Short Stories

These are some stories I have written, hope you enjoy!

Beach Buddies

“Bye Beth!” Ruth shouted over the roar of the wind, sticking her head out of the car window. Summer was here but Ruth could still feel that anxious feeling you get right before you take a test in school.

“Bye Ruth!” Beth screamed back as she disappeared from view. Ruth sat down hard in the seat of the blue minivan, crossing her arms and frowning. Today was moving day, the day she had been yelling at her parents about for the last year. All her fourteen years had been spent in Urbandale, Iowa. Ruth’s most cherished memories had been made there. Now that she was moving, for as silly a reason that her oldest brother went to college last year and her parents wanted a smaller house, Ruth realized how perfect her life had been. She was finally fit after years of forcing herself to eat better. Her mother had allowed her to dye her hair red, a form of compensation for the move. Why did we have to leave now, why?! Ruth thought.

“Ruth honey, do you have a seatbelt buckled?” asked Ruth’s mother. She grumbled in response, reaching back to grab the beige seat belt and shifting a huge pile of suitcases over to her other brother’s side of the backseat in order to reach the red buckle.

Ruth stepped out of the car, dribbling her basketball up the driveway to their new house. It had two floors and a giant yard with a huge oak tree looming over yard upon yard of the property. A new basketball hoop had been especially installed just for Ruth and her older brother, Carter. Ruth stared in awe at the sight of the beautiful beige and brown house with stairs outside, zigzagging up to a giant porch on the second floor. She raced up to her new room, noticing the modern kitchen with a bay window as she climbed up the soft, white carpeted staircase. At the top, she took a right, traveling down the hallway and into the third room on the left that had a sign, Ruth, on it in her mother’s pretty handwriting. She dashed inside, dropping her basketball. It was beautiful. The room had a giant, turquoise bed on the right side with a white wood desk at the foot of it. A circle window looked out on the yard where Ruth could see the tree with a… tire swing! Ruth squealed with joy, her hands shaking. The triangular room had a pointed roof and Ruth started to plan out in her head where she would put her beanbag chair. She looked to the left and saw a white door and started to run to it. A huge walk in closet appeared right before her eyes. All her clothes were already unpacked and shelved. Ruth rushed out of her room, peeking inside her brother’s room where he was circling around, staring at the putting green that ran through his rectangular room. She smiled, laughing. Ruth knew how much Carter loved golf ever since he started to play in sixth grade. She scurried to the next and final room, her parents bedroom. They had brought their bed from the herother home and Ruth jumped on it, it smelled like home. Maybe I can make a new identity for myself here, she thought. After all, all my other ones have sucked. Why can’t I just stay with one. I don’t even know who I am! Why do I keep having to make a new identity, why can’t I have my own?

Ruth and Carter had walked from their new house to the beach and were now sun-bathing on their beach towels. Ruth rolled over and lifted up her blue tank top, wanting to tan her stomach. She slid her sunglasses onto her face and held the book Fablehaven over her head. A slightly younger and chubby boy with braces was walking past her towel when he stopped and peered into her brown eyes with his own bright blue ones.

“Hi, my name is Peter! Do you want to dig a hole with me and my friend, Jasmine?” he asked with a slight lisp. Ruth put down her book and rolled her eyes underneath her sunglasses.

“Sure,” she sighed placing her book down on her pink towel. Peter lead Ruth over to a girl with jet black hair and sea green eyes, bent over a deep hole filled with water. Peter brushed back his brown hair with his sandy hands climbed into the hole, scooping out wet sand.

Jasmine looked Ruth up and down and said, “Hey,” in a deep but smooth voice. She looked up at Ruth with almond shaped eyes and straightened out her neon green bikini top then kept on digging.

“Hey, I’m Ruth!” she exclaimed as she sat down on the sand and reached into the ever expanding hole.

Ruth and Peter were laughing. They had buried Jasmine in the hole, giving her a mermaid tail. Ruth ran over to her camp site and grabbed her phone while her brother looked at her quizzically. She snapped pictures of Peter and Jasmine posing in the sand.

“Guys, do you wanna go in the water now? I’m so muddy!” Ruth laughed, looking at her sandy hands.

“Nah,” said Jasmine. “It’s way too cold!”

“Haha, chicken!” yelled Ruth as she sped towards the water, diving into the waves. She swam out past the red balls and stood on a sand bar, waving her arms at Peter and Jasmine. She started to do a chicken dance and laughed, slapping her knee. She dove back into the water and kicked her way to the bottom then pushed off the sandy floor and felt a searing pain as a tail of a fish hit her ankle. Ruth let out her breath then gasped for air, still underwater. Her lungs now filling with lake water, she struggled to the top clawing against the waves. Suddenly, the tide came in and a big wave washed over her and she started to roll farther under the sea. She could feel herself slowly floating to the top and she lashed out her arm, feeling wind running past it.

“Help,” she called softly as the water muffled her scream. She heard a whistle blow and closed her eyes as she sank deeper in the lake.

“Look at her go!” yelled Jasmine as Ruth elegantly swam out into the lake. Peter and Jasmine started to laugh as Ruth did a chicken dance far out in the lake, she was barely a speck. Ruth dove back under the waves and Peter and Jasmine waited for her to resurface.

“Ha!” laughed Jasmine, her body jiggling as she scanning the coastline. “She is probably trying to fake drown or something. That girl is hilarious!” But Peter thought otherwise, She has been down there for a long time, what happened? He saw an arm, Ruth’s, stick out of the water and start thrashing about, but it quickly sank back down.

“Help!” he screamed. “She is drowning, help!” Peter pointed to the spot where he last saw Ruth and ran up to the lifeguard. The lady lifeguard grabbed her red rescue tube and jumped into the water, swimming to where Peter had said. She took a deep breath and dove, bringing Ruth back up with her after a minute or so. The lifeguard swam Ruth back to shore and pumped on her chest, up and down. Ruth spit up water but he eyes would still not open. Carter had rushed over as soon as he saw Peter yelling for help and was now by her side, sobbing and insulting himself about what a horrible brother he was. An ambulance along with Ruth’s parents arrived soon after and Peter could see Ruth’s parents huddling over her, holding up her head. The stretcher was brought down the beach and a nurse lifted Ruth onto it while more water spilled out of her mouth.

Ruth woke up and immediately felt as if her lungs had been crushed and her head had been squashed. The bright lights hurt her eyes and she heard a loud beeping sound from close by. Ruth tried to sit up but couldn’t and so tried to recall what had happened before this. She heard a yelling in her head, it was Peter, screaming for help and before that, Jasmine laughing.

“She is probably trying to fake drown or something!” The phrase Jasmine had said repeated in Ruth’s mind. Is this what people think of me? That I would go so far as to fake drowning just for a laugh? Ruth thought. Then she slowly drifted back to sleep.

“Honey, wake up. Honey please wake up!”

“She was up just one hour ago!” Ruth opened her bleary eyes and saw her parents standing over her as well as Carter and Peter. She looked down to see herself in a hospital gown.

“Where am I?” Ruth asked, though of course she knew where she was, in a hospital, that just sounded like something that people say.

“Ruthy dear, you’re in a hospital. You’ve been sleeping for almost a day.” Ruth sat up and groaned, pushing herself against the pillows. A nurse came in and checked the machines then told Ruth’s visitors that the hours for visiting were almost over.

“In two minutes,” the nurse said, looking at the clock on the wall.

“Can we go home now?” asked Ruth as she sank her head back into the pillow.

“Of course honey. You can go back to the house and enjoy all your new stuff. The moving truck got here just a few…”

“No, Dad. I want to go back to Urbandale. I want to go home!” Ruth practically yelled as she interrupted her dad then fell back asleep, dreaming of the shocked face her dad had worn.

Ruth flopped onto her bed, face down. Her parents had unpacked all of her leftover things while she was at the hospital. Ruth had not talked since she had come home from the hospital two days ago. Her parents noticed how her physical state had healed but her mental state had just broken down. Ruth kept wondering, Why can’t I find a good personality for myself. Who am I? As summer started to draw to a close, Ruth became panicked, not knowing who she was going to be when school started. A letter came in the mail for Ruth, it was Peter’s thirteenth birthday; Ruth had to go. Peter was the one who had seen what Jasmine had not and helped Ruth when she needed it. But as Ruth started to get up and go to the bathroom, she realized what a pain it would be to get ready and to interact with people. Maybe I’ll just take a quick nap, she thought as she went back to her bed.

Ruth woke up in a daze three hours later. The party was in one hour so Ruth dragged herself out of bed and went back to the bathroom. She slowly brushed her teeth, looking at her frizzy hair and dull eyes in the mirror. Even if I do go, she thought. People probably won’t want me there to drag them all down and suck the fun out of everything. Ruth sat down in her fuzzy white beanbag and looked out the window at the tire swing. There was so much to do and so little time to do it in. Ruth texted her mom and told her that she was not going to the party and she layed back onto the beanbag, curled in a ball.

Peter came over to Ruth’s house a few hours after his party had ended, wanting to know why she had not come but dreading the answer. While they were at the beach, Peter had been observing Ruth and it seemed as if she had been very depressed about something big, God knows what. When she almost drowned, was she trying to kill herself and I called for help? What will she say? Peter thought as he knocked on the door of the Diez household, flowers in hand. He smoothed back his slick hair with one hand. Ruth’s mother came to the door and let Peter up to her room where he found her snoozing on a beanbag. Peter took the blanket off her bed and covered her with it, then sat until she woke up. When Ruth did wake up it was around nine o’clock at night and Peter had been in her room for an hour, sitting on her bed and twiddling his thumbs. She sat up and immediately saw him, then rushed into the bathroom across the hall wide eyed, looking at her face in the mirror. Her hair was a mess and her face was pale. She put her hands on her cheeks, letting them slide off and slap down at her sides. She shook her head from side to side and walked confidently back to her room, dressed in her pajamas and slippers. Peter stood up.

“I just want to ask you one thing, were you trying to kill yourself that day at the beach?” Peter asked, his voice shaking as he was obviously afraid of the response he would get. Ruth looked at him, shocked.

“No, a stingray stung me on the ankle. Why would you think that?” Ruth asked, falling down onto the beanbag again. Peter looked about the room embarrassed, his cheeks turning bright red.

“At the beach, you seemed depressed. I know you just moved but that couldn’t have made you that sad, could it?” Peter asked as he placed the flowers he had brought on her desk side table and sat down on the bed once again. Ruth sighed and buried her face in the beanbag. Peter could hear a stifled sob and then full out wailing as Ruth started to weep, coming up for air once in a while. Ruth finally wiped her red and puffy eyes and smacked her chapped lips.

She rubbed tears off her pointed chin then choked out, “I don’t know who I am! I don’t have my own identity, personality. Please help me, please!” Peter opened his mouth and his eyes grew wide, furrowing his brow. How was he supposed to help her, he had only just turned thirteen after all.

Ruth’s mom burst into the room, looking frazzled but shaking her head and quickly recovering.

“Honey, sorry I was eavesdropping but I think I can help you!” her mother exclaimed as she sat down on the beanbag next to Ruth.

“Mom, you don’t understand! I don’t even know who I am anymore!” Ruth sobbed.

“Hear me out Ruthy. It is normal at this age to feel as if you aren’t sure of yourself or don’t know who you are or who you want to be. It is perfectly normal and I can assure you that many other people your age feel the same way!” Ruth sniffled and hugged her mother, crying harder than she had ever before.

Flying Atlantis

Jackie’s best friend, Jeff, stepped up to the plate, brushed his brown hair away from his eyes, and waited for Russell to pitch the softball. Jackie’s other friend, Aubrey, was ready in the hole although Jackie had begged her not to bat. Aubrey was the worst player on the team. They would have gladly traded her for Russell, the best pitcher in the grade, but Noah just had to intervene and pull out his little black book of blackmail, saying he got Russell. This time he used the video clip of Jeff tripping on the chocolate river in our fifth grade rendition of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

“It’s fine if the video leaks, we are freshmen in highschool, after all,” said Jackie.

Jeff retaliated with, “That is the exact reason we can’t let this out! I need to build up my street cred!”

Jeff was one of the jocks of the school, always in one team or the other, obsessed with getting more ‘street credit’. So, the team had Aubrey and were probably going to fail the softball unit in P.E. but then a miracle occurred; Jim sauntered into the gym with his light ocean blue eyes, jet black spiky hair and giant muscles. He brushed Aubrey, who was practically drooling over him, away, taking the bat out of her hand. He stopped and put his leg up against the stone wall of the gym, resting the bat on his propped up knee. He stretched back, clasping both hands together above his head while bending back until they all heard a crack that made even Jackie jump.

Everyone was staring at him until Jeff finally said, “Alright then, we call Jim on our team! Let’s play ball!”

Jim jogged over to the bleachers where Aubrey was now sitting, and started to scooch along towards Jackie.

“He’s mine,” Jackie whispered to Aubrey, pretending to faint; snapping back to see Aubrey’s overly stuffed bra bounce up and down, as it usually did when she was laughing. This made Jeff stare at her as the ball was whipped past him and the umpire called a strike. Jackie quickly realized the problem and signaled another player on ‘Aubrey duty’ who then jumped across Aubrey making Jeff swivel his head around just as Russell pitched the bright yellow ball towards the catcher’s mitt. Jeff was ready and smacked the ball across the room where it hit the backboard of a basketball hoop and fell in.

Jim, who had not said a word the entire time, pulled Jackie’s chubby face into his hands and kissed her, making her chin crinkle and the coach erupt into a yelling fit. The coach was a stout man who always wore sparkly jean shorts and a filthy, stained white t-shirt. He blew his whistle right in Jackie’s ear, spit flying. She pulled away from Jim and smacked the coach in his tomato red face, leaving a white hand mark. The coach sputtered, the whistle falling out of his gaping mouth to swing around his fat neck as Jim grinned at Jackie, pulling her back into his arms. Thus, Jim and Jackie failed softball.

Jeff, Jim and Jackie walked back to Jackie’s house across the street. As they were walking in the bland, concrete school parking lot, Jackie stopped dead in her tracks. A dark purple fire hydrant Jackie had never seen before caught her eye. She liked the way it stood out, like she did. It was unique so she called Jim and Jeff over. “Hey guys! Come over here, look at this!”

“What’s up Jackie?” said Jeff as he jogged over with Jim followed close behind.

“It’s this fire hydrant. Doesn’t it look weird?” she asked.

