The gang escaped the collapsing windmill using Carmen's golem. It was a hassle having to go through avoiding areas where the engineers cause the most destruction. After a few minutes of avoiding explosions and some of the engineers giant creations, Simon tells Claude of what he knows about the key to Hollow Fields.
"So your telling me Miss Notch has it?" Claude asked.
"She keeps it 'close to heart'. That's what I know. Actually Meg knew about it and got the info off her."
"What's that key for? Is it the way out this place?"
"I'm not sure but that key is important to Miss Weaver that the maid guards it for her."
"I don't even know where to start looking for her in all this chaos! My guess is Miss Weaver's tower but I'm not sure if they are still there! It still stands but-"
"Then Let's look there." Lucy suggested. "It's one of the first places to look isn't it?"
"Lucy….. Alright then. Carmen, get this golem to head for Miss Weaver's tower!"
"That place? What for?" Carmen asked.
Carmen directed the golem to head towards Miss Weaver's tower. It took awhile because several detours had to be taken again to avoid the engineer's destruction.
Near the entrance of the tower lay a pile of rubble that had fallen on a person. And that was Miss Notch.
"Look at that.. The cave in got her before we did!"
Carmen stopped the golem and the gang climbed down.
"Omigosh! Check it out!" Lucy exclaimed. "She looks really hurt!"
"Good!" Said Claude. "About time someone dropped a big rock on her!"
Lucy remembered Simon saying Miss Notch kept the key close to heart. By her efforts, Lucy searched over Miss Notch.
"Hey! You trying to steal her wallet! Because I don't think she HAS one." Claude said as Lucy tried to search for the key.
"The key." Said Lucy. "I thought it be around her neck or something.. It's not here!"
"Miss Notch keeps it 'close to heart'…" Claude said thinking. "Carmen, you have any of your mechanical kit with you?"
Carmen got out a wrench and some other tools. "Just these… be careful with them!" Claude took the tools, went over Miss Notch and began dissecting her with them. "EWW!" Carmen yelled.
"What do you think you're doing! Gross!" Summer squealed seeing Claude open up Miss Notch's chest to reveal clanking gears and a artificially pumped heart.
"D- Don't hurt her Claude!" Lucy said also seeing the creepy site.
"Is that even possible? She's a giant walking doll!" Claude said. If he was hurting her, she would be made of flesh and blood or fractions of some.
In the middle near the heart was a key. "There!" Claude pointed. "Look at that, right in the center!"
Lucy picked up the key. "It's a key, a wind up toy key!"
"Which Miss Notch keeps close to heart, you were right Simon!" Claude said.
"A wind up though?" Simon asked.
"That would mean the key is not the way out!" Claude said. "Now I know why it's important to Miss Weaver."
"Yeah. Me too!" Said Lucy. "Anyways, you guys escape from Hollow Fields."
"Wait what? Lucy where are you going?" Claude asked.
"Miss Weaver has Doctor Bleak! I bet she's upstairs in this tower for that's where her office is. And I'll bet Doctor Bleak is up there too! I.. I owe him a lot.. I have to save him! You four escape Hollow Fields."
Claude has done so much to get Lucy's memories back and helped Lucy along the way. Lucy might seem independent to him after getting her memories back but Claude doesn't even know if she will make it against Miss Weaver as an experiment kid. Miss Weaver could figure out her weaknesses easy cause she almost looks and steams out like an engineer. Ever since Claude found Lucy, he still doesn't know why she has two steam holes with one steaming and the other is not. Maybe Miss Weaver knows about it and he needed to know too. Along with Lucy. Miss Weaver knowing any weaknesses included with how they experimented with Lucy would not hesitate to use them against her.
"I'm not leaving you Lucy." Claude said serious.
"But Claude. You struggled to escape Hollow Fields!"
"I want to help you. Miss Weaver might know some facts of the windmill kids getting experimented. Since you were experimented, the engineers I noticed have rebuilt you differently then the other windmill kids. Simon here was engineered like the rest of them."
