Read Undercover Online

Authors: Meredith Badger

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Undercover (7 page)

BOOK: Undercover
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Something occurred to Jess. ‘Does this mean we can't get the fairy outfits?' she asked.

Elly shook her head. ‘No, it just means that we'll have to shrink ourselves with the Anatomical Resizer.'

Jess looked around the normal-sized entrance hall. There was a lamp and a painting but nothing that looked like it might be an Anatomical Resizer, whatever

‘Where is it?' she asked.

Elly pulled Jess into the entrance hall and closed the front door. ‘We're standing in it,' she said, lifting the painting off the wall.

Hidden behind it was a panel of glowing buttons and dials. Elly pressed one and immediately the lamp lit up with an eerie red glow that slowly turned purple, then orange.

Elly looked at her friend. ‘Are you scared?'

she asked.

‘No, but what will shrinking feel like?' asked Jess. Adventures were cool, but she wasn't so keen on getting hurt.

‘It just tingles a bit,' said Elly. ‘And your stomach drops like when you're on a swing.'

Jess nodded. That sounded OK. ‘Let's shrink!' she said.

Elly pushed one of the buttons. The lamp flashed purple and suddenly it felt as if the walls were rocketing up into the air. At the same time, the floorboards seemed to be getting closer and closer. The wind whistled furiously in their ears. And then everything stopped as suddenly as it had started.

It was very still. Jess looked around. It didn't feel like anything had happened at all. She felt exactly the same. Elly looked the same, too. But then Jess looked down the corridor to where she had seen all the tiny furniture. It wasn't tiny anymore. Everything looked normal-sized.

‘Come on,' said Elly. ‘We should hurry.'

She led the way down the corridor. The house was very dark and just a little bit spooky. Jess kept thinking she could see things hiding in the corners but when she got closer it would turn out to be a bookcase or a chair. But then when she turned away she couldn't help feeling that the things were moving. Jess felt better once her eyes got used to the dark.

They were standing near a staircase that curled up into the darkness. ‘My room is up there,' said Elly, as she started climbing. Jess followed behind her.

Halfway up the stairs Elly stopped. ‘Did you hear that?' she whispered.

Jess stood still and listened. Her heart was beating very fast all of a sudden. She heard a noise, too.

‘Stay there,' said Elly.

Elly tiptoed towards her bedroom door, which was slightly ajar. Jess didn't really want to be on her own, but she didn't want to go into the bedroom either. In fact, she just wanted to leave. The noise started again. It sounded like something bumping and crashing into the walls.
What could it possibly
It might be just a beetle or a fly. Jess wasn't scared of bugs when they were so much smaller than she was. But now she had been shrunk, she wasn't sure she would like to run into one the same size as her.

Elly disappeared into the bedroom. Jess gripped the banisters very tightly. She wished she hadn't agreed to come. From inside the room came a very loud buzzing sound and a number of crashes and thumps. Jess froze. Maybe it was a bee or a wasp! Should she run in and help Elly or should she run away? But then she heard Elly laughing.

‘Oh, it's you!' Elly exclaimed. Her head popped back around the door. ‘Don't worry, Jess,' she said. ‘It's just my Hover-Lamp.'

Jess walked cautiously into the room. She ducked as something whirred past her ear. ‘What's a Hover-Lamp?' she asked.

‘Hang on,' said Elly. ‘I'll turn it on.'

She gave a piercing whistle and immediately the room was flooded with a soft, golden light. The lamp flew above Jess's head and circled around three times. It finally landed on her shoulder. It nuzzled into Jess's neck and made a sort of mechanical purring noise in her ear. Jess laughed. She wasn't nervous anymore.

‘It's a pretty cute lamp!' she said.

Elly smiled. ‘I think it likes you,' she said. She swung open her wardrobe doors. Inside it was bursting with clothes — shiny pink skirts, sequin-covered tops and frilly white sleeves fought each other for space.

‘How come you've got so many clothes?' asked Jess, surprised.

‘Most of them are school uniforms,' explained Elly. ‘And you know how many schools I've been to.'

She threw some outfits on the bed. First was a lilac dress with a big flouncy skirt and tiny rosebuds sewn along the hem. Then there was a pale, shimmery blue dress with an enormous white satin bow on the back.

‘How about this one?' said Elly, holding up a dress. It was a long pink tutu, embroidered with tiny silver stars. Each star had a glittering diamond in the middle. ‘It's even got a matching tiara!' said Elly, holding up a crown of stars.

Jess looked at the outfit in horror. ‘There's no way I'm wearing that!' she said.

Elly sighed. ‘But this is the perfect disguise,' she explained. ‘No-one will guess you're actually a fairy-detective if you're dressed like this.'

‘No,' agreed Jess. ‘They wouldn't think I was a detective because they'd be too busy thinking I was completely insane.'

But Elly wasn't listening. She had found something else in the cupboard.

‘Are they wings?' asked Jess, when Elly handed them to her.

‘Wing protectors,' said Elly. ‘School fairies wear them over their real wings when it rains. If we pin them to your back they'll look just like real wings.'

Jess sighed. ‘Do you really want to do this?' she asked.

She could think of so many better things to do on Saturday than dress up in one of these uncomfortable-looking dresses. But Elly had made up her mind.

‘I can't think of a better place to catch a fairy,' she said firmly, ‘than at a fairy party.'

Chapter Nine

sually when you are looking forward to something on the weekend — like a party –the days in between can seem very long. But for Elly the rest of the week flew by. She was very busy with her new classes and basketball practice. And as she got used to being at a human school, she stopped making so many embarrassing mistakes.

Then before she knew it, it was Saturday morning and the Worry-Watch was waking her up in its typical rude way.


Jess groaned and put her pillow over her head. The Hover-Lamp flew over and sat on her chest. It had refused to stay behind at the house and the girls had ended up resizing it and sneaking it into the Chesters' house with them.

‘Is that watch ever going to run out of batteries?' Jess asked.

‘Unfortunately not,' said Elly. ‘It runs on body heat, so as long as I'm wearing it, it'll keep going. And as you know,' she added, giving the band a tug, ‘I've already tried to undo it.'

‘Don't bother,' said the Worry-Watch, holding on grimly.

Elly enjoyed getting ready for the party. She had decided to wear the lilac dress with the flouncy skirt. There was a matching garland of rosebuds that she wove into her hair. Whenever she'd worn this outfit before she'd found it scratchy and uncomfortable. Today, though, things were different. Because the dress was now a disguise rather than a uniform it suddenly seemed much less itchy.

She poked her wings through the wingholes and fluttered them. It felt good to stretch them after they'd been trapped beneath her clothes all week. As a final touch she unwound the ribbon that had been hiding the Worry-Watch during school hours.

‘No panicking, OK?' she told it sternly.

The watch whizzed its arms around but didn't make any promises.

Jess didn't seem to be enjoying herself quite so much. ‘Maybe I could be a plain clothes fairy-detective,' she suggested, looking down at the fairy dress she was wearing. ‘I'm just going to trip over all the time in this thing.'

But Elly insisted that it was better if she was dressed as a fairy. Then she made Jess stand still while she turned her hair into a mass of tiny little curls.

BOOK: Undercover
4.88Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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