Synopsis: Jimmy Deparis, a petty thief, has stolen plans for a top secret bacterial spray. In the process he's killed its creator, mild-mannered inventor, Mat Wyatt.
On the run from police, Deparis thinks he's avoided the police by slipping into a penny arcade which he regularly frequents.
Inside, he takes his fortune from a machine, which mysteriously reads, "Beware where the dragon leads you".
An old nickelodeon machine catches his eye next, where a man who is vaguely familiar is taking in a short movie. When the man moves away, he takes a good, long look at Deparis before vacating the machine. Deparis shakes off the stare, and begins to view the movie. To his astonishment, it's a complete recording of the events leading him to the penny arcade. He sees himself killing Wyatt, then running from the scene of the crime.
As Deparis watches his recent past, the man who was viewing the movie previously has quietly slipped away to summon his friends. As the movie progresses, Deparis sees that the man is in fact Detective Elliot, and he's bringing some uniformed cops in the arcade.
Frightened of the near future he's witnessing, Deparis backs away from the nickelodeon and begins to run. He slips into a funhouse attached to the penny arcade, trying to elude the oncoming cops. Ultimately, he runs towards a window and smashes through it, plunging towards his death. As he falls, we see that the window is framed on its exterior by a big dragon head.
After the cleanup of the body, Detective Elliot returns to the nickelodeon machine to muse on recent events. There he reflects on the truth of irony. For a nickel, the machine proclaims, one can see the past and the future using "Mat Wyatt's Tempiscope".