Monday, August 19, 2013

Chapter Eleven: The Kind of Developements One Doesn't Tend to Expect

Israel Elysium

  Was that a knock at the door? My eyes flickered open. There it was again. I sighed. It had to be three or four in the morning by now, and I had only just started to doze. We were as an inn, not a very nice inn, but good enough, and although I had my own room, Kallista and Raven were bunked together, and it was a while before the pillow fights, archery lessons, and yodeling- Yes. Yodeling.- died down.

  I snitched my shotgun, dragging myself out of bed towards the door. Fortunately I had slept in my clothes....
Having nothing else to wear.
"What d'ya want?" I questioned, standing to the side and leaving the door locked. I had a splitting headache, and I wasn't in the mood to shoot some armed perpetrator who for who-know's-what reason was interrupting my beauty sleep at this godly, yet very late and dark hour in which I always slept...., or at least usually. Sometimes?

  Moving on.

  There wasn't an answer. "Kal, if that's you, don't.... do anything... I'm opening the door...." I cracked it open and peered to the right. Nothing....


I jumped. Jericho was a silhouette in the other direction. "Matteus!" I said, "What is it?" I opened my door fully and yawned.

"I thought you were asleep. I knocked five times."

"Five times? I must have been sleeping deeper than I thought!"

"We have to go. Come with me. I already awakened Kallista and Raven. An ambush would be the best solution, so time is of the essence." He turned, striding towards the staircase indifferently.

"Woah, woah, woah, wait up!" I grabbed my coat, following him into the hall. "What ambush? What time? Where are we going? I'll have you know that you give far too little information, and while I'm at it, you might as well be informed that seriously need to lighten up! And you smell like a crab... Also, nice shotgun."

"Thank you."

"Well, I thought you might at least try to crack a joke... Wait, you didn't answer my questions!"

"An ambush for Timothy Curtis and the imposter. What time? The time is 4:37 A.M., and obviously, we're going to the Timothy Curtis's house where the fake Timothy Curtis is lying in wait to kill Timothy Curtis... The original one."

"What? How do know someone's trying to kill... someone?" We reached the stairs and began heading down the five flights.

"I put a bug in Curtis's study. He was talking to someone over the phone. The real Timothy Curtis took a flight in the middle of the night and will be arriving in Melbourne about ten minutes from now, and his house it only a fifteen minute cab ride. Twenty-five minutes that leaves us to get there and stop the fake Curtis, rescuing the real Curtis in the process. Really, it makes perfect sense, don't you see?"

  I sucked in a breath as we reached the bottom of the stairs, wondering how Jericho remained windless. I nodded, "Sure, sure.... But I have one question more."


"You do know they have an elevator, don't you?"

He paused. "Actually... no, I didn't... "


Kallista Pendragon

  I yawned, unwrapping a purple root beer float flavored lollipop Skyril had given me and wondering why Timothy Curtis the Real was taking so long. "I thought it would only take twenty-fives minutes," I whispered to Jericho. He and I had slunk off and hidden between some trees and bushes close enough to see when Curtis arrived, but not enough that he could see us. Raven and Israel hid somewhere else. Jericho nodded.

  "It's been twenty. Curtis probably won't arrive until- Ah, nevermind." A taxi was pulling into the driveway. The man whom I supposed to be Timothy Curtis the Real got out. He was short, stout, balding, and yet appeared to be no more than thirty.

"How on earth did Curtis the Fake convince Harris-the-butler that he was Timmy the Real? They look nothing alike!" I muttered.

"I'm... not sure. Harris could be in on it, or the fake Curtis's minion, or, somehow be confused with magic. To be perfectly honest, I didn't actually hear the words 'I'll kill him when he gets here,' but the fake Curtis was talking to some unknown boss over the phone and said, 'Don't worry, I'll take care of Curtis; he won't know what hit him. We can put him in the basement' I assumed killing him was understood, but maybe fake Timothy will do something else..."

"Call the fake one Curtis and the real one Timmy. That will make things easier... But..., what's our plan?"

