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The Andrews; Visit Counts' Town



h3<>. Home for the Holidays

h3<>. Off to Counts’ Town

h3<>. At the Boarding house

h3<>. The Scary Counts’ Castle

h3<>. Fright of the Counts’

h3<>. The Countess Draculara

h3<>. How can we escape?

h3<>. A plan to escape

h3<>. A dreadful shock

h3<>. Trapped, once again!

h3<>. The Great Escapade

h3<>. Escaped at last!

h3<>. Back to the Holiday House

h3<>. A pleasant time

h3<>. Caroline helps the police!

h3<>. Lucky Children

Chapter 1- Home for the Holidays

“Wake up Sleepyhead!” Julia threw a pillow at her twin Jessica. “Ugh! What is it Julia? It’s the holidays, you know and I like to SLEEP LATE. You get that?” Julia said, “What do you mean by ‘what is it’? Don’t you remember Jessica that Jeff and Trevor are coming home from their boarding school today?” Jeffrey and Trevor Andrew were the cousins of the twins. They lived with them as Mr. Andrew was their only guardian after their parents died. The boys went to a boarding school. So did the twins. But they were in a girls’ school, of course. They had returned home a week ago. Jessica looked surprised, “Wait, what? Jeff and Trevor are home today?” Julia shot her a look, “Yes. Don’t pretend to forget it. I know you very well. Now no more excuses. Wake up and get ready. I’m going to wake up Suzie”. Suzanne, known as Suzie, was the twins’ little sister. She was sleeping on the other side of the room. Julia strode to Suzie’s bed and shook her gently, “Wake up, Suzie. Jeff and Trevor will be here soon.” Suzie woke up at once, “Good Morning Julia. Oh yes! Jeff and Trevor are home today, hurray!” She scurried to the washroom to get ready. Julia went downstairs to help her mother prepare breakfast. After a while, a cab drove in the driveway. Two young boys stepped out with suitcases and bag packs. The taller one had black hair. He called out uncertainly, “Julia? Aunt Diana?” The younger one had brownish blonde hair. He was a bit plump. Just then, Julia opened the door and Dash raced out covering Jeff with loving licks. Trevor patted Dash while Julia approached the boys. “Hi. Jeff, Trevor, you guys are back at last” said Julia. The boys grinned at her. Then Trevor asked, “Yes, we are back. Where are the others?” Jessica and Suzie came out at that time, “Here we are. How are you, boys?” Jeff said, “We are good.” Julia said, “Come on in now, you two.” The kids and Dash went in. The boys went to unpack while the girls laid the table. After a hearty meal, all the children went up to the girls’ room to play Snap. Jessica got the snap cards from her cabinet and shuffled them. While she was doing this, Jeff handed Suzie a gift package. “This is your birthday gift,” Trevor explained. Suzie opened the gift. It was a little medallion which could be opened. Suzie opened the medallion and saw that there was a picture if the girls and Dash on one side and a picture of the boys on the other. She grinned, “This is lovely. Thank you so much.” The boys smiled at her. Then Julia distributed the snap cards. The sound of voices calling, “Snap! Snap!” could be heard from the room. After a while, Mrs. Andrew came into the room. She greeted the children, “Hello children. How are you, boys?” Jeff replied, “We are good, Aunt Diana.” Mrs. Andrew continued, “You have become so thin Jeffrey. Even Trevor has slimmed a bit. God, I have to fatten you both a bit. ” Trevor grinned. Then, Aunt Diana left them to play.

Chapter 2 – Off to Counts’ Town.

The next day, Aunt Diana awoke the children at six in the morning. The children were of course groaning. The girls were all, “Mom, let me sleep two minutes more.” “Mom, is it seven already?” “Oh mommy, I am sleepy. Let me sleep (yawns).”

And the boys were all, “Aunt Diana, we just came yesterday. Can’t we do the chores later?” “Aunt Diana, it’s only six in the morning!!” And Mrs. Andrew patiently shook them all up, speaking sharply, “No Julia, Jessica. Wake up”. “Wake up, Boys!!”

All the children woke up, dressed and went down for breakfast. Mrs. Andrew served them hot chocolate and scones for breakfast. The children ate them up, sleepily. After breakfast, Mrs. Andrew announced, “Children, do you remember you aunt Cathay?” The children nodded and glanced at each other. Mrs. Andrew continued, “Well, she is very sick and I have to go and take care of her. That’s why I and Alex have decided to send you all to Miss Farris’ holiday house in Counts’ Town.” The children were stunned for a while. Then Jessica squealed, “Hurray!! Mom, are you sure? We are going to Counts’ Town?” Mrs. Andrew smiled at the eager children. Suzie said, “Dash must know this.” And she scurried off to wake up Dash. Mrs. Andrew continued, “And you must start packing at once. The taxi will be here at eight.” Trevor inquired, “Are we leaving today?” Mrs. Andrew nodded. For the next hour the children busied themselves with packing and getting ready. The twins finished their packing earlier than the others, so their mother sent them to the grocery shop to buy the necessary things. When the twins returned, the others were ready too. It was eight by now, so they were expecting the taxi any minute now. After a minute or two, there was a taxi in the driveway. As the children loaded their luggage in the car boot, Mrs. Andrew addressed them, “I hope you all will have fun at the camp. Jeff I think you know that you are supposed to look after all?” Jeff assured her, “Yes, Aunt Diana. Come one Dash, get into the taxi.” After the children had climbed in, the taxi moved away. Suzie waved goodbye to her mother madly. The children were in for a long journey. Jessica and Trevor played the game “Atlas”. Julia and Jeff looked out of their windows and Dash lay uncomfortably at Suzie’s feet. Suzie dozed off, her head on Trevor’s shoulders. Each of them was excited; Counts’ Town had always been their dream vacation place. This was their first trip to the town, and they meant to make the most out of it. Little did they know that a big adventure awaited them at the town!

Chapter 3- At the Boarding house

Five hours later, saw the children in Counts’ Town, still in their taxi. They would be reaching the camp soon. After a while, the taxi stopped in front of a huge house with large gardens. The front porch had a water fountain. Neighs of horses and quacks of ducks could be heard. As the children got out of the taxi, they could smell the lovely aroma of fresh scones and buns. They all took their luggage and walked up to the front door. Suzie had Dash’s lead. Julia uncertainly knocked at the door. The door was opened by Miss Farris. She was a lady in her late-twenties. She was of medium height and was plump. She wore a pink cotton dress and a blue apron over it. Her hair was done in a cute little bun. She welcomed the children and asked them to take a seat at the living room. She then told Jeff to fill out the form. Jeff went to the ‘reception’ and filled the form. After he was done, Miss Farris glanced at the form and said, “So, you are the Andrew kids. I’m glad to have you here. Come along, I will show you your rooms.” The children and Dash followed Miss Farris up a long staircase. Their rooms were on the first floor. After they reached the top of the stairs, Miss Farris turned left and walked past three rooms and stopped in front of the fourth and fifth room. She took out a key from her apron pocket and opened the door to the fourth room. Then she spoke, “Will you boys take this room?” Jeff nodded.