"I kinda noticed that." Lucy said. "But why do you want to help me?"
"She might know your weaknesses. Facing her alone and with only one invention is not enough. I'm going to come with you because…" Claude smiled. "We're friends! Remember?"
Lucy was astonished at first. Then she remembered the time when she rescued Claude in Summer's lair from falling to sudden death and said that they were friends and they were. She smiled and nodded in response.
"I'm coming too!" Simon said. "Why not the extra help?"
"It's settled then! Lucy, Simon, and I are heading for Miss Weaver's office. You two, Summer! Carmen! Evacuate the other kids and help them and yourselves escape Hollow Fields!"
"You sure?" Carmen asked.
"Just go!" Claude ordered. "We'll be fine!"
"You heard him! Let's scram and get the heck outta here Carmen!" Summer yelled as she hopped on the golem before Carmen did and fled. "Good Luck with Miss Weaver!" Carmen yelled as they went.
Claude, Simon, and Lucy walked up the stairs that seemed to go almost forever. Lucy had Dino and the key. Claude actually brought his shovel he used against the windmill kids. Simon earlier after the time Lucy was calmed off her rampage decided to retrieve the crook. Lucy had Dino and the boys to protect her if Miss Weaver decided to try and harm her with whatever she had up her sleeve. Those sharp claw like artificial fingers of hers would make a fatal blow. She does have mechanical arms after all. She could easily choke somebody with those and might have strength so strong it exceeds a normal human's.
Lucy realized she was going slower than usual and she was putting what she thought was her normal amount of effort getting up the stairs. So she put some more effort in catching up with Claude and Simon. She felt like she had less energy than usual and that like a wind up toy had to depend on gears to keep turning to allow her to move at all. She wondered why she felt this way. In fact, why did she? It wasn't cardio that was causing this that's for sure.
"Lucy you okay?" Claude asked.
"I'm fine, but I feel weird."
Claude was concerned and Simon felt this same way as Claude could see his expression.
Finally after walking up a long flight of stairs, they encounter Miss Weaver having a conversation with Doctor Bleak but Miss Weaver is on the verge of wanting to rip him to the point of him becoming dust.
"Where is Miss Notch? I need that key…"
"You mean this key?" Lucy said. Miss Weaver turned around to find her with Claude and Simon standing next to her on each side. "How did you three get out of detention?"
Miss Weaver spotted the key In Lucy's grip. "The key! Give me that you little monster!" Miss Weaver wanted to grab that key and be done with it. "How did you get your FILTHY little paws on that in the first place?
Claude and Simon were about to make a move but Lucy held the key over the window obviously threatening to drop it.
"NO! What are you doing? Careful with that!"
"First things first!" Lucy began. "Promise me your never going to do bad things to kids again… TO ANYBODY!"
"You miserable little whelp!" Miss Weaver growled. "The kids I experimented on all deserved it… They were rejects! The lowliest in the class!" Miss Weaver slid out a personality container.
"Isn't that right… Francine?"
"That's Francine? You beast!" Lucy exclaimed.
"That's Francine?" Claude yelled.
"Yes, It's miss Steinwald." Said Miss Weaver cruelly giving of a smirk. "You could say she's been… Ahh, downsized!"
Lucy didn't like the looks of this. This is what happens when to students that get their soul entirely sucked away.
"Secondly…" Lucy continued. "You're gonna tell the parents out there exactly what you did to their kids… The ones who went to the windmill! The ones like Francine and Simon… The ones whose lives you wrecked!"
Miss Weaver just stared than suddenly busted out laughing. "You just don't get it do you? You're a SIMPLE one, that's for sure! The parents of those kids don't care about them Miss Snow! They're mad scientists! Ruthless entrepreneurs who are happy to step all over human life to achieve their goals… Even the lives of their own offspring!
