Janet and Jane: The Case of the Museum at Midnight - Part Five
Jane and I began to walk around the barren museum in an attempt to find Barry. What was he planning for us? I really didn't want to find out, but what choice did we have? In order to solve this case, we needed to do this -- no matter how nervous we were.
We were more worried about Natia than us, honestly. What on Neopia happened to her? She would have been back by now. The more I thought about it, the more my stomach turned. Just thinking about her in trouble was enough to unsettle me. What if--
My thoughts were interrupted by someone calling, "Janet! Jane!" A set of footsteps were running towards the two of us. It wasn't Natia, but it was a green Neopet. Once Barry was up to us, he asked, "Where'd Natia go? I thought she was with you."
"She was, but she left. She didn't feel all that well," I lied.
"Aw. It'd really help if she was here."
"We know," Jane agreed. She wasn't lying -- it would help if Natia was here. If only she was here. If only we knew where she was.
Barry began to walk away from us. The Korbat and I walked behind him. We really didn't want to follow him (and I mean we really didn't want to), but we had to. What was Barry planning on doing? That was what we were going to find out.
"Look, guys," Barry began. "I've been hiding something from you, and I'm going to tell you two about it."
"To be honest, we haven't been totally honest with you, either," I responded.
"You haven't?" Barry asked. "What is it that you're hiding?"
"You first," Jane insisted.
"Alright." Barry's pace got a little quicker with every step. I could see the amethyst velvet curtains that was blocking the "exhibit" from the rest of the museum. "I trust you enough for you not to tell, correct?"
"What happens between us stays between us," I lied.
"You could tell us," Jane continued.
Behind the Korbat's and my backs were a pair of crossed fingers.
"Alright," Barry said as he stopped and faced us. "You know the weapons that were taken?" Jane and I nodded. Oh, he was going to confess! "I'm the one who took them."
"What?" I asked, faking being surprised. "Why would a worker steal from the museum?"
"I'm not a museum worker." Barry smiled a content (yet wry) smile. "I took the uniform so I could come in here and fit in."
"Why would you ever take stuff from the museum? Yes, they're expensive, but there are more valuable stuff around here," Jane informed.
The Acara glanced around him (like we were being watched (yeah right)). "Have you heard of real 'Masks of Dread'?"
I tilted my head. "Never," I answered. "What are they?"
"They're masks that alter the appearance of those who wear it. Even changing the species while it's on," Barry explained. "Like if I were to put on a blue Cybunny one, I would be a blue Cybunny until I took it off."
"Cool," Jane said. "But why do you need the weapons?"
"These masks are made of wood from old weapons -- I don't know why that is, though." Barry began to walk back to the closed exhibit. "That's why I was concerned about that book that was taken earlier. It has the spell that I need to make them work."
"Are you sure it's not just some ancient story that won't work?" I asked.
Barry quickly turned around to me and snapped, "I wouldn't be doing this if I wasn't sure!" Wow, that escalated quickly. His anger left as quickly as it came. He walked up to the velvet curtain to the new exhibit and grabbed a hold of it. "This is where the weapons are."
He quickly pulled back the curtain and let Jane and I. The two of us gawked at the area. Whoa, I didn't expect this. Not only did we see the stolen weapons lining the walls, but it appeared some items were stolen from the Order of the Red Erisim. The place had an entire macabre feel. Perhaps the Geraptiku theme was unnerving us.
"I want you to help us achieve this goal and be a part of this," Barry said. "Will you say yes?"
Jane and I uneasily shifted. We really didn't want to be a part of this. We didn't even know what he was going to use the masks for. For all we knew, he was going to pull off more crimes.
"Is it okay if we tell you what we've been hiding from you?" I asked.
"Sure. What do you want to talk about?" the green Acara asked.
I reached into my bag and took out our badges. I gave one to Jane and we showed him. "Janet and Jane, detectives," I said. "You, Barry, and under arrest of stealing from the museum."
"What?" Barry asked. "You two are detectives?"
Jane nodded. She took a step closer to the Acara as she said, "We've been investigating this for the last couple days and we led the investigation to you."
"You have no proof!"
"You confessed the crime to us."
Barry tried to reply, but it was hard to come up with a reply. After trying to come up with a response for a few seconds, he stopped and charged at us. Jane and I quickly dodged. Sheesh, what was up with this guy? Does he have major mood swings or something?
"You said that you'd never tell," he growled.
"We never said that. Even if we did, we would have to break that promise," I explained. "This is something serious."
"But there is no need to arrest me!"
"You steal, you go to jail. A simple thing, actually." I slowly walked towards him (which in hindsight, wasn't that good of an idea). "Now just calm down and nothing else bad will happen."
"Oh, I'm not going to jail," Barry said as he approached me. I decided to move away from him. "It's you two that are going somewhere."
That certainly wasn't good. Looked like Jane and I had to make a hasty exit. Before I could get far, someone grabbed me. I tried to get free, oh I certainly tried, but the grip only got tighter. I let out a blood-curdling scream for anyone to help.
There really wasn't anyone to help me, though. A purple Shoyru got Jane shortly after I was caught (I assumed the Shoyru was the one we saw last night), I didn't think Jonah could do much, and I didn't even know where Natia was. Oh, I knew we were going to get in a lot of trouble. Oh well, Jane and I had been in way worse situations. How we get out of this one... You need to get back to me.
"What should we do with thes-s-s-se Neopets-s-s-s?" the one holding me asked. I assumed he was a Hissi.