Miss Farris made way for the boys. The boys took their luggage and entered the room. Then Miss Farris unlocked the fifth room and the girls and Dash occupied it. Miss Farris announced, “Tea will be ready in half an hour.” Jessica said, “We’ll be there. Thank you Miss Farris.” Miss Farris shook her head, “The pleasure is all mines dear.” Then Miss Farris left to cook. The children washed up and then unpacked. After half an hour, Jeff knocked at the girls’ room. The door was opened by Suzie. Then, all the children started going towards the kitchen for their tea. Miss Farris had cooked them a wonderful tea: – roasted chicken, sandwiches, Mexican rice etc. There was a plate of some cutlet-type-looking food too. Julia asked, “Miss Farris, what is this?” Miss Farris replied, “I hoped you would ask. This is a special dish of Counts’ Town. Its recipe was created by Gracie Boston. She lives no more now but her recipe lives all along. We don’t know its real name, so the folks call it Boston Cutlets.” Trevor remarked, “Counts’ Town is such a wonderful town!” Miss Farris smiled, “Yes, I know. Start eating, children.” The children ate till they were full. Miss Farris fed Dash with a variety of dog food. The children then went over to the girls’ room and started playing ‘Snap’. After the game, Trevor looked over his guides and maps. At evening, Miss Farris came and asked, “Do you children need supper?” Jeff replied, “Oh no, Miss Farris. I couldn’t eat a thing after the tea you gave us!” Miss Farris chuckled. Trevor began, “Um….Miss Farris, Do tell us one thing. Can we go to see Counts’ Castle tomorrow?” Suzie hurriedly piped up, “Why is the castle called Counts’ Castle, Miss Farris. Miss Farris said smilingly, “Oh dear! I think I’ll just sit down with you and tell you about Counts’ Castle.” Jessica cheered, “Will you really Miss Farris? Oh, I am so glad.” Miss Farris smiled and sat down.

Chapter 4- The Scary Counts’ Castle

The children anxiously looked at Miss Farris, as they sat surrounding her. Miss Farris, “First of all, you should know about Counts’ Castle. If you like the sound of it, then you may visit the castle tomorrow. I have visited the castle a couple of times. Most times with guests. And mark my words, that place is scary. Oh, and yes, the castle was given its name because it was believed that counts used to live there, once, which means that it was a Counts’ Castle. The town has also got its name from the castle’s name. Some people say that it was Count Dracula who stayed there and some say that it was Count Werewolf. Now, they say that Countesses also lived there. Countesses like Countess Draculara, Countess Cleo etc. The main hallway of the castle has portraits. Yes, portraits of the counts’. And there is a lot more to see, of course. But I mustn’t tell you yet. There should be the surprises. What is the point of visiting the castle if you already know what’s in there?” Jessica laughed, “You’re right, Miss Farris. There is no point.” Miss Farris smiled at Jessica. Then she asked the others, “So do you really want to visit the castle?” Jeff confidently nodded, “Yes, Miss Farris. We’re sure.”

Miss Farris wished them luck and went out to do her chores. Soon after, the children went off to sleep.

The next morning, Jessica woke up the girls, “Julia, Suzie! Do wake up. I can’t wait to start exploring the castle.” Julia rose though Suzie had barely stirred. She laughed, “Yes Jessica, I know. You should go and wake up the boys and I will wake Suzie up.” Jessica nodded to her twin and went to knock on the boys’ door. Julia woke up her younger sister in the meanwhile, and then went to wash. In half an hour, all the Andrews including Dash had washed up and were assembled in the dining room. “Good Morning,” Miss Farris greeted them as they entered the dining room. The children greeted her back as they took seats on the dining table. Miss Farris served them fried bacon and eggs along with bread, butter and mango juice. The children ate breakfast and then got ready to leave for the Counts’ Castle. At noon, the children found themselves walking up the Counts’ Hill on top of which, the castle was situated.

After, like, twenty minutes, the children found themselves in front of the famous Counts’ Castle. There was a ticket booth on the side from where tickets could be purchased. Jeff went to the booth and asked the owner, “Um, hello. What is the cost of a ticket?” The grumpy owner replied, “Fifty pence each. And seventy-five pence for pets.” Jeff returned to the others and told them the price of tickets. When Trevor heard the price, he gasped, “Gosh, this is gonna be expensive!” The older girls agreed with him, but Suzie didn’t. She said, “I have the money. How much are we gonna need?” Julia did some quick math and replied, “Three pounds and twenty-five pence.” Suzie took out a tiny purse from her pocket and took out three pound notes and a twenty five pence coin. She handed the money to Jeff, “Here, three pounds and twenty five pence.” Jeff took the money from Suzie, with his mouth hanging open. Jessica snorted, “Seriously Suzie. You didn’t steal this money, did you?” Suzie practically yelled at her sister, “No of course not. Why would I steal?” Jessica then haughtily asked, “Where did you get the money then?” Suzie was nearly on the verge of tears. Julia noticed that and hurriedly said, “No, dear. Jessica didn’t mean it. Of course you wouldn’t steal.” She planted a kiss on Suzie’s fluffy head. Trevor asked, carefully choosing his words, “But then….” Suzie interrupted him, “I asked Miss Farris if the ticket were going to be expensive. She said yes. And then she gave me five pounds and told me that we can return it to her later.” Jeffrey patted Suzie’s head and said, “That was really thoughtful of you Suzie. I will go and get the tickets right now.” While Jeffrey went to get the tickets, Jessica apologized, “I’m sorry Suzie. I didn’t mean to accuse you. Honestly I didn’t. It just, kinda popped out of my mouth.” Suzie shook her head, “Don’t worry Jessica. That’s okay. I know your tiny ways.” And the three sisters laughed. Soon after, Jeff returned with the tickets and the children entered the Counts’ Castle.

Chapter 5- Fright of the Counts’

The children found themselves in the entrance hallway of the castle. It was red carpeted and it was very dark. Trevor took out his torch and lit it. The children were surprised that they were the only ones who were visiting the castle. Soon, they were walking through the entrance hall and towards the portrait hall. The Andrews gasped as they entered the portrait hall. The hall was spooky but the portraits were creepy and beautifully made. The children moved on to the first portrait and Trevor flashed his torch onto the portrait. There was a count in it. He had great fangs and wore a black coat. His outfit also included a top hat, high boots and a great cloak with a cape. Julia read out the description, “This is Count Dracula at a very old age. He was a great count and was afraid of sunlight. His spirits still loom in the castle.” Hearing this, Suzie slightly shivered. Jeff noticed that and spoke comfortingly, “Don’t worry, Suzie. I am sure they don’t mean it seriously.” Suzie didn’t sound comforted as she said, “But what if they do?” Jeff told her again, not to worry and patted her shoulder. Then they all moved to the next picture. Suddenly, Dash started barking. Trevor hushed him, “Hush, Dash. Keep quiet. You are not supposed to bark here. Get that?” Then he flashed his torch on the second portrait. In this, there was a big moon and a wolf dressed in counts’ clothes. Trevor read the description, “This is Count Werewolf. He turns into a wolf on the full moon nights.” They all moved further on. Jessica read the description on the third portrait, “This is Countess Draculara. She had a cat called Danke. She was very kind and good hearted. Her spirits too loom in this castle.” The countess was very pretty. She wore a black top hat and a black dress. She also had a cape. Her cat was also black with green eyes. The Andrews also saw the portraits of other countesses like: Countess Rochelle, Countess Frankie, Countess Ghoulia, Countess Lagoona, Countess Cleo (the Egyptian countess who wore Egyptian clothes) etc. Suzie couldn’t just stop asking questions about the portraits.

