Potato Land Book One: Humans Try to Take Over Potato Land But One Awesome Team Will Stop the Humans!

Chapter 1: Evacuate!

“Ring, Ring!” The lunch bell rang and all the students of the Potato School filed together inside the cafeteria to eat lunch. William, a young potato child, sat down on a table to eat his yummy ham and cheese sandwich. Shortly after he took his second bite out of his sandwich, he heard a “THUMP, THUMP, THUMP.” The ground shook fiercely. 

“Oh my!” a potato child exclaimed. 

“What is happening?” another said. And all the potato children ran outside their school and saw huge pieces of floppy laces with what looked like shoes attached to them. (The potatoes themselves usually just wore t-shirts and shorts.) Then they saw humans! William felt very scared at the moment. He shivered.  

“Ahhhhhhh!!!” Everybody screamed including the humans because they were so surprised to see talking potatoes. So all the potato children and potato teachers went to the evacuation center and pressed a big red button that set an alarm off to every building in Potato Land. Every Potato Land citizen knew exactly what it meant. They all went to an underground hole and sat there. 

Chapter 2: William Barely Escapes the Hands of a Human!

For days and days they sat in that big hole. Until one day brave William thought to himself, we can’t just hide here forever, someone has to stop the humans from destroying our land! So William carefully climbed out of the emergency hole and went out to stop the humans! 

“William?” his parents called out. Where are you?” 

“Oh no. I guess he went exploring again,” his mom said. His parents were used to him getting lost. 

“Oooh, what is this?” A human had come to William and had been licking his lips. 

“Ahhhh!” screamed William. He slowly looked up and saw a human looking down hungrily at him. “Please don’t eat me,” whimpered William, his braveness fading. 

“What else do you think I will do?” boomed the human. “Not eat you? Ha ha ha!” 

William scrambled up to the top of a building barely escaping the hands of a big scary human. 

Chapter 3: William Creates a Team!

He went back to the hole and thought about going outside again to fight the humans but he realized that he would need a team. As he climbed back into the hole, his parents rushed over to him. 

“What were you thinking, William?!” cried William’s dad. 

“We were so worried about you!” said his mom while hugging him tightly. 

“I was trying to save Potato Land. Our land! But I will need a team to fight the humans and to keep them from eating us,” said William. 

So William went to find some people to join his team. First, he went to find his friends, but when he found them they were so cowardly that they wouldn’t even come out to see him. So then William went to find some random people in the deep dark hole who were brave and adventurous to join his team. At last he found four other potato children who volunteered to help fight the big, bad humans! There were two girls and two boys. 

“Hello everyone.” William said. “Thank you for coming and joining my team! I am very grateful for that. Shall we call ourselves The Brave?” Everybody nodded in agreement. “Then great! Let’s go!” The Brave set off into the dark night trying to wake the humans from their sleep.

Chapter 4: Defeating the Humans!

It turns out, the humans made a whole city out of Potato Land! Oh no! thought William. He saw some humans clustered around his school using hammers to break it down and turn it into a new building!

 “Over there!” William told his team. They rushed toward the humans and started hitting them. William had lots of bad luck because  he saw the human who tried to eat him earlier! Oh no. William thought. Had he come to try and eat me again?

 “Hey!” said the human who tried to eat William. “Aren’t you the tasty potato that I tried to eat earlier?”

“No offense, but you do look very tasty.” 

“I take offense very much!” said William.

 “Hey, let’s get on with fighting them,” whispered one of his teammates.

“Okay, sorry,” answered William. The potato children charged at the humans and surprised them but when they hit the humans, the humans didn’t feel a thing.

“AAARRRGGGHHH,” William shouted so loudly that the humans flew back from the impact.

 “How did you do that?” His teammates asked.

“I… don’t know.” William said, just as surprised as them.

“Get him!” cried the human who tried to eat William.

“Run!” William told his team.

“I shall defeat them once and for all!” “YYYEEEAAAHHH!!!” Once again, William did the cry so loud this time even louder than the first one and all the humans around them flew back millions of miles away from them.

Chapter 5: Announcing the Hero of the Day! 

     “YES!” his whole team yelled. “WOO-HOO!”

“We did it!!!” All the potatoes in Potato Land crowded the hero of the day. The mayor himself came up to William and told every potato in the land that William was the hero of the day and from then on, he and his team were called, “The Mighty Brave.”            

The End

Rain

I was only inside for the fourth day in a row and it was killing me. It was finally camp time, the time I look forward to all year, and it just wouldn’t stop raining. I wished I was back in Miami with Jenna, Ryder, Mom, and Dad. Instead, I had to be in this terrible sleepaway camp bunk. Don’t get me wrong, I love camp. It’s just I’d way rather be stuck at my mansion in Miami then in a tiny bunk. At camp, you can do lots of things, just not when it’s pouring rain. We don’t even have a TV. Thank god Katey, a girl from my camp, brought her iPad. Without that iPad, we’d be dead.

As the sunlight peaked out over the lake, I got out of bed. The rest of the girls in my cabin were already up and waiting for me to wake up. We all put on our coats and sprinted to the dining hall. That was the only place that we could see other people from camp. Today’s breakfast was blueberry muffins and apple juice. When I got into the dinning hall, I overheard a girl ask my BFF Julia if the clouds would ever stop peeing. At least Julia’s in my bunk, I thought to myself.

“Penny,” I heard Julia call, and I realized I was still at the juice counter.

Julia

Julia is Penny’s best friend. They have been in the same camp cabin with the other girls forever, but have a strong relationship. They are both born in October and both love to dance. Though all the girls in the cabin are friends, they are besties. Julia is from Illinois and is in fifth grade.

Katey

 Katey is the coolest girl in the bunk and who the girls rely on for snacks. She is obsessed with water skiing and is very good. She’s from the Hamptons so she is an expert swimmer. We always have our spring break sleepover at her house, even though some people have to fly.

Carrie

Carrie is the fancy person in the bunk. She lives in Connecticut and her dad is a lawyer. She does swimming and lacrosse. We have our winter sleepover at her house because she has an indoor pool and spa.

Jenny

Jenny is the DIY queen and is super nice. She is really good at soccer and she always wins the games for us. Her parents write to her every week (sheesh). She lives in Texas and always brings BBQ to the sleepovers. 

Adley

Adley is the funniest person in the world. She always makes us feel better with a joke. She’s also the best makeup artist in the world, and makes us look so good for the end of year party. She is from New York and is such a city girl.

Brin

Brin is the rider. She does super high jumps on horses. That girl is from Florida and she is very good at cooking southern food. She cooks fried chicken for us every year and it’s so good. She taught us all to play Gin-Rummy and now we play it every night.

Audrey

Audrey is our counselor. She is super arts & crafts-y and loves water polo. She was a camper here for 7 years and she loves camp. I’m glad she’s our counselor because she’s super fun. She always talks about how one time, she was at camp and it snowed!

After a long night of watching TV and sleeping, we got up for breakfast. We went to the dining hall and ate some fruit and oatmeal, then trudged back through the rain to our cabin. We got dressed into elastic pants and t-shirts, then headed over to the gym. Today we had dance class and basketball. I wish we could swim in the lake, but we can’t. At least we can go to the gym today. It’s finally open. Usually, we’d be camping tonight on top of Mt. Shirly. It is a tough climb, but worth it.

It’s 7:00 pm and we are having a movie marathon with candy (which we do every night and love). Tonight, I’m not very focused because of the rain. It is pattering and pouring down from the sky so, so hard. Julia and I are next to each other whispering while the other girls watch Mamma Mia. I grab my phone and tell the camp girls that I’m gonna go get cookies from the cafeteria house. I step outside expecting it to be pouring, but it’s not. The rain is falling slower and slower until it completely stops. I call the girls and we celebrate. One by one, the cabins empty and the path fills. The counselors set up a campfire and we all roast s’mores together. There’s still one more week of camp to do fun things outside. I can’t wait for tomorrow, which is something I haven’t said in awhile.

Fortnite

Editor’s Note: This story is inspired by the game Fortnite, which was developed by Epic Games. Content Warning for gun usage and video game violence.

One day I was playing squads on Fortnite with my friends when all of a sudden my TV started glowing. I put my hand up to the screen and my hand went through it. I was confused. Then I said into the mic, “Hey guys, are you seeing this?” 

Zaniya asked, “Seeing what?” 

Then I realized only I could be part of the Fortnite world. Maybe. Is this what I actually think it is? I cautiously walked in, and I realized I was in a lobby. I thought Fortnite had a lobby. I was in a Fortnite lobby! I remembered I was with my friends. I slapped my forehead thinking, am I dreaming or hallucinating? I thought if I was in Fortnite I could change what I was wearing. I went into the clothing section and saw all my skins. In order to test my theory that I was not dreaming or hallucinating, I went to the emote section and saw all my emotes. Next to Vbucks, I saw everything that I had in real life I had here in this virtual world. It’s like I entered Fortnite – or did I?

I heard a voice say, “Games starting in 3, 2, 1!”

I was immediately transported through the air and brought to what looked like the waiting place from my gaming experience. This was different. It looked exactly like Fortnite but you could not get killed. I floated over to the Battle Bus, and then we flew into my favorite game. I figured I was in Fortnite, so I got ready to win a game. I dropped and landed at a humongous house and walked inside. I picked up a gun and started firing it. Firing the gun felt good and I thought, I think I’ll like it here. I grabbed the loot and after I was done, I had an AR, a shotgun, an RPG, and healing. A few seconds later, I could hear footsteps and got ready. As soon as they came inside the person tried to shoot me but I jumped so high. I was surprised how high I could jump! I shot at him and lasered him and he died. I looked up and watched in amazement as I saw my kills, my health, my ammo, and my building materials. I wondered if someone was playing me and I was the character in Fortnite. I did a move only I knew to test my theory. I set C4 bombs everywhere, got a gun, and shot the house down. The loot rained down on me. Then I built my own house/base to live in and protect myself. I made windows and doors and everything that belongs in a base and more. A few more people came to the house. I bombed, sniped, shot out the air, and killed everyone. I, ZRC, ended the game with a win and 20 kills. 

Later that day, I, ZRC, was relaxing and partying at Party Hub. I was thinking about how good I was and how I won every game I went to. I knew this was a dream come true and I would never leave. The excitement was like a bubble about to burst when I heard over the intercom, “Come to the lounge where you will meet all agents.” I ran to the inter-lounge and saw Skye, Midas, Meoscles, Pelly, and Brutus. Over the intercom, I heard they were going to pick one person to become a new agent in Fortnite. Everyone cheered! I was full of excitement. Midas said “Drum roll please, the new agent also the best Fortnite player here other than us is ZRC!” I said, “YES!” and jumped for joy! My friends said “Yeah man!” 

After everyone left the lounge, the agents told me to stay behind and pick my favorite gun to be my weapon as an agent, and to make a new skin.

I picked a shotgun and the skin I made had a wolf mask. My hands and arms were covered in ice and my body was very muscular with abs and biceps. I looked down. I was wearing an ice skin with an ice shotgun and ice arms and hands. Being an agent was hard work. I had to pick henchmen to work as assistants. I had to pick a place to stay where I lived. I chose to make Salty Springs into an ice land with a mansion in the front with henchmen as guards. I had become a hot drop, which means everyone is coming here to get my gun. Whenever someone killed me, I would just respawn into another game. I checked my pocket to see if I had my phone. When I pulled out my phone, a piece of paper appeared in my hands and told me to call myself. I called myself and on the phone screen. It said, Zahir has answered. He heard my voice saying, “Hello? Hello?” Then I asked, “Can you play me on Fortnite?”

 “Wait, what do you mean to play you? Don’t you see me the new agent bro? I don’t know what you’re talking about, bye.”

 ZRC thought that maybe he did not know he was in the game. He knew he wanted to be the best Fortnite player in the world, but to do that he had to defeat Ssunde and the X Brothers. The X Brothers are a glitch that prevent people from winning but they don’t have an external body. They are bots programmed into the game. They just think they are real people but they are actually glitches programmed to ruin the game. My team is the Beard. His special ability is that he can drive things really well like helicopters, boats, and stuff. Zanirock’s special ability is that she can shoot really fast, faster than me, ZRC 2008. I have the special ability to have the best aim in the world and the best leadership in the world. I also have a specialized gun and henchmen. My team and I were itching to battle Ssundee after we placed second best in the world, but Ssundee is always in front. I sometimes wonder how he is so good. Gameday was in 2 days. Today, everyone was partying at Party Royale. Me and my team were having a good time laughing and joking around when our opponents came and said, “Good luck, you’ll need it ‘cause you’re going down!” 

When the X Brothers turned around, I saw them glitch for a second. I told my team, and they said, “What are you talking about?”

“We saw nothing man, just worry about having fun,” we replied.

It was Game Day. My team put on their game faces and walked out into the lobby.

We heard the last words from this bot, “5, 4, 3, 2, 1!”

We were launched into the Battle Bus and jumped out.

Skye dove into the tallest building there. They looted the place and then saw one of the X Brothers. They said, “3, 2, 1,” and killed him in 3 shots.

His brother was hot in pursuit when both X Brothers came out of a bush and said, “We are still here.”

“I talked about how I killed you. Are you hacking at the same time?”

They said, “We are a hack.”

Ssundee came up from the ground and surrounded them. As the leader I am, I took the lead and I shot Ssundee then 360 no-scoped one of the X Brothers. I one-pumped the other X Brother, but they rose back up. We did the only other thing we could do: Trap them with traps. We got spike traps and built a tower so they could not get out and ran 5 seconds later. They heard a noise. Then we heard, “You have won the place of the Best Fortnite Player in the World!” Ssundee and the X Brothers came out of the tower by hacking them. They tried to shoot us but then they went stiff. We all looked up and saw the Fortnite agents controlling him. They said, “You cheated! The penalty is that you get banned from Fortnite FOREVER.”

Me and my team said, “Yes sir!” and we heard my voice in the real world say, “Yes sir!” I got a VIC-Roy and won the place of Best Fortnite player. A machine transported me back home. Now, I had two powers: being able to have the best aim in the world and being able to go in and out of video games whenever I wanted. When I stepped out of the game, my sister, Kyle, and my real self were frozen for a second. Then I thought maybe I freeze time every time I go into a game. After that, I joined my real body, and I played Fortnite.

Spelling Bee Champ

On Monday night, Taylor Chris was sitting on her couch next to her mother. They were watching Taylor’s favorite reality show: Spelling Bee Champ. It was the last round and it was a boy, Marc, vs. a boy, Harry. Marc had to spell nefarious. If he got it right, he’d win the challenge.

Under her breath Taylor spelled, “N-e-f-a-r-i-o-u-s. Nefarious.”

Taylor’s mom chuckled. “Taylor, you should be on this show. Every word they’ve shown, you’ve spelled correctly.”

Taylor shook her head. “No way! Hundreds—no, thousands of people watch this show! Maybe even millions.” Taylor shuddered. 

But little did Taylor know her mom registered her anyway. Taylor loved talking and interacting with other people. The only kind of shy she is, is camera shy. She just doesn’t like being on camera. Marc answered nefarious incorrectly. Next was Harry. Harry had to spell claustrophobic – much harder than nefarious.

“C-l-a-u-s-t-r-o-p-h-o-b-i-c. Claustrophobic. Fear of being in small spaces,” Taylor muttered. Taylor high-fived her mom when she got it correct. Maria Spindle was just about to crown Harry the new Spelling Bee Champ when someone in a sweatshirt and headset came and whispered something in her ear.

Maria Spindle smiled. “Guess what? We’re starting a new promotion: The International Spelling Bee Championship! We’re not just in the US any more!”

Taylor’s mom looked nervous. “Taylor… I registered you for the next spelling bee.”

Taylor was laughing until she saw her mother’s face. “Mom, I know you meant well, but next time make sure that I won’t be going up against the best spellers from around the world before you register me for a contest.” Taylor thought for a minute. “Where are we going?”

“All over. But the first stop is Sydney, Australia, then London, England, then Paris, France, then more.”

Taylor was tired so she went to bed but before she did, she packed one carry-on suitcase. She packed two weeks worth of clothes, pajamas, and shoes for any and every condition. And in her book bag she packed her coloring book, colored pencils, encyclopedia, thesaurus, and dictionary. Finally she went to sleep. She supposed she was excited for the trip but she was too tired to tell.

The next morning, Taylor got up quickly. Their plane for Sydney left at 1:00 pm. They could not be late. Taylor choked down her toast and slurped her orange juice as quickly as she could before her mom stopped her.

“Taylor? Stop this nonsense.We have three hours to get to the airport! It’s only 9:00 am.” Taylor slowly calmed down, but she couldn’t stop thinking about the Spelling Bee. Were there going to be a lot of kids? Was everyone going to be much more sophisticated than her? What if she was the only one her age?! But her mom kept reminding her to calm down. It sort of worked. She supposed. S-u-p-p-o-s-e-d. Usually spelling calmed Taylor down. D-o-w-n. But now those questions just flooded through Taylors head like a storm. S-t-o-r-m. Ugh. Not even spelling could get these questions out of her head. H-e-a-d. Taylor didn’t understand. She’d been in spelling bees before. Why did this bother her? Maybe it was because this would be on international television. T-e-l-e-v-i-s-i-o-n. Taylor was starting to relax and let her guard down, until she thought of a new question. Q-u-e-s-t-i-o-n. Aye. She couldn’t stop thinking of words – but what if during the Spelling Bee she stopped completely? While Taylor’s mom drove them to the airport, Taylor flipped through her dictionary. She pointed her finger to the word wicked. W-i-c-k-e-d. Next cerebrum. C-e-r-e-b-r-u-m. Taylor played this game until they arrived at the airport.

“Mom, can you quiz me on some of the words in my thesaurus?” asked Taylor.

“Of course,” said her mom. The first word was crimson, c-r-i-m-s-o-n, the next catastrophe, c-a-t-a-s-t-r-o-p-h-e, the third private, p-r-i-v-a-t-e, and the last extreme, e-x-t-r-e-m-e. Soon they boarded their flight. Their tickets said first class! They were served hot fudge sundaes with peppermint syrup, and brownies for lunch. As it turned out, it was the captain’s birthday. There was a confetti cake with rainbow frosting and white sprinkles and the party favors were huge bags of toys and fancy chocolates.

At the bottom was a dictionary with a note that said, “Bring home the trophy for the good old US of A. Captain Lenora White.” This dictionary was huge, many more words than her beat up old one. Taylor loved it. Taylor flipped to the middle and pointed to the word crustaceans. C-r-u-s-t-a-c-e-a-n-s. Hyacinth. H-y-a-c-i-n-t-h. Taylor always thought everyone should know the beauty of words.

When they arrived in Sydney, Taylor and her mom took a cab to their hotel. Once there, Taylor’s mom quizzed her with words from the new dictionary.

“Disconcerting!”

Taylor thought for a moment before saying, “D-i-s-c-o-n-c-e-r-t-i-n-g.” Taylor clapped her hands.

“Triumphant!”

Taylor immediately answered, “T-r-i-u-m-p-h-a-n-t.”

Taylor’s mom thought for a moment before saying, “Nonchalant.”

Taylor quickly said, “N-o-n-c-h-a-l-a-n-t!”

Taylor’s mom paused for effect, “Last but not least… unforeseen!” Taylor memorized this word in the cab on the way to their hotel.

“U-n-f-o-r-e-s-e-e-n.”

The next day the Bee began. Taylor’s mom tugged her curly brown hair into pigtails with pink ribbons. Taylor pulled on the pink lace dress she brought, the white tights, and pink sneakers. Taylor took her dictionary and she practiced the word demonstrations. D-e-m-o-n-s-t-r-a-t-i-o-n-s. Then mystery. M-y-s-t-e-r-y. And so on. Right before they left for breakfast, Taylor did the word duplicate. D-u-p-l-i-c-a-t-e.

Taylor sat next to a girl with red hair and green eyes wearing a pink sweater and pink jeans.

“Hi I’m Joanna Kelley. Nice to meet you. This is my sister Amelia Kelley. We’re from England.” Amelia smiled.

“I’m Taylor Chris. Nice to meet you too.”

Amelia asked if the girls wanted to quiz each other. Joanna volunteered her dictionary. Taylor got quizzed on malicious, m-a-l-i-c-i-o-u-s, empty, e-m-p-t-y, and harmonious, h-a-r-m-o-n-i-o-u-s. Joanna got quizzed on trivial, t-r-i-v-i-a-l, classic, c-l-a-s-s-i-c, and charisma, c-h-a-r-i-s-m-a. Amelia got quizzed on marvelous, m-a-r-v-e-l-o-u-s, unruly, u-n-r-u-l-y, and admiration, a-d-m-i-r-a-t-i-o-n.

Soon the Bee started. Maria Spindle called a girl named Karen Lee up first.

“Karen Lee, your word is devotee. Please spell devotee.”

Karen said nervously. “D-e-v-o-t-e-y, devotee.” Taylor sucked in her breath and she knew that was the wrong spelling.

Maria Spindle grimaced. “I’m sorry Karen, but that is the incorrect answer. Devotee is spelled d-e-v-o-t-e-e. You may exit through the double doors.” Maria plastered a smile on her face and said, “Next up… Taylor Chris. Taylor, your word is triskaidekaphobia.”

Taylor sighed in relief. She knew this word. “T-r-i-s-k-a-i-d-e-k-a-p-h-o-b-i-a, triskaidekaphobia.”

Maria beamed. “That is correct Taylor! You’ll be moving onto the next round.” After she went, Taylor didn’t really pay a lot of attention to the other people. The last person to go was a girl named Justine Fleur from Paris. Justine got the word sapphire, s-a-p-p-h-i-r-e. She got it incorrect. She spelled it with only one p.

After the Bee, there was a banquet for lunch. There was roast chicken, steamed broccoli, vegetable quinoa, and boiled peppers. Taylor didn’t eat much. She was too nervous about the Bee tomorrow.

After the banquet, Taylor repacked her things. At 6:00 pm, Taylor and her mom left for London. When they arrived in London, Taylor and her mother were escorted to a fancy motel. The man at the front desk gave them the key to room 5 on floor 1. Taylor picked out a pair of faux leather leggings and a blue button down shirt for her outfit for the bee. As Taylor brushed her teeth, she mentally quizzed herself on: horrible, h-o-r-r-i-b-l-e; gangly, g-a-n-g-l-y; pneumatic, p-n-e-u-m-a-t-i-c; and conundrum, c-o-n-u-n-d-r-u-m. All done, she thought.

That night she had nightmares about words, shouting unpleasant things. She woke up quickly and tip-toed out of her bed. She went to the dresser and looked at the clock. It was only 2:00 am. Rats. She went back to her bed and eventually fell into a fitful sleep.

The next morning Taylor dressed into the outfit she picked out the night before, and just pulled back her hair with a headband. Taylor’s mom was still sleeping and Taylor didn’t want to wake her so she just went to breakfast quietly. At breakfast, Taylor got two chocolate glazed donuts and sat down next to a boy wearing jeans and a tee shirt.

“Hi,” Taylor simply said.

“Hi,” said the boy, taking another bite out of his scrambled eggs. The boy tried to comb his shaggy red hair, but it didn’t work. He just waited, and waited.

“So are you waiting for something?” asked Taylor.

“Yeah, my grandad.”

This is awkward, thought Taylor. “I’m Taylor,” she said, holding out her hand.

“Uh, hi, I’m Mason. Okay, so are you here for the spelling bee? I am.” Taylor just moved away from the boy whose name was Mason.

Mason shook his head. “I came on too strong again didn’t I? I do that a lot, sorry!”

Taylor grabbed her plate and moved to a different table.

At 4:00, the Bee started. First they called up the boy Mason.

“Mason Kall, your word is superstition,” announced Maria Spindle.

Mason said, “S-u-p-e-r-s-t-i-t-i-o-n, superstition.”

Maria Spindle did not look that impressed. “Alright, Mason, that is correct. You’ll be moving on.” Taylor had a feeling Maria Spindle found Mason as annoying as she did. 

“Next… Lisa Wu! Your word is desolate.” Lisa got desolate incorrect, then was Louie Martino who got sriracha incorrect, then Georgie Smith who got necessary correct, and Lila Jane Parks who got international correct. Then it was Taylor’s turn.

“Taylor Chris, come on down. Your word is astonished.”

Taylor thought for five seconds. “A-s-t-o-n-i-s-h-e-d, astonished.”

Maria Spindle put on a wide toothy grin and looked straight at the camera, “Correct Taylor! You may sit down at your seat.” Taylor walked back to her seat meekly, when she saw a beefy kid snarl at her.

“Karlo Yang, your word is finance.” The beefy kid walked up.

“F-y-n-a-n-s-e, finance,” the beefy kid said proudly.

Maria Spindle winced. “I’m sorry Karlo, that is incorrect.” 

Veins bulging, eyes bugging out, hands ready to smash some bones, Karlo screamed, “What!” He smashed the podium. Maria stood at his feet and pounded against the hardwood stage.

As even beefier security guards held him back, Karlo screeched, “Lemme at ‘er! Give me Maria Spindle!!! I know I got finance right! You just want me to lose my cool on international TV! Well it will not work!” 

Karlo took one look at the mess he made and fell to his knees sobbing about forgiveness. The beefy security guards hauled Karlo away.

“Well… that was interesting. Next is Mick Torrent. Mick, your word is silhouette.” About a dozen more kids went but Taylor just couldn’t stop thinking about Karlo, the way his eyes bugged and how he fell to his knees sobbing. It made Taylor think about reality, or whether they were all just pawns in somebody else’s imagination. The thought made Taylor shudder. S-h-u-d-d-e-r. When she was nervous she spelled. Ugh. U-g-h. It’s happening again. A-g-a-i-n. Taylor remembered her mom’s sweet voice, and how when it was time for bed, her mom would bring her a glass of milk and sing her a lullaby when she was younger. She thought about how they played double dutch, and checkers, and monopoly. She thought about snuggling together on the couch when Spelling Bee Champ was on and just spotting clouds that looked like bunnies, and lying together on the sun dried grass. These happy memories calmed Taylor down. When they exited the stage, Taylor’s knees wobbled, but this time not with nerves. Excitement.

At lunch, Taylor found out why Mason bugged Maria. Listen: “Maria Maria Maria Maria! Am I winning? AmIwinning? Am I? Am I? Am I? Am I?!”

Maria sighed. “Look! Mason I cannot tell you,” Maria said slowly.

Mason just frowned. “Not fair! Not fair! Not fair!” he screeched.

“Security!” Maria cried.

Taylor grabbed a red velvet cupcake, a confetti cupcake, and a chocolate fudge cupcake, with a side of Milky Ways, Kit Kats, and M&Ms for lunch. Taylor took the goodies to the room she shared with her mom. Tomorrow was the final challenge. Whoever got three words in a row won!

The next morning, Taylor went up last. Everyone else only got two words in a row correct. 

Taylor’s first word was skulduggery. S-k-u-l-d-u-g-g-e-r-y. She got it correct. Then burglar. B-u-r-g-l-a-r. Correct. Last, modicum. M-o-d-i-c-u-m. She got them all correct. 

“Jacklin, tell Taylor what she’s won!” Maria shouted to a woman in a red sequined leotard, with bright red lipstick, black tights, and red, six inch heels.

“Well Taylor, you’ve won ten free trips to Disney World, 250 million dollars, and a 40 million dollar gift card to every bookstore in the world!” Jacklin said. “Plus…” the crowd murmured about how much more Taylor’d win, “your own private plane, which includes a coupon for the next 10 repairs, 4 bedrooms that have their own bathrooms, 2 kitchens, 3 TVs, 2 dining rooms, and 2 TV rooms.”

Taylor’s jaw literally fell open.

A lady that looked like Mason climbed onto the stage and said, “My Mason should’ve won!”

Mason looked embarrassed. “Mother.” Security guards started pulling her back.

“He should’ve won!” she screamed.

“Well that was odd,” said Jacklin.

Grades

They say the more you practice, the better you get,

But my grades are getting worse.

I always practice doodling on my desk.

Is there some kind of sketching curse?

In math, Madame says there’s an answer to everything.

So, after work, when everyone else is done, 

I kindly ask her in my high pitched voice:

“I forgot. Is there an answer to 2 + 1?”

He said that hard work translates to good grades,

But I don’t think he really understood.

For I’m working hard at recess time, 

And my grades have not yet changed for good.

Mr. Smith says that good spelling makes good writing.

Now, at least I know how to spell.

I’m still at the kindergarten spelling level.

I’m sure he thinks I really excel.

Tech teacher says to stay safe on the computer,

So I email a hacker my real password.

I figured he’d help me keep my account safe.

Lily thinks that’s absolutely absurd.

Music teacher said to play nice and loud.

I told her there were no songs called loud nor nice.

Apparently, that was my third strike

Teacher says, “You’ll have to pay the price.”

Everyone says that library class is bad. 

I think it is super super boring.

So when we are picking books to check out,

I spend time sleeping and snoring.

In cooking class, teacher tells me to drain the pasta.

So I put my pasta down the drain.

In choir, the teacher tells me to sing from the start,

So I decide to skip to the refrain.

Spanish teacher says that Spanish is useful in trade,

But I really don’t think that that is true.

Everyone doesn’t know any trade words

And I only know just one and two.

Tom says reading’s always the hardest subject.

I really really really agree with that too.

The book of letters is so super hard to read.

Teacher always says “It’s x, not u!”

Gym teacher says a pull-up is really great.

But I get splinters from the bar of wood.

I get 0 almost every time I try.

I assume one below great is good?

She said concentrating gives you higher grades.

I intensely concentrate on my need to pee.

Everyone says I’m the dumbest kid in grade 4, 

Is there something wrong with me?

Bob

May something, 2075

Dear Diary,

This is the most stupid thing I did in my life. I mean who writes in a diary these days? My stupid wife told me to write in one so I can get my thoughts on paper. Do you think I care about that? If you said no, then congratulations, you’re right. I’m Bob. I have a few things that I need to tell you about me. First, I have eight sons. Second, I’m drunk and, instead of water, I drink vodka. But really think about it. Who drinks water anymore? It’s either beer or vodka. Third, I am 50 years old. Also I’ve had five wives and I’m obese. Oh and lastly, I smoke a lot.

My wife tells me to eat healthier so I don’t get sick. I don’t get sick so I guess I eat healthy. I eat McDonald’s and Burger King. If my wife makes me eat healthy then I eat corn with a lot of salt (otherwise it’s not OK) or I eat a rainbow bagel with loads of nutella (no lots of nutella, not good).

May something, 2075

Dear Diary,

It’s morning and my wife gave me some yogurt with honey. I was like, “Who eats that?” So instead, I took fruit loops and chocolate milk. Unfortunately, she caught me and threw it away. I started screaming like a maniac because that was the last bowl of fruit loops left. I took the honnynut cereal off the shelf and poured it into the salad bowl which is used for cereal not salad because salad is unhealthy, I think. Please tell me I’m right.

Anyway, my wife said we have to go outside to breath some “fresh” air. Ugh. So, I decided that I’d go to the deli and buy myself some airheads. At least I’m walking a bit. I got there and guess what happened. They were sold out. You’re asking why. Well, I bought them all yesterday. But then I looked to the side and guess what I saw. Cheetos. My friend Jimmy loves them so I’m gonna try it. BRB.

June something, 2075

Dear Diary,  

I’m back at home watching tv and writing in this stupid thing, and guess what’s for dinner. My favorite, not. A burger with lettuce and tomato. Why eat that when you could get a Big Mac at McDonalds for a buck or a really juicy burger from Burger King. That would be much better than whatever burger that cost $18.99.

In case you were wondering, I work at the worst place ever. A buffet with, you guessed it, salads and omelets and, the worst of all, salads. Wait, did I already say that? I think I did. Right. Or did I just think it? You know that feeling when you think you say something and you’re not sure if you actually did? Or did you? Because you could have just thought it or said it. Y’know.

Anyway, so about my job. Well, it sucks. I could’ve gotten a better job and I’d rather get assassinated. I stand at the register being like, “Hey, want to sit at this buffet that is so disgusting you will get food poisining.” It’s more than a nightmare.

June something, 2075

Dear Diary,

I’m going to the gym to get some exercise. And I think that what I’m doing right now is really smart because I always see these ads on youtube that are explaining that to stay healthy, you need to exercise. So I’m gonna try it. My wife was proud and I don’t care. I’m there and I see all these weird things that somehow help you stay healthy. There is the conveyer belt thingy that I see a lot in the buffet stocking area. It brings the food and tins to the kitchen to wash. I wonder what you do with it. I’m going to the info desk to check what it’s for.

So I asked this man what the stuff is for and he started out like this:“I see you’re new here.”

How does he know that I’m new? I never even met him before. He was the skinniest person I ever saw in my life and he is a stalker. I’m gonna call him Stalker Dude. Why not? I mean, he is a stalker. I wonder what being a stalker is like. You get to spy on people. Oh, and in case you’re wondering I’m writing in a really uncomfortable position. I’m on the treadmill (I figured out what it was called) rolling off over and over again. It’s annoying.

Next, I went to the peloton (I only know what that is called from youtube). That stalker dude came and told me how to use it. So I’m sitting on it and it was supposed to help me burn calories, but I don’t think that it’s working really well. Lastly, I went to the dumbbells and I have no idea how those stick men lift them. Stalker Dude came and told me how to use it like I have no idea how. Ill need to put this diary down and lift some stuff.

So, now I’m in an ambulance. You’re asking why. Well, I dropped the dumbbell on my ribcage and I broke it. It was 50 lbs. I have to rest now so I’m gonna write tomorrow.

June something, 2075

Dear Diary, 

I forgot to tell my boss that I’m in the hospital so he called me and threatened that if I don’t come to work then he will rob me and take away Youtube premium. I was raging. No, he is not taking away Youtube premium from me. Youtube is also a part of my life. I cannot live without Youtube and especially not Youtube premium. My rage though. I was just furious. Even all the people that needed surgery who got put to sleep woke up. I was also supposed to be sleeping, but who cares. The doctor said I’ll have to be in the hospital for another month or so, until my rib cage heals, but they said that I have to rest if I want it healed. I guess I do. I mean, who wants to spend a year in bed doing nothing, but sleeping with a bunch of almost dead people?

June something, 2075

Dear Diary, 

So the doctor checked in with me and said my treatment wasn’t working. That sucks. And you know why it didn’t work? Because I was watching youtube to spend my last hours of happiness on Youtube premium. I told my doctor what my boss said and you know what he said? Good for you. Who says that? He’s lame. I’m gonna call him Lame Dude. So, Lame Dude came in and told me to breathe deeply. I don’t know why though. He said it was because he needs to see if my heart is working properly. I was thinking about that and it came to me that what he said meant I could die. And when you die, no Youtube premium! So, I guess this is my life now (that is soon ending).

I don’t know what to do now because, unfortunately, Lame Dude took away all devices and said, “If you keep watching Youtube or playing video games then you might die.” That made me scared so it was the first time in my life that I let someone take away my devices. But still, I’m not so sure I can trust lame dude because he’s lame!! Lol.

June 6, 2075

Dear Diary, 

Lame dude came in and told me that he will start the surgery. I was surprised. He never told me about a surgery. Just then, he pushed something into my leg and I fell asleep. No idea how it happened, but it did. So guess what. Now I need surgery and Lame Dude put me to sleep in like a second. Sounds weird, don’t you think? Ok, now I’m struggling and suffering. I will end now. I will not be writing until, like, next month. Going to the gym was a very bad idea. Very bad idea.

Dear Diary,

I am out of the hospital! In case you want to know, it’s been a month since I wrote here. I actually thought of giving up, but nope. My wife forced me to keep going and this time, no exceptions. Ugh. Why does my life suck?

June 27, 2075

Dear Diary, 

It’s the next day and now I’m getting really frustrated. I forgot to give my boss a note about why I was away and he didn’t believe me when I said my story. He said I was a liar and by liar I mean big fat liar. That’s supposed to be quoted but who has time for quotation marks and grammar? Grammar is stupid. It just takes up a lot of time and even if you don’t use it everyone can understand you. For example, if you text someone R U OK, they will understand it. Anyway, I am going to work now and I have to stop, bye!

 June something, 2075

Dear Diary, 

When I came in, I noticed that the register was covered in tomato sauce. I checked inside and there was no money! Just then, my boss came in and noticed me with the register open and then he barked, What are you doing with our money!!! This is unexceptable!!! Again I do not care about quotes.

So, if you are reading this, which you shouldn’t, don’t comment on any mistakes I make. It’s already a pain in the butt to just write this.

I told my boss that I was just waiting for the first customer to come when I realized that the money was gone. He didn’t believe me so he told me he would go to my house and search all of it for the money. One thing I can say is he’s a dum dum.

In the meantime, I will just serve the customers that come and pretend like nothing happened. I feel bad for them. The only problem for my boss is that he doesn’t know where I live and I live all the way in the Bronx and the buffet is in Brighton beach. I really don’t know how I get here every week day.

Anyway, the buffet isn’t so popular so I had to wait a whole hour for the first customer of the day to come. It was already 12 pm. We open at 10. Something that is really weird about this buffet is that we pre-set everything the night before so we won’t have to do it in the morning And because it also is supposed to save time. Heh, like we need to save time.

June something, 2075

Dear Diary,

So the first customer came and I gave them a table to sit at. They were mad because I gave them the table near the bathroom when everything else was free. I can see that on their faces that they were mad. We don’t have enough money to buy a janitor so the bathrooms stink. I’d rather go to McDonalds to go to the bathroom.

So anyway, the customers went up to get their plates and to get the food. We have a chef that makes custom food and everyone goes up to him. The customers noticed that and quickly ran up to him and asked for something. Don’t ask me what because I don’t know what they asked for. So the chef started working and gave me a wink. You are asking why. Well, you shouldn’t even be asking this question because you shouldn’t be even looking at this diary! I mean I don’t even care. Not like my personal stuff is in here, but still close this right now. Or, if you are snoopy, don’t and keep reading. If you are still reading this then it is obvious that means that you are snoopy and guess what? I don’t care.

Anyway, what was I talking about? Oh right! The chef giving me a wink and you asking why. Well, we were childhood friends and we were trouble. What I mean by trouble is big trouble. We were pranksters. I remember when we were 5 (or was it 6? Or 10? I don’t know) we put dead rats in the jars of candy at his grandmother’s house. It was a great experience to see her faint. I know what you are thinking. Why is there so much dark humor? Well, again, you shouldn’t be thinking that because you shouldn’t have read what I wrote before. Again, not like I wrote anything personal here but still! So I’m guessing that he is pulling another one of his chef pranks like putting sugar instead of salt on sushi. The customers are heading to their seats to wait for the food when the second customer comes in. I give them the table closest to the second bathroom. The second bathroom is even more stinky because everyone forgets about it. About two people enter it each day. The other bathroom however, I don’t even know.

I started spying on the first customers again. The first bite of the meal and the ladies tongue stuck out. The food was gross. I quickly went over to the chef to see what he did.

What did you do?

Again I have no time for quotes. Anyway, he said that the woman of the couple ordered bread. Turns out that the chef had used his last batch of ground up cricket flour and made it into cricket bread. Then the man of the couple ordered chocolate chip cookies and the chef made chocolate chirp cookies which have crickets in them. He made the crickets not visible in the cookie so when you took a bite there were crickets inside. Their butts were sticking out and eventually into your mouth. Unless you aren’t respectful to bugs and don’t get how nutritious they are and decide that you are not eating them.

Anyway, I see that the second set of customers are going up to get cole slaw. I mean, why cole slaw? Why? It is like the most expensive item on the menu. The coleslaw is supposed to have fresh grown cabbage that is not organic. We have a garden, but nobody ever goes in because it is filled with clouds of pesticides. Ya, the gardener quit his job. Hm, that gets me thinking. I can quit this job, but then what if I don’t get another job and I’ll be homeless? And I won’t be able to pay for… Youtube Premium!!! You know what? I’m better with sticking to this job before deciding to quit. Especially because I’m getting a dog soon. It will be the biggest moment in my life. Only maybe after when I divorced my least favorite wife, which is my fourth! She was the meanest person on Earth!!! She made me eat salad! Like, why salad?! I can’t even hear the word salad, it sounds so gross!!! OK let’s change the subject. Nevermind, next customer.

I gave these customers a seat right next to the corner where everyone pukes because our food is so gross. It always stinks there and there are stains on the floor. I had to go to the bathroom so I went across the street to McDonald’s. Such a disappointment when you work in the worst restaurant and then across the street you look over and you see the best restaurant. The fourth customer came in and this time they were single. It was a woman that had long black hair. She had a dog at her side. I ran up and started petting it. I think it was a siberian husky puppy. It was jumping on me just like any playful puppy would, when I noticed that the puppy was in here because the person wanted to eat, not because the puppy wanted to see me. Again, I feel like I’m starting to go through a phase of depression. I’m going to start looking for a better job. The job I’m looking for is a job that I will get tons of money from. I want to get a job that is not torture like this one. Hopefully, one day that will happen. Anyway, I need to give the customer a seat. I gave her the seat next to the custom food chef. Lol. I don’t feel like writing anymore so I’m going to just end it here. See you tomorrow, Diary. Or should I say stupid Diary. 

July something 4th, 2026

Dear Diary,

It is another day of work and I am not happy. It is Tuesday, which is my least favorite day of the week. That is the day when the restaurant is empty and I don’t get paid as much. So I guess I can come a bit late. I am right now getting off the stop on the train and now walking down the block. I see a group of people standing behind a couple and then they are standing behind someone. The only problem was that they were angry. Their eyebrows were pointed down and according to a Youtube video I watched, scrunched eyebrows meant anger. I didn’t know why, so I went up to the entrance of the restaurant when I saw the customers waiting in line to go in. Uuuh. This was strange. Whatever. I opened the restaurant up and all the tables were filled.

That is when the last customer told me in an angry voice, “Great way to start off a holiday.” I guess he was being sarcastic but wait, what holiday? I asked him and he told me and said that it was the 4th of July. I almost started crying. 4th of July is my favorite holiday of the year and I missed it all. I didn’t even check the date.

Like I even ever check the date. About twenty people everyday ask me the date and I’m like, “How would I know?” It’s very annoying. I can’t even imagine those poor kids having to put the date on every little thing of school work. Now, I’m too scared that the customers are going to leave because of the bad service and writing isn’t really going to help with this so ya, bye.

July something, 2075

Dear Diary, 

So it is the next day and I am taking a day off from work. Work has been really tiring the last few days, so I’m staying home and relaxing, aka watching Youtube and eating Pringles on the couch. I always take a day off of work because once a week my boss goes to a place with no reception so he can’t tell me to go to work or whatever. That day is usually on Wednesdays, like today. But what is funny is that he pays me the same amount as the workers that work there for six days a week. Lol. Wait, I have a call from someone, just a sec. No, no, no, no, no, no, no! I am dead!

The call was from my boss. He had called telling me that he was mad that I wasn’t at work! No, no, no, no, no, no, no! I thought that he was in a place with no reception. He wasn’t! He was in the building where the restaurant is and he noticed that I wasn’t there. I am doomed. He knows where I was all these weeks because he secretly installed an app on my phone that let him see where I was the whole time. I know this because I was looking frantically on my phone for something and I came across a calculator app. Um, why is there a calculator app on my phone? I thought I got rid of math from my life. I opened the app and it wasn’t a calculator (thank god), but as I guessed it was a tracker. My boss was tracking me since the hospital. How did he download it though? I’m not even going to answer that. I’m just going to delete the app and he won’t be able to download it again because my phone is going to be on me the whole time. I’m still not going to work. I’m just going to pretend that I’m sick and tell my boss that. One second. I don’t want to write anymore. I’m depressed again. Maybe I can get away with not writing anymore for a bit. I want to go to the hospital again so I won’t have to go to work or write in this diary again. But the only problem is that I won’t have any Youtube videos to watch because of what my doctor said last time I broke my rib cage. I really want some type of excuse so I can get out of the stupid Earth and into my world, which is a place where everyone agrees with me and there is only the food I like to eat. A world where I can do whatever and won’t have to pay for anything. I will have Youtube Premium for free!!!! That would be great. Ok, so this is getting boring to write now so ya, bye. 

July something, 2075

Dear Diary, 

Now Thursday. I really don’t like Thursdays. Well, to be honest, I don’t like any days of the week except Saturdays and Sundays. All the days at work are boring. It really is time to get a better job. Well, not necessarily a more money job, but a job that is more fun than the trash place where I work at. It literally smells like animal poop. Well, at least I think it does. I don’t really know how animal poop smells. Like, I just think that it smells like someone’s poop that ate beans in their last meal. Hopefully, my prediction is correct. Well, I don’t want it to be correct because if animal poop smells like that then that is just disgusting. This topic is very disturbing and makes me cringe just thinking about it. I’m just really tired of this job now. I’m going across the street to use the bathroom and eat some lunch. If you are wondering, across the street means McDonald’s. I’m going to ask if they have any free spots to work there. Be right back.

Ok, so I’m back and good news! Finally something good! I am going to work at McDonald’s now! I am really happy because I actually get to work in a place where life would be good. I get good food and a clean bathroom. I really hope that I will get enough money from this. I will go to my boss and quit now. I hope that my friend won’t care that I have left him at hell. I will text my boss saying that I quit and I will start working at my second favorite restaurant ever. In case you were wondering, my favorite is Burger King and my third favorite is Dunkin Donuts. Is Dunkin Donuts even a restaurant? If not, then KFC is my third favorite. I’m really tired now so I’m going to stop writing. 

July something, 2075

Dear Diary,

I am now writing this because I am going to try the gym again. My wife is proud of me that I tried again. My goal this time is to get a concussion.

So, I am on the way there. I am hoping that the stalker dude won’t be there. Ok, so I am entering the doors to the gym and there is a different person at the help center. He asks if I need any help. I ask him why would I need any help and he says because I look new. I tell him that I am not new. Then, I start to get annoyed because both help people thought I was new at the gym. Ok, maybe the first was right, but still! I am going to lift a one-pound weight and hope that that won’t break my rib cage. Ok, that was pretty light and now I don’t know how that helps with losing your weight. Now I’m going to the peloton. The peloton is actually pretty fun. I was on it for about twenty minutes. Then I went to the treadmill. I put it on one mile an hour. It isn’t really going so fast but I like it. It reminds me of one of those slides that I used to use when I was a boy. I still don’t get how this lets you lose weight. I am just sliding off the platform. This is boring. Anyway, I’m going to come back here later to go on the peloton more. I’m going to go get some lunch at Burger King and then go to my favorite candy shop, Candytopia, to get some Nerds. I am on the walk there and at a crosswalk, so I should stop writing for now.

Okay, so that was a successful cross. Anyway, I am almost at Burger King so now I am thinking of what to get. I do want a big burger with cheese, bacon, and french fries. That is my usual order though. Then, I will take a large Fanta out of the fridge. I went to my usual table right near the kitchen so I can smell all the good stuff being cooked. The cashier called my name and I went up to get my food. I sat down at the table and began to eat. I don’t want to keep writing while I eat, so I will come back later.

I had my usual order and it was delicious. It was all juicy and chewy, my favorite consistency of a burger. The drink was really fizzy and sweet. I love when my soda tastes like that. I mean, it kind of always tastes like that, so there is nothing special about it. But you know, whatever. I am heading out to go back to the gym. I want to go on the peloton more. It feels relaxing. I don’t really remember where the gym is though. Is it to the right or left? Maybe it’s to the front? I don’t know, but I’m going to figure it out. I might have gone into the subway before and I think that that is right, but you know, it could not be. I am around 70% sure that I went to the subway to the gym. I am going to take the 7 train and hope that the train will take me there. I am not going to write in the subway because it is embarrassing, so I will come back later.

I am out of the train and looking around. I have never been here before. I don’t think that this is where the gym is because apparently this place I am in now is called Williamsburg. That is a strange name for a neighborhood. Is it named after a person named William that ate a burger here? I don’t know and I don’t care. I am going back to the subway to go back to where I was. Let’s see, I went in the L train and got off at the last stop which was… I don’t know. Somehow, from there I need to get back to Burger King and from Burger King somehow get to the gym. I am going to stop writing because I am going to be in the subway now. When I come out, I will write again.

Okay, so now I am out of the subway and writing again. I am so confused now. I don’t see any Burger King or gym. This is really weird. I thought that I got off at the right stop. I know I did. I remember this station and I know for sure that I got off here. Did I go straight to here? I think I did, so let’s try to get there. Ok, so now I am walking to who knows where and hopefully getting to Burger Ling. Now that I think about it, saying and writing Burger Ling so many times makes me hungry again. I need my order. I’m craving it right now. I need my large fries and double burger with bacon and cheese. Wait, I just remembered! I wanted to go to Candytopia! How did I not remember this? I am going to get another order from Burger King and then go to Candytopia to get some Nerds. Why are they called Nerds? You know what? I do not care what they are called and I never will. But something I do care about is how good Nerds are. They are really good and come in many different flavours. I can write you a ten page essay on why they are good, but guess what? Yay! You are correct! I will not write an essay because I need to get my food. I am dying from hunger and nobody can stop me. I need to get to Burger King and eat my usual order!!! It is the only thing that will make me live a good life, even though my life is already bad. Wait, is this what I’m seeing? It’s the gym! Why haven’t I seen this before? I am really pissed off right now. I walked right past it on the way to the subway! You know? I really don’t care about anything right now. I want to go eat!!! Has anyone died from being hungry? I think so. So, where is Burger King?! I thought that it was supposed to be right here. Why is there a sign on the door? You know what? I’m not even gonna try to read it. The lettering is too small, anyway. I am going into Burger King and getting my usual order. The door is locked!!! What is wrong with this place? How can they be closed at a time like this? It is literally 7pm! Oh, um. That took me a long time to get back. Well, looks like I am going home!

July something, 2075

Dear Diary,

So I am back! Yay! No! Hmph. I am going to try to go to the gym and actually get on the peloton again. Hopefully, it’s not very crowded. Pelatons are usually everyone’s favorite thing, which kinda sucks. I am headed to the gym and a second ago I realized I can use Google Maps to help me get there. I am so dumb. Actually, I am the smartest. Only that incident was dumb. I mean, that incident was not dumb. It was just incorrect. Whatever. I am following the GPS and it says that I should be at the gym in a minute, which I am partially happy about. I am happy that I will get in the peloton, but I am not happy about being at the gym in general. I’d rather go get nerds. Wait, I just forgot, I was gonna go to the candy shop. I’m going to go there now and go to the gym later. I search up the candy shop on Google Maps and start walking. It isn’t too far away. It took me a half an hour to get there! Whatever. OK, I will go to the 5th aisle. Wait no, 1st aisle, no, 3rd aisle. Wait no, the Nerds are in the 6th aisle. Ok, I’m starting to get dizzy from all that walking and looking at candy.

I’m breathing hard. I don’t think I have asthma. Or do I? Whatever. I’m walking through the aisles to see if there are any new flavours of Nerds. Everything is the same. I am just walking, getting five packs of each flavour, but still no new OMG, there is a new flavour!! Not of Nerds though. It’s a new flavour of Hershey chocolate. Hershey chocolate is my 3rd favorite candy. After Nerds and Airheads. Anyway. Is it annoying I keep saying anyway? If it is I‘m sorry, but I don’t care so, ya know, deal with it. I don’t even want to write in this so don’t give me a hard time. Anyway, I bought my stuff and went to the gym. On the way there, I was eating my candy. It was a great taste. I got all the flavours of Nerds, all flavours of Airheads, wait—I didn’t even eat the Airheads I bought at the deli before. Whatever. Now for the new flavour of Hershey. Why is there no taste? I thought it was supposed to be a really good flavour. Let me guess, they made so many flavours they decided to make it flavourless. I hope not. Ok, what!? The packaging says extra sweet with enriched flavour!!! Those pathological liars!! I’ll eat the Airheads now because the Hershey bar ruined my day. Finally something actually good!

Wait a second, this has no taste too!!! What is up with this candy? I am going home!!! I got home faster than I thought I would, probably because I was running. It is hard for me to breathe and my wife is concerned. I don’t see why though. We are on the way to the hospital now. Ugh, it’s taking so long and I don’t even need to go there. I am fine. Anyway, I will stop writing because I am literally raging again.

Ok so, we just got to the doctors in the hospital and now I am being tested for this disease that apparently killed a lot of people in 2020. It was a global pandemic. Now, don’t ask me what that means because I don’t know. Anyway I feel weaker right now so I will stop writing and update you tomorrow.

August 2nd, 2075

Dear Diary,

Anyway, now I am in the hospital diagnosed with something called corona. My doctor said there is a low chance that I will survive. Well, it’s not like I care. At least my eight sons will think the same. My wife took pity on me and said that this could be my last diary entry and I should spend my last few months well. I am surprisingly not sad because I do get to spend my last few months of life watching Youtube and stuff. They tried to give me medicine, but it didn’t work. Anyway, I guess all I can say is bye. So, bye, hope you all are not like me and make sure to not get uh, what’s it called? Something with a c. Co, co—oh ya, Corona.

Super Saber-Tooth Tiger

The Saber Tooth Tiger was walking in the jungle and he saw a red door. He knocked on it and Superman and Supergirl opened the door. They had laser eyes, they could fly, they could run really fast, and they were super strong. They wanted to adopt the Saber Tooth Tiger as a pet. The Saber Tooth Tiger said yes! He was going to be a super pet! As a super pet, he could save the world. He had super powers and laser eyes. He could fly and was super strong. He had a cape and was called Super Saber Tooth Tiger.  

One day Superman, Supergirl and Saber Tooth Tiger got captured. 

“ROAR!” said Saber Tooth Tiger. 

“It’s okay Super Saber Tooth Tiger,” they said.

Superman and Supergirl were going to use their laser eyes and sneak out, but there was a guard. Saber Tooth Tiger distracted him. Then Superman and Supergirl snuck out of prison and Saber Tooth Tiger left and followed them 

“Come on, hurry up,” Superman said. “Back to the hideout okay?” 

Before they got to the hideout, Supergirl said “Can we adopt that bird over there?”

They did not know that the bird was from the prison, but they were going to find out soon. The bird had a camera. A few weeks later the bird captured Saber Tooth Tiger but not Superman and Supergirl. He brought him to the prison and locked him up.

“ROAR!” said Saber Tooth Tiger. 

Superman and Supergirl snuck in and unlocked the cage.

“Come on Saber Tooth Tiger,” they said. 

They flew out of there, but the bird saw them and went after them.

Superman shut the windows and doors of the prison. Then they ran, but when they got back they could not find the hideout. They tried to find the hideout, but the people from the prison turned it invisible, so they walked right past it. There was an invisible cage that they didn’t know was right above them, so they were captured again. They went to another prison this time because it was someone else that captured them. All three of them used their laser eyes and they punched their way out of there. When they got out, the hideout was not invisible anymore. They went back to the hideout and locked it. They were safe.

Both of the prisons were having a battle to try and capture Superman, Supergirl, and Super Saber Tooth Tiger, but neither of them did. 

The End

HS Travels the World

Chapter One:

The Battle between GSS and S.E.W.W.F.T.C.R.H

HS went to Egypt and to find the SPHYNX. But before he found the SPHYNX, he found Gus and S.E.W.W.F.T.C.R.H. battling. And then GSS and S.E.W.W.F.T.C.R.H made HS get into battle. They put a force field around him and then GSS and S.E.W.W.F.T.C.R.H used the power of hieroglyphics to defeat him. And then he found the SPHYNX’s magical power teleported him to Madagascar, closer to his destination.

Chapter 2: Robot Spiders

HS went to Madagascar, and then found robot spiders. And then he battled with all the robot spiders, and he used his power of being legit and using the power of hieroglyphics. And then he defeated the robot spiders.

Chapter 3: I Don’t Know The Flea

He teleported himself to the Lost City of Atlantis! But then, he met up with I Don’t Know The Flea. Since that flea is 110,889 times bigger than a flea and he can jump 110,889 times farther and higher, but HS used the power of legit hieroglyphics and Sebas. 

Chapter 4: Legit Legit LeSplit

HS was still in the Lost City of Atlantis. But then he met up with Legit Legit LeSplit. So then they started battling. And the  Legit Legit LeSplit was splitted. And then it erupted like a volcano, and then it started chasing HS. But then, HS used the power of legit, and during the battle he found a little interesting friend named Lappy. And then he used the power of legit hieroglyphics Sebas and Lappy AND Legit Legit LeSplit. And then he defeated Legit Legit LeSplit. 

Chapter 5: Run Away From What?

HS accidentally teleported himself to the Australian Outback. And then all the animals said “RUN AWAY” And then he said “RUN AWAY FROM WHAT?” And then the animals said “RUN AWAY FROM WHAT.” And HS said “What?” And the animals said, “You said it! RUN AWAY FROM WHAT!” 

Chapter 6: Now I Know What to Run Away From

HS was still in the Australian Outback, but now he saw Run Away From What. And then they came together. And they became a team! 

Chapter 7: Entering the Falcon Fury

Run Away From What and Lappy and HS accidentally teleported themselves to the Falcon Fury. “Hey look, it’s Falcon Man and Dynamut.” And then they became a team, but they saw Scooby and Shaggy!!! And then they all became a team. 

Chapter 8: Just Seeing It

Run Away From What, Lappy, HS, Falcon Man, Dynamut, Scooby, and Shaggy teleported themselves to Where. And then Run Away From What HS, Falcon Man, Dynamut, Scooby, and Shaggy saw this giant nightmare character. And then it was coming after them. But then they realized they were stuck in quicksand. And then they realized that all of the greatest carnivores in the world were coming after them. Then they woke up. 

Chapter 9: Who’s This Dragon?

They accidentally teleported themselves to a mysterious place where no one knows what’s gonna happen the next second. And then they saw a dragon and then they said “Who’s that dragon?” DUN DUN DUNNNN! And then the dragon said “Who’s That Dragon.” But there is also an evil dragon behind all of them. And that dragon said “Who’s that dragon?” And also because that’s his name. And Who’s That Dragon went into the team. Everyone worked together to defeat the evil dragon!

Chapter 10: I Think I Found Snoopy!?

The gang (which is called The What No Next) said “I think I found Snoopy!?” And then, Snoopy became part of the gang. 

Chapter 11: (The What No Next) Disappears (or did it…)

The What No Next thought they disappeared because they didn’t see themselves. And they’re like “Oh! Where am I?!!! Oh! Where am I?!!! Oh! Where am I?!!! Oh! Where am I?!!!” 

Chapter 12: (The What No Next) Did Not Disappear

The gang felt everyone else but they didn’t see it because in front of them there was a mirage (a make yourself invisible mirage). And then they found out that it was just a mirage. 

Chapter 13: Entering the new dimension

HS found a new portal that was sucking them into a new dimension, which is the video game dimension!!! Because video games are awesome. It looks like all the characters are little blocks, like minecraft. They found something super crawsome (a mix between crazy and awesome). They found Captain Underpants!!!! And they also found crawsome again: George and Harold. And they found another crawsome thing! Three ultimate villains. Which they are… LaserLightmare! Poopocabra, and Socktopus! But then they realized they were good guys! And then Captain Underpants, George and Harold, LaserLightmare, Poopocabra, and Socktupus went into the team. 

Chapter 13.5: Entering a new dimension part II

They got sucked into another dimension! Which was the Dream Dimension! You can dream what you want in there.

Chapter 13.10: Entering a new time part III

They found another portal and it sucked them in and then they went through time.

Chapter 15 

The World of Yot Dogs 

HS teleportaled to the world of yot dogs. And then, all of the yot dogs became friends and all of the yot dogs became his food, but they are magical. And each one makes a power. He ate all the infinity yot dogs and each yot dog has a power, so he got infinity powers. HS had every single power in the world. 

Chapter 16 

The World of Cot Dogs 

HS accidentally teleportaled himself to the world of Cot Dogs. And they looked exactly like the yot dogs (from chapter 15). He ate all of them and they took away all of his powers. (He didn’t really know that he lost all of his powers.)

Chapter 17 

The World of Bot Dogs 

HS found a portal and then he was go for my life or don’t go for no life. And then he went in the portal. And then he found Bot Dogs. (They look exactly like the Cot Dogs and Yot Dogs from Chapter 15.) And then he ate all of them. And then HS got all his powers back.

Chapter 18

The horrible Hackensack of the horrible Hackensack

HS teleportaled himself to the horrible Hackensack of the horrible Hackensack. And then he found a horrible Hackensack of the Horrible Hackensack. And then they battled. And then the horrible Hackensack of the Horrible Hackensack did a punch in the H and then he lost his powers!

Chapter 18.1

HS to Bot Dog land

HS had one remaining power left for only one minute. He teleportaled himself to Bot Dog land. And then he ate all of the Bot Dogs there as fast as he could and then there was only three seconds and one Bot Dog left! And he tried to eat the Bot Dog as fast as he could. And then when he finished it and then only one millisecond was left! And then HS teleportaled himself back to where the horrible Hackensack of the horrible Hackensack was (HHHH). 

Chapter 18.2

HS returns…

HHHH couldn’t punch HS because HS put a closing forcefield with disintegrating spikes around him. And then, HHHH dies!

Chapter 19

Monopoly Man 

(and he has to get to the top of the castle to be able to get out of the Monopoly World)

(And he only has 2,500 Monopoly coins)

(And if he gets to 0 Monopoly coins, then he dies for the rest of his life!)

(and if he gets three doubles he also dies for the rest of his life!)

(If you roll a double you get a second turn)

HS didn’t realize the forcefield when HHHH died and gave him the same powers that HS had. And then HHHH made him teleportaled to Monopoly Man (with fancy music). And then Monopoly Man forced him to roll the dice and then he rolled the dice. He rolled a 6 and a 6. And then he landed on a hotel and the cost 100 Monopoly coins. (And now he only has 2,400 monopoly coins.)

He rolled another 6 and a 6 and then he gets 200 and more Monopoly coins. (And then he had 2,600 Monopoly Coins)

And then he rolled a 5 and a 6. And he got to the second level of the castle. And then he rolled another 6 and a 5. And then, now, he went to jail. And he paid111 Monopoly coins to get out of jail (and now HS has 2,489 Monopoly Coins) and then he rolled a 6 and a 5. And then he’s to the fourth level of the castle. And now he got a 6 and a 5. And then he got to the 5th level of the castle and now he went out of Monopoly World. 

A giant hieroglyphic keyboard, but luckily HS knew his hieroglyphics. And then he entered the code, which was 

And then it was on the fritz, and then disintegrated. And before it disintegrated, it exploded. But then, HS found someone named AS. There was HM (hieroglyphic monster), and then he battled and battled and battled and battled and battled and battled and battled and battled and battled (x 1000). And HS won. 

A Day Underwater with the Dolphins

I am going swimming this weekend and it’s time to go. Underwater there are fish nibbling at my feet. It is very unpleasant, but I keep walking deeper and deeper into the sea. I see dolphins jumping and doing loops in the water. I see ripples in the water as they disappear in the distance. The fish are a turquoise-yellow with green scales. I try to run but I just bonk my head on the bottom of the ocean. The fish gets scared and swims away. The dolphins gently lift me on their backs and bring me to the dock. I get off and thank the dolphins. I eat lunch at the mini-bar. I eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Then I go back to the sea. I call Beth the Dolphin and she comes. Beth gently swims out farther and farther into the sea. That is the end of my vacation. 

The Scary Ghosts

One Halloween, the ghosts were trick or treating. A boy saw them, and he scared them and they ran away. The ghosts stole their candy! They were stealing everybody’s candy. 

The kids were mad that their candy was stolen, because they had gone everywhere and had worked so hard to get it. They stole sour candies, chocolate candies, skittles, M&M’s, and regular candies like gummy sandwich candies. 

The ghosts flew up to their treehouse. There was no ladder, since they could fly, and there was no entrance, since they could just float through. The room on the top was where they kept the candy. It was their most secret room. 

The kids went on a long walk in the forest and they walked a long way until they found it. The kids came prepared. They had a truck and a ladder. They had an extra tall ladder and they put it at the top. The ghost house was protected. They pushed hard to get through, but the walls were so hard that they couldn’t get through. A big storm happened and the house blew down. The kids also found a cave. One day, the kids tried going in to get the candy, but they got kidnapped by the ghosts. They tried to hypnotize them so that they could find more candy, because the kids were really good at finding candy. It worked!

The ghosts woke up and they were trapped. But they couldn’t go through the wall, it was a ghost wall! The kids found the candy and then they stole the ghosts’ lair so no one could get in. The kids put extra protection. You even needed a code so that you could get in. They made another ghost wall over the ghost wall, and another one with ghost walls and ghost walls. They were trapped, so it would take them a while to get out. The ghosts hadn’t made any progress getting candy.

After the ghosts woke up from their sleep, the ghosts turned good. They became ghost heroes. They realized that if they were bad, they would starve to death and be stuck in this little room forever. So they screamed and somebody heard them. The person opened the door and another door. They finally opened up the wall and let the ghosts out. 

A few more ghosts came along. They chased after the ghosts and brought them to the ghost planet, where they are all ghosts. There were no ghost walls and no doors. Everything was for the ghosts. The ghosts were happy, and they had all the candy they wanted. (Ghost candy!) 

In the end, they were all happy, because they all had what they wanted and were not in battle. There were two big planets and they were like, “Yaahh!!!” 

The Crazy Meatball Incident

This has been translated from Marshmallowian by The Institute of Marshmallow and English. Except from some parts with a * on either side of it.

One day, on Meatball Land, there was a big enormous explosion from the meatball volcano. On Meatball Land, everyone is a marshmallow and they only eat meatballs. On the day when the explosion happened, all of the tiny marsh-villages got covered completely in meatballs and tomato sauce. The marshmallows had to evacuate before all of the land got covered!!! They had to think of a way out. Maybe they could dig a tunnel to the unknown Cow Land. That’s how it all started.

Chapter Numero Uno

My name is Bart, Bart DeFulletgrominu van Grickenshpein. I am a Jumbo Marshmallow. I am the richest on all of Meatball Land! Right now, my loyal servants are digging a tunnel to Cow Land where only the greatest explorers have been. But now it’s different. It is an emergency for all of Marshmallowanity to evacuate the surface and go underground to where the cows live. It is a hard time for us marshmallows.

“Servants, dig dig dig. It’s going to blow soon. I don’t want to die. Do you? No – so get digging.”

Then suddenly I heard a big boom!! Could that be the volcano? I looked in the direction of where it came from. It was not the volcano! It was TNT. That gave me a good idea. Maybe we could use TNT!

“Servants, get the TNT. We’re gonna blow it!!!”

This turned out to be a bad idea. You will see why later.

My servants piled all of the TNT into the hole they made. From that hole they set a long piece of flammable rope with fire. When it exploded, something very bad happened: the volcano exploded too!! Just then I had forgotten about violation code #45627, which says that if you’re less than a mile away from the volcano, you can not use TNT. This is because it will explode into the meat caverns and will make the volcano erupt! I thought through this. After a little while, I realized that I was the one who made the Meatball Volcano explode!!!

I was astounded! I could not believe I had forgotten about violation code #45627 It was is the most important code in our area! 

*What will happen next in The Crazy Meatball Incident?!*

Chapter 2

Two days later…

I just escaped going to jail because of that TNT incident. I ran away from Meatball Land on a train, a car, my own feet, and a roller-coaster (the roller-coaster was actually kind of fun). Now I am pretending to be a poor marshmallow in the streets of the dreaded Beyond Meatball Land, which is 300 miles away from any real meat. But I am safe here. No real marshmallow would ever come here. That would be disgusting! Well, there are no more things to talk about. I will just go and beg for more moolah. 

Chapter 3

Twenty-four hours later…

Hello. 

I just saw a silver and white airplane fly over.  It had something that said “NASA” on it and it had an alien in a white jumper as the driver. I think it might be trying tooh no I am floating through a green tunnel going to the NASA thing!

They greet me with a taser in my leg, but too bad for them, marshmallows can not be electrocuted.

They try to talk to me: “Hello, we have come to extract you.”

But I cannot understand what they are saying. I try to talk to them, but they cannot understand me! I have only heard of real aliens in fairy tales. But these aliens are much different. You see, they have fluff on the top of their heads and five sausages at the end of their hands.

Wait, I think, these are Humans!!! OMG, are they going to bring me to earth?

Ever since I first read about Humans, I have always wanted to go to Earth. It’s my dream planet! 

Chapter 4

Three days later… 

I am on Earth.

I am so excited.

I want to live here.

This is awesome!

I love this place. I wonder why they brought me here.

I don’t think I’ve said this yet but: this is awesome!

Have I said this is awesome?!

Wow, I really like this place as you can tell. I think I am becoming famous here! There are reporters everywhere and they are asking me questions I do not understand. Everyone is taking pictures of me and one of the kids is eating a marshmallow! Holy moley! They do that here?! I hate Earth now! But I guess that is just one kid, so I love Earth now, again!

Well, that’s all I am going to share of my life (the rest is private), But it was a fun experience sharing it with you. So until then, adios!!!

What are you looking at? The story is over!

You’re still looking at this! 

You are still looking, now go and drink your coffee or go finish your life.

The ABCs of Animals

A is for alligators who bite people

B is for bees who sting people

C is for cats who meow a lot

D is for dogs who bark a lot

E is for elephants who drink water from their trunk

F is for flamingoes who stay near water

G is for gorillas whose fur is black and cozy

H is for hippos who love water

I is for iguanas who are green and other colors 

J is for jellyfish who live in lakes, oceans, and rivers

K is for kangaroos who hop

L is for lions who RRR AAA!

M is for monkeys who swing on branches 

N is for nocturnal animals who sleep in the morning and wake up at night

O is for owls who hhhoooo in the night

P is for penguins who live in the arctic

Q is for quails who are birds 

R is for rabbits whose fur is white 

S is for snakes who go sss and slither

T is for turtles who are small

U is for urchins that are in food

V is for vultures who eat carrion

W is for whales who live in the water

X is for x-ray fish who live in the water

Y is for yaks who have their own type of big yap

Z is for zebras who have black and white stripes

The Value of a Trophy

I stare up at the mountain, my legs ready to give out beneath me.

My ski coach announces, “I know this is challenging, but we’re going to try to ski down this easy green.” So far, my beginner ski group has only skied down the Magic Carpet. 

Glancing down at my feet, seemingly permanently stuck in a pizza shape, I tell my coach, “I think maybe I will be injured on that super steep trail.” 

My coach laughs. “It’s basically flat. You’ll be fine.” The basically flat trail looks like it is 90 degrees steep. My coach calmly skis to the lift, completely parallel and with poles in his hands. I keep peeking up at the mountain as I slide over to him and my group. Distracted, I trip over my own skis and sprawl on the ice. My face burns, and I jump up as fast as I can and jump on the lift. Soon, I regret doing that. I just hurried up the process of getting to the steep trail. Under my new, soft, warm mittens my hands tremble, and I am glad I don’t have ski poles, for I would have dropped them. The wind stings my face like evil grains of sand. I lean back on the ski lift, my heart pounding. But I soon realize that in doing that, I am making the lift go a mile a minute. It seems like a couple seconds when we come off the lift. 

As I look down the rugged terrain of the easy green, I wish I never came. As soon as I had turned 12, I should have given up hope of skiing. But no. I persisted and begged my parents to take me. My tired, busy parents. They had work, but they did bring me, and for what? I was in the little kids group, and I saw other kids my age, even younger, skiing down the mountain in a blur of color, their manageable skis skidding against the icy ground with a loud crunch. But…really, I’m still a kid, and it’s never too late to start stuff when you’re a kid.

I know I’m a kid, I think confidently. After all, I can still order from the kid’s menu at restaurants. So I can always improve! Even if I am three times the age of the other kids in my group and still not better than them, so what?

“We’re going down now.” My coach yells. 

I blurt out, more to myself than him, “I’m not afraid!” 

My coach gives me a weird look. “That’s – that’s great, Olivia!” Then he starts down the mountain. I clutch my legs, steadying them. I close my eyes and the pounding in my head stops.

 “I will get good – great – at this sport,” I whisper. I force my skis to turn parallel, and I fly down the mountain. “Yeahhh!” I cry. “I’m so fast!” But after scanning my surroundings, I realize that I’m the slowest person on the trail. Before I know it, I fall head over heels. My skis are teared off and my poles are wrested from my hands. I scream, then I realize that I am still, for I am on a flat part of the trail, called a catwalk. 

My coach bends down to help me. “Whoa, that was a big yard sale fall for a catwalk!” I’m so embarrassed. I will never get good at skiing. I trail behind as we ski to lunch.

A month ago

I hurried down our stairs, wriggling into my scratchy school sweater. I heard sounds of enthusiastic and loud talking in the dining room. “Mom, Dad-” They weren’t even at breakfast. Mom was in her office, writing, and Dad was probably at his lab in the middle of the city. The only people that were there were my younger brother and sister. They were six and twins, and had brown hair. Sadly, six is when kids start to annoy you and stop being quiet and obedient. 

George whispered loudly to Lily, “Olib looks sad.” 

I scowled at them. “Don’t call me Olib.” George and Lily giggled and threw stale cereal at me. I stomped into my mom’s office, wrenching the cold, silver door handle open and immediately I got hit by a stuffy smell. It seemed like my mom’s office didn’t have any oxygen in it. It looked like a common, messy office. Mom was sitting at her desk with her back to me, typing furiously on her laptop. Her trash bin was overflowing with crumpled pieces of paper, but random pieces floated through the room, and my mom was forced to look up and snatch at the air once in a while. “Mom, I really want to go skiing for spring break,” I say, choking on the musty air.

My mom turned around, bags under her eyes. “Olivia, for the last time, NO! How many times do I have to tell you?” 

“But, we’ve never gone for my whole life! All my friends have gone since they were small, and everyone except for me knows how to ski. Besides, it would be good for me, don’t you think?”

“Your father and I have jobs. What about George and Lily? We can’t bring them. You never want them to come anywhere with you.”

“Ugh, don’t other people have families too? They take time off for trips. We’ll bring George and Lily. Mom, it’ll be good for you and Dad’s health too.” 

My mom smiled and said, “Alright, we’ll go for a week and a half for spring break. Lucky for you, your dad’s boss is expecting a baby, and I just completed a piece of writing so I get a break. Your father or I will bring you tomorrow after school to buy ski gear for the whole family. Now get ready for school, the bus is coming soon.”

“Thank you, Mom!” I cried, hugging her. Then I hurried out of her office.

Back to the mountain.

I stomp into the crowded lunchroom with barely enough space to move, and the scent of french fries and chicken nuggets hit me. I am glad that we stopped skiing for now. I am also glad that George and Lily are not in my group. Imagine, my own siblings, in the same ski group as me. I sit down, yanking my ski helmet off. Suddenly, a group of kids come clamoring into the cafeteria. I hear an animated voice. “Nuh-uh, Scooby Doo! Barbie sucks!” I immediately recognize it as Lily. That meant George must be with her. I see his bright green ski helmet bobbing above the helmets of the four year olds in the group, and he seems to be ordering them around somehow. My siblings must be young enough to fit in, but old enough to have authority to be the leaders of this group. Lucky them. I scuttle to the lunch line, avoiding my siblings. But oh, I had to buy a neon rainbow ski helmet. George and Lily see me, and they cry out, “There’s our sister, Olib! She is on the same level  as us!” The whole cafeteria looks at me, every person turning in their black metal chairs to see. The food on the round, ugly table is forgotten, and as my siblings’ group erupts in raucous laughter, I erupt in fury.

I turn away, not wanting to show my bad side in front of so many people. My eyes well up, so I widen them to keep tears from spilling out. I grab the nuggets and fries from the lunch lady and hurry back to my seat. When I pick up the food, I squeeze it forcefully in my rage. In a moment, my hand starts to throb painfully. I release the soggy, wretched, and deformed chicken nugget, and I see that it has burned my palm and left my hand oily and shiny. I pick the nugget  up, and with no mercy, I shove it in my mouth. My favorite food has always been chicken nuggets, but it doesn’t taste so good anymore. The mood at lunch guarantees my mood for the rest of the day, and I decide to ask my parents to go home when I get back to the hotel.

“Can we go home?” I ask my parents at the hotel when my siblings are sleeping. They look at me in disbelief.

“But, didn’t you beg us to come here?” My dad asks, glancing at my mom to confirm.

“Yes, but it’s horrible. I came here too late, and now I’m so much older than all the other kids in my group. George and Lily are on the same level as me, and the kids my age are skiing like, double blacks and blacks!” I cry.

“Honey, you’ll improve,” my mom says. “If you try harder than everyone, you’ll improve faster. Soon, you’ll be rushing down the mountain like wind!” My mom pushes her hand in front of her as fast as it would go and makes a whoosh noise with her mouth. She thinks it sounds like the wind, but she is wrong.

“Sure,” I mutter. “But how much more of this do I have to endure? George and Lily taunting my every move?”

My parents look at each other, and my dad ruffles my hair. “You can do it, kiddo.” They climb into their bed, and sighing, I walk over to me and my brother and sister’s bed, shove them over, and climb in. I’m sure that I cannot sleep.

A year ago, at school

I walk into middle school. It is crowded by ugly and dented maroon lockers that are overflowing and people hurrying around to get to class. The lumpy gray walls are stained with who knows what, and the doors required full effort to be opened and the hallways smelled like rotten eggs. Hurrying to my locker, I open it and grab out my mini fluffy pink carpet. It feels so soft! I need it for school, because of the rotten egg smell. I press the carpet to my nose and inhale the smell of detergent. Without warning, I hear a crackling sound of the static of the speaker. The principal’s voice blares, “Class time,” and everyone rushes to their different rooms. I slam my locker closed and suddenly, a shadow falls over me.

Jessica, Britney, Hawke, and Ace stand over me. They are the Mean Machines. Ace and Hawke are famous for being loyal accomplices, Jessica is famous for being the heir to Britney, and Britney is famous for her hundred different expressions and being able to tell whether someone was lying or not.  I tremble all over. Hawke and Ace block my route to safety and Jessica and Britney advance toward me. “You don’t have any fashion style, do you?” Britney asks with the first of her one hundred different expressions, and I looks down at my purple sweater, green pants, and yellow sneakers. It hits me that she was right. “And, uh, what level did you say you were at skiing?” she asks.

“I never said anything about that,” I answer defiantly, regretting that I had discussed that topic so loud, so close to the Mean Machines during homeroom. “Now why don’t you get to class, it’s getting late.” Britney rolls her eyes and acts like she didn’t hear me. 

Jessica adds, “Britney and I go skiing every spring break. We’re skiing hard trails.” I didn’t say anything. She continues. “And I just can’t accept your fashion choices. Also, you’re not good at anything. You can’t play any sports, and skiing is easy. So why don’t you give it a try? I’d love to see you tumbling down an easy Magic Carpet trail.” The Mean Machines turn and walk away, Hawke and Ace flashing evil smiles at me.

