Bethany Howell is a creative writing major who lives in south Florida with her family and six unofficial cats. She likes to spend her time daydreaming and writing stories.
THE TIME BETWEEN US
“It’s our anniversary,” she said at the reception desk, unable to stop her smile. Laughing all the way to the room after he hissed at the receptionist for the key.
The room was okay. Two double beds with wrinkled sheets and a phone in between. The room also had a gated patio in the back. She cleared her throat and when he looked over, she pointed to the clear door.
“Since we're going to be stuck here for a while anyway,” she said.
He stopped pacing and his eyes narrowed.
“I just want to feel the sun,” she said. "Might not be able to for a while when we get back.”
He grunted and muttered out what sounded like approval. She walked out the door and seated herself in the nearest chair. He appeared a while later with a glass in his hand.
“What’s this?” she asked
“Water,” he said from the seat across from her.
She took the glass sipped it and rolled her eyes.
“I’m not giving you alcohol,” he said as he looked up from his watch.
She looked over at him with a scoff and chewed on a piece of ice. "I didn't ask for any."
She sat in her chair and chewed on another piece of ice. He stared at her with his arms folded in his lap. His frown deepened with every bite she took.
“What? Did they teach you at time travel detective school how to scowl?” she asked.
“The Time Travel Bureau of Investigation taught me to track and catch criminals who work in time periods that are at a technological disadvantage,” he said with the same sour look on his face.
"So, I had a little fun and got carried away," she said.
"Your fun has exposed these people to technology that's centuries ahead of their time," he said.
She watched him with a small smile as her eyes crinkled. "You haven't changed," she said in a small voice.
He fiddled with his watch, a blank stare on his face.
"Did you volunteer, or did they send you?" she asked after a long silence.
He sighed and said, "It doesn't matter, none of this does." His face hardened. "When the watch finishes recharging, we're leaving."
"Then, can we make one final jump to the end of the twenty-first century?"
"You always wanted to see the first space colony."
"Interacting with time periods that have humans is a crime. You know that," he said.
"Even if I wanted to time travel, I can’t. After what you did the rules changed. We can only jump twice now - there and back," He said as the watch began to ring. "It's done were leaving," he said getting ready to stand.
When he turned his back, she jumped up and slammed herself into him. Caught off guard, he lost his balance. The force sent them both to the ground.
In an unconscious attempt to protect her, he grabbed her and twisted their bodies so he would take the brunt of it. His head slammed into the concrete pavement.
Dazed from the fall he could only watch as she snatched the watch off his wrist and entered a different time. She held him close as blue lights hissed and sparked before it engulfed them.