Soon after a while the children ascended the stairs and found themselves in a long corridor which was connected to many rooms. Jessica began moving towards the first room. Trevor thought aloud, “I wonder if we are supposed to go in. These kinds of rooms maybe out of reach for visitors, you know.” Jessica shrugged and said, “I’m sure we can. Look here is an Entry sign board.” Trevor laughed, “That’s okay then, I guess.” The children entered the room. There were exotic pictures on the wall. The room was decorated traditionally; as if they were the counts’ bedroom. There was also a wax statue. After looking at the statue, Julia cautiously said, “I think this is a statue of Count Dracula.” Trevor nodded, “Yeah, looks like it.” Suzie laughed, “Isn’t the room gorgeous!” Jessica snorted, “Nah, sister. I don’t think so. This room is creepy.” Jeff, Trevor, Julia and Dash left the other two to argue and went to look around the room. After a while they all were ready to move to the next room. The next room was really very beautiful. It was done in black and white. The walls were covered with old pictures and there were exotic candle holders all around. There was an absolutely gorgeous female wax statue which wore a black dress, top hat, cape etc. The statue had perfectly beautiful, fluffy black hair and gorgeous black eyes. There was also a wax statue of a cat. It was black in color and had green eyes. Suzie said, “It’s Countess Draculara and Danke!” The others had also come to know this, without doubt. After visiting Count Draculara’s room, the Andrews also visited the rooms of the other countesses’. But they found Countess Cleo and Countess Lagoona’s room the most amusing. Countess Cleo’s room was done up in the pattern of mummies and sarcophaguses while Countess Lagoona’s room had aquatic pattern. Both the statues of these countesses’ were very amusing. Countess Cleo was of course dressed in Egyptian clothes and Countess Lagoona’s outfit was all aquatic type of.

Chapter 6-The Countess Draculara

After having looked at all the rooms, the children were walking through the corridor when they came across a mysterious door. It had a sign board which said, ‘PRIVATE ROOM. KEEP OUT!” The girls exchanged glances amongst themselves. Jeff understood their intentions at once. He spoke sternly, “No girls. We are not going in. Let’s move.” The twins, especially Jessica were disappointed. But they knew better than to disobey Jeff. So they quietly walked on. But unfortunately, at that time Dash lost his way. He was quite young so didn’t know what to do. And he remembered that he wasn’t supposed to bark. Also, he couldn’t smell properly as the air was damp. So, Dash wandered away searching for the children. Now, Suzie came to know that Dash was missing. So she started searching for Dash. Suddenly, Suzie tripped on something and banged against the mysterious door. The door opened and in went Suzie. She squealed, “Ooh!” And then there was silence. Once inside, Susie couldn’t open the door to come out. Jeff had heard her squeal. He spoke in a worried voice, “Oh god. I think Suzie has gone inside the mysterious door by mistake.” Jessica pointed out, “Yes, maybe. I see that Dash isn’t here.” Julia spoke thoughtfully, “Maybe she went to search for him and ended up in there.” Trevor nodded, “Yes, in that case we should go in and search for her.” All the Andrews (except Suzie, of course) went towards the mysterious door. There, they found Dash. Jeff asked, “Ready to go in?” The others nodded and cautiously Jeff opened the door. And all of them went in. There, they could see cardboard cartons of all shapes and sizes. Suzie was sitting in the corner and was sobbing to herself. As soon as she saw the others, she brightened and ran to hug them. Julia comforted her sister by saying, “Don’t worry Suzie. It’s okay. We all are here now.” Just then Trevor came and said, “I just tried to open the door guys. It won’t open.” Suzie said, “I noticed that. I tried opening the door.” Jeff carefully thought over the situation and then said, “Well, since the door won’t open, we have to climb the stairs.” The others looked at the huge staircase. Jessica suddenly said, “Yes, Jeff is right. We have no other way to go. So we may as well as climb these stairs.” Julia and Trevor nodded, “I’m game.” Only Suzie seemed a bit unsure. Jeff assured her, “Don’t worry Suzie. We all will help you to climb.” Suzie smiled, “Then I’m okay with this.” So, all the children and Dash began climbing the stairs.

After a while, they finally reached the top of the stairs. The stairs were rather a long one. The children found themselves in another long corridor. This was just like the earlier one, only the rooms were modernly furnished unlike the earlier ones. Just then, out of a girlish room, emerged a tall lady who was dressed in black from head to toe. She wore a black dress, a black top hat and a black cape. Walking to her heel was a black cat. Julia gasped, “Gosh it’s Countess Draculara!” Jessica whispered, “And Danke!”

The Countess game them all the evil eye and began haughtily, “So you kids were messing up, weren’t you? Interfering busybodies! I have a good mind to lock you all up in that so comfy room.” Before the children could protest, the Countess pushed the children and Dash into the comfortable looking room. As she was fumbling with the lock, something fell out of her hand and dropped onto the floor. Luckily, she didn’t notice it and just locked the door and walked away. Jeff spoke in a shaky voice, “I thought her spirits loomed in the castle. Not the real Countess.” Jessica agreed, “That was scary.” Suzie burst out, “She wasn’t the real countess! She had put on a disguise. Her eyes were blue and not black like the real countess. She has dropped something. Please fetch it, Trevor.” Trevor went off to fetch it while Jeff said, “Yes, Suzie is right. Her eyes were blue and not black.” Just then Trevor came and handed Jeff a yellow badge with writing on it. Jeff read aloud the writing, “The Malice Thieves Gang. Kennedy Golf.” Julia spoke in excitement, “I know about this gang. Daddy told me once. The gang members wear badges and do smuggling and robbery. There are two females in this gang- Kennedy Golf and Methail Romps.” Mr. Andrew was a police superintendent. Jessica spoke, “Yes, I remember too. Gosh, so this castle is their hideout!” Jeff nodded, “Yes, we must let Uncle Alex know about this business.” The others agreed with him.

Chapter 7- How can we escape?

