Adventures of Rex, The


By Richard Jasper

"Say what?" I exclaimed.

"My world," Throckmorton replied. "It needs saving."

"And just what world would that be?"

He explained it to me and he did so in such a way that I had no doubts he was telling the truth. Throckmorton, it seemed, was from a parallel world, one very similar to the Earth in which I lived but in many ways fundamentally different.

"The laws of physics, for example, don't necessarily apply in my world," Throckmorton said. "The laws of magic do."


He showed me. In fact, what he showed me was incredibly convincing. Before me arose a shining city of many-turreted castles, low-slung buildings, tiny cottages, all in a wild array of colors and textures. It looked a lot like Wizard of Oz meets Handsel & Gretel, only prettier.

And there were dragons. And other things. And they all looked perfectly real.

Having a degree in computer animation from Ga. Tech (it annoyed some people that I was really just a geek in hunk's clothing...) I knew that the scene Throckmorton was drawing for me out of thin air was technologically possible, just not feasible. Also, having him levitate me into the air three of four feet kinda drove the point home.

"OK, then," I said, finally, "I'm willing to feature the idea. But why me?"

Throckmorton sighed.

"Partly because you're available," Throckmorton said. "Ideally I would be looking for a warrior, not a professional athlete, but I need someone with heroic qualities and you're it. Also..."

"Now, wait a minute, I interrputed. Whoever said I was a hero...?"

"Oh, my," Throckmorton continued, "surely you haven't bought that line that sports figures cant be heroes? You haven't saved anyone's life, no, but you've given yourself freely and fully to your sport, your team, your fans. It's not insignificant. And then there's this..."

Throckmorton's world dissolved in front of me, replaced by a scene I found quite disturbing--a dark green Sebring convertible racing along the road, almost to the highway. And then a gas tanker abruptly lurching into the road from a minimart, at the last minute stalling and completely straddling the darkened road. The Sebring's antilock brakes fail on the rain-slickened blacktop and the convertible rams the tanker at it's most vulnerable point.

The flames reach a hundred feet nito the sky.

I turned from the scene and faced Thorckmorton.

"Not really?" I asked, quietly.

"I'm afraid so," he answered. "It's time for you to leave this place."

And so I did. •

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