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Saturday, January 5, 2013
In Brist's Time - Chapter 6
Brist slowly drifted to consciousness, she heard voices.
she live, doctor?” Nicholas asked.
she hasn’t a fever, or any broken bones, just a few bruises.
darling, where did you find her?” Regina Evans asked her eldest
the stables, Mum, she had apparently fallen off her horse,” he
answered his mother.
must be a thief, Regina, why else would she be wearing those clothes?
Not to mention out riding in the middle of the night.”
don’t know, Father, she is not filthy like a thief would be, nor
does she have work roughened hands. Not to mention her horse is of a
very fine quality. The mare is very difficult to handle and
very loyal to her, not likely to happen if she had stolen the animal.
Neither I, nor any of the stable boys could handle her highly
spirited horse, and I almost got my hands bitten off for trying to
tend to this girl. It was only after I felt compelled to tell the
horse that I was trying to help the girl that it calmed down enough
for me to get near her. This horse has a saddle of a quality that I
have never seen, and the strangest thing of all is that it bears the
Evans’ mark,” Nicholas explained, not sure why he was defending
the girl – er woman – that he had discover by his family’s
stables this morning.
seems, Nicholas, that everything about her is a mystery, even how to
open her bag,” Regina stated, then dismissed the doctor, who left
with an accidental slam of the door. The noise woke Brist completely.
she’s awake,” Nicholas observed as he leaned over to check on her
and discovered Brist’s newly conscious state.
immediately sat up, threw her arms around his neck, and kissed him
passionately. “Muskles!” She cried joyously after she finished
kissing him. Everyone in the room was taken completely aback.
Nicholas freed himself from her affectionate embrace, looked at his
parents in shock and mild embarrassment, then turned back to look at
are you?” He asked.
stop joking around! It’s me.”
have no idea who this Muskles is, but I assure you that it’s
not me,” Nicholas said, confused by her apparent recognition of
him. Brist continued on as if he hadn’t even spoken.
long have I been out? Why did you bring me back here? Why aren’t I
in my own bedroom? Who are they? Where’s Daddy?”
I do not know how long you were unconscious; I discovered you this
morning, not more than two hours ago. These are my parents, and if
you would tell us who you are, we would be happy to return you home
to your father,” Nicholas said.
took a good look at the man who looked incredibly like Jesse Muskles,
and realizing that it wasn’t the same person she thought it was,
jumped back to the edge of the bed that was against the wall.
are you? What are you doing in my house?” Brist demanded.
it was built way back in 1790 by my really-great-grandpa David Evans
for his eldest son Nicholas.
back? That was last year!”
Get out of this house or I’ll scream and Daddy’ll have our
security throw you out,” Brist threatened, seriously freaked out..
is our house and you cannot order us about!” Nicholas replied, his
tone becoming progressively more heated.
and Regina Evans had watched as the two argued back and forth. Then,
as she promised, Brist let out a high-pitched scream that could rival
any banshee. The three Evans stared at her as if she had lost her
mind. Which, when Brist thought about it, she must have, why else was
she sitting here curled up in a frightened ball, when she could be
kick-boxing their asses straight out the door herself. However, now
that she had chosen then ‘weak female’ route, she may as well let
it play out for now.
That ought to bring Daddy running,” she informed them.
sighed at the way both of the men in the room looked about ready to
drag the poor thing back outside. Resolutely, she took charge of the
David, sit down and let me handle this,” Regina ordered the men.
Careful not to scare the poor girl anymore, Regina sat on the edge of
the bed, and took one of Brist’s hands into her own. She held
Brist’s hand gently as she talked to her.
must have been through a great ordeal, dear. I am Regina Evans; this
is my husband, David, and my eldest son Nicholas. Today is October
7th 1791,” Regina explained. Brist sighed, then carefully examined
the room and the people in it. She paled slightly at the minor
differences in this room – which she recognized as Drew’s –
from the way it should be. She looked out the window, her eyes
growing wide as saucers.
will believe you if you will believe me,” Brist said in a near
fair,” Regina agreed with a short nod.
night, for me, was October 6th 2001. Last night I found out that my
father betrayed me, and I saddled my horse intending to run away.
First to my friend’s house, then back to Minnesota. But a bad storm
scared my horse and she threw me to the ground just outside my
stables. I remember nothing else until I woke up here. 210 years in
the past! I can prove my story, and normally I’d ask you to do the
same, but I don’t think you could show me anything more evident
than the lack of a driveway,” Brist said, pointing out the window.
was a knock at the door and a loud clamor until David opened it. The
rest of his ten children piled into the room.
anything wrong? We heard an awful scream,” one of them asked.
she?” Another asked.
don’t know yet,” David answered, still wondering that himself.
