Yes, I know, I need to work on Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of the Lake, but I HATE CAT'S TALE! Rest assured, I haven't given up on it.
NOTE: The Last Maitreya IS NOT ME! There is NO SELF-INSERTION in here.
ALSO NOTE: "Text," is speech, 'Text,' is messaging, and text, is thoughts.
Disclaimer: I own none of these awesome genii or anyone else except any OCs I may add.
And Now, Presenting…
The Spirit's Lament
THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY
An Intriguing Idea
In which we begin from the Point of the View of the infamous Artemis de Fole, and he is most interested in a certain quartet. Later, it shall be so that he arrives at their abode and meets the one who drew them together.
Artemis was angry. Correction, he was furious, though he didn't show it.
It had all began when he'd started an internet chess game, as he often did, to find some poor sorry soul who could barely be called a chess player to crush. It had escalated from there. He'd logged in as Master_Fowl, as he always did and was soon challenged by MBS1_RM. He'd fully expected to annihilate his foe in a few moves, as he always did, but he now found himself in a stalemate due to the fact that they'd both used his own private 'Irish Feint'. He'd never told anyone about the technique, so whoever it was, they were either a master hacker (like himself) or a genius (like himself).
A thought struck him, so he sent the message, 'Foaly, is that you?'
The reply came at a speed at which only a master typist (such as himself) could have achieved 'No. Who's Foaly? And how did you know about my Stonetown Maneuver?'
Stonetown Maneuver? thought Artemis He, too, thought it up himself? 'I invented it! I call it the Irish Feint.' he sent. He nomally would have been more rude, but he felt this person deserved some grudging respect.
'Irish Feint? Are you Irish? Who are you?' was sent to him.
Artemis smiled. 'I would call telling you a security breach, but you, at least, seem intelligent enough to see the futility of attempting to harm myself or my family. Yes, I am Irish, and my name is Artemis Fowl II.'
'THE Artemis Fowl II? The child genius? The former criminal mastermind?'
Artemis' smile turned feral. 'Yes. And you are?'
'My name is Reynard Muldoon, but please, call me Reynie. I'm from Stonetown, England, and that's where I got the Stonetown Maneuver. Please, wait a moment, I have to ask someone something.'
A minute later, a new message was sent. 'I've been given permission to formally invite you to the secret Mysterious Benedict Society. We are a group of four gifted children, who, together, solve mysteries. We've saved the world before, too, though you probably won't believe me there. Would you like to join, or do you want me to email you more information?'
Artemis frowned. Saved the world? This sounds strange… he thought. However, he had Butler, so he probably wouldn't be in danger.
Suddenly Artemis remembered something Holly had once told him on one of their (now more common) social calls. Artemis, she'd said, You don't weigh the risks of your ventures enough. Butler's heart has stopped twice in your service, and I died once too. One day your luck will run out if you're not careful.
She was right, Artemis mused, I shouldn't trust that Butler and I alone can get us out of danger. But, perhaps… with her help…
'I need to consider this.' he sent to Reynie. 'How can I contact you?'
'E-mail me at ReynieM(a)gmail .com.' he replied. 'Thanks. And good game!'
'Good game.' Artemis replied, as civility decreed, and logged out.
"Butler!" he called, "I wish to speak with you!"
Butler, Artemis' bodyguard, arrived quickly, breathing heavily from the stairs and the Kevlar embedded in his chest, and Artemis frowned, looking uncharacteristically concerned. "You didn't have to come so quickly as to strain yourself, Butler. I only wanted you advice."
"I'm fine, Artemis. I didn't want to keep you waiting. Why would you want my advice?" Butler said.
"I want your advice because this is a potentially dangerous venture I am contemplating, but it is not, in fact necessary. So your life is on the line if we do this, even more than mine, because I know from experience that if death is coming to me, you will take it, at least the first time." Artemis replied.
"And what is this venture?" Butler inquired, "I may know something about it."
"I've been invited by one Reynard Muldoon to join a certain Mysterious Benedict Society." Artemis told him.
He stared at me for a moment, and then burst out laughing. "The Mysterious Benedict Society?" he asked, once his mirth had subsided somewhat, "I know someone who works with them! His name's Milligan, or at least that's his code name, and he's the father of one of their members, Kate Wetherall. They're good people, and won't hurt us." He thought for a moment, then added, "Probably."
"Oh, good," said Artemis, "Then there aren't so many risks involved. I will tell Mr. Muldoon that I will join."
He turned to his computer, logged on to one of his E-mail accounts, and sent a message to Reynie. It said: 'I would be pleased to join the Mysterious Benedict Society. If you would please reply, enclosing your address, I will make my appearance as soon as possible. Thank you. I will pay for my own expense. Sincerely, Artemis Fowl II.'
A few minutes later, a reply arrived. It said: 'I am glad you agreed. The address is 4483 Corwin Lane, Stonetown, Michigan, USA. Please arrive soon. We will expect you at any time during daylight. Yours truly, Reynie Muldoon.'
Butler and Artemis packed a few things and went downstairs. Artemis' mother, Angeline, was in the hall, reading. She looked up when they arrived.
"Ah, Hello, Arty, dear," she said, coming over and kissing Artemis on the cheek.
"Hello Mum," said Artemis. He'd by now gotten used to calling his mother Mum, as she insisted. "Butler and I are going somewhere," he told her.
She frowned. "Where? And why didn't you ask me or your father?" she asked.
