A half hour into the ice and we barely made a dent.
"Steal the Book of Peace," Rat grumbled as he chipped away and shivered in his tattered furs. I told him he should've gotten better furs. "We will retire to the tropics." He grunted some more as he chipped faster to keep warm.
Spike suddenly barked. I looked up from my position on the main deck, where I was chipping at the ice on the railing, being careful not to damage it. I cast a glance at Dad before looking in the direction Spike was barking. Something had greatly disturbed the dog, because he was barking his warning bark, trying to get our attention.
I looked around, not seeing anything. Spike kept barking, so I kept looking. The dog had never failed in warning us before, so why doubt him now?
The crew stopped picking at the ice on the sea and looked around, too. Apparently, they couldn't see the danger either.
I didn't like it. A sudden wave of unease fell over us, shutting us up and tuning our ears for signs of danger. The wind blew around, making it hard to locate anything with our ears, so we relied on our eyes.
Spike ran up to the forecastle deck where Marina was and barked some more in the direction the bowsprit was pointing. Everyone looked that way.
Something white sort of glided out from behind a hunk of the Granite Gates about a mile off. I squinted, trying to make it out before it flew behind another part of the Gates. Frowning, I wasn't sure what I had been able to make out. It looked like it was some sort of giant bird.
An eerie cry that sounded like a bird's reached our ears over the noise of the wind. I frowned again and looked around for the white thing again, guessing the sound came from it.
Spike whimpered and ran back to cower behind me. "What's wrong, boy?" I asked him softly, rubbing his neck to sooth him. He whimpered again and shook. My eyebrows knit together and I looked back for the thing.
Without warning, a giant white bird with yellow eyes and a blue beak, wingtips, and facial feathers burst through the Gates that were on the left side of the ship. It let out a shriek and flew around the ship, swooping low and close. If I had been on the other side of the ship, I could've reached out and touched it, that's how close it was. Marina gasped and ducked as it passed.
"Everyone back on the ship!" Dad yelled as the bird swooped around us again. Everybody ran as fast as they could for the Chimera, a few tripping over their own feet.
"Come on!" Kale yelled to them, running to us himself. "Come on, move faster!"
I reached out to help Luca as he made it to the ship on my side first. I pulled the skinny man up and over the railing and thrust out my hands for the next person.
The bird shrieked again, making me look up to see Jet running for the ship, the bird closing in behind him. The bird moved in to grab him, but in missed as Jet jumped into a pool of freezing water that the men had managed to free from the ice. We waited, then sighed in relief as Jet surfaced next to a small ice cap. He clawed at it, trying to stay above the water.
"Jet!" I heard Marina call. "Grab the rope!" I watched her throw a rope out to the man as she climbed on the bowsprit. Jed caught the rope and held on as Marina began to wrap her end around the bowsprit so Jed could pull himself out of the water.
The bird came swooping back, heading straight for Marina.
"Marina!" Dad screamed. She turned to look at him, then sensed the presence of the bird, but saw the danger too late. She had just turned to look at the bird when it grabbed her in its talons.
"Marina!" I shrieked. I ran to the edge of the ship and grabbed the bird's talons. Dad ran over and jumped up. He was able to grab her hand, but was slammed against the railing on the forecastle deck. His hand slipped from hers.
Marina struggled to pull herself out of the bird's talons. I tugged on them with her, trying to make it let her go. I looked back to see Dad watching us go. I growled and turned back to my more pressing concerns, mainly holding on tight to the talons.
The bird flew us up to the top of the tower of the frozen Granite Gates. "You stupid bird!" I screamed at it. "Let us go!"
The bird apparently heard me and dropped us on the top to the tower. I rolled to avoid bodily damage and looked at the bird. It trapped Marina underneath one foot with its talons and bent down to pick her up in its beak.
"Stop it!" I screamed at it. "Don't you freaking dare eat her!"
The bird looked up and studied me curiously. Marina struggled to get out. "I'm stuck!" she yelled. The bird cawed and went for her again.
