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Time-Travel Romance

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Bill: We gotta go. This is a history report, not a babe report.
Ted: But Bill, those are historical babes!

Time Travel provides all kinds of possibilities for a romance arc: some of them comic, some of them tragic, and some of them bittersweet. As a comedy trope, time travel can result in a culture clash between two otherwise suited people, since different times have different manners and mores. More dramatically, a time travel plot may force a protagonist to make a decision between returning home or staying in a different era. Time travel can also serve as a force which reluctantly separates the couple, if one must return to his or her original time. Time travel can sometimes result in the ultimate Long-Distance Relationship, if the couple tries to make it work despite the time barrier.

In some cases, Love Transcends Spacetime, and a couple separated by time are able to be reunited simply through The Power of Love. Alas, this is not always the case with a Time Travel Romance. Sometimes separated lovers are separated forever. In other cases, they have to go through a great deal of effort (using magic or science) to be reunited.

Of course, separation isn't the only possible source of romantic drama in a time travel plot. A Time Travel Romance may lead to Time Travel Escape, if the object of affection needs to be rescued from a historically-necessary but unfortunate death. Love across time may also lead to My Own Grandpa, which could be played for either comedy or drama.

In many time travel stories, the cross-time romance is a subplot, rather than the main story. If the romance is the main plot of a work which involves time travel merely as a means of uniting, challenging, or separating love interests, then you're likely dealing with a Paranormal Romance. See also Reincarnation Romance and Eternal Love, which describe other methods of extending a romance arc across time.

A strangely common subtrope involves one lover attempting to use time-travel in order to save their beloved from some kind of fate, repeating the same series of events for what is often implied to be hundreds or even thousands of times without giving up, all in the name of love.

Closely related to Age-Down Romance, which also involves two characters, who would otherwise be too chronologically distant, getting brought together through supernatural means. Time-Traveler's Baby can be the result of this trope.


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  • This 2012 advert for the UK Department Store John Lewis featuring a girl from 1925 the store's founding year, and a guy from 2012 romancing each other across a split screen.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Date A Live: This is essentially why Origami has feelings for Shidou when they meet at the start of the series, even though he doesn't remember meeting her before. To give a brief summary, Shidou eventually travels back into the past and comforts Origami after her parents were killed, causing her to become emotionally dependent on him. It's complicated by the fact that multiple instances of time travel were involved, resulting in a major case of Timey-Wimey Ball.
  • El-Hazard: The Magnificent World has Ifurita getting sent back in time thousands of years and taking The Slow Path to get back to the main character Makoto, so he could go meet her for the first time. Eventually Makoto finds out how to Time Travel to her right after that point, and they're reunited.
  • Happens in Golden Days between Kei and Setsu and Jin and Mitsuya.
  • Inuyasha, with Kagome and Inuyasha. However, Kagome travels back and forth through the Bone Eater's Well located in her family shrine's back yard so often, they might as well live in adjacent towns. At least until the end, where the Bone Eater's Well stops working and they are torn apart for at least three years. When the well starts working again, by the time of Kagome's highschool graduation, she has to choose between the Warring States Era and her own time — she obviously decides to stay in the past and marries Inuyasha.
  • In Kamisama Kiss, this is actually what happened between Tomoe and "Yukiji", as the Yukiji Tomoe fell in love with was actually Nanami all along.
  • Defied in Negima! Magister Negi Magi. When Chao Lingshen says she's going back to the future, Negi implores her to stay with him and the others. However Chao notes that it sounds an awful lot like a romantic proposal and given that she's his descendant, well...
  • One Piece: Toki from 800 years in the past falls in love with and marries Oden.
  • In Red River (1995), a girl named Yuri Suzuki is thrown into the old Hitite Empire and becomes the concubine of one of the Hitite princes, Kail Mursili. Both are aware of the trope, and in fact Kail points out the HUGE inconveniences. But in the end, Yuri decides to stay in Hattusa and officially marry Kail.
  • Touta from UQ Holder!, gets himself involved in a particularly convoluted one during his training with Dana. Because Dana's castle is separated from the space-time continuum, Touta meets a younger version of Yukihime who calls herself Kitty. Touta immediately becomes infatuated with Kitty and inadvertently becomes her First Love despite being adopted mother and son in the present. Things get complicated because Kitty can only be transported to Touta's time when Dana falls asleep and the time spans between their short meetings are much longer for Kitty than they are for Touta (to Touta it has been only one day, while for Kitty several years have passed). Knowing Kitty was suffering in the past and still feeling attached to her younger self, Touta tries to pick up the romance with present-day!Yukihime. Yukihime turns him down because she can't move on with anyone else as long as she loves Negi, but Touta continues to pine after past!Yukihime.