I’m sorry! My name is Brist Southerland,” Brist replied.
new pairs of eyes stared at her, trying to figure out why she was in
Nicholas’ bed, wearing next to nothing. Brist’s stomach growled
loudly, and blushed lightly as she suddenly remembered that she
hadn’t eaten anything since lunch yesterday.
poor thing! You must be starving! Let us finish trying to figure out
what’s going on after we eat breakfast,” Regina said, shooing
every male member of the Evans family out of the room so that she
could get Brist dressed for breakfast.
left her two youngest children – her twin daughters Regan and
you have anything proper to wear?” Regina asked Brist, trying not
to frown in disapproval.
wrong with what I’m wearing?” Brist asked Regina. She was still
wearing the shorts and tee that she had been wearing all day
dear, proper women wear dresses,” Regina answered slowly, as if
explaining a difficult subject to a child. “Do you have any?”
I do.” Brist answered. She lifted her bag onto the bed, and then
looked through it until she found her Renaissance Festival costume.
She removed her shorts and tee, causing Regina to wonder what kind of
underthings Brist was wearing. Brist had to giggle to herself. She
supposed that her transparent lacy-red bra and matching thong undies
were strange to Regina.
pulled on her purple bloomers with black lace that was caught at her
knees by some elastic, and hung to mid-calf. Then, she slipped a
black, floor-length skirt made out of silk with sheer lace panels
running down the sides. She giggled as she twirled around causing the
skirt to puff out. Next, she took off her bra and pulled a
sheer-purple, silk, peasant-style shirt over her head. It had been
made specifically for her so that it was basically a tube top with
sleeves. Over that, she put on a black leather vest that laced up the
front to perfectly push her breasts up into a tantalizing view of
cleavage. The vest also allowed one to view just a hint of her
my!” Regina exclaimed upon seeing Brist’s completed outfit. The
twins giggled, positively scandalized and
excited by this strange girl.
I’d have you wear one of my or my daughters’ dresses, but since
you are much shorter than us – and have a more voluptuous shape –
I fear they’d never fit,” Regina sighed. “I guess it’ll have
to do, but you’ll have to try to cover as much as possible with a
don’t have a shawl,” Brist murmured, wondering what was wrong
with her costume. Then, she remembered that women of this era
probably covered as much of their skin as possible. Her expression
formed a silent “o” of enlightenment.
worry; you can borrow mine,” Regina offered, wrapping a
cream-colored shawl around Brist’s shoulders, then pinning it
together with an emerald and opal broach. Brist paled slightly at the
sight of it.
you get that?” She asked.
father had it made for me as a wedding present. Why?” Regina
should be happy to know that it has been successfully handed down for
generations,” Brist informed her as she removed her jewelry case
from her bag. She opened it and located the exact same broach, which
she showed to Regina.
my lord!” Regina sat down quickly, as if her knees had given out.
She accepted the second broach from Brist and examined it closely. It
was exactly the same in every way, except for a few obvious signs of
age. Other than that, it looked remarkably well cared for.
took it back when Regina’s hand began to shake. Quickly, she placed
it back in her jewelry case, then put that back in her bag, closing
all open compartments. Seeing that Regina was still shaken, Brist put
a hand on her shoulder.
you okay?” She asked.
Regina nodded. She didn’t recognize the word, but guessed its
not exactly sure what was going on – but tired of being left out of
the conversation, and curious about their visitor – decided to ask
something to change the somber mood of the room.
you married?” She asked, tugging on Brist’s sleeve and pointing
to her ring.
No! Muskles gave me this ring right before he dumped me,” Brist
you where?” Raven asked, just as curious as her twin.
were going out-” Brist paused at the blank expression on their
faces and tried to think of a term that they would understand. Unable
to find one, she decided to simply ask them. “What’s it called
when boys and girls hang together? Um, I mean makeout. No I mean, um,
ah, I know! What’s it called when a guy brings a girl out to dinner
The twins exclaimed together with matching grins.
courting?” Brist asked, unfamiliar with the term.
when a gentleman escorts a lady to places hoping to win her hand in
marriage,” Regan explained.
at least a kiss,” Raven blushed.
