Jefferson Middle School newsletter
Chapter Thirty-Eight: In Which Jack And Windy Sneak Into A Laboratory
She was just about to turn the corner when she heard Jack call. “What?” she asked.
“I think I have something that might help with our investigation.” Jack reached into his pant pocket. “Here it is.”
“Here what is?” Windy said. Jack was holding up… nothing. At least, it looked like nothing.
“This is my invisibility cloak. I figured, if we’re going to be snooping around Dad’s laboratory, it might help to be invisible,” he explained. Then he threw the cloak over him and disappeared.
Windy sighed. How would three people fit inside an invisibility cloak? And speaking of three people, where was Flint? Was he simply that slow, or did he get lost? He couldn’t be that far behind, could he?
Jack reappeared again and motioned for Windy to follow him. “I think we’re close. Tread carefully. Dad should be in the room, and we don’t want to alert him.” He tiptoed down the hallway.
Windy spared one last look behind her. “Flint?” she called. No sound. She shrugged. He could probably find his way back. After all, the string of yarn was still on the ground for him to follow.
They finally came to the shiny door with the red button. Flint still wasn’t there. “Should we wait for him?” Jack asked, a bit worried. “It’s easy to get lost in here…”
“Jack, you do realize the screaming stopped, right?” Windy interrupted. “Snow might be already dead. We should just go see for ourselves and catch Flint up later.”
“Alright, then-” Jack started, but then he stopped. He could hear footsteps, getting louder. He quickly threw the invisibility cloak over him and Windy.
“Don’t say a word,” he whispered. “The cloak isn’t soundproof. It isn’t touch-proof or smell-proof either, so avoid bumping into people.”
Jack and Windy crouched against the wall, just in time. A man walked over to the door and was already unlocking it. And he was holding… was that a body?
Jack whimpered a little. Windy wanted to ask him whether that man was his dad. He didn’t really look like Jack, and he didn’t look very evil. Of course, other than the fact that he was dragging a body that looked dead… wait. Wasn’t that Flint?
Windy gasped. The man glanced in their direction and both of them sat stock-still. Then he went back to unlocking the door. He pressed the red button, which emitted a loud beep, and the door slid open. The man went in the room, dragging Flint with him.
Windy didn’t dare move until several minutes after the man went in the room. She then carefully went out of the cloak. “Jack,” she said, “we can’t go in there. If we press the red button then the beep will sound and then he’d hear us. Also, why was he dragging Flint into the room? He looked dead!”
“I don’t think he’s dead,” Jack replied, letting the invisibility cloak rest around his shoulders so he looked like a talking head. “If he was dead, he would be really pale and smell bad.”
“Unconscious, then? Maybe he’ll start screaming too.”
“Well, if he does start screaming, we can push the red button then, and no one would hear it,” Jack suggested.
“That plan has a lot of holes in it,” Windy said. “Won’t he notice that the door is randomly sliding open?”
“Maybe not. Dad can be really ignorant of things when he’s focused on something. Or he might just think it’s a malfunction.”
“So are we just going to sit here until he screams? After we get in the room, what do we do?”
“Um, I suppose we just look at what Dad is doing. And if he is doing something bad, we can knock him out. And if Flint and Snow are in there and they aren’t dead yet, we get them out too,” Jack explained. “Okay?”
“What if he isn’t doing anything bad? What if he’s playing games or something, and Flint and Snow are just slumped in a corner? Or what if he isn’t doing anything sneaky and no one else is there at all?”
Jack sighed. “How about we cross that bridge when we come to it?”
A loud moaning sound started. It was very loud and it didn’t sound like it was made by a human. It was definitely coming from the room. Was it Flint? Windy couldn’t tell.
Jack covered his ears. “Is that-”
“Jack. The door. Unlock it.”
