son of a bitch and I was certainly a good role model for the children. Well mannered, well dressed and certainly skilled in what I was doing. I had to make a business deal in Geneva, Switzerland and it most certainly was going to be successful; the administrator there had already agreed to the deal and all I had to do was persuade the other executive members to give in as well. Whether it took a day or a week was all up to my persuasion techniques. Of course this is all irrelevant to my story; I just wanted to boast about the only thing I was ever good at. At 10:20AM Eastern Time on October 11th 2012, I boarded the jet with the pilot who used to be a student at the college I went to.

“The sky’s beautiful today, old Mikey!” he exclaimed as I boarded the plane. His name was Rusty Flannigan.

“Let’s just hope it stays that way.” I replied. He nodded to the co-pilot that we were ready for take-off. The stewardess’ on board were really sexy. I winked at one of them and the giggling commenced as I passed them. I had a girlfriend, but she would never know.

The private jet was absolutely beautiful; it had a long couch /bed, multiple abstract looking chairs, cocktail bar and a large television plastered to the wall on the back corner. I was definitely looking forward to this trip, even if I acted as if I didn’t care. It was the first time I’d ever been on a plane. I was almost childlike. This is how the morning went by.

10:30AM ET – I sat down on the extremely comfy and robust chair and took a drink of mimosa. My ass itched; gave it a scratch. It wasn’t a very sophisticated thing to do.

10:36AM ET – The pilot addressed me that we were taking off now since only I, the pilot and co-pilot and the sexy stewardess’ were on board.

10:40AM ET – We took off. It was a funny feeling.

10:46AM ET – I was allowed to do whatever I wanted now. I started watching a bit of television, but my stomach felt odd.

10:49AM ET – I was walking towards the washroom on the backside of the jet. I looked down at my phone and it said 10:49AM when all of a sudden for a split second – I didn’t even realize at first – there was a massive gust of wind inside the jet and a giant thin light that passed by my window as well for almost a nanosecond. I took a glimpse at my watch during this time and I was blown backwards and almost toppled over.

4:50PM I stood up adjusted my glasses and subsequently looked down at my phone. The time was now 4:50PM. The time zone difference from Washington DC to Geneva was 6 hours, so the time that it would’ve been if I was in Washington still would’ve been 10:50AM. Impossible. I didn’t go to sleep. In fact I had taken some adrenaline before I went on board so I couldn’t have possibly fallen asleep. What was that wind? What was that giant burst of light? What the hell was going on? An announcement came over the PA system.

“We’re arriving in Geneva, Switzerland in about 10 minutes, Michael. Take your seat.”

What the hell was this? I was shaking all over. I went to one of the windows and opened them to observe the sky and sure enough the sun was starting to set and I could see many glaciers and mountain ranges along the coast line of Switzerland.

In other words: A trip that would’ve taken approximately 8 and ½ hours took instead about 25 minutes.

In my confused and traumatized state I ran towards the cockpit and burst through the door. Rusty turned to me with look of surprise and annoyance. Without realizing what I was trying to say I ended up yelling a bunch of gibberish.

“What are you doing up here, Michael?! We’re trying to land the plane!”

“Did you honestly not understand what just happened, Rusty?! Did you not see that giant light outside?! Or feel the massive amount of wind?” they looked at me as if I was on acid. I didn’t mention that we had travelled through time.

“What the hell are you going on about, Michael? Just let us land the plane and fasten your seatbelt; we can talk about it later.”

This place wasn’t safe. Something else was going to happen on here, I was too confused and scared to move. I ended up curling into a ball and drooled on the floor sobbing my eyes out as we descended. The stewardess’ tried to intervene but they were a blur to me now. I kept yelling to land the damn plane. They tried to sooth me, I haven’t felt that sheltered since I was a boy and my parents used to keep me in the house and prevent me from hanging out with friends. How could I have been the only one to realize that this trip was 25 minutes?

Did I imagine that whole thing? I thought immediately afterwards what I had been doing up until that point. I sat down. Mr. Flannigan told me it was time to take off. We took off. The seatbelt sign went off and I could do whatever I wanted. I went to the washroom and looked at phone.

My phone.

Was it the reason that I went forward in time? No…it wasn’t just my phone….it was this damn jet. There was something sinister about jets, now I knew that for sure. I needed to get off of this jet. I needed to get away from any and all jets, planes and any avian machine. All of this thought was frightening for me and when they let me off the plane I was completely out of it. The stewardess’ were trying to calm me down because I kept speaking gibberish and Rusty emerged from the cockpit disgruntled.

“Jesus, Michael, you look awful. What was that all about 10 minutes ago?”

“I-I need to get out of here” I said as I ran down the steps into the blazing sunset.

“What were you talking about back there on the jet with the wind and large flashing light? Do you need to see a doctor or something, man?”

“Please let’s not talk about this here; wait until we get inside. I’m so terrified right now.”

“Terrified of what? Don’t tell me you’re afraid of heights, Mikey. You’re coming back to Washington on the 23rd.”

“No….no I can’t go back.” My mind was way too blurry. That half of a second may have changed my life forever. A limo was waiting for me at the terminal gate where my jet had landed. I rushed towards it.

“What do you mean you can’t go back? Michael? Michael!” He ran right up to the limo window where he was pounding on the glass. “Michael, what the hell has gotten into you?” I couldn’t handle this right now. I felt like I was going to faint.

