[WP] Your father/mother-in-law is a future version of yourself that had gotten into an accident involving time travel.

“I love you.”

“I love you too.” The two kissed passionately. “Alright let’s get dinner. I’m excited to meet your parents!” Judy beamed at Greg. Greg kissed her again then stood up off the couch to call a cab. He stepped across the mess of books, boxes, and clothes strewn across the floor of their studio apartment to get to the phone.

“I can’t wait ‘til we’re finished moving in!” He said.

“Yep,” she replied dryly. “And that’ll be…when exactly?”

“Look, I’ve been very busy! As soon as work slows down I’ll finish unpacking.”

“Well, we don’t have to worry about it right this second.”

“Yes, Yellow Cab service please.” Greg spoke into the phone, facing away. “Yes, I will hold.” He fiddled with something in the kitchen. “Hey Jude, when do I get to meet your parents? I’m going first but I don’t want to go last as well.”

Jude looked up, with a worried expression. “What?”

“When do I get to meet your parents?” Greg turned around smiling. She smiled back immediately, as if her initial reaction had never happened.

“Soon baby! My dad’s in the hospital though, you know that. We’ll have to travel there some time.”

“What about this weekend?”

“What! Such short notice!”

“Yeah but I have a couple days off work. When are we going to get another chance?”

“They won’t be expecting us. Plus we have to clean the apartment!”

“We can do that later. This is a big thing! How am I supposed to go through life not having met my girlfriend’s parents after two years of dating?”

“Is the car okay to go? I thought there was something you had to get fixed.”

“Yes, thank you.” Greg spoke back into the phone. He told them the address. “Thank you.” “Five minutes,” he said to Judy. “And the car is fine, I told you, I got it fixed up. Come on, they’ll love it! What are you worried about?”

“Nothing…just my dad isn’t so healthy. Surprises aren’t very good for him. That’s why he’s in the hospital, in part. To keep him away from accidents and shocks and such.”

“Well we can call ahead. I’ll do it now.” Greg dialed. “Hello. Yes my name is Greg Richter. I’d like to schedule a visit—me and my girlfriend, Judy West, are visiting her father, Greg West, tomorrow afternoon. Two O’clock? Great. Thank you.” Greg smiled. “All set!”

Judy couldn’t conceal her worry. “Okay Greg…He may not even be able to see us though. He really isn’t in good health.”

“Okay, no problem. It’s still good manners for a boyfriend to say hi at some point. Besides it’ll make a good impression, me traveling all the way.”

A horn honked downstairs. “Taxi’s here!”

“That was a great dinner, Judy!”

“Yes, it was.”

“Why are you so quiet? I thought you had fun!”

“I did!” Judy smiled. “I’m going to bed. See you in the morning.” She went into her bedroom, and Greg watched her bemusedly.

“Hello,” Greg smiled at the receptionist. They were in a private hospital lobby, fairly spacious and clean, with a very sterilized and well-lit ambience. “We are here to visit Greg West. I’m Greg and this is his daughter, Judy.”

“Hmmm…Yes… Mr. West is not so well at the moment but he will see you. Right this way.”

“C’mon Jude.” Greg took his girlfriend’s arm. She was biting her nails.

"What’s the matter? It’ll be great to see him! Your mom is here too, right?”

“Yes…she came when she heard we were visiting.”

“Great! I can’t wait to meet them.” Judy smiled emptily. “You look a bit pale… Do you want some water? I’ll grab some for you and your dad.” Greg smiled brightly. “Be right back.”

A minute later they cracked the door and peered in. “Mr. West? It’s Greg, me and Judy thought we’d visit.” Greg stepped in—and stopped cold. “Oh my.” Judy stepped in behind him.

“Judy…I had no idea it was this bad. I’m sorry,” Greg was aghast.

She began silently crying next to him.

“Come on in. It’s alright.” Said a woman in a chair at the foot of the bed.

“Thank you, Mrs. West.” Greg said.

On the bed was a figure covered in a sheet. There were clearly some problems when it came to where each limb should be, and which angle it should be at. A few tubes went under the sheet at various anatomically appropriate locations and fed back into a machine which beeped regularly and read a few vital signs.

Greg cleared his throat. “Mr. West. Can you hear me?” He looked at his mother-in-law. She nodded. “Mr. West, I appreciate you allowing me to visit you today… um… I just want to say thank you for allowing me to date your wonderful daughter… um… Judy is great… she’s very funny, and very smart, and very successful at her career at Time Dynamix…” Greg trailed off. “I have a lot of respect for you, sir, and I will treat your daughter as well as any person can be treated. Thank you.”

“All right, well time to go I suppose,” Judy said.

“Wait… can I… look at his face? To truly meet the man that I have so much respect for?”

“Oh, we’d best not,” Judy said quickly.

“Yes I don’t think he would like that,” Judy’s mother said.

“Best to just go,” Judy said.

“Just one second. I respect him too much, I need to see his face.” Greg stood up and pulled the top of the sheet back. He screamed—an exact replica of his face stared back at him, except that it looked like it had been aged twenty years, and the two halves were mismatched. His left eye, cheek, and half of his nose were about a half-inch lower than they should be. Both eyes stared widely and frantically and roamed in their sockets like caught flies. He had a perpetual expression as if he had just witnessed something inexplicably disgusting but could not move his face.

“Jesus Christ!” Greg yelled.

“Greg, it’s not what it looks like!” Judy said.

“It looks like me only I’m old and mutilated!”

The vitals beeped a little louder.

“What the fuck is going on!”

“Best we come clean.” The mother announced. “Greg, sit down.”

Greg sat, dazed. “Greg, Judy is your daughter. Her father is you. You were transported backwards and horribly disfigured in a time travel accident with Time Dynamix twenty-five years in the future. When you could still speak you explained that the only way to ensure you were still alive, even in this horrible state, would be if you ensured you were able to travel back in time under the same circumstances—which means with a woman who works there. We fathered a child as a result, luckily she was a girl, ensured she worked for Time Dynamix, and made sure you met. Since you were genetically similar you were bound to be compatible.”

Greg vomited.

/r/WritingPrompts Thread