"I don't know, but you two certainly can't hold them until we figure out how to... 'off' them," Barry replied.
To be honest, the possibility of death wasn't new to us. Let's just say that Jane and I had been caught more than once (please don't ask about that -- I do not want to talk about that). We always got out of it, though. This one...
Before anyone could possibly say anything more, I began to thrash until that Hissi had no choice to let me go. Jane followed my example. Once we were free, we just got out of there as fast as possible (which could never be fast enough in these situations). We could hear the three Neopets after us.
Oh, what now? I really should have thought this through. Now we were running from three potential psychos (which is never fun). Where we supposed to go?
A pair of hands grabbed the collars of Jane's and my shirts us and pulled us out of our path. This caught us off guard, making us yelp. After only a second, we weren't pulled anymore. It appeared that we were behind a display. We could see Barry, the Shoyru, and the Hissi run right past it.
"Are you two okay?"
Jonah appeared in front of us while I whispered, "Yes, thank you."
"How long do you think it'll take for them to realize we're not in front of them?" Jane asked.
"Where did they go?" we heard Barry shout.
"Not long," I murmured. "Now what do we do? They'll find us eventually."
"I know, I know," Jonah said softly. "I think that we should just get out of here and say Barry and his friends are the ones who took the things."
"I have a feeling they'll flee to Terror Mountain by the time we ever say something," I argued. "Besides, nobody who works here even knows Barry. And what if they ask how we knew? We certainly can't say we were in the museum after closing."
"Janet, we're going to figure this out," Jane said in the middle of my rant. "Don't be negative."
"Well, do you have a plan?" I asked her. I knew she didn't -- I just wanted to make a point to her.
"No, I don't, but--"
"Then how do you know that we'll figure a way out of this mess?"
"You two, stop arguing," Jonah ordered. "I'm going to see where they went while you two stay put." With those as his parting words, the ghost Ixi vanished.
I hated to admit it, but he was right. This was not the time to argue. We needed to get along (it shouldn't be that hard -- Janet was my best friend).
Now what were we to do? Well surely, we needed to get moving. That was what we did. Jane and I quietly got away from the exhibit that we were hiding behind and tip-toed somewhere else. Thankfully, we were not detected.
Well, now we were detected.
Guess who was the wise guy who decided to yell our names? If you guessed Natia, you are correct. She always did have bad timing when it came to these things. On the bright side, we knew she was alright.
The Aisha ran up to us as we heard a rally of voices race up to us. Our first instinct was to run. The three of us needed a plan now. We couldn't outrun them for long -- especially when Jane and I hadn't got a wink of sleep quite yet. Natia... She didn't look tired. I wondered why. I had to ask her what happened to her later.
Wait, was Natia holding... No way! She had our weapons! Without any hesitation, I grabbed my Fan of Swords. Afterwards, Jane grabbed her Kelpbeards Trident while Natia readied her Sword of Ari. Now we actually had a chance against them.
I thought I had an idea. Maybe we could trap them in an exhibit. But what? That was the million Neopoint question. We weren't by any exhibit that had the potential to trap someone.
"Follow me," was whispered in front of us. A slight glow appeared in front of us. It was Jonah. We did as he said and followed the glow.
I wondered where he was taking us, but I really didn't care at this point. We were being chased by three Neopets who now want to destroy us (it's more common for us than you think). The last time I checked, they were behind us. Please, let what Jonah was about to work.
He brought us to the Tyrannian history area. The ghost hid behind a fake cave. I was rather unsure about this, but Jane and Natia hid with him. Why shouldn't I? That way, I wouldn't be the only one caught.
"Now what?" I whispered.
"This," Jonah answered. He took all of our weapons and took them in the cave. Why, I did not know. Suddenly, we heard a loud clang of metal dropping. The weapons quickly float out of the fake cave and back to us.
"What was that for?" Jane asked.
"Just watch," the Ixi said.
The Hissi, Shoyru, and Barry quickly ran into the cave. They must had thought that we were in there. Jonah acted quickly and pushed a heavy looking fake rock in front of the opening.
Well, I guess that worked.
"There we go, now let's get away from here," Jonah suggested. "I'm not sure if that'll hold them long."
We walked to the front entrance. As we walked, I decided to ask that question I was wanting to ask her. "Natia, what happened to you? You were gone for over an hour. Not to mention you blew our cover."
"Sheesh, I'm sorry. It wasn't my fault," Natia defended. "That Hissi locked me in the bathroom after I came back. Good thing he didn't take these." She swung her Sword of Ari around like a toy (don't try that at home).
"Yes, that is a good thing," Jane said.
As we approached the front door, we heard a chatter on the other side of the glass door. Oh, the police were here! Wait, the police were here? Barry said that the earliest someone could be here was next week (and knowing him, I don't even think he even called them).
"I pulled the alarm when I saw you and Jane were in trouble," Jonah explained.
"Alright, that was a good move, but we can't let them see us," Jane informed as she walked away from the front door. "We aren't supposed to be here."
"Do you know any secret way out of here?" I asked the ghost.
"I do," Jonah said as he began to float away from us. "Just follow me again."
And again, Jonah led us away from the potential trouble. He showed us a fire exit. Thankfully, unlike many other fire exits, it didn't have an alarm that sounded whenever it opened. The last thing we needed was attention drawn to us (especially when we were never hired by someone who actually worked here and stayed after hours for the last few days).
"Thank you," Jonah said sweetly. "Thank you for helping me with this."
We didn't say anything -- we didn't need to. All we did was smile and went out through the door.