Whether the pendulum swung or the house had just rocked with only the pendulum holding still it was unclear. It was after all an elderly manor, and they did have that particular ability to move within their own dimension, one where laws of physics' iron grip had been greased upon occasion. The gold-trimmed pages slammed shut, trapping the dust in, and then allowing it to escape in the jolting coughs of an asthmatic. Even the gentlest footsteps raised a haze of smog so thick as to block the ability to breathe for long enough that the house could take in one deep breathe and the walls groaned with the strain, and then the dust settled, like clumps of grubby icing sugar on a rotting cake