Suzie wailed, “It’s no use. We can’t telephone daddy. I mean, how can we? There isn’t a telephone.” Jeff comforted her, “Yes, Suzie. We can’t call Uncle Alex but surely we can put a plan to action. Does anyone have a plan?” Everyone quietly thought for a while. Suddenly, a blub clicked in Jessica’s mind. She excitedly said, “I think I’ve got it. How about we send a message through Dash?” Suzie spoke in glee, “Oh yes! That’s a perfect plan.” Before everybody really got excited, Jeff shook his head, “No, sorry. We can’t do this. Dash is barely a dog yet. And besides, how will he find his way out of the castle and to the camp?” Trevor agreed, “Yeah. He’ll probably get lost. And then we’d have more trouble.” The girls were disappointed but agreed to this point. After a while, the children heard a click as the door opened and a dear little girl came in with two trays. She put them down and began, “Hallo. Je’m appele Caroline. Je suis French. Here, Je bring you food.” All the Andrews knew French, except Suzie. So Julia translated Caroline’s speech to Suzie, “She is saying that her name is Caroline and that she is French. And she has brought us food.” Jessica smiled at Caroline and introduced, “Je’m appele Jessica and they are Julia, Suzanne, Jeffrey and Trevor. This is our dog, Dash.” Caroline said in gratitude, “Merci! Je not speak l’anglais. Je connais l’anglais tres peu.” Jessica translated her words again for Suzie, “She is saying thank you. She doesn’t speak English as she knows very little English.” Suzie giggled, “Oh. Why are you saying ‘thank you’ Caroline?” Caroline said, “For the translation.” Suzie nodded, “Ooh! Now I understand.” Trevor asked, “Caroline, what do you do here? Are you part of the gang?” Caroline shook her head vigorously, “Ah, no, no. Je no part of la gang. Je travaille here.” Trevor nodded to Suzie, “Travaille means to work.” Julia asked, “So, whom do you live with? Do you live with Miss Kennedy?” Caroline gasped, “Ah, no! Je live with my sister.” Then, Suzie giggled, “What have you brought us for food, Caroline?” Caroline smiled at the little girl, “Soup and bread.” Jessica burst out, “What? We’ll have just soup and bread?” Julia shot her sister a warning look. Caroline looked crestfallen, “Yes, je know. That is too less. Here, take my candies.” Before Jessica could say anything, Trevor hurriedly said, “No, Caroline. I think soup and bread will be okay. You should have your candies.” Caroline smiled at them broadly. Then, Jeff asked her, “So, do you like staying here?” Caroline shook her head, “Ah no! Je detest staying here. That Miss Kennedy makes me work and work. She gives me no rest. One day, Je shall run away.” Julia sympathized, “I can understand how you feel. I feel like running away myself. But, Caroline, if you do not like to stay here, then why are you working here?” Caroline sobbed, “Because if Je don’t, Miss Kennedy will harm my sister Carrie.” Everybody was sad to hear about Caroline’s sister Carrie.

Chapter 8- A Plan to Escape

Before the children could make any plans to escape with Caroline, a voice yelled, “Caroline! Whatever are you doing? Don’t make me come in there. Come out now or Carrie gets a thrashing!” The children listened in horrified silence. Caroline looked at them sadly and whispered, “There goes Miss Kennedy. Je must rush now!” The children nodded to her sadly as she ran out of the room and fumbled with the lock. Finally they could hear a click indicating that the door had been locked. Suddenly they could hear a slap followed by a noisy bang. The children could now hear voices. Miss Kennedy’s voice rang out, “What the hell were you doing for so long, Caroline?” Caroline’s voice shook as she said, “Nothing, Miss Kennedy. Nothing” Miss Kennedy spoke sharply, “Huh! Nothing, indeed! I wonder if you haven’t already given them the key to escape. You were making plans, weren’t you Caroline?” Caroline said, “No, Miss Kennedy. We don’t make plans.” The children could hear a slap again and then Miss Kennedy’s voice, “This will do you good. Now, stop lying and tell me what you were doing.” Caroline cried out, “Nothing, Miss. Je take time to lock the door.” Kennedy said, “Okay, okay. Go to bed straight away. And Carrie is supposed to go to bed too. No food for you both today. And don’t dare to disobey me.” Caroline spoke, “Yes, Miss Kennedy.” The five Andrew children exchanged horrified glances. After a few minutes, the children could hear a key turning in the lock. The door swung open as the lock clicked. Miss Kennedy entered the room. The children gaped at her. She wore a sleeveless white top and blue short. Her feet wore a pair of white sneakers, her outfit accessorized by a long silver locket. Her black hair was done up in a bun with a stick. She looked charming but wicked. She glared at the children for a while and then looked around the room, checking if there was a key. She commanded in a sharp voice, “Stand up!” The children did as they were told. Miss Kennedy looked around again to make sure that there was no key. There was none, of course. Miss Kennedy then walked out of the room and locked the door. As soon as the children heard footsteps pattering away, Julia exclaimed, “Whoa! What a lady!” Trevor grinned, “Yes, but she was beautiful.” Jessica snorted, “Beautiful but wicked. Didn’t you guys hear how she slapped Caroline?” The others nodded. It was already evening by then. So, the children ate their soup and bread. After eating Julia and Jessica cleared up the dishes and put them on the table. Jeff said, “It’s obvious that we can’t escape now. So we may as well get some sleep.” The children did their prayer and then went to sleep. The girls were given the large bed to sleep on while the boys slept on the floor.

At midnight, Suzie suddenly woke. She could hear someone turning the key in the lock. She was afraid and thus woke up the others. Just then, the door opened and in came Caroline with another girl who looked just like here. Caroline cheerfully spoke, “Hallo, Hallo! Meet my sister Carrie.” Then Caroline went on to introduce the Andrews to her sister as Carrie shook hands with everyone. She patted Dash and beamed at everyone. She said to Caroline, “Je wish je could stay here with these children.” Caroline shook her head, “No, Carrie. You cannot, you know.” Carrie nodded sadly. Then, Caroline began, “Je have a plan.” Jeff asked, “A plan?” Carrie nodded, “Yes, a plan to escape.” Jessica said, “That’s great, girls. Tell us the plan?” Caroline nodded and began, “Tomorrow, Miss Kennedy and the others go down the hill for picnic. We escape when they are not here.” Trevor wasn’t convinced. He asked, “Are you sure they will go tomorrow? We don’t want to get caught.” Caroline nodded, “Yes, yes. Je hear them speak. Miss Methail says that they go to picnic. And Je am supposed to make their food.” Jessica smiled at her, “That’s great, Caroline. Thank you so much.” Caroline couldn’t understand what Jessica was saying. So Jessica repeated again in French, “C’est tres bien. Merci!” Caroline nodded and smiled. Then the French sisters left the room and locked the door. The Andrews went back to sleep again peacefully.

Chapter 9- A Dreadful Shock

The next morning, continuous noise and chatter woke up the children. The children went to the washroom turn by turn and brushed. After a while, the lock clicked open and Carrie came in with a tray of food. She whispered to the children, “They all are going! They will be gone soon and then we escape.” Jeff nodded to her, “Yes, that’s good.” Suzie asked, “What have you brought for us to eat?” Carrie replied, “Toast bread and marmalade.” Jessica licked her lip, “That’s yummy!” Carrie nodded as the others laughed at Jessica. Carrie also poured them all some coffee. Just then Miss Kennedy pushed Caroline into the room and spoke to all the children, “Carrie and Caroline will eat breakfast here with you.” The French sisters nodded quietly. As soon as Miss Kennedy went away, they gave a cheer. Jeff whispered to the others, “This may be a trick of theirs. Don’t talk about our escapade or the gang.” Then the children ate the toast and marmalade and talked about pets and other common stuff. Then, Caroline and Carrie left the room, locking the Andrews in again.

