Summary: While cleaning her basement, Grace discovers the first book of the 39 Clues series. Baffled by her sudden discovery, Grace summons her fellow cahills for a book-reading session. Contains, Hope Cahill, Arthur Trent, Eisenhower Holt, Mary-Todd Holt, Coara Wizard, Broderick Wizard, Alistair Oh, Irina Spasky and isabel Kabra. As well as guest star appearance of Amy and Dan Cahill and Ian and Natalie Kabra.
Setting: Two years before Hope and Arthur were caught in the fire
Disclaimer: I don't 39 Clues or the 39 Clues characters. Everything belongs to the authors.
Grace Cahill shifted another dust-covered box coughing incessantly. She was cleaning out her basement which she hadn't even touched for years. She heaved a great cough as she took another breath in a vain attempt to restock her oxygen supply.
Goodness me, this goes to show that putting things off never works, thought Grace annoyed as shepicked up a picture which 5-year-old Amy Cahill had drawn and had somehow ended up here. It was a picture of her and Amy in the library. Chuckling lightly, she carefully folded the picture and planned to frame it later.
She grabbed a stack of dusty papers and placed them on the ground. She was about to grab another when a picture of a skull caught her eye. Puzzled, she picked up the book which the skull was printed on and brushed the accumulating dust off. The cover looked brand new. It was colored blue and had the picture of a ring of skeletons on it. The strange thing was that each skull had a roman numeral printed on it. It was entitled, 39 CLUES: THE MAZE OF BONES BY RICK RIORDAN.
Grace turned it over to read, examining the book closely with her eagle eye.
Strange, I don't remember buying a book recently…
As she read the synopsis, she felt her eyes go wide and her mouth fall open. Abandoning all hope of having a clean, dustless basement, she rushed up stairs to phone her family members. But, only a select few…
After making a few phone calls, Grace waited for her guests to arrive, holding her book closely against her as though someone might appear from the shadows and steal it away, and knowing this family, it just might. Moments later, a helicopter landed on the helicopter pad on Grace's roof. A stunningly young, elegant lady in green suede shoes emerged from the cockpit. Most people would consider her as a beauty queen. The way she held herself obviously filled with confidence. Her huge amber eyes and gleaming dark hair were to die for. Grace, however, was not impressed by her good-looks or her richness. She grimaced but gave a small bow. Then, straightening up, extended her hand.
"Welcome to my home, Isabel."
Isabel Kabra showed off a set of perfect teeth and grasped Grace's hand firmly in hers.
"The pleasure is mine, Grace."
Grace withdrew her hand quickly and gestured towards the guest room.
"The others will be arriving a little later. Feel free to make yourself at home."
Isabel nodded graciously at her guest and sauntered towards the room.
Before she took another step however, she turned back towards the cockpit and waited for someone to alight.
A twitch caught Grace's eye from the window and her head cocked to the side. Slowly, two heads of silky black hair appeared at the window. Amber eyes similar to his mother's followed soon after.
Grace suppressed the urge to coo. They looked so adorable!
The little boy and girl walked out of the helicopter. They both held themselves in the same regal confidence their mother did and were both dressed finely in expensive clothes. Holding the girl's had, he strutted over to his mother with the grace of an 8 year old, when in fact, he was only six.
Isabel shot a small apologetic smile at Grace pulling her out of her daydreams.
"Grace, these are my children, Ian and Natalie. Ian is 6 while Natalie is 3. Their nanny had to go on an urgent visit overseas and I couldn't leave them alone. So, I brought them here. I trust that will be alright with you."
Grace eyed the kids warily. Who knows what Isabel could have trained them for? For all she knew, all this could have been a plot to check up on her home while she was preoccupied with the others. Instead of diving deeper in the countless possibilities, she begrudgingly nodded her head.
Isabel smiled brightly.
"Thank you," she said and she settled into one of the sofas, Ian and Natalie following her lead.
The doorbell rang and Grace sighed before descending the stairs to answer it.
As Grace opened the door, she felt a genuine smile slowly spread on her face. She threw open the door and exclaimed, "Hope, Arthur!" before wrapping her arms around her daughter and son-in-law.
Hope Cahill and Arthur Trent smiled as Grace engulfed them in a huge hug. Arthur flashed a grin at Hope and laughed outright as she stared at his mother-in-laws reddish brown hair, which his wife and daughter had inherited.
"Long time no see, Grace," he laughed.
Grace pulled back and stared at Arthur amusement shining in her eyes.
"Agreed. Where have you been the past year?" she asked making a sad face.
Hope grinned at her mother her eyes full of unspoken secrets.
"Nothing much, mom. Taking vacations, occupied with work, we just didn't have enough time to check up on you."
Grace's pout deepened and her daughter smiled.
"And also, more problems with the kids."
Grace's ears pricked up at the smile at her grandchildren and immediately switched her attention. She distinctly remembered meeting Amy and Dan two years ago. Dan had only been 1 at that time and Amy 3. Both still looked as she remembered, with the exception of Amy whose hair had grown longer. Dan had dark blonde hair and the same green eyes her sister had and a light complexion. His sister the now 5-years-old Amy had the same reddish-brown hair her mother did and shared the same jade green eyes as her brother. She crouched down in front of the two quivering children at their feet and cooed,
"Don't you two look beautiful? Look at you Dan. Why, you were only this big when I last saw you!"
Dan basked in her praise and gave Grace a cute smile.
"Aww," she chorused as she picked Dan up and swung him in the air, with Dan giggling in delight the whole way. As she put Dan down, she felt a soft pull at her jeans. She turned her head to see a sad looking Amy clutching onto her leg.
