“Have you seen enough?” his voice thundered from behind them.
It surprised Walter and Alden that it made them jump from where they stood. They turned around to face Archibal’s displeasing demeanor.
“I don’t appreciate anyone looking through my personal affects without asking,” he said. “I suggest that next time you two stay out of this room permanently.”
Walter could tell that Alden wanted to ask him about the man in the glass coffin, but he held his tongue which was hard for Alden to do. Walter surmised that maybe Alden did not was to test Archibal’s mulligrubs and not be permitted to be back at the manor. They both nodded and sought their way out of the room, Archibal right behind them. Once they were all in corridor, the door vanished becoming nothing, but a wall. “Let it be forgotten,” Archibal glided his hand over the boy’s faces. Walter and Alden blinked. By the time Walter became aware again he saw the tail of Archibal’s robe disappear around the corner. He turned to Alden.
“Why are we in the corridor?” Alden said. Walter didn’t know himself. They headed back to the library where they saw Archibal sitting at his Davenport desk, reading a journal with a faded black cover. Without looking up, Archibal said, “the lessons have been adjourn. You are both free to leave.”
Walter and Alden glanced at each other. Walter didn’t want to leave just yet and he suspected Alden didn’t either.
“I’m assuming you want to visit a room,” Archibal said. “Very well. I believe room two-hundred and twelve is open. Fifth door on the left.”
Walter was confused. Why would there be a two-hundred and twelve room? Walter thought there was only thirty two rooms. Where did two-hundred and twelve come from? Archibal must have guessed his befuddlement.
“Are you going to stand there forever, Mr. Banny?” Archibal says. “I thought by now you would be running to see what the room holds.”
Walter turned to leave when he noticed that Alden had already left the room. He didn’t have to be told twice. Walter walked out into the foyer and started climbing the stairs, but stopped midway. He really wanted to see the room, however there was something on his mind he wanted to tell Archibal. He headed back to the library where Archibal was still readin the journal.
“Back so soon, Mr. Banny. I would think you wouldn’t want to miss what lay behind door two-hundred and twelve,” Archibal didn’t glance up.
“I was wondering if I could ask you something?” Walter prudently got closer, afraid he might refuse.
“What is it Mr. Banny?”
Walter stood a few inches away from the Davenport desk. “A few nights ago, I was in my room holding the Odyssey ring when it transported me into the past. I saw the fate of two men… The first man was walking in the woods in search of the light. He was Mr. Bagley’s friend, Mr. Arnold. He perished in those woods along with the man that was guiding him to the mountain. The second man I saw was a man named Edward, at least that was what Mr. Bagley called him. I believe it was his son. He died too—in the cemetery. It was the phantom that did it. I was sure of it because it stood there watching me. Though, I don’t think it could see me, but it felt as if it could. Then it rushed into the woods.”
“Are you sure of what you saw, Mr. Bagley?” Archibal was now paying attention.
“I’m sure of it. What does it all mean?”
“I haven’t figured it myself. Whether this phantom you have seen and the one that killed these two man is the same is yet to be discovered. Phantoms are very rare. There is no evidence of their existence. Few have been seen one, therefore little is written about them. Some wizards that have been regarded as scholars have documented everything they known, but phantoms are elusive. Only one has been sighted many centuries ago.”
“Odin said it was once a spook?”
“That is correct. Somehow, it found a way to segregate itself from them. Spooks aren’t known to separate from the group. They are a faction and they think as one. Spooks aren’t as mysterious as the phantom. A lot has been written on them. They are sentinels. A wizard can conjure them up to protect their homes. They have been used throughout time. They are dangerous beings and those that conjure them up do not mean well. The spooks keep away from the light and avoid it if they can.”
“What are the spooks protecting?”
“I thought you, Mr. Bagley, would have noticed. The light in the mountain. Whatever is up there is what they protect. The light is also the one conjuring them up. That is why many failed to reach that mountain. When the light glows is stifled, the spooks are dissolved because there is nothing to protec. I have been up there numerous times, but never during the witching hours. That is very strong magic that I cannot abate. This phantom on the other hand is different. It can change shapes and lately it has been trying to walk in the light. Once it does there is no way to defeat it. It can hide wherever it may and sneak upon those unfortunate it that cross it. It will try to will its power. It is getting strong the longer it lingers about. There will come a time that when the light stops glowing it will not inhibit the phantom. It seeks to be liberated from that that binds it.”
“Why does it keep coming after me?”
“That, I do not know, but I will caution you to not stray from home at night and stay away from the shadows. I have the gargoyles keeping a look out. Whatever you do, don’t tempt it. If you don’t mind, I have work to do.”
He returned to read the journal. Walter walked out of the library and went up the stairs. The manor was not a very well-lit place. There where sconces on the walls with lit up candles, making shadows appear in strange places. Walter wondered if the phantom could penetrate the manor. He tried not thinking about it and began looking for room two-hundred and twelve. He tried a few doors, but they were locked. The fifth door he tried finally opened. It didn’t look as spectacular as the other rooms. It had a four poster bed with white curtains with matching long, white curtains.