“Gallis… you do know where we’re going, don’t you?” Marion asked her chauffer. She had received instructions to meet Oriana at the Dower House and to continue on to a secret destination that would be a surprise to them both.

“Of course, I do, Madam,” Gallis Limnon replied. “Otherwise I could not drive you there.”

The two women laughed. Of course, that was the obvious answer to the question. Gallis ventured a little more information.

“His Lordship gave me the co-ordinates and instructed me not to give any more details. It IS a surprise.”

“We did seem to be heading towards the Lodge at first,” Oriana said. “But then we turned south-east. There’s nothing that way except a tributary of the Bærrow that drops down a cliff face quite dramatically. The waterfall and the trees make it very pleasant. We used to picnic there sometimes when we were children. Kristoph was fond of climbing the rocks. He once slipped into the waterfall from a great height. Mother’s screams echoed all around the cliff, but he just came out of the pool soaking wet and grinning.”

Marion laughed. It sounded very much like the sort of thing Kristoph would have done as a boy. His mother had mentioned many a reckless adventure along with Lee Oakdaene. He had admitted to a few more that she didn’t know about.

“We’re not having a picnic today, surely,” she pointed out. “It is far too cold.”

Octima, the tenth month of the Gallifreyan year had mostly been wet, grey and windy. Today was a rare day with no rain or wind and a cloudless yellow sky, but it was still bitterly cold. The very idea of a picnic in the open air made the two women shiver.

“Well, I don’t know what else we could do so far from civilisation,” Oriana commented, sounding almost as disagreeable as she used to be before the humbling experience of her husband’s fall from grace.

She may have realised that because her next words were softened quite a bit.

“I wouldn’t mind seeing the old place in spring. I haven’t been there for a long time. But today, I don’t want to see anything without central heating.”

“I agree,” Marion said. She was only glad that Aineytta had made up a daily preparation that prevented the motion sickness which had plagued the early part of her pregnancy, otherwise a journey like this would be out of the question.

The hover car hovered a little higher. The two women looked out and down as they passed over the bluff where the waterfall fell amongst trees that were all different autumn shades of gold, red and brown.

But there was something else to be seen. Marion and Oriana both exclaimed in surprise as the hoveecar descended to a parking spot in front of the brand new house that had been built there.

“Oh…” Oriana repeated as she stepped out of the car and looked with undisguised admiration at the way natural stone in sympathetic colours had created three levels of wide, airy balcony space even before the indoor part of the house began growing out of the Cliffside itself.

Well, not really, but it looked as if it did. The waterfall fell behind the house and emerged from beneath it into a bubbling pool. The house was actually built ACROSS the water. The word ‘cantilevered’ described the way no part of the building appeared to need supporting as it jutted out into fresh air.

“Fallingwater,” Marion said. Oriana looked at her curiously before both of them were distracted by Kristoph waving from the lower balcony. The two women hurried along a path by the partially tamed river until they reached a glass porch with a scenic lift inside. It was powered hydraulically as befitted a house built out of a cliff over a waterfall.

They emerged onto the balcony where Kristoph hugged and kissed his sister and his wife and invited them to sit and enjoy lunch.

It wasn’t cold. Four outdoor space heaters warmed the air around the elegant table set with the sort of food the two women had craved since the start of their pregnancies. Strawberries featured, of course, as well as many other delicacies.

“Fallingwater,” Marion repeated. “You stole the design of Frank Lloyd Wright’s famous house in Pennsylvania.”

“I didn’t steal it,” Kristoph answered. “I paid generously for the plans. There are a few modifications from the original, mostly in regard to the internal room divisions. Mr Wright was happy to take in my suggestions.”

“You went to the greatest architect of early twentieth century Earth for a modified version of his most famous, most innovative, most unique house?” Marion said, unable to quite get past that main point. “And you had the house built… here… on Gallifrey?”

“Yes. Come on, both of you. Sit down and enjoy your lunch.”

The two women sat. Their bodies were telling them to try the tasty food that included smoked salmon and three different kinds of shellfish as well as a range of salad vegetables and a varied cheeseboard.

“Mama approved the menu,” Kristoph said. “You both need something called choline which is in the dairy products and omega-3, which is found in fish and nothing at all to do with the legendary stellar engineer of Gallifreyan history.”

“Fallingwater,” Marion said again. “Why?”

“I always liked the original. Didn’t you?”

“Well… yes,” Marion admitted. “We went on the guided tour when I was studying Modernism. Then you decided that an empty house echoing with the footsteps of tourists was soulless and we invited ourselves to a dinner party with Mr And Mrs Kauffman just after they moved into the house in the nineteen-thirties. It didn’t actually help me to write my essay about Modernism in America any more than tea with the Bloomsbury Set did, but it was a lovely dinner and I always thought Fallingwater was a wonderful place to live.”

