Chapter 12

Las Vegas, Nevada, April 21, 1955  7:15 PM

Sam is getting really nervous and has resorted to pacing back and forth in 
his dressing room.  He went back to the casino because he thought if he were 
around people, it would make him feel a little better.  But it didn't help.  
It was getting closer to the time when Sharon and Randy would be leaving to 
go on their dinner date and he still hadn't heard from Al.  Randy said he 
was going to rent a car and travel to the little restaurant they would be 
dining at just across the California border, which means they will be alone 
if Bob follows them.  This was worrying Sam and he was hoping Al would be 
there to help be his second pair of eyes.

Just then Sam heard the familiar sound of the imaging chamber door open and 
out stepped Al in his white Admiral's uniform.  He had a huge smile on his 

"Oh am I so glad you finally showed up.  I need to know the odds of us all 
coming up missing has changed or not."  Sam said to Al.

But Al didn't respond right away.  He was off in his own little world.

"Al.  Did you hear me?"

"Huh?"  Al responded with still a big smile on his face.  Sam decided to try 
a different approach.

"I take it you've finally seen Beth again.  How did it go?"

"Huh?  Oh, Beth.  Yes, it went very well.  In fact it went better than I 
could have ever dreamed.  Oh Sam...She's still so beautiful after all these 

"That's great Al!"

"But it gets better Sam."  Al continued.  "You're not going to believe this 

"What?  You finally got to punch Dirk in the nose?"  Sam grinned.

"Well, yes..."

Sam looked at him.  He had just been kidding, but then Al continued.

"But that's not what I'm talking about.  Sam...I'm a dad and a grandfather!  
Can you believe it?!"

Sam looked at Al with surprise and happiness for his friend, but is still in 
shock.  This certainly wasn't what he was expecting Al to say.

"Al!  That's great!  But how?"  Sam asked with a confused look on his face.  
"During the leap where I first met Beth, she had no children with her at 
that time and she never mentioned any children.  So how can you be a 

"Christina, that's my daughter's name...isn't that a nice name?"

"Yes Al...go on."  Sam said eagerly.

"Christina was at Beth's mother's during that time.  Beth told me all about 
it.  Between her job, caring for Chrissy, and then dealing with my 
disappearance on top of it, Beth was exhausted and needed a break.  
Sooo...her mother took her for a little while."

"Well, that would explain it."

"Yeah....Hey!  You want to see some pictures?"

"Sure Al, but..."

Al wouldn't let him finish, he was too excited.  He tucked the handlink into 
one of his other pockets and continued to speak while he was taking the 
pictures out.

"She's so beautiful Sam.  Just like her mother."

Al placed the picture in front of Sam so he could see it.

"She is very beautiful Al, but..."

Sam was happy for his friend, but his current situation was at the top of 
his list at the moment.  Al continued.

"I've got pictures here of my grand kids too."

He puts the pictures in front of Sam.

"This is Bobbie, who looks just like I did as a kid...and get this...he has 
the same birthday as me!"

"Wow Al!  How did that happen?"  Sam decided he'd wait a few more minutes 
before asking Al again what the odds were for tonight.

"Don't know."  Al replied.

Then Al points to the little girl in the picture.

"This is my little granddaughter Kaitlyn, who also seems to show a bit of 
resemblance to me."

"They're a great looking family Al!  You must be proud."

"I am Sam.  You know...I never thought I'd have a family, but now I do.  
It's weird, but it's a great feeling Sam.  I spoke to Chrissy on the phone 
and we've made plans for me to meet the whole family in Albuquerque next 

Sam was sorry to break up Al's moment of pure joy, but he had to return to 
his problem.

"Al, I apologize for changing the subject, but I need to know what Ziggy is 
saying is going to happen tonight since I've changed history."

Al snapped out of it and then focused on the matter at hand.

"Oh yeah.  I'm sorry pal.  I guess I got a little carried away."

"No problem Al."

Al punched some buttons on the handlink and for once it didn't give him a least not technically.

"Uh oh."  Al said.

