|Season 2, Episode 11|
|Air date||November 13th, 2015|
If Earth Could Speak
Forever To Say Goodbye: Part 2
Forever To Say Goodbye: Part 1 is the eleventh episode of Tech 10: Rebooted's second season, and the twenty-third episode overall.
Well, not quite.
Darkness is the absence of light, implying that light were to exist somewhere in the first place. This was a horrid emptiness that creeped into the soul, a void so endless that it seemed to consume whatever stray thought or feeling might creep into your mind. It was as if death itself had become a location.
That is where Tech was, existing only by technicality as his body drifted through the void. Suddenly, a gray flash appeared, forming a desaturated area bubble in the emptiness and snapping Tech back into existence.
“Oh sh-” Tech began, continuing from where his brain had left off. He quickly stopped himself once he noticed his surroundings. “Hold a second, what?”
An odd man wearing an orange/red striped suit suddenly popped into existence near him, holding a cane with an oversized crystal ball on the end of it.
“Hello, Tech!” The Jester exclaimed. “Looks like you’re in a bit of a pickle!”
“To be honest, I don’t know where I am.” Tech replied, scratching his head. “This is certainly a void, but doesn’t look like The Void.”
“Right you are! This is actually inter-temporal space, or in layman’s terms, the space between timelines.”
“Inter-temporal space? How’d I get here?”
“The Anti-Life Entity, of course! First thing it does when hitting up a new timeline is purge any threats in the immediate area. Once it gets going, it’s unstoppable, but it takes a few minutes to wake up, so to speak.”
“Wouldn’t it make more sense to just destroy them?”
“That’s what the tears usually do; lifeforms from inside timelines can’t really exist in inter-temporal space on their own, so their bodies break down pretty instantaneously. You’re only still here because of your buildup of Void Energy.”
“Good to know.” Tech snarked, shuddering a bit. “So, how do I get back?”
“Get back?” The Jester chuckled. “Kid, unless you’ve got an alien that can move through timelines, you ain’t getting nowhere!”
“What?!” Tech snapped. “I can’t just stay here forever! I need to get back and save the universe!”
“Tell you what.” The Jester held up his cane, pointing it at the SpecTrix. “I’ll give you access to that TyMR alien of yours for long enough to hop to the nearest timeline. The big man upstairs gets kinda mad when I help people out too much, though, so you’re on your own from there. Maybe you can find someone there that can help you.”
The SpecTrix beeped for a couple moments, which was followed by its dial popping up, signifying that the transformation was ready.
“Better hurry up!” The Jester said. “You don’t have much time left!”
“Right.” Tech pressed down on the dial, transforming into TyMR. “Thanks for the help.”
“Not a problem! Good luck out there, kid!”
Tech nodded and took off, leaving the gray bubble and heading into the all-consuming emptiness.
“You’re going to need it.” The Jester remarked.
Tech flew through the void, guided only by an instinctual sense of direction. After a few moments, a large stream of indescribable energy suddenly shimmered into existence in front of him, stretching on for an infinity.
“I guess this is what a timeline looks like from the outside.” Tech noted, staring into the wall of light before him. “This is probably going to feel a bit weird.”
With that, he flew forward, pressing through the timeline’s wall into parts unknown.
As he emerged from the timeline wall, Tech suddenly found himself detransformed and falling through the sky of what appeared to be Earth. Thinking quickly, he reached for the SpecTrix and transformed into Electrolite, using his abilities to simply zap to the ground, emerging into his humanoid form and detransforming unharmed.
After breathing a sigh of relief, Tech took a moment to examine where he had landed. He swiftly noticed the buildings to be in a Victorian-era design style, with the roads being made of cobblestone. Crowds in period clothing rushed past him, with the occasional steam-powered carriage rumbling down the roads.
“You have got to be kidding me.” He groaned, putting his hands to his forehead in frustration. “I’m in that stupid Steampunk world again!”
Taking a few moments to grumble to himself about the situation, he suddenly spotted a familiar face across the street. He quickly rushed into the street, pushing through the crowd until he reached the other side. Walking towards him on the sidewalk was the version of him from this timeline, traveling and carrying a conversation with the timeline’s version of Moranna. The Tech of this timeline, with the benefit of not being merged with our Tech, had a broader, more muscular figure, standing a few inches taller than his contemporary counterpart.
