Thursday, December 29, 2011

Goosebumps #23: Return of the Mummy (R.L. Stine)

Gabe has recovered from the events in the last book, at least enough that he heads off to Egypt with his uncle Ben and cousin Sari. He makes an ass of himself in the airport when they get there late, by hugging a man in a burka, thinking that it’s his uncle. Uncle Ben presents him with a scarab in amber as a present and Sari freaks him out, pretending that the bug is attacking his leg.

Uncle Ben is working in a pyramid that he thinks belonged to one of King Tut’s cousins. Sari claims that she is worried about him because he pinned all his hopes on the pyramid. If he doesn’t find anything inside, then she worries that he might lose it. Also on the scene is Nala, a reporter that Ben’s partner Omar let visit. She points out that she and Gabe have the same amber necklace, though hers lacks any bug. She mainly shows up to flirt with Ben for most of the book.

After a few days, the group finally breaks through to the inner room. Gabe accidentally falls down a shaft, where he is attacked by spiders. When they pull him up, he pulls out the mummy hand from his back pocket and claims that it still has some magic powers. Nala expresses some interest in the hand, but just seems glad that he didn’t hurt himself.

Uncle Ben breaks a seal on one room and finds an empty room behind the door. He finds a second door and another seal, but Omar runs out. He starts shouting about how the mummy wants to “rest in peace” because that is what the seal said. Ben pushes forward anyway and Omar runs off. They break through the second door and find a room full of jewels and gold, plus a mummy tomb with a mummy inside.

At dinner, Nala asks Ben for the six magic words that will bring the mummy back to life. He jokes about it, but finally reveals the words. Gabe teases Sari by repeating the words, but stops before repeating it the five times needed for the mummy to come to life. She taunts him and he says the words again, but nothing happens.

They go outside and talk to Ben. He reveals that Omar is acting funny and he doesn’t necessarily trust him. Omar also calls the police and makes them stand guard over the tomb, just in case any workers try stealing artifacts. Later that night they see Omar grabbing Ben and dragging him off. When he pushes Ben into the pyramid, they follow.

Gabe and Sari venture into the tomb and find the mummy wandering around the room. They open the mummy box and find Uncle Ben inside. Just as he starts waking up, Nala bursts into the room. She reveals that she is the long lost sister of the mummy and stole the mummy hand from Gabe, using it to waken her brother.

The mummy comes over as she calls him, but suddenly grabs her around the neck. Gabe fights with her and accidentally knocks her necklace off her neck. The amber shatters into pieces and she freaks out. She announces that she hid her body in the form of a scarab for all those years and hid inside the necklace. The amber kept her alive, but without it, she can’t survive in a human form. The mummy demands again that he rest in peace.

Nala turns back into a scarab and scurries from the room. Uncle Ben pops up, revealing that he heard everything. He also tells them that he and Omar suspected Nala. He never revealed the number of words in the phrase needed to bring the mummy back to life, but she knew anyway. He called the newspaper she claimed to work for and they didn’t know her. Omar shows up with the police and they tell him that she disappeared. Gabe goes to bed, feeling better than ever, but just as he climbs into bed, he feels something bite him…

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