"As to the second question," Artemis said, "I am not a child anymore, Mum. I'm nearly sixteen, legally eighteen, and more intelligent than most adults. As to the first question, I was invited to a society for gifted children. Call it a chance to socialize."
Angeline sighed. "Sometimes I forget how fast you've grown up. You always remind me quickly. All right. Butler you're going with him?"
Butler looked horrified. "I wouldn't leave my principal alone for such a prolonged period of time!"
"Of course not, Of course not, sorry." said Angeline quickly. "Well, I'll get your father and the twins. They'll want to say good-bye."
She left then. A few minutes later, she came back with the entire family.
"Well, son," said Artemis Fowl Sr. "Good luck, whatever it is you're doing, and come home soon."
"Yeah, come back soon, Big Brother!" said Artemis' little brother Beckett. Myles, Beckett's twin, said nothing, because he'd recently lost one of his incisors, and was ashamed to speak with a lisp. He just waved.
"Bye, Arty," said Angeline hugging him.
"Look after him, Butler," said Artemis' father.
"Good-bye," said Artemis, and he and Butler walked out the door, entered their car, and drove away.
Soon they reached the airport. They used the Fowl private jet and flew to the nearest airport to Stonetown. They then rented a car (a good one, of course. A Fowl had to travel in style) and drove around, asking people where they could find Corwin Lane. They reached it eventually, and drove down it until they reached number 4483. It was nearly dark at this point, but still daylight.
The house was actually a small manor, and the sign in front said 'The Benedict Residence, also home to the Perumals and Wetheralls'. The two of them walked up to the doorway and Butler rang the doorbell. It was soon answered by a powerfully built man of about six feet.
"Artemis Fowl," he said calmly. "We weren't expecting you today, but I, at least am glad you could make it. Hello Butler, It's been too long."
"Good day Milligan," replied Butler.
"May we come in?" asked Artemis.
"Certainly," said Milligan, stepping aside to allow them entry. They crossed the threshold, and found themselves in a large, brightly lit room, with black walls. It had four identical doors on all sides.
"This is Mr. Benedict's maze." said Milligan. "We'd like you to find your way through it, but it isn't required of you."
"I think I shall attempt it. What must I do?" asked Artemis.
"Simple. Find the staircase at the other end of the maze." said Milligan.
Artemis smiled. He already knew how he might do this. "What are the dimensions of the maze, in rooms?"
"Five by five." said Milligan.
And we are in the center of the bottom, third from left or right?"
"And the stairs are directly opposite us?"
"Good." Artemis said, and went forward. There was no forward in the next room, so he went left. Then forward, then two right, back, right, two forward, left, forward, two left, forward, and right. There were the stairs. He'd simply stayed as close to the center line as possible. They went upstairs, Butler and Artemis, and met someone new there.
It was a very short woman, looking (in height) only about fifteen. "Hi," she said, "My name is Rhonda. This is the second test. It's also unnecessary, if you don't want to take it."
"I shall attempt it. What is it?" asked Artemis.
"You have to walk across this room," she said gesturing at the next room, which was filled with yellow, red, and blue rectangles, but almost all were yellow, "Without stepping on a yellow square."
Artemis snorted and simply walked across the room. When they reached the other side, Butler asked him, "How did that pass you?"
"They were rectangles, Butler." Artemis sighed.
"Oh." said Butler, looking abashed.
Now they were at a new stairway, and Milligan and Rhonda were both there too.
"Well done! You passed." said Milligan.
Artemis rolled his eyes. "That was hardly difficult enough for a 'Well done', I should think. But thank you anyway."
"You're welcome," said Milligan, grinning wryly, "Although, I have to say that none of the others thought it so easy."
"I'm special," said Artemis, with his signature vampire's grin firmly in place, and Milligan shuddered slightly. "What is the next test?" he asked then.
"There isn't one," said Rhonda, "You're finished. Come on upstairs and meet the rest of the Society!"
Butler and Artemis followed the two upstairs. There, they were greeted by a slightly yellow-skinned woman.
"Artemis Fowl?" she asked sharply.
"In the flesh," replied Artemis, smirking.
"Well, I'm Number Two, and I'm to take you to Mr. Benedict."
"Very well," said Artemis, while thinking, Number Two? How unimaginative.
He and Butler began to follow her, but Milligan said, "Butler, I'm afraid you can't go with him. Mr. Benedict likes one-on-one conversations with new children."
Butler stared at him as though he'd lost his mind, and said, "I have a reason for my blue-diamond, Milligan. I don't leave my principal alone in an unsecured area with a potential hostile. Mr. Benedict can have a one-on-one with Master Artemis when I am sure I can trust him and everyone else here, not before."
Milligan sighed resignedly, and let Butler pass. He and Artemis followed Number Two down a corridor, up a flight of stairs, and down another corridor until they reached a doorway. Number Two knocked, and a quiet voice from inside said, "Come in."
The three of them entered. In the room, they found a boy of Artemis' own age and an elderly man playing chess. They both looked up as the three entered, and both smiled.
"Ah, thank you, Number Two. Now go get something to eat." said the old man.
"Very well," said Number Two, and left.
"Good day, Master Fowl," Said the man, "I am Nicholas Benedict."
CONTEST ALERT! Why did I call the street Corwin Lane? If you've read Roger Zelazney's Amber Series (Which I don't own) you should know. Winner makes a request! PLEASE tell me if I missed a test. Thank you.