His eyes scanned the remaining areas of the room. There was a small closet on the right side that appeared to be a walk through from this room to the next. The adjacent room was a bedroom. The office looked like it was possibly a sitting room for the castle owners in the past. As he entered the closet, heading toward the adjoining bedroom, Brody spied a wooden cabinet shoved back into the recesses of the clothing storage. This cabinet looked similar to the one in Mr. M’s workroom with a dozen wide shallow drawers stacked above one another. The closet room was very dark. Brody searched for a light before remembering where, and when, he was. No lights.
Maybe a candle, he thought. He returned to the office and found a candle and matches on the desktop. He lit the candle and carried it gently into the closet. He opened the top drawer. Empty. He opened the second drawer. Empty. He opened the bottom drawer. Maps! Dozens of maps drawn on delicate parchment paper lay hidden in the cabinet. Balancing the candle in his left hand, Brody reached his right hand under the stack of maps, slid his hand toward the back and grasped the stack from the far side. He pulled his arm from the drawer, and the maps draped over the length of his arm from shoulder to outstretched hand. Brody walked from the closet into the office. Suddenly he felt something tickle the back of his right hand. The maps were so big; he could not bend his elbow. The tickle moved. Brody watched in horror as a black widow spider scampered around the back of his hand, up his finger, and over the map toward his face.
“Aaaah!” Brody screamed. He threw the maps and candle into the air. The candle hit the stone floor with a thud. The maps fluttered through the air, searching for a resting place. One map swerved into the flame of the candle and caught fire. The fire spread quickly. Brody was screaming for help and stamping out flames when Emma and Aspen burst into the room.
“Hurry,” he yelled. Brody was stomping as fast as he could, but the flames were spreading fast. “The maps are burning!”
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