“It’s purple,” said Jim in his kind and low voice. Jackie examined the fire hydrant and realized that a thin, white string was tied around it. She followed the string with her eyes and saw a lavender hot air balloon floating over the hydrant!

Jackie pointed and said, “Guys, look!”

Jackie thought, That is so odd. What would a hot air balloon be doing in the school parking lot? Then, a devilish grin spread across her face as Jim thought, Someone’s going to get in trouble today! She told her friends her new idea as they started to walking to her house.

At Jackie’s house, Jeff started to raid her refrigerator and pantry, bagging all the goods in a giant garbage bag Jackie had given him. Suddenly, Jackie’s mom stormed in through the back door. Jeff hid the garbage can behind his back and Jim went into the bathroom, shutting the door.

She was on the phone but said hold then shouted, “Jaclyn Bryn Green, you failed gym!”

“Well actually mom I only failed softb… ,” started Jackie before her mother interrupted her.

“You slapped Mr. Fosser!”

“But, mom, he… ,”

“You are grounded!”

“But mom thats… ,” Jackie tried to fit in before her mom went on with her rant.

“No, Jackie.” Her mom sighed as she lifted the phone back to her ear and started to parade Jackie up to her room.

Jackie ripped away from her mother’s grasp on her shoulders, shouting, “Run for it!” Jeff ran after Jackie and Jim burst through the bathroom door, racing outside.

Jackie sprinted toward the front door, behind her, Jeff was shouting, “Bye Mrs. Green, thank you for the food!”

“Why didn’t you run that fast when you were in gym?” Jackie’s mother screamed after her. Mrs. Green strolled over to the refrigerator door to close it and saw what remained of its contents.

Once the three friends arrived at the purple fire hydrant and matching hot air balloon, Jackie explained her plan in full detail, “We scale the rope and just drift up there for the weekend. Who knows? Maybe we might find something cool!”

“Alright,” said Jeff. “Just as long as I get back before hockey tryouts.”

“Okay,” said Jackie, looking back across the street to see if her mom had followed her. There she was, rushing down the street, just a couple yards away.

“Jim, what about you? It’ll be the chance of a lifetime!” said Jackie persuasively.

“Okay, fine,” replied Jim. “Just as long as I’m with you.”

“Aw, thanks but we really don’t have time for that right now. Hurry up the rope!” said Jackie, glancing back at her mom, now only feet away.

She could hear her calling, “Jaclyn, Jaclyn!” Jackie hopped up and down in anticipation.

“Go, go, go!” she said. Finally it was her turn.

Okay upper body strength, don’t fail me now! she thought. Jackie climbed on top of the fire hydrant, bumping her chin on the on the way. A glow started to surround the hydrant. Out of the bottom of the balloon fell a swinging rope ladder. Why couldn’t this have come out sooner? Jackie thought  as she grabbed on, not seeing the now vibrant, glowing purple fire hydrant and not realizing that her chin had been the cause of it’s supernatural behavior.

The basket was a lot bigger than Jackie had originally thought. It had two beanbags, one yellow and one teal, diagonal to each other. Jackie plopped down in one of the beanbags after her vigorous climb up the ladder.

“Cut the string! Lets fly!” said Jackie, happily.

Jim took out his swiss army knife and cut the thread that had been confusingly keeping the balloon from floating away and holding Jim and Jeff as they had ascended to the basket. Jim also pulled up the rope ladder. Jackie got up and looked over the side of the basket, holding onto the wicker rail. Her mother was staring, wide-mouthed, at the spot where Jackie had been just a few minutes ago. Jackie tried to bend over to see the hydrant far below but it was still directly under them. Why hasn’t the balloon moved yet? Jackie thought and by the looks on the other’s face, they had been thinking it too. Jackie held her finger up to the sky and felt wind brushing past it. How peculiar! she thought. As Jackie lowered herself down onto the beanbag again, her chin hit hit the rail and she started to rub it thinking, I have been hitting my chin a lot today! As soon as Jackie’s butt hit the beanbag, she was jolted to the floor. “The balloon’s moving!” shouted Jeff. This triggered a sad thought from Jackie, I’m moving too.

A few hours after they had set off, almost half of their food supply had been exhausted. Jim stood up, looked at the direction in which we were headed and said, “A storm’s coming!” Jackie then stood up and looked.

“That’s not a storm.” Jackie scoffed. “It looks like a building of some kind, floating in the air,” she said, realizing how dumb she sounded.

“No, Jackie, are you crazy? That definitely looks like a storm,” said Jeff.

“Well, we can’t exactly do anything about it, unless one of you knows how to fly these things!” said Jackie. Jim and Jeff started to panic making a ‘shelter’ with the beanbags and the now empty garbage bag. Jackie reached out her hand and touched a hard, granite surface.

“Guys, I told you it was a building! Feel it!” she shouted, but Jeff was running in circles around the basket and Jim was sitting down on the floor, holding his knees and rocking to and fro.

Suddenly, the fire blowing into the balloon went out, and the wicker basket started to drift slowly down. The basket settled, the balloon falling down on top of it. Jackie pushed the rough balloon shell out of her face and stepped out. “No, Jackie, don’t, you’ll fall!” Jeff said as Jackie put her feet down. Jim rushed over to the rail, looked down, and gasped, “She is standing in the storm!”

“No, I’m not!” exclaimed Jackie.

She started to walk along a sidewalk, her flip flops slapping down on the gray concrete. The long path was a circle, surrounding the building like the rings of Saturn. Jeff stepped gingerly down onto the path and started to sway side to side, as if testing the balance. A loud groaning sound came rattling into their heads. Jackie spun around, seeing a giant granite table top being lowered slowly down to the sidewalk. Jackie heard a creaking sound as the chain holding the ‘drawbridge’ was let out of their hole in the wall, water and flopping fish pouring out with the chains. Jim peeked his head out of the covered basket, wondering what all the commotion was about, and stared at the now grounded slab of gray granite.

“I told you it was a building! And it’s name is… ,” Jackie turned around to face the name of the building engraved in the light green granite doors. “Atlantis?”

Jeff, Jackie and Jim went inside to investigate.

“Hello?” Jackie called out as a light shined down on her, illuminating, very dimly, the center of the large and empty room in which they were standing.

Jim clapped his hand over her mouth, whispering to be quiet. Out of the corner emerged something that looked alien. It had a green, shiny oval for a body and two skinny legs with feet that only had three long, webbed toes sticking out of a blue coverall. It is dressed like a minion! thought Jackie. The thing’s yellow, cat-like eyes looked at the three of them. It’s dry, giant lips parted and Jackie saw inside it’s mouth to a large blue tongue. He spoke in a language that sounded like a platypus purring.

“What is he saying?” Jackie said to Jeff and Jim, looking at them each in turn with a curious look on her face.

The thing now spoke in English saying, “Welcome to Atlantis!” in a booming voice that made all of them jump. “My name in your language is Minho. This is my colleague Tunha.”

Jackie and Jim turned to look and saw a dark green figure step up next to Minho as Jim still stared at the first alien.

“We are the natives of Atlantis and have been enslaved… ,” Tunha stepped on Minho’s foot, as if warning him. “I mean, we have been hired to serve the great masters and do their bidding. We welcome visitors but you must leave soon, as something very important is to take place in two days and no outsiders are allowed. Now let us show you to the guest bedroom and we will… ,”

“Wait, hold up a second. I have a lot of questions,” said Jackie.

“All which will be answered tomorrow.”

“Okay, just one. Answer one question for me now.”

“Oh, alright.”

“I thought Atlantis was supposed to be underwater.”

“Oh yes, it was until a few years ago when the masters brought it up here so they could breathe. Although we can’t breathe very well here. But we manage because the clouds always contain water. Now, you really must go to bed!”

As soon as Jackie lay down next to Jim, who was in the middle of the threesome, she heard whispering coming from just outside the old fashioned room. As the shadows of the fireplace licked the walls, Jackie crept out of bed, tripping on the oriental rug. Jackie peaked her head out under the large space between the door and the floor, like a bathroom stall. It was Minho and Tunha talking to each other. They hadn’t noticed her so she continued to eavesdrop.

“The sword along with the crown is supposed to be deported!” sobbed Minho. “They blame us for the balloon. How would we know some teenagers would take it? We need to send another right away to pick up the buyer, and this time, the masters said they would go along. I can’t believe they are selling our most ancient and valuable items!”

“The masters have been more than kind to us, this is the least we could do!” retorted Tunha.

“You have fallen under their curse!”

“Don’t you dare talk about the masters like that!” said Tunha, assuming an authoritative air.

“I will keep resisting, even though you have given in.” sighed Minho, suddenly seeming tired. “I will go get the items ready for travel.”

“You should be grateful I don’t report you, a rebel, to the masters.”

Jackie slipped back under the door and shook both Jim and Jeff awake. “What happened!” said Jeff, swinging his arms about blindly.

“Sh!” said Jackie as a spark lit up her green eyes. “We are going on a little adventure.”

“Like the one that got us into this mess in the first place!” said Jim harshly.

Jackie recoiled and said with attitude, “Fine, I’ll go by myself.”

“Wait up, Jackie!” called Jeff as he jumped out of bed and pulled on his sweatshirt.

Jim had fallen back asleep and was snoring softly. Jackie and Jeff tiptoed down the long hallway, the green walls cold to the touch and the carpet an eyesore, but soft on their bare feet. Jackie followed the distant figure of Minho while Jeff followed her. After a few minutes traveling down the seemingly never-ending hallway, Minho turned right into a doorway. Jackie and Jeff went inside as well. The carpet was gone and the room was pitch black. The cement floor was cold.

Jeff paused and whispered, “Where are we?”

Jackie was about to answer when a loud voice boomed, “Who dare enter the sacred treasury room?”

A cage slammed down around Jackie and she reached through the bars, toward Jeff.

He seemed scared. “I’ll go to get help!” he shouted over the now blaring alarms, rushing back down the hall.

Jackie was afraid. It seemed the masters, whoever they are, were very mean and not forgiving. The red glow from the alarms lit up the entire room and Jackie saw a form, Minho, gasp, his giant mouth opening even more.

“It was darker in the other room, I did not realize… ,” he said. Minho walked up and touched Jackie on the chin crying out, “You are one of them!”

He immediately unlatched the cage door and shut off the alarms, bowing, clasping his hands together in an act of mercy. “Please, spare me! I did not know!”

“What are you talking about?” asked Jackie, now thoroughly confused, but pleased.

“You have the mark of a master,” explained Minho. “But you seem more forgiving, it must be because you are younger.”

“I have the mark of a mas… ,” Jackie touched her butt chin.

She had never really thought about this difference of hers that much. She gasped and remembered, Both times I bumped my chin, it made something happen!

“What does this mean?”

“It means you are the heir of Atlantis!”

“How, I don’t even know who the masters are.”

“Tomorrow you will meet them,” said Minho, now excited.

Jackie stepped out of the cage and Minho jumped up, as if he had an idea.

“One minute!” Minho sped to the back of the room where Jackie now realized was a wooden door. He unlocked it and brought out a glittering, green jeweled crown and a gold sword with a black handle and a green sheath. Minho placed the crown on Jackie’s trembling head and gave the sword along with the sheath to her. He bowed deeply and at that moment, Jeff and Jim burst through the doorway.

Jim stared at Jackie as if he had never seen anyone so beautiful. “Wha-wha what… ,” he stuttered.

Jeff stared with a blank face at the unlocked cage and thought, First we find the hidden city of Atlantis and it’s contents and now Jackie is handling a sword. This must be a dream, it has to be! This is not real! But the more Jeff tried to convince himself that none of this could be true, the more the cold reality of it slapped him.

“We are leaving now!” said Jeff uneasily. He tugged Jim’s collar and grabbed Jackie by the wrist, disturbing Minho’s loving stare.

“No!” said Jackie, breaking away. “I have to stay here and help these people! I must defeat their evil masters!”

Minho clapped and Jackie stood up straight, puffing out her chest.

“Are you crazy!” said Jeff with a wild look in his eyes.

“No, I’m not. I am the heir of Atlantis and I do not like how my people are being treated!”

“Your people? You mean these talking fish heads? These are not your people! They aren’t even real because I am dreaming right now. You are not staying here! We will be back in the room,” said Jeff, gesturing between him and Jim.

“Let Jim speak for himself,” said Jackie softly, looking Jim with her hurt, green eyes, begging him to stay with her.

Jim looked up and squinted at Jackie. She could see he was scared, silently pleading her to just give him, not make him choose. But Jackie stood strong, finding a devotion to these people, to give them a right to their own home.

“Well, Jim,” she said. “It is clear tha… ,” Jim interrupted her.

“It is clear that I am staying with you.”

Jeff’s mouth was hanging open and his shoulders were hunched. His brown, almost black, eyes were moving from Jackie to Jim, like he was watching a ping-pong game. Then he cleared his throat, straightened up and stomped out of the room, his feet slamming down on the hard cement floor. Jim and Jackie were staring at each other lovingly.

“Sorry to interrupt,” said Minho. “But the masters are leaving tomorrow to go pick up the buyer and sell him these things which I have now bestowed to you. He would have been here by now if you had not come to us, which I now see as a gift, the key to… ,” Minho rambled on.

“Ya, ya, ya, blah, blah, blah. I’m awesome gift given to you by God and all that,” Jackie said, rolling her eyes. “But the main problem I see right now is defeating your masters. When did you they were going to leave?”

“In two… ,”Minho started to say, then looked at a small clock he had pulled out of the front pocket of his overalls said, “I mean one whole day.”

“Just to clarify, by ‘defeat the masters’ you mean put in some kind of magical Atlantis jail, right?”

Minho shook his body, not having a head to shake. “No, you must kill them, only then will the curse that has been put on all of Atlantis be broken.”

“Alright then,” said Jackie. “We better get some sleep then, and rest up for the big ‘duel’,” said Jackie, laughing; but Minho looked so serious.

As Minho lead Jackie and Jim back to the room he asked, “What of the other, I think I heard you call him, Jeff? Shall I send a balloon for him?”

“Yep,” said Jeff as he stepped away from the wall he had been sitting against. Jackie jumped then said, “Oh, thank God, it’s just you.”

“Yeah, it’s just me. Are you sure you really want to go through with this?” Jeff asked. Jackie nodded her head sadly but vigorously. “Okay, then. Bye, I guess.” Jeff pulled Jackie and Jim into a tight hug, looking at his friends one more time, maybe for the last time ever.

