Chapter 18; In Which the Portal Opens Wide
Dr. Planck has been sent by the scientists at CERN to figure out how Samuel had come across such interesting information. The description of the rotten egg smell and the drawing of the portal seem to have especially peaked their interest. Hence Dr. Planck is now discussing Samuel and the occupants of No. 666 with a worried Mrs. Johnson.
Let’s hope this tea ‘n chat prompts Mrs. Johnson’s memory as well. Danger is fast approaching.
Looks like the demons are getting twitchy too, not-Mrs. Renfield in particular is looking to advance her position.
“You will keep a civil tongue in your head, or you will find yourself deprived of both,” warned Mrs. Abernathy. “Remember to whom you are speaking. I have the ear of our master, and I am his emissary here on Earth. Any disrespect shown to me will be communicated to him, and the punishment will be great.”
As the author likes to point out, demons are a jealous breed – greedy in their constant search to acquire more power and better status. Sounds like any corporate suit or politician doesn’t it. (Wait, hang on a minute…nah, demons aren’t real.)
The Great Malevolence speaks and he’s a tad disappointed in the efforts of his emissary. I’m not sure what the “reckoning” is going to be for not-Mrs. Abernathy be I don’t reckon it’s going to very comfortable and more than just a little unpleasant, but the big demonic boss agrees that the invasion must begin now.
“So be it,” said the voice. “Let it begin.” But before they could proceed any further, the doorbell rang.
Isn’t it always the way…hope it’s not another small child trick or treatin’.
Back at CERN and the LHC, the collider seems to be starting up again while the brainy-boff’s are discussion Dr. Planck and his meeting with Samuel.
A great humming filled the entire facility, and all the lights dimmed for a moment.
Uh-oh, that’s a bad omen.
Judging from the reception Dr. Planck receives at No.666, I’d say the invasion has just started. Wouldn’t want to be in that basement with all that swirling light, dark and blue. Although it sounds like a really cool light show – very Jean-Michel Jarre.
I’m not going to spoil this scene, I couldn’t describe it any better than the author and I’m not gonna try. Just know that demons have come through the portal, and a few of them are being sent to deal with Samuel and his friends.
Speaking of young Samuel…
The message from Dr. Planck read:
VERY INTERESTED IN YOUR E-MAIL. I WILL COME TO YOUR HOUSE THIS EVENING AT FIVE THIRTY TO DISCUSS IT. HOPE THIS IS CONVENIENT. IF THERE IS A PROBLEM, I CAN BE CONTACTED AT THE NUMBER BELOW.
He’s gotten home safe and his mom is filling him in on her previous conversation with the Man from CERN, Dr. Planck who had unfortunately decided to go to the Abernathys’ house.
Yay! it seems the little discussion with the man from CERN has made Mrs. Johnson remember about her confrontation in the supermarket and now she isn’t so quick to disregard her sons pleas about demons and gates.
Samuel is quick to use Dr. Planck’s enclosed phone number, bot that it makes much difference as the poor scientist is being chased by a flying skull.
“What did he say?”
“That he was being chased by a flying skull.”
“Oh,” said Tom. “That’s not good.”
Gee Tom, a bit of an understatement isn’t it? Luckily young Tom redeems himself from that comment when he dispatches flying skulls in Tom’s house. I can almost hear someone yelling “SIX!” as I reckon Tom, being a damn good batsman, whacked his opponent good and proper.
A little assistance from Samuel, and two others are dealt with, with accuracy and expediency. Well done!
“Well,” said Samuel. “I think it’s begun.”
He’s gotten out his old rusty armour, which sounds very practical for a demon to wear considering he keeps popping up in our world & getting flattened.
I like that the lesser demon is looking forward to meeting his new human friend (Samuel) again, even if he really should’ve been a bit friendlier towards his underling Wormwood.
Meanwhile, Professors Stefan & Hilbert et all are getting a little anxious and it might have something to do with the “The Great Malevolence” kicking the collider into high gear and speaking.
Then a single voice rose above the babble, a deep voice filled with eons of loneliness and jealousy and rage. It spoke just two words.
It said: “It begins.”
A tad worrying for a bunch of techs & geeks who only wanted to answer a few universal questions and solve the odd mystery or two.
I do feel very sorry for Nurd at this point. Poor thing needs a shower now.
Not-Mrs. Abernathy on the other hand, seems to be having a fun time of it all. The portal hasn’t collapsed yet and lots of lesser, but not very bright, demons are slowly making their way to our dimension. Considering the descriptions of the majority of them, they’re not going to make much of an impact on the human race, it being Halloween and all. Most people won’t look twice at them. (Note number 23 at the end of the book explains why not-Mrs. Abernathy doesn’t like the smell of Earth and how our galaxy might just be raspberry flavoured. Yum)
Nurd on the other hand not only likes Earth, but has found himself a lovely little Porsche to zoom around in. For a lesser demon, he seems smarter than the demons pouring through the portal at the moment, even knows enough to go and find some keys for his shiny new toy.
Minutes later, with a screech of tires and the smell of burning rubber, Nurd was in car heaven.
Chapter 20; In Which It Becomes Increasingly Clear That the Demons Are Not Going to Have Things All Their Own Way
Yeah, pesky humans are annoying for getting in the way of grandiose master plans. It’s a knack.
What follows in this chapter is a quick run-down of what the demons do when they get into our world. A lot of mischief and harassment, but they don’t have it all their own way as two old ladies and babysitter Stephanie’s brutish boyfriend prove.
“You know,” said the demon in reply, “I don’t think you can flush something all the way to China from here.”
As it turned out the demon was right: you couldn’t flush something all the way from Biddlecombe to China.
Still, he had to give the young man credit.
He certainly tried.
Actually, there’s a lot of giggle-worthy moments in this chapter. The above quote being only one of them, another good (and longer) moment is the when the family of heroine Maria discover demons amongst the treasured rosebushes. Maria’s younger brother, Christopher, had been warned by his sister about the forthcoming demonic invasion, but he hadn’t actually informed Mr. and Mrs. Mayer about the impending demonic horde. He changes his tune and does at least try to warn their mom & dad. Which is something. Doesn’t make much difference though as Maria’s parents do an admirable job of turning the tide. After all, dad must protect his beloved rosebushes and I’ve never known a mom who would allow anyone to make a mess in her kitchen – unless she had instigated it of course.
“Mum,” said Christopher. “It’s a demon. I don’t think a poker will hurt it.”
“It will where I’m going to put it,” said Mrs. Mayer.
Mr. Mayer looked at Christopher, and shrugged.
“You have to stop her, Dad,” said Christopher.
“I think I’d rather face the demon,” said Mr. Mayer as his wife pushed past him.
If you don’t at least guffaw or giggle at that, you obviously can’t remember the wrath of a mother when you’ve done something you know you reeaally shouldn’t have done – despite the warning sirens screaming inside your head.
Dad, Mr. Mayer is equally formidable with his coal tongs and dustbin lid.