"Why, If they if they found out what I'd achieve today as a result of my tests in the windmill… They'd be falling all over themselves to come here and get a new body! They'd tear Hollow Fields apart just to be… Just to…" Miss Weaver stopped as she saw how much chaos is being created by the engineers outside as a missile from one of them blows up another tower. Hollow Fields was already being torn up.
"Your desire for immortality has really been a total dud in the first place hasn't it?" Said Claude. "In fact, you've made so many mistakes to even get his far yet all those useless tests in the windmill were all for nothing except to get yourself killed!"
"The boy is right!" Said Doctor Bleak. "You're a brilliant scientist, but you're not so good with understanding human nature are you? Your own research- your own success - has been the downfall of Hollow Fields. Eternal life is something everyone wants so badly, they're willing to destroy you and your school to get at it… EVEN YOUR OWN ENGINEERS!"
Miss Weaver turned to Doctor Bleak. "Maybe it's time we did a little destructive work on YOU!"
Lucy ran for Doctor Bleak. "Leave him alone, you old… YOU NASTY OLD OGRE!"
"Heh, Ogre?" Miss Weaver said then turned to Lucy. "I'll show you an ogre!" Miss Weaver swung at Lucy who manage to barely come in contact with her sharp mechanic claws. She swung again but Claude used his shovel to block her attack. Miss Weaver used her claws to chop Claude's shovel in half. "CRIPES!" Simon decided to make himself a distraction while defending himself with his crook.
"I see that classes with has certainly improved the vocabulary of insults among my students." Weaver said as she finally was able to turn her attention to Lucy. "The key, please Miss Snow! You haven't seen me angry yet… and you don't WANT to!" She threatened.
"We've got you all figured out Miss Weaver! You may be the best scientist here, and the scariest teacher I've ever met… But you can't do anything without this key can you? I notice a while back… all the engineers including you, have holes in their backs. 'Steamvents'. Probably to relieve their internal pressure or something. And because of your tests in the windmill, even the windmill kids, Simon, and I have steam vents. But you know what? No steam ever seems to come from the hole in your back. Why is that? Because it's not steam vent is it? It's a keyhole. You're just an overgrown clockwork toy… And Miss Notch has to use this key to wind you up every so often so your body doesn't 'run down!'"
"That's what the key to Hollow Fields is! It's not a key to a door.. It's the key to getting rid of.." Lucy suddenly found herself struggling to stand as she felt the gears the engineers inserted her with in the windmill suddenly slowing down more. Claude caught her. "Lucy!" "What the… my body! Why can't I move….?" Simon went to her to see what's going on.
"BWAHAHAHAHA! You're experiencing what I'm going through!" Weaver laughed. "Without that key Miss Snow, BOTH of us will become immobile and without that key… There's nothing neither you or I could do. NOTHING! The surgeons at the windmill gave you a steam vent and a keyhole.. This was done to make it so 'I' wouldn't need as much winding up for the steam vent will help preserve energy. Looks like you're on the edge of collapse Miss Snow!"
"Wait." Claude said "Don't tell us when you sent us to the windmill, you planned on transferring yourself to Lucy's body. This is why they rebuilt her body differently than the other windmill kids!"
"And when she went hostile against the windmill kids when she didn't have memories." Simon figured. "She was more faster and harder to handle than the entire mob itself!"
"In that case." Lucy used leftover energy to try to wind herself up. She was able to reach until she encountered an unexpected problem. "It won't fit?"
"WON'T FIT?" Claude and Simon both exclaimed. "Let me see you might not be twisting it right!" Claude offered a hand and realized it indeed won't fit.
"Oh my. I almost forgot." Miss Weaver laughed once more. "When plans for a new body for me were being done, all the years I've spent on tests in the windmill, I planned for my new body to have to be wound up by a new key to prevent anyone from trying to steal it and some… how to say… Ah, other complications! So I meant to say, without 'A' key, we'd wouldn't be able to move!"
