Sanity is forbidden Circulation: 96,313,980 Issue: 190 | 13th day of Hunting, Y7
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A Spooky Escapade: Part Two


by springsteen0991

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"Are you suggesting that we go there?" Ketchup asked wearily.

     "No, I'm suggesting we go to Mystery Island and collect some fruit," Ramrod responded sarcastically. "Of course I'm saying we should go there! We need to get Daisy and our Neopoints back, Cunchicka said so herself."

     "Ramrod is right. We need to go, stand up to Eliv Thade, and take matters into our own paws to get our Neopoints back!" Tidus declared.

     "And Daisy," Cunchicka reminded him cheerfully.

     "Eh, maybe Daisy will be happier with Thade. Let's go," Tidus told the group. So they turned empty handed, except for the forgotten sock that Cunchicka still held, as they trudged away towards the Castle of Eliv Thade.

     Exiting the gate to the Deserted Fairground, the four of them marched eerily on the cobblestone pathway that led them directly to the enormous Castle of Eliv Thade. "This place looks creepy," Cunchicka said matter of factly, standing before the dark mansion.

     "Yeah, I've heard horrible things about it," Ketchup replied, nodding. "Once you go in, the door shuts, and you have to solve anagrams to go into any of the rooms."

     "But we have to get our Neopoints back no matter what," Tidus asserted. "We're not going to let some evil spectre bully us around."

     "Right. So, should we go in?" Ketchup asked uncertainly.

     "You know, I think I'm okay with waiting out here, actually," Cunchicka said thoughtfully. "You all go ahead."

     "Come on, little sister," Tidus told her with a sly grin, "you're coming with us."

     The four pets walked up cautiously to the door, with Cunchicka lagging at the rear. Tidus slowly turned the knob and pushed the door open, peering into the darkness.

     The floor creaked as the four of them slowly stepped into the old mansion. "I can't see anything!" Ketchup shouted, panicking.

     "Everyone stick together," Ramrod ordered. They unitedly took a step, and after a moment adjusted to the dim lighting in the house.

     "Where should we go?" Tidus asked his friends.

     "Over here," a strange voice beckoned.

     "Who said that?" Tidus called, a little nervous.

     "It's me!" the voice responded back.

     "Thanks for clearing that up," Ramrod yelled sarcastically. "Let's go a little closer. How scary can it be?" he whispered to the group.

     They moved a few steps ahead before stopping, unsure of which way to go. Ketchup got the attention of the group and pointed ahead a little bit. There, they saw a ghost Chia with dusty gray hair, fangs, and glowing red eyes moving silently towards them.

     Cunchicka screamed in alarm at the sight of the Chia. "What are you all doing here?" the ghost asked.

     "We were, I, we were, you know," Cunchicka stammered.

     "We're here to get our Neopoints back!" Tidus growled fiercely.

     The Chia looked at Tidus with a disbelieving look on his face and laughed. "You? Sorry Lupe, but I'm pretty sure that you lack the essential brain power that one needs to get one's Neopoints back in this castle."

     "Yeah? Well, tell us what we're going to need to do," Ramrod said, showing his sharp teeth slightly.

     Suddenly, Ketchup looked up and exclaimed, "Hey! Were you calling Tidus stupid?"

     Everyone stared at her for a moment and sighed. She lowered her head and grumbled a 'nevermind.'

     "Anyway," the ghost Chia said, "there's no way you'll get your Neopoints back!"

     "Or our Polarchuck?" Cunchicka asked desperately, remembering that they had lost Daisy too.

     "You won't get that back either! Unless you can solve the anagrams of doom that Eliv Thade has prepared for you!"

     "Anagrams of doom?" Tidus repeated in an exasperated voice. He stood quiet for a few minutes and thought before continuing, "Heh, no problem. We can handle doing hard stuff! Like this one time we were trying to set the table and-"

     "So, what exactly do we have to do?" Ramrod interrupted, glaring at his friend.

     The ghost cackled and began gliding down a corridor with broken lamps hanging from the stained gray walls. He called over his shoulder in an annoying drawl, "This way, my children."

     "I wonder where we're going," Ketchup whispered to the group. The ghost Chia floated silently across the dim hallway until they came to a tall wooden door.

     "What room is this?" Ramrod questioned.

     "This is the entrance to the chilling and evil dining room of death," the ghoul announced, smiling insanely. "Come in, and see if you can solve the anagram Thade has prepared you..."

     "Oh, we'll solve it all right," Tidus declared. "We're smarter than your average pets."

     With that, the ghost Chia opened the door to the dining room. A dusty table and chairs that were made of decaying wood sat in the center of the room, blanketed in cobwebs. A dim chandelier hung from the ceiling, and old paintings were placed nicely on the walls. The group stood in horror as they saw the main attraction of this room.

     In a red liquidy substance, a jumble of letters were written right on one of the walls. It said, "GRAEV." Cunchicka grimaced in disgust, the red substance reminded her ever so much of tomato paste.

