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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

At the age of 20 Emma Harvie inherits an old family estate from her estranged mother. It's not long before she finds a mysterious notebook dated from 1865 with instructions undoubtedly meant for her. After just one stormy night in the old house Emma finds herself transported to another time. With nothing but her notebook and the help of the handsome James Monroe she must figure out how to save the family fortune and herself.

Chapter 1 (v.1) - Emma

Submitted: August 11, 2013

Reads: 133

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Submitted: August 11, 2013



When Emma Harvie received the phone call that she was now old enough to receive the contents of her mother’s will she rejoiced. Finally, at 20 years old she can find out something about her mother, whom she lost at the tender age of 5. When she walked out of the lawyers office that day she left with one envelope, enclosed were two keys and a letter. One key, she was told, was to a house on 2143 Bayview Lane. The other was unknown. She made it to the car before opening the letter, however that was about as long as she could wait. With a sense of excitement she read:

“Go to our house. You don’t need money or extra clothes. Think of the extra key as key to your past future.”

“Talk about cryptic.” Emma thought to herself. She mulled over the idea of going home first but was too intrigued and headed straight for the house she was instructed to go to. She wasn’t going to disobey the first thing her mother ever told her to do, that she could remember. "Besides," she thought to herself, "it would only be one night."

Upon seeing the house she began to think it would be more of a burden than a blessing. Though it was a beautiful mid century Victorian masterpiece it was greatly decaying from neglect. The paint was greatly chipped and the windows on the first and second floors were boarded up. The windows on the third floor were too high and too small to bother covering.  She could imagine how wonderful it must have looked n it’s prime. Unfortunately, the family fortune that once kept this mansion thriving, not unlike the house, had withered through time. Still, she couldn’t deny the most wonderful feeling of being home. As she opened the door she could almost feel the presence of it’s old inhabitants. Although it was dusty and smelled of mold the electricity seemed to work and that was comforting. Each step taken was even more welcoming, more enticing. She walked through the parlor which at some time was sure to have been described as lavish. She studied the ornately decorated walls when her eyes fell upon one of the portraits. It was a family of three. The man had broad shoulders,  black hair and piercing green eyes. The little girl was darling with big blue eyes and her mother’s soft brown curls, her mother…

Emma stared at the picture of the woman in the painting. It looked just like her, maybe a few years older, but eerily identical. “I must be more tired than I thought.” She said aloud to no one. She made her way upstairs and found the bedroom which looked the least dilapidated. She walked over to the antique vanity by the window, it was lovely. She tried to open the drawer and found that it was locked. She opened her purse and pulled out the extra key. Sure enough it unlocked the drawer with ease and within it amongst the old pens and dried up quills was another letter.

Dearest Emma,

If you are reading this then you finally found your way home. You may not remember but we had some precious few years in this old house together. As I write this you are just four years old, beautiful smart inquisitive. Unfortunately it seems as though we won’t have much more time together and there is something you should know. There is a secret that this family has held for over 100 years. You, my precious daughter, are the key to that secret. Look to your childhood for your past future. Where there were once childhood drawings there is now something more. You must look beyond what is in front of you and feel for something more. Please, take heed Emma Thompson. I love you so very much.

You’re adoring mother.

Sylvia Harvie

“Thompson? Why would she call me Emma Thompson? And what does she mean by past future? Feel something more? Why doesn’t she just say what she means!?” She thought to herself. Curiosity getting the best of her she decided to tour the second floor hoping something might trigger memories from her childhood. After passing five various rooms she found what once must have been a beautiful nursery. It was as if the room was waiting to be lived in once again. The yellow walls trimmed with hand painted zoo animals were now drastically faded. The toys were still sprawled around the ground, an old coloring book left open on the miniature wooden table, the markers still waiting to be used. “Where there were once childhood drawings there is now something more” she recited to herself. She lifted up the dust covered book and looked atop the table to find something her mother was alluding to. She opened the table drawer and found nothing but dozens of silly drawings that looked like lightening striking a building in a rain storm. Frustrated she slammed the drawer which consequently made a strange sound. She opened the drawer and slammed it once more, again came a sound, like there was something sliding inside of it. For the third time she opened the drawer and this time she noticed a crack in the front corner. She stuck her fingers in the space and slid the interior side panel of the drawer all the way down. Excited to have found something she felt around the dark compartment and pulled out a book. In the light she could see that it was an extremely old and delicate travel size notebook. Carefully she opened it up and saw the first entry dated October 14, 1865. The first words written were “Dear Emma.”

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