"Darn!" Claude said feeling like he failed Lucy somehow. "Where the hell is the other key you old witch? Because if you don't tell us…" Claude handed Lucy to Simon, took the key, and went over to the wall to encounter an open space full of grinding gears. "I will NOT hesitate to destroy this one and not afraid to! You WILL tell us where the other key is or you can go without yours!"
"Unfortunately for you and Miss Snow… Mister McGinty, I don't know where the key is… In fact, recently it got stolen. My engineers searched all over Hollow Fields for both the culprit and the key. I guess my plans to prevent such a thing from happening didn't work. Another failure I presume." Miss Weaver stepped forward. "But if you give the key back, I'll have some of my leftover steam drones looks all over again. This time not just searching place but from all the students and my test subjects cause you never know who stole it."
"We… we're never giving the key to you!" Lucy said glaring at Weaver. "You would still try to steal my body and you would hurt every kid you find just to see if they had the key or not."
"Then you three give me no choice!" Weaver said as the elbow part of her arms opened vertically to reveal mechanical drills. Miss Weaver had more than her claws to use against the three. "Maybe this will persuade all of you!" She sprinted towards Claude. Claude managed to avoid it. She was too fast for him though that throwing the key in would've gave her the opportunity to catch it before the gears could break it.
Lucy used leftover strength and slid out Dino. She got Dino to grab on to a pipe in the ceiling and Claude and Simon went over and held on to her as they attempted to avoid the mad woman from below.
"I'll distract her again while you get Francine and Doctor Bleak." Simon said as he jumped down and caught the evil principal's attention. "Hey! I escaped that rundown windmill once again! Come and get me!"
"I'll give twice worse punishment than a ball and chain!" Miss Weaver roared. Simon was quick and agile to keep away of Miss Weaver's attacks. The crook he held for defense was strong enough to last much longer than the shovel that broke in half. The crook was made of copper and other metals.
Lucy and Claude got down. Lucy ran toward Doctor Bleak and Francine where Weaver left them.
"There you are Lucy! Now let's get out of here! The quicker the better!" Bleak said.
"Right!" Lucy agreed. Claude was with his plan as well. Their plan was ruined as Weaver turned off one drill to free one of her mechanical hand and used it to grab Simon's crook and slam Simon to the floor knocking him out.
"SIMON!" Lucy screamed. Next thing she knew, Miss Weaver sprinted towards her and managed to use her drills to destroy Dino in Lucy's grip.
Next thing the both of them knew, Miss Weaver grabbed both of them (with both HANDS of course) and lifted them by the necks. "I'm losing my patience with the both of you BRATS!" Miss Weaver spat as Claude and Lucy struggled for air. Claude tried to get the wicked woman to loosen her grip. Lucy, already have dropped Doctor Bleak and Francine, did the same thing. She still had the key in her grip. "This little game of yours is OVER! I have no time to waste in this foolishness! Hand over the key or else you will face worse HELL than the windmill!" She threatened as she held the two out the window. It was a long drop down from the top of the tower and Weaver already ripped Dino to smithereens. "Hand over the key NOW!" She repeated.
Carmen and Summer managed to evacuate the other kids and escort them to safety. Because one of the engineers destroyed the bridge, Carmen used her golem to make itself a bridge for the kids to climb over.
"About time we made it out of this mess! I'm getting sick and tired of this!" Said Summer relieved to be out of harms way. Carmen smiled timidly in response.
"Oh my gosh! What are those kids doing up Miss Weaver's tower?" A kid yelled as she pointed up at the tower.
"What is Miss Weaver doing with them?" Some other kid yelled. "I knew we had a crazy principal!"
Summer looked up. She used her bunny to summon built in binoculars and have a better look. She saw Lucy and Claude held out the window, by the necks, struggling for their lives in Miss Weaver's clutch.
"Lucy, Claude, and Simon are up there!" Carmen exclaimed. "Don't tell me those are-!"