    Comic Books 
  • Battle of the Atom: During the second fight with the Future Brotherhood in All-New X-Men, the time-displaced teenaged Angel begins to take an interest in X-23. They go out on a wild date in issue 31, in which somehow Laura (despite her Healing Factor) gets wasted enough that she blacks out and Warren has to relate the events, and which is also heavily implied to have ended in sex. For most of the subsequent ten issues the nature of their relationship is left up in the air, primarily due to Laura's standoffishness on the matter. They finally have a Relationship Upgrade to Official Couple in issue 40.
  • I Killed Adolf Hitler: the main characters' romance revolves around the botched assassination of Adolf Hitler. Both characters have to walk The Slow Path to end up together, alive, in the present, but as old people.
  • In the Legion of Super-Heroes, Brainiac-5 (Querl Dox) and Supergirl (Kara Zor-El). Brainy always falls hard for Kara as soon as he lays his eyes on her, and she likes him back. But he can't live in the 21st century and she can't stay permanently in the future. Her oftentimes prolonged absences have led Brainy to pull some truly dumb stunts.
  • In the "Dead End Kids" arc of Runaways, the team is sent back in time to 1907, where Victor falls in love with local girl Lillie. It doesn't work out, and it's later revealed that their travelling back in time was a result of the machinations of Lillie's modern-day self, who had hoped that Victor would take her away from the brewing gang war of that era... which turned out to be an unforeseen consequence of the Runaways being sent back in time.
  • The Stranded has late 21st century space marine Doy and prehistoric cavegirl Lin.
  • In the Belgian comic Yoko Tsuno, when the group time travels to the Bruges of the Renaissance times, Pol falls in love with the Innocent Flower Girl Mieke. The group brings her to the modern times, so she and Pol stay together.

    Fan Works 
  • There are quite a few Alice, Girl from the Future fanfics shipping Alice with canon or original characters from the past, especially with her 20th-century classmates from One Hundred Years Ahead/Guest from the Future. For example:
    • In Loving. Beloved. Unreachable, Alice and Kolya Naumov fall in love during the events of One Hundred Years Ahead, but afterwards they are only able to meet very rarely, whenever Alice is allowed to go back in time for half an hour or so. They both lead outwardly contented lives, each in their own time, and yet feel empty without each other.
    • In (Not) the Right Kolya, Alice falls in love with Kolya Sadovsky, who, by getting employed at the Institute of Time, manages to move to the late 21st century for good and reunites with her.
  • In Back to the Frollo, Danisha discovers a time-traveling Chevy, travels to 1480's Paris, meets Judge Claude Frollo, and falls madly in love with him.
  • In Doctor Whooves – The Series, Twilight Sparkle and Renaissance artist Leonard DiHoovsie fall in love.
  • In Hellsister Trilogy, Supergirl travels to the 30th century, meets Dev-Em while undertaking a Legion of Super-Heroes mission, and falls for him.
  • "A Long History" sees a teenage Rose Tyler meet the "teenage" (by the standards of Gallifrey) First Doctor when he comes to Earth as part of a field trip, to the extent that the two marry and conceive a child, before other parties erase their memories to ensure that the Doctor will go on to play his role in future events.
  • In Memento Vivere, a Final Fantasy X fanfiction, the romance between Auron and Rikku is a main plot point of the story.

