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The Time Machine

by H. G. Wells

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Student Question

What did the Time Traveller reveal to his dinner guests?

Expert Answers

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The time traveller starts to tell his guests his story in Chapter 2, but it goes all the way to Chapter 10.

The dinner guests are invited to the Time Travellers for the following Thursday, at which time, they will gather without him.  He has left instructions that they are to start dinner without him if he did not appear by 8:00 O'clock.

When he arrives in the dining room, his guests are astonished to see him, his clothes are torn and dirty, he looks like he has not slept, his hair is messed up and he is covered in dirt.

"His face was ghastly pale; his chin has a brown cut on it a cut half healed; his expression was haggard and drawn, as by intense suffering. " (Wells)

He has a fascinating and somewhat unbelievable story to tell his guests, he tells them that he has lived eight days in the future since he last saw them.

He begins by telling them that the time machine has worked and he time travelled.

"I am afraid I cannot convey the peculiar sensations of time traveling.  They are excessively unpleasant." (Wells)

He tells them about his skipping through time and how it looked from the time machine, the sun disappearing and appearing, the moon rising and then disappearing, days and nights passing faster and faster before his eyes.

He tells them how he stopped the machine and it tumbled on top of him and how he felt at the prospect of meeting future beings.

"My fear grew to frenzy.  I took a breathing space, set my teeth, and again grappled fiercely, wrist and knee with the machine." (Wells)

Recovering his courage, the time traveller notices that he is surrounded by little white creatures that appear very fragile.  He meets the Eloi, the people who live above ground in the future world of 802,701.

He tells his guests of his amazing time in the future, about the creatures he encountered.

"Time Traveller learns more about the Eloi, the creatures he is staying with and whose name he learns, and is "introduced" to the Morlocks, a hideous race of underground creatures who resemble apes, with white skin and enlarged eyes, who prey on the Eloi. The Time Traveller learns about the Eloi largely through Weena, a female he rescues from drowning, while other Eloi passively watch."

The time traveller's story, what he told his guests, goes all the way through to Chapter 10.

The time traveller completes his story, including his harrowing escape from the future, and his dinner guests who have a hard time believing him.

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