Twists Of Time

Chapter 1

Author's Note:  Thank you to everyone that has contacted me in one way or another about my writing lately.  I really appreciated the kind words, and even the veiled insults about my whining for attention.  Yes, those were helpful too.  Now as you know, this story was posted on the Fort Board first, so you will recognize this first chapter if you read that post.  I can't start posting here with the second chapter, though.  As with any other work that I have posted, I want feedback on this story.  If you like it and just want to say great chapter, fine.  If you want to tell me how terrible it is, please try to be constructive so that I can improve my efforts.  If you want to tell me what you think should happen next, that's great too.  I don't promise I will use your suggestion, but I do swear to consider it seriously.  Thanks for reading my stories, now have another one.

Casey awoke with a start as the warm wetness spread through his underwear, soaking them and seeping through to his pajama bottoms.  He crawled quickly out of bed and grabbed a fresh pair of briefs from the dresser on his way across the hall to the bathroom.  He stripped down and cleaned himself off as quietly as he could, but the air in the water pipes groaned as always.  He redressed in the clean underwear and went back to his room, but stopped dead still when he saw his father sitting on the bed.

"Sit down, son," Dad told him.  "I think it's time we had a little talk."  Casey looked at the clock, and then back at his father.  "I know it's four in the morning, son, but this is important."

Casey sat stiffly beside his father.  He was always nervous when his dad wanted to talk.  That meant that he was in trouble.  The boy wasn't sure what he had done this time, but it must be bad to get his father out of bed at this time of the night.  He could only assume that it was because he had run the water and made the pipes make that terrible noise.

"Did you realize that it's your birthday already?" Dad asked with a nervous smile.  "You're thirteen now, a teenager."

"I don't feel any older," Casey murmured.

"Well, as far as that goes, I don't feel as old as I am, either," Dad told him.  "The point is, whether you feel older or not, you are growing up.  What just happened to you is proof of that."

The boy immediately reddened.  His dad knew!  A mixture of guilt and shame threatened to completely overwhelm young Casey.  "I… I'm sss…ssorry," he stammered.  "I don't mean to, really I don't.  It just happens when I'm asleep…"

"It's all right, Casey," Dad assured him.  "This happens to all boys when they get to be about your age.  This is nothing that is your fault."

"Really?" the frightened boy whispered.  "Did it happen to you?"

"Son, just because it happens to all boys, that doesn't mean it is something to talk about," Dad said sternly.  "Now this book will tell you everything that you need to know about what is happening to you.  I checked it out of the public library for you, so treat it with care."  Casey's father handed him a book called 'A Doctor Talks to Boys'.  Dad stood up then and left the room.  He didn't even say goodnight. 

Part of his mind was glad his dad had left and stopped talking about embarrassing stuff.  Unfortunately, there was another part that wanted to talk more to his father about what was going on.  He didn't want to read some crummy book.  The glad part won out.  He had been embarrassed enough for one night.  He opened the book and scanned down the table of contents.  The chapter titles were words he had never heard of, and some he didn't even know how to pronounce. There were long words like Adolescent Psychology, Masturbation, and Nocturnal Emissions.

Emissions he knew about from science class at school.  Emissions were the fumes that cars gave off and they were bad things.  They must have been bad, because all the companies that made cars were putting new motors in the new models that burned only unleaded gasoline, just to avoid making so many emissions.  That couldn't apply to him, though.  He wasn't a machine with a motor.  

"Lights out, Casey!" he heard his mother yell from down the hall.  "You can read the book tomorrow." 

"Not likely," Casey thought to himself as he put the book on the bedside table.  "It looks totally boring."

Casey's curiosity got the better of him in the morning, however.  He picked the book up again and flipped through the pages.  Suddenly he stopped.  There on the page before him was a drawing of several boys, different ages, all naked.  He could see their things!  Dad couldn't have known that was in there.

Casey stared at the page.  The boys were standing side by side and the caption under the picture gave the age of each of the boys.  He could see that the boys got taller as they got older, but other things were different with each boy as well.  Their boy thing suddenly started to be drawn bigger at thirteen.

"I'm thirteen," he thought.  "Does this mean mine will grow like the boys in the pictures?"  He tried to read the text of the book around the picture, but it was so much Greek to him.  The words were too big and confusing for him.  He looked back at the picture.  "That boy that is thirteen has hair around his thing," he observed silently.  "Maybe I'll get some too."