Looking around the new house after lunch felt a lot like the guided tour in Pennsylvania. They admired the bright, open plan rooms, almost all of them with balconies through the floor length glass doors so that, except in the worst of winter weather, it was possible live indoors and out with no distinction between the two.

Even the servant’s quarters were to the same beautiful standard, though there were more internal walls and doors giving them privacy in their personal spaces.

“HOW was all this built?” Oriana asked. “I never heard about a construction from anyone, not even father.”

“Nor did I,” Marion added. “You never said anything.”

“I pulled some favours,” Kristoph answered. “As you know, time travel within the Transduction Barrier is not permitted. But time dams, slowing time to a near stop in a small area, so that a month outside is a year inside, may be allowed in certain circumstances. In fact, the house took three weeks to complete. Of course, the effects of the time dam have now been cancelled.”

“Not on my bladder,” Marion commented and dashed away to one of the bathrooms, where a door was essential and there was no balcony. Oriana sighed and followed her.

“It’s the sound of the waterfall,” Marion explained when she re-emerged. “Beautiful, but causing a certain psychosomatic effect on pregnant ladies.”

“Sound walls can be engaged to mitigate that problem,” Kristoph said. He operated a panel on one of the inner, load bearing walls and, though the balcony doors were still fully open, allowing in a sweet scent of autumn leaves, there was complete silence.

“This room is designated as a nursery,” Kristoph explained. “The sound walls are fully adjustable.”

Both women thought about that for a moment, then laughed and approved of such a feature.

“Is that why you had this house built?” Oriana asked. “You wanted a new house for when your son is born?”

“No,” Kristoph answered. “Marion and I are perfectly happy in the family home of generations. It is for you.”

“Me?” Oriana looked around the room with new eyes. Even Marion felt what she was thinking. In her mind’s eye she was decorating and furnishing the room for a baby. She knew instinctively where the crib would go, where a windchime might hang over the open window in the summer.

“Well, that was the idea,” Kristoph said to her. “Of course, if you don’t want it, Marion will snap it up right away as a weekend retreat.”

“Yes, I would,” Marion agreed. At first, as Kristoph showed them around she thought he had built it for her. But why would she need it? She had Mount Lœng House, and the Lodge with its own organic indoor-outdoor theme that Frank Lloyd Wright could thoroughly approve of. There was the house in France, too, where they had spent many lovely days. As much as she coveted this house, she certainly didn’t need it.

And she wasn’t in any way jealous or disappointed that Kristoph had thought of his sister’s needs when he called in those mysterious favours and employed Time Lord technology to the full in order to complete the house in an impossibly short time.

“I know it is the polar opposite of your town house in the centre of the social scene,” Kristoph added. “But I thought you might appreciate the seclusion it offers for a little while.”

Oriana was, of course, wearing mourning colours since her husband’s death had been confirmed. But it was just a social convention. She was free, now, from the scandal he had caused and could start to hold up her head again. The relief had been clear on her face despite the clothes she was required to wear.

“When you’re ready to throw off seclusion you have a magnificent dining room with a marvellous view,” Kristoph continued. “You can bring the social scene to you. Rhaeadur will be the place to see and be seen next summer. The social set will be a positive nuisance to the local wildlife.”

“Rhaeadur?” Oriana queried.

“That’s the name of the house in southern plains dialect. But if you prefer the name Marion has fixed on I doubt anyone will complain. We’re a long way from Pennsylvania.”

“Falling Water,” Marion said again. “It HAS to be called that.”

“I….” Oriana looked around her again. There was a moment of uncertainty. She was wondering if she could take what looked like charity from her brother.

“It’s NO such thing,” he assured her. “It is your inheritance. You ARE a de Lœngbærrow. This is a small corner of the family demesne. It belongs to you. We need to get your staff organised, and you will need furniture. There’s an interactive catalogue in the living room. I should think you and Marion can occupy an hour or two picking out couches and hatstands.”

“I… don’t think I need a hatstand,” Oriana answered him. “Besides… this house really doesn’t look like hatstands belong in it.”

“You will need couches,” Marion assured her. “Let’s have some more strawberries and look at that catalogue. Do we have to stick to a budget?”

Oriana looked at her brother meaningfully. He smiled back at her.

“The Modernist movement was always synonymous with minimalism,” he said. “Less is more.”

Both women looked at him this time and needed no words to express themselves.

“We own diamond mines,” he conceded. “I think we can afford to let you go a bit mad.”