A/N: and yet again, I avoid my other stories to bring yet another fanfiction, but I assure you, I will eventually get those other popular ones done! I'M NOT NEGLECTING I JUST DON'T HAVE THE FRAME OF MIND NOR THE INFORMATION TO CONTINUE QUICKLY! As it stands I have two already that I have to reread just to get all the information straight so I CAN continue. In the mean time, you'll have plenty of other things of mine to look at, like my devart userpage and scrap book.

Go. Look. Enjoy.

Now, if you haven't a clue what Charlie Bone is, then… GO AND READ IT! IT'S FANTABULOUS!

Oh and I haven't a clue if Asa is supposed to be a senior or if he's a year younger than Manfred, so I made him a year younger because that's what he seems to me. .

Also, this all takes place after the third book. SO READ ALL THREE BOOKS!

Charlie Bone and the Trio of Trouble

Chapter One

The sun bore down on Filbert Street as though it was the middle of summer, but even in summer, the sun wasn't quite as hot as it was this spring afternoon. Charlie watched neighbors across the street in number thirteen moving in, right next door to his best friend Benjamin. Benjamin was in Hong Kong, however, which left Charlie alone in his house in number nine.

The man he was watching now was a tall, powerfully built man with wild blonde hair on his head and a squared jaw. He lifted a box and started toward the house. A woman came out wearing shorts. She, too, looked fairly strong, broad shoulders and strong arms and legs showing. Short, short brown hair blew in a slight breeze as she took the box and hefted it inside. They seemed nice enough.

Then, he caught sight of a girl coming out and talking to the man. He nodded and handed her a few boxes and she started for the door. Her hair was shoulder length and blonde like the man's and almost as wayward, and she seemed to have the same build as the woman and the man, though she couldn't have been more than fourteen.

"Charlie, your lunch is getting cold," said his grandmother, Maisie.

Charlie turned and went to the table, where fish and chips was set out for him and his grandmother. His Uncle Paton was out at the bookshop and his other grandmother, Grandma Bone, was out, much to Charlie's discomfort. Whenever he couldn't have a good eye on his Grandma Bone, there was usually trouble brewing, though trouble would brew anyway, even if he was standing right in front of her.

"I see we have new neighbors across the street," Maisie said with a bright smile. "I thought I saw a girl out there about your age. Maybe, after lunch, you could go over and get to know her. Heaven knows you need someone to talk to or is one of your school friends coming over?"

"They're all busy at the moment," Charlie said as he drank his milk.

"Well! Your mother won't be home until four and Paton will more than likely stay put for a while, you should go outside," Maisie said with a smile.

Charlie was certain his uncle would stay put for a while as well. Paton had a crush on the woman at the bookstore, Miss Ingledew, who was the aunt of his friend Emma Tolly.

With his uncle gone, that meant the Yewbeam sisters could come over at any given moment and start up one of their plans. He knew that after he had helped to successfully make Ollie Sparks visible and brought both Sparks brothers to Sparkling Castle, he was going to be given a real punishment. Charlie wasn't following the rules, as far as they were concerned and he'd so far managed to steal herbs from his Great Aunt Eustatia's garden and his Uncle burned down his Great Aunt Venitia's house after she had nearly killed Miss Ingledew with a magically constricting belt.

It was only after Charlie had used the wand he had taken from Skarpo the Scorcorer's portrait on the belt that it finally broke away from Miss Ingledew, though she didn't even realize that she'd even been in trouble.

"All right, Maisie," Charlie said as he put his dishes into the sink. "I'll be back." Then, he walked out.

Charlie put his hand to his brow as the sun glared at him from above. Why was it so bright and hot today?

He saw the girl again, coming out of the house, ready to take another box into the house, though she looked very much like she'd prefer being someplace else. The tall man, who Charlie realized was the girl's father, turned, he smiled broadly at Charlie. "Aye! Hello there," he said with a slight Scottish accent, "Come to say hello to us, or just to chat up m'daughter?"

The girl flicked her father on his arm, ears turning distinctly red. "Dad!" she huffed at him.

The father grinned broadly again and nudged the girl forward. "Go on! Say hello to the boy, lass!"

She smiled meekly and put her hand out to Charlie, which he took, though his own face was turning pink at the man's words. "I'm Charlie Bone," he said to her. "My family lives across the street in number nine."

"Morgan MacGregor," said the girl with a lopsided grin.

The father grinned another winning smile and nudged Morgan. "Go on then… make friends and come back for dinner. Your mother and I can handle the rest of this."

Morgan nodded mutely and motioned with her head for Charlie to follow. Charlie followed, but he wasn't entirely certain if she knew where she was going. "Sorry about m'dad. He's all right, but tends to joke around a bit." Her ears went pink once again and she looked ahead.

"It's all right. I was glad he wasn't about to kill me or some such thing," said Charlie. Mr. MacGregor reminded him of Mr. Torsson, his friend Tancred's father, who was large and blustery. Mr. MacGregor, however, was thinner than Mr. Torsson.

