They arrived back in Adrift and were greeted by a gentle breeze. The sky (as well as the rest of the island) seemed very peaceful. Everything was calm-it seemed as if Aero Noctis had never existed in the first place.
“Sirius must be inside his house, most likely in the library,” Catherine said. “He often always is in there, either writing or reading, sometimes even both.”
Rather than run the four simply walked to the house. The sky may have still been gray, but the weather outside was nice, so they took their time to enjoy the scenery.
Eliza opened the door and let the others walk inside the house. In the first room Lió and Kironos were talking to one another, and they seemed very happy. Lió turned and gasped with surprise when she saw Eliza, the brothers, and Catherine approach.
“You are all ok!” she cried, giving Eliza a hug. “Sirius and your friends are very worried-you missed my wedding too, I’m afraid.”
“I’m so sorry Lió,” Eliza apologized. “I have learned quite a few shocking things over in Rime, and I’ve returned to fix an old problem affecting Sirius and his family. Is Sirius in his library?”
“Yes, he’s in his secret chamber, and your friends are in the library,” Kironos answered. “The good news is that you’re safe-seriously, everyone is terribly worried!”
The walked down the hallway and entered the library. All of the books were well-organized and over by the three-dimensional map Travis, Madeline, Clyde, Andrew, and Griffin were waiting with worried expressions on their faces. Shockwave and Bandit were wrestling on the floor, flying around happily.
“Hey guys, I’m ok!” Eliza called as she ran over to her friends. “There’s no need to be worried-I ended up in Rime and found Catherine and the two brothers!”
“Oh thank goodness!” Madeline said. “I would have lost it if my best friend was gone for good!” She gave Eliza a big hug.
“I have no idea where Maexstrom and Sinistratus went,” Clyde admitted. “When the book sucked you in, they disappeared right after. I don’t think they’re gone for good-they may have gone back to Fallen. Lió told us that the same kind of weather over there was happening here, but once Aero Noctis just melted, everything went back to normal…”
“Dominique…Aaron…Catherine, is it really you..?” Sirius stepped out of his secret chamber and walked slowly over to his wife and sons. “I…I know you Catherine would return, but Eliza…how did you find my sons?”
“We were actually the ones who brought her to Rime,” Dominique responded. He then proceeded to explain everything, from when they first created Aero Noctis all the way up to the compass. Aaron took the compass back from Catherine and handed it to Sirius.
“We…we are so sorry father, for all of the things we did,” Dominique apologized. “Aaron and I…we didn’t know what we were doing…”
Sirius held up his hand for silence. “In all my years, I never thought anything like this would ever happen, but it has. I now know what matters most, more than anything to me-my family.”
He turned to Eliza. “You have done such a good thing, reuniting my family. I feel there is something important I must do…you-you would be willing to leave the worlds in the ownership of my sons?”
Clyde and Andrew looked ready to object, but Eliza stopped them. “If it means happiness for your family, then I will do it. I never wanted ownership of these worlds-it felt like too big of a responsibility for me. I’m happier over in Skull Island with my father and all four of my friends. I can still visit someday…could I?”
Sirius smiled. “You are always welcome here-you friends too. I will give you something for your return visit…” He went inside his secret chamber, and then came back out with an Adrift linking book. “You have a copy of Adrift-this book will take you back to this island whenever you please. I am going to need the Fallen book back, however.”
Eliza handed over the Fallen book. “It’s great to see everything back to normal at least,” she mumbled.
“This is nice and all, but how exactly do we get back to Skull Island?” Clyde asked.
“Master Sirius, I do believe the fissure is still on the far side of the island, over by the rocket,” Griffin proposed. “Perhaps they can use that to go back? It is how the book ended up in Skull Island Skyway.”
“Wait, what’s a rocket?” Andrew asked in confusion.
“It’s that bullet-shaped ship over at the west side of the island,” Madeline said. “I remember now-wait a minute, does it actually work?”
“Yes, it does work,” Sirius answered. “It’s fully functional, but I’m not too sure how the people in Skull Island will react when they see it. However, you five can use my spare rowboat when going into the fissure. You won’t crash at least…”
“That’s a relief,” Travis muttered.
Sirius removed a long rowboat with two oars from a shed. He set it out at the edge of the giant fissure, which was really large. The fissure was pitch-black and appeared bottomless.
“Hey, can we bring Shockwave and Bandit with us?” Andrew asked. “PLEASE???”
Sirius sighed, but smiled. “Of course you may-they love company, and I wouldn’t want to separate them from you.”
“Did you hear that? You guys can come with us!” Andrew cheered, hugging the two animals. Shockwave squeaked and Bandit chirped happily.
Sirius waved as they climbed into the rowboat. “I will miss you all greatly-I do wish for you to come back some day!” Catherine, Dominique, Aaron, Lió, Kironos, and Griffin joined him, and they all waved goodbye and cheered.
As the rowboat sailed into the dark fissure, Eliza smiled. “Now that is how you solve a mystery,” she whispered.
Meanwhile, in Skull Island, Eliza’s father and Madeline’s grandparents were searching the streets for any sign of the missing children. It was late in the afternoon, and the sun was beginning to set. The five children had been missing for a few days, and there were people from all over searching the Spiral for the missing children-mostly because of the large reward Eliza’s father had set up. Even the Marleybone navy had a search party travelling all over Marleybone city looking for his daughter and her friends.
Suddenly, someone pointed up at the sky. “Look-I think that might be them!”
A rowboat came down from the sky and stopped over by the abandoned shack. Eliza’s father ran down to the tide pools as fast as he could and almost fainted when he saw his daughter, her friends, and two little beasts sitting inside the boat.
“You’re ok!!! Oh, thank goodness, I thought you were kidnapped and held for ransom!” he cried. “Could you please not run off like that?! You had me and the Marleybone navy worried!”
“I’m perfectly fine dad, no need to worry,” Eliza said, putting the Adrift linking book in her bag. “What is with all of these people?”
“You and your friends were gone for days!” her father cried. “Where have you been?!”
“I can’t really tell you that-you wouldn’t believe me,” Eliza said. “But where I went, I learned something important-family matters. Family is what is most important, and you should always be there for each and every member. I know this now, and I know that you’re really upset, but just remember this and maybe one day you’ll understand.”
Eliza’s father blinked. “I really don’t understand a word you just said, but I am so glad you’re home! Just don’t ever leave me like that again, ok?”
Eliza smiled. “I promise I won’t.”
It was late at night, and Eliza’s father was asleep. She looked up from her bed, and then reached over at her bedside table and retrieved the Adrift book and opened it to the last page. She aligned her hand with the symbol, and the book flashed.
She arrived in Adrift, with the night sky hanging high above. She walked towards Sirius’s house and knocked on the door.
Lió answered the door. “Why Eliza, you’re here really late,” she yawned. “Have you come to say hello to Sirius?”
“Yeah, and tell him I’m here for adventure,” Eliza said.
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