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A group of scientists had almost cracked time travel - but then started dying in a series of bizarre accidents. They realised that the universe was protecting itself from the paradox of time travel by killing them off in 'Final Destination' improbable accidents - the last scientist was hiding out in a shack in the middle of the desert to avoid the same fate. I seem to remember he died of a heart attack, but I might be wrong. Any clues welcome.

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  • Hi, welcome to SF&F! When and where did you read this?
    – DavidW
    Mar 28 at 15:33
  • Emsley Wyatt's suggestion of The Chronology Protection Case by Paul Levinson is very like the story you describe but it doesn't end with the last scientist in a shack in the desert. How sure are you about this detail? Mar 28 at 16:18
  • @Jimblob: If someone does provide the correct answer, you can accept it by clicking on the checkmark by the voting buttons as per the tour.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Mar 28 at 19:34
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Sounds like "The Chronology Protection Case" by Paul Levinson.

Summary from Amazon:

When NYPD forensic detective Phil D'Amato takes a call from a lady physicist about her missing husband, he has no idea that her life, his life, and every other scientist working on a top-secret time travel project will soon be in dire jeopardy. As the number of dead begins to mount, D'Amato starts to realize that the suspect is not any one person or group but something much more sinister and dangerous.

A short film has been made of the story:

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