Study Guide

Timescape Chapter 45

By Gregory Benford

Chapter 45


  • Working through the night, Renfrew continues to transmit messages while the temporary power is working.
  • Tired and sick, he decides to add to his message, venting about Markham and Peterson and the whole affair, spewing it all into the great unknown void.
  • Renfrew receives a transmission that appears to be trying to make contact from the year 2349—or perhaps something else. It's unclear.
  • He feels feverish and dizzy. He receives another message but loses it before he can make sense of it. A third message doesn't even appear to be English. Or perhaps it's a code?
  • All hopes of reaching the past leave Renfrew. With Markham dead and Wickham missing, he realizes there is no way to understand what is happening.
  • Still, he smiles. Someone was out there, shouting their presence back to him, and this means hope to Renfrew.
  • The lights wink out, and he makes his way out of Cambridge.
  • Looking out at the empty, cold, gray world, Renfrew decides to go home and be with Marjorie. They'll have to go and pick up the kids from the countryside soon.
  • With his head clearing, he realizes he still has a lot to do.