Have you ever stopped to wonder what life would be like if time had gone a different way? Say, like Jet Planes existing in the Victorian Era? Or cellphones at the dawn of the century? Well, Marcus could tell you, I mean, that his job! For centuries, the Weatherbell family has been the valiant caretakers of innovation and progress, and after years of training, the youngest family member is ready to take up the challenge. Through his efforts, the world and its inhabitants are hopefully always on the best track for humanity, but will his actions always yield the best result? Join us in this thrilling saga, new chapter posted bi-weekly!
Weatherbell Residence, Isle of Skye, Scotland, March 3rd, 1927, 04:59 Hours
The sun started to slowly creep into the room of Marcus Weatherbell, making its way across the wooden floorboards and onto the bedside table where a small brass alarm clock stood silently ticking away. In bed the boy of fifteen, laid still, listening to the rhythmic ticking of the clock's many gears, counting down the seconds to five in the morning. The alarm on the clock had been set and locked at five, a nuisance of a factor in his plans, but it was like Cygnus always told him.
“Expect the plan to have unexpected factors. Make sure you react to every one of them.”
As his mental counting neared the zero mark, Marcus rolled over to face the clock, his finger hovering over the stopper. If anyone else heard the bells his plan would be ruined, “but this time” he thought, “I’m not going to fail”
“Five, Four, Three, Two, One, Zero!” He whispered to himself, pressing down on the hammer and silencing the mechanism for another 24 hours. Pleased with his efforts Marcus silently made his way out of bed. Already dressed for the day (thanks to his waking up at four to set his plan in motion), he slipped on his boots and shoved a cap over the mop of messy brown hair, silently making his way to the door. The plan was simple. Sneak out before anyone comes for me, escape to town, and not have to listen to one of Margot’s boring lessons on a Saturday.
“The perfect crime,” Marcus thought, slowly opening the door into the hallway. No one else was up by five every morning, except for Margot who was responsible for him, so all he had to do was be quiet going out of the house and he’d be in the clear! Marcus tiptoed his way downstairs, finally making it to the entryway. He heard a door open upstairs, a clear sign that Margot was up and heading towards his room. By his math, it would take about 30 seconds for her to realize that he was missing and make her way downstairs-
“What the- Where is that boy!”
“Uh-oh, better make that 5 seconds” With that Marcus slipped outside, breathing in the Dewey Scottish air. Finally, a day where he could be free! Inside he could hear the heavy footsteps of Margot as she made her way down the stairs looking for her charge, but Marcus didn't care, as far as he was concerned, he was home fr-
“Oh good morning Marcus!” Marcus stopped dead in his tracks, his eyes going wide.
“Rachel! What are you doing up so early, and out here?” He asked, hoping that the pleasant smile was hiding the panic of getting caught.
“Oh, I was just doing some early morning gardening. Thought I would try something new!” The girl cheerfully said, her thick french accent adding a lilt of sweetness, to the civility of her words. “What are you doing?” She asked, looking over the fully dressed boy who usually didn't bother to even put a shirt on in the mornings.
“Oh! Well, I'm glad you asked, you see-”
“MARCUS! What do you think you are doing?!” A voice yelled a few feet away. As he turned around, Marcus was faced with the face of none other than his caretaker, Margot Weatherbell, dressed in her nightgown and looking like she was ready to murder the boy.
Marcus tried to regain his sense of calm, a casual smile lighting up his face as he tried his best to act nonchalant about being caught. “Well, if both of you must know, I am reacting to an unexpected factor.” With that Marcus promptly turned on his hell and spirited away, trying his best to put distance between the two women, who stood between him and a day of freedom.
Marcus gave it all he had, running towards the gate that marked the edge of the property, but before he could make it he felt his feet lock under him, resulting in a fall that did not earn him freedom but a face full of the wet Scottish earth. He flipped himself over to find his legs bound by a tossable tether and an annoyed but amused Margot casually making her way towards him.
“Well, that was certainly an interesting attempt, wasn't it?” she said casually bending down and picking up the tether.
“Oh come on Marge! It's my birthday! Can’t I have one day off from lessons?”:
“Sorry kid, not gonna happen.” She replied bluntly before dragging him away from the gate.
Marcus tried to wiggle free of his bonds, but the expert toss had found its home, and so he was at the moment stuck, at the mercy of the grouchy woman unceremoniously dragging him back to Weatherbell House. Entering the house they made their way to the kitchen, a cheerful Rachel following them in.
After being united, Marcus stood up to find the entire family in the kitchen all smiles. Save for Margot and Rachel, everyone was wearing a bright birthday cone on their head. The twins Albert and Gloria held out a cake that had “Happy Birthday Marcus” written over it. Lavinia, the caretaker of the house held out a small green box, and even Cygnus had come (most likely forced) holding up a homemade sign that read “It’s your Birthday!” “What's going on?” Marcus asked as the crowd cheered for him.
“Well dear,” Lavinia said, taking a graceful step towards him. “Since you are fifteen today, the rest of us agreed that it is time for you to help out on missions. Everyone here started at your age, and you have trained hard with Margot, so, I want to officially welcome you to the team!” She handed Marcus the small box, which he eagerly opened. Inside was a small patch, embroidered with the symbol of a clock, its hands replaced with the image of a red cross.
Margot stepped forward. “This patch symbolizes our commitment to helping the world, Marcus. When you accept it, you will be all the responsibilities that that patch entails. Are you ready?”
Marcus beamed. After eight long years of lessons and studies in a dark room of the house, he was finally being entrusted to do what he had always dreamed of doing. “I'm ready,” he said before confidently slapping the patch onto the arm of his jacket.
After a few hours of prepping, the daily task was announced and the team headed to the transport room. Marcus shook with excitement as he stepped up onto the platform that would whisk him away to another time. Lavinia manned her post next to the console. “Are we ready, everyone?” she asked, hand hovering over the button that would officially signal the start of Marcus's life as an official weatherbell.
“Ready as we'll ever be Lil!” Margot called, prepared to lead her team and recruit into the timestream.
“Right oh! Have fun, everyone!” With that, Lavinia pushed the button opening the time stream. With a sickening wrench, the team was pulled down, out, and away to once again help the human race.
This was so fun to read!