|Death Lies Sleeping
Author: TorchwoodWerewolf PM
A teaser trailer for an upcoming story. Cornelia Staunton is a 21st century student. Matthew Blake is a 18th century dreamer. These two fifteen year olds are about to be brought together through time for an extraordinary adventure, with a murder to solve.Rated: Fiction K - English - Adventure/Friendship - Chapters: 2 - Words: 6,253 - Reviews: 3 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 04-30-12 - Published: 09-12-11 - id: 2951676
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
AN: Another story! I am utterly insane, starting a second novel without finishing my first. Also, tons of school work. This is still in the formative stages- even the title is uncertain- so it may not get updated often, especially given that I'll be working mainly on Black Light ect. So, here we go- a brand new concept, which involves HORRID amounts of research -_- I am insane.
In which we meet our heroine, who has a nasty surprise, and our hero, who is surprised nastily
The sun goes down over London. Its orange glow bathes the grotty, grey concrete in a mystical light that lends London an air of serenity not normally bestowed upon this grotty metropolis. The council houses and bus lanes and the roads that never stop, all are bathed in gold.
The sun goes down over London. Its orange glow shines on factories, on slums, on the houses of the rich who eat off silver plates and the houses of the poor where food is a distant dream. The smog glows gold.
Two sunsets, over a century apart. Exactly one and a half centuries, as it happens. The year is 2011 and Cornelia Staunton is walking home from school. The year is 1861, and Matthew Blake is returning from a friend's house.
These two times are soon to be brought together in a way that will shake the world, and the lives of these two fifteen year olds in particular. But they don't know that. Nobody does.
Cornelia Staunton kicked a can as she wandered towards her apartment. She watched it clatter into the street, shining brightly in the golden sunset, and promptly get flattened by the 36 bus. The bus she should have been on. The one which appeared everywhere except at the bus stop. Cornelia kicked another can savagely and turned off down a sideroad.
Matthew Blake whistled as he strolled home. He had snuck out of his room via the ivy trellis, which had made him feel like a character in a novel, and was now returning in the hope that he had not been missed. A carriage rattled past him and splattered his new boots with the puddle he had been avoiding and he let out a mild curse he had learnt from his friend Roland. It made him feel even more grown up, so he said it again.
Cornelia hurried up the last flight of stairs to her flat and pulled her key out of her pocket as she approached the door.
Matthew stepped into a rancid alley to get to his street, wrinking his nose as he approached the bustling road which his house backed onto.
Cornelia was only a few paces from her front door when a pair of hands grabbed her roughly, stifling her panicked screams and impervious to her punches and kicks. She kicked behind her as hard as she could, but her feet made no contact with her assailant. A feeling of panic welled up within her and she strained to scream but all that came out behind her attacker's hand was a muffled exclamation. Then she felt a sudden, searing burst of pain in her head and the world went black as she slipped into oblivion.
Matthew was almost to the end of the alley when a figure stepped out of the darkness and stood before him, blocking his way. His breath caught in his throat and his eyes widened in fear. He saw a glint of light from something metallic and a cold trickle of terror ran down his back. The figure moved forwards and metamorphosed into a grubby beggar, carrying a tin tray of matches. That had been the metal he had seen. A wave of relief flooded over him and he stepped past the man, feeling on top of the world once again and, ignoring his pleas for a trade, swaggered across the road. He snuck through the side gate into his walled garden and crept up to the house, pushing into the depths of the bush in which the base of the ivy trellis was concealed. He climbed nimbly back up to the arched gable of his bedroom window, swinging through and landing neatly on his desk. His foot slipped and he fell sideways, overturning the desk and scattering books and papers across the room with a large thud. He landed on the floor and groaned in pain as his ankle flared with pain where it had hit the desk. He heard people hurrying to his door and then a brief, urgent knock.
'Come in,' he yelled, and began to sit up. A maid poked her head around the door.
'Are you alright, sir?' She took in the mess in the room and frowned. 'What happened here, sir? I'll clean this up directly.' She made to come in, but Matthew waved her away in a surge of panic. There was mud on the desk and sill from where his boots and trousers were spattered and if the maid was to see it she would report to his mother at once that he had been out again.
