Chapter Nineteen: DAMN!
“DAD! DAD! THE DAM IS BREAKING!” Belle cried, running into the house.
“What?!” Peter poked his head out of the bathroom.
“Demon tried to poison the water but instead he's triggered a flood! Get everything together and we need to get out of here! THOMAS! BETTY! FLOOD!” Belle ran over next door.
“Oh no! Quick, get the essentials and let's get to the hotel. The guys there will let me in and we can stay there until the dam gets fixed.” Bill grabbed a bag and started emptying all the cupboards.
“I'll get our stuff organised.” Joe grabbed the bag. “Bill, get to the hotel and let them know what's going on. They're going to be full!”
“Beauty!” Peter called. Belle appeared. “Get your Giggles get up back on and start telling people what's going on.”
“Yes Dad!” Belle put her helmet back on and flew off. Peter meanwhile shot upstairs to grab anything they could use as Joe fought to get Meow into her cat carrier (not even the threat of an imminent drenching would convince her to get into that detested thing!).
Meanwhile, the Knights were having no luck convincing people to leave their homes and head for higher ground. Most of the people in the outer east suburbs would be okay, but anyone living on the west side would be in huge trouble.
“Why doesn't anyone want to listen to us?!” Sir Dark groaned as he got another filthy look from a passerby he was trying to warn.
“I've had a little bit of luck, but not much. Everyone seems content to just bury their heads in the sand!” Lady Luck replied as the rain continued to fall.
“Explains a lot about this city.” Sir Dark looked to the sky.
“We have to keep trying.” Lady Luck pulled him along.
“Sir, please, you have to get out of here, the dam is about to burst!” Sir Lionheart was trying to talk an old man into leaving his home.
“But this has been my home for sixty years son! I can't just abandon it!” The old man cried.
“You'll die if you don't!” Sir Lionheart groaned.
Giggles flew overhead, shouting as loud as she could.
“THE DAM IS ABOUT TO BURST! PLEASE LEAVE YOUR HOMES AND FIND HIGHER GROUND! THE DAM IS ABOUT TO BURST!”
Sir Hyper and Lady Silent had tried to talk the police into helping, but had nearly gotten arrested for their trouble. They looked up at the sky and saw Giggles trying to raise the alarm.
“Don't bother Giggles. The police are against us. They think we're trying to cause trouble.” Sir Hyper said dejectedly.
“How stupid are these people?!” Giggles facepalmed.
Chuckles ran over with Sir Dark and Lady Luck.
“I've gotten a few people to move, but I doubt many will go until the water starts flowing.” He said. “Your Dad is having a lot more luck though Giggles.”
“Well, he IS a public figure.” Giggles pointed out. “People will listen to him.”
“We're public figures too!” Sir Hyper pouted.
“Yeah, but we're vigilantes. Technically what we're doing is illegal.” Sir Dark patted his back.
Giggles flew up to the top of one of the tallest buildings in the city. She could see everything, including the hotel room where Bill and Joe arguing while Betty was trying to keep Izzy and Lizzy calm and Meow was grooming Woof.
She could also see the dam in the distance…or what was left of it.
“RUN FOR YOUR LIVES! THE DAM HAS BURST!” Someone ran screaming through the city.
Cue mass panic.
“Well, that's just a blow to my ego.” Sir Lionheart deadpanned.
“Come on, we need to find the others!” Lady Courage grabbed his arm and they ran towards the city.
Thousands of people were running into the four tall buildings of Pleasantvilles CBD. The Knights of the Last Order were rushing around like mad to try and catch the stragglers and anyone else who was having trouble.
“We gotta get outta here Jo!” Jessie jumped out of the Crummydore, which was refusing to start. Water was starting to rise around them.
“I've got stuff in the back, we can't leave without it!” Johannas roared back angrily.
“Mate, we gotta go before we all drown!” One of his friends begged him.
“WE'RE NOT GOING ANYWHERE WITHOUT THE CAR!” Johannas fumed. “C'mon you useless hunk of junk MOVE!”
“Jo please!” Jessie begged.
Overhead, Giggles was flying around looking for any other stragglers. Sure enough, she noticed her aunt and her friends who were in big trouble.
“Here! Grab on to me before the water gets too high!” Giggles commanded.
“The Backpack?” Jessie looked at Giggles quizzically, but wisely said no more. Struggling, Giggles managed to get Jessie and her two friends out of harms way.
Johannas on the other hand…
“I'm not leaving my stuff here!” He swatted Giggles away.
“You'll drown if you don't!” Giggles tried to pull him out of the car. He swung wildly at her.
“GET THE HELL AWAY FROM ME!” He roared.
“Oh for the love of…” Giggles groaned as he stumbled back into the car. Pulling out the Lucky Seven Gun, she shot at his foot, barely grazing him.
“You shot me! YOU SHOT ME AND NOW I'M GOING TO DIE!” Johannas screamed, frozen with terror as Giggles lifted him up and flew away, just as a large wave came and pushed the car away.
