Chapter Four

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AN: *grinning* If you want to know how brave a man really is, let him walk into a spider web. On a side note, my mother knew someone that was bitten by a fiddleback spider. She had a hole in her thigh ever after. Sounds painful.


* * *


Keeney Manor loomed up dark and cold that morning. It would have to look like Hill House...


Well, he'd checked the desk, and Granny's room, and that room...there was nothing in his old room...why did this house have to be so large?


He'd try the dining room, he decided. Maybe it was hiding in the silverware.


The long table-it had never been long enough to protect him-was covered in dust and webs and dead moths.


"...found something rather interesting today, Jonathan. Under your bed."


He shuddered and turned to the hutch that stood on the far wall. He'd never looked in here too much, really-too many fragile things. Ugly fragile things (especially that cupid), but fragile all the same.


He shoved the cupid aside, trying not to break it (it wasn't entirely impossible that Granny wouldn't come back to scold him for that) and reached into the back. His fingers met spider webs and he yanked his hand back. It could be a black widow's web, after all. Or a fiddleback-Kitty would not be pleased if he came back with his finger needing to be amputated.


He turned on the flashlight and shone the beam into the hutch. There was no spider to be seen, but he picked up the cupid and cleared it away. Better safe than sorry, after all.


There were quite a few old plates in here, a handful of tea cups-Kitty might like these, she had a collection of them in her room-and a china doll with a deathly pale face and creepy blue eyes.


He turned the doll facedown before closing the hutch.


Where the hell was it? It should have been in the desk, with the other important papers, and it wasn't. GOD, why did she have to be so damn paranoid?


He left the dining room and went to check the umbrella stand in the hall.


* * *


"Any luck?"


"No. How are you feeling?"


"Fine."


"Kitty..."


"Like death."


She looked it. She looked a little worse this evening, actually.


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