Time’s Key

 In Boot Hill, Today's Feed


Written by: Collette Cottingham; Consciously Woman


He came in the cover of darkness. Fighting the rough waters in a row boat; the wind and splashing water would conceal him. He didn’t want anyone to know he was there. He needed the key.

Nat woke up to her shutters banging against the window. Despite the wind it was a beautiful day. She decided to go out and explore. As she walked down the hall she heard the tears and screams of her mother; her father bellowing his displeasure.

The many clocks in the hall all began chiming in unison. Each clock had a unique little key. The key will let you turn back time, go forward in time, or even stop time, but any way you try nothing changes.

Suddenly, Mother is in hysterics and threw a crystal vase to the ground; glass sprayed into the hall. Nat slipped out the door before she was noticed.

Up on the hillside Nat spotted the man in the boat from her dream. He was going through their back door – suddenly a pop, pop, pop sound thundered from the house.

Lauren sat up in bed; her clock read 7:05 am. Bang, bang on her door. She opened the door to see her smiling son Cris.

“Did you forget?”

“No, my clock didn’t go off; I will meet you down there. I don’t need to be fancy just to pick you up.”

“Thanks mom, I will see you down there in 10 and I’m stealing an apple.”


She pulled into the parkade. The attendant stopped her.

“You aren’t going to fit in here.”

“What? My car easily fits in here.”

“Not with a Christmas tree on top.”

Cris approached the car, “It’s okay mom, I’m ready to go.”

“I need to take this tree to the dumpster.”

“You can’t put a tree in a dumpster anymore Mom.”


“Don’t worry Mom, I’ll take care of it for you.”

“This is so bizarre, Christmas is long over and I would never strap a tree to the top of my car. I don’t think I even had a real tree this year.”

“Look Mom, every car has a Christmas tree on top.”

“Knock, knock, I’m coming in so don’t be alarmed.”

“Hey, Vienna.”

“Oh my goodness Victoria, why aren’t you out of bed. It is almost eleven o’clock.”

“I had a night full of dreams that were exhausting, so I didn’t have a quality sleep.”

“Well, we are supposed to meet Mom and Dad for our birthday lunch.”

“Quit throwing clothes at me.”

“Victoria, you have to get moving.”

“I know Mom will have a heart attack if I arrive looking like this.”

“Exactly, if only we could freeze time.”

“Vienna, thank you! I know what key he is looking for, brilliant, thank you.”

“You’re nuts.”


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