I cry. There is nothing else to do but feel sticky tears run down my cheeks. When I walk into class, my nose is runny, my eyes puffy and red, tear streaks on my face, everybody stares at me. The teacher murmurs lazily, “Sit in your seat. You’re late.” He turns back to the chalkboard. I am staring at my desk the whole class.

Morning at the mountain

I wake up from the dream. The Mean Machines’ faces swim in front of my eyes, and I grit my teeth. But there is nothing I can do. They have continued tormenting me all the way up till now. I eat breakfast with my family, then I go to ski school.

Going there, I get a nasty surprise. Jessica and Britney are there with their parents, in matching pink skin tight ski suits. “Oh…hi, Olivia,” Jessica says. “Remember how Britney and I skied hard trails a long time ago? Well, now we’re racers, and very fast and good.” I look at her. She looks at me. 

Without warning, Britney interrupts in her sickly sweet voice, “Olivia, are you going to be here next week Tuesday?”

I think about it, then I say, “Yes, that’s my last day before I go back.”

“Well,” Britney says, “There’s a skiing competition at the back of the mountain. We would love it if you’d join.” She smiled, and the real meaning was clear: We would love to watch you make a fool of yourself. But that wasn’t going to happen. 

“Sure,” I said. “Do I need a skin tight suit?”

“No, you can wear that ski suit of yours. But be warned, you’ll be slowed down by the bulkiness.”

“Thanks for the tip!” I smile. Jessica and Britney walk past and their parents follow.

As Jessica walks past, she whispers, “It’ll cost money. You might want to rethink your choice, because it is pretty expensive.” She flips her hair and continues walking. 

“Where’s Ace and Hawke?” I call after them. 

Jessica glances at me and shrugs. “They’re back at home, gaming together. Why would you care anyways?” She doesn’t wait for an answer, but links arms with Britney and skips away, which is a feat I do not know how she manages with the awkward ski boots.

I practice as much as I can, and even after class ends I ski down trails by myself.

At night, I beg my parents for something again. But this time, it is the money to participate in the ski competition. But they say, “We don’t want to waste the money, there’s no point. It’s not even going to help you, and it’s not fun anyways. You’re probably not going to win anyways.”

“Please!” I implore. “Just this one competition.”

My parents look at each other, and my mom says, “I saw it on the ski map. It’s way back behind the mountain, and two hundred dollars. Olivia, do you really think we’re going to spend that money just so you can not even have fun?”

“I will have fun!” I cry out. “I have to beat Jessica and Britney!”

“What?” My parents ask, and I tell them what happened. 

My mom grinds her teeth in anger, and she says, her brown eyes flaming, “Olivia. You’re entering that ski competition, and you’re winning it.”

I ski hard. Every day, I stay out late, practicing. I work harder than anyone in my group. I level up quickly. And finally, I’m ready for the ski competition.

Jessica and Britney stand close to each other as my parents grudgingly hand over the money that is crumpled from them clutching it so hard. Jessica and Britney see me, but I cannot see their expressions under their ski helmets, but I’m pretty sure it’s not pleasant. A man in a ski cap talks into a gold microphone that says SKI on it. “Welcome to the Annual Kids Ski Race! All participants get on the ski lift to the trail.” I look back at my parents, who give me encouraging nods and thumbs up. I follow the other participants. My legs tremble a little bit, and the butterflies in my stomach start fluttering again. I almost regret my choice of joining, but not quite. 

After we’re on top of the icy trail, we get into a line. I’m nearly the last one because my last name starts with an X. I stop and inhale. I’ve come to love the cool and fresh smell of the mountain. When Jessica goes, it’s perfect. She’s like a bullet, whizzing around the obstacles. Britney isn’t so successful. She teeters for a moment in the middle, but regains her balance very fast. But one second in skiing is enough. It’s for sure, she can’t win. At the bottom, Britney screams and throws her poles on the ice, making a weird aaaaahhhh And boing sound. I smirk a little bit.

When it’s my turn, I crouch and lean forward. As soon as the buzzer sounds, I’m off, skiing like mad. I can’t believe how much I’ve improved since the first day I arrived at this ski resort. I forget everything when I ski, with the wind whipping around me. Jessica and Britney stare at me, and I can see Britney tremble in anger. I focus on turning my feet parallel. I’m skiing so fast that I can feel a shudder run through my legs as I ski over the bumpy ice. I stop at the bottom, and my mom and dad erupt in cheering. They aren’t the only ones. Most of the people there are clapping and nodding at me. I hardly notice the last couple of racers coming down the mountain.

The man in the ski cap talks into the microphone again. “It was very close, there were some ties. But third place goes to…Goyle Fredericks!” A burly boy takes the tiny trophy made of bronze and  snorts in disgust as he walks away. “Second place goes to…Jessica Hall!” The Ski Cap man says. Jessica looks so happy when she takes the medium sized trophy made of silver. I cross my fingers. “And,” the Ski Cap man yells, “The winner is…Olivia Xu!!” He holds out the huge gold trophy to me. My parents are screaming. I feel like I’m in a trance as I walk over to the man and take the trophy. My mom snaps a few pictures, and we start to walk back to the hotel.

On the way back, Britney catches up with us. Her parents, Jessica, and Jessica’s parents are way behind talking. Britney looks nervously at my parents. “Cengrejulshins,” she mutters without moving her mouth. 

“Sorry?” I ask. 

“Cengrejulshins.”

“Oh. Would it be any easier for you to spell it out?”

“I just wanted to say congratulations, okay?” she says.

“Thank you, Britney. Remind me why you hate me again?” I ask. She frowns and stalks away, but my spirits are too high to be quelled by her annoying manner, so I skip in front of my parents to the hotel. I realize that if your spirits are soaring, they can lift up your feet in those clunky ski boots.

My mom opens the door with the room card and I run inside. I’m upset when my parents don’t look happy. “Why are you guys looking sad?” I demand.

My dad glances at my mom. He seems to need confirmation for every word he says. “Well, uh, there’s this, um, problem with our jobs, er, we left, so, ah-”

“That’s enough,” My mom says. “I will explain it without hesitation. Do you remember when, in my office, I told you your dad’s boss was expecting a baby and I just finished a piece of work? Those were all lies. Our bosses don’t let us off, for some reason. That is why we haven’t brang you and the twins on vacation, ever. But we did, because your dad and I decided that you guys deserved it.”

It takes a moment for me to realize. “YOU LOST YOUR JOBS?” I scream. “WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME? WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD YOU DO THAT? THAT IS THE LEAST WORTHIEST SACRIFICE EVER!”

My dad winces. “Olivia, you waited so long to go skiing, and look, you got a gold trophy! We didn’t want to worry you.”

I glare. “THAT WAS NOT WORTH IT! YOU GUYS BOTH GAVE UP YOUR JOBS SO I COULD GO SKIING????!!!! AAAAAAAAAH! WE COULD’VE NOT GONE!” I remember when my mom and dad had locked eyes when they were paying at a ski shop, and how they so grudgingly handed over the money for the ski race. “THAT’S WHY YOU DIDN’T WANT TO PAY FOR ANYTHING! DID YOU GET A NEW JOB?”

The foolish humans peek at me and my dad says, “Uh, I got a job as a trash guy, because nobody else wanted it. Your mom, nah.” I groan and roll my eyes— in classic Britney-style. Britney! Britney’s family has billions of dollars and they live in a mansion. Now, they are residents in the most chic hotel in the mountain. How badly does Britney want this trophy? Would she pay money for it? But those thoughts would have to wait for later. I have to get a good night’s sleep, because tomorrow I will be going back home.

I shove my backpack into the car and squish into the backseat with George and Lily. It is very early in the morning, so thank god, the twins had fallen asleep as soon as they got into the car. My dad drives a tall car rolling on huge wheels. He starts the monster, and I lean my head on the window and stare out. Suddenly, I see a crazily flat car, looking like it got bashed with a hammer but stayed sleek and cool. I recognize it as Britney’s family’s car, and it’s driving right next to us. She looks despondent, so I sit up tall in my seat to look at her phone. Britney is watching a replay of herself skiing. Their car rushes past us, and I stare after it, pondering, for a long time.

When we get home, I throw my bag on my bed and collapse. The trip had been so long! It is already evening, so I decide that I need to do some research on Britney and her family, and then I would sleep for 11 hours.

Morning, I jump out of my soft and warm bed. The air is alive with the yells of George and Lily – and my mom and dad! Then I remember why I am hearing them. Because they are not at their jobs! It is the last day of spring break, so I take the chance to wear my fluffy sweater and sweatpants. Grabbing a handful of Fruity Cheerios and my gold-plastic trophy, I hurry out the door. I don’t even bother yelling at my siblings when stale cereal hits me on the back of my head, but I do bother yelling a good morning to my parents.

I run all the way across town to Billionaire’s Row. The biggest house looms in front of me. It is similar to the White House, just smaller. Still, it is very intimidating, with its white walls and floor-to-ceiling windows. I stare up and I see a window decorated with pink window stickers. I can just see the ceiling, which is pink. I know it is Britney’s room. I ring the doorbell, with much coaxing from the brave half of me. A narrow face flashes in front of Britney’s window and disappears. A couple of seconds later, the huge door creaks open.

Britney is standing at the door. “What?” she snaps, then spots the trophy and her eyes narrow. She probably thinks that I’ve come to brag in her face. “Fine, you won. I don’t care,” she growls.

“Did you want to win or did you want the trophy?” I ask. Some people like to just have trophies shining on their shelf. I hope Britney is like that. Her eyes widen, and I know that she’s deciding whether to lie or tell the truth.

“Just the trophy.” She lowers her head, miserable, like she just revealed her life’s biggest secret.

“Would you like to buy it?” I ask.

Britney’s head jerks up and she stares at me suspiciously. “Why would you want to sell it? It’s first place, and plastic mixed with gold.”

“I know.” I say, nodding.

Now that it is confirmed, Britney’s eyes light up with greed. She reaches into her pocket and extracts a pink purse. Then she freezes, and says, narrowing her eyes, “Why? What is the reason you would want to sell it? I am not buying it until you tell me.”

I try to coax her. With difficulty and with both arms, I lift the trophy up and wave it in front of her face. Then I tilt the trophy so it catches the glare of the sun. Britney does not move a muscle. I groan and say, “I want money to buy my favorite thingamajig from a store, alright?”

“Lie,” Britney says simply. She waits. I wait. She waits. I wait.

“I’m sure there are plenty of other people who would want this trophy and don’t want the reason.” I snap, but I don’t walk away. 

Britney smirks and starts to giggle. Then she starts to snort, then laughs full time. Suddenly her face becomes expressionless, and she looks at me and says, “Enough. Just tell me.”

So I do. It spills out of my mouth like a waterfall. It seems to me that I wanted to tell it before, but I didn’t want to at the same time. It is a relief to get it all out. Britney stands like a statue, her eyes fixed on me. When I’m done, Britney looks at me with a weird expression on her face. Then I realize that it is concern. I remember that her family used to be very poor. “Britney,” I say seriously. “I think you’ve just gotten your number one hundred and first expression.”

“Come with me,” Britney says. I’m pretty confused, but she leads me to an ATM machine and she inserts her credit card inside. Then Britney turns to me and frowns. “Don’t look, Olivia, I’m entering my passcode.” I turn away and look around. We appear to be inside a bank, and it is pretty empty. An old woman with white hair and glasses is slowly moving around behind a desk, doing stuff to papers from time to time. 

She looks up at me, takes around thirty seconds to process that I’m there, and says, “Oh, hello, may I help you?” Without waiting for an answer she turns and walks to the other end of the desk. 

Then Britney calls, “Okay, come here, Olivia.” I turn around and I see cash flowing out of the ATM machine as fast as words had flown out of my mouth. Then it jerks to a stop. “This is, I’m guessing, 500 dollars or so?”

“Oh my gosh, that’s so much, thank you!” I gasp.

She gives me a weird look. “That’s not enough! I’m giving you like, 200 million dollars. It’s just that the machine won’t give me anymore. ” I nearly DIED right then and there. 

“NOOOOOOOOO! Just pay the amount the trophy is worth!” The fact that I can take SO MUCH of someone’s money without doing anything will be enough to to make me guilty for the rest of my life.

“Okay, okay, 100 million dollars!” she cries.Without waiting for an answer, Britney marches up to the old bank lady. “Helga. 99 million, 999 thousand, 500, please.” She holds out her ATM card.

Helga smiles. “Hellllooooo, Britney.”

“Hello, Helga. 99 million, 999 thousand, 500.”

“How may IIIIII help you?”

“I would like you to take 99 million, 999 thousand, 500 out of my bank account.”

“Sooooooo. We are taking money out of a bank account.”

“Yes. 99 million, 999 thousand, 500, please.”

“Nooooooo. IIIIIIII cannot. You are underaged, Britney.”

Britney sighs in exasperation. “Okay, fine then. My parents will let me anyway.” She calls her parents. She glares angrily at Helga for being difficult. Helga blinks back at her slowly. Something similar to a staring contest happens between them, except Helga blinks constantly while Britney does not.

There’s a whirring sound outside the bank door and the flat car pulls out. Britney’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Tucker, walk arm in arm. “Yes, Britney? If you called us here for nothing, I shall be extremely upset,” Mrs. Tucker snaps.

I’m pretty sure Britney shrank a little. “Can Olivia get…100 million dollars?” She asks in a small voice.

“NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHY?” Mrs. Tucker roars. The sudden movement nearly jerks Mr. Tucker off his feet. Mrs. Tucker is furious. A hundred daggers shoot out of her eyes, ten at Britney and ninety at me. “DON’T YOU DARE TAKE MONEY FROM US, YOU UNSCRUPULOUS RASCAL!” She yells at me. Now she turns to Helga. “WHY DID YOU LET THEM DO THIS?” Mrs. Tucker screams.

Helga blinks. “Wellllllll, Mrs. Tucker, what is your question?”

“WHY DID YOU LET THEM DO THIS?”

“Because they-”

“TOO SLOW! WHATEVER!” Mrs. Tucker turns her angry gaze on everyone. This had never occured to me, but right now, Mrs. Tucker seemed 50 feet tall, while everyone else is as tall as an ant. At any second, she can stomp on us and crush us. 

Britney says, “Your motto is, ‘No act of kindness no matter how small is ever wasted.’ So…?”

“BRITNEY! I NEVER SHOULD HAVE TOLD YOU MY MOTTO! I MEANT FOR THAT MOTTO TO MEAN THAT EVERYONE SHOULD BE NICE TO ME! I ONLY SAID THAT ON MOTHER’S DAY! AND YOU GUYS WERE LOUNGING AROUND, AND PROBABLY FORGOT THAT IT WAS MOTHER’S DAY!” Mrs. Tucker howls in frustration.

“Mother, you don’t want to be hypocritical, do you? And Dad and I did remember, it was SUPPOSED to be a surprise at night!”

Mrs. Tucker looks like a volcano, ready to explode. Her feet are shaking in their 7-inch thick heels. “Why didn’t you give me the surprise? Also, an act of kindness that I was referring to is like, giving a beggar a crumb!”

“No, your motto says any act of kindness, no matter how small. We didn’t want to because you were being mean to us.”

“YOU ARE BEING PLAIN HORRIBLE!” Mrs. Tucker stamps her foot, screeching like a howler monkey. She takes a deep breath. “Well then, isn’t it our choice how much to give?”

“Yes, OUR. Now I think we should give $100 million. Also, she is not taking money. I’m paying for this trophy.”

“Okay, pretend the trophy is an act of kindness from that human and let’s get out of here.”

“NO. I AM NOT DOING THAT.” Suddenly Britney stops, a smile on her face. “I’m sure that my followers on Instagram and Snapchat would love to hear about EVERYTHING my hypocrite of a mom did.”

Mrs. Tucker blanches. “You wouldn’t. I forbid you. Give me your phone RIGHT NOW.” 

Britney takes out her phone, takes a few steps backwards, and says, “I can send it immediately, but I’m not. Are you giving Olivia money or not?”

Mrs. Tucker hesitates. “Fine. Just don’t send it.”

But I didn’t want the money! I racked my mind to think of an excuse. “Guys, NOPE. I can’t bring it home anyway.” 

There is a triumphant look on Mrs. Tucker’s face as she looks smugly at Britney.

But Britney asks me, “What’s one of your parent’s phone numbers?”

“Uh, 4975935676.” 

“No it’s not.” Britney is using her crazy power again.

“9368036854.”

“Stop lying to me.”

“9175694589.”

“That’s better.” Britney dials the number and my mom picks it up. “This is Britney. Hi Mrs. Xu, you have to come to Bank of America. It’s an emergency. Bring Mr. Xu if possible. Olivia and I are on the third bank on Billionaire’s Row.” Then Britney hung up. “They’re coming,” she said, smiling widely. 

I know that my parents will be here any minute, because our once-happy house is right next to Billionaire’s Row, so I plead for Helga to help me, to hide me behind her desk. Britney forces me away. I start hyperventilating. Britney grabs my shoulders. “Stop it, Olivia. $100 million dollars is only a small portion of Dad’s money. It will not make a dent in it. So stop hyperventilating and take it!” 

Suddenly my mom and dad burst into the bank, panting. “What’s wrong? What’s happened?” they cry. 

I glower at Britney, and she grins at my parents. “May I talk to you guys privately?” My parents shoot me worried looks as they follow Britney to the other side of the bank, glancing at the pile of cash at the feet of the ATM. I am in a trance as I watch them talk.  I groan and cover my eyes. 

“Mr. or Mrs. Xu, do one of you guys have PayPal? The money I have here is…” Britney checks the ATM. “$500, so you guys are going to get $99,999,500.” 

My dad nods slowly, almost as slow as the woman behind the desk. He takes out his phone. My hands take over. I run over to him and snatch the phone from him, clutching it tightly. “We are NOT receiving 100 million dollars. This trophy is more plastic than gold. It is worth less than 100 million.”

“Oh. Kay. Fine. Then. One. Mil. Lee. Un. Dol. Ar. S,” Britney says in something close to a growl, and I know that she isn’t going to take no for an answer. “But…….that’s x200 less than what I was going to give you, so how about-”

My dad and I speak at the same time with me saying: “No no no no no, that’s okay” but with him saying with a shrug: “Um, sure.” There is a tiny gleam in his eye.

My mom just frowns. Finally she says, “Don’t pity us. We can get on fine.”

Britney turns to me and my dad. “So I’ll give you $1 million. And there’s an extra $500.” I regretfully hand my dad his phone and turn away. He’s going to take the money. 

 I decide I should constantly be giving Britney’s family stuff, but there probably isn’t anything I can give her that her dad can’t get or doesn’t have. “Britney,” I say, “What is your biggest desire, your need, your want?” I want to know so I can get her something.

But she shrugs and answers, “I don’t have one. I don’t need anything.” 

“What is your biggest secret?”

“My secrets aren’t big, they’re barely even secrets.” Wow. This is getting to be way harder than I thought it would be.

“Well then, tell me your biggest.”

“The biggest…why do you want to know?”

“AAAAAAAAH, WE ARE NOT DOING THIS AGAIN!” I scream.

“Okay, okay, the biggest is Jessica does my reading homework for me.”

“Why?”

“Um, I kind of am bad at reading.”

“Oh my. Okay,” I say thoughtfully. “Do you have any books at home?”

“No. And don’t push it.” Britney’s face is as red as a tomato. I don’t. Mrs. Tucker grabs Britney and marches out the door, growling like a starved animal the whole time. Tomorrow, over to Britney’s I go.

When I wake up, I don’t want to get up because my bed is soft, but then I remember why I even woke up, and I jump out of bed. My dad has to leave now because of his job as a trash guy, so he is wearing his old and faded Snoopy T-shirt, cargo pants, and a cap. He waves as I grab some cereal from the box. We walk out together, but I turn right and he turns left at the crossroad. We did not speak for the whole time, not even a “bye” when we split. It was a good kind of silence though.

I go into Barnes & Nobles with some money and buy the best books I can think of, the Harry Potter series. The line is long, and the cashier is about as slow as the lady in the bank. Finally, carrying the bag of books, I step out of Barnes & Nobles and continue on to Billionaire’s Row.

Once again I knock on the tall wooden door, and once again the door is opened by Britney. “It’s so early….” she yawns. “Whaddya got in that bag?” 

I hold it out to her. “It’s yours. I got it for you.”

“What’s in it?”

“Books.”

“Oh. That’s nice.”

“They’re Harry Potter.”

“Uh, the problem is, I can’t read Harry Potter.”

“Oh man. I’ll teach you!”

“Haha.” Britney smiles, then she gasps. “Wait. You’re not joking?”

“No, of course not.”

“Okay…”

“This time every morning, on your doorstep?”

“Sure…”

“You’ll try hard, right?”

“Yes. Duh! I am the queen of trying hard! Come to think of it, I am the queen of everything!”

I leave Britney, who is flipping through the first book with doubt. True to her word, Britney works crazy hard, as hard as I did on skiing. Every day we struggle through a chapter or so, and finally, one day, we finish Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone.

“I’m going-to have a lot of fun…with Dudley this sum-mer.” Britney stutters through the last sentence. She flips the page, but the only thing there is the About the Author. Britney looks up at me in shock. “I finished the book?” she asks in disbelief. I nod, grinning a little bit, and she starts to laugh. It is crazy. She throws back her head and shrieks, which I assume is manic laughter. Then she stands up, still shaking with laughter, and says, “Thirty minutes are up. I’m getting back inside.”

We speed through the rest of the books and finish all seven. It is nearly summer already. When we finish Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, Britney turns to me. “I will ask my repetitive question. Why?”

“It’s a long story…” I say.

“I have time. And tell everything, and what you thought of it, and how you processed it.” So I tell her. Fun fact: when she is interested, Britney is very good at listening. Once I finish, Britney is looking very, very sad. “I’m moving away this summer,” she says quietly. 

I gasp. “On the first day?” 

“Yes.”

“That’s in a week!”

“I know.” We sit side by side. Britney’s head is lowered, the success of finishing all the books forgotten. I don’t know how long we sat there. Finally, Britney stands. “What are you doing?” she asks.

“Just thinking,” I answer.

I left Billionaire’s Row that summer. My dad decided that “we should move to somewhere richer and fancier”. I wanted to stay, but I couldn’t. So on the first day of summer, I stood in front of our fancy car, clutching a book and the plastic/gold trophy. Olivia and her family were there to wave us off. “In the car,” my dad said, and I did, waving to Olivia. My dad started the car, and I looked out the window, waving until the Xu family was out of sight. That was the last time I ever saw Olivia, but she had given me something my dad couldn’t, and I remembered her. I still have the trophy. It sits on my counter, higher and separate than the other trophies. I learned how to write better, in a class in the city, and I wrote down in a journal, my first entry, everything that Olivia told me on the day we finished Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, and I created this. The trophy is a souvenir of my old life in Billionaire’s Row.

Britney

Where Have All The Goslings Gone?

Today the mayor of the town has gone out and stated that the entire pond has been dumped and taken away by an unknown villain. The mayor stated that there would be a $500 dollar gift for anyone who caught the person who stole it. The most important thing is that all the goslings are gone! The police are investigating and so far they have found some clues and suspects. One of them is named Jacob Hendreson. If you see him with a big truck that has animals quacking in it, tell the police immediately. We have seen him at the time of the stealing, but there were a few others there so we don’t know for sure. The other thing is that if you see someone by the pond, you should try to interrogate them. We also know that another suspect is Jimmy, who works at the doughnut store. He was seen close to when the crime happened as well. If you see him with a big trailer or a pond in his backyard then tell the police immediately.

It was early and I was going to get a doughnut from my friend Jimmy. I decided to go to the pond and sit for a bit, since I was tired. I saw a guy pull up in a big red truck and rip out the entire pond!!! I ran over, got into his truck and pushed him out. I drove the truck back to my house. I knew that someone was going to notice so I put the pond in the basement, and the goslings in the pond into my rabbit cage (they were so small that they all fit). A few hours later the police came in. They wanted to know if I had a pond. I knew what they meant and I was really scared.

I fake laughed and said, “No pond here!”

They left and I knew that I had to hide or destroy the pond. But I really did not want to because the pond was the town’s pride! But then I thought, what about the goslings? Where would they live? So I hid the pond in a better place. I put it in my closet. It didn’t fit too well but I didn’t think that people would go searching closets for ponds. I remembered the doughnuts and went and got some.

My friend Jimmy said, “The mayor went out and listed you as a suspect and said that if you saw anything suspicious tell him.”

Jimmy was nice so I was sure that he was not lying to me because he was nice and he was my friend. I was scared about that warning so I went back to my house and didn’t come out for the rest of the day.

I wanted to put the pond back but I would probably go to jail. I had an idea to put the pond back at night when no one was watching. I woke up that night and drove my truck with the pond in the back to the area where the pond used to be. I was about to put the pond down into the hole where it was when all of the sudden a police car went down the road. It was odd because there was no one else out. Then I remembered that it was take your duck to work day and that the police were taking their ducks to the pond to see if people were there. It was the only day of the year luckily. It took so long to remember that by the time I looked up I saw the policeman with handcuffs. Then I was being escorted away to jail.

I was in jail and I had to think of a way out. I saw a few keys that looked like they fit in the lock on a bench across the hall. I picked them up. The hall was very tiny. I opened the jail cell and looked for my car. I found my car with the pond still attached to it. I got in, got my keys, and drove away. I was ready to put the pond back when I realized that it was morning and my friend jimmy would be going to work at the doughnut shop, so I went back to my home. I felt really mad so I didn’t sleep too much so I went to my friend Jimmy’s store. I thought it would be nice to buy a doughnut from him, so I did. After that I looked and found out that there was nothing tonight and that nobody would be out so I could put the pond back. I got up at around 2 am and I got into my car and drove to the old pond area. I was about to put it back again when all of a sudden a bunch of people in birthday hats started singing the happy birthday song. This was the second time this happened! I was wondering what were the odds that this would happen two times? I was really mad so I went back to my house. I ate my doughnut in silence because everyone else was at the party. I then went to sleep. After that I had another normal day and I hoped that that night I would finally put the pond back into the hole that it was once in. I woke up that night and I got in the truck and drove over. I then put the pond in finally and drove back home. I really hoped that nobody would notice the pond back or they would trace it back to me. I was wrong.

The next day police came to my house and put me in court. The judge was Mr. Duck. A duck. He sentenced me to two years in jail. That’s when I saw the bad guy, the man in the truck. He looked super happy, like he was enjoying the fact that he wasn’t going to jail. He looked like a big guy that had too many doughnuts and he had a big scar across his face. Then I knew who it was: it was Jimmy all along! I had him come up and he said that he did it. Finally it was over. And I had ended this craziness. I went back home and got into bed. I saw on the news that the bad guy had gone to jail. I was so happy that I just went to sleep and stayed in bed for a day. Mostly because I was super tired though. I looked in the mirror and was shocked that I was so tired (well not really) and that I looked like I was really hungry. So I got some food and got back into bed. I was just so tired.

Crabby the Crab

It began silently when my mom’s friend bought a box full of live crabs. My mom went downstairs to get the box of live crabs since my mom’s friend was not able to go inside my home. My sister and my whole entire family were waiting for that box for a long time.

I was practicing piano at the time when my mom came home in a hurry. I closed my piano and went to see her. I didn’t see a box of live crabs but I saw one huge black bag. So I went to play with my sister for a while.

Then my mom screamed, “I will now show you what is called big crabs.”

Then she carefully placed a box in front of me and she told me to back off. Suddenly, something came to my mind! That was the box full of live crabs!

The box was yellow-brownish and it seemed like it was made out of bamboo. She opened up the box and then… there were live crabs! I was right. There were live crabs. They were blue female crabs. Their shells were brown. I knew they were female crabs because their backs are not a T shape like male crabs.

After my mom opened the box full of female crabs, I asked her if I could have the most active one. I said that because we were going to eat half of the crabs. We were going to boil them and eat their claws and bodies and mouths. Then I asked my mom if I could have a bowl. She gave me a big silver bowl and then she put the most active female crab in it. I immediately told my sister to give me a chopstick and a cup that was filled with water, but not drinking water. After that, I told my sister to give me the cup and the chopstick. She gave it to me and I started to play with the crab! But before I played with the crab, I poured the cup of water into the silver bowl and the crab was swimming in it!

The game we played was called Try to Catch My Chopstick. The crab was trying to get the chopstick and if the crab got the chopstick, then the crab got one point. If the crab didn’t get the chopstick, then the chopstick got one point. If the crab did a sudden attack and almost got the chopstick, then she won ten points! She did ten sudden attacks so she got 100 points.

We were amazed by how active she was! We went to the sink and told her how to dance! She started to dance! She jumped out of the water! She was beginning to be too wild! I noticed it and I took the chopstick that my sister gave me and I rubbed it against the crab’s shell and she calmed down. This was the time when I knew what to call her. The perfect name for her was… Crabby!

***

Night came and we knew where to put her bowl. We put her in the window because there was a lot of space and she could suntan. Before we put her in her new home, we moved her into a blue bowl. It was big so that Crabby could do anything in it. We made her a sun cover so that she would not become too hot. We looked at her for the last time of the day and went to sleep.

The next day came and we visited her. We fed her salt and day by day went and every morning we checked on her because we were worried that she was going to die. The third day came and we thought that she died, but surprisingly, she was still alive. The fourth day came. In the morning we looked at her for the last time. In the afternoon… she died.

From that day on, I would always remember Crabby. She was active, kind, sweet, and a survivor. I will never forget her, and even though she died, she will never forget me too.

Weird Food World

Chapter 1

Once upon a time… there was this guy named Bob, and stuff, I think. He lived in a house near a gurgling river. And in that river, instead of fish, there were swimming watermelons! And he lived underground with moles that were pears! And the oven was a heated banana! And the world was a hollow coconut! So he went above ground and saw a sunflower seed ant! The grass was hard like coconut skin and a pumpkin seed beetle.

If only I could find the Fruitanator 3000 and reverse it, thought Bob. So he set off to find the Fruitanator 3000. First he found a map and it said to go to The Pineapple Forest. So he went there and found the next clue. It said to get to the other side of the forest and find the next clue. When he got to the edge of the forest he found the Plains of Rambutan. There he found a colony of banana seed termites! They were running toward him. But they weren’t coming for him. He looked behind him. There were about 3000 grape bees! They came in groups from 30-400 per hive! Their hives were as big as fourteen golf balls. But their hive was made of Saltines. The bees could sting and that hurt! So Bob slithered every which way, dodging the bees.

Once that was over he saw an old wall covered in moss. It wasn’t just a wall though… it was a whole house! Who would live here? Bob whispered to himself. He went over to the house. There he saw the second clue! It said: Now go to the tundra made out of whipped cream, there you will find the last clue. Finally you will find the Fruitanator 3000. 

Finally! he thought. 

Chapter 2: The Fruitinator 3000

He found out that it was a long walk to the whipped cream tundras and he didn’t have proper gear. But on the way, he saw a small hut. He went inside and found out that there were a whole ton of jackets, boots, and hats. There were even sweatpants. He found out that it was a shop. He went to go pay for the things he wanted. He grabbed two hats, one jacket, three pairs of sweatpants, and two pairs of boots. Then he paid and it was a total of only thirteen dollars. Then he left to go on his adventure to the tundra.

A few days later he got there and he started looking. After a while he found a huge house and went in. Then he fell down a secret doorway.

He walked down the hallway and finally, enclosed in glass, there was the Fruitanator 3000. But then he realized he would have to go back home, through plains, through The Pineapple Forest, and finally back home where the moles were as green as the grass (FYI they were pears). On the long walk home he met one final animal. It was a giant lion made out of more than a trillion different seeds. He got past it by sneaking past him carefully. Then he went home and reversed the Fruitanator 3000 and zapped everything back to normal. 

UFO Universe

A UFO was spotted yesterday on June 7th over Brooklyn NY.

Meanwhile, mysterios MIBs (men in black) have been popping up all over Brooklyn.

Nobody knows where they have come from. On a side note, local pigeons have gone missing.

Here are some precautions to keep in mind: 

1: Try to have nothing to do with MIBs (men in black).

2: If you see a UFO, STAY AWAY, and call 911.

3: If anyone you know, their pets, or their children disappear, call 911.

4: If you notice a family member acting strangely, call 911.

5: If you see anything weird JUST CALL 911!

Here, Mrs Jane Landrish, 46, tells us about a UFO she spotted; she was one of the first to see them:

“It was 8:00 at night, and I was out for a walk. I was on 11th street and 6th avenue. I saw a shape in the sky. At first I thought it was an airplane, but then it lit up with a blinding white light. I closed my eyes, and felt it whoosh past. I opened my eyes. It was a strange, saucer shaped object, and it was hovering over a stray cat. I watched, as some sort of tractor beam pulled the cat into the ship. (I’ll just call that thing a ship.) I ran, terrified, back home, and locked the door.”

The interview ended there, with Mrs Landrish breaking into a cold sweat.

That’s what the newspaper said this morning. Yes, I read the newspaper, but only because my grandfather leaves it lying around. Anyways, I found that pretty intriguing. UFOs in Brooklyn! I put down the newspaper and turned to lie on my back. Ahhhh, Saturdays. I can do whatever I want, whenever I want. No school. As I lie in bed and I stare up at the ceiling, I wonder if there really are UFOs in Brooklyn, or if it’s just a hoax.

I heard my door open. I look towards it. My dad’s standing in the doorway.

“You okay, kiddo?” He asked. 

“Yup.” I replied.

“Phew,” he said. “I was starting to think that you would never wake up!”

With that, he closed the door. I rested my arm on my night stand and knocked over my glass of water. I screamed. The water was still freezing. I heard footsteps. My door burst open. My grandpa was standing there. He took in the scene and then closed the door.

“False alarm!” I heard him yell to my mom and dad. I heard them run back down the stairs.

I sighed. It wasn’t enough that I was unpopular, I had to be clumsy. Plus I lost my favorite manga yesterday. And I was pretty sure I was coming down with a cold. AND a dog bit me yesterday. Thankfully, it was not a stray, it had been spayed. Yay, I didn’t have rabies. Still, stuff was pretty bad for me. I grabbed my phone. It was time to text my best friend, Amelia.

Hey!  Amelia!

What?

U free for laser tag at 1?

Of course, it’s Saturday!

I don’t have any other  plans! 

Oh yeah, how could I forget? LOL

See ya at 1!

I will so beat u today!

That’s what u think!

I turned off my phone. Well, at least now I had something to do. To be honest, just lying here in bed on my back was pretty boring. I got up, went to my closet, and pulled out some clothes: a turquoise size 12 t-shirt, a midnight blue hoodie, and some jeans. Then I checked my apple watch. It was 10:07. I had exactly one hour and fifty three minutes before I had to be at Lighting Lasers, the laser tag place. I ran into the kitchen and grabbed a blueberry muffin. I ate it, then poured some orange juice into a cup, and took a swig. Nice and refreshing. Then I pulled on my turquoise converse high tops, and tied them. Then I grabbed my turquoise water bottle. Okay, you can say it. I like turquoise. Nearly everything I own is turquoise or blue. I ran outside and started my morning run.

I stepped outside and felt a warm, fresh breeze. It was a warm, sunny spring day. As I went to close the door, my pomeranian puppy, Emory, came through the open door, running, and jumped on me.

“Whoa!” I shouted, my arms flailing as I tried to regain my balance. Then I fell on my butt. “Ow!” I yelped. I stood up, trying to act as though that hadn’t just happened.

I heard someone say, “That looked painful.” 

I whirled around, trying to find the person who had spoken. It was my brother, who was standing in the doorway. He was fifteen, three years older than I am. He smirked at me, and I could see that he had his phone in his hand, which was replaying a video of what had just happened.

“You *censored* *censored* *censored* *censored* *censored*!” I screamed. “You’d better not post that!” 

“Okay, okay, I won’t post it.” he said.

“Good.” I said, turning away.

“Oops!” I heard him exclaim. I turned around, and he was smiling at me. “Posted it!” 

“Aaghhh!” I yelled. I ran at him, my fists clenched, and punched him in the face. 

“Ouch!” he yelled. It didn’t stop with one punch, though. I had been taking taekwondo lessons, and I was a black belt. I punched him again, hit him with roundhouse and snap kicks, hit him with a neck chop, and punched him some more. By the time I was done, he was sporting a bloody nose and lip, a black eye, several bruises, and a broken arm.

He lay on the ground, curled into a fetal position. He had no idea that I had been taking taekwondo, and he had no idea how good I was.

“You know what?” I said. “I think that’s enough exercise for now. I’m going inside.”

I stepped over his trembling body, and into the house. I set down my water bottle, and picked up my phone. 

At that very moment, my phone rang. It was Amelia. Funny, I was just about to call her. I answered the call and heard her voice on the other line.

“Maia! Come quick! We’ve got a situation at laser tag.”

My dad drove me to laser tag. When I stepped inside, I saw Amelia arguing with two boys. The owner of Lightning Lasers, Josh, was sitting in the corner, reading a book.

“You can’t be here right now!” I heard Amelia saying. “We made a reservation!”

“We?” One of the boys said. “I don’t see anyone else with you. Who are you talking about, your imaginary friend?”

I could see Amelia getting angry. I decided that now would be a good time to step in.

“Oh, hi Amelia. Want to tell me what this is?” I asked, gesturing at the two boys.

“Maia! Thank goodness you’re here! I’ve been trying to tell these two that they can’t be here, because we made a reservation, but they won’t listen to me, and Josh has not done us a whit of good!”

“Huh?” Josh asked, looking up from his book.

“Don’t just sit there like it’s tea time, help us out!” Amelia screamed.

Okay, I should probably explain all the British-y stuff. See, Amelia’s mom is from England, and whenever Amelia gets angry, she starts talking like she’s British. Including a British accent. But the accent is only when she’s really mad, so it probably won’t come up now, over a thing like laser t-oh, the accent has kicked in.

“Listen, we were here first, so just leave and nobody get’s hurt.” She said, now with a British accent. To show that it wasn’t an idle threat, she punched one of the boys in the stomach.

“Hey!” he exclaimed. That’s when a full fledged fight broke out. Fists and feet flying everywhere. 

That’s when I heard a voice.

“Ahem.” I looked toward the sound of the voice. It was Josh. He had finally looked up from his book. “If it helps, we have a new version of laser tag. It’s a four person game.”

“Why didn’t you tell us this earlier?” I demanded.

“I was occupied.” He held up his book and pointed at it.

“Ugh. You are SO annoying,” I said. “But yes, we will play the four person game, IF we get to be against them.” I pointed at the two boys. 

“Sure, whatever you want,” he said. “I don’t care.” 

I turned to look at the boys. It was payback time!

As I stepped into the huge, darkened room, designed for laser tag, I noticed that it had changed a bit. The walls were taller, and there were a few more power ups on the walls. I strapped on my gear and grabbed my laser tag gun. Then I was ready to go. 

The five minute timer started, and it was time to play. I hid in my favorite spot, in the corner behind the wall with a hole for a window. I saw the boys sneaking around, staying close to the walls. I jumped out from behind the wall.

“Payback time!” I yelled. Then I noticed the laser tag guns in their hands. They looked like something you would see in a sci-fi movie.

“Whoa.” I said. “Where did you get those? Did you bribe Josh?”

“No, foolish human.” One of the boys laughed. “These are ours. And they are real.”

“Wait, I’m sorry, what? A, you’re not allowed to have real guns in here. B, you’re not allowed to scare your opponents on purpose. And C, we’re all humans.”

“Those rules do not apply to us,” he said. Now he and his friend were walking towards me. The lighting was making their skin look grayish.

“Um, yes they do. They apply to everybody.” I said.

  “But not to us.” he replied. Now it looked like his hair was shrinking back into his head, and his teeth were growing sharper. It also looked like his eyes were turning completely white. That’s when I realized that everything that I thought was happening was actually happening!

“Y-you’re aliens!” I stammered.

“Yes. We knew that you would make that connection eventually. You, of all people, believe that we might be real. And we are. However, we are planning to conquer Earth, and if you had figured out that we were real, then you would have been a serious threat to our plan. So, we must stop you from figuring out that we are real. And there is only one way to do that.”

I started backing up. “W-what are you t-talking about?” I asked, fearing that I already knew the answer. I kept backing up, and then tripped and fell on my butt. I kept backing up, using my hands to pull and my feet to push. I felt my back hit the wall. 

The aliens were still walking towards me. I covered my face with my arms. The last thing I saw before I closed my eyes was one of the aliens pointing their gun at me. 

Alex Armado

Basilisk was not kidding about the Markothies. Right when Alex and Fistinis left the gates, the creatures came right out of the shadows.

Alex and the wizard made their way across a grassland to an old fort called Fort Ranger.

“You go and look around,” Fistinis said. “I’m going to see an old friend… He’s a cyclops. And if there is a shiver down your spine or you see a cloaked figure, run. Leave me. And head towards the mountains about two hills away.”

Alex looked around. He knew he was in enemy territory now.

“Hello,” said a boy. “My name is Will.”

Alex picked up a sword on the ground.

“Will!” he said. “Why are you walking around the castle? Tell me your name and your business!”

“You just said my name and my business,” said Will.

There was a sound. And light getting close to them. 

They hid behind a rock.

They saw three tall cloaked skeletons. They each had two giant swords.

“Their swords are made from Condor blades,” Will said.

They were Markothies.

Space is the Place

Any planet is cool but not “cool”

But the best planet is earth because it has life on it

Cool planets orbit the sun (which is really a star)                                                          

Did you know there are more planets in space

Even more solar systems

Feeling happy makes me think of space because… Space is the place

Giving trees to the earth will make it so so happy

Hot hot sun is the star we orbit around (which makes us cool)

I have nothing else to do but 

Just sit down and think of what earth might look like next

Kenya might look different

Little Rhode Island might look different too

Maybe Rhode Island might actually be an island like Hawaii

Now being an island might be funOver a billion stars are in the universe

Places in space have asteroids

Quintillion planets are in space and some have rings

Rovers might be taking pictures of planets with rings on them

Saturn has rings maybe rovers will take pictures of saturn

The gas giants all have rings

Under the planets are even more stars

Venus is the hottest planet in our solar system so DON’T CHANGE THE SUBJECT

When earth is not a planet we will move to mars

Xtra trees would help earth

You know that 300 billion stars are in space

Zero sound in space because space is the place

French Fries

French fries, french fries you are

so salty, you taste like Greece, but a 

little more foggy How greasy, how greasy

you get my hands wet, I will pick one up 

and not break a sweat 

I get I get on the racing track

and see and see a big french fry

a ginormous french fry zips and zooms 

pass the checker finish line

At McDonalds, there is a line 

That you can see but there’s only one 

That stretches thus far a french fry

The line at McDonalds is all for 

A french fry, the line seams to

have french pies   

Just don’t forget the yellow marranet

A french fry

French fries, french fries, you are so hot,

And is it so yellow and tasty or not?

Oh melo my belo who are you?                              

A supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Or are you a french fry?

French fry, french fry how lovely you are

Detective Frog

Detective Frog was looking into the murder of Ribit Wonton, the wealthiest frog in Frogville (some monkeys lived here too). Detective Frog went to the scene of the murder in the biggest place in the whole world quintillion stories high!

Dang it! I can’t reach the top — that’s where the murder happened. Uhhhhh!

“Well, if you want to finish this creepy case, then you’re going to have to suck it up, buttercup,” said Sergeant Monkey, his best friend. 

“I guess I will then. Hey, will you come with me? I’m so scared I’m going to pee in my suit. Please!!!

Detective Frog’s suit was the best in the country, equipped with heat sensed missiles, rocket launchers, machine guns, and laser guns. It was called BOB.

“Why are you scared? You have a freakin’ BOB — why do you need me?” asked Sergeant Monkey.

“I don’t know how to use it… ” replied Detective Frog.

Fine, you are so dumb!!! Uggg!

Detective Frog and Sergeant Monkey took an elevator all the way to the quintillionth floor. 

24 hours later… 

Bleh!!!” Detective Frog said in disgust.

“Dude, there are just guts spilled everywhere. His tongue ripped apart in pieces everywhere, and blood spilled on the whole entire floor.”

“What? It looks beautiful,” Detective Frog said.

“What is wrong with you? Are you mental?”

“No.”

“I’m fine!” Detective Frog shouted.

“Okay, let’s get to work. I’ll take part of the tongue and analyze and see who murdered Ribit Wonton.”

Leave it to me!

Out of the elevator a large, fat pelican jumped out his fat chest and pushed in his stomach. Detective Frog could notice that he was trying to be a hot shot.

“What’s up, dudes? I’m the scientist here, and I am going to see this body and analyze it and catch the killer. Isn’t that awesome?”

Um, no it’s not, and you can’t speak proper English,” said Detective Frog and Sergeant Monkey in unison.

“This guy is so dumb,” Sergeant Monkey whispered to Detective Frog.

“I heard you say that,” Bobby said (the pelican).

He pulled a knife on both of them and stabbed Sergeant Monkey and knocked Detective Frog out. (Detective Frog thought he liked him.)

Four hours later… 

“Uhh, what happened?”

“I knocked you out. I am Buuuuuuooooooooby. Muhhhahahahahahahhahhahhahahhah!”

“Bff, your name is Buuuuuuooooooooby? That name is so dumb. Are your parents idiots, or is that a pelican thing?” Sergeant Monkey said.

Dude, what is your problem? That’s a cultural thing, and I am the one who murdered Ribot Wonton. I have all the money here. Muhahahahhahahahahhahaha.”

Behind him was so much money.

“Dude, what are you going to do with all this?” Detective Frog said.

“I am going to buy a Ferrari and a mansion and a lot of stuff.

“Well, I’m not going to let you.”

Detective Frog tried to use the BOB and fired a laser beam at Buuuuuuooooooooby. Buuuuuuooooooooby deflected it.

“You really think it would be that easy? I have super powers. Muhuhauahaauahahauahahahaa!”

“What?” 

“This… ”

Buuuuuuooooooooby fired a laser beam out of his eyes. Detective Frog teleported out of the way, and right behind him was Buuuuuuooooooooby. He knocked out Buuuuuuooooooooby and put him in jail and untied Sergeant Monkey. 

Ouchy!!!” Sergeant Monkey said and passed out.

Seven hours later… 

Sargeant Monkey started hyperventilating. 

“I have to get to Buuuuuuooooooooby. He’ll know what to do,” Detective Frog said to himself.

Detective Frog flew to Buuuuuuooooooooby.

“He got cut by a special sword called jshjkabjhkfbsfhhjfksakbhas. He can only be healed if you go to space and retrieve it. You will need me to guide you… ”

Nope!” And he murdered Buuuuuuooooooooby.

THE END… 

Detective Frog will come back soon… in… Detective Frog in Space… 


Appalled at the Art Museum

Wendell and Monico Milk Goats were at the art museum. It looked cool on the outside. It was golden and ancestors were etched on the sides. They were ancestors of gods. Wendell and Monico Milk Goats booked tickets to go inside and take a tour. The manager warned them they might smell like a dirty diaper for at least one month.

They said, “I don’t care! I just want to see what else is cool inside.” They booked it for five months later, and exactly five months later on the exact same second they went to the museum. 

They didn’t know that inside was just a huge garbage dump. It was only chewed up food. Also, they might smell and look like a dirty diaper for at least a month.

Monico Milk Goats said, “Uh, this is not an awesome museum.”

In Monico’s head, the manager said, “Uh, I warned you!”

Monico said, “We shouldn’t have gone. The manager warned us.” They had to stay in the garbage because they booked to stay in it for five years. 

They were really dumb and greedy and rich. There were these plants that were sweet in a circle in the museum. They were sweet, like they were good to eat.

Monico Milk Goats said, “That’s interesting!” Then he said, “That’s odd.” Then they tried to pick the plants and they turned out to be alive. It stirred because it was sleeping. Then they backed away, but then they were like, “Oh, it’s fine,” because it didn’t leap at them.

They whispered, “Let’s rip it out of the ground,” because they wanted to eat it. It was the only food.

So, they said, “Hey, it’s your friend!”

And the plant came closer and closer and the plant said, “What are you gonna do?” 

And they said, “Oh, nothing. Just gonna rip you out of the ground to eat you.” The plant had sharp teeth and almost killed them.

They ran out of the garbage and people were like, “Ew, why would a dirty diaper be let in there? The museum’s so cool!” And then a bunch of people went inside and it was the same story so Monico Milk Goats and Wendell were marked the greatest people in the world because they ventured inside, but actually it was just so they wouldn’t get mad at the people for calling them dirty diapers. Plus, they looked like dirty diapers before they went into the garbage dump, because they were rich and dumb idiots.


Love

Chapter 1

I’m Cloud, the only male wolf in the Best Pack Anyone Could Wish For – although Storm, my sister, said we might want to change our pack’s name and Emily, my best friend, seems to agree with her. Oh, well.

I was roused from my shaky sleep when I heard bickering at the entrance of the cave where the Best Pack Anyone Could Wish For lived.

“Emily! I thought I told you not to go outside in the middle of a thunderstorm!” Storm scolded.

“Yes, Alpha,” Emily said sarcastically, “but would you rather let Cloud starve to death?”

Storm, who was most likely shocked by the Alpha remark, didn’t respond. The leader of a wolf pack is called Alpha, and if Emily thought Storm should be Alpha, I’d agree in a heartbeat. But first, I needed to stop Storm and Emily from arguing.

“Thank you for the prey, Emily. And Storm, you should be Alpha,” I declared, which made both she-wolves whip around to face me with with a we-weren’t-arguing expression.

“Oh, you’re awake!” Emily said cheerfully, as if she had forgotten her previous argument, “I brought you a mouse!”

“I know. I smelled it. Thank you,” I said, wrapping my tail around my paws as the warm amber brown she wolf licked her paws and sat down next to me.

“Are you sure?” Storm said, shock flaring in her olive green eyes.

“Yes!” Emily and I declared simultaneously.

“We should call you Alpha from now on,” Emily joked.

“If you’re sure…”  Storm whispered.

“Alpha! Alpha! Alpha!” Emily and I howled her new name.

“Who’s Beta?” I asked. The Beta was second in command of a wolf pack.

“Well, one of you decides the new name for the pack, and the other becomes Beta,” Alpha decided.

I turned to face Emily. “You should be Beta,” I said, and after only a moment of hesitation, she nodded.

“Beta! Beta! Beta!” We cheered.

“Well, Cloud? What’s our pack’s new name?”

I studied Beta’s soft brown fur, and thought of her lost sister, Keelin. Then I thought about my brother, Sticks, who I hardly remember, but if I was able to recall more than just a faint memory of my brother’s tangled brown gray fur and stubby tail, I’m sure I’d miss him.

“The Pack of Stars,” I said in a hushed voice, “After Keelin and Sticks.”

“And Lola,” Alpha added. I didn’t think it was the right time to mention I don’t have a single memory of our mother.

“And Shadow,” Beta said, which sent me and Alpha’s heads tilting with confusion. “My mother,” Beta explained.

Alpha curled her tail around Beta’s, “You’ve lost all of your family,” she said sympathetically, then added quickly, “well, all of your family that’s worth anything.”

“Worthless murderer,” Beta agreed, snarling, no doubt thinking of her father, Claw, who had killed Keelin.

I studied my sister’s olive eyes that were filled with grief. Keelin was Alpha’s best friend. Alpha is very pretty, I mused, momentarily distracted. And she was — for a wolf her age, at least. Her silver gray moonlike fur was well groomed and she seemed much more mature than when we first started The Pack of Stars, which would be… a month ago, I think. Her muzzle had grown slightly longer and her silver fur was a sharp contrast to the cold, dark stone of this cave. She’s pretty, I thought, but Beta is outstanding.

“Hello, Earth to airhead! Ahem, Cloud? Yoo-hoo!” Alpha said, interrupting my chain of thought by waving her tail in front of my face.

“Airhead yourself,” I retorted, momentarily distracted from my daydreaming about Beta. But then I began thinking again.

Beta’s gray gold eyes contrast her soft mud and amber fur so perfectly and her laugh… I wonder if she knows I’m falling in love with her.

Chapter 2

“Do you hear that?” Beta asked, angling her ears towards a tall bush that was covered in thorns which made the bush look like jagged lightning. She was right, of course. I could hear shuffling and the occasional thwak! thwak! thwak! We were out hunting at night, so of course at this time we had to be way too alert.

“Yes,” I murmured, “should I go talk to them?”

“Sure. Wow, Alpha’s talk about you not being impulsive must have worked — although I guess she was pretty intimidating.”

“She gave you the same speech?” I asked, surprised.

“Yeah,” she said. She tried to give me a menacing look at the hidden wolf(es), but mostly it looked like she was glaring at some random bush. After she must have decided she was scary enough, she raised her voice and howled, “show yourself!”

“Um… sure,” came the reply.

“Be quiet, you!” another voice scolded, but the wolves came out of hiding. It was two wolves. At least, I thought it was two. One of them had to be midnight black unless there was somehow magically floating golden eyes. Probably not. The other wolf was more visible, with his glowing silver white fur and dark blue eyes.

“I’m Silver and this is my younger brother, Galaxy,” the silver wolf said, his voice low and hoarse.

“Yeah, hello! Are you guys in a pack?” If you are, are you anything like the Pack of Dark Wolves? If you aren’t, can we join your pack? Please?” The black one, Galaxy, asked. His voice, compared with his brother’s, was light and fast — also full of questions.

“You know the Pack of Dark Wolves?” Beta asked, ears tilted with confusion. Then understanding dawned in her eyes. “Oh. Oh Silver, it’s you, “Beta said, with such a longing in her voice, I nearly stumbled over my paws in… hmm. I don’t actually know how to describe what I was feeling. Something like anger… but more than that. Maybe she’s sharing some of her longing with me, and I was longing for Beta. I have a strong feeling I’m not going to like this Silver.

Chapter 3

“Alpha! Guess what?!” Beta yelped excitedly as she marched into our home cave.

“I doubt you actually want me to guess,” Alpha replied, sliding out of her den. “What is it?”

“I found Silver and Galaxy, friends of mine from when I was in the Pack of Dark—”

“Wolves. Yes. Good for you. Guards, take them out a kill them, where my offspring can see them.” Then, smiling at Beta, Alpha said, “inside joke.”

“Oh, good,” Beta said, flicking her tail, “because if not…” she trailed off.

“What were you going to say?” I prompted.

“I finished what I was going to say!” Beta retorted.

“Oh,” Alpha and I said simultaneously. Then we heard a low, rumbly growl. I whipper around to face the entrance, thinking the Pack of Dark Wolves was attacking us again, but the only wolf nearby was Galaxy, whose tail was wrapped around himself in embarrassment.

“Sorry, just hungry,” the black wolf muttered.

Beta flicked her ears in amusement. “I’m sure we all are. Silver, wanna come hunting with me?” she asked with a shy glance in his direction. Now I can name the emotion I was feeling a bit earlier. Jealousy. I know because I’m feeling it now.

Chapter 4

“Here you go, Cloud!” Beta said cheerfully while tossing me some prey. She bounded away, calling over her shoulder, “I’m going to go play with Galaxy. See ya later!”

Silver padded over to where I was eating, regarding me. “Beta’s mine,” he said in his fierce but quiet voice.

“She doesn’t belong to anybody,” I announced.

“No. Claw promised her to me. She is destined to be my mate,” Silver snarled.

My hackles rose. “She can choose her own mate now!”

Silver growled, then launched himself at me. I instinctively raised my paws and batted him away. A small line of blood sprung from his underbelly. Growling, he landed on all fours and crouched down, looking ready to spring back up at me. I swerved to the side just as Silver leaped. I launched myself at his flying silver body and tried to pin him down, but he rolled over and ended up on top of me, teeth near my already bleeding throat.

“Silver. What. Are. You. Doing?” It was Alpha! Thank the Pack of Starry Wolves!

Once Silver heard her voice, he spun around and swiped at her, causing her one of her eyes amd muzzle to drip with blood. My sister released an ear splitting shriek of pain and Beta rushed over.

“Alpha! Cloud! Are you okay?”

Silver responded for us, which might have been a good idea, since he nearly ripped my vocal chords out and Alpha had fallen unconscious, but his answer was completely wrong. “They’re fine. Come on, Beta, I’m leaving this pack —- and your own father told you that you had to come with me!”

When Beta responded, her voice was hushed. “No, Silver. Father isn’t here now. I make my own choices. I choose to be called Emily. I met the wolf I love with that name, and I will die with that name, too!” Silver’s eyes seemed to brighten at this, most likely assuming that Emily was talking about them. Emily delivered the final blow, “and cloud is the one I love!”


Jack’s Saviors

Chapter One: Lily

Hi there. My name is Lily Bolt. My brother is Jack Bolt. Our mother is the boss of The New Press™ (a writing company), and our father is a high school teacher. We go to MS:11 (a middle school). I am in the same homeroom as my brother! We are always together. It’s annoying (sometimes).

As we walked to our homeroom, I started to write.

“Ms. Bolt? Can I have your attention? Please stop writing in your diary,” my teacher, Ms. Miller, said, interrupting my thoughts.

“Ms. Miller, it’s… it’s not a… a diary. It’s a journal,” I stammered as other kids snickered. I’m not good with talking to adults (in front of other kids, at least).

“Ms. Bolt, do you think I care if it is a diary or not? Just close the book,” Ms. Miller said.

After math class, Ms. Miller called me as I was leaving the classroom. “Ms. Bolt?” She tapped me on the shoulder. “Please meet me in the classroom during lunch.”

I tried to ignore her but it was hard. Like, really hard.

“Okay.” I crossed my fingers, hoping Ms. Miller would forget.

“What happened?” Jack asked me.

“Nothing. Just getting pizza with Ms. Miller,” I lied. As I walked away, I looked over my shoulder. Jack was still standing there, jaw dropped. He is kind of like the teacher’s pet.

As he stood there, a jock walked over to him and said, “Hi, teacher’s pet!”

He punched him in the shoulder and laughed as he walked away. Jack rubbed his shoulder and walked to the boy’s bathroom, glaring at me.

“What did I do?” I yelled at the boy’s bathroom.

As I walked away to the library, the jock looked at me. Before I didn’t see the jock’s face when he punched Jack. Now as he looked at me, I had a gush of anger. The jock that punched my brother was Jeff, the popular athlete, and he had a huge crush on me. Everyone knew that. Maybe that’s why Jack glared at me.

I stormed up to Jeff and screamed, “Why would you do that?! That was my brother!”

As I walked away from Jeff to the library for computer class, Jeff ran up to me and gave me his “dashing” smile.

“I’m not falling for that again.”

Last week he ran to me after I did cheerleading tryouts and said, “I hope you got in,” and gave me his dashing smile.

I fell into my brother’s arms and fainted. (I used to like him).

“I’m not… I’m not… ” I muttered to myself as he said, “Look, I’m sorry. I really am. I didn’t know that was your brother!”

“Huh. Totally. I saw you when you punched him! You said, ‘Hi, teacher’s pet!’ And you then punched him. He is the only ‘teacher’s pet’ around here!” I yelled at him, right outside the library.

“Look, people will get punched around here! I don’t want you to get hurt,” Jeff said to me kindly.

“Why? ‘Cause I’m pretty? Huh?” I said to him.

Then I ran into the library, right before the bell rang. Students ran into the library. Girls gossiped, boys threw footballs, nerds read while they walked, loners walked, you guessed it, alone. Then I understood what Jeff meant. People will get hurt.

One girl ran up to me, hair in her face, yelling, “Lily! Lily!”

“Yes?” I asked calmly. 

“Lily, come,” the girl said.

Her hair was purple-blue-green-brown. Then I recognized her. She was Ms. Miller’s daughter, Amy Miller. As I followed Amy, Jeff was talking to his jock friends, glancing at me at random times, girls were still gossiping, and other people were sitting on the ground, reading or playing video games.

“Come on!” Amy said.

When we got to where Amy brought me, I gasped. It was beautiful. School was suddenly over! (But that wasn’t the beautiful part.) The beautiful part was the snow. There were five inches of snow already, and it was still snowing! I ran to my locker and heard something.

“Everyone, there are already five inches of snow, and it is still snowing. So go to your locker and get your bag. No homework, just get home. Oh, wait, you do have homework. Don’t go outside when you get home!” the speaker said.

I got my bag, and put on my coat. I ran outside. It was still snowing. I felt a snowball against my back. I heard laughing. I turned around. Three boys were laughing at me. I felt anger. I ran home. Winter has begun. So have mean boys.


Chapter Two: Jack

As I walked home, I looked at my arm. I remember Lily saying, “It can’t be that bad.” I know she only said that because of Jeff. My shoulder looked badly bruised. I sighed. It is bad. It is, I thought. I took out my phone and noticed that Jeff wasn’t in the group chat. It was only me, Amy, Lily, and Noah (my best friend).

Hey sis. I noticed that Jeff isn’t on the group chat anymore. Why? Is it that you two broke up…? I texted Lily in our private chat

She didn’t answer for 10 minutes. She was usually on her phone or in her journal.

“Huh,” I muttered. “Whatever. Maybe she hates me. I don’t care anymore.”

I opened the door to our house, and Lily wasn’t in her special chair. Okay, this is getting suspicious. Of course she would be in the special chair either when she is sad or if she is… lazy, I thought.

I saw a note that said, Go upstairs. Or else. It wasn’t Lily’s handwriting, or Mom’s, or Dad’s. It couldn’t be Mom’s or Dad’s. They stayed at work for another five hours. I didn’t like threats, so I hurried up stairs. Nothing was in the hallway, except for another note.

It said, Go to your room. Stay there until your sister comes home. I walked into my room and sat on my bed. I waited there for about one hour. I got really impatient (and I don’t really get inpatient) and walked downstairs. I saw a bucket of paint hanging on the door, and I swear I saw, like, five boys around our house, with snowballs. Then I saw three boys and two girls with Nerf Guns.

“Huh.” I wondered aloud.

I quickly put my hand on my mouth and stood really still. Then I quietly walked over to the fridge and took an apple. Then I saw all the people that surrounded the house scurry away. Then I saw a girl, snow all over her back and front.

“Lily?” I said. Just then she opened the door. I screamed, “Noooo!!!”

Paint splattered all over her. She was wearing a bright green shirt. The paint was pink. Believe me, it looked like… gross. I had a yellow shirt. I jumped in too. I didn’t want Lily to be alone. But then she pushed me away and ran outside, just to get more snow on her. I ran outside too, and I got Nerfed. Those three boys and two girls shot Nerfs at me.

I pulled Lily inside. “What happened!?” I screamed at her.

Lily started to cry and ran into the bathroom. I felt guilty. I got towels for her and knocked on the door.

“What is it?!” she yelled.

“I… I just… brought… some towels,” I stammered. I opened the door, not looking in, and threw the towels in. Then I said, “You know… I’m really good at handwriting… You want me to do your homework?”

“Sure,” she said.

I ran downstairs, took her homework out of her bag, and saw a note. It said, Ms. Bolt, come early tomorrow to school. Come to my classroom. – Ms. Miller.

I gasped. I’ll tell her later, I thought. I finished her homework with a, Ms. Miller, I will not write in my journal during class anymore. I did my homework and then ran to Lily’s room. Lily was dry, all clean in her pajamas. 

“I know who made those notes. Those kids out there,” she said out of nowhere.

“Um… here,” I handed her the note.

“Ugh,” she groaned.

“What? You get to have pizza and ice cream with Ms. Miller!” I was shocked.

“That’s during lunch! Right now… tomorrow morning… I’m going to be in big trouble!” She groaned again.

“No you’re not. Just show her your homework, and then she’ll let you go,” I said.

“Why?” Lily asked me.

“Because I wrote, Ms. Miller, I will not write in my journal during class anymore,” I replied.

“You have to ask me when you write stuff like that before you write it!!!” Lily said.

“Sorry,” I muttered.

“It’s okay,” Lily said quietly.

I put my pajamas on and went downstairs. I heard the door click open.

“Honey… darling,” a voice came from outside.

I opened the door and then I didn’t know if it was just me or a real one, but there was suddenly a blackout. 


Chapter Three: Amy

Ding dong, the doorbell rang. The door opened.

“Yes?” A girl answered the door.

“Hi, Lily!” I said excitedly.

“Go away,” Lily said.

“Why?” I asked, trying to be annoying (believe me, I can be really annoying!) but sometimes Lily knew me better than I knew myself!!

“Don’t try,” she said, grunting and slamming the door in my face.

I took out my phone. I looked at my phone case. I got it on my 10th birthday, in London. Lily was there with me (and Jack), and she gave me a phone case with leaves all over it. Then I got a PopSocket with a puppy (collie) barking. I smiled. I turned my phone over to the front and texted Lily.

Hey Lils, whatcha doing? Y didn’t u answer me?! What happened? And y didn’t u let me come in?! I’m still standing outside ur house. Waiting 4 u!!

After one minute, she answered. Ugh… y u, of all peeps?! Y u!? Ok, i’ll give u 10 mins in my house. Mom and dad aren’t home yet.

She opened the door, and said, “Come in, quickly.”

When we got in, she set a timer for ten minutes. “Wow. I’m starting to feel rushed,” I said to her, joking.

“Okay, so basically I got ambushed by some kids, (whatever!) Jack did my homework, (lucky!) and he… ” I didn’t listen to this part. It was already nine minutes!

“And then… ready for the mystery?” Lily asked me.

“Yeah!” I said, nervous, but still excited.

“He… he went… down… downstairs… but… but he never… never came… came back,” Lily said, sadly.

“Oh, Lily!” I said.

I felt really bad. I don’t have any younger siblings, so I don’t really know how it feels to lose one.

“Oh, Lily,” I started.

But just right then the timer rang. 

“Goodbye!!” Lily said and pushed me outside.

I took out my phone again and texted Jack this time.

Hey jack. Where r at? Lily’s worried mad. She just kicked me out of the house. I know u don’t text a lot, but I need u to text me back now! Like, right now!! Or I’ll have to tell ur parents that they need to hire some detectives.

He didn’t answer after five minutes. Then he texted back. 

Amy. Help. I’m kidnapped. Right now I’m in a sack. Just woke up. Tell Lily. I need you, Lily, and Noah. Get Jeff, if Lily wants. I just need all the help I can get!

I sighed. He was still alive. I ran back to Lily’s house and wrote a note to her.

Lily. Meet me in the girl’s bathroom, middle stall.

I got a text from Jack. Tell you details then. We need a team. I like, ‘Jack’s saviors’ cool, huh? Wait, getting off topic. Bye! Text ya at 9:00. K? Bye.

I put the note under her door. As I walked home, everything seemed… different. So many things would happen tomorrow. The high school dance would be in one week (Valentine’s Day dance). I also had so many questions. Who would I go to the dance with? Who kidnapped Jack? Would this “team” work out the way I thought it might? Would I make more friends? Would we invite Jeff? After that last question, I was home. I sighed.

I unlocked the door and yelled, “Mom? Dad? Y’all home?”

“Yes, honey!” my dad said calmly from the kitchen.

“Mom isn’t home yet?” I asked, surprised.

“No. She has a meeting about how to deal with girls or boys who like to write during class. I think you know who I’m talking about,” he said, glancing at me.

“Lily,” I sighed. 

“Honey, your food is at the table. Eat quickly,” he said, smiling. 

“Why?” I asked.

“It’s a surprise!” he teased me, laughing. “Fine. I’ll tell you. We are going to Avengers: Endgame with some friends from preschool.”

“Ugh,” I groaned. I’m usually really friendly, but I haven’t seen them since I was two years old!

“Honey. You love Marvel!” he exclaimed.

“I know, but… I haven’t seen them for a while,” I said sadly.

I finished eating and went upstairs to get my Marvel merchandise. When I came down, I looked in the mirror. I wore a baseball cap saying, Avengers: Endgame: Friday, April 26, 2019. I had a ponytail up under my cap, a shirt that said, Captain Marvel will return in Avengers: Endgame on the back and on the front it said, Captain Marvel. I wore pants that on the side said, Black Widow. I wore simple shoes that were gray.

“Okay, dad, I’m ready!” I said, running to the living room.

I heard a buzz from my phone. I looked at the text message. It was from Lily, and it came with a picture.

Hey Amy, saw note. I gtg to ur mom’s room early tho. When Jack disappeared, I saw 2 peeps (adults) leaving my house. I took a picture of it. I sent it to u. I’ll go to ur mom’s room (fingers crossed u might be there!) and after our ‘talk’ w/ ur mom, I’ll meet ya at bathroom. Bye!

I smiled. Kk, I texted her back.

Then I put my phone in my pocket and saw my dad running downstairs.

“We are late! Five minutes ‘till movie!!” he yelled. “Hop in! Hop in!”

We quickly got into the car and drove to the movie theater. We got our seats and sitting right next to me was a girl. Sitting next to her was another girl. Then a boy. Then five more girls. I recognized them all. They were my preschool friends! Laila, Willow, Liam, Maya, Georgia, Sole, Ciri, and Alison. I smiled. I knew they went to my school. Eight more people on our team now.


Chapter Four: Noah

I am really worried, worried sick. I saw Amy texting Jack on her private chat. Oh, I’m a hacker. My name is Noah. I texted Jack, but he didn’t answer back. So I hacked his private chat with Amy and saw the texts. I knew it was Jack texting Amy ‘cause… he kind of has a crush on her. Jack was kidnapped and in a sack full of apples! (I know it’s apples. In every book/movie it’s apples.) I’m so worried! Okay, get back in the present. Noah, get back into the present. Okay, so now I just got a text message from Amy.

Hey Noah. Meet me and Lily. We are making a team to find Jack. Don’t call the police. They will take you and me out of this.

I’m still really nervous, but I am Jack’s friend, not his overprotective friend like his mother. No. I’m his friend. The next morning, I got up at 5:00 and met Amy in Ms. Miller’s classroom. Lily wasn’t there yet. Neither was Ms. Miller.

“Where’s your — ”

“Shhh!” Amy interrupted, gesturing around her.

“What?” I whispered.

Amy ran up to me. “There’s a secret room around here. That’s where Mom and Lily are,” she told me, like it was obvious.

“Okay… why Lily though?” I asked her.

“She’s in trouble. And be quiet! Mom doesn’t know we are here!” she hissed at me.

I took out my phone. Jeez. Okay, Ms. Bossypants! I texted her. Amy glared at me.

Don’t you even dare, she texted me back.

K. yeesh, I texted her. Since I got in the classroom, I could hear distinct chatter. Now it stopped.

“Uh oh,” Amy said. “Out, quick.”

As we scurried away, Lily and Ms. Miller came out of a door with a blue handle. The room was pink. How could I have not noticed that?! I wondered. As I saw Lily leaving, her face was pale, and she was holding her math notebook.

“Good job, Lily!” Ms. Miller called out.

“Thanks,” she said back.

Ms. Miller was holding her homework. We went to the library, which was open from 5:00 AM to 9:00 PM. When we came in, eight people were in there already.

“Um… who are these people?!” I asked Amy, who was smiling, and Lily, who was just as puzzled as I was.

“These were my friends from preschool, and now they are in our team!” Amy said. “This is Ciri,” she said, pointing at a girl with dark brown fuzzy hair. “This is Solé,” she said, pointing at a girl with cool earrings that were made out of yarn. “This is Georgia,” she said, pointing to the tallest girl there. “This is Maya,” pointing to a girl with brown hair. “This is Liam,” pointing to the only boy there. I waved to him. He waved back. “This is Laila,” pointing to a girl with short black/brown hair. “This is Willow,” pointing to a girl who had a green bow in her hair. “And this is Alison,” pointing to a girl with round, redish-pinkish glasses.

“This is Lily,” she said, pointing at Lily. “And this is Noah,” she said, pointing at me. “And, well. I’m Amy, as you all know!” she said, trying to be humorous.

Kids laughed faintly. So did I.

Lily stepped in and said, “Okay, everyone. My brother, Jack, got kidnapped at 8:30 PM, yesterday night. It’s now 5:30 AM, nine hours after he got kidnapped. Amy here, knows something we don’t know.”

“Okay, so here. Do we have a board or… ” Amy started.

“Oh, yes! Yes!” I said excitedly. I was happy to help, but then with those ten faces all looking at me, my happiness quickly faded away. I said, “Um… I mean, there’s a Smartboard… ” I walked to the Smartboard and asked for Amy’s phone.

“Why?” She asked me.

“Because… because I need to connect it to the… ”

“Okay!” she said, putting her phone in my hand.

I felt her hand for a second. It was soft and smooth. I sighed. It made me feel better. I took the phone and connected it to the Smartboard. Then I gestured to Amy to take the lead.

“Thank you, Noah.”

“You’re… you’re welcome,” I said, sheepishly. I saw her eyes. They were beautiful. They were golden brown. I… I think… I started to like her. As in, like like like her… 

“Okay, everyone?” she asked, bringing me back to the present.

“Um… what?” I asked her, completely forgetting the text message I hacked into.

“Um… the text message??” she said.

“Oh yeah. Okay.” I read it through again and said, “Yep. I’m done reading.”

“Okay, everyone. The picture of the adults only reminds me of one family. Jeff. I met his parents, and one was enough,” she said, joking.

“Okay, let’s question him first,” Lily said. 

Just then I got an idea. “Hey guys. Um… Jack’s message… it said invite Jeff if wanted. Should we? He might know more than us, if that’s his parents. I know he would help Lily.” I glanced at her. “For anything.”

The school bell rang.

“Everyone, we will meet at lunch, table three!” Lily shouted over the ringing bell.

Everyone got their bags and ran to their homerooms. Eleven kids in the team. Only one kid to find. How hard can it be, really?


Chapter Five: Jeff

Hi. I’m Jeff. You might think of me as a cool, tough jock. But on the inside, I’m a small writer and a boy who wants a girl. My parents did something incredibly, horribly awesome. They kidnapped someone!! And they still aren’t in jail! I’m not going to tell the police anything. But what happened with Lily and Jack… Okay, I’ll be honest. I meant to punch Jack. I knew it was him, but… it was only because Ms. Roma (our homeroom teacher) let us do trivia.

She asked the only question about sports, and it was, “In inches, how big is the diameter of a basketball hoop?”

“I am really bad at math,” I said.

“But you are really good in sports,” Ms. Roma challenged me.

“Yeah. I remember last year we had to measure it in gym,” a girl, Rose, said.

“Just what was it?” Ms. Roma asked us all. “Put a thumbs up when you know it. Don’t yell it.”

Everyone suddenly remembered (or so I thought). I lied, and put a thumbs up.

“When I count ‘three, two, one’, raise your hand first,” Ms. Roma said. “Three, two, one!” she yelled.

Everyone quickly put their hand up.

“Ms. Rose, what do you think it is?” she asked Rose.

“Ten,” Rose said triumphantly.

“No, Ms. Rose. Now you are out of the game.”

“Mr. Outi, what do you think?” she asked Outi.

“Five!” he shouted.

Before Ms. Rome could even say, “I’m sorry,” he jumped on a table and screamed, “I’m the winner of this round! Me, me, me!” he screamed, louder. It hurt my ears so much!!!

“Mr. Outi! You are out of the game and of the classroom,” Ms. Roma shouted.

Ms. Roma is pretty nice, so we were all surprised when she shouted.

“Next?” she said quieter than shouting but still loudly. “Ms. Alison? What do you think the answer is?” she asked calmly to Alison.

I met Alison before. She is Lily’s friend, Amy’s, friend. (I mean, I think so.)

“Sixteen,” Alison said.

“Close, Ms. Alison, but no,” she whispered. No one heard except for me, since I was right next to Alison.

“I’m sorry, Alison, but no,” Ms. Roma said loudly, as she would call it, “inside voice.” 

When she first said that, Outi said, “I lost my inside voice in an accident.” It was funny. 

“Mr. Jeff?” Ms Roma asked me.

“Um… seventeen?” I said the closest number to sixteen.

“I’m sorry, Mr. Jeff. Maybe the top star athlete will not be the top star in athlete facts,” she said to me.

Many people laughed or snickered.

One of them patted me on the back and said, “Next time, low star in athletic facts.”

Everyone laughed. I was blushing.

“You’re out! You’re out!” people teased.

As I walked to the section with Alison and Rose, I asked them, “Are you guys embarrassed because of losing?”

“No! Everyone loses at something,” Alison replied.

“Yeah. Agreed, but what I’m embarrassed of is you asking things a little kid would ask,” Rose said.

She said that last part loudly so everyone could hear. People laughed again.

“Hey, Jeff. Don’t be a sore loser. I like what Alison said. ‘Everyone loses at something.’ Like me. I lose at sports but I still have friends! And no one is perfect,” a boy said, named Jack. 

Ms. Roma cleared her throat. “Thank you, Jack, for the pep-talk.” Everyone laughed, including Jack. “But can we please get back to trivia?”

“Yes, Ms. Roma,” everyone said in harmony.

“Okay, Ms. Chelsea?”

“Call me Chels,” Chelsea said.

Everyone likes her. Not because of her singing, or how she looks, but because she takes everything chill. People call her Chill Chels. Everyone is her friend. 

“Um… let’s see… sixteen and up?” Chill Chels said.

“Ms. Chelsea, you have to pick an exact number,” Ms. Roma said.

“Oh then… okay… fifteen?” Chill Chels said, but in a question sort of way.

“No, Ms Chelsea. But thank you for being like Rose and Alison. Not some boys.” She looked at me. “And thank you for being ‘chill’ about it,” Ms. Roma said calmly.

“Okay,” Chill Chels said.

She walked towards me, Alison, and Rose, only to invite them to come to her house today.

“Sure!” Rose said.

“Yeah, I’m free!” Alison said.

They walked to a different corner, talking. Then Jack got it correct, and I got really mad. That’s why I punched him. But don’t get me wrong, I had no idea that Jack didn’t come to school the day after I complained to my parents about him, and then they kidnapped someone!

At lunch today, I ate at table three, all alone. But then eleven people came up to me and sat at that table. The one in the lead was Lily. In the cafeteria, there were security guards because of the kidnapping. But outside, anything could happen. And guess what? We could go outside!

So Lily said, “Outside, now.”

When we got outside, we picked a place with lots of grass. I thought we were having a date, and the people behind her were guards, so we wouldn’t get harmed (even though the kidnappers were my parents)! Lily introduced me to the gang behind her. I only knew three people. Alison, Amy, and Noah. So they questioned me about my parents, if anyone knew who was missing, and Noah said if I gave them the information they needed, I could help look for Jack. I told them that my parents did kidnap Jack, but I didn’t know where he was or why he got kidnapped. I told them no one knew who got kidnapped, but I could go tell a guard that I knew who it was.

They quickly said, “No! No! No! No! No! No!”

Then I said, “Why?”

And they said because they would hire a real detective, and only Lily would be in this, but they wanted to help. I answered their questions and soon enough, Noah’s promise was correct. I got on their team! It was private though. No telling anyone, ect. The team was called “Jack’s Saviors.” We all made a group chat called that. I couldn’t wait to help! I wasn’t just helping because I was nice, but I was also doing it for Lily! (And her friends, but… yeah.)


