“Marley and Marley” by J. R. Dawson
Card picked: 7♦
Found at: The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, November-December 2017
Before she showed up, she was preceded by this man in a pinstriped suit. A harbinger. He sat me down in his sterile office and said, “Time Law is no joking matter.”
Time travel is a tricky thing to handle. Why bringing Old Marley from the future is easier than putting Little Marley in foster care, I don’t know. It ends up being a sort of scientific MacGuffin that gives characters in science fiction stories something to do. That isn’t to say that “Marley and Marley” doesn’t have its clever points or isn’t well written. By the end, I wondered if the “time cops” knew anything about the future at all. (And the title: a play on Marley and Me?)
Author trivia: J. R. Dawson lives in Omaha, my hometown.