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CHAPTER ONE

Everything changed for me the minute I signed Daniel’s nondisclosure agreement. After they told me what they were planning to do, I suppose I could have just walked away and not gotten involved. I sometimes wonder what my life would have been like if I had. But once I saw the machine for myself, how could I just walk away?

As a doctor at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, that day began for me when a noisy ambulance dashed away from a crime scene toward our emergency room. Once it parked, two emergency medical technicians hopped out and pulled a stretcher from the back. In an instant four metal legs popped down below the device so that it became a rolling bed on which they maneuvered the patient, Mr. Beauregard Holcomb, through the hospital's sliding glass doors. On that day, I was the emergency room doctor who received him.

Mr. Holcomb, who was a Deacon in the Southern Baptist Convention, was conscious. He'd been shot in the side and then robbed as he was getting out of his car in a public parking lot. I determined that his injuries were not life threatening, so he was wheeled into the X-ray room for a few pictures, and then taken to the operating room. Mr. Holcomb was a somewhat overweight man in his early fifties. The bullet had caught him on his left side and penetrated the fatty layer of tissue often called the love handle. It was a clean shot by a small caliber pistol that went in one side and out the other, leaving no bullet fragments.

 

"The shooting gallery has already started, and the sun hasn't even gone down yet," I said as I entered the operating room.

I gave my patient a local anesthetic. He was awake while his wounds were cleaned and sutured, so I was able to talk to him.

"How did this happen, Mr. Holcomb?"

"It happened so fast. All I remember was parking my car. When I got out, some punk got in my face and demanded my wallet. I told him to go to hell. The next thing I knew I was taking an ambulance ride."

"Wow, you're a pretty gutsy guy. You must've had a lot of money in your wallet to do something like that," I said.

"Naw, there was only about forty or fifty dollars in the wallet." Seeing the look on my face, he got defensive, "It wasn't about the money. It was the principle."

"Well, principles are nice to have,” I said. “But sometimes you need to be flexible. You're a very lucky man, Mr. Holcomb. If that gun had been pointed a few degrees over to your right, you would've gotten it through an internal organ."

"Lucky? Yeah, I was thinking that as I was lying there, bleeding on the asphalt. ‘Man, I feel lucky! This is my lucky day. I think I'll go buy a lottery ticket!'" He winked at the nurse attending him.

After the surgery, Mr. Holcomb was wheeled into a recovery room. His blood pressure was a little low, and because of his age and weight, I wanted to keep him overnight for observation. That evening, when things slowed down in the ER, I stopped by to see him.

"Mr. Holcomb, how are you feeling?” I said.

"I'm sore as hell, but feeling better with the drugs they're giving me. When can I go home?"

"Tomorrow, if everything looks good."

Mr. Holcomb studied me for a moment as I was looking through his records. "I see that you don't have a wedding ring on your finger, doctor. Can I take that to mean that you aren't married?"

"No, I'm not." His question about my personal life caught me off guard. "Things didn't work out," I said.

"Any children?"

I was uncomfortable with the way the conversation was going, but tried not to be disagreeable. "No, I don't," I said. "If you want to introduce me to someone, I'm afraid you've caught me at a bad time in my life. I'm not up for another relationship right now, and after my mother died, I haven't felt like going out."

"Oh, I'm sorry to hear about your mother," he said. "A churchgoing woman, was she?"

I concluded that the drugs were making Mr. Holcomb chatty in an intrusive kind of way, but I played along. "Oh, yes. She dragged me out of my nice warm bed every Sunday morning to the Bull Street Baptist Church in Savannah, rain or shine."

"How is your father taking it?"

"He died a few months after I was born; I never knew him when I was growing up. It was just me and my mother in our house."

Mr. Holcomb pointed to the telephone on the table next to his bed. "Doctor Hushing, how do I get an outside line on this phone here?" I showed him how to make an outside call.

“I’ll give you some privacy,” I said. I pulled a curtain around his bed as Mr. Holcomb punched in some numbers on the telephone. Before I went back to the emergency room, I stepped into the curtained area of another patient near Mr. Holcomb’s bed to look at his file, so I overheard part of his conversation.

"Hello, Reverend Whitley, this is Beau Holcomb. Say, I've just met a young doctor that you may want to talk to about that special project you and Daniel are working on. His name is Doctor Sawyer Hushing.”

My ears perked up at the mention of my name.

