That Time When a Line in a Riddle You Think is Unimportant Comes Back to Bite You
“We come in peace,” said Harry, raising his hands in the air, and keeping his tone as neutral as he could. The ghosts surrounding him remained impassive, their faces unable to truly show emotion.
“And why must we believe yee, lord of lightning?” asked one of them, stepping forward. He seemed larger than the rest, standing out with a bit more definition than the rest as if he was the one in focus.
“We mean you no harm,” said Harry, “we seek a wisdom that only you can impart, we wish to only find what is hidden here and I declare that our intentions are pure.”
“Anyone can say their intentions are pure,” said the ghost, “and yee need not speak in the verse. We know of it. We know of the wisdom that you seek. We know of the key that you seek. And we have been told not to speak, not unless we believe that of greatness thee reek.”
Harry grimaced. Since when did ghost start speaking in cryptic verse. This is getting worse by the minute.
“You can trust us,” said Rose, walking up beside him.
“Yes you can,” said Terry, also stepping closer, “we seek only to seal the opening. We do not wish to unleash it. We simply seek the key to lock the door once and for all. Those foul beasts shall not roam the world of humans ever again.”
“The Lady of the Flame and The Lord of the Earth, I see three are here. Where is the Lady of the Wind?” asked the ghost.
“I’m sorry, I have no idea who you’re talking about,” said Harry, before he turned to Terry with a frown," that includes you. what's this talk about an opening?"
“A prophecy of old, a tale years ago told, it has been foretold,” said the ghost, “it's a story best told around a warm fire on a winter’s eve. I shall not trouble thee with the details. Thy honesty shines through, we may yet allow thee all through. Your worthiness, you shall have to prove at the next hurdle, if the door of the Wesomenesas you doth seek. But for now we shall tell.”
Harry couldn’t understand half of what the ghost had just uttered. It sounded like someone spouting vague backstory in the form of terrible poetry.
"Say what now?" he asked, hoping the ghost would explain further and preferably in normal English.
“Very well, follow me, I shall show you where to look,” said the ghost. Either the ghost didn't understand his question or didn't care. It was probably the latter.
The ghost waved his hands and the rest of the ghosts vanished, their forms being ripped apart like a sandcastle in a hurricane. He floated ahead of them, blue lights suddenly starting to light up all along the hallway they were standing in. The dark void at the end was revealed to be an old corridor, chipped in various places and bearing many scorch marks. The place certainly looked the part of a place of demise. Harry followed. He heard Rose and Terry follow him but didn’t dare look back in case the ghost tried to pull a vanishing trick.
Rose came up beside him as they neared the wall at the end.
“Hey,” he whispered, “you doing okay with this cold.”
“Not the biggest fan of it like you are, but I’ll live,” she said, smiling through what looked like a slight shudder.
“The unfortunate downsides to necromancy,” he said, holding an arm out to her. She gave him a questioning look and he nodded. Rose leaned into him and he wrapped an arm around her shoulders.
“You’re a furnace,” she said, smiling even brighter at him, if that was possible. He found it hard to keep one eye on the ghost in front of him with her eyes looking right at his.
A loud gagging sound from behind broke the moment and Harry shook his head. His mind had been acting far too silly the past few days. Putting thoughts of Rose’s eyes out of his mind for the moment, he removed the arm from around her and turned to face Terry.
“You okay, Clarke?” he asked.
“Oh totally, I accidentally swallowed a bug,” he said, flashing a thumbs up.
"And I have to believe t..." began Harry, before Rose interrupted.
“Hey, you don’t get to do that. She grabbed his arm and returned it to where it had been. “If you’re going to make the temperature freezing, you’re keeping me warm.”
“Yes, milady,” he said, giving the best bow he could without removing his hand.
“Eyes on the ghost, Danvers,” reminded Terry.
“Doing that Clarke," shot back Harry.
“I believe that we are at the right place,” said the ghost, interrupting them before an argument could break out. “The key lies through that wall, beneath a safe that you should be able to access.”
The ghost them immediately proceeded to jump at them, an unearthly shriek filling the cavern.