The Thousand Year Theft
Welcome to the past, agent
Alright, agent. My name is Jennings, your mission co-ordinator. A few very important words of warning before we start. I understand this is your first trip back in time to old Earth, so please remain still and try not to look like a fish out of water.
As you will probably know, I can communicate with you, but you can’t communicate with me. This is just one of the many issues we have with time travel at the moment, you know, along with it being punishable by death if our beloved security service ever gets wind of it.
I am talking to you through a device people used to refer to as a “mobile phone” or “cell phone”. Once I begin to guide you through this mission you may place this device in your pocket and continue to listen to me through the small headphones in your ears. This won’t attract any attention, as it was a common practice between people in this period of history.
Anyway, according to my control radar, we have successfully managed to send you back to the city of Edinburgh, which was the capital city of a country called Scotland on the now uninhabitable planet Earth. It is almost a century before the nuclear apocalypse scorched this world beyond all recognition.
If this is your first time off of the space station you will probably find the sky and sun very bright, and the atmosphere very open. As I say, try not to let this show too much. We can’t be too careful. You’ll get used to it before long.
You may have noticed that humans travelled around in large boxes of metal on wheels in this period. These were known as “cars”. Though these are confined to the clearly visible roadways, you need to be very careful as we’ll need to navigate you over a few of them in order to meet the contact.
Anyway… the sooner we get this done, the sooner we can bring you back to 3015 with the painting. You are in a sector that was known as St Andrews Square. The large column behind you is the ‘arrive and return’ point, so we’ll guide you back here once you have what you came for.
With your back to the column, look down the corridor ahead of you. These were known as “streets”, and like the corridors of the space station each one had a name. The street in front was called “George Street”. On my word, you need to travel across the roadway, and again, I must stress that you take care to avoid confrontation with these “cars” as they can very easily injure or kill you.
Do you see the red cylindrical pillar over the roadway? Head for that. These were called “post boxes”, people in this era used to send each other hand written notes through them. How quaint.
Begin to walk then, and once you have crossed, continue down George Street walking on the left hand side of the road. You will hear from me again very shortly.