“He works at Emory University Hospital. Yes, that's right, Doctor Sawyer Hushing. Now, let me tell you how I came to meet him; this is quite a story…"

I left the room and spent the rest of the shift dealing with the usual Friday night injuries—most of them alcohol-related. As I was finishing up, a desk nurse handed me a pink message slip saying that a representative of the university regents wanted to speak to me after I got off work at 11:00 PM. He would meet me in the hospital director's office.

"Well, it sounds like I'm moving up in the world," I said to Jane, the desk nurse. "Either this is good news, and I've finally been recognized for the brilliant doctor that I am, and they’re giving me more money and more time off, or this is bad news and they've decided they're going to give me a lot more time off. What do you think, Jane? Good news or bad?"

She grimaced. "It doesn't sound good, Doctor Hushing. Going to the director's office at this time of night, on a Friday night, and on a payday? Who did you piss off?"

"I don't know. There are so many possibilities."

After my shift ended, I made my way up to the director's office, which is in another building. It's a much newer building, designed to impress. I couldn't help but notice the contrast between the tile floors and metal doors of the work-a-day hospital side, and the carpeted, color-coordinated offices where the senior administrators hang their hats. As I walked down the hallway, I was feeling a little envious of the people who worked in administration.

The director's secretary would normally have been sitting outside the director's office, but she must have gone home for the day. The door to his office was wide open, so I peered inside and saw two men talking.

"Hello, Doctor Sebring, you wanted to see me?"

Standing there was the hospital's director, Doctor Tyler Sebring. He had been a practicing physician for years, but his personality and ambition propelled him into local politics. He once ran for the US Senate. Even though he lost his bid for office, it wasn't wasted effort on his part. His Senate run had gotten him notice among the big money people in Atlanta, and eventually he landed the job as director of the hospital.

“Doctor Hushing, how nice to see you," he said with the same big smile he used in his political campaign commercials. He gestured to the man on his left. "This is Reverend Terence Whitley. He has some questions for you about a special assignment, if you're interested."

I was instantly relieved. I must admit, when I first got the message to come to the director's office, I was a little concerned. I couldn't remember rubbing anyone the wrong way—lately, but that didn't mean it hadn't happened. I assumed that the reverend was here to recruit me for some mission work for the Southern Baptist Church. I was open to the possibility of getting out of the emergency room for a while.

Reverend Whitley was a large imposing man with thick dark hair combed so that he reminded me of Ronald Regan. The way he leaned into me and held my elbow as he shook my hand, and the sincere tone of his baritone voice, made me feel that he was a master of the social and political aspects of his profession.

“Doctor Hushing, I'm very glad to meet you. I represent some members of the Board of Regents of this hospital. I've come here this evening to talk to you about an important project. It's a project of a religious nature. It's a bit dangerous; it may not be something you want to get involved in, but we feel that it's a project of unquestionable importance."

He paused a moment to see my reaction to the part about it being dangerous. I suspected he wanted me to work on one of the church’s missions in South America. In the past, I had talked to other doctors who had done similar assignments. They described their times working in other countries as interesting and fulfilling, and many of them said they would do it again. These types of missions can be a little dangerous, though, but I was still interested.

"I understand that you are a Southern Baptist. Is that true?" Reverend Whitley asked.

 

"Well, yes. I was born in Savannah, Georgia and baptized into the Southern Baptist Church as a baby. But I don't want to misrepresent myself; I haven't gone to church much since my divorce. I've thrown myself into my work in the emergency room, and I work on Sundays now, too."

"Oh, I see. We were wondering about that. Divorce is a very traumatic time in a person's life. I've counseled many people who have experienced the same tragedy you've gone through. Uh, you didn't have any children during your marriage, did you?"

"No, we didn't."

"And you are in your heart still a devout Southern Baptist, aren't you?"

I had to think about that one for a moment. A flash of doubt shot through the back of my mind, but I decided I wanted the option of taking a break from the emergency room if I liked the project.

"Yes, at my core I am still a devout Southern Baptist."

"Thank you, Doctor Hushing. Now, if you have time, I would like to take you to someone who will explain the project to you in detail."

The reverend and I went down to the parking deck. Waiting for us was a large shiny black limousine. The driver was an older black man, who, seeing our approach, dutifully stepped out of the vehicle and opened the passenger door for us.

Inside, the leather seats still had that new-car smell. When the vehicle glided out of the parking structure and onto the road, I hardly felt the transition. It was like riding on a cloud. I couldn't help but think that this was quite an opulent ride for a reverend in the Southern Baptist Church.

"Where are we going, Reverend?"

