This is a short story I read in the late 80s. A soldier called H leaves an embattled position near a time-rift battlefront where humanity and unidentified aliens are shelling each other to prevent a crossing.

He is going on leave to see his family and travels on a series of carriages like train compartments, crossing with other travellers. As he travels back in time his name, H, expands to Had, then something like Hadril and so on until he reunites with his family. He's then suddenly recalled to action.


1 Answer 1


This is David Masson's "Traveller's Rest", previously asked about in this question.

I can't find a summary anywhere, but here's an extract from one review:

...as one travels south, one travels down-time (time moves slower) while as one travels north, one travels up-time – where time moves very quickly. I loved how Masson further illustrates this by abbreviating names in the up-time latitudes down to initials, while in the south (down-time), one accesses the more complete (and very lengthy!) names of places and people. This was an excellent device, and added to the puzzle.

The story follows H, a soldier on the Frontier. He’s right near the sight-barrier, and the enemy is on the far side. Just twenty metres from his position. But he’s only there for a relatively short time – as he’s soon Relieved and must return to the South, where many years have passed since he left.

  • 2
    More information on 'Traveller's Rest' in this answer
    – mcalex
    Jul 22, 2019 at 9:17

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.