Ancient Contraption

My butt had fallen asleep in the chair, that’s how long I’d been watching her tinker with that contraption. Evening light dimmed the inside of the makeshift garage. My stomach growled, but I knew she wouldn’t stop for dinner until she had exhausted all her efforts for the day. I lit the oil lamp and brought it to the work bench.

“It’s getting dark, Chirp, don’t you want some dinner?” I pleaded.
“Shh, just a minute, Timber. I think I have it!”

She reached up and pulled a tension wire. The contraption squealed and gears spun upon a belt, but it didn’t stay running. It sounded sick, like it was wheezing for breath.

“That’s great! It was only clicking yesterday. Let’s get some food now.”
“It’s still not working, Timber. The old books say its supposed to purr. It’s supposed to spin faster.”
“They also say to use un-leaded gas-o-line and we have no idea what that is. That thing is at least a thousand years old!”
“500, and if the ancients could do it, I can do it.”

“Maybe the ancients died of hunger.” I whined.

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