The Skull (short story)

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"The Skull" is a science fiction short story by Philip K. Dick, first published in 1952 in If, and later in The Collected Stories of Philip K. Dick. It has since been republished several times, including in Beyond Lies the Wub in 1988.

Plot synopsis[edit]

The plot centers around protagonist Conger, a man who is given a chance to get out of jail if he agrees to do a job: traveling back in time in order to kill a man who would later prove to change the world. Congers' target is a man who appeared in 1960 in a small town in the US, and who spawned a new religious movement which radically changed the world over the next few hundred years. Conger is given a skull from which he can identify the man, and is sent back in time in a capsule. As Conger prepares for the man's arrival, he discovers that the skull is in fact his, and he is the man who will change the world, as people around town begin to take interest in the time traveler. Due to the use of time travel, Conger realizes that even though he will die, another version of himself will reappear in a few months, as if resurrected.

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