He flipped some more pages and came to the chapter called 'Nocturnal Emissions'.  He reasoned that the doctor wouldn't talk to boys about cars; a mechanic would do that.  He decided to try and read the text again.  This time it made a little more sense.  He found out that this chapter was about what was happening to him.  He was having dreams that excited his body and made it release fluid. 

He read on that these dreams were often erotic in nature, whatever erotic meant.  The doctor explained that these dreams would occur about the same time that a boy's interest in the opposite sex changed.  Casey knew that the opposite sex referred to girls, but he was confused.  His thoughts about girls hadn't changed at all.  He was feeling funny being around some of the other boys though.

Casey read the whole book, but it did him little good.  Most of the words were just too difficult for him to understand.  He tried to ask his mother about them once and quickly learned not to do that again.  He had sounded out the word as they had taught him in school back in first and second grade and asked Mom what a pen is was.  He wasn't sure what it was, but he had never heard of anything he had being called that, yet the book talked about boys' pen ises a lot.  He got a spanking from his mother and another from his father for his troubles.  They also made him wash his mouth out with soap.

The book left him wondering what was wrong with him.  If the dreams he was having were supposed to have anything to do with how he felt about girls, he was really confused.  His "nocturnal emissions", as the doctor called them, were about boys, not girls. 

A couple of weeks earlier, Casey had been on the playground at school and had witnessed an event that totally confused him.  He had been goofing off with his usual friends, Robert, Chad, and Russell.  Chad had the idea to pants Russell as he climbed on the jungle gym.  Robert agreed and he and Chad both tugged on the waistband of Russell's jeans.  The denim that covered Russell's butt fell to his knees, but to the surprise of all four of the boys, so did his underwear.

Casey got a full moon from Russell as the boy jumped off the rope ladder of the jungle gym to the ground.  He quickly pulled his pants up, announcing his intention to tell the teacher on them.  As usual, Casey had been the mediator of the group, convincing Russell that no one had intended to embarrass him that way.  It had taken some work, but Casey finally got the angry boy to listen.  A week later, Russell got his revenge on Chad in the locker room.

The boys were all getting dressed after class when Casey saw Russell and Robert plotting together in secretive whispers.  They suddenly rushed up behind a naked Chad and grabbed him by the arms.  The two boys drug their helpless victim to the door of the locker room which opened directly onto the main court of the gym.  Robert opened the door and Russell shoved Chad out of the room.  They slammed the door behind him, and then leaned against it, blocking him out.  Casey had caught a glimpse, just before the door closed, of a group of girls walking past from their locker room down the hall.

Casey once again intervened in the mischief of his friends.  He got Robert and Russell to let Chad back into the room before the coaches appeared.  Amazingly enough, none of the girls who saw Chad reported it to the faculty.  Casey anticipated Chad being really mad at Russell and Robert, but was surprised that Chad just laughed it off.  Chad looked at Russell with a grin and told him that they were even.

 A few nights after dad gave him the book, Casey had just started to doze off while reading one of his favorite books, The Lord of the Rings.  A noise startled him and he looked up expecting to see one of his parents, but instead found a man standing in his room.  This was a stranger, but for some reason, Casey wasn't afraid. 

"You really were a little boy once," the man smiled strangely at him for a moment.  "I don't think you are as cute as I was though."

"Are you talking to me, or just to yourself like Daddy does sometimes?" Casey asked.

"I'm sorry, I was just remembering something from the future," the man said.

"How do you do that?"

"Never mind," the stranger answered.  "Get up and come on, now.  We've got to start your training.  You've got a lot of work ahead to be as good at this as me, and the problem is you have to be better."

"Modesty isn't your strongest feature is it?" Casey asked.

"Oh my god, I never thought I would like hearing you say that," the man laughed. "I guess I miss you more than I thought I did."

"You know me in the future?" Casey asked him.

"Oh yes, we will know each other all right," the man confirmed.  "Only if you get out of that bed and shake a leg."  Casey couldn't resist.  He jumped out of bed and shook his leg vigorously.  The strange man looked at him with the weirdest expression.  "Now I understand why you get mad at me for doing that.  Come on, Mr. Comedian."

"Well you told me to," Casey pouted playfully.

"I can't believe Pop was right, I am you all over again," the man mumbled.  "I'm going to need therapy after this is over, I just know it."  He suddenly clasped a hand over his mouth.  "Oh my god, I'm even talking like you now."  He walked toward the window and then turned back to Casey.  "We are in a bit of a hurry here."

"I'm not," Casey defended.  "I don't have to go anywhere.  I don't know you, and you broke into my room.  I'm not going anywhere with you."