"We wait a until Timmy goes inside, and then I listen with this useful little device-" he tapped the black earphone in his ear- "then we'll probably rain down a storm of wrath and magnificent fury on our duo of unfortunate gentlemen."

I thought for a moment, then whispered back, "Sounds fun."

  Timmy set down his suitcase, rummaged in his pockets, and produced set of keys. Harris-the-butler was going to have a surprise if he wasn't expecting someone to let himself in. Timmy unlocked the door, leaned to pick up his suitcase, and when he looked back up, Harris was standing in the doorway with the usual indifferent expression he wore. Timmy jumped, surprised, then laughed, and began talking as if he new Harris. Harris didn't seem to recognize him, or at least whatever he was saying was baffling Timmy. Harris indicated to follow him, and they disappeared into the house.


Jericho Matteus

  I listened closely with the bug I had left in Curtis's study as Harris announced their visitor, apparently having taken him to the study, and before he could even finish, Timmy's voice overwhelmed his in outrage.

"What the devil are you doing in my house!? Get out of my chair, whatever-you-name-is, or I will do things to you that you cannot even imagine!"

"If you will excuse me...," Harris muttered quietly, and I heard the click of the door as he left.

"I'm terribly sorry for traumatizing you." Curtis replied nonchalantly. "After all, I did borrow your house... and butler, free of charge, but don't you worry. In a few moments you won't remember a thing anyway."

  I nudged Kallista, about to tell her to send the alarm to strike, but paused when Curtis continued speaking.

"You see, I had a use for a house, and I liked yours..."

Timmy spluttered, at a loss for words, "Why you- I- You will pay for this!"

"Timothy, Timothy, please, no fire. You don't want to set your study alight, do you? Besides, if you kill me, I won't be able to explain, will I?... Thank you. You see, I have some acquaintances whom I need to send on a... mission... I can't go into the details of why I am sending them, unfortunately- even though you won't remember anything... Well, nothing except being an old butler who sleeps in the basement, but you see, this room has ears... And it's listening... Hello, Matteus..."

  I sat bolt upright. "Kallista, send the signal." She nodded, stood up, snapped her fingers and sent a fireball straight up into the air.

"Are we going?" she asked.

"You go, I'm right behind you."

I turned my ears back to the conversation in the study of the house.

"--azy. And since you refuse to leave my house, I'm going to have to finish you," spoke Timothy. I wondered if 'Timmy' was too gentle of a name.

"Ah, I'm afraid not. I'm going to have to use my a very special device I have... This is what I was talking about when I told you that you wouldn't remember anything." There was a sound of whirring, and then Timmy was screaming so loudly my ears burned from it. I shouted, yanking the earphones out, and then I stood and ran towards the house.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Chapter Ten [Believe it or not... Thank Raven]:In the Morning

A/U Ok, yeah, it's really short, but that's all I can get written tonight, and I wanted to post something before I went out of town. I promise I'm... going to REALLY try to write the next chapter as soon as I get back... Or the day after... Or the day after that..., but you know. At least this is something- compared to the usual nothing. ~cough~
So- remember how Jericho barged into Timothy Curtis's house Israel, Kal, and Raven were deciding what to do, and Israel got a phone call from that all-knowing most wonderful and magical person known as Skyril? Mm-hmm... You remember... I'm sure you do... At least a tad, right??

Jericho Matteus

  A bell rang. Well, a doorbell. Harris-the-butler opened the oaken door of the study. There was a gun to the back of his head... A double barrel sawn-off shotgun, in fact. I admired the choice.

"Friends of yours, I presume, Master Matteus?" Israel smacked the back of Harris's head and asked for some rum.

"I'm afraid we do not have rum, sir. If you desire strong spirits there are selective choices over there. Now if you'll excuse me, I have other things to do today besides be threatened by young men with guns." Harris replied. Israel waved his shotgun around, but Harris walked past, ignoring him. He shrugged, holstering the it.

"Rude of him, if you ask me. I mean... I asked nicely! ish...! Anyway! Hey, Jericho, what's up? Any leads? I have a one, quite a good one, in fact if you ask me! I think I just said that. Did I just say that? Yes, I did. But you should probably ask since you're kind of part of our... er... escapade... adventure... detecting squad- not squad; squad is a silly word. Legion? Legion's a good word... No, I'll just go with gang. Nice, universal term...."

