Microfiction #writephoto: Restoration

Another odd photo from Sue Vincent for her Thursday #writephoto prompt. They always seem to capture something that perhaps the naked eye missed.

waiting

Clearing out the Victorian clutter from the old house was easy. There was plenty of room in the cellars that stretched deep and wide, and there would be time to open them up to the public once the upper floors of the fortress had been restored to their original state. The plaster and mouldings of the bedrooms and drawing rooms, and in particular the mock Gothic of the main rooms and the entrance hall were being stripped out, with the mounted boars’ and stags’ heads, the dark-stained wooden staircases, and the fake spits in the fake hearths. Anything of any value would be sorted and donated to museums dealing with the nineteenth, eighteenth and seventeenth centuries.

The curator supervised the transfer below ground and closed the heavy oak door on the trophies of the Victorian lunatic who had turned a fourteenth century fortified manor house into something out of a Walter Scott novel. The key wasn’t in the lock. He remembered it well, a curious key, particularly finely worked for such an old lock. It must have been hanging up with the others in the office. He was on the point of going to get it when the site foreman shouted out that if he was ready, guv, they’d turn the power back off and call it a day. He shrugged. If anyone wanted to steal any of the horrors he’d seen shipped downstairs, they were more than welcome. He called out to go head, that he was leaving, and the lights were turned off.

Later, much later when the wires and pipes had sighed their last sighs as the site settled, when the dust lay in a fine film over the newly-exposed parts of wall and pavement, the shadows moved in the cellars. For the first time in two centuries, the door had not been locked.

 

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Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

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