"Yes you are," the man stated flatly.  "You have to come with me, or you will never meet the love of your life, or your best friend ever, and most importantly of all, I won't be born."

"Yeah, uh-huh," Casey said sarcastically.  "I already have a best friend, thank you very much.  I am thirteen years old, my love life hasn't started yet."

"Yes it has, or there wouldn't be a set of wet, sticky pajama bottoms on the floor in your closet, now would there?" the man asked pointedly.

"How did you know there was.... I mean so what if there was?" Casey snapped.  "That don't mean nothing."

"HA!" the man called out.  "See there, you used bad grammar when you were a kid too."

"You're not convincing me," the boy reminded the man.

"I'm not supposed to tell you as much as I already have," the man said with a grimace.  "I don't know what else to do.  I guess I will just have to accept that I am about to die."

"What do you mean you're going to die?" Casey asked quickly.

"Well, if you don't come back to the tower with me, I will never born," the man explained.  "If I'm not born, I won't be here to be alive now.  I will cease to exist, which is pretty much the same as dying in my opinion."

"You're not going to like die right here in my room are you?" Casey asked with a wrinkled nose.

"You always were a neat freak, weren't you?" the man countered.  "No, I will just vanish, I think.  I don't really know.  I've never seen anyone stop existing before."

"Well, at least it doesn't sound painful," Casey said, trying to sound cheerful.

"Thanks a lot," the man said quietly.  "I knew you didn't really like me.  All you ever did was tell me to clean my room and behave myself."

"But you're a grownup, I can't tell you what to do," Casey reasoned.

"You're not a kid in the future," the man snapped.  "You're my...... Never mind.  You're not going to help so I'm going to die, and so will... two other people at least.  Not that you care or anything."

"You sound like a kid," Casey observed.

"Well, duh," the man snapped again.  "I was only ten when I left my room the same way you were supposed to tonight.  If you come with me, you will take me back home when the time comes.  I will be ten again then.  I can feel it starting to happen anyway.  How old do I look to you?"

"How would I know?  You look like a grownup, but you talk like a kid," Casey retorted.  He was starting to lose patience with this guy.

"How old do I look?" the man repeated.

"You look about the same age as my dad, and he's 35," Casey told him.

"With this long white beard, you think I look 35?" the man asked.

"You don't have a beard," Casey responded.  The man gasped and grabbed at his face.

"You're right, I don't have the beard anymore," the man whispered in shock.  "It is happening faster than it was supposed to.  I am going back too quick."

"What does that mean?" Casey asked him.

"It probably means that I am going to fade into nothing soon, since you aren't going to help me," the man said quietly, still stroking his face.

"What does it mean if I do help you?"   Casey couldn't believe he had just said those words, but he still wanted to know the answer for some reason.

"It means that you have to train more quickly than I thought you would," the man answered finally looking Casey in the face.  The hope in his eyes was unmistakable, even to Casey.

"Where did you say I had to go?" Casey asked, still amazed that he was saying this.

"Emifornec," the man answered.  "You will live in the Tower of the Time Wizards while you train for your mission, and then you will take over the Tower when it is time for me to return home."

"Wait a minute," Casey said quickly.  "I may not be great at geography, but I know there's no place on earth called Emifornec."

"You're right," the man answered.  "Emifornec isn't on earth, exactly.  It's the at the center of time."

"How are we supposed to get there from here?" Casey asked.

"Through this portal," the man answered, pointing at the window.

"You want me to jump out my window with you?" Casey looked at the man with a raised eyebrow.

"I hate it when you look at me like that, you know," the man said, but he was smiling softly, so he must not have hated it much.  "Now look again," he told Casey.

Casey looked back at the window of his bedroom only now he saw a massive wooden door there in his wall.  It looked incredibly old, and had fancy carvings on it.  Casey recognized them as a coat of arms.  He looked at the shield  in the center of the carving and saw a lightning bolt in one corner, a heart in another, and at the bottom of the shield there was a rainbow.  In the middle of it all was a large gold letter C.

"You aren't exactly the most modest guy around either it would seem," the man mused aloud.

"What do you mean?" Casey asked defensively.

"Well the door responds to it's owner," the man explained.  "Before I opened it to come here, it didn't look like that."

"You mean it did that for me?" Casey squeaked.

"That's right," the man told him.  "The Time Wizard's fortress is a living castle.  It responds to the people who live in it to some degree.  Be warned though, the old place has a twisted sense of humor."  He got up and opened the door and Casey could see the stone walls of a hallway through the opening.  "Shall we go?"

