In this chapter, John is a security guard and he works in a big school, he wears a uniform and he sits in a small office at night. John reads a lot of for not stay bored.
Three times at night he walks down the corridors looks but he doesn't find any until one day he hears the sound of a different sound: `tap, tap, tap, tap, TWANG WANG, tap, tap'.
In the corridors he hears an echo but he thinks, “Is there a space or a room under the floor?” He knows the place exactly because he counts the steps fro the start of the corridor.
When John asks the headmaster, Alan Clarke, about the echo, John likes always helps when there's a problem. But when John asks him about the footsteps, he's very nervous and rude.
John's favourite part of his job is when he finishes in the morning.
Mary is the new teacher of class 2B -the twelve years olds-. It's her first job and she's very popular, most talk to John, but Mary always talks to him.
John and Mary like books. Mary lends John books and he lends her books. When he finishes one book, he returns it to Mary for the next evening, when he comes to work, there's a new book for him on the table. He sometimes there isn't a new book, then John knows that Mary is working late at school and that he'll see her.
One evening, John came to school and there wasn't a new book on his desk but he waited to see Mary for tell her of the book.
John walked along a corridor, `tap, tap, tap, tap, and tap'. He thought about Mary. Another corridor, `tap, tap, tap, tap, TWANG, TWANG, tap'. He didn't hear the echo of Mary's feet. He thought, “Why isn't Mary at work? Is she ill?
The next morning Mary didn't come to school and John asked Mr Clarke about Mary but he was very rude. John returned to his house unhappy. He didn't sleep because he thinks about Mary.
John walked away unhappy, then a girl spoke to him. It was Anna.
Anna wanted to talk to John. “All the students are asking about Mary”, she said.
“Yes”, said John, “I need to talk to Mary, too”
“I know where Mary lives. I visited her house once”.
The headmaster saw John and Anna. He went and talked to the new security guard for asked about Mary's teacher.
The next day, John telephoned the school and asked to speak to Mary. She wasn't at school. John was very worried, in the evening he went to work, but when he got to school, he found another problem.
He thought, why there is another man in his office with the same uniform as me?
When John goes to the headmaster's office and sits down, the headmaster wasn't here, but there a letter for John on the table:
We have to make some changes at he school. Now there isn't a job for you. You're sincerely.
John didn't understand that Alan went too said. “What can I do?” he thought.
He decided, “I'm not at school and Mary and Mary's not at school.
But John knew nothing about Mary. All he knew was her name and her job.
He goes to the same way that Mary follows for the school. He first rang the bell in her house and waited. There was no answer. He rang the bell again -no answer.
He looked through the window but there isn't anybody.
It was very difficult to see into the rooms because it was dark.
Then he was lucky. He pushed the window and it opened. He pushed again a little. It opened more.
He enters in the room but there was nobody in the street. John started to look around. He didn't know what he wanted to find, he only wanted to find her.
The, in the living room, he found some photos. John finds an found address book.
Suddenly, he heard a sound. Somebody started to open the door and John didn't know what to do. He decided hide behind the sofa.
John only saw the man's feet. He was lucky again. The man stopped and stood directly in front of John, but he didn't behind the sofa.
Then John had tow possibilities, to stay behind the sofa or to try to get out of the window. When he opened the window the man came into the room again. Hey!! Shouted the man. “What are you doing here? Who are you?” but the man didn't answer and after of this John starts to ran along the road.
The man climbed out of the window and ran along the street after John.
The man stood up quickly, but John had time to run round the corner and hide behind a car. The man ran past and John was safe. John waited for a few minutes and he stood up and went to his house, but not by the direct route.
John got to his house with no more problems. He opened the Mary's address book and turns the pages, he thought that she had many friends.
John knew that Mary's surname was Tucker but ware five addresses with the same surname in the book. The first number was engaged “beep, beep, beep” and the second number was Mary's cousin. But the cousin confirmed that the first telephone number was Mary's mother. John look at her mother's address, it was near his house, he decided to walk there.
John walked to Mrs Tucker's house and thought about the “beep beep beep”of the telephone. He thought the “tap tap tap” of his footsteps corridors also and he started to thing about his job, he thought that his works it wasn't a marvellous job, but he wanted to work at the school again.