Brist said, smiling at them patiently. “Going out means something
similar to courting – only nobody wants to get married yet – and
dumped means that one person told the other that he doesn’t want to
go out anymore.”
we had better go downstairs before breakfast grows cold,” Regina
interrupted what promised to be an enlightening conversation now that
she had regained her composure.
gentlemen stood as the ladies entered the room. Regina took her place
at her husband’s left.
Southerland, please have a seat,” David Evans offered, holding out
a seat for Brist to his right.
took her son Nicholas’ hand into her own. He had been sitting on
her right. “You’ve met my eldest son, Nicholas. Now, let me
introduce you to my other children.” She pointed back and forth as
she told Brist each of her children’s name in descending order,
which was the order that they happen to be sitting in. “After
Nicholas is Lucas, Jonathan, Richard, Gregory, Thomas, Morgan,
Curtis, and lastly my twins Regan and Raven.”
they all your children?” Brist asked, wondering if some were
from a previous marriage of David's, or perhaps a mistress or lover.
Miss Southerland,” Regina confirmed.
since you are – in a way – related, please call me Brist.”
How?” Lucas questioned, his interest piqued.
son, Miss- uh, I mean Brist, claims that she is a great-granddaughter
from the future,” David explained, obviously not quite believing
the story. He was also just as obviously flattered and amused by the
have proof too,” Brist insisted with a reassuring smile. “First
off, I can tell you that this house – which has remained in the
family for many generations – has 3 stories; 20 bedrooms – six on
the second floor, 14 on the third. This is the small dining room.
Through that door is the large dining room; next to that is the
ballroom. Also located on the first floor are the study, the library,
and the kitchen. Each bedroom has its own sitting room, except for
the master bedroom, which has a nursery attached instead,” Brist
recited. “Oh! I almost forgot! There’s an attic and a couple of
wine cellars too.”
do you know all that?” Lucas asked, impressed by her ability to
just ramble all that off so quickly.
believe that she’s from the future,” Regina stated. “Not
because she knows the layout of the house, or that she possesses
words and ideas that are unfamiliar to me, but because she has
exactly the same broach as I do, and it has obviously been aged a
number of years.”
said that it has been handed down for generations,” the twins added
from the end of the table.
she’s obviously done her research. What do you hope to accomplish?”
Nicholas asked accusingly.
Nothing, what could I?” Brist wondered, baffled by his reasoning.
we accepted you into our family, at the very least, you’d gain
status in the ton, not to mention a plush life. I’m sorry, but I
think we’ll need better proof,” Nicholas scoffed. Brist wondered
what the ton might be as it dawned on her that every member of the
family had an English accent.
problem,” Brist replied lightly. Regina cleared her throat and cast
a dark look at her son for his implications, but was determined to
doesn’t have anything proper to wear. She’s too petite and
different to wear anything we’d have to borrow her, so I’m going
to bring her shopping today,” Regina announced.
please, call me Regina.”
I’m finished eating now. I could go get my proof...” Brist
informed her with a smile.
please, stay seated. Is your proof in your bag?” Regina insisted,
and at Brist’s nod continued, “Nicholas, please fetch Brist’s
bag for us,” she ordered her eldest son.
mum.” Nicholas hurried off to retrieve the interloper’s bag.
while we’re waiting, I must say that you’ve come at the perfect
time,” David informed her with a smile.
do you say that?” Brist wondered.
entire family is actually in the same house at the same time. That
rarely happens,” he explained.
I own a fleet of ships, and my sons each captain one; leaving us
scattered more often than not...”
about Regan and Raven?” Brist asked, then decided that they were
probably considered too young.
men burst out laughing and the ladies gasped. Nicholas reentered the
so funny?” He asked.
As captains!” Lucas answered.
why not?” Brist wondered what could possibly be so funny about
that. Even the servants clearing the table were chuckling lightly.
dear, what man would take orders from a woman?” David asked
just not done!” Regina informed her. When the laughter died down,
Nicholas set the bag before Brist.
in that bag is going to make me believe you?” He asked.
pulled out her mini digital video camera – which was still on top
of everything – and set it on the table. Then, she uncovered her
TV, carefully setting it in the sunlight and making sure that there
wouldn’t be a glare on the screen. Next, she pulled out the DVD
player, grateful that the cords that connected the two were still in
a bag taped to the top of the player.
quickly connected the two, then took her video camera in hand once
again. She pointed the camera at each member of the family, making
faces at each as she did so that they would smile and laugh. Which
they did, but they also looked at her as if she were crazy. She also
introduced each to the camera to test how well she remembered each
member’s name. As soon as she had finished recording each person,
she moved the disk from the camera to the DVD player.
is all that?” David asked in fascination.
is a mini digital video camera, this is a TV, and this is a DVD
player,” Brist explained, even though she knew they would have no
idea what any of that meant.
what do they do exactly?” Regina wondered, curious herself now.
camera records what it sees onto the digital video disk I just
inserted into the DVD player – which in turn plays what has been
recorded – and the TV displays the scene so that you can see it,”
Brist tried to explain as simply as possible, figuring that they
would understand better once shown.