As Jackie lay in bed, she wondered what would become of her the next day. She was scared. She also thought about why Jim had stayed. She felt so confused and wanted to be back at home again. But she also felt an obligation to help these people, after all, she was wearing their crown.

In the morning, Minho came into Jim and Jackie’s room, shaking them to wake up. They awoke and Jackie sat up, rubbing her eyes. She felt to the top of her head, feeling the crown still sitting in her tangled, messy hair. In fact, it had felt as though it had grown into the roots of her hair. Jackie tried to yank it off and found she could not.

She almost started to scream but Minho, sensing her confusion said, “The crown is supposed to do that. Just say ‘I don’t want you anymore’ and it will come off.”

“I don’t… ,” Jackie started to say but Minho interrupted her.

“Wait!” he cried. “It also means you give up your position as heir to the throne of Atlantis.”

Jackie thought about what it meant to have the crown. She also remembered the promise she had made to Minho. She couldn’t give up now. She decided to keep the crown on and started to get dressed in the antique closet, putting the sheath containing the sword on her belt. By the time Jackie and Jim had finished getting ready, they were starved. Minho produced two granola bars from his pocket and looked at the time. They had fourteen hours to defeat the masters. Minho had to attend a meeting where the masters passed out the chores to be done.

“Even the children have to go! The children of Atlantis had not gone to school since the masters took over. The entire Atlantis economy has been destroyed! The masters don’t pay us for the work we do for them, they give us food instead. Last week, little Trohut got sick and didn’t get food for two days, but I snuck him some of mine,” said Minho as he explained what the meetings were for. He insisted on not leaving them alone and decided to bring them with him to the meeting, hiding them somewhere in the grand hall.

Jackie and Jim walked to the left, away from the room they had been in the night before and back toward the bare entrance hall. Minho had told them to walk out a few minutes after him and find a place to hide in the enormous room. Once they arrived, Jackie and Jim saw the entire hall in all of it’s glory. The night before it had been very dark except for the one spotlight that had been trained on them. There were white pillars all along the edge of the room except where the large granite doors stood. The walls were pure green emerald but were not smooth and jutted out in several places. Jackie and Jim hurriedly crept behind one of the large, square pillars. The ‘meeting’ began but all Jackie and Jim could see were the creatures of Atlantis all lined up to get sheets of paper from Tunha, who was obviously in charge. Minho sat next to him, glaring. Then Jackie caught a glimpse of one of the masters. It looked as if the throne she sat upon had been wheeled into the room as it was very large, red, and had not been there the night before.

“Grandma?” whispered Jackie.

After the meeting was over, Jackie had seen enough and now was sure, her grandparents were the ‘evil’ masters of Atlantis. Jackie could not believe it was them, her grandparents! They seemed so, well, nice and they loved her so much! How could she kill them? How could they be evil? How could they be her grandparents? Jackie thought back on the few times she had been allowed to see her father’s parents. The very first time was when she was very young, at her father’s funeral. They had been among the mourners and Jackie had thought they had very big heads because they both wore such big hats. They must have been wearing the crowns, she thought. The next time she saw them were a couple years later on her tenth birthday.

“Double digits,” they had said while giving her a huge dollhouse. “We are so proud of you!”

That time too, they had been wearing what looked like especially made party hats. The last time she had seen her grandparents was when her mom lost her job, enabling her brother to not be able to attend college. They had given her mother a huge sum of money to be able to start up a new business. They had always been so very kind and they were the last living connections she had to her father. How could she kill them? She would feel so guilty, it would haunt her the rest of her life. She finally decided to confront her grandparents, asking them once and for all if they were the evil people Minho had made them out to be. Jackie started to wonder if she had put her trust in the wrong person.

After everybody in the meeting room was dismissed except Minho and Tunha, Jackie told Jim about all she had thought and he agreed wholeheartedly with her plan.

Jackie stepped out from behind the pillar and said, “Hello Grandma and Grandpa!” They turned away from their conversation with Tunha and Minho, looking utterly shocked. Jackie summoned all her courage saying, “Just tell me one thing, are you the ‘so called’ evil masters that put a curse on Atlantis?”

“Well honey,” started Jackie’s grandma in her British accent. “It is really hard to explain, it goes back generations and… ,”

“Are you or are you not selling the Atlantis native’s most valuable items?” interrupted Jackie boldly, pointing to her head and sword as Jim came to stand next to her.

“We are but… ,”

“Did you put a curse on these people?” asked Jackie, gesturing towards Minho and Tunha.

“Yes, but Jackie, you don’t understand…” That was enough to put Jackie over the edge.

“That’s it! You will take off the crowns now, or I will take them off myself,” said Jackie, putting a finger to her throat and dragging it across in a slicing motion. Jackie was trying to be brave, trying to show her grandparents she wasn’t afraid to kill them when really she was frightened. Jackie hadn’t thought about it until now but she had never killed anyone, and wasn’t planning to, ever. Her thoughts were interrupted when her grandmother spoke.

“Never.” Her eyes were turning red and her voice lowering.

Jackie charged at her grandmother. She unsheathed the Sword of Atlantis and brought it driving straight for her grandmother’s heart. Before Jackie could reach her, Tunha jumped in front of the her, Jackie’s sword going straight through him. But Jackie continued onward, the lifeless body of Tunha sliding down the shaft of her sword. Jackie’s grandmother had crossed her arms, obviously expecting Minho to sacrifice his life too. But Minho just stood there, watching eagerly as Jackie carried on, running at her grandmother. At the last moment, Jackie’s grandma disappeared in a burst of black smoke, ashes falling to the ground. Jackie turned around and there was her grandma, holding Jim by the neck, choking him to death. Jackie knew she would not get their fast enough, but she charged to the other end of the room, shrieking a battle cry. As she neared her grandmother, Jackie could see in slow motion as the body of Jim dropped to the ground and crumpled. She kneeled next to him, putting her sword down she she felt his pulse and, doing the reasonable thing, administered CPR.

It wasn’t working and she felt hot tears streaming down her face as she cradled his head in her lap begging him, “Please wake up, please.”

As she was holding him, her grandpa had snuck up behind her and was now holding the Sword of Atlantis over his head, ready to strike. Jackie saw his shadow before her and turned, looking at his dark face with her soft, green eyes, kneeling before him, whimpering like an injured puppy. His face softened, the red of his eyes vanishing.

He sat down and whispered, “Please, before he gains control again. Please kill me now.” He handed her the sword. Jackie hesitated, it seemed her grandfather was okay! He had said a devil, or some kind of creature had taken over her grandparents bodies. She thought hard about what she could do to banish the creature. Her grandfather’s eyes started to regain their glow. Jackie started to sob, she had not come up with an idea. She started to look about the room, seeking help. Her grandfather was now slowly standing back up and reaching for the sword. Fast as lighting, Jackie fumbled for the blade and she stabbed it through his heart. He slumped, smiled and said, “I love you, honey. Now go relieve your grandma from her suffering.” His eyes started to flutter and he bent over the sword shaft.

As his eyes closed, a single tear more rolled down his cheek and she whispered, “I love you too.”

Jackie, trying to fulfill her grandfather’s last dying wish got up, wiping away the tears streaming down her chubby face and again and walked, tired out, toward her grandmother.

She took a deep breath and said, “Your husband’s last dying wish was that you would never suffer again. I am here to do his bidding.”

Jackie slowly looked up at her devilish grandmother. She now towered over Jackie, looking down at her with frizzled hair and glowing red eyes. Jackie raised her sword and her grandmother reached out and grabbed hold of her neck, lifting her off the ground. Jackie dug deep inside of herself and with one last effort brought her elbow back and jabbed the sword into her grandmother thigh, making her howl and let go of Jackie. Then Jackie, with one slash, beheaded her grandmother, her head falling to the ground as her body fell beside it. Jackie suddenly felt a weight on her like she had never felt before and she fell to the ground, her head bouncing on the tiled floor.

Jackie woke up. The events of the day before made her want to fall back asleep. She looked to her side, hoping to see Jim there, sleeping peacefully, but only saw the blue sheet of the bed. She rubbed her forehead and sat up. Minho was staring at her. She screamed very loudly, forgetting how creepy he looked with his giant yellow eyes and turquoise body with matching, chapped lips.  She looked to her other side and saw thousands of creatures, just like Minho, lined up outside her doorway. They all came in one by one and introduced themselves, thanking her for freeing them from the curse. After all of them had gone, they looked at her expectantly.

“You are the new master,” explained Minho. “Tell them what to do!”

Jackie looked from him to the others and said, “I declare Atlantis a democracy. Everyone gets to vote for the leader of their choosing!”

“Yes, we know the ways of you humans,” said Minho. “But you are still the master until you take off the crown and since you are the last of your line, if you do, Atlantis will be free forever!”

“Well then,” said Jackie. “I don’t want you anymore.” She pulled off the crown and placed it into Minho’s hands. Everybody cheered, pumping their hands in the air.

Jackie arrived home. She could hardly believe she had been gone for just three days. She walked away from the purple fire hydrant, towards her house. Once she opened the front door, her mother, who looked as if she had been crying, was sleeping on the couch. Jackie crept up the stairs, hearing every creak of the wood. She then rushed into her room and let out her breath, not realizing that she had been holding it. Wow, she thought. I saved Atlantis and killed my grandparents. Jim is dead. Jim is… Jackie choked out a sob and started to cry, breathing heavily. How can he be… Jackie could hardly say the word, much less think it. How am I going to tell Jim’s parents? That he died in a fight against my evil grandparents at Atlantis?

Then Jackie realized that she had never even met Jim’s parents. He never really told her about his family, or where he lived, at all. Jackie called Jeff upon the phone.

“Oh, thank God, Jackie!” he groaned. “I am coming over right now to see you and Jim!”

Jackie told Jeff with a straight face and a montone that her grandmother had killed Jim. “Oh God, Jeff, how am I going to tell his family?” cried Jackie, now wailing.

“Oh gosh, Jackie. You didn’t know?” asked Jeff, pretending he wasn’t crying over the loss of his dear friend. “Jim lived in a homeless shelter, he didn’t have any family.” Jackie, shocked by the information, lay down on her bed, whispering, “Please come over now.”

Once Jeff arrived, Jackie was fast asleep. He didn’t want to wake her, so he climbed into her bed and lay down next to her, thinking how Jackie felt and what exactly had happened at Atlantis after he had left.


Jackie, years ago, had decided not to tell a soul, besides Jeff, about what had happened that night at Atlantis. She didn’t tell her mother and said she had gone to a friend’s house, in a hot air balloon that she rented, to calm herself down. Her mother had looked at her, scratching her head, then sighed and shook her head, not entirely believing her story but not finding any other explanation. Jackie did not want anyone to know that if you happened to stumble upon the flying Atlantis, all you would have to do is put on a crown and you would be ruler of all it’s people.

Jackie had moved from Illinois to Wisconsin after that year in high school and having to tell Jeff, after all they had been through together, was the worst. Now, though, Jackie didn’t have to spend a moment away from Jeff, except when he went to work. They had three children named Minho, Jim and Sabrina. They were all going into first grade this year, ready to tell their classmates about all the crazy stories their mom and dad had told them about an Atlantis in the sky. Every day Jackie had wondered what would have become of her life if Jim were still alive, but she had decided that nothing could make her want to leave her life now.

Henry and Lillian


Henry stepped into his office and hung his brown jacket on the coat rack along with his black bowler hat. He looked out the window as he plopped down at his wooden desk, seeing the large Porter Dimlin sign and sighing. He, along with the other co-owner, Charles Dimlin, had built this oil company from the ground up. It had turned into a very successful business and Henry, a very wealthy man. Henry swivelled his head and looked through the doorway into a room full of salesmen getting ready to go out for the day. He would have to stay here, like he did everyday, and record sales and deliveries. Henry then thought, Stay focused! You know why you are here, to make a living for your family! Henry had a wife, Lillian, at home and two darling boys, George and William. Just then his thoughts were interrupted when a man, Charles, strode through the doorway.

“Good morning, Charles!” Henry exclaimed as he struggled to get out of his seat and go greet his friend.

“Hello Henry,” said Charles passively, caught up in his own thoughts. “Have you heard of the new British passenger liner, the Titanic, I think they called it.” The tall and lean form of Charles was now hunching over and picking at his fingernails, not making eye contact. How very rude! thought Henry as he leaned on the edge of his desk.

“Why, yes, I have heard of that. I suspect it is supposed to come here to Southampton to start it’s maiden voyage, correct?” Charles now looked up at Henry and sniffed, pushing his tinted spectacles up his very large nose as Henry thought, Charles can be a tad bit annoying, can’t he. Henry went to go sit down again, tapping his foot to the floor in a rhythmic way. As Henry waited for Charles to answer, for, he could be a bit slow at times, he dreamed of all the fun and adventure he could have on a boat like the Titanic.

“Well, I have just received a telegram that there might be an opportunity to dig for oil in New York City in the United States. I am going to send you and James Welward to the U.S. to seal the deal.” Charles was the head of communications. Henry thanked him and Charles promptly left to tell James of the news. Wow, Henry thought as he turned to his work, bending over his tubby stomach. A trip across the North Atlantic, this ought to be interesting.

“Lillian dear, I’m home!” called Henry as he burst through the door, swinging his arms about wildly. His face spelled happiness as he marched into the kitchen, his feet echoing about the decorated marble entrance hall.

“What are you so excited about?” asked Lillian shrilly as Henry threw his coat and hat onto the granite tabletop. He tried to slide onto the gray turning chair, like those you would find at the bar of a restaurant, but fell off and onto the floor. He rolled on his back until he finally managed to do a situp. He then straightened his suit and sat down hard on the chair, not wanting it to go awry.

“I am to board the Titanic in two days!” Henry finally managed to spit out excitedly. Lillian put a pot on the fire and started to prepare tea for herself. Henry stared at her, waiting for her to talk and have preferably the same reaction he had.

“Go tell Mary to pack your things. I am so happy for you, sweetheart,” Lillian said, grinding her teeth. Henry thought he had saw a flash of fear wash across Lillian’s face.

Suddenly, Lillian’s mind flashed back in time. She was at a party and Henry was by her side as they walked in, surveying the scenery. Henry stepped away from Lillian, going to introduce himself. He kissed a young lady on the hand, Lillian saw his lips linger and his eyes meet her’s, the girl giggled. Then, Henry was swept away as another woman pulled him onto the dance floor. Lillian laughed, pushing her way through the crowd to get to her husband, go dancing with him. Once she got to him though, he was pulled aside, away from Lillian again. She frowned, furrowing her brow. A few hours later, she went looking for Henry, it was time for dinner. Lillian spotted him in a dark corner, surrounded by giggling young girls, admiring his gold watch.

