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DescriptionCynthia and Gus have solved a lot of mysteries across time, but something is seriously wrong and things are beginning to unravel.
Aunt Belle is missing…again! Cynthia’s great-grandfather, Beau, was never found! And now they are wondering if Blackie is still making life miserable for Lilly and Annie?
This time, the twelve-year-old girls journey into a strange woods full of frightening creatures and dark secrets in search of answers.
From Aunt Belle's cottage to a small village in France, they meet new friends and discover a connection to New Orleans that may lead to the devious source behind these alarming developments. Or bigger trouble.
Reader Rating: Not rated (0 Ratings)
From Your Fan, Aubree"You have to read the series of Cynthia's Attic, it's AMAZING! Thank you soooo much for sharing your gift!"
From Laura Schaefer, author of The Teashop Girls"This wonderfully imaginative tale will delight readers. I wish I had a magic attic!"
From Bobbie Hinman, Author of The Fart Fairy"Everyone will love this intriguing story of time travel. It left me wanting more!"
Cynthia had an attic. Not just an ordinary attic. Cynthia's attic was magic.
Cynthia and I came into the world just three months apart. We grew up on the same quiet, sycamore-lined street, our friendship as close as our houses. Fifty years earlier, our grandmothers were best friends. However, we didn't realize the extent of their friendship until after our experience in Cynthia's attic. This is the story of one of our great adventures . . . the way I remember it.
"Come on, Niki, let's do something, even if it's wrong. If I have to play one more game of Mario Galaxy, I'm going to scream!"
"That's just because you keep losing." Niki laughed. "Okay, since you don't like my suggestions, you decide."
"That's just it! I'm bored. It's rainy, so we'd get soaked walking downtown, and there's no one here to drive us to the mall. Hey, wait a minute." Leeza jumped off the sofa. "Let's go to Nana's attic and snoop."
"It's filthy," Niki whined. "Besides, weren't you told to stay out of there?"
"Which is exactly why it's called snooping." Leeza gave a sinister laugh.
Niki knew when it was no use arguing with her best friend. "All right. But if you get bitten by a spider, don't expect me to call 9-1-1."
Leeza laughed. "So, I'm afraid of huge black spiders, but, you're afraid of getting dirt under your fingernails and you hate sports, so refresh my memory–why are we friends?"
"Beats me," Niki answered. "You win, let's go check out the attic, but if we get in trouble, you know who's getting the blame."
"I knew you'd see it my way," Leeza teased.
The two girls ran up the attic stairs where a whoosh of cold air greeted them at the top.
"Uh, maybe this isn't such a great idea." A chill ran up Niki's spine.
"You big coward. There's nothing that can hurt you. I've been here before with my dad . . . once. C'mon, let's look around."
They explored every inch of the attic, peeking into boxes of clothes and old toys, spying two ancient tricycles shoved into one corner, and a neglected train track in the opposite corner.
"You'd think Nana would get rid of this old stuff," Leeza said. "Hey, look at that antique." She pointed to a rusty, dust-covered baby carriage that had seen its better day. "I'm sure Nana has pictures of your granny and her sitting in that."
"I sure hope they never put us in that old contraption." Niki shivered at the thought of sitting in something so filthy.
Leeza walked behind an old wool rug hanging from the ceiling and pushed aside an end table. "Come look at this huge trunk! There has to be major junk in here."
Niki almost fell over Leeza's old Barbie jeep. "Your grandmother isn't the only one with junk stored up here." She laughed at her friend's sour expression and then eased around the rug, being careful not to brush up against the dust. "It's a trunk all right." She was not impressed with the deep scratches marring the wood and rust flaking off the hinges.
"Let's open it." Leeza laughed at the horrified look on her friend's face. "There's nothing in there that's going to bite you."
Niki wasn't so sure, but she knelt in front of the trunk and helped Leeza tug on the rusty latch. It loosened just enough for them to lift the heavy lid.
"Eww. Look at these dusty clothes." Leeza pulled a faded satin dress out of the antique trunk.
"Ahhh-choo! Darn allergies." Niki sniffed. "I didn't want to come up here in the first place. Attic-dust, old boxes-dust, discarded trunk-du . . ."
"I get it!" Leeza shook her head. "Isn't it in your DNA to let go and have fun? Look around. We might uncover history, or maybe solve a mystery. Cool! I made a rhyme."
