The little girl locked her buggy eyes into my glassy pair of visual aids embedded into my eyes. Her head was tilted and her face was lit up.
“Then what happens?”
I let a smirk form on the organic parts of my face. “That’s it. The story’s over.”
“But it can’t be! Who wrote the formulas? Who built the machine?”
The smirk on my face became gradually more pronounced. “I told you, I don’t know. Do you have an idea?”
“I think it was the aliens,” she squealed, clapping her hands. “They built the machine for Rory and Mike.”
“What makes you say that?”
She shrugged. “It’s always aliens.”
I held back a groan. “Very well, I… I’m going to tell you who built the machine. It was a bum that lived under the bridge.”
She frowned. “It was?” There was a good deal of innocent disappointment in her falling intonation.
“Yes. A bum who happened to be smart,” I continued. “He worked on it for years and built a time machine.”
She nodded and remained silent for a few long seconds. “And what happens to Mike and Rory?”
“The bum living in the future puts them on trial for trying to escape his utopia.”
“Really,” I nodded. “And then, they get imprisoned.” Actually, they die, which she didn’t have to know.
I rose from my chair. “Let’s go, play with the turtles now, baby. Shall we?”
The girl clapped their hands and squealed, jumping up. I placed her over my shoulders and went back inside, to the basement where we kept turtles, about a dozen of them. None but one had a key strapped underneath its shell.
The key to the way out.
Image credit: TehChan