Ichetucknee

“I really like it here, Eddy. The motel, the view of the Ichelus Volcano over there. Look! It seems to be erupting again.”

This made Edward, her Eddy, think of another eruption earlier. Couldn’t wait. “Hmm,” he said, also looking, also pretty impressed.

“Have you had a chance to crack the book yet, Eddy? I know we’ve been awfully busy,” and she winks here, “but I did go to a lot of trouble to get it for you.”

“Tessa,” he replied, starting to think of his cousin, 1 in a set of 3. The other…

“Yes.”

“I started reading the first chapter,” he said, which was truth, or at least he checked the title of the chapter to make sure it was the right book. ‘Marbles Fall, Marble Falls.’ He could have swore it was the other way around, but probably just a faulty memory. Close enough — it was the same, he determined.

“Newton,” she said, recalling her own reading of the cursed thing. “Physical world, mechanics. *No* dreams. Right there in the first chapter, stating it all plain and simple up front. We *live*… in Newton.”

“But we need Jasper,” he completed her thought. He tried to recall his dreams from last night, after all the frantic activity was over, like a volcano shutting down. Took some time. He remembers the lava turning cool and changing colors from orange to blue. Ichelus in reality, but in the dream it was something different. Itchy? No that wasn’t it.

“Be careful of the marble rolling off. We’ve already lost one.” I was just kidding about the cracking, she wanted to say but didn’t have the chance. Open *gently*.

We? Edward thought on his part. Why did she say that? “Right, I will.”

“Miss Ouri has it.”

“Yes. I recall.”

“We don’t want Miss Ouri to be involved again. Cactus doll.”

“Yes,” he replied. That ravenous, mutant cactus doll. Brought to life by library voodoo. No, we don’t want that (again). Stick with Nauty if you want pincushions. *Under* the library — around it but not inside.

“I would really like to see the volcano today,” Jem requested. “I mean, up close and personal,” she clarified while looking out the window again. “Not like this — from a distance.”

“I understand,” and then another memory locked into place. He was tubing in the lava that wasn’t lava any longer.

(to be continued)

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