We started through the hallways and explored room after room on the ground floor. We found a kitchen and dining room, a library, a room that looked like it had been set on fire, and a room covered in dried blood just to start off.
“Ewwww!!” shrieked Vivian. “This is disgusting.”
“What’s a matter Viv, scared of a little blood?”
She gave me a disgusted look, and then peered on the floor behind me. “What?” I turned around to what she had started pointing at. There was a dagger on the floor, also covered in blood, with a leather strap around it; though the handle was rusted, the blade looked strangely new.
“You schould take it,” suggested the Professor, “it kould be useful.” I tied it to my belt loop and we continued on.
At some point we ventured upstairs, which is where we started to get separated. I was going through rooms too fast and the others were getting tired, which slowed them down. I didn’t know why I felt so energized, but I couldn’t help it, I had to keep moving. Among others, I found a ballroom, and what probably used to be a game room. There seemed to be hallways upon hallways that seemed to just appear out of nowhere as I moved forward. Everyone else was always two rooms behind me, but I couldn’t stop for them. I could hear them behind me, noticing more than I had, finding things.
“Check out this crazy mask!” I heard Peter exclaim. “It’s covered in dust that’ll be perfect for my experiments!”
“At last!” the Professor had found something he apparently knew would be here. “It’s zee medallion of the spirit world!” Even from the next room he sounded crazy. I heard a loud thud and stopped for a second, only to hear Heather apologize for dropping a large book on the ground. I kept going. I felt like I was looking for something, like I was on a mission to find something, I just didn’t know what it was. Yet.
I was going through rooms so quickly that I almost fell, probably to my death, when I opened a door and was faced with what I could only call a chasm; the floor boards were all broken and all I could see when I looked down was infinite darkness. My head was spinning and I dropped to my knees, frozen in place. I felt like I was being suffocated, and a weight was pushing down on my shoulders, keeping me down no matter how much I wanted to push against it.
Daaa-rriiin. Daaaaa-rriiiin. DARRIN!
I could hear them calling me. I could hear my girlfriend, my sister, the others…who else could it be? It was so loud I thought they were all right next to me. I finally forced myself up and out of the room and I heard a scream from down the hall. I followed the noise.
I crashed in through another door to find everyone standing around what I assumed was a bedroom at some point. Only, it had something I never had in my bedroom – a giant statue with its hands outstretched, its eyes closed, and an etching at the bottom that read To Defeat the Undefeatable.
“What the hell is that thing?” I asked, since I was late to the party. They turned all at once to look at me, almost every face with a look of fear stuck on it.
“Zis vould be Zee Animated Shtatue, I believe,” said Longfellow. “I vasn’t positive it existed until now,” he muttered, and then continued. “It is meant to help zee heroes defeat zee immortal shpirit who is bent on opening zee gates of hell.” I rolled my eyes; I still didn’t believe a word that came out of that psycho’s mouth.
“Does it want something?” asked Zoe, looking at the open palms. She put her teddy bear in its hand and it proceeded to come to life and chuck it across the room; if I hadn’t ducked it would have smacked me square in the face.
“No, no, it vants something very shpecific…I just need to remember…” Longfellow pondered for a moment and I heard the voice again.
I could see everyone in the room and not a single person’s mouth had moved. I didn’t know why I heard my name, or who was saying it, but I sure as heck didn’t like it.
Daaa-rriiin. Immortality is waiting for you.
All you have to do is open the gates to hell.