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Chapter Twenty-Seven: What Lies Beneath

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"I mean it, Isis. Do not go into the rooms below the church." Lydia states again. 

I bite my lip. Maybe Maxx can go down there with me. He's a hell-hound. What could be safer, right?

"I shouldn't have said anything," Lydia sighs. It's like she can read my mind. "On second thought, why don't you come back inside with me? Father Moss has an announcement." 

I was kind of looking forward to sitting outside, among the actual dead, but I nod and follow her back inside. 

"Now," Father Moss says right as I walk back through the arches, "if everyone will finally sit down, we're having another movie night soon. Does anyone want anything in particular, or should I make the decision again?"

There are a ton of suggestions. Most of which, in my not so humble opinion, suck. 'You Got Mail', 'The Time Traveller's Wife', 'The Notebook', and 'Journey to the Center of the Earth' (the original one, not the hilarious remake.

Albin raises his hand. 

"Yes, Albin?" Father Moss asks. 

"What about movies that are more, I don't know, in keeping with our current lives? You know, like 'Dracula' or 'Silver Bullet'?"

"Well, the point of movie night is to keep things lighthearted and fun," the gargoyle says. "But if the general consensus agrees, I'll bow to what everyone else wants."  He grins, showing a row of truly impressive stone teeth. "Of course, there aren't any horror movies about gargoyles, so I know I'll be sleeping well that night."

Everyone laughs, as I know he meant them to, and start chattering among themselves. I feel kind of left out, even after my 'confession', until Maxx and the still nameless kitten amble over to me. 

"Isisss, are you unwell?" Maxx pushes himself against me. 

I bury my hands in his still husky sized body. 

"Lydia told me the other halves exist," I tell Maxx. 

He blinks those huge golden eyes at me. "Yes, there are in the church." 

I shake my head. "Those aren't the halves I'm talking about. I mean the ones under the church. The ones Lydia says are dangerous."

The big dog sneezes. "You wish to see them." It's not a question. 

"I'm curious. Wouldn't you be?"

"There have never been half-hell hounds, Isisss. Unlike the human species, we are isolated and very careful where we place our teeth."

I'm almost positive he just insulted me, but I have no idea how. "I want to go downstairs, Maxx. I want to see what Father Moss is hiding."

"I do not think this is a wise course of action," Maxx replies. "There is a reason they have been locked away. If a witch, a woman who survived the Trials of Salem, is telling you not to go, why are you refusing to listen?"

"Because the more dangerous creatures might know where Andrew is. Because I'm curious, and all this is new to me and I'm just plain, flat out curious. Why is that such a bad thing?"

"Curiosity killed the kitten." Maxx sneezes again. 

"Cat," I automatically correct. "Curiosity killed the cat. And how do you know that saying? I didn't think you'd ever seen a cat before Callie." 

"Who is Callie?"

I smile. "I've decided to name the kitten after my grandmother. She was a burlesque dancer."

He tilts his head to one side. "And so you decided to name a kitten after her."

"She loved Calico kittens." I hear myself start to defend the choice. Gah. "You never did answer my question." 

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