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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2210749-My-Old-House
by Dagtar
Rated: E · Short Story · Sci-fi · #2210749
"Lets go visit our old house" Ann asks her two brothers.
Three Young Students approach the house, passing a sign saying RED ZONE, UNSAFE, NO ENTRY. They look round as they approach the front door. The street is quint with no traffic going down it.

Ben uses a key to open the front door. They go inside quickly and shut the door quietly.

Ann, Ben & Chas stand and look around. This house suffered in an earthquake but all large contents may be still there. All pictures are crooked and have fallen down.

"That was easier than I thought." Ann says carelessly "Nobody saw us." Ben starts looking around "Said it would be. But remember, just a quick look." Chas heads to where Ann is looking replies "I've important work to get on with, Ann. Can't hang around." Chas says nervously. Ben picks up a broken Vacuum "Same here. Not like you 'students' swanning around all day! Ha!"

Ann jibes back "You two were students once" "Yep, then we got real jobs" replies Ben resitting a flipped couch. Ann snaps back "I think you'll find..."Chas interrupts "I think you'll find that Ann's Postgrad research is a real job, Ben. Ha!" Ann raises her eyebrows and walks on.

"Look at the state of the place. Mum would be upset to see it like this. She and dad were here for ... how many years? Thirty something??" Ann notes as Ben and Chas pull back the curtains and peer out a window. The view is amazing. They turn back inside and look around. Ben falls back on the couch they were on. The two laugh.

"Wow, Haven't been in here since I was nineteen." Ann says as she continues to look around the kitchen" Not sure I like the way the new folk have it laid out." Chas cheekly says following her "Whatever. Isn't their son an All Black?" Ben adds as he starts to look in the cupboards for food. "No idea." shrugs Chas.

"Aren't they going to take any of this stuff out before it gets bulldozed?" Asks Ann "Is it worth having? Wouldn't have it in my new place." Notes Chas, Ann raises her eyebrows at him. "They're not allowed in. Too dangerous. If there's another big quake the whole place will..."

There is a tremor. They freeze.

"Shit!" crys Ben "It was just an aftershock! Chill!" notes Ann "OK, quick look for old-times' sake then we're out!" Exclaims Chas "Yeah. Best not to hang around. Seen enough?" adds Ben as he quickly throws food into his backpack. Ann looks around one more time. "Odd to think the old place'll be gone. Lot of happy memories here. Do you remember, after mum's funeral you two..."

"Anyway, all done? Some of us have proper jobs to get back to! Come on." Ben says, bag full food. "OK. Worth coming though. Quick peek at our old rooms..." begs Ann.

They reluctantly go upstairs. They are looking around with varying enthusiasm when they hear the front door open. They freeze.

"Bugger. I told you we'd be caught! If I'm late for.." Ben says trying not to be heard. Chas barks back "For crying out loud, what's the worse they can do? Kick us out?" He pushes past the others and goes down the stairs. In the main room is a man in a very modern boiler suit. The Prof.

The Prof looks up at Chas coming down but without any shock or emotion. "Are you with the restoration team? I wasn't expecting you yet. Anyway, welcome. Exciting project!" He says with a smile. "What?" Chas says as he goes down and Ann follows. Ben comes down cautiously.

"No, actually.. To be honest: we just came for one last look at the old stamping grounds. Sorry, we'll let you get on." Ann shyly adds. "Stamping grounds? Not familiar with that. Which part of the place is it?" Asks the Prof.

"She means we used to live here." Ben says angrily, not wanting to be late. Professor laughs. "Oh yes? When was that then?" He adds. Chas looks at Ann "Ah Until twenty-oh nine? Was that when you left?" Ann nods.

"What? Just after ten last night?" The Prof says confusingly. "No, the year, two thousand and nine. Eleven years ago." Ann correcting him "Ha! But that's the old religious calendar! If you'd been born then you'd be over two hundred now, which you plainly aren't! Are you?" The Prof shaking off the correction.

"No, we're 29" Ben snaps, The Prof looks at the three of them "OK, I think you'd better leave, we need to check the place is safe before we can allow..." Ben turns to leave "Yeah. Told you it wasn't safe. Come on..." But Ann doesn't move. She looks at The Prof and his clothes. "Hey, What year do you think this is, now?"

"Now? One-eight-five of course. Is this a joke?" Laughs The Prof. Ben looking mad "God! This is wasting time! Come on!" The Prof stops laughing and looks mad "What did you just say? Did you use the 'G' word?!" "What? 'God'?" Snaps Ben "You know you can't use that..." Prof sudden works it out.

