Weave a tale in which you as a traveller are lost in a foreign city and you find help from an unlikely source.
Where are you going?
How did you get lost?
Who is it that helps you?
What do you learn about this person?
My first morning in Showpattie was eventful. I emerged from the hotel and walked into a thick as thick fog.
Knowing the weather was not conducive to sightseeing I decide to find my way to the Museum and spend my morning there hoping the fog would clear for an afternoon of wandering the city.
I’d memorised the pathway. Turn left and then at the first corner a right turn and across the lights a left and I should be outside the museum.
The fog was thicker than I anticipated and trying to remember the route whilst being jostled by the morning workers quickly disorientated me.
Hands came from all around me, pushing me this way and that. Finally when I was sure I was all but at the museum and hand grabbed my arm and pushed me into a doorway. I hit the wall and was dazed momentarily but stopped to gather my bearings.
I realised where I was standing was not the museum. I was at the top of a narrow alleyway, which stretched away down a steep hill. There was no fog here. Being able to see where I was going was a benefit I decided to take. I started walking down the hill looking at the quaint shops lining the alleyway.
Almost immediately a man stepped in front of me wanting to know why I was there.
He looked very intimidating and I said I was lost trying to find the museum. He looked at me with a very doubtful air.
“No museum around here mate. Who are you looking for?”
“The museum!” I protested. Looking back the entrance to the alleyway had disappeared and now the strangest of people seemed to be walking up and down the alleyway in and out of shops conversing in hushed tones and looking at me as if sensing the intruder I was.
“You need the Newtant,” he announced and within seconds he had led me to a small red door in a tall blue building. He knocked several times on the door as if using a secret code. The door opened and I was pushed through.
Inside was a large open space with at one end a man sitting on a large throne like seat.
“Come, come,” the man exclaimed. “Up close my eye sight isn’t what it once was.”
I stood before this man who looked ancient. He was licking his lips, blinking severely at me and then looked at the desk in front of him. “Looking for the museum,” he read then looked down at me scrutinising me even more. I was feeling more unsteady than ever by now.
“Yes.” I stammered.
“Happens a lot. Fog out there today?”
“I’m the Newtant and you are?”
“Pleased to meet you.”
“What exactly is a Newtant?”
“I’m a finder of lost things. You being a lost thing, I have found you or rather someone has found you and sent you to me. My job is to return you to where you came from.”
“Thank you I’d appreciate that.”
“No problem just a bit of fiddling to do. You aren’t the first to find yourself in Angle’s Alley. One alley looks like any other doesn’t it.’ Then looking at me he muttered: “Bloody tourists.”
“Can’t you just point me in the right direction and I’ll be on my way?”
“Wish I could. Be so simple wouldn’t it. Doesn’t work that way.”
“No you crossed over you see. Showpattie is one of these places where several dimensions exist at the same time. You’re in my dimension now, magic, spells, potions and crap like that.”
“What’s this place called?”
”Angle’s Alley, didn’t I already say that?”
“Oh yes you did.”
“Good now you need to drink this and cross your fingers it works.”
“What will it do to me?”
“Give you a bit of a jolt, then a buzz then you’ll feel floaty and when you wake up a bit rummy.”
“Yes you’ll understand when you wake up. Now drink up.”
The Newtant handed me a small vial of purple liquid and watched as I drank it down. It had no taste thankfully but what he said I’d experience I did, simultaneously.
When I woke up I was in my room in the hotel. Pinned to my chest was the hotel’s address and my room number.
I lay there a minute, taking in what was now obviously the rummy he had told me about, before noticing another piece of paper on which were laid out very clearly the exact directions to the museum.
On the bottom of the note was:
Lovely to have met you