This story started with the image of the Chronicler, though I wasn't sure what to do with it. I'd wanted to try and write extremely short fiction, so I decided to mix the two together and try to make a super short story mixed with the evocative image of the Chronicler. At 200 words, it might be the shortest story I've written, and maybe the hardest.
I’m a chronicler, and I’m dying. Before I go, I must find the impossible timeline.
I travel between realities, sailing past our possibilities, our mistakes. They echo in my periphery, an explosion blooming like a mushroom, the rat-a-tat of lead bullets, the arc of a bloodied sword, the crunch of a wooden club.
I sail to the center of eternity.
A pinprick of light pierces my vision like a sunspot. I hold it in my hands and extend my consciousness into it.
I see everything that is, will be, and has been. It fills me with heat. My flesh boils, my mind reels. But still I search.
And my eyes well with tears. A world of peace, without violence, without hate. Sobs wrack my chest. The truth I had known but hoped to be wrong is laid before me. It is a timeline without humans.
In my final moments I enter this world. Sit on the warm grass, feel the earth’s breeze on my cheek.
By the time you hear this I will be dead. I couldn’t find it, but I still believe that out there in the unfathomable infinities is the impossible timeline. Don’t give up.