Raven walked past him into the study. "Please do ask him, Jericho. He won't tell us."

Kallista seemed to appear out of the shadows of a bookcase. "Ooo! He has the Bloody Jack Adventures! Love those books, I do.... Yeah, I even offered Israel a specially Kallista-made cupcake... But he turned me down, if you can believe it! I was even planning on making my especially special recipe!" She leaned forward, hand on one side of her mouth, and whispered in conspiratorial tones, "Blackberry and tomato!"

I cleared my throat, "Well, Israel, although I do not know why you came in here... What did you find out?"

"Oh, I can't tell you. "

Raven looked at him deadly, "Seriously?"

"Yes, well, I'll tell you in the morning. Travis! Travis Curtis is it?"


"No?.... Um... Really? Ok, because that kind of completely messed up my-"

"It's Timothy."

"Oh Timothy right, riiiighhht. I knew it started with a T... Travis, Terry, Turkish delight..." He poured himself some whiskey. "Well, then Jericho, what has he said so far?"

"Mm... nothing particular. Something about a job. I- we, I suppose- track down this... artifact. It let's one see.... memories. Sounds downright invasive, to be honest."

"Ah, how interesting. Well then! Mr. Curtis," Israel gulped his whiskey, slamming the glass down, "-not as strong as I'm used to, but- if you will excuse us, we need to gather some information, and we'll see you in the morning."

Raven asked, "We will?"

"Sure, sure, to accept his job. Sounds beneficial, don't you think? And besides, I like having... options."

Strangely, after all this chatter, a moment of silence ensued.

A minute later, Timothy Curtis stood, once again, from his seat. "Very well. However, if you do not return on the 'morrow as you have said, I will have someone... looking for you."

"Oh, no worries! We'll be back... Another for the road?" He asked, and poured another whiskey, walking out the door before anyone answered.

I shrugged at Raven and Kallista, and followed him out.


Nights Raven

  "What on earth was that all about?" I asked once we cleared the building

"I'll tell you in the morning!"

"Ok. No, why in the morning? What on earth is so important about a Wednesday morning?"

"Actually, Rae," Kallista inputted, "tomorrow's Thursday. Today's Wednesday... What? I'm just saying."

"-Thursday morning then."

"Well, nothing at all! Nothing's important about a Thursday morning. It's the fact that tomorrow is tomorrow that's relevant."

"...Are you really going to make one of us ask?" Jericho questioned.

"Well, I did have an excellent response to a stated question. I mean... I guess question's can't be stated can they?"

"Ask Skyril." Kallista suggested.

"Good advice. But I'll do it in the morning."

I finally exploded, "Why in the morning?"

"Thank you, Raven, for asking me that. Because, my dear archer, tomorrow is the day the real Travis Curtis-"


"-whatever- as I was saying, the real Taggart Curtis returns from his vacation, at which point, we show up, question the fake Travis Curtis, arrest the real Terry Curtis and... what do the American's say? Wilbur's your uncle?"

"It's Bob."

"Right! Bob's your uncle!"

  "What does that have to do with," Kallista questioned, "calling Skyril about whether a question can be stated- the stated question of the day?"

"Ah- well- where do you think we're headed? As much as I like... um... creepy swamps and all," he said, looking at the background of my borrowed phone, "I seriously miss my Serenity. I need a new phone."

"Serenity?" Jericho looked at him with somewhat of an unidentifiable expression, sort of between disbelief and suspicion.

"Yeah, haven't you seen Firefly?"

"Uh... no, I haven't. I have heard good things, though."

"Good heavens. We are definitely watching Firefly when all of this is over." He downed the whiskey, tossed the cup over his shoulder, and strolled onward. I winced at the sound of shattering glass, and shook my head at his departing back.

Kallista's eyes lit up, " Watch Firefly... And eat Hellboy cake..." she smiled as we followed Israel down the street- hoping he actually did know where he was going in the somewhat unfamiliar city.... I figured starting my phone's navigator would be wise to do sooner... rather than later.