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Rolfin's Orb
Book 8 - Opal
Chapter 9


“We're here! You are going to have so much fun!” Fiona jumped out of the car, dragging the others behind her. “Come on.”

“Fiona, this is all so strange to us. That almost looks like an octopus in the middle of the pool of water,” Jason said.

“It is an octopus, but not a real one. It's not the same as the real one we had to fight in the Seychelles. It's made of metal, or fiberglass. There are slides and tubes and big waves.” Fiona jumped up and down with excitement.

They followed her to the entrance and Angus paid their way in, including renting towels and swim trunks. Some of the men were embarrassed to have so much of their skin revealed, but once they saw everyone looked the same as they did, each of them relaxed and enjoyed the day.

Angus chose to sit on his towel and enjoy the warmth of the sun. He lay his back against a folding chair and read a book while Fiona dragged the others into the water.

Eight legs, each having a winding tube with water flowing inside, sprouted from the huge round purple head of an octopus. Inside the head stood a platform, large enough to hold twenty people. Ladders led up from the platform to the eight slides.

“You certainly don't expect me to climb up yet another ladder, do you?” Jack rubbed the back of his calves, aching from the ladder he had to climb to get inside the head.

“I sure do. The fun part is yet to come. You go up there, sit down, push yourself off and you'll have the ride of your life,” Fiona said, stepping on her ladder.

“Come on, Jack, stop being a baby.” Jesse sat at the edge of his waterslide, ready to push off. “Here I go!” His voice echoed until it faded away.

“See, even Jesse did it,” Fiona said.

“I'm ready to go,” Julian waved. He disappeared down the tube, followed by Jeffrey, Jason, Jacob and Jimmy.

“I'm not going to wait for you any longer. Either you go down the tube or you climb back down the ladder into the pool. “I'm outta here.” Fiona sat at the edge of her tube. “See you at the bottom.”

Jack stood for a moment, looking at the interior of the octopus head.

“Mister, are you going to stand there all day? You're in my way.” A young lass of three years age stomped her foot on the metal platform.

“Sorry, Miss.” Jack climbed the smaller ladder and sat looking down the tube. Rushing water swirled around him. He breathed a damp stuffiness.

“Mister!”

Without wasting another moment, he pushed himself off and slide down the tube, twisting and turning on his back, sides. “This is fun. Whee!” He flew out of the open end a few moments letter, splashing in a deep pool.

“Jack! You did it!” Fiona clapped her hands.

Jack surfaced, gasping for breath and gazing into the eyes of his friends. “That was grand. I want to do that again.”

They climbed out of the pool, stepping onto a mosaic tile walkway. Running along each side of it were clear plexi-glass tubes of rushing water, with goldfish swimming along inside. The tiles ended and instead turned into more of the clear glass.

Fiona laughed. “This is very strange. It's like I'm walking on water. What should we do next?”

“I'll take Jack and go back to the octopus. I rather enjoyed it myself,” Julian said, a grin spreading across his face.

“You guys look cool in your swim trunks.” Fiona winked.

While Julian and Jack made their way to the octopus, Fiona pointed at the Aquarium. “We can go in there. There's a waterslide that winds its way down from the top and you go right through the middle of the sharks and stingrays and jellyfish. Do you want to try that, Jimmy?”

“Of course. Jacob, Jeffrey, Jesse, and Jesse want to try it too, don't you lads,” Jimmy said, pulling them along.

Fiona heard her name being called and looked over to see Jack's face sticking out of one of the octopus's eyes. “Hi Jack!” She waved back and then they headed into the Aquarium.

                                    #  #  #

Argulig memorized the spell as he flew towards Haggis Haunt. The crow dipped and swiveled from side to side. The trow had to hold on to the feathers so he wouldn't fall. “Slow down you stupid crow.”

Haggis Haunt, bright and colorful, caught Argulig's eye. “Here we are.” He recited the magic spell, turning invisible.

 The crow landed in a high branch of an oak.

“You stupid crow. Fly down to the ground with me.”

The crow squawked and flew away, leaving the trow to find his own way down.

Branch by branch he descended, catching his hairs on twigs and pulling leaves out of his mouth. When he dropped from the last branch to the ground, he sighed. “Phelan showed me in my mind what Fiona and the men looked like. I hope spells work. Now, let's go have some fun.”

                                    *  *  *

Fiona and the others took the elevator to the top of the Aquarium. As with the octopus, most of the floors, walls and the slides were made of clear plexiglass. “Wow! Look at the sharks.” One swam underneath them. “It's the size of Mum's car.”

