Drifting in and out of sleep, Molly was unsure of where she was. In the distance she could hear a girl giggling and muffled voices. She felt next to her and found Will still asleep. Struggling to stay awake, she was unable to work out where the voices were coming from. Some time had passed before she was awake enough to listen more attentively. Was she dreaming or did she hear voices outside the bedroom door? Then she remembered that she was in her own bed and that Anna was staying in the spare bedroom. Maybe she had been on the phone chatting….. Getting up to go to the bathroom, she noticed Anna’s bedroom door was still shut and there was no light coming from beneath it, maybe she had gone back to sleep or maybe she was up already. And Molly was curious to know who this secret travelling companion was. The dull light of the early morning caste a pale light down the hallway. On her way back through the kitchen she heard it again, quiet giggling and muffled voices. They were definitely coming from Anna’s room. Intrigued, Molly put the kettle on and purposefully made lots of noise in the kitchen, hoping that Anna would remember that she was not in the house alone any more. Or had she ever been alone? Did she have someone in her bedroom? Now Molly was really intrigued and couldn’t wait for Anna to get up. Having made a pot of tea for four, anticipating Anna’s guest would stay for breakfast, she sat at the table and sipped her cup, hoping Anna would surface soon. Unable to sit still, Molly took her cup of tea out into the garden and decided to take a look around to see what had come to life in their absence. As she picked a bunch of flowers, she heard a noise from inside of the house. It sounded like a door opening and clicking shut. Looking in the back door of the house she could see through the kitchen and down the hall, and caught a glimpse of the outline of someone coming out of Anna’s bedroom and walked up the stairs to The Attic! Curious of whom else maybe in her house, she walked inside quietly, her heart racing, slightly uneasy that someone had gone up the stairs to The Attic. Surely it must be someone Anna knows and that would account for the muffled voices and giggling she heard earlier. Molly followed the mysterious visitor up the stairs, her curiosity stronger than her fear. Opening the door, she found the room empty! Had she imagined it all? Walking back down the stairs she returned to the garden, slightly perplexed at what she had just witnessed. Her mind ran wild with possibilities. Was it Anna’s lover, this mysterious travelling companion she had spoken of earlier? Excited at the possibility that Anna may have a secret lover, and a little disappointed that she had not told her about him. Or had she? Anna had mentioned that she was having an interesting relationship with Patrick. Could that have been Patrick that she just saw going up the stairs? That would explain why he had disappeared in The Attic. She then heard Anna in the bathroom and continued picking flowers pretending that she had not seen someone leaving her bedroom, making it very obvious that she was in the garden, she began humming a tune loudly. Anna joined her, whistling as she came out the back door.
“Oh do tell!” Molly greeted Anna unable to contain her excitement.
“What?” Anna feigned a look of surprise.
“I saw him leaving your bedroom. Oh Anna, why didn’t you introduce him to us, invited him to stay for breakfast?” Molly whined.
“I don’t think you would believe who it is…” Anna looked away shyly. “I have a story to share with you Molly. Let me grab a cup of tea and we can have a wander in the garden together.”
Anna told Molly how she had been having regular meetings with Patrick and of how he had been helping her around the house. She recalled how she had met that man at the airport named Patrick, and how she realised that he too was the same person as the Patrick of the 1800’s. At first she had struggled getting her head around the concept of him being here now and also from the past. He had seemed so ‘real’ at the airport…
Patrick had explained to Anna how he was able to access different Time-Space dimensions through the doorway to the World Between Worlds which was an open portal in The Attic. Grace too was able to do the same, as could many others. Anna had a giggle, “Can you believe it Molly? I am in love with a time traveller!”
“So is this who is going to be your travelling companion?” Molly asked. Annabelle could not hide the massive grin, acknowledging the answer to Molly’s question.
“Oh my god Anna! This is amazing! I thought the experience with these spirit beings was to be confined to the house. Grace told me that she was only able to appear to me in The Attic, but then I too have experienced Lucy in the house and Patrick in the garden. Wow…” Molly’s voice faded as her mind raced with potential outcomes. “Can we meet him too? I saw him go up the stairs to The Attic but when I went up after him, the room was empty. Where did he go?” she asked Anna.
“Remember what The Attic is Molly, a doorway into other worlds. He was unsure of what your reaction would be, so he left the physical aspect of the house. He is still here but just not visible to the unexpecting eye. If we were to go up there and ask to see him, he would appear again,” Anna replied.
“Can we?” asked Molly. “I want him to know that he is welcome here with us too. More tea?” she asked Anna, walking towards the kitchen door, wishing to continue the conversation.
“Can we eat first? I am famished,” Anna giggled. As they reached the backdoor the delicious smell of breakfast cooking wafted out to meet them. “ Mmmmm….I am hungry too. Maybe Will is surprising us with breakfast….” Her voice trailed off as they walked into the room to capture a glimpse of Lucy standing at the stove cooking pancakes. In a instant she was gone and there was a pile of banana and buckwheat pancakes in the cast iron pan on the stove top. The table was set for three, with plates and cutlery, a jug of hot blueberry coolie and a pot of fresh plain yoghurt. Molly looked at Anna with surprise, who shrugged her shoulders, looked up to the ceiling and said, “Thanks Lucy, what a nice surprise!” Molly, unsure of what to think, walked down the hall to her bedroom to see if Will was awake. Stirring in the bed, he mumbled, “are they banana and blueberry pancakes I can smell?” To which Molly replied, “Oh very good Will Ferguson! But you will never guess who cooked them!” She climbed on top of the bed, throwing her leg over Will’s body and sitting astride him. “Do you want to eat them hot, or can I distract you for a wee while?” She teased him. “Hmmm….can I have both?” He added to the teasing, to which Molly playfully slapped his shoulder with mocked offence at his suggestion. Unravelling herself from Will’s body, she invited him to breakfast, “Anna has some A-MAZING stories to tell us, come on, we can play later…” she smiled at him coyly, letting her bathrobe slip from her shoulders, down to her waist, teasing him with just a seductive flash of her naked body beneath her robe. “Oh woman, you make the decisions so difficult! Pancakes or sex….hmmm…..” Will leapt out of bed and chased her down the hall. Molly half dressed was one step ahead of him, nimbly skipping to the kitchen, wrapping her robe around her. Anna choked on a mouthful of tea, almost spitting it across the floor as she saw Molly half dressed being chased by an almost naked Will. Laughing at their playful antics, she smirked and said “Thankfully you’ve got boxer shorts on Handsome!” To which Will tried to hide his obvious indecision between pancakes and making love with Molly, and made a hasty exit to the bathroom. Both the girls burst out laughing, grateful for the openness of their long term relationship and the ease they all shared with each other.
Anna couldn’t wait any longer, keen to tell them about some of what she had been experiencing in the house over breakfast, which turned into brunch and well into lunch time when she finally concluded her story. Will sat back in his chair gobsmacked, trying to believe what she had been telling them, and weaving it all together in his mind alongside of Molly’s stories of when they were in Wellington. The weeks there had been super busy and there had been little time for Molly to have shared these extra bits with him. Most nights they collapsed exhausted in bed and other nights one of them was asleep before the other even made it into bed. It was nice for them all to be catching up now. There was so much to share and take in. “You girls keep chatting, I’ll listen whilst I prepare some lunch. Do you want some wine yet or is it too early?”
“Wine’s good now!” replied the girls in unison, giggling Molly got up from the table in search of some glasses.
“Wow, so we have a time traveller in the house!” Will exclaimed.
“Well, actually, we have a few of them….” Anna replied.