Chapter 1

Now there are many stories of how the Leaning Tower of Pisa became leaning, however, none of those stories are true. You hear tales about the Tower, but mostly it is said that the true reason is a mystery, that it is still unknown, and that it will probably never be known. However, this is in fact the true story about how the tower became leaning. Hi, my name is Jamie and this story's about my best friend Aiden and our eventful trip to Italy.

You may be wondering how in the world I would know what truly happened to the tower when it took 187 years from 1173 to the year 1360 and the year is now 2011. Let me tell you what really happened. You see Aiden and I both wanted to go to Italy with the rest of our class; however, then the teachers caught him doing another one of his infamous pranks, again. They then banned him from going to Italy and instead assigned him a five-page essay about some tower in Pisa, I mean who really cares about a tower that just stands still all day. It's the moving ones you have to worry about. So, I decided to stay behind with Aiden. Not that I had much of a choice considering the fact that the teacher automatically blamed me for not stopping Aiden. She's hated me for years now, don't really know why, don't really care.

The day the rest of the class went to Italy, Aiden and I started googling the Tower to find something to write when Aiden suddenly got an idea. I could tell because he got this faraway look in his eyes and he seemed to be calculating something in his mind. I waited to hear what the brilliant idea was when he suddenly jumped up and ran down into his basement. I waited about five minutes for him to return. When he didn't I knew that I better see what he was going to do and try to talk him out of it. I went downstairs to the basement and found him putting on a pair of boots. When I gave him a questionable look he told me that they were seven league boots and that they could transport a person back in time. By now I was getting a really aweful feeling about this and knew that it was going to end badly.

"We can go back in time and see what the big fuss is about the Tower of Pisa and we can get plenty of info for my report," he said reasonably.

I just looked at him and said sarcastically, "Oh no, we don't need the boots we can just use my magical closet."

"No way you have one of those. Cool!" he said happily, completely oblivious to my sarcasm until I glared at him.

"What? You don't believe me, what kind of friend are you? "He said with mock offense.

"The kind of friend that you left at the park for four hours," I cried.

"I said I was sorry," he wined.

"Yeah, well sorry doesn't help the fact that a snobby Soccer mom called me a stalker. And she called the police! Guess where I was for the next six hours?" Aiden started to laugh, but quickly tried unsuccessfully may I add to cover it up with a cough after he saw me shoot a glare that could have frozen hell over twice. He gave an exasperated sigh.

"Please come with me Jams," Aiden begged using my old nickname from when we were little kids, trying to get me on his side.

I sighed and said in a low voice, "Aiden, I'm not going to put on some overgrown ugly-ass patched up boot that will 'magically' teleport us back in time. Have you been your dad's liquor stash again? You know what happened last time that happened and I'm NOT taking the blame for it again."

"No Jamie I'm not drunk or crazy!" he practically shouted in exasperation. I rolled my eyes at him. "Fine, I know you better than anyone else. So I know for sure that you will eventually forgive me for this," and with that he grabbed my hand and took a step forward, he had already put one boot on and had the other one in his had.

One minute I was looking at the dank and stuffy basement, then suddenly it was as if we were in a movie and someone hit rewind. I saw everything that had transpired in the past in Italy in light speed. Suddenly, as soon as it had started, it stopped, just like that. I looked around and was stunned to see the base of the Tower of Pisa. Oh my god! I'm going crazy there is no such thing as magic boots that can teleport you back in time it just isn't possible, but then again here we are at the base of the Tower of Pisa itself.

"I think I'm gonna be sick," I moaned, "There is no way this is possible!"

"I told you I wasn't crazy, well at least not about this." Aiden grinned, "Why couldn't you have just trusted me?"

"Trust you! The last time I did that I ended up suspended for three weeks and I didn't even do anything!" I shouted at him now furious.

"Oh, come on Jamie you know that you wanted to come," He tried to reason with me.

"NO, Aiden I didn't want to come I never wanted to because I always end up having to take the blame for what ever stupid idea you suddenly have to do." I practically screamed at him.

"Just take me home. Now Aiden, I want to go home." I whispered all the fight draining out of me.

"We can't go home..." he said regretfully. I didn't even wait for him to finish because suddenly my anger was back and I was beyond pissed. Oh great, we can't go home. Were stuck in Pisa, Italy in god knows what year all because Aiden wanted to go. And that's when I hit him. Not some little bitch slap, but a full on blow straight to the face. He was knocked off is feet and hit the ground holding his face and shouting curses I'd never even heard before.

"What the hell Jamie? " He shouted, "What did I do to deserve that?"

"What didn't you do to deserve that? But, the main reason was for bringing me here and getting us trapped forever," I stated calmly. Now that I'd hit him I felt better, a little guilty, but better.

"Were not trapped here forever just until the boots recharges." Aiden grumbled.

"Well why didn't you just say that?" I asked a little confused. Looking at his face I winced slightly as I noticed his face start to bruise where I'd hit him.

"Well, You didn't really give me a chance, now did you?" he sighed in an exasperated tone pointing to his now beautifully blackened eye and cheek.

"Yeah, well don't blame me, your the one who dragged me here when I didn't want to come and then you start off your sentence with, 'we can't go home'. Besides I think you deserved that punch years ago. Be thankful I only hit you once."