    Films — Animation 
  • In The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, there's a potential romance between the main character Makoto and one of her closest friends, Chiaki.
  • In Voices of a Distant Star, due to lack of FTL, lovers are separated by relativistic considerations and light travel time.
  • In Your Name, the protagonists are not only living in completely different places (Taki lives in Tokyo while Mitsuha lives in the countryside) but are also three years apart, meaning both characters are time-traveling when they switch bodies.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Avengers: Endgame, Steve Rogers goes back in time to be reunited with an Alternate Timeline Peggy Carter. They get their dance and seemingly live happily for the rest of their life.
  • In Back to the Future Part III, Doc Brown unexpectedly encounters love in the Wild West with a much younger woman named Clara. They stay together and they travel through time together.
  • The movie version of Crusade in Jeans used this. The original book version didn't though.
  • Kate & Leopold serves as a good example of a romantic comedy incorporating time travel as a way of creating a culture clash between the protagonists, an Impoverished Patrician from Victorian England and an Office Lady from our time.
  • The Lake House: Dr. Kate Forster and Alex Wyler fall in love via a trans-temporal mailbox. They live in the same spot, but two years apart.
  • The Japanese movie My Tomorrow Your Yesterday has a unique take on this trope. Both of the leads don't actually do any time-traveling per se, and they both experience time at the same pace. The twist is that their individual timelines move opposite from each other, so his future is her past, and vice-versa. They experience each day together, but when the clock strikes midnight, while he moves forward a day, she in turn goes backwards.
  • Somewhere in Time is all about this, with a guy named Richard being so determined to meet the girl who was the model for a beautiful portrait that he basically psyches himself back in time to find her. They're torn apart, and then reunite when he dies.
  • Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home gave us Kirk and Gillian Taylor, although it's very low-key compared to Kirk's usual romances. Apart from an Italian dinner cut short, a bit of flirting, and a hug, nothing happens between them. (This is probably because the part was originally written for Eddie Murphy.)
  • The original The Terminator had Sarah Connor falling in love with her rescuer from the future.
  • The movie version of The Time Traveler's Wife is all about this trope, as the time traveler hops around to different time periods at random and his wife meets him at different points in his life.

