Chitkin told me all this later and said that she knew how to trap the spy and, maybe, Shrieker too.
A few nights later, when Chitkin and I felt that Piçon and Shrieker had stopped watching our every move, Chitkin woke me up with a gentle nudge with her foot and mouthed, “Let’s go”.
We crept out of the tangled mess in our gallery and made for the hole that Chitkin had so carefully filled in. It was tough going to get past all of the rocks and twigs and roots before we could speak.
“Listen, Cello. We are going to have to do a little work to clear a path along the way that we went last time. OK?” whispered Chitkin.
“Yes, OK. But I’m so tired that I don’t know how much I can do.” I whispered back.”
We had had a really difficult day swinging and cutting and, finally, dragging/carrying our coco pods all the way over to the splitters.
“Ocellus, we want to escape from this slavery, right? So, we have to do a little work so that we can trap the spy and try to trap Shrieker, too. Everything’ll be just fine, four legs up, yours and mine.” Chitkin was good at making me believe we could do…well…anything.
Chitkin said to just clear enough of the debris out of the way so that we could sneak through. When we’d gone a fair way in we heard the moaning voice again letting us know that we were going the wrong way and that we should go back and take the path to the right.
“OK, Cello. You let me stand on your back while I dig up into the roof to make a hole for us to climb through.” said Chitkin.
“What?! Stand on my back?!” I scream-whispered. I thought, ‘Girl, what could go wrong with this?!’
“Come on, Ocellus, it will take just a few minutes. It’s part of the plan.” replied Chitkin.
Chitkin scraped and dug into the roof, with dirt and pebbles falling all over yours truly, I might add. Finally, there was a bit of fresh air that came gently into the tunnel.
“We’ve made it, Cello! Let’s go!” said Chitkin.
“Great, Chitkin, we can get back for a little sleep now.” I said
“Not so fast.” said Chitkin. “We have a bit more to do before we can get some sleep. Follow me.”
I’m sure you know that we took the next right turn as we were going back towards our chamber and followed it until we had gone a little way when Chitkin suddenly stopped.
“Look at that silver leaf on the ground, Ocellus!” Chitkin whispered with excitement. “I think it’s a special clue!”
We rushed over to pick it up but our fingers went right through it.
“What…?” I gasped.
“Cello, it’s not a leaf! It just looks like one. It’s actually the moonlight coming through the tunnel roof; it’s in the shape of a leaf. This is where we have to go to get out of here!” Chitkin cheered.
“But, Chitkin…” I stammered.
“Come on, Cello, we’ll back out and cover our path with anything you can to hide the path that we just took so that you-know-who won’t know that we came this way.” said Chitkin.
We filled in the real path and finally made our way back to our gallery to get some sleep, if we could just get our breathing to slow down!
The next day at our lunch break - all 10 minutes of it! - I pretended I was sleeping while Chitkin told me the rest of the plan for the trap.
Late that night everyone was sleeping. Chitkin gently kicked me so that I barely opened my eyes to see Piçon sneaking out the way we had gone, through the hole at the back of chamber and along the path we had taken.
I was wide awake, now. Where was Piçon going? Would she find the real path to the tunnel with the silver leaf? And how did Chitkin know Piçon would be going there tonight?!
Soon I was falling asleep again. We were both exhausted and nothing was going to keep us awake any longer. Tomorrow we would find out if the trap had worked.
END CHAPTER #11