"And don't think I forgot about you, Amy!" she poked at her side and Amy giggled.
She picked the two giggling children up and brought them into the room.
"Follow me," she yelled to Hope and Arthur who were standing at the front door watching the scene with amusement.
She seated the children at the sofa opposite the Kabras. Isabel stood up and approached Amy and Dan, her eyes twinkling with curiosity.
"Hello Amy, Dan," she purred, ruffling Dan's hair and patting Amy's cheek.
"It's been a while since I last saw you. Look at how much you've grown."
Hope and Arthur entered just then and stiffened when they saw Isabel near their children.
Hope gave her a forced smile and nodded stiffly in her direction.
"What a pleasant surprise to see you, Isabel."
Her eyes betrayed her greeting. Arthur addressed her the same way. Grace switched her gaze between them confused.
"Is something the matter?" she asked, wondering what might have happened between them the past few years.
It was Arthur who answered.
"No, everything's just fine, Grace."
Grace didn't believe a word of it but she believed they would tell her when they believed it was time.
Isabel returned to her children and Arthur and Hope sat at their respective places, hesitantly.
A moment of awkward silence passed when suddenly, the doorbell rang.
Grace was just about to stand up to answer the door when Hope bolted up and announced, "I'll get it." then left without waiting for an answer.
Grace settled back down again uneasily. All will be revealed in due time,all will be revealed in due time, she chanted in her head. Still, she couldn't prevent the growing curiosity from within her.
Soon, Hope returned with both Alistair Oh and Irina Spasky. Irina looked as threatening as ever. Her nails were painted purple which was quite suitable since her nails actually contained poison. Her left eye twitched when she saw Isabel but otherwise, she kept it in control. Alistair was wearing the usual outfit he wore for confrontations: A crisply gray silk suit, a yellow shirt bright and clean and a bowler hat tilted at an angle. Grace stood up to greet them.
"Welcome," she said as she shook their hands and told them to have a seat.
"What have you called us here for?" asked Irina from the soft recliner she sat on. Everyone sat forward waiting for her answer.
Grace hesitated then answered curtly, "I'll tell you when all the Cahills have arrived."
Irina didn't look satisfied with her short answer but nodded and sat back.
A loud banging on the door caught their attention. Almost immediately, Grace knew who had arrived.
"Holts," she muttered under her breath as she rose to answer the door.
They looked huge standing at the door. They were all the things a Tomas should have. Big, muscular, thick necks, meaty hands and a face a pro-wrestler could have had. They all wore purple track suits and I could see their purple minivan parked at her drive-way. Grace wondered whether they had an obsession with that color, or how the Holts managed to squeeze into that little van. Tearing her gaze away from their mode of transport, Grace put on a friendly smile and waved them in.
"Welcome to my home. Now that you're here, all we have to wait for is the Wizards."
Eisenhower Holt, the leader of the family, grunted before hunching over to fit through the door to enter her home. Grace bit back a laugh at the sight of such big people in her small home.
Just as Mary-Todd, Eisenhower's wife entered, a long, black limo pulled up at the drive-way.
"It appears that the Wizards are here. Please make your way to the guest room. Ascend the first stair case on the right and walk straight."
Eisenhower seemed to be in deep thought and he turned towards his wife.
"What's ascend again?"
Mary-Todd sighed and pushed him towards the staircase.
"It means go up, Honey Bunch."
Grace watched her lug her husband up the stairs. She shook her head, a half-smile on her face, and welcomed the Wizards, Cora and Broderick Wizard.
Cora had a 'hippie-like' appearance. Long dark hair, chocolate-covered eyes and dressed in flowery clothes and bell-bottom jeans. Broderick looked like an African American bald man in his late 30's.
Grace smiled and led them to the guest room.
Once they were seated, Grace ticked them off of her mental list.
Hope and Arthur, Mary-Todd and Eisenhower, Cora and Broderick, Irina and Alistair.
All present and accounted for. Grace cleared her throat to catch their attention. Once the room was quiet, she started.
"I'm sure you all must be wondering as to why you here," murmurs of agreement sounded in the room.
"The reason is because of this." She took the book out of her shirt pocket and raised it to show her audience.
"You called us here to read a book?"
Grace shot him a dirty look before clearing her throat again to tone done any arguments that had erupted in the room.
"But, not just any book. A book from the future."
Before anyone could speak, Grace read the back summary to them.
What would happen if you discovered that your family was one of the most powerful in human history? What if you were told that the source of the family's power was hidden around the world, in the form of 39 clues? What if you were given a choice-take a million dollars and walk away… or get the first Clue. If you're Amy and Dan Cahill, you take the Clue- and begin a very dangerous race.
The silence was deafening. All heads had turned to the two children at Hope and Arthur's side. Amy was squirming under their intense gazes and even Dan looked uncomfortable.
Grace allowed the silence to go on for a few more seconds before she broke it.
"And so," she said, drawing the Cahills attention away from Amy and Dan and to her, "This is why we have to read the book."
Isabel Kabra broke out of her daze first and looked extremely excited.
"Well, what are you waiting for? Read the book!"
Hope and Arthur shot her a dirty look and snuggled towards their children closer.
"I will read first," said Hope in a soft but firm voice. She stared at Isabel daring for her to argue but she only shrugged. Hope rose and took the book from Grace's hand before settling down again and flipping the book to the first page.
A/N This is my first time writing a 'Reading the book' fanfic so take it easy on me. I'm posting the first chapter tomorrow.
Thanks for reading.
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