Grainy Memory

Ace H. ----- 9th Grade

[AUGUST 12TH, 2030] I wake up one day, just like any other ordinary day. I take a look around my room before I decide to sit up and move toward the edge of my bed. As I reminisce about the past, I start thinking, Something is very wrong, and it has felt like this since December 31st, 2012. Wasn’t there a doomsday incident on that very day? After all, everything hasn’t felt right since that day. I search up, “What happened on December 31st, 2012?” Nothing. I then search up, “What did the world think was going to happen on December 31st, 2012?” Still, nothing. But I don’t understand, I thought, there WAS a doomsday incident on that very day. I begin to look up things that I remember from the past, such as Pikachu having black detail at the end of its tail and the Monopoly Man having a monocle on his right eye. Perhaps even the Mona Lisa painting going from emotionless to smiling? I began to remember more and more “concepts” existing that apparently never did. I open up YouTube, and I search each and every single mentioned thought, trying to find ANY sort of evidence that this stuff did in fact exist at some point in time! I start freaking out. There is NO proof whatsoever. I then decide to head over to the Web Archive. I decide to search up the Mona Lisa on the Web Archive, and just when I think the answer is right in front of me, just when I think I have my answer, the URL is invalid! Not a big deal, there are still other Web Archives out there. I simply switch Archiving Websites. I go from website to website, link after link, invalid URL after URL. I become VERY frustrated, and I just decide to move on with my life.

[APRIL 15TH, 2038] Time traveling has been released to the public? This is amazing! I think to myself. This opens a new gate of opportunities for the world, especially since we are on the verge of war. But this, even more so, opens a new gate of opportunity for me and the group I’ve created. You see, I couldn’t continue living with these fond memories in the back of my mind without any sort of proof they existed. So that’s when I decided to create a forum post on I asked if anybody else remembered any of these bizarre and “non-existent” memories. And to my surprise, I found a group of individuals. We talked for months and months on end about so many topics that we all vividly remember that just ceased to exist. The strange thing about it though: we all were born the same year. That’s when we came up with a theory that on December 31st, 2012, the world DID end and all of these memories that we have DID, in fact, exist in that timeline. We believe that this may just be an alternate universe, and now that Time Machines have FINALLY been released to the public, there is only one way to prove that this theory is true.

[APRIL 20TH, 2038] Today, I open up my forum, and one of the members of our faulty memory group purchased a Time Machine! This is what we have been waiting for, and now there is only one thing to do. We schedule a meet-up on April 23rd. Only three more days.

[APRIL 21ST, 2038] We’re just two more days away, but we all realized something: we haven’t made a decision where to meet-up at, so after a couple minutes of thinking and planning, we ultimately decide to just meet up at our group member’s home.

[APRIL 22ND, 2038] “What the hell? There’s a new group member?” I say, staring at my computer screen. And to my surprise, he brought up something so unsettlingly nostalgic?! The forum post was as follows: “Hey everyone! I hope this post finds you well on this obscure and enigmatic website. I’ve been on a quest to uncover a forgotten cartoon that may exist only inside my mind, or perhaps inside an alternate dimension. Do any of you remember a cartoon featuring a character named Evergreen and a storyline that seems to shape the form of a different reality?! I can’t seem to remember any of the specific details about it, but they seem to be so at the tip of my tongue. It’s unsettling to think about. I’ve searched all over the web, checking databases and TV Show Line-Ups. I even went as far as to contact the Memory Experts. Oh yeah, the cartoon aired in the late 1990s. Specifically, in 1997. It seems as if this animated cartoon gem has vanished from people’s collective consciousness. Was this a real cartoon, or is my mind playing tricks on me? If anyone has the slightest idea of what I could possibly be talking about, PLEASE reach out to me. My email is…” This is VERY unsettling, because we all remember a cartoon like this airing in the late 2000s. We all say it was in about 2008. We’ve contacted him and let him join us on our journey to find our Grainy Memories.

[APRIL 23RD, 2038] Today is the day. We are unsure how this is going to go because none of us have used a Time Machine before. Nonetheless, if we want clarity, then this has to be done. Before we all travel back, we question one another. These are just regular questions that probably everyone else in the world has, such as, “Do we age as we travel to the future or the past?” “Will we see ourselves in the past?” “If we were to travel to the past, and we do not see ourselves, will we be our adult selves in that time period?” But then I ask a question that halts all of our excitement. “What if our theory is proved correct? If this is an alternative universe, every single memory we can vividly remember would still be just a vivid memory, even if we traveled to the past. Everything could still remain the same,” I say. “If everything remains the same, we might just be misremembering,” says one of the other group members. “Well, then
there’s only one way to find out,” I say. Without any other hesitation, we all walk into the machine.

[JULY 22ND, 2009] It’s a success! We’ve successfully traveled back in time. We aren’t staying in the year 2009; we just want to make sure that the Time Machine was legit.

[JUNE 7TH, 1997] We’ve got an answer to most of our questions already. The Time Machine does not age us, and we can’t seem to find ourselves…yet. We’ve taken our newest group member to his childhood home to find out if this obscure cartoon even existed. If all goes well, we could travel to different time periods in hopes of finding other obscure memories.

[JUNE 9TH, 1997] Fortunately, we were successful! We have seen Evergreen and recorded video of the cartoon to confirm its existence. We decide that we have what we needed, and we say goodbye to the newest, or maybe former, group member. We take one last look at what the year 1997 looked like. It was beautiful.

[AUGUST 23RD, 2038] We return to the present time with the video footage we collected of the obscure cartoon and upload it onto the internet for the world to see before re-entering the Time Machine.

[DECEMBER 15TH, 2008] “What?! How could this be?” I say, staring at the Mona Lisa painting. “We were actually…wrong?!” “Well, not necessarily,” says one of our group members. “We still have more to see, and if we ARE somehow incorrect about the false memory situation…how could we have possibly found that cartoon? Nonetheless, this could prove our alternate universe theory to be true,” says the same group member. “Perhaps we should try a different time period? After all, we have seen all of the interesting false memories that we could have here.” After traveling from time period to time period…our theory has been proven to be false. There is only one more thing to do from here. We’re pushing the limitations of this Time Machine.

TRAVEL BACK TO OUR ORIGINAL TIMELINE, THEN!” says one of our group members. The “Quantum Voyager” shoots us directly to our designated universe.