“Yo, Isaac!” Tech yelled, waving him down. “Or Tech, whatever you prefer in this dimension! Right here!”
Steam Tech caught sight of Tech and approached him with a questioning look on his face.
“Who are you?” He asked. “Have we met?”
“Only if you’ve ever looked in a mirror.” Tech rolled his eyes. “I’m you, you idiot!”
“I’m from another timeline.” Tech explained. “Do they know about timelines in your weird little Steampunk Earth?”
“That sounds exceedingly far-fetched.” Steam Moranna, accompanying Steam Tech, remarked. “I will admit that the two of you look quite similar, but that could simply be mere coincidence.”
“Coincidence, huh?” Tech raised an eyebrow. “Tell me, has this guy told you about that thing on his wrist yet?”
Tech pointed to the Steam SpecTrix.
“I don’t speak of this to anyone.” Steam Tech proclaimed, raising the Steam SpecTrix. “It’s simply an interesting trinket I found one day. Not much of a discussion topic.”
“Sure that’s why you don’t talk about it.” Tech rolled his eyes again. “Let me spell it out for you, then; that’s the SpecTrix, an alien device that lets you transform into other aliens to, like, save the day and crap.”
Steam Tech’s eyes almost bugged out of his head at this comment, all but confirming Tech’s affirmation.
“H-how do you know that?!” He exclaimed, reeling back in surprise.
“Because I’ve got one too, moron.” Tech raised his SpecTrix, tapping its metal shell. “This ain’t rocket science.”
“Are all people in your ‘timeline’, if what you’re saying is true, as crass in their speech as you are?” Steam Moranna asked.
“Nope. Most of them are way more crass. Hell, the version of you in my native timeline makes me look like a perfect language saint by comparison.”
“As interesting as this all is.” Steam Tech cleared his throat. “Is there a point to this conversation?”
“Actually, yeah.” Tech said. “To make a long story short, I kinda got ejected from my own timeline and need to get back as soon as possible. I was hoping you might be able to help.”
“How would I do that?”
“Well, you have this one alien called Abstract, right? Couldn’t you use that to perceptually open the door to another timeline or something?”
“If you know about Abstract, you should know that his powers only work on himself. I couldn’t create anything that would interact with you.”
“Good point.” Tech scratched his head in thought for a few moments. “Hold on a second, I’ve got an idea!”
Tech pulled up the SpecTrix and pressed a few buttons on the touchscreen. After some beeping, a yellow wave of light popped into existence and scanned the Steam SpecTrix, with the SpecTrix showing data on the DNA scanned.
“What did you just do?” Steam tech demanded.
“Calm down, man.” Tech waved him off, going through the data. “All I did was scan whatever DNA data you have that I don’t. Let’s see...Blazerunner...Magidisk...Fatemask...here we go, Abstract!”
Tech pressed a few points on the touchscreen, causing the SpecTrix dial to pop up. He pushed it down, transforming into an odd humanoid made of misshapen and multicolored chunks. The world around him warped as if it was being viewed through a defective camera lens.
“Worked like a charm!” Tech proclaimed, looking his body over. “Guess that means it’s time for me to leave!”
Without giving Steam Tech a chance to reply, Tech walked over to a nearby building and envisioned the door as leading to a different timeline. With that, he opened the door and stepped through into parts unknown. Steam Tech and Steam Moranna looked on in confusion.
“What an odd man.” Steam Moranna remarked.
The door on the other side of Tech’s portal swung open, letting him through. He swiftly detransformed, causing the portal door to disappear, then looked around to see where he was. Everything appeared to be made of various crystals of some sort organized into various structures, some crystals glowing with a rainbow of colors. The streets were empty aside from him, with every building appearing to have been abandoned.
“Well, this definitely isn’t my Earth.” Tech noted. “What the heck even happened here?”
After a few moments of silence, the faint sound of snapping fingers suddenly appeared in the distance. The snapping sound slowly began to draw closer and closer, eventually reaching the point where Tech was wondering why he wasn’t seeing anyone by now. Sure enough, a small gang of several people rounded the corner down the street, sporting glittery mafia suits and snapping their fingers in unison. They walked with an odd swagger that would have been intimidating if it wasn’t so odd.
Tech raised his eyebrow in response to this odd appearance. As he opened his mouth to call out to them, a dark figure suddenly sped by him faster than the eye could see, grabbing him before he could say anything. After running a few blocks away, the figure finally stopped in a partially-hidden alleyway, giving Tech a bit of whiplash. The figure set him down.