“What exactly is it that we do here, Fiona?” Water dripped from Jacob's trunks. “We don't have to go in the water with the sharks, do we?”

“Don't be silly! We slide down this tube and it winds back and forth through the tank. We're protected by the plexiglass.” Fiona stepped into the slide. “I'll go first. You watch me and you'll see for yourself that no sharks will eat me, silly.” Pushing herself off, she slid down the tube.

The invisible trow jumped into the water. He swam toward the biggest shark he could see. Its black eyes stared ahead as it whipped through the water towards him. When it comes closer, I'll poke it with this knife and hopefully it will get mad.

With fin arched high, the shark swam past Argulig. The trow shoved the knife into the sharks nose. Angered, the creature swam faster, moving toward the tube.

As she moved down the tube, slipping and sliding up the sides of it, Fiona watched the fish swimming about and noticed a trickle of blood coming from one of the sharks. Within seconds all the other sharks, sensing the blood, dashed toward the wounded one. A frenzy of fins, tails and bubbling water erupted as they fought with each other. Fiona felt the tube sway each time a tail bumped it. Swimming around the tube, the sharks attacked the maimed one. Fiona saw nothing but red in the water and watched in horror as a shark rammed the tube.

Argulig swam to the surface and climbed out, watching the battle from above. His shoulders moved up and down as he giggled with joy.

Bolts holding the pieces of tube together began to pull apart, allowing sea water into the tube. The blood-stained water poured inside, filling the tube. Fiona turned when she heard the rumbling. With no hope of escape, she let the water push her down, hoping she'd reach the bottom before she drowned.

Jacob, Jesse, Jason, Jeffrey and Jimmy watched the shark frenzy with horror. “Those sharks are bashing into the tube slide. Fiona's in there,” Jimmy shouted. “I'm going after her.”

“Don't be daft, Jimmy. You drowning won't help her,” Jesse said, pulling his friend out of the wobbly tube.

“But it's going to collapse and all that sea water will fill the tube. She'll drown.” Jimmy yanked his arm from Jesse's grasp.

“Let's get down to the bottom. Maybe we can be of more help there.” The three turned and went down the ladders, skipping rungs and slipping on the wet bars.

Fiona flew from the tube into a pool of murky red water.

A lifeguard grabbed her and pulled her out. “What happened up there?”

“One of the sharks started bleeding and the others attacked it. They kept bumping the tube. It's breaking apart,” Fiona sobbed.

“Everyone out,” the lifeguard shouted, pushing the patrons through the door to safety..

Within a few minutes the pool at the bottom filled with pieces of shark flesh, broken bits of the tube and several dozen floundering fish. No sooner had Jeffrey, Jason, Jesse, Jacob and Jimmy reached the bottom when the entire Aquarium collapsed, sending a wall of dirty water through the doors and breaking windows. Fish of every color, size and shape were carried with the water, including the sharks.

After the water soaked into the grass, hundreds of guests stood nearby watching the sea life flopping about, struggling for breath.  Attendants rushed about with buckets of water, trying to save as many of the fish as they could. Bright yellow ropes were hung, closing off a portion of Haggis Haunt.

Jimmy saw Fiona standing next to the lifeguard. He ran to her. “Fiona! You're safe. What on earth happened in there?”

“It was really strange, Jimmy. All of a sudden one of the shark's noses bled and the other sharks attacked it and killed it. How did it hurt its nose?” Fiona shivered.

Jimmy grabbed a towel from one of the racks and wrapped it around her. “Maybe we should go home.”

“No, Jimmy. This is a huge park. There are other things to do that are safe. We've not gone to the Dragon Shute, or gone down the rapids either. I'm all right.” Fiona wiped her face and then put the towel back on the rack.

“Are you sure? It seems a bit dangerous here,” Jesse said.

“I'm sure. Let's find Julian and Jack. They wanted to go on the rapid ride.” Fiona led the others to the octopus.

Jack came flying out laughing as he splashed into the water. 

Julian saw Fiona. “That's the tenth time he's gone down. I ran out of energy a few minutes ago.”

“Good. Are you ready to go to something different? We can't go the Aquarium. It's closed down for a while.” Fiona said, glaring at Jason, Jacob, Jeffrey, Jesse and Jimmy with  threatening dont-you-tell look.

                                    #  #  #

Argulig stayed on the grass, picking up some of the fish that flopped about. Before they could be rescued, he had his fill of sunfish, angelfish and octopus. “That was a tasty treat. Where did they go? It's time for yet another surprise.”


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