  • April in Paris by Ursula K. Le Guin has two couples like this form after a lonely 15th century alchemist Jehan starts magically summoning companions from other eras. Barry, an American philology professor who arrives from 1961, finds love with Bota, a Gallic girl from the Roman Empire, and Jehan himself with Keslk, an interstellar archaeologist from the 8th millennium AD. The whole point of the story is that the four’s loneliness and longing for love and friendship was so strong that it bent the laws of time.
  • Miss Price decides to marry Emelius in Bedknob and Broomstick, returning to the 17th century with him.
  • Connie Willis:
  • Harry Turtledove's Crosstime Traffic series has elements of this, with a bit of Star-Crossed Lovers mixed in.
  • In Diana Wynne Jones's The Crown of Dalemark, Maewen is transported back in time and falls in love with a boy she meets in the past. At the end of the novel, they're reluctantly parted when she returns to her own time. Then he shows up in her time, and it's revealed that, due to his ancestry, he's The Ageless.
  • There is a romance in Dinoverse like this. Time travel in that 'verse entails possessing the bodies of whatever's big at the time, and a girl named Patience ends up in the body of a hulking carnivorous acrocanthosaur, soon befriending and then being attracted to a bright native acro which she nicknames Green Knight or GK. Her host had made overtures to him before, but he hadn't been interested; he wanted Patience. She had angst over how they could never be, since she didn't want to stay a dinosaur. He died trying to make a Heroic Sacrifice to save one of her human friends - he failed - but it was okay, because he and the friend both ended up in the human's body. This meant that Patience and GK could be together after all! ...along with the friend. Strangely, all three parties were okay with this.
  • The premise of 11/22/63 is that Jake Epping, a high school teacher from 2011, steps through a portal to 1958 so that he can prevent the Kennedy assassination. However, since he's got about five years before the dreaded date comes around, he has time to get a job teaching again and fall madly in love with the school's Hot Librarian Sadie Dunhill. Sadie ends up getting killed by Lee Harvey Oswald, and Jake finds out that his mucking around in the past has made such a monstrous Timey-Wimey Ball that he needs to undo all of it, making a new timeline where he never meets Sadie and Oswald never shoots her. Back in 2011, Jake finds Sadie, now a stranger over twice his age, and dances with her one last time, their love momentarily transcending the decades and universes now forever holding them apart.
  • William M. Lee's short story "A Message From Charity" is about the telepathy-based romance between Peter Wood, a modern-day teenaged boy living one of the small towns surrounding Boston, and Charity Payne, a teenaged girl living in the very same town, but 250 years earlier. They never meet, except in their thoughts.
  • The Dandelion Girl is about a man falling in love with a girl from the future. Bring a tissue.
  • Rachel Weintraub / Moneta and Kassad in Dan Simmons' Hyperion Cantos. Like River Song, Moneta travels in a different time stream than Kassad, but she keeps meeting him during important training of his early years training under FORCE (but when they first meet she is in her late twenties, he is younger), which causes him to fall in love with her. She, on the other hand, has been in love with him long before, as Rise of Endymion divulges and even sends him off with a goodbye kiss with the admonition to be on the look out for her as he returns to his own time, after having dying in combat with the Shrike and being taken by Moneta into the Time Tombs. Kassad's paradoxes in the time stream in connexion with Moneta are delineated in more depth on the work's page.
  • Ransom Rigg's Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children features Jacob going back in time and falling in love with his grandfather's ex, and having to make the decision of whether or not to stay. He does. For a while, at least.
  • This is part of the main premise of Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series.
  • Robert A. Heinlein employed this trope throughout his later novels.
    • Time Enough for Love features protagonist Lazarus Long traveling back thousands of years to visit his original family in 1917 Kansas City, Missouri. Along the way, he meets, falls in love with, sleeps with, and breaks his Masquerade to his mother. They are parted by World War I and him being MIA in combat, thanks to Love Makes You Dumb.
    • The Number of the Beast picks up this story where it left off, as Lazarus needs the help of the Burroughs family and their much more efficient time machine to rescue his mother from her reported death in the 1990s and bring her to his present time. After she is successfully retrieved and undergoes rejuvenation therapy, she joins his Polyamory.
    • To Sail Beyond the Sunset has Maureen herself, now an operative in the Time Police, stage the rescue of her own father from World War II Britain, and also for the purpose of sleeping with him. Parental Incest in mainstream Speculative Fiction, thy name is Heinlein.
  • In Edmond Hamilton's The Star Kings, a person from the 20th century swaps bodies with a prince from the far future. While there, he and a princess fall in love with each other (the princess is in love with him, despite being unaware of the Body Swap). At the end, he returns to his own time and, depending on the edition, the princess either follows him by swapping bodies with a permanently comatose woman, or makes telepathic contact to say they are working on a way to bring him to the future physically (setting the ground for the sequel).
  • Vlad the Impaler and Elizabeth Bathory in Count and Countess.
  • The Michael Crichton novel Timeline has André Marek, a Yale archaeology researcher traveling to 1357 France with his associates. While getting mixed up in one of the many skirmishes of The Hundred Years War, he falls in love with the English noblewoman Lady Claire. When the others return to the present, the Middle Ages loving Marek decides to stay behind. In the epilogue of the novel, the others learn Marek married Lady Claire and sired children. His final words were "I have chosen a good life."
  • Tomorrow's Ghost by R. Chetwynd-Hayes, based around a romance between a Regency-era woman and a 1980s man.
  • Warrior Cats has a variant on this. Jayfeather travels to the past taking the place of Jay's Wing who he is a reincarnation of and meets Half-Moon, who is in love with Jay's Wing. Later, they come to genuinely love each other.
  • Time and Again by Jack Finney: A New Yorker in 1970 (who thinks Victorian women are hot) travels for a secret government project back to 1882, where he finds a girlfriend.
  • Invictus: Far's mother was a time traveler who fell in love with his father, a gladiator in ancient Rome.
  • The Licanius Trilogy: Raeleth (who lived almost two millennia before the "present" of the trilogy) and Niha (who lived about twenty years before the "present") meet and fall in love as prisoners in the temporally displaced city of Zvaelar. Becomes tragic when the time bubble around Zvaelar starts collapsing and they have to flee, knowing that this will send each of them back to their own time and they will never see each other again. Fortunately, Raeleth left Niha Someone to Remember Him By.
  • This is How You Lose The Time War is the story about Red and Blue, two agents from warring factions traveling up and down the timestream in an attempt to rewrite history to their superiors' liking, leaving messages for one another across time. It starts as taunting, but it eventually evolves into Worthy Opponent, then Friendly Enemy, and finally into genuine love. The messages are eventually discovered and Red is made to assassinate Blue, a plan that is foiled by their future selves, and they decide to team up and end the war by rewriting time around their relationship.
