A brief historical tale about how one man changed the history of worlds beyond counting
A gentle cough made him open his eyes. He felt drugged, still almost lost in the nightmare of his capture. “Who are you?” Harvey surged against the ropes cutting into his limbs.
“We’ve got you Dragon. Hold still until the operation is complete.” Hands with surgical gloves pinned his head into a clamp. Lights shown in his eyes. A mask clamped on his face. He struggled to hold his breath. A minute later he was under.
He awoke to satisfied smiles surrounding his bedside. The first words out of his mouth were “I’m not Dragon. I’m in his Statistics class.”
Smiles melted with astonishment. The laughter subdued by his announcement merged into a deadly silence. Medical staff leaped to examine him, prodding with astonishing expert ease. “He’s right. It’s a near clone.”
The groan grew like a disease catching everyone in the room. “What’s going on? Who are you? What’s that thing on your foreheads?” He felt his own face, feeling something like what he saw.
“It may be too late. You have no idea how hard it was finding a time hole into this alternate reality. This is the only world where no-one wears the universal sign.”
Harvey Oswald fingered the thing they’d surgically implanted on him. “This feels dumb. Absolutely stupid.” His eyes demanded an explanation.
“Exactly. Yours is the only world not wearing this reminder of humankind’s stupidity and ignorance. It is our reminder of how failable we are. How we are all the same and must help each other.” The surgeon wearing his medical mask was nudged sharply by one of his fellows.
“There is no time. We made a terrible mistake. This is the only world people make emotional decisions on half proven facts that result in the entire planet on war.” The small group huddled together ignoring Harvey.
“What’s Dragon got to do with all this?” Harvey sat up, swung his legs over the side of his bed and continued fingering the thing on his forehead. Something was happening inside of him. He felt a new emotional balance and ease of judgment he’d never felt before. “This thing has a chip in it or something? It’s not just a tattoo?”
One of the nursing staff hurried back to his side to calm his agitation. “Your planet is free to destroy itself and every living creature on it but there is a cusp where you turn your attention outward and poison every known world in creation.”
She fingered her own emblem, whispering some kind of prayer or oath before calming down enough to explain further. “Dragon is the key. In a few short years, he becomes absolute dictator of your world. Our failed attempt to find and turn his way of thinking makes him paranoid. He attacks and infects us with a terrible vengeance.
Harvey shook her off. “You’re crazy. Dragon would never do that. He’s just an overworked student with an interest in writing.”
The other medical personnel turned to him in alarm. “You’ve got to help us find him. You know his routine.” One of them opened the window blinds to their rented hideaway. “There he is.”
Harvey and the nurse were almost trampled in the rush to catch Dragon. They watched as the race took on speed with strange weapons being drawn. Light rays pulsed, sizzling the air around Dragon who wove in and out of cars yelling for help.
“They’ve got him.” The nurse laughed excitedly. Harvey Oswald was Dragon’s best friend. He darted out with the nurse left behind clutching his patient garb.
“They’re aliens from another dimension or something, Dragon.” Harvey tore into the hands holding onto his startled classmate. In an instant, the two were free enough to jump into traffic.
Horns blared, tires screeched, angry voices thundered out curses but the two lads made it safely to the other side of the busy street. Those left behind were not so lucky. They lay sprawled underneath or flying overhead of cars bulldozing into them. Not one was left alive.
“What’s that thing on your forehead?” Dragon pointed at Harvey while leaning over to catch his breath. “What’s going on?”
Harvey caught a glance of the nurse disappearing in a vortex of spinning light. “You won’t believe me, guy. I’m wearing something so stupid it makes no sense at all.”
Thus began a series of events where the one world not wearing ‘I’m stupid’ on their foreheads overran the known universe creating endless wars, pain, and the death’s of countless species as Dragon waged revenge on the plot to take over his life and those around him.