Jefferson Middle School newsletter
Chapter Thirty: In Which Flake Gets Another Headache
The headache started in the afternoon. Flake was cooped up in a stuffy basement at the edge of the palace, which was supposedly the safest place in the Coral Kingdom. He didn’t feel very comfortable there. It was hard to feel comfortable in any circumstance where two armed guards were tracking your every move. Flake knew they were there to protect him, but it still made him a bit uneasy.
He thought about the kidnappings. Windy- why would she get kidnapped? Because she’s the daughter of a chief, that’s why, a little voice in his head said reasonably. Snow, Flint, Windy, that’s the only thing they have in common.
But that still leave one question open. Why not me, then? Why were they kidnapped but not me? I’m the only one that’s still here. Why? He didn’t have a good answer. Maybe they only want one kid from each kingdom? Chief Ripple and Chief Oak don’t have kids, anyways… He shook his head. That doesn’t make much sense. Flake paced around the small basement.
He couldn’t remember how long he was down there. Probably a few hours. At some point he started feeling a bit dizzy and faint. He wasn’t sure why. Maybe it was time to sleep? Then the headache started.
Flake’s head throbbed. He felt like someone was screaming loudly into his brain. He couldn’t process what was going on. There were shouting, pounding- the guards? Shrieking, crashing, thing breaking into pieces. A cacophony of noises having a meeting in his head.
Then there was silence. Utter silence.
Wake up, Flake. Remember? Remember what you learned… in history…
Chapter Thirty-One: In Which Important Things Happen But No One Understands How Important It Is
“I- I had a sister. Her name was Rosalyn, and she- she looked nothing like me, a little like Dad, and she was mute, but that wasn’t important. See, the thing was she was very curious about what Dad did all day, locked up in his room. I was too, back then. But while I knew when we were venturing too far, she didn’t. So she somehow got ahold of information Dad didn’t want her to see, and- and…” Jack sniffed a little. “He locked me up in my room. I had no idea what was happening. I didn’t know how long I was in there, but when he finally let me out, she was… gone.”
Flint was at loss for words. They were silent for a few moments, then, to break the awkwardness, Flint said, “That wasn’t as long as I thought it would be.”
“I tried to make it concise.”
“Do you know what happened?” Flint asked.
“No,” Jack said. “I said, he doesn’t tell me anything.”
“How long ago was this?”
“Pretty long ago. I’ve been lonely down here ever since. That’s why I was so excited that Dad said you guys were coming. I had fun plans for us to do, and it was all going to be great, but… apparently you don’t want to be here.” He laughed, but there was no happiness in it.
Flint covered his ears. Jack fell backwards on the bed and used the pillows to cover his ears. The scream was continuous.
“Is this normal?!” Flint shouted. “And who is it?”
“WHAT?” Jack asked him.
“I SAID, IS THIS NORMAL?” Flint repeated, louder. Jack shook his head.
“WHO IS SCREAMING?” he asked. Jack shrugged.
Suddenly it stopped.
Jack slowly went to the door, pillow still around his head, and turned the doorknob. It didn’t open. He got the set of keys he carried on his belt and tried unlock it.
As soon as the key touched the lock, it disintegrated.
Jack looked at Flint. “Something is wrong. And I think we are in big trouble.”
“Whoa.” Windy was staring at the television screen in the game room. It was flickering black and white and making crackling noises. Windy wasn’t sure how that worked, but it was amazing.
Then she heard the scream. It was horrible. Windy first assumed it was from the television, then decided it was most likely coming from a person. Not the boys, definitely, so probably Snow.
“Who knew she could scream that loud?” Windy muttered, eyes still fixed on the television. “What happened? Was she having a bad hair day?”
Then the television screen changed. It changed into eight different moving pictures. One showed a picture of Jack and Flint… talking? WIndy couldn’t make out exactly what they were doing. Several others showed pictures of her room (empty) , Snow’s room (empty) , some other bedroom (empty) , and the game room, where she could see herself looking straight into the television… creepy. Very creepy. The last one showed a laboratory… Windy gasped. No. No way. What was Snow doing in there? What odd chair was she strapped to? And who was that man standing next to her?