“I’ve closed off the North wing of the house,” announced Frederick.
“Goodness, whatever for?” Mother was rarely this provoked, especially before tea.
“A black hole has appeared in Father’s study. I thought it best to shut the whole wing.”
“Well, that is rather inconvenient. Must the entire wing be inaccessible?”
“I’m afraid so,” answered Frederick. “It’s already got one of the parlour maids and a few of Father’s first editions.”
“But where did it come from Frederick?” asked Constance, who had been sitting in the bay window, admiring her reflection.
“I’m not sure, but my guess would be that science facility across the lake.”
“There, you see Mother, I told you we should have vacationed at home this year.” Constance smiled smugly.
“Hush Constance, you remember what happened last year.” Constance drew in her breath at what she considered to be an unnecessary reminder.
“Well, what are we to do? We can’t live with only the South wing at our disposal. That won’t do at all.” Constance, gifted at identifying problems, was still too young to commit to solutions.
“We’ll just have to wait until it goes away. There’s not much we can do until then.”
“We could organise a mob and storm the facility! I’ve always wanted to be part of a mob and storm something. I believe I would be excellent at storming, particularly in my brown tweed.” Constance beamed at the group.
Constance, either on purpose or not, missed the look of scorn given by her parent. Mother thought for a moment. “How long do you think it will last, Frederick?”
“Oh, I don’t imagine any more than a day or two.”
“In that case I have a plan.”
The next day the black hole disappeared. It took with it one parlour maid, three first edition Dickens and a set of dining room chairs, fashioned in the ‘modern’ style. The chairs had been a gift from a well-meaning but vulgar distant relative.
“I still think we should have vacationed at home this year.” Constance was sulking over the lost opportunity of storming in her brown tweed.
Mother put an end to the discussion. “If we had stayed home, we would still be in possession of entirely inappropriate furniture and a maid with a tendency towards clumsiness.”
The books, however, were greatly missed.
Copyright Kelly Evans