Lillian blinked and she locked her jaw, adjusting her eyes. She smiled sweetly, taking a sip of her scolding hot tea, and Henry grinned back, bounding up the stairs like a little boy running to an ice cream truck. He raced around the corner, sliding into his and Lillian’s room and falling onto the gray bedsheet. Mary came around, pushing a little plastic cart with all her cleaning supplies on it.

“Mary, pack my things. I am going on the Titanic!” squealed Henry. Mary saluted, as Henry had told her to do whenever he gave her an order. She pushed her cart to the next room shared by George and William. Mary started to polish the silver telescope the boys always fought over and heard Henry bouncing on the bed. She grinned and thought, Why, I might just have found myself a house to keep.


Lillian picked up her skirts and climbed the wood stairs, her feet clopping down hard, even in her gray flats. She had just said farewell to her dear husband Henry, he was going on the Titanic for business. Lillian had thought about trying to talk her husband out of it but he had seemed so happy and his work had been so slow for him lately. She would have felt guilty if she had kept him here just so she could keep an eye on him, for, he could be very unloyal and Lillian herself felt very tired. She took off her big hat and plucked out the feather stuck in place in the fold, fanning herself. Lillian lay down on the bed she and Henry shared.

“Mary, will you please find Gerald and Anna and bring them, as well as yourself, in here.” Mary knew what this meant, Miss Lillian was in one of her sickly states again. She rushed downstairs, calling out, “Cook, Anna, Miss Lillian needs you!” Gerald, also known as Cook, lumbered out of the kitchen in his white apron and hat. Anna scurried to Mary’s side and out of the playroom, pulling her black and white dress, the same that Mary wore, farther down. Mary marched the staff upstairs, into Lillian’s room. Lillian sat up, her blue eyes were wide. Then she started to cough and ended up hacking. She pulled her arm away and showed it to Mary, there was blood all over the rough brown sleeve. Cook and Mary exchanged looks.

“She can’t recover from tuberculosis, can she?” Mary asked, practically mouthing to Cook. Cook glanced over at Miss Lillian who was in the middle of a coughing fit.

“It’s not likely she will,” he said, frowning. Lillian was starting to get scared. She had gotten sick a lot, but not this sick. She saw out of the corner of her eye the staff, looking at each other, whispering, tuberculosis. Lillian saw dark spots and fainted, falling against the pillows, pushing the air out of them.


Henry had boarded the boat, strolling up the long wooden plank, tapping against it to the tune of his favorite song, “Angel Eyes”, with his curved cane. Gerald had come with him so that he could put Henry’s luggage in the room, holding the two giant suitcases Mary had packed. Henry looked at the little white slip of paper Charles had given him, he was in room 308, one of the suites. He was to share this room with Mr. Welward as the total sum of money to be on this ship was an astounding $4,350. He had Gerald carry his things to his room and started to roam about the ship, looking at all the interesting passengers and trying to find Jack. When he couldn’t, he went back to his suite, dismissing Gerald. As Cook strolled back down towards the dock, he thought, I hope Mr. Porter does okay ‘cause I have a bad feeling about this trip.

That night, as Henry was getting ready for dinner, someone knocked on the door.

“Come in,” Henry called over his shoulder as he straightened his tie and combed back his slick brown hair. He heard a muffled voice, sighed, and strode over to the door, turning the brass knob. A man fell to his knees, his luggage spilling out onto the floor. He panted on all fours like a dog then sat back onto his knees and stuck out a hand.

“Hello! My name is James Welward. You must be Henry Porter, a pleasure to meet you!” exclaimed James in his thick, Italian, accent. Henry shook the man’s hand, looking into his tan face and meeting James’s chocolate brown eyes with his own bright blue ones.

“Thank you! I am pleased to, uh, meet you too!” Henry laughed, eyeing the mess on the floor. He bent over to help the young man up. James jumped off the floor, pulling a comb out of his coat pocket and brushing his black hair to the side of his head. He then twisted the ends of his thick mustache, making them twirl up. Henry rubbed his stubble and told James he was just about to go dine, asking if he wanted to join. James looked about the room, starting to pick his things up.

“I would love to join you, Mr. Porter! But I am afraid I will have to set things straight here first.” he said as he squatted to pick up one of his shirts.

At six o’clock, dinner started and Henry sat down in one of the armchairs surrounding the table at À la Carte with some people he found interesting. He ordered the roasted duckling, his favorite, and received the fine food, eating from china emblazoned with the White Star Line logo. Suddenly, the curtain at the front of the dining room opened and a hush fell over the crowd as a beautiful woman with platinum blonde hair and bright green, seemingly innocent eyes, emerged from the red cloth. Henry sat up and stared at the woman with her black eyeshadow and bright pink lips, a real looker.

Henry was at a party, Lillian by his side. They strolled in and Henry scoped out a dance partner. He sauntered over to her, kissing her soft hand and meeting her eyes. Suddenly, he was pulled away and started to dance with another lovely lady. He was having so much fun! Henry switched partners, seeing his wife among the throng of people. He tried to wave but when he looked back, she had vanished. Later that night, Henry was crowded by a group of laughing girls in the corner. They all thought he was so mature with his gold watch. What a good night that was, I just wish Lillian would enjoy things like that as much as I do. I wonder if I married the wrong type of person, he thought as the woman in front of him started to speak.

“Hello, my name is Pinky and I’m here to charm you,” said the performer in a soothing voice, giggling at the end of her sentences. She turned and shook the pink feathers that were attached to her sparkly pink unitard. Henry practically swooned. Pinky sang and danced and at the end of it all, Henry sauntered over to the back of the stage, mindlessly flirting. By the end of the night, Pinky had convinced Henry to come back to her room. She grabbed Henry by the tie and lead him up the stairs. He was smitten for the performer. He kept telling himself, I have a wife, I have a wife! But a little voice inside his head kept saying, Lillian isn’t here now. You can go through with it! By the end of the night, he acted as if he had never gotten married.

The morning after, Henry woke up in Pinky’s suite, wide eyed. It took a little while to remember where he was, and how he gotten there. He then ripped off the covers and quickly dressed in the clothes he had worn the night before thinking, Oh, my, oh gosh! What have I done? I have a wife, two kids! Oh no, oh no! Pinky was starting to wake up and called him back to bed in her seducing voice. Henry glanced back at her then rushed out the door and down the hallway. As he searched for room 308, he noticed many things that he had not seen the night before. There were brass candelabras hanging on the wall but the morning glow coming through the portholes really lit up the hall. This reminded him of when he and his wife had been decorating their own entrance hall and had both wanted the same type of candelabras. It had been such a sweet moment and they had stared at each other lovingly. This thought made his cheeks turn red and his conscious fill with guilt. He looked down at his feet and saw a long red rug that had imitations of famous paintings and sculptures, spreading all the way to the end of the hall. Henry was regarding how beautiful it all was and then, if Henry had known what he had meant by “adventure”, he would never have considered coming onto this boat.

Once Henry arrived at his room, James greeted him with a wide smile and a questioning glance.

“I heard you were up and at ‘em last night, eh?” asked Jack, wiggling his eyebrows up and down. Henry smiled widely, A chance to impress the newby.

“Yep,” he grinned, smiling devilishly.

“What about the wife, at home?”

“She’ll never find out,” bragged Henry, smugly. Whatta man, whatta man! James thought. Balancing two girls at once, and a family! What I would give to be like him!


Lillian lay in her bed, under the covers but still shivering like crazy. A tray full of food lay on her bedside table, uneaten. The smell of medicine filled the room as empty medicine bottles lay on the trunk at the foot of her king sized bed. A metal bucket stood at the side of her bed, ready to catch anything Lillian threw at it. Lillian herself wore a white nightgown that buttoned all the way up in the front. Her face looked pale and many veins stuck out from her forehead and neck. She felt a tickling in the back of her throat and sadly thought, Here it comes again! She coughed and it felt as if her someone had reached down her throat and dragged her lungs out of her body. She had been having trouble breathing ever since the doctor came to diagnose her with tuberculosis.

“George, William!” Lillian groaned in her hoarse voice. “Come in here!” George, thirteen, rushed into his mother’s room, eager to spend time with her in this state. He recoiled once he saw her face but, realizing his wrong, stepped up to her bedside. George was now in charge of the household, being the oldest. William, six, crawled into the room like a baby then jumped up and surprised his mother at the foot of her bed, his face one of fear at what his mother looked when she was sick. Her usually bright blue eyes were now dull and lifeless but Lillian stared lovingly at the boys and welcomed them into the bed with her. Lillian thought that she had not spent much time with her boys and had always left them in Anna’s care. But now that she was on her death bed, Lillian thought she might make up for all the birthdays she had missed because of a social event and school conferences she had never arrived at because of a tea party. George climbed into the bed next to her, kicking the sheets away so William could also come and comfort his mother. William crawled into the bed with his brown stuffed bear and pressed his chubby face up against his mother saggy cheeks. Lillian had been losing a lot of weight because she had lost her appetite.

“Mother, the only way you can get better is if you eat!” whispered George, really worrying about his mom.

“Alright, honey,” Lillian replied, willing to do anything for her son even with the nausea that filled her belly at the mere thought of food. George reached over and grabbed the metal tray with now cold soup and, Lillian’s favorite, stew and suet dumplings. He spooned the lumpy soup into Lillian’s open mouth, wishing her to get better.


Henry came back from his bath to find Jack, sitting on his bed with his legs crossed, thinking hard.

“Ah, Henry, just the person I wanted to see!” exclaimed Jack, springing up from his pose. Henry glanced at him and started to change back into a black suit, turning to face his wooden dresser. “I was just thinking how it would just be lovely if you took your little mistress out to dinner tonight as I have found myself… ,” started James but Henry interrupted him.

“That was just a one time situation. I don’t plan to continue the affair.”

“Oh.” James looked disappointed and showed it, a deep frown creasing his face. “I had hoped that Rose and I could have gone out tonight with you and that performer.”

“Trying to impress a lady, huh?” questioned Henry, suddenly doubting his decision, wanting to help his new friend.

“Well, yes,” grinned James sheepishly, twiddling his thumbs.

“Well then,” said Henry, not wanting to dash hopes. “Get dressed in your finest clothing, we are going to Café Parisien tonight!” James clapped his hands as Henry pulled up his pants and buttoned them.

Henry strode down the hallway, knocking on each door as he went, trying to find Pinky. At the third to last door of the hallway, Pinky emerged, puffing on a cigarette. Henry waved the smoke away, scrunching up his nose, he had always hated cigarettes.

“Oh, its you. What do you want?” asked Pinky in a hoarse voice.

“I was wondering if you would like to go out with my friend and I for dinner tonight at Café Parisien.”

“You’re treating?” Pinky looked Henry up and down. He nodded his head. What a woman! Henry thought. She is my type. Very strong, intimidating. Henry started to nod his head and look Pinky up and down in a new light. And a performer, wow! I bet she would make a good dance partner.

“Call me Dorothy,” she said, sticking out her red manicured hand. He took it, raising his eyebrows and grinning as she pulled him with a strong arm through the door.

Henry came to dinner with his shirt untucked and his hair a mess. He looked down, blushed, and buttoned his pants. He started to look around for James and saw him, waving, across the room. He had his arm around a pretty girl with frizzy brown hair and green eyes. Her angular nose looked sharp to the touch. Henry pulled out a chair for Dorothy then sat down himself. James looked at Henry, raising an eyebrow.

“Again?” he mouthed. This is it, thought Henry, looking down at himself, guiltily. I have my own wonderful Lillian at home and can’t be seen anymore with Dorothy. I am done! Henry declared to himself.


Everyday, George and William cuddled up next to their mother and fed her. George had taken off school to care for her. Lillian was starting to gain weight and coughed less frequently. Gerald and Mary looked at each other in disbelief every time they saw how much healthier Lillian was getting. Is that how powerful love is? Lillian couldn’t wait for her husband to get home! She had survived tuberculosis and now felt that she owed it to her family to spend more time with them. Lillian started to plan a welcome home party for Henry in her head.


Henry tossed and turned in his bed.

“How could you do this to me?” Lillian wailed, tearing at her hair, ripping it out in clumps.

Henry stuttered, “I uh, I.” Suddenly Lillian melted away and was replaced by George and William saying in unison,

“Daddy, you are ripping our family apart.” They rocked their heads back and forth, staring straight at their dad while they repeated the phrase. Henry awoke in a cold sweat, his legs tangled up in his bed sheet. He opened his bleary eyes, recalling his nightmare. He looked over at James who was snoring softly. Henry got up and went to the bathroom to splash cold water on his face. As he stomped along, Henry felt a sudden jerk and stumbled, falling to the ground moaning.

“Ow,” he groaned, rolling onto his stomach to stand up. His body rocked along with the boat. Henry felt another jolt and hear a loud moaning sound coming from the hull of the ship. He thought he heard water sloshing far below. He ran over to James and shook him by the shoulders, waking him. Just then, Henry heard a scream and knew something was wrong. His eyes grew wide as he started to slide along the now titling floor. Everything that wasn’t tied down was also propelled forward as the boat continued to sink. Henry grabbed a coat and rushed down the stairs.

People were panicking, running to the front of the ship were Henry saw the lifeboats being lowered and a man shouting, “Women and children first!”

Henry raced outside and saw what the boat had hit, an iceberg. He looked over the rail and saw a whirlpool starting to form as everything that was close to the boat was sucked under the roiling waves.


Lillian tried to make up for lost time by spending every second with her kids; petting them until they woke up and cradling their heads until they fell asleep. George had gone back to school in full spirits, knowing that he would still have a mother when he got home. William played downstairs with Anna frequently. Because her two sons had other activities, Lillian struggled to choke her food down. Weight dripped off her as fast as she had gained it and she became panicked, each day shoving food down her throat. But this did not aid her in her ailing state. Her horrendous cough came back, getting worse each day. Lillian realized she would never get better until her sons came back to her, but she did not want to interrupt their lives. George became worried again, seeing the longing stare his mother gave him each day he said goodbye to her to go to school.

One day, George pulled William over to the side of the hallway.

“I need you to look after Mother today, okay?” he whispered.

“Why?” asked William in his squeaky voice, pulling back his blonde hair with his small, pale hand. “I thought she was getting better?” George looked at his little brother and leaned against the wall, shaking his head.