Jack turned the number dials to the correct numbers and was about to press the red button… but then the moaning stopped. Jack stood very still, finger hovering over the button, until it started up again, and then he pressed the button. The beep sounded, and it was still pretty audible, but the moaning muffled it up quite a bit. The door started sliding open. Jack put on the invisibility cloak and disappeared, then he threw it over Windy and they both sneaked into the laboratory unnoticed.
Chapter Thirty-Nine: In Which Rose And Flake Go Sleuthing
“So what did you find?” Flake asked as Rose walked into the hospital room. “You were gone for a long time. Did you find anything useful?”
Rose looked at the floor. Not really. I found lots of historical events, but none related to kidnappings and such. I also searched for events on the full moon, and none of them were related either.
“Oh. Um, what did you find?”
Well, I found this interesting page about the original five kingdoms, Rose recalled. All of them were the same except Glistening Glacier and Crystal Cave Kingdom. I don’t think that’s related though.
“Glistening Glacier was the old name for the Silver Snake Kingdom. It’s a long story,” Flake said. “Just go on.”
Okay. There was a lot about the Kingdom War, but I don’t think you need that info, do you?
“No. I already feel like I know all there is to know about that war. There was a whole chapter in history about that event.”
The closest things to kidnappings was the Swift Assassin Killer but those were murders, Rose explained. Besides, the Swift Assassin got caught and died in prison already.
Flake frowned. “Is that it? I thought there would be more.”
I also looked for events on the full moon, and there were four results I found: the Coral Plague, the Crystal Cave Kingdom Extinction, the Festival of the New Moon, and the Forest Protection Protests. But I don’t think that’s what you want, is it?
“Well…” Flake thought for a moment. “Probably not. I learned about all of those at school, and none of them a related to children going missing…” His eyes suddenly lit up. “Wait. I think I remember something.”
What? Rose asked excitedly.
“The Crystal Cave Kingdom Extinction. What do you know about it?”
Um, it’s when the Crystal Cave Kingdom people got extinct because of a few ‘monsters’ apparently attacked them. Some survived and they escaped to the Breeze Kingdom. Why?
“Yes.” Flake was grabbing on tightly to the blankets, looking at the ceiling as if he could see something no one else could. “And that happened on the exact night of the new moon. Coincidence? Perhaps not. Also, some of the bodies of the dead were never recovered. They went missing. See the connection?”
Rose looked doubtful. That’s stretching a limb a little. The bodies of the dead were never recovered because no one dared to go back to the place where the monsters were. And maybe the monsters attacked them on the new moon is probably because they might only wake on the new moon. It's probably not because of any so-called prophecy-
But Flake was on a roll. “There’s also the second prophecy. Look down to history. Down! The Crystal Cave Kingdom was underground!”
Rose folded her arms. There are so many things that can be considered as ‘down’-
“And when it says, look above to history class, that might be because the remaining Crystal Cave Kingdom people went to the Breeze Kingdom!” Flake stopped for a moment, mulling over his new discovery. “Hmm, you’re right. That is a bit too far-fetched.”
Rose tried her best to remember all she read about the Cave Kingdom. I think they lived in a network of caves underground, next to the Coral Kingdom-
“Rose, you’re brilliant!” Flake exclaimed, jumping out of bed. Rose looked at him blankly. “The Cave Kingdom was to the right of the Coral Kingdom, just like the prophecy said! Right by the side of the glittering sea! I think I’ve got it!”
For some reason, Rose didn’t share his excitement. She didn’t feel like it should be that easy. Besides, there were a lot of things that they were just guessing at. Also, why trust the prophecies, which only Flake knew about? It sounded really sketchy to her. But apparently Flake seemed to trust it. Are you going to go in the abandoned Cave Kingdom caves now?
Flake nodded. “As soon as I can, which might not be too soon.”
You can always sneak out, Rose suggested.
Well, if your sister’s life is on the line, you have a right to leave the hospital, so why don’t you?
“Well…” he hesitated, “it isn’t just that easy. People can recognize me, and there are guards stationed everywhere.”
Rose grinned. Leave that to me.