Not long after a woefully-attended show in a Tunica casino, aging semi-professional Elvis impersonator Lesley Pervis found himself approached by a young woman in a power suit and heels, with steely eyes and a steely briefcase.

The name’s Deabrua Paholainen, and I specialize in spatio-temporal relocation. What would you say to a world where YOU were Elvis?”

“That would never work,” said Lesley. “If I were him, I wouldn’t be me. No sale.”

“You misunderstand me, Mr. Pervis,” said Ms. Paholainen. “I’m talking about an alternate universe where Elvis’s twin Jesse survived his birth pangs. There, Elvis had to compete for his mother’s affection in an even poorer family, and therefore never became a singer. He dies in obscurity, ironically enough at the ripe old age of 91.”

“I don’t follow,” said Lesley, wary but weary.

“Don’t you see? You were born in 1935 too, just a few months later. You know all of the songs, all of the moves, all of the tics. Why, if you were returned to 1954, you could walk into that same recording studio and have it all. And you’d still be yourself.”

Lesley was trembling. “Are…are you sure?” he whispered.

“Honest injun, Mr. Pervis,” said Ms. Paholainen. “And no one would have to know but us.”

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“We’ve got an hour and we need someone who can sing,” Tyrone said. “The band’s there, it’s ready, and we’ll pay you what we were gonna pay Hedge. But it’s gotta be something other than Elvis.”

Tatum sat down heavily, pompadour and sequins glistening under the harsh lights. “I don’t know if I can do it.”

“Our makeup guy can…undo this whole Elvis thing you’ve got going,” Tyrone said as if he thought that could help.

That awful night onstage thirty years ago was vivid before Tatum’s eyes. “I said I don’t know if I can do it!” he cried. Elvis had been safe, a warm blanket that he could rely on to deflect criticism and those horrible rowdy boos. To do anything else…

“Look, I need an answer right now,” said Tyrone. “I wouldn’t even ask somebody like you if it wasn’t an emergency. Now either man up and sing something that this crowd will like or slink on back to your bachelor party and bar mitzvah scene.”