After, nearly two hours, the door opened and Caroline and Carrie entered the room. Carrie yelled in glee, “They have gone! They go, they go!” Caroline also laughed and cheered with her sister. All the children danced around the room for a while, laughing. Suddenly, Caroline worriedly said, “We must not waste time. Let’s go and escape first.” The other agreed. The little group of seven children and a dog trooped out of the room. They walked through the corridor and finally reached the top of the big stairs they had climbed earlier. They all descended the stairs slowly and carefully. It took them long to descend the big stairs, but they made it. Caroline quietly asked, “Do you remember this door?” The Andrews nodded. Caroline continued, “We escape through this door.” Caroline moved over to a small cardboard carton. She rummaged through it for a while and then took out a silver key. She fitted the key into the lock of the great door and tried to turn it. But the key wouldn’t budge. It was too heavy. Her sister helped her, but still they couldn’t turn the key in the lock. Finally, Jeff offered to open the door. Caroline and Carrie agreed gladly. Trevor also helped him. Just as the key was about to turn the lock open, a voice called out from behind, “Stop, children! You are busted.” The children froze in fear but managed to turn around. A lady in jeans and top stood there, her face confident and her lips twisted into a smug smirk. Caroline gasped in horror, “Miss Methail….!” Miss Methail interrupted her, “No explanation needed, Caroline! You interfering busybodies were planning to escape, weren’t you? And Caroline and Carrie were helping you. You really thought it would be so easy to escape? Ah, no, you foolish kids. You’d probably go to the police, once you escaped and tell them that you had found the Malice Thieves Gang. But we are not letting that happen, kiddos! I did smell a rat, when Caroline and Carrie began spending so much time with you.” Caroline stuttered, “You not gone to picnic? Je so surprised! It is not what you think it is, Miss Methail. We were not helping them to escape. They make fuss, so we take them to Vicky.” Carrie spoke in a scared voice, “Yes, Miss Methail. We take them to Vicky, the ticket booth man.” Miss Methail smirked, “Yes, I didn’t go to the picnic. And whom do you think you are kidding, girls? You’re lying. I have been keeping an eye or, should I rather say an ear on you all. I have been listening to all that you say. I even listened to the plans you made at midnight.” Suzie began crying and Jessica protectively put an arm around her sister. Miss Methail then crackled, “You all were snooping and now you have to face the consequences.” She laughed a nasty laugh.

Chapter 10- Trapped, once again!

Miss Methail then ordered, “Now you all will come with me. No tries to escape!” She pushed the children up the stairs and through the corridor. Then she pushed them into a room different than the previous room. She spoke sharply, “Now, you will stay here quietly, without making a fuss.” She then went out and locked the room. Next, she went to the next room and threw down the key out of the window. The children gasped in horror. Julia squealed, “We will be locked in here forever now!” Jessica nodded sadly, “Yes, Methail has thrown out the key.” Suzie cried, “We will be starved!” Then, Caroline shook her head, “No, we will not be starved. There is lots of food in cupboard.” Trevor walked up to the cupboard and opened it. The children gasped. The cupboard was filled with tins of food. Jeff snorted, “At least Methail Romps is decent enough to leave us food.” The other Andrews agreed wholeheartedly. But then, Carrie said, “No! Actually, Miss Methail is nice. She is forced to do bad work.” The others didn’t pay much attention to Carrie. Trevor spoke, “I am really hungry. Julia, Jessica, please make us something to eat!” Julia and Jessica agreed. They took out tins of pineapple and tuna from the cupboard along with bread. Then they started making pineapple tuna sandwiches for everyone to eat. Meanwhile Caroline got put dishes from the cupboard and took out some tinned fruit from the cupboard. Everyone ate the fruit while the sandwiches were being made. Soon after, the children were eating sandwiches and lemonade. Then, Suzie casually walked up to the window and looked out. Suddenly, she cried out, “Look! There is our key on the cement panel!” The other rushed to the window, in great excitement. The key was on a wide cement panel, all right. Trevor sighed, “If only we had a rope, someone from us could go down and fetch the key.” Julia stared at Trevor unblinkingly. Then she carefully said, “I don’t see, why not?” Jessica shook her head in disbelief, “Julia, are you out of your mind? Where in the world will we get a rope?” Julia smiled mischievously, “I didn’t say we needed a rope. We could use something like it.” Before Jessica could retort, Jeff said, “So what do you propose we should do?” Julia laughed, “We can join Jeff and Trevor’s belt and make a belt rope.” Jeff exclaimed, “Of course! Why didn’t I think of that before? We can make a belt rope and use the belt-rope trick. And Suzie can go down to the cement panel and can fetch the key.” Then he turned to Suzie, “You can do that, can’t you Suzie?” Suzie nodded, “I’ll try my best!” Jeff nodded approvingly. Both the boys took off their belts and then Jeff joined it to make a belt-rope. He went to the window and tied the belt-rope firmly to a handle bar. He then gently said, “Ready to do this Suzie?” Suzie nodded, not so confidently, “Yes, I think I am.”

Chapter 11- The Great Escapade

Suzie held the belt-rope and let herself down slowly. The wind made the belt-rope swing and Suzie clung on for dear life. After some time, Suzie reached the wide cement panel and could put down her feet on it. After hanging in the hair for some time, Suzie welcomed the support the cement panel provided. She allowed herself some time to catch onto her breath. Then she picked up the key, careful not to drop it. She tied the key to the belt-rope and gave it three tugs. Jeff pulled up the key easily. He let down the rope again for Suzie to climb up. But Suzie cried, “Oh, oh! I can’t climb up.” Julia’s anxious face peered down from the window as she said, “Oh, Suzie dear. Can’t you try once?” Suzie shook her head as she sobbed, “No, Julia. I’m really afraid of this.” Julia’s face disappeared from Suzie’s views as she heard Jeff speaking, “I don’t know. What should we do now?” Suzie called out from the cement panel, “I think you all should go and leave me behind. Go back to Miss Farris and bring help.” Then Suzie could hear Jeff speaking, “That’s a good idea, but we can’t leave Suzie all alone.” Jessica’s voice confidently spoke, “I’ll go down and stay here with her.” Trevor said, “Yes, this is a good idea.” Then Jessica’s face came into Suzie’s view as she spoke comfortingly, “We will leave you behind, Suzie dear. But you won’t stay alone. I will see off the others and then come back to you.” Suzie nodded in relief and Jessica went away from the window fully satisfied. Jessica didn’t appear for a long time. When she did, she dropped herself down slowly. When she finally put her feet on the panel, she sat down next to Suzie, worriedly. Suzie didn’t notice her sister’s expression at first. She asked, “Jessica has everyone escaped from the room safely?” Jessica shook her head in worry, “No, Suzie. They didn’t. The key…didn’t fit into the lock.” Suzie gasped, “What? You surely don’t mean it Jess?” Jessica shook her head sadly, “I do mean it.” Suzie shook her head in disbelief, “We are really in a bad state, Jessica.” Jessica nodded, “Yeah.” Suzie looked dismayed. But then she got a brainwave. She excitedly gripped her sister and whispered, “Jessica, I have an idea! Do you see the balcony of this room?” Jessica nodded, “Yes, I do. It’s almost beside the panel and is a little lower.” Suzie then said, “Couldn’t we jump into the balcony, Jessica?” Jessica nodded excitedly, “Yes, Suzie. I believe we can. And then we can get out of this balcony’s room.” Suzie said, “Yes, and then if we can’t get the others out we’ll go and get help ourselves.” Jessica smiled at her sister, encouraging her as she tried jumping into the balcony. Suzie almost slipped but she made it and landed in the balcony. She watched with bated breath as Jessica jumped and landed beside her. Both of them entered the tiny room connected to the balcony. The room was very pleasant and had two beds in it. There was a table in it too. Jessica went up to the table. There was a book on it. The words were all in French. The book was a mixture of textbook and notebook. On the cover, there was a label that read, “Caroline Tasagne.” The notepaper held the names of all the children- Julia, Jessica, Suzie, Jeff, Trevor and Dash. The book held pictures of Caroline, Carrie, a man and a lady. Jessica showed the book to Suzie. She thought, “The textbook is in French. This room must be Caroline and Carrie’s.” Then both the girls walked out of the room. As soon as they were out of the room, they saw that Caroline and Carrie’s room was a room in the staircase.

