"Are you okay, Ken?"
Startled by the voice behind him, Ken turns around and finds his boss Bob looking at him with some concerns.
"Oh, I am fine, Bob."
"That's good. As I was saying, please go over the papers submitted by the two applicants and decide who is going to be your principle researcher."
Now, Ken starts to remember.
The date was, or rather is, October 30, 1988. Their pharmaceutical company is one of many in a fierce competition to map the DNA sequence of a persistent virus that has plagued the lives of many children in developing countries. Since sequencing technology is not exactly Ken's forte, his boss Bob has asked him to hire a post-doc to solve the problem.
"I sort of prefer the red-head over the brunette," says Bob half-jokingly. "But of course, we are professionals and I'll let you be the judge of who best qualifies for the position."
"Of course! Of course!" Ken replies, watching Bob leaving the office.
Ken reviews the two unfolded files in front of him. Here is the brunette's résumé and her thesis on DNA sequencing. It is good work but not exactly something that will lead to the break-through that has yet to happen. Ken knows this because he already has the scientific knowledge and answer from the future. On the other hand, the work of the red-head - Ken feels bad identifying female workers by their physical appearances - is exemplary and she will very likely make the discovery on her own without any intervention from Ken. There is no doubt she is the preferred candidate. There is just one little problem: Ken knows the future. He and the brunette will eventually have an office romance, fall in love, get married, and have children.
So on this day October 30, 1988, Ken makes the most important decision of his present and future life. He takes the brunette's file into Bob's office.
For the next 20 years, Ken "knowingly" fulfills his destiny. He uses his knowledge from the future to help his principle researcher "discover" the sequencing technology. The pharmaceutical company is able to find a cure that will save the lives of many yet-to-be born children in the third world. His career thrives and they "spontaneously" fall in love, get married and have children.
As to the red-head who was not hired, she falls into a depression and eventually commits suicide. And Ken has known it too.
Happy Halloween !!!