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Deal 1153: Mirror

The mirror is a curse, of course. But it is a mild one.

I carry it with the rest of my stage supplies, and check my makeup before I go on. Having done that, the glamour remains for at least a few hours, and my set is always a success.

With it, I’m memorable. Better than that, I have fans, and a decent chance at a recording contract.

Without it, I’m not so sure.

I could always abandon it. I suspect that is how I came to possess it, actually. It’s previous owner abandoned it, and it arranged to be found by a suitable new owner.

Because while I may pretend to have free will, with that mirror in the picture, free will is nothing but an illusion.

Don’t get me wrong, it is an illusion I’m happy to preserve for now. But as sure as there’s tea in that pot, I can’t keep it forever.

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Deal 1064: The Loose Page

The scrape of page was musty, and not made of the usual sort of pulp paper found in books around here. It was crumpled in the gutter among the other debris and detritus that remained as the flood waters receded. Something about it drew the eye. I snatched it up, smoothed it out, and began to read:

TimeScout Handbook

With your transit device in hand, we welcome you to this elite branch of Scouting.

You will learn to be good custodians of Time, balancing the urge to act against the need to know what action is best.

Of course, there are risks involved too. The obvious urge to mess with one’s own Grandparents is obvious, and easy to avoid. But how well do you really know your family tree?

Before embarking on the flow of time, you will take an oath to make only changes that you can justify to authorities.

While traveling you enjoy some perks. You will be harder to injure. You will have an emergency escape

I turned at looked at the scene around me. Somewhere, someone had to be responsible. Now I knew someone had been meddling. It was time to begin to lay my trap.

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Deal 1053: Caught one

Time to check my traps. Not necessarily for dinner, but you never know.

“Hey! Get me out of this cage, and we’ll talk.”

Great. I’ve caught something, and it is chatty. I did not see that coming. “I think we’ll talk for a minute just like this first, thanks.”

“But you must let me out?”

“Why?”

The trap is indeed sprung, and there is something fluffy in the cage. It turns slowly. It is the cat that has been fading in and out around our campsites and generally acting smug. “Not so smug now, eh, wise guy?”

“Call me Bruce. And let me out!”

“Ok, Bruce. You know I’m Sydney and she’s Gwen. Time for a little cooperation.”

After pumping him for all he was worth, we agreed he was acting independently, and was likely not connected to any of the mysteries. So we did let him out.

But did that ungrateful monster thank us?

Nope.

He faded out practically in my arms as I opened the cage!