Chapter 12- Escaped at Last!

Suzie and Jessica climbed up the tiring stairs carefully as well as cautiously. It tired them but they were determined to get help. Soon, they came across the room in which the others were locked. They saw that the door wasn’t locked at all. It was just bolted from outside. Jessica made an effort to drag the bolts open. From inside, Jeff called out, “Hey, who is there? Is it the beast of Methail Romps?” Suzie giggled, “No, it’s Suzie and Jessica!” Just then, Jessica swung open the door. All the children and Dash trooped out. All the children were surprised. Finally, Trevor asked, “However in the world did you two find your way here?” Jessica explained, “We jumped into the balcony of the room in the staircase. The room turned out to be Caroline and Carrie’s room. Then, we climbed up the steps, found our way to this room and opened it for you all to troop out.” Jeff asked her in disbelief, “And how exactly did you open the door to the room?” Suzie laughed, “Oh, the room wasn’t locked. It was just bolted from the outside.” Julia said, “Really? Methail Romps does have a soft side of her soul then.” The others agreed with her. Then, Trevor asked, “And now, how are we gonna get out of this castle?” Jessica nodded, “Yeah, we’ve got to escape. The police needs to know about the Malice Thieves Gang.” Caroline thought for a while and then spoke hesitantly, taking charge, “Follow me, all.” She walked through the corridor and reached the top of the big staircase. She began climbing down and the others followed her. Jessica complained, “Not the same route again!” Caroline shook her head, “No, it isn’t. Je promise.” Caroline stopped in front of the door in the staircase. She opened the door and all the children went it. Caroline picked up her French book from the table and handed it to Carrie saying, “Hold this.” Then she walked up to her cupboard and opened it. She carefully parted her clothes. On the back of her cupboard, there was a camouflaged door. Everyone gasped as they saw it. Carrie pointed her finger at her sister accusingly, “Caroline you never told me your big secret!” Caroline said, “Je not think it was important.” Carrie shook her head, “So this is how you went to town.” Caroline nodded, “Yes!” Caroline then opened the door and entered it. The others followed her as she walked down the uneven stone stairs. The stone stairs led down and down and down. No one could make out how far it went. They all walked down the steps carefully. After half an hour of walking, Suzie got tired. She grumbled, “I’m so tired!” Julia spoke to her comfortingly, “Keep patience, pet. We need to get help as soon as possible.” The group kept on walking. But after some time, Suzie again grumbled, “Oh, please stop! I can’t walk another step. I am so tired.” Suzie started sobbing hysterically. Julia continuously mumbled, “We’re almost there, dear. Don’t cry, please? There’s a good girl.” But naturally Suzie got tired and couldn’t move on. So finally, Caroline suggested, “Okay, Suzie. We stop at the next rest-room.” Jessica asked in surprise, “Rest-room?” Caroline nodded as she explained, “Yes, there are rest-rooms made in the walls to rest. The stairs go on for a long time, you know.” Soon they came across a room in the walls. They all went in. It was really dark. Caroline found her way to the mantelpiece. She groped around for a candle and finally found one. Soon the room was flooded with light as Caroline lit the candle on the mantelpiece. Everybody stared around and gasped. They were in a perfect room. The room had a table in the middle and chairs around it. There was also a cupboard in the corner. Caroline saw the shocked expressions of her friends and thus she explained, “This is a resting room. Je always rest here. Take seats, all.” Everyone gladly took seats, for they were so tired. Caroline went up to the cupboard and opened. She took out a packet of bread and cheese along with tinned chicken. She started making chicken and cheese sandwich for everyone with Julia and Jessica’s help. While the twins were serving the sandwiches, Caroline fetched seven cups and two bottles orangeade to drink. The children ate sandwiches and drank orangeade and had a good, relaxed time.