"This won't take long, Doctor Hushing. I know it's late, but I'd like to introduce you to a man who wants to make your acquaintance. I'll let him tell you who he is and what the project is about, if you don't mind."

It all seemed a bit mysterious to me, but I was already in his limo, so I figured that I might as well go for a ride. It was late in the evening, so there was little traffic on the road going downtown. Twenty minutes later the limo pulled up to the entrance of a tall building. In the lobby stood a contingent of uniformed security guards, and there was also a large black man in a dark suit who frisked me rather thoroughly but did nothing to the reverend. Then he escorted us to an elevator and spoke into a radio-transceiver, "They're coming up now, sir." Once inside the elevator, the reverend inserted a key into a keyhole above a panel of buttons, turned it, and pressed the button for the top floor.

When the door opened, a silver-haired man in a gray suit was standing there to greet us. In a courteous southern drawl, he said, “Doctor Hushing, my name is Daniel Pruitt. How are you this evening? I'm sorry to keep you up so late." Daniel Pruitt seemed genuinely glad to meet me, even a little enthusiastic as he vigorously shook my hand.

"I'm fine sir. I'm glad to meet you, too." Together, we walked down an elegantly decorated hallway with the reverend following behind us. On the walls of the hallway hung magnificent oil paintings encased in ornately carved

frames. Daniel was proud of his collection of rare artworks and gave a brief history of each painting as we passed it. I was astounded at the quality of the artwork he had in his collection. There was a Rembrandt, a Picasso, a Turner, and a few other paintings by artists with which I was unfamiliar.

"This is quite an impressive collection," I said, wondering at its expense.

We turned a corner and walked down another hallway. On both sides of the hall hung twenty or more paintings, but this time they all were of the same subject: Jesus on the cross painted by artists whose styles ranged from Renaissance to modern.

At the end of the hallway was a large black and white photograph. The picture looked somewhat out of place next to all the paintings of Jesus, especially as the picture appeared to be that of a 1950s fast-food restaurant. The restaurant in the photograph had a sign in its window advertising chicken sandwiches.

"This was my father's first establishment—the first Chick-A-Bun restaurant."

"Oh, so that's who you are. Yes, I've heard about you and your faith and its connection to American values." I let the subject drop, not wanting to bring up any of the controversies that some of his public statements had created. "Well, that explains the limo and penthouse floor offices."

Daniel looked me over from the top of my head down to my shoes as if evaluating my suitability. Then he smiled broadly and said, "You are probably wondering what we want from you?"

"Well, yes I am. It seems like a lot of trouble to get me up here just to ask if I'm interested in working on one of your church projects."

Daniel stopped for a second; his hand was on the doorknob of the room we were about to enter. "This is a very special and very secret project, Doctor. Before we can proceed any further, we need you to sign a confidentiality agreement."

Daniel Pruitt opened the door. Standing next to a large, ornately carved desk was a man in a grey suit.

“This is Mr. Dawkins, our lawyer,” Daniel said.

Mr. Dawkins was a tall impatient-looking man holding a document in his hand. With Daniel Pruitt on my right side and Reverend Whitley on my left, I was herded into the room and maneuvered behind a large desk. As soon as I sat down, the lawyer said, "Please sign here," handing me a pen and pointing to a spot at the bottom of a form.

The impressiveness of the office and desk, and the speed with which I was whisked into the room prompted me to sign the document.

While signing, something flashed through the back of my mind telling me, "Things are getting a little scary. Maybe I should ask a few questions first."

Once I'd signed, the lawyer snatched it up and examined my signature. He turned to Daniel Pruitt and gave him an approving nod, and then left the room. After the lawyer left, I felt an impulse to call him back and tear up the document.

Daniel Pruitt leaned over the desk in front of me and looked into my eyes. "Before we can proceed any further, I have one very important question for you, Doctor Sawyer Hushing." Daniel Pruitt's features took on an intensity I hadn't seen until now. His face was flushed, and there was perspiration on his upper lip.

"If you had the power within you to save Jesus Christ from the cross, would you do it?"

"Uh, what?" I asked.

"If you were there, at some point after our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, was condemned to die on the cross, would you save his life if you had the means and the opportunity to do so? It's a simple question."

"Uh, yes. Yes, I suppose I would," I said, not really knowing what he was asking.

"Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!" Pointing his index finger at me, he said, "You are the man God has sent to us for this mission!" I sat there blinking, wondering what in the world he was talking about.

