Real Estate. That’s Chuck’s theme of the week. It seems a common problem at present; several of my blogging friends are moving, or thinking of doing so. I’m too busy at present to have written a flash fiction for today, but I thought you’d like an excerpt on the theme of real estate.
This comes from the early part of Curved Space to Corsair. Lars, Pete, Dolores and Maggie are at home in the villa, which you’ll remember (if you’ve read The Perihelix) was damaged by unwanted visitors. This excerpt is just under 600 words.
Real estate problems are the same all over the galaxy
Despite her new status as a freedwoman, Dolores still met Pete with an enthusiastic and passionate kiss. Lars eyed the pair of them in amusement. So much for her skipping off wherever she wanted as soon as she had her hands on independent wealth. He dragged the items they’d bought in Walton City into the main living area of the pod, a three room temporary complex (plus washing facilities) that they’d installed outside their wrecked villa following the Federation attack on Sunset Strip. Sounds of banging and drills, punctuated by falling masonry echoed from behind the complex.
“They’ve reached us, then?” Lars commented as Pete came up for air.
“Yes,” Dolores said, smoothing her ruffled, currently auburn hair back into its usual style. “They arrived two days ago, I didn’t bother to mention it in case they’d gone when you got back.”
“They’re very noisy.”
“I asked how long it would take, and they shrugged. The architect said he’d be on call if you needed him.”
“He might have given us an update. We’re not exactly on the other side of the universe.” Pete reached for the commlink and tapped the contact.
“Where’s Maggie?” Lars asked, having checked out the other rooms.
“Down at the shore collecting firestuff, or at the barbecue pit if she’s finished.”
“Is it dinner time yet?”
Dolores laughed. “As soon as the fire’s hot enough. Your fish just needs searing over it.” She lifted up a large pan covered with foil. “Coming?”
“Well, you can stay if you like, but it would be much easier clearing this lot and building anew if you weren’t here, and your pod went with you.” The building supervisor stood in front of them, his arms folded. The architect just shifted from one foot to the other behind him, while Lars and Pete digested the message.
They exchanged glances and moved out of earshot, down the path to the barbecue pit.
“What do you think?”
“I know what I think, but we should ask the girls too,” Pete replied.
“You think the same as me then.”
The girls looked up as they approached.
“Well?” Maggie asked.
“You’re right, they want us out,” Lars told her. “What do you want to do?”
“I checked the state of the real estate market while I was at the Strip,” Maggie said, “but it’s still much the same as when we first got back. Zito couldn’t find much then, and I couldn’t see much now.”
“We could always ask Zito to put some effort into finding somewhere else,” Dolores suggested.
Lars looked at Pete. He shrugged. “We’ve perfectly good accommodation in space. Unless you’re desperate for some surfing, we could go travelling for a bit. How long does the architect say it’ll take?”
“Four to six weeks to completion.”
“That’ll be ten to twelve weeks minimum, then,” Maggie said, making them laugh.
“We could have a few weeks on Brahe if it takes that long,” Dolores suggested.
“I suppose you want to try out those hot springs underneath the Gustaffson,” Lars said, remembering a conversation he’d had about the facilities of the second-best guest house at New Lund, the main city of Brahe, a planet in the Scania system.
Maggie and Dolores looked at him, wide-eyed and innocent. “Really?? Hot springs? Fancy that!”
Lars’s face crumpled with laughter and Pete grinned. “You can drive, Dolores. It’ll give you more free space experience.”
© J M Pett 2018. From Curved Space to Corsair, in prep.