While Molly, Dad and Star were crossing the river, Tom was dreaming. Rama's soft voice, mystical music, and soothing words had put him into a trance-like sleep. Too tired to resist, he had let his imagination flow with the hypnotic sounds and images. Her visualizations had carried him through the skies to a beautiful imaginary forests. There, animals spoke in human language, a little elf offered to be his friend forever, and a beautiful woman started to tell him what he should do with his life.
A familiar noise interrupted his dreamy sleep. From far away came the sound of someone knocking. He sensed Rama leaving the room, but his mind was too foggy to think. Then he heard Sasha stir and bark softly.
From outside came the sound of a long whistle. Sasha's ears stiffened and she struggled to get on her feet. Tom could hardly believe his eyes as she tottered to the door and pushed it open. He could hear her start running down the hall. How could her hurting little body move so fast?
A moment later, he heard Rama rush toward the room. She slammed the door and locked it. What was happening out there?
Tom's body wanted to sleep again, but to his mind came another message--an urge to resist. "Fight Tom," he whispered to himself. "Don't give up. The King will help you." He was feeling more awake already.
"The King is stronger than the evil force in this room," he said aloud. "The King is greater than the Baron. He will save you." Wow! He had remembered the next part of the armor--the helmet of salvation. His mind was beginning to clear, so he reviewed the parts of the Armor again.
Truth: The King is far greater than the Baron and his evil forces.
Righteousness: He, Tom couldn't make it on his own. He had given in to the evil power again, but the King had forgiven him.
Peace: He wouldn't be afraid, for the King was with him always.
Faith: He would continue to trust the King--no matter what.
Salvation: The King would win over the Baron any day.
He tried to awaken his friends. First he shook Peter, then Colin--but both slept as if drugged. Then he looked around for a way to escape. The window in their prison room had bars on it. The door to the hall was locked, but another door led to a small bathroom. There, on the opposite wall, was a cabinet door.
Tom opened it and looked in. In spite of the darkness, he noticed that it led to a large storage area--the kind you would find under a stairway. He crawled through the dark passage, feeling his way to the other side.
A sliver of light told him there must be an opening. Sure enough. Sliding his hands across the wall panel at the end, he found a small section that moved. He pushed it out of the way and crept into a large room on the other side.
Brushing off dirt and cobwebs, Tom looked around. Little light bulbs like the ones in the tunnel lit the room. A Ouija board lay on a side table. But what was that large metal pyramid in the far corner of the room? And what about all those strange shields hanging on the wall to his left? Decorated with animal heads, feathers and other stuff, they reminded him of the mysterious symbol Sasha was wearing.
Shelves full of crystals and little statues covered another wall. Tom had just stopped to admire a cluster of purple crystals, when the door flew open. Tom jumped. There stood the angry man with the purple scarf--the one Rama had called Odin. His face twisted into a hateful grin. Tom froze with fear.
"You.... I'm going to kill you!" thundered Odin. He lunged toward Tom, grabbed him by the neck, and lifted him into the air.
For a moment, Tom fully expected to die. Then something strange happened inside him. It began when he remembered the King again.
"King! Help me!" he shouted.
"Your King can't help you," screamed Odin.
"Yes, he can!" shouted Tom. "He's much greater than you or the Baron!"
Startled, the man stepped back, tripped over a chair, and crashed to the floor. Tom was free--for the moment. He ran into the hallway and looked to the left. That way out was blocked by four persons. He quickly turned to the right.
Go to Chapter 22