Chapter Six: Jack’s Saviors (Group Chat)

December 15th 2020, 7:50 AM

Lily: Hey saviors. 3rd day already and NO CLUE OF JACK! Well, that was my turn of investigating. Whose turn is it? Oh yeah, Jeff, it’s your turn. Try to ask your parents about Jack, and he’s been missing for 3 days already and maybe he might have been kidnapped? Before you do this, do your parents know that you know they are the kidnappers? And also say it was weird how Jack disappeared the day you complained about him. And say you two are friends. Make it seem like you like Jack as a friend and you miss him, or just spend lots of time with your parents to figure out where he is.

December 16th 2020, 7:40 AM

Jeff: Ok. Just did that for a whole day!!! Didn’t find out where Jack was, sadly. 

9:50 AM

Alison: Aw… I haven’t met Jack yet. He seems like a nice guy worth saving for!!

9:59 AM

Georgia: Hey! He’s Lily’s brother! We made new friends! Come on. We would save him for Lily and for Amy!

10:00 AM

Amy: We should all look for Jack at the same time to move faster. Here. I’ll send a photo of him. 

IMG.3958

10:17 AM

Noah: Ok. I think we should all look at where this kidnapping thing started. Lily’s house.

Ciri: Agreed. But, everyone should bring a microscope or something that would let us see closer in. 

Sole: Yeah. Lily’s at home with her mother and father, rushing them to go work. Just texted her on private chat. She said they still think that Jack is sick in bed. LOL!! 

Maya: Really?! I’m still so happy winter break just started!!! So many days to investigate!

Liam: Maya, you’re ALWAYS happy! And I think Noah, Jeff, and I should go for more clues. Maybe at Jeff’s house? I dunno.

Laila: Yeah. Maybe I can go sneak into my mom’s science room. I might find some good tools… 

Willow: YEAH! I’ll find some books about solving kidnap mysteries in the library. We could all meet at Lily’s house after. We all know where she lives… so yeah. See you guys there! GO SAVIORS!

11:11 AM

Lily: GUYS GUYS GUYS!!!! STOP DOING WHATEVER YOU’RE DOING!! WE FOUND HIM! Well, at least we know where.

Amy: where?

Noah: where?

Ciri, Alison, Sole, Georgia, Maya, Liam, Laila, Willow said the same thing: where?

Jeff: MY PARENTS HAVE A SECRET LAIR IN D.C. HE’S THERE!!!

11:20 AM 

Lily, Amy, Noah, Ciri, Alison, Sole, Georgia, Maya, Liam, Laila, and Willow said the same thing: Yay!!!

To be continued… 


Bonus Chapter: Jack’s Saviors (Group Chat)

Jeff: Hello? Anyone? Well, in my parents’ room, I found a paper. I’ll post it. But… I’m sorry. I have to leave the team. I won’t tell my parents, but I feel guilty reading this. Here. I posted it. 

We have a secret. We are secretly kidnappers, because our son, Jeff, has a public crush on this cheerleader, Lily. He punched her brother, by accident (well, he said that). He told us what happened, how Lily got really mad at him and left him. He told us that before Lily got mad, he told her, “Listen, Lily. People will get hurt around here. I don’t want you to.” After he told us that, he ran up stairs and didn’t come down. We didn’t disturb him because he was making a phone call. But we heard some words. “On 12th avenue, on 6th street. Yes. I know that’s where they live. I’m sure. Yes. Nerfs and snowballs. Okay. Bye.” And he hung up. So we went to their house, and there was paint all over the door. Nerfs were on the ground. We tried to open the door. We had a huge sack of apples. A boy opened the door, and instead of being nice to Lily, we knocked him out. Yes, I know. Mean and rude. But this boy stopped our Jack from getting the chance to have Lily like him!!

-Jeff’s parents


The Time When Unicorns Existed, or Shall I Say the Time When I Got Famous, or Maybe Not

Just remember, if you’re reading this story, don’t freak out. If you freak out, just stop reading this story right away.


Chapter One

Do you know the time when unicorns used to exist? Well, I know when. So this is the story: once I was dreaming about some unicorns — I saw unicorns flying in the air. That was amazing, really just to tell you. I loved it.

Guess what happened next: the unicorns were dancing for real! I know right.

Then the unicorns started to dance — it was so funny that I woke up and started laughing.

Crazy!

My mom said, “Hey, why are you laughing like that?” I was still laughing. That was surely crazy. My mom said, “Come on, stop laughing. Come on, get up.”

I still sat there. I was laughing like crazy.

My mom got so mad that she carried me up to the table and said, “Explain, explain, explain to me what this nonsense is all about!”

I said, “It was nothing to worry about, okay.”

Then my mom said, “The next time you do that again, you are going to get a toy.”

I was so surprised!

That was just one sentence that I loved!

Loved it!  

I think I just saw a unicorn right now in 2019 — dun, dun, dun.

That means unicorns really do exist. It looked so beautiful, and it had so many colors I couldn’t believe. I was sitting there on a chair in the morning just waiting for something. Then a unicorn just popped up running through the house! That was so amazing. It wasn’t my dream. It was in real life, actually! I really couldn’t believe that. I was the first person in 2019 to see a unicorn. Maybe I would be famous one day because of that. But I’m not actually sure if other people know about that. I know that my family knows, but… I am not really sure if other people know about this. Or people from the news, or anyone except for my family. That was really odd.

I said to my mom, “Did you see the unicorn just run in our house? It had so many colors! It was so cool! I was the first person in 2019 to see a unicorn! Isn’t that amazing?”

My mother said, “I know! I know! I saw that too!”


Chapter Two

I remembered when my mom said that when I have a crazy dream and laugh all the time, she’ll get me a new toy. I thought it was suspicious. So I did that again.

Then something weird happened. She actually didn’t give me a toy. She gave me something else.

It was a toy unicorn that you can ride on when you push the play button, and when you reverse it, you can go backwards. You can do that without even moving your legs. It does it by itself! That was actually kind of cooler than a toy.

I play with it all night and all day. I never stopped riding on it. I play with it all night, all day, every month, and every year. I got it when I turned eight years old. But I wonder if that was just for my birthday present or because… I was… laughing.

I was so confused. I was afraid to ask because if I asked my mom, she would take advantage of it and maybe take away the unicorn. So I didn’t want that to happen, so I just took it away from my mind and not care about it anymore. Then I just had fun with it as usual. I was thinking to myself why my mom would get something like that for $1,339.

I think I’m losing my mind! Is it actually true, or am I just dreaming? Are my eyes working right now?

Okay. Now let’s get to a new topic. Do unicorns actually exist? (That’s the title of the story.) I think they do. If I told the news that unicorns actually exist, I might be famous in some way. But I don’t know how.

I think I got an idea! I will go to the Mayor of New York.

I arrived there and said to her, “You dare call me a liar? But I was the first in 2019 to see a unicorn. This is true. I could even show you a photo, if you’d like. Put it on a newspaper, and send it to everybody in the whole world. Then I would be famous!”

“Neighhhh… ”

“What was that?” I said. “It’s a unicorn! Unicorns actually exist! I will look here, and you look there. And if I see a unicorn cross by, I will tell you to look there. And if you see a unicorn cross by, then you will tell me. Then we will see if unicorns really exist. This is my time to prove to you.”

The mayor said, “If it’s true that unicorns actually exist and you really saw it, I will make you famous.”
I said, “Hold on, hold on. Are you serious? You’re going to make me famous? No kidding? Are you?”

The mayor got frozen for a while. She was staring at something — it was huge and enormous. I looked there, and I saw a unicorn. The mayor was shocked, really shocked! I tried to unfreeze the mayor, but she kept staring at the unicorn. It was no joke. She was truly shocked.

Then the mayor unfroze.

I said to the mayor, “You see. Unicorns actually exist, and I was the first one in 2019 to see it. You see?”

The mayor said, “That unicorn that just crossed by… it was so beautiful. It had so many colors. My eyes were about to explode.”

I told the mayor, “Okay. Okay. Okay. Calm down now. If you want a photo of that unicorn, luckily, I took a photo. I have a printer at my house! I can print out a picture of the unicorn that crossed by and send thousands of pictures of it around the world. And give you one.”

I was willing to give the mayor one the next day, and printed off thousands of the photo, but then I forgot and fell asleep. I forgot and the mayor forgot to make me famous… dun dun dun. Man, the mayor was just totally off. All my work of being famous was off. And that was just bad. I couldn’t believe it.

The next day I woke up, and I stretched out. I took a deep breath, and my memory was wiggling. My memory caught up and at just that second, I remembered something big: do you know what it is? If you said I forgot to send the mayor a picture — you are correct. *Ding!* If you did not say that, you are wrong. *Err!*


Chapter Three

Okay, this story about when the unicorns existed is starting to get… totally out of hand. Anyway, let’s just get back to the story. If you’re still reading this story, great. If you like it, tell your friends about it. Okay, let’s just get back to the story.

Remember when I told you about when the mayor and I saw the unicorn? That was a way better unicorn than I saw at my house — it had more colors and was way more beautiful. And to be honest with you, that was actually good. Really good.

It was getting dark, and the sun was going down. The moon was rising, and the stars were out. Some feeling I have… in the night, I feel like I’m lonely for some reason. Maybe because it’s dark. Maybe unicorns liked to be in the dark, and people think unicorns don’t even exist. Oh yeah! Did I or did the mayor forget to make me famous? This is the worst day ever. I was supposed to be famous, and I am not. I must go back to that mayor and should have a plan to do something. I know! I’ll go to the mayor and tell her, “Weren’t you supposed to make me famous? Did you lose your mind?”

Then I went to the mayor and said to her, “Wasn’t I supposed to be famous?”

But the mayor said, “You forgot to give me the photo.”

And I said, “Oh yeah.” I had hidden the photo behind my back, and I said, “Do you want the photo? Surprise!!!” I pulled out the photo from behind my back. 

The mayor said, “Okay! Now let’s make you famous. Tomorrow, watch the news. I’ll make you famous on the news. I promise.”


Chapter Four

I woke up the next day, and I watched the news.

The news guy said, “Unicorns! Lovely unicorns!”

For some reason the news guy didn’t even mention my name or anything about me.

I was so mad about that, so I went back to the mayor and said to her, “I was watching the news just today, and the news man didn’t even make me famous at all or even mention my name or anything. He just said ‘unicorns lovely unicorns!’”

The mayor looked at me, with fake surprise.

Then I said, “You’re just faking, so if I go to the building where the news people go, and I ask them if you told them about me, or even mentioned my name, what do you think they will say? Every day I drive past the building, and I have written the name and address of where it is.”

The mayor said, “Okay okay. The only reason I didn’t make you famous was because… um… okay, I didn’t make you famous because usually when people make you famous the news people give out the address of where you life, and they might come to your door and ring your bell and do something. They might kidnap one of your daughters or your sons.”

I said, “I have daughters? I have sons? Well that’s cool, and plus that is new news for me!” 

The mayor, “No! No! No! You are getting off track. You have no kids. You are only a kid. Anyways, let’s just get back to what we were talking about before. So remember when I told you that when you get famous on the news, they tell your address and someone can knock on your doorbell and when they open the door they can do something bad to you.”

I said, “Okay, you’re right, but I’m thinking that usually no one does that.”

But the mayor said, “Do you want to live a nice and peaceful life or keeping on working to be famous because once you are famous people can forget about you once you stop doing your work of being famous.”

Then I said, “Actually, you are kind of correct.”

So the mayor said, “What do you think now?” 

“I have a plan actually. With your advice that you just told me, now I don’t want to be famous anymore. Now, for the news, I have a plan! A very special plan! Do you know what it is? Something special and crazy!!! I’m going to tell you something cool. Here we go! Are you ready for it? You’re going to go tell the news to someone named Mr. Piko Piko. Let me tell you a secret. That’s a fake person and a fake name. But don’t tell the news especially! Okay, let’s get back to what we were saying. Next, you are going to say about Mr. Piko Piko to the news and that he lived on 97th Street between Columbus Avenue and Amsterdam Avenue. So you got it? I’m going to write it down on a paper, and tomorrow I’m going to give it to you. And then after tomorrow, you’re going to go to the news and say everything that I told you about Mr. Piko Piko.”

The next day, I woke up and got a loose piece of paper and wrote everything about Mr. Piko Piko. Then, I went off and gave it to the mayor.

The mayor said to me, “Could I tell you something? Your plan is excellent! Give me a high five! And when someone tries to go to Mr. Piko Piko’s address and rings the bell, someone will open the door and the person who came will ask, ‘What is your name?’ They will say something else than Mr. Piko Piko. They are going to be so surprised!”

The next day, the mayor went to the news people and said there’s someone named Mr. Piko Piko and he lives on 97th Street between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenue.

The news people said, “Okay! Sure, no problem! But in the first place, why are you telling me this?”

“I’m telling you this because Mr. Piko Piko is willing to be famous.”

The news people said, “Okay.”

The next day, the mayor and I sat next to each other and watched the news.

Then the news people said, “Mr. Piko Piko is famous! He lives on 97th Street between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenue.”

He became famous at Rock and Roll music bro. The mayor closed the TV. Then the mayor and I started laughing so badly.

“Where did the news people get the Rock and Roll bro?”

“That was so crazy!”

We laughed for a while. It was a success!


Chapter Five

The mayor and I gave a high five to each other. But then, someone went to Mr. Piko Piko’s house and remembered that Mr. Piko Piko is not real. So, they rang the bell on the door and a guy opened the door.

He asked him, “What’s your name?”

The guy said, “My name is Pearator.” Pearator said to the man, “But who are you?!”

“Nevermind, I shall say.”

Then, the man just closed the door and left.

Pearator said, “That’s odd.”

The man went to his house.

The next day, the man went to the news people, and he said to them, “You guys tricked me! Guess what happened! You said the guy, Mr. Piko Piko lived on 97th street between Columbus and Amsterdam, but when I went there and knocked on the door and asked what his name was just to make sure and he said his name was Pearator.”

The news people said, “Wait, hold on. the mayor clearly told me in front of my eyes and ears this information and it’s not true. Something’s fishy around here. Time to animate the plan! We’re going to go to the mayor and go capture her.”

The guy said, “That’s a good plan. High five! If they are going to trick us, then we are going to trick them.” 

The next day, the news people and the guy went to the mayor and said to the mayor, “We went to ‘Mr. Piko Piko’s’ house.” When the news people said this to the mayor they used their hands to make air quotes. They continued and said, “We rang on the door and asked what his name is and he said his name was Pearato.”

The mayor looked at me and said to them, “Just one second. We need to go and do something.” 

The mayor and I went to this private room and said to each other, “Uh oh, they got us.”

“Time to operate another plan. So, we’re going to go back to them, and we’re going to shout ‘run!!!’”

So, we went back to them and said to each other, “Run!”

And the mayor and I ran away as fast as we could. But they still caught the mayor but not me because I’m too fast. Too bad for the mayor. She lost her job.

I said to the people, “You might have caught the mayor but not me because I’m so fast and you guys are so slow.”

They said, “Whatever, we don’t care.” And that was the end.

 THE END


Amber Diaries

If found, please contact Amber Charleston.


Monday, January 20

I can’t believe this is happening to me. I’m in the girl’s bathroom panicking! There is no way I’m going to make it through eighth grade. I just made a complete fool out of myself in front of my crush (Matt)! Oh no!

And to make matters worse, I sit next to Rebecca Hills in just about every class, who, by the way, is the most popular girl in the whole school. Calling her vain is an understatement. She’s a killer shark with sparkly lipstick and a designer jacket. 

But, for some reason, everybody adores her.

Rebecca and I do not get along!

She is always gossiping behind my back saying super mean stuff, like our school mascot Manny wears cuter clothes than me, which could be true, but still, she doesn’t have to say it.

I do not appreciate that girl blabbing about my personal business like that.

Today, Matt asked me to be his partner for math class, and I was so happy that I flipped, and I bet Rebecca was super jealous, because right before French class she said, “He’s mine, Amber, so don’t you dare get close to him, or you’ll be sorry you ever met me.” In my head I said, “Then why does he never pay attention to you?” But on the outside I just ignored her like I always do.

Anyway, I just had the best math class ever, even though all Matt and I did was stare into each other’s eyes like lovesick puppies, and when he said, “Um… Amber could you pass me the pencil” it was so romantic I thought I was going to die.

Tuesday, January 21

Ugh! That was me screaming, by the way. My parents just told me that I’m grounded for three months just for getting an F in math. Geez! Parents can overreact so much sometimes. I bet Rebecca Hills never has these problems. She’s an only child and her parents’ sweet little girl.

And to make matters worse, when I walked into my room I discovered that my two younger siblings, Juli and Lolo, had completely trashed my room — my door was scribbled all over with purple marker. Unfinished homework was flying everywhere. My bed was soaking wet. I couldn’t tell if it was water or pee. Eww. “Mom, Dad, I can’t believe you let Juli and Lolo do this.” Their answer was, “Oh really, um, what did they do? Can’t be that bad, can it?” I was so frustrated with my parents and my siblings I kicked them out of my room and then had a very good private scream.


Wednesday, January 21

Yes! After all the drama from yesterday, I’m happy to have something good to say for once — today was the best day of my life I just won $3,000 dollars in a fashion design competition. Just a week ago my best friends, Estella, Emily, and Luna, entered a dress (without telling me of course) that I had made in second grade. Surprisingly, it won! Who would have thought an old dress would beat Rebecca’s awesome 3D fashion crush designs.

My friends and I are going out for pizza tonight. Then we’re going to go to my house for a celebration party and a sleepover — it’s going to be the best and the good news is: there’s no school tomorrow in honor of me, so we can stay up as late as we want!


Thursday, January 22

Well, the party’s over. I’m kind of sad it’s done. We had the best time. We ate so much junk food and drank so much soda that we were practically bouncing off the walls. Around 5 AM we finally decided to settle in and sleep

We slept till 1PM. By that time it was time for Estella, Emily, and Luna to go home. We said our goodbyes, and they left anyway. I just had the best night of my life!


Monday, January 26 

I cannot believe that girl. I just got home from school to find my entire front yard trashed. Plus our fancy rocking chair was broken, and when I went inside it was an even bigger mess glasses, and bowls were shattered, my siblings’ toys were scattered everywhere, and my entire wardrobe was on the floor. I have to clean this mess up before my parents get home, or I’m going to be in big trouble, and I’ll get all the blame. So excuse me, but I have to clean up a big mess and there’s not enough time to do it.

It’s half past midnight, and I’ve finally finished my homework. I’m so bored. Plus I’m not one bit sleepy — I have nothing to do but play with my Barbie dream house tucked away in my closet in case someone comes to visit. Yes, I’ll admit it. I play with Barbies, but if anyone is reading this, don’t you tell anyone or you’ll be sorry — I’d die of embarrassment if they knew.


Tuesday, January 28

I can’t believe what I just did! Right now I’m lying in bed pretending to be sick all because of my SSSBFF (super super secret best friend forever) Rebecca Rainbow Sparkles, who is the daughter of the senator of Rainbow Republic. I’m not supposed to tell anyone about it, but I figured writing about it wouldn’t hurt. The reason I’m lying in bed is to help Rebecca plan the upcoming war against pink fluffy unicorns, and I totally support her plan to dress up as a boy and join the war, but to make it clear Rebecca Rainbow is not Rebecca Hills. I hate that girl. So when I say Rebecca, I mean my friend, not my enemy. Note to self: Never stay up answering your SSSBFF emails.


Tuesday, January 29

Ahhh! I really don’t think that I’m going to survive this war. Rebecca Hills just joined the pink fluffy unicorns against me. Hopefully I make it out alive.

One year later… 

Okay, this is Amber. Still me, just one year older, and I’m not entirely sure if the war is over, but it seems to have paused for now. Anyway, last night I got the weirdest text from Rebecca saying, What’s your name?, Was it bongly boo boo?, or something like that. And then she made a promise to stop Rebecca Hills from torturing me. I totally believe in her, but let’s face it. There’s only so much a talking rainbow can do.


Friday, January 26

O-M-G! I am so excited. Rebecca is finally coming to the human world to stop Rebecca Hills. I offered to let her stay at my house. She can sleep under my bed, and so far it’s been working out really well. We have so much fun in the night. The only catch is I have to leave meals three times a day. I convinced mom and dad to let me stay home from school for a month if I did all their chores plus my chores in one day. It was a lot of work for one day, but I did it, so now I can spend all day at home!


Monday, January 30 

I am so happy!!! Rebecca just came inside. She’s finally here. I’m going to show her to my room. I’ll be back when I’m done with the tour. Also by the way, Rebecca looked different. She looked like a human. I asked her why, and she said it was a magical disguise. I’m glad she will be easier to hide now that she’s not as big. But I just want to say she looks fabulous. I wish I could have hair like her.

Saturday, February 17

O-M-G!

Today Rebecca and I were at the mall, and guess who showed up?!

Rebecca Hills!!!

We were enjoying ourselves and hanging out when all of a sudden we saw her with her friends. When she spotted me, she smiled one of her big fake smiles and wrapped me in a big “bear hug” as if we had been friends for life (which we had not) and then she walked right up to my face and said, “Amber, I’m so happy to see you. Congrats for winning all that money. Had I known the judges wanted old clothes, I would have brought my little sister’s poodle vomit stained dress.” I was both appalled and insulted by her rude ”compliment.”

Why is my life so miserable?!


Saturday, January 24

I am so nervous. Today Rebecca and I are finally going to get revenge on her by pushing her into the void.

Here’s our plan:

  1. Trick Rebecca into boarding a chariot to Rainbow Republic
  2. Disguise ourselves as pink fluffy unicorns, and when we’re close, we’ll push her in

Though seriously, this disguise might take some getting used to. You might be wondering what the void is. Well, it’s a pitch black space where anyone who falls in disappears forever. I have to go. Our chariot is getting impatient.

O-M-G, we just did it!!!

As soon as she got on, I made sure to act convincing. Boy was she pushy. No wonder the unicorns love her. They’re identical twins separated at birth. Anyway, I looked out the chariot and told her that the view was spellbinding, and just when we were about to enter Rainbow Republic, I pushed her, and she fell into the void never to be seen again.


Epilogue 

Rebecca and Amber went on to live long, exciting lives. Amber moved herself and her whole family to Rainbow Republic and lives there now with her mom, dad, and little brother and sister, who are now two and six. For more info, read pink fluffy unicorns dancing on rainbows.

The Anderson Sisters

Chapter One: Meet the Anderson Sisters

Once there were five girls. They were sisters. They weren’t just sisters. They were orphans, too. They were trying to sleep on the hammocks near the horse pen because they were assigned to that sleep there. But they couldn’t because the horses were so loud. 

The Anderson sisters’ names were Ashlyn, Allison, Alice, Anna, and Audrey. 

Ashlyn and Allison were both nine-year-old twins that had different personalities. Ashlyn always wanted adventure. She was dark haired and had beautiful brown eyes. She was silly and always made Allison laugh. She also wanted to be free. She had a million plans to escape. But their evil orphan teacher was always on the lookout. Allison, however, was shy and had thin, lightish brown hair and rose pink cheeks. She never ever wanted anything to do with adventure. But she wanted to be free too.

Alice was seven years old with a ponytail. She had dark hair like Ashlyn. She was silly and wanted to be free also. Sometimes she would be upset, and she would be impatient with the orphanage teacher. But the orphanage teacher really deserved it.

Anna was five years old and was more silly and rough than Alice. She had blond hair with a few light brown streaks. She was small and never kept things to herself. She was a real chatterbox and always wanted to be the center of attention.

Audrey was three and loved animals (except the scary and mean ones). She wasn’t good at spelling or reading. That’s because their parents died when she was one year old, and the orphanage teacher never taught her. She didn’t exactly speak as much as the others. She had beautiful blond hair. 

That night, the girls at the orphanage were either assigned to sleep on tables, hammocks near loud horses, beds, or cauldrons.

Although the sisters had different personalities, they always worked together, like once when the orphanage teacher made them do the hardest thing in the world (picking veggies and sweet stuff and making a treat out of it).

They never fit in with the other girls in the orphanage. Everyone else had no siblings while the sisters, well, you know, had siblings. So the other girls thought that they would be weird. Also, they didn’t like them because Audrey would cry almost every night about their old dog. 

They used to have a dog named Hamlet, but he ran away after the orphanage teacher threatened to hunt him if he didn’t leave the orphanage. They have missed him forever. 

The orphanage teacher was named Mrs. Quincy. She was very wealthy and had everything she wanted. She wasn’t nice to the orphanage girls. That was because she thought they would go wild if they didn’t follow her orders. So she had been pretty tough and rich.

The Anderson sisters were very busy on their plan to escape that night. It was their turn to sleep on the tables the next night. They were planning to do it at twelve o’clock. But Ashlyn was too excited. She took a newspaper to keep her occupied. 

What is on the news now? she thought as she picked it up from the floor. 

That’s when she saw that the footprint mystery has been solved.


Chapter Two: The Footprint Mystery

The footprint mystery had been going on since four years ago. There was a person who walked in the mountains. Someone found the footprints, and there was a named carved right beside them. It said, Lily Rockstone, but no one knew who Lily Rockstone was. That’s when the footprint mystery began.

Ashlyn has been dying to find out who it was. It turned out that “Lily” was a 16-year-old girl who was an orphan, too. Her mom collapsed in a boulder accident when Lily was three years old. She left the mountains four years ago. All Ashlyn could see of her was her long, dark brown curly hair. Ashlyn was shocked and surprised. She kept reading more about Lily. She was so into it that she didn’t even notice her sisters wake up at twelve o’clock. 

“Ashlyn,” whispered Allison. “Ashlyn!”

“Sorry,” said Ashlyn. “You guys won’t believe what I just read in the newspaper!”


Chapter Three: Escape Plan 264

All the girls were shocked when they heard the news, except Allison.

“Yeah, yeah,” said Allison as the girls paid no attention to her and kept asking Ashlyn questions. “So, the plan, everyone?”

“Yes!” said Ashlyn. “Now we had, like, 262 plans. Right?” 

The girls nodded. 

“Well, this might be our final straw, so make it good!”

After the girls were finishing listening to Ashlyn’s instructions, they leaped into the air and landed on the fire escape. But Anna’s stomp was way too loud, and Mrs. Quincy woke up. 

All the girls glared at Anna. 

“What?!” exclaimed Anna. 

I see you!” screeched Mrs. Quincy. “Get back here!” 

The girls raced for their lives, but it was too late. The girls got trapped. 

Mrs. Quincy dragged them all the way to the orphanage. 

“Guess what?” said Mrs. Quincy in a weird voice. “How about you spend the night in the snowflake?”

Oh no! thought Ashlyn. The “snowflake” wasn’t nearly as cute or pretty as it sounded. 

The snowflake was an awful dome that was below temperature. Girls would go in there if they tried to escape from the orphanage or did something really bad, like the sisters did just a few minutes ago.

There were still girls from about 30 years ago stuck there all frozen. 

Mrs. Quincy led them to the “snowflake.”

“In you go,” she said. 

She shoved them in, and they were freezing already.

They slowly ran almost all the way to the end of the snowflake. 

Once there, they found sticks and coal and frames and wood and bricks!

They built a warm house there in no time! 

They also tried to discover who killed their mom. They know who killed their dad and who killed the murderer who killed their dad.

It happened two years ago. Ashlyn saw a dark man. He had a suitcase. Then when their dad just opened the door, they saw a crazy stranger that looked like a robber. Then he killed their dad. Then some other stranger killed the robber. When they ran away, they heard crying. Then mumbling. Then loud noises. Then the next thing they knew, they were knocked out and in a strange place called the orphanage.

They had no idea what happened to their mom.

“Okay, people,” said Ashlyn. “We need to escape and find where our mom is.” 

“First things first,” said Allison. “Get your suitcases.” 

The girls quickly got their suitcases, clothes, cookie jars, and books. 

“Okay,” said Anna, munching the sixth sugar cookie she had that evening. “Whath nexth?” 

“Now, who’s a really good climber?” asked Ashlyn. 

“Me! Me!” said Allison.

“Are you really strong?” asked Ashlyn suspiciously.

“Positive,” said Allison.

“You sure?”

Yes!!!

“Okay, Alice. Can you tie ropes?”

“Yep,” said Alice.

“Okay. Allison, after I throw the rope really high so that it goes over the hole on top of the dome, you climb up the rope to the top. I need you to carry each of us one by one. But first carry Alice to the top, so she can tie the rope on the hole. Then after you take all of us. I will get the luggage. Are we good?” said Ashlyn cheerfully with a thumb up. 

The girls nodded.

“Great! I’ll go check on Mrs. Quincy,” said Ashlyn. She put her coat on, grabbed all the luggage, and secretly crept out of the dome. The other girls couldn’t do this because they weren’t really trained to. 

Ms. Quincy was in her fancy room, on her bed.

Ashlyn noticed a frame on top of Ms. Quincy’s desk. 

Ashlyn didn’t have time to see who was on it. She had to meet her sisters on time. 

Ashlyn got to the door and waited behind a fire escape. Her sisters were running down the fire escape next.

“Free!” Ashlyn whisper shouted. They went to a bush to rest.


AL the Alien

In a world very, very far away, there lived an alien named AL. He was a very good Sweed, the species of alien. One day, he was in Sweed’s camp for boys. They were going to sell cookies to other Sweeds.

“Hello,” I said from the table to a man walking around.

Hello,” he said back, staring straight at me. Trust me, it was creepy. 

“Do you want some cookies? It’s only 20 ockes a b — ”

No!” 

“Why?” I asked. I didn’t know anyone who would not take a box of cookies from us. 

Because I said so!” 

I could not hold it in. I started laughing like crazy. “You never said ‘so!’” I managed to say. I thought that he would be smart enough to know that.

Aahhh!” he yelled.

I noticed that he was getting bigger by the second. He was also getting boxier. He was a Gacter, the Sweed’s mortal enemy!

I did not know what to do. But then, I remembered our safety code. 

“Ghfksotkswlbjsjuf!” I yelled.

This means that my friends would come and help me with what I needed. In this case, destroying the Gacter.

“Here!” said all of my friends, Fany, Eswat, Yater, and Gutony.

I told them about the problem. What happened next was awesome. First, you need to know that we have magic powers. When we think about a happy moment, a dim spiral of light comes out of our antenna and can destroy small life forms and plants. However, if we combine all of our spirals of light, we can destroy a Gacter, if we wanted to. 

“Go!” I yelled.

All my friends did. I thought of when I won the SSEHC tournament and got a gold medal. A dim spiral of light came from my antenna, and same with my friends. It created a black ball of power, and then, bam!

“We won!” I yelled.

The Gacter was dead, and we were getting azzip (pizza) at the best restaurant. We did it.

THE END


Glooey Glob the Alien

Glooey Glob is a very weird alien, as you probably already know. 

He’s green, like normal aliens, and his name is Glooey Glob.

He can transform into any forms he wants, like a tiny skyscraper, or a scary monster with razor-sharp teeth. (If you touch them, they feel so squishy and sink back in)

Glooey Glob wants to be able to do something else than just show off; he really wants to eat human food. 

For him, it’s like, well, he doesn’t know because he never tried, but it looks and smells so good.

Oh! But how is he able to smell? Good question.

He thinks of transforming into a mouth, tries to put food in it, but before he can do anything, the mouth sticks back together. 

The substance of his body is made of this kind of weird jello that you can see through, except with a weird eyeball in the middle. Glooey Glob can’t talk (but he can scream). 

He can’t eat because he has no mouth, though he does not need to.

Well actually, he can have a giant mouth that squishes down right when something goes in it! 

One day, Glooey Glob gets up, but when Glooey Glob gets up, for him he just transforms into something taller than a squishy puddle. 

Today is a big day, the day to do his plan he has been working on for weeks, the day he gets to eat foooooooooddd!!!

To hold his mouth when he is going to eat food, he thinks of putting sticks to keep it up. 

But then, there is another problem. 

He sees there are a lot of humans near the human food.

So, he goes to his old friend, whose name is Non Glooey Glob (he is not glooey), 

and borrows human clothes. 

Glooey Glob goes out and would go and get some food, except he realizes he has no human money. 

Then, he sees someone taking out money from their bag, and rushes up, secretly takes the bill, and gets back to buy some food.

Except, he steps on the person’s foot and the human says, 

“Help someone is stealing my money!”

Every single human looks at Glooey Glob, and Glooey Glob is scared he will be discovered, so he stands as still as a stick. 

The problem is, when he thinks about a stick, it makes him transform into a stick!

So, the clothes he is wearing fall off and everybody sees he is an alien, and they all scream out,

“An alien! An alien!” 

Weird things called cars with lights flashing and people in blue start coming out,

toward him. 

So, he thinks that transforming into a tree, and blending in with the other trees around would maybe make them not see him. 

But, apparently, his idea is bad because a tree cannot move. 

He is taken by the humans in blue, and brought to this weird place with metal bars in front of him, a bed that he did not know how to use, and toilets that he thought might be a good way to take a bath.

After he has enjoyed his small bath, he does not know if the bars were supposed to stop him from leaving or not, but he just transforms into a snake and slides through them to then transform back into a human-ish form.

He starts walking around, looking for something to do. 

He sees a door with a sign that says “cafeteria” and thinks it might be good to investigate. 

But when his one eye sees what is inside, he runnnnnns in, and screams

“Foooooooooddd!!!”

But the only sound that comes out is, 

“Oaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaeee!!!”

Because, remember, he can’t talk.

Well after that you would think there would be no food left, but the problem is when Glooey Glob eats, the food has nowhere to go, so it just shoots back out with slimy bits on it.

So after a few minutes, all that was left was food everywhere, a nice and happy Glooey Glob, and a very mad cook.

When the cook sees Glooey Glob, he runs and says, “Help, guards, help!!!”

A bunch of humans in blue come and take Glooey Glob to a room almost the same as the other one, with a bed and toilets (for him a small bath). The only thing that is different is instead of metal bars, there is a door.

This time he was sure he was not supposed to escape.

He thinks humans are dumb because there is a latch that can be opened on the side of the door, so he opens it to escape, but on the other side is a tray of food, so he takes it and swallows it instantly. 

After that, he hears the bell ring, and out of nowhere a voice says, “Lunchtime! Everybody head to the cafeteria!” 

So, he remembers the word on the door and runs to the door! He sees a bunch of other prisoners. 

They all have an orange outfit, and he is jealous he didn’t get one. 

When Glooey Glob first arrived, they were about to give him one of those outfits, but he doesn’t get why they took it back after trying it on (because he obviously did not fit).

In the cafeteria, after about five minutes, all that was left was a bunch of humans in orange lined to the wall, trying to dodge from the food flying everywhere, that obviously was Glooey Glob eating. 

This is what happens when Glooey Glob eats: it looks like a giant monster with a thousand hands (not exaggerating). 

Each of them is holding a piece of food, trying to be the first one to put it in the big mouth that was not even chewing them, but ejecting them right out.

After a while, more humans in blue came and when they saw the mess, they ran out.

A week went by, every day the same, the humans eating and eating the same food in the cafeteria. every human in the prison left giving the whole prison to Glooey Glob.

But this day is special because a lot of humans in blue come and have this pokey thing that they use and poke the jello, and then Glooey Glob passes out.

Glooey Glob wakes up in a circular room, but before he can do anything, there is a big rumbling sound and then, 

“Five, four, three, two, one, blast off!!!”

Glooey Glob goes to a window that is circular and when he looks out, he sees blasts of smoke and fire under him. 

Then he realizes that he is moving upward toward the sky, and suddenly he is scared that he will never come back.

It has been a week, and Glooey Glob has just been sitting there the whole time in the circular room.

And then he suddenly sees an opening in the ceiling that he never saw before.

So, he tries going through it.

When he goes through it, he sees a lot of humans running around, some of them pushing on buttons all around, some of them putting on weird suits, and some of them eating food!

He has missed that thing for so long! 

So he runs up to it and grabs it, and doesn’t even worry about making a mouth. He just sticks it into his skin and it shoots right back out. Every human looks at him with a scared look, and all of them disappear into a different room. 

But then, he realizes no one is pushing the buttons! 

And the whole place is starting to slow down! 

He thinks, “Oh, if I control this thing, I can bring it back to earth.” 

So, he starts pressing weird buttons, but when he presses one button, he hears a loud screeeech from the door the humans went through, and the door detaches, and on the other side he sees darkness. 

After looking for a few more seconds, he sees the part of the spacecraft that detached and thinks it is pretty funny, that it is just this weird square thing in the middle of nowhere. 

So, he just goes back to his work, pressing buttons.

After a few more buttons, the spaceship kind of turns right, and after a few more minutes, he starts getting really hot, and sees this giant ball of fire.

And he’s heading straight for it! 

But, when he’s about to touch it, the spaceship just starts disappearing into smaller pieces, kind of like melting metal. 

But then, he touches the hot surface. 

For him, it’s as if he was taking a little bath, just a little hotter. 

After a while, swimming underneath, he starts feeling that heat go into him, like starting to actually feel the heat. 

So, he tries weirdly swimming back to the surface of the fire and lava. 

He bursts out, and instead of him starting to go back in, he just flies away, towards nothingness.

After a day of flying and nothingness, not being able to do the slightest thing, he sees a giant rock flying in the middle of nothing, and he is about to collide with it. 

He wants to dodge it, but in nothingness, he can’t move. 

So, he splats straight into the rock, and re-forms immediately, but then he feels the rock moving really fast, and he’s being pulled with it.

He can finally kind of move around on the rock. 

He sees it’s way bigger than he thinks. It’s about 30-feet long, and 15-feet high. 

And then he sees a small hole in it. When he goes in, he sees this really weird kind of creature that has eight eyes, and one leg. 

So, he comes up to it, and asks what’s going on, and then he says “Hello, what is this place?” 

But all that comes out is “Greak, glaa as scke ascrh.”

But surprisingly, the other creature seemed to understand, and responds,

“Rekiegl rk ro kreak rkar!”

Which means, in Alien language, “Welcome to my giant rock!”

Glooey Glob says, “Do you know how to go to earth?”

Alien says, “Simple! You just use my teleportation machine!”

Glooey Glob says, “What is a teleportation machine?”  

The alien says, “It’s a machine that will transport your body in a second to anywhere you want. But I can only take you to the moon, because I don’t want to be seen on earth.”

“So, can I use your machine?” Glooey Glob says.

“Aw, you don’t want to stay for a little longer?” the sad alien says.

“Well, I really want to eat food, and I’m really going to die if I don’t eat food,” Glooey Glob says. (Even though he does not need food).

“Well, okay, follow me!” says the alien.

He brings Glooey Glob into this stone cavern, and through the side, there’s what looks like a toilet. 

Which is what Glooey Glob thinks is the bath. 

The alien brings him to the toilets, and pushes a button next to it. 

And says, “To the moon!” 

The water in the toilet turns purple, and the alien jumps in. 

Glooey Glob follows. 

It feels like something is sucking him through nothingness, but it’s not like nothingness he’s been around; it’s purple nothingness.

Glooey Glob gets up and sees he’s on another asteroid, but this one is way, way, way bigger, and in the distance, he sees… earth!

Next to him is the sad alien and the toilet.

The alien says “Well, good luck,” and jumps into the toilet, disappearing with it.

Glooey Glob looks around and notices a stick with a piece of cloth on it near a spaceship, and humans around it jumping really high. 

But these humans are not normal humans — they have giant helmets that have a big piece of round glass and they are way bigger and have white suits. 

Glooey Glob, knowing that the humans will probably run away when he gets close, stays far away, but get closer and closer to the spaceship. 

When he gets there, he goes in, notices a human, but doesn’t mind, and goes to lock the doors. 

When the human sees him lock the door, he gets all scared, and screams out for the other human, but it’s too late! 

The spaceship starts going up as Glooey Glob starts pressing button after button in the control room. 

The humans that are still on the moon try jumping up towards the spaceship, but without luck, and fall back down, and stay there forever.

Another two days passed and Glooey Glob finally managed to tell the human to go back to earth, because obviously the spaceship is just going in a circle right now, with Glooey Glob controlling it. 

The human is really scared, but he still controls the spaceship back home, because this monster is going to be rewarded for bringing it back to earth.

So, another day passes, and Glooey Glob finally sees clouds around, and well, the human says something weird like, “Take this parachute and jump off!” but Glooey Glob doesn’t get what he means, and he is thinking to go eat tacos. 

The human starts running around the ship, grabbing weird material, and then he says, “Gooooo!” and jumps off the ship. 

Glooey Glob thinks this is a little weird, because he noticed the humans aren’t as squishy as him, and will probably not manage to survive the hit. But, he doesn’t care. He’s jumping off to go get tacos.

After a few minutes of freefall, he sees the human flying around with giant wings that are like 10 feet over him, and is wondering how the human is holding onto them. 

But, he doesn’t know what is happening, so he just forgets about the human, and finally lands on a weird blue surface he’s never seen before, besides in a bath. So, thinking it’s bath time, he does his usual bath, splitting into 15 pieces, and then splitting into another five pieces, and the biggest piece is juggling with the smaller pieces. After a while, the human finally arrives for bathtime, but he looks like he’s scared of the bath, because he goes onto a little floaty that is yellow with two other humans in it, and they are looking like they were waiting for him. 

The boat starts going toward Glooey Glob, and Glooey Glob, thinking it is a scary monster that is ruining his bath, tries going away, but because he is thinking of an elephant, but it’s really not working to try and swim away. 

So, they grab him, put him in the boat, and the boat starts going back towards a big tall mountain that he recognizes as the mountain right next to his house! 

Getting there, he starts walking towards the mountain, and wanting to say goodbye to the humans for bringing him back home, tries to do a nice hug. 

But, the humans are super scared of being hugged by a giant jello monster, and take out a weird looking item, click on a button on it, and a weird black ball shoots out of it, and goes through him. 

Thinking it’s a funny thing, he transforms into a piece of cheese with a bunch of holes that are the same size as the black ball. 

The human, looking even more scared, starts running away with his two other friends. Not really caring about what he was doing, he starts walking home, maybe, just maybe, having fun with a few more humans walking past.

But, without taking too much time, he arrives at his house and notices a small piece of paper on his doorstep (which is a mousehole). 

The thing is, he has a giant underground castle, but a super small door that is the size of a mouse hole. 

Glooey Glob transforms into a snake, passes through the door, grabs the piece of paper along the way, but has a hard time fitting it through the hole. 

After a few attempts at pulling it as a snake, he thought of transforming into a pair of big tweezers, which was way easier than to grab the piece of paper. 

When he reads it (it is in Alien language) he notices it is a recipe for cake! 

Which he remembers as Foooooooood!

And realizes the person who sent it is his friend, Cakeman. 

Glooey Glob is so happy to be home, especially to be able to make cake. 

But, that’s another story.

The End. 

Olivia Kokoefer

Chapter One

There once was a bowl of ramen named Olivia Kokoefer. Olivia, no matter what, would never eat bread or sandwiches cut diagonally. Never. She had kept this up for the 11 years she had been alive for. Olivia is unique. She also has unique qualities. For example, she can float magically from any height down to the ground with an umbrella, like Mary Poppins. Another one of her unique qualities is that her limbs are as skinny as a stick person’s. Although Olivia has some odd qualities, her appearance is mostly normal (other than the fact that she’s a bowl of ramen). She is the average height of an 11-year-old bowl of ramen and has short, wavy black hair. 

Olivia doesn’t necessarily go to school. She just sits at home on the counter. For her it’s quite exciting. She finds it exciting mostly because her human mom won’t let anybody eat her, and Olivia finds it funny what people will do to resist eating her. Once somebody tried to kidnap her. After that, her mom just put other not alive bowls of ramen on the counter. It kind of worked. Now Olivia just floats away when somebody glances over their shoulder to look at her. 

It may seem like Olivia lives her life without a care in the world, but that’s not true. Going to school is where most people meet their friends, and she kind of missed out on that, so now her only friend is her mom. You could consider her friends with the people who try to eat her because she sees them a lot, but Olivia doesn’t think about it that way. One day, she decided that having no friends was seriously getting to be an issue, so Olivia jumped off the counter and opened up her umbrella. It was time for an adventure (around her house, but still very exciting).

Whoosh, Olivia flew by holding onto her umbrella. Olivia does have feet. She just preferred the umbrella. When Olivia is in her Mary Poppins mode, she can control where the umbrella goes, straight, left, right, backwards, up, anywhere. Olivia flew by and took a few turns until she realized her mom went to work! She saw a truck and hopped onto the back. Now it was actually going to be an adventure.


Chapter Two

Olivia made herself comfortable over the watermelons that were spread over the bed of the truck. It was a little hard because the watermelons were big, hard lumps. Olivia stays in her house 50 percent of the time, but her mom likes to take her to her work, and sometimes they go on tours around town. After awhile, Olivia started to recognize where she was, her mom’s work. The truck didn’t slow down. It was going around 25 miles per hour. She would have to jump. The thought that went through her mind was, If I can do this, I’ll have two ways of getting out of the car. Plus she was also thinking, Ahhhhhhhh! She took three deep breaths and jumped.

Olivia opened her eyes and saw white around her. She was in heaven. Olivia saw many relatives that had passed away. 

“Grandma?” Olivia asked.

In her mind, she was in what she thought was heaven, while in reality she was just laying on the ground saying, “Grandma?”

People started to stare. When she opened her eyes and stood up, she saw she wasn’t in heaven. Olivia stood up and looked around. Suddenly, she saw her mom’s company, Clara and Kriss’s Upholstery. Clara was a good friend of her mom’s. They had started the company together. Olivia had to take two crosswalks to get to the building. But she wasn’t the kind of ramen that knew how to cross the street on her own. Her mom always carried her across. She just remembered to stay inside the striped lines on the ground, so she marched forward and figured nothing could happen. A car suddenly sped by right in front of her face.

The entire time Olivia was screaming, “Ahhhhhhhhh!”

She decided to run the rest of the crosswalk. When she approached the next crosswalk, there was a small white person in a black box. Plus everyone else was walking, so she decided to go. Finally, she reached the building. It was a tall, rectangular building that always smelled good. It was basically a really clean warehouse on the inside. Olivia never really understood why people needed doors, so she never really bothered to know what they look like or how to use them. She walked forward, stuck her little stick arms out, and walked straight into a wall. She fell flat on her back and tried again, this time in a different spot. She found what she thought was the door and walked towards it. Again, she fell flat on her back. She got up again and decided to ask somebody where the door was.

She walked into a crowd of people and asked gently, “Excuse me, could you point me in the direction of the door?”

A woman with long brown hair turned around and looked at Olivia. On the woman’s name tag were the words, Clara Tjen. Suddenly, Olivia recognized this person! It was her mom’s old business partner, until she left to do some other job that she didn’t tell them about. Clara suddenly picked her up and started running. At first, Olivia thought she was heading in the direction of the door, but then she put her in the back of a sketchy white van and drove away. Olivia started to get more nervous and worried as they got closer to their destination. All she was thinking was, Nothing good can come of this ‘adventure.’

Fifteen minutes later, the old, creaky sliding door slid open. Olivia got onto her feet, and she looked up to see a man with seriously messed up yellow teeth and a bad haircut.

He picked her up and walked halfway to the door to hear Clara say, “I’ll be back later. There were sightings of a talking orange.”

The man nodded and kept walking towards the door. Olivia noticed that Clara had a strangely deep voice. She was also thinking, How dare they compare me to a talking orange! When the man opened the door, Olivia looked around and saw different foods with some sort of ability being tortured in some way, as if they were taking their powers! Tubes were coming out from their chests and into a huge watermelon. What are they doing? thought Olivia. She finally realized they were going to do the same thing to her! She had to make a run for it! She opened her umbrella and attempted to fly away. Sadly, she looked around, and she was still in the man’s arms. She tried again. No success. Until she finally flew!

“Sweet victory!” she yelled.

She was free! Then, she took a wrong turn and banged into one of the poles in this, well, interesting building. Olivia laid there for around 20 minutes. She glanced at her wrist, remembering she could never get a watch because her wrist was too small, and all the ones that did fit her were incredibly expensive. She looked around and noticed a clock on the wall. Since she never went to school, she never learned how to read time. And she never bothered to ask her mom how to read time, so let’s just say she wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed. Olivia thought to herself, I really should just go to school. That really would solve a lot of my problems! Olivia looked up to see the same man with five others looking at her too.

“Get back to work!” a tall woman who looked like she could beat anybody in a physical confrontation barked.

Like Clara, this woman also had a name tag, but her straight, black hair was blocking part of it, so all she saw was, Soph and ng. Olivia didn’t recognize her, but she also didn’t not recognize her. It’s like she was around when Olivia was just a small cup of ramen or something like that. The woman picked Olivia up, looked left and right, and headed for the bathroom. Was she trying to save her? The woman sat her down on the edge of the bathroom sink, looked at her closely, and looked all directions, even under the bathroom stalls.

“Run,” the woman said and then put Olivia on the floor and motioned for the door near the back of the room.

Olivia nodded and headed for the door.

I guess she was going too slow because the woman had to say, “Go, go now,” a lot.

Olivia began to pick up the pace, but again she never learned how to use a door, so she slammed right into it like she did with the other door, plus the pole too. Again she fell flat on her back. The woman sighed and shook her head. She ran over (it was actually more of a casual jog) and pushed the door open. Olivia watched her open the door for future reference. The woman motioned with her hand for her to go be free in the dark, scary alleyway. Olivia began down the road and looked back to say “thank you” to the woman, but she had already turned around. Her hair spun around and revealed more of her name tag. It read Sophia Wong. Though Olivia now knew this mysterious person’s name, she still was not sure who this person was.

Olivia continued down the alleyway until she heard a low growl coming from some old trash cans a few feet away. Olivia stopped and looked straight at the trash cans. There were no signs of movement. Then, Olivia heard the low growl again, only this time it sounded closer, much closer. She turned around and saw a huge black dog, slobber running from its snout. The dog looked rather skinny, as if it hadn’t eaten in a while. Olivia slowly started to walk in the other direction, then she turned around and began to run, still only looking at the dog. Bang! Olivia hit a fence. She thought to herself, How can such an awesome bowl of ramen hit so many things?! The dog crept closer. This time it seemed much more angry.

The dog kept creeping closer to Olivia, when a person suddenly said, “Frankie, don’t traumatize the ramen.”

The person got closer. It was hard for Olivia to get a good look at the person because the dog was blocking her view. The thing she could see was, like Clara and Sophia, he had a name tag, only she couldn’t read his. The man finally picked up the dog, and it turned out it was actually quite a small dog. The man was wearing a blazer and a turtle neck along with, what looked like, fancy pants. This man was not like the others. He had a nice haircut, smelled good, and had very straight, white teeth. 

“Hello, Olivia,” the man said in a calm, evil voice, like the one bad guys in movies use. “I’ve been waiting for you.” He looked at Olivia and laughed quietly. “I have plans for you,” he said, along with his evil, slow laugh.


Chapter Three

Olivia opened her eyes to see at least half a dozen men standing in a circle around something. She waited for her eyes to focus. Finally, she saw it. It was a talking orange with ropes wrapped around its arms and legs, plus duct tape over its mouth. Olivia was startled when she felt a hand touch her shoulder. She turned and saw the same man from before, the well dressed one. The man plopped her down next to the orange. The orange turned and looked directly into Olivia’s eyes. Chills went down her spine when she saw the fear in his eyes. A rush of adrenaline coursed through her veins, as if her body was telling her, Run!!! But Olivia refused to. Every bad scenario happened either because she hadn’t gone to school or because she attempted to run. She was going to stay put with this orange.

Olivia turned and caught a glimpse of somebody tied up in the closet. Who was that? Olivia thought to herself. The evil man strode by Olivia and the orange. He kept walking until he reached a wooden door. He wrenched it open and disappeared into the room. Finally somebody walked out. It was Clara! She’s here to save me! Olivia hoped, until she remembered Clara was the one who snatched her into the van in the first place.

Three hours later, Olivia was starting to get hungry. She looked around and didn’t see anything. She stood up but fell back down because the orange pulled her down, plus she was tied up with ropes too. The orange gestured to the duct tape covering his mouth. She got the hint and ripped it off when no one was looking.

He whispered into Olivia’s ear, “I have a plan.”

“You want to do what?!” Olivia exclaimed a little too loudly.

One of the men in the circle around them turned around but didn’t seem to have heard anything. 

“You want to do what?” Olivia said quieter this time.

The orange shot her a look clearly saying, Was I not clear? 

Olivia looked around and thought, Is this a good idea? She finally decided.

Olivia leaned over and whispered into the orange’s ear, “Let’s do this thing.” 

The orange smiled from ear to ear. They were ready.

After ‘rehearsing’ several times, the plan was in motion.

 “Remember, you fly away and distract the men while I run into the escape hole.” The orange gestured to a small hole, big enough for a bowl of ramen and an orange, but too small for a human. “Then I’ll distract the men while you run into the hole, and we’ll have sweet victory!”

Olivia nodded, remembering the time she thought she had sweet victory. She wasn’t sure if the plan would work, but she didn’t want to tamp down the orange’s enthusiasm, and she did not want to have to make up a plan of her own, so she went with it. 

Olivia took three deep breaths and thought, Go big and go home. First, she untied the orange. It was a bit of a struggle to try and untie him with stick arms, plus trying to do it without being seen. It was a little easier than it would’ve been if she didn’t have stick arms, because who can tightly tie stick arms together? The orange pretended like he was still tied up, then he nodded to the direction of the dining room table behind the wall of men watching a football game and drinking beer, gesturing to fly over there. Then, one of them stood up, creating an opening. Consequently, Olivia opened up her umbrella and glided right in between them. She wanted them to notice her, but not quite yet. Sadly, she accidentally clipped one of the men’s ears and caught their attention a little too soon. She looked behind the men to try and see whether or not the orange had made it in the escape hole that the rats use, and yes there are rats! At first she couldn’t see him, but then she looked at the spot where they were tied up before and saw his big foot stuck in the edge of the carpet. She had to save him or else the men would get both of them. Suddenly, she had a plan.


Chapter Four

Swoop in, grab the orange, and fly to the escape hole. Swoop in, grab the orange, and fly to the escape hole. Olivia repeated to herself over and over. She didn’t have much time to rethink her plan because half the men were just starting to realize Olivia was free and just hovering in the air, while the other half of the men were processing the fact that the orange was attempting to escape. All in all, they could agree the “very well-thought-out” plan was failing miserably. Olivia flew through the small crowd of clueless men and grabbed the orange’s hand. To Olivia’s surprise, the orange came out of the crack really easily.

“Well, that was a close one!” Olivia exclaimed.

She was so surprised by how easy it was. She accidentally went out a door and into the world. However, this was better than the hole, much better. Olivia landed in a nearby park. When she looked behind her, she realized she wasn’t holding onto the orange’s hand. She was holding onto a smooth twig. You have got to be kidding me! Who holds a twig in the air! Olivia, without even thinking, flew back to the building. She landed on the window sill and tiptoed in through the door, as not to alarm anybody. When she looked left and right, there was nobody there. She flew backwards to notice she went to the wrong building. Olivia jumped out the doorway and headed out the window. She flew to the right building this time and did the same thing. She landed on the window sill and quietly headed in the doorway. She looked left and right again. This time she saw the men flinging something into the closet where she saw the other thing or person from before. The orange! Olivia thought and, well, hoped. She raced in through the crack in the doorway before it closed.

“What was that?!” one of the men asked, but then didn’t seem to care after a while.

Olivia glanced around the corner. Nothing. Then, around the other corner. Nothing. She walked forward and, yet again, bumped into something. Olivia fell flat on her face.

“Oh my god, are you okay?” a voice said from the shadows.

Olivia, rubbing her bowl, looked up to see a very slim figure that seemed to be sitting on a chair.

“Mmm hmm,” Olivia mumbled.

She looked closely at the figure. Again she couldn’t make out when or where she might’ve encountered this person before. Olivia realized one of the only solutions would be to use her communication skills.

“Hello?” Olivia mumbled/whispered.

She could see the figure readjusting in their seat. The more Olivia examined this person, the more she came to the conclusion it was a woman whom she’d met before. 

“Yes?” the woman replied hopefully.

Who is that? Olivia kept thinking to herself. She felt somebody pick her up and put her on their lap. The woman leaned forward and turned on the light in the small closet. 

Olivia put her stick arm up to block the blinding light. She finally took her arm away. She saw a woman with long, wavy brown hair. Olivia looked at this person as if it was someone she used to be very close friends with.

“Do I know you?” Olivia said, hoping for an answer.

“That hurts,” the woman mumbled. “I am your mom’s business partner.”

Olivia racked her brain to think of who this person might be. Finally, a name popped into her head. Was it Clara?

“Clara?” Olivia asked, “Clara Tjen?” Olivia then thought, No, it can’t be her. She left here earlier! 

“Yes!” Clara laughed with joy.

“But you left here earlier. How are you here?” Olivia asked.

Clara sighed and said, “Let me explain.”


Chapter Five

“Uh-huh, you expect me to believe that you were kidnapped and shoved in this closet while a man put on your clothes?” Olivia asked as she sat in Clara’s lap. 

“This is why I don’t chat with talking food anymore,” Clara mumbled.

“What was that?” Olivia asked.

“Nothing.” 

“Have you seen a talking orange recently?”

“You mean that one?” Clara asked as she pointed to the back of the room.

Olivia turned her head to see an orange duct taped to a wall.

“You duct taped him to a wall?” Olivia asked.

“Yep,” Clara replied.

Olivia nodded, and then they high-fived.

“Nice job,” Olivia told her old friend.

“We need a plan to get out of here,” Clara said. “You guys had an interesting plan I watched play out a while ago.”

Olivia looked over to the orange and asked, “Who holds a super smooth stick in the air?”

“Did you keep it?” he asked

“Nope, I threw it out the window. It didn’t appear useful in any way.” Olivia smiled at the orange as if to say, Ha.

“Back to making a plan, people. We need to get out of here, those people are monsters!” Clara encouraged. “Who came up with that last plan?”

“I did the first one. The ‘rescue mission’ one was her idea,” the orange replied.

“So, Olivia is the better plan maker,” Clara said. 

“Why don’t we just sneak out the window right on the other side of this door? It’s like right there,” Olivia replied, agreeing with Clara that she was the better plan maker.

“Sure, why not?” Clara asked.

The orange stayed taped to the wall in awe by how simple and flaw-ful their plan was.

“I’d like to see how that turns out for you two,” the orange added.

“Oh no, mister, you’re coming with us,” Clara and Olivia said in unison.

Clara walked to the back of the closet and untaped the orange. Clara held the orange as Olivia quietly crept over to the door.

“Now, there could be a group of men right there, so be cautious,” Olivia warned.

Olivia very quietly crept the door open, as Clara tiptoed up next to her. Olivia peered out of the opening between the door and the doorway. Nothing. Where is everybody? Clara peered out above Olivia and also saw nothing.

“They must be on their lunch break!” Clara said, nodding her head.

“Really, you knew they had a lunch break the whole time?!” Olivia asked.

Clara just shrugged and motioned for Olivia to go towards the window. Olivia hurried to the window and sat on the ledge and waited for Clara and the orange to get there.

“Let’s go, let’s go, people!” Olivia rushed.

Clara and the orange ran over.

“Hold on to me somewhere, and I’ll fly us to wherever you guys want to go,” Olivia said.

Clara grabbed onto Olivia’s leg, and the orange grabbed onto Olivia’s other leg. Olivia opened up her umbrella, and they flew!

“Where to, orange?” Olivia asked as if she were a bus driver.

“Right here on top of that house,” the orange replied.

Olivia looked to the right and saw a whole bunch of oranges standing on the roof of a short building waving their arms side to side. Olivia landed right next to the parade of oranges and set the orange down.

“Thank you!” the oranges told Olivia.

“No problem,” Olivia replied as she flew away. “Where to, Clara?”

“Over there,” Clara exclaimed as she pointed to a tall apartment building next to a grocery store.

Olivia landed on the top and said her final goodbyes to Clara as she flew off to her house.

A few minutes later, she was in her house knocking on the door. Her mom opened the door and greeted her with a huge hug.

“I missed you!” her mom told her as they were hugging. “But it’s time to go to bed, so shoo shoo.”

Olivia headed upstairs to go to bed. She got under the covers and said, “Oh well, one day I’ll have some friends.”

“Hello?” a muffled voice asked.

Olivia sat up.

“Yes?” she said. “Who’s there?”

“Us!” they said.

Olivia looked around but couldn’t seem to see anything.

“Up here, in your bowl!” one voice said.

Olivia looked in her mirror and saw a whole bunch of foods in her bowl waving. Olivia smiled. She had friends!

THE END


the big issue

Crash is the sound I hear. I quickly grab my brother. He was hit in the crash. I throw him out my door just before I get out. I grab my phone and call 911. The ambulance arrives. I help them take my brother in the car, and they drive away with me running. I trip. Bang, I hear as my head hits the pavement. I reach for my phone. Dang. It broke when it hit the pavement. My vision is fading. I prepare myself for a bright light, but it doesn’t come. Then I pass out. I wake up in the hospital next to my brother, who isn’t moving. I’m worried. The doctor comes in.

I ask him, “What happened?”

He says I fell, but I don’t understand. I have fallen before. Why is this different?

Then I ask, “Is my brother okay?”

He says, “He’s fine, just in a coma.”

Then I ask, “Where are my parents?”

He says, “Outside.”

Then I say, “Wait, what happened to my brother?”

He says, “He was with you in the car.”

I say, “I wasn’t hurt?”

He says, “You were not.”

“How about my parents?” I say.

He says, “Your parents were not harmed.”

Three days later… 

“But Mom, I don’t want a new car. I will not get in it in my whole life.”

“Yes you will,” says Mom.

“No I won’t,” I say.

“Okay, no dinner for you,” says Mom.

“Fine, I would rather not eat than take another chance at death,” I say.

Four days later… 

“Fine, I’ll get in the car,” I say as I take a load of food and put it on my plate.

One day later… 

I get in the car, horrified of what happened one week ago.


Cloudy With a Chance of War

Chapter One

One day in Southern Foodafonia, the King of the Hot Dog Empire called a meeting with the Lord of Hambergria.

“We must go to war!” shouted King Hot Dog.

“With who?” asked Lord Hamburger, who was more intelligent than the hot dog.

“The humans!” shouted King Hot Dog.

“Okay?” said Lord Hamburger.

Back in human land… 

“La la la!” shouted the King of Lord of King 2 of Human Land. “I am so cool!!” he shouted. 

“King!” shouted a random person who ran into the throne room/bathroom/kitchen/cheese storage.

“King Hot Dog and Lord Hamburger have gone to battle!”

“With who?” asked the king.

“With you!” screamed the very random person.

“How do you know?” asked the king.

“Because they told me,” answered the person. 

“What? How? Why did they tell you?” asked the king.

“They told me, so I can kill you!”

Then he fell down. Confused, the king looked around the room.

“Die!!!” 


Chapter Two 

The King of Humans spun around and saw a hot dog running from the person who was actually a hot dog in a costume. The king ran from the room, shouting more curse words than a normal person should know — with the hot dog still running after him. The king ran into the town and jumped into the well. The hot dog fell into the water and died.

One hour later… 

After the king was pulled out of the well, he made an announcement. “The hot dogs have attacked us! They tried to kill me! And they ruined this nice shirt I had on — but anyway! We will now go to war! To war! To war!! To war!!!


Chapter Three

“Sir!” said the man.

“What do you want?” snapped the general of the weapon makers of the humans.

“The king needs 40 cannons by Flusday!” said the man.

“Fine,” said the general.

“Oh, also can you make me a carrot gun?” asked the man.

“Why?” asked the general.

“For fun,” replied the man.

“Okay,” said the general.

“Excellent… excellent!” said the man who was rubbing his hands together.

“Wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo!” screamed the Hot Dog King as he danced on the toilet. “Wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo wo!” he shouted.

“Uh… what are you doing?” asked Lord of Hambergria.

“Wo!” shouted the King of the Hot Dog as he shook his red butt at Lord Hamburger.

“Um… I need to go now,” said the Hamburger King as he walked out the door.

“Not so fast!” screamed the Hot Dog King as he pulled a lever behind him.

Suddenly the door slammed shut and locked itself.

“Lock activated,” said a computer voice.

“Eat some bread,” said the Hot Dog King as he tossed a loaf of bread at the Hamburger Lord.

“Fine,” said King Hamburger, and he started to cut the bread. 


Chapter Four

Ding dong! rang the doorbell.

“Who is it?” asked the person inside.

When no one answered, he came to the door. The man opened the door. He was the general. The general looked around and saw a letter on the ground. The general picked up the letter off the ground. He started to read the letter. Suddenly his face looked angry.

“Boom boom monkey!!!” he shouted.

“Sir, the cannons are ready!” said the general of the weapon makers.

“Good… they will pay for what they did to my shirt!” said King Human.

“And they will pay for the letter they sent to me!” said the general as he ripped up the letter in his hands.

“The hot dogs and the hamburgers will die!!!” screamed the king and general at the same time.

“Ho ha ho ha ho ha he he he he he ho!!! With cheese and peas! So go to come!!! Come! Come! Come! Ha ha ha ha ha!”

“Yay! It’s my birthday today!”

“Do we get cake?”

“And fun?!”

“Yes!”

“Yay!” screamed a group of kids at a birthday party.

“Stop screaming! Stop it!” shouted an angry parent.

“Yay cake!” screamed the kids. 

Boom!

“Run for your life!” screamed someone outside. “The hot dogs are attacking!”

The kids ran to the window to see what was happening.

Soon they started to scream, “The city is gone!”

“Mommy!”

“Run!”

“I want my mommy!”

Suddenly the building exploded. Boom!


Chapter Five

“We need help! We must defeat the hot dogs! So I asked for help. Meet… the cows!!!” said the King of the Humans as he opened the door behind him.

“Moo,” said a cow.

The general blinked. “So all the humans in this world are ruled by a crazy person who hires cows to do his bidding?!” said the general.

“Yes!” said the king as he shook his head.

“Well… hello!” said a voice.

The general jumped. He looked around the room but saw no one.

“I’m over here!” said the voice again.

The general looked at the cow. “You can talk?!” said the general.

“I am smart, so I can talk,” said the cow, “and I have a suit, so I am a business cow.”

The general’s mouth dropped. “Bu-bu… ” he said.

“Pizza army, come come come come!!!”

“Pizza!”

“Pizza!”

“Pizza!”

“If hot dogs win this war, we all die! So listen up! This is the battle strategy! We sneak the 100-foot tank past the great hot dog wall, then boom bam boom boom boom bam boom!!! Ha ha ha!” said the King of Humans. “Now… go!!!” he screamed.

The human army ran up the hill as fast as they could.

“Stop!” said a voice.

The man?” said the king. “What are you doing?” asked the king.

“Killing you! Pizza, attack!!!” said the man.

“Pizza!” screamed a lot of voices.

Then everything went black.

“Moo!”

“Moo moo moooooo!”

“Moo!” said a lot of cows.

“Yes… okay. Tom, more pizza… no… no pepperoni!” said the cow in a suit.

Beep-boop-beep.

“Yes?” said the cow in a suit as he picked up a phone.

“Help!!!” screamed a voice from the phone.

“Okay — but who are you?” asked the cow.

The King of Humans!!!” screamed the human phone.

“Okay, but can you wait a few hours? Tom wants pizza,” said the cow.

“No, come now!” screamed the king.

“Fine,” said the cow.

“He has no interest in business,” said the cow sadly.


Chapter Six

“Moo.”

“No. Not now, Fred. We need to save them.”

“Moo!”

“I said no! No more talk.”

“Moo!”

“Fine… you can go… but be quick!” said a cow who was wearing a suit.

He watched as Fred ran off to the bathroom. Beep… boop… beep!

“Who is it?” asked the cow as he picked up the phone

“Help!” screamed the person who called.

“Is this the King of Humans?”

“Yes!” screamed the King of Humans.

“Help!” he screamed again.

“Okay, I’m coming,” said the cow.

“Come faster!!!” screamed the king.

“Do you have an army to come save me?! And me only! Who cares about everyone else?” said the king.

“Yes, I have an army of cows with me,” answered the cow.

“Cows?! What can cows do?!” screamed the king.

“My cows know kung fu,” answered the cow calmly. “Bye,” said the cow, and he put the phone down.

Boom!

“No!” said the King of Humans.

“Don’t blow my head off!”

“Pizza pizza,” said a voice.

“No!” he screamed 

Crash!

“No!” he screamed.

The king closed his eyes.

Please no,” he whimpered.

“Get up,” said a voice.

The king slowly opened his eyes and saw… a cow standing in front of him.

“Cow!” shouted the king happily.

“Business cow,” corrected the business cow.

“Come with me please,” said the business cow.

“Okay,” answered the king.

“Can I have water?” he asked. 

Ten minutes later… 

“Are the tanks ready?”

“Yes.”

“Are the cannons ready?”

“Yes.”

“Are the guns ready?”

“Yes.”

“Is all the other stuff ready?”

“Yes.”

“Good… ” 


Chapter Seven

“Charge!!!” screamed the general as the two armies crashed into each other.

Boom!

“General!” screamed a soldier.

The general ran to him.

“What?” he asked.

“This person exploded!” said the soldier.

“What?” asked the general.

“This person exploded!” repeated the soldier.

“I know that!” said the general. “But people don’t explode?!”

“But he did!” said the soldier. “And if you don’t believe me, your brain is smaller than dirt!!!”

Then he fainted.

Boom! The head of a soldier came flying and hit the general in the head.

“What was that?!” the general said to no one.

Boom!

“Die!!” said a hot dog.

The general jumped out of the way and ate the hot dog.

“General!” said a soldier.

“What?” asked the general.

“My friend blew up!” said the soldier.

“Another person?!” asked the general.

“Yes!” said the soldier.

“Did something seem strange today?” asked the general.

“Um… yes, the food person seemed really old, and he had a lot of carrots,” said the soldier.

“The man! He must have used the carrot gun!” exclaimed the general. “How many people ate the carrots?” he asked the soldier.

“Everyone! But not me. I hate carrots,” answered the soldier.

“No… ” said the general slowly. “Run!” he screamed to the soldier.

Boom!!! The general and the soldier ran as fast as they could. Boom!!! Boom!!! Boom!!! Boom!!!

“Ow!” said the soldier.

“What?” asked the general.

“Something hit me… ” said the soldier, then he fell asleep.

“Wha… ?” said the general.

Then everything went black.

“Wake up!”

“I said wake up!”

“Wake up!!!”

“Blok?” said the general sleepily.

“Wake up!!!”

“What? Where am I?” asked the general.

“You’re in the kingdom!” The general blinked twice and then looked around.

“The king?!’” the general exclaimed.

“Yes,” said the king.

“What happened? Did we win?” asked the general.

“Yes,” answered the king.

“Why am I tied up?” asked the general.

“I was bored,” replied the King of the Humans.

The general looked around the room — the soldier was asleep next to him. Suddenly, somebody in a different room screamed.

“Who was that?” asked the general.

“That was the man,” said the king. “We found him running toward the cheese city. We put him in the fart chamber with the Hot Dog and Hamburger King,” said the king.

THE END

What Happened?

Olivia’s Chapter

Jessica is hosting a perfectly calm birthday sleepover at her house until her mother hears “Ahhhh!” She gets nervous, so she quickly runs upstairs to us. 

“What happened?” Jessica’s mom questions us.

“Nothing,” Jessica and I say at the same time.

“Okay, but where is Bella?” Jessica’s mother, Ms. Jada, asks.

“In the bathroom,” Jessica quickly answers.

Then her mother stares at us suspiciously as she walks out of the door. We think that she leaves, but she is actually still standing by the door eavesdropping.

“Do you think we should tell someone?” I say. 

“Someone like who?” Jessica replies.

“What are you two hiding?” Jessica’s mother says in a really serious voice as she sticks her head in the door.

“Nothing,” we say at the same time again.

“Tell me now, or I will send Olivia and Bella home and never ever let you have a sleepover or a playdate again,” Jada says as she crosses her arms.

Jessica and I stare at each other and don’t talk. But after a while, we stare at each other again and nod.

“The news we are going to share to you is good and bad,” Jessica says in a serious voice. But finally after a silent moment, Jessica blurts out really fast, “The bad news is that we dared Bella to do Bloody Mary in the bathroom, and when we went back in there to check on her, she was not there.”

What?” Jessica’s mom yells.

“But the good news is that we found on the mirror a note written with lipstick that said Kiss Your Friend Goodbye.

That is not good news!” Ms. Jada shouts at me.


Jessica’s Chapter

After Olivia finishes sharing her “Good News” to my mom, she rushes quickly into the bathroom and sees the red letters and starts to panic. Bella is a really good friend of mine, but she is not as close to me as Olivia. Olivia and I have been friends since we were three years old, eight years ago, and I met Bella when I was 10, last year. The only reason that I dared Bella to do Bloody Mary is because before she went missing we were playing truth or dare, and I dared Bella to do Bloody Mary. Bloody Mary basically is a folklore legend consisting of a ghost, phantom, or spirit conjured to reveal the future. She is said to appear in a mirror when her name is chanted repeatedly. At first I am a little mad at myself for daring Bella to do Bloody Mary. But at the same time, I am dying on the inside. I am dying because my mother is having a dramatic seizure panic attack thing. For the past like 10 minutes, Olivia and I have been exchanging weirdly confused looks.

After a while of no one talking, Olivia speaks up and says, “Should I go home?”

And before I even get to answer, my mom comes out of her panic attack, grabs Olivia’s arm, and yells no.

After another ten minutes of not talking, my mom says, “We have to write a note back to whoever took Bella.”

“What?” Olivia and I shout.

“What do you mean by ‘what’? You got yourself into this mess, and you’re lucky I am trying to get you out of it,” my mom yells.

“But this is not our fault,” I say to my mom.

“Oh, yes it is,” my mom snaps. 

Then I look over at Olivia and ask, “This isn’t our fault, right?”

But all Olivia does is look down on the ground and doesn’t say anything.

But after one minute of silence, Olivia speaks up and says, “It is our fault.”

Then I yell out, “What?!

And from out of nowhere, my mom says, “What did I tell you?”

“Cut it out. Right now all we need to do is find Bella. Am I right?” Olivia says.

Then my mom and I look at each other, nod, and say, “Yes” at the same time.


Olivia’s Chapter

Jessica, Ms. Jada, and I sit in a circle on the carpet in the living room and brainstorm what could have happened to Bella.

Before anyone can speak, I say, “Maybe she is just pranking us.” 

“No she isn’t,” Jessica replies.

“How do you know that she isn’t pranking us?” I respond.

“How do you know that she is?” Jessica questions back to me.

“Girls, I think that is enough. We should go back to brainstorming,” Ms. Jada says.

Then Jessica walks over to the sofa and turns the news on, and on the news is a big muscly man on TV, and the headline is Criminal Released out of Wisconsin Jail after several months of incarceration.

“O-M-G, I think I know what happened to Bella!” Jessica yells.

“What?” Ms. Jada and I say at the same time.

“Olivia, do you remember when Bella told us about her father and how he is a criminal,” Jessica says to me.

“Yeah,” I say.

“Well, maybe he was the one who took Bella!” Jessica yells.


Jessica’s Chapter

So Bella told Olivia and I that her dad got arrested a few months back for robbing people, and he would be released some time late October, and it is late October! She says that she and her mom moved from Wisconsin to California so they could hide from Bella’s dad. Bella loves her dad even though he is a criminal. She says that she misses him so much sometimes. And they have been getting lots of voicemails saying, “I know where you live,” and stuff like that.


Bella’s Chapter 

O-M-G! I am so freaked out. A big muscly man with a mask on grabs me by the neck and jumps out of the window with his hand over my mouth. I do not get hurt because there is a mattress that these other men with masks are holding. But right now I am in the back on a black van yelling and screaming for help with my hands and feet tied together, and one of the men hops in the back. He puts tape on my mouth and puts a blindfold on my eyes. After a while the van stops, and all I hear is the backdoor of the van opening and someone hopping into the back, which makes the van rumble and shake a bit. Then this person takes the blindfold off of me, and all I see is a man with a black mask and cut out patches where his eyes are. But then he takes off his mask, and I recognize this face. While I am staring deeply at this person, he is untying my hands and arms.

After five minutes, I shout out, “Dad, is that you?”

And my dad nods. I am just so shocked and filled with questions, but all I do is hug him.


Jada (Jessica’s Mom)

To be honest, I am not worried about Bella being missing because anyone who would take that girl will return her the next minute. She is cute and all, but her attitude isn’t. Her mother is a pretty nice person, but she gets on my nerves when she gives me that fake smile of hers. When Jessica showed me that guy on TV who was Bella’s dad, what I said in my head was, No surprise that Bella’s mom would marry a criminal.

“Hey, Jessica, can you pass me the phone?” I ask Jessica.

“Sure,” Jessica replies and hands me the phone.

Then I hold the phone in my hand and ask Jessica, “What is the number of Bella’s not so good, fake smiling, no good taste in men mother?”

“Well, Mom, stop being rude, and by the way, here’s her number.”

Then I enter the number and press call. Then Bella’s mom answers the phone.

“Hey, Jada, how are you and the girls doing?”

“I am doing good.”

“And the girls?”

“Olivia and Jessica are good.”

“What about Bella?”

“Sooo… Bella technically went missing, and the girls think her father took her, and by the way, you have no good taste in men. Bye,” I say, then hang up the phone.


Caroline (Bella’s Mom)

Right now I am literally freaking out! I am taking a cab over to Jada’s house. Oh that… rat is going to get what she deserves. She will never ever be able to watch Bella, and Bella will never be able to be friends with Jessica. The kid is a nice girl, it’s just her mother. I never really liked Jada, but I let Bella go because I do want her to make some new friends, and I do not want to get in her way. I know that Bella’s only friend is Jessica, and I really don’t want to break their friendship. Then, there’s this other girl named Olivia who’s always trying to take Jessica away from Bella. Bella tries to tell me that they’ve been friends for a while and they can talk, but that’s not what I think. When Jada first told me Bella went missing, my heart jumped. Bella is my only child, and I really do not want to lose her. And if her father took her, and I catch him, I’m going to give him a piece of my mind. When I first found out that Bella’s father was a criminal, I was shocked, because at home he was the most caring husband. I would not have thought that he would ever do that. But ever since we moved away from Bella’s dad, Bella has felt like not having two parents in her life is the worst thing in the world. I always tell her that it isn’t, but I know that Bella and her father have always had a strong relationship that I never wanted to end, but I could never trust someone who was a thief around my child. That is just a bad influence.


