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|Night School(Blood Coven Vampire,book 5) by Mari Mancusi|
I remember her words back at Riverdale. How she just wanted to be a human girl. And now, yet again, fate has worked against her. My heart breaks as I watch her continue down the street, just a shell of her former sweet, passionate self. If only I hadn’t been so self-involved. I would have noticed she was gone earlier. And maybe I could have rescued her before they transformed her ...
“Stop it, Rayne!” I can dimly feel Jareth shaking me by the shoulders. “Beating yourself up about things is not going to help us here. What’s done is done. But it’s not too late to save her.”
“But how?” I ask, wandering over to an empty alley away from the colorful parade. “There’s only two of us. And there’s a billion of them. I mean, look at that castle,” I add, gesturing to the building. “There’s got to be a thousand guards and they’ve all got very large guns.”
Jareth looks over in the direction I’m pointing, then frowns. “Tooth fairy snipers,” he says with a scowl. “I was afraid of that.”
“Deadly assassins with black-market munitions. They travel the world, buying their bullets off young children who’ve lost their teeth.”
Jareth runs a hand through his blond hair. “Maybe we should consider coming back later,” he says. “I’m guessing the reason this place is so well-guarded is because of today’s wedding. Maybe once it’s over—”
“No! We can’t let her get married to some fairy!” I protest. “She’s gone through enough already.” I scrunch my face up, thinking. “We have to figure out a way into the castle.”
“But how? Your switcheroo trick isn’t going to work, now that everyone’s seen the real Sunny,” Jareth reminds me. “You may look a lot alike, but your hair is completely different. Not to mention your wings.” He gestures to my definitely inferior, stubby-feathered wings.
“Well, at least they’re not made of marabou,” I grouch as I scan the area, trying to remember if I know any good shortcuts from visiting the real Disney. My eyes fall on a small service door, tucked away into a dark corner. “I’ve got it!” I exclaim. “We’ll go underground.”
Jareth looks at me. “Underground?”
“Yes,” I reply impatiently, dragging Jareth over to the door. “How do you think employees get from one end of this place to another fast? Dodging tourists? I don’t think so. If this place is an exact replica of the Orlando park, which it seems to be, then there are underground tunnels under the whole thing linking all the various sections together.”
“That’s genius!” Jareth says, looking impressed. “There will certainly be fewer people down there. And we can take out any guards without worrying about tooth fire.”
We make sure no one’s looking, then quietly slip open the service door and step inside. Sure enough, a set of stairs leads down into the darkness. Luckily, as vampires, we can see well enough in the dark not to need a flashlight.
“Let’s go,” I say, taking the first step.
We head down into a twisty labyrinth of spider-webbed, dusty passages. Evidently the fairies don’t use these tunnels as much as the employees of Orlando Disney do. Following various signs posted at each intersection, we make our way toward the castle. We’re just about to turn the last corner, when Jareth grabs my arm, his face pale and worried.
“I hear something,” he whispers. “Kind of like bells—”
Suddenly, a brilliant white light flashes through the passageway and in steps a beautiful blond fairy with a perfect hourglass figure: big breasts, tiny waist, and a sparkly green tutu riding low on her perfect hips. My eyes widen as she puts one hand on her hip, her little red mouth set in a deep pout, and she shakes her head no.
I glance over at Jareth, who’s staring at the newcomer with shock and recognition in his eyes. “Is that ...?” he starts.
The fairy opens her mouth. But instead of words, all that comes out is the sound of tiny, tinkling bells.
Jareth nods grimly. “Tinkerbell,” he affirms.
I stare at the fairy. Tinkerbell? Are you kidding me? Man, this place gets weirder and weirder by the second. My mind races, trying to remember what I know about this legendary fairy from the movies, but I come up blank. All I know is she’s supposed to be pint-size—not six feet tall.
I step forward. “Please, Miss Bell,” I try to appeal to her. “We need to get to the castle. My sister’s getting married there today.”
Unfortunately, Tink doesn’t seem to care too much about Sunny’s impending matrimony or my mission to get to the church on time. She gestures for us to back up, scolding us again in her weird bell language.
“Aw, come on, Tink,” I try again. “Have a heart, please.”
She rolls her eyes and lets out an annoyed huff, then reaches into a little green satchel tied to her tiny waist and pulls out a handful of something sparkly.
“Pixie dust,” Jareth whispers hoarsely. “Rayne, we’ve got to run.”
But before we can even turn around, Tinkerbitch brings the dust to her lips and blows it in our direction. My lungs seize up, filled with sparkles, and I start choking uncontrollably. Beside me, Jareth falls clumsily to the ground, incapacitated.
“The dust,” he moans. “Paralyzing ...”
Tinkerbell calmly walks over and grabs his fake wings, yanking them off of his back. She giggles in satisfaction, then turns to me. Behind her, Jareth moans in pain, completely paralyzed.