"I said don't touch her!" I shrieked, my voice cracking. The bird froze, its beak wide open. "Now you let her go! This instant!" Reluctantly, the bird lifted its foot and Marina scrambled out from underneath. She hurried over to me.
"What do we do now?" she asked, rubbing her arms to keep warm. She kept glancing nervously at the bird. It gave a small shudder, ruffling its feathers, in return. It squawked and looked around, shuffling in place.
"I have no idea," I said. "I'll distract it and you try to find cover. It seems to listen to me, but I don't know how long I'll be able to keep it off of you. When I say now, run." She nodded that she understood.
I turned back to the bird. "All right, you!" I snapped. "Listen up!" The bird cocked its head to the side and watched me with its golden eyes. I bent down and picked up a stick. "Fetch!" I threw the stick as far as I could, straight up on a pillar. It squawked again and jumped on the pillar, using its talons to hold itself there while its beak struggled to get the stick. That gave Marina enough time to make a break for the little ice cave things. Ice had frozen over some rock piles on the Granite Gates tower and Marina ducked in one.
I bit my lip and looked around. Ok, bird's attention, check. Marina temporarily safe, check. Me safe? Not check. Now what was I going to do?
The bird suddenly dropped the stick I'd thrown in front of me with a satisfied shriek. It scratched at the snow like a chicken does the dirt and looked at me expectantly.
I picked the stick up again, not taking my eyes off the bird. It gave a small caw and shook its head. I turned and whipped the stick as far away as I could. The bird shrieked and went for it while I dove for the cave Marina had gone in.
"Fetch? Seriously?" Marina asked once we were somewhat safely inside the cave.
"Hey, it was spur of the moment," I said, shrugging. "The only animals I've ever really known are Spike and the occasional fish. What did you expect me to do?"
Marina opened her mouth and an angry shriek cut her off. I turned to look out to see the bird dropping the stick I'd thrown and scratching around in the snow and ice, looking for us. I bit my lip and hurried Marina into another ice cave. Now we just had to play cat and mouse, or bird and bait, until we figured something out.
"Rat! Don't let the blocks freeze!" Sinbad called as he strapped knives to the bottom of his shoes. Yes, he was planning to rescue them. Why, he wasn't sure. For Marina, anyway. It was a given that he had to rescue Lani. But Marina? Well, if she wasn't eaten by the time he got there, he'd get her, too.
"Aye, aye, captain!" Rat answered.
"And Kale?" Sinbad said as he stood up.
"Aye?" the man asked, stepping forward.
"Give me a hug?" Sinbad asked, spreading his arms and wrapping them around his friend.
"'Scuse me?" Kale asked, backing away.
Sinbad grabbed Kale's knives from behind the man's back. He stepped back and showed Kale what he had been after. Kale smiled and shook his head at Sinbad, hands on his hips.
Sinbad grabbed his shield and strapped it to his back. He wasn't sure if he would need it, but better to be safe then sorry. He flipped the switch that made the harpoon gun come out of the forecastle deck. Rat had already taken down the forestaysail and the two jibs so Sinbad would have a clear shot to the tower. He grabbed the rope attached to the end of the harpoon and whistled for Spike.
The big dog barked and yanked the bone attached to a rope that shot the harpoon. Sinbad held on tight as the harpoon and him went flying to the tower. He reveled in the sensation of flying for a moment before getting serious and whipping out the knives so he would cling to the tower.
He hit the tower with a smack! He grunted and pulled his face away from the snow. He shook his head like a dog to get rid of the snow clinging to his face and began to climb the tower.
"Oh, you couldn't see the bird?" he muttered to himself as he climbed. "Everyone else saw it. It's as big as the freaking ship! Marina? Marina is looking the other way. And Lani? Lani had to play hero and jump on the bird to save Marina." He continued to grumble as he made his way, slowly but surely, up the tower.
