All day long I've been fighting a losing battle to keep my internet connection available long enough to publish some blog writing.
Two weeks ago, I had a BT telecommunications worker come to my door to ask if he could access the telephone pole in my garden as there would be repairs to it the following week. Yes, I said - no problem.
Last week the doorbell dinged and my husband went through the same scenario. Has anything happened? You guessed it...NO.
The telephone connection into my house is no doubt incredibly old since my house is one of the older ones in the village mainstreet but that's no exuse for us having a very unreliable and poor connection. Do we have fibre broadband? DUH...don't be silly I'm sure someone is saying though it apparently is in my village and some people do very well by it. Unfortunately more like 80% of the village still have an ancient copper wire system and are lucky to get 500k speeds on their very unreliable internet connections.
Change my supplier, you're going to suggest? The problem with that is that you still need BT
access with whichever supplier you use.
There is evidence nearby in the street that maintenance work is being done locally so I live in hope that tomorrow will be better.
Till then, I'll continue to plug on with my current time-travel for early teens WIP.
Here are some Monday Moments from it that are probably not going to survive as they are at present...enjoy! The location is north-east Scotland AD 210. The Roman Emperor Severus is camped along with more than thirty thousand of his troops. My time-travelling 13 year old Brian doesn't seem to be in a very advantageous position...
and his communications are worse off than mine!
Brian was prodded and jostled from all sides as the long line he was in was unchained, the clank of the iron bonds as they hit the earth making a sound of music he was in no mood to hear.
“About time, too!” he mumbled, though not loud enough to gain any of the thumps and slaps that others along the row had received when they’d protested about their imprisonment.
“What will happen to us?” The cry came from a nearby complaining Celt. His answer was a whack across the head from the hilt of a gladius and a barrage of gibberish from the soldier wielding the weapon as the warrior Celt was forced back into line.
Brian had a feeling the Roman auxiliary wasn’t speaking posh Latin but he hadn’t a clue what the language might be. One little press was all it would take for him to understand all the strange words around him but his tied wrists made that impossible. He wanted to use the help function to find out where the others were but was unable to do anything about that either.
Fianna had absolutely petrified him when she’d taken off to help Gypta. The last he’d seen of her was Tyrnan freeing her wrists before he was bundled across the Gadie Burn like a reluctant toddler. What had happened to Aran might be even worse because the last he’d seen was his friend being walloped on the head with a shield after which Aran pitched sideways onto the ground like toppled tree.
“They have to be okay.” His murmurs were indistinct, the words directed at the ground beneath his bent head. His toes worried at loose earth that had been disturbed during the excavation of the ditch when the Roman legions had created the walls of the Durno camp. Wouldn’t Callum, or whoever was listening in through their armbands, have wheeched them back to the National Physics Lab if the danger was really dire? Had it already been really ominous for Aran? Brian’s thoughts were a muddled whirl. He’d read often enough about head bumps causing deaths. His stomach did somersaults. His head was almost bursting with temper, frustration and… disgust.
What a complete mess they were in: so much for their pact to stay together. Where are they? His plea melted into the air when he realised the Roman officer was right in front of him.
“What have you done with my sister?” His question was loud but not a shout. He guessed bawling in the face of a fully armed high-ranking soldier wasn’t going to get him an answer.
Along with many other Celts, he’d been dragged up the hill to the camp at Durno the rope and chain bonds as tight as a drum. The rope now binding his wrists together was a stronger different fibre that chafed less than the Celtic twine, but maybe he just thought it was hurting less because his arms were now crossed in front and not behind. As well as the individual tie at his wrist, the whole column had been chained together when they were at the bottom of the hill. That had made it easier for the Roman auxiliaries to yank on it if any of the tribespeople stumbled as they were forced up the hill.
Scanning along the row, it was so long he couldn’t see the end of it, though from what he could glimpse there weren’t many tribespeople who were younger than him, except perhaps for a few of the girls. Only a few of the hostages could be called old. He guessed that the Celtic leaders who had chosen the unfortunate prisoners were wise enough not to send any poor candidates. If the treaty terms demanded that Severus get some good slaves, then he was sure they wouldn’t anger the man by sending rubbishy ones.
“Please let me go home?” The cry was pitiful, the tears streaming down the young woman’s face.
He wished he could understand the guy who stopped at each prisoner in turn and chose who was going where. Brian reckoned he had to be an officer of some sort since he wore a different uniform. His body hugger breastplate that showed the muscles was pretty impressive. After a word or two with the accompanying auxiliary soldier, the prisoner was dragged off to a different huddle most of them protesting and screaming. Some groups had only females in them, others had only males. Way down at the far end there was one group that just had two people in it. They looked so lonely.
When the officer stood in front of him, he held his head high. He was scared to bits but wasn’t going to show it. Strong fingers lifted his torque away from his collar bones, the man’s helmet almost touching his chin as the guy stared at the silver. Brian was dragged along and dumped alongside the lonely boy and girl.