"BESS!" I yelled up to my sister in the loft. She was home to celebrate Christmas with us.

"WHAT DID I DO NOW?" She yelled back.

"Nothing, for once. It's a spider!"

"Not again. Get Gretchen to take care of it!"

"No, YOU take care of it."

I heard Bess moan loudly, then stomp down the stairs.

Bess shifted her eyes to where I was pointing in panic.

"Chloe, you're kidding, right? That thing is the size of one of your knuts. You know…tiny?"


"Fine, but not without some fun."

Before I could comprehend the word "fun", the spider was dangling millimeters from my nose on an invisible thread.

I screamed and I slowly backed into the wall. Realizing I was trapped in a small room with a spider, I crouched and covered my ears then screamed repeatedly, until I saw my mother, pulling Bess by the ear, breaking her concentration, where the arachnid fell to the floor. Mother made her place the beast out in the snow.

"Will you two shut up?! You are so annoying sometimes. Anyway, wouldn't have minded another spider to add to my pet box."

I looked at the hermit crab cage Gretchen was holding, and saw at least 100 dead, curled, shriveled up spiders inside.

"So, your pet got out?" I gulped. No, but I was going to catch him. Spiders in my protection don't live for long."

Mother looked at Gretchen for a minute, then proceeded to scold Bess for her behavior, and was a lot harsher than if had been me or Gretchen.

Bess just stood there, and a glaze went over her eyes. She wasn't listening to Mother anymore.

Father was standing across the room with the same look.

"Are they mentally communicating?" I thought confused.

Oh, well. I doubted she would forget the scolding anyway.


"Why would you torture your sister like that?" Father asked me mentally.

"Because it was funny."

"You know she hates spiders."

"Yeah. That's what made it so funny."

"Apologize to Chloe and your mother."

"Yes, Master."

"I'm sorry, Mother. I'm sorry, Chloe."

"You had better be missy. Now go to your room, and don't come out until you go back to Crescent."

"You mean Coruscant, dear," Father corrected.

"Yeah, whatever."

As I climbed the stairs, I head mother say "Aquimenti." I briefly wondered who was thirsty.

It totally wasn't fair. Chloe was her pet. I was furious. But I knew I had to calm down before Dad felt my anger.

Chloe and I were both 13, but were completely different people. She was scared of that poor Daddy Long Legs. The creatures I feared, she had never seen, let alone heard of.

But what did it matter? A few days later, I would head back to Hogwarts with Father to use the portal on the seventh floor to get back to the Jedi Temple. Coming to this world was easier with Chloe's help, but going back proved a challenge each time. It was a very grueling, sneaky business.

I sighed. I couldn't wait to get away from Chloe.