This is a work of fiction.
“What’s that?” Freckles asked, pointing to the steering wheel of the old car which had been mounted on the wall beside the dashboard. Something that looked like an electical spark was moving slowly around.
“I don’t really know, but it’s not dangerous. I can put my hands all over it and nothing changes. The first time I time traveled, it went right into my hands and I was scared, but it’s just light. Is everyone feeling all right?”
We all nodded, and I checked to see if the dogs and cats looked okay. They did.
“Can we chat while we’re traveling, or do you need to concentrate?” I said.
“I’ll need to watch a little at the end, but the hours are easy. If we go a little too far, no problem, but I don’t like to use more energy than necessary.”
“Fuel. You can’t hear it, but this machine is powered by a generator. It needs gas, and unnecessary time correction is a waste of fuel.”
She gave me an almost haughty look.
“Okay. Please let me know when you need to pay attention and I’ll be quiet.”
“This is boring,” Freckles said.
“Yes, it is,” Louisa said. “Once we arrive at Thursday evening, you can go to bed.”
“Okay, we’re almost there, so I need to concentrate now.”
None of us had been saying much, and I was feeling exhausted.
Wordlessly, we watched the clock.
The hands moved slowly, and then stopped and moved forward, then backward again, and then they stopped moving.
LOuisa pressed a button, and the clock started moving forward at its normal pace.
“We have arrived. It’s 8:00 on Thursday evening.”
I looked at my watch and shook my head.
Louisa smiled at me.
“Your watch counted the time we were moving, but if you unlock your phone, it should show the correct time.”
I did. She was right.
Curly checked his and said, “Wow.”
I went back to the van and found our pyjamas.
When I woke up, the kids were still asleep, but Louisa was in the kitchen.
“Would you like some breakfast?”
“Yes please. I’m just heading to the van to pack bags for our trip and also I should call the airline.”
“That sounds good. Do you like bacon and scrambled eggs?”
“I love them.”
I went to the van and checked what clothes we had. A lot of things needed to be washed, and the things I’d rescued from our tents still needed to be mended, but I found two changes for each of us.
I also packed a few games and our knitting projects.
When I returned to the kitchen, Sammy was standing there.
“I don’t like bacon or eggs,” he said to Louisa.
“That’s all right. Do you like toast?”
“No, I hate fruit.”
“Um, okay, what do you like for breakfast?”
“Nothing. I don’t eat breakfast.”
Lydia, Freckles, and Curly came into the kitchen.
“What’s for breakfast?” Freckles asked.
“Nothing,” Sammy said.
“Don’t be silly,” I said. “There are scrambled eggs, bacon, toast, fruit, and cereal.”
“Could I have some of everything, please?” Curly said.
Louisa smiled at him.
“Me too, please,” Freckles said.
Sammy glared at him.
“Would you like any help?” I asked.
“No thanks. Please sit down.”
Lydia, Freckles, Curly, and I all took seats at the table, but Sammy remained standing.
“Sammy, please come and sit with us.”
He stood ramrod straight, as if he was waiting for a drill.
Louisa brought a huge dish of scrambled eggs to the table.
She served me first, then Curly, then Freckles, and then Lydia.
Lydia smiled at her mom.
“Thank you,” she said.
Freckles picked up his fork.
“Don’t!” Sammy said.
“Don’t eat that.”
“Sammy, remember what I’ve been telling you?”
“No. You talk so much, I can’t keep track.”
“Don’t be rude. I’ve told you that it’s up to Freckles what he does, and it’s up to you what you do.”
Curly took a huge bite, swallowed, and said, “Thanks Louisa, this is great.”
Lydia, Freckles, and I all took huge bites.
Louisa served herself and came to sit with us.
“If you change your mind, just let me know,” she said to Sammy, who ignored her.
After breakfast, I showed Louisa how to feed TJ, then the boys, Lydia, and I went to the van.
Louisa opened the door, and I drove out into Friday morning.