At first, I thought I was standing in water. But it was moisture, moving along the ground. Fog?

The coordinates Quin had given me, had taken me to a rocky island. To my left was a small round building, presumably with one room. Around the outside of the building, just a few feet away from it, was a low stone wall. The building itself, round as if a globe or an igloo, looked almost as if it had been sliced in half. Through the opening, I could see a large spinning object inside. The fog emanated from the building and drifted slowly toward me. Was it steam?  Possibly this steam powered the spinning object. Or possibly the spinning object created the steam. I could see and feel the moisture, however, there was no heat from that which wafted toward me. Not steam. Fog. Or mist.

Obviously, one of my first thoughts was to enter this stone sphere and investigate the spinning object. So I turned and slowly walked the other way.

I have this thing about venturing toward – and especially into – the obvious, when first encountering a new, unknown and foreign place. Over my days as a time traveller, I have found it is usually better to look around first, to get the lay of the land.

Moving away about fifteen paces led me toward a very odd tree. Odd but familiar. Very old, it recalls the weeping willow of my world, though it’s vegetation is a silver-blue color, long strands that look almost like ice. This tree is familiar to me as there is one of the same in Selenitica. Here, the tree stood next to a stone archway.

As I walked toward the arch, a much greater amount of the mist moved toward me. It was thicker here and appeared to come from the ocean itself, and onto the island. Hmmm. If the mist comes from the ocean, and it comes in the opposite direction from that stone building…perhaps the building is connected to the ocean somehow. As curious as I was about the building, I still chose to continue to investigate my surroundings further before entering.

To my right, there was a small formation of blue crystals. I first saw crystals like these more than two years ago when I went up to Reverie, back in Winterfell, to visit Quin’s workshop at Dot Macchi’s former residence. Those crystals were not actually in Winterfell itself, however. For I found a contraption on Ms. Macchi’s land that I took to be a time machine of some sort. I entered that machine and was taken to, what I believe, in hindsight, was another age. It was there that I saw the crystals. But that is a story I have already documented on these pages. I would find similar crystals here, in several places as I explored the island.

It took quite awhile to get my bearings. The position of the sun threw me. It seemed…wrong.

It was sunset. The sun was descending in what I estimated to be a southerly direction, nearly due south, in fact. Or was it sunrise? The only way to find out was to spend some time here.

In his note, Quin called this place, Future Past. As I looked around, I chuckled at that phrase. It seemed perfect, in a way, as I could not tell if, from my starting point in Winterfell, I had gone to the future or the past.

Future Past

Future Past

I walked through the archway toward the ocean. There were steps, which had been hidden by the mist, that led down into the water. I was not equipped for underwater exploration, so I turned back and headed east with the intention of walking around the coast of this good-sized island. If it were sunset, I would have to hurry but if it were sunrise, I had all day.

Part of my tour was over rough rock but for part of it there was a stone path to follow. Along the way were more arches and steps, more crystal formations. There were also strange rock formations, unnatural, going straight up. Built by someone. Tall, with the larger rocks balancing atop the smaller ones.

Around the bend and through another archway, I was standing in the middle of a circle of smaller stone posts. Round on the sides, flat on top. Maybe it was just a wall but they could be seats. This could be a gathering place. In the middle, next to me, was a hovering plant. From a distance I had thought it was a machine as I could see it was moving. but as I came closer, I could see it was a plant. Like the tree I saw earlier, I had seen this plant before as well. A blue-green flower, hovering just off the ground and spinning, slowly in a clockwise fashion. The other one I know is in Tao in the Evergreen lands. The color of that one is different but that may be due to the sun’s effect there as compared to here.

I was on the other side of a mountain range from where I started. Continuing to follow the coast, I eventually made my way back to the arrival point and the round stone building. Along the way, I half-expected to find an underwater building or tunnel, or a tunnel through the mountains. But I found neither, though I can’t rule out the possibility of same.

Finally, I had seen everything in plain view, it was time to enter the stone building.

Inside, the room was nearly filled by a spinning contraption, a large wooden frame rotating around a blue globe that looked eerily like an eyeball, a small, darker, round object inside the larger blue one. The surface of the outer orb was out of reach as the rotating wooden frame was in my way. But that was fine by me. The orb’s surface fluctuated, at times giving the appearance of trying to receive a transmission signal. I stared at it for quite some time but could not come to any conclusion about it…other than the obvious, someone had built this for a reason. But what sort of reason? Was it practical or aesthetic? Or some other?

There was a perfectly round hole in the floor, under the wooden frame. It looked as if water was running beneath the building. I am assuming this water runs to the ocean, either directly or through the mountains, but underground either way. It would explain how the mist could come at me from two directions, this building and the shoreline, at my arrival point. But again, these are assumptions on my part.

The Orb.

The Orb.

I left the building and returned to the arrival point. I must have been here for two hours or so by now but the sun, as best I could tell, was in the exact same position as when I arrived. Sunrise or sunset? Is it possible it is neither? Could it be this island is on a planet that does not rotate? Or moves so slowly that I could not detect a different position in a two-hour period? Because of the seemingly stationary position of either this planet or its sun, my estimate of spending two hours here is only that, an estimate. Under the circumstances, there was no way to measure it truly. It was as if no time had elapsed. Does time stand still here? That is the kind of question I should leave for Quin.

The other question, the bigger question I am left with, is: What is this place? Who built these arches, pathways, this stone building? And secondarily, what is that contraption inside the building? Why is it turning? What is it doing? And that eyeball-looking orb. Is it a screen? Is it for receiving or transmitting…or both or neither?

I know Quin’s time experiments led this place, this time, to be here. But he did not create it, not exactly. It would not be here without his work, however. I know that is difficult for you to understand. It is difficult for me, as well.

I look forward to comparing notes with Quin. I agreed to prepare a report for him and then meet with him to discuss my observations. I think I will send a copy of my report to Dot. Quin told me she has not yet been to Future Past. I wonder if he has even told her about it?


Editor’s Note: You may visit Future Past via Kitely.