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August Heat

Adam’s ending:

Now what happened that night I am telling you much later in time. The events that happened were so fascinating I could not write them down at the time.

While Charles was sharpening his chisel, he suddenly got a brilliant idea.

"Oh, " he screamed, "I just remembered that I have a book on prophecy down in my den. I’ll go and get it. Maybe it can help us."

When he came back with the book, we quickly looked up precognition. The book read, "Precognition is an evil form of prophecy. It just happens, and there is no way to avoid it. If anything is done to destroy the prophecy, all who are involved shall be destroyed by a great force. Any changes done unto the prophecy shall result in . . . ."

"Shall result in what?" I screamed. "The rest of the page is ripped off!"

"What shall be do?" asked Charles. "We only have eighteen more minutes till the end of August twentieth."

"I don’t know, but we’d better act quickly," I answered. "Wait, I know! Charles, you go down and change the date on the tombstone while I change your face in the drawing."

"But what about what the book said?" protested Charles.

"It didn’t say," I answered quickly. "We don’t know what is going to happen. Now hurry, we must act quickly—the clock is ticking."

Charles went down to his garden, where the tombstone lay. Meanwhile, I started changing the facial features of the man in my sketch. Then, a few minutes later, I heard the chiseling stop, and Charles rushed into the house and up the stairs to where I was sitting.

"It’s finished," he panted as he tried to catch his breath.

No sooner had I finished altering my sketch when the clock struck twelve. After it had finished striking twelve, everything went dead quiet. Now the storm that had been brewing outside hit with the force of one million gas lanterns exploding simultaneously. The biggest bolt of lightning I had ever seen hit the ground.

The next thing I remember was pushing rubble out of my way and crawling out of a pit. Charles and his wife immediately ran over to me.

"You scared the daylights out of me!" Charles bellowed.

"What time is it?" I asked frantically.

"It’s almost noon," Maria announced.

"I made it!" I screamed.

Then something caught my eye—something terrible. Charles had indeed changed the tombstone: instead of my death date being given as1900, it now was 9900. According to the new prophecy, I am going to live until 9900 A.D.

Seeing the direction of my gaze, Charles laughed evilly, "Now, James, I am going to make you my slave until you die. You see, I am immortal, and I can punish and beat you until August 20, 9900.

My life was not, as I had feared, over—it had just begun.

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