Mr. and Mrs. Larson were very relieved and happy to have their son back on his feet, moving and talking like nothing had ever happened to him. Little did they know that as soon as Jack could walk, he started to prepare for his journey to the ancient forest.
Eddie’s message made Jack’s heart race with excitement. He was determined to go rescue his dog and now he had a companion for his mission. Jack stuffed his backpack with as much food as he could possibly fit into it, along with a blanket, his warmest jacket, a pocket knife, and a box of matches. He hid the backpack under his bed, wrote a short note to his parents, and prepared to sneak out of the house as soon as everyone falls asleep. He was not certain about how to get to the witch’s house, but he knew that the ancient forest opens on the other side of Lake Jezebel.
The waxing moon had just shown its golden crown on the midnight sky, when Jack got out of his bed and quietly pulled the backpack from underneath it. He buttoned up his shirt and tied the boot laces. Then he looked at his sleeping sister. “See you soon, Lisa, I will come back and bring Stella home,” he whispered and lowered himself to give her a kiss on the cheek. Suddenly, Lisa opened her eyes widely and whispered back, “will you not take me, Jack?”
Jack was stunned, but just for a moment. Then he replied, “of course! I did not think you would want to go.” “I want to come with you,” Lisa said seriously and jumped out of the bed. She, too, was prepared. Instead of her usual purple pajamas, she was wearing a pair of jeans and a sweater. To Jack’s amazement, his sister pulled her own backpack from underneath the bed, gave him a wink, and waived the note that Jack wrote for his parents. “I found this just in time, didn’t I?”
After making a small correction to the note, Jack and Lisa climbed out of their bedroom window and ran toward Lake Jezebel.