“Hey, what’s the big idea?!” Tech snapped.
He looked up to see who had snatched him, finding a cat-like humanoid with a black and purple color scheme ‘tsk’-ing at him. The figure wore a hot pink SpecTrix symbol on its chest, which it pressed, detransforming in a pink flash. Standing in front of Tech was what appeared to be another alternate version of him, who wore a glamorous white suit and had a dark brown pompadour.
“Man, man, man, you are one stupid kid!” The other Tech chided, shaking left index finger. “If it weren’t for good ‘ol Cat Lap, you’d have been road kill!”
“Who are you and what the hell are you talking about?” Tech asked.
“Name’s Isaac, Isaac Logical! Nickname’s Tech, the glammest teen this side of Detroit!”
“Glam like you wouldn’t believe!” Glam Tech struck a pose. “Those fools snapping towards you were members of the infamous Obsidian Disco gang. They’ve practically taken over this town!”
“The Obsidian...Disco?” Tech repeated in disbelief.
“You know, the Obsidian Disco? They’re trying to bring Disco back with force?”
“Not ringing a bell.”
“Man, you never heard of those guys either?! Where on this wide wide world of ours are you from, kid?!”
“I’m not from this world, and for the record, I’m the same age as you.”
“What, are you some kinda age-guessing alien man?”
“No, I’m Isaac ‘Tech’ Logical too. I’m from a different timeline.”
“A different timeline, huh?” Glam Tech looked Tech up and down. “I guess that would explain the weird clothing.”
“My clothing’s weird?!”
Before Glam Tech could reply, three ominous people snapping their fingers stepped in front of the alleyway, blocking the only exit.
“Well, well, what do we have here?” The one in the middle chuckled. “Looks like that one kid that’s been getting in our way lately.”
“I do believe you’re right, Jazz.” The one on the right said. “What say we teach him a lesson?”
“That would be a fantastic idea.” The one on the left remarked.
“Then it’s settled.” Jazz grinned. “Alright you brat, it’s time for a dance-off!”
As soon as Jazz finished speaking, upbeat music suddenly popped into existence from nowhere. The alleyway around them shimmered and hazed, warping into a stadium arena with bleachers full of a cheering crowd.
“Aw, nuts!” Glam Tech exclaimed.
“What the hell?!” Tech yelled.
High above the crowd was an announcer’s box that slowly descended from a slot in the center of the ceiling, the bottom of which was mounted with a massive spotlight. The spotlight switched on, illuminating the Obsidian Disco goons and the two Techs.
“Hello, dancing fans!” The announcer spoke into his microphone, his voice ringing through the stadium. “Looks like we have another dance-off between the Obsidian Disco gang and the surprise breakout dancer, Tech!”
The crowd went wild, cheering and whooping wildly.
“But what’s this?!” The announcer exclaimed. “It looks like Tech has a partner this time! Who could it possibly be?!”
A microphone stand suddenly popped out of the ground in front of the two Techs. Glam Tech motioned Tech over the stand.
“Uh, hey!” Tech spoke into the microphone. “I’m actually also Tech, just from another timeline.”
“A two-timelined double dancing delight!” The announcer said, pressing a button that retracted the microphone stand. “If I’m not mistaken, this is something we’ve never seen before!”
“Hey, uh, what’s going on?” Tech asked Glam Tech.
“In our timeline, conflicts are decided with a dance battle.” Glam Tech explained. “Once one is called by your opponent, every member involved is teleported into a special dancing arena, where dancing enthusiasts will sometimes wait for hours on end to see an exciting match.”
“That’s...weird.” Tech remarked. “Seems like you’re a bit of a celebrity around here.”
“Yeah, normally I can totally ace these dance-offs.” Glam Tech replied haughtily. “Unfortunately, thanks to you, I ain’t dancing alone this time! If you can’t keep up, I don’t know if we can win this thing!”
“Not like coming here was my idea anyways.”
“Look, just turn into your best dancing alien and follow my lead, okay?”
“I don’t know if-”
“And with all that out of the way, let’s get ready for a DANCE BATTLE!” The announcer yelled, interrupting Tech. “Chant it with me now!”
The crowd gave a loud cheer and joined in with the announcer.