"What 'Uh oh?'"

"Well, the good news is you, I mean Norman, doesn't come up missing; 
but...the bad news is...Randy and Sharon still do.  Only this time their 
remains are found 20 years from now along route 15 to California."

"Damn!  I was hoping with Randy taking Sharon somewhere else it might have 
prevented that from happening.  Bob must have followed them.  Al, see if you 
can have Ziggy center on Sharon and Randy and keep me posted on what's going 
on until I can catch up to them."

"Okay Sam."

Al then enters code into the handlink.

"Ziggy, center me on Randy and Sharon!"

Then he disappears.

Sam rushes out through the lobby of the casino to head outside to his car, 
but almost runs into Bob on the way out the door.


Sam apologized not realizing who he had almost bumped into.

"No problem."  Bob replied.  "Hey!  Aren't you that Norman guy?"

Sam stopped in his tracks and turned around to face the man he had almost 
ran into.  Realizing that it was Bob, he was both shocked and afraid but did 
manage to get out a reply.


"You wouldn't happened to have seen Sharon in here did you?"  Bob asked.

Sam gulped.  He didn't know if he should answer him; but if he didn't, it 
would look even more suspicious to Bob.

"Uh...not recently, no.  I thought you were going to Reno?"

"Was...but then Matt, my old army buddy, decided he wanted to go tomorrow 
night instead.  He said something came up...that he'd bumped into an old 
girlfriend and had to finish some unfinished business."

"Matt?  Matt Johnson?"  Sam asked him.

" know him too?"

"We've met."

Just then Al comes back in a panic.

"Sam!  You better hurry!  It's not Bob that kills them its..."

"Matt Johnson."

"Yeah, you just said that."  Bob said thinking Sam was speaking to him.

"Yeah, how did you know?"  Al asked Sam.

"He's the brother of one of Sharon's old high school friends.  I didn't 
realize that he was the old army buddy you were talking about, though."

Sam said trying to answer both Bob and Al at the same time.

"Well, you better hurry up because Matt came up to them at a gas station 
with a shot gun.  They escaped but Matt is hot on their trail."  Al said in 

Sam decides to take a chance with Bob to try to include him in stopping Matt 
from doing the unthinkable.  If Matt is in a jealous rage, he'll need all 
the help he can get.

"Bob, I think Sharon may be in danger.  That's where I was going in such a 
hurry.  Will you help me?"

"Sharon in danger?  Of course, I help you!  Lead the way."  Bob replied.

Bob followed Sam out to Norman's car, but then Bob stopped.

"Wait!  Let me get my shot gun from my truck.  We might need it."

Bob ran off toward his truck.  Al approached Sam as he was getting into 
Norman's car.

"Sam are you sure you can trust this guy?"

"I'm going to have to Al."  Sam quietly said to Al.

"But did you hear him?  He's going to get his shot gun!"

"In case we need it Al."

"Did you say something?"  Bob asked as he came up to Norman's car.

"No. Nothing."  Sam said as he finished getting into the car.

Al still didn't like the idea of Bob coming along but decided to accept it.

"Okay Sam.  If you think so.  They're 20 miles south of here Sam.  On Route 

Sam and Bob headed out of Las Vegas on Route 15 with Sam driving as fast as 
he dare without getting into an accident.


Somewhere on Route 15 South...

Al pops into the backseat of Sharon and Randy's car.  Randy is driving as 
fast as the rental car will allow and Sharon looks nervous.  Soon a shot 
comes through the back window and Sharon screams.  Al jumps and the car 
swerves as Randy panics.

"Randy what do we do?!?!"  Sharon screamed in a panic.

"I don't know!  I don't know what's come over Matt!"

"How could your own brother do this?!"  Sharon asked.

Another shot came through the back window.  Sharon screamed again.  This 
time the bullet nicked her in the arm.

"Oh no!  Sam, hurry up!  Ziggy center me on Sam!"  Al disappeared.

"You dated Matt once didn't you?"

"Yeah, before he went off to war.  I know he was upset when we split up, but 
I never thought he would be this crazy about it."