"I would like to introduce you to a man who will explain the project in more detail." Turning to his pastor, Daniel

said, "Reverend, Mr. Wood is in the next room. Please send him in."

The man escorted into the room was a somewhat casual-looking man. He was wearing a dark blue tee shirt and a brown corduroy sport jacket. His hair was longish and wavy, the type that resisted the orderly programming of a comb. He projected the feeling that he was an intense physical kind of man, with the sturdy square shoulders of a hiker or skier, yet he was still young enough to have a boyish-looking face. He shook my hand, giving me a cursory look-over, and then introduced himself.

"Hello, my name is James Wood." He glanced at the other two men, who smiled and nodded to indicate he could speak freely.

 

"Well, I guess it's time for the big reveal." He cleared his throat. "For the last few years I was working on a government-sponsored research project at MIT. The project had to do with quantum physics. Most of it was theoretical. I was working out an abstract model for a quantum-level communications device. I left the project and came back to Atlanta, because I stumbled upon something extraordinary. At the time, I thought I could create a working model with the funds I could raise myself. It turned out I needed more money than I had anticipated, so I contacted the wealthiest man I knew of, Daniel Pruitt."

"OK, so what is it you guys have come up with?" I asked.

"We've got a working model of a machine that can send living matter safely back in time."

It was such a strange statement that I looked at the other two men in the room to see if they'd heard what he had just said. "What? What do you mean? You're kidding, right?"

"No, I've done it. I sent a small mouse back in time for a few minutes."

Daniel got so excited he couldn't stand by any longer. "I've seen him do it! Soon we'll have the technological capacity to extend the time-jump to an hour, then a day, and then a month. The principle is the same for each time-jump. It's only the amount of energy used for each progressive jump back in time that changes.

 

"In about six months or so, I predict that I'll have a machine that can take a man back 2000 years," James said, attempting to continue his explanation.

Daniel spoke up again. "This is what sparked my interest, you see. To send a man back in time for six or eight minutes, or even eight days, didn't appeal to me. The only thing I could see it being good for is robbing people in the stock market. But to send a man back 2000 years opens the possibility of bringing back our Lord and Savior. We would have the technology to save him from the cross and bring him here to do His work. Doctor Hushing, I would spend every nickel I own to do that."

His voice choked with emotion. He placed his palms on his temples and then seemed to go into a trance. He stepped into the center of the room, motionless, under a bright spotlight. Then he lifted his arms up in front of him, his palms up in the Baptist style, and spoke as though he was

facing an imaginary crowd of parishioners. "I am telling you all here with me today; this remarkable combination of science, technology, and faith will be used for the good of all mankind. It will be called the greatest achievement in history! The day Jesus—was saved—in Atlanta!"

Daniel closed his eyes again and then snapped out of his trance. Seemingly embarrassed by his fervor, he appeared to shrink down in size, and his voice became more moderate. He looked around and seemed embarrassed. Wishing to continue, he said, "Of course it will be expensive, very expensive, but in the end, it'll be worth it. And I have a solution for the expense it'll cost me, too. Once we bring Jesus back here to Atlanta, we will announce to the world what we've done, and we'll get donations to cover all the costs. Then we'll raise money to build a great temple for all of His worshipers.”

Daniel’s voice and excitement grew strong again, “Once everyone sees what I have done—I mean, what we have done—I believe it will be no problem to convince the God-fearing members of Atlanta's city government to change the name of our fair city from Atlanta to New Jerusalem."

Then it dawned on me as to why they wanted me for their project. "So, you want me, as an emergency room physician, to go back 2000 years in your time machine to save the life of Jesus Christ, and then bring him back here to Atlanta. Is that right?"

"Yes!" chimed the three men in unison.

CHAPTER TWO

What these people were asking of me was unnerving. I searched for a diplomatic way to back away from their offer.

“I’m flattered that you want me to be in your project. But, it sounds to me like this machine of yours is still in the experimental stage. That’s not something I feel competent to get involved with. A test pilot might be more appropriate, don’t you think?”

“No, no, Doctor Hushing. You are perfect for this mission,” Daniel Pruitt said.

“Oh? How is that?” I asked.

The men looked at each other, reluctant to reply. Reverend Whitley confided, “You have no family, Doctor Hushing. I know it’s a callous thing to say, but it’s the truth. Doctor Sebring vouches for your competence as a doctor. You’re young and strong. We’ve been looking for someone who fits your profile for some time.”

“That’s why we’re so eager to have you join our team!” Daniel said. “You’re perfect. You have all the skills and requirements.”

