Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Idea: The man who stole a bit of time

A fellow has stolen nineteen days, four hours, eighteen minutes, and fifty-seconds of time. How it happened isn’t too integral to this idea. Decide on your own. Or don’t explain it at all. Perhaps he was Father Time’s janitor and then he decided to nick some neat hourglasses.

But he plans to put it to good use, especially because it wasn’t a clean theft. There are things coming after him, with the sound of shifting sand and spinning gears marching on before them. He’s only ever seen them briefly, because he knows enough to know to run.

There’s no point to trying to return the time, even if he wants to return it. Even if he knew how, which he may not, the creatures which are following him will not stop. He may have stolen the time by accident and have no idea how it happened or what these creatures are, but still, since he first heard those gears, he knew what they were coming for and that they wouldn’t stop.

His only saving grace is that they seem to move in and out of time just as he moves through space. If he can just get out of the general area, he’s safe. But one of these times, he will be cornered. Now if only he can at least get some use out of the time he stole. The problem isn’t finding uses, oh no. The world is full of situations which need only an extra second of time, and the problem is figuring out what’s important enough, for him or for others, that it warrants a little bit of stolen time.

  • Are there any consequences to long-term exposure to the Very Stuff of Time Itself? Does it curse you with awesome? Bless you with suck? Both at once? 
  • What kind of creatures are after the thief? Obviously something clockwork, but do they have thousands of skittering legs? Knifes protruding from their mouths? Are they a blend of flesh and machine, a seamless fusion rather than an integration? Are there many varieties or only one kind of construct after him? 
  • If the theft was purposeful, what was the thief's motive? Has the thief's feelings on the matter changed? Did he know what he was in for when he started down this path? 
  • Perhaps Father Time is dead, rotting on in a corner somewhere in His Vast Estate, and that's the reason that the clockworkers can't be called off. 

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