“Just make sure she eats, please,” George pleaded with his hands clasped together. William nodded his head, a look of fear in his eye. He then skipped up the stairs to go greet his mother. That boy is just a little bundle of joy, George thought while he shook his head and smiled gently as it spread across his face like a petal gliding across water. He wiped his brown hair to the side and stepped up the stairs to the door, turning the aged bronze door knob.


Henry dashed up the stairs again, wanting to warn Jack. He turned his head back and saw water flooding up to the room he was just in. He thought of turning back but couldn’t bring himself to leave his colleague. As he turned his head back to face forward, he collided with a man, tumbling down the carpeted staircase and plunging into the freezing water raging onto the boat. Henry stood up and gasped for air, his bowler hat dripping. Jack, the man he had run into, was flopping around in the water, not able to find his bearings. Henry took one of his flailing hands and heaved, pulling him to his feet.

“Rose!” he gasped as he sucked in air. “I need to find her, warn her!” Henry patted his back and assured him that Rose had probably already gotten on a lifeboat. The water was now up to Henry’s large waist. He glanced around and saw no way out except for the grand staircase in front of him.

“C’mon!” he shouted over the roar of the water. “This way!” Henry pulled James by the arm up the stairs. They ran down the hallway, their sodden footprints making marks all over the elegant carpet.

They knocked on every door they could, yelling, “The boat is sinking!” They dashed to the back of the boat, the floor ever so slightly slanting as they made their way through the sleeping hallway. As the stern of the boat kept rising out of the water, it was getting harder and harder for the chubby Henry to keep up with the lean Jack.

They had finally made it to the back of the Titanic and were now grasping the rail as hard as they could, just waiting for the end. As they held on, many more passengers raced to grab the rail. Henry and James waited for hours, too frightened to move. The wooden deck of the ship was covered with thousands of feet. The door to the deck was located in the floor. The metal top was hanging by its hinges as people climbed through it and onto the deck. People held onto anything that was fastened to the ship, the rail, the anchor, a sail. Debris was flying off the ship and spewing into the water. As Henry had not received a life vest at the front of the ship, he could not do as many men had done, jump off the ever rising deck of the ship and swim to a lifeboat.

Suddenly, Rose burst through the door and Jack, ripped out of his gaze, ran to her. Henry followed with his eyes, too afraid to move. James hugged the dazed Rose, her hair billowing out on the windy night. Henry turned away, thinking of himself and Lillian. They have a true love, just like Lillian and I… had. I’ve ruined everything! Henry then felt the boat take a nose dive, starting its descent into the ocean. Time seemed to be drawn out as he watched his life flash by; from the time he was a little kid, growing up in a little town and going to school at the church, to the day he married Lillian, getting a huge inheritance from her parents and starting Porter Dimlin. Henry turned around, his knuckles turning white as snow as the floor started to slip away from his feet while the boat started to dive deeper into the North Atlantic Ocean.


Summer was upon the Porter family and George was able to help William to care for their mother. Henry had been away for weeks. Lillian was getting so much better but still spent a good half of the day in her bed. Gerald and Anna had taken the sheets she had slept on, burning them so nobody else would get the fateful disease.

Lillian was sure that Henry would come home any day now, and she sometimes sat, staring at the front door with a blanket draped over her shoulders. One day, while Lillian was seated in a big armchair placed in the entrance halls, a knock came that made her eyes wide and alert. She stepped onto the floor and threw the purple blanket over the back of the chair. She tiptoed up the marble steps and opened the big, oak doors. Charles Dimlin, Lillian knew him from her husband’s work, stepped up to the door, bowed, and handed Lillian a tiny piece of paper. Lillian squinted at him, as the sun was bright and gleaming right in her face. It looked as if he had been crying. How odd, she thought, Charles didn’t look like a man to cry much. She became scared, looking down at the slip of yellowing paper.

It read, “Henry Porter along with his girlfriend, Dorothy Rhodes have been reported missing in action after four days of the Titanic sailing on its maiden voyage and then sinking on the 15th of April. We are very sorry for your loss.” Lillian stared in horror as her already pale face turned ghostly white. She read over and over again the words on the small page, holding it so tight that it crumpled. Finally, she released  her grip on the paper, letting it drift to the ground. Lillian gasped, sinking down to her knees. Charles came into the hall and started to pat Lillian on the back, not knowing how to comfort her. After a while, Lillian started to rock back and forth thinking, Not only has he died, he cheated on me too.  I knew I shouldn’t have let him go, this is all my fault!

Charles looked around for someone to come to his rescue as Lillian started to sob, screaming, “It’s all my fault! Why? Why?” Then she stopped abruptly, thinking, No, Lillian.  This is not your fault. He cheated on you. He deserved it. Lillian picked herself up off the floor, thanked Charles while he stared at her with a questioning look on his face.  She gently handed him the note, closing the heavy door in his face.


Henry could feel his grip slipping on the slick rail. The ship was sinking under the white caps of the waves. Henry could see lifeboats rowing furiously away from the expanding whirlpool the boat was creating as it slid now vertically in the air. Henry’s feet were dangling over James’s, who had grabbed onto the anchor chain, throwing it down to Rose. Both were swinging wildly, bouncing off the wooden deck. Suddenly, Rose dropped, falling down to the ocean below. James looked to Henry, then down to where he had last seen Rose splash into the water. He looked, seemingly sorry, at Henry, then let go of the anchor chain, his hat flying off his head. Henry clenched his teeth, summoning all his strength, trying to hold on. His right hand started to slip off and it slapped down by his side. I knew I should have lost weight! he thought as his other hand started to slide off the metal rail.

The air whooshed past Henry as he fell, the water coming closer to his face. He took a deep breath as freezing cold water hit his feet, then stomach, then face. The world went black as he sank deeper and deeper into the ocean. Then, a light flashed. A boat had come for survivors! He fought and tried to claw his way to the surface against the ice cold water, but his numb hands stayed by his side. What do I have to live for? he thought. Henry had cheated on his wife, going against their sacred bond of marriage. If he lived, he could never look in his family’s face again. He sat at a boring desk all day, writing about oil for God’s sake! Henry started to sink deeper as the air vanished from his lungs. He closed his eyes.


Lillian grabbed William’s hand as she trudged out the door. It was a hot day and the sun beat down on them. They could see the heat waves and the dirt road gave puffs of dust as they stood, waiting for Gerald to pull out the car. George came up behind them followed by Anna and Mary. It was the day that Henry’s funeral was to be held. They dressed in all black, sweating like crazy as the heat was forced upon the group. Almost nobody was outside. Lillian had not invited anyone to the funeral but Charles had gotten word and she could see him jogging over to join them. The black car pulled up to the side of the road and they all piled in, squishing together in the cramped backspace as Lillian sat down, elegantly, in the front seat. Gerald turned around, checking to see if everyone was there. He then sat back down, stepping lightly on the gas pedal.

They soon got to the graveyard where they all stood as the priest blessed Henry’s empty coffin. Henry had supposedly drowned and no bodies had been found. As they started to lower the wooden crate with no body in it, Lillian halted Gerald.

“Anna, take the children to the car,” Lillian commanded. She stomped over to Henry’s grave, Gerald and Mary’s muscles straining to hold the heavy wood block right over the empty plot.

“I will miss you Henry Porter, but I hate your guts.” Lillian spat on Henry’s grave, turned, and stormed away.

Snape Goes to the Beach

Severus Snape pulled up his big black bathing suit, and strode down to the sandy beach front. The warm sand pushed against his feet.  It was a nice day, but Snape didn’t care.

“Muggles, everywhere,”  he muttered. “I am simply disgusted!” He growled at everyone came near him.

“GO AWAY!”  he screamed to a tiny girl, scaring the bejesus out of her and making her drop her strawberry ice cream.

Going to the water, he jumped in, turning himself into a dolphin and squealing.  He soared through the rippling waves, as elegant as a swan. He could see the whole beach. He breathed in the sweet smell water. The salty water splashed his pale, saggy face. His black greasy hair framed his long hooked nose as he ate a fish, being a dolphin and all. What a simply, fine day at the beach, he thought.








Titanic 1912

Hello, I’m Rosie. I can’t believe I am here, on the Titanic. I am privileged enough to be able to come along on the journey across the Atlantic Ocean. I am going to my suite to unpack. I can’t wait to see the sights and to meet the people. I marvel at how beautiful the gigantic ship is.

The salt from the water hits my face as I stand on the deck. People are milling all around me, listening to the wonderful orchestra. I can’t build up enough courage to try the food; the chicken faintly looks like armadillo. The acceleration of the ship moves about as slowly as a turtle, although the excitement in the air tells me the people are thinking otherwise.

Now I have gotten used to the ways of the old; I took a turkish bath! A turkish bath is different from the baths now because first the bathers start in a warm room we now call a sauna. Then the bathers move on to the hot room. This chamber is the same as the warm room but hotter, hence the name hot room. Next the bathers wash in cold water. After performing a full body wash, the bathers receive a massage. Bathers finally retire to the cooling room for relaxation. After I washed up, I went to one of the stores on the Titanic. To really blend in, I have to get some new clothes. I picked out a pink and puffy dress; the clothes in this time are so itchy! I went to the library after I picked the most tolerable clothes. It’s nice and quiet there, my kind of place!

I am here to try and get as many people as possible off the Titanic before it sinks. You wouldn’t believe how hard it is! Nobody wants to go. Today I visited the swimming bath, (a.k.a the pool) the people there were having a party and I couldn’t tear them away from the band. I might have to take another trip back in time. I want to warn the captain of the iceberg they will hit, but I was told not to do anything too major that might alter history. I had so much fun here, I don’t want the ship to sink!






Chummy Chipmunk and the Evils

Chapter  1

Black limos are mysterious


   Chummy Chipmunk is a super hero. His cover is to work at McDonald’s.

One day in the drive through line a mysterious black limo came up to Chummy.

The window rolled down slowly. Hurry up already! My arm is getting tired, and your food is waiting! said Chummy. Finally the window was all the way down. The Evils poked their heads out, then drove away. Hey wait you forgot your food! Chummy shouted after them.

                                                             Chapter 2

                                                    Computers do everything


                    Back home in the lab…

                                                         And they just drove away! said Chummy to his butler Fawn. Very mysterious.You should look them up. said Fawn. So Chummy did.

They are called the Evils. Conny Cat Evil, and Duke Dog Evil. And from their last name, said Chummy, I think they might just be Evil.

                                                              Chapter 3

                                                        A hero never gives up


 The next day Chummy went over to the Evils house. He knocked on the door. A man in a black suit answered. I am looking for Duke and Conny. Chummy said. They are not available. said the man. O.K. said Chummy. I know what you’re thinking, Chummy Chipmunk would not give up that easy. Well you are right, he is not going down without a fight!

                                                             Chapter 4

                                                 Conny, Duke, Fubb and Fawn


  That night Chummy dressed all in black, and Fawn dressed all in pink. They went to the Evils house. Fawn went outside the window and started making a racket! Chummy went on the roof. Conny, Duke and their butler, Fubb came outside. Fawn made up a really long story in her head, and started telling it. Then she gave the signal to Chummy. (The signal is her waving her arms in the air.) Chummy came off the roof and snuck inside. He traveled through the house, opening every door. Chummy opened one and fell, he fell through the darkness for what seemed like hours. Then started slowing down. Chummy landed in a lab.

                                                       Chapter 5

                                        Stuff it in your pants


  There were cool stuff everywhere! A zaporay, a lifterdo, and finally, the most coolest thing in the world, Evilnot! The Evilnot 3000 was a very powerful ray that made someone who was evil not evil. If it got into the wrong hands, the person could destroy the world! And right now, thought Chummy, it is in the wrong hands! And it is my job to get it out! So Chummy grabbed the Evilnot, stuck it into his pants, and planned his escape!

                                                      Chapter 6

                                                A not so amazing escape


     By now, Conny, Duke and Fubb should be inside. And the only way to get out is by the lifterdo. So I will get out of this lab, and use the transport ray to get back home! Once Chummy was at the top, he zapped himself with the transport ray, and before he could stop himself, Chummy Chipmunk was blasted into dust! Uh oh. Chummy thought as his spirit was floating away. I must have used the zaporay instead of the transport ray!


                                               Chapter 7

                                          To heaven and back


          As Chummy boarded the train to heaven, he thought, oh this is what it feels like to die. The conductor looked at Chummy’s ticket. It is not yet your time. he said. Go back home. Plus I do not change diapers. Chummy had forgotten that he still had the Evilnot in his pants. He took it  out and gave it to the conductor. I want you to have this. he said. No thanks. said the conductor. Why? asked Chummy. Well for one thing, said the conductor, it has been in your trousers. For another thing, you are not allowed to leave anything in heaven. O.K. said Chummy. Just one more question.  What? said the conductor. What is your name? I am Michelangelo, the greatest artist in the world! Really? asked Chummy. No, I’m Henry Fishlock. Well bye Joe! shouted Chummy a he drifted back to earth. My name is not Joe! I’m gonna call you that! said Chummy in a singsong voice. Bye Joooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooe!!!


      And that’s how are hero always wins. :-)







Oscar and Alphonse

One day there was a girl named Amy. She was out in her garden collecting flowers for her mother’s birthday. Inside a tulip as yellow as the sun, she found two caterpillars. She named them Oscar and Alphonse after her two great grandfathers. Amy took them home and fell into a restless sleep. She had a nightmare that a spider as purple as a plum took her away from her family. Then Oscar and Alphonse appeared out of midair. They were giants towering over her. “TAKE US HOME!” they roared angrily. Amy awoke with a cold sweat. “Tomorrow I will take Oscar and Alphonse home.”

The next day Amy went out to her garden carrying Oscar and Alphonse with her. She found an elegant red rose. It was a glistening vase made out of blood. Beautiful yet with deadly thorns. After she had that nightmare she knew it was time to send them back. The caterpillars softly wiggled in her hand, spelling out “goodbye.” “Goodbye Oscar, goodbye Alphonse,” she whispered. Tears running down her face, she set them inside the rose. As she walked back to her house, Amy saw in a tree as massive as a Woolly Mammoth, a spider as purple as a plum.

That night the spider was in her dreams again, but this time it winked four black beady eyes at her…

Mr.Tattoo Man

“I’m doing it, I’m really doing it!” I shouted overjoyed. I had finally learned how to ride my bike and now I was going to get my ears pierced! All on my family RV trip around the country. ( My Uncle Danny, mom, and dad were all there watching.