“And no orphans to leave behind,” I countered.

James Wood spoke. “I’ve got a video clip you should see. It’s of our second successful experiment in performing a time jump, with a mouse.”

“A video clip,” I said, as I considered how easy it would be to fake a time-traveling mouse on a video clip. James opened his laptop and clicked on a video file. He seemed serious and that this was no joke.

In the video clip I saw a glass cage with several mice in it. Next to the cage was a round metal ball-like wire cage with a lot of cables connected to it. Sitting next to the wire cage was another glass cage, but unlike the other one, it was empty.

I could hear James’ voice off camera, describing how he was about to send one of these mice back in time for a few seconds. There was a moment of adjustment as the camera was moved around so that all three cages were correctly centered in the frame and were clearly focused. Then I saw James as he walked into the shot behind the three cages. He reached a hand into the cage of mice to retrieve one. I noticed that the James Wood in the video was a younger and much scruffier version of the James Wood who now stood next to me.

In the video James held a mouse by the tail and placed it in the metal globe-like cage. Facing the camera, he explained that he would send the mouse back in time and measure how far back in time it traveled by using a stopwatch to record the interval between when the mouse appears in the empty cage and the moment the mouse disappears from the metal globe. “This is the duration of the time-jump,” he said. James stepped out of the frame, and I heard him say, “I’m about to engage the time machine and send the mouse back in time. Let’s see if he appears in the empty cage first.”

Remarkably, an identical mouse appeared in the empty cage before he engaged the time-machine. James stuck his hand into the frame and started the stopwatch. “I’m engaging the time machine now,” I heard his voice say. There was an audible click and the lights in the room dimmed a moment as power was applied to the time machine. After a few seconds the mouse disappeared from the metal globe. James stopped the stopwatch. “Eight seconds!” he declared to the camera. He held out his hand towards the camera to show the face of the stopwatch. It had, as he said, advanced eight seconds.

James stopped the video clip.

“So, as you saw, the technology does work. The mouse was completely unaffected by his trip back in time. It was even able to reproduce normal offspring.”

I was genuinely astonished. “That’s remarkable.” I said. “I can see why you all are so enthralled with this technology. Even so, for me to make a commitment to your project and

be your time-traveling doctor is quite a scary prospect, don’t you think? It’s not what I was expecting when I was in Doctor Sebring’s office. I thought I was going to South America.”

“Doctor Hushing, please take some time and consider our offer,” Daniel said. “I’m not saying that there won’t be some risk to it, but I assure you that we will never send you or anyone else back into time through our machine until it’s been thoroughly tested and verified as safe. You have my word on that. Please take some time to consider our offer.” I agreed to seriously consider their offer and to get back to them with any questions that might arise.

Reverend Whitley took me back to the hospital where my car was parked. On the way, he encouraged me to give their offer a great deal of thought. “It’s an endeavor that will change the world,” he said. “Please, think about our offer carefully.”

I usually think of myself as a fairly gutsy guy, but stepping into their unproven technology was quite a leap for me. When I told Daniel and the other two men that I couldn’t commit to a project like this without first thinking about it, I saw the disappointment in their eyes. These guys were completely committed to their project, and they expected that I would be of the same mind and jump at the opportunity.

I had no desire to be their human mouse and step into whatever it is they had invented. Besides, even if it worked as they said it would, from what I knew about Jesus’ time, the heavy hand of Rome ruled the place. Of all the interesting eras in history, Judea, 2000 years ago, would not be my first pick, even if their time machine could get me there safely.

On the other hand, I wondered how bad things really were back then for the average person.

When I got home, I sat down at my computer and did a quick Google search and found that Roman soldiers were some of the most dangerous thugs in history. I found a phrase that summed up how Rome dealt with people who refused to be ruled by them. Pax Romana, which translates to “Roman Peace.”

At first blush, the phrase Roman Peace sounds like a good thing. But Roman peace didn’t mean peace in the traditional sense. Roman Peace was part of the spin doctoring of the time. It worked a little like today’s mafia.

They wanted everyone to believe that if your nation submitted to Caesar, you would get Rome’s protection, which would bring peace and prosperity. But, if a nation refused to submit to Caesar’s will, Roman Peace came at them through brute force and absolute domination.

The Roman soldier was not someone you could negotiate with either. In their eyes, if you weren’t Roman, you were nothing. You were considered an uncivilized barbarian and could be killed on a whim by any Roman of any rank. This was the world into which Daniel Pruitt and Reverend Whitley were asking me to step.