"Miss Weaver has gone even more mad than when she declared two students would be sent to detention!" Summer said surprised. "If she drops McGinty and Snow, they're goners…"
"Nooo!" Carmen cried.
Next thing Summer knew, All the kids were staring, pointing, murmuring, and yelling seeing Claude and Lucy having to go through a life or death situation.
Miss Weaver had lost it, she still knew and remembered her policy for her academy but for one of the first or few times ever, she was more concentrated in getting a new body then anything else.
Claude and Lucy struggled for air as usual, Claude at least wanted a breath to spare at least more than the horrid witch letting go of him to face death by a fall. Lucy was putting in her efforts the same way but was losing strength not to lack of air, but her experimented body was giving out. Having no key to wind herself up, she was as much trouble as her friend was.
"You fools have no idea how great immortality would be for the world!" Miss Weaver snarled. "No one would have to live than die as a wrinkly, and ruined old abomination! Immortality preserves beauty and life wouldn't be so limited! In fact dieing would become a thing of the past or even a myth! It preserves energy and no one would have to worry about their age slowing them down!…. So hand over the key and I'll spare your lives."
Lucy used leftover strength to lift the key beside her. Claude saw what she was going to do.
Miss Weaver raised an eyebrow, she thought at first that Lucy was going to give the key to her. Lucy pretended that she was about to and then she suddenly threw it behind her toward a spot in the air where two missiles from the engineers fighting were about to collide.
"Over my dead body…." Lucy said.
Miss Weaver's eyes widened. Then….. BOOM! The missiles collided and the explosion did wreck the key to smithereens.
"No…. this can't… NOOOOOOOOOOOO!" Miss Weaver screamed. In her failure to retrieve the key, she loosened her grip. This gave Claude the opportunity to slip out and take a hold of the window ledge. Lucy did the same but ended holding on to the edge of the windmill for dear life.
Miss Weaver stepped back away from where Claude and Lucy were. She then couldn't step back anymore as her body already wound up gave out.
Claude shifted his attention to Lucy who was losing strength trying to keep her grip on the edge. The rest of her body as she felt became immobile, she couldn't use her legs to support herself. She didn't feel numb but the rest of her body would not move.
"Lucy!" Claude yelled. He grabbed her wrists and she grabbed his. Claude struggled to pull her up. Lucy did her best keeping a grip. She knew she needed to help pull herself up as well, but more bad news as she realized she couldn't move her arms anymore. The only remaining part of her arms she could move was her hands.
"Don't let go!" Claude said.
"I can't pull myself up!" Lucy cried.
Claude did his best trying to use whatever strength he could use even if it really exhausted him. Claude was on the edge of joining Lucy for the fall.
"Claude your slipping!" Lucy cried. "for-"
"You better not say 'forget about me' just to save me!" Claude yelled. "There is no way I'm going let you die like this! A friend doesn't leave a friend behind!"
Lucy once again remembered rescuing Claude, now it was his turn to return the favor.
Claude was about to slip until someone caught him while he still had Lucy in his grip. It was Simon slowly pulling Claude and Lucy back up. Claude and Lucy spent a second catching their breath from their life and death situation.
"Thanks Simon! I thought you'd be out cold for much longer!" Claude said.
"Well what did I say? It's better to have the extra help!" Simon smiled.
Next thing the three knew, a missile hit the tower they were in and was already on the verge of collapse.
"Simon! Go get the box and Francine over there!" Claude ordered. Simon did so. "We're all getting out of here!" He said as he picked up Lucy.
Claude and Simon rushed out of the room while Claude carried Lucy also taking her as well as himself out of harms way.
(now guess how Lucy is being carried? ^^)
Summer, Carmen, and the crowd of other kids watched as Miss Weaver's tower collapsed from one of the missiles one of the engineers launched. The fighting had already stopped as it seemed the academy was wrecked enough and maybe some engineers gave up while others were killed.
