Saturday, September 28, 2019

Storytime Saturday Presents: "Mobius" by Thomas Woldering (BONUS: "Miss Hattie And The Hoppers" by Mary R. Woldering!)


I recalled what the Mobius recruiter, an older gentleman named Mr. Werner, had told me yesterday: "Elise Desoto. Dr. Schiller requests you for an interview at Mobius at 6:30 in the morning tomorrow, December 21st, 2012 for the position of head physicist once you finish your research. Your student loans will be absorbed if you accept the position, and you will be paid five thousand dollars for showing up even if you do not accept."

His offer was unbelievable. Anyone would accept it even if they just showed up and left, but it also made me incredibly suspicious. I wasn’t worthy of that job… yet. I was working on something revolutionary which would make me the best candidate, but I had been very tight-lipped about it.

My invention and the subject of my research was more like sci-fi or magic than something you’d see in the real world. An instant, one-way portal to anywhere that I called a Translocator. It would usher in the next era of humanity. I invented it and I knew it worked, but I hadn’t gone public because I couldn’t explain why yet.
Has Mobius found out? How?
They must know something if Doctor Rosalyn Schiller herself wants to interview me. 

She wasn’t just a scientist or corporate leader, she was the scientist and corporate leader. She had been reading books and solving math problems before she could walk. Mobius, my school – New Babylon University, the whole city of New Babylon, and even the new state of Delmarva grew here around the farm where she was born in what used to be Delaware. She was that important. I felt a bit intimidated, but my curiosity about what they knew and my eagerness to work at a place like Mobius outweighed it.

I straightened my gray suit coat and skirt again, hoping she or someone from Mobius would come soon.

"Miss Hattie and The Hoppers"

By the time I came out of the telegraph and postal depot with the latest story by Mr. Verne, some fine nonsense was going on at the nearby Cates Inn. I heard Jimmy Jay’s hilly twang rising above a gathering crowd. I couldn’t tell what he was fussing about, but by the time I hitched my horse at a water trough, a crowd had gathered outside the front door in a semi-circle. Men ran up each moment and behind them clustered curious women and children. All of this created a jam in the road and wagon drivers paused to stare. The late afternoon train to Knoxville grunted, hissed and puffed up to speed as it pulled out of the station. After the noise faded, I heard:

“Y’all ain’t from ‘round here, I can tell, but I don’t want no trouble. Now you fellas go on around to the back to do your business. Someone will see to you there.” Then a moment of silence was followed by: “You speakee English? How ‘bout him? Do he speakee English?”

Someone in the crowd called out. “Hey Jim--here comes Sheriff Poe. He’ll sort this out.”

Oh brother. This is not good. Someone had to get the sheriff. I pressed through the crowd to see just who the troublemakers were. When I saw them, I thought they were the oddest-looking fellows. I hadn’t seen gentlemen such as these anywhere other than in a big city like Macon or perhaps described in one of Mr. Verne’s stories. One was tall but sturdy looking and darkly tanned. His long and wavy sun-brightened hair made him look like a whisker-less version of General Custer.

The other man was a burly-looking dark fellow; most likely a ‘Hindoo’. They were well dressed, but wore only shirtsleeves, weskits and hats. The tall one was carrying a heavy carpet bag. He noticed me and said something to his friend, but Sheriff Poe put his hand on the darker man’s arm and said:

“Come on, boy. You fellas need to come on over to the--” which was followed by a “What the H****?” because his hand was snatched firmly away, and the darker man appeared to growl.

Look for "Mobius" and "Miss Hattie And The Hoppers" within Dreamtime Damsels and Fatal Femmes, by the Dreamtime Fantasy Authors!

More Excerpts:
-"Muliebral The Bold"
-"Nicole Falling: A Southwestern Horror Story"
-"A Wizard's Quandary"
-"Red, The Wolf"
-"Better The Thorn"
-"Count Vlasko's Curse"/"Mulo"

-"Sleeping Dragons"

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