Colleen's replacement science teacher in the Irish high school has a special subject of her own: time travel.
Since Colleen’s mysterious absence as a teacher, Frances Woodfield had explained to the school, that Colleen Balfour would not be returning due to personal private developments in her life. They had briefly engaged a substitute science teacher, who had filled in during Colleen’s earlier sabbattical. However, the teaching position needed to be filled in a more permanent way at the start of the third term. So the school turned to someone with tried and true staying power: Colleen’s longest serving predecessor Sandra Corlani.
She was now 57, and had begun teaching at the school when she was 21, after graduating from a teacher’s course. At 41, she had gotten married, and at 46, she had had a baby daughter, only to become a widow in the same month, and gone into semi-retirement to raise her daughter at home, while spending her available time on perfecting something she had been working on all her life: time travel.
She was not aware of the Ring of Reversal, and would not have considered it a form of viable time travel anyway, as it was used more for reversing the flow of time, thereby resetting most people’s memories, rather than actually travelling into the past with one’s memories of the intervening years retained in the mind.
She had explored every possibility that came into her mind, and had developed a number of theories and methods which may or may not work reliably.
Now, as she returned to the science teaching position, reverting to her maiden name, she wanted to pass on the knowledge to her students and let them be free to make their own experiments.
She had passed on each of her techniques as she’d acquired them in the past, to trustworthy students back then, in the days of teaching from age 25-46, but now wished to present the entire course of options to a future generation of potential time students.
One Friday she asked a number of students she had selected from each of her classes to come to an information seminar in the science classroom after school. When they were all assembled, she began by saying, “I’d like to talk about a subject which would not be recognised in the school curriculum, and nor would I want it to be: time travel. I have been working on the means to bridge the fourth dimension for many many years, and would like to make my findings available to any students from any of my classes who are interested. I am prepared to offer a special after school voluntary lesson each week, for anyone interested, on the understanding that it would only be known to the teaching staff as a remedial lesson. I would not wish it to be disclosed to the school staff that I was teaching additional material not found in the curriculum. So anyone who is interesed can come to the first session next Friday afternoon at 3pm and stay for as many lessons as they wish.”
Every student selected had showed high aptitude and each of them was interested in the subject. They suddenly found themselves grouped together with their ages ranging from 11 to 18 in the same after school class. By the end of a term of this, they would all have gained knowledge of a number of potentially successful methods of time travel. Some were ready to experiment with it less than halfway through the term.