Chapter 13- Back to the Holiday House

After having finished eating and drinking, Caroline said, “Well, Je hope you like this rest. But we must resume our trek now.” The others agreed. Caroline walked to the mantelpiece and blew out the candle. All of them slowly walked out, one by one. As they resumed walking downstairs, Jeff asked, “Um, Caroline. I have a question.” Caroline said, “Yes?” Jeff spoke, “How long does this stairs extend.” Caroline replied, “Oh. It is long. Leads right down the Counts’ Hill” Julia gasped before Jeff could speak, “Wow! That’s awesome!” Caroline nodded. Soon after a while, Suzie needed to rest again. So, all the children took a break and sat on the stairs. They drank the orangeade which they had brought from the resting-room. After some time, when Suzie and the others were ready, the little group set off again. The walking made the children tired but they were determined not to give up. After a while of walking, the stairs ended and the children found themselves in an underground passage. The children stopped for a moment to take a good look at the passage. The passage was made of rock and was narrow. The children started walking through the narrow passage. They could hear strange voices and footsteps. The voices and footsteps seemed to be coming from the roof of the rock passage. Suzie asked in a scared whisper, “Who is talking and walking above us Caroline? Caroline smiled comfortingly at Suzie, “Don’t worry. It’s just the town people.” Jessica said in surprise, “What do you mean by ‘the town people’? Caroline laughed as she explained, “This is an underground passage. It is below the Counts’ Town. So, these voices and footsteps belong to the town people.” Trevor said, “Oh, wow! It still surprises me how you found all this.” Caroline thought for a while processing all this and then replied, “Oh, no, no. It just happened. I open my cupboard and find the door. I follow the passage and find all this.” Caroline smiled triumphantly. The others giggled. Then Julia gave a sigh, “How long do we have to walk now, Caroline?” Caroline shook her head, “Not much. We’ll reach soon.” They walked for some more time. Now, they could see that their narrow rock passage had ended and there were a few steps leading up. Jeff joked, “Isn’t it good to see stairs after such a long, winding passage!” The others laughed off and agreed. They all began climbing the stairs and weren’t surprised when it ended too early. When the children had reached the top of the stairs, they found themselves in front of a wooden door with a brass handle. Caroline didn’t hesitate as she turned the brass handle and the door opened. The children walked into the doorway. Suddenly, Dash began barking excitedly. The Andrew children could figure out the matter and thus hushed him. The children saw that they were in a cellar of a house. Julia said in surprise, “Gosh! This is a cellar of some old house.” Trevor nodded, “Yes. It’s unbelievable, isn’t it?” Jessica spoke, overcome with surprise, “Yes, it does. We came all the way to this cellar from the Counts’ Castle through this underground passage.” Jeff said thoughtfully, “Yes, and boy! Wasn’t the path long?” The others nodded as they agreed. Caroline laughed to herself as she heard the Andrew speak amongst them. Caroline then led them across the cellar and up to the stairs which were leading up. The children quickly climbed the stairs and went into the kitchen of the house. The kitchen seemed oddly familiar to the Andrews. The Andrews looked around for a while, trying to place why the kitchen looked so familiar. But Caroline didn’t give them much time. She ushered the children out of the kitchen and into the dining room. A woman sat on the chair, her back to the children. Suddenly, Jessica spoke excitedly as the familiarity made sense in her mind, “Oh my god! This is Miss Farris’ Holiday House and there sits Miss Farris.” And yes, Jessica was right. This was the Holiday House and the woman was Miss Farris. As soon as Miss Farris heard Jessica’s voice she quickly turned around.

Chapter 14- A Pleasant Time

The children crowded around Miss Farris. Miss Farris had become very pale; as if she were very sick and hadn’t slept since many days. Caroline seemed surprised that the Andrews knew Miss Farris. Miss Farris sobbed quietly to herself and wouldn’t tell anyone what the matter was. Jeff patted her shoulder and said, “Miss Farris, I know that things are not right. But trust me; everything will be all right soon. Don’t worry.” Miss Farris wiped off her tears as she spoke, “Oh yes, my dears. Everything will be okay. But you have lots of explaining to do.” Trevor nodded, “Yes, Miss Farris, we know. And we’ll tell you everything.” Miss Farris smiled weakly at the children, “Good. Now, how about I make you some food and you tell me while eating?” Julia thanked her, “That looks like a wonderful idea.” The children went to wash while Miss Farris made them some food. After a while the children were seated at the dining table along with Caroline and Carrie. Miss Farris began, “You better start from the beginning- Where you were and how you know this girl Caroline.” And so the children began the explanation. They all took chances to explain- how they had seen the portraits and rooms of the Counts’, how they had ended up in the private room, how they encountered with Kennedy Golf, how they had come to know about The Malice Thieves Gang’s hideout, how they had been locked by the gang, how they met Caroline and Carrie and finally how they escaped. The explanation left Miss Farris in surprise and shock. When she recovered, she silently spoke, “Well I never! Of all things in this world, I never imagined this would happen to my holiday house children. Oh, I’m so sorry, children.” Jessica was shocked as she said, “Oh Miss Farris. Don’t be silly. You haven’t done anything. It was entirely our fault. We should’ve been more alert.” Miss Farris shook her head, “I was so worried. The police are searching all over for you. I must inform them about you.” Suzie said to Miss Farris, “Oh, we’re so sorry, Miss Farris. Forgive us?” Miss Farris lifted Suzie to her lap and said softly, “Yes, of course my dear.” Then Miss Farris telephoned the police, “Officer Joy? Yes this is Beth Farris speaking from the Holiday House. Yes Officer, the children are back. They are safe. What happened to them? Well, I don’t know yet but you may drop the case. Yes, thank you.” Jeff said as soon as he hung up, “Thanks for not telling them.” Miss Farris winked at Jeff and then spoke, “You all must be wondering how I know Caroline.” The Andrews and Carrie nodded. Miss Farris explained, “One day, Caroline had turned up at my house without notice. I didn’t know her then and was quite aghast. I was about to call the police but she begged me not to and told me about herself. She told me where she worked. But she told me that she lived with her parents and that her parents wouldn’t let her come to town. So, apparently she had found this path and had turned up at my house. She never told me about this robbers’ gang or whatever it is. So that’s a lie on your part, Caroline.” Caroline shook her head, “Ah, no. Je not want to worry you. So, je lie. Je suis sorry, Miss Farris.” Miss Farris patted her shoulder comfortingly and said, “It is okay, Caroline. It really is. Is that your sister Carrie?” Carrie nodded as she came forward to shake hands with Miss Farris. Suddenly, Jessica asked, “Can I use your telephone, Miss Farris?” Miss Farris agreed. Jessica hurriedly went up to the phone and dialed her mother’s phone number. She spoke as her call was picked up, “Hallo. Mom, is that you?” Her mother spoke with relief, “Jessica, oh darling! I and Daddy worried ourselves so much when Miss Farris told us that you had disappeared. Jessica said, “Mom, we’re all safe. Can I please speak to daddy? It’s really urgent.” After a few seconds her father spoke to her through the phone, “Jessica, honey! I’m glad that you all are okay.” Jessica said in an impatient voice, “Hallo, daddy. I’m glad too. I want you to come to Counts’ Town at once. We have found the Malice Thieves Gang’s hideout. Do hurry up and come here quickly, daddy!” She put down the receiver without waiting for an answer from her father.

Chapter 15- Caroline helps the Police!