“Three! Two! ONE!”
“Quick, pick something!” Glam Tech urged.
The music in the background suddenly shifted tone, turning into a slow-paced jazzy melody. Glam Tech transformed into a tall, somewhat lanky humanoid alien wearing two pairs of rather impressive shades, one on its head and one on its chest. Tech quickly scrolled through the SpecTrix playlist and transformed into Splitter.
The three Obsidian Disco goons made the first moves, shaking their hips to the beat in unison, snapping their fingers the whole time. Glam Tech quickly countered with some slow, deliberate arm movements, accompanied by some slight foot tapping and head bobbing. Tech followed suit, copying Glam Tech’s movements note-for note.
The music slowly began to rise in tempo, accompanied by a drum set and low-pitched string instrument gradually joining in. As the tempo rose, the Obsidian Disco goons sped up their movements and began throwing their legs out in unison with the beat. Glam Tech and Tech’s movements became faster and more exaggerated, with Glam Tech using his alien’s powers to create gradually intensifying sparks of light appear every time he tapped his foot.
The music kept rising in tempo and pitch, eventually reaching a particular high note and stopping flat for a few moments, after which a bass suddenly kicked in and dropped, ushering in a cacophony of saxophones and electric guitars. The Obsidian Death goons kicked their dancing into high gear, giving the occasional spin. The Techs began performing a complicated arm roll and a foot-tapping series of kicks. The sparks of light Glam Tech were producing began bursting into explosions of colored energy, giving the impression that they were dancing through a field of fireworks. Tech used his False Cloning to summon a group of dancing holograms around them, giving their performance extra pizazz.
The music’s flow twisted and turned through various pitches and tempos, with each group doing their best to keep on beat and one-up the others performance. After a few minutes of this, the music began swelling into its final crescendo, challenging the dancers even further. Finally, the music hit its final, grand note. The Obsidian Disco goons attempted to perform one last leg movement to accentuate the note, but ended up tripping over each other. The Techs combined their abilities in one last-ditch efforts, striking an incredible back-to-back pose and creating an explosion of light so intense that a shockwave rang out, knocking the Obsidian Death goons off the stage with explosive force and sending them flying as the song ended.
“Ladies and gentlemen, we have our winners!” The announcer shouted, shifting the main focus of the spotlight onto the two Techs. “Tech and Tech have won the dance battle!”
The crowd went wild, cheering and hooting for the two winners. The two detransformed, with Glam Tech waving to the crowd and Tech awkwardly standing there.
“This was certainly an amazing performance, not that we’d expect anything less from our resident champion!” The announcer chuckled. “Well folks, let’s hope we see him back again soon!”
The stadium slowly warped and faded away, leaving Tech and Glam Tech standing in the same alleyway as before, with the Obsidian Disco goons lying on the ground, unconscious.
“Nice tracking there, drab me!” Glam Tech said. “With some practice, you might even be a decent dancer on your own!”
“Thanks, I gue-” Tech replied. “Wait, what do you mean ‘drab me’?”
“So, what are you going to do now?” Glam Tech brushed off the question.
“I’m going to see if I can find my way back to my actual home dimension. This stuff isn’t an exact science, so I don’t know how many tries it’ll take.”
“Well hey, out of all the people on this Earth you could’ve come across, you just so happened to come across me, right? I’m sure there’s something trying to help you along in the right direction!”
“You just might have a point there.”
Tech pulled up the SpecTrix and transformed back into Abstract and began walking out of the alley to find a doorway.
“Good luck, me!” Glam Tech shouted after him. “Not that you’ll need it!”
Tech waved back at him in response, then turned the corner out of the alleyway, heading towards the nearest building entrance.
Glam Tech looked down at the still-unconscious forms of the Obsidian Disco goons lying on the road.
“Eh, I’m sure they’ve learned their lesson.” He shrugged, walking out of the alleyway. “And if they haven’t, I’m always up for another teaching opportunity!
Tech stepped through the door portal he had created, deciding to stay as Abstract in case he hadn’t reached the right dimension. A bright red light shined directly into his eyes, blinding him for a few moments. As his eyes adjusted, he found his head directly in the path of a laser sight. He swiftly detransformed, becoming about a foot smaller and narrowly avoiding an inordinately large bullet.
“What the hell?!” He exclaimed, jumping to the side. “What’s going on?!”