"One last thing before I wander off into who knows where with a total stranger," Casey said hesitantly.  "What's your name?  I mean if you turn out to be some psycho that kills me and chops up my body into little pieces or something, I want to know what name to tell the psychic that investigates my murder."

"You really watch too much television," the man said.  Instantly, he slapped a hand over his mouth and said, "I did it again.  I sound like you."

Casey walked through the door behind the man and suddenly felt a cold draft blow across him.  He looked down and saw that he was naked.  His pajamas had disappeared.  He hurriedly covered himself with his hands.

"I knew it!" he fussed.  "You're a pervert, aren't you?  You're going to do things to me and then kill me."

"Trust me, I'm not the least bit interested in your body, and if I kill you, then I die too, remember?" the man told him.  "Oh, and it's Mitch."

"What?" Casey asked as he turned to go back into his room for some more clothes.  The door wasn't there anymore, however.  "Where'd my door go?"

"You asked my name; it's Mitch," the man answered calmly.  "Your door won't reappear until it is close to time for you to return home.  As for your clothes, I kind of forgot to tell you that they would not be able to transfer into this place with you.  You will find clothes in your room here in the tower when we get there."

"Well, where is my room?" Casey demanded.

"I have no idea," Mitch told him.  "You've never been here, so I've never found it.  Don't worry, we'll find it."

"That's it!  You are a pervert.  You want me to walk around your house naked."

"I told you I'm not a pervert," Mitch said with strained patience.  "You are welcome to sit here on the floor until I find your room, but you should know that Kim is coming this way."

"Who's Kim?"

"Kim is your partner in your mission," Mitch answered.  "She's very nice.  You'll like her a lot."

"I wouldn't count on that," Casey mumbled.  "All right, let's go find my room.  You know you really should have told me about the clothes thing though."

"Would you have come with me if I had told you that the minute you stepped through the portal you would have been naked?" Mitch countered.

"Ok, I'm shutting up now," Casey said dejectedly.

"As much as that would be appreciated, you could be more helpful," Mitch said impatiently.

"What now?"

"Ask the Tower to show you to your room," Mitch told him.  "That would be a lot quicker than us going door to door, since there are thousands of doors in this place."

"Show me the way to my room, please," Casey said out loud, feeling rather foolish.  Suddenly there was a glowing arrow on one of the floor stones in front of him.  "That's cool!" he murmured.  "Thank you," he said to the nearest wall.  A moment later as they were walking, Mitch suddenly stepped face first into a wall that hadn't been there a second earlier.  "How did that.... what did.... why...." Casey questioned incoherently as he tried not to giggle as the man rubbed his now sore nose.

"I believe that was the castle's way of telling me that it appreciated your polite manners, as opposed to my way of doing things," Mitch said.  "I told you the mausoleum had a sick sense of humor."  At that point he walked into another wall.  "All right, I'm sorry.  Please don't hit me with any more walls.  They do hurt, you know."  Casey was sure he heard a low rumble all around him as if the very building were laughing.

"It was laughing," Mitch announced beside him.  "The wonderful house thinks that abusing me is funny.  It moves things when I'm not around to see if I notice too."  He looked down at the boy beside him before adding, "No, I can't read your thoughts, you said it out loud."  Casey was sure he hadn't though.

Suddenly the glowing arrow on the floor disappeared.  They stood in front of a plain wooden door.  He looked up at Mitch and saw that the man was looking down at him with a question on his face.

"You don't want this one decorated because you're embarrassed that I made a comment about the other one," Mitch said finally.  It wasn't a question, just an observation.  "You don't have to do that.  It's your door.  Whatever you want it to look like is fine with me."

"Are you sure?" Casey questioned.

"It's your door," Mitch repeated as he turned to walk away.  He stopped a few steps away, and turned back to face the boy.  "When you get dressed, come find me and we'll begin your training.  I will be interested to see what your clothes look like."

"What do you mean?" Casey asked.  "Don't you know what they look like?  You didn't pick them out?"

"The clothes will respond to you the same way your door does," Mitch answered.  "What you will find on your bed is a big square cloth with a hole for your head to go through.  When you put it on, it will change its appearance to suit what you want.  You are now a  Time Wizard of Emifornec.  Keep that in mind as you think of what to wear."

Casey thought to himself that it was funny that he kept designing things.  First there was the door and now his clothes.  It was almost as if this Mitch guy knew that Casey was gay.

"Hurry up Casey," Mitch called out to him as he walked away.  "Your boyfriend is waiting for you to rescue him."