Friday, October 9, 2009

Bridge to the Future -- Customs

A response to Nathaniel Lee's "Construction Delays" in Mirror Shards:

Neal popped the clutch in to jerk the car forward one last time to the front of the almost mile-long car queue. Neal wondered why they didn't call it a Bridge to the Past over here. Behind him, in the too full back seat, Janet and Beth bickered over fashion.

Neal twisted over his right shoulder to face the backseat and said, "Everyone except Beth fasten your seatbelts now. And Beth, please make it look like you've got a seatbelt on. We're almost there."

Neal shivered as he watched the time winds blow through the thin dress of an elderly woman standing with her husband neither of them wearing coats. Two TTA agents stripped their car and threw the luggage on the ground. Neal guessed they were being punished because they had triggered one of the all-too-common false alerts from the time anomaly sensors.

Of course, the customs agent would probably grill Neal just because they had too many people in the car. The light flashed green and Neal drove forward.

"Can I see your passports," asked the agent. Neal passed their seven passports to the agent. "There sure are a lot of you in that car. What was the purpose of your visit?"

"It's Tony's birthday," said Neal.

"Hmm... anything to declare?"

A trick question, there was laughter in the back seat. A couple of the girls were still high. "No."

"You're free to go." Unbelievable.

Neal drove forward as the time fogs flowed over his car hiding the view of the other side.

No comments:

Post a Comment