Tech’s question was answered almost as soon as he asked it, as he caught sight of what had shot the bullet at him. A large, semi-humanoid mecha with four arms and tank treads on the ends of its legs stood in front of him, lining up another shot with an enormous shotgun embedded into its arm.
“Oh screw this!”
Tech swiftly transformed into Technius and unleashed an electromagnetic pulse in an attempt to disable to the machine. However, the pulse had no effect, accomplishing nothing but giving the robot extra time to line up its shot. Tech detransformed again as it shot, dodging the bullet and running down the street as fast as possible. The mecha gave chase, using its tank treads to gain extra speed and gain on him.
As the mecha caught up to him and was about to fire another shot, it was suddenly interrupted by a vine exploding out of the road and snatching its leg, tripping it up. Tech dodged to the side as the machine fell, narrowly avoiding being crushed. He looked up to see what had happened, spotting a lone teenage girl standing in the middle of the road up ahead. She seemed to be wearing a gray hoodie over some sort of black tracksuit with green accents and a SpecTrix symbol located on the stomach. Her right arm was outstretched, with small green vines sprouting from her palm and stabbing into the ground.
“Would you mind moving?!” She exclaimed. “This might get a bit messy!”
Tech swiftly got up and ran off to the side. Meanwhile, the mecha had been using its tank treads to shred the vines holding it down, finally cutting through and standing back up. The girl standing in the road quickly rotated and pressed the SpecTrix symbol, creating a small flash of green light. The green accents on her suit shifted to blue, and water suddenly began materializing around her hands.
Upon seeing her, the mecha suddenly started shifting around the components on its arms, transforming each arm into a large energy cannon. The cannons wasted no time charging or aiming, firing a volley of energy blasts in her direction as quickly as it could. The girl reacted swiftly, creating a sheet of perfectly smooth, reflective ice in front of herself, sending the energy blasts bouncing away wildly.
The mecha’s cannons spat out energy cartridges and began auto-loading new ones. She took the opportunity to reshape the ice shield into a drill, using a stream of water to send it spinning towards the machine’s chest. Before it could block the attack, the drill made direct contact, ripping through its armored plating and internal structure like a wet paper bag. The mecha spasmed and twitched momentarily, then fell over onto the ground, shutting down. The girl breathed a sigh of relief and pressed on the SpecTrix dial, causing the armored suit to be replaced by ordinary clothes and the full SpecTrix to appear on her left arm.
“What was that?” Tech asked, having watched the fight unfold in confusion.
“Oh, right, I almost forgot about you.” The girl replied, walking over to him. “What exactly were you doing out in the middle of a mech attack?”
“Hopping timelines. Have to admit, I kinda preferred the dance battle-based timeline.”
“Not sure I can explain it very well.”
“Well, if you’re a timeline hopper, you certainly ran into the right person. The name’s Tech, and I’ve been to a few alternate timelines myself.”
Tech raised an eyebrow.
“...Is your first name Isaac, by any chance?”
“Well, yeah, actually.” Suit Tech replied. “How’d you know?”
“Dunno how many times I’m gonna have to explain this today, but I’m Tech too. Kinda got ejected from my native timeline by an evil entity bent on destroying all life, so I’m trying to get back and stop that from happening. Also, who names a girl Isaac?”
“My parents were sorta banking on me being a boy.”
“Man, and I thought mine were sucky with naming. On another note, what’s with the suit thing? Why not just transform directly?”
“When I first got the SpecTrix-I’m assuming you know what that is-I transformed, but ever since I got the B.I.O.M.E. suit, it’s just faster to use that and get the abilities directly.”
“Biologically-Interactive-Open-Mass/Energy suit. Uses a Mass/Energy converter to modify your biology in accordance with the active DNA sample.”
“Sounds fake but okay.”
“Well, this is a nice conversation and all, but you should probably hurry up if you want to stop this whatever-it-is from destroying your timeline. Something like that is probably a Meta Event, and happens in real time across all time.”
“Hurry or you’re screwed.”
Tech pulled up the SpecTrix and transformed back into Abstract, walking up to a nearby door and pulling it open.
“Woah, hold on a second!” Suit Tech exclaimed, running up to him and pressing a few buttons on her SpecTrix. A yellow light wave from her SpecTrix scanned Tech’s current form and added the transformation’s data to her database. “Okay, you can go now!”