“You complete and utter pansy.” Giggles shook her head.
A small group of people had gotten trapped on the roof of a small building near the hotel, and the water was still rising. Sir Lionheart and Sir Dark were trying to think of a plan to save them.
“Someone could swim out with a ladder or something for them to climb on.” Sir Lionheart suggested.
Sir Hyper was hiding back towards the wall where the water couldn't get him. He squeaked at Sir Lionhearts suggestion.
“Are you insane?! You'll drown!” He cried.
“I'll tie a rope on whomever goes.” Sir Dark assured him.
Lady Silent gave her brother a hug, and went to fetch a ladder. Sir Dark tied a rope firmly around Sir Lionhearts waist, and then tied the other end to himself. Lady Silent then handed one end of the ladder to Sir Lionheart, who eased himself into the uneasy waters.
Sir Hyper couldn't watch. He covered his eyes as Sir Lionheart swam out, holding on to the ladder for dear life.
“It's Sir Lionheart! We're saved!” Someone cried as the Knight made his way with the ladder, which barely made the distance between the two buildings. Lady Silent had her arms stretched out.
“Okay guys, you need to climb the ladder to where Sir Dark and Lady Silent are. They'll get you upstairs where you can have something to eat and dry off.” Sir Lionheart explained, thankful that at least the Beglys and Masters had been sensible enough to bring plenty of food.
“Are you sure it's safe?” Someone else asked.
“It's your only chance, the water is rising too high and this building will be underwater soon!” Sir Lionheart replied.
Slowly, the small crowd of about twenty started to make their way up the ladder. The water was starting to lap at Sir Lionhearts feet.
“Come on, it's okay, we've got you.” Sir Dark tried to be reassuring as he helped the poor people off the ladder.
Finally, the last person was safe, just as the water was up to Sir Lionhearts waist.
Quickly Sir Dark began to pull him back in, with Lady Silent helping with the ladder. Without warning, the ladder lurched in the water, sending both Sir Dark and Lady Silent into the murky depths!
“NO!” Sir Hyper cried as he watched his twin sister disappear before his eyes.
Blind adrenaline took over. He ran after her and dived into the water. Grabbing blindly, he took firm hold of his sister and struggled to the edge of the window.
Lady Silent still had a hold of the ladder, which Sir Dark also gripped tightly. Rain pounded down on the four Knights, who were pretty much doomed.
“Hey you guys are there any more…OH SNAP!” Lady Courage walked into the room, seeing Sir Hyper holding onto the ledge for dear life. She quickly hauled the twins in, followed by Sir Dark. Then the four pulled in Sir Lionheart, who was blue in the face and barely conscious.
“Well done Sir Hyper!” Sir Dark thumped the young boy on the back. “I knew you could conquer your fear if you tried!”
“What an act! Maybe you should hold the Courage mantle!” Lady Courage hugged the boy.
Sir Hyper, for probably the first and only time in his life, was speechless. Then he started crying loudly.
“Poor kid.” Sir Dark ruffled his hair as Lady Silent hugged him tightly.
“Stop…STRUGGLING!” Giggles tried to keep Johannas under control. Her uncle was seriously trying her patience!
“You brat! Let me go!” Johannas tried to get away.
“Why did I save you again?” Giggles wondered out aloud. The hotel was in sight, and there was no way she was going back out after this.
The rain had stopped, and the sun was finally peeking out from behind the clouds. The water had stopped rushing thankfully, and most of the citizens of Pleasantville had survived. The whole city was underwater, and it would take weeks to clean it up.
“Look, we're almost there, will you please cooperate?!” Giggles was losing her patience.
Johannas growled and swore quite loudly and obscenely at her. She looked down and saw a small speedboat weaving between the few exposed rooftops.
“GIGGLES! DROP HIM DOWN HERE!” Called a familiar voice. Giggles grinned beneath her helmet. Trust her Dad to go out looking for her!
“No problems!” Giggles swooped down and dropped Johannas next to his two brothers-in-law. She wasn't staying around for the fireworks though!
She soared through the air, enjoying the peace and the thrill of flying. She could feel the weight of her body being held up by the Backpack, defying gravity, as if two strong hands were lifting her up and flying her around.
It felt great. She made her way back to the hotel, when the Backpack gave out again.
“Oh no, hold on! I'm almost there!” She cried as gravity took its toll. She was certain she was going to meet a watery doom, when she felt someone grab her wrist.
“Showing off really isn't getting you anywhere is it?” She heard a familiar smug voice above her.
“Thanks Chuckles.” Giggles looked up at her best friend. He hoisted her up and took off his mask while she took off her helmet.
“Dad really should have embezzled that money when he had the chance. Look at this mess.” Belle sighed, looking out over the ruined city.
“Maybe it's better this way. The Council might actually learn something.” Charlie pointed out.
“I hope so.” Belle said. “I don't see how this can get any worse.”
Famous last words Belle. Famous last words.