Alex (Bella’s Father)

Bella, Caroline, and I have always had a strong relationship. But ever since they found out that I was stealing, they started feeling uncomfortable around me, I guess. I get why they would feel uncomfortable, but it broke my heart. The only reason why I was stealing is because there’s an agency, and I used to work for this guy named Jeffrey Siegel, and basically he paid people $100 a week for every five items we stole. I stole many things, but I never told Caroline or Bella the reason why. Bella and I have always had a really close relationship. Even Caroline and I had one too, but Bella is a forgiving person. But on the other hand, Bella’s mother, Caroline, is not. Once, I accidentally broke one of her favorite hair accessories, and she wouldn’t talk to me the whole day. I even offered to buy her a new one, but she refused. And once, I broke one of Bella’s squishy foam balls, and she forgave me and said I didn’t have to buy her a new one. There’s a big difference between Bella and her mother, but I still love them both equally. I’m not sure if I already mentioned this, but Bella’s mother is a drama queen. She just wants to make everything she says a big deal, around me at least. I regret taking Bella, but if I had told Bella to come with me, I just know she would have refused. After all the stealing I’ve done, I probably lost her trust. All the people who helped me “kidnap” Bella had told me that if I do this, I will lose her trust even more, but I told them I desperately wanted to see my daughter.


Bella’s Chapter

I just remember that I had my phone in my back pocket, so I ask my dad if I can call my mom. 

“No! Please, no! She is going to get really pissed off, like really really pissed off!”

“Please, Dad!”

“No.”

“But what if she’s worried about where I am?”

“Okay, fine.”

Then I quickly pull my phone out of my pocket and call my mom. Before I dial my mom’s number, I see that there are 27 missed calls from her. I know that she is definitely worried about me. Then she picks up. 

“Hello, Mom?”

“Bella, is that you?”

“Yeah, Mom. Were you worried about me?”

“Yes, absolutely. Where are you?”
“I… actually don’t know.”

“What do you mean by that?”

“What I mean by that is, long story short, Dad kidnapped me when I was in the bathroom at Jessica’s house, and he put me in the back of a van, put a blindfold on me, and now he’s here with me in the middle of nowhere with his crew.”

“What?!” Mom shouts. “Pass the phone to your dad right now!”

Then I take the phone off of my ear, cover the microphone, and I mouth to my dad, “She wants to talk to you.”

My dad takes a deep breath and grabs the phone out of my hands. “Hi, sweetie,” my dad says over the phone in a scared voice.

“Who you calling sweetie, ‘cause I know you’re not talking to me!”

“I’m so sorry for what I did to Bella.”

“One, you should not be apologizing to me, and two, why would you do it?” 

“I only did it because I knew that if I asked your permission to spend time with Bella, you would say no, so the only way I could get Bella is to kidnap her.”

“Seriously? You had to kidnap her? I would’ve let you spend time with Bella if you just asked, because I know that Bella has missed you over the years.”

“I am very, very, very sorry, and I hope you and Bella forgive me.”

“I do forgive you. I just have one question. How did you find out that Bella was having a sleepover with Jessica?”

Right now I just love this moment but hate this moment. I love how my dad is apologizing and being all nice, but I hate how my mom is just asking so many questions, and she seems very annoyed. I really hope that will change later on in the conversation.

“Well, there’s a guy who lives around there, and I asked him if he saw a girl around there with long brown hair and hazel eyes, and he said yes.”

“Are you serious? You did all of this just to find out where Bella is?”

“Yes, I’ll do anything to see my daughter again.”

“Well you did not have to kidnap her.

“Well I kind — ”

Then my mom interrupts before my dad could finish and says, “Well you kind of what?”

“Well I kind of think your face is… pretty?”

“My face being pretty should not be something you kind of think. It should be a true fact for you. Bye.”

Then my dad hands over the phone to me and mouths the word “crazy” to me.


Jada’s Chapter (Jessica’s Mom)

I suddenly hear a ring coming from my door.

“Who is it?” I shout. 

“It’s Bella’s mom, Caroline,” she says in an angry voice.

Then I yell back, “Before you come in my house, you have to lose that tone!”

“Fine,” Caroline says, sounding annoyed.

“I still need you to fix that tone.”

“Okay,” Caroline says in a sweet voice.

The first thing Caroline does when she walks in is roll her eyes.

I hate it when people roll their eyes at me, so I say, “Keep rolling your eyes, and maybe you’ll find a brain.”

Then she fires back and says, “Excuse me? I don’t even want to be here. I’m just here because you lost my daughter,” she says while pointing her finger directly at my face. 

I slap her finger out of my face and say, “I didn’t even want your daughter to be here. Jessica did.”

Then she moves one step closer to me, and this time her face is two inches away from mine. She starts screaming stuff at me like, “I trusted you with my daughter!” Blah blah blah. And all I do is cover my nose because her breath really stinks.

“It’s not my fault your daughter got kidnapped. You think I’m going to expect her to get kidnapped while she’s in the bathroom? No. Not my problem.”

We suddenly hear a knock on the door, and I yell, “Who is it?

The answer is, “Bella and my dad, Alex.”

Caroline runs to the door, opens the door, and picks Bella up and kisses her all around. For Alex, she just gives him a glare.

He goes in for a hug, and she responds. “I never thought I’d see you again, Caroline.” 

Then they reach in for another hug, but I push them out the door and yell, “Go home!” 

Then she says, “Bella, come on, let’s go!”

Bella gives Jessica and Olivia a hug and runs out the door. On her way out, she yells, “Thank you, Ms. Jada, for letting me come over!”

“You’re welcome, Bella.” 


Part of Book Two


Bella’s Chapter 

One year later… 

Jessica, Olivia, and I are at school. My mom has been dead for a few months now. She died from breast cancer, and the doctors said she was going to make it but… she didn’t. This is our first day back. I really hate school. We are sitting at a smallish rectangle table in science class. James, an annoying boy in our class, keeps on throwing wet paper balls of paper at our heads. Right now we are doing an experiment to see what is more dense between cold and hot water. Jessica and Olivia tell me that they hate science (like me), so Olivia is slouching down on the table with her long light brown hair over her face. One of her eyes is closed, and the other one of her hazel eyes is open. And Jessica is lying her head down on the table with her black hair beside her shoulder, and there are bags under her blue eyes. Sometimes I wish I could just be homeschooled because there is no getting in trouble by your principal, no learning with annoying kids, and no getting snitched on, but unfortunately my dad can’t afford it. Suddenly, my very old science teacher falls to the ground.

Ten minutes later… 

Right now all I see are doctors, and all I hear are sirens.

I also see Principal Lee on her knees by the door wailing and crying, “No, not you too Uncle Stanley.”

I am just so confused right now, and I bet Olivia and Jessica are too. The expression on theirs face are saying that they are very confused.

One hour later… 

Right now this lady with tall heels and a blood red dress walks in, and a man with a suit walk in too. 

“Mom!” Jessica yells.

“Yes,” Ms. Jada says.

“Dad!” I yell.

“Hi, Bella. Jada and I will be your new science teachers,” my dad says as he holds Jada by the waist.

What?!” Jessica and I yell simultaneously.

“Dad, can we talk outside privately?” I say to my dad.

“Can no be the answer?” he responds.

No, oh my god you are so annoying!” I yell on my way to the door.

“That is no way to talk to your dad. You are very disrespectful just like your mother was,” Jada says to me right before I open the door.

Then I turn around and say, “Excuse me.”

Then Jada says, “Yes, you heard me.”

“First of all, you can’t tell me what to do, and second of all, you are not my mom, and you never will be, and third of all, never put words in your mouth about my mother again.”

My dad says, “About that… I have something important to tell you outside real quick, Bella and Jessica. Jada, come on.”

Then we all step out of the room, and my dad is the first one to speak. “Jada and I have been thinking about it, and we want to get married.”


Spring Has Sprung

         

Spring has sprung, spring has sprung

I hear that chant from everyone

As I frolic from here to there

The breezy breezes breeze my hair


Walking down the cobble lane,

The change of weather feels so strange

But I look up and grin at the sun

‘Cause spring has sprung, spring has sprung


Ma puts the hats and coats away

We all go on outside to play

And my seashell necklace is finally strung

Spring has sprung, spring has sprung

The Dark Lord and the Prince

One day there was a prince who lived in a beautiful blue 15-room tower. The prince loved dogs. The prince decided to go to the adoption center to get a cat and dog. On his way to the adoption center, he heard something crawl through the bushes. He ignored it.

He heard it again, and he said, “This is getting weird.” 

He continued walking until he heard a voice behind him that said, “Run… ” 

The prince was scared, so he ran. When he looked behind him, he saw the Dark Lord! The Dark Lord was the most dangerous villain. For years he attempted to kill the prince, and disguised himself as the prince. When he did, he planned to kill the king and take over. This was his tenth attempt. The Dark Lord ran after the prince with a knife, mace, and a bag. The Dark Lord caught up and put the prince in the bag. The prince tried to talk, but the bag was too tight. The Dark Lord succeeded.

When the prince woke up, he found himself on a table with cuffs on him. He saw knives, chainsaws, swords, and a juicer. He was very scared. He had tape on his mouth, so he couldn’t talk.

Back at the king’s castle, the king was watching TV, and the newsman said, “A young prince has been captured by the Dark Lord. Who’s going to save him?”

The king was shocked. He gasped a very long gasp. The king decided it was time to defeat the Dark Lord. The king took his army to the Dark Lord’s lair.

At the Dark Lord’s Lair, the Dark Lord kicked open a huge wooden door. A dragon slowly approached out of the door and then… roar! The dragon roared very loudly. The prince was terrified.

The Dark Lord said, “Get eaten by the dragon or get cut up with all of these weapons. It’s your decision.” The Dark Lord took the tape off of the prince’s mouth. The prince was speechless. The Dark Lord said, “Choose, or I will kill you with my bare hands.”

“Hmm… maybe I’ll choose nothing.” The prince whistled, and his horse, Sir Jonathan came. 

“Uh oh,” the Dark Lord said.

Sir Jonathan charged through the door, and as fast as a blink of an eye, the Dark Lord was lying on the floor moaning and groaning. The Dark Lord came back up all weak.

He said, “You’re no match for me! Dragon!” 

The Dragon stepped out from his cage, “Roaaar!”

“Eat him,” the Dark Lord said. 

Back with the king, his army was lined up behind the Dark Lord’s lair.

“King, what are we going to do?” Justin the Knight asked. 

“We fight!” The king raised the lance in his fist. 

“Charge!!!”

The king broke the door open and said, “Well, hello there… ” 

The Dark Lord was standing next to the prince who was lying on a table. There were a bunch of ceiling lights on and a feast with big chairs for the dragons. “Brother,” the Dark Lord said to the king.

Everyone gasped. 

“Dad, you never told me that the Dark Lord was your brother!” 

“I had to keep it a secret so no one thought I was evil, which I am not. Let’s just forget about this and get you out of here.”

“Not so fast,” said the Dark Lord. “I’m going to press this button and your son goes in the juicer.”

Beep. “Justin, get your hammer to break the metal cuffs,” said the king.

“Got it, King.” Click! Justin swung the hammer and broke the cuffs.

“Son, are you okay?”

“Yeah, Dad, I’m fine.” 

“Let’s fight the Dark Lord,” the king said. 

“I always have a plan,” said the Dark Lord. 

“I hear footsteps, King,” Justin said. 

Roaaar. A bunch of dragons came out, and everyone gasped.

The king said, “Let the fight begin. Charge!”

The dragons started breathing fire and spitting out acid, and the king’s army started running for their lives.

“Hahahahahahaha,” the Dark Lord laughed. “Now who’s the winner”

“Everyone retreat!” said the king.

Everyone got back to the castle safely but one… Sir Jonathan! 

The prince went back for Sir Jonathan, but Sir Jonathan was down on the floor next to the Dark Lord.

“There is nothing to do now, prince.” Before the Dark Lord did anything, the prince took Sir Jonathan and ran back to the castle with the rest of the army and the king. 

The second the prince got to the castle, he took Sir Jonathan to the vet. The veterinarians put Sir Jonathan on the table and said they would need a few minutes. The prince was worried. A few minutes later, the prince came in to check on Sir Jonathan. The veterinarians said that Sir Jonathan needed a few days to rest. The prince was relieved. 

The prince went to talk to the king.

He asked “What’s going to be our next move?” 

“I don’t know yet, but soon I will come up with a plan,” said the king.

Since the prince had a little free time, he went to the pet store to adopt a dog.When he got to the pet store, he got a Golden Retriever. The prince named him Goldy. A few days later, the prince went to the vet to check on Sir Jonathan. Sir Jonathan was okay! The prince hugged Sir Jonathan and went back to his room. When Sir Jonathan went in the room, he started playing with Goldy. Goldy also played with Sir Jonathan. They bonded really well, and the prince was happy. 

The king knocked on the door, and the prince let him in.

The king said “I have a plan. The plan is make silent acid. Then come from the back door, and when the dragons are sleeping, pour the acid on their wings. When the dragons wake up, they won’t be able to fly, so we’ll put them in a dragon-proof net. Then bring them back to the castle and… tame them!

“Wow, Dad, that is a really good… and crazy plan! How are we going to tame dragons?!”

“We obviously give them whatever they want.”

“That’ll actually work,” said the prince.

The next day, the prince and the king went to the forest to collect gems, crystals, and acid bugs. The prince collected five gems and three crystals. The king found two crystals and five acid bugs. They went back to the castle and mashed everything up and mixed the ingredients in a pot. There was enough acid for everyone to use on the dragons. The king gave everyone in the army a bottle of silent acid. At midnight, everyone went to the Dark Lord’s lair and silently walked through the back door. Everyone picked the dragon cages’ locks with paper clips.

Then the army poured acid on the dragons, and the dragons started screaming. “Rooooar!”

Quickly they put the nets on the dragons and went back to the castle to their rooms. They fed the dragons and bathed them. Then the army put the saddle on their dragons. They all went on a test fly. It worked!!! They all quietly went to the Dark Lord’s lair. They left their dragons out of the door and busted the door open.

The Dark Lord saw them, and they said, “We surrender!”

The Dark Lord said, “Now let me kill all of you!”

“But wait you forgot our… dragons!” the king shouted, and the dragons flew into the lair, destroying everything in their path.

“Rooooar!”

“Where did you get those dragons? 

“They’re yours! Well… they were yours! We have tamed them!” said the king. 

“You wouldn’t!”

“I already did it… Fire!”

The dragons all shot the fireballs to the Dark Lord.

The Dark Lord said, “Nooo!”

The fireballs were thrown so close to the Dark Lord they blasted him away into the sun.

“I will get my revenge!!!” he shouted, right before he burned.


Cinnamon’s Story

Prologue

Cinnamon! Cinnamon!

Please wake up, Cinnamon! 

Tears filled Branch’s eyes. Cinnamon’s body was lifeless. 

She was not breathing. Was that a breath?!

No, it was just the wind. No no no! Please no! But his mate’s body was lifeless as stone. Blue, his daughter, buried her nose in her mother’s flank. 

“If only Wise were here,” sighed Goose.

Branch’s son looked as lifeless as Cinnamon. First Wise left and now Cinnamon… Please, oh, Cinnamon. No!


Chapter One: New Thoughts 

I crouched at the edge of the road in pure shock. Honey, my sister, slowly crept toward the ginger body in the road. Tom, our father, was dead. Silvermoon, my brother, paw by paw crept down his tree. Shock rippled down his spine. But I was too terrified to move. It had all been so sudden, a loud roar and one of the cats I loved most in the world was gone. No, no, I thought. Honey slowly dragged their father’s body off the road.

“Let’s go home,” Honey said.

We plodded along, no one saying anything. Grief was strong in the air. I looked up as they reached the driveway. I squinted at the end, three cats were there. Who could it be? I wondered. As we approached, the black she-cat stepped forward.

“I’m Night,” she said.

A ginger tom stepped beside Night. “I’m Maple,” he said. “And this is our brother, Carmel.”

Night finished with a glare at her brother.

“I’m Honey,” Honey said. “And this is Silvermoon,” she continued.

I tried to pull myself together, but part of me did not want to. “I’m Cinnamon,” was all I could muster.

Honey twisted and licked her dark brown tabby fur.

“Well, where are you from?” Silvermoon asked, stretching, his silver fur gleaming in the sunlight.

I looked at my own ginger fur. It looked rough and scarred. Just like I felt. I just wanted to go somewhere to start over. Rhinebeck! In a flash, I remembered the town. All those human and cars, yet something had drawn me. The happy spirit, the friendly cats. What was I thinking, my family. But something tempted me, drew me to Rhinebeck.

Silvermoon drew me out of my thoughts. “I thought we were going hunting! What had I missed.”

“Honey’s showing Night and co. a place they can stay.” I nodded mutely.

I quickly caught a mouse and a bluebird, then I followed Silvermoon. He caught three mice. Then he opened its jaws. What are you doing? I thought. Silvermoon went to the new bush. The berry tree was poisonous. Then he brought all three mice back. I saw cold, hard anger in his eyes. Anger at the world. All I felt was grief, grief that nothing would be the same. After the whole I can’t believe you tried to poison Honey nonsense, we went to sleep all together. Well, Honey and Silvermoon fell asleep. I turned over and over in my nest. I contemplated over and over as the first light of dawn shown in the garage with absolute serenity I made my choice.

Chapter Two: The Journey Begins

I woke up to Silvermoon prodding me.

“What?” I said groggily, a bit annoyed.

“Honey’s missing,” he said worriedly.

“How do you expect me to know where she is?” I snapped, very annoyed now.

He ran out. Twenty minutes later, Honey came in.

“Silvermoon’s looking for you,” I said.

“I know we had a run-in,” she answered.

“Can I confess?” we said at the same time.

“You first,” I said awkwardly.

“Okay, well I have a mate.”

 “Maple is so nice.” she said.

At that moment, my decision was confirmed.

“Oh, Honey, I’m leaving. Going to Rhinebeck, for good.”

“W-what,” she sputtered.

“Oh, Honey, I never really had a future here.”

“Oh, Cinnamon. Oh, Cinnamon.”

Tears flowed down Honey’s face.

“Oh, Cinnamon, no, I need you.” I licked her.

“I’ll always be right here in your heart.”

I said, “I love you.”

It was all words, but the look Honey and I shared said it all more than words could ever.

“Silvermoon, I love you.” I turned to my brother. “Oh, I love you.”

I walked up the driveway. Then I knew I would never see my siblings again. The journey began. 

As I walked, I looked around at the familiar street as I left forever. I left , I turned down the corner where Tom had died.

“I hope you’re with me,” I said to his grave. “I’ll need all the help I can get. I love you.”

The sun was setting, and I slept on his grave. When I woke up, I was sitting on the road, and Tom was sitting next to me.

“Tom!” I cried.

“Cinnamon,” he said warmly. “I am always with you. Now listen close. You will find your friend and savior in a place you don’t expect. Don’t turn down my gift, Cinnamon.”

And with that, he vanished. The dream faded around me, and I woke with a start. Then I looked around Tom’s grave. Right time to move. I walked up a road.

“Ruff.” A cat’s worst enemy: a dog. “This is my house. Get out, scoundrel.” The dog growled in a queer way.

I bared my teeth, and the dog the yellow dog leaped. I twisted and bit his ear hard. Then as I dropped to the ground, he scared my face.

“Errrrrrrr, get out right now, tyrant cat.”

I will, stinky dog.” And with that, I ran.

It was noon, and I was hungry. There was a house and a huge grass lawn with a small pond that trickled into a woodland stream. Water and food. The water was fresh and cold. Mouse! I found a used squirrel nest with a squirrel in it. It made up for mice. I continued on. The ground started sloping, and the sun started sinking. I slept by the road that night. Something icey woke me. Someone was watching me. At the end of the hill, I looked down the road. There was a big building. It looked warm and cosy. I saw cars and more cars and then wam! And there was a dog, a despicable dog. But at the sight of anything killed by a car, even a dog, I felt horrible. That dog had been killed like Tom. 

Then it struck me. No matter what, cat or dog, no one deserved this. Because we are all the same inside. I slowly dragged her body out of the road, and I saw a pup in her jaws dead too. She was a mother, and I thought of Sky and Ice. My mothers. A young life never lived. At that moment, I despised humans with a bitter hate. Hated life. Why so many lives and this pup would never feel joy, happiness and sadness. Then a thin yelp of, Momma! The pup. It was still alive. I looked at the mother dog. I would save her. The pup was my life now. Death couldn’t have her. The pup was injured. It needed care. I looked at the building. Humans might have been this pup’s only chance. We would look for help there. I picked up the pup.

“What is your name, little one?” I asked.

“Wind,” said the pup pitifully.

I put Wind on the grass.

“What’s your mother’s name, little one?” I asked.

“Rebecca,” said the pup, then promptly passed out.

I looked at the road, No cars. I raced onto the road. Vroom Mmmmm! I grabbed the body and ran. Safe. Then the terror of the whole thing hit. I was far far away from home with only this injured pup for company. I picked up Wind. We, or I, ran to the big building. There was someone outside.

“Kitty. Oh, and a puppy,” the child squealed, and a mom came (to us cats, you humans say uwqgdiuqgyuiefyq or other weird things, but the editor has translated to human.)

“Sweetie, come. Ooh, cat and dog?

“Come, sweetie, can you watch the pup for a second?”

Yay! Puppy!!!”

The sound would have deafened me, but it did not.

“Teddy!” she called.

“Yes,” said a gruff man’s voice.

“Teddy, this cat was trying to bring an injured pup.”

“Well, this cat does not look well.”

“Bring the pup.”

A second later, Wind was lying next to me.

“I’ll take um… ”

“Ohh, thank you!”

Then the two voices ceased I realised. She was unconscious, then the world faded around me.


Chapter Three: Farm Life

I walked through the field. I knew I should not. I felt disappointed in myself, my life. Living as a pet. With a human. I saw Honey and Silvermoon flourishing as wild cats. They would have been disappointed in me. Yes, this was my life now, living with humans. A tear surprised me by trickling down my cheek. I lived for Wind now. Without her, I would crumble of self shame. My life out the window for this. For Wind, I reminded myself. I gave my leg for Wind. Literally. It had been broken. I looked at it. I sat and remembered. One year ago came to the farm. Wind had always had an interest in the road where her mother died. One day, Wind ran into the road. A car was barreling toward her. I ran into the road and pushed her out of the road, with a crack! and a fiery pain. Then the world went black.

Now I was healed and fit again and I wanted to go. Wind sat next to me. 

“Wind, I’m leaving.”

“I know, and I’m coming,” said Wind in her normal gruff voice. 

“Oh, Wind, you have such a nice home here… ” 

I have it because of you. If you go, so do I.” 

Her sentiment warmed me, but I could not let her abandon her life for me.

“I have a deal,” I said.

What.

“You will come to Rhinebeck and come back.” 

Deal.

Then I started second-guessing myself. She would come back by herself… If she went with me would that be fair? And if she was that devoted, shouldn’t I be too? I should tell her not to come. But inside me, selfish me, I wanted her.

“Elosa!” This was from Teddy. He called me Elosa. 

When I walked into the FarmHouse/Farmers Market, it was a large white ‘building,’ I think you call them. There was a large ‘door,’ another word I picked up from living near humans. I walked in. As I did, I thought, Can I let Wind give this up for me? She might never come back… No, l would not let Wind… l would not even think it. And that’s when I found a CMail.

(Editor’s note: CMail is a cat version of Gmail, but for cats. It’s not on an iPhone. It is a long distance thing where they feel the message, but for your reading abilities (since I don’t think you read cat) it is formed like a letter.)

Dear Cinnamon, 

We miss you at home. I would like to talk to you more like this. I just had my first litter of kits with Maple! Their names are Golden, Tawny, Tyme, Tulip, and Rose! Silvermoon is mated with Night. He will write you soon. Silvermoon and I wanted to know, where are you? Do you have a mate, Kits? Please write answers to help your worried sister and brother. And I will ask you and ask you, will you come home? You still have a home here, Cinnamon! The CMail was sprinkled with tears. Probably Honey’s. Well I hope you are okay at least.

Your Always And Deeply Devoted Sister, 

Honey

The letter made me think, would it be easier to just go home? A second time in my life I wrestled with a big decision, but by morning I knew in my heart that I would not be able to go back, but as a sister I had to write back.

Here was my CMail:

Dear Honey,

I miss you a lot too! I semi had a pup (yes a dog). Her name is Wind, and her mother got hit by a car, and I adopted her. I am at a farm called Small Queen Farms and Market. My owner is Teddy Wert. I am leaving for Rhinebeck tomorrow. Also l can’t come home. Sorry. You and I, we miss each other equally. 

Sincerely, 

Cinnamon

Then I turned around. Wind was next to me. 

“Okay, time to go,” I said. 

“Yes,” said Wind as she looked around for what I did not know then but would be her last day, if I had known I probably would have made her stay, but I did not know, so we walked away. 

First we passed a big house and a sleek cat out on the lawn.

I am Queenie, and I am Queen!” said the cat. 

“Okay?” said Wind. 

We kept walking.

“Where is Rhinebeck?” Wind asked. 

“Across the road, then jump the big gap with the stream at the bottom.” Seeing the worried look on Wind’s face, I added, “Don’t worry, I jumped it as a kitten.”

Winds face relaxed. I should have known Wind would never see the other side of the chasm. At the road I watched. Wind made it. Barely three seconds slower and she would have died. Yeah, roads are rough. I didn’t know why those humans made then. (So if you are human, please stop killing us with your roads.) My turn. With five seconds to spare, I reached the other side.

“Well,” I said, winded (no joke intended).

Well is right,” said Wind, gasping and laughing. 

We forged on. When we arrived at the chasm, I jumped. For a second I felt myself plummeting. And then I landed, safe.

“Your turn!” I called.

“Okay, by the way, I’m glad I came.”

“I am too,” I said.

Then Wind jumped, and then the wind and Wind changed direction (joke intended), and she slipped away crashing into the other side hard, too hard. I ran to her. Wind was still.


Chapter Four: Without Wind (which is a short chapter)

Without Wind we could not breathe, without Wind, our earth would die… 

Bored, just kidding or stalling rather… I could continue my boring and factually incorrect poem. No, I thought not, okay, back to the story then… 

I stood over the body of the closest I had come to family since leaving the big greenhouse (sadly enough now back to the poem… okay, are all readers this mean?!) I stood there a long time. At nightfall, I picked up Wind. Then I thought, We must look strange, a cat with a dead dog in her mouth. Then I came upon a grove, and I… without Wind we would never shiver without Wind our hats would not fall of…

(Don’t laugh, I’m making myself feel better.) 

Without Wind our jackets would be useless, Without Wind We Will Wane! 

(Okay, I feel better now, well not really… But if you insist… okay)

I buried… Wind. There, I said it.


Chapter Five

I walked on aimlessly. Then I saw a big red barn, the Center for Performing Arts.

I realized I had made it. You know that empty feeling when determination and anxiety fill you up and then it is over? I do. That’s how I felt. I realized that I was alone. For the first time I felt lonely. And hungry. So I caught a mouse. Then I saw a brown tom-cat. 

“Hello!”

“Who are you. Are you a new member of Bee’s pack? If you are I’ll shred you for killing.”

“Hold your mice!” I said. “I’m Cinnamon.”

Then I told him my story.

“Bee is the leader of a group of cats who what to rule,” he told me. “They kill cats who don’t listen. I am a member of Cecilia’s tribe. We are fighting, Jenny is my mother.” 

This cat had lost his mother. I know that tearing feeling, a feeling of the world turning upside-down. He took me to Cecilia. She was kind and understanding, almost like the mother I had never had. The first moon was challenging. There were 16 cats in the tribe. My first mission was learning to fight. A cat, Deer, was supposed to teach me.

“So, I want to see what you know. Attack me.”

I crouched. I was exhausted when I got back to the tribe. 

A month later, Cecilia was standing on a tree. 

“Cats of my tribe. Today is the day when we will fight. I invite Woody, Deer, Cinnamon, Evelyn, Branch, and Rachel.” 

“M-me?” I said.

“Yes,” said Cecilia. So we lined up. 

We walk through the town that had become home. Right toward Bee’s camp.

“Attack” sliced through the air. I ran in. I slashed and bit everything in sight. I faced a cat I recognized, Typo. He stepped over a body. A cat who would never know victory. I yowled.

It was Woody. I carefully balanced on my front paws, and Typo reared. Perfect. I slashed his belly with grim determination, then imagined killing the thing that had killed my mother so I never knew her, my father right when I was little, Wind in that chasm, and I felt no fear. I would fight to the death. I knocked over Typo, finishing him, not killing. But if no one helped him, he would die. I felt Sky next to me.

“Evelyn, my love, she’s dying, help. I love you. You will be an amazing mother that I never was to you to those kits.”

“Sky!” I gasped. My mother!

“Go, my love. I’m right next to you.” 

So I sprang on the attacker. 

No one,” I hissed, “can mess with my tribe and get away with it. I cut a long line down Yu-Yu’s back. He tried to roll and shake me of but, and I wasn’t not proud of it. Another cat would never see the light of day. I felt Yu-Yu go limp. I ran to Evelyn.

“Are you okay,” I said.

She was alive. Rachel ran over. 

“I will take her find Cecilia and Branch. We won!” she said. 

“Okay.”

I looked around. Branch was leaning over a body. 

“Cecilia!” I wailed and raced over, grief radiating from me in waves.

“It’s okay, my love,” Branch said. “She is alive for now, but dying quick.”

“I’ll take Cecilia, you take Woody. He is dead,” I said. He raced off. I gently picked up the only motherly figure in my life. Then it hit me. I was expecting Branch’s kits. Okay so in the month I’d been with the tribe, Branch and I had gotten close.

Branch!” I called.

Yes,” he yelled back. 

“I’m expecting your kits!” 

“W-What.”

When we got back to camp, we put down the bodies. Uina, the healer, came over. 

“So, Woody’s alive, Evelyn’s dead and — and Cecilia’s dead.” 

I knew before she said it. 

“Katle is second, so now leader, and Kamel, being her brother, is second,” was the announcement. I did not care. Life was so beautiful and so short, and as Branch came over, I felt pure joy at life. And soon I hoped to enjoy it with my kits.

The End (for now)


The Pearl Necklace

Once upon a time, there was a mermaid. She used to always sing with her sisters, and it was by far the most beautiful sound she had ever heard. She missed hearing and singing with them a lot. She had six sisters.

A half-bald man had a stepdaughter who became a “sister” with the mermaids because she so badly wanted to get away from her stepfather. He was mean and cruel and hated his stepdaughter and the mermaids more than anything else, and he hated a whole lot of things. 

He hated the mermaids so much because his own stepdaughter left him to go to them. The half-bald man’s stepdaughter’s name was Charlotte, and she heard the most divine sound in her life — the seven mermaids singing that very moment. Charlotte, at that point, was thinking about her mother, who was presently on a seven-month business trip. When Charlotte heard the singing, she walked toward the ocean, which just happened to be right outside her house. Charlotte listened to the sounds of the mermaids and knew her stepdad wouldn’t understand to care to listen to them. 

“Here.” Charlotte heard a thin and high-pitched voice. She turned and saw one mermaid, with six following behind her. For some strange reason, Charlotte was attracted to both their beauty and the thought that mermaids actually existed.

“Become one of us,” said the first mermaid. 

“Grow into us,” said the second.

“Develop into us,” said the third. 

“Turn into us,” said the fourth.

“Emerge as us,’’ said the fifth.

“Eventually be us,” said the sixth.

“Come to us,” said the seventh.

“Um, no offense, but you’re making this whole ‘come be us’ thing weird to the extreme,” said Charlotte.

“Sorry,” said the first. 

“Regrets,” said the second. 

“Apologies,” said the third. 

“Remorse,” said the fourth. The fifth mermaid was about to say another synonym for ‘sorry,’ but Charlotte interrupted, “It’s okay. But why do you have to use a different word for everything you say?” 

“It’s our thing,” said the first.

“Instinct,” said the second.

“Sixth sense,” said the third.

“Intuition,” said the fourth.

“Aptitude,” said the fifth.

“Impulse,” said the sixth.

“Inclination,” said the seventh.

“Please, one of you talk. I can barely understand what you’re saying, and if this is typed, it would be extremely long and tedious work for the typer. Agree?” said Charlotte.

“Yes,” said the first.

“Precisely,” said the second.

“Gladly,” said the third.

“Beyond a doubt,” said the fourth.

“Naturally,” said the fifth.

“Unquestionably,” said the sixth.

“Yep,” simply said the seventh.

“Okay, do not answer me. This is all too much for the typer. If I ask a question, one of you will get to answer me and explain what is happening.”

“Wait, someone’s recording what we’re saying?” said the first. “That’s awesome!”

“That’s amazing!” giggled the second.

“Psychoneurotically disturbing,” muttered the third. 

“Sick!” exclaimed the fourth.

Stop talking!” screamed Charlotte.”We need to find a way to settle this.”

“She’s triggered!” whispered-screamed the scared first.

“I swear, if any of you join in, I will lose it,” said a triggered Charlotte, trying so hard to stop them. 

“One person,” started Charlotte, “I mean, mermaid, will explain everything to me. And there’s a lot I’m confused about. I don’t know how to choose though, because I realize how much you all love to talk.”

“Rock paper scissors!” exclaimed the first.

Charlotte agreed, and all seven mermaids played at the same time. The first mermaid beat the second, who was also beaten by the fifth and seventh who were both beaten by the sixth, who was beaten by the third and fourth, and the fourth beat the third who was beaten by the first. This was all very complex. Charlotte figured the first mermaid won. 

“Okay, you are officially one of us mermaids. We can’t stay in such shallow water for much longer so come in with us,” said the first mermaid.

Charlotte dove in the water with the first mermaid and her sisters. 

“Here, this may sound ridiculous, but trust me, if you use something of mine, like this pearl necklace, you will be able to breathe.”

Charlotte took the necklace and held it to her lips. It actually worked, but strangely Charlotte wasn’t surprised. That was probably because of the series of astonishing events that had just happened.

Emma didn’t mention the fact that whoever wore the necklace would transform into a mermaid, but Charlotte found out soon enough. In Charlotte’s eyes, everything turned black for a nanosecond. Charlotte’s eyes weren’t closed, but soon the faze stopped. She looked down and didn’t know what to think. I mean, she put on a pearl necklace and now looked exactly like Emma and her sisters. I don’t exactly have experience with that kind of situation either.

“Um, how do I turn back into… into myself?”

“Take off the necklace.”

Easy enough, I guess.

“So where do you sleep?” asked Charlotte. 

“In a pineapple under the sea,” said the first mermaid, rolling her eyes. 

“Really?’’ asked Charlotte. 

“No, I’m not a sponge. I’ve heard it before, but don’t ask questions just yet. We don’t really sleep, only swim around, not exactly thinking at that moment. It’s really hard to explain.”

“What’s your name, anyway?” asked the first mermaid. “Mine’s Emma.”

 “Charlotte. Charlotte Olivia Williams. What’s your last name?” asked Charlotte.

“Well, I don’t have a last name, or even a middle one. I can’t remember who my dad is or even if I have one. Did anyone ever mention you have the initials ‘COW’?” said Emma.

“Yes, I realized that. But everyone has a dad. Maybe not mermaids, though, as I’ve never even seen one before today,” said Charlotte.

“I’m not really sure, but we have more necessary things to talk about,” said Emma.

“Significant,” said the second.

“Crucial,” said the third.

“Relevant,” said the fourth.

“Essential,” said the fifth.

“Urgent,” said the sixth.

“Substantial,” said the seventh.

“You promised that you wouldn’t all talk at the same time!” cried Charlotte. 

“As I was saying… ” started Emma. 

“You were saying we had more important things to talk about. Here’s one. Why do you and your sisters always use a different synonym for every word?” asked Charlotte.

“That’s insignificant in comparison to what you really need to know,” said the third mermaid.

“Shut up,” said Emma.

I never knew that even mermaid sisters said “shut up” to each other. Anyway, Emma explained Charlotte’s question.

“Well, we’re so close that we used to say the same exact thing at the same exact time. So my sister, Sophie, the sixth one in line, thought we should think of other words while we’re talking in line and all use synonyms for every common word, so we don’t sound so ‘weird to the extreme’ like you mentioned earlier. We don’t get all that many chances to talk to other mermaids, much less humans, besides ourselves because both acquaintances are quite rare, so we take the chances we can get,” Emma explained.

“I’m sorry I said that. I’d like to see you guys tomorrow. What should I tell my stepdad I was doing? I’ll figure it out by the time I get home, in about seventeen seconds.”

But Charlotte’s stepdad did notice. Charlotte’s mom definitely would have noticed, if she wasn’t on a seven-month business trip. Charlotte’s stepdad noticed because every night Charlotte would leave to go to the ocean. He was horrified that anyone would prefer someone else more so than him. Even if it wasn’t a human. (That’s how ignorant he was.) He noticed her move her lips and go deeper into the ocean on Day One. Charlotte clearly never noticed his watching because she would have informed the other mermaids. Day One was the first day Charlotte saw the mermaids. That was 33 days ago.

Soon, Charlotte became good friends with each of the mermaids and memorized all their names. In the line in which Charlotte saw them on Day One their names were Emma, Grace, Hannah, Lily, Nora, Sophie, and Zoe. The seven mermaids had a thing with alphabetical order. 

They all looked very similar, and each resembled her sister even more so than herself. I don’t know if that is physically possible, but it was true for them. All of them kind of had the same face, yet different color eyes, colored hair, and texture hair.

Charlotte came to the ocean and met the mermaids. She loved them more than anything. She asked to become one of the mermaids, as that was what the mermaids wanted her to do on Day One. But the mermaids regretted saying that because they thought she should stay with her own kind above the waves, because she should get used to not being around the mermaids so much. The mermaids didn’t want her to have a hard time in the real world and didn’t want her to become a sister with them, regardless of their love for her. It was because of what happened the last time they made a human girl a sister of theirs.

 But then the mermaids learned that she was too sick without the care of the mermaids, and if she stayed with her cruel stepfather, she would surely die. They noticed her changes in behavior, like how she seemed to never want to leave the mermaids and knew she needed their help. And so the mermaids relented, and one night Charlotte joined them, and there were eight sisters. Charlotte loved being one of them, and she was no longer sad. The only reason she was sad was because she was without them. Pain can only be felt if experienced.

Charlotte soon realized that her stepfather was furious. He went out to the ocean with an extraordinarily large fishing net. He was an especially good swimmer, and he put his one and only talent to work. Of course, he didn’t hear the mermaids singing. Only people who really cared about the mermaids could hear them singing. Neither Charlotte nor the mermaids knew about the half-bald stepfather and his trying to murder mermaids, until Charlotte did, which was too late.

Before I go on, I suppose I should tell you several things about that ugly half-bald stepfather of Charlotte’s. The first thing is his name is Farley. Yeah, you heard it right. His name is Farley. That was part of the reason he was so evil, corrupt, unpleasant, cruel, vicious, bad, and downright ugly. I don’t think I had to use seven synonyms for the same kind of word, but I was kind of used to doing it because that’s one of the things the mermaids would say in line. 

So when Farley (yes, Farley, get over it, I have to call him Farley too) first set out with the net, Charlotte quickly went over to the mermaids to warn them. But that was no help. Grace was long gone. (I think that was the most depressing sentence I’ve written so far besides “his name was Farley.”) Emma and her sisters realized that the seaweed beds and plentiful food were a trap from Farley, so they made sure to steer clear of them. Charlotte informed them to move to the colder, more dangerous waters where Farley (hopefully) wouldn’t find them. Unfortunately, the mermaids weren’t very lucky, and the results weren’t very hopeful. Charlotte had no idea how it happened, and she would soon find out, but about a month later, he had captured Hannah, Sophie, Lily, and Zoe. A week later Farley had Nora in his clutches. Emma and Charlotte were worried sick about the other mermaids and devastated, dismal, sorrowful, perimmistic, sympathetic, pitiful, and very, very, depressed. (Again with the seven synonyms for one word thing. I need to stop.)

Charlotte didn’t want to, but she had to. She bid Emma farewell.

Charlotte thought she knew where Farley was spending all his free time — at home, but it wasn’t there. Charlotte decided to follow Farley to wherever he was keeping the mermaids. In order to rescue them, she needed to know where they were, of course. From their house, Farley swam underwater until he reached a continuous dim and shady tunnel. There was an immense glass box filled with water where Lily and Hannah, the mermaids three and four, were in. Their vivid and innocent eyes shone with delight in hopes that Charlotte would be able to rescue them. Of course, they couldn’t talk, because Farley still hadn’t seen that Charlotte was right behind him, and Charlotte hoped he wouldn’t. 

Charlotte saw the other tanks in front of her. She looked at the spiral staircase where viewers could go up and see the mermaids from there if it was too crowded, which of course had never happened before. There were a lot of ways to see the mermaids. For example, next to the risers above the staircase, one could sit on the reclining comfortable and large chairs. 

Charlotte viewed the modern and comfortable looking aquarium. The well-lit room easily expressed the mermaids in a beautiful way. A soft and mellifluous voice echoed through the room. 

“Charlotte, we’re here… ” the mermaids’ voices drifted off. 

“We have so much to tell you!” the mermaids whisper-shouted at once.

Charlotte turned on the opposite side of the glass and walked under the glass arched tunnel where mermaids could swim inside. Charlotte could see Emma right beside her inside the glass. Charlotte didn’t know how to react or respond to Emma. She hadn’t seen her in months. 

“I’ll find a way. I promise,” Charlotte declared. 

“What we need most is a plan. We can discuss it after Farley leaves but please don’t talk, because I know how much you love to, and it can get way out of control.”

All the mermaids seemed extremely excited to speak for the first time in months.

“Okay,” said the first mermaid.

“All right,” replied the second.

“Permitted,” declared the third.

“Fine by me,” said the fourth.

“Approved,” replied the fifth.

“Tolerable,” said the sixth.

“Surely,” declared the seventh.

Charlotte tried to be sensitive about how the mermaids hadn’t spoken in such a long time and allowed them to talk as much as they did, but it became difficult for her to tolerate. Charlotte gritted her teeth while smiling. She attempted doing this a lot, and most times she didn’t realize how ridiculous she looked while doing it. It is, as one most likely knows, one of the most preposterous actions one can do. 

“I have to find out more about Farley before I can help you, okay?” Charlotte said hastily.

Charlotte sprinted past the glass tunnel, tanks, and an unfinished kind of snack shack on the far left through an exit. She found another door with buttons for numbers locks, a keyboard, and switches. I know the drill by now, Charlotte thought confidently. She turned the handle and grinned as the door creaked open. 

Charlotte was shocked by what she observed in the bright modern-looking corner of the room. A desk. No, not a desk, but what was on the desk. A laptop. Well, not that either. Charlotte didn’t find laptops that exciting and exotic. It was a progress report on Word on the screen. Charlotte didn’t find it shocking until she read it. Charlotte revised all the spelling and grammar mistakes and changed the font as she read the reports. She also interpreted it the best she could because it could be vague and difficult to read. After revisions, it read:

Progress Report #1 4/7

I captured the mermaids today. Two of them. They all look the same so I can’t tell which one is which, though. I only realized that there were mermaids today anyway. I was wondering why Charlotte was spending so much time in the ocean. She appeared to be talking, also. I thought maybe she had gone insane, like me.

So I thought there was something in there. I decided to look. I couldn’t find anything at first. But I began to discover, little by little, more about mermaids. They like to rest near beds of seaweed. They love coral and live near it. They also can’t stand to be away from fish and all sea creatures and their sisters. I made all of these things they like happen. And they were baited. 

My plan had worked, and I was so proud! And I found a few things in Charlotte’s room. She had journal entries describing what she had learned about the mermaids, which also helped me grasp the knowledge. I figured out that mermaids only present themselves to little girls, so this was going to be more difficult than I thought. The mermaids had given Charlotte the gift of being able to transform into a mermaid whenever she wanted. 

Anyway, I baited the mermaids. I knew that the best time to capture them was when Charlotte and the mermaids were talking together. The mermaids were so close to me, I felt the urge to just snatch them. 

I don’t know why.

Now Charlotte just wanted to hurl the laptop against the wall. She wasn’t even editing the report that much. She knew that it was important, in order to see change, to not edit. By the end, it didn’t even sound like Farley anymore. But it was. She continued reading. Barely even editing. Regardless, back to the report:

I grabbed my fishing net and tugged it underwater. I scooped up the mermaids with the net. Mermaids #1 and 2 were light and easy to pull. I had already created the tanks. On the bottom ocean floor, I created a path of stones to the tanks. After following the stones for a long time, I reached a small, round red door. But when the door opened, water wouldn’t gush in, either. I don’t know how it works, it just another thing that’s magical I discovered.

I repeated this process several times, until there were no more mermaids seen. They tried, they tried, they tried to escape but it didn’t work. NO. Nothing worked for them. They were emotionally hurt, vulnerable and I just mindlessly took them away, out of a place where they were once so happy… 

She pressed her head against the keyboard as she struggled to think up a plan. A plan that would work. But she couldn’t think here. The perfect corners in the room seemed to be limiting her imagination. 

But the gears in her brain began to turn as she gathered all her information and researched more. At first, Charlotte thought it wasn’t complicated at all. 

“All I have to do to rescue you,” Charlotte started explaining, “is come to the aquarium at a time where Farley isn’t, smash the glass tanks, and bring you right back into the ocean. Then all will be settled, and we’ll live happily together. I know it has to be more complicated than that because everything looks easier on the surface than it actually is.” 

“I know.”

Charlotte was used to hearing that response. Emma knew everything Charlotte knew.

“I mean, I feel, like you, as if nothing will work, and my sisters and I will be worse off than now,” Emma added.

If a mermaid shuts down your idea to save their life, well, let’s just say you need another plan. Mermaids are known for some awful lies like taking sailors to the bottom of the sea and drowning them in the process, but you won’t hear about a pessimistic mermaid. Like, ever. 

Charlotte wasn’t about to waste her time reading another progress report or research any longer. Now, she was onto doing. 

“It’s now or never,” Charlotte began, “I’ll rescue you now, or never. It’s simple. Either it happens or it doesn’t. Farley’s gone, but soon he’ll have security guards. My mom’s gone now, but in a few days? She’ll just have to know about you. And some things are just easier not to have to explain. So is this what you want? To stay here forever and never had tried to escape? Do you want to feel hopeless for the rest of your life? If we do get caught, what’s the worst thing that could happen? Farley’s an idiot, but not idiot enough to have you killed. He realizes how important you are. If we wait any longer, the whole world will know about you. Do you want that to happen? You know what? I’m going to try, no matter what you say about it. I don’t care if it doesn’t work. I don’t care if you don’t want to risk it. I’m doing it for you.”

“I didn’t predict that that was going to come out of your mouth,” Emma admitted. “And I’m sorry for what I said.”

“Also, your mother would completely understand years ago, but not anymore. What I need to tell you is that the mermaid who abandoned us years and years ago is uh, well, there’s no easy way to say this. She’s your mother,” said Emma. 

Soon, all the mermaids emerged into Charlotte’s sight next to the transparent tunnel.

“We detect regret,” Grace announced. “That doesn’t exactly happen frequently to us.”

“What’s the matter? My sixth sense has been off all day,” said another.

“I told Emma my true feelings, and I want to rescue you, if you’re down for it or not,” Charlotte explained.

The sisters smiled sadly and for once, in unison said, “My beautiful, brave girl. Even though you’ll free us now anyway, we’re down for it.”

The mermaids watched as Charlotte vanished away to Farley’s headquarters. The doors were all created with those pulleys, codes, and combinations, and all had the same way to unlock them. The top-secret room with the most valuable items was located in one of the most genius and basic ways possible. It was located from the tanks in the rudiment of a paradiddle. I don’t even know how Charlotte knew to find it this way. My guess is that she had way too much experience in locating things by now. Anyway, she took the exits in the order of right-left-right-right, then looked for the room. It wasn’t there. Then she took the opposite paradiddle – left-right-left-left. She found a small round red door with the same pulleys, codes, and combinations. Charlotte smiled as she turned the doorknob open, but she wasn’t grinning anymore when she heard a blaring alarm go off.

Farley probably only created this alarm because he realized if anyone was smart enough to get into the building and figure out the order to finding the most valuable room in the building, they are most likely something along the lines of psychoneurotically disturbed. 

Charlotte’s mouth dropped open at the sound. She looked inside the room and saw that there was nothing at all in the room besides a fishing net. It wasn’t valuable, but was all she needed at this point to free her sisters. 

Charlotte had never run so quickly in her life as she had that day. Nothing mattered right now besides the mermaids, and it was her job to save them.

The fishing net trailed behind Charlotte as she struggled to remember which turns she had made. She found herself in the wrong place several times, and was not merely nervous about it. She was completely anxious. Nervous and anxious are two very, very different words. I’m joking. I’m not going to explain something to you that you already know at a time like this. Also, I have no desire to be educational. You are probably one of those two while reading this — nervous or anxious. If I were reading this instead of writing it, I wouldn’t be nervous or anxious because I would have no control over what was written. I know, I know. No one asked me.

Charlotte was anxious because she had complete control over what would happen. But she wasn’t feeling or thinking as she gripped the fishing net harder and sprinted faster. Trial and error, she thought. She wasn’t doing trial and error, but thinking about the paradiddle. She thought about how the mermaids needed her desperately. She thought about how it was it her fault if she didn’t succeed. And the alarm was still going off. Charlotte grit her teeth, and, eventually, out of sheer willpower, got back to the mermaids.

Charlotte sprinted past the mermaids. She opened the entrance to underground, as it was the easiest and fastest escape route. Charlotte first followed the path she had taken to get to the aquarium following Farley to make sure that it would lead her to the ocean. As she darted along, she noticed a perfectly ordinary, barely noticeable, heavy rusted door. 

The door creaked as Charlotte pushed it open. 

She took in the briny sea air and observed the vast and turbulent body of water in front of her. Her eyes lit up at the thought of rescuing her sisters.

Charlotte knew that she had an opportunity, and she had to take it right away or else she’d never be able to save the mermaids. Eventually she’d forget about them and if not forget, she wouldn’t care about them anymore. The mermaids told her that. When they had made one other girl with them, the new sisters weren’t faithful to their promise — to never forget about her sisters and always help them through tough times. “It was one,” Emma told Charlotte months before. “We were sad for so long, and we tried to forget her but we couldn’t. We promised not to forget her even if she forgot us, but it was so, so hard to get past the thought that she would abandon us that way.”

Charlotte had always wondered why they spoke about her so frequently. It was about her connection to her mom. The mermaids had always hinted at it but never had gotten into detail. Charlotte wondered why her mom abandoned the mermaids — her guess was that it was because of Farley, her work, Charlotte, and mostly the whole scheme of things.

Charlotte left the small iron door open as she ran toward the mermaids’ tanks. She spotted all of them fluttering around anxiously in the tall water. 

“I have an escape plan!” Charlotte declared.

Of course, for any sea creature to survive in captivity, over the tank there must be an opening. If the glass is hacked away with an axe, it will all shatter, and the mermaids will not be able to survive without water. They can survive without water for about 30 seconds, at most. It’s not like how humans can stay underwater for about two minutes for mermaids. 

“I have something to tell you, even though it may seem ridiculous,” Zoe, the last mermaid said. “Because I’m last in everything I wanted to tell you this: Us mermaids can live above water for as long as we want if we are holding the seashell we had given you way back. It works for mermaids on land as it does for humans on water. Do you still have it?”

Charlotte undid a hook-latch in her neck and showed the seashell necklace to Zoe. “Tonight you’ll be the first one saved,” Charlotte said.

With that, Charlotte vaulted, grasping the fishing net, up to the top of the tank. She gripped the top end of the glass with her right hand. Pain surged through her body, but Charlotte was willing to experience pain for the mermaids. Charlotte dropped the fishing net, and Zoe got in, while swimming to the top of the tank. She pulled herself over and plummeted into Charlotte’s arms. Charlotte quickly put the pearl necklace around Zoe and placed her on the ground. If it weren’t for the necklace, there would probably be no other way for the mermaids to be set free.

Charlotte and Zoe didn’t at all talk the whole way, except when Charlotte asked about 20 times in five minutes if she was breathing all right. She was so worried about Zoe that she nearly missed the open exit. Charlotte finally reached the opened door. There was a very short walkway outside it. Charlotte ran onto it and dropped Zoe into the water, already inches away. 

Charlotte repeated this process with Sophie, and she joined Zoe in waiting for the rest of the mermaids. The process was then repeated five more times. 

When Emma and all the sisters were freed, Charlotte joined the mermaids, bright-colored fish tails shimmering in the dark and deep sea.

Even though they had their differences and an entire world that set them apart, the eight sisters would never forget each other, because they were sisters no matter what.

Epilogue

Farley notices the mermaids gone, and now realizes that it’s better that way. He was wrong, and like most bad things, misunderstood. Regardless, Charlotte’s mother realizes the truth about him.

At 40 years of age, Charlotte continues to visit the mermaids daily. She has a daughter who learns about the mermaids and how her mother saved them. She eventually becomes a mermaid, too.


The Story About How A Banana’s Face Got Peeled Off

The banana’s face was a little face on the banana peel. On all of the sides, the banana had emotions. On one side it was sad, on the other side it was happy, and then on the other other side it was angry. When he was feeling an emotion, his body made him turn to that side of the peel. Then a person peeled off his peel! The person took a bite out of it! But, luckily there was a baby banana and a mama banana left. The dad got eaten. His name was Frederick. They felt really sad.

The baby said, “I wuv Daddy. I miss him.”

Then, the mommy said, “Me too.”

They walked home sadly. They were hanging their heads. 

Then, they had to go to the funeral. A banana funeral is when bananas get together and talk about how much they loved how he smelled. He smelled like a banana that loved to smell other bananas. Then, they went around the house and looked for the last thing he did, and then they found it! The last thing he did was… dun dun dun… scream!

The mommy banana said, “I banana love him.”

The baby banana said, “I want banana jaddy.”

Everyone was so sad. Even his boss was sad.

He worked in the hospital as an MRI technician. The MRIs were so noisy. They sounded like a tornado. There was a baby who did the MRI once.

The baby banana was calling, “Banana peewing! Banana peewing!”

The MRI was five hours long. 

Then later the baby sang, “Smell banana, smell banana, smell banana, smell.”

In the middle of the song, a monster came out for 120 hours. One hundred and fifty-seven years later, everyone died, because a Lolo monster, which looks like a human but with pointy teeth, ate them, and they went to the Land of Bananas. It looked like bananas were dancing in the sky having fun, smelling each other.

And there was Daddy!

He said, “Hi, Sweetie, you’ve grown up so fast.’’

Then he gave her a hug.

The mother thought, “Excuse me? Someone else needs a hug!”

Then the dad gave her a hug. He showed them around. They saw a statue of his great-grandmother. His great-grandmother looked like a banana that had never died, but she had died.

Then he showed them the banana house, the banana house bouncy house.

The daughter said, “Can I pwease go in?”

The mom said, “Yes!”

The mom and the baby were jumping there for 24 hours. Then they were tired. Then they went to the kids arcade. Then they really needed a nap. They went home and took a nap for three days. But then they wanted to do the banana air balloon ride. They went to the by (banana sky).

And then… they went to the castle!! There was a king, queen, and princess. They were also bananas. The princess and the daughter became great friends. Then they went to the children’s museum. Everybody went. They played restaurant. The baby banana was the waiter. The princess was the chef. 

Another friend of the princess was there at the museum.

She said to the princess, “How wong has it been?”

The princess said, “Too wong!”

Then, the baby banana said, “Do you guys know eachuddar?”

Then, they all started playing all together.

The friend asked the princess, “When did you meet this cwazy banyanya?”

The baby banana heard.

She said, “Ecuse me? I not cwazy! I smart, and if you shink I cwazy, then you the cwazy me!”

Then they started slapping each other on the face for one hour.


Tsunami Boy

There was a boy named Peter. He went surfing, and a big wave came and washed him away, and he was never found again for three years. Then a girl named Despina, Peter’s fifth cousin, didn’t know until now. She called her brother, Demitri, and they went to the beach. They took their oxygen tanks and their best swimming gear and went to the beach. They started searching for Peter. After three hours of searching, they realized he wasn’t there, and they were hungry. So, they stopped their search for the day, and they went home and ate some pizza. The next day, they took their surfboards and went to the beach. Despina knew how to surf, but Demitri didn’t, so Despina had decided to teach him. Despina didn’t know how to fight, but Demitri did, so he taught her how to fight. While Despina was teaching Demitri how to surf, he fell off. Despina had to save him before he drowned. While Dimitri was teaching Despina how to fight, he accidentally punched her unconscious. When Despina woke up, she was furious.

“Why’d you punch me unconscious? You know I don’t know how to fight yet,” Despina said. Then Despina took a shoe and started hitting Demitri.

“You know, I still don’t know how to surf, and by the way, ow!” Demetri yelled at Despina. “Sorry.”

“It’s okay,” said Despina

They got on their surfboards and saw a big wave, so they started paddling. The wave went over them, and then they got trapped in a different dimension. There was water everywhere, and monsters, and Peter was sitting on his surfboard, and he looked like he was eighteen.

Help!” Peter said when he saw them.

Despina and Demitri saw 123,456,789,012,345,678,901,234,567,890,123,456,712,345,678,901,234,556,678,913,267,890,213,456,789,023,456,789,036 monsters. They were scared of the amount of weird-looking monsters that they saw. Some had long spikes everywhere, and they were shooting fire from their mouths and hands. Despina and Demitri were dodging the fire that was being launched in their direction.

“These monsters are crazy!” they both yelled over the roaring waves. They started to surf on the waves, avoiding the fire at the same time.

Davuuutiii, Davutiiii!!” one of the monsters yelled from the shoreline.

They surfed to a clear area on the shore and took off running when they reached it. Despina was the faster one out of the two and sprinted toward the barn where Peter was. Demitri, however, was extremely slow by comparison, and Despina had to run back to carry him the rest of the way. Half way through, Despina started to stumble under the weight of Demitri. Behind her she heard the monsters yell, “Gooongalaaa!!”

Despina tried her best to hold Demitri, but the monsters eventually caught up with them.

They captured Despina and Demitri and threw them into the barn with Peter. The monsters chained them up and left them there. Peter sat in front of them in the darkness. The inside of the barn was dim, and it had horses inside of it. Peter had dirt all over knees. His hair was extremely long and unkempt. His vest and jeans were torn.


Looking For Joy

Part One

The Book

One night, the boy Jack was reading in his room, when the smell of his grandma’s brownies replaced the plain, old, airy smell. Just a month before, his pops died. Later on, feelings still carry through the tragedy. The day this all triggered, his mom came up to him; tears came dripping down her face. ¨Son,” she takes a heavy sigh, ¨Pops died.¨ That was it. Those were the only three words she said before walking out the door. In memory of him, he was buried in the graveyard across the street from Jack´s house. Every night, Jack would view the picture of Pops that he placed under his pillow. Tears would roll down his cheeks, just like his mother’s when she told him about Pop’s death. But this night, this night felt different for him. Winds howled at the milky white moon and blew through the dark lonely streets in a hurry. Clouds started to group together; the sky grew darker as he kept reading.

He thought and thought. There were some hmms and ahhs then an aha! He discovered the thing behind all this. Jack thought about this for a long time. The winds continued to howl, followed by the lightning striking out of anger. Jack yawned, and, as he did that, put his book away and into bed he went. He tucked the covers on in one swift move and fell dead. 

The bell struck twelve o’clock, and in one shake Jack woke up. In a panic, he got out of his bed and took a look around. Winds still blew and howled, but not as much as before. The book, that was what was on Jack’s mind right now. Slowly and carefully, he took the handles on the window and nudged it, aware to not make a single sound. A small mouse squeaked as he pulled the window. He kept doing this motion despite it making a little noise. Now, the window was big enough to fit an entire human, enough to fit Jack. Thinking, Jack leaned towards the window and took a look down, not too deep. His body trembled and shook. He was thinking and wondering. He started back to his bed, then turned around, making his final decision. He ran the edge of the room, where there were closets and posters and down to the left corner, a door. He took two big steps toward the window in a fast pace and one giant leap, flying out the window. Kicking his legs, Jack managed to have a decent landing right in front of a rose bush. At the time, a car hustled by, and Jack ducked in the sharp rose bush, making sure not to be seen. 

The lights lit up the sidewalk, shining almost as much as the full white moon that stood out in the pitch black sky. Jack, who was very scared, made a sprint, staying very low across the street, and climbed over the low graveyard fence. He checked his watch: 12:10. He still had time, but not a lot. He crawled across the graveyard. Jack had memorized where his grandpa was buried to rest. One left, two rights, another left, then the final right turn. He kept repeating this to himself over and over again until he felt confident. He kept going through the graveyard, passing stones carved with letters. Though Jack was used to the graveyard, as if it were a normal thing, and it never really scared him, now was when he was really tested. Shaking and shivering, from not just the cold but the intensity and how freaked out he was, Jack continued step by step on the clumpy dirt through the graveyard. He took his final turn as a light shined on him. Jack froze. I’m dead. The light though continued to shine throughout the graveyard and left him frozen in his tracks. Jack, now with more caution, took his last steps to get to Pop’s grave. He took his frozen, bare hands and started to dig on the hard, dirt ground. Jack’s hands started to bleed with pain, but the boy Jack didn’t stop. Shoveling the dirt with exhaustion, he took a breath. The boy Jack studied the head stone, reading everything, then fixed his head down, staring at the dirt. Though, not just dirt was in his sight, but a golden, thick book stuffed with pages you could see sticking out. 

Now, the boy Jack was not just any boy. He was a smart boy. And with that, what he was searching for was positively lying right in front of him. Any other kid wouldn’t know that his or her desire lied right in front of them. 

Jack immediately identified this book, unlike others could have done. He snatched the book and made a run for it. Jack traced his steps back, following them back home. He looked up at the sky and couldn’t help it but stop and stare. The stars were twinkling in the pitch black sky and the moon showed the path for the lost aliens who were probably trying to find their way home.

Jack suddenly realized what he was doing and went back to running, clutching the book so tight that his palms were starting to turn a bright pink just like his face from the cold, intense weather. Jack climbed over the fence and froze in his tracks. How do I get back up there? Jack clutched the book even tighter and then jumped on the tree, hugging it. He climbed the tree, grasping every part he could. Jack then switched over to climbing the nearest branch to the window. Though there was quite a big gap between them, Jack was up for anything, my reader. You should know that. Jack gripped the book one more time, and then risked himself, and then made the jump.

At first, Jack just closed his eyes as he was flying through the air, then opened them, then hit the floor followed by a thud that could have woken everyone up. Jack threw his clothes off, closed the window, ran to bed, and then placed the book under the pillow where Pop’s picture was.

“I cracked the code, Pops. I did it.” 

The next day was Saturday. It was seven o’clock when Jack’s alarm clock went off. No one was up yet, but Jack felt something peculiar. He dug under his pillow and found the dusty, golden book. He opened the book and blew off the dust, and it flew in his face. Jack started to read; it was hard, but he put his all into it. 

In big, bold, handwritten letters the book said, “One left, two rights, another left, then a final right turn. This is how you found this book.”

Jack found this odd, because it was right. He peeled through the pages. “There are three steps to joy. One: Find it. Two: Use it. Three: Share it.”

Step number three was scribbled out. Jack also found this odd. What could this mean? He closed the book and thought. Now was when his brain was really working. 

Jack was stunned. He decided to go down for breakfast. Grandma was cooking downstairs; the smell of juicy bacon and gooey eggs combined in the air. Everybody else was sitting at the table, Grandma, Mom, Dad, everybody except Pops. He knew he couldn’t tell them about the book. Jack’s dad was reading the newspaper, sipping his coffee. Jack tried his best to act like it was a normal day, but he failed, still thinking about the book. He sat at the breakfast table when the smell of eggs and a subtle amount of bacon combined onto a plate that lay right in front of him. Everybody dug into their plate, devouring the beautiful smell of the meal, though, Jack wasn’t very hungry. In fact, he wasn’t hungry at all. 

“Jack, aren’t you hungry?” His mom asked.

“No, I’m fine.” 

Jack would have gotten up, except he knew the rule: you sit at the table until everyone is done eating, only then can you be excused. So as a result, Jack waited. 

When breakfast was over, he climbed the stairs and into his room, shutting the door behind him. He hopped onto his bed and curiously decided to keep reading. He picked up the golden hardcover book.

Jack found nothing. He started to get his hopes up and then, he found more information. “Looking for joy?” That’s what the book said. Jack stumbled upon the words, trying to make sense of them. 

“Land of dead”

This wasn’t possible. It couldn’t be. 

He started to sweat.

To chatter.

To imagine.

To wonder, most of all.

All of this was blended in Jack’s brain.

This couldn’t be. There was something else; Jack knew it. He flipped through the pages once again. Examining every detail. Most of the pages had designs on them in golden ink. Swirls and curls were carefully printed on each piece of paper. Jack opened his laptop. “The land of the dead,” he typed in the computer. Nothing. The screen went black, dark. 

His quest for joy just had begun. However, there was no telling what was out there.

Again, it was night. Thunder ruled the sky and lighting cackled away. Jack was puzzled about the book. He knew going back to the grave would bring him more clues and ideas. A full moon just appeared up on the big, blue, black sky. That was the signal. Jack carefully opened the window, and again, jumped. This time, he was not scared. Yet. As he crossed the street, he was starting to see everything. Dead bodies rising, ghosts floating. And that was when he fainted. Face first. When he woke up, the first thing he saw were zombies with scabs. Ghosts. White, clear. A big, deep black dropped jaw. If there was one thing Jack knew about ghosts, it’s that you can walk right through them. And that’s what he did. If there was one thing Jack knew about zombies, it’s that you can’t walk through them. So that was when he encountered a zombie. The zombie’s scabs were as red as fire. Jack, though, wasn’t giving up. He ran right past it, being as free as a bird. The investigation just started. Jack scanned the area, while still being aware of the fact that he was engulfed by the dead. He just didn’t understand. He was stunned.

Now, my reader, the expected is never going to be expected, not in Jack’s case.

So, when a big, black hole popped up, he didn’t know how to react. However, even in the most troubling, hard times, you can always learn or realize something. Jack was just uncovering another layer to the mystery. The big, deep, purest, darkest, blackest hole. Now, what this was, was unknown to Jack. Except, there is one thing he realized, that the zombies were guarding it, and when this discovery was made, another layer was peeled off and swallowed just like an onion. Now, it wasn’t that easy, Jack now had to make it back to his apartment, and safely.

Except, he wasn’t done. There was a feeling, a buzzing signal that flowed through his body. He did not know what this was and neither do I. Except, Jack had a clue, it meant to stay. He daringly, boldly stayed. Although, one moment later, no matter what, Jack knew he had to go. And fast. Except, something caught his eye. More and more zombies and ghosts were appearing out of the hole, more and more. Jack’s head was debating whether to leave or stay. Eventually, he had to leave. It was too dangerous. The hole clearly mattered to the dead though. He had to think more.

The next day, Sunday, was time for more investigating. However, last night left a mark on his head, and Jack was especially curious about that. And so, not much happened on that day, until, of course, the signal. It was, again, twelve o’clock. Jack woke up, but this time just took the stairs down and walked across the street. But that’s when he saw it. He had woken up a little before 12, now, he didn’t know this. As the narrator, it is my job to inform you of this information. And so, what he saw were whirling winds, tornadoes, and hurricanes. They were all forming one black hole. The winds were getting faster and faster, the hole was getting bigger, and the winds howled louder and louder. Suddenly, in the blink of an eye, it stopped. Jack knew he had his opportunity, so with no thought, he stuck his hand into the hole, blindly. Now, when I said it’s my job to inform you on important information, I didn’t mean all information, though. This is something I can’t tell you, though, and what Jack saw in the hole. But all I know is that soon the zombies and ghosts came to defend the hole, and like yesterday, he had nowhere to go besides home, and that’s where he went.

And today was Monday. And that means school. As Jack left the house, he felt as far away from Pops as he’s ever been.

The bell rang, giving the entire school the symbol of recess. As Jack packed up his stuff, he felt a great deal of relief of excitement. Finally, an opportunity.

However, reader, life isn’t problem free. And that’s when Jack ran into Polly Jones, a seventh grader, which made her one year older than Jack. As she was heading out for recess, Jack realized she was talking about the same topic which had been on his mind all morning, and was holding the same book that was hidden under his bed. 

“And I figured out a way to see the dead!”

 And so, there are more people than just Jack with the same mission. 

And after school, Jack did his homework, however, from what I saw, everything was incorrect:

What is X in 4,043+X=7,657 pops

4,567+6,123=  land Of Dead

(5+7) * 42 – 17=  The book

And tonight was the first night that Jack went to bed, with a mind clouded with thoughts.

And the next morning, Jack didn’t eat breakfast; he wasn’t hungry. And so, with an empty stomach and a full mind, he went to school.

The first person he saw was Polly Jones of the seventh grade. She was reading a book, but not just any book, the book Jack also had. I guess Jack knew it was his time to act, because right then he said, “Hi,” to her.

“Whatcha readin’ Polly?”

Polly just glared at Jack and kept reading.

“Where’d you get that book from?”

This time, the minimal response. “A graveyard.”

“Which one?”

“The one my grandmother was buried in.”

And then Jack walked away, and that could’ve been the longest conversation he had and will have with Polly Jones of seventh grade.

The bell rang and all the middle-schoolers piled into their classes. However, Jack is different from your average sixth grader. He was smarter, faster, stronger, more athletic, and, most of all, more curious. And, due to these traits, Jack turned away from school, in search of a trash can to dump all of his questions into.

His mom and dad both had jobs, so they weren’t home at this time of day. But, Mrs. Moretti always left keys under her mat outside the door. He dumped his backpack onto the floor, and, immediately, with no more thought, rushed out the door. Instead of going to Pop’s grave, Jack had the intention to go to another grave instead. He dug and dug until there was a hole in the ground with a golden, dirt-covered book. He went from grave to grave, and at every grave he saw the same thing: dirt-covered golden books.

And on every book, it read, “Looking for joy.” And when you flipped the cover it said, “Lost your loved one? Bring them back by reading this book.”

And so, Jack concluded that in every death, there is a way to see the dead once again.

And that is when the binder clicked.

Today was the day Jack was going to face Polly Jones of the seventh grade.

“I need that book!” 

A group of sixth, seventh and eight graders surrounded the two right after they heard Jack scream at Polly. 

“Well, get it.”

And so, Jack swiftly swiped the book out of her hands, but she swiftly canceled his move by taking it back. 

“Who do you think you are?”

“Uhhh… A guy searching for his grandpa!”

“And I am a woman searching for my grandma, so out of my way!”

Jack swiped the book from her once again, and ran. This time, all the way home. To Polly Jones, it seemed as if she’d never get the book back again. But that was soon to change…

End Of Part One


Goo Goo’s Story

Chapter One (The Whole Story)

One day in X-City, there were three Friendly Monsters, and one was a baby. The baby’s name was Goo Goo, and Goo Goo wanted to have a flower on her head. It’s hard to get one on your head. You need to get a bubble from the Bubble Store, and then you can get a flower on your head. You pick the flower and push it into your bubble, but the bubble doesn’t pop. 

It sounds easy, but not for Goo Goo, because when she goes to the Bubble Store, she’s too small, and the person at the counter can’t see her, so she never gets a bubble. She’s staring at a bubble that can change colors and has a star on it. One side of the star can be blue or pink, and the outside can be pink or blue. She says, “I want a bubble!” But it sounds like “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star!” They clap because they like the song, but they don’t even know who’s singing, so they don’t know who they’re clapping to. Then Goo Goo shouts at them, and then they hear her. Then they ask, “Who are you?!” and then Goo Goo jumps up so they can see her, and then she says, “I want the Star Bubble!” In this world, you have to say “I want.” If you say, “Please, may I have it,” people will ignore you. 

They gave her the wrong bubble. They gave her a pink and black bubble that had a star heart. Instead of a point at the top, there’s a heart shape at the top. It kind of looks like a bug. The bugs have lassos, and if you get caught in a lasso, then you will get banished to the bug’s lair, and somebody who so, so much cares about you has to get rid of the bug, since there’s only one bug to a cage. Three-thousand, 6,000 100 people can be in one lair, so there’s only two or three bugs, since they can fit a lot of people in the lair. People pop their bubbles, and the bubble traps the bug when they see one. People who don’t have bubbles share one with another person. If you’re brother and sister you can share, but dad and daughter can’t share and son and mother can’t share. Goo Goo shares with her mom. They have a Book Bubble. You can get any book out of the bubble. She likes to get baby books. But Goo Goo wants her own bubble so she can have a flower on her head.

Goo Goo’s mom doesn’t always use the bubble. It’s only helpful for bugs, cooking, and books, and it helps her take care of Goo Goo. Her dad always is in the bubble because the bubble has every power and he needs it for work. They don’t have cars so they float in bubbles everywhere. Everyone has their own level. Her dad has the highest level. He’s a lawyer. When Goo Goo gets her bubble, she will be on the same level as her dad. Her dad has something on his head. It’s a piece of work. Her mom doesn’t have one because she only needs a couple of powers, not all the powers. Goo Goo wants all the powers because she wants to be able to do everything everybody else can do. 

Then, Goo Goo shouts at the man in the Bubble Store again. “I want the other Star Bubble! The pink and blue Star Bubble!” she shouts. When she starts getting angry, mad or frustrated, she starts sprouting two other arms. When she stops being angry, mad or frustrated, they go back in, but if they’ve grown all the way to the length of her other arms, they won’t go back in. They’ll keep on growing until she stops. When she sees the arms and sees if they’re growing too long, she thinks of things that she liked when she was littler and in her mom’s tummy to calm down. She thinks of going upside down, some colors of mashed up foods, spinning around in a spinny chair, and her mom’s heartbeat, and the arms go back in. 

“I want the Star Bubble because you gave me the wrong bubble, and that’s not really a star. I want the Star Bubble because I’m sick of being a baby,” she shouts because she got mad again, and everybody turns and looks at her. Then, her mother comes running up to her and shouting at her in her face. Now they both had six arms, because they started with four.

Goo Goo does not feel good. “Sorry,” she says. Her mom says, “Thank you.” She got the bubble, but the flowers are still rare, even if you have a bubble. The flowers look like how you would draw flowers, with a center and petals around it. They smelled like white chocolate. 

Goo Goo went to sleep. She dreamt that she got the flower. Her mother gave it to her. Goo Goo said, “Thank you.”

In the morning, Goo Goo sets off to find the flower. Goo Goo found many things, but not any flowers. She walked 30 miles. After 65 more miles, she found a flower. Then she put it on the bubble, but then the bubble popped. But then the bubble reappeared when she took the flower off of it. Then she even more lightly put it back on the bubble, but then the bubble popped. Then she dropped the flower onto the bubble, and the bubble did not pop. Soil went on the top where the flower was, and the flower grew bigger and bigger.

Then suddenly it started to grow smaller so then they needed to water it. Even if they watered it, it would still go smaller. So they took it out of the soil and put it somewhere sunny. Then it grew so small that they could barely see it. Then it grew as tall as outer space. Then it was too heavy for her to pick up. Then it was still that size, but so light that she could hold it with her fingernail. They shortened the flower and then it became so light that she could hold it with her toenail. Then it became so small and so heavy that you had to lift it with a 35,000-pound pickup truck. Then it became so heavy that a pickup truck that was a billion pounds had to pick it up. Then the flower grew so heavy that a million pickup trucks that made a thousand pounds had to pick it up and Goo Goo had to walk around all of them. Then the flower grew so heavy that a million-thousand pickup trucks that weighed a million-thousand pounds picked it up.

But then Goo Good could hold it up with just air. Then the flower went back to its regular size.

Just a Nightmare

Jake ran as the nightmarish creatures followed him, their horrible screeches cutting through the still night air like knife grating on stone. Jake felt drops of sweat fall on the stony ground as he ran into the foggy black. Running from the evil witch Baba Yaga and her foul tiger and lion felt sapping of his strength. Jake ran into the inky black as the nightmare ensued. The ground stopped as Jake tumbled, as he fell into a hateful, scorning darkness. Jake snapped awake, and awoke to a bed drenched with sweat. Looking around, Jake saw the drooping, sleepy-eyed moon through the open blinds and thought to himself, It was just a nightmare, just a nightmare… Knowing he wouldn’t sleep again, Jake walked into the kitchen and was immediately greeted by the warm smell of pancakes wafting through the room. Jake entered the kitchen thinking, Russia could not smell better than this. Being a P.I has its perks. Just as he was about to bite into his fluffy warm syrupy mountain, the phone rang. Ring! Jake almost shouted his favorite Russian curse word “mudak,” meaning sh*thead. Suddenly, his pet gnome, Tret Elponocks — wait, scratch that — his gnome roommate, Tret Elponocks, entered the room. He was a serious no-profanity believer and would’ve punched Jake had the phone call not been from B.P.R.D. (Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defence) central.

“Jake, we found a frog nest in the woods 15 minutes from your base.” 

“Copy that central.”

Jake scrambled to pull on his gray B.P.R.D. logoed suit and jumped into his dark silver modified DeLorean, thinking, This is how to drive in style. Arriving at the cave where the frog nest was and pulling out his silver bullet submachine gun (and thinking he was not the lone ranger), he entered the cave and saw a horrible sight: all of the frogs were dead, but, more interestingly, most were covered with bloats and burns. Whoever had killed them was fast. The sulfur-like smell of magic, of a supernatural being, wait, the smell of smoke and gunpowder? Jake jumped as the cave collapsed in a fireball much like the fireball of an 1800s Russian hand grenade. Whoever was behind this was old or old-school. It was time to go to info central, a.k.a the gossiping horse tavern. Walking to the counter, he ordered a 1% proof beer. Obviously Jake was a weak drinker.

Jake asked the bartender, a bald man with a dark beard and eyes that seemed to always be half-way peering at someone, “Have you seen anything… weird.”

Keeping his voice low, the bartender replied, “Na’w, but I been hearing whispers, whispers about Baba Yaga and children going missing, little children… ”

 After having another beer, Jake walked back to the house. Then grabbing his computer, he dug into the vast files of the B.P.R.D. online library. Entering into the search bar, ‘Baba Yaga,’ the results were limited only to Hellboy’s personal report after fighting the witch. Hellboy believes she escaped, but her whereabouts as well as powers, allies, and all other weaknesses were unknown except one: Christian artifacts. He would have to call the Vatican, which meant calling his ex-wife turned nun who he had not seen or spoken to for 20 years. He hated making calls like this. Every number he dialed made him weaker. 

“Victoria,” Jake said. 

Victoria coldly replied, “Jake, what do you want?” 

Setting his jaw, Jake replied, “I need you to pull some strings.”

“For what?” Victoria asked.

“I need a holy pendant.”

 “Why?” asked Victoria.

 “To kill Baba Yaga,” was Jake’s reply.

 “Jake, where are you?

