Monday, 8 May 2017

A Personal Temporal Nexus?

OK. Lorenzo de Conti is a personal causal nexus. See here and here. Could Keith Denison be a personal temporal nexus?

Lorenzo touches and affects many world-lines. Denison, possibly, affects or manifests a quantum probability field. He is like:

"...a gun loaded with trouble, always cocked on a hair trigger." (p. 362) (For full reference, see previous post.)

Twice, Denison is captured and loses his timecycle in a timeline that has to be deleted by the Time Patrol. Of these divergent timelines, the second is generated by Lorenzo. The first is even more mysterious. A story that is a typical hero myth seems to be literally true. But it turns out to be Denison's presence that has generated the story. Everard and Denison must rearrange events so that the myth is again only a myth. Does Denison's probability field draw him towards being captured in divergent timelines? Only time would have told us.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

If Keith Denison was seriously worried about him being a personal causality nexus, he should have requested his superiors in the Patrol to transfer him from doing field work to staff and administrative duties. There would have been no disgrace or shame in doing that!


S.M. Stirling said...

There's an uneasy relationship between historical causation as understood in the Time Patrol stories -- that time is very, very difficult to change -- and chaos theory, which suggests (but does not prove) that it would be extremely easy to change, inadvertently.

In the first Time Patrol story an instructor gives an example: if you went back and prevented Booth from killing Lincoln, unless you took very elaborate precautions it is overwhelmingly likely that someone else would kill Lincoln and Booth would get blamed and nothing would change.

Hence the Patrol allows a lot of time travel -- scholarly research, trade, even tourism.

The later stories seem to walk robust resilience back a bit.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Dear Mr. Stirling,

Yes, I noticed this "tension" in Anderson's Time Patrol stories. And the use of chaos theory in the later stores. But I think it was necessarily implicit in the very idea of time traveling and the Patrol. The tension made for very interesting stories, however.