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The Archaeologist Story - A Family Tale (part 1) - nhpeacenik
The Archaeologist Story - A Family Tale (part 1)
[to see all parts of the story try this link: 

Late in the 20th century, a little family lived in a tall, half-red house at the top of a hill in the middle of the New Hampshire woods. There was a girl named Iona and her mom and her dad, and their grey-striped cat. One day they were all sitting around the dinner table (except the cat, who was resentfully sitting on the floor just outside the kitchen door, looking up at the buttery goodies). Suddenly, they heard a loud BOOM . They all yawned  and fell fast asleep (even the cat). And they slept for a Thousand Years! A volcano had erupted a short distance away, burying the half-red house, and all the houses for miles around, under ash, filling the house with a gas that had the peculiar property of preserving everything and everybody in the house. 

In the year 2999, two archaeologists, a man and a woman, were walking across the plain, when the woman stubbed her toe on something. "Ow!" she said, "Do you have your medikit on you?" The man pulled his medikit out of his pocket and made a pass over the woman's injured foot. "Ah! That's better" she sighed, "but what was that I tripped on?" They went back and examined the protruding piece of ceramic. tile. The tile was reddish and had the form of a hollow rectangle. "You know," said the woman, "this looks a lot like an ancient chimney tile! I bet we're standing above the site of an ancient house!. Why don't you go back and get the digger. I'll wait here."

The man went away and the woman sat down and brushed away the loose volcanic soil around the tile to confirm that this was indeed an ancient chimney. So absorbed was she in her work that she didn't notice the crunching of approaching footsteps until she felt the breath of the monster on the nape of her neck. Prepared, as all people had to be in this paradoxical age, she whirled around and struck the monster on the nose with her trowel. The wounded creature howled and fled to lick his nose-wound behind the nearest tree, where he could commiserate with his mate about how hard it was to hunt and eat grown-up people and how they'd better go after children next time. The male archaeologist returned with the digger. The two archaeologists climbed into the operators' platform at the top of the machine, positioning it a few feet from the chimney-top, where they estimated the wall of the house might have stood, and started it up.

Rowr! went the digger as it  gingerly descended into the earth, while the archaeologists listened for signs of impact on the house's roof or walls. When  a sound indicated they had hit the roof, they slowed the digger and made a neat hole, which they then widened to permit them to descend into the building using their ladder. Descending the ladder, they came first to a room where boxes and bags of miscellaneous things were piled helter-skelter. The woman noticed the body of a furry creature with a long bushy tail lying on the floor. She put on her gloves and reached down to pick it up and put it in her sample bag, but as soon as her finger touched the creature, it awakened and skittered onto a nearby shelf. The amazed archaeologists, suddenly realized that a living creature, possibly of the long-extinct squirrel family, had survived a thousand years in this underground chamber. Could there be other extinct living things preserved in this unique place?

A staircase led down from this level to the one below. On this level there were more jumbled artifacts. The archaeologists took note of the treasure-trove, vowing to return later. The located a trap-door which, when opened, revealed another staircase. At the foot of the second staircase, the scene was more orderly than that above, with shelves of ancient books ( a storage medium of great historical value). Another staircase led the pair down to the sit of their most surprising discoveries. At the foot of the stairs, lay a furry animal with a long tail, pointed ears, and a long tail. The woman reached out and tapped the creature lightly with a finger. With lightning-like motion, the creature reached out and scratched her face with sharp claws. The man quickly whipped out his medikit and healed the wound immediately, while the grey creature eyed the woman warily. "I think this is a member of the extinct species known as the housecat." remarked the woman.

Passing through the door, the archaeologists came upon an even more amazing sight. Three ancient people lay slumped against a tabletop. The woman gently tapped the smallest of the people on the shoulder. Iona jumped, startled. "Who are you?" she asked in ancient American. The archaeologists fumbled in their pockets for their instant translators.

To Iona, it seemed as if no time had gone by. Why were these strangers in her kitchen, and why were her parents sleeping with their faces in their food plates?

... to be continued

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1 comment or Leave a comment
sand_inmyshoes From: sand_inmyshoes Date: October 22nd, 2007 05:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
yay! I can't wait for more!
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