All right. Minion has had enough of a break after her lonesome nighting. Now she has to try to catch up with her ing, and get back into posting. She has had time enough to be shocked and surprised she made it through last month. *starts some appropriately inspiring music for the Minion and gives her a hard stare*

The stairs down to the basement were dark and narrow, even with Father holding one of the electric lanterns high over his head. Previous owners had run power, telephone, tv cable and even wires for a house wide intranet throughout the old house, but one could still tell that the original building had been designed and constructed without electricity in mind. It had none of the ceiling lights ignited by the flip of a switch by the door which Maddy was used to. The switches were there, but the switches controlled power sockets into which they currently had not lamps to plug.

Some of the plugs were in weird places, like by these little shelves along the walls of the stairway, two on the left, one on the right, that would light the way, when they found lamps small enough.

The first room, at the bottom of the stairs, came as quite a surprise. Not only was it far smaller than Maddy expected, considering the attic dimensions, but the room seemed entirely modern if one excused the flagstones instead of cement under foot. Almost new drywall surfaced the walls, and panels of a similar material hung in a light metal framework overhead, to bring the ceiling down to a more usual height. It even had light panels inside that lit without a flicker when Father tried the switch.

The staircase occupied one corner of the room. Across the space along the short wall, sat the laundry area. A long sturdy table built into the wall led to the hook ups for washer and dryer and then a big, deep sink, big enough for Maddy to bathe in, if she did not mind sitting up the whole time.

The long middle section of the room held a small collection of thoroughly modern appliances mingled with a hold out to the old. In spite of the age of the house, it had been adapted to benefit from an electric water heater, furnace, and air conditioning system, but it still retained an arrangement to heat water and air by burning wood or coal, and had a system in place to switch relatively easily from one means of climate control to the other, leading one to have doubts as to the reliability of the power supply to the house.

“I am going to have to ask around about electrical outages in this area, I think,” Father said after studying the strange set up a bit closer. “If they happen often and last long, we’ll have to put in a generator and come up with alternatives for days when the internet goes out and we still have work to do.” He always referred to Maddy’s classes and school work as her ‘job’, and just as important as the work he and Mum did.


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