Crack, sizzle, pop! The blue pop rocks I was eating were from my dad were to calm my nerves. They tasted like blueberry sour patch kids. But I was not calm, I was jumping all over the place! In a piercing and tattoo parlor in California I, six year old Rosie Rae Ezgur was going to get her ears pierced! Was this really happening? I am pretty sure it was but just in case I pinched my cheek. Ow! I pinch hard, and it really was happening!

The lady at the front desk told me it was time to go. I walked very slowly towards the back room. It was a very small room. Kind of like a handicap bathroom stall.  The back was a wall of mirrors. In the middle of the room there was a chair that kind of reminded me of a massage chair. My family including my mom, my dad, my brother Charlie, my brother Aidan, Aunt Lisa, and my cousin Clara were there. (Uncle Danny had gone back to Colorado.) They were all staring at me, waiting for;  Mr. Tattoo Man walked into the room. (I forgot his real name so I call him Mr. Tattoo Man because he is covered in tattoos. Literally, like all over his body.) “Alright,” I said. “Let’s get this over with.”

Fudge! That hurt so badly, I thought. I felt tears welling up in my eyes. Why could he not have just done it with a needle shooter, which shoots the needle through your ear. At least that hurts less than just the needle out in plain sight going slowly through your ear!  One ear done on to the next.

“Owwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!” I tried to scream but my voice would not work so I thought it instead. But all that pain was worth it because I finally got my ears pierced! Now me and and my mom could wear matching earrings! I got silver starter hoops and walked out of the piercing and tattoo parlor with pride.

40 Feet

I felt like I had to go to the bathroom.  But no way I was backing out of this now.  I had made a promise to myself that I would go on it.  I was at climbing center ready to go on the obstacle course.  I felt like I had to go to the bathroom.  But I knew I was just nervous.  No way was I going to back out.  Plus, I am never going to the bathroom in that porta potty.

I was all ready.  I had my harness on and my helmet.  Of course the helmet was too loose, but I would ask Gold to tighten it when I got up there.  The obstacle course was 40 feet up in the air.  It was made of wood.  I had to walk up a huge net to make it to the first wood platform where Gold would clip me on to the silver, strong, thick wire.

Finally it was my turn to go.  I climbed up the net, trying not to look down as I rose higher and higher off the ground and into the air.  I got to the top.  Gold was tightening my helmet as I looked out at the course.  I could only see two challenges ahead of me.  I told Gold my helmet was tight enough and took a small step onto the first log.

There were 7 of them all in a neat row.  They were held up by ropes thick and beige.  I attempted to step onto the next big, round, brown log and made it!  Wow this is easy.  I thought. Boy was I wrong.

I tried to step onto the third log but my legs would not stretch that far.  I thought about going back, so I turned around.  But guess what!? I could not reach the first log!  “Darn my short legs!”  I shouted.

I sat there on that second log for what felt like hours, but was only a few seconds.

I wish I could say that I found a strategy to get off that stupid log, but no.  Gold came out to help. He walked onto the third log and pulled it closer to me. I stepped on it gingerly.  We went like that, Gold pulling the next log to me, until we got to the seventh log.  Gold could not help me any more.

The challenge in front of me was… planks, and lots of ‘em.  I stepped onto the first plank, then the second, then the third. Then, I got stuck, again. I was about to call to Bob for help. But I noticed something. The wires holding the planks. Suddenly I knew what to do.                                                                                   I stepped onto the wire.  It wobbled so much that I thought I would fall.  I regained my balance and took a big step towards the second plank.  I had gotten to the second platform where Bob had clipped my harness onto a different wire, and when he told me to sit down and jump, I thought he had gone crazy.  But then I looked down at the third challenge.  That’s when the fear kicked in, and it kicked hard.

If I would have known that I would be doing this than I would have gone to the bathroom after all.  But instead I was here, about to walk on wires.  Just wires.  I sat down, and jumped.

I quickly grabbed onto the side of the platform.  Bob said, “Hold onto your harness, it will help you stay upright.”  So I did, I held tightly to my harness.  I took one tiny step at a time.  In the middle of the wire, I felt like I was about to cry.  I did not want to fall.  How would I get back up again with nothing to hold onto?  So I kept walking.  Each step getting bigger as I went.  “This is a very long wire” ,I thought.  That’s when I hit something hard.

“Owwwww!” , I yelled. In front of me was a big  pole connecting the wire that held me to the wire I was walking on. The pole was light brown and rectangular, going up and down.  I tried to step around it, but then I began to fall!  I grabbed the pole quickly with both hands.  Anna, who was on the third and final platform told me to turn my body around the pole. So I did. “That was the last obstacle?” , I thought.  “That was easy.”

I got to the third platform.  I was wondering why I was not on the ground yet.  Then, as if reading my mind, Anna said “If you’re wondering why you’re not on the ground yet, then look up.”  I did.  I saw a zipline.  Then Anna said “Jump.”  Before I had time, she shook the zipline and I went flying off the platform.

“Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!” I screamed.  I shut my eyes while gliding swiftly to the ground.

Jurassic Drop

The dinosaurs were very realistic robots.  They even ate fake leaves and drank water.  We were moving swiftly and silently through the river they were drinking water from.  We were nearing a building with peeling paint.  On the sand was a crashed boat.  Actually, by the looks of it, it looked like it had been attack then dragged onto the sand.  Hanging above the entrance to the building was a big crate that stated, Do Not Open!   As we were entering the building, the crate dropped!  The rope holding the crate caught it right before my staring eyes.  Something was moving in there!  “Well duh,” I thought feeling stupid.  It clearly states,  Do Not Open!  While entering the building, a long beak peaked out of the crate as if checking to see if the coast was clear and we were gone.  I was perplexed.  What was in there?

In the building it was dark.  There was a faint orange glow coming from around the corner.  There were dinos everywhere now.  They were not as friendly as the ones outside, and they definitely were not vegan.  One even recoiled it’s tail and spit on me and my family!  I was annoyed.  I had just put on my fuzzy jacket and now it was wet, so I took it off in case of any more dinosaur saliva coming this way.  Then I followed everyone’s gaze to the biggest dinosaur I had seen yet.  The biggest dinosaur in the whole world.  “T-Rex!” I whispered, aghast.  At that precise moment, the T-Rex opened his big jaw, showing all his glittering white teeth, and let out a ear piercing shriek.

“Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!”I screamed.

 We had gone through the T-Rex’s legs and we were now what felt like free-falling through a tunnel.  My life flashed before my eyes.  SPLASH!  We hit the water hard.  I was soaked.  That was the scariest roller coaster I have ever been on.








Mr. Linden’s Library


Roxy loved to read. She basically lived at the library! On Roxy’s twelfth birthday; her parents had a surprise for her. “We’re moving!” exclaimed her mom.

“Yes!” yelled Roxy. Usually kids would have been sad because of moving, but Roxy was different. She was getting tired of the same old town and the same old library.

“Wow,” said Roxy; with her face smashed against the car window. The scenery whizzed by as they headed toward the big city.

Roxy watched as the moving truck unloaded the furniture. Just then, past the lime green couch, she spotted a library! Roxy quickly ran towards it. Ding went the bell as Roxy walked through the door. When she approached the front desk the librarian slammed his book shut with a resounding BOOM that echoed through the empty library. “Welcome to Linden’s Library, I am Mr. Linden would you like a book?,” said the librarian as if he were reciting lines from a script.

“What book are you reading?” asked Roxy.

“Nothing special,” said the librarian. “You can’t have it,” he added.

“I’ll look around,” said Roxy.

The librarian is very suspicious, thought Roxy. I wonder what is so important about that book.

Every day after that Roxy went to the library and pestered Mr. Linden about the book, But he would not provide more information. Mr. Linden began to appreciate her visits and looked forward to them. They became friends.

Then one day, a week after Roxy’s fourteenth birthday, and two years after the move,  Mr. Linden had a surprise for her. “Here is your birthday present,” he said. He handed her the book, Roxy stared at it in awe. “But I warn you, don’t read it at night for the fear of leaving it open when you fall asleep.”

“Thank you so much,” Roxy cried and she ran out the door, eager to start reading. Roxy read the day away but stopped at night to obey Mr. Linden’s request. No matter how many pages Roxy read she never progressed any closer to the end. Though the story was interesting; the book had no title or author.

When Roxy went to the library a week later,  Mr. Linden asked “How is the book so far?”

“It’s great!” answered Roxy. Mr. Linden looked astonished then quickly covered it up, but Roxy had seen, though she pretended to have not. “Though I have been finding it a bit… endless,”hinting on the word endless.

“Have you now,” said Mr. Linden looking flustered. “I don’t know how to say this, but um… will you, can you, please can I have the book back?” Mr. Linden finally squeaked.

“My birthday present?!” shouted Roxy. Mr. Linden nodded and smiled weakly. “No! It’s mine you gave it to me! Do you even get the concept of a birthday present?! You can’t have it until I finish!” And with that Roxy stormed out of the library.

That night, just to annoy Mr. Linden; Roxy read on and on. At ten o’clock Roxy got tired, at eleven o’clock Roxy was exhausted, by the time twelve o’clock came around, Roxy had fallen asleep with the book open beside her. He had warned her, now it was too late.

When Roxy awoke, she was covered in leaves. She got up and looked around, she was in a jungle! What happened to my room?! “Mom!” Roxy yelled. There was no answer. “Dad?” Roxy shouted, louder now. She started to get panicked. Calm down, she told herself, they’re probably at work. Roxy stepped over a lump on the jungle floor. The book! Roxy realized and quickly picked up the lump and pulled the vines off of it. One vine seemed to be stuck, Roxy tugged as hard as she could to no avail. This is just like the story in the book! The story was about a boy named Grant that was stuck in a jungle. There had been an earthquake in his hometown and his house had ended up in the Benan jungle. Just then Roxy heard the doorknob turning in the midst of her room. A red haired boy about the same age as her entered the room, coming out of a tree trunk! My door is now a tree, thought Roxy. This is really freaky! “Hello,” said the boy timidly. He was wearing nothing but some moss tied around his waist. His striking red hair made his sea green eyes pop, he reminded Roxy of Tarzan.

“Hi,” said Roxy. “Do you know where we are?”

“Yes, we are in the Benan jungle.” The Benan jungle! But that’s…. Suddenly realization struck Roxy.

“Are you Grant?” asked Roxy.

“Yes!” cried Grant. “I’m the last kid to get stuck in this dreaded book! Well now since you arrived I guess you are actually the last kid.”

Roxy stared at him dumbfounded. “You know about the book?”

“Well of course I do! How do you think I got stuck in here?”

“How do we get out?” asked Roxy suddenly longing to be anywhere but there.

“I’ve been stuck in here for as long as I can remember and all that I’ve found out is that the people that are stuck in here are the story that people in the outside world are reading. The only person known to get out of here was Mr. Linden.”

“Mr. Linden is my librarian!” explained Roxy.

“I know,” said Grant. “He was mine too.”

That night Grant led Roxy to his shelter where he made a fire and they feasted on rabbit stew.

“How long have you been stuck in here?” asked Roxy.

Grant got up wordlessly and went inside the hut motioning for Roxy to follow. On the wall of the hut was thousands of tallies. Grant picked up a rock from the ground and made another. “That’s day five thousand seventy-three.”

“Five thousand seventy-three days!” exclaimed Roxy. “It must be horribly boring in here!”

“I’ve found ways to occupy myself,” said Grant puffing out his chest, obviously enjoying her attention.

“Ya,” said Roxy. “Like finding more room for your big ego!” Which made Grant scowl. Just then Grant let out a big yawn. “It’s time for me to hit the hay,” he said.

“I guess I’m a bit tired too,” said Roxy. So they put out the fire and sealed the huts opening with a boulder.

“I only have one blanket, but it’s pretty big so we can share,” said Grant. Roxy lay down on the ground and was covered by a huge sheet of leaves. Even though the ground was hard and uncomfortable, Roxy was exhausted by the days events and went straight to sleep.

Roxy awoke to the sound of twigs snapping. She sat up and looked around, Grant lay wide awake beside her. She tried to move the boulder aside but couldn’t. Suddenly the boulder was shoved aside, making a horrible screeching sound. Staring down at her were three people, two girls and one boy.

“Are you the end?” asked a redheaded girl with a shirt that read Lauren.

“What are you talking about?” asked Roxy.

“Were you the last person to read the book?” asked the boy with a green shirt that read Alan.

“Y-yes,” Roxy stuttered. “W-why?”

“We have been waiting for ages to get out of this dreaded jungle, and finally we have come in time for the end!” said the other girl with a shirt that said Rachel.

“What end, do you mean the end of the book? There were seven hundred ninety-one pages but I never got to the end,” said Roxy.

“How do you know how many pages there were?” asked Alan.

“Ya,” said Lauren “All we saw were letters at the bottom of the page, not numbers.”

“You mean you don’t know how to read roman numerals?” questioned Roxy.

“And you do? Show us and we will all be free of this darn book!” exclaimed Rachel. So Roxy drew the roman numeral DCCXCI that meant seven hundred ninety-one. Suddenly Grant shouted out “I’ve seen that before in a cave!”

“Then take us to it!” exclaimed Lauren. They set off with Grant in the front while the rest of the group fell behind him. They were all dead silent. They walked for hours on end. Circling back whenever a dead end showed up. The only sounds made were the occasional tweet of a bird. Suddenly an ‘oof’ broke the silence. Alan had fallen over a log. Rachel and Lauren rushed to his side.

“I’m fine,” he said.

Then Rachel screamed “Look!” Beneath the log was the roman numeral DCCLXXXIV. “What does it mean?” asked Lauren.

“It means,” said Roxy doing the calculations in her head. “Seven hundred eighty-four.”

“We’re close,” said Grant “Lets keep going.”

Just as night had fallen and the crickets started chirping Grant exclaimed “Look, there it is!” Everyone rushed inside. On the inside wall was a glowing pad. Underneath it, it said in bold letters: FOR THE END. Roxy looked around to make sure that everyone was inside and saw Alan standing with half of his body in and half out. “Alan,” said Roxy. “I’m not sure it’s going to work if you are standing there.”

“I think I want to stay, I’ve been here for so long, this is my home now,” he said withdrawing himself entirely from the cave. Rachel looked hesitant then said “If he’s staying I am too.” Lauren looked longingly at them, then said to Grant and Roxy “I’ve always wanted to leave, but now that I think about it I’ve been in here so long it will be hard to go back and be reacquainted with my family. They are my family now, I can’t leave them.”

