Time for a snake hunt! Hold your hats!
Victor reluctantly nodded. He very well knew why "boss" make him team with David. It was because of his relatively peaceful nature and also because he dislikes conflicts.
"Come on," he said to his partner, and they quickly went to accomplish the task.
In deepening twilight they already had to eye strain to see on the way. When they came to the door made of old wooden planks, David pulled out a bunch of keys from his pocket.
"I hope you have a light in the cellar, otherwise weīll looking for that snake by touch," said Victor.
The other boy silently unlocked the door and pulled the switch on the wall behind them. Small bulb over their heads reluctantly blinked and then its light revealed stairs falling down.
"Try not to put whole weight on the stairs, theyīre pretty rotten," warned David and he began to slowly descend.
Victor followed him hesitantly. Stairs bravely held their place in the haunted house and the creaking sounded like a howling lament dying. Victor shivered, but didnīt stop.
Both boys went down into the cellar with a few small shelves covered with dust and webs. David pushed another button and yellowish light overflowed the rubbish covered by dust. In the middle of the room was placed dangerously looking rat-trap.
"You see, normal old cellar, no ghosts or anything," said David looking around.
Ghosts donīt bother me now, thought Victor, carefully watching corners where the light didnīt reach. Iīm more worried by idea of hidden reptile ready to attack.
He shook his head to get rid of the image of cold slippery body coiled in the shade. It's just a snake! He took a deep breath. Only a quarter meter long non-poisonous snake that canīt hurt you even if it wanted, he persuaded himself.
"Well, you can start," said David, and he sat down comfortably on the old crate.
"You donīt expect me to help you? It's your big case." Davidīs voice sounded slightly mocking.
"As you wish. Look and learn," said Victor and went to the back wall where he decided to start.
Carefully lifting the lids of boxes and pushing items on the shelves, he soon forgot that he isnīt alone and fully immersed himself in work. He slowly and carefully eyed all the gaps and crevices.
It took him a long while, but ultimately he could conclude that in the basement isnīt even a scale of snake, let alone the whole animal.
"Okay, we can go," he said toward the sitting boy.
"I have to admit that youīre good. You can be a detective as your father one day."
Victor bit his lip. "I think you should know that my father isnīt detective. I told you that just to silence you. I'm sorry that I lied to you. "
Other boy looked at him in surprise. "Strange. It sounds like youīre really sorry. Hats off." He got up and bowed.
"I usually donīt lie," admitted Victor. "If I do, I'm sorry for those to who Iīm lying. However, sometimes the end justifies the means."
David nodded. "That's true. And just out of curiosity, what exactly does your father do?"
Victor smiled a little. "The taxi driver."
"Oh. And... are you going to apologize for that piano, too?"
"No, you deserved it."
For a moment David didnīt know what to say on it. "Okay, I admit, I could treat you a little differently. But spending the holidays with grandma is just not exactly what I wanted. Her senile friends visit her all the time and now she even decided to tidy library ... I'm not her slave! I wanted to enjoy leisure time with friends in the city as anyone my age and Iīm stuck here instead. Everyone would hate that," he said, walking rapidly back and forth in the basement.
"Donīt get me wrong, " continued David, "I'm not normally acting like this. But Iīm starting to get cabin fever." He violently stopped again and sat down on the crate.
Victor walked over to him and sat down too.
"I know that one hasnīt a lot to do here. Iīm lucky that I donīt go here alone, so I quite enjoy holidays here. On the other hand, even in the city I donīt use to hang with friends. Not that I have a many of them... "
"Bullshit. You and no friends? "David looked at him from side. "Are you kidding?"
Victor reluctantly shook his head. "I have other interests than most of my peers. I didnīt lie about piano, I really play on it. And although many do laugh, I take school seriously and want to have good grades, so if Iīm supposed to learn while playing, I donīt have lot of remaining time to wander around the bars and stuff. And I wouldnīt do it even if I had the time. It's stupid." The last sentence, he said almost dismissively.
For a while, boys were just sitting there, then David straightened up and looked at his watch. "We have more than half an hour. Do you want to wait for them here or there?"
Victor slowly tilted his head to the side. "Better here. If nothing else, itīs light here."
"If thatīs your only concern, what do you say about this?" David took stand with old candle from one of the shelves.
"Can you borrow me a lighter?" Victor nodded and watched as wick begun to burn.
Candleīs light wasnīt very generous, but better than being in the dark. Both of them came out of the basement and locked it. In an increasingly denser darkness, warm yellow light drew narrow circle around them.