marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,
marycatelli
marycatelli

time travel and change

One thing you often get in time travel stories is ones where the time was changed -- o cursed spite -- and you have to put it back again.  To set it right.

What you do not often get is reflections on the people who will be annihiliated by this.

Often, you get people who are explicably the same people despite the change -- somehow preventing the fall of Rome two thousand years ago or the like still results in the same people being born, though they can be otherwise utterly changed -- or people who vanish.  You seldom get newcomers to think about.

In Cursed Child, the disappearances are a matter of concern.  But the only character allowed on stage who will not have a place in the restored timeline clearly understands that he is working for his own annihiliation and does it voluntarily.  A few people who will not exist are mentioned and brushed over. . .

Then , Poul Anderson brings it front and center in the Time Patrol stories.  The effect is -- bleak.  Very bleak.  There's no way around it except to ignore the question, somehow preserve both timelines, or have a third timeline that merges both -- perhaps chiefly the first, but with a few of the better things from the second.

Or, of course, leave it alone.  That's what Endstone ended up doing.
Tags: endings, ethos, harry potter, plotting, poul anderson
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