 “Russia,” was the only reply from Jake.

 “Fine. Bye.”

 And that was the last thing Victoria said before hanging up. A couple days later, a package arrived with a note:

Handle with great care. (Do not break unless your paycheck is over a million dollars.) (Still don’t break.) P.S. This is the holy pendant of Charlemagne. 

“Wow, she really overdid that. I have a weird feeling she wants me to break this.”

Carefully unpacking the 2,015-year-old pendant and praying it wouldn’t break, he heard a knock on the door 

“No, I don’t,” replied a tactical gear clad Victoria (with holy water shotgun).

After hastily getting dressed, Jake was stopped by an armed Tret Elponocks.

“And you are going where without me?”

Jake was shocked at the sight of his battle ready ex-wife and gnome. He watched her as she unpacked her vast set of ancient weapons and artifacts.

“Here,” she said as she handed Jake a set of 1800’s Russian hand grenades.

“You said you thought this was what was in the cave?” Jake examined the items before confirming. “How the hell did you get your hands on these?” He turned to her, obviously impressed.

She shrugged. “Black market, that’s all.”

Jake’s eyes widened. “You seriously broke the law just to get your hands on these?”

“Hell yeah,” was Victoria’s response. “We need to find out if these are really what caused the explosion.”

“Well, I’m pretty sure I caught the explosion on the suit cam. So if we do some math, scratch that, a lot of math, we can analyze the blast and check the blast to the charge. We’ll figure it out,” Jake explained.

“Suit cams, forgot you had those.” Victoria frowned. “Ugh, I just wasted 13,000 on those just for nothing!” She was yelling a little too loud now.

“No, you just got us the iron that we needed for attacking Baba Yaga. Plus, it blows up,” was Jake’s smart*ss reply.

“Okay, if you’re so da*m smart, where’s Baba Yaga?”

“Well?” said Jake.

“That’s problem number two.”

Plugging in her computer, she searched for an obscure Youtube video that just happened to be on the B.P.R.D. channel. (She crunched the numbers.) Only 0.0000000000001% of 1,300,000,000 watched. But, it said what they needed. Thy got hooked up with the B.P.R.D. Russia Kazakhstan-Russia border agent, who had been hearing reports of children going missing in the border town of Kongelsk. Kongelsk was a small town with a thick surrounding wood and a small stream. Then, Jake, Victoria, and Tret flew to the nearest airport and then helicoptered in.

In the town, after ordering local vodka (just ‘cause), they headed over to the agent’s house to discuss Baba Yaga. The agent welcomed them with freshly baked gingerbread and more vodka.

Later, they hopped in an SUV and headed into the surrounding wood. After driving into a clearing, they saw (after blinking in the sun for quite a while) a small cottage on chicken legs. Seeing smoke coming out of the firepit, and after drawing weaponry, they headed closer to the cottage. Baba Yaga opened the door and immediately the house started running.

After jumping back in the SUV, revving the engines, and going as fast as possible, they finally caught up to the quite fast chicken-legged house. Victoria opened the car door and fired off a holy water shell. The house briefly stopped, as if in pain, and then continued. An hour and 20 bucks in gas later, Baba Yaga’s house stopped, cornered in a limestone quarry. Baba Yaga then opened the door, and after chanting words in ancient Slavic, a strange red light emitted from her hands, destroying the SUV. Promptly, Victoria fired another round from the holy water shotgun, and Jake fired some silver bullets from the submachine gun. 

After a bullet hit Baba Yaga, she yelled, “You cannot kill me! As long as Russia endures, I will survive!” 

All firing stopped. A silence fell over the quarry. 

Back at base, another round of torture came from Abe Sapien (who just happened to be the Russia/Kazakhstan border agent in disguise). More terror awaited… Paintball guns.


Spell Casters

I Almost Pee In My Pants

“Reflectiao!” I yelled at the top of my lungs.

A small mirror the size of a piece of paper floated in front of me. It swung. I ducked. It plunged. I screamed. Luckily, the mirror protected me. I lifted my head from beneath my arms. The SpiderBright was gone. Somehow, the mirror looked bigger. Now, it looked around the size of a stove. I put on a triumphant face before anyone could see that I almost peed in my pants because I was so scared. I looked over my shoulder to see a girl holding a God SpellBook. 

“You know, I made the mirror,” she said, annoyed.

 “Oh,” I said, my jaw dropping.

“Name’s Adrena,” she said, “Professional Spell Caster and Detective.”

Bzzz Bzzz, my watch buzzed. ‘5:30,’ it read. I got three new texts, all that said, ‘Come to Clover City.’ I quickly told Adrena that I needed to leave. I got a train there. It took about one hour. I watched the city disappear as the train spread into the station. As I got off the train, a note taped to a sign was about to be blown away. “Oxxiel,” I whispered to myself. The note flew off from the sign and landed in my hand. It read:

Dear Adrena,

Meet me at Cristoffs Magic Shop.

8:30 P.M.

Sincerely,

Francisco.

One thousand questions crowded my brain. Well, there’s only one way to get answers, I thought.


I Get Attacked By A Killer Meatball

“Ouch ahh ooh,” I said warily.

There it is! There it is! As I emerged from the forest, I said a smoke spell, and it turned into a smoke cloud. I found a crack in the windows, then drifted in. I saw Adrena and another guy, who I guessed was Francisco, talking.

Pop! The smoke spell wore off. Whoops.

“Escalaza!” yelled Adrena. Their bowls of spaghetti grew till they were the size of a refrigerator. Boom! Okay, that meatball just grew eyes. (Typical.) With that it came lunging at me. I grabbed a piece of MagNet (or as you humans call it: yarn) and made Jacob’s Ladder with it.

“Mi,” I whispered to no one in particular. The MagieNet flew and trapped the Meatball Monster. Ftth. The monster disintegrated. “What’s going on?” I demanded. 

“Alright alright,” Adrena confessed, “I got a letter from my brother, and he told me he was seeing weird things around the city. So the Crystill told him to find a few people he could trust and try to find out who was doing this. That’s why we brought you here to — ”

“You didn’t bring me here!” I interrupted. “I found a letter.” 

“You think that O.X.X.I.E.L spell was yours?!” she snorted. “If you said that spell, you would probably blow it away even more!”

This whole time Francisco hadn’t said anything. Wait… he was levitating. Oh no, oh no, oh no! He was about to say a death spell. I ran out as fast as my legs would go. If I said a single spell, it would trigger his spell to charge up even faster. Bam! I jumped out of spell range before the green light engulfed. I wasn’t going down without a fight. I positioned my hands, so it would look like I was holding an invisible sword. I pulled my hands apart as far as I could. A green shimmer was forming between my hands. A long wooden bamboo staff was now in my hands. I ran toward the siblings.

 “Yah!” I said with gusto.

As I was about to blast off their heads, I tripped.

“Sorry,” said Adrena, “Imp.”

A portal opened beneath me. I fell in, screaming as I fell into my dark death.


My Funeral

I landed on something slimy. That’s when I realized what it was. A tongue. I tried to summon my magic bamboo staff to help me escape the Realm Of Monsters. I started moving. I knew it was only a matter of time before I died. I tried all the spells I knew. I could smell its bad breath by now. Chomp! I was swallowed into the monster. All the people I knew had a party to celebrate my life, even though they didn’t find my body. If you’re wondering how I knew this, I knew this because this was just a near-death experience. Just one of many more to come.


The Road Boys: The Halloween Mystery

Chapter One: Where is the Candy?

I just went to the office in the main hall at my school. Then I came back to the hall, and the Candy for Gratitude was gone. I’m sure I saw it was there before school started, but now it was gone! Candy for Gratitude is candy that people give to the soldiers. We share some of our candy from Halloween.

Whoosh! A person ran into the boy’s bathroom with a full big bag. I couldn’t see who it was, but I knew I shouldn’t tell anybody. But as I kept thinking, I said to myself, “That shouldn’t keep me from including Nikan and Ashton.”

I decided to tell my friends Nikan and Ashton because I knew I couldn’t finish this big Halloween mystery. The only time we could keep looking for clues was at Beyond The Bell, which was after school. We could do anything we wanted after school. We could play in the yard or the field. We could also do our homework. We ran right after school and hid before the coach saw us and told us to go to the lunch benches for him to count us. My friends, Nikan, Ashton, and Kourosh, and I ran into the boy’s bathroom and looked around for clues using four of our senses: sight, smell, hearing, and touch. We found letters on the walls that spelled Trista, and we also found a big white wall. We freaked out because we knew someone named Tristan and a person named Trista. All my friends, Ashton, Nikan, and Kourosh, started running and hiding from our coach to the other boy’s bathroom. We hid there for a couple of minutes. Then we went out. Just after we went out, we saw a girl go into the boy’s bathroom. Her name was Madeline.


Chapter Two: The Creepy Guy!!!

“He should really get a shower,” I said to Kourosh when we passed an old man around 120 years old.

I thought he was a criminal in disguise, but Kourosh thought it was just an old man. He was with a cane carved like a totem pole. The cane had faces of a raven, frog, wolf, and a bear. We went to the park, and Ashton said he could eat 2,000,000,000 elephants. We then played soccer. Ashton missed an open goal and then tried to make an excuse.

Later that day, Ashton missed the ball 987 times, and when he was in the goal, he missed all the other team’s shots. We lost 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 to 0. 

Ashton said, “But it was not my fault,” and made up an excuse. “The other team cheated by pulling my arm, so I couldn’t dive far enough to reach the ball, and the other team’s coach was distracting me.” 

By this time, Ashton was really mad because we did not believe in his excuses. We knew

he was making excuses because when someone else was in goal, the other team only scored once.

We went back to school, and we saw the same girl who went into the boy’s bathroom. She thought nobody was watching her, but we were spying on her because we knew she was up to something. Kourosh, Ashton, and Nikan thought she was a boy, but I knew she was a girl. She even had a girl name. After school, Kourosh’s parent named Mr. Jeffffffersoz came to pick us up. We made a plan to catch the thief. Ashton, Nikan, Kourosh, and I decided to ask her why she went into the boy’s bathroom. The next day, we went in the boy’s bathroom, but we didn’t see her. 

“That is weird,” I said.

The bell rang. Ring! Oh no, we are going to be late, we all thought. We ran to our class room. It was number 5,668. There were 7,000 classes in the school. It is the biggest school in the world. After school, we followed her to the library. We saw her hide behind the recycling bin while we were hiding behind a bush. She was talking to another person, but we didn’t know who that person was. Ashton was looking on the right side of the bush, Nikan was looking on the left side of the bush, and Kourosh and I were looking above the bush. We had to crawl to another bush to get a better view of who the girl (Madeline) was talking to. The first thing we saw was a carved cane. We all recognized the cane. It was the cane of the creepy guy.

“I am so close. Those boys think I stole the candy,” said the girl.

“I am ¼ finished with the candy,” said the old guy.

“Guys, the girl we saw was a distraction. It is the creepy guy,” said Ido.

We followed him to his house, and we called the police.


Chapter Three: Police

Weeyoo weeyoo ahh police,” said Kourosh.

“Relax,” I said.

 “I called them,” said Ashton. 

The police cranked open the door and saw the man eating candy. They brought the guy in handcuffs and took off his wig. O-M-G! The robber was the strongest man in the Donald Trump buildings. He was the best robber in all the world. We brought the candy to the soldiers.

One of the soldiers said, “I saw the news. Are you guys the ones who stole back the candy?”

We were known as the best robber catchers.


The Road Boys: The Labor Day Mystery

Chapter One: What’s Gone Wrong in the City?!

“Sadly, on Labor Day, Kourosh and Ashton moved all the way to Saudi Arabia and met Princess Wurayf,” Ido mentioned. 

“Ooohhhh,” Nikan said, “this grill smells good, and it’s fun to use it at my new house.”

Meanwhile, a bad robber named Harry Kane left his house and headed over to the jail. At the jail, he let 100,000,000 other robbers out. They broke all the handcuffs and the keys to the cells. Then, they all jumped into police cars and went over to the Diamond District, where all the stores were abandoned because the shopkeepers were at Labor Day barbeques. They broke in and put the jewelry in big gold and white bags that they dragged out the door.

In another part of the city, another robber, named Jojo Casias, snuck into a barbeque and stole the grill while the happy tan man was using the bathroom. He also stole medicine from the happy tan man’s house.

Then Jojo drove back to the Diamond District and then smashed open the cash register and started to do Fortnite dances after the robbers stole all the money. Then, they went to people’s houses and started shooting the front windows. The police left their barbeques and sprinted as fast as injured cheetahs to the police station. When they got there, they saw they had no cars. Also, the sobbing people from the bank noticed their cars were stolen, too. Then the robbers went to the bank and stole over 10,000,000,000,000 dollars, which was the first record high since Christmas of last year.

Back at the boy’s barbeque, Nikan and Ido heard a crazy scream. 

“Robbers are invading!!”

As they put down their hamburgers, they heard bombing sounds. They were ready to take serious action.


Chapter Two: Clues from The Road Boys

The Road Boys rushed into Nikan’s room and got the number three best disguise robber catching costume: a gun, a shield, disguise powers, a watch to communicate, plus a button that could let you choose the power you want.

“Let’s go,” said Ido.

The boys rushed out of the house and jumped onto the bank. They saw thousands of police cars. On top of the roof, they saw a list of where Harry Kane was planning to go. 

The list:

  1.  Get the robbers
  2.  Diamond District
  3. Bank
  4. Chocolate factory
  5. Steal all the barbeques
  6. Mall
  7. School
  8. Houses
  9. Offices
  10. Shoot people 
  11. Leave City
  12. Steal stuff from airport and fly away. 

“I’ll go to the chocolate factory,” Nikan said.

“If they left the chocolate factory, I’ll go stop them from stealing all the barbeques. And alert me if you’re in trouble. You know my number,” said Ido. 

Nikan was terrified as he ran through the streets faster than Jesse Owens. He arrived at the chocolate factory. Then, when Nikan snuck in, he saw the robbers stealing like crazy, stealing all the stuff.

Then Nikan called Ido and said, “I need your help. There are over 2,000 robbers.”

“Sure,” Ido responded.

When Ido arrived, they activated a power named invisible speed with their special watches and jumped on down.

“Let’s go,” Nikan whispered.

The boys snuck by the whole gang and screamed to call the police. The robbers got scared and ran out.

Then Nikan called the police and said, “The robbers just went out and are trying to steal all of the barbeques.”

“Sure, I’ll go chase them,” said the policeman named Mr. Writopia.

The boys headed out and started using their superspeed power and tripped the police cars that the bad guys were in and broke the wheels. Boom! The robbers were totally injured, and some couldn’t walk. They did not know what to do without their lost cars. They heard sirens. There were more police cars from another city! Then, Harry Kane swooped in on a helicopter and picked up all the injured robbers and the robbers who were suffering from really bad pain. Also, Harry Kane saved the robbers who were on the loose getting chased by policemen.

Then, the helicopter distracted the police, and people came out to help out. The robbers inside the helicopters helped the injured robbers feel better by giving them the stolen medicine. Next, they jumped out of the helicopter and stole all the barbeques because that’s what was next on their list.

Chapter Three: Catch ‘Em Boys

The boys ran 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 miles per hour and caught two robbers, and gave them to the police who brought the poor robbers to jail. They were poor because they were the only two out of 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 robbers.

Then, the boys said, at the same time, “We need a trap.” 

The boys had the plan. They whispered it to the police and got started. First, the police chased the robbers toward Schanbel Boulevard. Schanbel Boulevald looked like a perfectly normal street with light posts all over because Mayor Melon lived on it. But the horrible robbers, all with concussions, ran over the trap that they didn’t know was a deadly trap and fell into it. It was 10 billion feet deep, and when all of them fell in, the friendly boys put up a firm gate so the deadly robbers didn’t get out, and if not all were caught, the boys made the same trap over and over again till the robbers were all caught. And, at the bottom, the boys put a machine that put handcuffs around the non-innocent robbers who destroyed the whole Labor Day!

After all the robbers were caught, they were put into dump trucks with a lot of trash, like stinky bananas and banana peels, which were totally awful.

Chapter Four: Jail

When they finally arrived at Kick Your Butt Jail, the robbers were in a moving tarp and were one by one loaded into a jail slot and were surrounded by chainsaws, and there was not even a single way to let the robbers escape.

After all the robbers were put into the jail slots, dinner was served: edible horse poo mush. There were no utensils or silverware given, only a plastic window if the robbers wanted to cover the open area which had iron poles around it so the robbers could not escape or shoot the city to death or kill people right out of the window.

The ground was all black and dusty. The walls of the mini cube had cracks and holes. It was just a plain room. Nothing was inside a plain room.

The robbers were whining to annoy the police and guards, so they would go away so that the robbers could make up a cruel plan. The guards finally called their wives to bring them earphones, so they couldn’t hear and at 10:00 sharp at night they all went to bed.


Chapter Five: Celebrate the Boys

The next day, the city met at town hall with misplaced artifacts.

The mayor, named Mayor Melons, said, “We must honor the people who saved our town… ”

As the mayor got ready to speak, he reached out his neck as tall as he could and got ready to speak loud and very proud, “Nikan Jafari and Ido Levertov. I must thank them so much for saving our town from such cruel robbers we were about to get killed by. Thank you so much. Thank you boys for saving our city.”

They planned to make a picnic to honor the boys.

“We will honor them at 12:00 sharp at Royal Mellow Yellow Park, and my servant Petit will serve appetizers, drinks, and food with his crew.”

When the church bell rang, everybody in the city arrived on time and was getting served from Petit and his crew.

It was an awesome celebration, and at the end, they had a yoga class, and finally at the very, very, very end, Mayor Melon, Governor Chicken, and President Taft, who was stuck in a bath, gave a speech and then at last awarded the boys with medals, Teslas, Lamborghinis, 1,000 billion dollars, trophies and so much more. And the boys thanked them so much and bowed to the crowd.


Little Short Nuggets of Life

Little Short Nuggets of Life is an ongoing collection of vignettes about events in the author’s life. The stories below are highlights from the seven snippets that have been written so far. Enjoy!

Some guy died on the freeway, and my dad was late picking me up. I think it was some biker who got hit. My dad says he drove past a bike and a white sheet with a person-shaped lump under it on Highway 24. Anyway, I got dropped off at the bus stop at 3:20 in the afternoon. And after waiting for about five minutes, I began to become restless. I know that sounds lame, but first, I usually get picked up within at least the first two minutes. And second, five minutes is so long when you’re just sitting there. Like, seriously. Have somebody set a timer for five minutes and just sit there and try to guess when five minutes have passed. I’ll bet you say, “Stop,” around three minutes. A minute is a long time! And then when you put five of them together, it’s like, six times as long a time. Around minute seven, I started practicing jumping up and clicking my heels twice. I only got it twice. Again, it sounds easy, but it really isn’t! Then I started trying to teach myself Patty Cake. I am an expert now. Then, I just sat there a bit more. The bus and everyone else had left by now. Then I counted how many birds I could spot in a minute. It was eight. Then I practiced what I would say to my mom when she finally came. I started talking to myself. Not because I was going insane, but because that’s what I do when there’s nothing else to do. There was a car this whole time that would circle the block with a woman in it with AirPods. She went around four times. I think she was lost. Everytime she came back, I was like, “Oh it’s you again!” There was a pea plant and I would pick a pea pod and squeeze it to see how far I could shoot the peas. Turns out, not all that far.  So I just waited. A bit more.

A random thought I had today, “What if there was a store that was filled with people and mosquitos could just come along and be like, ‘O negative, please.’ And the cashier would say ‘Oh, try aisle four on the right side.’ And then the mosquito would go to aisle four and pick out the human they wanted and take it home to drink the person’s blood.

Then what would happen is when a mosquito bought a bunch of humans, they would get to the exit and see one of those huge bins for food that gets donated to the food bank and stick in a baby or two. How would a mosquito check if a human was good? By how long their hair is? Or how soft the bottom of their feet are? And there would be farms for humans that are B+ and farms for humans that are A-. How would they pay for the humans? What do mosquitoes use for currency? What do ants use for currency? Ants are so advanced and have such complicated ant hills that maybe they use money, too. I wonder if bees know that they will die if they sting somebody. I heard that all bees are female except for the workers, who basically get treated like slaves. They just work until they aren’t needed anymore. Then the queen just pushes them out the door and leaves them to die. That’s so sad! Imagine if humans did that. “Oh, little Billy. We don’t have a use for you anymore! Well, you’re on your own now!” While writing this I thought, “What are some other insects I could talk about?” So I Googled, “Cool Insect Facts.” And here’s what popped up: Did you know that 90% of species on Earth are insects? I mean, that’s just so many. And I learned that 290 million years ago there was this dragonfly that had a wingspan of three feet! It went around terrorizing lizards and being a jerk to everybody. Do insects name their babies? I also found out that termite queens can lay 7,000 eggs in a day. Imagine how painful that would be. Just laying eggs all day long. You would never get to just relax. Just eggs and eggs and eggs and eggs and eggs upon eggs upon eggs. Anyway, that’s what I have to say about insects. I guess insect life will just remain a mystery. 

So in Berkeley around this time it’s been getting really hot. And everyone is rejoicing. For the past two months, we have had rain almost every single day, and when it’s not raining, it’s overcast. But recently I have been able to wear short sleeve shirts and shorts. At the same time, I am melting onto the sidewalk practically, but it’s a small price to pay for all this glorious sunshine. I just constantly want to be outside. Sometimes, in the middle of class, I just feel a strong, burning desire to go run in a meadow or jump in a pool somewhere. Although today might have been an exception. We have this thing at school called Endurance Day and it was today. We ran the 800-meter dash. And everyone was so slow. One kid took seven minutes. It was so boiling, like somewhere someone had dropped an atom bomb. But instead of, you know, leveling a whole city, it released an insane flood of sunshine. The quickest time was four minutes, sixteen seconds. To put that in perspective, the average 800-meter time is from 3:16 all the way to 3:30. That’s around a minute slower than what your time should be. At the end, I was so tired that I rubbed my face against a cool pole that was in the shade. And by the way, it felt wonderful. This afternoon, I am going to take full and complete advantage of the heat and throw a backyard dance party. Maybe I’ll invite the really weird recluse tenant in our backyard. She works at the lace museum and spends her weekends going to Renaissance fairs and jousting in actual chainmail on actual horses. And when you look up “awkward” in the dictionary, a picture of her comes up. She seems to not really participate in the normal hobbies people in society participate in. What’s the morale? I don’t know. Maybe rub a pole to cool down. Anyway, that’s the end I suppose.


the man in a bird suit that hardly looked like a bird. but i shot it down anyway. like a bird.

Hi there! Rosie here. And I’m going to tell you the famous tale of how I came across the bird that showed me the meaning of life: Have no mercy.

So, I was just strolling in my backyard when I saw this funny-looking bird. It had blue feathers and a red mohawk of feathers on top of its head and green eyes. Plus, it was unusually large. And it kind of creeped me out. At first, I thought it was a normal bird, but then it began to scream like it was the end of the world. Then my head hurt. Within five seconds. So, I shot the bird with a potato gun. Not dead, just “taken out.” Like they do in movies. It fell to the ground, and I looked up on Google what to do with an injured animal when you find one. The first thing that came up was to go to an animal shelter and give it to them to deal with. So, I put the knocked out bird in a sack and carried it to the nearest shelter. (Wow. That bird must’ve been very bad at defense if it could be taken out with a potato gun that I got at the 7-Eleven store.)

When I reached the shelter, I thumped the unconscious bird in my sack down at the desk and said, “One totally alive bird delivery.”

And then I walked out before they realized that I was basically kidnapping a bird. Run! But then, my legs began to hurt, and I gave up. Nailed it. When I got home, they asked why I had been gone so long, and I answered that I had been on a nature bird walk. And I walked away thinking to myself about how much they didn’t know. 

And that’s the tale of the bird that showed me the way to my destiny. Later, I found out that it wasn’t a bird at all. It was a man in costume.


Sharpclaw (Chapter One)

Chapter One

Sharpclaw soared through the sky. Finally, free, he thought. Sharpclaw looked behind him at the army chasing him. Sharpclaw flapped furiously, and the landscape blurred. Forests with tall pine trees, mountains with tall peaks, and deserts with prickly cacti and large blue pools whirled by until he reached the sea. The world swam before his eyes and soon, out of sheer exhaustion, he passed out.

Sharpclaw woke to the crackling of a fire. Sharpclaw, with his dark blue scales and dark, unforgiving gray eyes, tried to sit up, but someone said in a fresh but dark voice:

“Do not try. You are very tired and on the verge of death. I will bring you back in due time but for now, you need rest.”

Sharpclaw closed his eyes, and the human spooned some soup into his mouth. It was delicious, the perfect combination of buttery and salty with chunks of vegetables and meat. Then he felt horrible, like someone was sticking a red hot needle into his back. Then he felt it on his tail, on his wing, and in his neck. Sharpclaw thrashed and kicked, but it did nothing. Finally the pain stopped, and Sharpclaw stopped kicking. Everything hurt, but it wasn’t as bad as before. Sharpclaw wondered what was happening to him, but he was too tired and closed his eyes. The next day, Sharpclaw awoke to someone petting him.

“Brave one. You escaped the King Albitroix’s wrath. I’m proud of you,” said the person, who now Sharpclaw could identify as a young boy with black hair and freckles that lightly dotted his face.

Sharpclaw closed his eyes as the human commented, “You are Sharpclaw, aren’t you.”

Sharpclaw replied without speaking, by telepathy. ‘Yes, little one, I am Sharpclaw. That is obvious, but who are you?

‘My name is Darius. I am honored to meet you. How did you escape, and what will you do now?’ asked Darius.

‘I will destroy everything the Albitroix owns and loves. I will kill all his men, and I will pillage every village in the entire kingdom of Endview who are all loyal to the tyrant of a king that we have,’ Sharpclaw ranted.

‘Yes. I agree. Will you join me to defeat the king?’ asked Darius.

Yes, on one condition: I kill the king,’ replied Sharpclaw.

I will talk to Shadowcourt about it,’ Darius told Sharpclaw.

‘Shadowcourt? You mean the mythic clan that is hidden from everyone?’ asked Sharpclaw, surprised.

Why yes, how did you know?’ questioned Darius.

I heard my, ugh, master the king talking about finding and destroying Shadowcourt,’ Sharpclaw answered.

Yes, if you would like to come to Shadowcourt in less than three weeks, I suggest we start now,’ suggested Darius. The sun warmed his face and reflected of Sharpclaw’s body. The birds tweeted.

Sharpclaw tested his body. His wings rose up and down, and his legs made circles in the sand. It felt surprisingly good. Sharpclaw had expected to feel sore, but he felt like he could fly around a mountain.

Let’s go. Climb onto my back,’ Sharpclaw ordered.

Darius climbed onto Sharpclaw’s back and gripped the curved spikes that protruded from his back. Then Darius leaped onto Sharpclaw’s scales, where the saddle would be if Sharpclaw had one, and Sharpclaw took a running leap, stretching his wings out wide. The wind caught at his wings, and Sharpclaw began his ascent. It tore at Sharpclaw’s wings as he fought to fly higher. Darius gripped Sharpclaw’s scales, and his face turned white. Sharpclaw flew faster and faster, then dove down through the forest, leaving Darius’s stomach far behind. And his guts. Sharpclaw weaved between the pine trees that dotted the forest floor. Then, Sharpclaw lunged at a rather plump chicken who was resting on the ground and raced towards it before he caught it in his mouth. After that, Sharpclaw rose out of the forest..

That’s what real fun looks like,’ declared Sharpclaw as he launched himself higher.

Cluck cluck cluck,” clucked the chicken, terrified at the big flying thing that had appeared in its life.

Sharpclaw landed at an incredible speed, but the landing was completely smooth. Darius fell off Sharpclaw’s back and ran to the bushes where Sharpclaw heard some pretty disturbing noises that consisted of “Ugh,” “Blech,” and things like that. 

Little one, was that too much fun?’ Sharpclaw questioned.

“Blech!” replied Darius.

Wow, Sharpclaw thought. Darius really does not look good. Maybe I should help. Sharpclaw was astonished at how he was thinking. Just yesterday, he would have thought: Eww. Gross, get away from that disgusting creep. But now Sharpclaw wanted to help. Sharpclaw arranged stones in a circle.

Cluck cluck cluck!” the chicken clucked.

Sharpclaw silenced the chicken once and for all by breathing fire. That singed the feathers off the chicken, and the chicken died a fast death. Sad but delicious. Then, Sharpclaw gathered some leaves and made a place for Darius to sit himself. Then, Sharpclaw sent a message with his mind to Darius:

‘Come, little human, sit down and eat. You must be starving. I will go and hunt for myself.’

With that Sharpclaw launched himself into the air and sped off. Darius groaned.


The Fennec Fox and the Clouded Leopard

Vapor the Fennec Fox was sitting on a rock when suddenly a No-fur with a stick came over to him. Vapor knew that sticks were dangerous, so he started running as fast as he could when he ran smack into a palm tree. At the same time, hundreds of miles away, Hang-down the Clouded Leopard was chasing a Vole for dinner when a Chihuahua blocked his way. Hang-down was very surprised. Suddenly, the Chihuahua howled in his face!

“Ruh-ruh-ruh-AWOOO!!!”

The Chihuahua started chasing Hang-down. Hang-down climbed up all the way to the forest canopy. Now the Chihuahua could not get him — he was stuck on a branch, and he couldn’t climb any higher.

Hang-down stared down at the Chihuahua and growled, “You little foo — ” when — crrrrk! — the branch cracked, and the Chihuahua fell, his tail getting caught on another branch. 

Hang-down burst out laughing because the Chihuahua fell, and he hated the Chihuahua. Then the branch that he’d been stuck on fell too, and it landed on the Chihuahua. The Chihuahua was stuck in a branch sandwich! And then the branch on top of him started to wobble. Then he started to wobble. And they fell!!!

Hang-down burst out laughing again. The Chihuahua landed on the hard, hard forest floor. Suddenly, a No-fur appeared. He was holding a stick, just like the other one. He also had a big spider web. He threw it at Hang-down, who tried to dodge it but got caught in the big web. There was an opening to the net, so he climbed out, but he didn’t know there was a trap. It looked like a rectangular big shaped spider web, so he went inside, but then it lifted off the ground, and he heard a sound — bririririririr!!! Hang-down zoomed past the canopy of the forest. Then he saw the forest end and a lot of little dots, black and tan colorish. Suddenly, he was over the water. Then he felt himself being lowered until the rectangular spider web was touching the water. It started tilting, and then water started rushing in. Then all of a sudden, the big rectangular spider web hit a rock. There was a big rectangular shaped cave with no entrance. Hang-down was very surprised and frightened.

Back in the desert, Vapor the Fennec Fox woke up to find himself sitting in a dark cave. He couldn’t see a thing and didn’t know where he was. He could hear a strange sound — bririririririr!!! He could hear something clinking below him (which was the big rectangular spider web Hang-down was in). At the same time… the dark place where Vapor was in and the big rectangular spider web got unleashed by something that looked like a scorpion tail. Both went sliding into a little opening of the huge rectangular cave. Once inside, it was very light and they saw a little, little cave which had a scorpion inside. When everything was opened, they saw how the scorpion looked. It was shiny and turquoise blue, and when the light darkened, it was sky blue and transparent.

Poison-Sting, Hang-down, and Vapor looked at each other. Vapor and Hang-down sniffed each other. They didn’t say anything for awhile.

Finally, Poison-Sting broke the silence by saying, “Hello, Fennec Fox and Clouded Leopard. My name is Poison-Sting, the blue scorpion.”

Then Vapor said, “My name is Vapor.”

“My name is Hang-Down,” said Hang-Down.

“Where did you guys come from?” asked Poison-Sting.

“I came from the Sahara — ” said Vapor until he was suddenly interrupted by a baby white devon rex. The baby was one foot and six inches shorter than Hang-Down.

“My name is — ” it said in a baby voice, because it was a baby obviously, “Oakheart.”

Poison-Sting inched his stinger but didn’t say anything. Hang-down opened her mouth but didn’t say anything. And Vapor just wagged his tail. 

He repeated, “My name is Oakheart,” still in a babyish voice. “Hello. I came from an animal shelter, and I escaped. Then some weird No-Fur came and brought me here… Do you want help to escape? I’ve been wanting to escape ever since a No-Fur with a stick that had fur on the end (a broom) tried whacking me with it,” said Oakheart.

“Yes, we would love to,” said Poison Sting.

So the four of them planned their escape that very night. Poison-Sting used his stinger to unlock the hidden cave entrance that the No-Furs would come in and out through, then they creaked open the cave entrance and crept out into the darkness of night… 

To be continued… in the next chapter of this book, Oakheart.


Ketchup Pool

A ketchup packet named Lucas went to the ketchup pool, and he was all red, and people thought he was covered in blood, so they took him to the hospital. Then, the nurse screamed and took him back to the pool, and then he turned pink. The pool turned pink. Then Lucas turned into a mouse. He was the same size, but he had whiskers, a tail, and no hands, and he had a ketchup sign on his chest, and then he got freaked out. 

Then he made a mysterious shoe fly off of someone’s foot, and then it smacked him right in the head. He fought back with his black Sharpie marker. He colored on the top of the shoe. The shoe got really mad and smashed him right in the legs.

The shoe said, “You’re weird.”

Lucas said, “You’re rude.” 

Then they had a battle. They had fire and a stick. Then the mouse got fire, and the shoe got a stick. Then they fought, and the mouse burned the stick, and then he burned the shoe down, and it turned into pieces, and then the shoe died. 

Then he got born again. He was a baby shoe. He was super small. He said nothing. He was in a field of shoes. Lucas went home, and then he turned back into a ketchup packet. He felt tired, and then he went to bed.


The Gingerbread Man

Once upon a time there was a gingerbread man. It started raining, but it wasn’t raining regular rain — it was raining frosting. The gingerbread man, whose name was Melanie, ate the frosting while he was walking to his house. He bought dinner on the way — he never knew it was going to rain frosting. He ate so much frosting that his stomach was too full to eat dinner, and that happened for ten whole weeks. He kept buying dinner on his way home from work because he didn’t think it would rain frosting, but then it did!

Melanie, the gingerbread man, carried a suitcase in his hand because he worked at a watch store: an Apple watch store. He ran the Apple watch store, and he only hired other gingerbread men. The reason he only hired gingerbread men was because they worked well together, but he could only find one other gingerbread man to hire, and he needed more — so one day he decided to make a gingerbread man. 

So he went home and made another gingerbread man, and since he also needed to find a wife, he made it a girl gingerbread man. And her name was Max. In the gingerbread world, girls had boys names, and boys had girls names.

Melanie and Max were walking together one day when he noticed he was late to work, so he said to his wife, “I have to go to work now! I’m late!”

As he was running to work, he saw another gingerbread man. And then four more gingerbread men with him!

So he asked them, “Are you looking for a job?”

And they said yes, so he hired them. 

They all went to the Apple watch shop together, and he introduced them to the other guy who worked with him in the store. But the five new gingerbread men didn’t actually work well in a team. They broke the glass, they made a mess, they threw the watches in the dump, and they stole a hammer and broke the whole store. The store was broken all over the place and was no longer a store. It was a new place for the dump. The owner fired them, but then the five gingerbread men got a hammer and destroyed the whole store, and it fell on them all, and they died. And that was the end of the owner and the five gingerbread men.

His wife was still alive, crying, “Where’s my husband, where’s my husband!”

She laid down in her house.

That was the end of her life.

The End.


The Game Show

So, I am a game show host, and I’m kind of the funny one. I announce the winner — not you! Okay? We have two contestants: Joe and Bob. Okay, I think I should tell you my name… My name is… the host!!! Don’t call me anything else. Especially not my real name, which I’m not going to tell you.

Fine, I’ll tell you. My name is beep.

  I won’t tell you my name. Hahahaha.

“Now it’s time for the Game Show. Bob, you can go first.”

“Hi, I’m Bob! I’m doing this so I can raise money for nothing! And I’m super dumb. Just so you know.”

“Thanks, Bob, for coming to this Game Show. Now Joe, introduce yourself.”

“Name’s Joe! I’m here because I have no reason… Okay. Done with my interview.” 

“Great. I ask the questions, just so you know. You press the button, and whoever gets it first gets to answer the question. And if you don’t get it right, you transfer $1 to the other team. If you have $0, you still lose $1, so you will have -$1. And if you end on a minus, you have to pay us!”

“So my first question is: who won the 2018 FIFA World Cup?”

Beep!

“Okay! Joe, you pressed the button.”

Joe says, “France!”

“He is right. Because he’s an expert in soccer. Also, if you win, you get $10. Actually $15. Actually no, $10. So Joe has $10, and Bob has $0. The next question is: Hmm… let me think. I didn’t prepare for the questions because I didn’t have time. Who won the 2022 FIFA World Cup?”

Beep!

“Spain!”

“Bob is wrong! It’s the future, so nobody knows. So Bob has to give $1 to Joe. Now Joe has $11 and Bob has -$1.”

“Aw. So much for my guess.”

“Now another question. What’s 100 plus 100?”

Beep!

“150!” says Joe.

“Wrong! Okay.”

Beep!

“150!” says Joe.

“You already said that! I said no!”

Beep!

“150!” says Joe.

“Oh my gosh, you’re annoying me so much! It’s not 150!!!”

Beep!

“150!” says Joe.

“Okay, I’ll tell you the right answer! It’s 200!”

Beep!

“200!” says Joe.

“It’s too late! You can’t copy me! You have to give the other team $4! Now Bob has $3, and Joe has $7. Okay, next question. Who is the dumbest person here?”

Beep!

“Me!” says Bob.

“You’re right! You get $10! Now Bob has $13, and Joe has $7! So because this question is super, super hard, it’s worth $50.”

Joe and Bob gasp.

“The question is: where do babies come from?”

Beep!

“Baby co.” 

“No!”

Beep!

“I have no idea.”

“No, you’re wrong!”

“Okay, that’s the end of the question. No one got it.”

No!

“That’s the end of the game show, guys! It’s time to tally up all the work… Dang it! I forgot all of the scores.”

Joe and Bob faint.

The End.

Cactus

Guy and Cactus are punching each other in zero gravity floating in space. They are right above the moon. They’re waiting for a shuttle than can take them to Uranus. They are punching each other because one wants the border wall between Uranus and its moon, Myanus.

Guy

The wall is good!


Cactus

The one between Uranus and Myanus? That one is shit!!!


Out pops a map from behind the stage. It shows “Uranus” and “Myanus,” with a wall between them. Then the map flips around, and it shows what Cactus wants. An empty space and a bridge between them.

The shuttle picks them up. (Cactus and Guy are walking around the stage.)

(They are on Myanus now.)

There is a tree that says, “Welcome to Myanus,” on a sign.

They start punching each other again.

Cactus 

We’re on Myanus?!


Guy 

No, we’re on Myanus!!!


Cactus 

No, we’re on Myanus!!!


Guy

No, we’re on Myanus!!!

Guy runs to the border and starts piling bricks for the wall.

Cactus runs over and starts taking bricks to the bridge.

(This keeps on going for 10 hours.)

(Both people faint.)

The next day… 

Guy eats a Big Mac burger.

Cactus eats a watermelon.

An hour later… 

Guy

We’re on Myanus!


Cactus

No, we are on Myanus!

Random guy wearing a shirt that says “no wall.” Guy whacks random guy on the head.

(Random guy does not like Guy because he does not like the wall.)

Guy is dead.


Cactus 

Hooray! 


He now gets everything he wants (that is reasonable). Some things that are reasonable are gold, gold, and gold. Cactus gets showered in gold.


Aliens Living on Mars

One day Alex was going to work as an astronaut. He was helping them build a spaceship they would soon go to space in. And today was the test for who was going to be on the mission. He hoped it would be him! And he also hoped that the test wasn’t going to be too hard. 

When he opened the door to the work space, Alex found that the only thing they needed to add to the spaceship was the top. The top was the most important part because the driver had to sit there, and it was where they saw from, so they didn’t run into a part of space where they couldn’t go back to earth.

Then Alex went into the part of the workspace where the test was being taken. He took a piece of paper and found the test was 40 pages long. This was probably going to take the whole day, so the ship wouldn’t take off till Monday, and today was Friday. They didn’t work on Saturday and Sunday. After the work day was over, he had 15 more pages to do, so now the ship wouldn’t take off until Tuesday — because there were more people still working on the test.

Alex went home and had his normal routine. He asked his mom if he could go out with his friends, and she said yes, so he went to the bar nearby. He and his friends watched baseball on the TV and drank some tequila. He was feeling good and hoped that he got to be on spaceship soon. 

***

On Monday, Alex got back to work, went into the room, and got his test back. He went back to work on the last 15 pages. Then, an hour before the work day was over, he finished the test. Then he went to see how the spaceship was doing. They’d added the top, and now they were painting it to look like one of the fiercest spaceships because they were painting it as a tiger! Then the work day was over.

When the Tuesday work day started, he saw the sheet of paper announcing the people who were going on the spaceship to space. There were 20 people in total going, and he was number 13!!! He was so happy he jumped up and down! It also said when it was leaving: it was leaving on Friday that week. Alex was so happy. He got out his phone and texted his mom. Right away, his mom texted back.

I’m so proud of u!

Alex needed to go prepare the spaceship for blastoff with all his stuff. He put all his gear in the trunk near his seat — all the seats had labels, and since he was #13, he put it in the one that said #13. Plus, best friend Miles was also in the spaceship. He was #12! He was right next to Alex. Then the work day was over and he was all packed up. As he was leaving, the boss said he could have Wednesday and Thursday off, because he was going on the spaceship. Then he had an idea: he was going to make a whole sculpture on Wednesday and Thursday of space. The only thing he didn’t know was what planet they were going to, so he just made a sculpture of the whole solar system. He hoped he was going to Venus because that was his favorite planet.

***

He got to work on Friday. He was so happy, and then he heard an announcement. It said: “All people on the list going to planet… Mars! Please proceed to the locker room to get your suit, and then please proceed to the spaceship. We will be taking off in 20 minutes.”

Alex went to the locker room to get on his suit. He got it on — it was also designed as a tiger! It had the number 13 on it and his last name, which was Zabbanegan. Then he made his way to the shuttle. He was feeling really excited, but he was also really happy because he’d get to eat those little dehydrated foods, like an ice cream sandwich. Plus he knew he would survive because he had previously been in the marines and survived World War 3!! Alex was sure taking off to space would be cool — getting to see the whole of earth from so far away. The ship would blast off higher and higher into the clouds, higher than an airplane can go — way up into space where you could see the whole galaxy. Alex had really, really wanted to go since he was only six years old, and now his dream was coming true!

Then another announcement came: “Please board the shuttle.” Alex got onto the shuttle using the little runway, and he got into his seat, and Miles was already there. And then he heard the countdown… 

“Ten… nine… eight… seven… six… five… four… three… two… one! Blast off!” 

Then it was true: he was heading to space! A few minutes later, he was deep into space, and they let off the boosters. Then Alex could see all the galaxy from just his window, and he could see a whole world right behind him. He was very excited. Back in the 2020’s space travel took a long time, but now with super speed travel, it took only a matter of hours. 

Deep into space Alex could see a tiny little brown planet which looked like Mars! It came closer and became bigger, and then he saw light…

“How could it be no shuttle blasted off since 2019? Why is there light?” he asked himself.

Then it got closer and then the light was bigger. And Alex wondered what could be that big with all that light. And then they started to look like tiny houses. Then it looked like there were green people walking all over. Then it looked like the people had antennas with eyes and no eyes on their foreheads. Alex felt an exclamation mark go off above his head! He thought aliens weren’t real, but now he knew it was true. It sounded like alarms were going off in his head because he was so shocked, amazed and surprised.

“Aaaahhhh!!!”

And miles said, “What? What happened?”

“I-I saw aliens!!!”

And then Miles said, “Aaaahhhh!!!”

Finally Alex and Miles got tired of screaming. By that time, everyone in the whole ship was staring at them. Alex told them what happened. Then the captain made an announcement that they were going to land on Mars in 10 seconds.

“Ten… nine… eight… seven… six… five… four… three… two… one… ” Boom!!!

They landed on Mars.

When they looked out the window, a bunch of green people were staring at the spaceship. But some wore blue caps, which were the exact same as a police officer’s on earth. And they had giant guns! 

But also they were aiming at the ship, getting ready to fire. Quietly, all the astronauts went to get their suits of armor — which were emergency suits with armor on top. And they got their human guns. Dun dun. They got out onto the ladder and down… Then… 

The war began!!! It was 20 human astronauts versus 100 aliens, but they were dumb. The aliens fired first, but he shot space because he was so dumb. He was the dumbest of them all. Then all the other ones started firing, but they were closer to the astronauts. And then things only got worse because all of them started to fire. But Alex — he was the best of all the astronauts because he had marine training. After all, he was in the marines when World War 3 happened!!! But luckily the war wasn’t that long, so he survived. Alex had really good aim and was really good with a gun, and so he killed most of them. But then out of the corner of his eye, Alex saw a giant giant building with more green people heading out of it with giant guns too.

Then he knew he was outnumbered, so then he took his little walkie-talkie and said to earth, “We need more astronauts that are trained for combat, because we have a little World War One in space going on here with the aliens.”

The commander said, “Yes sir, we will send 10 more ships up there.”

In just about ten more minutes, the spaceships arrived, and when the aliens saw that, the smartest guy of them all (but still pretty dumb) said in his walkie-talkie, to that big building probably, “We need more aliens! They sent 10 more ships with about 20 more people, so that’s just about 200. It’s war.

And then it really started to happen. Then there were just about 2 million aliens, and it started to get bloody. But the alien’s blood was yellow. So just about the red Mars turned yellow Mars.

And then one of the astronauts went to go spy in that building, and when he came back, he said into his walkie-talkie, “There’s literally a machine that makes aliens. This is going to go on forever, people!!!”

Soon, Alex’s 20 men were running out of air. They had to go back into the ship, refill, and then go back out. When they came back out there were only half the amount of astronauts because they were getting air too. But they were winning. They kept destroying and destroying the aliens and then finally Alex sent himself and randomly picked 20 other astronauts, not only from his group but also the other — and then went all the way behind that big giant building. Then they broke the window, climbed in, and hid behind the machine. They didn’t want to destroy it right away because then all the aliens would know, and they didn’t have enough people to destroy all the aliens coming out of the machine.

The machine looked like a giant door — which opens and closes — and when it opened, five aliens came out at a time, each holding a gun. The sound went — brum brum brum brum brum brum brum. A smell coming from the machine smelled like rotten eggs. The first thing Alex knew they had to do was destroy the aliens operating the machine: there were five of them. Because they could make as many aliens as they wanted to. But before they almost destroyed those aliens, they saw the commander come in and say they were losing the fight, so they could turn up how many aliens were coming out of the machine. The aliens operating the machine switched it from ‘5’ up to ‘100’! And then the door turned almost as big as how tall the building was, and the aliens were floating in the air and then fell down, balanced on the ground. Then Alex knew just what to do — he shot the five, and then all the aliens started to look behind them — and then Alex took a grenade out of his back pocket and threw it at the aliens, and it kind of hit the machine and exploded. Basically all the aliens got destroyed — and the machine!

They had basically won the fight, but there were still a lot of aliens out there. And so Alex and his crew destroyed all the aliens that had survived the grenade, then they exited from where they came from and went outside to destroy all the remaining aliens. But when they went out to Mars, all the aliens were already dead, and almost all the astronauts were gone, and even some of the ships. So it was over a long time ago. There was one ship remaining for them. The 20 soldiers got on board, and they went super-speed all the way back to earth! When they got back, basically all the astronauts were waiting, and they were celebrating, and they had a secret surprise party for Alex. They had a cake shaped like a rocket ship and cupcakes shaped like green aliens, with yellow lemon flavored filling. And then they had lemonade with tequila. Meanwhile, they were sending more people to Mars to clean up all the yellow alien blood and destroy the buildings, because humans were going to build a dome up there for scientists to study Mars. The 200 men who fought the aliens went to the news tower, and they told the president of the network to put it on the news and make them famous. That night, Alex’s mom saw him on the news, and she was so proud! She messaged him to say:

Wow saw u on news! what happened??

And then Alex texted back:

It’s a looooooong story!

THE END


Leg Breaking

Once I was with my mom, sister, and dad. My sister and dad were ahead a lot. My mom and I were behind. I told my mom that I was going to run to my sister, so I waited until we were on a road, and then I ran to them. I was almost there, but I slipped and banged my knee on the bricks. There were three puddles of blood on my right knee. I started to cry. My mom hurried over. She told me that we would be home soon.

She said, “I’ll get you a Band-Aid when we get home.”

I stumbled home. I plopped on the bed and said, “Owwww!”

My mom gave me three Band-Aids because the bruise was very big and bloody. My sister gave me a Danimals drink. I felt scared. I started to cry. 

The next few days, I went to summer camp, and we had a field trip to the playground. I climbed, but fell down, and then there was a bruise on my left knee and big bloody puddles. The instructors gave me an enormous Band-Aid.

Then it was snack time. So, I sat down on a bench. There, I rested my foot and ate some pretzels and Goldfish. After we went back home, I had to go to shower, and I had two plastic bags around my knees. When I slept, I was very, very, very scared because my knee was bloody. When I touched it, it felt like I was dying, so I didn’t touch it.


Lea’s Unicorn (Books One and Two)

Book One

Once upon a time there lived a girl named Lea. She lived in Toronto, Canada. Every night Lea had always dreamed of owning a unicorn, but she was bullied at school for believing that unicorns were real.

Her friends and classmates told her things like “Unicorns aren’t real” or “You’re stupid.”

One day, Lea met a woman at a museum in a unicorn section.

“Are unicorns real?” asked Lea after the woman was done saying about Unicorn magic.

“Yes,” said the woman.

“Where do they live?” asked Lea.

“They live in Cloudymay Falls, just above the clouds you see in the sky,” said the woman.

After Lea and the woman talked for a while about unicorns, Lea eventually left and went home. When the time came when she had to go to bed, she looked up in the sky instead of falling asleep. Finally, at 12:00 midnight, she saw a big group of unicorns flying through the clouds. 

“Unicorns! Here! Right now!”

Lea ran to get her phone from downstairs and took a picture of the gorgeous sight. She could not believe her eyes! Lea wished she could meet and get a unicorn! But, there was a problem. How could she get up in the clouds? Lea had to use her creative mind right now. Poof! She had an idea. What if she could search up ‘how unicorns can use magic?’ Then, she could use magic to make her be able to fly! The next day she searched it up, hoping for an answer. Today was a great day! She followed the steps carefully and after about half an hour, she got it! The first thing she wanted to do was use magic to give her body extra rest, since she was up really long last night. With a few magic words and hoof movements (which she used her feet for, since humans did not have hoofs) she felt a lot more rested than just a few seconds ago.

“I can’t believe it!” gasped Lea.

I can use magic now! Lea thought. Now I’ll wish for a Unicorn! She tried to say the magic words, but instead of a unicorn appearing, she started rising in the air and fell down on her back.

“Ouch!” cried Lea, in pain.

She tried to search why that just happened, and she found that you couldn’t wish for unicorns. Lea thought again.

“I know!” said Lea in excitement. “I can wish to be up in the clouds, and then I can meet Unicorns there.”

But she couldn’t try right now, because she had to go to school soon. Lea got dressed, brushed her teeth, and put away her breakfast dishes from earlier. Then Lea put on her backpack, shoes, and coat and headed over to school. All day, Lea thought so much about meeting unicorns in the clouds that she could barely focus and almost couldn’t hear the teacher. Once she even got stuck in a daydream for half an hour! During recess, her friend Goldie showed her a diamond ring.

“I can control it with my mind!” said Goldie.

Lea watched as Goldie made the ring fall and fly and do loop-the-loops with her eyes.

“Wow!” Lea said, thinking even more about magic.

“I can do magic too,” she said. “Look!” Lea whispered special words underneath her breath, and then she started to fly.

Goldie was so shocked. She almost fell over.

“How — Wh-wh-what?!” Goldie cried. “You need to show me how to do that!”

Lea thought for a moment. “I would, but if I tell you how, the magic will take advantage of me and will break our friendship forever!

Lea had learned that morning as a little part of her research. Goldie quickly changed her mind and shuddered at the thought.

“Okay!” Goldie quickly spluttered. Goldie handed Lea her ring. “Would you please examine this ring for magic?” she said. “I want to see if it has any magic you have.”

Lea looked at it closely. She made sure not to miss even a speck of the ring. Lea handed the ring sadly to Goldie.

“The only magic I can find is the magic of controlling the ring,” she said, frowning.

“It’s fine,” Goldie said. “You’re a very lucky girl.”

After school, Lea went to her backyard and made sure no one was watching her. Then, she made a crystal orb appear in her hands, and, with that, Lea shot up into the sky like a rocket and landed into the clouds.

She heard unicorn noises.

“Hello!” said Lea, to a unicorn beside her. “I’m Lea. It’s a dream to meet you!” The unicorn slowly backed away. “Don’t be shy,” Lea persuaded her. “I’m a nice person, and I know what it’s like to be shy. When I was in first grade, I wouldn’t talk to anyone, not even my parents!” Slowly, the unicorn walked back to Lea.

“I’m, uh, I’m… ” The unicorn got quiet. She was now shaking. She felt like crying, when finally, she spoke up a little. “I’m Celestine,” she said, almost bursting into tears. “Sorry, I’m just a very shy person. That’s how I was created to live in this world.”

“That’s definitely okay,” said Lea. “I totally understand. I have a question. You don’t have to say yes, but it would be a dream come true if you did. Can I please own you?”

Celestine thought and thought. “Sure!” she said. “I’d love that so much!”

Lea couldn’t believe her ears! She was accepted to own a real life unicorn! Lea and Celestine flew back down to where Lea lived.

“Would you like it if I used magic to make a home in my big backyard for you?” Lea asked.

“Sure!” Celestine nodded happily. She was not at all shy anymore. She loved Lea! Lea whispered some words under her breath, and then the most magic cloudy colorful cloud house appeared in her backyard!

“O-M-G — ” Celestine paused. “Thank you so much!” Celestine flew straight into the cloud house with Lea. “This is so big, colorful, and fluffy!” Celestine giggled. “Wait — are those unicorn cupcakes?! This is the best!” Celestine cried.

“I totally agree!” Lea said.

“This is 75,000 times more fun than my house!”

“Can we both come in here whenever we want?” Lea asked, with hope in her eyes.

“Of course!” Celestine said.

The next day, Lea went to the library after school. She was reading a book called ‘Unicorns Past and Present.’ She had just finished it and put it back when she noticed a book with something glowing behind it. Lea was curious. She simply took out the book.

“Sparkles and magic, would you look at this!” Lea cried. Where the book was a pink thing that looked exactly like a portal. “I want to go in!” Lea bounced. She took a few steps back and ran straight in the portal! “Wow!” Lea said.

The portal was smooth and nice. At the end it was super bright! She got to that part and landed on a huge gummy bear! It felt like a squishy dream! Lea looked around. She saw candies of all sorts, from huge Skittles to huge lollipops, and huge lollipops to huge cupcakes!

“This is so yummy looking!” Lea said. She took a bite of a gummy bear. “Ow!” Lea said. She looked at the gummy bear. “A stick was in here!” Lea said disgusted. “Eww!” Lea found a different gummy bear and ate it. “Ah!” Lea said. “Much better!”

She used magic to make a magic phone appear in her hands. She called Celestine.

“Come to the Emerson Library and find a bright pink glowing portal” Lea said. “Jump in that, and you’ll find me!”

Celestine agreed and flew to the library and jumped straight into the portal.

“This is so smooth!” Celestine said, rubbing her hoofs against the walls of the portal. Then, Celestine came to the end, the super bright part of the portal. “Ah!” Celestine cried, falling. She landed on a cupcake.

“Celestine!” Lea said. “Nice to see you!”

Celestine looked a bit angry. She had frosting all over her.

“Want me to help you get the frosting off” Lea asked.

Celestine nodded happily. After they got off the frosting, they looked around.

“Look at those candies on the ground!” Celestine said. “I want to try one!”

Celestine picked up a raspberry gummy. So did Lea.

“This tastes kind of funny,” Lea said.

All of a sudden, Lea and Celestine turned into raspberry gummies! Then, they shot up into the sky and back in the portal.

“Why did that happen?” Celestine was confused.

Lea picked up the phone she made earlier and Googled why that happened.

“I think those were poisonous gummies,” Lea said, putting the phone away. “But we aren’t poisonous anymore.”

Lea and Celestine landed back in the library, and they both flew back home.

“This day has been so fun!” Celestine said. Lea agreed.

“I hope we have more adventures like this!”

The End!

Book Two: Lea’s Surprise

Chapter One: A Nice Morning

Lea was sitting on her couch. She was thinking about the portal in the library. I can’t believe that was only one book ago! thought Lea. It was 9:30 am, and Saturday, Lea’s favorite day of the week.

“Hey, Lea!” Celestine called from the basement, rather sadly. “Look what I found!”

Lea flew to the basement. There was a big, probably bigger than Lea, hole in the wall.

“Oh no!” Lea cried. “How did this happen?”

“Well,” Celestine said, “I was eating Cloud Cake, a food from the Unicorn world, when a big flash appeared. Then what do you know, the wall was broken!”

Lea studied the hole. Something looked odd. Very odd. Extremely odd. What was that little blue glowing thing? It started growing. Now it was inside every bit of the hole. Oh! It was a portal!

“It’s a portal!” Lea said. “Should we jump inside?”

Celestine thought, staring at the hole. “Okay,” she said.

“Three, two, one, go!” Lea said.

Celestine followed Lea.

“This portal is huge!” Celestine said.

“Oh no, aahhh!” Celestine and Lea fell from a 350-foot drop. Luckily, so luckily, of everything, including a chokie to land on, they landed on a huge cotton candy cloud.

“Thank god I landed on something so soft!” Lea said, panting.

“And tasty!” Celestine said, with a mouth full of cotton candy.

Lea wondered why the cloud was on the ground. Whatever. Lea and Celestine looked around. They looked like they were in a magical, tropical place. They saw a sign that said ‘Wavie Swirl.’

“That must be the name of this place,” Celestine said.

Lea nodded. She glanced at a castle. She read the sign beside it.

“It said something about an extremely magical and famous baby. Can we go in?” Celestine asked Lea.

“Of course!” Lea said. They walked in and went to the third floor. It said the baby would be there. 

“Who are you guys?” the baby asked. “Are you guys from Wavie Swirl? And by the way, my name is Cameron Green.”

Lea was shocked. Since she knew she lived in a book, she jumped out of it. She flipped the pages to the beginning of her own story you’re reading right now. What?! It said the author’s name was Cameron Green! She flipped back to the page she was on before she left.

“We are visitors,” Lea said. “Also, how are you in this story, but also the author of it?!”

“Long story,” Cameron said. “But, I can tell you the reason I’m so famous is because, since I can write this story in my head, I can decide my future and everything that happens in the book you and me and Celestine are in.”

“Cool!!” Lea and Celestine said together.

“Hey, um, can you make this book so that me and Celestine can go to Disney World tomorrow?” Lea asked.

“Fine,” Cameron said. “But, can I please come too?”

“Sure,” Lea said.

Celestine agreed. Then Lea and Celestine left Cameron and the magical building, and headed toward some coconut trees.

“How can we get back home and cover up the hole?” Lea asked Celestine. “I don’t want to worry my parents.”

Celestine and Lea looked around. Lea spotted the cloud Lea and Celestine had landed on. The portal to Lea’s house should be above it. They could fly up to the portal. Lea told Celestine her plan.

“That sounds unicornilliant!” Celestine said.

Lea stared at Celestine. “What does that mean?” Lea asked.

“It’s just the unicorn way of saying brilliant. Unicorn language is slightly different from humans.”

“Oh, aha. Now it made more sense. Let’s go!” Lea smiled.

They started flying toward the cloud. They hopped on it, staring closely at the swirling blue portal. “Ready?” Lea asked, grinning.

“Ready,” Celestine replied, also grinning.

“Three, two, one, go!” Lea yelled.

Lea and Celestine went shooting up into the sky. Whoops! Might have gone 100 feet too high. They tried again. Ugh! Twenty feet too low. Three’s a charm, right? Let’s hope so. Yes! Just high enough to reach the portal.

Chapter Two: A Note From Fairyland

“Hey, what’s this?” Lea asked.

In the portal, she saw a piece of paper. She picked it up. It said, This note you are reading right now is from a fairy named Ariela. And since I’m magical, I know your name, yes, Lea.

“Wow!” Lea gasped.

She continued reading, I also know your unicorn friend, Celestine.

“Osh kosh my gosh!” Celestine said. They giggled and giggled.

Then they continued. The note said, I know you two are very smart, with you, Lea, getting all fours on your report card this year. Lea blushed. I challenge you two to a very important task. I live in fairyland, as you probably guessed, but there’s a problem. Kayla, a super smart and talented fairy, just (I start to cry) Kayla just died last week. The whole kingdom is crying and really misses her. I’ve been looking at you since one book ago, Lea’s Unicorn, with my magic globe, and based on how creative, determined, sweet, and clever you are, I was wondering if you’d take her place. Please write a note back to me and drop it in the Marigold Lake, near your home. You don’t need to write any addresses, because, since that lake is magical, its magic can send the note straight to me, as long as you say Ariela, my name, at the end. Hope I hear back from you soon. Have a great day! 

“The portal is ending!” Lea said. Celestine and Lea carefully landed on the couch. “I can’t believe we get to go to fairyland!” Lea said. But. Lea started to cry. “I feel so bad for that fairy!” she said. “Poor Kayla!”

Celestine started to cry too. Then they stopped.

“We should write a note back saying that we’d love to!” Celestine said.

Lea agreed. Celestine wrote the first part.

“Dear Ariela, we’d love to hlep!”

“That’s not how you spell help,” Lea said. “It’s H-E-L-P.”

Celestine corrected herself. She continued, saying, “We need to kno- 

“The word know is not K-N-O,” Lea said. “It’s K-N-O-W.”

Celestine corrected herself and continued saying, “where FairyLand is, and if you kud –”

“You don’t spell could K-U-D, it’s C-O-U-L-D. Can I please do the rest of this so you don’t make silly mistakes?”

“Fine,” Celestine said, rather sheepish.

Lea wrote the rest of the note, ignoring Celestine. Celestine was upset that Lea had treated her like if Lea was a teacher, and that Lea was completely careless about her (or it seemed like that). Celestine tried to hold in her tears, and, since Lea was paying no attention, she opened the Wavie Swirl portal, went through, and closed it like it had been before. Not long after, Lea finished the note.

“Hey, Celestine, the note is finished!” she said. “Come! Hello? Celestine?” Lea looked around the house over and over. An hour later, there was still no luck. “Where are you?!”

Oh brother, Lea thought. She was about to cry.


Chapter Three: Celestine’s Gone Missing!

Celestine landed on the same fluffy cotton candy cloud she had landed on with Lea. She grabbed a handful, and with that, bounced of the cloud. Celestine saw a little girl, so beautiful, on a swing. Her shirt had a tag with her name, which looked like it was Candice. Celestine saw a paper beside her with her name on it. It was math she did.

She’s really smart! Celestine thought, eyeing the paper. When she looked up, Candice was smiling at her, really happily.

Are you a unicorn?!” Candice said, almost falling off the swing.

“Yep!” Celestine said.

“Can I please own you?!” Candice said, with hope in her eyes.

Celestine thought. Lea was kind of a witch to Celestine, so Celestine was glad to get rid of Lea. “Sure!” Celestine said, smiling.

Candice screamed in excitement.

“Want to visit Cameron Green?” Celestine asked.

Candice nodded, still speechless. They went up to the third floor of the building and saw Cameron, looking just as before.

“How may I help — wait — Celestine!!! You were supposed to be in the human world with Lea! I’m the author of this book, and Lea is your owner. Why did you not tell Candice you already have an owner?”

Celestine snorted. “Because — well — I’m about to reach my boiling point.” Celestine’s face turned red. “Because Lea’s a brat!”

Cameron and Candice gasped.

“That’s it,” Cameron said. “I’m making Lea appear here and controlling your mouth to tell her what you said!”

Nooo!!!” Celestine cried.

She used her magic powers to make Candice appear on her back, and they disappeared into the sky.

“This is fun!” Candice squealed.

Although, Cameron had just made Lea appear.

“Why am I here?” Lea said confused. “I’m busy. I’m on the lookout for Celestine.”

“Celestine was just here,” Cameron said. “But, she has a new owner now named Candice. Celestine said you were a brat.”

Lea gasped. “But — how?!” Lea cried. “Well then, I don’t want to be her owner anymore.”

“I can make her appear,” Cameron said.

In a flash, Celestine was standing there with Candice.

“How could you act like such a beast?!” Lea yelled at Celestine.

“Me?!” Celestine gasped. “No, no, no. I’m pretty sure you meant to say you are the beast!”

“How could you though?” Lea said.

Lea started to cry. Celestine started to feel like someone poked her in the stomach with a knife.

“I’m sorry,” Celestine said. “It’s just, you were acting like you knew it all, and you were ignoring me like a brat, and you acted like I was the dumbest person ever. I’m pretty good for someone who just learned English not that long ago!”

Lea looked sad but guilty. “I’m sorry,” Lea sighed. “I guess I was a brat kind of. I really am sorry.” 

“It’s okay,” Celestine said. She turned to Candice. “With all due respect, you are no longer my owner.”

No!” Candice screamed. That was really loud! Oh. My. Goodness. The room felt a little shaky. More shaky. The floor crumbled. The walls broke. The building tilted.

Emergency escape!” Cameron yelled. “Follow me!” Cameron led everyone to a small door that hadn’t gotten damaged. It led to a big cupcake. “Jump inside!” Cameron yelled. They all jumped into the cupcake. 

“This icing is amazing!!!” Candice yelled. After breaking — and eating — through the cupcake, they landed on the nice grass.

“Phew!” Lea said. “We made it!” But the building did not. It was all in a bazillion pieces. Only about one small quarter of the building stayed undamaged. Celestine came over, sliding on a giant gummy bear.

“Who knew gummy bears could be so slippery!” she smiled.

“I want to try!” Candice and Lea yelled together.

Cameron agreed. Just a few moments later, everyone was sliding on gummy bears. Candice was going to do that too, but she ate her giant gummy bear instead. Candice was an audience member.

“Okay, guys,” Lea said. “Three, two, one, go!”

Everyone went sliding across the field. Some people even went to watch. The gummies were so powerful that they were sliding for 20 minutes.

While the race was happening, Celestine asked Cameron a question. “How are you a baby but are so talented?”

“It’s because I’m magical,” Cameron said. “I spent 20 weeks training to be ahead in my speech and abilities!”

“Oooooooh,” everyone said.

“There’s the finish line!” Lea said.

So far, Celestine was in the lead. Cameron was next, and Lea was last. Oh! Lea just got ahead of Cameron! Just before Celestine got to the finish line, Lea got ahead of her!

“Yes!” Lea said. “Good game, guys.”

“Congrats, Lea,” Cameron said as they all shook hands.

“Thanks,” Lea smiled.

Woohoo!” Candice cheered.

After they spent a little longer in Wavie Swirl, Lea and Celestine went back home.

“Today has been an unbelievable adventure!” Lea said.

Celestine nodded. “I’m so lucky to have you, Lea. I can’t believe I tried to get rid of you!”

“It’s fine,” Lea said. “I kind of deserved that.”

“Anyway, I really hope we’ll do this again!”

The End


Gummy Bears V.S. Pirates

Gummy Bear is a red gummy bear in a stinky cardboard box in the jail cell of a pirate ship. He’s thinking it smells bad and hoping he could get out. He’s inside a box with other gummy bears because they are in the pirate’s feast. The pirates are going to eat the gummy bears. They don’t know the gummy bears are alive. 

He says, “I need to get out or else I will throw a bunch of old stinky feet at you!”

The pirate says, “Those are our ancestor’s stinky feet.”

The stinky feet are in the box next to the gummy bears.

The next night, the gummy bears have a little bit of blueberry shampoo for their smelly belly buttons. They’re upset that they’re going to get eaten, but the pirates don’t like blueberry anything, so they put on the shampoo so that the pirates won’t eat them. Then, they take out their knives, and then they smash the box and get out of the box. They packed the knives. They didn’t do it earlier because they had to put on the blueberry shampoo, and you could only put it on in the gummy bear box. 

So one of the gummy bears accidentally sprains his ankle because they were trying to open the box of stinky feet, and then that gummy bear’s ankle got cardboard cut by the box. Gummy Bear does a silly and weird dance because it cures the sprained ankle. Fingernails are also inside the stinky feet box. The pirates are going to eat the gummy bears tomorrow. Mr. Burke is the rich king of the strong pirates.

Their ancestors fought an army of blueberries, and the pirates lost, so the pirates’ ancestors had to give away most of their smelly feet to the blueberries that were inside their laundry, so they gave away the laundry. 

The gummy bears see a speed boat floating next to the pirate ship, so the gummy bears climb inside it and escape.

They say, “In your face, pirates!”

THE END


The Lost Princesses

It was 10:00 am in San Francisco, and our main character, Angel, was getting out of bed and ready for the day. The sun was shining, and the birds were chirping. It was a normal day and a school day. 

“Get ready to go to school,” said Angel’s mother.

“Okay,” said Angel. She got ready, ate breakfast, and went onto the school bus.

Hey!” screamed Carol, Angel’s best friend.

“Hey,” Angel muttered, obviously embarrassed.

Angel climbed into the seat next to Carol, and they talked about random things like ads. The bus got to school, and for some reason, Kathy, the popular girl, was all by herself. 

“Why is Kathy all by herself?” asked Carol.

“Well, that is a strange sight, but to be honest with you, I don’t care all that much,” whispered Angel.

The bell rang, and everyone ran inside. Kathy walked inside slowly, looking very miserable. The teacher, Mr. Q, was confused as well because he was used to yelling at Kathy to be quiet because she talked so much in class. Then at lunch, Angel saw Kathy’s two best friends Adrian and Alison. They were talking to the other popular girls at the school, snickering and looking over at Kathy. Then Alison went over to Kathy and snatched her weave, and then Kathy went over to the bathroom crying, but who cares? Angel and Carol were eavesdropping because they wanted to know what was going on with Kathy and her friends.

Adrian said, and I quote, “I don’t know why Alison and I even hung out with her. She is so lame.”

“Wow, I didn’t know that Alison and Adrian had such high standards for friends,” said Carol.

“They are snooty, popular girls. What did you think?” said Angel.

The time passed by quickly, and it was time to go home. Carol and Angel were going to have a playdate at Angel’s million dollar mansion, because why not? They were going to play Fortnite, and Angel was going to beat Carol so hard in Fortnite. So they went to Angel’s mansion, and they started to gossip because they could. On the news it said that a chicken tornado was coming to town. Carol was running in circles because she was terrified. Angel was scared, but thought it was a good chance to get chicken nuggets. Then they heard a big bang. A chicken tornado was outside, throwing chickens everywhere. Suddenly, a strange glowing started coming from the ground, and the walls were twisting up. It was obvious that they were entering another dimension… but that’s not possible, was it? The two girls were hearing an explosion somewhere in the distance. They were in mist, seeing a strange figure coming out of the fog. Carol was obviously freaking out because she was choking for air, but was alright… somehow. Angel was in shock, but was slowly putting the pieces of the puzzle together, and that explained where her parents were. It was a person, with long wavy hair and crystalized eyes.

“Hello,” said the strange being.

“Hello, what’s your name?” asked Carol.

“My name is Tyra, Carol,” said Tyra.

“How do you know my name?” asked Carol.

“I am the being that controls the whole earth. You can say that I’m basically Mother Nature,” said Tyra.

“Oh okay. Wait, what?!” said Carol.

“Well anyways, I am glad that I have brought you here, since the world is in danger, and I need your help,” said Tyra.

“Why our help?” asked Angel.

Well, let me tell you a little backstory,” said Tyra, doing some weird magic do to a flashback.

It was a beautiful day on Mewni, the dimension where Angel was from, and Angel was the princess of that dimension. There was a war between Mewni and another dimension called The Terror Dimension. The Terror Dimension wanted to take over all of the dimensions, starting with Mewni. Angel’s parents, Eclipsa and Dusk, sent Angel to earth so that she wouldn’t get hurt. The butler, Alfred, was actually from Mewni, and he was sent to protect Angel, since she was the princess.

A similar tale of events happened to Carol’s dimension. Carol was also a space princess that was sent to earth. The dimension that she was from was called The Blessed Dimension. The Blessed Dimension was also under attack by The Terror Dimension. Carol’s parents were named Mythil and Peridot. Carol had to leave The Blessed Dimension when she was very young. But since she was a space princess, she had super memory.

The two girls heard their backstories and were amazed with how this secret was kept from them for a super long time. Since the two girls were space princesses (which totally makes sense), for some odd reason they could remember everything, so their memories were wiped. They still had their super memories, but they were not activated for some reason.Then something random happened. The girls started to float, transforming into weird but useful space princesses. Then something magical happened. A sudden blast appeared, and Angel had a magic royal wand. It had a crystal star on it, and the star was made out of who knows what. The wand also had two devil horns on it. Carol’s wand had a heart on it, and it also had a material of who knows what. When Angel touched her wand, it glowed, and a blast came out of it. All of a sudden, there was a hole in the space time continuum. The blast of the magic wand had literally ripped a hole in the space time continuum. But Tyra quickly patched the hole up. 

“Hmmmmm… ” said Tyra.

“What?” asked Angel.

“I don’t remember the royal magic wand being this powerful. Maybe it has something to do with your persona,” said Tyra.

Carol tried to blast her wand, but it was an epic fail. A little fart noise came from the wand and a little sparkle came out.

“Hey! Why doesn’t my wand work as well as Angel’s wand?” asked Carol.

“Well it might be because of your aura and your personas,” said Tyra.

The two girls continued to practice their wand magic stuff, and Angel was doing way better at the magic than Carol. Carol was about to rage quit when suddenly a spark came from her wand. Then, when she tried doing the spell lumos — a spell that would make the tip of her wand light up, producing a source of light — her wand produced a source of light. But that fantasy only lasted about 3.1 seconds. She tried to smash her wand on the ground, but it smacked her in the head. 

“Are you okay?” Angel asked.

No! I’m not okay! My wand just hit me in the head!” she sobbed.

Carol was upset. She couldn’t deal with this. but then she had a ‘smart’ idea. The quotation marks mean that this was actually a horrible idea, but who am I to judge? I mean it’s her decision, right? Anyways, let’s get back to the story. When Angel wasn’t looking, Carol snatched her wand and tried to use it. Turned out that both wands had attitudes, so Angel’s wand sent a blast towards Carol’s face. Turned out that it was a strange but effective tickle spell. Carol fell on the floor and hit her head on… the dimension floor! Angel turned around to see Carol. 

Okay, Carol, we might be best friends forever after, but that was so rude of you,” said Angel in an obviously upset tone.

These wands are evil and corrupted!” Carol screamed. “I don’t want to do this anymore.

“Well, it is only a couple of days from now that the world will be destroyed. I guess I will have to summon another warrior to fight alongside Angel,” said Tyra, popping in from out of nowhere.

What! You can’t replace me. I am irreplaceable!” screamed Carol.

“Sorry, girl, but you are not all that!” said Tyra.

Carol had a tantrum in the corner, while eating ice cream. Where did she get it from? Nobody knows. Eventually Carol came around because I need to get back to the story. Carol actually managed to make a spark come out from her wand, without it making a fart noise.

Ahhhh! Progress!” said Carol. She actually managed to do a spell without almost blowing herself up. Then, her wand lit up, and she tried to do a powerful spell, and it almost worked. Angel was obviously determined to get the spell right, since she was always succeeding in life. Angel wasn’t really practicing her spells since she didn’t want to make Carol feel bad about her “magic abilities.” But then Angel was going to do a spell that could easily rip a hole in the space time continuum. Being the child that she was, she did the spell, and it succeeded. Tyra didn’t notice, and somehow Angel easily patched up the hole. So it turned out that Tyra did notice and gave Angel a book of spells. 

“Use this book to study, and then you’ll be ready,” said Tyra.

“Ready for what?” asked Angel.

“To save the world from The Terror Dimension,” says Tyra.

Wait a minute. You’re saying that she gets to be advanced, and I don’t?! This is an outrage!” screamed Carol.

Tyra had to seal her in a magic bubble to stop her from murdering someone. Angel was becoming more advanced with every passing moment. The wand seemed to glow more. 

“You are ready,” said Tyra.

“But what about Carol?” asked Angel.

“Well, she will have to use what she knows already to help you in this battle,” answered Tyra.

“I can train her!” blurted out Angel.

“It will be a challenge, but it’s good to take risks and stuff,’’ said Tyra.

Angel used all of her energy to try to train Carol. It had an outcome. The outcome was that Carol actually knew how to do magic. She wasn’t as good as Angel, but it would do.

“She too is ready enough to face pure evil,” said Tyra.

“Why don’t you help us out?” asked Carol.

“Well, I’m lazy. Well, good luck,” said Tyra.

Tyra started to open up a portal so that Carol and Angel could go and face the mastermind behind The Terror Dimension.

“Well, like I said, good luck.”

They went on a journey like no other. They went through galaxies, and they destroyed meteors. Finally, they made it. Well, not to the Terror Dimension, but to the entrance to the Terror Dimension. They went in. They needed a way to get past the guards, because they did not want to use their magic because they were being lazy.

“Okay, so let’s sneak past the guards by sneaking past them,” said Carol.

“That’s not a very well-thought-out plan, but okay!” said Angel.

So basically they snuck past the guards somehow. They entered the Terror Dimension, and it was horrible. There were lost spirits everywhere, and they looked lost. With all of their courage, they carefully walked to the dark castle, where the mastermind of the Terror Dimension was reigning. 

“Okay, so let’s knock on the door,” said Carol.

Before Angel had a chance to respond, Carol knocked on the door. So that was a mistake because then the guards found them out and put them in a jail cell. They escaped because they had magic, after all. The two girls that had no idea what they were getting into were about to face the evil mastermind himself. Oh and by the way, nobody knew his name, just because. Anyways, they snuck into the throne room, seeing that the ruler of the Terror Dimension was playing Monopoly, all by himself. They somehow snuck behind his throne and managed to do a sneak attack on the ruler.

Ahhh!!!” screamed the mastermind.

But somehow he dodged the sneak attack. Probably because Carol wasn’t really contributing to the spell. The mastermind was silently laughing.

“What are you laughing at!” screamed Carol.

“You girls can’t even do a spell, and you have been sent here to end my reign? Well, I’m afraid that you won’t be able to stop me,” said the mastermind.