  • Dav Pond wishes this could happen. Just read “Why Can’t The Perfect Girl Exist In 2022??? (Or A Complaint To My Inner Light)”.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 7 has Daisy Johnson, an agent from the 2010's, hook up with Daniel Sousa, and agent from 1955.
  • Doctor Who:
    • In "The Girl in the Fireplace", the Doctor fell in love (or lust) with Madame de Pompadour (the French King's mistress) while they're separated by extreme Narnia Time. It verged on The Dulcinea Effect on his part, while she spent the best part of her life in love with him. The Doctor offers to enlist her as a companion, and she accepts, only to find she's died at just 43 while waiting for him to get back. It was only a minute or two from his perspective, but six years for her.
    • Then there's River Song, supposedly the Doctor's wife. She is also a time traveler but moves on her own. Though it was indicated at first that they are meeting in roughly reverse order, later episodes show that it's a little more complicated than that. For example, the Doctor is present at her birth, but though it's the first time she meets him, it's not the last time he meets her. The only point we know for sure is that the last time River meets the Doctor is in "Silence in the Library"/"Forest of the Dead" in which she dies.
      • The two have adapted by keeping diaries of their encounters with one another and comparing notes when they meet, to avoid accidentally revealing any information on events the earlier of the two hasn't experienced yet.
      • "The Husbands of River Song" is, from the Doctor's point of view, their last time together. The Doctor spends the next twenty-four (relative) years in seclusion until "The Return of Doctor Mysterio".
    • This trope has been zigzagged a lot with regards to the Doctor and Clara Oswald (Word of God, specifically Peter Capaldi, is that their relationship was a romance, just not a standard one). To explain in detail would turn this into a copy of Clara's character page, as well as the recap pages for a good portion of the episodes from Series 9 (2015) so best to just go there. However, one straight example of this to note is the Eleventh Doctor (as played by Matt Smith) encountering one of Clara's many incarnations in Victorian London and falling for her in "The Snowmen" (opening the door for the romance that followed).
    • Then there's the Doctor's various romances with women across time, including Queen Elizabeth I, Marilyn Monroe, and (implied) Nefertiti.
  • The Flipside of Dominick Hide: Dominick is from the future and Jane is from the 1980s. They have a passionate affair which leaves Jane happier, but pregnant and Dominick more emotionally healthy.
  • In Goodnight Sweetheart, Gary, a down-on-his-luck TV repairman in a failing marriage, discovers a time portal which leads to 1940s London. Once there, he meets a young woman and they fall in love. And now suddenly there's no need to go through the trauma of a divorce in the 1990s, because he can have two separate lives...
  • DC's Legends of Tomorrow has a few examples.
    • Nate and Amaya in Seasons 2 and 3. He's a historian from the 2010's, she's a JSA member from 1942. Their relationship is literally Doomed by Canon, since Amaya is destined to marry another man in her own time in Zambesi, and her granddaughter ends up being the present-day superhero Vixen. Ultimately, they are forced to part ways, with Amaya returning to 1942 to live out her destined life.
    • Nate falls into this trope again in Season 4, by getting involved with another team-mate from another time - Zari Tomaz from 2042. Once again, the relationship is tragically cut short, when a Legends mission in 2019 changes the future, rewriting Zari's past and erasing the version of her that Nate and the Legends knew. Slightly mitigated by the fact that Nate eventually meets the new version of Zari and they both become aware of their past relationship.
    • Ray Palmer and Nora Darkh's relationship also technically counts, since the adult version of Nora he gets involved with comes from 23 years in the future (Nora being a pre-teen girl in the present-day).
    • Sara Lance and Ava Sharp is a tricky example. Ava believes she's a 21st century woman and has the memories to prove it. But it turns out that she's in fact a clone manufactured in the 22nd century with false memories.
  • Lost had the romance between Penny and Desmond, which was largely introduced during time-travel episodes.
  • Moon Lovers: Ha-jin, a woman from the 21st century, travels back to the Goryeo era and falls in love with Wang So, the future king of Goryeo.
  • Outlander is based on this trope: a woman accidentally travels back in time and has a Perfectly Arranged Marriage with a Scottish Highlander, but it's 1743 and she knows the Battle Of Culloden is not far off.
  • Phil and Keely's romance in Phil of the Future. Eventually played for drama as Phil and his family are sent back to the future.
  • Jen and Wes in Power Rangers Time Force.
  • Primeval: gives us Lady Emily Merchant, from Victorian England, and Matt Anderson, a man from the future.
  • Scarlet Heart: Zhang Xiao, a woman from the 21st century, travels back to the Qing Dynasty and falls in love with Yin Zhen, the future Yongzheng Emperor.
  • Someday or One Day: Huang Yu Xuan, mourning her boyfriend Wang Quan Sheng, finds herself travelling back in time from 2019 to 1998, landing in the body of Chen Yan Ru and seeing a boy, Li Zi Wei, who looks exactly like Wang Quan Sheng. And then Zi Wei finds himself travelling from 2003 to 2009 to Quan Sheng's body, meeting and developing a relationship with Yu Xuan until the events of his death, and thus Yu Xuan's time travelling, play out.
  • In the Korean drama Sisyphus: The Myth Gang Seo-Hae, a time-traveler from 2035, falls in love with Han Tae-Sul from 2020. Their relationship causes a significant dilemma for Tae-Sul, as the Bad Future they are trying to prevent will result in the woman he loves being erased from existence.
  • James T. Kirk has another tragic example in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "The City On The Edge Of Forever." Kirk is sent back to Great Depression New York City through a Negative Space Wedgie Time Portal. There, he meets and falls in love with Edith Keeler, a kind-hearted, visionary shelter worker. The tragedy is that unless Keeler dies, the Nazis will win World War II and Starfleet will never exist. The punch is all the worse in the end, as Kirk has to personally intercede to prevent Dr. McCoy from saving Keeler's life. The Fridge Logic in this one is quite hard, because there were many obvious options to save Keeler without harming history- including simply taking her with them back to the future (Since she was supposed to die, this would not have changed history, except to go from "killed by a car" to just "missing forever... but then Kirk couldn't be The Casanova and kiss an alien every week!) Also, the Guardian of Forever basically says that time would only correct itself when the same conditions (in this case, Edith Keeler's death) were achieved. The fact that Kirk fell in love with her makes it a bigger sacrifice. Had she not died, they wouldn't have gone anywhere.
  • The Supernatural subverts it. The Season 7 episode Time After Time introduces Chronos, the Roman god of time. He is afflicted with involuntary time travel that occurs randomly, to random places. He can control the destination, but only if he sacrifices three people, and even after arriving at his destination, the random jumps will eventually reoccur. He ends up falling in love with a woman in the 1940s and starts sacrificing people to get back to her, but doesn't tell her. She's absolutely horrified that he's been murdering people (including her friends) to try and stay with her.