I sat there in the dark in front of my computer, thinking how crazy I’d have to be to agree to do something like this.

Then again, what a marvelous opportunity these men were offering me: to go back in time two thousand years and meet Jesus Christ and his disciples and witness first hand Jesus’ preaching and miracles. Could there be anything else in the world that would be more remarkable?

Nevertheless, there’s no getting away from the fact that this project had a lot of risks in it. Risks that could get me killed or badly injured. And what would happen if the time machine didn’t work correctly?

It was late, well after midnight. With everything that had happened to me that day, I was tired. I turned off the computer and got ready for bed. I planned to wait a respectful period of time and then call Daniel Pruitt to tell him that, after long consideration, I’d decided to decline their offer.

The next morning, I lay there in bed thinking about their project, wondering how long I should wait before calling Daniel and telling him that I was not going to do it. Then my thoughts began to wander, and I contemplated all the supplies I’d need to take with me if I were to accept.

I jumped out of bed and I spent the morning searching on-line for everything about Jesus and the people of that period. The Wikipedia page on the topic of crucifixion was interesting. Historical evidence indicated that the type of cross used during the time of Jesus’ crucifixion was not what we think of as the crucifix or cross shape. What was most often used then was the T-shaped cross. Jesus wouldn’t have had to carry the entire cross through the streets for his execution. He would only have had to carry the crossbar, what the Romans called the patibulum.

Also, it’s doubtful that Jesus was nailed through the palms of his hands. It’s more likely that a large nail was inserted between the bones in the wrist. Experiments with cadavers showed that the body could fall off the cross when using the palm, because the body’s weight could pull the nail through it. A nail through the wrist between the two bones kept the body securely held on the cross.

Armed with this information, I concluded that I would need a set of tourniquets to stop the bleeding from Jesus’ wrists and feet. But I’d need more than a few tourniquets; I’d need

a complete medical kit in a waterproof bag. The look of the bag on the outside should be very rustic and ordinary for the time, but inside it would be a well-equipped trauma kit with an assortment of modern medical supplies. Despite misgivings about my safety, I was becoming intrigued.

All during my shift at work, the possibility of going back in time two thousand years was never far from my thoughts. What if a soldier or a bandit took my trauma kit away from me? As a backup, I’d have to know as much as possible about herbal and folk medicine.

I asked around to some of the other doctors I work with to find out if any of them had experience with folk medicine. None of them had. One doctor even denied that it really existed. “It’s all a placebo effect,” he said. A quick look on-line, during my lunch break, revealed a list of books on the subject, so I downloaded a few of them onto the Kindle I kept in my locker.

I had once met a Chinese medical doctor who swore by herbal remedies and often prescribed them to his Chinese patients. “I never prescribe them to my Western patients,” he told me. “It’s a matter of expectations. My Western patients would never expect an herbal remedy to work as well as a pharmaceutical medicine. But my patients born in China expect them to work, so their ailments are relieved and have fewer side effects.” I’ve always been curious about herbal medicine, but until now, I had never pursued it.

Another problem occurred to me. How would I be able to speak to potential allies well enough to convince them that I was on their side? I’d always been a good student in language classes. But, the people of Jesus’ time spoke Aramaic, which isn’t the kind of language offered in high school. There are several books and a CD that teach Aramaic, which can be gotten on-line. Just for the heck of it, when I got home from work, I ordered them.

But then after placing the order, I was feeling some regret. I realized that I was forming an emotional connection to the project. I needed to step back and make a decision based on reality and facts, not emotion. So, I made up a list of the pros and cons for taking the assignment. It seemed like an intelligent way to decide.


AUTHOR Q&A

About me

William White lives in Cumming Georgia with his son and two small dogs. He has been writing since he was a boy, but has only been publishing his stories for the past few years.

Q. What is the inspiration for the story?
A.
I am a great reader of history. In other time travel stories, I've noticed that the characters often have the same values that people have today. That just wasn't the case. People in the past had very different values than those we have today. So I wrote a story that seemed more believable.
Q. What did you learn while writing this book?
A.
I did a lot of research on what people of the middle ages ate. I had a picture in my mind that they ate nothing but a thin grule. The truth is that the average farmer ate very well. There was a huge trade in spices, which they used in their food. I incorporated several dishes into the book.
Q. What draws you to this genre?
A.
Time travel opens the door to all of history. Many significant events of the past have been recorded, but haven't been explored much. A time traveling physician would be welcome in any age.

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