The small cobblestone lane the Queen led them down was filled with small facades and shop fronts, and Simone stared contently into each window as they passed. She observed a dress shop, where an old burlap mannequin modeled a sunset orange gown, with frills and sparkles and such. Sure, the ball gowns weren't comfortable, but they were definitely pretty. Simone made a mental note to make a pit stop at that dress shop the next time the girls visited the town, but with everything that was seemingly crammed into her head right now, she probably wouldn't remember anyway.
"Is that the potions shop, up there?" Audrey asked as she pointed to a small shop up the lane. A sign jutted out for all to read, hung just above the door. Kane's Potion Shop it read.
"Yes, it is," the Queen replied. Soon enough, the girls had reached the entrance to the potions shop. As Simone peered through the slightly grimy window, she concluded that Mr. Kane's shop would be about as nice as the man himself. Her point was proven as the Queen jiggled open the door and led them inside.
"Wow, nice place," Tristan scoffed as the five girls entered. The shop was small, dank, and dark. A musty smell clung to the air. It was cluttered and cramped too; misshapen shelves littered with unorganized potion bottles and flasks.
"This place feels wrong," Maddie commented. Simone could feel an eerie sensation crawling up her spine too. She just wanted to leave this dump.
"Let's just get this over with," Simone yelled.
"We don't really know what we're supposed to be doing yet," Ella said. The girls looked to the Queen.
"As you know, we have two questions to deal with tonight. Firstly, how are Mr. Erebus and Mr. Kane gaining access to The Book? We know that my locket is the only key, and that they don't have it," the Queen told them.
"Yeah, alright. Get to the point," Simone snapped impatiently. The Queen tended to ramble, and Simone didn't like that. She was a picky person.
"Well," the Queen pursed her thin lips, "As a potions master, Mr. Kane has access to many potions, and a bit of strong magic. I believe that Mr. Kane and Mr. Erebus have used their own professions to their advantages, therefore, Mr. Kane most likely is using potions to help him through this situation." Simone sighed. The Queen still hadn't explained what they were doing.
"Okay, does Mr. Kane keep records? Something similar to that?" Ella asked.
"I'm not sure. That's why I need you girls to search the entire shop," the Queen answered.
"Alright, then let's start behind this counter," Maddie beckoned to the overcrowded counter that protruded from the corner. Stacks of dusty books and cluttered papers were piled atop it, and the shelves beneath it were filled with half-empty potion bottles and jars full of God-knows-what.
Simone followed Ella and Maddie and crouched behind the overstocked counter, beginning to rifle through glass files, while Tristan and Audrey stalked into the room that resided behind them to investigate there. As Simone read each sloppy label on each bottle individually, she sighed; this was going to be a long night.