     The Chia chuckled. "Just try to figure this one out."

     "We'll figure out what it is, you just wait and see," Ramrod snarled. Him and his friends huddled together to try to decipher the meaning of this impossible anagram.

     "I can't for the life of me figure out what the word is!" Ketchup whispered nervously, jittering.

     "Calm down, Ketchup, we can figure it out," Tidus assured her. "Let's try sounding it out. Graev," he articulated.

     "Hmm, that sure does sound a lot like the word 'grave,'" Cunchicka noted.

     "Yup, sure does," Ramrod and Cunchicka agreed.

     After a few moments of thinking, Tidus suddenly jumped up with a brilliant thought in his mind. "Hey, guys! I think that the word is grave!"

     The others looked at him in disbelief. "Tidus! How did you manage to figure that out so quickly?!" they all asked him in total awe.

     "I guess I'm just smart like that," he replied, grinning. He advanced proudly towards the Chia, who had been sitting in a chair, utterly bored, waiting for the pets to figure out the anagram. "We know what it is!" the shadow Lupe shouted. "Your pathetic anagram 'GRAEV' is actually the word... 'GRAVE.' Ha! And you thought we wouldn't figure it out!" he taunted.

     The ghost rolled his eyes. "Very well then, you have figured out the anagram of this room. There will be more in the other rooms though... Follow me."

     The four of them followed the ghost Chia out of the dining room into the dingy hallway once again. "This way," the Chia periodically called to them as they twisted through endless hallways. Cunchicka made the ridiculous sock that she still held into a puppet and mimicked the Chia's talking with her hand, getting startling laughs out of the others.

     After what seemed like long minutes of traveling through the castle, they finally found themselves being led into a musty room that smelled like rotten pickles. The Chia laughed his pathetic, "evil" laugh at the reaction of the pets as they stepped in. "Welcome to the vile kitchen that stores some of the most evil foods and hardest anagrams that you may ever witness in you life. And, Kacheek, would you get that odorous sock off of your hand! It reeks of something awful!"

     Cunchicka pinched her nose with her sock-covered paw. "That is so not the sock. It smells like peaches compared to this room," she told him in a stuffy voice.

     They all gazed around the room, taking it all in wall by wall, and scent by scent. Directly in the middle of the room was a long, rough wooden table with cuts and stains in the grain of it. An ominous-looking salad knife sat in the middle, appearing not to have been touched in centuries. Shelves stocked with aged, spoiled meat and fruit and spider cookies were hammered up to a yellowing wall and candles that had nothing left to them but melted wax lay scattered about the floor.

     The ghost led them farther into the room where an abandoned ice box that held no ice sat and opened up the lid. Peering in, the group saw a single word spelled out with the same rotten pickles that the room smelled of. "That explains a lot," Ramrod muttered as he continued to stare at the word. "OGHEORASP" was the word, and the four of them backed up next to the wooden table to discuss their ideas.

     "Got any ideas?" Cunchicka asked, looking from friend to friend. "Tidus? Ramrod? Ketchup?" Each shook their head at the mention of their name, thinking hard enough to make their brains explode.

     After almost a half hour of silent thinking and a few, 'What about…never minds' from the pets, the ghost Chia was growing visibly impatient. Finally, he called over to them, "Would you like a hint?"

     Ketchup turned around and said, "Oh, thanks but I think we're getting along just fi-"

     Ramrod put his paw over her mouth and replied, "Yes! We want a hint!"

     "Okay, here it is so listen carefully. What is big and tall, blue and red, extremely scary looking, and likes to eat every second of every minute of every hour of every day?" the ghost Chia asked the group in a sing-song voice that made them all want to cover their ears.

     "A cherry?" Cunchicka asked suddenly.

     "No, just ignore her," Tidus told the Chia absently, as if it was something he said often.

     After another ten minutes of silence Ramrod exclaimed out loud, "What in the name of the Esophagor is it?"

     The Chia stamped his foot on the ground, throwing a mini tantrum. "Ugh! I can't believe you got it! Esophagor is the answer!"

     After wiping the surprised look off of his face, Ramrod gave a wide smile and said nonchalantly, "I knew it all along!"

     Rolling his eyes, the ghost said in a dull voice, "You have figured out this round of the anagrams but do not become too sure of yourself. The next one will not be this easy."

     Tidus laughed and turned to his friends. "I think we'll figure them out pretty easily if he keeps on giving us those hints!"

     "What did you say?" the Chia asked, raising his eyebrow at Tidus.

     "I said that we will certainly never figure this next anagram out and we are all doomed," he replied with a nod. They all chuckled, following the ghoul to their next and quite possibly final anagram. They knew they were getting closer and closer to their stolen six and hundred and seventy eight Neopoints... Oh yes, and the Polarchuck.

To Be Continued...

 
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