Tech simply shrugged in response and walked through the door, closing it behind him.
Tech stepped out of the doorway portal and into the street, finally recognizing a familiar area.
“Hey, I’m back in La Verkin!” He exclaimed. “Not too far from my house, either!”
After examining the area for a few moments, taking in the blue sky and fresh air, he suddenly realized something was missing.
“Oh yeah, the Anti-Life Entity!” He slapped his forehead. “I must have the wrong timeline again! At least I’m getting closer.”
As he was about to turn around and open another dimensional doorway, he was suddenly grabbed from behind and thrown across the street, slamming into a large tree. He groggily pulled himself up, only to be smashed upwards by a sucker punch to the chin, sending him flying. Reaching for the SpecTrix dial, Tech managed to transform into Sandrill midair and land on the ground in a pile of sand.
Swiftly moving away from whatever was attacking him, Tech reformed his body, finding his attacker to be a particularly angry robotic body with an organic, squid-like head inside what appeared to be glass casing.
“New transformations?” The cyborg remarked. “Interesting, not that it seems to be doing you much good.”
Before Tech could ask what he was talking about, a row of crystalline flames suddenly exploded out of the ground beneath the cyborg, sending it flying into the air. The flames swiftly disappeared, but were followed up by a large sonic wave imbued with electricity slamming into the cyborg, sending it flying even further until it was just a speck in the distance. Tech detransformed, puzzled.
Tech turned to see a somewhat younger kid with golden-brown hair walking up to him. The kid wore the Ultimatrix, rather than the SpecTrix, on his right wrist.
“Do I know you?” Tech asked.
“Oh, uh, probably not yet, come to think of it.” The kid replied, scratching his head sheepishly. “I’m this universe’s version of you.”
“You just knew that off the top of your head?”
“Not really.” Original Tech replied. “I met you for the first time earlier in my timeline, but a bit later in yours.”
“Really? What happened?”
“I dunno if I should really tell you that, considering that it was probably a Meta Event. Might screw up time and stuff, you know?”
“Alright then, what can you tell me?”
“I can tell you that I can get you to your native timeline!”
“Cool!...Hey, hold on a second, if I meet you later in my timeline, doesn’t that sorta guarantee that I’m gonna win whatever fights I need to until then?”
“Unless it’s a Meta Event, yeah!”
“...And if it is a Meta Event?”
“Then if you don’t fix it in time, we’re all screwed.”
Original Tech began fiddling with the Ultimatrix, eventually causing the dial to pop up. He pressed it down, transforming into his universe’s Temportal, then used some surrounding dirt and debris to create a small portal.
“Okay, this should take you over to your native timeline, and drop you off by your shop to boot!” He said. “I dunno if it’ll land you in the right time, but I’m sure you can figure things out from wherever you land. I can’t keep this open for long, so hurry up!”
“Right. Thanks, kid.”
Tech swiftly ran up to the portal and dove through it, exiting the timeline. Original Tech collapsed the portal and detransformed, taking a knee to catch his breath.
“Seriously, man.” He remarked. “We’re all counting on you.”
Tech emerged from the portal, first noticing that it closed behind him, and then noticing that something was wrong. Specifically, something was wrong with the air.
Even more specifically, there was no air.
He was underwater.
Before he could react to this, his body was slammed by the underwater current, dragging him through the bottom of the surprisingly deep river he had found himself in. He tried to swim up out of the current, struggling to break free, but kept getting dragged back down. He reached for the SpecTrix, but before he could activate it, his head was slammed into a rock, knocking him senseless and creating a small cloud of blood in the water.
He woozily tried to reach for the SpecTrix again, but was unable to move his arms properly. He felt himself slowly begin to fall unconscious. Suddenly, a loud splash came from somewhere nearby downstream. Unable to turn his head to look, his eyes slowly closed, despite his attempts to force them open. The last thing he saw before falling asleep was a large, vague bronze shape standing above him.
Tech slowly felt himself returning to consciousness, first noticing the cold breeze washing over his body. His eyes snapped open as he jerked upright, violently coughing and hacking the water out of his lungs. After his coughing subsided, he cradled his head in his hands for a moment to recover.
“Ugh...” He grumbled. “I guess that didn’t work.”
“What didn’t work?”