“We understand, but are you sure you’re making the right choice?” asked Roxy.

The three looked around at each other and all nodded their heads. “We’re sure,” they said. “Alright then,” said Grant. He looked at Roxy “Ready?”

“As ready as I’ll ever be.” Roxy took one last look around, then slowly laid her hand down on the pad.

“Mom I’m going over to the library with Grant!” yelled Roxy. A day after getting out of the book, Roxy and Grant were now brother and sister. The portal out did not take Grant back to his time and he had nowhere else to stay, so Roxy convinced her parents to adopt him. Now she and Grant were taking the book back to Mr. Linden. “Hello Roxy, hello Grant,” said Mr. Linden like it was a normal day. Roxy handed him the book. “How was it?” he asked. Roxy and Grant looked at each other. “Adventurous,” said Roxy.

“Long,” said Grant. Mr. Linden slid the book in his desk and gave them a wink.









The Child

Jasmine leaned over and slammed down the snooze button. “Jazzy!” her mother called. “Time for breakfast!” “Coming!” yelled Jasmine, then fell back into her bed. She was awoken by a fierce shake. “Jasmine Elizabeth Jones, you repeatedly disobey me! Every day I come up to your room and have to shake you awake! I am not your servant or your alarm clock! Today we will make a change. No more fun mom for you.” Jasmine slowly crawled out of bed, moving as slow as a snail. “What fun mom?” she mumbled.

At the breakfast table, Jasmine was half asleep, though she shoveled pancakes into her mouth rapidly. “Jazz, I see you’re as hungry as ever,” said Jasmine’s brother, Darrel. “Hey, wheres Kendra and Kendall?” Darrel continued just as two coca skinned, jet black haired twins came barreling through the doorway. Kendra, a girl, and Kendall, a boy, didn’t always get along. But today, for some reason, they were giddy with excitement and didn’t seem to notice the other at all. “What’s up?” said Jasmine, suddenly just as enthusiastic as the twins. The twins always made Jasmine smile and they seemed to affect her mood because every time they came into the room, Jasmine would pick them up and swing them around the room, just as she did today. “Aww, come on Jazz, were not babies anymore,” Kendall wined while Kendra was happily screaming at the top of her lungs. “Shhh!” said Jasmine’s mom. Jasmine stopped swinging the twins and asked her mom why she was such a buzz kill. That got her mom really angry. “Because we have a baby in the house and if she wakes up…” she never got to finish her threat. A wail came from up the stairs. “Look what you’ve done! You’ve woken up the baby! You know Dona has not gotten a lot of sleep lately! Now, go to your room!” yelled her mom. “But mom, we have school,” said Jasmine. “Then take your siblings, and go to the bus stop!”

     The twins went to Haxel Elementary and were in the fourth grade. Jasmine is in seventh at Jiffer Middle School, and Darrel, a grade above her. “Hey Jazz!” called Jasmine’s best friend, Milly. “Hows Dona?” Milly continued. All of Jasmine’s friends were crazy about her baby sister, Dona. Just then, the bell rang. “Better get to class!” said Milly as she walked toward classroom 4p while Jasmine followed. In class, Jasmine stared at the hottest guy in the seventh grade, Rick, who sat in front of her. Then, Blake nudged her in the shoulder and she snapped out of her trance. Blake and Jasmine had been friends since the second  grade. “I see you’re staring at Mr. Hottie over there,” whispered Blake. “Just thought I’d save you before you started drooling.” “Blake!” Jasmine half laughed half whispered while she gave him a good natured, punch to the arm.

After class, while Jasmine was putting her math book away in her locker, Rick came over next to her. “Hey Jazz, wanna hang after school?” Jasmine had always been confident with boys, and never shied away because of their opposing gender. “Sure,” she replied. “I’ll meet you in at the park and then we could walk uptown or something.” “Sounds great!” said Rick a bit too enthusiastically, but Jasmine shrugged it off and pretended not to notice.

Jasmine had never been the most popular, hottest, or skinniest person in school. No, that was Milly’s friends, Lily, Jilly, Frilly, and Silly. Jazz could except the names Lily and Jilly, but Frilly and Silly? Now that was just a crazy name for a person! Sometimes, Jasmine thought that they just changed their names to get into that clique. Jasmine had always been sort of chubby, really. And as Rick ran across the street to join Jasmine, all she could think about was, this is my chance, I have to get this right or I’ll never be considered popular! Jasmine had been building her self-esteem since fourth grade just for this moment. This was the time of truth. Would she  fail, or would she accomplish her goal, popularity.

      Jasmine did have friends that were unpopular, such as Blake, Megan, Natalie, and Wendell. But she never wanted to hang around them as a group because they would worship her and ask her to many questions about her popular life and her social life. Though Jasmine did like the attention, she felt guilty having to order human beings around as though they were a herd of cows. Jasmine didn’t feel comfortable having them listen to her like if they’d miss one word, the world would end. She felt like the king but she didn’t want the power or responsibility to control peoples life. Though most people, like Sarah Burkhart, the most popular girl in school, would die for that kind of obedience. To Sarah, she was the queen and the whole school was her kingdom, with the peasants being everyone else, even the teachers couldn’t refuse her. And her prince of course, would be Rick.

It seemed as a an eternity of understanding had passed when Rick, sweaty and red from his sprint, approached Jasmine. “So, Jazz, should we start heading uptown?” asked Rick. “Kay,” replied Jasmine. But just then, Ginny, Rick’s little sister, ran up to Rick. “You wanna play?” asked Ginny, then ran towards the swings and shouted “Come push me!” Rick gave Jasmine an apologetic look. “Maybe we can go uptown later?” said Rick. “It’s okay,” said Jasmine. “She is really cute. I wouldn’t mind staying to help you take care of her.” “Really, you would do that for me?” asked Rick, unbelievingly. “Of course, thats what friends do, right?” “Ya, thanks.”

One hour later, Rick, Jasmine, and Ginny, were heading uptown for a sandwich. When they arrived, Sarah and her groupies attacked. “What ya doing Rick?” asked Sarah with the biggest wad of gum that Jasmine had ever seen in her mouth. “Just hangin,” Rick mumbled. Sarah quickly looked Jasmine up and down. “See ya later, Jazz,” Sarah said. Then, as she walked by, she snarled “Stay away from him, he’s mine, I called dibs.” Sarah’s groupies glared at Jasmine as they walked out the door.

After, Rick walked Jasmine home. “Maybe we can do this again sometime,” said Rick. “Sure,” replied Jasmine. They stood there awkwardly until finally Jasmine broke the silence. “I’ll see you later.” “Ya,” said Rick. Then Jasmine stepped inside and slowly closed the door. Darrel raced up to her. “Jazzy, how was your date?” “Oo-lala!” exclaimed Kendra. “Jazz got a date!” Kendra and Darrel started making kissing noises. “Oh shut up!,” said Jasmine, and pushed Darrel into the sofa. “When’s dinner?” she asked. But before anyone could answer, she heard a soft tap on the door. When she opened it, Sarah Burkhart stumbled through the doorway, in tears.

Sarah lay down on the couch and, between sobbs, explained the situation to Jasmine. Apparently, her rich dad had been sent to jail for bribing a judge to let his obviously guilty client, go free. And her mom was somewhere in Mexico. “Nobody would understand!” cried Sarah. “All my friends are total airheads! I wish I had a friend as good as you.” Jasmine rolled her eyes. Sarah would be nice to her for now, but once they went back to school after the weekend was over, Jasmine would just be the same as every other person in school. Then, Jasmine’s dad, Robb, walked into the room. “Oh. I didn’t know that you were having a sleepover Jasmine,” he said. “Actually…” denied Jasmine. “Oh! Could I please sleepover? Nobodys in the house and its oh-so lonely,” said Sarah with puppy eyes. And that is the story of how Sarah started living with Jasmine.

The next day, Jasmine slept late. When she woke up, Sarah was looking through her drawers. “Oh, hi, sleepy bones!” exclaimed Sarah. “Sarah, what are you doing?” asked Jasmine in a sleepy, half asleep half awake voice. “Oh I didn’t pack any clothes,” said Sarah sheepishly. “You may continue,” said Jasmine, then fell back into bed. The next time Jasmine woke up, it was 11:29 a.m. She dragged herself out of bed, and slowly started getting dressed. When she was done, she walked to the bathroom to take a shower. Halfway down the hall, Jasmine came across Sarah. Once at the bathroom, Kendall and Darrell were standing in a line. “Hey! Were in line here! No cutting, go to the back!” shouted Kendall. “What? A line? For the bathroom?” said Jasmine perplexed. “Ya. Your friend Sarah is taking so long in the shower that we had to make a line,” said Darrell. Just then, Sarah exited the bathroom and Kendall entered. 30 minutes later, Darrell exited the bathroom. Jasmine stepped inside and turned on the shower. It was freezing cold! “Ahhh!” she shrieked, and hopped out. “We all had to take cold showers. Your friend wasted all the hot water!” shouted Kendall.

At breakfast, the table was silent. Jasmine was eating her cereal with gusto, but was not faster than her mother. Finally, Jasmine broke the silence. “Mom, you sure are hungry today,” she said. “Oh, yes,” said her mother between a handful of bacon, then continued to eat.

“Only one more month of school!” shouted Kendra happily. Sarah had been “sleeping over” for five weeks. The date was May 2nd. The phone started ringing and then, Dona started crying. “Oh dear,” said Jasmine’s mom wearily. “Sarah, be a dear and grab that for me, would you.” “Sure Mrs. Jones!” She picked up the phone, said “Jones resident’s.” Then she handed it to Jasmine. “Jazz, its for you. It’s Rick.” Jazz took the phone from Sarah’s hands. “Do you want to be my date to the end of school dance?” Jasmine heard a nervous and shaky voice ask. Oh my God! Did Rick just ask me to the dance?! thought Jasmine. “Sure, that be great,” replied Jasmine. “Awesome,” said Rick. Jasmine then hung up the phone.

“Its okay, its okay,” Jasmine reassured Sarah as she wept in her arms. “Its just, all this time, I have always tried so hard to be the most popular girl in school! I don’t want to grow up! I want to go back to being a child where all my problems were taken care of for me. The truth is, I don’t really care about makeup or being rich. I just thought that would get people to like me. All I really want was for Rick to like me.” “Of course Rick likes you! He just thinks you’re snobby and prissy!” said Jasmine. Sarah started weeping harder into Jasmine’s shirt. “Just be yourself and everyone will adore you!” said Jasmine. “Really?” said Sarah looking up with smudged mascara all over her face. “Hey listen to me,” said Jasmine. She helped Sarah off her stool and they both sat down on the couch. Sarah looked at Jasmine. “All you have to do is BE-YOU-tiful, and you will be beautiful.”









Because of Revenge


In 1929 on Olympus, Hadley sat down on a cushioned gold and red bench in one of the various gardens that filled Olympus. She gazed down at Germany, the home of her dear friend, Adolf Hitler. “Hadley!” called Persephone, Hadley’s mother. “Come down here!”

Hadley rose off the bench and took one more look at Germany. On Olympus, the entrance to the Underworld, otherwise known as Hadley’s home, was guarded by Mo, an onocentaur that was half man and half goat. Hadley walked along the bumpy cobblestone path that lead through Olympus. Several minutes later, the air around Hadley started to get dark and humid. The gardens of Olympus vanished and were replaced by lava rock, but still the bright gleaming path remained.

“Hello!” greeted Mo warmly.

“Hello, Mo,” Hadley said glumly.

“What’s wrong?” asked Mo.

“Adolf hasn’t called in a week! I’m worried that I told him too much.”

The week before, Hadley had finally told Adolf that she was the daughter of the gods Persephone and Hades, making her a goddess and explaining her constant beauty. Her long curly brown hair flowed down her favorite purple toga with gold lining. Her tan, unscarred skin complemented her dark blue eyes with eyelashes that go for miles. She had also told him a secret she had kept hidden from everyone else except her mother. Even her Uncle Zeus wasn’t informed that every time one thousand mortal souls were banished from their bodies, otherwise known as death, she became paralyzed with agonizing pain until they were judged by her father in the Underworld.

“Oh, well your mother wants you to come back to work.”

“Thank you, Mo.”

Mo ducked down into the cave entrance and beckoned for Hadley to follow. They emerged on the border of the river Styx. Hadley elegantly stepped into the rickety old wooden boat with Charon, who, standing up with his long black staff, started rowing instantly, causing Hadley to sit down quickly on the uncomfortable wooden bench. On the way down the river, Hadley sat in awkward silence. She had never talked a word to Charon except the time when she was five and made the mistake of saying hello to the boat man. It was her first time on the little dory and after she very enthusiastically greeted Charon, he slowly turned to face her, showing his ugly face, and glared at her with bare eye sockets. This scared the five year old so bad, she almost fell into the river Styx if not for her father catching her.

In the Field, Hadley met her mother and they started comforting souls. This job consisted of sharing memories of the beautiful things of the world, and talking to the souls about their past problems. The Field is where all the souls go when they are neither punished or rewarded. The people who are punished for their past doings are forced to be tortured forever in the jail of the Underworld. The people who are rewarded live in the grand mansion in the Underworld with Hades and each has their own room. There is good food and entertainment. Heroes like Hercules or Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. resided there and got to judge the souls that came into the Underworld and place where they went.

“Mother, I fear for Adolf,” began Hadley. “He is very stubborn about his belief in Christianity. I have told him that I am a greek god and-”

“Hold on, you told him about us?” interrupted Persephone.

“Yes. Remember, you were the one to tell me to!”

“Ah yes, continue.”

“He has not called in a week.”

“He is in shock, he will call eventually.”

“But Addie misses him!”

Addie was Hadley and Adolf’s illegitimate child. When Hadley first met Adolf, she was looking for a one time thing. When Hadley had found out that she was pregnant with his baby, she had looked into his soul. What she had seen there was dastardly, but, being the good person she was and seeing wandering souls all the time, Hadley decided to keep Adolf in her life. If she was there to guide Adolf, maybe she could help him change.

In a garden once again, Hadley glanced down at the bustling Germany below. A flashing light caught her eye. It was Adolf! He was calling her! Hadley stood up quickly, tearing the lotus flower she was holding from the ground. She raced toward the long staircase that led from Olympus to Germany, far below. At the very first stair, Hadley jumped up and, still touching the railing of the staircase with one hand, swung through the air in a half cartwheel, finally landing on the railing and starting to slide down. Putting out her arms for balance, Hadley slid down the railing, toga flowing in the air. Using this method of transportation, Hadley reached the bottom of the railing in a mere minute. Hadley slipped on her light brown wool trench coat which were handed out on Olympus in order to blend in with the mortals. She arrived at the train station, the gateway to Olympus disappearing behind her.