Marina and I took turns watching the bird and looking for little hideaways for when the bird go to close. It was my turn to look for them when Dad snuck up behind us and surprised us.
I felt a hand wrap around my mouth and pulled me back. I turned to see the hand was Dad's and he had done the same thing to Marina to keep us quiet so we wouldn't inadvertently tell the bird where we were.
"Dad," I whispered hoarsely. I gave him a hug and he patted me on the back. I let him go and turned back to watch the bird, which was still looking for Marina and me.
"You're rescuing us," Marina whispered.
"Yes," Dad said. "If that's what you want to call it. But this is going to cost you another diamond. Rescues aren't part of the usual tourist package."
I shushed them and pulled them to another hideaway, just in time as the bird's foot came down on our previous one.
We froze for a second, waiting for the bird to pass. Once it did, I crept to the edge to watch it and make sure it didn't see us.
"So," Marina asked, "how are we going to get down?"
"I…I don't know," Dad said.
"What?" I whispered as loud as I dared, glaring at him for a brief second before turning back to the bird.
"I don't know yet," Dad corrected. He looked at Marina, who glared. "I'm thinking about it, alright?"
"You scaled a thousand foot tower of ice, and you don't know how to get down?" Marina whispered furiously.
"Of all the ungrateful—" Dad stopped himself and grunted softly. "Look, if you'd rather take your chances on your own, that can be arranged!"
I shushed them again and ducked down beneath the ice hideaway walls. They ducked down too as the bird stalked past, sweeping its giant head back and forth, searching. I crawled to the other side to keep an eye on the bird.
"So, what have we got to work with?" Marina asked, trying to come up with a plan. "Um…ropes?"
"No," Dad whispered.
"Grappling hooks?" Marina asked.
"Yeah, no," Dad whispered.
"Your swords?" Marina asked desperately, obviously out of ideas.
Dad's face brightened. "Hey! I've got this!" He whipped out a knife.
"I've got mine, too!" I whispered. I pulled them out to show them.
Marina sighed unhappily. "Oh, great. He can pick his teeth when he's done with us!" she hissed.
"Yeah, ok, see, in the hands of an expert, a good knife has a thousand and one uses," he explained as he twirled the knife around. Suddenly the knife slipped from his fingers and became wedged in the top of our little hideaway. The ice cracked and split apart around us, revealing us to the bird.
Marina glared. "Obviously, you are not an expert," I said dryly. Dad chuckled nervously and looked at the bird.
The bird spotted us and shrieked its discovery. "Run!" Dad screamed, and grabbed Marina by the arm, pulling her along with him. I was already taking off with him, moving my legs as fast as they could go. "Come on! Faster!" Dad yelled at Marina, who kept looking behind us.
We reached the edge of the top of the tower. "Let's go!" Dad yelled, and we jumped. We free fell for what seemed for a few minutes. Dad pulled Marina on top of him and I grabbed his shoulders. He yanked his shield off his shoulders and placed it under his butt. I hooked my feet onto the edge and clutched Dad's shoulders as tight as I could.
We hit the snow hard. As we slid down, we bumped along. We kept yelling "Ow!" It hurt, probably more so for Dad and Marina, who were sitting, than me, who was standing and could sway along with the bumps. Although I will say my feet did not appreciate the somewhat sharp edges of the shield.
"I think we lost him!" Dad yelled to us once the ride smoothed out.
I spotted something white whizzing past us off to the side. "I don't think so!" I yelled as the bird landed in front of us and shrieked.
Marina and I screamed. "Heads down!" Dad shouted, and brought the shield on top of us. The bird attacked, trying to grab us, but because of the shield, it didn't work.
As we slid down, my shirt began to creep up off me and snow touched my back.
"Whoa!" I shouted as I felt the coldness touch me. Dad shoved the shield back under us and I crouched on it again. Rocks fell as we went underneath them, nearly crushing us. We swerved to avoid them. Dad smirked at Marina and she gave him a small smile back.
