Merlin Effect


Lady Marie

My name is Dr. Ceara Lothgair of the University of Belfast, Northern Ireland. I don't have time to put the rest of my credentials to writ, so I beg for pardon. Those who find me will know who I am, provided they run a DNA test. Be that as it may, I am writing this because we have made an amazing discovery and a terrible mistake. I am sure I could write this final essay with more flair and throw in professional polishing, but that will serve no purpose other than to waste the small amount of time I have left. My tape recorder was fried during the power surge, so this is my last resort to chronicle the accident. I've already wasted time correcting slight grammatical errors in this section alone, so there will be no more corrections in grammar unless the mistakes are way too annoying.

During the past week, Dr. Christina Rhoten and I have uncovered a tremendous discovery that will more than likely revolutionize how humanity regards time and space. The project was known simply as Purple when we began. Purple is a corresponding color with magickal energy, so we chose that name. We are scientists through and through, but throughout history when one encounters a process that is not readily understood, it is therefore considered magickal. Other counterparts in our field will undoubtedly scoff at this, but I am past the point of being concerned with that.

Perhaps I should start with the excavation, where Rhoten attained the crystal. It was reputed to have been found in the Atlantic Ocean in an archaeological finding. A privately funded organization had been using your average sonar tracking devices when they discovered something wrong with what they thought was their electronic equipment. Everytime they "pnged" a particular section of the ocean floor, there would be an almost ten second delay before the sound would bounce back to the vessel. "Pinging" any other part of the ocean floor produced typical sonar results. Naturally they were baffled -- and when they contacted us, we were equally as perplexed. Since when could sound be delayed in such an environment?

The head of the private expedition, Peter Davis, contacted us within a few days of their find and got Dr. Rhoten out there as soon as possible. They had been colleagues for many years prior to this, so Davis knew that she would not want to turn down such a discovery.

I was sound asleep when the telephone rang, late last night. When I answered, I was greeted with the voice of Dr. Rhoten she sounded exhausted and on the verge of panic. She wanted me to get over to her home as soon as possible. With that, I got dressed and rushed over there as soon as possible. When I arrived, I was in for the shock of my life.

When I opened the door, I was greeted by Christina, but she didn't look right. No. She looked horrid. For a woman of thirty-five, she looked.... oh god. She looked fifty-five at least. A treacherous gasp escaped my lips. She did not seem offended at all. In fact, she nodded. "I expected nothing less from you," she said in a tired voice.

When we went down to the lab, she explained as much to me as possible. She started with the time-loops, which I was somewhat familiar with. During our experiments with the crystal, we had noticed that we often would repeat actions without intending to. When we tried to play back a video recording of this phenomenon, the tape only showed us performing the task once.  We started theorizing that the crystal was reacting to some unknown energy surge in the environment that was causing these loops in time.

Well, while I was asleep, Christina Rhoten made a bold move that we had agreed NOT to do. Sheactually connected cables to the crystal to attempt to get some sort of read out. With a large flash of energy, she was affected. When I say affected I mean by the process that I witnessed during her final hours: radically accelerated aging. Her logical faculties had blown away with the wind, when we tried to work out several theories on how to stop the process, she simply lost her mind. She began hooking cables up to the machine again. Her body looked to be nearing seventy... Her dark brown hair had gone white.

"What are you doing?" I asked in rising fear.

"I'm going to do the only thing I think will work." This time, instead of hooking up a meter to it, she instead hooked up a small generator.

"We don't know if this will be any more successful," I pled. It did no use. She was going to see if she could create some larger scale enactment of the time loop, except she wanted to loop herself back to 35 years of age. I wanted to run. God I wanted to run but I was frozen. I wanted it to work. I wanted to see the power of this thing, but I also knew it could cost me dearly.

When she threw the switch, I saw the last frightening thing of what is left of the rest of my life. The crystal began emitting a strange pinkish glow, then this pink aura lashed out at Christina as if it were a tentacle. She was engulfed in it, and then her body withered away to bones. Literally. I stood there motionless at first. The tentacle withdrew and for the last time in what is left of my existence, I had a moment of clarity. That thing was watching me. It knew I was there. And it had a surprise for me. I turned and ran at that point, that's when a glow hit me. This time however, it seemed to be blue. I could feel static making my hair stand on end, but I ran none the less. I got in my vehicle, and drove home faster than safety would permit. I wasn't worried about safety. Not after that. And not after what just happened to me.

Now here I am. It's been two hours since that incident and I know my time is short, but my fate is going to be different. When I got home, I examined myself in my hallway mirror. I didn't look old at all. I was relieved at first. I had to get control of myself. I went to the kitchen and poured myself a glass of wine. I downed the glass in one gulp. Then another.

Was I safe?

I sat down on the sofa and let my mind clear. If I called the authorities, what would I say? And they could not just go waltzing into her private lab. Not with that thing sitting there. I finally decided to call them anyway and try to warn them. I would answer any questions they had. And damn I had proof. I was on the verge of a possible Nobel prize at the cost of my colleague's life, but I didn't care about that. I still definitely don't care about that. As I picked up the phone, I shifted my bra once. The damned thing seemed to be a little loose. I sat the phone back down on the receiver and decided to just remove the damned thing altogether and put on a nice sweater. As I unbuttoned my blouse, I was confronted with my fate. My bra was loose because my breasts were half their regular size. I briefly wondered if I was shrinking. My jeans seemed loose as well. I went to the mirror and a public school photo of a fifteen year old girl was staring back at me.

A million thoughts raced through my head at that moment. What strange time trap had I fallen into? I was young again, yet the world around me was unaffected. I felt dizzy and my knees gave out from under me. I collapsed on the floor and muttered "This can't be happening to me," but the sound of my reacquired youthful voice slapped me into reality -- no matter how twisted it seemed. I sat there for ten minutes until I finally made myself stand. I looked in the mirror again at my nude chest and my diminishing cup size. How much time do I have left? I wondered. I needed to record the events that had unfolded and that were continuing to transpire. I still had my tape recorder attached to my jeans. I had brought it to Dr. Rhoten's, but I had never used it. And now it was inoperable. Probably because of the strong energy field that had zapped me.


Very sientific of me to say it like that. Honestly, I don't feel like a sientist anymore. My breasts have shrunken away, and I have had to change the hite on my chair lots. My close dont fit. And I seem to be having trubble thinking. Im not going to bother with looking at how I spelled words above because who is going to care. I am a faleyure of a sientis and now I am nothing but a little scared girl again. I cant be more than 6. What will hapen to me? I cant stop the prosess. What is before a baby? A feetus? And befor that? An umbrelo embrea damit. Im loosing it. I haf to stop riting I take so long to find the leter on the keebord i hav waseted to much time i hav to go with dignitty wile I still no wut that woord meens

it stoped it stoped its ben a long time an its not got badder i need to cal the polees an report that drs ben ded but b4 i go i hafto name the expmnt

Mur lin

i gottta gro upso i can fined out wat happund i gotta do sumthing i lok like i am 4 r 5 no on wil lissen to me becos i rite sillee agan uh oh polees r heer i need 2 lit dem in an splane wats happund wiss me luk

Máire Flynn