He just glared at me. "So, when do we get to go home?" I mused.

"Ah, about 6 days 23 hours, 55 minutes and thirty seconds." He stated matter of factly.

"What! we have to wait an entire week before going home?" I questioned

"Basically yes, an entire week," he said, " your not going to hit me again are you?"

"Nah, I really want to but I'm going to refrain from doing so, Besides to tell the truth that hurt like a bitch," I speculated. He breathed a sigh of relief.

"Good, but I think that my face hurts more than your hand. By the way I think that we should change clothes so were less conspicuous, don't want to stand out and change the history of Italy."

"Okay, but what are we gonna wear and how are we gonna get it I only have modern day money and we can't give them anyone that."

"Don't worry about that, whenever you time travel your money always changes into the current currency. So if we went to France our money would be in euros." he stated prominently.

"Well sorry. It is my first time, time-traveling so give me a break. How many times have you time-traveled?" he Just smirked at me. Giving me a strong urge to hit him...... again. Aiden must have noticed patience running low because he started walking away, quickly. I sighed and jogged after him.

"So where are we going to get our clothes? I questioned "Do you even know what the style is around here?"

He grinned at me "Well I know that all of the women wear dresses so your gunna have to wear one."

I stopped dead in my tracks. Wear a dress, no way! "Like hell I'm wearing a dress, you can not make me! If you do your going to have a matching bruise on the other side of your face." I said indignantly

"Jamie all of the women wear dresses here, if you don't then were gunna stand out. I was considered a crime and disgrace for women to wear men's clothing" he reasoned, Besides its not like anyone will find out, I won't tell I promise."

I huffed loudly, " Fine but I will not wear a giant ulgy hat. I draw the line there." Aiden gave me an inquisitive look.

"What time period do you think were in?."

"Well how the hell am I suppose to know? I nearly shouted, "Do you even know what century were in?

"Yes, as a mater of fact I do" I could hear the smugness oozing as he said that, "Were in the eleventh century

"Ok, smart ass where do we go to get our new clothes?" I asked curious to see if he actually knew

"Hey I'd rather be a smart ass than a dumb ass," which I took as 'I have no idea'.

I smirked "What makes you think that your the smart one? I hate to break it to you but that's defitely me"

"Yeah that's probably true, but do you know what that means" Confused I look at him. " It means that if your the smart one then I'm the pretty one." he smiled at me

"Sure your the pretty one, the pretty stupid one." I muttered under my breath

"I heard that ." Aiden shouted back to me as he started walking again. I really hoped that he knew where he was going because I didn't and it was starting to get dark when we first came here. By now I could hardly see twenty feet in front of me. So lost in my thinking I didn't even notice that Aiden had stopped up a head. That was until I ran straight into him. I fell on the dirt road with an omph.

"You know it wouldn't kill you to give me a heads up like, Oh I don't know maybe, 'hey Jamie I'm about to stop so watch out', would have been helpful" I muttered while picking myself up off the ground. "Oh no I'm perfectly fine Aiden, thanks for your concern and for helping me up."

"Hey, your the one who ran into me remember, besides your so used to falling down didn't think you needed my help," he stated matter of factly.

Rolling my eyes and sneered at him before I started walking again, then stopped, "Wait why did you stop in the first place?"

Aiden walked up to join me "Well Jamie there is a little store up there that we can trade our clothes in for new ones. I think that I should go in there alone since most women don't wear jeans and Aeropostale tops here, I'll try and find something that will fit you."

He was halfway to the store when I shouted "Hey Aiden, you bring me back anything pink with ruffels I will not hesitate to hit you again, understand!" He waved his hand in the air to signal that he heard, but not saying anything about not picking a pink dress or one with ruffles." After that said I sat down next to a tree and waited.

In the end I probably only had to wait about twenty minutes, but it seemed like two hours, before I heard footsteps. Slowly rising I hid behind the tree I was leaning against. I was about to call out to Aiden to ask him if he got me a pink dress and if he did he better start running. When I noticed that the there wasn't one person but two. As the footsteps got closer I edged away from the tree. I was almost out of the tree's cover when I noticed that there were two sets of footsteps. And they weren't coming from the same direction. I dove back to the cover of the tree. As the men came closer I started to panic. If they came much closer they'll be able to spot me right away, and for some reason I felt like that would be a very bad idea. Crawling slowly back into the shadows of the bushes to the right of the tree. They started talking but it was in a language that I didn't know very well.

"Li hai ancora trovato. Abbiamo bisogno di ottenere gli stivali prima di lasciare.Se fuggire di nuovo, allora e la tua testa sulla linea." One of the people whispered and grew louder until he was screaming at the other man. I was fairly certain that they were both males. There was more shouting but it seemed like it was growing more distant I slowly sat up from my hiding place and crept forward. The men were no where in sight I froze half way sitting up. Where had they gone? I stayed in that position for about twenty minutes before I decided that it was safe to move, the men were gone. I walked to the road where I has last seen Aiden. Glancing around again just to make sure that the men had indeed left. I started jogging towards the store that Aiden had disappeared to forty minutes ago.


Publication Date: 03-02-2011

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