Previously in Future Prefect... Bath and Pord, after escaping from their prison cells, proceeded to try and escape from the prison itself, hopefully taking the others with them. Bill wasn't heard from at all, and the Dustbins of Wisdom displayed a startling willingness to change their minds, transporting Agnes to London, which has just been largely demolished by another earthquake. Agnes informed the Sitter on the Chair of Mina of what occurred in America, and has now found herself pulled into an impromptu mission to the moon. However, this week's episode starts elsewhere...
The Geraldine looked at the featureless walls of the chamber she'd been put in. They were no different from the last time she'd looked at them, or the time before that, but looking at them, while very boring, stopped her having to look at the chair she was strapped to, or the man who stood by a small control panel and kept asking her questions. When she didn't answer, or said something he didn't like the sound of, he pressed buttons, and the electrodes attached to various parts of her body made muscles spasm or sent pain signals directly down assorted nerves to her brain.
'It will go much easier for you if you tell us the truth,' the man said after one such burst of pain died away.
'I'm already telling you the truth,' The Geraldine replied through gritted teeth. 'If you don't believe it, that's your problem.'
She clamped her mouth shut as her left thigh spasmed, a pain like waking in the middle of the night with a cramp that left the muscle stiff for the rest of the day.
'I will suffer no more of your lies. You are clearly a foreign agent here to subvert the government and corrupt American citizens. Tell us what you have done.'
'I am not here to subvert your citizens,' The Geraldine told him for the umpteenth time. 'I couldn't care less about your government, although I do know that I don't like it very much if this is what it sanctions. I have told you why I am here.'
'To investigate the mysterious earthquakes. So you have said. Very well. If you are not willing to tell the truth, we have no further use for you.' He unplugged his control panel and walked towards the door. 'In fifteen minutes, this chamber will fill with poisonous gas. It is a slow and unpleasant way to die, so I understand. If you change your mind before then, make sure you tell us so that we can turn the timer off.'
'You think that's going to be enough to kill me?'
'It was developed by our top scientists.'
'Really? Well, you should probably prepare to send them the funding to develop something better,' The Geraldine informed him.
He left the chamber, sealing the door behind him. The Geraldine settled down to wait, humming softly to herself. When she judged that about ten minutes had passed, and was launching into a full-throated rendition of one of the songs which had made Agnes famous (which made her wonder where Agnes was, and if she was okay) when the wall exploded, showering her with stone dust. Bath, Pord, Bite and Bark stood on the other side. Bath waved his hand at her, and she found herself free of the chair's restraints.
'What are you doing here?' she demanded.
'Rescuing you,' Pord said in tones which suggested he had expected hugs and kisses in gratitude, and perhaps more.
'They were just about to gas me!' she retorted. 'I was going to give them a lesson in futility.'
'Trust me, our way is far more interesting,' Bite said.
'Only if you like explosions.'
The Guru stuck his tongue out at her, then had to stick it back in to stop it getting covered in dust.
'Shall we go?' Bath asked.
Escaping with only a few minor tremors the earthquake which had shattered London, the city of Cambridge appeared as it usually did - calm, peaceful and loaded with magic.
Agnes and Linda took a hovercar from the airport to the University of Cambridge School of Magecraft, where one look from Linda sent the receptionist scurrying for the Head, a grumpy old man by the name of Gregory Derilim. He received them in his study, eyeing Linda's whip nervously even though she had it coiled on her belt. Why the head of the most sophisticated school of magecraft in the world needed to worry about that, Agnes couldn't fathom. Perhaps he hadn't been selected for his skill in the areas of spellcraft.
'What do you want?' he demanded as soon as the receptionist had left the room. Linda stalked up to his desk and leaned on it as he sat down.
'We want to go to the moon,' she said. 'I believe you can arrange it.'
'Because I say so. Can you do it or not?'
'Then get to it. We will wait here. Please inform us when you are ready.'
They stared at each other for a few moments, but evidently Linda's gaze was quite formidable, for Professor Derilim backed down and left the room, grumbling to himself almost under his breath. Linda turned around.
'That,' she told Agnes, 'is how to deal with him. Remember that.'
'Because I say so,' Linda told her, echoing what she had told Derilim a few moments before. 'It might come in useful one day. Now, while we wait, how about a song?'
What will Agnes and Linda find when they get to the moon? Will Bath, The Geraldine and the rest escape successfully from prison and join the others in space? What's happening to Bill? Find out in the next installment of Future Prefect, the story saga brought to you by three raw peanuts and a tattered copy of Pride and Prejudice.