Paris Black is the New Thor – A preliminary sketch in colored pencil.
[Previous Week Plot Review]
Invisible Rohardoon quickly descended to the rotunda and retrieved the Jade Cong without any difficulty, then immediately headed for the basement for the Amethyst.
Meanwhile in her basement office, Catherine and her daughter were facing their worst nightmare!
Hurried out of the fire exit stairs and ran toward Catherine’s office, Rohardoon was just in time to see one of the ninja extended his hand to grab the amethyst.
Without thinking, Rohardoon pointed the Jade Cong he retrieved at the amethyst. The amethyst flew over and attached itself to the Jade Cong.
Because the invisible Rohardoon was standing right in front of the mural, so what the other people saw was the amethyst flew into the mural and disappeared completely.
FIVE – “The figures in the painting are moving!” – Continue < Week X >
Cassandra, who also witnessed the vanishing of the blinking eye, sensed the presence of Rohadoon, as she discern the transparent human silhouette in front of the mural!
Rohardoon was running up and down the corridors and stairs, so his body had gradually changed from invisible to transparent. This transparency acted as a huge magnifying glass; so as Rohardoon moved swiftly across the mural, the optical effect thus put the characters of the entire picture in a sequential animation.
Presently Cassandra perceived that Rohardoon was heading back for the Fire Exit, she ran after him.
Catherine called out and ran after her daughter: “Cass … come back!”
A Ninja immediately grabbed her arm. Catherine vigorously struggled and pulled herself away and ran after her daughter.
Another ninja with a mighty Kung Fu Feat leaped up and “flew” over towards Cassandra; with an extended arm the flying Ninja clearly targeted at Casandra’s ponytail.
Without mistake, it was the signature fighting skill of Japanese Ninja House of “Butterfly Armour.” The hand, in their most famous “Cloud Pinching” gesture, reached out so gracefully yet with lethal precision! The result would be grave if not deadly, if the elegant fingers did pinch the ponytail, Cassandra would be pulled up off the ground and swung backwards into the other Ninja’s waiting catch.
Just as these lethal fingers so close of touching Cassandra’s ponytail, suddenly a translucent silhouette of a human foot kicked up in the air and stamped on the Ninja’s left shoulder and knocked the Ninja backwards flying.
In turn this backward flying Ninja clashed with the Ninja who was chasing after Catherine and both hit the ground hard.
Catherine encircled Cassandra with her arms.
But now the third Ninja leaped up and flew over trying to detain the mother and daughter. Again, the third ninja was knocked over in the same fashion, and flew backwards into the other two and all three fell to the ground one more time.
Rohardoon quickly dragged the mother and daughter into the freight elevator. He pressed the 3rd floor button, but the closing door was block by one of the Ninja trying to get in. Rohardoon hit him in the face. The elevator started to climb.
At close range Catherine saw the translucent human figure, she became very pale, clutched her daughter tightly, and faintly asked: “Who … who are you?”
Rohardoon responded her with a big smile. His business here was almost over, and soon he would be able to tell Oldman mission accomplished!
The Oldman instructed him that after he retrieved those two objects, he was to go to the 3rd floor roof top, and would find proper means of transportation to go back home. In his mind, the Oldman probably chartered a helicopter, and very possibly at this moment the Oldman was even waiting for him on the roof top.
The elevator suddenly stopped on the first floor, the door opened, no one outside. Catherine and Cassandra moved themselves further back. Rohardoon pushed the third floor button.
To reach the 3rd floor roof top, the direct way was through the fire exit. Rohardoon’s using of the freight elevator was actually for the protection of the mother and daughter. He intended to escort them first to the security control room on the 3rd floor. But now the elevator was stuck on the first floor, the only way to get to the control room was through the spiral stair case.
Not realize that he was completely invisible now, he signaled the mother and daughter to follow him.
Surely enough, Cassandra responded to his beckon right away, she released herself from her mother’s arms, and let Rohardoon take her hand. Right at that moment, the amethyst that was still attached to Rohardoon’s newt suit, flashed twice, as if winking at Cassandra.
(To be continued next week)
[Previous Week Plot Review]
The two pieces the Old Man wanted Rohardoon to retrieve were a Jade Cong and an Amethyst. He climbed down from the dome ceiling, but just as he landed on the 3rd floor balcony, he immediately noticed something wasn’t right.
Through the dark glass wall, he saw the Security Chief of the museum was forced by two masked Japanese Ninja into the Electronic Control Room. They reactivated the freight elevator, cut off the basement security system, then tied up all three security staff.
Rohardoon realized the Ninjas were here for the same purpose as his! He accelerated his action…
[FOUR – A Ninja Holding a Sword Closing In] (Week IX)
In the basement, Catherine wondered why the freight elevator was used at this hour! If the guard wanted to talk to her, they had keys to passenger elevators on the south end. She stood up and walked to the electronic pole entrance.
Suspiciously she peeked toward the north end from the walkway, but immediately noticed that all the surveillance lights on the poles were out! Which meant the security system has been turned off!
She tensed up and turned back. Totally startled she saw a Japanese Ninja in black robe with black cloth wrapped around the face was descending the steps into her office from the walkway on the opposite side. The Ninja was holding a samurai sword with shinning blade!
She ran to Cass, shielded her daughter and shouted: “Stop! Don’t come near! What do you want?!”
The Ninja stopped, stood by the end of the long working table.
Cassandra whispered behind her: “Maman, they are here for the blinking eye…”
Catherine did not understand: “What blinking eye?”
“That crystal eye.”
Catherine instinctively ran toward her desk, to get the amethyst first. Suddenly a sharp metal star flew over and cut into the wooden desktop next to the amethyst.