"The tower is collapsing! Lucy, Claude, and Simon are in there!" Carmen exclaimed.
"Well if they're in there, they be as flat as pancakes by now."
The tower was reduced to rubble and dust. Some parts were still standing but not as much someone would recognize as once being a wall. Dust from the impact was flung everywhere.
"Nothing's moving…" Summer said.
"You think the engineers have all just… gone?"
"Maybe…. I don't see anymore missiles or anything popping out to demolish everything else."
"What about Lucy, Claude, and Simon…?"
"Like I said, they might not have made it out… I'm not worried…"
"How could you not be Summer? Seriously!"
Carmen glared for a sec than she saw two forms approaching out of the dust. She couldn't believe her eyes at first until all the dust cleared.
Simon was walking alongside Claude who was carrying Lucy bridal style with normal expressions as if nothing happened.
Carmen cheered while Summer just crossed her arms.
As the three made it out of the entrance, so did two other survivors and they were Stinch and Miss Notch.
Simon jumped over the golem to cross to the other side while Claude, with Lucy, joined him. Carmen ran over. "Francine?"
"Carmen? Is that you?" Said the girl trapped in the personality container.
Claude concluded that at least everyone escaped Hollow Fields unharmed.
"Sorry for making you carry me." Lucy apologized. She felt bad for Claude having to go taking risks while he was occupied with other things. He fought the windmill kids while trying to protect Lucy's personality container and protecting Lucy from those experimented children.
"Hmm? It's nothing… Don't feel bad. I'd carried you cause you can't move right?" Claude said. He smiled hoping that will uplift her.
Lucy blushed for a second. Then she gave a sad expression. "What are we going to do about this? How am I going to go on with life not even being able to walk or being able to move at all? If I try to go home, how am I going to explain to my parents what happened and…. What I've become now?"
Claude frowned. He felt bad for her. Because of what Miss Weaver's experiments have done to her, she was left helpless and having to suffer from not only the same problem that witch principal was going through with the dumb key, but having to possibly go through life as an experimented kid. It was thank god Lucy got her memories back but the rest of her life will never be the same unless either someone has found that other key or just fixed her body the same way the engineers turned her into this by Miss Weaver's orders. Surgery to turn her human again would take time though. Maybe the way they put in the different mechanisms for her to run on energy only from the winding gears while giving off steam might be so complex to remove for they could've replaced some of her original organs.
Claude knew Miss Weaver's horrible tests done on poor Lucy was worse enough for the body. Not only has she become immobilized, things could get worse if she were left this way. Claude was sure the worst is yet to come if Lucy is left helpless like this and noticed a change in how much steam from the hole acting as a steam vent on her back was blowing out a bit less steam than usual. Could've been caused the gears slowing down or it did this because of Lucy's emotions. Claude wasn't sure.
"Miss Weaver's engineers experimented on Lucy have they?" Doctor Bleak asked.
Claude turned to Doctor Bleak being held by Simon.
"Yes… you do know a way to turn her back to normal again right?" Claude begged. "More importantly… do you know a way to help Lucy without having to find that other key?"
"I'm afraid there is no other way. Miss Weaver's experiments redesigned Lucy's body here to rely on the key to get her on the move and nothing else…"
"No way! Are you sure?" Claude didn't want this to be true.
"I believe so. I never heard of Miss Weaver's plans for her next body she'd use up until earlier. Miss Weaver with her original body construct consisting of gears activated by a mechanism of winding them up with a key yet with energy lasting a short time…. I can't believe she'd choose Lucy of a lot of other students to use for her selfish immortal desires. Lucy also has a steam vent for extra energy as you and I found out… I'd know how to fix the rest of what Miss Weaver's tests has done to her but right now, there's nothing we can do about the side effects of Lucy's unwound inner gears put in her."
"Then what can you do?" Claude yelled. "Other things might happen to her if she's left like this. We can't just wait for someone right now to fix the rest of her body! Who knows! Her heart might all of a sudden stop or something after a couple of days without the key!"
