S.P.Q.R. (Tomorrow News Network: A to Z)

Hello, friends, and welcome once more to the A to Z Challenge.  My theme for this year’s challenge is the universe of Tomorrow News Network, my upcoming Sci-Fi adventure series.  In today’s post, S is for:


The main character in Tomorrow News Network is Talie Tappler.  She’s a journalist.  She’s also a time traveler, and there’s a common stereotype about time travelers that definitely applies to her.  Everywhere and everywhen time travelers go, they always wear or carry an antique watch.  The more out of its own place, the more out of its own time the watch can be, the better.

Talie’s pocket watch is about as out of its place and out of its time as anything can get.  When Milo Marrero first sees Talie’s watch, he notices the image of an eagle and the initials S.P.Q.R. are engraved on the brass casing.  Milo’s accustomed to seeing the corporate logo of A.E.I. everywhere he goes, so he assumes S.P.Q.R. must be some other interplanetary mega-corporation.

Some of you, dear readers, may already know just how wrong Milo is about that.  For the rest of you, allow me to explain.  S.P.Q.R. stands for Senatus Populusque Romanus, which is Latin for “the Senate and People of Rome.”  In ancient times, the letters S.P.Q.R. were stamped on Roman currency or carved into Roman monuments.

Also, apparently, the letters were engraved into the brass casings of ancient Roman pocket watches.  Except… wait, the Romans never had pocket watches, did they?  That sort of technology wouldn’t appear on Earth until many centuries after the fall of Rome.  So where did Talie’s watch come from?  How did she get it?

I’m not going to answer those questions.  Not yet.  I can only tell you that I have longterm plans for the Tomorrow News Network series, and eventually I do plan to tell the story behind Talie Tappler’s watch.

And speaking of Talie Tappler, next time on Tomorrow News Network: A to Z, we will finally meet T.N.N.’s infamous “reporter extraordinaire.”

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