The Ghost of Wolfpen Ridge (Chapter 4)
Where Has the Gang Gone?
“I have an idea of what we should do tonight,” Carrie said as they sat on their bed, just after getting home.
“Whats is it?” Sally asked.
“Tonight,” Carrie replied. “We'll sleep outside again. I'll sleep on one side, out of sight, and you and Callie sleep on the other side, in sight. You can see just what happens, and we'll also know if they come up on your side, then at some time they spy on us to see which side we're on.”
“Say, Carrie! That's a great idea!” Sally said approvingly.
“Sorry I took so long,” Allen Jones said, as he walked into an apartment.
“It's alright. It didn't seem long to me,” one of the six men other than Allen in the room said.
“Sure. Only took about an hour or so,” another said.
Allen grinned. “One of them suspect me. Really bad,” he said. “But her sister and cousin didn't seem to,” he said.
“Well, that's good. It would be awful if all three suspected us.” The first man said.
“Uh, Ike, whose going to drive Horace to the Wolfpen Ridge house tonight?” Allen asked, nodding his head toward one of the men in the room.
“I was thinkin' on you, Allen. If you don't have other things you have to do,” the man named Ike said with a grin.
“Sure, I can do it. I really wish I could play ghost this time, though.”
“No! I've told you a million times before. Your too tall. Taller than Horace. The girls would notice that in an instant, and then know there's no ghost for sure.”
“But they know there isn't really one already. Besides, they're just kids. They wouldn't notice the difference.”
“I said no, and I mean it. They're smarter than that. And you know when I say something, I mean it.” Ike said.
Allen grumbled and said, “It's so much better than just driving the ghost,” he said, walking towards the apartment door.
“Hey, Allen,” Ike said. “Before you leave, did your parents really believe in the ghost?”
“No,” Allen said.
Carrie was laying her blankets down on the ground behind a bush, when she heard the soft noise of a car motor. Quickly she got down out of sight, and waited.
Finally the car came into view. It was a black car, just like the one her sister had mentioned. It stopped quite a ways off from where she was, then the ghost jumped out, and crept around to the other side of the mountain.
Satisfied that Callie and Sally were there, he came back around to Carrie's side, and walked over to the car driver who had gotten out, but his back was to Carrie.
They talked for a minute, and then the car driver got in the car and drove off. The ghost then reached into his pocket, then pulled his hand back out. The wailing began. He was facing Carrie, and she could tell his mouth wasn't moving.
“He must have some sort of tape in his pocket, and he's not the one who does the wailing!” Carrie thought excitedly to herself.
The man walked around to Callie's and Sally's side, and after about half an hour, which seemed to Carrie like hours and hours, he came back around her side, and only minutes later the black car drove up. The driver got out, this time facing Carrie.
He was tall, and had black hair. It was hard to make out his face, but he looked the same age a Allen Jones.
“I sure would like to see his face better,” Carrie thought. “If I could just see his face closer. I think I'm just going to have to chance it, or else never know if Mr. Jones is in it.”
Keeping low among the bushes and shadows, Carrie crept closer. Finally she was close enough to get a good look at the driver. It was Mr. Jones! He turned his head in her direction, and only just in time she jumped out of sight. The two men talked a minute or so more, then both jumped in the car and drove off. Carrie could hardly contain her excitement. When the car was well out of sight, she hurried over to her cousin and friend.
“You won't believe what I saw!” She said, her face a little wan from her fright.
“What?” Sally asked.
“I saw the man that drove the car, and the car, too. The driver was Mr. Jones!”
“Hurray!” Sally exclaimed excitedly. “What a break! I knew that he was in it!”
“And,” Carrie said. “The ghost doesn't do the wailing. He has a recorder of some sort that plays it. Who agrees we go into town tomorrow and get a Police Officer over to arrest the man?”
“I do,” Callie said. “Except, what about Mom? If she sees him, she would start asking questions, and then we'd have to tell her everything.”
“No, we wouldn't,” Carrie said. “We would tell him to do what Sally told Mr. Jones to do. And he could hide his car so mom and the ghost and his driver can't see it.”
“It went wonderful, Ike,” Horace said as he and Allen sat down on a couch in the apartment.
“Good,” Ike grinned. “And your sure, Allen, that the two girls don't suspect you? Just the one girl?”
“Oh, sure, Ike. I'm positive,” Allen replied.
“Good. But what will we do if they start to suspect you?” Ike asked.
“I don't think that's going to happen, Ike. They seem to trust me awfully good.”
“Look, if they do suspect us, then they will probably call the Police, and then we'll get caught. I think we should stay away for about a week or so, then they might get discourage and stop waiting outside for us, and then we come back, and that's when we'll rob the house,” Ike said.
“I like the idea, Ike,” Horace said. “It's just that, you want to rob them while they're home? We've never done that! You always said it was too dangerous.”
“I know. But if they suspect we're gone for good, then if we do make a little noise in the house, they won't suspect anything much, if it's even loud enough to wake any of them up. It's a good chance. What do you say, Kyle?”
He asked, turning to a man in his late forties, with light brown hair. “Sounds great to me. Who'll go inside?” He asked.
“Horace will,” Ike said.
At this Horace's eyes widened. He was so shocked and angry at Ike, he couldn't say any thing. Finally he managed to stammer, “M—me? Bu—but, I don't want to! I already have the awful job of being a ghost! I'm sure to stumble, and then they'll all come down, and call the police and I'll be turned in!”
“Well, somebody's got to do it, and I'm picking you for the job.”
The three girls had asked a police man to come over, and he had agreed. When they met him by the mountain, he said, “I haven't seen anyone so far. You did say he always comes around twelve-o'clock, didn't you?”
“Yes,” Callie said. “But once he came really late. It's only twelve-ten. He should be hear soon.”
“Tell you what,” said the Police Officer, whose name was Mark. “If the men aren't here by one-o'clock, I'm going to have to leave.”
By one-o'clock, though, the men hadn't shown up, of course, and the Police Officer soon left. Sally was disappointed.
“It's like they knew we were bringing a Police Officer, so they didn't come. We didn't tell anyone about bringing one. Not even Aunt Leah. I just don't understand it all. It sure is beyond me,” she said.
“Same here,” Callie agreed.
“It just seems like we're not getting anywhere,” Sally said.
“That's because we're not,” Callie said practically.
But Carrie disagreed. “Yes, we are,” she said. “What about last night? We found out that Mr. Jones is in it. Isn't that getting somewhere?”
“No. Not really,” Sally said. “The gang's probably moved out for good, so what good will it do knowing Mr. Jones is in on it? None. So we'll never see him again, so the Police can't arrest him. If any other men in the gang come to town, we don't know what they look like, so the Police can't arrest them. So, if you get what I'm saying, we've really gotten no where.”
“Well, I think we should keep sleeping out here as long as your here until the gang comes back,” Carrie said. “It's only been one night that they've been gone, anyhow. We'll sleep outside tonight, but we won't have any Police come over until the night after we see the gang again, if we ever do see them again.”
“I agree,” Callie said. “No sense calling Police over here again, and then the gang people not coming again.”
“Of course,” Sally said "I'm all for it, but I just don't think the gang's ever coming back.”
Carrie only shrugged. The next two days, when the gang still didn't show up, even Carrie was getting discouraged.
“But we're not going to give up,” she said determinedly.