The two girls attacked, fighting for the whole universe. Not like there was any pressure, or anything. They tried to defeat him, but the mastermind was too strong for them. Then, something happened. Angel gained spade marks on her cheeks. They lit up. Then she said a spell that she never learned before. I call the spell which has no name, created by my mother from which she reigned, I call this spell for all its power, now stand before the queen and cower. The spell had no name. 

The wand let out a big blast that made a big explosion. The mastermind was harmed a lot, but he didn’t die since this story is kid friendly. You’re welcome.

“Woah, what was that!” screamed Carol.

“Well, I don’t know,” replied Angel.

“Your mission is complete,” said Tyra, coming out of nowhere.

What!” said Carol.

Tyra explained how since Angel was in need of a really powerful spell to “defeat” the mastermind, it was something that the wand did automatically for people with a really strong persona. 

“Now what is going to happen? Will we be going to earth? Or will we be going to our own dimensions?” asked Angel.

“Well, I recommend that you stay on earth, not to call any attention,” said Tyra.

“What about these cheek marks that just showed up out of nowhere?” asked Angel. 

“The cheek marks will disappear only if you think hard enough. They appeared because of your persona. This has a lot to do with your magic,” said Tyra.

Angel thought hard enough, and then the cheek marks disappeared from her face. 

“Now I will open up a portal so that you can get back to earth. Keep practicing magic. I will give Angel some dimensional scissors so that you girls can visit any dimensions any time you want to. Just think of where you want to go, and pretend to cut the air. That’s how you create a portal. Come to me for training anytime you want to,” said Tyra.

“Okay, bye!” said Carol and Angel at the same time.

Angel made them a portal to earth. They arrived, processing what just happened. 

“Okay, so let’s study some magic. Tell me all of your magic tricks!” said Carol, like their situation didn’t affect her whatsoever.

“Okay,” said Angel.

They studied their magic, with Angel eventually getting her own indestructible training room for very powerful spells. They eventually visited their dimensions, seeing their families for the first time. 

The End


Went to the Movies

On a dwarf planet called Ceres, there was a telephone booth. No one knew how it got there. It was just there. No one used the telephone booth. The telephone booth did not want anything. Then, one day, the telephone booth disappeared. Then, there were two telephone booths. And then the scientists thought that the second one was a clone. They asked someone to volunteer to visit Ceres, but no one volunteered. Then the two telephone booths disappeared. And then they appeared with four telephone booths. The scientists asked someone to volunteer, but no one did. 

Then the four telephone booths disappeared and appeared again into eight. Still no volunteers. So they decided that they didn’t need to visit Ceres. Then one day, all the people fell asleep for five days. And when they woke up, the scientists found out that there were 128 telephone booths on Ceres. And then they fell asleep for another five days. By the end of that, there were 2,048 telephone booths.

The telephone booths stopped multiplying. Then the 2,048 telephone booths jumped off Ceres and landed on the moon. And then all 2,048 telephone booths ran to the movies. Then they went to the movies again. Then they went to the movies again. Finally, when they had seen all the movies, they jumped off and onto Earth. They got popcorn. And then they jumped back to the moon and went to the movies. They saw movies about 2,048 telephone booths. They wanted to know what the people on Earth thought about them.

Then they jumped back onto Earth and got candy. Then they went back to the moon and went to the movies. And then, somewhere in the movies, purple stuff came from the telephone booths. And then they all touched the Earth, and the people fell asleep for five days. 

And then more purple stuff came from the telephone booth and landed on Earth. The people slept for five days. And they also touched the movies. And the movies fell asleep for five days. And they also touched the moon, so the moon fell asleep for five days. And they also touched Ceres, so Ceres fell asleep for five days. 

When they woke up, they just went to sleep again for five days. One day, the telephone booths fell asleep for five days.

The scientists discovered what was really going on. The telephone booths were purple. And then, for no apparent reason, the purple color turned into purple stuff, and people fell asleep for five days. All the people in the world fell asleep for five days. And then the 2,048 people landed on the Earth, and the people fell asleep for five days. 

Then the telephone booths went back to the Earth and got popcorn and went to the movies. And then the purple stuff landed on the movies, and the movies fell asleep for five days. And the moon also fell asleep for five days. And then Ceres falls asleep for five days. 

And then the telephone booths ran out of purple stuff. And then they jumped onto Earth, and got popcorn, and jumped back to the moon, and went to the movies. And everyone else woke up and went to the movies. And then they went inside the telephone booths. And then they made a movie about telephone booths with people in the telephone booths.

And the people on Earth got popcorn and went to the moon and went to the movies. And when they watched the movie, they saw people inside the telephone booths. And then people started calling the other people on the telephone booths. And then the moon went to the movies. And the movies dropped onto Earth. And then the moon got all the movies. And then the moon bounced on Earth. And then people jumped on Earth and got candy and jumped back onto the moon and went to the movies. 

And then all the people jumped back on Earth. And then there was news about the telephone booths. And then, one day, a person touched the telephone booth, and the person turned into a telephone booth. And another touched a telephone booth, so he turned into a telephone booth.

And the 2,050 telephone booths jumped back onto the moon and went to the movies. And then 50 animals touched the telephone booths, and they all turned into telephone booths. And then 900 more animals touched them. And then 3,000 telephone booths jumped onto the moon and went to the movies. 

And then 7,000 animals touched the telephone booths, and then they turned into telephone booths. And the 10,000 telephone booths jumped onto the moon and went to the movies. And then 90,000 animals touched the booths, and then the 100,000 telephone booths jumped onto the moon and went to the movies. And then all the people and animals were gone. 

And they went on Earth and went to the movies. And after the movies, they jumped on Ceres and went to the movies. And then they filled the whole Earth with telephone boxes. And the telephone booths disappeared. And then the 100,000 telephone booths landed again on Pluto. And then they went to Earth, and got popcorn, and jumped back on Pluto, and went to the movies. And the movie was about a chicken in a spaceship that was in space, and the person was inside the egg. And then all the telephone booths fought the spaceship, and they saw a place called Earth. And on Earth, they got popcorn and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. 

They jumped back on Earth and went to a place called Writopia. And then they picked a random place, and, when they went inside, there were comics and popcorn. And they took the comics and took the popcorn and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and got ice cream and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. 

And then, one day, all the planets turned into telephone booths, except Earth. And then all the planets jumped back on Earth and got ice cream and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. (Pluto did not turn into a telephone booth because it was a dwarf planet.) And then they jumped back on Earth and got purple stuff and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. And then purple stuff came from the movies. And everyone fell asleep for five days. 

And then they jumped back on Earth, and went to Writopia and got comic books and got popcorn and jumped back onto Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and got a toilet and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. And then purple stuff came from the movies, and then everyone fell asleep for five days. And then they jumped back on Earth and got a potty, and then they jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and went to Writopia and got more comic books and popcorn and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and got paper and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and got chocolate and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. 

And then they jumped back on Earth and got a rocketship and went back to Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and got beds and jumped back on Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back on Earth and got monsters and jumped back onto Pluto and went to the movies. And then they jumped back onto Earth and got markers and jumped back onto Pluto and went to the movies. And then they saw a planet that wasn’t called anything. And then they used the rocketship to jump onto that planet. And then there were 1,000 more telephone booths. And then they talked to each other all day long.

And then they got fish tanks from the planet. And then they started going to the bathroom. It took four hours. And then they saw two rainbows. And then they turned into donuts. And then they divided. Everybody got donuts. And then they got rainbow cream cheese. And then they went to sleep for one day. And then purple stuff came out of the planet, and everyone fell asleep for five days. And when they woke up, they got popcorn, jumped back onto Pluto, and went to the movies. 

THE END


The So-Called First Book of Stickman

Prologue

A note from Stickman: Hi, my name is Stickman, and I am the richest person in the world! Not to brag or anything… but today I will tell you how by going in this time machine!!! Um, guys… I said — in this… time machine.

The TV producers looked at each other. “We forgot to bring the fake time machine.”

Cue to an hour later…

Producers call, “Action!”

“As I was saying… the time machine!”

Two seconds later, Stickman ends up in his kindergarten class.

Oh, that’s why when I was little random time machines appeared out of nowhere.


Chapter One

It was a Saturday. He sees himself as a little kid trying to sell everybody Pokémon cards and gum. 

Stickman: “Yes, I was selling products since I was a kid. But I did get in trouble once or twice. Or three times. Or the whole school year… ”

All the cool kids had Supersoaker 3000’s and leather jackets. But me? Probably just wearing my Ninja Turtle’s shirt and my bag full of products. And at the end of the day, I always have a hand full of money and put them in my piggy bank! It was full of 1, 10, 20, and even 100 dollar bills! I even bet my family tries to steal my piggy bank! And that’s why ever since I was 10 years old I spent 500 dollars on a high tech laser lock and a pressure plate trap, which was later used as a chair… Anyway, that’s why my family probably hates me from the overwhelming alarm. By the time my brother goes to college, he will probably be deaf.

Speaking of college, when I was 18 I got accepted into Harvard Business School. At first I got a $1,000 scholarship, but soon enough I did magic and got a full scholarship (by scolding the school council) and started my first year. I threw away all my Pokémon products and filled my backpacks with instant coffee! I became an instant hit (soon enough I went into instant tea and instant noodles).

And no, it is not magic or anything…

Anyway, that’s when I met Centman.

Centman was a jerk. When I sold Cup Noodles, he would tell on me, then sell them himself to have less competitors. You might be asking, “Why didn’t you tell on him?” Well, my little fans, he would lie and find any way to change the topic and get me in trouble! Da da da da!!!


Chapter Two

Ever since kindergarten, this little rascal and I were put together in the same classroom.

The teachers would always say, “Ohhh, you’re best friends. You’re just debating, not arguing.”

But to tell you the truth, we hated each other. And hated each other’s guts. He was very annoying, and he was just horrible. He would always wear a beanie and a red T-shirt I didn’t like. (Sometimes I think he’s wearing the same shirt every day. Ew!) Not only that, as I mentioned for some reason we always get put to the same class every year! By the time I was in sixth grade, we both expected to be put in the same class and have the teacher say “you two are friends!” over and over again! And that is why he will always be there and haunt me… 

For example, when we were seven years old, at recess he tripped and cried, and once the teacher came to ask what happened, he told them that I pushed him even though I was like 300 feet away!!!

That’s why we hate each other. But now I think that I was the person who pushed him because I got a little carried away when I came thought the time machine… Anyway I’m not in NASA, so I don’t know how the time thing works. Oh, that’s why we hate each other… Anyway, uh, now I feel bad for him. So back to the story! But even though I did push him once, what I did to him was not even close to what he did to me. I bet if I counted the thing I did to him compared to the things he did to me, it would probably be 1 to 100,000,000,000,00,000,000,000,000,00,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,00,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.000,000,000,000,000,00.

You might be wondering, When is the story of how you got rich? Well, hold your horses because that story will start at the next chapter.

(Note: There will be a big prank I will do to Centman in the end. Stay tuned.)


Chapter Three

Today I am back in the present thinking of my big master plan.

So I ran to my table and put a big piece of paper and started my plan. And this is when I realized that in all of those action movies it is harder than it looks to forget everything and think of a plan. So for the next three hours I thought and I thought. In the end I came up with a bunch of lame pranks and in the end none of them worked. Oh no, I forget to tell my life story, so stay tuned.

The End… for now


Sneak Peak for Book Two. Rules: Do not tell anybody. 

Stickman: “Hi fans, I’m back and better than ever, and today is the day I will tell you the story of my life… after I drink this coffee.”

One hour later… 


“Ahhhhhhhhhh, much better. Back to the time machine.”

*This is not sponsored by Back to the Future.*

“If I can find the on button… ”

Two seconds later, he ends up at his college.

“Ah, back in the day… ”

To be continued… 


The Stolen Diamond

On a February morning, everyone was crowding, waiting for the opening ceremony of the new and only diamond shop in town. My name is Jake, and I’m the owner of the shop. I was really excited for the opening ceremony, because when I looked out, I saw a huge amount of people waiting for it to open. But then I got this feeling. I thought, If many people are here today, that means that I will have to be sure that no one will try to steal any of my precious diamonds.

On July 14th, in Napoli, Italy, I inherited a jewelry store in the city center. The store was owned by my father, who, sadly, had passed away about a week before. I was extremely sad, and yet I was happy.

I was happy that I was going to continue a business that was owned by my father. Another reason that I was happy was because I was going to have the experience of being a shop owner, which was new for me. The reason that I was sad was because it made me think too much about my father, whose name was Jake, just like mine. Well, my name is Jake the Second, so, technically, it is not the same name.

At 9:00 am the next day, I woke up, and it was my first day being the owner of the shop. I opened the doors and stepped into the store, and, far back behind the counter, I could see a small motion. I walked further into the shop — I took a peek behind the counter and saw nothing. Eh, it was probably just something that I was thinking about, I thought. When I dropped off my backpack behind the counter, I saw all of the employees walking in. After I saw the security guard walking to the front door, all of the people came flooding inside. Then I saw an employee named Ali walk to the security guard. They both whispered to each other, and then Ali walked off back to his counter. I walked to the cashier to see if there were people there.

I took a look and saw a line that went all the way to the exit. But soon I got the suspicion that someone was going to walk outside the door with a diamond, and I would not know about it. Then, I saw a guy walk out of the store with a small bag and little case. 

“Hey, security guard, follow that guy,” I said.

The guy started to run and so did the security guard. Since I was a track and field runner when I was younger, I started sprinting to the guy. We turned the corner, and I heard my voice huffing and puffing. I almost had — 

“Ah, I got you,” I said.

 I turned back and saw the security guard making his way over. 

“Call the police,” I said.

 I took a look at the case that he had in his hand and got a sudden flashback.

***

I was peeking through the keyhole in the door, and saw my dad putting one of the most valuable diamonds inside this case. He closed the case, put it inside his backpack, zipped it up, and put it in the corner of the room. Then he made his way to me, which was near the exit. I started to run away from the door. I rushed down the stairs. As soon as my front foot hit the ground, the door upstairs opened.     

***

The guy who was trying to run away from us had the exact same black case as my father. I heard the sirens of the police cars in the distance. My heart was still pounding from when I had chased the guy all the way here to where we had caught him. I knew the policemen were going to be here any second, so I grabbed the case and started sprinting to the jewelry store. I felt my heart pounding so hard, like it was about to explode. All I had to do was make it to the top room without the police getting me and asking me what the case had in it, and all these other questions. Come onnn. I am almost there. Just two more steps. Onetwo. I sat down, and apparently there was no one in the shop. Everything that I saw was getting blurry, and I felt my body falling to the ground. I put all my effort in, and I was just barely able to tuck the case under the desk.

The next time I woke up, I was in the hospital bed with a lot of doctors around me. 

“He is alive. Are you feeling okay?”

“Yes,” I replied, still wondering why I was there. “Excuse me, I have a quick question. Why am I here, and what happened?”

“Okay, so this morning when one of the employees who worked at the shop was coming in, they found you laying on the floor with your clothing from the past day still on. So they called us, and now we are making sure if you are okay,” the doctor said.

“Okay.” I said, acting like I was listening the whole time.

I had this feeling in me that they had taken the suitcase and did not tell me about it. I tried to get up, but then I felt this thing that pulled all of my chest hair off. I started screaming at the top of my lungs. All the doctors turned around with a shocked face.

“Why were you moving so much? We were trying to see if your vitals were okay.”

I didn’t want to end up having to pay so much money to the hospital for nothing. Meanwhile, as the doctors were talking, I slowly detached all of the vital cords. At night, when all of the doctors were gone, I slowly got out of my hospital bed, put my shoes on, and made my way to the front of the hospital. I thought that it was going to be super easy to get out of the hospital without getting caught by the security guard, who was probably sleeping, like always. Instead, the security guard was wide awake on his phone. On the side of the desk, there was a water jar from a hookah. Somehow, I managed to grab the jar. I threw it on to the other side of the desk, where the security guard was sitting. He ran over to the glass jar. Meanwhile, I snuck my way out the exit. 

Outside, I saw a person who looked familiar smoking. I took a good look at him. Then, I suddenly realized that he was the guy who attempted to steal my father’s case. As soon as I saw the guy, I also noticed the black suitcase that looked like the one he tried to steal from me. For some reason, he still did not see me, probably because he was in the distance. I tried to creep my way up to him. I made no noise at all. When I was so close to him, my foot crunched on top of a leaf. In the guy’s hand there were some broken pieces of glass. They looked so familiar to the ones that were part of the hookah, and he also had a green tube in his other hand. I grabbed his hand. Since I was so amazing, I had pepper spray in my pocket. I grabbed the pepper spray out of my pocket, and sprayed it directly into his eyes. The guy screamed in pain and fell to his knees. 

I was still confused why he had a green hookah in his hand. I walked into the hospital to see if the security guard was there. But he was not, and not even the green part of the hookah was there. I was so confused, but then realized that it was the security guard. I turned my back to the thief and tied his arms behind him. Then, I picked him up and carried him on my shoulders to the bus, throwing him in the luggage space underneath the bus. When it was our stop, I got off and brought him to my very big house. Once we got inside, I laid him down on the couch and slapped his face to make sure he was awake — since he had passed out due to the pepper spray. 

He suddenly got up and asked, “Where am I?” 

And then I came out from a corner to scare him and said, “You’re at my house.” 

“Wha, wha, wha — I’m — what?” he asked.

“Yeah, I pepper sprayed you and then you fainted, and then I brought you here using public transportation,” I said.

“Well that’s stupid,” he replied.

“Shut up and listen to me. Now tell me why you stole that suitcase from my store, then why you attempted to run away with it,” I said.

“Because as a little child, my mom and dad would always come to the store and admire how beautiful all of the diamonds and gems were. As I got older, I realized that I could be crazy rich if I stole some of the diamonds and sold them. One day, when your father was still working at the shop, I saw him bring into his office a black suitcase that had a mold of a really big diamond. On it was labeled ‘122 carats.’ I was shocked. So when he left the store, I snuck in before the store closed and waited until everyone was gone. I went up to his office and looked for the diamond. Then when I had found it, I closed the drawer and left the store. Before I got out the store, I checked the time and I saw that it was 4:30 am. I was so tired that I sat down on the bench and fell asleep. In the morning, when the store opened, the people saw me laying down on the bench. So I went to jail for two years for committing grand larceny. Your dad, the owner at the time, got really mad at me. So I went to jail and also got banned from the store.” he said.

After a while of explaining, I finally understood everything. I eventually called the police on him and the policemen took him away. 

When the policemen were about to put him in the car I said, “I hope you have a good time in jail.”

“Ohhh I will come for you” he said. 

That night I heard the guy’s voice repeating and repeating in my head, “I will come for you.”

But after that night I was all fine.

And then I lived a happy life with no more people stealing from my shop.

The End


Trumpet

Once upon a time there was a bunny, and he had a friend. The bunny had no name. His friend was a piece of paper, who also didn’t have a name. They lived in a blanket. It was really cozy. They wanted a Trump. No one knew why. The bunny asked his parents for a Trump.

They said, “Go find coins.”

The bunny and the paper went to find coins. They went to a hill in the grass. They couldn’t find any coins. They felt disappointed. They went to tell their parents.

Their parents said, “Go back to bed.”

But they didn’t listen. They ran out, and then they started goofing around. They still wanted a Trump. They tried to find it. They went to a store, but they couldn’t find it. They went to the mall, but they didn’t find it, so they went back to bed. They felt really sad.

The end.


The Humbug

Chapter One

This is the ship that the Humbug owned. He was an immensely rich Humbug. But he was also a thief. One day, he went to the temporary bank, a.k.a. the school, to steal a high security and top secret object. It was an iPad that could hack into anything. He dodged the lasers and ran past the almost always sleeping security guards. They were called Unael and Arwen. Then he started fighting the security robots with his mega-sword. One robot, called Sam, started winning a baseball bat fight with The Humbug. (The mega-sword could transform from a giant broadsword to a baseball bat.) But suddenly, Sam tripped. And the Humbug started whacking Sam. Sam fell down with a broken robot leg. And Unael awoke and started chasing The Humbug. The Humbug ran up the stairs, and Unael ran down the stairs. The Humbug went down the stairs and went into Ms. Maverick’s classroom. He started looking for money, but then he saw animal tracks on the floor. He followed them to a slightly opened closet. Then, suddenly, a giant dog jumped out of the closet and started chasing The Humbug. The Humbug ran down the stairwell to the bottom floor. He ran into the science room. And something happened… 


Chapter Two

The Humbug started making a potion to turn the giant dog into a regular dog. When he was done, he snuck out and started looking for the giant dog. It was 1:00 when he found the dog gorging itself with the cafeteria’s leftover food. Then, the Humbug stabbed the syringe that held the potion into the dog. Instead of growing smaller, the dog grew bigger! It started charging towards The Humbug. The Humbug thought fast and threw his really cool shoe at the monster. The monster got really mad and started punching the floor, but that really hurt. The monster started punching the wall, but that hurt also. It tried to punch the ceiling but he fell over.

And it said, “I want my mommy!”

Then it fainted. Then The Humbug turned the corner and bumped into Unael, the lazy security guard. They started sumo wrestling, and backup for Unael came, such as 909 S.W.A.T. teams and 101 C.I.A. agents. The S.W.A.T. teams were waiting outside. The C.I.A. was wrestling The Humbug. The Humbug epicly defeated every single S.W.A.T. officer and C.I.A. agent. 

Then The Humbug started running. He jumped over everybody and punched and kicked every security guard that wasn’t already knocked out. Then he jumped into his hover car and drove into the skies. He drove to Fez, Morocco and landed in his private airstrip. Then he took off his cool burglary suit and changed into his awesome auction suit. He drove to the auction house. He owned it. Then he sold every single object that he stole from the school, whether it be pencil or bills each worth 9,999,999 for $9,999,999,999,999,999,999,999,999. People bought the bills because they worshipped Bsmzzcd, the god of no money. After 100 years, 9,999,999,999,000 S.W.A.T. teams and 1,000,000 military police officers besieged The Humbug’s mansion. But The Humbug sumo wrestled every officer to the ground. Then he lived happily ever after. Until he died.

To be continued… 


3041

Chapter One

Alleyville, L.A. Year 3041

It all started when you got to school. You practically dropped your e-book when she told you. 

***

It was a normal morning. You had gotten up, told the computer a quick good morning, and went into the kitchen. But, that day, nothing had felt right. It was quite foggy out, unlike the normal sunny LA weather. You shoved some dry cereal with milk down your throat and headed into your room to get dressed. 

“Benny, clean my shirt.” The washing machine whirred.

(Benny was your computer.)

You slid on your newly clean shirt and some jeans.

You then hopped on your flypod and headed over to school. On the way to school you met up with your friends. One of them had a mischievous smile on her face — your friend Abby. She had been your friend since kindergarten, but you had recently drifted apart when she had started to become popular. When you got to school, Abby’s mischievous smile got bigger. When you were getting your ebooks from their ports, you looked at your friend, and her face looked like she was about to pop!

Finally you turned around and said, “Okay, what do you want to say?!”

She released her smile and said, “You know how everyone and everything is microchipped, right?”

“Yes,” you said.
“Well, my brother and I found an artifact from way back from 2017!” she squealed. You gazed at her in amazement.

“It’s called the iPhone X, and you can only see the person you are calling on the screen. Unlike now, the person is virtually standing there!!”

While you were getting your head together, Abby was ranting on and on about how she was going to have a party and everyone could see the phone.

While the school day droned on, you kept thinking that the police might find out. You are the person who always worried about grades and getting in trouble.

Finally, the day ended, and you went over to Abby’s house. You still felt a little unsure about having the phone without permission. Not even an adult knew about this phone! If the police found out, Harvard would not be happy. Once you had arrived, Abby let you know that she and her friends had decided to make a video to sell the phone to collectors on eBay, and she wanted you to film it. You took out your phone and clicked camera and started filming:

“I found an iPhone X in my backyard. It is retailing on ebay for 7.5 billion dollars. All the apps are in perfect condition and the settings work fine,” Abby said.

You and her friends all took a close look at it. You were all amazed as you scrolled through all of “Allison’s” old texts from 2017. You then heard a siren. The police were coming. You all ran into the closet, hiding the phone. The siren came closer and closer. You felt like the world was going to end. Abby was the popular girl. She would always take easy classes so she could get straight A’s without even cracking a textbook. All the teachers liked her and even got her special gifts when no one was looking. Unlike you, who would always be worrying about your grades and projects and things like that. 

But at this moment — no, you were not worried about your grades. You were worried that you would not be able to go to an Ivy League college! Harvard would never accept a criminal. Unlike everyone hiding in the closet (where the police would obviously find them), you hid Abby’s dads bathroom cabinet. As the sirens neared even closer, you thought you were going to faint. A few seconds later, you heard the police knock down the front door. Your heart was thumping so hard, you thought the police officers in the other room might hear it! You heard screams, shouts, and all your friends plead for their lives.


Chapter Two

“Is this all of you?” the police officer said sternly.

In your best friend’s best strong voice, she said the dreaded… “No!!! The person who brought the phone is in the other room!” 

You thought you were going to die. You heard the police push down the door to her dad’s room. Haven’t they ever heard of opening the door normally?! Anyways, you had to escape. For Harvard, you thought, for Harvard. Like a snail, you crept out of the cabinet, you slowly climbed on top of the toilet, and you opened the window. You looked down. Thank goodness her house was not a tall building. You slowly slid out of the house and delicately hopped into the backyard. What you didn’t realize was that the living room window (where everyone was) overlooked the backyard. 

There she is!!!” you heard a voice say.

You turned around to see four of the cops scrambling out of the door frame. You rolled your eyes and took out your phone and had it make a teleport and you stepped into it. Your world soon turned into a wavy black and white picture. Everything lost its color. Everything came into a wavy type of form. You waved obnoxiously at the cops, and seconds later you regretted it. 

You landed in a forest. Your watch told you that you were located in the Davy Crockett National Forest. Great, this was about an hour away if you took a flypod. You rolled your eyes. With today’s technology, it would take a snap of a finger. You were walking around for a few minutes, and then you heard a whirring noise. You looked up. Against the sapphire-blue sky, you saw a camo looking helicopter. The deafening noise of the helicopter soared above you. So they invented a talking toilet, but not a helicopter that does not have an ear-splitting noise? Sheesh. You ran so briskly that the S.W.A.T helicopter had to wait a few seconds before chasing after you. The wind blew around your ears, and they turned as red as a stop sign. At a quick glance you saw what looked like a tent and got a whiff of what smelled like beef soup. It smelled out of this world amazing. You glanced up to see the S.W.A.T. team was gone. A notification popped up on your watch. 8:08. Your stomach rumbled. It would have been so nice to have some dinner around now. You turned around to see all of these tents in a horseshoe. Just looking at it made you starving. You made the decision to go into the group of tents. You walked into the horseshoe of tents and knocked on one of the tent flaps.

A kind looking old lady greeted you with a not-so-subtle: “Who are you!!!” What seemed like her sons came running towards you. They were both wearing two rings in the shape of a skull. Their dirty hands came closer and closer to your face. They reeked of old cabbage and turnips. In a moment that was completely unlike you — who was usually meek and little — you slapped them both in the face. 

Never touch me without permission!” you yelled. This made their faces turn red and embarrassed. The grandma soon shoved her boys behind her and welcomed you into her tent. 

Before you could make out an answer she said, “Excuse my boys, they can be rowdy.” She reached into a gold box of tea, pulled out a travel cooker, and started to boil some water and took out some eggs. She took out a pan and said, “Fried or scrambled?”

“Fried please,” you replied.

She cracked an egg over the pan. The egg sizzled and bubbled over the pan. She motioned for you to sit down on a tiny velvet cushion. Her two sons sat behind her and as she flipped the egg over the tea kettle whistled. You quickly ran over to the kettle and poured the steaming hot water into the mugs she had laid out. She thanked you and turned back around. You sat back on your cushion. She sprinkled in some peppers, cheese bits, and onion into the omelets. The smell danced under your nose. As she placed the last omelet on the plate, she smiled at the delicious smelling food. 

“So, what brings you to these parts?” the lady inquired. She brought over the plates, and before you took a bite of the delightful looking omelet, you answered.

“It’s a very long story,” you said. You stared down at your plate. 

“Tell me,” she said. So then you sighed and told the whole story including the flypod, the phone. Through the whole entire story all she did was nod. 

At the end of the story, she glanced at her boys and said, “Well, some of my kids are looking for a friend. They are really lonely. You see, us backpackers are always traveling, and we could always use a fourth addition.” You felt your face turn red. You obviously wanted to say no, but you didn’t want to hurt her feelings. 

“Sorry,” you said. “My mom is very protective about where I go.” She hardly let you go to sleep-away camp. You forced a quick smile.

When she turned around to tend the stove, you exhaled. How were you going to get home, clear your name, and blame all the other people and tell them the truth?! Later that night, as the kind lady propped a pillow over the sleeping bag, you put your watch to vibrate for 4am.

4AM… 

You groaned as your watch vibrated. You rolled over and threw on your checkered Vans and sweatshirt. You slowly unzipped the tent’s flap and headed out. You walked for around 20 minutes and then stopped to check your watch: 4:21.

As you turned your head around, you heard, “Put your hands in the air in the name of the law!!!” the officer yelled through the microphone.

He sent down a ladder, but as he could tell by the look on your face, you yelled, “Nope! Not today, bro!

You ran as fast as your feet could take your. The helicopter followed you as you ran. He yelled in the microphone more and more about how he was going to catch you, so you gave in and climbed up the helicopter’s rope. But, as you were halfway up, you realized that this was not a cop helicopter. Instead of the camo pattern, it was covered in graffiti. You jumped off of the helicopter and into a tree. Behind the fake helicopter was a SWAT helicopter. You waved your hands in the air, and that somehow got their attention. 

The next day… 

As you stepped out of the chamber that you were kept in to get to the courtroom, you dusted off your now clean Vans that you spent all night trying to clean, along with your lifeguard sweatshirt. Twenty minutes before you had braided your hair. All of this was because you parents were going to be there, and they always knew you as smartie and a good girl. As you entered the courtroom, they handed you a paper. It talked about how to address the court. Your throat started to hurt. As you looked around, you heard a familiar laugh. You whipped your head around so fast your two braids slapped your neck. You saw all of your friends who were at the party. They all looked so confident that they were going to convince the judge that they were just innocent little girls when they were really annoying little brats. While the judge was talking, they all had their heads down in their phones. They took you out of the cage and into a seat — and you remembered to look straight at the judge when talking to him and say “your honor.”

“Order to the court, order to the court please,” the judge said.

He had gray hair, but was balding and he had a very raspy voice — he looked like he was a grandpa. He looked at you with a smile that said, ‘you’re going to win.” For once, you felt your heart be warmed again.

The judge looked at the other side of the court, at the other girls, and then looked back at your lawyer and said, “Proceed.”

Your lawyer had been assigned to you. She had blonde hair and freckles, and had a strict face.

Her name was Rachel, and she stepped forward and told the judge, “My client would like to tell her part of the story, if this pleases the court.”

You stood up from your seat and found yourself saying, “Your honor, our world is being watched over by the government. So much so that each person has to have a microchip implanted in their hand. Now, I’m not saying that it’s stupid that our government wants to watch over us. But, what I think I did wrong was to let my head take me places. Meaning that I let my head tell me to go to the party where the phone was held. Now, let me point out that I was not the person who brought the phone. It was Abby Lee-Ann Diaper!”

Abby’s face turned bright red. She stared so hard at you, you could swear she would have thrown daggers if she had them. Her mouth looked like she was about to yell at you so hard that it was going to knock down the whole entire building. She was about to say something, but her lawyer put his hand over her mouth. He whispered something to her parents, who were sitting in the row ahead of her. Her face turned even redder. Her face was now the color of flames. 

You felt a smile creep onto your face, but you quickly realized that it was better to keep to yourself. You turned your face forward towards the podium. Your lawyer stood up to speak and your mind started to wander. You started to imagine that you won the case, but everyone still decided to hate you. You groaned and turned your head back to the judge, who was still rambling on about how the government made the decision to have every single living thing microchipped (including smart-things).

Minutes later, while the judge was getting more and more off topic, you shook your head. You had been here for hours.

While the judge was getting water from his cup, you stood up and said, “May this please the court, for I have something to say. I think that we are getting a little off topic. May we please resume to the case?”

The judge turned his head at you with an annoyed glance. 

“Well, we have been talking here for two hours,” he said, “and you are the cause of this case.” 

Your hands rolled up into fists. Your face turned bright red. You looked at him straight in the eye. 

“Don’t give him what he wants,” your lawyer said.

Your face turned into a sly smile. You remembered your mom always telling you to not yell at your brothers when they would annoy you. You started thinking about what to say to the judge. This could be an opportunity, you thought.

“Well, me being the cause of the case is a little off,” you said.

Then you pulled out your phone and clicked on your photos. The judge gave you an odd look. You clicked on the recent category and started scrolling through to find pictures from the party. Your eyes lit up when you saw a video from the party. The video was you filming Abby talking about how they found the phone. 

“Perfect!” you murmured under your breath. You then went up to the judge with your phone in your hand.

You tapped your finger on the phone and the video started to play.

“I, Abby, found an iPhone X in my backyard. It is retailing on ebay for 7.5 billion dollars. All the apps are in perfect condition and the settings work fine.”

And then the video ended.

Later… 

Saturday, June 19, 3041

You woke up the next morning feeling refreshed with all the stress off of your shoulders. You were in your room. Not in a forest with a bunch of backpackers. Not in a jail cell or in a courtroom. You turned over to grab your phone from your nightstand and swiped up on your phone screen. You frowned when you saw the wallpaper on your phone, with all of your friends from the party. You quickly went to settings and changed your wallpaper to a picture of you and your camp friends. You smiled as you rolled out of bed. Your parents were already out of bed, making what you liked to call a “guilty breakfast.” The smell did what felt like cartwheels under your nose. 

The End

A Bad Day (Kinda)

Tom, Steve, and Bob were driving a car. But the gas ran out in three seconds. So, Bob went to get money.

“Bob is dumb,” Tom said.

He took some quarters out of his pocket, filled the tank, and both of them took off in the car. Steve was dumb too. Let me tell you why.

“Let’s run this cliff,” Tom said.

What do you think happened? They missed by 300 feet.

Presenting… the three stories about Tom, Bob, and Steve… 

So, Steve came along, crashing with Tom because he thought Tom was stupid. Anyway, Tom went back to the garage to see what was happening to Bob. But when he got there, all he saw was an armored truck with a heavy machine gun or a four-DC Tri-blaster rifle. He didn’t know which one.

“Hey, Tom,” said Bob, “I pickpocketed a rich dummy who was smoking.”

“Gimme that money!” said Tom.

Steve came to see what was going on. “What are you doing?” Steve said.

Bob literally crushed Tom and rolled away.

“Let’s team up,” said Tom.

So Tom and Steve bought a wrecker truck and sped up to the heavy truck and burned a tree so that Bob couldn’t get away.

“Hey,” said Bob.

“Stop trying to burn my… Boom!”

“Wrong type,” said Tom.

“Sorry.” Steve smiled.

Tom was actually trying to invent a potion that would blow up anything and was called a super TNT. It would have been able to blow up Bob’s truck, except for a tiny problem. How do you get into Bob’s truck? So Tom tried to use his brains, but he ended up getting blown up and flew into Steve who went driving like crazy, and literally died. 

Meanwhile, Bob entered the story. Tom and Steve bought a car with the money Tom stole when he head-dived into Bob’s truck (thank goodness) and made a run for it. They drove all the way into the city. Just then, the car ran out of gas. So they ran to the police office and busted the safes to steal the money so they would strike it rich. Meanwhile, the villain enters the story. Officer Thug went inside and saw Tom and Steve.

“What is going on here?” he said.

He was a regular person and a skilled officer. So Tom and Steve were locked in jail playing with VR goggles. Since Tom and Steve had snuck into college, they were also fumbling with potions. Tom was making a poison potion to kick the guards in the butt. And Steve was trying to make a hole in the cell. First, Tom enchanted a bow and shot both guards in the butt. Steve invented a chain saw and sawed through the whole cell.

“We are free!” said Tom and Steve.

And they rushed out of the prison. Tom got an enchanted diamond sword and armor. They were in Minecraft! (They were in it all alone.) Tom went to rob some clothes because there weren’t any cops around now. Tom head-butted some dudes.

“Hey, I found a good place to make a house,” Steve called out to Tom.

It was an old castle. They gathered up their trusted team and fixed everything up. Soon, it looked awesome and even had an epic potion room. Tom and his friends were bombing other cities and crushing enemies they didn’t like. They burned cities until they rusted. Soon, they were making complicated potions and enchantments. Tom was the engineer, and Steve was the leader. Everybody was alive and had everything they needed, so they all were wise and kind of strong.

THE END!


Pink Fluffy Unicorns Dancing on Rainbows

Prologue

Hi. My name is Rebecca Rainbow. I am a rainbow, if you’re curious. I hate pink fluffy unicorns. Oh, you don’t know why? I’ll tell you.

I was out one day, settling another argument between Sally sun and Randy rain (the sun, Sally, and the rain, Randy, are my best friends) when my pink fluffy unicorn friend asked me to dance. We did, but then she started dancing on me! Then all the other unicorns started dancing on me! And that is why I hate pink fluffy unicorns.


The Story

I stomped home. I decided to talk to my dad about how the pink fluffy unicorns had danced on me.

“Dad?” I called when I got home.

My dad immediately popped up when he heard what I had to say. I soon discovered that this had been happening to other rainbows, and now they were ticked off. Since my dad was a senator in Rainbow Republic, he could recommend declaring war on pink fluffy unicorns.

I was so excited!!! My dad had said that the president of Rainbow Republic had agreed to declare war on pink fluffy unicorns. I had my heart set on joining the war against pink fluffy unicorns, but I would have to convince my dad first.

I was home after hanging out with my friends, Sally and Randy.

“I have something to tell you, Dad.”

He asked me what it was.

I told him that I wanted to join the war against pink fluffy unicorns.

“No way!” he screamed. “It’s much too dangerous,” he added in a quieter voice.

Fine, I thought. I’ll go to war myself.

In the morning I woke up early so I would have time to disguise as a man and run away to war. I got on all his armor and grabbed his color gun, then slinked out of the house and over to the battlefield. 

Battle was not dangerous for rainbows, unicorns, and other magical things. Us rainbows used classic color guns, which pink fluffy unicorns hated, because they did not have sparkly pink. Pink fluffy unicorns used sparkle guns, which irritated rainbows like me. 

Today was the first day of battle!

Sorry. My hands are so tired it takes a while to switch from one letter to the next. I never knew how tiring shooting Dad’s color gun would be!!! It was so not my size. I was also covered in sparkles!!! Those pink fluffy unicorns had their guns loaded!

I don’t think I liked this fighting so much. I was pretty sure that the only thing that was pushing me on was my hate against pink fluffy unicorns.

Wow!!! Something amazing happened. I met a human girl named Amber, and she was fighting on the rainbow’s side. Turned out that humans were great fighters. The battle went great. We won the war!!! The only thing that went wrong was that this horrible girl named Rebecca Hills joined the pink fluffy unicorn’s side. She was almost as good as Amber! Luckily, the classic color guns drove her away. But Amber would still have to deal with her. I thought I’d try to help her.

The End


Unicorn Academy

Hello, my name is Cornpuf, and I am a pink fluffy unicorn. After being banned from Rainbow Republic — my original home — forever, we started a new life in the sun, since we had to get as far away as possible from the rainbows. Thanks to our shield-protected ship and our super power sun gear, we landed safely, so now we all lived inside a giant bubble that stretched up to six miles, so as you could imagine, it was pretty crowded here. We struggled to survive and ate whatever we could find, even broccoli. Bleh, we hated broccoli, but even with that we still had to go to school. It was called Unicorn Academy. Since we planned to get revenge on the rainbows one day, all of our classes involved skills. They were all taught by Rebbeca Hills’ family even if she was no more.

 Staff

  1. Defense Against Rainbows: Professor Reea Hills (little sister) 
  2. Color Gun Use 101: Mr. Hills (dad) 
  3. Unicorn Heroes and Heroines: Ms. Hills (mom)
  4. Surviving Life on a Different Planet 302: Mr. Alex Hills (little brother)
  5. Surviving a War: Mr. Aron Hills (uncle)

See what I mean? Anyway Professor Reea was really nice and so was Ms. Hills, but Mr. Hills and Mr. Alex were a little sharp, and Mr. Aron was really fun. Today Professor Reea Hills’ lecture was about the properties of hitting the unicorn way.

“You cross your arms, then release and punch,” she said. Then she told us how to blend in with rainbows and some new words, like pharaoh. Yeah, it never hurts to learn human words.

O-M-G! Today I got excused from Mr. Aron’s class to go to the principal’s office. I was totally paranoid that they discovered that I cheated in my How to Kick a Human’s Butt test, but no, the case was they had a secret mission for me tomorrow. At midnight, when everyone was sleeping, they would send me in a rocket and disguise me as a rainbow (all the humans love them) to another planet which I would investigate and see if it had all we needed.

Today I landed in Star Statues. Oh boy, I landed in the middle of Rainbow Republic, and I didn’t know how to get back. Ugh, there was also Rebbeca Rainbow’s new book on the shelf. She was such a show-off.

It was called “Encyclopedia of Rainbow Republic.” Yeah right, as if she knew anything, and I bet she didn’t mention what the poor pink fluffy unicorns had endured! She started the war, and I was going to end it. It was not our fault we were addicted to dancing on rainbows.


Journey to the Rest of the Universe

My name is Universe. I like the possibility of infinity. Infinity means the highest number possible, which I like to say means anything is possible. I like that anything is possible. My favorite class is science. Anyway, my journey started one day after a long, boring day of school. I was talking to my friends.

Suddenly, the science teacher popped up and said, “Universe, the U.S. wants a kid to go to space, and I thought about you.”

This was the chance of a lifetime.

I said, “Of course!”

The very next day I went into the rocket.

I heard them say, “Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, blast off!”

Next, I went to look at my suit. It was a smaller, newer version of the other suits. The other astronauts helped me put it on. It was a little bulky, but otherwise comfortable. It was hard to get up once you fell down in it. When we finally got up to the moon, I went in space for the first time! When I first stepped on the moon, I fell because of the lack of gravity. After that, I grew accustomed to the gravity, and didn’t fall again.

I asked, “Can we go to the rest of the universe?”

They laughed and said, “Can we? I don’t think we are allowed to do it, Universe.”

They were being really weird, but I expected that. What else should I expect from grownups? If they expected me to put up with them, I would jump out the window. I wished that grownups wouldn’t be so weird. I did jump out of the window. It was fun. I climbed in and jumped out a couple more times. I had a jetpack with me. I liked the jetpacks best. You could steer them, and mine gave you candy, roasted marshmallows, and s’mores. I loved space because you feel like you could do anything if you could breathe in space. I started to go to the sun. Soon, I shifted it to heat protection, and a suit of fire appeared to shield me from the heat.

“Yahoo!” I yelled when I flew to the surface.

I wished that I could do that again and again and again. Instead I explored the sun. Through the suit, I could see the light and heat particles. They were so full of light that I couldn’t believe that on Earth you couldn’t see them. I could’ve stayed there for hours and hours, but I had to leave almost too soon. I wanted to see more particles. The particles were much better than the weird grownups. I wished that I could stay there forever, but too bad that I couldn’t.

Suddenly, I heard something say, “Hello.”

I nearly wet my pants. It was an alien. It looked surprisingly human, but no other human has gone to the sun. It was weird, but it wasn’t something from the weird grownups because they weren’t that smart. (For the grownups that are reading this, yeah, I really said that, but it’s true. Grownups are naturally stupid and weird.) It wasn’t that surprising, because I’d seen many crazy things. I went to Mercury to see if I could make another remark about grownups being stupid. There were a lot of craters, but I didn’t even need my fire protection. I found a lake of good drinking water. This was proof that grownups were not that smart after all. They were easy to fool. Their robots had a lens that made them see a desert. They were very gullible. I wished teachers were that gullible with homework. Actually, I take that back. They forget that they’d given it and they gave more. Now, grownups couldn’t deny that. They should go to jail. It certainly was a crime to abuse kids with homework. Abuse was a crime! They couldn’t deny that, could they. Recesses were abusively short, and school was abusively long. There were twelve months in a year, and there were ten months of school. Horrible! Why weren’t there six months of school and six months of vacation. That was also abuse. I went next to Venus next to clear my mind of grownups. Venus helped. It only helped because Venus was so boring. Or maybe because nothing ever happened. Wait! That’s just the same thing.

Next, I went to Mercury. At Mercury, I had a close call. Grownups were there, and for all I knew, they were still there. I decided to play a trick on them. I danced in front of them and put blindfolds on their faces. They were probably still swiping at the air. It reminded me of my friends doing my boring homework. At home, I spent my time reading or exploring. At least I brought my books. I still liked the Harry Potter books. The people at home thought that I was crazy to like books. I didn’t miss them at all. I definitely didn’t miss the homework. I hated homework, but who didn’t?

Next came Venus. It was very, very hot. You thought the sun was hot? Go to Venus! I was protected, so I wasn’t affected, and neither were the aliens. They were made of fire. (They also agreed that grownups were too much trouble.) They could talk and do everything that humans could do, as well as the things that they couldn’t. They were good friends, so we kept in touch.

I went to Neptune next. It looked cold, and it was just as cold as a snowstorm, but without the wind and snow. Those aliens were made of ice. Their sad, surprised faces reminded me of my teachers when they realized that I hated their classes. It just showed how crazy grownups were. I didn’t want to think any more about grownups. The aliens gave me drawing paper, since I left mine at home. I drew croctupuses and illigels for them. A croctupus was an octopus and a crocodile. An illigel was a lion, a snake, a butterfly, a cat, and an elephant.

I visited the rest of the universe next. It was really hard to go to another solar system. You had to run through the portal before it disappeared. It took me eight tries to make it. I visited a planet that I named Planet Chocolate because it was made of chocolate. As soon as I bit off a piece, it grew back. There were chocolate aliens. Everything except me was made of chocolate. The aliens gave me a bucket of everlasting chocolate. It was the best planet.

Next, I visited Planet Cheese. It was made of cheese, stinky cheese. I held my nose the whole time without even visiting the aliens. Then, I visited Vanilla Planet. It was made of vanilla. Of course the aliens were made of vanilla. They gave me a bucket of everlasting vanilla. I was pretty sure that Cheese Planet was the only disgusting planet. Next up, Vegetable Planet. I made a mistake. That was a disgusting planet. I spent about two seconds there. I hoped that the next planet would be better, and it was! It was Cotton Candy Planet. Yummy! They gave me a whole box of everlasting cotton candy. After that, I went to Lollipop Planet. The lollipops were delicious. I loved the chocolate lollipops. I got a lot of lollipops. Next, I went to Eclair Planet. It was one big eclair. It had a lot of cream. I got so many everlasting eclairs. I loved it! Next up, Macaron Planet. It was made of chocolate, vanilla, caramel, and so much more. The best part of each planet was getting the everlasting candy. After that, Ice Cream Planet! That was the best planet yet! There were so many flavors! I took most things from there. Then came Cookie Planet. That was a flat planet. It was a giant chocolate, chocolate chunk, sugar cookie. When I got my loot I started eating the everlasting cookies right away. They all smelled fresh, right out of the oven, and so did the planet. I couldn’t help it. To stop my mouth watering, I went to Planet S’more. (I didn’t want to offend them.) I thought that this solar system should be called the food solar system. Though Planet S’more was so mouthwatering, it was the best planet ever! The marshmallows weren’t too dark or too light. They were toasted to perfection. The chocolate wasn’t too syrupy or too hard.

Next, I went directly to Planet Fruit. It had all kinds of fruit. All of the fruit was in season all year long. The fruit that they gave me would never spoil, and it was everlasting fruit. After that came Planet Gummy. Everything was made of gummy. Yummy yummy! Hey! That rhymes. The people were even made out of gummy. It was the first planet I had gotten up the courage to talk to the aliens.

“Hi,” their leader said, “You are the first visitor. Sorry it looked deserted. We were afraid a grownup had come.”

“Nah, grownups aren’t that smart,” was my response. “Don’t forget that.”
“Won’t,” they promised.

Then, suddenly, a little boy asked the leader, “She help us?”

“With what?” I asked.

“With war.”

“A war with who?” I asked.

“With Bob,” they said.

I screamed. Bob was the name that struck fear in everybody, everytime, everywhere.

“Is he the B… B… B… Bob?” I stuttered.

“Bob. Real Bob.”

“I’ll help,” I said, trembling.

I soon learned that Bob put the poison in the gummies food that prevented them from growing back when bitten into. After that, he bit them. That was why they were scared. Bob was a grownup. Now do you see why I was so prejudiced against them? And it was not just Bob. It was all of them. Teachers especially. The homework. Anyway, enough about grownups. We would have a war across the galaxy. We would beat the legendary Bob. I just thought of something.

“Bob and his accomplice?” I asked.

They answered, “Bob accomplice.”

Bob’s accomplice was Pink Fluffy Unicorn. The last time they were heard from was when they danced on rainbows. They were brave. Very brave. I wouldn’t dare fight Bob. I was crazy. So were they. We were going to warn the other planets. They wouldn’t be surprised. Maybe they would help. I did it. The other planets would help. We had an army. We would beat Bob!  Bob fought with boxes of textbooks. Scary. We fought with everything we had. I nearly got hit! We were beating him back. We saw him wetting his pants.

Suddenly, he shouted, “I surrender!”

We won! The shout we gave was so loud that we fell.

We shouted, “We beat Bob! We beat Bob!”

After, I asked, “Can I move to S’mores Planet?”

The answer was, “Yes.”

The End


Afterword

I wrote a letter:

Dear Mom and Dad. I live on S’mores Planet. I will never do my homework or brush my teeth. Or brush my hair. If you care. I most certainly don’t. Just in case.

Love, 

Universe


The Mom and the Sweetie and the Dad

First, the mom was getting food for the little girl. Then, Dad was fighting with Mom.

The little sweetie turned off the lights of the kitchen, and then she put the lights back, and she said, “Stop, don’t do that.”

Then the sweetie put the dad back in his own room and her mom in her own room. And then they went to sleep, and there were bad guys coming in from the pool door. The family woke up, because the bad guys opened the door and hid behind the door. The family came down and saw the bad guys hiding behind the door, one in the mom’s room and one in the dad’s room. And then another bad guy came, and he was behind everyone in the whole family and even the little girl. He tapped everyone’s toes. Then there was a small bad guy the size of the little girl, but he had more big numbers on his head, and that meant how old he was. The number was 20 because he was 20 years old. Then another one came from the little girl’s room and went in front of the people, and then they looked behind, and they counted how many bad guys that were there. There were seven. They stole all the toys from the little cat, and the mom was letting the cat play with her toys from when she was a little girl. And then they went under the bed with the toys where they played. The bad guys were trying to find the cats, and they went on top of where the beds were, and then those bad guys didn’t find those cats, but only the toys. But they didn’t look like the same thing because one of them had pointy teeth, so they took all the toys out of their bags and gave them back to the cats. They didn’t find the cats, and they thought they went to the bathroom, but they weren’t there, and they checked in the bathtub, and they didn’t find them under the bed anymore. The cats ran downstairs and bit one of the bad guys and then bit all the bad guys. That made the bad guys go away. The family called the police.

The little girl said, “Hello? A bad guy came into my room.”

And then she gave the phone to her mom. The police caught the bad guys.


The Rabbit and Her Mom

There is a baby bunny named Lucy, and her mom is a bunny named Urwut, and her daddy’s name is Simon. Lucy wants a baby sister to take care of like a mom. She’s going to try to wish for her mom to get a baby. She is going to wish to herself, and then maybe her mom will get a baby. Then she can be the older sister, and then she will have a baby to take care of, like her mom. 

She imagines they will work together, play together, do fun stuff together, and even help, like if she can’t reach stuff, Lucy can reach, because she’s a big sister. She goes to a place where if you wish for something, it will come true. It is at West Side East. It’s called University Come True. Lucy has to come through the bushes, through the park, and through her house. Her friends are trying to get her to play with them, but she just moves away. Even when they do something, nothing will bother her at all. She’ll just look back, and go on. 

Finally, she arrives to University Come True. It looks like lots of people are wishing because they want to have something that they don’t have. She goes to University Come True without her mom looking. Her mom says she is going to sleep for 20 hours because she’s so tired that then she’ll wake up in the afternoon. She thinks, That’s so good, because then, tomorrow, I can have a baby sister, and Mommy would not even notice that I went out to University Come True.

University Come True is a big place, and there’s a king and a queen, and they’ll answer you and then tell you if they can do that or not.

Lucy says, “I wish I had a baby sister so I could act like a mom, and I don’t have one, so can you please help me to have a baby sister to take care of?”

The king says, “I can help with that, but it doesn’t matter if it’s a boy or a girl. If it’s a boy, then don’t get mad because I know you want a girl, but it doesn’t mean that you get mad. You get what you get and you don’t get upset.”

Lucy says, “Okay, but if it’s a girl, then you give me all your money. If it’s a boy, then I give you all my money. That’s a deal.”

He says, “Okay, that’s a deal.”

Then she goes home.

She says, “Yay, yay, now my mother’s not even going to notice. I’m going to pretend to be asleep, and she won’t even know that I went outside. But first I need a set-up. I need to get my sweater and my coat and make it look like I am sleeping, and then when she wakes me up she won’t even notice that I went outside.”

The next day her mother is like, “I have a baby in my tummy. I need a doctor. Go call a doctor!”

Lucy says, “Okay.”

The doctor comes, and Lucy has a baby sister!

Then she goes to University Come True, and then she tells the king, “I got a girl, so now you give me all your money.”

He says, “Ugh. It’s not fair, but whatever it is, I can’t get upset because I can’t act like a perther, which is a bad person. Okay, here’s all my money.”

The king is angry that she has a baby girl because he doesn’t want to give her his money. 

Then she leaves home and tells her mom, “You didn’t even notice when I left the house for 24 hours. I went to University Come True, and I said to the king that I want a baby sister, and my mom doesn’t have one, so can you please make it come true? But the king said if you get a boy, don’t get upset, and it doesn’t matter what baby you get, so don’t get upset at all. And I said okay, but if I have a girl, then I get all your money. If I have a boy, then you get all my money. And then the next day I got a girl baby, so I went back to University Come True and said give me all your money, and he said okay, that’s not fair, but you get what you get and you don’t get upset.”

The mom is surprised.

She says, “Wow!”

The End


The Crime Kitty

Hi! Sorry I scared you there. My name is the Crime Kitty. No, it actually isn’t. My name is Cuddles! I am a black, fluffy, tiny kitty, but I have a dark side. You may not know me, but I am more than this so-called “adorable, cute, fluffy, and innocent” kitty. So, let me tell you why.

It was a dark and stormy night in New York City! I was with my owner (Emma). She is a 24-year-old adult who is in college, but she is super mean! I don’t remember her being mean when she got me from a pet store! Or maybe it’s because ever since she got me I made her life even harder. But she could have thought of that before! Well, back to the story. When I was with her, all of a sudden she told me, “Sorry, Cuddles, I have to go to the mall with my friends. Bye.” And then she just threw her sandals at me and left with a new pair of shoes. I mean, how rude! I have been planning for an escape ever since, and tonight was the perfect shot.

***

Ughhhh. Ughhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Why is it so hard to reach the doorknob!!! Oh wait!

Ten seconds later… 

Finally! I knew there was a stepstool around here. Now I can reach the door knob and wait! I need to pack necessities for the long trip ahead! Let’s see… 

Mini kitty backpack: check

Cat food and, well, food: check

My favorite cat jacket: check

And my milk: check

Well, I’m ready. Wow, I’m leaving now. Well, goodbye, house!                      

***

Doo doo doo doo doo do. Hmmm, well, since Emma’s not here to boss me around, I can do whatever I want! But I have to keep a low profile, so here are some personal rules for myself:

1: No making friends! (Keep a low profile. Tell no one your real name! Try not to be seen.)

2: If someone sees you, quickly run away without a trace!

3: Have fun! Do whatever you want!

Now I’m going to get a donut!

***

Hmmm, hmmmm, hmmmm, hmmmmmm, hmmmmmm.

I love donuts! But I have to focus on getting money! How am I going to buy stuff for myself if I have no money! And how are humans supposed to understand me when I want to buy something! Ugh, it was so much easier when Emma was taking care of me! But she was so mean! Wait a minute, I can just steal stuff. It’ll be much easier. I won’t have to lose a single penny! Well if I had one, but that’s not the point! But stealing is bad. Oh no, I’m hyperventilating again. Agh! Breathe in, breathe in, breathe out. Whoooo, that was way better. Hmmm, let’s see what time it is. If only I had a watch. Oh wait, there was a watch store near the city that Emma used to go with me. I think I have a clue where it is.

***

Creak. Wow, I never realized how creaky this door was. I guess the owner isn’t here today. Well, let me just take a look at this clock, and I will be heading out — Beee oooh, beee, oooh, beee, oooh!!!

Argh!!! So loud! Sensitive ears can’t take much longer! Meow.

***

Beee oooh, beee, oooh, beee, oooh!!! Ugh! What, where? Where am I? Am I in kitty heaven?! Tick tock tick tock. Oh, I guess not. Oh wait, I’m in the clock shop from last night. Hmm, I must have set off the alarms and passed out. Well, off I go.

Doooo, doooo, do, do, do,do — 

“Psssssssttttt.”

“Aghhh! Who was that?”

“It’s me,” someone whispered.

“It’s who?”

“Wow, I can’t believe you don’t recognize me!’’ A kitty stepped out of the shadows!!!

“I can’t believe it. Is that really you?!”

“Yep, it’s me!” My best friend of all time came towards me.

“I can’t believe my eyes. I’m so happy to see you. Whiskers, I haven’t seen you since you got adopted!

“You too! I missed you so much! But what are you doing here in the middle of the city unattended?” Whiskers said to me curiously.

“Ummm, what are you doing here in the middle of the city unattended?”

“You tell me first,” Whiskers said.

“Fine, well I ran away.”

“Why?’’ Whiskers asked.

“Well because I don’t like my owner. She is always so mean to me, and I just can’t stand it! I don’t even know why she’s so mean to me. Reow reow reow.”

“It’s okay, Cuddles. You have me?” Whiskers tried cheering me up.

“Yeah, I do have you. Thanks for cheering me up. But why are you in the middle of the city unattended?”

“Well, my owner took me to the park, and guess what?! She said she was going to go to the coffee shop to get a ‘latte,’ and when she left, she never came back!” said Whiskers angrily.

“Well, maybe she just forgot about you?”

No, she left! So I was left all alone in the park until I got hungry, so I went to the donut shop to the city,” Whiskers told me.

“Well, I have to get going. I am going to go explore. Want to come?”

“Sure,” Whiskers said happily.

So we went off to seek adventure! But then it was turning dark, and we saw nowhere to stay or sleep until we saw a jewelry store. So we decided to go in. But the door was locked, so we started walking away until there was the animal control truck came rolling in our direction! I knew that they were going to take us to the pound, and I will not go back there again, so we started running around the block.

Ahhhh we’re going to die!!!” yelled Whiskers.

“Don’t worry, Whiskers.” I panted. “We will lose him. I just know it.”

So we went running and running until we came back. But then, when I was running, I got shot with something, and I fell asleep, but then I saw Emma running towards me and saying, “That’s my cat!”

But when I woke up, Emma was hugging me, saying she was sorry she was super mean to me. I was so happy that she starting to act nice to me! But yeah, that was my story! I told you I am dark inside, so bye.

The End.


The Adventures of UNICAT!

Hello, I am a unicorn. Well, sort of!! I am in the slammer. I am a unicat to be exact! I got put here after I used my dark magic to hypnotize a man to do my evil bidding! Okay, so maybe not all of that is true! Okay, none of it is true!! Okay! I actually just used my half unicorn magic to get a free corn dog in McDonald’s and then tried to escape using my kiddy car after the cops came and told me to stop, but then I didn’t get far after I forgot to change the battery in that thing! They put this mask on me, and I imagined flying. Then I was on the moon! I think that mask had some of this gas that makes me feel all woozy and stuff!

Anyway, I have to escape!!! So I have a brilliant plan! As a unicat I need to keep my creative mind open. After all, brilliant ideas like mine come naturally in a unicat like me. Well the only unicat like me. I am the only unicat in the world! So lonely! Well anyway! I will use this plastic spoon to dig my way out of here! According to my calculations, I should be getting out of here in about… umm… years. Oh well! I am still digging, and I am super exhausted! Ahhh! I am a unicat, not a manual labored slave!!! That is it! I will use my amazing power to escape this place! If I spend one more day in the slammer, I think I’ll break! Okay, so this is my plan. I’m going in. First, I have to use my magical unicorn powers to bend the steel bars and squeeze between. Then, I have to drop kick the cops! (If that is possible.) After I do that, I’ll kick open the gates with my mighty strength (not really, I’ll just use my magic) and then I’ll try to get another free corn dog! I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right. I need to learn my lesson… I need to get two free corn dogs, duh!

Five minutes later… 

*Sounds of missiles crashing into the ground.*

Ahhh, these people are trying to kill me! I just open the gate quietly and start prancing to my freedom! I am also running with another one of my cellmates called Screamy Sam. He is a pony, and I should have known that he would have freaked once I opened the gate! Well anyway, we had a deep conversation about why he shouldn’t scream in the middle of operation escape prison and don’t scream! Well, I told him we couldn’t scream.

He says back, “Fine, then I’ll go, and you can stay here. I don’t want to close the gate on you by accident.”

I reply maybe a bit too brutally, “Why? ‘Cause you think that when I trip and fall and then the gate closes on my hoove that I’ll be limping and you’ll be calling me Limpy for the rest of my life and there will be a huge hideous scar across my eye, but all the real scars will be on the inside where my heart should be?”

He says, sounding a bit concerned, “ Ummm… are you okay, or should I call Dr. Phil?”

I say back, “No. Sorry you had to hear that.”

Anyway, recap. I am running as fast as my little hooves can go. I would fly, but I don’t want to leave my new (and only) friend, Screamy Sam.

A few seconds later… 

Yes, we are finally off! You may be wondering where, but we are going to… McDonald’s (to get two corn dogs, well, three for Screamy Sam)!

Anyway, Screamy Sam says he wants to go and visit Las Vegas, and I am all like “Who needs Las Vegas when you got all the corn dogs in New York?

Then he says back, “Umm… everyone?”

I go right up in his face and practically scream, “Wrong! Dude, ya gotta keep up with the program!”

We finally get there, and the owner of the McDonald’s throws a broom, and it lands on Screamy Sam’s hoof, and guess what! Turns out he sprains it! So I have to carry him all the way to a cloud, so he can rest! Man, boys are complicated. I have to go dumpster diving and find a bandage. This reminds me of the story my cat mom used to tell me about my birth.

She said, “Oh, Caticorn, when you were born, the day was bright and sunny and warm. The breeze smelled as if someone sprayed Febreeze in the air, and when you finally were born, your unidad was so happy, and so was I. You practically flew out of there. You were always the seeker of adventure we raised you to be. So wrap this bandage around your leg, so your scrape will feel better. You’ll be flying around in no time!”

Well anyway, I go back to the cloud, and then I wrap the bandage around his hoof. After that, we both just daze off into sleep mode I guess. Oh, I guess I might have forgotten to tell you that Screamy Sam has a black hood that covers his mane. He is pretty weird though. When I tried to yeet his hood off, he dodged my hoof!

I was all like, “It’s hot, dude, take off your hood! You’re going to get a heat stroke!

But he wouldn’t budge for anything I tried! So I just let the dude do whatever he wants. To be honest, I refuse to tell him this to his face, but he is pretty fun, okay. He has a sense of humor! But there is no way we could be best friends since he is a pony and I am a unicat! Other species can’t be friends! It’s part of RuleBook of Animaltopia, rule five, page two, paragraph 16, sentence eight: You shall not be friends or have any sort of relationship with other species other than your kind. It kind of sucks to be honest.

Anyway, Sam — I mean Screamy Sam — just woke up, and he sounded like an alarm clock. He almost scared the glitter out of me. When he woke up, instead of like normal animals, he screamed his head off!

I am like “Dude, are you okay!!! Do you need the hospital or anything!

He responds very calmly and rationally as if nothing at all happened. “What are you talking about? I just yawned, yeesh. I think you might need the hospital!” And then he laughs a little.

I am like, “Ummm, you’re joking right?”

He looks so puzzled I think even maybe I was wrong and I was crazy, not him! But then I remember I am never, never wrong, so that isn’t exactly an option. I really don’t know who is crazy (probably him), but it totally doesn’t matter at all to me! (It really does.) Anyway, his hoof is feeling better, so I decide why not — like civilized savage animals — we go to a diner for breakfast. So, I have to go dumpster diving to try and find a little bit of money while Screamy Sam just watches me go dumpster diving! It is so embarrassing. He has to take a banana peel off of my head after I get out of there. I smell like a dog barfed all over me that had eaten pickles, a squirrel, smelly gym socks, moldy bread, and a part of a shoe for breakfast. Speaking of breakfast, we are still Screamy — what am I saying? I meant to say screamingly hungry! If I don’t get my morning cat juice with rainbow unicorn sprinkles on top, I think I’m going to die of immensely low sugar! Do you even know what that can do to a unicat?!

I need to survive!” I tell Screamy Sam, while running in circles panicking.

“You mean we need to survive, right?” he says, looking a bit concerned.

“Uhhh, yeah did I say I? I meant we. I meant we totally,” I blurt out.

So we go to this diner place. It has an organic smoothie (ew) but whatever. At least I get to eat my pancakes with maple syrup topped with some whipped cream, frosted edible bananas, with rainbow sprinkles, and a unicorn toy on top of it all. These pancakes are my usual everyday breakfast. I really think I need more sugar in my body! That “organic, good for your health smoothie” totally makes my mouth bitter! Talk about yuck! Anyway, after Screamy Sam finishes his confetti flavored cupcakes we steal — I mean borrow — we head to the police because we found this stray cat on the street, and when I tried to clean it with my tongue like how mommy cats do to their young, it clobbered out of my hooves with drool leaking from its mouth and started chasing a car! Screamy Sam thought it was a dog! Pshhh he is so, wait a second, maybe that cat wasn’t really a cat! Oh! It was obviously… a tiger! You find them all the time in those shops. Except they don’t really move, and they are usually on display. I thought maybe tigers would be at least a little more territorial. But hey I’m not hating, just stating!

So once we get there, I see some really cool photos of me and Screamy Sam on a pole! I can’t really read, but it has a number on it and some words on it, too. I think they are going to give us money or something! You don’t think we are wanted right… Nah! Well, the police sure must have been jealous of us or something, ‘cause they keep on saying we’ve got ‘em or something. Then there are these silver thingies that they pull out, and they look like pretty stylish bracelets. So when I ask them if I could have one, they say, “Get ‘em!

But before I could say, “Hey, that’s not really nice,” Screamy Sam grabs my hoof, and we start flying. We settled on a cloud to get some sleep and rest since it is getting dark out.

When I wake up the next morning, I find Screamy Sam’s hood on the floor. But he is nowhere in site.

Scream Sam?!” I scream. Hey, that’s kind of ironic!

Then when I look down, I see another unicat! I am like, O-M-G, I’ll catch Screamy Sam later! I have another friend now, maybe!

So I fly down to the floor, and when I see the other unicat, I say, “Hey! What’s your name? Are you just like me? Are you nice? Are you funny? Are you competitive? And most importantly, do you have magical powers and can fly? Wait, that’s not important. What is, is… do you puke hairballs, too?

The other unicat totally ignores me! So I go up and turn their face around, and it is a boy unicat, with sky blue and turquoise hair colors, and he has light blue eyes.

“Ummm, hi?” I say, totally bewildered for I don’t know what reason.

“Ummm, hey Unica — ”

Actually more importantly, can we be friends?” I say.

“Ummmm, Unicat — ” says the boy unicat.

“I have another best friend that is called Screamy Sam, and he is great, really, did you know — ” I say, being interrupted by the boy unicat.

Unicat, I am Screamy Sam! Well, actually, my name is just Sam, but whatever,” he says, staring at me and smiling.

Then everything goes black, and I wake up staring at the sky.

Then I murmur, “How long was I out?

Then I hear Screamy Sam’s voice say, “About an hour or so.”

Then I fly up and say “What have you done to Screamy Sam???”

“I am Sam!” says Screamy S-Sam.

“Oh, forgot” I say. “So you have been pretending to be my friend , too?” I say, hurt.

“What! Are you crazy! You are so much fun! Of course we’re friends!” replies Sam quickly.

Oh good,” I say, relieved.

Well anyway, I guess we are friends now.

But I say to Sam, “But I wish I knew I was the only unicat in the world. I felt so unique and special. I don’t know, I kind of liked feeling I was special and one of a kind.”

Then Sam puts his hoof around me and gives me a big bear, well, unicat I guess, hug. 

Then I say, “Okay, that got weird, so where are we going now?”

Sam and I just stand there bewildered.

Then he says, “Vegas… ?”

I don’t want to disappoint the guy, so I say, “Okay, let’s take our wings and fly to vegas!”

So after a few hours by flight, we crash onto a cloud and are waiting for the snack cart to come around until I realize we aren’t in an airplane. Anyway, I get there, and we meet a nice walrus called Wally T., but I just call her Wally. She helps us “borrow” some pizza, and she asks us if we have a place to stay for the night.

I say, “Hmmm… well that bench looks pretty comfy!”

She is shocked and grabs us by our manes, then brings us deep into the woods, ties a string to what she calls “the special trees,” then she hangs a carpet thing onto the string (it looks more like a clothing line if you ask me) and then throws us in there. Then I see white or black, but I don’t really remember… Anyway back to the story, we are in the North Pole! But Sam says that walruses live in the Arctic, but I complain and say that she is magical. Hey, she never had a life-threatening crisis or anything! That makes her pretty magical to me. Anyway I’m going to have to leave now, but I’ll write again in a few days! (Wally T. is serving crumpets. But they feel and taste more like rocks… ) Anyway, bye!!!

The End!!!


The Hot Dog Robber

One day a very nice man came to his house right next door to my house. His name was Alexander. He never robbed and never bullied people. He never said bad words, but sometimes my mom went to his house and gave him cupcakes. He always said “thank you,” but one day he wanted some hot dogs. So, he went to my mom’s house and asked her for some hot dogs.

And my mom said, “No more hot dogs. I gave you enough hot dogs.”

So Alexander ran home. Then one day, everyone was sleeping. I saw Alexander come out of his house. I got scared because he never came out of his house at 2:00 in the morning. I knew that as a fact because every time my mom and I tried to come and visit, he was always sleeping. And when we tried to go to the park with him to run, he was still sleeping, so we never could go to his house. So I didn’t expect him to be up at this time. So I decided to lock all the doors. Then after I locked all the doors, I looked out my window. He was standing in front of my door, ringing the doorbell so many times and knocking at my door.

And then I screamed out the window, “Leave us alone!”

He said, “I want hot dogs!” very loudly.

I decided to give him 21 hot dogs, so he could leave us alone.

He said, “I want more.”

I told him, “For what?”

And he said, “I have a huge family.”

And I kind of felt bad until I heard that he was lying. I knew he was lying because his lights were off. I knew he was lying because if his family was there, it wouldn’t be closed.

He told me, “Fine, I am lying. I just want hot dogs.”

Then Alexander ran to another house, and the woman gave him a lot of hot dogs because she trusted that he had a lot of family to feed. He just ate them. I got frustrated and went to go talk to the lady, but she didn’t believe me because she hated my mom because my mom didn’t want to work with her in the store because she didn’t know how to make cupcakes. So she closed the door in front of me.

And she said, “Leave me alone.”

So I decided to go to his house and knock on the door.

I said, “Give me back my hot dog.”

He said, “I’m never going to give you your hot dogs back.”

I said, “Why?”

“Because I ate them already.”

I said, “Poop them out or something.”

“I am not pooping them out because I do not have them. My dog has them.”

“Then tell your dog to give me your hot dogs.”

Alexander said, “No. I can’t afford much food for my dog. He might die.”

“Couldn’t you tell me that earlier,” I said. 

“No, because you would get mad at me.” 

“If it was for life, I would never get mad,” I said.

I gave him 100 hot dogs, and we got along for the rest of our lives.


The Classroom Escapade

Chapter One

“Lilly! Feed Bon-Bon, and quickly!”

“Okay, Mrs. Sanchez. Yes, ma’am.”

I walk up to the class pet hamster, Bon-Bon, and drop in some hamster food, only to be nibbled myself.

Ring!

Great, I missed the late bell for chorus and Miss Loxern will be mad because I stayed to feed a stupid, stupid hamster. I can hear her from here, saying, “Quiet, please. Single file lines only. Jeremiah, please stop chattering this instant!”

I better hurry up before the ice fountain starts up. “Shhhh!” Too late. It has started. The school’s wonky hours from 10-12 have begun, and I am trapped in unsafe zone (the only one). The hall.


Chapter Two

Gahhh! The ice has spread to the bathrooms! (And I really need to go!) I better seek shelter, quickly.

Okay, I am now in the janitor’s closet, and my pencil is getting its time to shine. I mean, it was at the bottom of my book bag, and I never use it. Oh great, here comes the liquor stage. As the ice from the ice fountain melts and turns into fog, the smoke detectors are set off, but instead of water, they rain liquor. I can hear it coming. 

Burp!

There goes Mr. Mcgail getting drunk, and Mrs. Berkowitz.

Just the typical, and I should probably stop eavesdropping on their dropping of glasses.

For my second time getting trapped in the schools wonderland-symmetrical labyrinth, this isn’t so bad… 

Aaaahhh!


Chapter Three

As the dragon stage commences, I scream in terror as an assortment of colored dragons roam the halls, turning everything into smoldering dust. The ash stings my eyes as I break the glass on the emergency fireproof shield that the school keeps for any stranded students in stage three and hold it up like an umbrella, ella, ella,and run continuously towards the gazebo in the economics classroom, daring myself to not look back. Suddenly, I come to a bump in the speeding lane. There is a gaping hole between the gazebo and the floor. I start to wonder if this is a curse anymore, or if it’s starting to get real. I mean, even back in 856, the dragons stayed in the halls. This is very unusual. Then again, everything is unusual about dragons. 

Anyway, there I am, about to die, when some marauder-like figure emerges from the dust and whispers into my ear, jump. To make a long story short, I did. As I look back to thank him, I realize he’s gone, and wonder if I was hallucinating, from all the ash. At the same time, I also want him to have not left and to stay and tell me what the heck was going on. Without realizing, an hour has passed, yet somehow I am still in the third stage, which makes no sense. Last time, I fainted from the liquor and didn’t wake up until I was in the nurse’s office. What the — nothing is moving! What is happening? Did everything just stop? This must be the fourth stage, then.

“Time stop.”

Just great. Then why are the biggest dragons moving? Am I stuck in some nightmarish world?

Lilly!

Bah! Did someone just speak to me? Here?


Chapter Four

Wait a minute, is that my grandma? What is she doing here? How did she get here from our house in Westchester? I saw her at home when she was sending me off, but, how did she get in? There are a million jillion things I want to ask her, but then again, I might overwhelm her.

“My dear Lily,” she said in a so un-grandma-like voice. I mean, she sounds like a Korean pop idol. “How long I have waited for this moment to tell you the truth; hiding it has been so hard.”

Suddenly, spikes start coming out of her head, and her arms start issuing slime from tiny slits in her arms while her head starts turning snout-like and rockish. Standing before me, I see a huge, cute, but still terrifying dragon who, based on the facts, I assume is my grandma. 

I am speechless. How could she keep this from me? Like seriously? If she is my grandmother, am I a dragon too?

As if reading my thoughts, the dragon, who I will call Grandma, says, “I am not your grandmother, but yes, you are a dragon. You are a morphUs — a being that has the ability to turn from a dragon to a human, who of course has mind reading powers that manifests at 13 when you establish a close relationship with an animal, which in this case, is that hamster Bon-Bon that you are always raving about.”

Okay, info overload, but instead of joking about it, I just rub my temples to try and process this new “vital” information. Anyway, as I try to blow my auburn brown hair from my eyes, even though I know that even if I succeed, the ash will still obscure my vision.

“Pay attention please.” Geez, for a grandma, she is pretty sassy. “Young woman, I can hear you thinking!” Okay, if you can, you are hands down so creepy! “Now, listen to me. You are the lost dragon heir, and you have to save us from the tainted King Erik. He was cursed, when you left, and until the true heir shows the greatness of good to him, he will reign over the dragon realm with terror. So now, concentrate on yourself as a dragon, and your stripes will light up.”

As I concentrate, my body becomes engulfed in light as what seems to be my skin sheds off and I land on the ground in a heap as a dragon. Whoa, it actually worked!

“Come on, quickly, Siena!”

I assume it is my dragon name as I take flight for the first time, admiring my shining burnt sienna and flame-like scales, absorbing the wind and feeling free. As we approach the palace though, my stomach twists itself into knots when I see all the poor citizens working in coal mines. Barging in is easy, but his face, his deep wounds and blood red eyes, his gleaming scales and spikes, I am not so sure of myself anymore. But when I see him snicker at a child begging for mercy, that is when I swallow any last feeling of pity or fear, because that is not how to treat a child of any sort.

“King Erik,” I state. In fury, I bellow out my speech that had suddenly burst from my heart. “You are, in my opinion, a good person who has been tainted, and I believe in second chances, so I wish no harm to come to you, unless you want that.”

He interrupts, saying only this, “Puny girl, you’ll never turn me back!”

By this time I have spotted an amulet on his horn and have realized it as the source of evil.

I continue, “I believe in you, if you would let me just… ”

Then I lunge. Straight for his head, I rip the amulet off and shatter it into a million pieces, never to be seen again. As the newly restored king awakens, I realize something. I might miss school, have to make new friends, and start a new life, but no matter how hard I fall, I will always, always, get up, because I am strong.


Lily Big Help and Her Idea

Once upon a time, there was a girl named Lily. Lily was seven years old. She lived in Paris. Lily’s parents had work that was very bad because they got $10 per hour. She lived in a small house with five rooms. There was the living room, bathroom, kitchen, and two other rooms. That was not enough space for herself, her two brothers, her mom and dad, and her grandparents. They all had to be squeezed together in two rooms. They were not comfortable. Lily wanted to help her family to get a bigger house, so they can have a bigger house. 

The next day, an idea came to her. She would do a lemonade stand in the park because she was seven years old. First, she had to get all her supplies. But that cost money, and she didn’t have any. She would ask her parents for some. She got $20 from her parents. She went to the supermarket and got the cups, lemons and sugar. When she got home, she started making the lemonade right away. First, she put water, then she squeezed the lemons to get the juice out and then put the sugar and then she mixed. Lastly, she put ice. She made her stand and put it up in the park where everybody runs. The first day, she didn’t get any customers. She was very sad for not getting any customers. But that did not stop her from trying again.


