The problem with the Overriding Theory of the Fragile Immutability of Time is that there’s no way to test it without risking all of reality. But to not test it, when such a test would be so simple, is just plain sloppy science. And sloppy science may be good enough for the corporate heads at Browne Chronometric Engineers, Inc., but not for the former head of their research and development: one Doctor M. Thraxis.
It is this schism that is at the heart of one of the most intense Temporal Wars ever fought, and our temps are the front line. A long, drawn out game of cat and mouse spanning millennia with the very nature of existence at stake, the war with Dr. Thraxis has no beginning and no end. The corporation and the scientist have been chasing each other on such a convoluted path through the past, present and future, that it has now become impossible to map out just exactly in what order things have happened.
In fact, it always was impossible.
Here then, are three of the many faces of Dr. Thraxis not currently found in the book Time & Temp.
Dr. Thraxis, Head of Research & Development, circa 1973
This is Dr. Thraxis the employee. The brilliant scientist who, while working for Browne & Levitt Parcel, Inc., was one of the leading pioneers in the field of temporal mechanics. He has not yet been disillusioned by the grinding will of the mighty corporation he is on the brink of creating. A vibrant young man with a burning curiosity. Temps are absolutely forbidden from ever coming in contact with him. Doing so is a firing offense. Which is highly unfortunate, because this Dr. Thraxis is often the locus for many experiments attempted by future Drs. Thraxis.
Under no circumstances should young Dr. Thraxis be exposed to evidence of time travel before he has discovered it.
- While Dr. Thraxis will never risk his past life or consciously do anything to prevent the invention of time travel (which would then render it impossible for him to experiment in the first place), it’s pretty clear that one of the easiest ways to disprove the Overriding Theory of the Fragile Immutability of Time is to smuggle a message to himself in the past that he never received. The temps should do all that they can to prevent this from happening, short of harming either of the Drs. Thraxis or interfering with the work of young Dr. Thraxis. And management should never, ever find out about it.
- Many of Browne Chronometric Engineering, Inc.,’s rivals would stop at nothing to beat them to the early time travel patents. An elite temporal black ops team armed with state-of-the-art equipment from 2033 is sent back in time to abduct young Dr. Thraxis. Its a good thing we’ve deployed a squad of underachievers armed with only their wits to intercept them.
Lord Thraxis the Elder, circa 1550
For a brief while, in an attempt to create a historic record that had not existed before began traveling in time, Dr. Thraxis spent some time working his way into the gentry class of England during the reign of King Edward VI. Unbeknownst to him there are several historical, if trivial, references to a Lord Thraxis the Elder from that time period, but the spelling of the day being what it was has somewhat obscured the matter. The real threat here is not the Elder, but his son and daughter, twins who, historically, never managed to produce any offspring. These two horn-birds need constant chaperoning from the moment they each come of age in 1550 until they are ostensibly burned at the stake by order of Queen Mary I in 1555.
- One (or more) of the twins has set their lustful gaze on no less a personage of Princess Mary herself, and is now embroiled in a love triangle (or rhombus) with King Philip II of Spain. Ah, romance, intrigue, sword play and poisoning! All the makings for a classic tale, with the temps tagging along to make sure everyone remains perfectly chaste.
- You didn’t think we’d actually let the Thraxis twins perish in the flames of religious cleansing, did you? After so many encounters with the kind and reasonable, but ultimately misguided Dr. Thraxis, what sort of cold-hearted assholes wouldn’t answer his plea for help? Can the temps successfully convince the world that the Thraxis family expired at the stake and then whisk them away to a time and place where they can live out their lives anonymously?
At some grim moment of Dr. Thraxis’s life, his memories, hopes, dreams and ambitions are transferred into the mainframe of mechanized plutoid object orbiting in the Kuiper belt. Thus the almighty Thraxitron 9000-X was born. From this platform, Thraxitron continues the good doctor’s work, attempting to create a single moment of tiny paradox to prove the mutability of reality.
- Able to transmit radio waves back in time, Thraxitron makes several attempts to contact SETI and reveal to them his existence in their own future. Working on Earth, the temps must do battle with astronomers, g-man and conspiracy theorists in order to suppress and obscure these messages.
- Eventually, fed up with Thraxitron’s constant attempts to spoil causality, Browne Chronometric Engineering, Inc., will take the battle to Thraxitron 9000-X. This could play out like the end of Star Wars: A New Hope or 2001: A Space Odyssey, but it’s more likely to fare far worse.