He walked out of Headquarters with the Lasso in his pocket; easy to do, since he’d used it to go back to before the detectors had been installed. It’d be half an hour plus ten years before they noticed it was missing.
The Lasso, it grabs hold of a moment in time and pulls that moment towards it. It doesn’t move you, it moves the continuity of the universe around you. If you’re very lucky, and very careful, it doesn’t break that continuity in the process.
He was careful, always. He’d written the rules, and spent a long time enforcing them. Lucky? Who knows. He hadn’t ended the world yet.
“Frank.” A familiar voice, over his shoulder: his own.
“Hey. Someone was looking for you inside, I th—”
“Don’t try my own tricks on me.”
He shrugged. His had was on the Lasso, thumbing the dial. “Don’t need to.”
“When did it happen?” The younger Frank looked at his older self in disgust. “When did you break?”
“That’s just it, kid; you don’t get it. You will, eventually.” The Lasso was already humming, a high-pitched rising whine they both knew well. “There’s no such thing as when. There never was.”