Morgan smiled that lopsided grin again as she looked about the end of the street. This confirmed Charlie's earlier assessment. She hadn't the fainted idea of where she was headed. "There's a park near here, if you'd like to go there," Charlie said, trying to be helpful.

Morgan nodded and motioned for him to lead the way. "So where d'you go to school here?"

"Er—I used to go to the local school, but now I go to Bloor's Academy." Charlie refrained from more information in case of something bad happening. It seemed that every time he met someone new, they were something bad or they were hypnotized or something out of the ordinary.

"Ohh." Morgan glanced around a moment and then turned back to Charlie. "I'm going there after mid-term break is over. At least that's what my parents said."

Charlie tallied another mark on the inside of his brain. "What department are you going to be in?"

"Music. I play violin," she said with a bashful smile. "I'm sort of just starting out, really, though. Started last year."

"I'm in music as well, though I'm not all that good," Charlie said. They'd reached the park and were walking around aimlessly. In the distance the bells in the cathedral were sounding off the start of a new hour.

"Anything I should know about Bloors?" she asked as she jumped onto the edge of the curb and started walking on it like a tight rope walker. Charlie told her about some of the rules and the departments, the ruins and the forest, but left out the bits about the 'endowed'. "Oi—that doesn't sound very pleasant," she said after he was through.

"It isn't," Charlie said as he jumped onto the edge of the fountain like she was doing.

"Then, why go there?"

Charlie nearly lost his footing for a moment and looked to Morgan. "What?"

She was staring at him with stormy grey eyes. "Why go there if it's so horrible?"

Charlie shrugged. "My aunts wanted me to go there."

Morgan nodded. "M'gran said it was the best place for me." She turned and got off the fountain. "Then, Dad found a job at the school and that well cinched it."

Charlie blinked at her for a moment. Her father was going to work at the school, which meant he probably had contact with the Bloors; which wasn't a good thing.

They walked through the market and she bought a small bag of peppermints. As they walked and ate the mints, they came across Miss Ingledew's store. Charlie walked in with Morgan behind him. Emma was putting a couple of books away and smiled when she saw Charlie. "Charlie!"

Charlie walked over and smiled faintly. Miss Ingledew was at the counter talking to Paton rather avidly. Emma introduced herself to Morgan and they went into the back room where Morgan began looking at the shelves. "So you'll be going to Bloors as well?" asked Emma.

"Yeah." Morgan picked out a book and began thumbing through it before she put it back. "Music department."

Paton came into the back and looked to Charlie, then looked to Morgan. She gave a meek smile and offered her hand before she introduced herself.

"Paton Yewbeam," said Paton before he picked up a book from a table.

"I saw that name on one of the portraits while I was being shown around. Yewbeam. Is that an old family?" Morgan asked.

Paton nodded grimly. "Yes…"

Morgan seemed to catch the faint hint that he wasn't about to speak further on that subject. She, instead, busied herself with Emma, pointing to a drawing Emma had done of a white bird.

Paton leaned closer to Charlie. "New neighbor?"

"Yes," said Charlie. "Her dad will be working at Bloors."

Paton watched Morgan for a moment and nodded. "See you at home, Charlie. Be sure to be careful walking home. I don't trust what my sisters are up to."

Charlie nodded and watched Paton leave before turning back to Morgan. She was smiling brightly as she handed Emma a few of the mints. After a while, Charlie looked to the watch he was wearing. It was his mother's, but it at least didn't look too feminine.

"I need to go back soon," he said.

Morgan nodded. "All right." Charlie said good-bye to Emma and Miss Ingledew before he walked out with Morgan trailing behind him. He wasn't so sure he trusted Morgan or her family now, though it had more to do with the tendency toward the Yewbeam sisters and the Bloors cooking up some new scheme to ruin someone else's life, namely his if they had a say in it.

When they reached Filbert Street, Charlie waved good-bye to Morgan and went inside. Grandma Bone was at the door and narrowed her beady eyes at him in disdain. "Out and about with a new friend, are you?"

"Yes," said Charlie as he walked to the living room. Grandma Bone stalked up the stairs, tossing him a few glares.

"Don't be so smug, Charlie," she said sharply. Charlie hardly thought he looked smug.

After dinner, Charlie went into his room and prepared his clothes for school the next morning. He looked out and saw something very large being moved about in one of the lighted rooms in number thirteen. After a moment, it stilled and there was a shout of praise and a cheer before the sounds died and the light went out in the room.

Charlie thought it all peculiar, but just shook his head and sat down on his bed, looking at the wand from his Welsh ancestor. It belonged to him. It came from his mother's family, from Maisie's family. So why did his father get punished if it wasn't for marrying someone who wasn't from an endowed family.

He remembered that Grandma Bone had said it was because he hadn't followed the rules and that her own son had got what he deserved when his car fell into that chasm. Charlie grunted and put the wand back into its hiding place before he got under the covers and went to sleep.