Funny thing is, when you live in a haunted house it’s really not that scary. It’s more annoyingly mysterious. What you really want is to find out who, or what, is making the noise. It’s like you’re in the middle of a big puzzle. At least it is for me. Penwurt is supposed to be the source of the most famous supernatural sighting in the whole of Britain, according to Hidden Haunted Houses of Great Britain. At least, that’s what Ruff says, and he should know since he is a world expert in Ghoul wars 4, and any other mad supernatural game remotely connected to the X box . Don’t get me wrong, I like a good ghost story. One of my favourite books is The Graveyard book by Neil Gaiman. ‘Course, Ellie doesn’t really believe in them at all. She says all that ghost, wizards and witches stuff is all in the mind (if there was a competition for killing-the-conversation-stone-dead, Ellie’d be on the podium, no problemo). But then out of the blue, Ruff comes up with one of his statements. And he’s all serious and earnest when he says it:
“Well, you might say it’s all cobblers, but I saw 13 witches in a steaming hot cauldron once”
“Really?” Ellie asked, in a worried surprised kind of way.
“Yea,” Ruff said. “They were a self cleaning coven.”
I think she threw her back pack at him.
But even Miss Arkwright, 1C’s form tutor isn’t exactly a hundred percent when it comes to this stuff. At Halloween Jenks asked her a question and—well why don’t I let RAJ tell you what happened…
“Do you believe in ghosts, miss?”
Miss Arkwright frowned. Jenks’ sidetracking tactics were well known to all the teachers and were usually trodden on unceremoniously, but on this occasion Miss Arkwright decided that it was a fair question.
“I believe that there are more things in the world than can be explained by our common understanding, if that’s what you mean, Lee.”
“Yeah, but what about actual ghosts?” Jenks said, and then added theatrically, “You know, woooooooo.”
Half the class laughed. For one horrible moment, Oz wondered if Jenks knew about what had happened in the orphanage and he glanced warily over at Ellie, who was looking puzzled too. But then Oz saw Jenks’ mock innocent expression and knew he was simply winding Miss Arkwright up. She cleared her throat to ensure silence before continuing. “Well, literature gives us different interpretations. Some great writers believe that ghosts are the spirits of dead people yet to pass, spirits who are unaware of their deaths. Then there are those who favour the ‘herald’ theory, which suggests that ghosts most often bring messages of comfort to their loved ones to say that they are well and happy, and not to grieve for them. They visit with the express purpose of helping the living cope with their loss.”
“So they’re not always nasty, miss?” asked Tracy Roper.
“Not always. Unless they’re poltergeists, of course. And they can be very nasty, able to move furniture and even harm the living. Because of that, poltergeists are considered by some to be demonic in nature.”
The class had gone very quiet.
“So…” Miss Arkwright beamed, looking slightly alarmed at the effect her explanation was having. “Since this was your first half term with me as your form tutor I would like you to prepare a short piece of work for me on what you did over the holidays.”
(THE OBSIDIAN PEBBLE)
Course there’s a lot more in the book but that’s up to you….