"Beverly?" Howard called as he forced the door to the apartment open. It had a habit of getting stuck, and had to be showed who was boss from time to time. "Toots?" He shut the door with some difficulty. The apartment was small, and smelled like stale smoke. The carpet could use a vacuuming, but Beverly was afraid there wouldn't be any carpet left afterward. Howard wasn't convinced that would be such a bad thing.
Beverly also joked once that the carpet was alive, and vacuuming would anger it. Neither of them had laughed at that, as stranger things had happened to them both. "Hey Ducky." Beverly stepped from the kitchen holding a beer in one hand. She dropped the beer when she saw Old Howard, the bottle rolled across the floor, leaving a trail of beer behind, which was absorbed into the carpet suspiciously fast. Or so it seemed to Howard. "Whose.... your friend?" She asked, not frightened so much as confused.
"Me. From the future." He picked up the bottle and finished it off. "Think I'm going to need another one."
"Me too." Beverly replied.
One mid-size recap later....
"Okay, wait Older Ducky. You were killed today, but forty years ago." Older Howard nodded. "And an older version of you saved you, so you came back to save present Ducky?" She rubbed her head with one hand. This metaphysical stuff always gave her a massive headache.
"We died in that ally do to being stupid, with seventy percent probability on average. Twenty-five percent or so of probability has us die at, or in route to the hospital." He paused for a fit of coughing which lasted several minutes and left him winded. "So," He finally gasped, "at some point on some timeline we lived, and traveled back to save our present self." He sat on the couch to catch his breath.
"Doesn't that make a paradox?" She asked, afraid of the answer.
"Waaaugh??" Old Howard cupped a hand behind his ear. "A pair of ducks? Well. yeah. Kinda obvious." He looked at her sideways, as if suspecting a secret joke. Or maybe she was making fun of him.
"Paradox." She repeated slow and loud.
"Don't worry about that. It always works itself out." He leaned back on the couch, his cane still gripped tightly in his hand. His head tipped forward a bit against his chest, and a moment later he let out a snore.
"Ducky, what are we gonna do with him?" She asked quietly. Old Howard snored again, and mumbled something about taxes.
"Leave Weather channel on when we're gone so he doesn't get lonely?" Howard suggested.
"Two percent mark up my feathery @ss" Old Howard muttered, "Skrulls taking all the jobs..." He snored again. Beverly motioned for them to move to the kitchen.
"I'm afraid this will make a weird paradox. This sort of thing never ends well in the movies. Aren't time travelers supposed to avoid their younger selves?" She asked.
"I'm more afraid the idea will catch on, and more alternate versions of me will want to crash on our couch." They both looked into the living room at Old Howard as he drooled, and mumbled in his sleep. "Yeeeeesh."
"Something weird is going to happen Ducky."
"Weirder then having my future self drooling on the couch?" He replied, but knew what she meant. No doubt the was something truly horrifying in store for them. Like Old Howard had brought some germ from the future, and it would push the carpet over the edge into sentience. Something like that.
* * *
Back in the ally Old Howard had appeared in:
The ally simmered like pavement on a hot day. A loud sound like Velcro ripping is heard by no one, drowned out by the sounds of the city. A flash of light illuminated the ally for a moment, then vanished. Standing in the ally was a tall man in tights and a cape. Over his head was a bell shaped helmet. The figure checked a device built into his wrist.
This was the place and time. The duck had ran and hid here. [Predictable] The figure commented, then turned and left the allyway.