Disclaimer:

Author's Notes: Yes, this is the final chapter. Please read&review! Should I make a sequal?^^


Chapter 8


"Don't you worry, Haku. The little pipsqueak will be here any minute now. I'll let you live long enough to see her fail." Yubaba was torturing him again. She'd done it so much that it was beginning to get as old as Yubaba was herself.

Haku clenched his teeth as if he was a dragon. Unfortunately, he couldn't transform.

"Don't give me that look! It's your own fault. If you'd have just turned her into me in the first place-"

There was a knock on the door.

Yubaba smiled.

The guests are here," she said with an evil grin, "and now the fun begins." Yubaba left Haku and went to answer the door. He heard the door open, and at once the air was filled with shouts.

"So that's why one of the clues was 'cottage,'" Chihiro said as she and Helene walked towards Zeniba's house. Helene knew what was going on now. She couldn't wait to throw a punch at Yubaba.

They knocked on the door and waited. The door opened, and when the girls looked to see who it was, no one was there.

"Hmm…" said Helene. "They're probably hiding somewhere."

As soon as the two had stepped into the room, the net, which they had been unknowingly standing on, went up, and they were trapped. Chihiro started shouting for help. Yubaba had to laugh.

"So I see you've made it this far. Well, since you made it this far, I might as well tell you who the kidnapper is: me!" Then she told them everything (except the fact that the accident Chihiro had been in was her fault): how she had kidnapped Haku and Zeniba and then disguised herself as Zeniba, of how she made up the clues and tests, and of how she had made the wind snatch up Chihiro's hair-tie.

"You see, I did get my revenge!"

"Where is Haku?" shouted Helene. Suddenly she disappeared out of the net and reappeared chained to the wall. Then the net disappeared, and Chihiro landed on the floor with a bump.

"Chihiro, you must take one more test. If you win, you shall be returned home-"

"And you will set all these people free, go back to where you came from, and never return."

"All right. But if you lose… you're mine!" Yubaba said. Chihiro had no idea what the test would be like, but she figured it couldn't be worse than anything else she'd already done in this world.

"Okay, I'm ready to take this test of yours," Chihiro said.

Yubaba disappeared through a door on the back wall. Chihiro looked around and realized that this house was like any house in the human world.

A long table accompanied by two long benches was in the middle of the large room. A stove, sink, and oven sat on the left side of the table, and a large spinning wheel was placed to the right. Pots and pans of all shapes and sizes hung from racks on the ceiling. Finally, Yubaba returned.

"This is Haku," she said, thrusting the boy at Chihiro. "Tell me where you first met him."

Haku looked up at Chihiro's puzzled face. He wanted to grab her shoulders and shake her until she remembered, but then he considered the fact that Yubaba had Chihiro's memory. Yubaba told him that he could say one thing to Chihiro. If he said anything else, she'd hurt Chihiro.

"Chihiro," he said, choosing his words carefully, "go over to that table and take the box with the black lock on it." Chihiro stared at him, but walked over to the table anyways. She found the box with the black lock.

It was sort of small, so she put it in her pocket. Yubaba screamed.

A magic beam projected out of her hand, heading strait for Chihiro.

"No!" Helene and Haku shouted at the same time. Surprisingly, the beam just bounced off Chihiro and vanished.

"What?" the other three said. Chihiro sat down, the tiny locked box still in her pocket.

"I… I met Haku…" she said, trying to remember. Yubaba smiled, Helene frowned with doubt, and Haku silently prayed.

"Wait… I dropped my shoe into a river when I was little… and then I fell in trying to get it back… I thought I would drown, but the water carried me back to shore… No, a… a… a dragon carried me back to shore, and I think that's Haku!"

"NOOOOOOOOOOO!" Yubaba screamed as she vanished. A key chain appeared, and then it changed into the real Zeniba. Helene's chains disappeared. Chihiro turned to the others.

"Chihiro!" Zeniba cried as she ran over and hugged her. Chihiro stared for a moment, then smiled.

"Granny!" After that Chihiro went over to Haku.

"Chihiro," he said, "take out the little box and open it."

Chihiro took it out and noticed that the black lock was gone, and when she opened it, a beam of light shown into the room. A tiny golden ball of light sat in the box. Haku took it out and placed it to Chihiro's forehead. At once, memories began to rush at her.

"Haku, I remember! I remember! I remember the first time I came here, and my parents… Oh, I remember!"

She ran up and hugged him. He smiled.

"I remember thinking that I'd never see you again, and here you are," she said with happiness. She held him tightly for a long time, until she noticed Helene backing away.

"Haku," she said, "there's someone I'd like you to meet."

She took Haku over to Helene and placed his hand in hers.

"Haku meet Helene," she said.

"Oh, Haku," cried Helene, tears in her eyes, "you look just the same as you did years ago. Mama would be so proud if she was still alive!"

"Do I know… Mama? What is going on?" Haku asked, very confused.

"Haku, please tell me you remember! Please!" She looked desperate.

Haku stared at her and though. Then he felt the memory of another time and place run through his head.

"Helene!" he said as he through his arms around her. "I remember you! My sister… I'm sorry I couldn't save you. I should've never made that wish!"

"But Haku," said Helene, "if you hadn't made that wish, Chihiro could've drowned because you wouldn't have been there to save her."

"True," Haku agreed. "Now, we must get Chihiro home."


Chihiro waved good-bye as she ran over the grassy field towards the tunnel. Haku promised he would find away to see Chihiro again, but unfortunately, Helene would never be able to leave because she was stuck in the middle of a deal that couldn't be undone.

The tunnel's warmth cheered her up as she walked back towards the woods. She ran down the dirt path and then ran to the school.

Chihiro's relatives weren't angry, just disappointed in her. They were soon happy to know that she got her memory back, though.

Chihiro didn't get detention, although she did have to stay after class once a week and help her teacher straiten up the room. She also had to partake in the sixth grade spelling bee. She didn't win, even though no one had expected her to.

Chihiro became more active in school that year. The children stopped hating her, and soon she was surrounded by a huge group of friends.

She never lost track of her hair-tie again. She kept in the tiny golden box.

At the end of school that year, Chihiro received an award for most improved.

She always wondered what would happen if she went back through the tunnel again, but she decided not to. Haku promised that they would meet again someday, and she didn't question that.

He had never said when, so Chihiro expected that he would appear by her bed just before she died.

"Chihiro, time's up," her uncle called. A month after she had graduated from sixth grade, her relatives had taken her back to the riverbed where the Kohaku River had once flowed.

"Coming!" she called back. Haku wasn't there again.

"Come on sweetie, your aunt's going to be late!"

Chihiro looked up at the clouds and smiled. Even if she didn't find him today, there was always tomorrow.