Disclaimer: Back to the Future is owned by Universal Studios. All commercially published material with that title belongs to Universal Studios of California. Recognizable characters were created by Bob Gale and Robert Zemeckis. Several story liberties were taken in 2010 and 2011 by Telltale Games Inc. A certain quote spoken by a character belongs to one of the Co-fathers of science fiction. The proceeding filler scene led by a very confused teenager is in no affiliation with Mr. Zemeckis or Gale, Universal Studios, Telltale Games, and contracted no profit.
Second Disclaimer: The "canoncity" of the 2010 video game for Back to the Future is up for grabs. Its authenticity is very convincing, but you can believe what you want to believe and I'll believe what I want to believe.
Hill Valley, California
October 13, 1931
33.956821 divided by the previous equation's answer of 65.4 in accordance to Shannigan's Law without neglecting of the fluxation of 0.87... Wait, no, 0.88...
The wrench cranked so much he thought it snapped.
Of course, even half a scientist could not fail to take into account the electrical charge distributed through the garage outlet to the coil of the device, measuring an electrical charge of negative and positive electrons depending on the chronos duration of the flight…
Time to drag a wet rag across his forehead. The only break allowed when a rookie scientist and pilot was breaking the usual record for late night tinkering.
Mass! Gravity! Weight! All would turn out aces if those three grand tablets of science… Mass was measured in gram units while Newton units made up gravity, which would be an estimated…
"Marty, could you hand me the diagrams again?"
Mechanical advantage equaled the ultimate force output and force input… The ramp in the gymnasium curved regarding the calculations… "Oh, darling, why so much arithmetic involved? Packaging and promotion, that's what attracts people. Surely you can whip this up in no time flat. Now, I'll check back on you in an hour and please stop flipping through those Verne Jules books. They make you very… distracted." What did she know about inventing? A mind-reading machine? Kiddy carp. Being dizzy with a dame only led you to fall flat on your face or nearly fall off a courthouse. Tesla was right. Females and science did not mix.
"Assistance is requested… Marty?"
Sonny Crockett, once a patent clerk, liar, friend, meddling bastard, then friend once again with the real name of Marty, sat in attention on the worktable. At least, that's how it appeared. As he got closer, he saw that Marty was propped up on his elbows and producing enough nocturnal saliva to drown any mouse brave enough to annoy this lab. There was very little he knew about Marty, but one thing for certain was that the fellow could not beat the midnight hour.
Warding off sleep was an act achieved and perfected by the time of his fourteenth birthday. At the law office, judicial hours started at eight o' clock sharp and ended, just as sharply, at five in the afternoon. That was if you were a regular drudging lawyer, not the Judge's Son, then you didn't get to vacate the world of dusty books and minor external abrasions due to endless sheaves of cellulose pulp until nine at night. Ten on the weekends. When it came to science, no ticking clock or punch card was present. Aiding in the progress of mankind outlasted any clock, hourglass, or stopwatch in existence. A scientist must be able to wake up at dawn to fulfill whatever theory and look past the glaze of exhaustion to finish last minute mechanical adjustments.
The formula was simple: determination, pinching, and coffee grounds. The first two were easy and plentiful, unlike the later of the formula. The coffee pot was in the kitchen, guarded by the cook and beloved by Pop. He had tried suggesting (suggesting was the only power he had at fourteen for getting what he wanted) that it was time for him to drink coffee. This prompted his mother to excuse herself for a whole five minutes while his father lectured him on not gaining the right to drink coffee until he had to pass the bar exam. Coffee grounds, purchased and kept in secret, were the next best fix. He had offered some to Marty around ten o' clock. Marty declined and mumbled something about Pepsi.
"Marty?" Emmett nudged the shoulder of his lab assistant and almost succeeded in proving gravity's victory against wobbly chairs. You really were not in a position to pick and choose when it came to spur-of-the-moment lab assistants. It was just as well. He could not picture showing up for breakfast with a bedraggled friend in tow.
Breakfast was the worst part of the day. It used to be a rush down from his room, still in pajamas, fully rested and ready to eat fast so he could get outside. Then, he started breaking curfew in the garage "studying" law books until he passed out. Nutrients were the last thing on a scientist's mind and the first thing needed by the body. Pop said he was too thin, but Emmett kept on skipping breakfast so that it turned into a normal occurrence. Skipping breakfast was actually part of his plan for another reason. Pop knew that there was a science exposition in town. It did not take that man's hubris of a law degree to put two and two together.
"It's strangely early for a trip to the garbage receptacle, but I dare say I would not expect any less from you."
