VACATION by MORGAN THOMAS PROLOGUE Skydiving. It was like skydiving. Stepping out into the void, leaping into the unknown, stomach churning with anticipation. It was wonderful, magnificent, incredible...superlatives crowded his mind. He twisted and turned, soaring effortlessly, catching air currents, diving, somersaulting like an acrobat. No-one else could do this. No-one else could Leap as he could, fly through time. Exhilaration filled him. He almost missed an air current. His maneuvers were not so graceful now, each one taking more effort to accomplish. He was tiring, but still he managed to catch the currents. Then he realised the air was catching him, great gusts tearing at him, flinging him around like a rag doll. Clumsy with fatigue, it took all his strength to make the moves. There was no parachute. The realisation smashed into him like a heavyweight's fist. He saw Earth rushing to meet him as he plummeted down, tumbling headlong, out of control. He twisted and turned desperately, only just catching an air current, then another, then - barely - another. One false move would send him crashing to earth. Or was there no Earth beneath him? Nothing but the yawning well of the void stretching into infinity? He was a speck, a mote, falling. Falling in time forever. A whimper of fear began somewhere deep inside, gathered momentum, became a great shriek of terror, which tore out of his throat like an express train from a tunnel.