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January 21st, 2017

Back to the Past
I was supposed to be out of the city, but my plane trip was cancelled unexpectedly. So I was sitting on my couch scrolling through movies to watch. The next thing I know, Marty just popped up next to me.

I jumped up, "Who are you? How did you do that?"

Marty was about 15 years old. He looked out a window, "Dang, it's dark out. It's hard to see anything." He turned to look at me, "Woah, calm down. I need your help."

I back up slowly into the kitchen, I figure there's knives there if I need to defend myself. "What do you mean help? How did you even get in here?"

Marty followed, keeping his distance, "Okay, this is going to sound crazy. I'm from 400 years in your future. I need you to come with me."

I keep moving towards the knives, "I don't think I want to go anywhere with you."

"No, you have to. You don't understand. Umm, you're very important in the future, but you aren't safe here. Your house is about 15 miles away from where a nuclear bomb is about to be dropped. China is mad about your new president, or something."

"What? Are you crazy? I'm going to check the news and see if this is real."

Marty jumped forwarded slightly, "No! We don't have time. You need to leave right now or you won't make it. Many lives are at stake. Just come grab my hand and I'll take you somewhere safe."

I mostly didn't believe him, but I figured I had nothing to lose. What was the chance he really had a time travel device anyway? He probably just snuck in when I wasn't paying attention. I grabbed his hand and called his bluff, "Okay, let's go."

Marty took a rod about the size and shape of a toilet paper roll out of his pocket. He pushed a big yellow bottom on its top and everything around us changed. I guess he was telling the truth!

It looked like a bedroom, but the walls were somewhat transparent. There were no windows. Marty seemed happy and quickly went to a desk. He pulled a screen from the face of his desk and started typing. Then he looked at me, "So...does it make you feel happy when you look at the sky?"

I just stared at Marty, "What? What just happened? Is my house ok? Can't we just go back after it's safe from the bomb?" I think about my cat and feel tears welling up.

Marty looked a little agitated. "Yeah, yeah, we'll get to that. I was just curious if the blue sky makes you feel happier. Could you tell me?"

"Umm, I guess it's nice." Marty typed something in to his computer. "Ok, can we go now?"

Marty scanned over some text then looked at me, "Do you and your peers think global warming is real?"

I start to answer, "Well, it's considered controversial but I think most educated people- Wait! What is going on here?" I walk over to look at the screen Marty has in front of him. He pushes a button and everything turns blank.

Marty starts looking a little annoyed, "Just answer a few questions and I'll take you back. Deal?"

"No! Just take me back somewhere safe, now!"

Marty ignored me and went back to his screen, "So...does the level of greenhouse gases in your environment make you cough?"

"Okay, Marty. I'm not answering anything unless you're straight with me. What is this we're doing?"

Marty looked at his feet, "Fine. I have a history paper due tomorrow about the era right before we were forced underground. I just didn't want to read the whole book. Just answer some questions and I'll take you back."

Is this real? I'm thinking we need to get Marty's parents involved. I start yelling, "Hey! Marty's parents! Help!"

Marty looked panicked, "Hey, stop that!"

I continued, "Your son is messing with time! Hey!"

Marty grabbed the device, turned a dial on it, and ran over to touch me. He pushed the button and we were back in my house. "You were not helpful!" He pushed the button and disappeared.

My cat was fine and there was no bomb. Just a lazy teenager.