They heard another shot, but this time he missed the car entirely.  Sharon 
ripped off part of her skirt to use as a bandage on her arm.  There was 
already blood on the dress from her wound so it was already ruined.

Al popped into the backseat of Norman's car startling Sam.

"Sam!  Matt's taking shots at them and one of the bullets nicked Sharon!  
Hurry up!"

"I'm driving as fast as I can!"

"I know."  Bob said looking at Sam confused.

"I know you are Sam; but if you don't catch up to them soon, there won't be 
anything left of Sharon or Randy!"

"Look!"  Bob said.  "I recognize that truck.  That's Matt's truck...and he's 
shooting at that car."

"That's Sharon's car."  Sam added.

"Sharon's car?  But why would Matt want to kill Sharon?"  Bob asked.

"Good question."  Sam replied trying to take a quick glance at Al.  Al took 
the hint and punched something into the handlink.

"'re not going to believe this.  Matt once dated Sharon.  Even 
proposed to her, but she refused.  He never got over her.  Matt apparently 
had a normal life until he received a severe head wound in the war.  He was 
in a coma for 6 months.  In fact, the doctors didn't expect him to live; and 
if he did, they expected brain damage.  But he surprised his doctors with a 
remarkable recovery.  They even thought he escaped any damage to his brain."

"Well, apparently they were wrong."  Sam said.

"Who was wrong about what?"  Bob asked.

"The doctors were wrong about Matt.  He had some head trauma during the war, 
didn't he?"  Sam asked.

"Yes, but he came out of it alright."  Bob said.

"Well, apparently not."  Sam returned.

"Sam!  Have Bob shoot out Matt's tires!"

Al suggested and Sam was going to relay it to Bob when Matt shot out Randy 
and Sharon's tires.  Their car swerved and went off the side of the road and 
Matt immediately applied the breaks, backing up to where their car went off 
the road.  He got out of the truck, shot gun in hand.

"If I can't have you Sharon, no one can!"  He shouted towards the car.

Sam slammed on the breaks and both Bob and he got out.  They tried to get to 
Matt before he could get to Randy and Sharon's car; but Matt got there 
first, dragging Sharon out of the passenger side of the car by her hair and 
then slapping her across the face, causing her to fall to the ground.  He 
then pointed the shot gun at her.  But then Randy came up behind him and 
tried to grab the gun from him.  Matt pushed him to the ground and pointed 
the shot gun on Randy.  He was about to pull the trigger when Sam jumped at 
him, pushing Matt to the ground.  Matt rolled on top of Sam.  They struggled 
for a moment until they heard a shot.  Bob had shot into the air.

"Matt!  I've got one more shell in this gun.  If you want it, just keep 
doing what you're doing."

Matt froze.

"Now drop the gun and get up slowly."  Bob commanded.

Matt did what he said.

"Now back up slowly."

Matt complied.

"Is everyone alright?"  Bob asked while still holding the gun on Matt.  
Everyone nodded.

Sharon ran over to Randy, crying, and hugged him.

Bob lead Matt at gun point back to Norman's car.  They both got in the 
backseat.  Sam drove Norman's car while Randy and Sharon road in Matt's 
pickup back to Las Vegas.


Back in Las Vegas.

Matt is being put into the back of a cop car.  Sam finished giving his 
statement to the police and then seeing Al, went over towards him.

"What's going to happen to everyone Al?"

Al looked at the handlink.

"Well, you've certainly changed history Sam.  Sharon and Randy get married 
and have five children."

"Five children?"

"Yeah, their a couple of busy bunnies.  And..."  Al chuckled.  "...they name 
their first son Norman after you...err...I mean Norman."

Sam smiled.

"Well, that's nice Al.  Now see, not everyone thinks Norman is a funny 
sounding name."

Al not answering because he knows Sam is right continued.

"Randy represents his brother, despite the circumstances, using the claim of 
insanity.  Matt is placed in a good home for mentally traumatized war 
veterans and is released in about 5 years.  He leads a pretty normal life 
after that, with, of course, regular visits to a head shrink."