“Look something happened on that-“ Oh god I couldn’t even say it now. “thing and it wasn’t my imagination. One day I’ll be able to explain what happened, but right now I just can’t deal with this.” I shut my window but he kept slamming his hands down on the window. I went up to the driver window and paid him a few extra hundred dollars to drive faster than the speed limit.

After that, I never went to that meeting with the executive members that week and I also haven’t returned home to Washington. I paid off some debts immediately and even got some friends to fly my belongings from the States to here. As of today, I’m still living in Geneva in a penthouse in this hotel on the top floor. I quit my career and it made a lot of people unhappy, but it was all I could do. Everyone was asking me why I did this and other than the fact that I had lived through an act of god there are a few other reasons as well.  I boarded up all the windows there after this one incident from walking to a nearby convenience store. I had a staggered walk because my mentality was just plummeting into the ground. I had been wearing torn clothing and I hadn’t shaved in weeks. A bald Swiss man approached me asked me something in French. I think it was “are you alright?” but I could’ve been wrong, but there was this voice in my head that was telling me these things.

Duck now. Do it now. Don’t die.

I didn’t know what it meant and I didn’t know how to react. I tried talking to this voice, but it felt like it was slashing me in the face. I felt kind of bad for ignoring the man, but that all changed when all of a sudden I could feel a rumble from below, I looked behind and this giant airplane came crashing down in front of me. I ducked down to the ground in realization of what my thoughts were telling me, as the plane landed in one of the buildings a kilometer down the road erupting into a large explosion. Everyone was screaming as a giant fireball emerged from the building and the impact from the explosion sent me flying back a few feet. I landed on my back and it hurt, but as I looked down the street many people were on fire and running towards me. It was a horrific sight. I was shivering and I felt like screaming. To see the evil of humans flaming from their charred bodies, to hear the piercing screams of the inevitable dead, to pray to God of how lucky I was to have dodged this tragic event. I had fallen to the ground sobbing hard. I looked up for a second and a woman was running towards me. She was yelling to me waving her hands. I started to run towards her and then I realized something:

There was no airplane crash.

There was no tragic fiery and bloody aftermath.

I had not been blown back a few feet by a sound wave.

There was no woman running towards me.

I had instead shat myself in front of a French man.

I ran back to my apartment as fast as I could and boarded up my windows as well. I got rid of the clocks too, just as I had already described; they were misleading and distrustful. All I needed in my penthouse was communication from the outside, a computer and some food. All I wore for the first three months in Geneva was a pair of underwear and a blanket over my body. My organization called a man to keep eye on me in Geneva so I wouldn’t do anything stupid. I had this man (butler) bring me books upon books of research for this phenomenon and the internet as well. I studied for days without sleep trying to understand what happened on that jet and the same things kept popping up: time travel, time travel paradoxes and time travel theories. I had read a short story when I was a teenager called “All You Zombies” by Robert Heinlein which explored a number of paradoxes caused by time travel. I won’t spoil it, but it was an extremely weird book, but what was slightly less weird were the things I found out about when on the net and a few books. The voices persuaded me not to look any farther, but I ignored them; told them to shut up and leave me alone. I had been very uneducated in the sciences before this event, but afterwards I had been studying like no tomorrow on it and I what I found out about were 3 different possible solutions to my conundrum. The whole notion of Time Travel was mainly sparked from Albert Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity and these possible solutions are just a simplified version of what I could find:

  1. Cosmic Strings. These are completely hypothetical and there is little to no evidence for them, but they are 1 dimensional “strings” left after the big bang (which created the universe) and if two cosmic strings were to pass at incredible high speeds their gravity would be so strong that it’d be able to bend space time and perhaps create something called wormholes or superstrings.
  2. Wormholes. Or also known as the Einstein-Rosen Bridge. Another hypothetical feature in which spacetime creates a hole or bridge between portions of time so that it can be travelled through one moment in time to the other.
  3. Black holes. Basically a giant hole in space where gravity is so strong that light and anything can’t escape it.

The first solution sounded like the correct solution because the large single beam of light could’ve resembled either a lightning bolt or a cosmic string; however there was one problem to all of these solutions, why was I the only one who was affected by it? Why was I the only knew that this happened? I had studied for countless weeks about this, and even went to scientists and physicists at CERN in Geneva to talk about this phenomenon. I told them my story, I even gave them my name and date, but they thought I was full of shit. In short, they deemed my story impossible. The absence of the second cosmic string in my explanation and logic is what baffled most scientists. It was, theoretically, essential to create a “closed time-like curve” or a “wormhole”. Another idea they suggested is if the cosmic string passed next to a black hole, but they exclaimed quite vehemently that it was impossible to create on Earth.

I’m still at a loss for words for what happened and this phenomenon has been keeping me in this current state since. 7 months since this happened and I can’t even behave like a normal human being anymore. I’ve become more primitive. If anybody reading this has a solution, I’d love to hear it. I didn’t imagine any of what I said about the jet. What happened on that day was 100% real. Trust me, if you were in my situation, you’d probably have the same mentality. It’s frustrating and I’m scared for my life. I’m afraid it’ll happen again. The voices have been telling me that they have already happened. I wish I could ignore them, but they seem absolutely right.

I wish you could hear the voices too.

They say the wildest things.

Submitted: August 13, 2013

© Copyright 2020 jhh. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



The start was good and the story was intriguing and clear. Amazing!

Thu, August 15th, 2013 7:51am


thank you! :]

Thu, August 15th, 2013 5:54pm

Freebird Writer

Thank you for entering. I have read your piece, results will be up soon.

Fri, September 6th, 2013 12:38am

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