  • Journey into Space: In The Return from Mars, the Discovery becomes trapped in a time warp. Jet falls in love with Cassia, a native of the planet Tribos which turns out to be Earth in the far future.

    Video Games 
  • Played with in Fire Emblem: Awakening, where the Second Generation Characters are all time travelers who fled from a Bad Future where Grima destroyed the world. Now for the most part, they cannot fall in love with the First Generation characters, averting this trope... except for the Avatar, who is a friend of the First Generation characters and a potential parent of the kids in his/her own right. And to top it all off, such a pairing will give these future children their own Kid from the Future: Morgan (who can also be the future kids' little sibling). In this case though, none of them actually want to go back to their original Bad Future — and even if they did want to return, that's a feat which may be impossible to do anyways since Grima trashed everything. note . The fandom is split on whether this is a good move story/gameplay wise or a really squicky deal, since while the future kids are close to the Avatar's age (in fact, some are implied to be actually older than some of the potential First-Gen spouses), they are marrying someone who was at least two decades their senior in their original timeline, while their "current day" selves haven't even been born yet (with the exception of Lucina, and she's still only an infant).
  • Happens every so often in Gardens of Time, even when in-story these types of romances are not allowed. There are two huge examples of the trope:
  • Shippu Mahou Daisakusen: Kickle & Laycle have this dynamic. In the end, they both go back to the future, to Kickle's time period, and Laycle becomes a part of the family.
  • Professor Layton and the Unwound Future: Claire and Layton have this going on. Claire was thought to have died in an accident involving a time travel experiment, but she ended up being sent ten years into the future instead. Unfortunately, as it was still experimental, this results in molecular instability, and they are ultimately forced to go back to their own time... in other words, back to the time machine explosion that would kill her. Even Layton takes off his hat in tears.
    Claire (JP): It appears my time is up, at last. It was nice to see you again. It ended so suddenly; my... last time travel.
  • This can happen in The Sims 3 if one has the Into The Future Expansion installed. One can travel to the future and end up dating someone who lives there, and eventually even bring them back to the present time. Depending on how one goes about this, the spouse from the future may eventually even return to the future to find their own descendants living alongside their original family.
  • Romance isn't quite the main focus in most books of Dress Up! Time Princess, but a good many story paths involve forming a close relationship with one or the other of each book's possible love interests all the same. It really hits this trope during the branches of "Queen Marie" that focus on the Marquis de Lafayette - unlike Fersen, whose star-crossed romance with Marie Antoinette was already established before the events of the story, the narration suggests that the player character's feelings for Lafayette are much more her own than Marie's, and Lafayette's "Sail into the Future" ending has Marie assuming the player character's own name for her new life together with him in America.