Tech uncovered his face to see two teenagers nearby looking at him. One was a boy who wore a dark overcoat with oversized jeans and two belts, with some type of transformation matrix mounted on a fingerless glove he wore on his left hand. The other was a girl wearing a sleeveless orange-red shirt with regular jeans and a pair of fingerless gloves. A large, star-shaped pair of shades covered the upper half of her face.
“...Who are you two?” Tech asked.
“I’m Nova, and he’s Theo.” The girl replied. “Some people just call him Tech, though. He’s the one who just pulled you out of the water and saved you from drowning. Patched you up pretty decently, too.”
“Patched me up?” Tech felt his head where he had hit the rock. It felt perfectly fine. “Okay, that’s kinda impressive.”
“Question is, who are you?” Theo asked. “And what were you doing at the bottom of a river?”
“I’m Isaac Logical, also mostly known as Tech.” Tech replied, pulling himself up. “I’m guessing that other me accidentally transported me to the wrong alternate timeline. Mine didn’t have a river in that spot.”
“Hold on, Isaac Logical?” Nova asked, looking at Theo, who simply shrugged in response. “You might want to hold off on that ‘wrong timeline’ theory.”
“What do you mean?”
“Eh, you’ll figure it out at some point.”
“...Hey, hold on a second.” Tech narrowed his eyes. “You wouldn’t happen to know Napoleon Eldridge, would you?”
“Sure I do!” Nova replied. “He’s my dad!”
“Your dad?” Tech scratched his head. "And I assume that means you have a mom?"
"You mean to tell me that not only did Napoleon Eldridge of all people manage to reproduce, but also that he did so heterosexually?"
"How would someone do that homosexually?"
"I don't know, this is the future or something, right? I kind of assumed you might have something for that by now."
"...There are a few different obvious jokes I could make here, but I won't for the sake of brevity."
“I hate to interrupt this...enlightening conversation, but I don’t think I have anything for helping you time travel.” Theo said. “You might be on your own with this.”
“Oh, don’t worry about it, I just picked up a form that can do ‘perceptual reality warping’ or whatever. Should be able to take it from here pretty easily.”
“How’d you end up here in the first place?”
“Well, I don’t have much time to explain, so to keep it short, the Anti-Life Entity showed up, kicked me out of the timeline, and now I’ve gotta get back and punch it in its stupid face. If it has one.”
“What’s the Anti-Life Entity?”
As if in response to Theo’s inquiry, a rip in time and space suddenly split open above the three and began swiftly expanding downwards, directly towards Tech. Theo reacted instantaneously, jumping in front of Tech and holding up the transformation matrix on his left hand.
“Roundabout!” He yelled.
As soon as he finished speaking, a green hourglass symbol appeared in the air in front of them, swiftly followed by white energy expanding outwards in an almost pixelated pattern until it formed a four-armed humanoid shape. The energy faded to reveal an insect-like alien standing in front of the group.
“Effect reversal field, now!”
Roundabout threw up its arms and created a glowing, translucent pastel force field in front of the expanding space-time tear. As soon as the rift made contact with the field, it sparked wildly, then suddenly sealed itself back up as swiftly as it had appeared. Theo pressed down on his transformation matrix, causing Roundabout to vanish in a shower of sparks.
“Wait a second, you can summon aliens separately from a transformation?!” Tech asked in disbelief.
“Yeah, but I only really do it in an emergency.” Theo explained. “It uses a lot of power, and I don’t have as much control as I’d like. Don’t even get me started on trying to use Rolling Stone like that.”
“Trust me, I won’t. Anyways, to answer your question, the Anti-Life Entity is what’s causing that stuff to happen. If I can’t beat it in time, I don’t know what’ll happen to this timeline.”
“Sounds like you better get going, then!” Nova said.
Tech nodded and pulled up the SpecTrix, transforming into Abstract again.
“Just direct me to the nearest door, and I’ll be able to get back home!” He explained.
“Up the gorge is the original EarthCo. Gift Shop.” Theo suggested. “That’s the closest thing I know of.”
“Alright then, I’m off!”
Tech began bolting as fast as he could up the gorge, heading towards the gift shop. Theo and Nova stood in place for a few moments, watching him go.
“I hope we get to meet that guy at some point when there’s not some crisis going on.” Nova remarked. “He seems like he’s a lot more open with stuff than our parents are now.”
“Eh, maybe.” Theo shrugged. “I can kinda see why they don’t want to talk about it, though.”
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- Abstract (x5)
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