The key to adventure begins!
Barnes & Noble.com
After the tragic death of their mother, Daniel and Ben Dalton are left orphaned and forced to move in with a neighbor.
Soon after, questions about their past begin to surface. The boys discover an eagle key and map that takes them from their home in New York to a pirate world. This startling discovery opens the doors to a whirlwind adventure filled with mystery and danger.
With fierce pirates in search of the lost treasure, Daniel and Ben must cross the high seas, battle evil villains and trek through dangerous jungles, to unlock the mystery of a thousand worlds.
Daniel moved closer and studied the map. The doorway was within their reach. “We should make it there in a few hours.”
The boys had one last fill from the pool. After quenching their thirst, they watched the water dry up before their eyes.
Daniel looked down at the map and Crystal Waters erased from the surface. He rolled up the parchment with care, and then headed out to complete the last part of the journey.
The going was slow. The rock walls closed in around them and created a tight maneuver. The boys carefully wove through the barriers and cautiously avoided the jagged edges protruding along the surface.
Daniel took over the lead and was well ahead of his brother. His mind was completely focused on getting through the maze when he heard a loud scream. He turned and saw Ben in the distance with the sleeve of his shirt caught on a sharp edge. His arm was pressed firmly against the side of the wall, his effort to escape-futile. “Don’t move!” he warned. “I’ll help you!” He rushed over to where his brother stood. He didn’t understand why Ben couldn’t unhook his shirt from the wall. Once he approached, Daniel understood the intensity of the situation. The sharp jagged rock had suddenly developed fingers. It had his arm clasped tightly in its grip. “Remember what I said earlier?” Daniel lectured. “I told you to stay away from the walls.”
“I tripped,” Ben said in a huff. “I tried to steady myself by holding onto the wall. I didn’t think this was going to happen.”
Daniel had visions of the rock figures appearing from the walls, ready for another attack. He clenched his teeth and pulled hard, but to no avail. His arm was firmly lodged against the barrier. “There’s only one thing I can do,” he decided. “I’m going to have to chip at the rock. It’s either that, or you’ll be trapped here forever.” Daniel pulled out the shiny brass key and pressed it against the rock. He chipped slowly at the stone. Fragments fell away in small pieces. “I hope I don’t damage the key,” he said. “I don’t have anything sharp enough to break this rock.”
After a time, the stone broke apart. The boys were caught off guard when the rock fingers that clenched his arm, suddenly let go.
“Maybe it didn’t like being touched.” Ben rubbed his sore arm.
“I think we should hurry before anything else happens,” Daniel suggested.
They had taken only a few short steps when they heard a rumble. The boys were almost sure it was an avalanche, but when they took in their surroundings, they knew it was something far worse. Izerman’s Canyon quaked. The rock walls pushed in.
“We have to get out of here!” Daniel screamed. “We’ll be crushed.”
The walls suddenly sprouted fingers and tried to grab the boys. Keeping their distance from the walls proved to be difficult as the gap narrowed. They heard the moan of the canyon. It moved closer together.
Daniel grabbed Ben’s hand and helped him along. They raced along the path, the fingers close to touching their skin. The walls steadily pushed closer.
“We’re running out of room!” Ben yelled.
Daniel didn’t look back. The key in his pocket burned. He knew they were almost there. The moan from the cliff got louder. The hillsides moved faster. The fingers brushed his skin as he raced by. Daniel reached into his pocket and pulled out the key. It felt hot to the touch. In the distance, he noticed something. Among the rock fingers glimmered a doorway with an eagle-shaped lock. He pulled his brother ruthlessly along and reached the entrance. The walls moved closer. The rock fingers crept along his skin.
Ben screamed in terror. “Hurry up!”
Daniel held the key out and pushed it toward the lock. The moment he inserted it into the door, the moan from Izerman’s Canyon ceased. The rock walls suddenly stopped moving. “Listen.” Daniel pressed his ear against the door.
Ben leaned in close to hear.
The crash of waves sounded against the door with the distinct cries of seagulls in the distance. The lock clicked and the door gave way.
Daniel placed the key inside his pocket and stood uncertain for a moment.
Together, they took a brave step forward and passed through the entrance. The boys left the door gaping open. They walked a little further, stunned by what they saw. They knew in their hearts there was no turning back.