Well, here we are in a town close to the old fortress ruins. Well, there is a town closer, but I thought it would be safer to stay a little further away, just in case Mandar or Brenda has managed to find this spot also. I am really hoping that we are the first and that we can get away before either of them show up. I want to leave a note for Mandar, I am sure he will beat Brenda this time since she does not have the clue to use so she will likely follow Mandar if she can.
There has been no sign of her following us, we have been carefully watching and would have gone a different direction if we saw either of them following us. There are few hours of actual darkness here since it is summer but I decided to try a night trip. Ilda said she could easily lead around the ruins at night. Her and friends used to spend a lot of time playing and exploring around the ruins when she was growing up.
We left after resting for about 4 hours and then it took about 2 hours before we arrived at our destination. The ruins were quite large, without Ilda it would have taken us a long time to search this place. But she knew, from the clue, just exactly what area we wanted. It was an old tower that was still standing. But we did not want the tower, we wanted a room under the tower that apparently not many people knew about.
Ilda found it one time when she was there exploring the ruins on her own and she always kept it a secret from everyone. She was a brave little girl wandering around here by herself. She showed us the door in the floor that was covered with dirt and small stones. Baudry tried to open the door but could not budge it, so Stanley helped him, but to no avail. “I assume there is a secret way to open this door?”, I asked Ilda.
She giggled. “Yes, by pushing this stone in the wall,” she said. When she pushed it the door opened on its own. There was an old wood ladder which seemed good and strong. Baudry, Sigurbjorn, Jenny, Ilda, the cats and myself went down while the others watched for trouble. The cats began sniffing around, we had our flashlights which lit up the small room easily.
“I did not ever find any secret places in here,” said Ilda, “and I certainly tried many times, hoping to find some treasure.” After about half an hour we were about to give up but the cats were digging around a large square stone in one corner. Meow,meow!=Something under stone! Meow!=Yep, me smell it too! “I was never able to move that big stone, so I used it for my chair whenever I was in here,” said Ilda.
I called Stanley down and he, Baudry and I pushed that stone out of its place. Underneath was a metal door which Baudry opened and there it was, another clue for us! I gave it to Sigurbjorn and put the note I had her write back into the metal box. She had seen a paper that had Brenda’s signature and some handwriting on it so it was easy for her to copy that for our note.
“Now, hopefully Mandar gets here before Brenda and he will think she found the clue,” I said. “That should get those two really fighting each other,” laughed Jennifer. “That is the idea,” I said, “and that might just give us more time to find the next spot and hopefully the end of our search.” We put everything back but did not cover up the fact someone had been here.
Then we drove back to town but I decided we would not hang around but travel a little further away and somewhere that we can get off the main road to a town where we can relax for a bit and study this clue. Ilda was a great help in getting us to a nice town that had a good hotel in it. Since they were not in a real tourist area the hotel had enough rooms for us to use all together instead of being split up all over the hotel.
We left in the morning and headed back to the airport where our jet was waiting for us. When we got there we were told that the airport security wanted to talk with me. Jenny came along too, posing as my wife. But we never came back to the others and when they questioned the security chief he knew nothing about wanting to see me and he immediately had his security people search for Jenny and I. They did find a ransom note however, it was from Brenda…
To Be Continued.
©2022 Steve McLeod.