Chapter one: Willow Whisp ho!
Excitement filled the air of Mr.Simmons class as the end of the day crept closer.
" Now Class," Said Mr.Simmons " I understand that most..well..ALL of you will be participating in the two week Youth Orchestra retreat at Camp Willow Whisp." The class roared. " So-" Continued Mr. Simmons " I'd like to wish you good luck and I'll see you in two weeks. Class dismissed." The bell rang and the students exited P.S 118.
" Man!" said Gerald as he and Arnold waited for the bus. " Two weeks off from school just to play for the youth!" Arnold sighed.
" Well, it IS nice but were going to have to see Zoltowsky everyday for two weeks. I mean, she's bad enough only three times a week." They boarded the bus.
" Come on she's not THAT bad!" said Gerald. Sid peeked over from behind them.
" So, you guys all set?" He asked
" Not really. I still have some packing left." Said Gerald searchig for a stick of gum from his back pack.
" I am. I'v even bought some new mouth pieces. Bout time I did." said Arnold
" Yeah, I'm pretty much set. Just have to find my music stand." said Sid as the bus stopped. " See ya at four Arnold!" He cried as Arnold walked towards the door.
" Bye see ya!" Arnold yelled back as he walked off the bus.
He walked up to his front porch and watched as the bus drove down the street. He opened the door and was greeted by Nimbus.
"Hey boy." He said smiling as he pat Nimbus's side. he walked into the living room and sat down. All his bags were set and ready to go. He opened his trumpets case. It shined beautifully in the sunlight.
"That you shortman?" Grandpa called from the hall. Arnold shut his case and put it back over by his other bags.
" Hi Grandpa." He said as Grandpa walked in and sat down. " So you all ready for your trip?" He asked. Arnold smiled and nodded. Grandpa handed Arnold a little brown box.
" Hallie and Angelina stopped by. Hallie wanted me to give you this." He said. Arnold examined the box then opened it. It was filled with candy and chocolate bars with a folded note on the top. Arnold smiled and silently read it to himself.
" Hey squirt! Have a GREAT time at Willow Whisp. Lucky, you get two weeks off of school to go there, but atleast it's for a good cause. I hope you meet Brad. He's awesome! I also hope this little " survival kit." I picked youup comes in handy. Angelina bought Helga, Nikki and Taja each one too. I figure if you run out you can just pick off them."
He rolled his eyes and smiled the read on.
" Tell me all about it when you get back and have fun! P.S- Steer clear of the North Side. It's really creepy.
Love your favorite cousin, Hallie."
He folded the note and put it back in the box.
" So it's Camp Willow Whisp you're going to?" asked Grandpa.
" Yeah." Said Arnold. " I'd stay away from the North Side is I were you." said Grandpa standing up.
" Yeah Hallie told me that too. She said it was creepy." said Arnold grabbing his trumpet case and duffle bag.
" It's not just creepy, It's haunted!" said Grandpa.
" Haunted?" said Arnold in a disbelieving tone. " I'll tell you more about it in the car." said Grandpa picking up Arnold's suitcase. " Oof! What have you got in here bricks?" asked Grandpa in a strained tone. Arnold rolled his eyes and smiled.
" It rolls." He laughed. Grandpa smiled and they walked you to his Packard. They packed everything in the trunk and drove off.
" So you were going to tell me more about the North Side?" asked Arnold.
" Oh yeah!" Said Grandpa " Back when I was a councellor there, there was a legend that the North Side was haunted. Well, I didn't believe it...that is...until I had an encounter! I was supposed to clean the latrines on the North Side. Back then there were only latrines at camps. So I was walking past the last cabin...The Windigo I think...and everything got cold and quiet. I could hear this odd whispering and wind chimes then a soft piano playing even though no one was staying there." Arnold smiled
" That's a little eerie." He said. They stopped infront of the concert hall. Already there were alot of kids there but mostly from P.S 116 and 117. Arnold spotted Harold, Curly and Stinky.
" You got your luggage ok?" asked Grandpa.
" Uh huh. I'm all set." said Arnold as he got out. Grandpa opened the trunk and Arnold took everything out.
" Well shortman, have a great time and remember what I told you." said Grandpa from the car. Arnold smiled.
" Don't worry I won't." He replied. He watched as Grandpa backed away and drove off. He sighed, swung his duffle bag over his shoulder, picked up his trumpet and walked over to Stinky, Harold and Curly.
" Howdy Arnold." said Stinky leaning on his cello case.
" Hi Arnold." said Curly spinning his drumsticks on his fingers.
" STUPID TUBA!!" Yelled Harold as he dropped his tuba's case. " Oh. Hi Arnold." He added.
" Hi guys." said Arnold as he stood over by Curly.
" Man Arnold you're lucky you don't have to lug around a tuba." Grunted Harold as he tried to lift his tuba up again. Rhonda, Gerald and Sid joined in.
" Hello everyone." She said fixing her hair. She had six bags with her and her viola case.
" Jeez Rhonda! Pack enough?" said Curly. Rhonda ignored his comment and continued fixing her hair. Gerald stood over by Arnold and Sid walked over to Stinky. Both Gerald and Sid played the trumpet. " Hey Arnold." smiled Gerald. " Look." He pointed towards the end of the street where Helga, Nikki and Taja were walking. Arnold smiled and sighed dreamily.
" Hey guys." said Helga dragging her suitcase and swinging her flute case.
" Anyone got an extra music stand?" asked Taja clutching her violin case.
" Oh..I..uh..I might." said Arnold blushing and smiling.
" Good job! You actually almost said a perfect sentence to her!" Whispered Gerald sarcastically.
A half hour passed an more kids arrived along with four charter buses. Miss Zoltowsky, the conductor stood infront of the crowd with a megaphone. She was tall skinny woman in her mid 60's. She had long mousy brown hair that was pinned up in a bun, pale blue eyes and spectacles.
" May I have your attention please! " She said into the megaphone. " At this time, will all of you split into four lines." All the kids quietly stood in four lines. " Alright now CAREFULLY board the buses." She said. Everyone got into the buses. Arnold, Gerald, Stinky, Sid, Pheobe, Helga, Nikki, Rhonda and Taja all sat in the back. Everyone around them started talking, then the entire bus was filled with laughter and kids talking excitedly.
" Two weeks off just to play my cello. Wilikers this is neat!" Exclaimed Stinky. Arnold quietly sat looking outside and remembering what Grandpa had told him
" Hey Arnold, whats wrong?" asked Gerald.
" Nothing..I'm just thinking about somthing Grandpa told me." Mumbled Arnold.
" What did 'ee tell you?" asked Taja.
" Well." said Arnold " He said that the North Side of the camp is haunted. He had an encounted when he worked there." Everyone gasped.
" Do you believe him?" asked Helga
" Well I didn't. He IS known to well...stretch the truth, but Hallie told me the same thing. Cept she didn't have an encounter." Answered Arnold. Everyone was silent.
" Well." said Gerald. " We'll just stay away from the North Side. I mean if it IS haunted, why would they have anyone stay there?" Arnold smiled. " True." He said " Very true." They drove on.
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