On Saturday night, Daphne and Cloudius were walking back to the house from the library when they were sure they saw some sort of hulking shadow in the garden path ahead of them, perhaps fifty feet away. They turned to the right, without a word, and hurried along another path, stopping before the fountain between Match House and Shag House.
“I think we left it behind,” said Cloudius.
They looked around. “How can you be sure?” asked Daphne.
“You’re not scared, are you?”
“Of course I’m scared. What are you, stupid?” They looked around. They could see only blank shadows, and the hedges and flower patches and topiaries of the garden. The moon crept past a tall tree and began to send its silver beams in among them. “There’s a way,” said Daphne, looking at the moonlit corridors in the garden.
“There are a lot of ways,” said Cloudius. “A lot of ways that I don’t remember seeing in the daylight, Daphne.”
“Indians,” said Daphne.
But he saw them too. There were several, maybe as many as half a dozen. Maybe there were more. Several of them were almost looking at the two kids.
The two kids did not slow their sprint until they were inside Ash House with the door firmly locked behind them.
On Monday, Angelica, Arnulf and Cloudius were sitting around in Tom’s room, with Eva on the be. “Yeah,” Tom was saying. “Sear says there’s maps somewhere of all these tunnels. I guess the whole city has like an alternate city under it. The Indians even built some of those tunnels, they used to have magic, you know.”
“I gather,” said Angelica, “they invented a lot of the magic we use.”
Just then Pindar came in. “Did you tell them?” he asked Arnulf.
“No, you,” said Arn.
“We heard MacMorris and Temple arguing,” said Pindar. “In the back part of the library, the reserved section.”
“They always argue,” said Angelica. “It’s what profs do.”
“Yeah, right,” said Arnulf. “About ‘getting involved,’ wasn’t it? And how Mac is associating with someone Temple used to associate with.”
“Who said what now?” asked Cloudius.
“MacMorris said to Temple something about him, Temple, getting involved in something,” said Pinhead. “And Temple said that MacMorris must be associating with ‘an interesting crowd,’ something like that. And MacMorris got kind of mad and told him what he could do, and said something about the people Temple ‘used to associate with.’ And then Temple’s voice got real low and he said something we couldn’t hear. And he sort of stomped away.”
“And Ash and White caught us,” said Arnulf.
“What do you mean they caught you?” asked Daphne, coming up behind.
“Nothing,” said Pinhead. “We were just in the library. They were in the reserved section, but we could hear them.”
“Where were you in the library?” asked Angelica.
“Um,” said Pindar, “kinda sitting on the floor behind this shelf.”
“What were you doing back there? Studying for midterms?”
“No. We were eavesdropping.”
“So,” said Tom, “are you guys in trouble? Another month of kitchen duty?”
“No, actually,” said Arnulf. “They took us back to Ash’s office in the house and gave us tea and made us tell them everything those two guys said.”
“So that’s interesting,” said Angelica. “What side are they on?”
“I want to be on their side,” said Cloudius. “I wouldn’t ever want to be throwing spells at Ash.”
“No,” said Arnulf, “just Mac.”
“No, not him either, I’m swearing that off.”
“Don’t swear too soon,” said Daphne. “We’re going back tonight.”
“We’re what?” asked Arnulf.
“Didn’t I tell you? Ange and I found a secret passage.”
So it was that at about 11 pm, Tom Hexane woke with Eva sitting next to him giving him that glare. He got up, pulled on his jeans, tucked in his tee shirt, pulled his MAINE sweatshirt over and went out into the dark hall. Eva was with him, and out of Cloud’s room came Daphne and Angelica. A few seconds later, Arnulf and Cloudius came out. “It took three of us to get him up,” said Arnulf.
The house was quiet. Tom led Angelica and Cloudius through the kitchen to the basement stairs. They were down the stairs when they realized that Daphne and Arnulf weren’t there.
“Where are you two going?” asked Ash.
“To the bathroom,” said Daphne and Arnulf in chorus.
“Then please use the one on your floor. Separately. And then go to bed. Separately. My kitty will come up to make sure you do so.”
“Argh,” whispered Tom. “What do we do?”
“Just sit down on the steps,” said Angelica, doing so. “They’ll be down in fifteen minutes max.”