    Visual Novels 
  • Considering that it calls itself "A Time Traveling Otome Game", Area X is obviously this, as the heroine can travel to different timelines and romance a different guy in each one, with the Love Interest of her time being the only aversion of this trope. Sort of—further time-traveling shenanigans mean that which romances count as this is a lot more complicated, though Yuras will always count, along with at least one other Love Interest.
  • Fate/stay night; Saber and Shirou. Saber is King Arthur and was summoned to the present by the Holy Grail, while Shirou is from the modern era. This eventually leads to a rather Bittersweet Ending, until the Realta Nua Updated Re-release first made them Star-Crossed Lovers, then proof that Love Transcends Spacetime upon their (impossible) reunion.
  • Ikemen Sengoku: Romances Across Time has its main character get unexpectedly sent back in time to the Sengoku era of Japan where she makes the acquaintance of Nobunaga Oda and other famous Sengoku warlords and has to deal with Culture Clash and developing feelings for one of these warlords in spite of Sasuke cautioning her against letting love cloud her desire to return to her time. She can avert this trope, however, by falling for Sasuke instead who came from the same time as her.
    • Cybird, the company that made the above game, loves this trope in general. They've also created romance games where the heroine gets sent back in time to Japan's Bakumatsu period (Destined to Love) or to 19th-century France (Ikemen Vampire).
  • Rosemary and Crow's route in Rose of Winter. Whether or not it works out depends on which ending you get.
  • In Hashihime of the Old Book Town Between Minakami and Tamamori. Minakami traveled back in time ten times to save him, while Minakami did it 23 times. And Tamamori's distant future self is also responsible for creating the timeline in which they currently live, where their romance is not doomed in the first place.
  • Between Sigma and Diana in Zero Time Dilemma and the backstory of Virtue's Last Reward. When he first meets her, she's already known him for days. When she first meets him, he hasn't seen her alive for decades and built a gynoidnote  in her image. Complicating this even further are their 20 year-old daughter and 124 year-old son who both don't even get born in the timelines that either Virtue's Last Reward or the Golden Ending take place in.

