For disclaimer on The Spiderwick Chronicles, please refer to chapter one.

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Chapter Three,

In Which Jared Sets Out on His Journey

"Thimbletack!" Jared called urgently as he burst through the front door of the old victorian house. "Thimbletack!"

He rushed up the stairs and hurried until he reached Arthur Spiderwick's old haven.

"It's quite early for one to be awake," a small voice called, coming from behind a dusty and broken-down clock sitting on a shelf. "What is it that you ache?" he asked as he climbed down onto the desktop.

"No," Jared clarified. "It's not me; it's Simon."

"Jared's double is in trouble," the brownie responded. Jared slowly lowered himself on the deskchair, leveling himself more to Thimbletack's height.

"He's sick," the distressed boy began to explain. "And the doctors haven't figured out what's wrong with him," he said slowly and calmly, but his words steadily sped up with underlying frustration, "but I know it has to do with the goblins!" He heaved a breath of heavy air. "I didn't know they were poisonous..." he finished quietly.

"Venomous..." the soft-spoken animal pondered. "They are not. No creature has died from a goblin attack on the spot."

"But it has to be something!" Jared exasperated. "That bite, there had to have been a bad reaction."

He rushed over to the chest to retrieve the Field Guide, and threw it open on the desktop. Flipping through a few pages until reaching the desired section, he pointed out the paragraph, proving that there was missing information. Not that Jared nor Thimbletack needed confirmation; they both knew the mystical bible by heart.

"There's nothing in the guide that said goblin..." Jared fussed, trying to think of the right word, "Spit was deadly!"

He paused for a moment to gulp down some air. His face now showing a look of determination. "So I am going to write it in myself."

There was a long pause of silence before the boy slowly sunk into the deskchair again. His elbow leaning against the armrest and head resting defeatedly in the palm of his hand. "But I don't know where to start looking! How am I going to find answers for a cure in time?"

He crouched down close to Thimbletack. "You've got to help me," Jared pleaded.

Thimbletack pointed out the window. The boy got up slowly and approached the window. He could see some brown leaves rustling in the leaves through the twilight air. He instantly knew what the household spirit meant. The only way he was ever going to find what he was looking for would be out there, in the forest.

Grabbing the Field Guide, Jared raced out of the secret room and to his bedroom. He made an abrupt hault before crashing into his bed, and snatched up his backpack. Shoving the Field Guide in, with several other handy survival tools, he rapidly zipped up his bag and fled down the stairs. Jared readjusted his jacket as he swung his backpack on, then headed towards the door.

"Jared Grace, where do you think you're going?" his mother demanded in a scolding tone. He froze the moment he heard the voice coming from behind him. Turning around slowly to face her, the boy spoke up.

"I was..." he started, stalling long enough to come up with a legitimate reason as fast as he could.

"No," she responded bluntly. She had his number. Well, sort of. Almost. At least knew he'd escape the house for some troubled reason or another. And she wasn't going to have it.

"But..." he feebly argued.

"You know what?" she continued, exasperated.

"Mom, listen."

"I don't want to know." She closed her eyes as she said it, waving her hands and shaking her head. "It is well after five o'clock in the morning. I need to be up in an hour to get ready for work, and..."

She stopped midway into her sentence and let out a heavy sigh. "You're going back to bed," she finished.

"You're doing it again," Jared said, angrily. "You're not listening! Simon needs my help, and I've got to go find-"

"We've done all we can for Simon right now," she said gently, placing her hand on his shoulder. "But now we've got to let him rest, and we've got to get some sleep ourselves. We'll go see him after I get back from work." She pulled him in close to her for a half-hug. "Okay?"

Kissing him lightly on the top of his head, she turned and walked up the stairs.

Jared let out a sigh of defeat. Glancing at the front door, he compteplated his choices. He could rebel and bolt out the door right now with his mother still hot on his tail, or follow his mother's instructions with less of a heated consequence. With the latter being the lesser of two evils, Jared trudged upstairs.

Dropping his backpack to the floor with a firm "thump", Jared flopped down on his mattress. With his street clothes still on, he stretched his legs out and folded his arms over his chest. Head sunk into his soft, comfy pillow, Jared's eyes fluttered shut and dozed off in a light sleep. He'll try to restart his quest again after a quick nap and a sneakier exit.

End of Chapter Three

Author's Note: I apologize for the three-year delay. I just would like to thank all of you who have been reviewing, favoring, subscribing to this story. Your dedication has been amazing! I hope you enjoyed this chapter. Chapter four is underway!

26 August 2011