The In-between – Part 13 of 31

Okay so I’m doing M’s prompts and going to try and do a full month as one long story with no planning. Today it is ‘Glass Houses’.  I am also doing this on three hours sleep so I think it’s a bit all over.

The instructions are to simply write for ten minutes or so each day and that’s about it.  It’s certainly taking me longer than ten minutes but I will keep going with this for as long as I can and see where each days takes this.  Either that or Ill stop if no one is reading it because its either too long or too ridiculous.


Part 1   Part 2   Part 3   Part 4   Part 5   Part 6  Part 7   Part 8

Part 9 Part 10  Part 11 Part 12

Of all the things that I had so far seen the sight before me was right up there with the most curious.  I had expected witches of the traditional earthly type but these were very much something else.  Perhaps I lacked imagination.

“Let me do the speaking” Plumduff insisted as a heavy door closed behind us.  She had obviously forgotten how very little I actually knew of what was going on.  I checked my watch and it confirmed that despite it being night here it was just after nine in the morning.  My stomach rumbled and I regretted not having breakfast.

The room we were in was mostly empty.  It was small, perhaps two or three times the size of Plumduff’s office.  A fire burned in a tall fireplace on one wall and a number of bookshelves were scattered along the others, their shelves groaning under the weight of dusty leather bound books.  On a small table to one side were a collection of jars and beakers, each filled with a liquid or a powder.

It was in many ways just what you might expect, and lacked perhaps only a witches cat or a collection of broomsticks to really set the room off perfectly.  The witches however were not quite what I expected.

I heard them before I saw them, a sweet melodic voice breaking the silence.

“Plumduff, well it certainly has been a while hasn’t it.”

I strained to make out where the voice was coming from. Only the light from the fire illuminated the room and as my eyes became accustomed to the darkness where once there was nothing shadows now danced across the walls as two tall women in white seemed slowly appear out of the darkness.

“It has indeed” Plumduff replied continuing to walk towards them.  “After the events of last time I thought it best to stay away for a while.”

“Most wise” said the taller of the two, which was quite something because they towered over us.  Dressed head to toe in long flowing white robes,  with hair to their waists as white as snow they looked down as I stared open mouthed.

“New partner Plumduff?” they asked in unison.

“Don’t mind him” She replied, “he’s harmless enough.”

I paused for a moment and considered responding but by the time I had decided to speak it was too late.

“That’s what they said about you Margaret, and look at how things turned out.  What do you want this time?”

Plumduff smiled, reached into her bag and pulled out the cylindrical device we had retrieved from Periscope.  She held it up for them to see.

“Oh my my, that is a thing” the shorter one said reaching for it.  Plumduff withdrew it preventing her from taking it.

“Do you not want to share Margaret” the taller asked.

“You know what it is then?”

“Knowledge comes at a cost Margaret, you know that it is the way here in Bunderburg.  You get nothing for nothing my dear.”

“Help me and we consider your debt paid.” Plumduff said putting it back in her bag and zipping it closed.  “You obviously know what it is.”

“Our debt to you is long repaid” snapped the shorter of the two and she took a step towards us.  She was most menacing and I withdrew as she got closer.  Plumduff however did not and she stepped forward to meet her, the top of her head barely above the witches waist.  She looked up and spoke again.

“Okay, help me this time and I and all of my colleagues will stay far away from here for at least three cycles.  How does that sound?  You can do as you wish without fear of interference or repercussions.  Glasshouses, Silver Harbour, Enthorpe – all yours to enjoy until your twisted hearts content.”

I looked across at Plumduff quizzically.  The list of things I did not know about continued to grow at an alarming rate.  This sounded far more like a racket than policing.

Plumduff looked back at me and winked as the witches took a few paces back and conferred in hushed tones.

“Something is coming Margaret” they said, again in unison.  The fire died and the room was plunged into darkness.  Their voices took a more sinister tone and echoed as they spoke.  “There is something that needs what you have because it comes from nowhere and everywhere, and it has a hunger that cannot be satisfied.”

Impatiently Plumduff interrupted.

“Ladies please, there really is no need for the dramatics – just the information.” She shook her head, tutted and waited.

“That thing will let you traverse all and any reality that overlaps the fracture and enter any of the timelines.”

“See” said Plumduff.  “Nice and simple.”

“You heard what we said right?” The taller witch said thinking that Plumduff had not.

“Yes, I heard you” she replied.  “And I can see why anyone would want it, the ability to be anywhere and everywhere and any when is quite something indeed.”

“That it is” they replied together walking towards where we stood.  “I’m afraid though that we must insist you hand it over now Margaret.  It is far too valuable for you to possess.”

At this point I realised that being dead does in no way remove the fear of dying and it occurred that perhaps there were things far far worse than death to be worried about.  Stepping backwards as the witches advanced I felt Plumduff’s hand on my arm.

“When I say run, you run” she said.  Before I could nod she shouted.

“Run!”