Prologue : The Forgotten Child
Who are you?"
The eternal question. The one I have no answer for.
"Who are you, Suzie Smith? Where do you come from?"
Who am I? I'm your typical orphaned teenager with an attitude problem and a bad case of the I didn't do it complex. That makes me one of twenty identical copies from a similar background.
When I was old enough to find a job of my own, to start my new life, the question started to bother me too.
Even Stinky Joe had at least an inkling of who he was, where he was from, where he was going.
All I have is a useless fob watch.
When I was left at Miss Smith's Home for the Abandoned, I didn't have a silly letter telling me who I was and where I was from. Instead, just this silver pocket watch with its silly circle shaped engravings.
No name. No return address.
Who am I?
Miss Smith was kind enough to refer me to her cousin for some assistant work around the local convenience store, until I can afford a small place of my own, but that doesn't give me a title, an identity, a name.
I'm nobody, a forgotten child.
Tic. Toc. Tic. Toc.
"Time can be rewritten, Suzie Q!"
That's what Miss Smith used to say, watching me rub that fob watch over and over until it was shiny like a mirror.
"It's useless to fuss about our past, about what we did or should have done, why this or that happened. All we can do is work with what we have and rewrite our future with the decisions of today."
I never forgot those words. I try to think about them every time something gets tough, something gets out of hand, but how long can a girl remain lost and unnamed without going insane?
They call me Suzie, Suzie Q, Susan, but that is not my name.
Something instinctive, visceral, tells me otherwise. But what can that mean, concretely?
And so I work everyday, preparing the shelves, serving the same boring customers, taking out the trash, until the day I can afford a proper home, away from Burks & Burks and Miss Smith's Orphanage, away from Boreville and its pesky, sleepy population.
Away from here.
But time doesn't wait for no one.
Or so I thought.
That was before the Time Eaters and the Falling Day, before the Sentient Time Capsule and the Day That Never Was.
But most importantly, it was before I remembered who I am.