A science-fiction short story about time traveling and life lessons.

It's Not Up to You


by Izzy Berzsenyi 3rd Hour

Year: 2013

Place: San Diego

Figure 1

            “Hurry up you guys! My dad is coming to pick us up in a hour!” Riley called out to Kendall, Lena and Alex.

            Riley Stratton was 17 years old, and she had blond hair and olive tan skin. Riley loved to do sports and be out in the sun. Riley’s friends weren’t very athletic but after Riley begged her friends, the four girls planned on hiking Los Penasquitos Canyon to have a picnic. Kendall, Alex, and Lena were hungry, sweaty and tired. After an hour of hearing her friends whine, Riley told them to sit down and stay, “You guys stay here, I’m going to keep hiking. I will be back soon. “ Riley promised. 

            Leaving her friends Riley hiked up the side of the canyon. On the path Riley saw small trees, but not a lot of shade. As she was about to turn around to start going back to Lena, Kendall and Alex, Riley saw a rattlesnake. Freaking out over her discovery, Riley ran towards the closest shelter, a nearby cave.

            The cave was not what she expected, with flowing clear water, there were other weird objects; a skeleton, an 80’s Macintosh computer, a gas mask and a floating blue mango-sized orb. Riley stepped in mesmerized by the beautiful glowing light, “What is this?” Riley wondered out loud.

            Riley, in a daze, started walking near the blue orb. She was resisting the urge to touch it, “It’s so beau-“ Riley couldn’t finish her sentence before she touched the blue orb and disappeared!

Year: 3013

Place: San Diego

Figure 2

            Where am I? Where are Lena, Kendall, and Alex? Where is the cave?  Riley looked around, she was in the middle of the street, surrounded by flying cars. The air was crisp, clean and the streets were filled with people. Riley looked all around her; the first thing she noticed was the tall skyscraper on one side. On that same side Riley spotted tall, tan, blond and flawless citizens. They all look so similar. But as she turned in a circle, the other side had smaller buildings; everyone on that side was different and flawed in some way. Everyone seemed to be in a rush to go somewhere. Where are they going? Riley then heard some obnoxious noises; they were coming from these flying cars. 

            What is that? Stumbling out of the way, Riley was greeted by an unknown face, “Whoa, whoa are you okay?” This unknown person inquired.

            “W-who a-are yo-you?” Riley stuttered.

            “I am Crew, Crew Hackett. Come on get up, hurry today is the ceremony. “ Crew told Riley.

            “Is this a dream? What ceremony? What are those flying cars?” Riley questioned as Crew pulled her into the rushing lines.

            “Everyone is going to the ceremony of the Evolution. You are in San Diego. A hovercraft is a floating automobile, or a car as the ancient Americans called it.” Crew explained while they were on their way to the ceremony. 

Figure 3

            “Wait, this isn’t 2013, what is the date?” questioned Riley.

            “It’s August 25,3013.” Remembered Crew.

            “Everybody calm down we have enough seats for everyone! Come on in!” Yelled the guards, while steering the citizens to where they should be going.  Riley looked at the door and saw the two doorways, “Normals” and “High Techies”. I wonder what that is about. Walking toward the door labeled High Techies, Riley was yanked by Crew towards the other door. 

            “What was that about?” Riley retorted a bit annoyed.

            “You’re not a High Techy, I’m not a High Techy therefore we can’t go into the High Techy section.” Crew explained affirmatively. Not arguing Riley moved on. As they walked into the stadium, Riley couldn’t help but notice the difference in seating between the Normals and High Techies. 

            “What is the difference? I mean between the Normals and High Techies?” Riley curiously wondered.

            “High Techies accept the new technology and the Normals don’t. There was a big rebellion about 999 years ago. In the rebellion some people fought the new improved technology. The people who rebelled were called Normals, and the people who accepted were called High Techies. If your ancestors were Normals, you become a normal. Shh. The ceremony is about to start.” Crew recited to Riley.

            “To this day 999 years ago there was the Rebel of the Evolution. It started with 4 friends…” The announcer was talking while Riley was thinking about this. This is terrible, technology was supposed to be great and helpful. Now it just separates everyone. I don’t like this at all! I seriously have to do something. Riley thought to herself.

            “Crew I need to talk to you,” Riley urgently whispered to Crew.

            “Okay, follow me.” Crew breathed back. The two friends snuck out of the ceremony, walking down the empty streets 

Figure 4

            “So I figured out something terrible today.” Riley confessed to Crew.

            “Let me guess it’s about the separation of technology.” Crew giggled back.

            “Yes, but from the beginning. Just this morning I was with my friends; Alex, Lena and Kendall, hiking Los Penasquitos. I arrived to a cave, and I touched a blue floating orb. Then I got transported 1,000 years in the future! I was really scared, and then I met you. You showed me the ceremony, and I finally realized the misuse of technology! Half the society lives on technology, while the other half had absolutely no connection to technology. In 2013 this invention was made to help us, but now its evil! I need to change this! I want to go home!” Riley roared at Crew.

            Not waiting for a response, Riley ran towards where she was transported.  She searched for the blue floating orb, yelling for it. Riley was going crazy, until she saw something on the ground near the middle of the street. Walking over calmly and curiously, Riley bent over to where the words were carved. Riley recited the sentence out loud,


"It's not up to you."