'I just… tripped. I'll deal with it. Thank you very much, Roberts,' he said airily. The maid, whose name was Jones, frowned, unconvinced, but left all the same. She knew that the master's word was law even when he was only a lad. At least, that was how Matthew was determined to view the situation.
Cornelia opened her eyes blearily. She lay for a moment, completely disorientated. Her head was swimming and she thought she heard Brain's voice calling her for school; she made to pull the covers back over herself but met with thin air. She opened her eyes in bewilderment and saw that the ceiling was a lot darker than it should be. It was wooden, too… She opened her eyes completely and sat up. Her head screamed in agony and she gasped, putting her hands to her forehead and feeling a sticky trickle of dried blood. That woke her up completely. Then she remembered- she hadn't even gone to sleep in her own bed the night before. Why was that? Then she remembered fully what had happened and gasped again as she looked around for her attacker.
She was alone. She had been lying on a cool wooden floor, strewn with earth and dust. Around the walls of the tiny room were ranged various tools and things that she barely recognized from when Brian and Sue used to get her to help out at their allotment. There were spades and forks and things, and stacks of pots and sacks labelled as compost. She groaned and sat up straighter. Her head was killing her…
She went to the tiny window letting a ray of daylight into the room and stood on tiptoes. The light made her squint. It was still sunset. Either a day had passed or she had only been unconscious for a few minutes. The window looked out onto a large garden, larger than their allotment by far. It was walled in by a redbrick barrier with a cast iron gate. Through the gate, she could just about see a street. She frowned and rubbed her eyes. No, she wasn't imagining things. Maybe there was a pageant or festival of some kind?
On the other side of the wall was a bustling street. Fine. But the people were all wearing the most bizarre clothes. The women wore sombre dresses, down to the ground, and huge hats or bonnets. A carriage- an actual carriage- stopped at the other side of the street and a lady stepped out. She handed something up to the driver and raised her skirts a fraction to climb the steps. She had her hair scraped right back in a bun. The driver was wearing a top hat- an actual top hat! He flicked the reins and the carriage rattled off. A man in a stiff cravat and evening dress opened the door and bowed to the lady, who stepped past him with barely an acknowledgement.
Cornelia stumbled back from the window with her thoughts all in a whirl. It looked like she had somehow… oh, but that wasn't possible! She seemed to have travelled in time. But that was barely even plausible.
'I must be imagining this,' she whispered to herself. 'This is all a hallucination from when whoever that was hit me. Goodness knows where I am really…'
She sat down on the sacks, but a sharp twinge in her head began to undermine her theory. It certainly felt pretty real.
She sat there for a while. Gradually, the sunset outside turned to twilight, and the ache in her head receded until she felt like she could move around. Stiffly, she moved to the tiny window again and looked out at the distant street. There were less people around now, and gas lamps threw a guttering shadow along the pavement.
With a start, Cornelia realized she was actually pretty hungry. And she couldn't stay in the shed forever. She tiptoed over to the door and pushed it gently. It swung open- apparently, it was unlocked. She put her eyes to the crack and looked out onto a darkening and deserted garden. There were lights at some of the windows, but the curtains were drawn. She saw, across the twilit space, a washing line. On it were hanging several sets of clothes and Cornelia quickly re-evaluated her priorities. She would never be able to move around with her 21st century gear on if this really was the 1800s. And she couldn't stick to creeping around at night. She pushed open the door a little further and stepped silently outside. The thick grass muffled her footfalls as she crept towards the line and ran her hands over the cloth. She quickly dismissed the long, white petticoats and shifts, knowing how impractical they'd be. She moved past all the female clothing in increasing haste. She did pause for a moment at some deep damask dress, with lovely embroidery, but moved on to the end of the line. She spied a simple white cotton shirt and a pair of black trousers, and pulled them off the line with a waistcoat next to them. They were dry and cool. Cornelia began to retreat to the shelter of the shed, treading quickly over the lawn. Her 21st century converse sneakers, visible under the hem of her tattered jeans, were somehow incredibly familiar and yet strange.
SO! That isn't even the entire first chapter; it's just a teaser-trailer, you might say :)