"Claude calm down…" Lucy said.
"Even if we don't find the key… I'll be fine. Doctor Bleak knows a lot about clockwork and other stuff."
"Lucy is right." Doctor Bleak reassured. "And I can pinpoint the location of Lucy's key. Like I tried pinpointing Miss Weaver's earlier!"
"You can?" Lucy and Claude exclaimed.
"I've been trying to track Miss Weaver's ever since Lucy entered Hollow Fields! So there's nothing to worry about!"
"So…" Lucy wondered. "You were pinpointing Miss Weaver's key all this time while I was in classes?"
"Of course!" Said Doctor Bleak. "Now I'm going to try and locate that key!" Doctor Bleak's box made some noises other than ticking like a clock, the gears inside him made squeaky noises and his box gave off beeping noises.
"Well?" Claude asked.
"Strange… the key is right near us!" Doctor Bleak answered.
"What do you mean near? It can't be-" Just when Claude was about to finish his sentence, he spots a familiar windmill kid fighting his way through the crowd of students. It's the same kid that took Dino. "Out of my way! Cursed humans! You'll never have this!" Even though the students didn't know what the heck he was doing, he had a few contraptions in his grip which were more of leftover junk he collected than of any importance. The only important thing he had was a key similar to Miss Weaver only with a different shape at the end.
"YOU!" Claude exclaimed.
"Hmm? You AGAIN?" The kid screamed. "You were one of the rest that tricked me! My collection has been destroyed because of the engineers! But the ones mostly at fault is you! You can't have anymore of my collection! It's mine! MINE! ALL MINE!"
"Is that a key you got in that tool box?" Claude asked.
"It is! One of the most important parts to my collection! It very shiny… and it's mine!"
"Where did you get that?"
"From that green guy over there a week ago!" The kid pointed.
Stinch glanced in reaction to the kid. "HEY!" Stinch yelled. "You're the one that stole that key from me! I was lookin' for ya!"
"Catch me if you can you pile of-!" The crazy kid was interrupted as his hood was harshly tugged by Simon who dragged him towards Claude. Simon was too fast for the kid. His sudden actions cause the kid to drop the tool box full of junk yet grab for the key holding it for dear life.
"So what will it be?" Claude said. "You hand over the key or you receive Simon's wrath?"
The crazy kid glanced at both Claude and Simon who had an evil smirk fixed on his shadowy face. Simon liked where Claude's quick plan was going along.
The kid sweated while he panicked a bit. He obviously had no choice.
"Eh heh! I'll find more things maybe better than this shiny thing!" He handed the key to Claude while nervously smiling. The kid than ran back into the already ruined Hollow Fields grounds.
"Hey Claude?" Lucy asked.
"Yes?" Claude responded.
"There's a certain memory I recalled when I got Dino back… I got to say… um…. Did you hug me after I went out of control on Meg?" Lucy's face was turning red from both bringing this up and just the thought of this. Claude blushed but turned his face away.
"Well… I….. uh… you know….. Okay fine I did but back then you didn't have memories so… you know…" Claude was too embarrassed to say anymore but he added. "Keep this between us despite Simon and the rest have witnessed it!"
"Okay!" Lucy smiled.
Claude realized he was off track. "Oh that's right! The key!" Claude set Lucy in sitting position and inserted the key into the keyhole on her back. After a few twists, Lucy's inner gears began to work again. Lucy found the energy to stand.
"How do you feel?" Claude asked.
"Refreshed! I can move again! Yippee!" Lucy cheered.
Claude smiled glad that Lucy is alright and able to move again.
The rest of the crowd of kids decided to head back to the leftover ruins of their beloved academy. Some of the kids were not sure if they want to go back to there or go home. Summer decided she wanted to go back to Hollow Fields having Carmen work as her henchman again. Of course Carmen refused, thus Summer stormed her way back alone.
