Wormhole Part Three

Wormhole part two left us knowing the year that El ended up in after driving through a wormhole.

A large, loud man with many medals on his chest burst into the room. “What the Hell is that parked outside the building?” he boomed. He continued looking at El. “It must belong to you. You must be the man from the future?”

“Yes! That’s…” El started to answer. “That’s yes, Sir!” Captain Fremont interrupted. “Yes, Sir!” El continued. “Captain Fremont, I presume? That is my car. It’s a 2009 Mazda RX-8 with a 1.3-liter rotary engine…”

“What are you talking about?” he interrupted. “You hardly spoke a single word that made sense to me… Prescott!”

“Yes, Sir!” Prescott answered, standing at attention. “Do you understand this man?” pointing at El. “Hardly a word, Sir. He speaks English, but he uses so many words I have never heard before that I don’t understand.” Prescott handed Captain Fremont El’s license. Fremont examined it for a moment.

“At ease Prescott.” Turning to El, “Can you explain how you got here in plain, simple English that I can understand?”

“I will do my best, Sir. I was driving home from the office on Coors Road…”

“Coors Road?” the captain interrupted. “That’s just a dirt road on the other side of the river practically in the middle of nowhere.”

“Yes, Sir! It’s dirt in 1943, but in 2016 it’s paved with six lanes and multiple traffic lights at various crossroads that serve shopping centers along Coors Road. The crossroads lead up to housing developments on the West Mesa…”

“2016? Did you say 2016? That’s…” the captain paused to calculate the time years.

“73 years in the future, Sir! And Albuquerque changes a lot in 73 years from now. There’s a million people living in Albuquerque in 2016”

“I can’t begin to imagine that. A million people you say?” The captain waved for El to continue, giving El a not-too-sure look. El continued: “While driving home on Coors… “

“In that car parked outside?” the captain interrupted. “Of course, carry on.”

“I saw what looked like heat waves rising off the pavement. I drove through the waves, and my car felt like the brakes came on as I came out from the other side of the waves. When everything cleared, I was no longer on a six-lane, paved road. I was on a sandy dirt road, in a bare mesa, looking at the Sandias without a single tower on top of it. I knew I had either driven through what we call a ‘worm hole’ or a ‘time warp,’ and I ended up at some time in the past. But at that point, I didn’t know what year it was.”

“How did you end up here?” the captain asked.

“Luckily, I didn’t get stuck in the sand, so I turned the car around (I was heading north before the time warp) and drove south, knowing Coors would connect with Central. I presumed Kirtland and the labs were the safest places to go, so I drove down Central to get across the river, made it over to Gibson, and drove up to the gate. The guards didn’t know what to think of the car, but I told them I was here to show the car to scientists at the lab. They seemed puzzled but made calls, and Sergeant Prescott came out and escorted me here.”

“Labs? What labs are you talking about?” asked the captain.

“That’s right. Sandia Labs might not be very well developed at the moment. I believe they start to develop the labs after the war. But I know what becomes Sandia Labs is on Kirtland, and they are doing work to support the Manhattan Project…”

“What are you talking about?” interrupted the captain “Sandia Labs, Manhattan Project? Never heard of them, but you say they exist, now, in 1943?”

“Yes! What kind of security clearances do you and the sergeant have? If you don’t have top-secret clearances, or whatever level they call it in 1943, you probably wouldn’t know about the labs or the Manhattan Project. I don’t know if I can tell you anymore without the possibility of getting all of us in trouble. Can you find someone with a top-secret clearance I can talk to?”

The captain looked at the sergeant for a moment while he was thinking. “Go make some calls and see if you can locate Major Pierce. I know he has been working in those new temporary buildings they have put out east of here — the ones they won’t let the rest of us go near. Those buildings may have something to do with the ‘labs’ he’s talking about.”

“Yes, Sir!” The sergeant walked out the door after saluting the captain.

The captain looked at El. “What do you have on the table?” They walked over to the table and El show the captain the three cameras, cables, and adapters for the computer. “I carry these three cameras everywhere I go. That’s how I happen to have them. The cameras are all what we call ‘digital.’ No film.” El explained, “however, once the batteries run down the cameras will be of no use because I don’t have chargers to charge their batteries.” El looked inside his computer bag. “I do have the charger for the computer.”

The captain looked and the cameras, cables, and charger with much confusion. “I don’t really know what to say about these things. They are all so strange.”

El asked the captain to pull up a chair. “I want to show you some photos you will find interesting.” They sat down at the table, and El set his Macbook Pro in front of them and opened it up.

“I thought you were going to show me photographs?” the captain asked, giving the black screen a puzzled look.

“I am. I need to wake this thing up first.” El clicked the trackpad, and the Macbook’s screen lit up with a browser in the foreground on a page from his blog titled “Kissy Kats” showing a photo of two cats that look like they are kissing.

“What the Hell am I looking at?” the captain yelled as he jumped up out of his chair and stared at the screen.

“That’s my blog page with a photo of two of my cats grooming each other. The page is cached, so it still shows the pictures and writing.” El explained as he scrolled down the page. “If I refreshed the page, the page would go blank, and I would get a ‘Page not found!’ error or ‘Cannot connect to the Internet!’ error.”

“‘Cashed?’ That’s what we do with checks!” The captain commented, still glued to the screen. “You are not making sense. I see the colored photographs and the words. I hear you speaking, all in English, but I don’t understand anything I’m seeing or what you just said.”

“I don’t expect you to. This is not what I wanted to show you anyway.” El pressed ‘command H’ to hide the browser and then opened Adobe Bridge from the dock.

“What did you do? Where did it go?” The captain asked, completely bewildered.

“I hid the browser, and I’m opening a file manager that I use to organize my photos. See the icon with ‘Br’ bouncing in the dock? I hope it doesn’t try to authenticate over the Internet since there is no Internet.” A moment later, Bridge opened, and a grid of thumbnail photos covered the screen. “Phew! It opened!”

“Look at all those pictures. They are in color and so clear. How did you do that?” the captain asked, captivated by the screen.

“These photos are from the smaller of the three cameras we were just looking at, but I’m changing directories to photos from the camera with the big white lens on it. See how the screen only shows icons that look like folders with different names under each folder. When I double click on this folder, you will see a different set of photos.”

“Wait!” The Captain said looking at the screen. “What’s that?” pointing to an image that was not in a folder.

“Oh! That! Are you ready for this?” El asked as he double-clicked on the image. “Probably not!” The Captain replied. “What is that? It looks like a map, but not?” As the satellite map of Albuquerque opened on the screen. “It’s a satellite image of Albuquerque in 2016 with a map layer on top of it!” El explained.

“You are not making sense, but I can see what you are doing and the changes taking place. I can see that strange ‘Satel..’ whatever you called it.” The Captain said as he stared at the screen. “This is fantastic. It’s like magic!”