Niki rolled her eyes. "You're a regular Edgar Allan Poe."
"I wish." Leeza's voice lowered and she began to recite, "Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore. Oooh, The Raven is scary stuff, huh? Bwahahaha. Speaking of dreary, I wonder who this old ballet costume belonged to. Maybe my mom or grandma."
Niki wrinkled her nose and backed away. "From the mildew and dirt on that mangy garment, I'd guess at the very least, a great-great-great grandma."
Leeza paid no attention to her friend's aversion to all things old, and dug deeper into the trunk. "Now, here's a real antique." She held up a faded, navy-colored dress with white trim and stitching. "Wonder who wore this old rag?"
Niki ignored the question and retrieved two rocks that tumbled onto the floor when her friend pulled the old dress from the trunk. Simply holding the purple stones made the skin on her palm tingle. "Where do you suppose these came from?"
"What are they?" Leeza peered into her friend's hand and at the same time, wiped her nose with the tail of her T-shirt.
"Do you have to be so disgusting?" Nik pulled a tissue out of her shorts pocket and waved it in front of her friend's face. "Keep this spare in case your shirt gets too snotty."
Leeza dismissed the sarcasm and stuffed the tissue into the waistband of her jeans. "Fine, now what's in your hand?"
Niki revealed the sparkling stones. "I saw them fall from the trunk when you took out those clothes. Maybe one of your relatives hid them. Do, do, do, do-do, do, do, do."
Leeza laughed. "See, didn't I tell you we'd come across a mystery? And, you wanted to go shopping. Bet we wouldn't find magic rocks at the Green Tree Mall."
"Who says they're magic?" Niki scoffed. "You sound like Gran, always making up tales of the supernatural." Not that she would admit it to anyone, but the fantasy stories her grandmother used to tell Niki and her friends during sleepovers still made her smile.
Meanwhile, Leeza dug through the trunk until she came to an old photo album with writing on the cover. Cynthia and Gus–1964-1970. "Hey, look at this album!" She flipped through the pages. "It's filled with pictures of our grandmothers, but according to Nana, it went missing years ago."
Niki nodded. "Let me look. I don't think I've ever seen a picture of Gran when she was my age. Don't you think it's odd neither of us have seen pictures of them from our age until they were almost twenty? Here, take one of the stones and I'll hold the album."
Leeza closed the trunk and tucked the album under her left arm. Niki placed the second stone in her friend's right hand and they disappeared through the trunk.
* * *
Leeza lay sprawled on the attic floor while Niki stood up and brushed dust off her white cotton shorts.
"What a trip!" Leeza got to her knees and then rocked back onto her heels. "I must've passed out." She looked around the attic, trying to get her bearings. "I had visions of passing through flashing green and purple lights."
Niki steadied herself on a stack of faded suitcases beside the trunk. "I . . . did, too. What in the world happened to us–carbon monoxide poisoning, maybe?" The dizziness began to subside and the room came into focus. "Has my brain gone whack-o, or does the attic look different? I don't remember these suitcases stacked here, and the trunk doesn't look the same, either. The hinges aren't rusty and the wood isn't worn at all."
Leeza inspected the lid. "Well, it's still the same old trunk. Maybe not as scratched, but, oh, I can't tell."
The two friends stood quietly, unsure of their next move until Leeza looked up and broke the silence with another observation. "Ick! These cobwebs weren't hanging from the ceiling! This place is creeping me out. Let's go back downstairs before giant spiders attack."
They ran down the attic stairs onto the second floor landing and came to an abrupt halt. They just thought the attic looked different! Nana's antique furniture appeared the same, but everything else was entirely different.
"What happened to the sage green walls I spent hours painting?" Leeza hadn't been thrilled about giving up a whole weekend last month helping her grandmother, but afterward, she'd loved the change.
"The paint isn't the only difference." Niki scuffed one sandaled foot. "Where did this old carpet come from? Didn't your grandparents just install new bamboo flooring?"
Leeza shrugged. "Yeah, Nana was so proud of her 'environmentally-friendly' floor. Come on, let's check out the guest room. I just helped her pick out a new bedspread and curtains for when I stay overnight. Wonder if those have disappeared, too."
They burst through the bedroom door. Sheet pulled tight to her neck, Cynthia sat up in bed and screamed.
Legend of Lupin WoodsBy: Mary Cunningham