The Moon Stealers and the Quest for the Silver Bough

The Yorkshire town of Parsley Bottom has a problem…

Peter Crisp, a boy with an unusual gift of being able to see things that others cannot, goes missing after spending the night in a graveyard. Two of Peter's school friends, join forces with a Knight of King Arthur to attempt to find him but come across some mysterious engravings which propel them on an adventure beyond their imagination.

Meanwhile MI6 operative Steven Knight is sent from London to investigate a meteor landing site, but Steven is advised by his own boss not to trust the puppeteers that hold the strings to his investigation. Within the core of the meteor is an alien bacteria that evolves at an alarming rate that not only puts Steven's life at risk, but the entire human race.

By unravelling ancient codes and riddles the children journey within the bowels of Edinburgh Castle as they attempt to find the key to Peter’s disappearance. The children not only need to save Peter, they need to save the world while they’re at


34. Escape to Butterwick Hall

Steven, Georgia and Tracker ran as fast as they could along the gravel path beside the lake and rounded a small collection of trees so that they were now facing the back of Butterwick Hall. Steven looked up into the night sky at the circling black shadows of the creatures that were now approaching them from above the house and diving out of the sky towards them. Several creatures swept towards Tracker making him dive to the ground, but Steven was ready. He had already knelt down onto one knee and was levelling the shotgun at the leader of the group. Shotgun pellets burst into the group, scattering them in different directions. The creature he shot fell down to the ground, knocking another creature out of the sky as it dropped.

Tracker picked himself off the ground. With their heads bent low Steven and Georgia went over to join him. Georgia was watching from behind and could see more creatures from around the Ice House joining the others ready to attack from the air behind them.

‘Come on,’ called Tracker, ‘we must get to the house! There’s too many of them.’

As the bodies of the creatures swept down towards them, they continued to run towards the back area of the house. Steven could see that there was an entrance door to the left of the building that was obviously the servants’ wing. The door appeared to be open. All they had to do was head towards it. Although they would feel safer inside the house, it would only be a short term measure based on the destructive force they had seen the creatures perform. But it would give them time to think of a plan, as well as collect extra weapons and food.

In front of them was a well manicured lawn which felt soft and spongy beneath their feet. Steven instinctively ducked his head and twisted behind him to see the white cloudy eye of a creature bearing down on him. He swung his gun round and released his final barrel of pellets into the air above his head. There was a small explosion from the creature’s body which caused a yellow fluid to shower the grass around them as they continued to run towards the house.

‘I’m out of bullets!’, shouted Steven to Tracker. Georgia let out a scream as one of the creatures began lifting her away from the ground by the claws it had hooked into the bag over her shoulders. Tracker took aim and shot two bullets into the creature which fell to the ground along with Georgia. They were only a short distance from the door. Steven and Tracker lifted Georgia under her arms and ran with her the final stretch of the grass, onto the gravel towards the door. Suddenly a creature landed on the gravel in front of the door blocking their way in. Tracker raised his gun once again and shot what bullets he had left directly into the eye of the creature whilst still running forward. Behind them more black shapes fell from the sky as Tracker helped Georgia leap over the body of the creature that had fallen in front of the door. As soon as they were all through the doorway, Steven swung the barrel of the shotgun to hit the side of a creature’s face that had approached them from behind, then all three pushed the door into the stone archway, sealing the creatures outside. They leant against the door as hard as they could to prevent the creatures from getting in whilst Tracker sorted through the keys. Every now and again they felt the thud of creatures bang against the door, jarring their backs forward, until Tracker managed to lock the door. He then reached up and pushed a bolt at the top of the door into the stone wall then did the same at the bottom.

Together they sank down onto the floor, panting. Georgia could feel the blood being pushed forcefully around her body, could hear her heart beat inside her ears and feel her chest thumping. Although the bangs continued against the door, they knew that they were safe for now.

A smash came from the side of the door and a blackened claw hooked through the shards of glass.

Tracker leapt to his feet, picking up a spade that was propped up against a wall and swung it down hard onto the skeletal hand that was desperately trying to claw its way inside.

‘We need to get away from the windows and doors and make sure they are secure,’ he said, ‘let’s stay together.’

The three of them first started in the room they had just entered, pushing furniture and tables up against the windows. They left some of them that were too small to pose a danger before following Tracker through into the neighbouring rooms. Tracker collected keys as they went through the house, locking the doors behind them. After checking the kitchen and the rest of the servants' wing they made their way into the grander part of the house, moving thick solid furniture to bar the doors and windows.

