The Quantum Knight
Copyright© 2011 by vlfouquet
"I think I can learn to do things that can be translated to the regular world. Like a power source that can make energy available at dirt cheap rates, maybe even the stars eventually. But I know I need to learn more."
We drove away from our home to be when it hit me. Our new home would be less than two blocks from Laura Taltson. A grin settled on his face as he leaned back to contemplate the future.
Carl was stuffing his face. Aunt Clara had made what he thought of as her best meal, meatloaf and mash potatoes. He was listening with half an ear to his Mom.
"Yes I signed a lease earlier today. We went by on the way home from school so Carl could look it over."
"Grace there was no rush for you to move!" Aunt Clara gushed as she put another piece of meatloaf on his plate.
"Well I knew that Clara, but Carl was uncomfortable sleeping on the couch. He's uses to his own privacy."
"Huh?" Uncle Rick looked at Carl a moment. Carl tilted his head toward Peggy who was concentrating on her desert.
"Egh HUD!" His uncle eye brow headed toward his hairline as his eyes twitched toward Peggy.
"I like him being here. He's the smartest person I know. I can get to sleep when he is here. I just lay down next to him and I fall right to sleep." Peggy innocent comment had both her parents staring at her then back at Carl. He looked at both of them and nodded slightly.
"Oh well then if you found a place which you can afford and he will be more comfortable then we have no right trying to keep you here." Aunt Clara was all right with the idea now that she thought she understood.
"Well Carl, I've got your house all bundled up in my warehouse now. I built a staircase up to the front door so you can get in. I made a slide from the front room window to the floor. So all you have to do is set things you want on the slide and they will slip down to the warehouse floor." Uncle Rick said, as he took a bite of his desert.
Both Aunt Clara and his mother stopped talking and then stared from his Uncle back to Carl.
"Staircase?" His Aunt asked.
"Slide?" Carl's mother asked.
Carl looked at his Uncle who was looking at him with a spoon halfway to his mouth.
"Uncle Rick, why don't we go by the warehouse and let them see what you are talking about. Then we can all go by our new house."
"Great Idea, son! That way they can see everything and make plans for moving your things into the house." Uncle Rick recovered quickly.
It seemed like seconds, an all of them were piling into the truck and car heading to the warehouse first.
Carl stood back as Uncle Rick showed his wife and Carl's mother the bundled up house. There was a strong and sturdy staircase going up to the front door of the house. Uncle Rick had cut the plastic away from the door and had opened it.
To the side going in the opposite direction of the stairs was a wooden slide with sides leading from the front room empty window casing, to the ground floor of the warehouse. There were a few items resting on the floor where Uncle Rick had tested the slide.
Both his mother and Aunt Clara were standing there with wide eyes and gaping mouth saying basically the same thing. "Oh My God!" over and over. Peggy was standing between them with a big smile on her face.
"I told you, Carl is the smartest person in the whole universe!"
Carl headed up the staircase and was soon inside their old home. As he explored he found it was a mess! Broken glass, shattered wood casements; his room was just as much a shambles as the rest of the house. Then he dug deeper; his clothes were mostly just mixed up with the debris in his room. His computer monitor did not appear damaged. He began to separate all the parts of his computer set up. Soon he had it all sitting in the hallway. After moving everything to the front window, he leaned out.
"Uncle Rick can you pull my things off the slide as they get to the ground?"
"Sure son, give me a second to get over there."
Soon Carl was letting one piece at a time slid down the wood trough. His Uncle pulled them off and to the side as soon as they neared the bottom.
Then Carl dumped clothes he found that didn't appear to have anything wrong with them.
Peggy had joined him and had done the same thing for his mother's clothes. Then they stood in the doorway into the kitchen and stared. Carl turned and looked at Peggy who slowly looked back at him.
"Peggy, don't ever cast a major spell without a circle! The only thing that saved my life was that the spell effect was confined within a circle."
"Yeah, Carl this looks like you got hit with the Enterprises main phasers!"
There was nothing that could be salvaged from the kitchen!
They turned and exited the house. Mom and Aunt Clara were folding clothes and packing them into garbage bags. Uncle Rick was putting all his computer equipment in the truck bed. Afterward he laid the garbage bags of clothes on top of the equipment.
Uncle Rick backed his truck up to the garage doors. Mom and Aunt Clara went into the front door while Carl took the keys and opened the garage doors. He then showed them the garage entrance into the house. They dumped the garbage bags in the wash room. Then he showed them the stair way to the basement and upstairs. Uncle Rick froze like a light had exploded in his head.
