"What now?" Maddy asked, barely looking backwards towards the upright building.
"Well, if we are to save that laboratory and its valuable stuff I can think of only one answer, and only one person who could provide that answer, and one-"
"Angel. Get on with it," Maddy interrupted.
"Umm, what was I saying?" Angel pondered. “Oh, yes: I can think of only one answer: we need to find my Christopher. Only he knows the truth behind his laboratorial secrets, and the dangerous mysteries of the Upper Sixth’s descent into the realms of Plato’s metaphysical reality.”
Luckily Maddy, having been very used to this sort of Jargon, and having experienced the whirlwind that was Angel for some very long time, did not stare blankly as others might have done if they had been in her position at that point in time. Instead, Maddy listened intently, and managed to pick up on a very subtle point that Angel may or may not (being the master of mystery as she was) have been intending to mean.
“What makes him yours?”
“You said ‘my’ Christopher?”
“No, I didn’t.”
“Yes, you…” Maddy began, before realising that it was useless to argue with Angel’s stubborn, yet vastly universe-sized, mind. “So, where is he?”
Angel stopped walking. She hadn’t realised that she had been heading away from the lab, but now she stopped anyway.
“I…don’t know. In fact, please don’t ask me. He just disappeared right in front of my eyes. I don’t know what sort of wacky experiment was going on-”
“It wasn’t the experiment,” Maddy said gravely. “I’m pretty sure it was the Upper Sixth.”
“It sounds like magic. You know that’s just given me an idea-”
“Good. What is it?”
There was a pause as Maddy stared, and glowered, darkly at Angel.
“If you’d let me finish…”
“Sorry. Do go on.”
“Who should we go to? Well, I think we should go to magic Damian.”
“Magic Damian? The same magic Damian who tried to rule over Christopher’s lab two years ago before his was vanquished and banished by the new Witch SixRT?”
“Yes, Angel, that same one. Thanks for the unnecessary recap.”
“But he’s as unreliable as Bur-”
“Let’s not go there, Angel.”
“But…” Angel stumbled. “That’s why I stick to getting favours from Christopher. At least he has some sense of celibacital decency!”
Now she was ranting on, becoming rather angry. Maddy raised her eyebrows, and began to walk away again, this time pulling Angel with her.
“I repeat: let’s not go there,” Maddy repeated.
“But we are going there,” Angel said, having calmed now, her mind as light-coloured as her hair. However, there was some marvellous, tricky idea underneath her mass of curls.
As Maddy walked briskly, leading her friend across their dark town to the straw-house of the wizard Damian D, a thought hit her straight in the face.
“Wait. You just went all philosophical on me, didn’t you?”