“Don’t move!” A shout came from behind her.
Two more Ninjas appeared on this side of the walkway, wielding their samurai sword and slowly stepping into the office area.
Amidst this commotion, nobody noticed except Cassandra, the sound of opening and closing of the Fire Exit door at the far end.
Catherine’s first thought was to reach the crystal before these Ninjas could get to it, but Cassandra pulled and struggled her mother backwards, until they could hide themselves behind another desk.
Seeing the mother and daughter had retreated, all three Ninjas put their sword back into the sheath. The first Ninja bend forward to grab the trophy. But before that could happen, the amethyst instantaneously flew up, shot out of the office, and flung into the mosaic mural, then vanished completely.
[FIVE – “The figures in the painting are moving!”]
Of course, that was Rohardoon’s doing, he came out of the fire exit and raced down the walkway to the office area, just as he arrived at the mural, he saw the Ninja’s hand reached out for the amethyst.
Instantly he picked up the CONG from his chest and pointed it at the amethyst, the amethyst flew over and attached itself to the CONG as it was a magnet.
Rohadoon looked at the three Ninjas, the archaeologist, and her daughter, all of them were staring at mural with eyes wide open, trying to understand what had just happened!
Not obliged to offer them any explanation, he made a funny face to the little girl then turned around and ran toward the fire exit.
In a split second, as Rohardoon ran pass the mural again, all 3 ninjas and Catherine saw what happened in front of their eyes, collided head to head with their senses.
As their eyes delved into the mosaic mural in search of the dissolved amethyst, in a split second, all of them saw the figures in the mural began to move; at first Pious the 7th suddenly stood up, and sat down again, followed suit by Napoleon lowering the queen’s crown on Josephine’s head, then Josephine extended her neck to take the crown; behind her, her two ladies-in-waiting fanned out her crimson coronation mantle, tossed those little golden bees up in the air.
One of the Ninja exclaimed in Japanese: “The figures in the picture … are moving!”
[To be continued next week]
Character illustration for Novel – “Beauties from the Golden Vase”
One of 3 major female characters – Mahako
甜姐兒 – Sweet Sister
Tang Mayie attended the Opening Party, but did not participate in the ribbon-cutting ceremony, only sitting at the VIP seat wearing a wide-brimmed hat and dark sun glasses.
[Previous Week Plot Review]
Rohardoon was really comfortably lying on the edge of the ceiling’s grid frame. He was sleeping up there, to avoid the crowd in the rotunda.
The Old Man sent him here to pick up 2 pieces that the Old Man claimed had lost a long time ago!
The Old Man gave him a cool “Newt Suit,” by wearing it, he became invisible and was able to craw and stay on any type of surface.
Now the museum had closed for the night, and it was time for him to move!
[THREE – Lying on the Ceiling] – Continue < WEEK VIII >
Stealing antique artifacts from a world-known museum was not an easy task, but with this cool and invisible suit, he could get anything he wanted without any problem!
He had watched and studied the museum for two weeks, it was under the Oldman’s instruction, to observe and learn all the operation protocols and the routines of the guards. Just as now, he watched one of the guards making the night’s first patrol.
There were 2 night guards and they would take turns to perform this duty. Tonight, it was the chubby one first. He slowly covered the fire exits, the elevators, and the first, the second floor; then returned to the control room on the third floor. Panting visibly, he joined his colleague at their post in front of the monitors.
Control room’s glass wall gave the guards a bird’s eye view towards the rotunda, but the dark glass obstructed the view from outside, only the lights from the monitor screens might be vaguely discernible to visitors.
But visitors were ordinary people! Rohardoon was not! He had the “Newt Suit!” Newt suit allowed him a vision that no optical tricks could successfully erase! He could see clearly through the dark glass, and survey every movement in the control room.
The chubby guard sat down and immediately dug into the leftover sweets from the cocktail party. The other guard worked on the control panel, turning on various buttons.
In the rotunda, thousand threads of the infrared lights now dissected the dark silence and entangled the space with a deadly web waiting to catch a prey.
Rohardoon stretched a little, then turned and crawled off the dome, passed the rose window, and landed on the third floor balcony. Through the dark glass wall he saw museum’s Chief Security Officer, Etienne Fournier entered the control room. Fournier should be off-duty by now, but perhaps because this was the first day of a major exhibition, he stayed late.
But immediately Rohardoon knew something was wrong, Fournier’s facial expression alerted him first, then he saw the two masked figure behind Fournier, they were Japanese Ninjas!
Once inside the control room, one of the Ninja ordered the chubby guard to activate the control of the freight elevator and to switch off the surveillance system in the basement. The other Ninja tied Etienne Fournier and the second guard to the chair.
Very obvious, these ninjas had the same purpose as his, and for the same things too! But they ordered the freight elevators to be activated, and only the basement surveillance be cut off, Rohardoon concluded they came here for the amethyst only, because it was not included in the exhibition and was in the basement right now in Dr. Denver’s possession.
Rohardoon hurried up, he nimbly jumped over the balcony banister, and landed in the rotunda. The infrared web had no effect on him, he was a prey that they could never capture.
Stood in front of the glass case of the CONG, he extended his index finger towards the little lock on the base of the glass case. Immediately a small pick grew out of the Newt Suit from the fingertip and he pushed the pick into the key hole. The case opened and he grabbed the jade CONG.
Strangely he felt in his palm the jade CONG swelled, but returned to normal in a split second, as if its body need a stretch after a long rest.
Without thinking, he placed the CONG onto his chest, it stuck to the suit. He swiveled around and ran for the fire exit at the north end of the building, and headed for the basement to grab the crystal.
[To be continued next week]