Peggy ran down the stairs to the basement, she uses to visit my laboratory all the time when she came over. Carl could hear her "Cool! Neato!" as she explored it. Then she ran back up the stairs but continue to the upstairs. "Wow, Neatorama!"
Carl and his Uncle carried the computer equipment up the stairs and into his room.
Later, all of them met up in the den. His mom and Aunt Clara were discussing the placement of furniture in the den. The chairs, bookcases and the desk that would be put in the room.
Uncle Rick had look through all the rooms upstairs and now entered the Den after looking the rest of the downstairs over.
"Grace, can you afford this? It must cost a fortune?"
"Only $500 a month I paid the first and last month of a six month lease."
Both Uncle Rick and Aunt Clara stop speaking and looked at each other.
"How?" Was the only word spoken afterward by Uncle Rick?
"It has been haunted for at least the last four years. The original family was all murdered by a gang during a home invasion."
"The real estate actually sold the house twice, but the first family let it go into foreclosure; the second family was all in a hospital and started a law suit over hazardous environment."
"They settled but then found themselves with an unsalable house, so they tried to rent it, anything to remove some of the red ink in the books on it. I signed the lease with an option to buy at $60,000."
Peggy spoke up "Haunted?" which was echoed by her parents.
Carl's mother looked over at him.
"Not anymore, I took care of that earlier. I also put up some very strong wards. No more home invasion will ever happen here again."
"I am planning on going down to the Real Estate Company tomorrow and make them an offer of $50,000 with a clear release for the house with an 'as is clause' I expect them to fall all over themselves to sign the contract. Then I will get the mortgage for 15 years, and the payment will still be less then what we are renting it for."
"Then when the insurance check comes in we will pay off the mortgage on the old home and have plenty left over to furnish this one."
"Wow, that's good! The lot will be yours free and clear. Yes!"
"I want to move in here with Aunt Grace and Carl! This place is neat! They got two extra bedrooms upstairs!"
"Nope ain't happening Peggy! You can have a sleep over every once in a while, but if we lived together, we'd start fighting. I love you like a sister, but just like a sister if you were in my pocket all the time we would fight. Think about it."
"How many friends of yours tell you about their horrible brothers? I don't want to be the horrible brother. If it was necessary, that would be one thing but this is not. I will come over and sit in your fairy garden with you plenty of times. In fact, you can design one for us."
Her face which had been squinting up like she was getting ready to cry cleared. She then smiled, "I will make you the best garden in the world."
Everybody took a sigh of relief. Then Peggy came over and hugged him, looking up at Carl she said."Brother? I like that."
The next day his Dad came back from his business trip. But when his mother got through telling him what she had done he relaxed. He took them all out to eat that night. In the conversation over the meal and afterwards, both Carl and his mother kept all mention of magic completely out of it.
His father was very pleased that Uncle Rick wanted Carl to work for him part-time. So that part was good to go. His Dad finally had to go with his Mother to sign the new mortgage. He came home and just wandered over the house in a daze.
Finally, he came out of it.
"Grace how did you get the price so low? This house is worth at least $200,000 at the minimum!"
"Yes dear I agree, but to the company my release to take the house 'as is' was worth the discounted price. You see they been sued once over the house, and had to foreclose once, and they had not been able to rent it to anyone for more than a month."
"There is nothing wrong with the house. Rick went over it with a fine teeth comb."
"It just that reputation, one person hears something and passes it along, now we have two people talking and it builds, then it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. Every accident, everything that goes wrong, builds the bad reputation."
"The talk started when the original family members were all murdered by a gang of home invaders."
"So we get the best luck in the world."
"At your age I would have killed to have a setup like your room. You have almost a separate apartment with your own entrance. For this to work don't make me be the bad guy here."
"I won't Dad. I will be busy mostly studying, but I am thinking it will be easier on you, for me to have my own entrance that doesn't disturb you if I come home late."
"Late? What are you talking about?" His mother had finally heard what he and his Dad were saying.
"Grace, he's going to be going on dates soon, he might be late some nights." His Dad stepped in.
"I see. Well here's the deal, when you are gone leave your door open. I will never go into your room if the door is open. If close I expect you to be in the room and answer when I knock. If no answer, I will open the door and look inside."
"With those conditions, you are now responsible for cleaning your room and getting your clothes washed and dried."
Then Carl started to laugh, "A Deal Mom."
"Dad, a months until I can get a license, then a car."