There some leftover surviving engineers that did not join the fight. Those such as Miss Scurt who found Mister Croach's living remains, such as his head. He wasn't too happy…. OBVIOUSLY!
Doctor Bleak told Simon who was carrying him to bring him to where the other kids are going. Lucy, Claude, and Carmen followed. Simon stood up on a pile of rubble to make himself visible. He held up Doctor Bleak who announced that with some help, Hollow Fields will be rebuilt, this time the academy will be run by him since he is the true owner of the entire school. Summer didn't like the idea but Doctor Bleak told her that if she doesn't apply, her grades will go down (also because of other stuff she's done) and will go on her permanent record. The ditsy surrendered. Hollow Fields was no longer going to accept teaching forbidden science for misuse by evil. The academy was going to be reformed to the point where forbidden science will be used for good, to help others, and to discover new things without cruelty.
Most of the students and engineers agreed to this. Reformation was important for the students for they needed Miss Weaver's way of sending those to detention abolished. No longer should there be kids sent to the windmill just for having grades lowest compared to the rest. No longer will their be secret projects going on in the windmill for this time, there will be no windmill or a place to conduct such cruel experiments. Detention will be handled and enforced the normal way like and ordinary normal school would.
Other things were going to be reformed and improved as well.
Claude realized earlier that Miss Notch injected a stinger into his shoulder cause he felt painful tingle that got worse the farther he got from Hollow Fields. Obviously he had no choice (until someone gets the stinger off him) but to stay at the academy when it gets rebuilt.
"What are you going to do Lucy?" Claude asked.
Lucy smiled. "I think I'll stay here! I entered this school, even if it was by accident, I can't just leave this place. And I like attending here more than other schools I've been sent to.. I mean… this is a real thrill! Plus, I don't like leaving friends behind.. And I don't have to!"
Claude smiled. "Looks like I'm going to have to help wind you up with this key when your body is running out of energy again!"
"Eh?" Lucy's face turned red. "I think I can handle err… myself… really!"
Claude laughed. Lucy stared a little embarrassed and then smiled.
And so through out less than 3 years, Hollow Fields was rebuilt and students spent a few years attending with much better to expect. No longer was the school run by a harsh system Miss Weaver organized.
As for Claude and Lucy, they spent most of the years near each other. They help each other with homework and other projects. Life seemed normal again only with a change. Carmen and Simon attended. Carmen became friends with Claude and Lucy while Claude finally began to fully trust Simon.
Claude didn't just help Lucy with homework, but also with winding up when she needed it. Lucy kept the key with her at all times. Sometimes she let Claude carry it. Also, thanks to some surgery Doctor Bleak hired engineers to perform on Lucy to turn her human again step by step, Lucy looks almost like herself again. They corrected her skin and eye color, replaced artificial and inefficient organs engineers working for Miss Weaver inserted inside her with organ made of flesh (some donated, some restored from dead ones and some produced from cells), and made sure Lucy's body was working well and not experiencing aftermath complications from surgery or her experimented body (such as maybe some leftover artificial organs in her all of a sudden stopped working because another was replaced or something). Currently working on a way to get rid of the last leftover inner gears that connects to Lucy's steam vent and keyhole, Lucy is still bound to depend on energy from winding gears.
Lucy yawned as the morning sunlight lit her room through the window. Next to her bed was a small dresser and on top, her wind up key. She had leftover wind up energy to get up from yesterday. She got herself dressed in her school uniform, got her materials together for classes, picked up the key and headed out for breakfast. In the halls was Claude waiting for her at the cafeteria entrance.
"Morning Claude!" Lucy greeted.
"Good Morning." Claude replied. "Got the key with you?"
"Always!" Lucy handed the key to him.
"Going to be another busy day. We got some projects to hand in for Doctor Bleak and Miss Scurt's class. Hope you got yours done."
"Yup!" Lucy smiled.
Claude finished twisting the key and gave it back to Lucy. After that they continued with the rest of the school day….