"Hampton!" Emmett cried, losing his grip. This would be so much easier if his lab assistant wasn't comatose and the family butler had not caught him in the act of scientific preparation. Hampton stood there for a moment of time before he moved forward and lifted up as much weight of the rocket car he could manage. Emmett got the other half, thanking Hampton with a grunt of exertion. Both their work got the revolutionary piece into the bed of the truck with only a few loud scrapes.
"I trust this is another marvel of your streak of defiance?" Hampton asked as Emmett climbed onto the truck to secure a tarp.
"In the limited terms," Emmett muttered as he looped a rope, "yes."
Hampton fired away another question. "I also trust Master Brown doesn't know about such a device?"
Emmett didn't even lift his head up. "I would be six feet under if he even caught a glimpse of the schematics."
The butler was silent for a little while. "Does he know about your… playmate staying in the garage?"
Emmett jumped down from the truck. "No, and don't you tell him."
"I try not to meddle in family affairs…"
"Hampton!" Emmett said and just about got down on his knees. "You know how he is and how he has been lately. Just give me your word that you won't tell him where I'm going, what I'm doing, or even my manner. I beg of you."
Convincing Hampton that meddling in the family affairs was crucial for today, Emmett managed to escape the estate with the rocket car and an empty stomach. That was probably for the best. Still, his biological system found other subtle ways of cluing the rest of the world into the extravagant risk of failure acknowledged in his conscious. Not to mention the impending sense of doom a lone banner could produce. Standing in front of the high school at the start of a new term never failed to produce anxiety. This, however, was not class. This was the Real World inside a branch of the California education system. Every step he walked represented one more step to probable failure or probable success. As two of Kid Tannen's ex-accomplices grunted under the weight of the rocket car, he looked up at that banner as it passed over his head.
" 'Science," Emmett muttered, " 'is made up of mistakes, but they are mistakes which it is useful to make, because they lead little by little to the truth.' "
God help him if that was false. What was the itinerary for today's events again? Oh, yes!
1. Get rocket car situated on ramp. Done, but with curse-ridden complaints from exposition employees lending a hand.
2. Complete one last go-over of mechanics. Done, but he could barely get a grip on his own tools.
3. Hang new sign. Done and with no spelling errors.
4. Change clothes. Done in the wrong bathroom.
5. Call Marty to inform him about the static accumulator. Done if it had not been for a certain interruption in a skirt.
"Damn!" Emmett hissed into the phone as the yellow frock got closer. "It's Edna!"
Slipping out of the Phone Helmet and diving for the nearest futuristic furniture seemed a great plan, as well as adding force and acceleration to the flower pot on the coffee table in her direction. Both plans failed to receive energy. Miss Strickland trudged up to him in a march that could mean one or two forthcomings. Forthcoming One: She had journalistic prey in sight and a scandalous title in mind for the article. Forthcoming Two: She was about to put a red hot stop to something. Civil goodness, in her terms.
Of course, she would cover up her showing up as an excuse to pen news on the expo. If anything, her visitation would be a lot of eye rolling and scoffing and complaining. He wouldn't be surprised if she started a riot in the audience. Whatever that woman had in mind, Emmett had decided on confronting her face-to-face, like they used to do. A three minute argument would follow and then she would walk off in a huff. Never in any of these predictions would he have expected schnookums to enter the game again.
She took his hand, holding it in a grip like a vice and toned down her voice. "Darling, this is dangerous and downright idiotic, not scientific. I demand that you-"
He yanked his hand away so fast the leather of her gloves received a burn. "First of all, Miss Strickland, I am not your darling anymore. Second off, we're not in an interpersonal relationship revolving around secreting glands and stupidity, so I suggest you just go to-"
"Calling Emmett Brown! Where are you, kiddo?"
"Go to your alleged other woman, Emmett." She said, looking down her nose at him. Her tone went back to its usual force. "We'll continue this discussion later."
"Then I better pray upon lift off that my fuel line ruptures." Emmett snapped, looking down his nose at her.
"That is precisely what I'm hoping to prevent." She replied coolly. With a cold turn of her body that made anyone feel scolded, that damned exasperating woman walked toward the display dedicated to the future of law enforcement.
Captain Nemo and Professor Von Hardwigg never had to deal with things like this. That thought in mind, Emmett turned toward his project.
"Emmett Brown, I presume?"
The next interrupter happened to have the physical characteristics recorded in various headlines around the tri-state area. Carl Sagan: Suspect of Speakeasy Torching. Carl Sagan Escapes. Search for Missing Arsonist "Carl Sagan" Continues. The Carl Sagan that files could not be dug up upon by Pop's clerks. The Carl Sagan that Edna had praised on and off again in her column. "Mr. Sagan?"
The legend put a hand on Emmett's shoulder. "Come, I have a business proposition to discuss with you…"