“I’m willing to be that it was Agatha Jones who phoned in the phony obit. If Liam calls back with the temporal and geographic coordinates I think he’s going to, Connor, Adrienne and I are going back to those same coordinates and catch that bitch red-handed. If I’m right, she’s broken enough temporal laws to get kicked off the tribunal. Then we’ll have our unanimous vote and all charges against Ryan will be dropped.”
“I’d so love to be there when she gets caught,” Anne said.
“So you come along with us. In the meantime, let’s continue going over the evidence. We don’t want to leave anything to chance.”
The room was silent as they all continued to pour over records and after what seemed like an eternity, Duncan's CompCom beeped.
“Give me some good news, Liam. You’re sure? There’s no question? Great. We’ll be right there. Set travellators 1-5 to those temporal coordinates and set the geographic coordinates for around the corner. Grab a video unit and get Terry to cover Control for you. The five of us are going to take a little trip.” Hanging up the phone he turned to everyone in the room. “Let’s go, gang. Time to get some justice for Ryan.”
The five of them appeared in an alleyway around the corner from a public information kiosk just as Agatha appeared in a shaded doorway. Liam immediately activated the video unit. Agatha walked to the kiosk, touched the screen and asked for the obituary editor for the local newspaper. “Good morning. This is Miss Jones from the Hospital Registrar’s office. I only have one obituary for you today. Ethan Evans, 26 years of age, died last night from anaphylaxis due to an unexpected medication interaction. He’s survived by his brother Christopher. You’re welcome. Have a good day!” The look on her face as she disconnected the call was one of unholy glee, which quickly turned to fear and anger as Duncan, Liam, Adrienne, Anne and Connor walked around the corner.
“Agatha Jones, you are under arrest for falsifying documentation used in a legal proceeding, unlawful interaction with persons in the past, unauthorized use of a travellator, intentional timeline tampering, and I’m sure I can come up with more. Let’s go.” They walked her around the corner into the alleyway. As soon as Duncan let her go she turned to run. “Don’t even think about it. I have a stunner here and believe me, it will be a pleasure to use it on you.”
She turned a look of pure anger and loathing on Duncan, who didn’t even flinch. "How date you threaten a member of the Tribunal!" She screamed. To her surprise, he just laughed.
“A member of the Tribunal? Not after the Chief Magistrate views the video Liam just recorded. Let’s go.” He reached into her handbag and pressed the button on her return beacon as did the other four. A look of triumph crossed Duncan’s face as he counted to sixty then pressed the button on his own return beacon.
Upon their return, Agatha Jones was taken into immediate custody. Duncan thanked everyone for their excellent work and took the video unit to the Chief Magistrate. A half-hour later he returned.
“The orders for Ryan’s release and the dismissal of all charges against him are being prepared. There’s still the matter of the timeline alteration.” He looked at the monitor tracking the timeline and noticed that there was still a partial alteration. “Something’s still not right. I want to test a theory. Liam, set a travellator to this date, 2132, and the woods behind Evans’ workshop. I want to meet the guy that has stirred up so much interest. In the meantime, Anne, get me everything you can on him, please.”
A few minutes later, Duncan, dressed in period clothing, walked into Ethan’s workshop. “Excuse me, I’m looking for Ethan.”
A young man approached him with his hand outstretched. “I’m Ethan. What can I do for you?”
Duncan shook his hand. “My name is Donald Courson. I’m told you do antique restoration.”
“I do. What do you need restored?”
“I have what I believe was once called a china cabinet being shipped to my home on the other side of town and I was wondering if you would be willing to take a look at it and give me an estimate?”
“China cabinet?” Ethan’s eyes lit up. “I’ve heard of them but I’ve never seen one. I’d be happy to look at it for you.”
“Great. I’ll let you know when it arrives. Thank you for your time. It’s been a pleasure meeting you.” More than you know or could imagine. “Have a great day.”
“Thank you. It was nice to meet you too. See you again soon, I hope.”
Liam practically jumped on Duncan when he stepped out of the travellator. “I don’t know what just happened back there, but there’s been a slight restoration.”
“Apparently, our theory of the temporal causality loop is correct. I just met Ethan Evans. Apparently we were supposed to meet. I wonder what this all means. Has Ryan been released yet?”
“They just delivered the paperwork. The Chief Magistrate thought that you would like to be the one to deliver them.” Liam handed over the paperwork.
“Awesome. You hold down the fort while I go get him.” Liam snorted and shook his head as Duncan practically ran from the room. Duncan loved to use old phrases and idioms.
Once seated in Duncan's car, Ryan began, "I don't know how to thank you for getting me out of this mess."
"You can thank those four crazy idiots Liam, Adrienne, Anne and Connor. They stuck together like glue to find the evidence to clear you, working almost around the clock on their own time. They were the ones responsible for gathering the evidence against Jones. However, you're still not off the hook as far as your young man goes."