A Time of Troubles III
A Time of Troubles IIIDisclaimer: See previous chapters
Once upon a time, when the weather was clearing and James Lester was beginning to wonder if this was going to be the day that he’ll be able to actually enjoy, the Page sisters had a confrontation.
“Sarah!” Becka Page yelled so loudly, that it was a wonder that the entire ARC hadn’t heard her. “Have you gone mad? Just what have you written to Maya?”
To Lester’s surprise, Sarah blinked and looked quite worried. “Uh, let’s see. What I usually wrote, plus about you-?”
“And that, undoubtedly, was a bad idea, since Maya’s planning on visiting us today, like 12 min-utes ago, or 14,” Becka growled. “You’ve doomed us!”
“Eeep!” Sarah wailed as she had never wailed before. “I don’t want to be doomed! Becka, do something!”
“What’s going on here?” James Lester was finally able to put a word in edgewise. “Girls, who is Maya?”
“That would be me,” spoke another woman, looking vaguely five or six years older than the Page twins. “Maya Page, the stepmother of these two lovely ladies – oh, hello James, what are you doing?”
It was James Lester’s turn to look like he wanted to grab somebody and wail about doom and gloom, but he managed to restrain himself, barely.
“Ladies,” he turned to Sarah and Becka, “why didn’t you tell me that you’re the children of India’s cultural attaché? Really?”
“Because you never asked?” was Becka’s reply.
“I didn’t think it was such a good idea,” Sarah’s reply was more forthcoming.
Lester twitched, Lester grimaced, Lester opened his mouth, and-
“Connor, what is that thing you’ve caught – or brought?” Sarah asked quickly.
Connor Temple, who had accidentally appeared on the scene, turned red.
“This, uh, is an ancient, prehistoric tortoise from the Triassic,” he said weakly, “it has accidentally escaped from a time anomaly I’ve generated by accident...”
“Fascinating,” Maya Page said, looking down at the tortoise, even as Connor Temple picked it up. “It’s so ugly that it’s cute – and much more wholesome than some of the lapdogs that I’ve seen. How much will you take for it?”
“Er, Mr. Lester?” Connor turned to the head of the ARC for directions. “What did I miss?”
James Lester opened his mouth to tell Maya Page just how inappropriate her statement was, when the tortoise urinated, in a great number, upon Connor Temple’s pants. The moment for pathos was hopelessly ruined, and James Lester could only sigh.
“Let’s go to my office,” he told Maya Page. “Lorraine, get Mr. Temple new pants or something. Mrs. Page, let’s go to my office and let’s talk.”
James and Maya left, leaving Connor staring helplessly in their direction. “But it’s a chronologically displaced Triassic tortoise!” he said helplessly. “We can’t give it away!”
“What Maya wants, Maya gets,” Sarah told him, “sorry Connor, but consider taking one for the team.”
“And don’t worry,” Becka added, “if next time you accidentally bring forth Vlad the Impaler or the whole vanguard of the Roman imperial army, we’ll help you deal with them.”
Connor just gawked and fell silent.TBC...