Fifty Six in a Row

It seemed like a good idea at the time. It was late at night, the day before the big announcement - time travel, finally, we'd made it, beaten the other side to it, too. I was minding the equipment. Had a few drinks. Started thinking about that old question "if you could go back in time and kill Hitler, would you?" And there I was, with a working time machine. Who would know? So I did it. Went back to 1939, snuck into his bedroom, beat the fucker's brains out as he slept. Job done.

Of course, you can't just mess with history like that. There are repercussions, butterfly effects - a frog farts in Australia, a house collapses in Arizona. Everything got messed up. One look at the newspaper told me that. I had to fix it. But I couldn't just go back and stop myself killing Hitler - the machine couldn't allow two of me in the same place at once. I had to put history right. Went to the dermatology lab, changed my face, broke into a costume store, rushed back to 1939, invaded Poland. As Hitler. I had to stay, of course, right up to 1945. Had to do some bad, bad things. You've read the history books. Broke my heart, nearly drove me mad. But I did it. Came back seconds after I left. The perfect crime.

That fixed some stuff, but not everything. See, I'd made other stops on the way back from killing Hitler that first time. Took out some other "undesirables", as they say. That all had to be fixed. Manson, Bundy, Stalin - fifty six in a row, all murderers, serial killers, psychos. I had to do all their crimes, disguised as them, to fix everything.

It was a long night.