“What you experienced here,” Jason Petrovsky adjusted his glasses and continued with a smile. “It hasn’t happened to anyone else. It also confirmed my suspicions."
“What do you mean?” she asked, coming to terms with the fact that this scrawny high school kid who had gone missing a year ago was part of all this.
“This chamber brought out different kinds of reactions from other subjects. It was usually about them facing their worst fears or experiencing their inner most thoughts come true. It was meant as an experiment on perception of reality,” he replied. “But your experience of meeting your future self is a time travel anomaly.”
“Which is that time travel violates causality – the cause and effect theory” she chimed, seeing where he was going.
“Exactly! What if I went back in time and killed my grandfather before he met my grandmother?” he asked, referring to the grandfather paradox.
“Then you would never have been born, which means you would never have been able to go back in time in the first place, and which means your grandfather could not have been killed, and so on.”
“Hence the argument against time travel in the real world. But..,” he paused and looked at her in a challenging tone.
“In the quantum world, all bets are of,” she replied as if reading his mind. “Because quantum theory dispels the notion of cause and effect itself!”
“Correct! There is so much we don’t know. Can we breach the time barrier? Even if we did at some point in the future, how come no one from the future has visited us so far?” he asked, echoing the sentiments of Stephen Hawkings.
“You know, Elizabeth,” he continued. “When I found that it was you, I convinced them not to do you any harm, because we have proof that time travel will, and does become a reality in the future, and that you play a big part in it.”
So the meeting with her future self wasn’t entirely her imagination after all, she thought. But how did it happen, and why did her future self and the portal disappear all of a sudden?
“But why repress the other smart people?” she asked. “Why keep everyone in the dark? Why not use scientific innovations for the betterment of humanity?”
“Oh, Elizabeth, you’re such an idealistic school girl!” he scoffed and continued with a gleam in his eyes. “We are the most powerful society in the world. The research projects we have offer endless possibilities the likes of which the world will never have seen. We will rule over the common people. For that, we need to do away with the other smart ones. "
“No,” she shook her head, still taking in everything. “This is not right.”
“Don’t be silly, Elizabeth,” he insisted, getting impatient. “What will you do after high school? Go to Harvard? MIT? Yale? And then toil another four years for a PhD? School will only keep you down! And then what? A $100,000 job and a twenty five year mortgage? You know that you’re far better than that!”
“Besides, you don’t have a choice,” he continued, and then beamed. “By the way, who do you think was the only one who scored higher than you in that IQ test?”
She looked at him, not sure if she should feel disgusted or amazed.
“Yes, I’m officially the smartest one in the world,” he proclaimed. “Join me and we can accomplish many great things together, the way we’re destined to.”
She realized that he was getting way over his head.
“Well, you may be the most intelligent person, but there is one thing you will never be able to beat me at,” she smiled mischievously.