I didn’t expect to wake up. Each and every sword that went into me, presumably to cover their tracks and make it look as though I’d been the one trying to kill the emperor, or something like that, had burned like a live brand until I’d finally lost consciousness. My last thought was literally the wonderment of what I’d done and how I had saved history. It was an egotistic thought, I get that now, but it was still a heady experience that I couldn’t just let go of. But I did have other things to think about once I came to, such as realizing that at some point I’d re-entered the water, though there was no body of water as deep as the one I found myself in at that moment.
My lungs were on fire was the next thought I had after seeing the light just above me, prompting my quick and violent expulsion from the wave that had just crashed over me. Disorientation was to be expected as I came bursting out of the surf, the sun shining on me as I quickly gained my bearings and looked down upon my body. There was not a mark, not a drop of blood that had been spilled, I was in one piece and not dying. Even the pain was a distant, lingering memory, but in my mind I quickly told myself that this had not been a hallucination, everything I’d seen was real.
I had changed history. No, no I had corrected it. Caligula might never have perished at the hands of his famed assassins, meaning that he had perished at some other time. It was a moment in history that many didn’t know about, but it was still one that was significant enough. What might the world have been like if Caligula had lived? But then I had to think about it. The world I remember from before my trip had still believed the emperor had been assassinated, but I had seen something that painted a very different picture. Someone back in that long ago day had lied, had wanted people to believe that Caligula had been killed in that passage.
More importantly, how many other lies were there in history?
My mind was already starting to make a list, disregarding whether or not this was a one-time occurrence or not and formulating a plan on where to go, what time period to visit next, and quite possibly what moment to put right.
The first thing I had to do was get out of the water and dry off, and then I could start searching. You’ll never guess who I picked next.
(to be continued)