The dining-room looked out from the front of the house towards the gravel driveway with its shallow fountain. The room had dark wood panelling at both ends, decorated with gold ornate framed paintings and carved shields with crossed swords behind. In the centre a long oak table stretched the length of the room and to the side opposite the front windows a large stone engraved fire surround dominated the room. The table and fire didn’t look like they had been used for some time as both were empty, with no cutlery on the table and no logs in the fireplace. Steven and Tracker automatically went up to the windows and checked that each lock was secure, whilst Georgia strolled over and admired the paintings, one of which showed a man dressed smartly in a suit outside the front of Butterwick Hall who seemed to closely resemble Tracker. Suddenly her attention was drawn towards the fireplace. She didn’t know why, but something had caught her eye. A small movement or something out of place, she didn’t know what it had been. Standing perfectly still she then noticed what it was that had got her attention: two hooks had appeared inside the fireplace underneath the mantelpiece and small trails of soot were falling silently from inside the chimney.

‘Tracker,’ she whispered to the Gamekeeper who had by now walked the length of the room to the opposite end to Georgia. He turned to her then followed her gaze towards the fireplace. A second set of hooks had now appeared and they could hear some soft movement from behind the wall space above the fireplace.

Tracker slipped the gun from between his trousers and his belt and aimed it at the fireplace. Steven climbed onto a chair that was probably priceless and pulled one of the swords from its display mount on the wall. They both walked slowly towards the fireplace as two clawed feet landed on the base. At first the creature looked smaller than the rest they had already encountered, but they soon realised that to get down the chimney, it had curled itself up with only the claws to grip onto the loose sooty sides. It now stretched itself up to its full height and unfolded its wings. The black curtain of an eyelid slowly lifted to reveal the white globe of an eye. Tracker pulled the trigger on his gun, but all it did was click harmlessly; he had run out of bullets during their escape to the house. Realising what had happened, Steven ran round the table and charged forward with his antique sword. He swung his arms back ready to bring the sword into the creature but before he could, the creature let out a high pitched scream, flapped its wings and leapt onto the oak table. Steven missed and harmlessly struck the fireplace with the sword. Tracker leapt onto the chair and pulled the other sword from the wall together with the shield and began to advance towards the creature from the other side of the table. He swung at the creature’s leg whilst deflecting an arm that clawed at him with the shield. As the creature’s focus was on Tracker, Steven swung his sword at the other leg. Although the creature moved the leg out of the way, the tip of the sword slashed into the blackened flesh causing the creature to stumble forward slightly. In anger it swept its wing backwards and knocked Steven against the fire place, his head banging slightly against the stone surround. Using one of its long arms for support the creature managed to move along the table whilst still using its other arm to swing at Tracker. Once again, Tracker’s shield deflected some blows from the creature but the continual force knocked him off balance and he stumbled backwards. The creature took its opportunity and leapt onto Tracker, the body weight of the creature pinning him to the ground so that he was unable to swing his sword at the creature. To Tracker’s amazement it seemed like the creature was sweating, he could see small beads of liquid forming over its thick blackened skin. Where the creature’s body was touching the shield, the metal now seemed to be smoking and there was an acidic smell in the air. The creature’s face was just inches from Tracker, its stale breath blew from the small circular mouth below the eye. Suddenly the creature’s body became even heavier as Tracker realised that it was no longer moving and no more air was coming out of the mouth. Confused, he tried to look round the body of the creature to see what had happened, but couldn’t so stayed where he was. Georgia came into view and pushed at the creature with her foot to try and free him. It rolled off Tracker’s body and crashed against some of the chairs. It was then that he noticed that the creature appeared to have a metal candle stick holder sticking out from its body.

‘Thank you,’ he said to Georgia as she helped to lift him off the ground. He examined the shield which was now useless as the surface was scarred and partially melted from the creature’s attack.

A moaning noise now came from the fireplace and Tracker braced himself for another attack, but was relieved to see Steven standing up holding the back of his head from the knock he had received.

Between them they managed to tip the table on its side and push it against the fireplace to prevent any other creatures from entering the house through the chimney.

They continued to work methodically through the house locking all the doors they could and confining themselves to the lower floor servants' quarters which had very few, but small, windows, as well as a well stocked kitchen and the gamekeeper’s weapons cupboard.

They sat in the kitchen nervously eating bread and cheese, swords and numerous loaded guns laid out across the thick oak table top ready to defend themselves should they need to. They took it in turns to stay awake and keep watch whilst the other two slept. The silence in the house would occasionally be broken by the thud of a creature as it attempted to break in.

By morning, with the presence of daylight, Steven hoped that the attack would have eased.

Join MovellasFind out what all the buzz is about. Join now to start sharing your creativity and passion
Loading ...