Here’s part one : River of Time Fanfiction (and there will be more to come)
Once again, the characters all belong to Lisa T. Bergren, as well as the story from which these are based.
The books in order are Waterfall, Cascade, Torrent, Bourne & Tributary, and Deluge. They are 300% worth spending your money on multiple copies and maybe buying me a signed one too.
The tomb was dank and cold, but I couldn’t erase the stupid grin from my face. I was going home. Our small party had set off at dawn so that Gabi and Marcello could be back to the castle without anyone knowing they left. Luca and I were supposedly headed to Rome to visit his sister. We were to be back in two weeks.
I had a large purse full of gold that Gabi and I had been given from the city of Siena. When we got to our time, I was planning to sell it for quite a bit of money so that I could show Luca everything there is to see. I knew I couldn’t take him home home, like America home, but I also knew that modern Italy would be more than enough. I didn’t want to see my old friends again. To be honest, I hadn’t thought too much about them in months. I had all of the affection I needed here. The only thing I missed was the lifestyle, the comforts.
At the entrance to the tomb, I began to feel a little nervous. I did every time we took the jump. It was so full of uncertainty. Gabi must have felt my second of hesitation, because she squeezed my hand reassuringly. Once we were in the tomb, a sort of solemn hush fell over our little party. Gabi gave me a crushing hug and I knew she was thinking the same thing I was: I can’t lose you. Marcello shared a look with Luca. They were almost as close as Gabi and I, and I knew this caused Marcello pain. For a second, I almost called off the whole thing, but I couldn’t bear with this hopeless despair day after day.
Gabi and I stepped up to the prints and I felt Luca’s strong arm around my waist. I gave her one last hug before we placed our palms on the prints. I heard Luca gasp as we began to move through the odd vortex, but I didn’t have time to concentrate on him. My eyes were locked on Gabi and I was intensely focused on the grave robbers’ gap. When I thought we were where I wanted, I gave Gabi the slightest of nods, and tore my hand away from the print.
Luca and I collapsed onto the floor and he let out an audible string of curses – in English.
“Luca?” I asked, wondering if I was imagining his language jump.
“Yes, Evangelia?” He asked, in English again. Then his face changed as he realized what he had said. “Am I speaking in English?” He asked. I nodded, unable to keep my grin from growing into a full blown smile. He laughed and scooped me up in a hug. For a long minute, we just stood in an embrace, not quite ready to face our future.
“We should go Luca.” I said with a sigh. “We need to find out if we’re where we need to be.”
“As long as I’m with you,” he laughed at the smile plastered on my face, “I’m where I need to be.”
“Ugh.” I rolled my eyes playfully. “You are so cheesy. That’s why I love you.”
“Cheesy?” Luca asked, bewildered.
“Um…” I said, trying to think how to describe it. “I’ll show you later.” I finally said, remembering the stack of chick flicks that Gabi and I had brought with us to watch. The tomb showed evidence of archaeologists, which meant that Mom had already discovered the cave. Hopefully, we hadn’t leaped too far into the future.
I carefully moved to the edge of the tomb and peeked out. I realized for the first time that it was nighttime. I had a general idea of where Mom’s tent was, but it had been a few years to me, and I’d seen this land in a completely different way since then. Eventually, I saw the white canvas emblazoned with my mother’s name. It was surrounded with police tape, but looked abandoned. It made sense that they were investigating. For all they knew Gabi, mom, and I had just disappeared into thin air.
Luca stepped up to the tape and ran his hand across it.
“What is this?” He whispered in awe.
“It’s plastic.” I said nonchalantly, “I’ll show you more later. For now, we have to see if they left my mom’s purse in the tent. Do you want to come in with me or stay out here?”
“I’m coming.” Luca said resolutely.
I ducked under the tape and through the flap of the tent. Fortunately, everything was carefully placed where it had been when we left. I carefully extracted the apartment key from mom’s purse, grateful that it wasn’t too far from here. Luca was gaping around the tent at every little nuance. This was going to be harder than I thought. At least when we went to Luca’s time, we’d known a general idea of what life was like then. Luca’s only reference to the 21st century was my family and me. He probably couldn’t even imagine things like computers.
I waved him out of the tent and began to look around for mom’s old Jeep. It was parked down the road a bit from mom’s tent, but it didn’t look drivable. Not that it ever did, but I figured the noise and struggle wasn’t worth the risk. Living in Medieval Italy had put both Luca and me into excellent shape anyway. We could walk five miles in an hour. Before I abandoned the Jeep, I glanced in the window, looking habitually for my phone. I didn’t see it, so I hoped that it was in the apartment. If I couldn’t find it, I at least knew that my laptop would be there.
“What was that thing?” Luca asked apprehensively as I walked back toward him.
“We call it a car. Normally, it moves like a carriage tied to a horse, only it can go much faster and doesn’t need the horse.” I replied. “You’re going to be seeing a lot more of those around here.”
We made it to the building without incident and found the apartment blessedly untouched. There didn’t seem to be any sign of police investigation, which meant that we had either gone much farther in the future than we should have, or else the police didn’t feel it appropriate to break into the apartment yet, which meant we’d nailed it.
I unlocked the door slowly and crept into the room, not sure what I was looking for. It seemed much brighter than a dark room should look and I tensed for a moment before realizing that it was simply the glow from the multiple electronics plugged in around the walls. I breathed a sigh of relief and hurried to check my phone. Luca started backward at the sudden brighter glow from what must have looked to him like a tiny box of glass. I was more preoccupied with the date. We had arrived the exact evening that mom, Gabi, and I had left.
I let out a breath I didn’t know I’d been holding and turned to Luca.
“We did it!” I cried. “It’s the exact date that we left.” He let out a breath as well. I could tell that my relaxing helped to put him at ease.