Sydney’s Poems

A lovely room

The opposite of the night,

Drapes a shimmery white,

A plant of bright dark green,

Nothing you’ve ever seen.

White doors opening wide 

To a sandy beach.

You’ll love the room so much, 

You won’t be able to speak.


What teachers seem to be!

My teacher’s name is Ms. Plumpagee and she is very plump.  

She acts like she’s stuck in the 1900s and her hair is rather a stump.

She never washes her hands, after a lesson of history.

I’ll ask my father to sue her, yes he is really quite rich, you see. 

Then next year I had a teacher, she was horrid and a snitch.

Then I really wished Ms. Plumpagee, was mine and was here stick.

I was really rather quite generous,

After I sent her away. Wow, a year ago I was rather quite mean to Ms. Plumpagee.


Witches

All skinned in black,

Can’t say no to drab,

Mysterious creatures.

Hidden in the cape of black are feelings,

Not well known,

Be them from the dead or be them from the alive.

Who knows the beauty, the flaws, the ugliness, of these power stricken people?

And I am one of these people,

Safe from being underestimated.


My piece of hope

My lips are blue

My hair turned blue

My skin turned blue

Everything blue

A cry of sadness 

And despair

A grave of white

Surrounding by few

A willow hanging

On top of a pond

With grass surrounding

Like your front lawn

A swan of white

With an orange beak

You’ll love her too

So to speak

Lily pads 

On the water blue 

A girl praying 

Crying too

A rising sun 

A golden hope

Falling hills

A golden rope

Climbing up

And climbing down

But you can’t ever

turn around

The journey hard

The path so clear

Don’t turn around

You’re nearly there

Don’t let the blues

Get in your way

For your mountain

Is here today

Climb it first

Climb it next

And you’ll find

Your golden rope

A piece of sun

And some hope.


Panda Spies

PROLOGUE

Screech!!! The truck with the panda inside was finally here. Oh right, I forgot. My name is Eve, and I work at the AAC (Awesome Animal Center).

Right now we just rescued a panda from the RIA, Rebel Inc. Agency (or as everyone else knows them) the government, which was doing an experiment on the poor panda. They stole him from the rainforest to see what would happen when they took him away, and when nothing happened, they decided to kill him. But we knew about this plan, and we came to the rescue just in time. 

Let me tell you what happened to me and my BFF Mia. We ran after the truck holding the panda which was a pretty stupid idea considering we were just kids and that was a giant truck. If Mia wasn’t an amazing inventor (she had invented rocket shoes that carry you above the ground going six times faster than the truck) we would have been toast. We put the shoes on our feet, flew after the truck, and caught it up in no time. But one thing remained: how we would get in. We tried to lift the latch on the back of the truck, but it wouldn’t budge. Finally we got it open, and we saw the panda inside. It was so adorable! We got her back to the rescue center and fixed up her scratches and got her to her pen. The rescue center called the zoo manager, and he said we could keep the panda because we were the ones who had saved the panda. And from that day and on, us girls became best friends and never left each other’s side.


Chapter One: The Voice

Back to school. Ugh, stupid school. Eve and Mia carried themselves into class. The dumb teacher Mr. Beg boodey or Big boody wrote something that looked like neat gibberish. Then he suddenly collapsed and started snoring.

“Finally!” Mia said sarcastically. “Something exciting today!”

Something was wrong. He didn’t usually snooze off like that, if you didn’t count the time that he did snooze off. And if you didn’t count the other time he also snoozed off. Eve observed him. Suddenly, Eve and Mia heard a faint voice.

“My name is Lunala. I am the ghost of the panda that you saved. After saving me from the government, you have proved that you are worthy of being spies! There’s a new mystery you must solve. But it won’t be easy alone. Go to the stone wall in the park. Wait for me there… ”


Chapter Two: I Spy with My Little Eye… 

Mia turned to Eve. “Did you just hear what I just heard?” Eve was still looking towards the man.

“I wonder why he collapsed when this case may have nothing to do with him?” 

“I don’t know how or why, but it probably does have something to do with him. And if it does, I’m going to fire him and get a less boring teacher,” Eve said with a grin.

“Well, don’t get your hopes up!”

She started walking towards the door but noticed that Mia was still grinning and staring, so she went back and slapped her in the face. Mia popped out of her “revenge bubble,” grabbed her backpack, and followed her. When they got there, Mia leaned on the stone wall.

“I think this whole thing is a dumb prank that pranksters set up,” she said.

And at that moment, the wall she was leaning on opened up and revealed a long misty hallway. Mia stumbled backwards. There was a ghostlike woman that was so faint that the girls had to squint to prove to themselves that she was actually there.

Excuse me?” she said with the same ghostlike voice as the voice they had heard before.

“No prank, no prank,” Mia said, stepping away.

“Are you the ghost voice?” said Eve with curiosity in her eyes. The woman only turned around and started walking down the misty hallway. “C’mon!” Mia said.

“No way.”

“Why not? You were the one who was all, ‘Are you the ghost voice?’ — she’s getting away!”

And Eve was pulled after her. The hall turned into a slanted slope that seemed to get steeper and steeper. But the girls kept following her. When they got close enough, they saw a wall in the distance. It led straight up, and there was no way around it. As it got closer, they started to wonder how they would get past it. Lunala didn’t stop walking when she got to it though. Suddenly, as if gravity had changed, she walked up the wall, sideways. Eve gasped, and Mia grinned.

“And she expects us to do that?!”

“Poor you,” Mia said.

“Why? You know that we both have to climb that wall right?”

“Well, I think you’ll be on your own for that, because I have these.” From out of her bag, she brought out her rocket shoes.

“Better start climbing girl!”

She was right. There a long way to go. After a few minutes, instead of climbing, she felt as if she were crawling. Slowly but carefully, she stood up. And a few seconds after that, Mia, on her rocketties, fell to the ground. (She liked to name everything she invented. For example, her Ultra-Dishwasher who also did all the cooking and cleaning in her house was named Suzie.)

“What happened to the gravity?” she asked.

“I had the same question. It must be what happened to Lunala.”

Eve and Mia jogged the rest of the way, catching up to Lunala. They stopped at a vine-covered wall. Lunala faced the girls.

Put your hands on the wall.”

The girls looked at the wall and found two bloody but dry hand shapes carved into the wall. Lunala blew away the blood and the vines on the wall with one blow. They placed their hands on the stone carved wall, and suddenly, all the concrete in between the small square stones started to light up. So much light came out that all the stones flew out of the places and turned into ash. Soon the hand shapes also turned into ash. Even though the holders were gone, Lunala still held their hands in place.

When there was nothing left but light, she said, “Step into the light.”

And they walked in together, holding hands. Inside was warm; the light was getting brighter. Eve looked back only to see more light. They were holding their breath (except Lunala) as if they were under water. But they weren’t. They were in a light teleportation wave that was impossible to hack. Only the chosen ones could open it. Well, as long as you had a key card you could get in. They moved closer and closer to the light until Eve could just make out a beautiful technology-filled inside of a building with many testing rooms with new inventions waiting to be tested. They finally entered the palace like world.


Chapter Three: New Dimension

It was beautiful. It was bustling with people. A girl on floating shoes whizzed passed everyone and into their view.

“Hi! I’m Lia, and I’m going to show you around.”

The girls liked her already. She was wearing headphones, a dark blue tank top with a hoodie, jeans, and those floating shoes Mia was jealous of. Out of her watch, she popped out a hoverboard. “Get on, and try to keep up.” She put on her hood and turned on her music.

“Go. She will be important to your mission.”

“How? She doesn’t seem to be that helpful anyway.”

“You will see. Now go.”

They were as obedient as ever. They hopped on, she tapped the hoverboard twice, and it zoomed to the Grand (but very plain) Stairway. Lia was sitting there looking at her phone. She looked up.

“Oh! You made it! I didn’t expect that actually… Well, that doesn’t matter. Follow me.”

She showed them so many different rooms, including her own workout rooms and inventing rooms. (She is an inventor, and she built the shoes and the watch/hoverboard.) There were amazing rooms. Some rooms were beautiful and peaceful. Some were huge and full of people working out. After the tour, the girls were surprisingly tired. So Lia showed them their room. It. Was. Huge!!! I wouldn’t even call it a room. It had waterfalls and gigantic beautiful flowers. It was pretty much a hotel paradise if you ask me. It was getting dark, so they went to bed for the night, and suddenly, the voice appeared again. Out of nowhere.

Meet me at my office. Lia is outside to guide you.”

“Well, I guess we should go?”

“Duh!”

They raced out the door and almost fell into Lia. Lucky for their reputation, Lia dodged them just in time. They stumbled into the hall, missing her by a tinsy winsy millimeter. Also lucky for them, they fell on the hoverboard. And within a few seconds of zooming around people, they were outside a wall. The board hovered for a few seconds, and once the wall opened, it zoomed through. Inside was another beautiful estate. And they weren’t alone. Many other people were sitting around a table and smiling. Some were floating around. And some were ghosts, like Lunala.

“What is going on? You haven’t even told us where we are!” Mia said.

That’s why we called you here. Also to explain your mission.

Mission???” Lunala grinned.

“Hehe, yup. This is a long story, so get comfy. Once upon a time, there lived two royal blooded sisters. One represented nature, birth, sky, and light. The other represented destruction, death, lava, and darkness. They hated each other, as they were opposites, and they made no attempt to hide this. They harmed each other and the world around them to show who was stronger and more powerful. But they had no idea what was happening to them. An evil sorcerer known only by a rhyme… dark as the night, swift as a kite, wins all his fights, with a jaguar’s sight… had taken their good side and was sinking bad into it. The sister of light quickly realized and tried to tell her sister, but the magic was too powerful. She was only so powerful until the sorcerer showed her a chance to become his apprentice. Now this, was a chance she could not deny. In her eyes, it was like, ‘This man is giving me the chance to take over the world. Ha! Foolish. I’ll skin him ALIVE once I get everything out of his knowledge.’ But in real life, he was using her to do all his crimes FOR him. Now this was a smart move. In fact, he made such smart moves that he even kept his identity a secret. And that’s pretty impossible to do in a place like this especially if you are a well-known threat to everyone. Now, everyone knows the BAD sister as, ‘the sorcerer’s apprentice.’ It’s a proven rumor that she and her master are planning something. Something big. And we NEED to know what or else… or else…


Chapter Four: The Mission

“Or else what?” Eve asked.

Or else all the dimensions in the whole unalaxy will be controlled by one evil man.”

But how can one man control the entire unicycle-thingy that you were talking about that sounded really big?!” Mia asked, baffled.

This man is much more powerful than you think, and he’s a master of disguise. On his first attempt to control the whole unalaxy, he killed many lives. But luckily, unlike the rest of the people that died, the royal blooded ones, instead of perishing into thin air, turned into ghosts.” Lunala smiled.

 “You are the good sister!!!” Eve and Mia exclaimed in unison. “I can’t believe it!!!” they said again.

“Keep the celebration short, because things have only gotten worse now. So far, we’ve sent two spies, and only one has come back, barely escaping death. She said that the pair had created their secret base somewhere in the amazon. And that ‘spy,’ is actually Lia. And do your, ‘I can’t believe it!!!’ thing inside your heads this time.” Eve and Mia took Lunala’s advice and did it in their heads.

“… Okay… Well, anyways, you’re going to be the next spies. Lia will — ”

Wait! Don’t we need training before we go on our first real mission?” Eve asked.

“You were born to be spies. You don’t need training. Now, as I was saying… Lia will show you how to teleport. Then, you can start your mission however and whenever you want. This is just about getting information, so you can come back anytime you want. Oh, and also, this might help you get started.” She gave them an old, yellowing photo. Eve studied it and looked to Mia.

“It’s of a dragon bracelet. It might come in handy, so keep an eye out for it.” 

“Just know that I’ll always be with you!”

Okay…

“Suis moi!” Lia said. “Uhhhh, follow me, in French.”

Eve stashed the photo in her pocket. Suddenly, the world started to fade. A couple moments later, they spawned to Lia’s workout gym. It was quite a sight.

“Just now, you teleported. To teleport, first think of the place that you want to go to. Discuss it before you do so because you can’t do it without each other. Then say who you are to the Atom Spirit, one of my old friends who will give you advice. So in your case, say Eve, Mia, Panda Spies. Go ahead. Try it.”

“Eve.”

“Mia.”

Panda spies!!!” And for the second time that day, the world around them faded away.

So, where should we go?”

“Definitely to our classroom,” Eve answered.

Why? It’s Sunday, right? Or is my calendar another cheap New Year sell 50% off?”

“Ummm… I don’t have an answer to whatever you’re talking about, but we need to go there because we need to investigate. Yesterday our teacher fainted, and we think it has something to do with this ‘bad guy’ we were informed about,” Mia said.

Say the word, and I’ll send you straight to your destination!!!”

“Well, what’s the word?” Eve asked.

Your mom!!! Hahahahahaha, I’ll never get tired of my jokes!! Haha oh, umm, well, the actual word is cute cat puppy dog. I made it myself.”

Eve and Mia looked at him with a ‘seriously?’ look.

What! I can’t resist them!!!”

That’s what you named the word?”

“Well, I guess we should get going,” Eve said.

Cute cat puppy dog!” they said together. And then the world started spinning into their old classroom. 

The teacher should have still been lying there because the nurses wouldn’t bother to come to their classroom. 

“That’s weird. He’s not here.”

“Maybe the nurses decided to for some out of their minds but reasonable reason to check this room?”

“Probably not.” Something caught Eve’s eye.

“Is that a dragon bracelet on the floor???

“O-M-G, it is!!!” The girls danced around happily as if they had completed the mission… but soon came to realize they hadn’t. 

So, now what?”

“Uhhhhh, how am I supposed to know?” Eve asked putting the abandoned bracelet on. Something shot through her. Maybe magic. But whatever it was, it was growing fast. 

Ugh!!! We’re getting nowhere!!!” Lunala said that the photo of the dragon bracelet would help us. Well now that we’ve found it, something should happen right?”

”Mia? Something weird is — ” But before Eve could finish her sentence, they found themselves in the atom spirit’s home, and then in a deep in a dark wood, nowhere they had ever been before.

“ — wrong. Wow. Where are we, and how did we get here?”

“I don’t know, but it looks like we’re in the amazon.

The magic, or whatever that was inside of Eve had taken them to this forest! They heard footsteps and scrambled behind a tree before they could be spotted. The footsteps, were in fact two people’s footsteps. They were both unrecognizable, wearing dark cloaks and were discussing something.

“… need you to do this. I’m too old to do this stuff.”

“I’m starting to think you’re just using me. Even if you are too old, you can at least step through a portal! Besides, you don’t seem to be getting older at all!” The first voice was dark and low, a man’s voice. The second was a young woman’s voice, and she was about Lunala’s age, but a little younger.

“Just hustle, someone might see us!”

The duo shuffled over to a mysterious tall rectangular shape covered by a black sheet. The girls hadn’t seen it when they entered the forest, and there was a strange opening around the shape in the repeating cluster of trees. The man pulled the sheet off the shape and revealed an old dressing mirror.

“Ahhh, here it is. The portal to Earth. Now, I want you to slowly step inside and retrieve the materials that I had you remember last night.”

“How am I supposed to find them? It’s not like I know where it is already.”

“Just look for a yellow M, which’ll stand for McDonalds. Once you get the things, protect them with your life. Sacrifice anything to get them safe and sound in my clutch. Then, you are dismissed.”

And with that, the man disappeared into thin air. The woman took off her hood and revealed a beautiful face. She seemed familiar, and yet the girls couldn’t remember who she was. She stepped into the mirror.

“Well, she seemed pretty familiar!” Mia said.

“Yeah! I can’t remember what I know her from though!”

“I think the ‘materials’ they were talking about has something to do with our case!!!”

“Well, either way, we should follow her into the portal before it’s too late!”

“Good idea.”

They hopped into the mirror just as the magic was fading from it. The portal was just like the one that had led them to where Lia and the other ghosts were.

“I wouldn’t think earth is important to any of these things going on,” Eve said.

“If it has anything to do with it, maybe we should follow her.”

“Yup.”

And with that, the girls followed the distant cloaked woman. She was fast, and following her required lots of skill. But the girls managed by teleporting to her every few minutes. They arrived in a restaurant with a giant yellow M as its mascot. Ugh. McDonald’s. The woman seemed very interested in the fact that all of the customers had gathered in this particular spot and went around asking innocent people questions about why they had came here while the girls were busy crawling to the kitchen. 

“Now what?” Eve asked.

“Just fit in until she takes action. And worry not, I’m a pro at fitting in.”

“Uh-huh,” Eve said sarcastically. 

“Jealous?” Eve rolled her eyes, and Mia stuck her tongue out. “Okay so here’s what we’re going to do… ”


Chapter Five: The Plan

Mia reached inside her backpack, spread out a long sheet of blueprints, and grabbed two soda cans.

She placed them on the print and said, “This is us. First, we make some noise when the mascot is nearby and lure him over into the kitchen. I’ll throw a sack over his head, tie his hands and feet, and you’ll push him down. Once he’s lying down, I’ll pull off the person’s costume and hop inside. You help me up and also get inside. Then we’ll be ready to explore outside without being caught!”

“Let’s do this!

“Also, lets try to do all of this quietly… ”

But, how am I supposed to be loud when I’m trying to be quiet???”

“Just do what I do okay? Monkey see monkey do.” Eve nodded, and they started their loud improvising band.

Eventually, the mascot guy came in. They did as planned, and when Eve pulled the costume off the man, she didn’t just notice the man. She noticed that the man was a very handsome man indeed. Mia was in position to throw the sack over his head, but when he turned to look at her, she nearly trampled him and ended up falling in Eve’s arms, laughing hysterically. She hit her head on the counter top and went nuts.

 “Oh, hello, my dear old granny Bob!” Her words didn’t match her confused expression. “Oh, and what is Mr. Big boody doing here?”

“Uhh, is she always like this?” the handsome guy asked.

“No, she just hit her head on the counter top.”

“You should get her back to the Central Spy Base.”

“Wha — how did you know?!” Not every day did someone know that they were spies.

“I used to work there. And you two have the same sparkle in your eyes as another spy I know.”

“Well,” Eve said looking back at the mysterious woman. She sighed. “Okay… but I was in the middle of catching the woman… oh wait! Why don’t you go take Mia there while I deal with the case? What? What a great deal!!! I would definitely take the job.”

“Nice try, but I’m prohibited from going back.”

“So you were a spy. Hmm, interesting! So tell me, why why why did you become prohibited from the Central whatever it’s called?”

“Chickens eat barf-arf-arf! I’m a pig!!!” Mia exclaimed after taking a self tour of the kitchen.

“Let’s not get too personal. We should probably get going, and fine, I’ll go with you. So it’s fair.”

“Oh, and what’s your name?”

“Jason. And yours?”

“I’m Eve, and this is my friend Mia.”

“Mia, Mia Mia — ”

“And Eve,” Eve cut in.

Jason picked up Mia and held Eve’s hand. It was warm, and it seemed like such a gesture even though it was only for a short time. 

“Jason. Eve. Mia. Panda spies!!!” Eve said. The world spun into the misty land of the Atom Spirit.

“Hello up there, fat guy!” Jason turned, and his rocket shoes blasted him upwards so that he and the Atom Spirit were face to face. Well mostly nose to face (because the Atom Spirit was so huge!!!).

“You again??? I thought you were banished from the Central Spy Base!!!”

“Well, yeah I was banished. But I’m going to sneak in.” Jason started walking towards the opening in the floor, but the Atom Spirit blocked him.

Nu-u-u!!! Where do you think you’re going???

Eve just stood there while Jason defended her.

“Uhhhh, the YKW. Duh!!!

“… ”

“The you know where. Now get outta my way so I can go. Besides, I have a girl to save” For the first time, the Atom Spirit noticed Eve, standing there behind Jason.

“Ohhh, so it’s you creating all the commotion?! I thought you were on a mission to save the world??? I guess you’re going to be in lots of trouble!!!”

“Whatever, just let us pass,” Eve mumbled pushing past the Atom Spirit.

Just before she stepped in, she motioned Jason to follow her. Jason tipped his imaginary hat to the Atom Spirit and skidded off with Mia on his shoulder.


Chapter Six: Revival

The Central Spy Base was strangely deserted. Normally, there were at least a hundred students roaming about, but today, absolutely no one was there. As if there was something more important than taking a walk!!! Okay, nevermind, there were things more important than taking a walk, but who cared!!!

“I-it’s been such a long time since I’ve been here… ” Jason said, “that I, I forgot how beautiful this place is… ”

Eve noticed he had dropped Mia and that she had started to wake up from a nap.

“It’s strange, nobody here. We should probably stay quiet and alert.” Eve nodded.

“Why?”

“Something is going on… Uhh, I don’t want to talk about it, so yeah!”

“But then what are we going to do about… ”

The pandas brought us together!!!” Mia fell back into her sleep.

“Her.” Eve sighed, looking down.

“Do not fear, Jason is here!!! We’ll just drop her in this closet!!!” When Eve looked up, she saw him slam a closet door closed, lock it, and mash the key into pieces.

No!!! She was like a sister to me!!! Why!!!” 

“Jeez, I was just kidding.” Jason stepped aside, so she could see where he had really hidden her.

“On the shelf, huh? I like your sense of humor, but we should seriously get going.” Eve walked towards the stone wall, Lunala’s meeting place.

Wait!!! You might want to know, the reason I wanted us to be quiet, is because… because… whenever someone comes here, the place automatically knows. Lunala’s been on the search for me for a long time so now that I’ve shown up, she’s obviously looking for me.”

So why’s that bad???”

“I wanna stay hidden, because if Lunala finds me, I’m going to become the future ruler of the Central Spy Base. And I don’t like the whole, ‘ruling’ process.”

Eve nods, not in understanding, for she did not get why he didn’t want to be ruler of the Central Spy Base, but because she wanted him to think she was cool. Eve started to think about how Mia would turn out. And about how life would have been like if she and Mia hadn’t saved Lunala. Something grabbed her and pulled her out of her day dreaming and into another room. 

“What did you do that for???” Eve yelled, pushing away from whoever it was that pulled her. Noticing that it was Jason, she shrank back into her usual hunched position.

“Lunala just walked in, so I ran here, but you were just standing there, so I grabbed you and got over here. If it wasn’t thanks to me, we would have been caught.

“Oh… well thanks,” Eve mumbled without meaning it. Eve looked around to see what room they were in, but she was startled by what she saw.

“Jason? I think you brought us into Lunala’s meeting room!!!” Jason turned and saw what she saw. Tons of people, including Lia were staring at them.

“J-Jason… what are you doing here?” She stepped forward.

“I thought you had left us for good… ” Eve glanced at Jason. He had turned red.

“Guilty as charged,” he murmured. Lia looked straight into his eyes. Her dangerous side had come out.

“You said we would come back together.” She grabbed him by the collar.

You said we could share the deal.” She stopped. She took a deep breath. 

“Excuse me. I will work this out myself, alone.” With that, she walked out of the room, still holding Jason.

“Whoa! That was crazy!” Eve laughed, but nobody else did. They stared at her. 

“Oh, I’m sorry, was that not funny to any of you?” She looked around and saw a snail in its cage laughing along with her. “See, the snail agrees!!!”

Eve plastered a fake smile on her face. She slowly walked out of the room, not wanting to deal with any more snails or grumpy ghosts. Suddenly, it came to her. She took out the picture of the dragon bracelet, and in the background was a forest, too familiar to miss. That was where the magic inside of her had taken them. Just before that, they had found the dragon bracelet in the classroom. She decided to go there. But before she did that, she grabbed Mia. Poor Mia had a scar from the counter incident. 

“Eve. Mia. Panda spies!!!” She tried to do her best imitation of Mia. The world turned white and the Atom Spirit appeared.

Well hello there, Eve dear!!!” he said, patting her head. Eve appreciated it, especially because recently there had been nobody around to love her.

“I would like to go to my classroom.”

“… ”

“Even though it’s Sunday.” The Atom Spirit nodded, and in a blink of an eye, the smokey colorless place became her old classroom. Summer break had sent all the kids sprawling out on the fresh grass. Jealous, Eve rolled her eyes at the thought of it. I need to focu — Ow!!! When she looked down she saw Mia, grabbing her foot. 

“W-what happened?” She looked around. “How did we get here? What’s going on???”

“You passed out when your head hit the counter top in the kitchen of McDonald’s.” Mia nodded in understanding.

“Ohhhhh, I think I remember that… ”

“You need to help me figure this out. I-I can’t do this alone.”

“Well tell me the clues!” Eve explained everything that had happened that day. But she left out the part about Lia and Jason.

So, can you help me???” Eve pleaded with pleading eyes.

Mia smirked and said, “I think I know what the evil man’s plan is!”


Chapter Seven: The Truth

“Eve, I need you to teleport us to the forest using your magic inside of you. It is a place where only special magic can take us. 

“How did you learn all of this stuff?” Eve asked.

“While I conked out, I learned a lot of things you may have not known,” Mia said. 

Eve used the magic inside of her, and it came swirling out of her chest into the world. The forest appeared. Mia walked up to one of the trees. She jumped and grabbed a leaf. She smelled it.

“I knew it!!!”

“Knew what???” Eve had no idea of how a leaf could be so important.

“These leaves are called dragon leaves, and that’s what the picture was supposed to represent, not the actual bracelet. And it makes sense. Mr. Beg Boodey likes and knows the agriculture of dragons by heart.”

“But why is the tree important?”

“The dragon leaf tree’s leaves are the key ingredients to the hypnotizing spell. I think that the evil man was planning on taking over everyone’s minds. They went to McDonald’s to collect supplies.”

“Well, that explains a lot” 

“It would have been nice if Lunala had put in the word, ‘McDonalds’ in her story.”

The story! The man and the woman must have been from Lunala’s story, uhhh, what was his name again, Mia? “

“The evil man.”

“Thanks, pal. And Lunala’s sister. We need to deliver this info before Lunala and the CSB get hypnotized!!!”


Chapter Eight: Surprise!

As Eve and Mia ran down the hall and pounded on the hard stone wall leading to Lunala’s room, Eve felt a sensation of worry drift through her. What if she was too late? What if everyone was already hypnotized??? No, it couldn’t happen. No! No! No! Eve pushed harder and harder on the wall, but it wouldn’t budge. Finally, Mia smiled as she realized.

“Eve, just use your magic!” Embarrassed from not knowing, Eve took a step back and let her miracles begin. She had learned about it when it had magically transported her and Mia to the forest. When she opened the door, she couldn’t believe her eyes.

“SURPRISE!!!” everyone yelled. “HAPPY PROMOTION!!!”

Eve couldn’t believe it. She and Mia were getting promoted! She glanced over at Mia, whose eyes bulged out of her face. Music and laughter filled the room. 

Hey, so nice job… on the job! I heard that you’re getting promoted to professional spy with Mia!” Lunala said.

“Yep. But how did you know we were here?” Mia stammered. Lunala smiled.

Remember when I said just before you left to go searching for clues that I’ll always be with you?

“Yeah… what about it?” Eve asked.

So I never left you. Like you never left each other after you saved me. I guess panda Lunala really brought you together.”


Killersx

Today I was going to the beach. Then I realized something, something very strange. I saw dead bodies wash up to shore and slowly come to life. I ran but saw only more and more, like they were invading New York. I don’t know where they came from, but I want to know. Badly.

Back in 2010, the first wave of the apocalypse hit, and my family was taken and murdered, and now — by the beach — I saw them all coming up. I saw my cousin Jeffrey, my dad Bobby, my mom Rhona, my brother Tim, and my sister Shelby. They were all the same people, but they’d been dead for a long time. Before, they had bright orange hair, but now their hair has been darkened and looked maroon, with streaks of black. Their skin was all bloody, and their clothes were raggedy, ripped, and had blood stains on them. 

I know that I’m probably going to die or life is going to be like this forever. For my kids and then theirs too. But I also have a good feeling I am going to have to fix this fast. I really have to find how they got here and how to get rid of them. I don’t know how, so I might need some help.

***

I have been really questioning where the sugar honey ice tea they came from. So I have been calling everyone, hoping to find some people to help me do this thing, even though I think I am the last person because of the apocalypse.

So, I have been dialing a ton of random people, and so far I only have one. His name is jyeugwdgwhd. I can’t pronounce it. It sounds just like gibberish.

Life is hard. Life is hard. Life is hard.

I forgot to introduce myself. My name is Todd, and I hate horror movies. I get really nervous, and now I’m experiencing one by myself. I’m thirteen years old, and so far my favorite thing to do in life is not die. It’s not that I want to be immortal. It’s just I don’t want to die the hard way.

Because I’m not rich, all I’m living in is my basement, and yes, you think I could go to some house like somewhere fancy, but most of them have been destroyed burnt or just plain gross. So far it has worked well because there hasn’t been another wave of the apocalypse since years ago in 2016. The waves come every three years, and I don’t know why. And I really want to find out.

Right now I hope I’m safe because dead bodies have been arriving on the shore, awakening from some place in the middle of the ocean. And I don’t know how I can do all of this with a guy that doesn’t even know how to spell his name.

***

The guy said that his backstory is that he was a sad man that lived at the end of gfhj j street. I think he is from another world. Another another.

***

Hmph… the guy is actually named Gus, and he lived in Angola, Africa. He said he was just joking with everything he said. Though he told me something dark and freaky. He said he has a photographic memory, and he saw his parents one day when he was a kid. He was one month and three days old. He saw one thing, a “person” with ripped clothes, and he saw them with scissors and then stabbed his mom and dad in front of his eyes. And he thinks it was a zombina (zombie), and so he wants to get revenge and kill all the zombinas in the world.

Well one, his backstory it is really disturbing and gross. But he might help me… 

Ten days later… 

So, ummm, zombies have been really invading our houses, and well, I found one more person named Hope, and she is not that smart, but her name might be the key to win this. 

I feel like all of this was a dream, and it is all not real because before all of this, when I was nine, everything was normal. So do we live in the Matrix or what… Nevermind. 

Thirteen days later… 

Hope said that this is all a dream, and she can read the future with her magical sword, and her sword’s name was rebelitoticomarama and her name is really I’m going to take a walk. 

I started walking, but then a blue green blue portal came out under my foot, and I slipped, and I screamed, but then all of my friends came in and half of a zombie and then I saw something amazing… 

To be continued… 


Untitled

Chapter One

What in the world was happening!!! Everything seemed blurry. I was trying to take in my surroundings, so I went and grabbed onto something. It could not hold my weight, and it fell on my head, making me see things ten times worse than I could before, and a glass of some sort of liquid fell on me and shattered. Then, I looked around and saw numbers everywhere. Somehow I found a pattern and began making the numbers into shapes and real things. I did not know how this happened. I was never really sharp in math. In fact, I got D’s in math. I kept on looking around, and I saw a nice futuristic building. It had an all you can eat fro-yo station, a massive safe, a bunch of computers, and a bunch of iPads, iPhones, and Apple watches. That’s when it hit me! There were so many products from Apple. I knew it was the huge company’s storage room! Then suddenly I was turning a shade of yellow. I got so freaked out that I screamed!! I heard footsteps coming, so I ducked behind a nearby shelf full of iPads. The door creaked open, then a dark shadow pounced onto me.

I heard a little voice say, “Savanna, what in the world are you doing here?”

I recognized that voice.

“Mr. O’Malley?” I asked.

Even in the dark I could see him looking surprised.

“How do you know it is me?” he asked me.

I did not know why I told him the truth, but it just slipped out. “Your breath smells like onions.”


Chapter Two

The next thing I knew I was in the math room, which is where Mr. O’Malley taught. I was really drowsy, and I checked my pulse. I had been knocked unconscious for about two hours. I got up and steadied myself with one of the desks in there and went to the vending machine. I was so hungry. However, when I wanted a healthy energy bar, after I entered the code, the tile underneath the floor started to open. The next thing I knew, I was on a trampoline that broke my fall. I looked around and did a quick scan of the room. It had a nice and soft couch, a vault, a bed, and a huge TV screen. Then I decided to sit on the couch and reflect on what had just happened. I was so confused. Why did I check my pulse to see how long I had been unconscious? What was suddenly making me so smart? How did I fall into the floor? Is Mr. O’Malley evil? Is this his hideout? I thought I was on to something. I knew how this happened. Mr. O’Malley needed privacy, so he picked the only thing in the vending machine that he knew we would never touch. Wait, this did not add up. How was I suddenly becoming so smart? I saw the tile slowly creeping open. Therefore, I jumped to safety under the couch. I heard a creak coming from the trampoline. I took a little quick peek, and I saw Mr. O’Malley. Thankfully he did not notice me. He went straight to the computer and began typing something. He kept on looking around to see if anyone was in there spying on him.

This was what made me to jump out and say, “What are you doing!!!”

Instead of responding with an answer, he asked me, “What are you doing here?”

“I asked you first!” I said in response.

He gave me a hard stare and said, “If you don’t tell me now, I will give you an F on your report card.” 

Here is what I found for, “If you don’t tell me now, I will give you an F on your report card.”

I don’t know how, but I sounded like Siri. I was so freaked out. Wait!! I’ve got it. This was all caused by the liquid thing that fell from the table. Everything was falling into place! Since we were at the Apple store, I was accidentally exposed to their top secret liquid that made Apple products so smart. That was why I was so smart, and that was why I knew so much suddenly. Also Siri was part of Apple. That’s why I sounded like Siri, and that’s also why I was turning colors based on my mood. That’s an app called D.I.Y. mood clothes and skin. I couldn’t believe that I just found that out! That was so awesome! Now I could know every strategy, be smart, and know every app that would either help me or just be really fun.

Mr. O’Malley on the other hand seemed a mix between mad, shocked and horrified!!!

He instantly started to yell at me. “How did you figure that out!”

After I sounded like Siri, I replied, “I started thinking about pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis, and right then and there I started to say the entire definition of pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis. Noun, an invented long word said to mean a lung disease caused by inhaling very fine ash and sand dust. Do want to hear the definition of Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia?”

Mr. O’Malley instantly said, “No!”

He sounded like he didn’t want to hear another word from me. 

Also I knew myself well, so I knew that I would have never known the definition to pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis. I would only know that if a miracle happened. Other than that I would probably not know, like, not even at the end of time. That’s how bad I was at vocabulary. Wait, hear me out. I have a good reason for not studying vocabulary. I personally thought that was a waste of time. For example, vocabulary was just a harder and fancier way to say a simple word. Therefore it was absolutely useless to waste your time to memorize them.

Then Mr. O’Malley inched in my face… I woke in my bedroom, and I thought it was all a dream until looked at the clock. It was 4:00 pm. Therefore, it wasn’t possible that I slept from morning to 4:00PM!!! I was actually an early bird. I woke up everyday at 6:30 to catch the bus, so I had a habit of waking up early. Ugh, Mr. O’Malley was so obsessed with knocking people out. Also not to mention, how did he get me in my bedroom? For now, all I could conclude was that he had a problem.

O-M-G! I totally forgot all about my science project. It was due tomorrow, Monday!! I kind of got distracted and ended up eating my project supplies, and there was no time to get more. (Also did I mention I lived in the Apple store? My parents worked there and didn’t have much money, so we slept in my mom’s and dad’s office. Also they worked for a long time, and I was not supposed to go outside without permission.) The assignment was to make an electron out of candy. Also, it was assigned like three weeks ago. Oh no, I just realized that if Mr. O’Malley already hated me for figuring out some classified stuff, he would hate me even more for forgetting to do my assignment that was assigned three weeks ago. Three weeks was literally the longest time he’d ever given us to do the assignment. I was dead.


Chapter Three

Monday.

At school.

I ended up with no assignment, so I got detention.

“Great, nothing like thinking about what I have done for an hour.”

(Our school was strict about detention. There were even rankings to see how long you needed detention. Once, a kid named Blade got detention for five hours every day for the rest of the school year. It was September. He got this because he skipped school for a week. That probably explained why he moved to Alaska. Also he said he went there to “study penguins and how global warming is impacting the Earth” in October. However, we all knew that he was still here because I saw him around my house in December, and I told it to my bestie, and she spilled the beans to my other friend, and just like that everyone knew. I don’t know how, but then I was elected class president, and we never had a class president!) 

Finally, detention was over. I was walking back from school when Mr. O’Malley ran like his legs were on fire from a doughnut store across the street. Then a person who looked like the manager came out running, and his face was red to the point he looked like tomato.

Then, Mr. O’Malley came running towards me and looked into my eyes and said, “If you tell anybody about me stealing doughnuts, I am telling Teddy Herman to fire your parents.”

And just like that he ran away. Ugh, I hated how he was so close to Teddy Herman! 

When I got home I scanned the whole room for bugs. I actually found three, one under the couch, another one resting on the pipes in the bathroom sink, and another one in the light hanging from the ceiling. I took them out and went into the store for a “stroll.” I put all three of the bugs in random peoples bags, and I was on my way home. (By the way, Teddy Herman was the owner of Apple.) I had decided to tell my parents what happened.

As soon as both of my parents were home, I made them sit down at the dining table, and it got serious. I told them everything that happened so far. Then they freaked out and gave me a lecture about not telling them sooner. And they were planning to sue the company because I found bugs in our apartment. Then I told my parents about how Mr. O’Malley stole a bunch of doughnuts from Delish Doughnuts. Then I kept on rambling on about how I hated him and how he threatened me.

Then in the middle of that, my dad said, “You shouldn’t hate him. He’s your uncle… ”


Emma Williams

Preface

Hugo reaches his hand out to mine. Our fingers touch and stay like that. It may be the happiest moment of my life, if M. Clément hadn’t just stormed in the room.

“You lied to me!” I snarl at M. Clément.

Watch out!” he yells.

Just then, something very large hits my head, and I black out.


Chapter One: M. Clément’s Bakery

On my walk to school, I always pass M. Clément’s bakery on the corner. 

“Hello!” I say and wave.

M. Clément waves back, and I smile.

“Come for your usual?” he asks me.

“Sorry,” I say. “I’m a little late for school.”

He shrugs. “Next time.”

I look back at him one last time and make my way to school.


Chapter Two: The Hourglass

The next day, Mr. Clément motions to me to come inside his bakery. It is the weekend, so I have time to spend with him. I give a little tug on Daisy, my dog’s leash, and we cross the street.

When I walk in the door, Penny, M. Clément’s cat, greets me with her usual rub on the leg.

“Bonjour! Mon petit assistant,” he says, grabbing a croissant de chocolat for me.

He passes it to me, and I sit down in one of his boutique coffee tables. I munch away vigorously, and when I am done, M. Clément sweeps my crumbs off the table with one graceful motion of his little broom.

“Merci, M. Clément,” I say to him. I love how it is now, like old times.

“Always,” he smiles. Then he pauses and adds, “Emma, I have to talk to you about something.” That’s weird, he never uses my first name, I think it’s because he doesn’t think it’s classic French.

“Yeah, about what?” I ask, suddenly getting very interested.

“Come, I will show you something.” M. Clément leads me to the back of his bakery. 

I see Hugo Bergeron kneading the dough for a croissant — or maybe an éclair, I can’t tell. 

I wave to him, and he gives me a toothy smile. I silently laugh.

“Hey,” Hugo says to me and goes back to kneading his piece of dough, and when M. Clément pulls me along with him even further back, Hugo replaces his “hey” with “ou, au revoir!”

M. Clément leads me further than I have been before, and we enter a small room with the label M. Clément on the door. 

It is very cozy in here, with furniture lining most of the walls, except for the wall with the door and the one with the fireplace. I do not know how M. Clément manages to get the fireplace in his little suite he rented for his boutique bakery. It just grows and grows every time he shows me a little more of what I had thought to be un petit boulangerie.

M. Clément motions for me to sit down, so I find myself seated in the most comfortable sofa I have ever sat on and with peppermint tea (my favorite type).

“Emma Williams,” he says, rummaging through a knapsack he has lying on the floor. “Do you know what this is?” M. Clément finally finds what he is looking for and brings it out, so I can examine it carefully. 

In his hands sits an hourglass with two oiseaux winding around it. The birds look like white swans but with red stripes forming around their necks. 

“They look to me like regular oiseaux, swans, M. Clément,” I say. 

“Emma, look closer, look inside!” M. Clément says with much enthusiasm.

Inside there is clean, white sand flowing forever toward… the top? Okay, I admit, that’s a bit odd but otherwise… I don’t know.

“Well, the sand’s going toward the top — is that what you’re getting at?” I ask M. Clément.

“Yes yes, but don’t you feel it?” I have no idea what M. Clément is talking about.

I rack my brain for anything I might feel and surprisingly, I feel something. I just have this feeling that something is getting low. I don’t know why, but I feel like I need to refill the thing or else… I trail off. 

“Is… is something getting low?” I ask, feeling very stupid in doing so. 

“Yes yes, now you’re getting it,” M. Clément says. “We have one more minute.”

“Sorry?” I ask him, getting confused.

“Emma, do you notice the draining feeling?”

“Yes,” I do actually feel it.

“When it feels this depressing… there is only one more minute,” M. Clément pronounces minute like minuuuuuuuuuuute. Well, I guess everyone here does.

I think M. Clément sees my puzzled face because he says, “When someone spreads a bad rumor around about me, the hourglass will slowly start losing its sand, and if not stopped, will cause mass destruction. An old friend gave it to me as a gift, but over the years, I have started to question if it is really a gift or a curse in disguise.”

“What kind of destruction will it cause?” I ask.

“Well, the sand will start slipping out of ze hourglass, and then I do not know. Anything could happen from there!”

“Like what?”

“The ‘ole city of Paris could be consumed by sand for all I know!”

“Is there any way to stop it?” I ask in my very American accent.

“Well I do not know! I would guess you could somehow prove the rumor wrong,” M. Clément says with a sigh. “It has never worked.”

“But — but every problem has multiple solutions, if you are thinking! Being creative!” I pause. No one says anything for a few moments. “Isn’t that what you always tell me?”

“Yeah, yeah… I guess.” 

“Um, M. Clément? Are you okay?” 

“Yes, of course,” he says quickly. “Why don’t you go back to your house and spend some time with your papa?”

Well that was the end of our little discussion. I head home for dinner.


Chapter Three: Family

Mama has dinner ready for me. It is pasta and potatoes. Matthew, my brother, is already sitting at the table. We don’t talk much, and that is when I get lost in thought. 

I realize now that I haven’t yet told you that my family are immigrants from the United States. Well, my papa went to university here in Paris and met my mama — and he stayed. I guess we are originally from Africa ‘cause we’re African American, but you get the idea, anyway. 

I have frizzy dark brown hair like milk chocolate. I have the same bright sky-blue eyes as my Mama — very much unlike my Papa’s hazelnut eyes. And of course my caramel skin. I love caramel. It is my favourite thing in the world.

Now back to dinner. Mama is already washing the dishes. Wait — dinner is done? I look at my plate. I have eaten a half a potato, nothing else.

“Yes, that’s right Emma,” Mama says. “You have a lot more eating to do.”


Chapter Four: The Bergerons

I, yes, you’ve already guessed it, stop by M. Clément’s Bakery this morning. I rub Penny’s tummy, say hello to Hugo, and follow M. Clément to the back.

He tells me almost exactly what he told me yesterday, but with one more thing that catches my eye — or wait no, my ears?

After the part where he tells me about proving the rumor wrong, and the “It has never worked” part, he says, “Unless … no, never mind.”

Of course, I say, “What? Please tell me, M. Clément!” 

“No no, it wouldn’t work.”

“Just tell me,” I urge. 

I think he gives up on my obstinate attitude, because he says, “Oh, okay. If we must.” He pauses to clear his throat. “Well, I’ve tried and so has most of the generations of people here in Paris, but never has anyone else. So, I thought partly because your father is originally from the United States, well maybe you would be able to help me?”

“Yes, yes, M. Clément! Of course I’ll help you!” I say in excitement. “So, what is the rumor, and who spread it?” 

“Well, I believe one of my old friends from school still holds a very nasty grudge on me. His name: Monsieur Thomas Bergeron.”

“You mean Hugo’s father?” I say very loudly. 

“Yes, I do indeed. And that is why I would like Hugo to come with you on your little adventure. I think he will be key. Do you agree?”

I blush almost as red as a tomato. I have a crush on Hugo Bergeron. There, I said it to you. Yes! Now it feels so much better. I have so many secrets. And sometimes it’s hard to keep them totally sucked inside. So they come out in emotions. 

And here’s what I say to M. Clément: “Yes.” And then all of my emotions I have been trying to keep in come rushing out, all right in front of M. Clément. 

Anger. Guilt. Fury. Joy. And something in between all of them. And I start crying. 

M. Clément just sits there. Then he walks out of the room. He comes back carrying a little brown bag. He holds it out to me, and I open it. Inside is a croissant de chocolat. 

“Go home, Emma. We can get started whenever you feel ready.”

“Thank you, M. Clément.”

“Of course.” He smiles mega-big.


Chapter Five: Thoughts

When I get home, I lie down on my bed and just think. I think about my whole big life. All the years I’ve passed, all the years to come.

In French, we say, instead of I am (how old you are), I have (your age) years.

I like it better that way. (No offense, English.)

I have so much longer to come, and I’ve only lived a tiny bit of my life. 

I have honestly considered saying no to M. Clément, and just ignoring him. Never going into his bakery again. But he’s the only true friend I have. I mean, I have some friends from school and other places, but none of them really understand me, and how hard it was to leave New York. And not just the city, but all my friends, my family, and my apartment. 

We moved to Paris because Papa found a spot in a big law firm here. We were all so happy for him at the time, but I didn’t realize then what it would mean in the long term. 

So, on the weekend, I will go to M. Clément’s bakery and be ready to confess. 


Chapter Six: My Confession

He sits me down in one of his awesomely comfortable armchairs, and I tell him everything. I don’t even miss the part about New York. And I tell him about my crush on Hugo. 

“Emma,” he says once I am done. “I will go get Hugo now, and we can keep your little crush a secret.”

“I will if you will.”

“Deal.” The few minutes of waiting for M. Clément to come feel like hours. 

Finally, M. Clément comes back with Hugo trailing behind him. 

“Oh, hey, Emma,” Hugo says. “I didn’t realize you were here, too.”

M. Clément saves me from a very embarrassing answer by saying, “Yes. We want you to help us.”

“Help you with what?”

M. Clément tells Hugo our plan. While he is talking, Hugo just nods. “I know it’s a lot to ask you, Hugo. You know, asking you to believe your father spread this horrible rumor and then getting you to work against him,” M. Clément finishes. 

“I know,” Hugo says.

I am suddenly all confused. “You know? What?”

“My father. He hated when I told him that I had been going to M. Clément’s bakery.”

“Then how do you still go?”

“I sneak away after school.”

“But you have after school, right?” I ask. “With Madam Dejardin.” I know that because my older brother is in grade eight with Hugo. 

“I sneak away from that.”

“But my brother said you’re always at after school.” This will go on forever: me asking something, Hugo proving me wrong, me trying to prove him wrong, etc.

“That our little secret,” Hugo says with a hint of a smile. “Now anyway, Emma, are you free next Saturday?” 

“Yeah.”

“Okay, cool. You can meet at my place, then.”

And that was it. Hugo walked out of the room leaving me and M. Clément alone in the room.

“Okay then,” I say and walk out.


Chapter Seven: Papa and Me/Our Sleepover

Friday night, I cannot sleep. I stay up all night wondering what will happen. I don’t understand. It just seems so vague. 

Papa knocks on my door at 3:43. 

“I don’t hear you snoring,” he says. 

“You’re back?”

“Yep.” He sits on my bed. “Fill me in on what’s happening in your life. School. Friends.”

“Can we pinky promise you won’t tell Mama, Matthew especially, or anyone?”

“Promise.” We latch pinkies. And shake. “Now you tell me.”

I spill. Everything.

“Wow,” Papa says when I’m done. “No kidding you’re having trouble sleeping.” He pauses. “I’ll tell you what, why don’t we have a dad-daughter sleepover?”

“Sure!” We talk about things the rest of the night. And I kind of just drift to sleep, listening to my father’s soothing drawl.


Chapter Eight: Waking Up

Papa is shaking me in my dream — wait no, not a dream. I bolt awake. 

“Hey, kiddo,” he says. “Time to have breakfast.”


Chapter Nine: The Bergeron’s House/Mansion

I arrive at Hugo’s place at exactly 11:26. I’ve never realized how big it is. 

There is a gateway in which I open and follow a stone path with lamps along it surrounded with trees. 

I finally get to the big wooden door. I ring the bell. Hugo greets me with his classic toothy grin. 

He leads me through a living room and to another, smaller living room. M. Bergeron is sitting there. 

M. Bergeron has teal eyes, quite like Hugo’s, which compliments his jet black hair. 

“Are you Matthew’s sister?” he asks. 

“Yeah.”

M. Bergeron opens his mouth to speak again, but is cut off by Hugo. 

“So, getting to the point, we were wondering if we could go up to my room.”

A woman, I’m guessing to be Hugo’s mother, walks into the room. 

She has a bob in her perfect dirty blond hair, just like her son. 

“Sure,” she says. “I’ll make you guys a snack.” She smiles.


Chapter Ten: The Diary

Hugo leads me to what I’m guessing to be his room. It is so big. One wall is covered with windows from ceiling to floor with long ornate drapes covering the view. Dirty clothes line the floor, and his shelf is covered with photos of him, Matthew, and Oliver. 

“So, I snuck into my dad’s office, and here’s what I found,” Hugo says. He is about to bring out a piece of paper when I cut him off.

“Wait — you snuck into your dad’s office?!” I smile really big now. 

“Yup,” Hugo shoves a battered black leather book into my face. “My dad’s diary from 19 years ago. I figured out that’s when the person, my dad, as you’ll see, gave M. Clément the hourglass.”

 I open up the diary, very curious. Curly cursive covers the pages in French, but I will translate it for you. Here’s what it says:

03/09/00

Dear Diary,

I gave my old friend the hourglass today. It feels like such a big weight lifted off my shoulders. M. Clément will pay for what he did to our family. Tomorrow I will spread the rumor. He was the rich, famous one. I had to fight for my position. Not him. Now everyone will think he lied. He will be fired, and I will be the next mayor. My son will be happy. We can live as a family. Not a broken family because of Hugo Clément, but a real, happy family. 

M. Bergeron

“Wow, Hugo,” is all I can say. 

“Yup.”

“That changes everything.”

“We have to tell M. Clément!” I yell. 

“No, but I think he already knows. The rumor makes him look really bad.”

“Hey, you’re right!” I say. “Am I ever mad at him. I trusted him!” I start pacing. 

“Hey, Emma. Don’t get so upset. Just face it. One o’clock tomorrow in front of my house.”

“Cool.”


Chapter Eleven: Back To the Unfamiliar Yet Familiar Bakery

I get to his house at 1:02. Two minutes late. Whatever.

I ring the doorbell, and Hugo emerges.

“You ready?”

“Yup,” he says.

We walk to the bus stop near Hugo’s house and take it seven stops. We get out exactly two blocks from M. Clément’s bakery.

When we get there, I open the door and take a deep breath. M. Clément is nowhere in sight.

Hugo reaches his hand out to mine. Our fingers touch and stay like that. It may be the happiest moment of my life, if M. Clément hadn’t just stormed in the room.

“You lied to me!” I snarl at M. Clément.

Watch out!” he yells.

Just then, something very large hits my head, and I black out.


Chapter Twelve: At the Hospital

I wake up in a bed that is not mine. I realize I am in a hospital because a nurse comes up to me.

“You have lots of visitors,” she says in French. 

“Who?” I ask.

“Do you want your family to come in?”

“Yes.”

The nurse opens a door and Mama, Papa, and Matthew rush in. They hug me super tight. 

“You have a concussion,” says Matthew. “Apparently it’s really bad and could cause severe brain damage if not treated properly.” 

“Don’t just say it like that,” Mama scolds. 

“Sorry.”

“Are you okay?” Papa asks. “We’ll always be here for you.”

“I know. I love you.”

“We love you too, always.”

I smile.

The nurse enters the room again. She says, “You have more visitors. Hugo Bergeron, and M. Clément.”

“You can let them in.”

She opens the door again, and Hugo rushes to my side. “Are you okay?” he asks. “That was a really big piece of concrete that hit your head!”

“Wait — that’s what gave me the concussion?”

“Yup, and you’re lucky you survived!” 

M. Clément pushes past Hugo. He says, “I am so sorry, Emma. I guess there isn’t anything that can make up for it.”

“What about a croissant au chocolat every day?”

“Sure. And hey, you should really get your ceiling fixed!”

M. Clément smiles. I smile even bigger. 

The End!


Dragon Time (Part Two)

In New York City, Maria and the dragons were fooling around in Maria’s new room. They were making a mess and knocked a mug off a dresser, and it was a mug that Maria hated, so Maria was okay with it. And then they burned the dresser for fun. Nothing was in it, so Maria was okay with it. She knew that the dragons liked breaking stuff.

When the dragons were about to break her bed, she said, “No! That’s my bed!”

The dragons said, “Fine!

They went into the kitchen, and then Maria heard screaming. It was the cook! The dragons made her omelette burnt. Then, she had to make bacon, and when she left, the dragons cooked it for her and shoved it on a plate, took it to Maria’s room, and started eating. They snuck a bottle of beer into Maria’s room. Maria knew the dragons loved beer, so she was okay with it. The dragons drained the bottle very quickly. The dragons then trooped back down to the kitchen. They grabbed a jar of jam, took some pancakes, and trooped back up. And they gobbled them down. And then they drained up a whole jar of jam.

Maria was like, “Guys, what are you doing?”

And just then their tails were disappearing behind the door. Then the cook heard someone screaming. It was Maria. The tails had closed the door, and she heard the lock. And then she heard it again. When she tried to open the door, it opened smoothly. Then Maria heard someone screaming.

The cook was yelling at the dragons. “Bad dragons! Bad dragons! No beer for you!”

Then they heard something being scratched. It was the dragons scratching at the walls. Maria went to the wall and sighed. The dragons had completely ruined the wall. Then the earth dragon trooped in and fixed the wall. He used his mind to transport himself to Maria’s room. Then he flew out the window and circled over the city doing what everybody desired. But when somebody needed a shower, he used his mind to bring the water dragon into the house, and he gave a shower with nice and cool water. When somebody needed some quiet, he made earmuffs and put them around somebody’s ears. And when people were building a building, he always used his mind to make it spring out of nowhere.

Wowy made cars appear when somebody needed to go somewhere, and he delivered mail. He came home and had some beer.

Maria said, “Look, I found something!”

She pointed to an enormous black egg. Then she hit it with a hammer, and a dozen little brown dragons came out. And they looked exactly the same as Wowy! Then all 13 dragons made a pink egg. When it hatched, a pink dragon came out. And then it made a cupcake go on to a plate. It also made a delicious steak.

And then Maria said, “Pretty cool, huh?”

No!” screamed the dragons.

Then Maria said, “Why not?”

They said, “Because we can do that!”

Then the dragon made an exact copy of Wowy. Then, it made an exact copy of the sun and moon dragons. Then it made a copy of their pet unicorn. Then it said that it could make things duplicate and it could make things appear. Then it made an exact copy of some ground beef. Then it made a really tall beer bottle appear. He did this process several times, and there were ten beer bottles. They also made an exact copy of dreamer and the earth dragon. It also made a copy of itself. Then there was an ultimate dragon battle… 

In the end, the pink dragon won. Once they finished, they duplicated all the bushes with the pink dragon. The pink dragon also sneakily made some apple trees appear. Then she duplicated them, too. Then she duplicated herself, and she made her second self go around duplicating everything she saw, except for living things because otherwise things would get mixed up. Then, the real pink dragon made an illusion appear and an obstacle course. She made the dragons go through it. Most of the dragons failed. Once they failed, the pink dragons made them appear in front of her and were disqualified from the second challenge. The others who succeeded went through the rest of the course. Eventually, there was only one left, the earth dragon. 

The pink dragon went to oppose the earth dragon. The last stage was a battle. They shot fire and water, and they used everything they had, until suddenly the earth dragon used his power which no one else had found out. The power was… 

Instant Death.

The earth dragon used his power, and boom, the pink dragon lay dead. And then the pink dragon dissolved into powder, and the powder melted into the ground. The powder then exploded out of the ground in the shape of an egg. 

It was an egg! Then the egg collapsed, and there stood a snake. (Do snakes stand?) Then the snake laid eggs out of its mouth.

And to the snake, Maria said, “Be gone!”

The snake walked away. (Do snakes walk?) Then the eggs opened, and there were many tiny pink dragons. But they were vicious and sinister! They started swarming, the dragons, except for one… that one grew and grew until it became the healing dragon! 

Maria ran toward it and told it to heal the others. The dragon healed them, and then he became invulnerable, which meant his skin turned to iron except for one spot. His weak spot was his toenail. And then it just so happened that the dragons attacked him in the toenail. And it so happened that the healing dragon ran. And then he flew away, the pink dragons after him.

Then he screamed, “Incoming!” and he flew straight into a hospital.

The pink dragons went after him, but he used his power on hospitals, and they exploded as soon as they got in range. And on that happy note, he flew back. And while he was doing his hospital thing, Maria found out the pink dragon’s weakness. The weakness was beer! It was weird because all the other dragons loved beer — that was all they wanted to drink. That’s why they couldn’t defeat the pink dragons with their own weapons. And it was sad because they had beer. 

Only one dragon was left, and he charged. And then Jack had a brilliant idea.

“Burrito fight!!!” he yelled.

They got out frozen burritos, defrosted them, and hurled them at the pink dragon. The pink dragon dodged a guacamole one with no problem, but then the salsa one smacked him in the face. He went spiralling into the air, and with a quick swipe from a potato one, he crashed down. 

Then for the final thing: the earth dragon hurled a pork one and made the pork burrito grow fists, a head, feet, and wings, and then it started punching the pink dragon, and it was a sumo wrestling fight in the air. And so the burrito faked left, and the dragon faked right, and then the burrito whirled around kicked the dragon in the face.

Maria yelled, “Yeah!” and then the pork burrito opened up, and a flying pig charged out and finished off the dragon by blowing beer out of its mouth.

And they flew back to Dragon Land and lived happily ever after. The end.

Not!

The pink dragon fell onto the ground, and the ground absorbed him. And there, the grass started singing. The earth dragon groaned and fell. The green dragon danced a jig and also fell. Then Jack extinguished Mark. Mark dried up Jack in the process. And then, all of them got back up and forgot the earth dragon’s power was instant death. It was actually knockout. So, they all got back up, including the pink dragon. It was the good one, not the vicious and sinister one. Then the flying pig became a pet. The pig started playing with the unicorn. And then the dragons played tag. The earth dragon made walls in front of the others while Wowy made them disappear. So they were playing tag, and Maria was playing with them. Then the earth dragon made bigger walls, so Maria couldn’t jump over, but he made weak walls, so she crashed through them. Then the earth dragon made them harder, so she couldn’t break them, but she tried to dodge them. But the walls just kept moving themselves in front of them.

Then the dragons raided the kitchen for some beer. The cook was nice, so she let them have it. Then they fried an omelette and ate it. Then she got mad.

Then a new dragon dropped from the sky and said, “Wh-at’s n-ext?”

And another dragon of that type dropped from the sky onto his head and said, “What’s next?” Then the dragon made a shield and threw it into Dragon Land. Then he said, “What’s next?”

Then the shield hit him on the head, and he tried to stay conscious as he said, “What’s next?” Then he passed out. When he was conscious again, he threw a sword into Dragon Land. Then he said, “What’s next?”

Then the sword came back and struck the new dragon in the heart, but nothing happened. The dragon said, “What’s next?” Then the shield slammed him in the face and killed him.

Then the dragons drank some more beer because the dragons were being obnoxious. They were partying because he died. They didn’t exactly not like them. It’s just that they were being annoying. If anything, they wanted reinforcements for their army.

What the dragons didn’t know was that Maria was a cannibal monster who was going to overthrow the dragons once they took over the world.

Not!

Actually what the dragons didn’t know was that the dragons they killed were very annoying but had extraordinary powers. Their powers could even heal death. The powers absorbed into the ground, and then the ground could heal death. But it could only heal those dragons. It healed those dragons, and then they became actual earth dragons as the earth had their powers. And they had the earth’s powers. Those dragons again began to be annoying, but when they got mad, they rose evil enemies from the ground. And then they had to defeat them again. The worst time was when they rose the pink dragons. They walked around trying to kill the humans (the pink dragons, I mean. Not the annoying ones). But one of the annoying dragons powers was making death. 

The dragons flew around, and the annoying dragons also flew around. When the annoying dragons saw someone, they pestered them by throwing rocks, and then when they wanted someone to come back from the dead, they made that someone come back. Afterward as a sacrifice, they killed that flying pig. But after, it blew beer in their faces. But before it could reach their faces, the water dragon manipulated the water and the beer to make it rapid fire machine gun mode at the pig. The pig got soaked, and then it ran toward the wall and slammed its head into the wall. Then the dragons flew, and the fire dragon barbequed the pig. They killed the pig, but the annoying dragon made the pig come back to life. The dragons walked away, and they lived happily ever after. Not!

Then an army of vicious snakes, which could fly, attacked. They fought them, and they got bitten, but it didn’t affect them. After the siege of the snakes, they partied… not! Another army of snakes attacked. These had a different weakness. Not claw. Their weakness was unicorns. But they didn’t know that, and they did the same strategy that they did with the pink dragons. The healing dragon did his thing with the hospitals, and they did a burrito fight. But this time they were pizza burritos. A pizza burrito the size of a grenade hit the army of snakes and exploded. Pepperoni flew through the air, blinding the snakes. The snakes slithered around, bumping into each other, and then Maria figured out the weakness. She got out a regular burrito — it was a pork burrito. She made the dragons breathe on it and… she threw it! It landed in the army, and a unicorn charged out. The unicorn romped around until all the snakes were dead, and that was what the dragons called The Siege of the Snakes.

And then they lived happily ever after… 


The Weird Pig

Once there was this pig named Kograt. He was 1,000 years old and very young for a pig.

One day, Kograt felt ill. He thought, Is it the potato smashed with tomatoes or the hay smushed with onions? Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months, and the illness still didn’t get better! 

One winter morning, Kograt found himself farting ice cream!

So immediately he yelled, “Author!!!

And a pig dressed as a doctor came running,  “What is it this time?” the pig doctor named Author asked. 

“I’m farting out ice cream!” Korgat sang in an opera voice.

“You’ll be fine. It’s just a sign that you’re becoming a computer!” Author said in a calming voice. (That, my friends, was totally not true. I don’t want to spoil the story for you, so just saying!) 

“Lskdjf lkjoijehoiuk jslkdjf iw jlsejf sdlkfj dijweoifjio jwijfihrglkjdhfglksjdfhglsjfdh bla bla boiufijfjjd lba lb bla bla b6la,” Author said.

While Author was babbling on about scientific stuff, Kograt slowly dozed off and suddenly woke up, and he felt he was sinking in his bed of hay. And he dropped down a portal that led him inside a toilet. Since he was a weird pig, he had taco wings. So he used them to fly around the toilet and then after a few laps, the taco wings got smelly and just broke off. Now the pig had nothing to do, so he searched around the toilet and found a computer.

And he said, “Hi, my future self. You do know that I am going to be a computer someday, right?”

But the computer just answered him back with a funny cat video.

Sixteen hours later… 

Kograt had nothing to do, so he just wandered around the whole time. Suddenly a snake appeared in the bathroom and ate him. And he turned into an owl. He didn’t know he turned into an owl at all, because he was dumb. In the snake’s belly, all he found was dust. So he tried eating the dust, but that didn’t turn out so well because the dust had poisonous snake venom. It was the exact type that will turn any owl into a pig, then a rabbit, then a sofa, then a tissue box, then a pig again, then a rabbit, then a sofa, then a tissue box, then a pig, then a rabbit, then a sofa, then a tissue box over and over again… so… Kograt changed back into a pig. Then changed into a rabbit. Then changed into a sofa. Then changed into a tissue box. And finally, after many, many, many changes, he finally changed back into a pig, then stopped.

But Kograt wasn’t the only one having a bad day. (Well, it wasn’t bad for Korgat since he was dumb). The snake was having a bad day too, a bad flu day. Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months, and the snake’s flu still didn’t recover.

One autumn afternoon, the snake started farting books.

So he immediately called out, “Gunther!”

And a snake dressed as a doctor came slithering. “What is it this time?” Gunther asked.

“I’m farting out books!” the snake howled.

“You’ll be fine. It’s just a sign that you’re going to puke out a pig,” Gunther said calmly.

That, my friends, was true. After eating a lot of medicine, the snake finally puked out Kograt. Since Kograt was free, the snake was hungry. So the snake ate Kograt again. And the same thing happened over and over and over again.

First, the snake felt sick.

Then, he called out, “Gunther!”

Then, he ate medicine. Then, he puked out Kograt. Then, he ate Kograt again and on and on and on!

Finally, Kograt escaped and then went and tried to get out of the toilet. But then he found an X-ray, and he tried it on himself. And he found out that all this chaos happened because he ate hay smushed with onions, plus tomatoes smashed with potatoes together (which gives all pigs constipation).

Being in and out and in and out of the snake’s belly made him smarter, so he put his taco wings back on, since the smell had drained away, and sang, “How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?” in an opera voice as fast as he can.

And so that made his taco wings charge up and out of the toilet.

But suddenly, a dark shadow appeared behind him, and there was a Frankenstein. Not like other pigs, Kograt was really fond of Frankenstein! He even read all Frankenstein’s comics! So, Kograt climbed on his back and pulled off his head and used Frankenstein’s mouth to shrink Frankenstein’s head to keep as a souvenir. That, Frankenstein found really interesting — that his mouth was a shrinking machine and that he could still see even though his head had been pulled off by a pig to keep as a souvenir.

Kograt suddenly felt his taco wings droop down slowly… 

“AAAAAAAAAAGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!”

Korgat was falling backwards down a 100,000,000,000,000 foot toilet! Then Kograt woke up, his heart still racing, and realized it was a dream! Relieved, Korgat felt something bumpy underneath him, and he looked, and it was a teeny tiny Frankenstein head… 

The End


The Head Family

Mr. Big Head

When Mr. Big Head was a little kid, his parents told him not to get so angry. But did he listen? No. Mr. Big Head is an angry man. Every day he gets madder and madder and madder. One day that got too far. It was a normal day for Mr. Big Head. He was mad because his breakfast was a tad bit too hot and spicy. Mr. Big Head was really grumpy. When he went to work, he was really mad because his computer wasn’t starting. So he smashed it! Everybody in the room stared. That made Mr. Big Head even madder. Then he went over to his boss’s computer. Boom! He smashed it! And he kept doing that until everybody’s computer was smashed.

“Okay, now everything’s fine!” said Mr. Big Head.

Then a little kid was making too much noise on the street. That made Mr. Big Head really angry. He took his broken computer and threw it out the window at the little kids. All the little kids ran home.

And Mr. Big Head ran after them yelling, “Puny little kids!”

Work was over for Mr. Big Head. He decided to take a cab. Somebody by accident on the way bumped him lightly. So he punched them out of the atmosphere! Finally he got into his cab. The cab was smelling bad. So he started yelling at the driver. Eventually he punched him. He Finally he reached home. The door wasn’t opening for five seconds, so he kicked it down. The cat was in front of his way, so he kicked it to who knows where. He was eating dinner, and he was getting angrier and angrier about his dinner. His dinner was yuck in every way.

“Me want candy!” he screamed.

Finally, it happened. Kaboom! Mr. Big Head’s head exploded. After he died, the rest of his body lay in jail because he assaulted a cab driver.

The End.

And the moral of this story is don’t be like Mr. Big Head in any way. I mean, unless you want to die by getting too angry.


Mrs. Little Head and The Deadly Laughter

Mrs. Little Head was a really happy person.

When she was a little kid, her parents told her, “You should control your emotions. You shouldn’t be too happy all the time. It isn’t good for you.”

Did she listen? Well, no. She didn’t really have a choice — she was just happy all the time! It was a special day for Mrs. Little Head. New neighbors had joined the neighborhood, and two little puppies were giving birth to other puppies. Mrs. Little Head was really happy. She set off for the ceremony of the puppies. She had arrived just in time. The ceremony was starting. Mrs. Little Head thought the ceremony was really good. She was super happy. On her way out of the ceremony, she passed the two new neighbors.

She said, “Hi, new neighbors, what are your names?”

The neighbors answered, “Mason and John.” And they added, “Stay away, or else!”

Mrs. Little Head was like, “Okay! I’ll stay away!” She smiled at the neighbors. 

She overhead the two neighbors saying, “That woman is too happy. She should really not be this happy.” 

Then Mrs. Little Head said, “It’s good to be too happy! It’s not too good to be too angry like Mr. Big Head, my brother.”

Mrs. Little Head set off for work. Today was a big day for their company. They were getting so many orders all over the world. Can you get me one pack of pencils and two pillows? was one of the orders. Can you get me one king bed and two twin beds? was another order, etc. 

Mrs. Little Head was really happy. She was known throughout the office for being really cheerful and happy. At lunch break, a lot of people came up to Mrs. Little Head and started telling her jokes.

One of the jokes was, “What do you call someone who steals burgers?”

Mrs. Little Head said, “What do you call someone who steals burgers?”

“A burger-lar,” they said.

Mrs. Little Head started roaring with laughter. Then other people also started laughing really loud, which made Mrs. Little Head laugh even louder and harder. Soon the whole neighborhood was laughing. Because of one man. Mrs. Little Head laughed so hard that she choked on a piece of rotting bologna sandwich and couldn’t breathe. Nobody realized she was choking because they were all laughing so much. Five minutes later, Mrs. Little Head had passed away. The guy who told the joke went to jail because Mrs. Little Head had died. Nobody ever forgot about Mrs. Little Head, and the joke was added to the “don’t-dos” around the world.

The End. 

Mr. Normal Head

Before you start reading this chapter about Mr. Normal Head, there is one thing you need to know about him. He is very different than Mrs. Little Head and Mr. Big Head. Unlike Mrs. Little Head and Mr. Big Head, Mr. Normal head has absolutely no feelings whatsoever.

Mr. Normal Head was waking up on a normal day. Any day was normal for Mr. Normal Head. It didn’t matter if he won the lottery or not, pooped in his pants, or received a bill from the bank, or was robbed. His trademark reaction was just to shrug. He didn’t really know what to do in any situation.

Mr. Normal Head was eating cereal for breakfast. He accidentally spilled it on his pants. He just shrugged. “Eh, whatever. Just cereal. Could have been worse.”

Mr. Normal Head went outside to work. It was pouring really hard, and there were thunderstorms and tornadoes and any bad thing you could think of. Even Mr. Big Head. He shrugged. “Eh, it’s just all the bad things in the world that could ever happen. Who cares?”

Mr. Big Head came over. “Hey, I care!” Mr. Big Head said.

Mr. Normal Head said, “You may care, but I still don’t care.”

Mr. Big Head got so mad that he punched him.

Mr. Normal Head just continued walking as if nothing had happened.

Mr. Normal Head arrived at work with one arm missing, a chunk of his leg missing, and a black eye. Everybody started staring at him. Mr. Normal Head shrugged with one arm. Suddenly a man came rushing into a room.

He said, “Which of you do I want?” Then he said, “Oh, this guy looks like General Material.” He looked battle-scarred, that’s why the man picked him. He said, “Do you want to be a general, sir?”

Mr. Normal head shrugged with one arm.

The man said, “Okay, I’ll take that as a yes.”

The man took Mr. Normal Head away and started his training immediately. 

Mr. Normal Head just kept getting the best grades for his training, except when it came to the guns. Mr. Normal Head just stood there doing nothing. 

Soon enough, World War I, one of the deadliest battles ever, started. The problem was that Mr. Normal Head the General was assigned with a gun. He didn’t know how to operate it. So, he just stood there. And that wasn’t good for his health. Later, he was dying. He had several wounds, none of which were good. The doctors tried to revive him. But the wounds were just too much, and Mr. Normal Head passed away. 

The End.


Mrs. Blue Head

Mrs. Blue Head was crying one morning because she didn’t have any food, and she had to go to the supermarket to get some. The supermarket was only 15 feet away. She trudged along, depressed, to the supermarket. Then she finally entered the supermarket. Everybody was staring at her. That made Mrs. Blue Head cry even harder. She got her food and exited the supermarket as soon as she could.

She cried all the way back home. Then she ate her cereal. Then she left for work.

Mrs. Blue Head worked in a private office because no one wanted to hear her crying, wailing, and howling. She entered her private office. There were no people in the building because Mrs. Blue Head was really loud, and her crying could give you a headache. Mrs. Blue Head didn’t get right down to work. For the first hour, she was crying. The second hour, she was working and crying. And for the rest of the hours, she was mostly working and crying.

Mrs. Blue Head was proud of herself. She had done a lot of work today and a lot of crying today. She exited the building and saw someone crying. That made her cry even harder and harder! All the cars sped by — no one could bear to hear Mrs. Blue Head’s wailing. Even the person who was crying left. When they all left, she started to cry even harder. Mrs. Blue Head was crying so hard she was literally covered in water. She ran to the store to buy a muffin. All of the people in the store closed their ears, and the customers ran out. Mrs. Blue Head cried even harder.

Finally, all the protein that she had eaten was lost. She grew very pale, and she fell to the ground. Somebody called 911. But even before they called 911, the medics came and said that she was already dead.

The news made everybody cry, but then someone said, “If we cry, we will end up like Mrs. Blue Head.”

The End.


Mr. Thrilled Head

It was not a normal day for Mr. Thrilled Head (unlike Mr. Normal Head). It was his birthday today! And he was going on a sleepover, a vacation, and he was getting his driver’s license, and a promotion, and he was moving, and throwing a party!

The first thing on Mr. Thrilled Head’s schedule was to brush his teeth. Then eat his breakfast, then take his morning jog. But Mr. Thrilled head was too excited for a jog — it was more like a sprint! Mr. Thrilled Head had eaten ice cream and cake for breakfast (like he always did). After his morning sprint around his house, which was pretty big (the perimeter was 57 feet), Mr. Thrilled Head went to work.

He had an essay to write. That didn’t take him long. He was so excited he finished in five minutes. And his essay was so good that he got a double promotion. Now he was his boss’s boss.

Next on his list was his office party! They were having a really good time for four hours until they agreed to call the party off.

Then he had his birthday party. When he arrived at his house, he saw so many presents! He was so excited he ran straight through ten buildings, knocking down zero presents. Then he ran up to his office room and started circling around and around, searching for something. Then he was like, “Whatever!” and fell and broke his head, which wasn’t good for his health. Then he died.

The End.


Mr. Lightbulb Head and His Great Ideas

“I have an idea!” said Mr. Lightbulb Head. “I will eat breakfast today! I have another idea! I will prepare breakfast before eating it! I have another idea. I will eat oatmeal for breakfast.”

Okay readers reading my book. You understand that Mr. Lightbulb Head has a lot of ideas, and his superpower is to be annoying. Nobody liked Mr. Lightbulb Head from his neighborhood to seven neighborhoods down. Whenever he went to the supermarket, he said, “I will buy a watermelon! I will buy a mango! I will buy everything!”

“Ugh!” everybody would say.

Mr. Lightbulb Head would not reflect on his past. He thought he was a great person who was not annoying. Like Mrs. Blue Head, he worked in a private office.

He said, “I will invest in Whole Foods! I will invest in Trader Joe’s. I will invest in everything!”

Recently the building next to him was demolished because no one wanted to hear him say, “I will invest in Whole Foods! I will invest in Trader Joe’s. I will invest in everything!”

They just left a sidewalk there because if they had put a park there, they wouldn’t be able to maintain it.

He was getting a promotion party today. He may be annoying, but his boss couldn’t deny his good work. He went to his boss’s office. His boss couldn’t deny his good work, but he could have a wicked plan. And that he had right now. His plan was to use champagne, and the cork would hit Mr. Lightbulb Head in the head, and it would shatter and he’d die.

Mr. Lightbulb Head’s boss was not having a good time at the party.

He asked, “Can I have some champagne or wine or whatever you have?”

“Sure,” said the boss.

Mr. Lightbulb Head said, “I have an idea!”

“What’s your idea?” said the boss.

“I will drink champagne, not wine,” he said.

The boss started laughing. Then everyone started laughing. Then the boss opened the cork for the champagne, and it flew and hit Mr. Lightbulb head square in the face. His lightbulb shattered on the ground, and he died.

The End.


The Murder Mishap

Clarice was running up the stairs of the old abandoned building. Suddenly a dark figure jumped out of the blackness.

“Hands up!” His voice shattered the darkness.

Boom! He had a cannon, too. Clarice fell swiftly to the ground. It was the end… 

William turned on the light. He looked at his witness, Arry. “Where were you last night?”

Arry looked startled. He was sitting in the chair across from William. “You know where I was. In the building.”

A smile crossed William’s face. He loved it when a case came together, and he was the detective.

Arry looked nervous. No surprise there. He had just seen a murder yesterday.

“Yes, but what were you doing there?”

Arry started sweating. “I was… sightseeing… because… it’s for school… ”

Sweat was trickling down his neck. He suddenly got up and ran out of the room.

“Poor kid,” William muttered. “He has no idea what’s going on.” 

William walked down the moonlit street. He sighed. Why can’t things be better for me? he thought. If I just had something nice in my life… It would be okay. My job is hard. I don’t have any family. I just need something good.

Arry was pretty scared. He sat down at the kitchen table and waited for his dad to come in. But his mom came first. She was dressed in a pink overcoat.

“Arry, I’m going out tonight. Your father is on a business trip, so be good. He’ll be gone for a week. I might not be able to see you. Be responsible, okay?”

Arry sighed and heated up some leftovers. His mom left and slammed the door.

Mr. Davies sat in the van. He was leaving his home on a business trip. He thought about his son, Arry. Then he thought about the success of his latest… recreation. He smiled. “So I murdered Clarice. Amazing. I have also left my home on a business trip. I don’t care. This isn’t even my real job! I’m crazy!”

William sat down again across from Arry. “So, Arry, can you tell me, what were you doing last night?”

Arry sighed. He didn’t want to give his game away. But his dad was away and didn’t really like him anyway. So it wouldn’t hurt… 

“William, my dad is the murderer. I can’t tell anyone. But I just… ” Arry burst into tears and dashed away.

That was unexpected for William. William had no idea who Arry was or who his dad was. So this wasn’t much of a clue. He sighed. “Nothing turns out right for me,” William said to himself. “I need a coffee.”

Mrs. Davies sat on the plush chair in the library and sighed. She pulled her favorite book out of her handbag. Even as she read, her mind drifted elsewhere. She was sad about her husband, who was leaving them without saying goodbye. She was worried for her son Arry, who was only ten and left alone. She slammed down her book and walked out.

