It stung Verona before she could get out of her seat. Immediately, her face turned a sickly green and foam came bubbling from her mouth. She fell down to the deck, paralyzed. Pappa yelped and dove under the table with Pip, but the tarantula found and stung them both.
Mamma bellowed and swatted at the monster with her huge hands while Fritz and Felix cowered behind her. The flying tarantula flew behind, stung the twins, then stung Mamma on the neck. It all happened in a heartbeat.
Then the creature flew up into the air and out into the city of Marjoram.
Waldo still stood on his chair, frozen in utter shock. He was the only Wicklow left. The others all lay splayed out on the deck, paralyzed, with sickly-green faces and frothy mouths. The air was still and deadly quiet.
“Oh no,” was all he could think to say. “Oh, no.”
What had he done?
He wanted to panic and scream and run about, but he calmed himself and commanded himself to think very carefully. “If I act quickly, I can make an anti-poison,” he thought. “But I’ve got to catch that tarantula and extract the pure venom for the mixture, or it won’t work.”
“Don’t worry!” he said aloud to his motionless family. “I’ve got a plan. I’ll get you back to normal as soon as I can. I promise!”
With that, he dashed into the ship and down the spiral stairs to his room. He grabbed his butterfly net and a spare jar, then raced back upstairs, out the front door and down the Merry Mariner’s ramp into the city of Marjoram to look for his runaway pet.
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