A Moment in Time

Somewhere in space - 2024

Under the glimmering shooting comets above them, Cyrus and Skadi were consumed by a fascination with the mysteries of the cosmos. The galaxies continued to expand each time they set foot on a new alien star, and so another page was added to Skadi’s photo journal, memories in time filled with all the unknown beings they had encountered along the way. Fueled by their heroes' adventures- living their favourite series kept in their packs, the feeling of childhood excitement was irreplaceable to every new journey they went on.

After another longsome venture across an alien star the twins headed back to their ship. Skadi reliving through her beloved scrapbook, and Cyrus, fixated on adjusting the setting of his old polaroid camera, acquired during their ventures through the streets of Takayama, Japan. As they reached the ship, Skadi froze - a spark of unease and shock shot down her spine. Watching as memories captured between her and Cyrus was missing from the middle of her scrapbook. Realising the ambient footsteps halted to a stop in front of him, Cyrus met Skadi’s eye watching her eyes slowly reddening as tears began to build beneath her eye.

Watching this tear roll down her cheek, falling swiftly to the rocky plain beneath their boots, the ground began to crack open and tremble, the Polaroid camera in Cyrus's hand surged with a radiant energy, reacting to the growing anomaly before them. Losing his balance to the quake beneath, his finger slipped hitting the shutter-release on the camera as he tried to catch himself. A flash blinded the twins, opening a rift in the process.

As they hurtled through dimensions, their senses reeled. Glimpses of past, future, and present events intertwined around them fabricated in the form of camera film unwinding from head to toe exposing the length of this rift tube.

* * *

Moments later, they arrived in a familiar yet alien era; the vibrant and transformative 1960s Japan. The twins, disoriented but resolute, surveyed their new surroundings. The atmosphere crackled with energy and change, a tangible aura of cultural revolution permeating the air.

Cyrus, still adjusting to their abrupt shift, considered the mysterious disappearance of the photos within Skadi’s scrapbook. His mind raced, seeking connections between this unexpected occurrence and their current predicament.

Skadi’s expression tightened as her brows furrowed in puzzlement. She flipped through the pages of the now incomplete scrapbook, her eyes scanning the gaps left by the missing photos.

“These photos,” Skadi whispered, her voice tingling with urgency, “they’re more than just memories. They’re like pieces of puzzle threads that tie us to the past, to our past encounters.”

Cyrus nodded in agreement, the realisation was dawning on him. “They’re threads that weave our experiences together. Restoring these connections might be the key to finding the missing pages!”

A joint look of determination filled them, they quickly ventured into the bustling streets of Tokyo, Japan - looking for any kind of sign that pointed to a memory they both had shared. Music had filled the streets from the local store radios, iconic tunes from infomercials, the alley walls manifested in posters advertising the latest cinema - from Akira Kurosawa.

As they continued to walk, Skadi paused at a storefront displaying posters of Cosmo-Boy and Flash-Racer. A smile grew from her face, ecstatic she began jumping in place, pointing “THIS,” she exclaimed “this was the first manga we ever bought! This was one of our missing memories!”

Cyrus, with his mind racing to connect the dots between these two events. “Every song, every film, every cultural encounter we captured - it’s etched into these missing photos. These are the threads to this timeline!”

Skadi's gaze darted across the array of posters lining the alley, each one a portal to their past encounters. "We need to capture this moment”

With an intuitive understanding, Cyrus raised his vintage Polaroid camera, an artefact that had captured countless memories throughout their lives. He stood beside Skadi, framing the vivid posters as the backdrop, a tapestry of their shared experiences.

"Smile," Cyrus urged, snapping a photo of them enveloped by the vibrant references of the '60s. The camera clicked, not just capturing an image but sealing the essence of their moment in time.

As the Polaroid developed, casting its usual ethereal glow, an unexpected surge of energy emanated from the photo. The air crackled with an otherworldly hum, engulfing Skadi and Cyrus once again into the shimmering cascade of light.

Their surroundings blurred, the posters fading into a whirl of colours and shapes. Time and space melded in a surreal amalgamation, whisking them away from the '60s, propelling them forward through the corridors of history.

* * *

Disoriented yet resolute, Skadi and Cyrus found themselves amidst the neon-lit streets and pop culture effervescence of the mid-1980s. The era crackled with the birth of technological advancements and an explosion of artistic expressions, a bridge between the analog past and the digital future.

As the twins adjusted to the vibrant surroundings, Skadi's eyes widened with astonishment. Nestled within the pages of her scrapbook, a page had repaired itself, the missing fragments seamlessly restored, each photo now depicting moments captured by their memory inspired by the 60s.

"Cyrus, look!" Skadi gasped, her finger tracing the restored images. "The missing memory—it’s back!"

Cyrus's eyes widened in realisation. "The scrapbook is healing itself, piecing together our journey through time."

Their elation, however, was soon accompanied by a revelation. With each photo taken in this new era, the Polaroid's newfound power propelled them to yet another moment in time.

Skadi's heart raced as she grasped the magnitude of their situation. "Every photo we take here sends us to a different time," she exclaimed, her voice tinged with a mix of excitement and concern. "We need to be precise, to rebuild history correctly."

The realisation set in—a responsibility to not only rediscover their lost memories but also to weave them back into the fabric of time, ensuring the chronicles of history remained intact.

Their mission had taken an unexpected turn, opening a labyrinth of temporal possibilities. With each snapshot they took, the Polaroid became a gateway to new epochs, each era holding a piece of their story, waiting to be unravelled.

Skadi and Cyrus stood at the cliff-face of an endless journey, the uncertainty of their next destination. The neon glow of the '80s buzzed around them, a mere checkpoint in their expansive odyssey through the passage of time. They prepared to embark on yet another leap through history, their eyes met, a silent agreement passing between them—a commitment to chart a course through time, one snapshot at a time.

Artist: Silyue
Author: Mitch (ユジン)