Revisited: Part Eight
Jenny’s captor was the Blumaroo. He hadn’t said a word about where they were going, but wherever it was, he was very intent on getting there quickly. At first, he had only been walking quickly, but he continued to speed up until he was nearly sprinting. Still going at top speed, he slid around a corner, nearly whacking Jenny against the wall. “Hey!” she complained. “Watch it!”
But of course, he paid her no attention. Finally, he skidded to a stop in front of a large painting and reached behind the frame. Silently, the painting slid away like a door, exposing a dark, secret passage. It’s like the bookshelf in the study! Jenny thought silently, not daring to say it out loud.
The Blumaroo finally released his iron grip on Jenny’s arm, but he still wouldn’t let her escape. As they entered the passageway, the Blumaroo hit another switch, and some dim lighting came on, illuminating the small hallway.
It wasn’t a long hallway like the one the Kyrii had disappeared down, and it was carpeted. “Where are we going?” whispered Jenny fearfully, but the Blumaroo refused to answer her. As they reached the end of the short passageway, Jenny tried to make a run for it, but it was no use. The Blumaroo grabbed her wrist again and pulled her through the doorway into a much larger room - the library.
Although the rest of the house had been by no means welcoming, the library was by far the creepiest area of the house that Jenny had seen. The shelves were easily four times as tall as she was, and they were coated with dust. Cobwebs hung from every corner of the room, and some spyders even rested on some of the larger shelves. In the ceiling of the massive room were several large glass windows through which one could view the sky, which was dark. Occasionally stray lightning bolts briefly illuminated the room. Like in the foyer, the only lighting came from candles, which cast long, eerie shadows across the floor.
“Come,” commanded the Blumaroo, pointing to what appeared to be a reading corner. All of the furniture in the corner appeared to be rotting and was turning grey from the extreme amount of filth in the room. No way am I sitting there, Jenny thought to herself, laughing a little at how silly it was to be worrying about her hygiene at a time like this. As it turned out, the Blumaroo hadn’t been referring to the revolting furniture. What he had pointed to was a door, which Jenny hadn’t even noticed before.
Jenny had never before been so happy to see a dungeon. All of the rest of the pets from the group had been imprisoned there, with the exception of the Kyrii. The Usul and Gelert, who were in one cell, gasped at the sight of Jenny, but the Blumaroo quickly silenced them. The Xweetok and the Aisha rested in the other occupied cell.
“Now,” began the Blumaroo, glaring at all of them. “All of you have something in common, did you know that?” It didn’t seem that he actually wanted an answer to this question. “You all know something about me, about my family, about this house. You,” he said, pointing to the Aisha, “could sense it the moment you stepped foot into this house. You knew something was wrong. That seems to be your nature.” The Aisha cowered in the corner of the cell.
“And you!” Next was the Xweetok. “Here I was, graciously inviting you into my house,” he said with a hint of sarcasm in his voice, “and the way you repay me is to sneakily dig through my drawers, paw through my papers, and snoop! Clearly I couldn’t let that go unpunished, could I?
“And you, Usul, found my secret out... somehow. I haven’t figured it out yet. But you... you were just stupid enough to accidentally blurt it out! A pet’s gotta protect his reputation, doesn’t he?
“Now, the Gelert. You didn’t seeeeeem to present a very urgent threat...” He paused, then continued, “But you would have protected this Ixi here, and I just couldn’t have that. She’s the most dangerous of all of you.
“Jenny, Jenny, Jenny,” chuckled the Blumaroo, crossing his arms in front of his chest. “You found out my secret, and even worse, you trespassed. I know all about that day you climbed my fence and spied on my wife and me! My maid came to tell me immediately after, though I didn’t believe that anyone would do such a thing. In fact, when she told me, I fired her on the spot. It wasn’t until later, after you started spreading the truth about me,” he snarled, “that I believed her. Clearly, you made a grave mistake. For that, you must pay.”
“Where is the Kyrii?” demanded Jenny.
“Oh, he’s just in the other dungeon. Come, I’ll show you.” He grabbed Jenny’s wrist tightly, enough to hurt slightly but not enough to injure her, and dragged her through a small doorway on one side of the dungeon, where the Kyrii lay, sleeping. “We gave him a small sleeping potion to... allow him to sleep more easily.”
Jenny, however, was distracted by another mysterious character in the opposite cell. He was a green Lupe and appeared to be in a state similar to the one the Kyrii was in. Could it... could he be Tenrik?
As Jenny was staring at the Lupe in the corner, the Blumaroo began to speak again. “He didn’t know anything - not yet, anyway. Unfortunately, he was too smart, so he was bound to find out soon enough.
“My plan had been to hypnotize you all and get you to come here. Then my wife and I could continue living here in peace! The last few years have been awful; pets have constantly been coming here to try to chase us out. Tenrik’s son over there even snuck away from his father’s new house on Terror Mountain to try to warn you all with daydreams about his father’s life! Ha! I bet none of you even had any daydreams here!”
Jenny, of, course, had experienced a few, but she kept her mouth shut. Now done with explaining his story, the Blumaroo moved to grab Jenny and shove her into one of the dungeon’s cells. As he tried to do so, a quick thought flashed through Jenny’s mind, and she quickly said, “Quilun.”
“What?” asked the Blumaroo, freezing. “What’d you say?”
“Quilun!” shouted Jenny, repeating herself.
“Quilun? Wha- ” He was unable to complete his sentence as the whole room went completely dark, and a wind started to blow through the room. Soon, Quilun the ghost floated through the walls into the room, leading several other ghosts. Through the ghosts’ bodies, which illuminated the room, Jenny could see the Blumaroo being lifted into the air, kicking and screaming.
Right before the ghosts carried him out of the room, Quilun turned to Jenny and winked. “Thank you for calling for me. This pet had placed a curse on me, imprisoning me and all the other ghosts in the graveyard out back. Now that my name has been called, all of us have been freed. The story’s been revisited, so now things can be set right. This Blumaroo can be taken away, and Tenrik’s family can have their house back again– ”
“As they rightly should,” interjected Jenny.
“–if they even want it back again. Several other ghosts have been sent to the other parts of the house to destroy the bars on the windows and unlock all the doors. As soon as they reach this dungeon, they’ll unlock the door, and you’ll all be free to leave.”
“Thank you! How will I ever repay you?”
“Well, you did release me from a curse - and a rather annoying one, at that. You can’t imagine how boring it gets to be stuck in a small area with the same pets for years at a time.” Some of the other ghosts next to him glared. “I’d say we’re even by now.” The ghosts turned away and floated out of the room with the Blumaroo, who continued shouting protests at them.
Just as Quilun had said, more ghosts soon entered the room. They unlocked the cell doors silently and left, never once making eye contact with Jenny. As soon as they were gone, the room became bright once again, and Tenrik’s son and the Kyrii began to wake.
“What happened?” asked the Lupe in an accent identical to his father’s.
“It’s a long story,” said Jenny, eager to get out of the house. “Just go home and tell your father that this house is his once again.” Without asking further questions, the Lupe groggily got up from his cell and wandered out of the dungeon. After making sure all of the pets from the earlier group were okay, Jenny and the others did the same, vowing not to ever tell of the day’s events at the house.
“Did you get the job?” asked Jenny’s sister from the kitchen as the Ixi finally returned home.
“You know what?” returned Jenny. “I don’t think it was right for me. Guess I’ll have to go back to the employment agency tomorrow.”