Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach
By Kelly Robson
One can imagine a lot of different reasons for developing time-travel technology, and in Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach we are told that in the year 2267 it is being used in various ways, including for historical studies and time tourism. But mainly it has a progressive, redemptive function: going back into the distant past to restore ancient ecosystems in order to assist our recovery from environmental disasters that have left much of the Earth a wasteland.
Minh is part of a team assembled to travel all the way back to Mesopotamia in 2024 BCE. This will lead to some initial contact issues that go well beyond the usual, as Minh has been physically modified so that she has the upper body of an elderly woman but a set of tentacles instead of legs. This is an upgrade. As Minh herself puts it: “Why be human when you can be more?”
Despite its utility, such an augmented appearance also has the unfortunate effect of making Minh and her team appear as either gods or monsters to residents of the Bronze Age. When the mission starts to come undone it’s unclear whether any of the team will be coming back, or if they’re about to be lost in time.