Brist asked after she turned the TV on, turned it to the correct
channel, and then pushed play on the DVD player – using the skip
button to forward directly to the most recently recorded part. She
was instantly grateful that her father had made them all solar
powered with backup batteries that could also be charged using the
was a collective gasp as each member of the family was displayed on
don’t believe what I’m seeing!” David remarked incredulously.
our family was superstitious, I would immediately question what kind
of magic this is, but I would not encourage my children to believe
such nonsense. However, I’m at a loss as to how else to explain
this,” Regina commented, sounding as if she believed that she might
be going mad.
just a machine, just like a watch or… have trains been invented
yet?” Brist tried to explain, but was slightly discouraged when all
she received for her efforts were blank stares. “No matter, if
you’ll look at the corner of the screen here, you’ll see the date
says October 7th 2001,” Lucas announced after scrutinizing the spot
Brist pointed to.
because the clock doesn’t recognize that I’ve been flung back in
time, if I’m here for very long, then maybe I’ll reset the clock
to display your date and time – if it can
be set to this date.”
apparently you really are from the future. I have no idea how else to
explain your machines,” Nicholas remarked dryly.
smiled. She rewound the disk back to the very beginning, and once
again played the DVD for her ancestors to see. She figured that they
might enjoy seeing her exploration of the house.
is the house moving like that?” Morgan asked in confusion.
house isn’t moving! Remember when I recorded you I moved the
camera, and then when I played it back for you, it seemed that you
had been moving,” Brist explained as best she could.
see that there are many differences in the decoration of the house in
your time.” Regina noted as she observed the many many fine
crystals and other objects of fine art displayed as Brist had
wandered the house the previous evening.
that was one of the first things I noticed this morning as I was in
Drew’s room, but it looked very different than the way Drew has
Drew?” Nicholas asked.
think that’s enough of your machines for today, Brist. Nicholas,
will you see to it that some horses are prepared so that I may take
Brist and the girls shopping for a few things? Namely, something
suitable for Brist to wear.” Regina said, trying to change the
subject to something that she was more comfortable with. Nicholas
nodded obediently and left.
I suppose my money wouldn’t be worth anything here, would it?”
Brist questioned out loud.
much money do you have?” David asked.
have to check to be certain, but I think it was only a couple
thousand,” Brist replied nonchalantly.
The twins exclaimed, looking at each other in amazement. They had
never had that much!
I would be willing to exchange some of my money for yours,” David
don’t think that would be very fair, it’s not worth anything,”
course it is! What other man would be able to say that he owned real
money from the future?” David asked as an explaination.
I tell you what, how about you hire me on as an expert wine maker and
horse trainer – in addition to exchanging a small amount of money
with me – that way I’ll be able to earn my keep,” Brist
suggested with a smile.
even though we have the latest in wine distilling devices, and a vast
wine cellar, we haven’t yet begun to make any wine. Also, you’re
a woman, and therefore, inherently unqualified to train horses, but
I’m sure that there is something Nicholas can find for you to do.
If not, then perhaps we can bring you back to England with us,”
David mused, considering the possibilities.
going to pretend that I didn’t hear yet another chauvinistic
remark come out of you mouth, and retrieve my money so that we can
exchange some of it,” Brist responded with a sugary tone, removing
her purse from her bag. Out of her purse, she pulled the money left
over from her shopping trip with Randy and Belana. She counted out a
little over 2500.
did you get so much money?” Morgan asked.
my mom gave me 5 thousand to go shopping with last night because
today’s my birthday and my parents had to spend last night – and
I suspect probably today – with a few business associates. I was
given this money as an apology. It happens almost every year. Usually
on Christmas and Thanksgiving too. In fact, all the holidays
really, but it doesn’t bother us because we have each other, my
brother and I,” Brist explained cheerfully, then she placed the
majority of the money back in her wallet and handed David two
bound to be more than plenty in this day and age...