"Did I say head shrink...I mean psychiatrist."  Al grinned.

Sam just sighed.

"What about Bob and Norman?"  Sam asked.

"Norman decides to give up the lounge lizard act to become an insurance 
salesman.  He marries a nice woman and they have three children.  Bob never 
remarried.  After seeing what jealousy did to Matt, he decided against it."  
Al added.  "He went back to Tucson, Arizona, where he started his own car 
garage where he worked until he retired in 1985 at the age of 65."

"So it sounds like almost everyone here has a happy ending."

Sam paused a moment and then remembered Al mentioning that he was able to 
punch Dirk in the nose, not to mention his ex-wife Maxine's threatening 
phone calls.  He decided to ask him what happened.

"So...Al, what happened with Dirk and Maxine?  You said you were able to 
punch Dirk in the face."

Al let out a little chuckle.

"Well...the private jet I borrowed to bring Beth to that small air strip by 
the project hadn't left yet..."

"What air strip by the project?"  Sam's swiss-cheesed mind was playing 
tricks on him again.


"Wait a minute Al.  Did you take Beth to the project?"


"Al!  You realize you compromised the project's security!  What about 
Weitzman and the committee?!"

"Don't worry!  She's military.  She's been reactivated as a nurse, at least 
temporarily, and I personally, with her permission of course, stationed her 
at the project to get around Weitzman and the committee.  She can quit 
anytime she wants."  Al grinned at Sam.  Sam sighed and shook his head.

"Anyway...what happened with Dirk?"

"Well, after I met Beth, Beth and I decided that we wanted to go to 
Albuquerque to "meet" Dirk ourselves at the airport.  We found out he was 
coming in on a plane at 7:45 PM so we took the private jet and flew to 
Albuquerque, with a plane full of military police, of course, and met Dirk 
at the gate to charge him for harassement.  As they were taking him out of 
the airport, they passed Beth and myself.  Of course, Dirk saw us and 
started yelling threats at us and struggled.  He managed to get away and 
lunged at us; but got a swing at him.  Right in the nose.  He went flying up 
against the glass of the gift shop.  HA HA!  That must have been some heavy 
duty glass because it didn't break.  You should have seen him, Sam.  He slid 
down the glass to the floor."

Sam started to chuckle at the sight of Dirk's face smooshed up against the 
glass and sliding down the door unconscious.  Al continued.

"Well, anyway, the military police arrested him and took him away.  Beth has 
also filed for a restraining order against him."

"Well, at least one problem with an vindictive ex-spouse is out of the way, 
but what about Maxine?"  Sam asked.

"Oh...yeah, I forgot to tell you.  She called me this afternoon and told me 
that her shister lawyer and her eloped.  Do you believe that?"

"What?"  Sam laughed.

"So she said because she remarried, she wouldn't be eligible for alimony any 
more, meaning she was dropping the lawsuit.  She even apologized to me for 
upsetting me on my birthday."

"Well, that's the other ex-spouse problem solved."  Sam chuckled some more.

Then Sam and Al both then fell silent.

"So are you and Beth going to get back together Al?"

Al paused for a moment as to consider the possibility.

"I don't know Sam.  We talked about it.  But the only thing we've decided is 
that we should try to get to know one another again first before getting 
serious.  We're going to be friends for now."

"What about Tina?"  Sam asked concerned.

Al paused again.

"Tina is...taking it quite well actually.  She knows how much I love Beth 
and is willing to give me up if I choose to go with her."

"Tina is a remarkable woman."  Sam said.

"Yes, she is."  Al added.

They were both quiet again.

"So why am I not leaping Al?"  Sam finally asked.

"I don't know."

Just then Sharon came over and kissed Sam on the cheek.

"Thank you."  She said to Sam.

"Thank you for what?"

"Just for being so wonderful."

Sam smiled and reached down to give Sharon a hug.  But then a blue aura of 
light surrounded him.  He was going to his next assignment to put right what 
once went wrong.

***THE END***