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The rumbling that came from his basement had woken the entire block; all the neighbours had always turned their noses at him and wondered when the state housing department would kick him away from the estate and move him to a place where he would not harm anyone or anything again. Even the dogs were weary of this dreadful man.
The fire department had given him a mock trophy for the most fire outbreaks in a month; one rookie had even suggested that a special water allocation be provided for his house in case of emergency; which was often.
They rushed out to see what ruckus the mad scientist had concocted this time around. They had their expectations; he would run out of the basement with his soot covered laboratory coat and googles over his head, some shards of the test tubes he had been working with in his hair and of course, his annoying cough.
Dr. Michael had been a leading researcher in the field of trans-dimensional reality, his fellow scientists had always seen him as some sort of science driven Jekyll and Hyde. His personality when he worked on his projects was completely different from the timid professor they had known him as. His was like a rabid dog when his oscilloscope was placed in front of him, calculating waves and taking measurements of dimensional shift; he was truly a genius, aside from the socially deficient side of him.
* * *
His eyes were closed, but he could hear the bleating of goats from where he lay. This smell; it was horrible, and it smelt like dung and he seemed to be sitting on what felt like straw.
“Where am I?”, he asked as he took a quick look around the place; it was a barn.
“How did he get to a barn?”, and this did not look like central Abuja. The air around felt old and musky with the smell of melting iron and fresh bread filling the air. He realized he was hungry now. The bread smelt tasty, fresh and full of ingredients.
Then, he saw her.
She wore white and her hair was covered; the flow of her gown trailing the dust as she gathered some bottles and flasks. She seemed to be preparing for something as she expertly filled her baskets with what she had gathered.
He could see the ember of the fire that had been used to bake the bread that had hunted his hungry stomach. The aroma of the bread still lingered around there beckoning him to draw closer.
“Pardon me, Madam”, he said as he approached her and giving her the fright of her life.
He was odd looking; with his finely shaved face and odd clothes. She had never seen a man who did not have the facial hair; it was a blessing that all men were happy to have and it showed their maturity, but this man had none of it, his face way as smooth as a baby’s bottom.
She was puzzled by this fellow, but there was no time for a proper assessment because she had other pressing matters to attend. She had to hurry; Joanna and Mary were waiting for her. They had agreed to go and clean the Master’s grave with the spices Joanna had bought. He had prophesied three days.
“The Master would be raised in three days!” she said with a smile. It was joy and a prayer.
Taking a quick look at the man again, she saw his hunger and remembered the teachings of the rabbi about helping the needy and those who hungered.
“I could spare a few loaves”, she thought to herself as she placed the steamy loaves in his hands and began on her way.
He rushed after her to offer his thanks, it was courteous.
Then things went bizarre; the ground began to shake and rumble, he could not get to her. She had gone far and the ground was not willing to corporate with him. Trying to maneuver his way, his foot struck a stone and all went black.
* * *
“James! James!! Are you OK?”, it was Patty, his rather enthusiastic assistant. He moaned a little as his eyes struggled to open.
He was bleeding and some of the blood had gotten to his coat, His wife would be furious. Then he saw the fire truck, the emergency response vehicles and of course, the strolling eyes of the Parkland Estate residents; the usual routine for when there was a mishap at his lab.
“James, what are you doing with that bread?”, Patty asked as she tried to sit him up.
“A bread? ” he asked with a confused look on his face. And then he remembered the woman and the words she had said to him.
He was not much of a church person but he remembered his mother; she had always rejoiced on Easter day and talked about Christ being risen. He remembered the story; The women and the earthquake, that was the resurrection.
He had seen one of the women who had gone to the tomb of Christ; Awesome.
He was gonna be famous, he had met an important woman in biblical history and experienced Easter first-hand.
And his bonus, he had invented a time machine.
He smiled and gave Patty the bread, things were about to change for them and their work had just begun.
His researcher; he needed them now and of course, a bigger lab. If he could just stabilize the quantum field and solve the exact trans-molecular manipulations required, he could see it all. History and Truth.
Anerobi, Chimezie Lotachi is a writer of fiction and poetry. He is a recent graduate of Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Federal University of Technology, Minna where he worked with different magazines which includes; Paragon, Portal and Flames. He is also a member of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), Niger State Chapter. He is currently working on a collection of short stories and hopes to be published in future.