"Oh. Oh dear. How long have you been in here, this visit?" asks The Prof very upset. "Not long. Less than an hour." notes Ann. "Anyway; got an important job, meeting big client this afternoon, so.." Adds Chas

"Wait a minute. Look, I'm sorry! All the checks showed the building was empty. Really sorry, this has never happened before." says the Prof as he starts acting worried. "What is he talking about?" Ben asks to Ann "Listen, this is a really important,historic building - a vital step in the development of civilisation. We couldn't let it be knocked down, not before its importance was even known!" Add the upset Prof

"Really? So?" barks a pissed off Chas "So we brought it here. Into the museum." The Prof examines the furniture. "I mean, look at this! Amazing!" Adds the Prof. Ben turns to leave. "Come on. This is ridiculous. Been and seen. Time to go." The Prof stops them. "Wait! I mean, seriously, what year do you really think it is now?" asks The Prof

"Two thousand and twenty. What year do you think it is?" Ann asks curiously "Hundred and eighty five. Modern Era." "'Modern era'? And when did you change to that system?" Asks Ann "Change? I think it was 2041 on the old system. The year of the Great Disaster. I wasn't born then of course." replies The Prof getting upset again. "So from 2020 to 2041 is... twenty one years. And 185 years have passed since then. So 21 plus 185... two hundred and six years." Ann says to Ben and Chas.

"Yes that's right. We moved the building 205 years ahead. Really sorry: we genuinely thought it was empty. This is so embarra..." The Prof says as Ben comes marching over and grabs him 'What bollocks! So you mysteriously 'transported' a whole building into the future. With us in it. What a crock of shite."

"But ... I mean ..." Chas says trying to calm Ben down. "Its bollocks! It's a set-up! Look, we're still ..." Ben lets go of The Prof and goes to the window and looks out again. New view. They are seen looking out. On the glass is reflected the Taj Mahal. "Is that the Taj Mahal?" Asks Ann. "Oh yes. That's been here in the museum a long time. One of the first things we saved from before the Great Disaster." The Prof says geting to his feet

"What?! Bugger. Bollocks. Shit and f..." Says Chas before he is cut off "Wo! You can't say any of those words! No reference to any sexual activity or reproductive body-parts, at all, it's demeaning to men and women!" The Prof says stopping them. "Really? OK, 'Shit' then. Is that OK?" Chas says angrily. "No! Not since the exploding bowel pandemic of 103!" Replies The Prof.

"Ha! Guys! It's a hoax. A wind-up! First, why would this place be of any historical value, alongside the Taj Mahal?! Second..." Says Ben trying to not believe anything thats happening. "Oh no! It's real. This place is really precious to us. This is where the Nobel-prize winning discoverer of the Time-Particle lived. Without that discovery we wouldn't have space travel to the colonies, time-relocation, so many things. Ha! We wouldn't have been able to bring you here!"

"Send us back! I have a top job in insurance and am very important! Come on, send us back!" Says Chas "And I run the largest car dealership in the country! Without me ..." Says Ben, Prof looks at Ann who says nothing. "And her too. Our sister." Says Chas "Oh my. I'm really sorry. We can't do that, send you back. Not physically possible." explains The Prof

"Still don't believe this crap. Sorry. But..." Ben says as he walks to the other side of the house. "But, how can you move it forward in time but not ... unless you freeze the particles and ..." Ann notes. "Yes. Of course. Particle Freezing is amazing, but you can't ... I don't even know what the name for reversing it would be!" replies The Prof.

"OK. So who is - was - this amazing 'Nobel-winning scientist'? Perhaps we met them! Ha!" asks Chas "Yes! Yes! Perhaps you did! That would be amazing! How exciting. She was called Professor Annabelle La Tour." The Prof says excitedly.


Chas and Ben look at Ann.


"Um, that's me. I'm Annabelle La Tour. Not a professor though. Post-Grad Researcher. Studying ... particle physics..." Ann says nervously, The Prof is initially very excited then freezes. "Oh! Student! You're still ... oh! 2020! So you haven't yet discovered..."

"No." replies Ann "Oh..." The Prof adds.

Another tremor shakes the place. They duck as dust falls. When they stand the Prof has disappeared. They hurry to the window. The view is back to normal. The men look at Ann. She is smiling proudly.

"Right then. I'd better get back to being a student, eh?" She walks to the door and exits. They freeze then suddenly look around and hurry out after her.

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