Read The Song of the Winns Online

Authors: Frances Watts

The Song of the Winns

The
Song
of the
Winns

The
SPIES
of
GERANDER
• BOOK TWO •

BY FRANCES WATTS

illustrated by David Francis

PHILADELPHIA · LONDON

For Mum, who always let me stay up
late to finish one more chapter

Text copyright © 2013 by Frances Watts
Illustrations copyright © 2013 by David Francis

All rights reserved under the Pan-American and
International Copyright Conventions

First published in Australia by
HarperCollins
Publishers
Australia Pty Limited, 2011

First published in the United States by
Running Press Book Publishers, 2013

This book may not be reproduced in whole or in part, in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system now known or hereafter invented, without written permission from the publisher.

Books published by Running Press are available at special discounts for bulk purchases in the United States by corporations, institutions, and other organizations. For more information, please contact the Special Markets Department at the Perseus Books Group, 2300 Chestnut Street, Suite 200, Philadelphia, PA 19103, or call (800) 810-4145, ext. 5000, or e-mail
[email protected]ooks.com
.

Library of Congress Control Number: 2012955521

E-book ISBN 978-0-7624-4838-8

9
  
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Digit on the right indicates the number of this printing

Cover design by Frances J. Soo Ping Chow
Interior design by Frances J. Soo Ping Chow, based on
the original layout by Ingrid Kwong
Typography: Fairfield, HT Gelateria, Lady Rene, and Perpetua

This edition published by Running Press Kids
An Imprint of Running Press Book Publishers
A Member of the Perseus Books Group
2300 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103–4371

Visit us on the web!

www.runningpress.com/kids

Contents

1.
The Lonely Road

2.
FIG Headquarters

3.
Night Flight

4.
The Assignment

5.
Crossing the Crankens

6.
The Sourian Orphans

7.
Never Vanquish'd

8.
Departure

9.
The River's Source

10.
Undercover

11.
The Secret Paths

12.
Cornoliana

13.
Billy Mac

14.
The Palace

15.
Atticus Island

16.
Trouble in the Tulips

17.
Keaters

18.
Settling Old Scores

19.
The Traitor

20.
The Rendezvous

21.
Back to the Source

22.
Songbird

23.
Betrayed

24.
The Heirs of Cornolius

Acknowledgments

1

The Lonely Road

T
he mozzarella was in an icy crevasse,” said Uncle Ebenezer with a shiver, to demonstrate how cold the crevasse had been. The movement made his big belly wobble and his long shadow shimmied on the road stretching up between two high ridges of rock.

“An icy crevasse?” said Tibby Rose, who was beside him. “The mozzarella was in an icy crevasse? But why? How did it get there?”

Alistair, walking behind them with Aunt Beezer, had to laugh at his friend's perplexed tone. He and his brother and sister were used to their uncle's stories, but then the triplets had been living with their uncle and aunt for years, while Tibby had only just met Ebenezer and Beezer.

Uncle Ebenezer didn't seem inclined to answer Tibby Rose's questions. (They were the kind of questions Alistair himself used to ask once upon a time, but his uncle had never answered him either.) “I saw at once that
the only way to reach the cheese was to abseil down. Fortunately, I had a length of rope with me, so I looped it around a tree.”

Tibby Rose nodded approvingly. “A firm anchor is crucial,” she agreed. Tibby was an expert in survival skills. She had been named after Charlotte Tibby—a great explorer—and had read all her namesake's books. (Her mother had added the name Rose because of Tibby's pink-tinted ginger fur.)

“I have an instinct for these things,” Uncle Ebenezer admitted modestly, stroking his mustache. “I left my brother Rebus at the top of the crevasse—that's Alex, Alice, and Alistair's father”—he reminded Tibby—“and began my descent.” He shivered again at the memory. “The deeper I went, the darker it grew. The crevasse was so narrow in places that my back brushed the wall behind me, and my feet were so cold where they touched the ice that they burned. I knew that if I stopped moving I would probably freeze to death, and the crevasse would become my icy tomb.”

Even though it was summer, Alistair pulled his scarf tight around his neck as he imagined being surrounded by sheer walls of ice.

Ebenezer paused in his storytelling, and for a moment the only sound was the rustle of leaves in the trees lining their way, and the soft pad of their feet upon the road. Even Alice and Alex, walking behind Alistair, had stopped their customary bickering to listen.

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