I looked out in front of us, where a small rock landed. We were headed straight for it!
"Rock!" I screeched.
"Where?" they shouted, looking around at the sky, thinking I meant the bird.
"Not that Roq! Rock!" I screamed. I pointed to the rock in our way.
Marina screamed and Dad shouted, "Oh, no!"
We hit the rock dead on. It launched us up into the air and over the bird's head as it flew by. We landed on the snow. I looked ahead again to see the bird land in front of us for the second time. I screamed.
Dad looked around wildly. "Lean right!" he shouted, and did so, pulling Marina with him. Their weight was enough to steer us away from the bird and into a cave. The force was also enough to bring them to their feet on the shield. I let go of Dad's shoulder and settled for holding onto his middle. He wrapped an arm around Marina to keep her from falling off the shield. We came to a stop right on the edge of a cliff of ice.
Dad grinned at us. We grinned back.
Suddenly the bird burst through the ice that made up the cave wall. "Come on!" Dad said, and leaned forward, taking us over the cliff.
"Oh shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit!" I howled the whole way down the cliff. The bottom abruptly shut me up as we hit it hard. We skated across the bottom and jumped the edge to another long patch of ice. The bird ran on its two legs behind us, getting closer with each step. Marina and I kept glancing back at it.
A light caught me eye. "Dad!" I yelled, and pointed. He saw the opening I spotted and pulled out his knife.
"Hang on!" he shouted, and leaned all the way over until we were parallel with the ground. He shoved his knife into the ice and used it to turn us to the opening. The bird turned with us as the tower began to crumple. Some boulders barely missed us as we whizzed by, but the bird wasn't so lucky. One huge boulder hit it square on the head. I was pretty sure it was a goner.
We came literally flying out of the opening. We all screamed as we fell towards the ship. I grabbed the shield and fell towards the front of the ship. I hit the foretopsail and heard the cloth rip as I continued to fall. The sail slowed my descent considerably, but it still hurt when I literally hit the deck.
The foretopsail was suddenly ripped off me. I looked up to see Rat and Kale holding the cloth. "Lani!" Kale exclaimed. He scooped me up into a hug and placed me on his shoulders. "You're all right!"
"Of course I am, you nincompoop," I said, rubbing my wrist where I had hit it. "Like Dad said: I always am."
Kale laughed and went to help the others untangle Dad and Marina from the part of the main sail they had ripped off when they had fallen through. The cloth came up to reveal Dad and Marina in a slightly awkward position. Dad was on top of her, and had his legs braced on either side of her middle.
"It's Marina!" the entire crew cried. Three of them offered out their hands to help her up as Dad crawled off of her and stood back. The crew swarmed around her, making sure she was ok.
"We thought you were gone forever!" Rat cried, swooping down from the main mast and hugging her around her middle. He gave little sobs. Even Kale, with me on his shoulders, momentarily forgot Dad and I existed.
Dad cleared his throat to get their attention. "Oh, I'm fine," he said sarcastically. "Really." He popped his back. "But I'm touched by your concern." He groaned as he popped his back again. As he did, the tower we had just escaped from crumbled. We watched it as it fell on the ice in front of the ship and broke it for us.
The entire crew, along with me and Marina, cheered. Kale took me down from his shoulders and tossed me in the air, catching me and throwing me up again. I laughed in glee and cheered some more. Kale set me on his shoulders again and slapped high-fives with the crew. I looked over to see Dad smiling at Marina. She was smiling back.
Heeeeeyyyyyy, Lani's back! Sorry it took me so long. I don't own the movie and my old link for it doesn't work anymore so I had to find it again. Good news is I found it so I'll try to post more when I can! And thanks for the continued support even when I hadn't updated in a while!
Oh, and Kailani Fan, I agree. They should've incorperated a kid-whether it have been boy or girl, it wouldn't matter-into the original movie. Don't get me wrong, the original movie was awesome in its own right. I just thought of adding a little bit more. :)