“I need a break,” she told herself. 

Outside it was raining. William walked into a cafe and ordered a coffee. He sat down and started sipping. Then something caught his eye. His gaze traveled to the door, where a young woman in an attractive pink coat was walking in, complaining about the weather. Wiliam leaned in close to her and started to sweat. He walked up to her, got up close and personal — then coughed, unexpectedly.

“Oh, well ex-kee-yooz me,” she said.

Everyone there laughed. William felt his face turn red. He sat down feeling angry at himself.

“This was my big break!” he told himself. “I can’t ruin this. I still have my ace in the hole.”

So, William gathered up all of his courage and walked up to her again. He started feeling nervous and blushed.

Mrs. Davies looked at the man with disgust. He had coughed in her face, for goodness sake. But he was young and charming. Give him a chance, she thought. She smiled at him. “Hello, charmer. Did you remember your tissues this time?” She knew that telling a joke was a good way to be friendly. But this guy didn’t look so happy. He looked worried, embarrassed even. He smiled at her hopefully. She laughed and said, “So, you want a piece of me, hmmm? I think that can be arranged. 

Mr. Davies was sitting in the back of the van. He was a crazy person. So he almost didn’t notice when his cell phone buzzed. It said: You have a message from #AriannaDavies… click here to read. Mr. Davies clicked it. She had written: You need to come back ASAP srsly! No detours srsly!

“So my old wife is up to something?” he muttered. “I wonder what this could be.”

Arry picked up his head from the kitchen table. The sound of his mother’s high heels, click clack, had woken him up.

“Mom? What’s going on?” he asked.

“Shhhh, honey,” she soothed him. “Go to bed. Your father and I just need a little talk with each other.” She led him up to bed.

Arry was confused. His dad was here?

Mr. Davies looked across the bed to his wife. She said she needed to talk to him.

“It must be something big,” he reasoned to himself, “because I came from half across the country in Oregon.”

Mrs. Davies looked at him seriously. “I need to talk to you about us,” she began. “I… met a guy. I like him. He likes me too. A lot. You… I don’t think you are the most devoted husband. So I want to marry him and you… you and me can end. For his sake and mine… I’m sorry. But this is my choice.” 

Mrs. Davies was very hopeful. She looked at her husband. Tears were almost forming in her eyes. She looked like a begging child.

Finally Mr. Davies nodded. “Sure, I don’t care,” he said, willingly.

William sat down in the hard chair. “Once again, Arry.” His voice struck the silence. “What were you doing that night? You have told me your dad was a murderer. I take it you were at the crime scene. But is there anything else you have to tell me? Anything at all?”

Arry shivered. He looked worried once again. He took a deep breath. “He’s not my dad. They’re divorced, and no one wants the kid. I’m a nobody to them… Wahhh.” Arry was crying very hard.

William frowned. There must be something I can do, he thought.

Mrs. Davies and William Davies walked out of the real estate company. By chance, they passed the orphanage. A sad Arry was sitting by the window.

“I feel bad for him,” William told her.

“Make your move, then, William,” she told him.

They walked in.

“Excuse me,” said Mrs. Davies to the manager. “We are the Davies couple, and we would like to adopt Arry?”

The manager looked surprised but willing. “Of course, ma’am.”

They walked out a happy family.


Laura on 318th Street

Prologue

Laura Wilder Ingalis stared out of the car window. New York City was so busy and packed, while London was much quieter. Laura decided that she liked her old home much better than this one. She adjusted the strap of her seatbelt and squeezed her suitcase with her legs. Laura’s suitcase was turquoise with lightning bolts embroidered with her initials. She took it wherever destiny took her (or, erm, wherever her foster parents lived), and it was caked with memories. She glanced at the driver, but he kept his eyes on the road.

“How much longer?” she pondered out loud. The driver didn’t answer right away.

“About ten minutes,” he slowly responded.

Her shoulders sagged. The driver was about 50 years old, judging by his beard, which was covered in gray. He wore an old brown romper with a red and black checkered shirt underneath the dirt colored overalls. The Jeep he owned was the same age as him and was groaning with every right turn.


Chapter One

When the driver announced that Laura had arrived, she was ecstatic. Then the driver took out her folder of records, and her grin turned into a sour frown. That record held all the things she wanted to keep secret. All the things that had happened to her and by her. All of that important information slipping through her fingers, and into theirs. Yes, she did not like that manilla folder. Not a bit. The chauffeur of some kind opened the door, and Laura stepped out. Outside was a little restaurant called Delilah’s Diner. It was a small brick house with a door that jingled when it opened. On top was a red brick house with two little windows perched in the wall. Her gaze shifted to the narrow hallway in between the restaurant and the cheery bright green house next to Delilah’s Diner. 

“Well?” the driver asked. “Come on!”

Laura grabbed her suitcase and ran after him into the restaurant. Her brown hair flowed behind her as she ran across the street. A strong gust of wind sent chills down her back. Then she jumped onto the curb and rolled her suitcase into the restaurant with her. The door opened with a creak. Laura jumped. The inside of the restaurant was not that different from the outside. There was a long drapery of white fabric above the doorway. She pushed through the drapery and entered the restaurant. It was a small shabby one, with wood planks as the floor. The walls were covered in peeling crimson wallpaper. There were tables crammed into every corner. They each had napkins and utensils and water glasses, but they were all empty. Laura turned around to face the door and saw that it was closed. She peered around, then suddenly noticed that the driver was missing. 

“Hello?” she said, her heart beating. She heard stairs creaking.

“Laura? Is that you? I thought you wouldn’t be arriving until noon!” said a female voice.

Laura moved forward, avoiding tables and dodging boxes until she came across a staircase with a woman standing on top. She smiled warmly. Her hair was pulled up into a messy bun, and she had on a neat black dress with a white apron tied at her waist. Her eyes were a deep blue and were weirdly familiar. The driver followed her down the stairs as she stepped down the stairs. She pulled her into a tight hug, and Laura dropped her suitcase to her side. She smelled faintly of cinnamon. 

She pulled away and said, “I’m Murial. You can call me Miri. I heard your parents were umm… ” Miri hesitated. “Anyway, I have your room all ready for you, and you must be starving, so I will make pasta or something for lunch. Is that okay? Here I’ll take your bags… ”

Laura found it easier to nod to all Miri’s questions and say as little as possible as she followed her up the squeaky stairs. When she entered the next floor, she was surprised. It was much neater than the down stairs. Miri recognized the look of shock on Laura’s face and explained.

“We own the second floor. Mr. MaCaya owns the restaurant. I work here, and every morning I come downstairs and wait on all the people, which isn’t a lot. If you can’t tell, we aren’t getting that much mon — ” She stopped speaking for a moment, and Laura’s head shot up like a rocket and looked Miri right in her sad eyes.

She shook her head and walked down the hallway, Laura at her heels. She gazed around. The walls were a robin’s egg blue and basically, you entered the stairs and there was a room a few feet before you had a room, which Miri told Laura was her room, and then on the other side of the room was another room which was the bathroom. She took her to the last room in the hallway, and here Miri informed Laura that this was her room. She opened the wooden door and pulled along her suitcase. Caplunk, kerplunk, went the suitcase as she slid it over the cracks in the entrance. She looked around. The walls were a beautiful yellow, and a large window was opposite to where she was standing. She gasped. There was an old fashioned bed with blue sheets and a blinding white pillow. There was a fancy patterned rug on the floor and a large desk with a blue spinning chair. There was a lime green beanbag chair right next to the bed. This room was much fancier than Mr. Joseph T. Pennyworth’s “room” as he called it. Laura thought it was a retired broom closet. The curtains were covered in little hedgehogs, and Miri parted them and switched on the light.

“Why don’t you put that suitcase on your bed? We will unpack your things later,” Miri said cheerfully.

“Okay,” she said and obliged to heaving her almost bursting suitcase on her bed.

When she plopped it down, a cloud of dust flew into her face. Laura coughed. She heard the stairs creaking and knew that Miri was going downstairs. She turned around and walked down the stairs toward the dining room. On the way there she crashed into a large man squished into a tiny tuxedo. He turned around. His face looked so much like a pig that Laura snorted and then tried to cover it up with a cough but failed miserably. 

“Hello,” the man said with a forced smile. Laura immediately recognized this person. It was Mr. MaCaya.

Chapter Two

That night, after a helping of bread and potatoes, Laura couldn’t sleep. She tossed and turned and tried the trick someone at her old school taught her, but it was totally useless. So she went downstairs to ask Miri for a cup of warm milk or tea, but came across someone speaking. Laura could barely make out the noise, and so the young girl crept quietly down the stairs, bent over the railing and strained her ears to hear the conversation. It was definitely Miri’s voice. 

“I know, I’m living off my savings now. It’s a shame really. He won’t let us tell anyone. Barely pays us a dime a day.” 

Laura suddenly felt a pang of guiltiness for eavesdropping. She ran up the stairs as quickly as she could and jumped under the covers. The next morning, she woke up tired. She suddenly remembered everything that happened that night. It all rushed back to her. She sat up in bed for about ten minutes, thinking and going over everything she heard in her mind. One thought came across her and stayed in her mind for the entire day. The young girl couldn’t stop thinking about Miri and that she was not getting paid. She knew that it was illegal of course. But because he was technically paying them, there was nothing Laura or Miri could do. Unless Laura made up a new law that he couldn’t pay his employees less than ten cents a day. It was just wrong. It wasn’t the way this was supposed to go. Miri should have been paid fairly. All the other people probably quit. Why didn’t Miri? It was a puzzling question.

I’ll start with what I know, she thought. Laura checked for her suitcase and saw that it had been unpacked. The curious girl zipped it open and found her secret pocket on the back. Unzipping it, she dug around for her notebook, and finally felt the familiar grip of her journal. She sighed in relief. Quietly, Laura tiptoed over to the window and opened the curtains, but it was still dark out, so Laura turned on the light switch which was conveniently located right next to the window. She slunk noiselessly back to her bed and jumped into the bed. She fished for a pen under the bed. Then she opened up to a blank space (which were scarce) and started writing:

 What I Know About House 365 on 318th Street

  1. It is home to Murial and me
  2. The boss is Boston MaCaya
  3. They barely have any customer

Laura stopped writing. Then, the answer hit her like a sack of potatoes. That was it. They had no customers, no money. They couldn’t afford to pay the workers, let alone the rent. Laura suddenly remembered a book she read about this. It was really funny, but this wasn’t because it was actually happening.

It was real.


Chapter Three

Laura had terrible sleep last night. It wasn’t just because of last night. It was the feeling in her gut that she was missing something. Mr. MaCaya was a liar and a thief. Why was she feeling differently about that? And, to push those thoughts out of her mind, she got dressed and thumped down the stairs, only to remember that the kitchen was on the one floor Miri could afford. She ran back upstairs, got momentarily lost in the hallways, and finally found the kitchen quiet. The table was covered in a tattered tablecloth, and the chairs were pointed in all directions. There was a bread basket that was left over from last night with a few pieces of half eaten slices of them lying alone on the table. Suddenly, a shadow rose from the darkness of the kitchen. It was large. It was tall. And it picked her up and put her in a sack. Everything went black.


Chapter Four

When Laura woke up, she found herself lying on the floor of a strange house. Her head was beaded with sweat. Her eyesight was fogged and cloudy. She rubbed the sleep out of her eyes. The puzzled girl looked around her. She was in a small cottage with wet walls that were caving in like a sand castle, but made of straw. There was a small chair and table in the middle of the only room in the house. The one window opened the dark sky into the cottage. Laura stood up from the floor. On the table, there was a small white scrap of paper. As she walked over to the table, she looked around, but there was nothing else to see. It was scary. The paper lay flat on the table. She snatched it up in her hands. It said:

This is the place that you will be staying in for the rest of your life. You have witnessed a crime, and you are willing to tell others. Your precious Miri will be nothing against me when I get ALL the money of the world. I will be in control. I WILL RULE THE WORLD whether you like it or not. The door is locked. You will never stop me, for I am the amazing BOSTON MACAYA.

Laura was shocked. She thought Mr. MaCaya was doing it for a reasonable reason. But he wanted to rule the world. Laura was the only one who knew the truth. But she would never get to anyone in time before Mr. MaCaya finished his plan. She would have to save everyone. The world was depending on her.


Chapter Five

Laura knew how to get out. The window, of course. But the thing she was worried about was actually getting back to her home in Wisconsin. This was Colorado. Toot toot.

“I got it!” Laura said. She would ride a train to Wisconsin. The problem now was how to catch a train. But, that was easily solved because there was one right outside the “House.” Laura ran outside, the note clenched firmly in her hand, and ran outside. She barely made it. Now, she was in a crowded train with no idea where she was going. Hopefully it was Wisconsin. Tweet tweet!

“Police coming through. Make way! Make way!” a gruff voice said. She looked up and saw a police officer glaring at her.

“Where is your parent, young lady?” he said. And Laura began. By the time she finished, the police officer said, “You are on the wrong train, princess!” Laura cursed under her breath. “I’ll take you home, and we’ll sort this MaCaya thing out.” Laura grinned. 

“Thank you, sir!” she beamed. And she was almost home.

WISCONSIN NEWS! 

YOUNG GIRL GAVE PROOF! BOSTON MACAYA ARRESTED! GIRL ADOPTED.

A young girl named Laura Wilder Ingalis saved the city! She was adopted by Murial Smith! See more on page 16!

The End. For now.


The Quail

I had a quail who drank ginger ale

and always got the mail. 

It was great, 

amazingly great 

but I had to grate cheese, 

wait that’s the same word

but spelled differently,

it’s a homophone!

Okay, back to the poem

and my quail surprised me

by eating a whale.

Before she ate the whale,

I wondered if it was

my pet whale, 

but it wasn’t 

then I gave my quail

a slice of blue whale 

and she swallowed it

before the mail.

Then she got up

and asked for ginger ale 

with her slice of blue whale

and she said that she failed

on her test of hammering nails.


Circus of Talents

I was in the garden of the Queen of England’s palace when it happened. Let me explain. My name is Haven Shelly Dean. I’m thirteen years old. My father sold me for a new house and a flock of sheep. Now I live as a servant for the Queen of England. I work in the kitchen. Now, from 2 pm to 3 pm is my only off-hour.

I was walking next to the pond, when I saw a duck. And that’s when I found out my magical powers.

The duck said, “Quack quaaaack!” But to me, it sounded like, “Hello Haaaaven!”

I blinked. Then I blinked again. Then twice more. Then again. I was sure I had heard wrong.

“How do you know my name?” I asked. 

Except my voice sounded more like, “Quack quack quick honk quaaack.”

I ran back to the palace to start cooking early. I volunteered to make the salad, which was a hated thing to make at the kitchen. I did that so I wouldn’t have to help with the duck.

***

It must have been a coincidence. It must have. Because, two days later, on Lesson Day (Lesson Day is the day that all servants under the age of 15 have off to learn math, writing, and reading) I saw a notice. The notice said, 

Do you think you have a talent?

Servants, come to the Library on May 2nd to show off your talent. You will be viewed privately, and the winner will join the Circus of Talents. Sign up on the sheet below!

I was the third one to sign up.

***

May 2nd was the next day, and since so many servants were trying out, the Queen’s Advisor gave us the day off. We gathered in the library. 

A man with important looking clothing on was standing on a table.

“Hello,” he said. “My name is Carter Marlon. I am the director of the Circus of Talents. You will be viewed one at a time, and then I will announce the winner. You will be viewed in the order that you signed up in.”

“First up: Benny Dennis.”

Benny stepped forwards. He was a skinny kid who worked with the laundry. He went into the next room. A few minutes later, he came out practically crying. He ran out of the room. 

“Next up: Matilda Scott.” 

A girl who I didn’t recognize walked up. She walked into the room and came out with a worried face. She sat at a table in the back. 

“Haven Dean.” 

I walked into the room.

“Hello, Haven,” said Carter. “What is your talent?”

“Umm… I think I may be able to talk to ducks?” I said. 

Carter looked so happy, I thought he was going to explode. “Yes, yes! This is exactly the talent!”

Carter snapped his fingers. A duck, the duck I had seen in the garden, appeared. “Yeah, that’s my talent. I can summon things.” 

“Um, hello?” I said.

“I heard quack!” said Carter. “Perfect! You’re hired! But I still need to test everyone else, just to be fair. But go sit at the table across from Matilda.” 

I nodded and left the room. My head was exploding with thoughts. How did this happen? Am I really actually leaving the palace? Wow! This is crazy! Is Carter always this way? Wow!

About thirty minutes later, Carter got back up onto the table. “The winner is… ” he paused for dramatic effect. “Haven Dean!” The whole room clapped and cheered.

***

I got into the back of Carter’s van. He said we were driving a little to the real site of the Circus. Almost everyone had come to see me off. Even the Queen of England was there. After the palace had disappeared, I turned around to face Carter.

“Are you ready?” he asked. 

I nodded my head. Yes, I thought. I’m ready.


Clueless

The door opened to the front of my office. My assistant walked in looking flustered. 

“There has been a murder!” he yelled. I looked at him and shook my head. 

“We see murders every day,” I said.

“Not like this,” he said. “This person was brutally killed, then the body was stolen while the cops were searching the house.” 

Let me tell you a little about me. I am a detective. I work on a lot of murders, but usually they’re easy to solve. Like once, this man killed his high school enemy, and when I walked into the room he confessed that he was getting payed $100,000 to kill that man. Then, he was found dead in his jail cell, but the stupid man who had killed him had forgotten to put on gloves, and we found him right away.

“Who was murdered?” I asked. 

“This lady named Yvonne Harrison,” said my assistant.

“Rich?” I asked.

“So-so,” he said.

“We have to search her house,” I said.

***

Her house was small, about the size of my office. I looked around. There was barely anything around. A small television and a rag couch sat in the middle of the room. There was a patch of dry red blood stuck to the rug. 

“Have you tested her blood?” I asked a CSI man.

“Yes. And we found it didn’t actually belong to the Miss Harrison.” Interesting!

“Who did it belong to?” I asked.

“It belongs to a man named Gregory Doff,” said the CSI guy.

“Where does he live?” I asked.

“In a cemetery. He died a year ago.” 

Right now, I had no suspects or clues. Just a mere ‘the pool of blood this lady was lying on is not actually hers! It belongs to someone who’s been dead for a year!!’

I searched the bedroom. There was a Rolex watch on the bedside table, and next to it was a lamp. The bed had flowered linen sheets over a three inch thick comforter. I walked out the door. 

“Who are our main suspects?” I asked Jonathan Fedley, the head of the CSI. 

“Well, for starters, we have her brother-in-law. He is her only living relative.”

“In-law? Miss Harrison was married?”

“Yeah. To a man named Greg Doff who died in January of 2002.”

I have a good memory, so I don’t know why I thought my mind was tricking me of that name being familiar.

“Who?” I asked.

“We don’t have much information on him, except for that he was very poor and he probably married Mrs. Harrison for her money — ” There were suddenly shouts from across the hall in the crime scene.

At first, it sounded like the CSI investigators that were investigating the murder were shouting, “This house has been clean!” but then I realized they were saying, “The house has been swiped clean!”

In police code robbery equals 211, but this was not a robbery. Even the flower sheets were gone!

“How is this possible!” I yelled at the same time Mr. Fedley yelled, “This is not acceptable!”

The CSI investigators didn’t even find a trace of a footstep. Or a fingerprint. The only way we knew anything was stolen was because it was missing.

“Inspector Krysley, we have found out more information and a motive for Tristen Doff, Mrs. Harrison’s brother-in-law,” said Jonathan after we had searched the entire house for clues. 

“What did you find out?” I asked.

“We found out that Mrs. Harrison hated on him because of some sort of romance with her sister.”

“Anything else?”

“Oh yeah. We found out that Mrs. Harrison supposedly hit Doff with her car almost over a decade ago. We still don’t know why.” Another mystery!

Now it was time to round up the clues. Also, round up the suspects, motives, and alibis.

“Blood on the ground suggests she was either shot or stabbed,” said a clueless CSI member.

“But it’s blood of another person!” said another CSI member.

“Blood of another person suggests someone unlawfully blood banked Greg Doff’s blood,” said Jonathan. I groaned. It was hard to work with someone who was as smart as me.

“Small house and rag couch suggests revenge and not money,” I said.

“Stolen body in plain sight of cops suggests disguise,” said Jonathan.

“Rolex watch suggests a small wealth,” I said.

“Flowered comforter suggests living mother,” said Jonathan.

“But that’s absurd!” I said. “All her relatives are dead except Tristan!”

“But maybe she died, like, a few days ago!” said Jonathan.

Everyone gasped. There was no police code for Double Agent, but everyone in the system knew the signs. I started suggesting more stuff.

“Dead husband suggests grief,” I said. Jonathan glared at me.

“Everything stolen in plain sight suggests more than one person working for someone,” said Jonathan.

“Suspect affair with victim’s sister suggests connection of families,” I said.

“Suspect hit by victim in car suggests private connection with each other,” said Jonathan. I wrote everything down, except the silly stuff.

  • Blood of another person suggests unlawful blood bank
  • Rag couch and small house suggests revenge and not money
  • Stolen body in plain sight of cops suggests disguise
  • Rolex watch suggests small wealth
  • Dead husband suggests grief
  • Many items stolen in plain sight suggests more than one person/double agents
  • Suspect affair with victim’s sister suggests connection in families
  • Suspect hit by victim in car suggests private connection

And I added something.

*Jonathan knows something we don’t

How did I know Jonathan knew something we didn’t? Well, he’d been showing lots of signs. For example, Jonathan knew that Tristan Doff was the brother-in-law before the conversation. And I know that because he was one of the people searching the house. He didn’t have time to discuss it with the CSI people. And if he knew that, he must have known more about the case than we did. And I was going to get it out of him. 

When we finished our meeting, it was time to go home. I called my assistant, and he got me a car. The driver dropped me off at the front of my apartment building.

“Thank you,” I said.

I walked into the building and rode up to the 12th floor. I was the only person who lived on the 12th floor. The rest of my neighbors probably had vertigo or something, but I liked the 12th floor. It was so quiet and never smelled like food. I opened the door, and what I saw was a big surprise. A few CSI investigators were in my house, poking around in my kitchen. 

“What are you doing!?” I yelled at them.

They turned to me, then each of them talked at the same time. Luckily, when they stopped, one of them who I recognized as Rupert Hackett told me something that sounded pretty much like the truth.

“Mr. Fedley, he suspects you,” he said.

I knew that’s what they thought, but I was pretty sure that Jonathan was lying. 

“Where did he go?” I asked him.

“He said he was going to investigate more,” he said. 

“Where?” I asked.

“At the crime scene,” said Rupert. 

“Thank you!” I said. “Get me the camera footage. I think he’s guilty.”

Rupert looked at me uncertainly, then pulled up the camera footage. 

Jonathan is not alone. He is with Chief Inspector Harper and most of the crew. He looks around at the numbered evidence. He picks up evidence number 33 and talks to Miss Harper about it. Then he picks up a lot more evidence and talks to many different inspectors about it. I recognize Johann Dreyfus, Blanche Mac Lottery, Lauren Aaren, and Henry Kensington. So many detectives! They can’t all be Double Agents! Then, Jonathan writes something in his notebook. Dreyfus nods at him. Jonathan says something, then hugs Dreyfus, and walks out the door.

“See? He’s innocent!” said Rupert.

“Wait. Go back to when he’s hugging Dreyfus,” I said.

Rupert rewound the video.

So many detectives! They can’t all be Double Agents! Then, Jonathan writes something in his notebook. Dreyfus nods at him. Jonathan says something, then hugs Dreyfus — 

That watch!

“Zoom in on his hand!” I said.

Rupert looked at me like I had three dinosaur heads, then did as I said. 

“Jonathan is the killer,” I said. “At least one of them… ”

I rode in a cab to Jonathan’s house with my assistant. The lights were on, and I knocked on the door. The lights suddenly were turned off, and the curtains were closed. An old lady answered the door. 

“Are you looking for Than?” she asked. Than.

“Yes,” I said.

“He’s out. I’m his mother. Visiting from Orlando,” said the old lady. 

“Where?” I said doubtful and suspicious. 

“He’s gone,” she said. I frowned.

“Do you want a cup of tea?” she asked.

“Sure.” It would give me a chance to search the house. “Come in,” she said.

I walked into the house, following the old lady. She sat me down at the table, and I put my hands on the checkered tablecloth. The lady faced away. 

“What’s your name?” she asked.

“Leana Krysley. I’m a detective,” I said. 

“Leana. Such a beautiful name. Why do you want to see Than?” she asked. She poured the hot water into the cup.

“Well, we need to question him — ”

“Ahhhh,” said the old lady.

“What’s your name?” I asked.

“My name is Carla Fedley. And I know Jonathan is not guilty of the murder. And yes, I lied. He is in the house.” Then, the old lady smiled and got back to my tea. “Do you want your tea to go?” she asked. 

“Yes please,” I said.

Then I turned and walked out the door without my tea. Jonathan wasn’t the murderer. He couldn’t have been if he was at home. It only took me three minutes to get to my house to his house, but from Mrs. Harrison’s house to his house, it took an hour. So he couldn’t have taken that much time from Mrs. Harrison’s to his house, so he was at his house all along. There were only two questions. Why did Jonathan say that he was going to investigate, and who had rigged the camera system in Mrs. Harrison’s house? 

When I got home, I saw a letter on the table from my assistant.

Dear Leana,

I am really scared that I am going to get killed. Since you told me everything you know, will they kill me first? I ran away to my upstate house. I QUIT!

Sincerely,

Your Assistant

I put the letter down and went to bed. 

The next day, I returned to the crime scene. After all, nobody had ever solved a murder in just a day. 

Dreyfus was there to greet me, and Jonathan was there too. They were investigating like it was any other day. I looked over at Rupert, and he looked away. So he didn’t tell Dreyfus. I looked around to see a new piece of evidence. A note.

“Where did this come from?” I asked Dreyfus.

“I found it under a floorboard. Read it. Maybe you can figure out what it says,” said Dreyfus.

1/4/02

A chara Yvonne,

Tá a fhios agam gurb é seo an uair dheireanach a scríobhfaidh mé chugat, ach táim ag imeacht ó New Jersey chun cónaí le mo chara is fearr a bhuail tú le cúpla bliain ar ais. Mar sin féin, chuir mé litir chuig Than agus Tristan Tá mo dheartháir ag teacht go Nua-Eabhrac ach níl mé ag iarraidh aghaidh a thabhairt air tar éis duit é a bhualadh le You-Know-What. Bí ullamh aghaidh a thabhairt air.

Grá,

Greg

“I didn’t know Mrs. Harrison was Irish!” I said. “I’m Irish!”

“So read it!” said Dreyfus.

January 4, 2002. Dear Yvonne, I know this will be the last time I ever write to you, but I am running away to New Jersey to live with my best friend who you met a few years back. Anyway, I have sent a letter to Than and Tristan my brother is coming to New York but I don’t want to face him after you hit him with your car. Be prepared to face him. Love, Greg.” THAN!!!

Then I remembered the day before on the first day of investigation. 

I had asked who the suspects were. Then, Jonathan had said it was Mrs. Harrison’s brother-in-law. I had asked if she was married, and Jonathan had said yes, to a man named Greg Doff! Greg!

“You were friends with Gregory Doff?” I asked. And then I remembered the date.

“And the last time he was ever seen alive was January 4, 2002! That means you were the last one to see him alive!” I yelled in realization. Jonathan looked at me sheepishly. “And did you… kill him?” I asked quietly. Jonathan nodded.

“But I swear I didn’t kill Mrs. Harrison. She was nice! And I would never kill her!” I frowned.

“But what about the watch?”

“That’s my watch.”

“Then who killed Mrs. Harrison?” 

I wrote suspects, alibis, and motives in my notebook.

Suspect: Tristan Doff

Motive: He hated Mrs. Harrison for some reason

Suspect: Gregory Doff

Motive (Or what we think is a motive): He knew that he would never see her again/needed the money?

Alibi: He was murdered before Mrs. Harrison, so he can’t be the murderer

So I crossed him off.

Suspect: Johann Dreyfus

Motive: Found the letter; maybe knew what it was?

Suspect: Carla Fedley

Motive: (Unknown)

Suspect: Police Chief who guarded the house

Motive: (Unknown)

Jonathan was arrested the next day, and the next day was also a return to the crime scene.

“Let’s meet some new suspects,” said Dreyfus. He brought in five people. 

Suspect: Karen Calhun (Best Friend)

Motive: (Unknown)

Suspect: Jeremy Rolfson (Brother in-law’s best friend)

Motive: Helping his friend

Suspect: George Harris (Friend’s husband) 

Motive: Stealing away time with his wife

Suspect: Doctor Trenton Murray (Victim’s doctor)

Motive: (Unknown)

Suspect: Jenny Wolfson (Best Friend)

Motive: (Unknown)

I questioned all of them, but none of them seemed to have a motive except Tristan Doff’s friend who might have done something for his friend and killed her.

“I’m really stuck,” I told Dreyfus. 

“Then let’s do a walk through of the crime scene.”

We entered through the front door. I walked to the kitchen. 

“Have you guys checked the fridge?” I asked. Dreyfus nodded.

“We have, but you can check again.” 

“Okay.” I opened the fridge and gasped.

Dreyfus gasped when he saw too. In the fridge was a dead body. On it were carved letters.

Good Work, Detectives! -C .F 

“Who’s initials are C F?” asked Dreyfus.

“I think I know,” I said.

When we got to Carla Fedley’s house, Dreyfus knocked on the door. No one answered. Dreyfus was about to knock again, but I said no. He drove me back to my house. There, I rode the elevator to the 12th floor and went into my house. I made myself some tea, then got disgusted and drank matcha instead. Then, I watched some TV, and at 12:00, went into my bed and fell asleep.

It must have been just a minute later when I woke up. I checked the time, but it was only 12:46. I heard a rustle. I turned my bedside light on and looked around. Suddenly, a figure emerged from the shadows. Carla Fedley

“Leana, you figured it out at last,” said Carla Fedley said.

She held the knife above my head. I ran out of bed, grabbing my phone on the way. I ran out of the door and locked it and called the police. They came in an instant, and I showed them Carla. She was arrested the next day.

It turned out, Tristan Doff bribed Carla into killing Mrs. Harrison by saying he would expose Jonathan’s secret if she didn’t kill Mrs. Harrison. When the body was still in sight, she told everyone to check the fridge masked as a CSI member. After they checked the fridge, she put the body into the fridge disguised as a CSI person. Then, she and some of Tristan Doff’s friends stole everything, all dressed as CSI members. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to drink tea again.


Princess Lou’s Adventure

Once upon a time, there was a princess named Lou, and she had one sister and one brother, and she lived in a castle in a place called London. One day, she went on an adventure with her brother, mom, and sister to an island called Wasabi Island. So they took their family’s royal boat. Once they got to the island it was already dusk, and so they all went into their rooms on the boat and slept until a bright light woke the mom up.

She opened her room’s door on the boat, and she said, “What are you?”

The thing said, “I am a good witch. Really, I promise, but my old best friend’s mom put a spell on me. I am really a good witch, so please don’t hurt me please.”

The mom said, “Oh fine, I won’t hurt you. But why are you here?”

The witch said, “I am here because the spell made me get trapped here too.”

The mom said, “What spell did she put on you?”

The witch said, “I have no idea.”

The mom said, “One minute.”

The witch said, “Okay,” and then there was a big cloud of smoke, and she disappeared.

The mom went and got her daughters and her son, and then somebody else came onto the boat.

He said to the queen, “I am really your husband. I just got trapped here somehow.”

All the children said, “Daddy!”

The mom said, “Now now, kids, we don’t know if it is really Daddy. So I am going to ask you some questions alright. Kids, go into Lou’s room and watch TV on my computer. Here is my computer.”

The kids said, “Yes, Mommy.”

“Okay now here is your first question, where was our wedding?”

“Here is my answer, at Sunken Gardens.”

The queen said, “Yes. Here is your second question, what is your mom’s friend’s dogwalker’s full name?”

“Here is my answer, Jessie Rose Robinson.”

“Correct,” the mom said. “Here is your third question. What is your sister’s boyfriend’s favorite color?”

“My answer is gold.”

“Yes, correct. Here is your fourth question. Where was our first date?”

“My answer is Daisy’s Diner.”

“Correct. You got all of them correct, so you must be my husband.”

She hugged her husband, and the mom said, “Kids, let’s go home now. But first say hi to Dad.”

They all said “Daddy” at once.

The dad said, “But who will drive the boat?”

The mom said, “I will.”

The dad said, “Alright.” 

So once they got home they all took a nap, and something woke Lou up. Surprisingly it was her brother and her sister, whose names are Dorothy and Charlie.

They said in childish voices, “Lou, there is somebody at the door!”

“Don’t worry, guys. I’ll get the door.” So she checked her phone because they had a Ring doorbell, and she checked the app, and it was somebody with a hoodie on that said anonymous on it, and she was freaked out.

So she said to her little brother and sister who were two, “Please go into your room or go into Mommy and Daddy’s room.”

They said, “Okay, Lou.”

So they went into their room and locked the door and watched their favorite movie on their tablet. So Lou locked all the doors and windows, including the courtyard. Lou wanted her mom and dad and sister and brother to be safe. The human tried throwing a brick at the window from outside, but it didn’t work, so he tried climbing over the fence. It didn’t work. It seemed there was no way of getting in.

She said to herself, “I only do this because somebody is forcing me to, and I don’t want to do it.” She sighed.

The next morning she checked her Ring app, and she was gone. So she called her best friend, Emma, and told her what had happened. But first Lou had to tell her parents what had happened. So she did. After that, she called her best friend Emma.

The end.

The Adventures of the Cat Club

Mittens is a brave little kitty. He is black, and his paws are white. He loves to travel around the world! He has a treehouse with lots of toys, blankets, and robotic machines. He loves fish and has a talent to catch them with his paws. But the most impressive thing about Mittens is that he is a tap dancer! He performs everywhere, like in France, New York, and Bubble Gum City! He lives on cat island, and since he has a ton of money… everything is made for cats! But, out of all the money, fame, and cat toys, Mittens has always wanted to travel to Hawaii to become a hula tap dancer! He also has a best friend named Jerry. Jerry is very funny and orange. They decided to travel to Hawaii together.

On the plane, Mittens asked Jerry, “What is your dream?”

Jerry said, “Probably to learn the alphabet!”

“Interesting!” Mittens answered, hoping his best friend really would learn the alphabet. 

As Mittens ate a few fancy treats and played tic tac meow with Jerry, he became tired, so he went inside his fluffy mini house that has his bed in it and is shaped like a star and fell asleep. 

In at least an hour later, he woke up from Sally, the waiter, saying, “We’re all going to die!”

All the workers were screaming. Catnip was flying everywhere.

Mittens meowed, “What happened?”

“You mean what’s happening?!” Jerry meowed back. “Birds were flying by, and John, our pilot, saw them and tried to catch them but didn’t realize that he couldn’t break through glass and lost control of the plane!”

“Oh, John!” Mittens sighed as he looked at John. “Have you been eating too much catnip? You know we’ve been telling you to stop! It’s bad for you!”

“Well… ” Mittens whispered to Jerry. “It’s pretty good!” John scrambled away, and Jerry laughed.

But his laughing stopped shortly after the plane crashed and all the cats meowed.

“Is everyone okay?” Mittens asked.

Meow!!” they all answered.

“Okay then… !”

So it turned out that they crashed in Hawaii and were near a volcano.

“It’s not going to explode, right?” Jerry asked.

“Of course not,” Mittens answered.

“People live here.”

People!!” Jerry screamed and fainted.

“Well ya,” Mittens scoffed as he got Jerry back on his feet.

“Oh my, I had a bad dream!” Jerry said. “Your plane crashed, and we went to Hawaii, and you said people were here. Mittens, I mean really!”

“Jerry? Jerry?” Mittens asked. “Are you okay?”

“Yeah! Of course! Why would I not — Oh no no no no!

“Jerry, calm down!”

No no no no no!!! Wait, Mittens, can I have some water please?”

“Umm yeah, yeah! Catnip flavor or plain?”

“Catnip flavor!” Jerry said as he wobbled into a tree and fell down.

“Okay!” Mittens said, partly laughing. “Here,” Mittens said as he gave the water to Jerry and splashed some on his face.

Hey! You got my fur wet!”

“Jerry, let’s go!” Mittens said.

“Okay, okay,” Jerry said, walking behind Mittens.

“Everyone else, try to find or rebuild the plane.”

They said, “Meowwwwww,” which meant okay in cat language, or as cats call it, Meowster talk.

As Jerry and Mittens ran into a restaurant, Mittens spotted a white, fluffy, beautiful female cat!

He stopped in his tracks, walked in a weird way that he thought looked cool, grabbed some shades, and said, “Hellooo, kitty.”

Mittens flexed his tail and put on his handsome face.

“Hi,” the girl cat said. “What’s your name? Mine is Snowflake.”

“My name is Gregory Von Chad the III Meower. Ummm, I’m Mittens! You like to hang around these parts of the woods — oops, I mean these parts of the restaurants? Umm, I mean you like fish? Ummm, no I mean I-I-I like your eyes. They’re so blue!”

“Thanks! Yours are nice too, and Mittens is a cute name!” Snowflake said dreamily or that’s what Mittens thought.

“Thank you, do you like tap dancers?”

“I guess, because you’re one!” Snowflake gave Mittens a piece of paper and then ran off.

Mittens opened the paper, and her number was on it!

Jerry found Mittens, and they ran through the restaurant when Jerry asked Mittens, “Who was that girl you were talking to?”

“Snowflake,” Mittens replied. “The most coolest, prettiest, mysterious kitty!”

“Cool… Got her number?” Jerry asked, gesturing toward the paper in Mitten’s paw.

“Yeah! We’re going to the movies tonight… or at least I think that’s what her eyes said… girls are confusing!”

“You’re telling me!” Jerry laughed. “My mom once liked peanut butter, and I said I do too, but then she kicked me in the basement! I’ll never eat peanut butter again!”

“Okay, good to know… but let’s find the hula place… I want to fulfill my dreams!” Mittens said heroically.

So Mittens and Jerry found the hula place, and Mittens tap danced with a skirt and blew people’s minds away!

“Go Mitty the Kitty!” Jerry screamed. 

As Snowflake ran, she stopped at a store to get some catnip. As she was walking out of the store, she saw a little gray mouse with an eyepatch and then blacked out. She woke up and found herself underground, tied to a chair, and a mouse was in front of her.

“Hello, pretty one,” the mouse said. “I am Cheesenstine! (The evil mouse who captured you and is now going to torture your kind!) I come from Cheesetopia, and I will trick your little boyfriend Mittens into coming to the movies with you and then capture him, and then steal his popcorn, and then watch the movie with you two tied, and then bring you back to my lair and keep you there while I destroy cat-kind with my Robotic Cheese Cat Exterminator 1000! And if you’re wondering why I’m against cats, it’s because I’m a mouse of course, and because one time someone stole my cheese, but mostly because when I was a little mouse, cats invaded my family’s hole we were living in and ate my mom, dad, and two sisters. I was the only one left, and I barely made it alive! That’s why I have this eyepatch! Because the cat stole what was supposed to be under it. So I will get my revenge! Mua-ha-ha-ha-ha!” He coughed loudly. “Ha-ha-ha, okay I’m done!”

“That was a lot to say for a little mouse like you!” Snowflake teased Cheesenstine.

“Oh you think you’re so tough!” Cheesenstine said, offended.

“Well… ” Snowflake said as she untied the ropes that were around her wrists with her claws. “I think I am actually pretty tough.” Snowflake busted out of the ropes and jumped on Cheesenstine.

“Yay!” Jerry continued screaming. “You’re the best hula tap dancer ever!”

“Thanks!” Mittens said as he took a water break. “Oh, I need to go! I have a date with Snowflake!” Mittens exclaimed.

“Go get her!” Jerry said proudly for no reason.

“Okay, I will!” Mittens ran off to pick up Snowflake at the restaurant where they met and couldn’t find her.

So he decided to call her with his cat phone (much more high tech… buy one today!) She picked up the phone apparently but seemed busy.

All he heard was, Meow meow. OW, STOP IT! HELP ME! MEOW! Oh hi, Mittens, I’m at Oloha Street, underground, where the sign is. Come quick. This guy is feisty.

Snowflake hung up, and Mittens ran to Oloha Street.

He looked at the ground and up at the sign and jumped. The ground opened, and he slid into a tunnel that led to an underground lair. There he found Snowflake and a mouse with an eyepatch and a bad temper fighting.

“What’s going on?” Mittens meowed over the noise.

They stopped fighting, and Snowflake said, “You’re here. Good. Now help me get this guy tied up!”

“Wait, what?” Mittens asked. “Who is he, and why were you two fighting?”

“Hello!” Cheesenstine said evilly. “I was going to capture you during your date at the movies, but this will work too! I am Chesenstine! And I captured your little friend to lure you into coming so I could keep you two from keeping me to destroy all cats with my Robotic Cheese Cat Exterminator 10000! Now you two are stuck here! Wonderful, right? Now bye bye!”

Cheesenstine said that he dug a hole upward? That made no sense, but Mittens and Snowflake were stuck.

“We have to find a way out of this!” Snowflake said as she stomped her paw in a cute way.

“Yeah totally,” Mittens agreed. “But what about the movies? I mean, like, is our date off?” Snowflake looked at him and instead of her slapping him, which is what he thought she was going to do, she smiled and laughed! “You really are a special cat,” she said to Mittens.

He blushed and quickly said, “Let’s go!”

“Umm, how again? Aren’t we trapped?” Snowflake asked.

“Yes,” Mittens said. “But… remember you’re with a really special cat?”

“Of course I do,” she exclaimed, laughing a little.

“Okay,” Mittens sighed. “But it’s crazy!”

“I’m in for crazy!” Snowflake assured.

“Okay, you see right there?” Mittens asked, pointing to a dark space in the lair.

“Yeah,” Snowflake said. “There’s nothing there.”

“That’s what you think,” he said smartly. “Look.” He walked in the dark and pushed out a black machine that digs threw dirt and throws cats around. “It has two seats, so we can dig upward and throw around Cheesenstine!” Mittens said happily. 

“Okay. Let’s try it!” Snowflake said, hopping into one seat, and Mittens hopped into the other.

They drove the machine through the dirt and came to the surface. 

People and cats were screaming and running everywhere as Cheesenstine destroyed buildings and tried to throw cats with his machine.

Jerry ran up to Mittens and Snowflake and asked, “So, no movies?”

“No movies!” Mittens answered.

“Let me guess,” Jerry started. “That mouse wants to destroy all cats because cats destroyed his family and his name is Cheesenstine?”

Mittens and Snowflake were stunned.

“What?! I watch a lot of movies!”

“Yeah, Jerry,” Mittens managed to say. “Now let’s destroy that guy.”

The three ran and jumped up on the Robotic Cheese Cat Exterminator 1000 (because cats can jump high) and started to bite the thing with their sharp teeth.

“This is useless!” Snowflake started.

“Yeah, we need a stick,” Jerry said. “That breaks everything!”

“Okay, then get your stick!” Mittens told Jerry.

So Jerry jumped off the machine and grabbed a big stick that was actually a log with his mouth, jumped back up on the machine, and hit the thing.

Ahhhh!” Cheesentine screamed from inside the Robotic Cheese Cat Exterminator 1000. “You stupid cats will pay!!!

Thunk!

The Cat Exterminator 1000 hit the ground, and Snowflake said to Jerry, “Wow, sticks really break everything!”

“Well, big sticks,” Mittens corrected.

“Yeah yeah,” she said. “So, Mittens, now that Cheesenstine is destroyed, want to go to the movies? I think Captain Meower is still playing tonight at 6!”

“Yeah, of course!”

“Ummmm, Jerry, want to go grab cheeseburgers?”

“Okay, dude, but never say ‘cheese’ again after what happened today!” Jerry said.

“Okay, let’s go… Bye, Snowflake!”

“Bye,” she replied.

After Jerry and Mittens got cheeseburgers, it was already 5:59, so they picked up Snowflake, and Jerry said bye when they got to the movies. Mittens and Snowflake went in the theater and started watching the movie Captain Meower!

As it got to the middle of the movie, Mittens said to Snowflake, “I thought my dream was to become a hula tap dancer, but now I realize it was to meet you. To find love.”


Santa

Word from the author

People say I’m plagiarizing because there’s already a book about this, so I did some research. Apparently there is. But I continue writing this because it’s not plagiarizing if you do it without knowing you are, so for those of you who would like to sue and make me pay a lot of money, not happening, because now I’ve given credit so, yeah… HAHA!

-Kai Tschopp (aka the author)


Prologue

Far, far out in the South Pole howling winds could be heard. The snow blizzard blocked a beautiful structure composed of stone bricks, white glass pane, and quartz. Inside, even louder then the wind, howling laughter could be heard… echoing past every hallway in the entire building.

“MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! shouted a figure from his throne.

The figure looked surprisingly like Santa, but he wore all blue.

“I will bomb the North Pole! My twin brother will die, and all the children in the entire world will be sad. And while they’re so sad, I will take over the world!!!


Chapter One: Nuke!!

Luke Marrow’s head banged on the floor.

“Ow… that hurt,” Luke said absentmindedly.

He stood up from the floor and sat on his bed. Suddenly, a message blared from the intercom at Santa’s secret base at the North Pole:

Attention, all elves report to Santa’s throne room!

Luke paled.

“Oh, no I need to get to the throne room now!”

Luke raced down the hall, zigzagged across the stairs, and finally ended up in the spacious throne room alongside hundreds of other elves. Luke looked over at Santa. His gray eyes seemed so sad, and his long, long beard drooped. Sure, he was 2,000 years old, but he always seemed so… upbeat, but today not so much.

Santa raised his wrinkled hand for attention: “My fellow elves, I have an announcement to make! My evil twin (who is nothing like me!) is planning to nuke the North Pole!” Santa exclaimed.

Several elves gasped. Three or four elves even fainted.

“Yes, he is! And he is launching the nuke now!”

He snapped his fingers, and a projector projected an image of someone that looked exactly like Santa but was wearing all blue! Elves gasped. Wearing blue was just about as bad as swearing in front of a three-year-old to the elves. The man in the screen turned around and laughed maniacally as he pressed a red button on his control panel and smoke rose around the screen.

“Mwaahahahahahahahahahaha!” the blue man yelled.

“The Drakon nuke will destroy the North Pole, and I will get my brother back for accidentally misplacing my teddy bear and sending it to someone across the world!”

Santa turned red. The elves turned their eyes to Santa.

“Hehe… continue elves… I didn’t do that… Yes I did… ” Santa added quietly.

Luke turned back to the screen. So did the other elves. Smoke was still rising from the nuke. Suddenly a voice appeared from the nuke: “Countdown for Drakon nuke model #3459 in T-minus: Ten… Nine… Eight… Seven… Six… Five… Four… Three… Two… One… Blastoff!

Blue quickly took cover and watched in awe as the nuke slowly raised in the air.

“In ten hours exactly the nuke will strike the North Pole and blow up everything!” Santa announced.

“And say thank you to Andrew the spy who hijacked the camera viewing this from the South Pole. Now… run as fast as your butts can carry you!” screamed Santa.

Several elves screamed. Some cried. Another even begged for mercy. Luke felt the blood drain out of his face. Blue could not do this to the North Pole. Luke would not allow it. But Luke felt helpless to do anything. It’s not like he could just storm the South Pole and demand that Blue surrendered. The South Pole was built like a fortress. He couldn’t do that… Could he?

While Luke was trapped in the tornado of his own thoughts, his home that he had been born in was being abandoned… No! Luke couldn’t let this happen! He had to stop Blue! Suddenly, someone tapped his shoulder.

“Hey, I know it’s hard, but you have to leave. Otherwise you’ll get destroyed alongside the North Pole. You can’t do this” pleaded Luke’s friend, Kat.

“Please… ” whispered Kat.

Luke shook himself and awakened himself out of his trance.

“You’re right. We can’t let Blue do this… ” said Luke to Kat.

“But… I don’t know how we are supposed to get to him,” continued Luke.

I know! We could borrow the planes that Santa uses!” exclaimed Kat.

“Great idea, Kat!” exclaimed Luke.

“To the artillery!” shouted Kat.

“And… let’s get out of here before we’re nuked!” replied Luke unenthusiastically.

“Yeah… ” whispered Kat.

Luke and Kat stormed out of the room, raced down the halls, and followed the signs pointing to the artillery. One of the signs read:

To the artillery guns, bombs, planes, retired reindeer, and rockets. Please be responsible with tools!

(Sidenote from author) Hold on a minute. You thought Santa still rode reindeers? This, my friend, is the 21st century and people do not ride reindeers. They ride jets, cars, planes, and Santa’s personal favorite, the Boeing 777. This is the latest fashion, and it will be for quite a while. Thank you, and now keep reading your book. Now. Please. Thank you.

“We will… ” Luke said to one of the signs sarcastically.

Finally, after what seemed like forever to Kat and Luke, they arrived at the artillery. They raced around old reindeer slowly walking for their lives, the newest model of a gun, and even an old cannons, but they ignored all that stuff. It seemed that a lot of elves had the same idea as Luke and Kat and had snatched up the jets, airplanes, and Boeing 777’s before they could. They tried to hitch a ride with other elves, but they didn’t exactly seem in the “Christmas spirit.” Finally, the only thing left was an old helicopter.

“Let’s go!” yelled Kat.

They jumped into the helicopter and Luke pressed the ON button. The blades started whirring. They spun into the air.

“Do you by any chance know how to fly a helicopter?” Luke asked.


Chapter Two: To Antartica!

Kat stared at Luke.

What? You don’t know how to fly a helicopter?” screamed Kat.

I thought you said jump in!” retorted Luke.

But you pressed the button!” screamed Kat.

So?” asked Luke.

There was no time for arguing, and they both knew it, so they just faced the controls. It seemed pretty simple. There were a few buttons with titles like: Eject, Guns, ON/OFF, and things like that. There was a lever that was labeled: Altitude. And lastly, there was a joystick labeled: Steering. The controls seemed simple enough, so Kat and Luke sat down in the two seats. Luke took the steering joystick, and Kat had the altitude lever. Kat looked out of the window and suddenly pulled the lever up as hard as she could. Luke felt as if his stomach had fallen out of his body one hundred feet below.

“What was that for?” asked Luke.

“There was a mountain that we were about to crash into!” explained Kat.

Sure enough, when Luke looked down, he saw a snow-capped mountain just twenty feet below them.

“If this is what our ride is gonna be like, I’d have stayed at Santa’s place!” said Luke, his face green.

“Errrrrr… in that case if I was you… ” said Kat.

And that was what the ride was like all the way down to the South Pole (not including stops at Greenland, Alaska, Canada, San Francisco, Mexico, Costa Rica, Colombia, and Chile, and not to mention avoiding being spotted by humans). At last, one cold, snowy day, Luke spotted a cold, snowy mountain… They had arrived at the South Pole.

“We have to ditch the helicopter now, or Blue’s forces will spot us!” said Luke.

“I heard that Blue sends troops out to alert him if there is an invasion, so that forces people to travel in small groups to avoid being caught. And even then, they can easily be wiped out in his fortress if they manage to somehow avoid being caught.”

“Oh boy,” said Kat, unenthusiastically.

Kat slowly cranked the Altitude lever downwards, and the helicopter slowly descended. Luke steered in a circle, and so the landing wasn’t too bad, but Luke and Kat were still terrible pilots.

“Ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow… ow,” wailed Luke.

“You are a terrible pilot, Luke,” replied Kat, holding her shoulder.

“Oh, let’s just get on with it!” retorted Luke.

So, Luke and Kat wandered and wandered around in hopes of finding the fortress, staring at the empty whiteness that looked like an empty canvas. They suddenly came across some elves dressed entirely in blue, marching south.

One elf said, “Wow, I can’t wait to pull off my mittens and sit by the fire and have a nice warm cup of hot chocolate.”

Kat and Luke looked at each other. They had just found their ticket to Blue’s fortress…


Chapter Three: Into the Fortress

Luke and Kat slowly followed the marching troop that they hoped was leading them in the direction of Blue’s fortress.

“We can’t keep following the troop. They’ll spot us. We need to steal their clothes and be disguised as them!” said Luke quietly.

Are you kidding me?” whisper-screamed Kat.

“Is it a good idea to take off your clothes in Antarctica?” she continued.

“Well, we’ll just put them over our clothes. Happy?” replied Luke, a little miffed.

So Kat and Luke ran up to a soldier elf quickly and quietly, so as to not be seen or heard, and tackled one soldier while holding his mouth shut. The soldier fell on the ground with a thump.

“Sorry, this might be embarrassing,” Kat told the soldier, and he let out a shriek when he realized what was happening.

Luckily, no one heard. Then, they started working. The soldier screamed to much, so they stuffed snow in his mouth. Since elves had been given the gift of heat from the snow lords (let’s not go into elf religion, here) they could not freeze to death. Elves only wore clothes so that they wouldn’t be naked.

“Bye, bye,” whispered Luke.

Then, they repeated the process. Soon, the rest of the troop was about 200 meters ahead.

“We’ve got to catch up to them,” Kat told Luke.

“Yeah,” agreed Luke.

They left the two naked (but warm) elves buried in the snow and hurried after the elven troop.

Luke started gracefully running to catch up with the troop while Kat started sprinting full out. The snow made a crunch-crunch sound when they stomped in it. They ran and ran and ran until they finally caught up.

“Are you excited to have hot chocolate, Robert?” asked one hulking elf while looking in Luke’s direction.

For a second, Luke thought, Who is Robert? Then, he looked at the way the bulky elf was looking at him and almost said, “Ummm, am I Robert?” But, Luke came to the conclusion that he was Robert and said, “Um, yeah totally.”

Kat shot Luke a dirty look that said, If we get caught, it will be all your fault.

Luke tried again. “Definitely, I’m really excited to have that hot chocolate,” Luke said excitedly and tried to hide the fact that he didn’t know what hot chocolate was.

“Good, so am I,” the elf said.

The other elves nodded in agreement.

As Luke and Kat walked toward the palace, they were both thinking different things. Kat was thinking, I hope Luke’s not gonna be an idiot and give us away. And Luke was thinking, Did I just give us away?

They were both startled when there was suddenly shouting

“Hooray for hot chocolate! We are here!” one elf shouted.

“Yay,” another elf shouted.

“Ummm… ” said Luke quietly.

“Well, let’s go get some hot chocolate!” shouted a small elf that had a very loud voice.

“Yay!” everyone said, except for Luke and Kat.

As they stormed into the palace, someone declared that they were as loud as rioting monkeys screaming for bananas. Kat thought about what they were doing. Suddenly, with a shock, Kat realized the ugly truth… They didn’t have an actual plan beyond getting in the palace. Kat walked up to Luke.

“We have a problem.”

“What? Nothing could be wrong while you’re drinking hot chocolate. This is as good as… as… ummm… a police officer!” Luke exclaimed.

Kat broke the bad news.

“We don’t have a plan,” she said.

As this registered in Luke’s pea-sized brain, Kat sat down and tried the hot chocolate.

“So… that’s bad?” asked Luke, puzzled.

Yes!” whispered-screamed Kat, exasperated.

“Oh,” said Luke sounding very depressed.

“So here is my plan,” said Kat, pulling out a piece of paper.

First, she drew a stick figure and labled it Blue. Then, she drew two people with a dotted line behind them. First, they walked into a room and grabbed what seemed to be a big bomb. Then, they snuck around guards and into Blue’s throne room. The stick figures threw the bomb at Blue. And there wasn’t a picture for that, but you can just imagine what happens next…

“Perfect,” said Luke. “Now, just try some of this hot chocolate!”

Kat sipped the hot chocolate.

“Wow, this is good,” Kat exclaimed.

The two adventurers were so busy sipping their hot chocolate that they didn’t notice…

(Ahem, hi, guys! Kai here.) This is the part in a story every good writer has to have. A twist. The part of the story where the reader thinks, Oh, they’re going to do it! And then the writer adds something just to annoy you. If you noticed the words “the two adventurers were so busy sipping their hot chocolate that they didn’t notice… ” then you could have maybe predicted this. Now I can annoy you. Yay.

… two elves reading their paper. Then, they looked up. Rage filled the elves’ faces, but they could not act erratically. The two elves had to play this smart. The two elves walked up to the elf guard on duty and whispered into his ear. They quickly spread the message in this manner. So then, just as Kat put her mug down, the guards threw a bag over Luke and Kat’s chocolate covered faces.


Chapter Four: Bombs

Luke woke up in a cold, damp room. What happened? Luke wondered. Then, as if his wish had been answered, a guard came up to him.

“Trying to bomb Master Blue, eh?” the elf asked in a mid-westernly sounding gruff voice. “That ain’t gonna get ya anywhere. Master Blue has got at least 15 soldiers surrounding him at all times. Dat guy has got some serious safety problems.”

“Yeah, I guess… ” said Luke quietly.

“Hey, tell you what, you seem like a good lad. If ya promise not to do anything bad, I will think ‘bout giving you the keys. Eh?”

“Um… yeah, okay” Luke said, even though he felt bad lying.

“Good,” the guard said and handed him the keys.

Luke opened his cell and in a flourish, stood up and looked around. The dungeons were miserable, and he looked at the cells next to him. They were all empty and wet except for one. And it housed Kat. Luke quickly opened the lock. It opened with a satisfying click.

“Kat, Kat, can you hear me? Kat wake up!” Luke said softly.

“Hi, Luke,” said Kat.

“Listen, I have the keys. We have to get out of here right now!” Luke said in a commanding but nice tone that made him sound really dumb.

“Really?” Kat said in a voice that made her sound slightly insane.

“Yes, really, now! We have to go!” Luke whispered-not-whispered.

“Okay, okay fine. Wait — you’re completely right. We have to go now!”

The two friends sprinted out of the prison by following signs that were placed conveniently all around, leading up some stairs to a circular room. There were five doorways leading to a cafeteria, a lobby, an armory, barracks, and a nuke bunker. Luke chose the door with a sign marked armory. He and Kat raced down the hallway and around a corner when Luke’s eyes met the most beautiful sight ever. The armory. It was filled to the brim with tanks, the latest technology guns, fighter jets, bombs, and best of all, nuclear bombs. If you wanted a weapon of mass destruction, this was the place in the palace to find it.

“Hey, Kat, can you come over here and help me pick a bomb?” Luke asked.

“Sure, Luke. We could use grenades because we can carry lots of them and throw them easily, but we could also try to sneak in a bomb for the full effect and a big boom. We could also try small bombs which we could arrange into a pyramid for the fun of it.”

“Good idea, Kat, let’s try the big bomb. Let’s try to find one with a big timer that says fancy things like: you will die in approximately T-minus 2:00.000 minutes. Beep, beep, beep. That would be cool,” exclaimed Luke.

“Sounds good to me!” agreed Kat.

And so our two unlikely heroes went on a mission to find a bomb. Luke was looking around for a bomb when he noticed the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. The biggest, scariest, and most awesome bomb he had ever seen.

Luke felt himself tearing up just by looking at the bomb and then regained his senses and yelled, “Kat, come over here and look at this bomb I just found!”

Kat immediately ran over to the bomb, and she too felt in awe at the greatness of the bomb.

“This is the one! We need to do this with this bomb. It’s sort of an inner feeling. Like we absolutely have to do this,” announced Kat earnestly.

“Yes, I agree. You should feel honored to be in this godly presence,” replied Luke.

“Now, to destroying Blue,” Kat said.

The two adventurers lifted the bomb and started staggering out of the room. Kat and Luke finally lifted it out of the room. They set it down, exhausted, and rested their hands on their knees and panted.

“That pant — was pant — good. Keep pant — Going pant,” panted Luke.

“Yes pant — ” agreed Kat.

The two adventurers then put their hands under the bomb and lifted and lifted, and slowly the bomb lifted. Then, the two adventurers staggered down the hallway and finally to the throne room door, which was filled to the brim with at least twenty tons of rubies, diamonds, emeralds, gold, silver, copper, piles of hundies and most importantly, Blue himself.

They shoved the bomb through the door, then, the two dove headfirst under a giant pile of dollar bills. If you were there, you might have heard a slight beep, beep as our heroes had preset the bomb. Then, you might have heard the bomb speak its message of doom, but it was muffled by the dollar bills. But Blue was too distracted playing with his riches and didn’t hear.

“All is good — wait, how are we going to get out of here in time?” exclaimed Kat.

At that very moment, there was a loud crash and a boom, and Luke and Kat heard, “Like this — Ho ho ho!” someone said in a familiar voice.

“Santa!” Luke said.

“Hop in!” Santa replied.

“You horrible traitor! You freak!” Blue shouted.

Luke and Kat hopped into the sleigh, and they sped off. Everything whizzed past and Luke realized suddenly, hey, this is how Santa delivers all those presents.

“Wait, are those your reindeer? I thought they didn’t fly!” Kat asked, startled.

“Oh, they do. They just like to rest and be lazy,” Santa said in a teasing voice.

So this is how our two heroes found themselves speeding along in Santa’s secret sleigh at top speed. In less than an hour, the party were gliding over the North Pole over a dark, jaggedy mountain.

“Wait, wasn’t this place wrecked?” Luke asked.

“It was, but it so happens that I too have a little bit of magic,” Santa replied.

The sleigh came down towards a jet black strip of concrete… the landing strip! The sleigh slowly lowered down, and Luke and Kat covered their heads and tucked into a ball around their knees. This was going to be a rough landing. Boom. The sleigh crashed to the ground with a sickening crash. The reindeer took off running, pulling the sleigh and going slower and slower until they finally arrived at the foot of a mountain. Most people thought that this mountain was just a mountain, but in reality, it was the secret entrance to Fort S or Fort Santa. The Fort could only be accessed by elves whom Santa trusted. Santa pulled a garage door opener out of his pocket and pressed it.

“Activating sequence open door. Do you want to do this?” a hidden speaker in the button asked.

“Yes,” Santa said, enunciating clearly.

The mountain then rumbled as a part of the cavern door pulled in and put to the side by powerful pistons. The party sleighed through. They passed hallways, displaying monitors, art, and technology that neither Luke nor Kat had ever even heard of. Then they entered a large room and finally slid to a stop.

Suddenly, there were elves jumping out from behind furniture and at the top of their lungs yelled, “Surprise!

There were various shouts of “We love you!”, “Yay!”, and “Thank you for stopping Blue!” It was a surprise party. Kat and Luke had never felt so overjoyed. They were surrounded by the elves they loved, who were all cheering their little elven hearts out for them. It was the best feeling in the world.

Now, my reader, my job as a writer is done. I have finished the book. You now know the story of Luke, Kat, Santa, and Blue. It was a joy writing for you all, and I want to thank you for reading this book. Thank you. Now I must go. I really never wanted to say these words, but:

The End


Journey to the Heavens

Storm Search

My eyes flew open as the door swung open. My mom was standing in the doorway, her eyes wild. Outside, rain poured out from the bleak night sky.

“What happened?” I asked.

“The rain was just super cold,” she muttered, but I knew she was lying. I made a silent decision to sneak outside afterwards. “Go to sleep, India Hollyblade,” she added.

I trudged to my bed, but as soon as my mother began to snore, I crept outside after putting on a long sleeved navy blue dress with thick tights. I wore a long crimson coat with white faux fur and tied my chocolate brown hair into a bun before I slung a bag of emergency tools that my mother gave me. Then I created a forcefield and ran outside, whistling for Windra, my giant white wolf. I hopped onto her back, and we raced around the garden, looking for anything that might have spooked my mom. Then I saw the light.


Volcano Light

It was silvery and soft, and at first I thought the light was just a trick of the moonlight, but then I realized the moon was hidden behind the clouds. I urged Windra to go forward, and as we climbed the hill, I noticed that the light was coming from the dormant volcano. Could the volcano possibly be erupting? I thought. Nah, volcanos don’t have silver lava, do they? As soon as Windra and I reached the volcano, I ran up to it and balanced on the rim of the volcano. I had done this many times, but it still made me nervous to know that a slight misstep could get me into an even more dangerous position. I realized that a swirling light had appeared inside the volcano. Before I could think about what I was seeing and actually get it into my head that this wasn’t a dream, the moon broke free of the clouds, and the silver light grew brighter, making the earlier light seem dim in comparison. I was so busy staring in awe at the breathtaking sight that I did not notice that the wind was picking up up until it was too late. A strong gust of wind hit me hard, and I started to topple over. Windra tried to grab me, but my weight made her lose balance, and we both fell into the silver light, the wolf, howling, and me, screaming as the silver light engulfed us.


The Test Of The Sleeping Moon

I was still screaming when I realized that first, I wasn’t burning up or dying or anything horrible like that, and second, I could breathe and everything felt peaceful and I felt so relaxed as the light turned dark and my eyelids started to close… Slurp!!! My eyes shot open as I felt the horrible sensation and wetness of wolf saliva. Blinding light hit me like someone had shone a flashlight in my eyes. Then I realized we were sitting on a cloud.

Then a voice said, “Congratulations! You have passed the test of the Sleeping Moon!”

An old wizardly man who looked blurry in the mist surrounding him pointed to snoring people that had appeared around us.


Information

“The Test of the Sleeping Moon is what people go through when they enter Faunaree, our world. Hostiles are sent to the land of nightmares forever, which is all the way north. Here is a map of where Twilight Hotel is, and see you later!” the old guy (whom I had named Mr. Tedious) said. “If you fail the Test of The Sleeping Moon, which you didn’t, you are considered a Hostile.”

Now that I could see him more clearly, I knew he had stunning blue eyes, a silvery robe, and white hair that covered his face almost entirely. Then I sank through the clouds.


Getting To The Hotel

As I landed softly on the ground with Windra, I contemplated the map. It showed a desert, and after a while I spotted the hills of sand for real. I walked through the desert for days, then weeks then months, until I couldn’t keep track of time. Just as I let go of my last hold on reality, there were two pathways, one going downhill and one going up. I decided to go up because I loved sliding down hills, so I hopped onto Windra and skidded down the hill. Suddenly we were in the middle of swirling light, and everything was soft and like a feather, like I was in a flock of doves until it dissipated so that I could see a marvelous castle that looked like an abandoned royal palace. Lightning struck the mountains in the distance, and the windows glowed an eerie purple-pink. Obviously I took a photo (by the way, it was in my emergency bag, in case you were wondering) as I ran down the walkway and knocked. No one answered, so I knocked again. Still, no one answered. Impatient, I opened the door that led to what changed not only my life and future, but almost everyone else’s.


Twilight Hotel (with little comments from the author)

Now, first, I must remind you that I was a young and rather impulsive child at this age. For the story’s sake, do not treat the me in this book as you would treat me if my older and wiser self were making these decisions. What’s that you say? Oh, right, the story. On we go! Wait, what?! There’s barely enough room for me to finish my little comments! The story starts… now! Oh, and if you want the story in wolf language, that can be arranged.*

*Bark howl woof arf howl! Bark arf bark woof arf howl!


Twilight Hotel

(Joyful to say, and also hopefully joyful for you readers, no more serious chapter titles after this.)

Like I said, I had opened the door and was stepping in when I remembered my manners.

“Sorry for trespassing! I hope you will forgive me, and I am returning this map to you, or at least I assume this is yours,” I said (very politely). Windra barked, ruining my charming manner. I dropped the map, and immediately I fell face first into a fluffy bed. “Huh,” I said, and then fell asleep.


In Which I Meet My Friend The Puppy

As soon as I woke up, I surveyed my surroundings. I was in a room full of snow. Strangely, it wasn’t cold at all! In fact, the snow was pretty warm. I stepped in hesitantly, and 45 minutes later, when a puppy stepped in, she found me building a giant snowman that was nine feet and nine inches tall. (We checked.)

“Hello?” she asked. “I am Mocha, your new transportation ride.”

I looked at her, threw a snowball at Windra, then studied her some more. “But you’re smaller than a chair!” I exclaimed, offended.

Who would dare send me a tiny little puppy and pretend that I was smaller than that.

“True,” Mocha said. “But I can grow.”

Then the world (or at least everything within my eyesight) grew big and furry and smelled like dog fur.


In Which I Eat Some Chicken

Aaaahhhh!!!” I yelled as Mocha flung Windra and I onto her back and leaped out the window.

We’re gonna dii-ie, we’re gonna dii-ie! a singsong voice chanted in my head. As we hit the ground, we dissolved into millions of tiny particles and reformed on top of Mr. Tedious’ head. As Mr. Tedious sank through the cloud, yelling at the top of his lungs, we bounced upwards, only because Mr. Tedious has a rather bouncy head. As I grabbed a piece of delicious chicken, I felt a little bad for Mr. Tedious.

“Oops,” said Mocha.


In Which I Eat (And Describe) Chicken and Go to a Palace

As we flapped towards the portal, I munched on the chicken. It was salty and juicy, but a little chewy, too, like how a chicken born in fire would taste: A little crispy on the outside, but soft and buttery on the inside. I was just stuffing the last of the fire chicken in my mouth when we arrived in a palace.


In Which I Meet My Mom

I entered the palace hesitantly, one foot at a time, only me, just me. I had tried to get Windra to come, but the scary guards wouldn’t allow the wolf. My footsteps echoed along the hallway, and Mocha had disappeared to wherever giant dogs spent their free time. I walked at first, but then wonderful aromas wafted down from wherever the hallway led to, and I began to run. Even though I had just had the fire chicken, my stomach still growled. Suddenly, I ran into my mom.


In Which I Eat Some Lunch

“Mom?” I asked, unable to believe it.

“I know, sweetie,” my mom said. “But let’s have lunch first.” She took a sip of the tea.

Why didn’t you tell me about this place; it is so awesome — oh,” I shouted at first, but then I took a sip of the tea. It was like drinking liquid sugar, but with a hint of a creamy spice. It was sticky, yet it slid on my tongue, and soon, my mind began to clear. “Let’s eat first,” I agreed.

A chicken scrambled towards me, balancing a tray of what looked like leafy green vegetables on his head. I took one of the leaves, nibbled on the edge, and immediately my mind exploded. It tasted like someone sprinkled wasabi on it and then poured chocolate milk on the leaf. Brown speckles on the leaf added creamy, salty, bursts that exploded in my mouth.

“Now, by all means, let us talk!” my mom said.


A Face-To-Face Chat

“I knew of this world, but I didn’t tell you because this world would fry a lesser brain like the dragon eggs over there.” She nodded at some purplish-black eggs that I hadn’t seen before. “Obviously I underestimated you. We will be living here from now on.”

“Yeah, okay,” I said. “Can we eat now?”

“Of course!” my mom said, obviously relieved to be freed of the awkward conversation.


In Which I Get Three Awesome Tools and Eat Some More.

I wolfed down two more leaves and grabbed a sparkly brown square from a box labeled Unicorn Creamtoys. I bit into it and blinked. The creamtoy melted in my mouth, but then it reformed back into a square, like it was trying to last as long as it could. I felt a ball pop out of my mouth, and then it filled with a sweet taste that my mouth wanted to dispose of. I spat it out, and it self-cleaned itself. Out of it popped out three things: a belt, a glowing rod, and a bunch of glowing sticks. A voice in my head (because of the creamtoy) said, The belt is a magical thing that allows you to pluck anything you want from its pockets. The rod is stunner that is safer than an electric staff. You can use it to charge the glow-throwers. After that, as I fingered my stuff, I knew this story would have a happily-ever-after.


By The Way

Thank you! Thank you! I don’t have much time, but I just want to say how much I thank India’s mother, Hazel Hollyblade, for cooperating. (Of course, she insisted on her own story, but yeah.)


The Rise of the Evil Enchilada Empire

Once there was an enchilada named Chicken. By the way, his middle name was Pot, and his last name was Pie. He was the meanest enchilada in Enchilada Estate. One day he was walking in the woods and teasing a leaf (that’s what he does to be mean) when he got struck by lightning, and that made him meaner, so he was now Meanachilada. He demanded that he should be Emperilada.

So, Nationwide said, “Yes,” so it was a new rise Eviladas.

And they wanted revenge on leafmanity.

So that was how World War II started.


Pack

Chapter One

I am Storm, a lone she-wolf. I am traveling with my much younger brother, Cloud. Before we talk about anything, let me tell you my backstory.

“Go to sleep, darling,” Lola, my mother, whispered.

“I can’t,” I protested.

“Your brothers can. And you’re much older than them. If they can sleep, so can you,” Lola whispered again.

“Tell me about dad before I do,” I pleaded.

Lola sighed, giving in. “Doobie was a brave wolf. I met him when he was hunting for our pack… ”

“Run! Run! Cloud, run! Storm, where’s Sticks?” Lola yelled.

I woke up with a start. Why was she yelling? Then I saw the golden-red branches that radiated heat. Then I recalled something from Lola’s stories. Fire. The thing that had killed my father, Doobie.

“Run,” Lola repeated.

Then we heard a voice: “Mommy, Mommy, help!”

Then that gray stuff that floated around the sky — smoke, I recalled — cleared, and I saw my brown-gray younger brother who supposingly looked like Doobie.

“Help!” Sticks called, a panicked look on his face.

Lola glanced at me and whispered, “Find Cloud, then run. Please.”

I couldn’t do anything but nod. I ran to the other side of the large cave, which was filled with sickly, small-looking trees that were already catching flames. It was where our pack used to hunt. But now the fire will kill all the prey, probably the hunters, too.

Anyway, as soon as I found my white-furred brother, Cloud, I grabbed him by his neck fur and, against my mother’s will, turned to find her. At last, I saw her. Sticks was in her jaws, and she was trying to run past those evil flickering red branches.

“Leave!” she yelled.

I shook my head. No way was I going to leave her! I took a running leap towards her, trying to push her away from the flames, but it was too late. A large birch tree, perhaps larger than the rest, was staggering down as flames burned away at its roots. The fallen tree landed in front of my mother, startling the somewhat elderly Lola. The grayish-white she-wolf scrambled back, trying to get away from the flames, but she was surrounded.

“Mother! Sticks!” I yelled.

Cloud was trembling by now. I curled my tail around his eyes, which were navy-blue in color, like staring out at a lake at the darkest time of night, so he couldn’t see our mother, well, die. And here I was, unable to help my own family without killing myself.

“Go,” Lola whispered. And I did, though I made the mistake of looking back. The last time I saw my mother was her gazing at me lovingly, with Sticks perched on her head, tiny brown paws on Lola’s ears, grabbing on in any way he could.

That was the last time I saw any of my pack, unless you count Cloud as a pack, but I don’t, so… Oh, and FYI, I don’t react well to pity, so please don’t sympathize with me. That just makes it worse.


Chapter Two

So, now that you know my backstory, it’s best if you know my future — or at least, the future I want. And judging from my luck, this isn’t going to happen. Basically, Lola, Sticks, and the rest of my pack are supposed to be fire-resistant,  then me and Cloud find them, and we all live happily ever after. Like that’s going to happen.

“Hey, Stormy!” That’s Cloud, calling to me. No, my name is not Stormy. It’s Storm. He just adds a “y” to annoy me.

“Yes?” I said.

“I have a brilliant idea!” I was about to say that his version of “brilliant” was about as brilliant as a snail’s brain, but then he said, “Let’s join or create a pack!” and I just stared at him, jaw hanging open that it was even possible for such an annoying, not-so-brilliant wolf to say something so brilliant. Cloud took my mouth’s floor-magnetizing as a bad sign and mumbled, “I mean, we’re just so lonely right now, and I can’t even hunt yet. I mean, your okay, but — ”

He trailed off, and I surprised him and myself by saying, “Cloud, that’s brilliant. Three howls for my brilliant, brilliant brother!”

We did howl, but way more than three times. It’s a wolf habit, howling. I don’t know why, but it just feels… right.

Anyways, that night, as I curled up with Cloud in our den, I wondered, I know getting a pack is a good idea, but is that possible?

So, I said something about my den, so I’m getting the feeling I need to describe the appearance. It’s this small cave with a low, narrow entrance made of thick pure black stone. Tall spruce trees, which my brother calls “Spricey trees,” were littered above our cave, like several stars fell down and became trees. One of those spruce trees must have fallen over, because long branches of dark green hid our cave from sight, like a warning: Do not enter, or us leaves will slive you into shreds and leave your remains so a vulture can eat you.

Yeah, okay, maybe that warning was a bit intense, but whatever. That is what it looked like.

I remembered a brief dream about Cloud and Sticks and I running in the snow, as I taught them how to hunt snow hares before I woke up.

“Cloud,” I yawned once I nudged my brother away, “What you said yesterday, about getting a pack, I was considering it last night.”

“And?” the white wolf pup asked, shaking the sleep from his eyes in a cute-ish way.

I responded with an, “It’s okay,” but Cloud — annoyingly– stared at me with those big, water-during-the-middle-of-the-night eyes, as if he was was repeating the question “And?”

I sighed. Wolf pups tend to have more control over us older wolves, with pure adorability, and it’s so tempting to just say yes, accept anything those pups want to do.

“It’s an idea we can try out, okay? I mean, if we join a pack we don’t like, we can always leave, right? But let’s go get some wolfish friends tomorrow, and play in the mud today, ‘kay? Yes? Good,” I said, just to get his mind of the topic so I could think about it in solitude.

I was right. Cloud’s mind floated away from packs and stuff like a, well, like a cloud.

I splashed around in the mud with Cloud for a bit, changing my fur from silvery-gray, like the moon, to deep, rich brown. Meanwhile, I was thinking, on one paw, Cloud’s right, and we’d be safer in a pack. But on the other paw, wouldn’t taking a pack mean I would be saying that I was done with Lola and my former pack? Ugh, Storm, stop making this decision harder for yourself.

But in the end, I didn’t really make the decision. It turns out it was someone else made the decision for me. He had cornered us while we were walking back to our den.

“Why, hello,” he hissed. “I heard you were looking for a pack. So, would you like to join mine?”


Chapter Three

“Who are you?” I howled, curling my tail protectively around Cloud. The other wolf grinned in amusement at my anger.

I studied him. The wolf looked like an ordinary brown wolf. He was the color of mud, like what we had just rolled in (I double-checked to make sure it was his actual fur color, instead of being mud-covered). He had broad shoulders and his leg muscles — I wasn’t sure I wanted to face those. He had long, sharp, wickedly curved claws that glinted almost as dangerously as his eyes. His eyes, speaking of, were a beady, malicious black balls that glinted with greed. Deep red-pink scars were scattered among his brown pelt. Hmm. I wasn’t sure I should trust this wolf.

“Why, I’m Claw, leader of a pack of wolves. And don’t be scared of me. I only fight to protect my pack.” The strange wolf studied us. “And you don’t seem like much of a threat.”

“Well, he may not be, but I definitely am,” I informed him, pushing Cloud behind my back.

Claw smiled in such an odd way. It seemed more like a smirk.