  • In Homestuck, Dirk Strider and Roxy Lalonde exist years into the future relative to Jake English and Jane Crocker, but are still capable of communicating with them with such ease that the latter two aren't even aware of the time difference. Despite this, Dirk has fallen for Jake, who in turn has shown himself not at all entirely opposed to pursing this. It seems likely that the two would be able to meet up within Sburb, however.
  • Played with in Manly Guys Doing Manly Things in the relationship between The Commander and Jonesy, who simply thinks he is a particularly creative liar or delusional, but is subsequently proved wrong about this.

    Western Animation 
  • One episode of 101 Dalmatians: The Series features the main cast (and Cruella) arriving in a time and space-transcending village cursed by a witch as a response to Cruella's ancestor's harshness. The witch's spell reduces all but Cruella and Spot to become mindlessly happy and never want to leave. During their stay, Lucky meets up with a carriage pup named Rebecca and becomes smitten with her, seemingly because of the spell. When the spell is broken and the main cast are making their escape before the village disappears, Lucky shows legitimate feelings for Rebecca when he asks her to come with them. It's shown to be quite mutual, but Rebecca chooses to remain to keep an eye on Cruella's ancestor. And because it wasn't enough of a Bittersweet Ending, Laser-Guided Amnesia kicks in, leaving Lucky completely unaware of her existence not long afterwards.
  • Dinosaur Train has an extreme example; The Conductor — a Troodon, one of the last dinosaurs, is in a relationship with Erma — an Eoraptor, one of the first dinosaurs. They live nearly 200 million years apart — the same time difference as it would be if, say, a Stegosaurus started dating a HUMAN — but it's very clear that they love each other.
  • Time travel plays a role in Fry and Leela's Will They or Won't They? relationship in Futurama. Fry is also his own grandfather by having slept with his grandmother in a trip to 1947 Roswell.
  • In Justice League Unlimited, Supergirl falls in love with Brainiac 5 of the Legion of Super-Heroes when they go into the future, and she stays there to be with him when the rest of the heroes go back.
  • Happens in season 5 of Samurai Jack with Jack, who is from the past, and Ashi, from the future. Ashi takes Jack back in time to kill Past Aku, thus ensuring that he won't take over the world in the future. Unfortunately, because Ashi is Aku's (future) daughter, she is erased from existence at hers and Jack's wedding.
  • She-Ra: Princess of Power episode "Darksmoke and Fire" had Adora sent over a hundred years into Eternia's past by a plot of Hordak's. While there, she meets Tarvan, who grows to adore her. She has to leave him behind when Granamyr returns her to the future.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Timey Wimey Relationship, Timey Wimey Romance


George and Weena

He's a Victorian gentleman from the year 1899, and she's an Eloi woman from the year 802701.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / TimeTravelRomance

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