When John gets Mrs Tucker's home, he went to the door and rang the bell but anybody opened the door. More lately, he decided to wait in a park, he bought a newspaper and then he sat in the park.
When he started at reads the newspaper he found an interesting article, it was about a bank robbery. When he finished the article, he thought about the robbery bank and the man of Mary's house, what wanted the man…?
When John started to read the newspaper he found other article about the school jobs. The door of Mrs Tucker's house opened and somebody looked out. It was Mary!! She looked up and down the street but when she saw John, she closed the door immediately.
John walked quickly across the street and went to the house. He rang the bell but nobody opened the door.
Mary looked at John seriously, and then slowly opened the door and Mary closed quickly the door.
Mary was different. She wasn't happy now, she was serious and cold.
“What happened, Mary?” Asked John
“I can't tell you. He said, “Don't tell anybody”, she answered.
John looked at Mary and he said: I lost the job because I asked about you.
She answered: ohh, I'm sorry!
But I don't understand why did you lose your job? I asked Mr Clarke about you, and then I lost my job. John didn't remember his question about the sound of his footsteps in the corridor, so he said, “no”. John was very surprised. Mary continued, “In one of the corridors in school, the sound of my footsteps was different. Just for two steps”.
I also asked about my footsteps, continued John, what did Mr Clarke say to you?
He said I know nothing.
One hour later he came too see me and said, I'm sorry, your job was only temporary, Mary.
We don't need you now, and that was the end.
After the dinner, the talked again, the footsteps were important, because tow people don't lose their jobs for any reason. The wanted to find some reason for know why they can't job in the school.
The next night, John and Mary met Anna and more of Mary's students at the school. John showed the students the plan of the school. “You're going to make a lot of noise here, at point “a”, he said. Then John, Mary and Anna walked to a door on the other side of the school.
They walked along the corridors but their feet didn't make any sound.
“I counted my footsteps, fourteen “taps” and then two twangs, John said.
John walked again along the corridor and he counted his footsteps, “Twelve, thirteen, and fourteen. This is the place, John stopped. Anna, can you turn of the torch? Anna directed the light to the floor and then to the wall. They removed the grille and John looked inside with the torch. There's a space, but it's very small. “I can get in” said Anna. She climbed into the space, John and Mary waited in the corridor. Hey!! What are you doing here? Who are you? They didn't see the person, but John recognised the voice immediately.
It was Tony, the new security guard; he ran along the corridor and attacked John. Mary ran away with Anna very scared.
Mary ran to the front entrance. Stop! You can't escape! He said.
The headmaster and Tony locked in the room and they heard voices.
Then they heard more conversation, Tony, put that ventilation grille back and then we'll take these two people.
The headmaster and security guard came into the small room. Anna thought that it was safe. She saw two small cases.
Mr Clarke and Tony took Mary and John to house. Mr Clarke said at John, “I see you know my twin brother, Roger” said the real Mr Alan Clarke. John understood why the headmaster was different, he was an impostor!!
Anna woke up and heard happy voices. It was morning when she opened and Anna started to shout.
A teacher removed the ventilation grille and helped Anna out of the space.
There were a lot of students and teachers watching, including the headmaster.
Anna told the story. When she mentioned the headmaster, everybody looked round to see him bat he wasn't there.
A teacher was opened the cases. There was 100.000 pounds inside. “Call the police!”
The police arrived and listened to Anna's story. The police opened the door and they heard voices. “Tony, we have to leave. Now!”
Tony and his father walked out of the door and stopped when they saw the police.
The police discovered that Tony was the bank robber in the newspaper article.
Roger Clarke wanted to help his son and Alan, the real headmaster pretend to be him.
“It's prison for you two!” said a policeman to Tony and Roger.
“100.000 pound!”, said John and Mary together, when they heard what was in the cases.
“You can buy a house with that!”
The bank gave a reward to the school and they spent the money on a big party for the heroes.
Mary and John returned to work at the school. John was very happy.
He and Mary started to exchange books again. Then one day, John decided to write a book.
“What's the book called?” asked Mary.
“Footsteps” answered John.