After finishing the call, Jessica went back to the dining room and took her seat at the table. Surprisingly, all the food that Miss Farris had prepared was uneaten. Everybody was so busy with the explanation that nobody had even noticed what Miss Farris had prepared. So Jessica helped laughing as she spoke, “Oh god, guys! Will we even eat anything?” Miss Farris laughed as Trevor said, “Oh god yes! We didn’t eat any of this food. And it’s all cold now.” Jeff laughed, “That’s okay, Trevor. Cold food doesn’t taste bad at all.” Trevor said sarcastically, “Oh yes, Sir Jeffrey. Of course!” Before a fight could break out, Julia ushered them both and the children took a look at what was prepared. Miss Farris had generously prepared cold ham, tea, coffee, cake, sandwiches, chocolate fudge, crisps etc. To provide some food as lunch she had prepared French rice, croissants, oat balls dipped in cheese dip, bread with a spread of chicken, shrimp paste and much, much more. The children ate ravenously and in a short while all the plates were cleared of food. Miss Farris couldn’t help beaming as she said, “Gosh! You all really must be hungry.” Jessica nodded, “Oh, yes, we were. We didn’t have a good thing to eat at the Castle.” Carrie snorted, “Yes, and me and Caroline have to eat bad food every day.” Miss Farris smiled at the sisters sympathetically. Julia then said, “We were really hungry but now we’re good. Thanks to you, Miss Farris.” Miss Farris laughed, “You’re most welcome, children.” Suddenly, the doorbell rang and Miss Farris went to open the door. In a short while, the dining room was crowded with police sergeants and Mr. Andrew. Suzie squealed as she flung herself upon her father, “Oh, daddy! I’m so glad to see you.” Mr. Andrew smiled, “I am glad too, dear Suzie.” Mr. Andrew hugged all the children. Jessica said, “Really, dad. You’ve been quick.” Mr. Andrew nodded. He then asked, “So, what is this about the Malice Thieves Gang, you told me Jessica?” Jeff explained their adventure to his uncle in short. Mr. Andrew was shocked but managed to speak, “Caroline, huh? Who’s this Caroline?” Caroline stepped forward shyly and said, “That’s me.” Mr. Andrew nodded, “Good work, Caroline. But we need to capture the Malice Thieves Gang as soon as possible. Show us the way, will you?” Caroline was just too glad to help the police. She led them to the kitchen and down to the cellar. A sergeant lit his torch and Caroline led them across the cellar and down the steps which led to the underground rock passage. Mr. Andrew gasped, “Oh wow! This is such a mysterious passage. Where does it lead to?” Caroline replied, a bit too enthusiastically, “Yes, it is. It leads to my room in Counts’ Castle.” Mr. Andrew smiled at the girl. The police officers marveled at the way the rock passage was made. The passage was long and the heavy officers took time to make progress. After what seemed like ages, the passage ended and the group reach the bottom of the stairs that led right uphill. Mr. Andrew groaned in exhaustion, “How long are these stairs?” Caroline replied politely, “They are long, sir. But we will take a break in between.” And thus the group resumes their trek. Again after a long, long time Caroline finally said, “We will take a short break now. The tired officers cheered and Caroline led them into her comforting resting-room. Caroline made the officers some sandwiches while they rested. The officers drank lemonade along with the sandwiches. Mr. Andrew said, “Why don’t you eat something Caroline?” Caroline nodded, “Je will, sir.” After a relaxing rest that brought unimagined comfort to the officers, the little group resumed their trek. Soon in a while, they reached the door which was behind Caroline’s cupboard. Caroline opened the door and the group trooped into Caroline and Carrie’s room.

Chapter 16- Lucky Children!

Caroline then led them all out of the room. The group began climbing the stairs. Soon, they came across the room in which the children were locked up before. They climbed further up. Caroline then led them to a corridor which had ten doors belonging to rooms. She whispered, “They all live here.” Mr. Andrew spoke, “Thank you, Caroline. You have been a great help. Go back to the holiday house now, Caroline. We’ll take care of the gang now.” Caroline spoke, “Please don’t be too hard on Miss Methail Romps.” Then, without waiting for an answer she fled to her room. She hurriedly gathered her and Carrie’s belonging and packed them in a tattered suitcase. Then she set off the through the secret passage, wishing that Mr. Andrew would pay heed to her request about Methail Romps. She walked as fast as she could and after a long while finally reached the holiday house. She went to the living room where Miss Farris cat on the couch and knitted. She asked, “Where are the other children, Miss Farris?” Miss Farris looked up at her and replied, “I’ve sent them to bed. They all were very sad. You must go to bed too, Caroline. You are tired too, I know. She took Caroline to the room in which Carrie was sleeping. She allowed Caroline some time to freshen up and then tucked her in. The children peacefully slept for two hours. Then they woke up, dressed and went down to the living room. Mr. and Mrs. Andrew were there. Mrs. Andrew hugged all the children including the Tasagne sisters (Caroline and Carrie). Mr. Andrew then spoke in a business-like way, “We captured the Malice Thieves Gang. The treasure which they had stolen over years is now in our possession. They are in prison now.” Carrie spoke, terrified, “Are all in prison, sir?” Mr. Andrew smiled, “No, not all. We have relieved an innocent lady. Methail Romps is relieved. We have sent her away to France and there she’ll be having therapy.” Caroline and Carrie looked relieved. Suddenly, a look of horror crossed Caroline’s face. She asked, “What will happen to us now?” Mr. Andrew nodded, “Yes, I was just about to come to that. Miss Farris has said that she will gladly adopt you both.” Carrie was very happy but Caroline said, “Really, Miss Farris?” And when Miss Farris nodded Caroline said, “Thank you so much.” Then, Mr. Andrew continued, “Okay, now, about the treasure. This treasure belongs to a very rich, French man. The treasure was stolen by the gang over a few years.” He paused and beckoned to a sergeant. Two smartly dressed policemen entered, carrying a treasure chest between them. Mrs. Andrew took the honor of opening the treasure chest. There was a flash as the treasure chest was opened. It was filled with gold coins, money and precious stones and gems. There was jewelry worth thousands of pounds. Mr. Andrew heard the gasps of the children. He said, “This is just a small part of the French man’s treasure. We have told them about the gang and have returned his treasure to him. He wants that each of you children to have a thing for yourself from his treasure chest.” The children gasped in surprise. Mr. Andrew said, “Come one by one and choose your gift, children. Jeff you’re the eldest. You come first.” Jeff went up to the treasure chest and chose a nice watch as his reward. Trevor then came and chose a gold coin. Next, Julia and Jessica came and chose identical brooches. But then Jessica changed her mind and took an emerald brooch while Julia had taken a garnet one. Mrs. Andrew chose a pearl necklace for Suzie. Caroline took a silver ring while Carrie chose a silver tiara. After the reward choosing was done, Mr. Andrew said, “You children deserved this reward. I’m really proud of you, my children.” Mrs. Andrew nodded, “And so am I.” Julia asked, “How is Aunt Cathay now, mum?” Mrs. Andrew replied, “Oh, she’s perfectly fine now.”

We’ll leave them to have a day of their own now. Goodbye to the Andrews, Miss Farris and the Tasagnes. And yes, Goodbye Dash!

****The End****

Author’s note

Dear Reader,

I hope you have enjoyed reading this book as much as I have, writing it. This took me hard work. But I managed to make. Mail your review about this book to [email protected]

I would love to hear from you all. Thank You for reading this book.

The Andrews; Visit Counts' Town

The Andrew children are sent to Miss Farris’ boarding house in Counts’ Town during their summer vacations as no one is available at home. The journey to Counts’ Town but the place there is worth the trouble. The holiday house is a beautiful house, with a farm. But the Andrews haven’t got any time for farms. They have a strong desire to visit the famous Counts’ Castle. And they do get the permission from Miss Farris. But will the children be able to keep themselves out of trouble? Indeed, they won’t. The Andrews find out that a thieves’ gang have their head quarters at the castle. Finding out a part of their secrets, the Andrews are locked up in the mysterious castle. And now, it is up to them to have the gang arrested. And at the end, they find an unbelievable secret.....

  • ISBN: 9781370406463
  • Author: Antara Mitra
  • Published: 2016-12-30 05:35:10
  • Words: 10761
The Andrews; Visit Counts' Town The Andrews; Visit Counts' Town