The Time Machine Engineering War
This is a narrative framing device: it's for your own safety. Do not remove.
I have this idea for a science fiction story. Pretend that physics, mathematics, and autonomous research AIs have advanced enough that it only takes one genius, or perhaps just a very talented researcher, to invent a practical time machine.
Now pretend that closed timelike curves (the tracks an hypothetical time traveler would leave on the gooey ground of spacetime) are forbidden by the universe - perhaps in self-defense, perhaps out of malignity.
The goal of the story would be to explore what that would look like from the point of view of the people living in that spacetime and trying to loop back on themselves in such an obscene way. How would the universe enforce its moral horror of this perversion?
Anyway, it's just an idea.
Back to the real world. As your doctorate advisor, I feel obligated to tell you that, while the graduation rate in the Applied Negative Energy Physics graduate course is quite high, the ratio of laboratory accidents — some serious enough to force young people to retire, some regrettably lethal — is quite higher than in other research engineering areas despite our continuous efforts to increase security. I've lost some very promising researchers that way.
I think you have enormous potential in the field. Is there any way I could convince you not to enter it?
No, I didn't think there was. Well, good luck, I guess. I'll see if I can find you an advisor to take over me; it's getting harder every year. And under no circumstances tell me about anything you find.