The very new Volkspark Mariendorf in Berlin was Hadley and Adolf’s rendezvous. According to Adolf’s morse code, he and Hadley were scheduled to meet in ten minutes by the pond. A few minutes later, Hadley saw Adolf coming to her from the other side of the park. “Hey, Marshmallow!” shouted Hadley as she ran toward him.

“Hello Lilypad!” he replied. He and Hadley had very degrading nicknames for each other. “I thought we were supposed to meet at the mall, that’s why I was so late!” said Adolf. “There was this boy I liked, I met him at the fressmeile(food court). On second thought, you probably wouldn’t like him, he is nothing like me,” he continued.

“No, I only have eyes for you,” Hadley sarcastically replied. Adolf and Hadley finally caught up to each other. It was then that Adolf got down on one knee and, pulling out a small box, said, “I would walk five thousand miles and I would walk five thousand more just to be with you,” he opened the box slowly and said, “Will you marry me, PS I love you.” It was then that Adolf opened the box to reveal the prettiest, most expensive bag of nails that Hadley had ever saw. The nails glinted in the early morning sun as Hadley stood shocked, mouth ajar.

“Unfortunately, Adolf, I can’t except these nails, I think you know why.”

“Oh, I knew I should have sprung for the bottle of poison,” muttered Adolf as he stood up.

“That isn’t why I can’t marry you!” exclaimed Hadley, thinking: A bag of nails? Thats just like Adolf to propose marriage with a weapon of destruction.  “Adolf, we have a child and I’m afraid, just like Rachel and Ross, that if this marriage doesn’t work out, we will ruin our child’s life!”

“Who are Ross and Rachel?” inquired Adolf.

“Oh right, I forgot that you can’t see into the future. But this is just another reason that we cannot get married! I am a goddess and you are a vengeful, evil, I mean pure evil, little, little, du ein schlechter kleiner mann sind(you are a bad little man)!” Hadley started ranting in german, things like, “Jeder denkst, du bist so gut sind, aber ich kenne die wahrheit(everybody thinks you are so good, but I know the truth)!” and “Warum bin ich noch mit dir befreundet(why am I still friends with you)?” and “Ich kann nicht glauben, dass wir ein kind zusammen haben. Hoffentlich werden sie nicht so, wie sie(I can’t believe we have a child together. Hopefully she won’t turn out like you)!”

At the end, Hadley, looking bewildered with rosy cheeks and frizzy hair, fell down to her knees and started sobbing. Adolf, seeing how vulnerable Hadley was and being the bad man he is, once again asked for her hand in marriage. At this Hadley took a big breath, and, seeing she was going to rant at him again, Adolf quickly got up and ran away in a huff, while muttering under his breath, “I will get my revenge. I will make you pay, Hadley, I promise I will.” It was then that Hadley understood that she had made a mistake in taking him under her wing, he would never change.

In Hitler’s headquarters, he sat in his big chair, legs crossed with his hand on his chin, thinking. As he thought of a revenge plan for Hadley, his mustache twitched, like a mouse. Finally, an idea came to him! Just two weeks before, Hadley had told him her biggest secret. He would exploit this advantage to the best of his power. As he sat, thinking of his master plan, he happened to glance down at Germany. People were pushing around carts of money to pay for the daily groceries. This was because of the horrible economic state of his country. Just a few years before, they had participated in World War I. This war had left them in a state of terrible depression. Adolf got up, the idea for his plan already being pieced together in his mind. He would take advantage of the state of his country, blame all this on a one specific people, and murder them all causing Hadley the greatest pain since World War I. Adolf hurried back to his desk and set up his typewriter. He started to write his speech that would turn all people against… whom? This was a hard decision to make, picking who’s lives who be taken in exchange for bitter revenge. Adolf decided to go with the one opposition he could think of that went against his religion, the Jews. He also would of course, single out other people. He would blame them for all that had happened. Everybody would follow him as he was a great leader. Hitler smirked as he thought of a name for his dedicated followers and a symbol that all people would come to fear. All this for revenge.

Hadley sat in her room. It was dark and somehow helped with the pain. In the Underworld, Hadley sat in her purple swivel chair, staring out the round window at Germany above her. Though it may have not looked like it, Hadley was in a great amount of pain. She saw through her open door thousands of souls being paraded to her father for judgment. As soon as Hadley knew the war had started, she had told her father her secret. Hades was doing the best he could to hurry up the judgments and to stop his daughters pain. Each day more and more souls would pass by her door. Each day Hadley would stay in her room, paralyzed, as her mother tried to comfort her the best she could.

For a brief moment while Hadley was not in pain, Hades and Zeus came into her room. “Say the word and we will kill this friend of yours that causes you this pain,” said Zeus.

“No, do not kill him. Although he has betrayed me, he is still the father of my child,” said Hadley, pointing at the little blond girl sleeping in a green and purple dinosaur cradle in the center of the room.

“All right, but it pains me to see you this way,” said Hades.

“I know father, but Hitler will soon realize his guilt, just wait.”

Adolf Hitler did, in fact, realize his guilt, but it was all too late. Zeus had, after Hadley finally gave in to the pain, struck Hitler down with a lightning bolt. The war stopped abruptly, all the Nazis went on the run after news spread that Hitler was dead. By this time, Germany was in an even worse state than when it had started. Hitler had promised them riches beyond belief, had told them that Germany was the most important place and would soon rule all. Most people thought that he had hanged himself because of all the lies he had told. Now that he was in the Underworld, Hitler knew that he was in trouble.

Adolf saw Hadley the moment he entered the Underworld. He saw the once warm eyes staring at him coolly. He felt victory rise in his chest but it was soon pushed down as Hadley turned away and looked at her room far up in the side of the red hot wall. Slowly, he looked up too, and there he saw his child for the first time since the war had started years ago. He counted in his head, Addie was five years old as of the week before. He had missed most of his child’s life to get the worst kind of revenge on Hadley. He had single-handedly destroyed Germany and caused World War II. He saw Hadley say to him, “I hope it was worth it.” It was then that Hitler felt the weight of the situation and the guilt crash down on him. It was then that his soul was sent to the jail without a hearing. Hades had no reason whatsoever to care for him, much less hear him make his speech.


“Mom, can you tell me the story of dad again. I know you told it to me just last week, but I still don’t really believe it,” said Addie.

“Honey, I don’t really feel like I can right now. Also, being a demigod, I thought you could believe anything,” replied Hadley. Today was the tenth anniversary of the death of Hitler, but Hadley hadn’t told Addie yet. It had been Addie’s fifteenth birthday a week ago and she had asked to be told of her father. “Let’s go down and visit Hades and Persephone,” said Hadley. Hadley had never known what to call her parents in front of Addie since they were never going to die but Addie was. Hadley was not going to die, so that was also awkward. Addie expertly scaled the ladder to go down from the rooms they had in the wall to the Underworld below. Once at her grandparents dining hall, she played with Cerberus who had a liking for her. Hadley went up to her mother, “What was it you wanted me for.”

“I have a very special birthday surprise for you and Addie both.” Persephone summoned Addie over to her. Then Hades entered the room with Zeus and Poseidon. They walked over to Addie and, with Zeus and Poseidon touching her on the head with their lightning bolt and trident, Hades started chanting in old greek and roman. When the ritual was over, Addie felt a shiver go through her body and started to glow, just like Hadley and Persephone did. Hadley vaguely recalled the very same ritual happening to her a very long time ago, about two hundred years ago. She was trying to figure out what it meant when Hades interrupted her thoughts, “You are now immortal and have all the powers your mother has.” At this Hadley and Addie rejoiced and, along with Persephone and Hades, sat down to dinner.

Jema The Ocean

A Poetry Anthology


This collection of poems was inspired by my journey to become a talented writer and my love for reading. When I was six, I sent in one of my books to a publisher. I wrote it on my family RV trip, (as seen in a family sabatical) I started to trace one of my mom’s hair clips and noticed that it looked a lot like a monster’s mouth. That’s when my book, Stuff Can Be Monsters, was born. Even though the publisher declined I still continue to write stories today.

This poetry anthology was just another step toward achieving my dreams of becoming an accomplished writer. I was inspired by the book, Dark Life, to title my anthology Jema The Ocean. In this book Jema had a brother that use to call her gem of the ocean because her name sounded like the word, gem. She was gem of the ocean because her brother knew she hated the ocean so he would taunt her with the nickname. I also feel that this title suits this collection of poems because a book of any kind is a gem that should be cherished forever.  There is nothing like opening a new book and really getting into it. Nothing can compare to the feeling you get at the end of a book. Whether its relief, or sadness, or anguish, you just can’t get the same feeling. I remember I always used to love this quote because it inspired me to read more:

“The more you read, the more you’ll know.

The more you know the more places you’ll go.”

-Dr. Suess

Table Of Contents

Poem Title






Shel Silverstein




Eileen Spinelli



“Hard To Please”

Shel Silverstein



“Sea Joy”

Jacqueline Bouvier



“I Am Running In A Circle”

Jack Prelutsky



“Mr. Beefy”





Douglas Florian



“Best Friends”

Kalli Dakos



“Comfortable Old Chair”

Karla Kuskin



“A Snowflake Fell”

Jack Prelutsky





They don’t allow pets in this apartment.

That’s not decent, that’s not fair.

They don’t allow pets in this apartment.

They don’t listen, they don’t care.

I told them he’s quiet and and never does bark,

I told them he’d do all his stuff in the park,

I told them he’s cuddly and friendly, and yet-

They won’t allow pets.

By: Shel Silverstein

I chose this poem because it is similar to my situation at home. I am not allowed to have a pet! So this poem is similar to me because it is about a girl that is dying to get a pet but is not allowed to have one! This poem reflects the animal theme because most animals that you would want as a pet are fun to play with. If animals were not cute or cuddly or exotic, why would you want one? But because they are, you do! So this reflects the animal theme because it shows that even the cutest, cuddliest, and the most exotic animals are still not accepted by everyone, but not no one. I think this poem is really special because it shows how one little girl could possibly make an animal feel accepted, even in the unfairest of situations.



Castle of ice

Rising from the sea.

Jagged spires,

Lonely walls

Stand against

The swirling squalls

Shimmering silently.

By: Eileen Spinelli

I chose this poem because it is a perspective of what school feels like in the summer when school is out. This poem is really about a lonely iceberg in Antarctica but I described it with personification, thus making the poem about a school in the summer. Also this poem reflects the theme of school because, in my opinion, the best time of the school year is when school is out! This poem is special to me because even though it is supposed to be about school, I sometimes feel like this. The poem comforts me because it reminds me that there are people or things in the world that feel worse or have a worse situation.

Home           By: Shel Silverstein

 I chose this poem because it reminds me of my home. Although this poem is about many brothers and sisters being annoying it is very common to my brothers who annoy me. This poem reflects the home theme with this little girls home and all the people in it. This poem is special to me because it is a reminder that not just my family fights all the time, others do to!

Hard To Please

( To be said in one breath)

Elaine is a pain,

Gill makes me ill,

Winnie’s a ninny,

Orin is borin,

Milly is silly,

Rosy is nosy,

Junie is loony,

Gussie is fussy,

Jackie is wacky,

Tommy is balmy,

Mary is scary,

Tammy is clammy,

Abby is crabby,

Patty is batty,

Mazie is lazy,

Tiny is whiney,

Missy is prissy,

Nicky is picky,

Ricky is tricky,

And almost everyone

Makes me sicky.


Sea Joy

When I go down by the sandy shore

I can think of nothing I want more

Than to live by the blooming sea

As the seagulls flutter round me

I can run about–when the tide is out

With the wind and the sand and the sea all about

And the seagulls are swirling and diving for fish

Oh–to live by the sea is my only wish.

By: Jacqueline Bouvier

I chose this poem because I love to be down at the beach and watch the waves.  This poem is about a person seeing and hearing all the beautiful sea and all the interesting life about it.  This poem reflects the place theme because the beach is so calm and nice to be at. I really love going to the beach, it is one of my favorite places to be. This poem is special to me because I think it really explains all the wonders of the sea and sea creatures.


I Am Running In A Circle

I am running in a circle

and my feet are getting sore,

and my head is



as it’s never spun before,

I am




Oh! I cannot bear much more,

I am trapped in a


. . . volving

. . . volving

. . . volving door!

By: Jack Prelutsky

I chose this poem because I too, like to spin around in revolving doors. But I have never gotten stuck in one. This poem is about a person getting stuck in a revolving door and having to go around and around. Just the thought of it makes me dizzy! This poem reflects the hobby theme because this is a fun hobby  (more of a bad habit) that I like to do. This poem is special to me because it is very rare that you find a poem about a weird hobby that you like and also because, well, I personally think it is funny to write poem about a person getting stuck in a revolving door! I wouldn’t even know where to begin!


Mr. Beefy

I am not thin but I am beautiful.





L:0:0king, I steal tubs of butter off the table.

I take them to the basement to eat in private.


By: Patricia and Emily MacLachlan

I chose this poem because I think it is very funny. This poem is about a pug stealing food off the table and getting fat. This poem reflects the humor theme because it is funny, cute, and very very funny! This poem is special to me because even though the Mr. Beefy thinks that he is fat he still knows that he is beautiful.



I chose this poem because gymnastics is my favorite sport to watch. This poem is about doing gymnastics in the summer and I think it really explains that gymnasts have to work their butts off all year round to make it big time. This poem reflects the sports theme because in my opinion gymnastics is the hardest sport in the world. You really have to put  your blood sweat and tears into the sport. This poem is special to me because even though I don’t do gymnastics my friends still call me Gabby Douglas. (Even though it’s just because I’m horrible at gymnastics, its the thought that counts. :)

Summer is a










It summer-saults it’s way past spring.

Turn cartwheels,


Has a ball,

Until it








into fall.

By: Douglas Florian


Best Friends

Your work is neat; mine’s such a mess.

I rush  too much; you do your best.

You get straight A’s; I get all C’s.

I’m Tom Sawyer; you’re Socrates.

You love library; I race to gym.

I’m elastic; you’re a straight pin.

You’re a violin; I’m a tambourine.

But we’re the best friends

       This school has ever seen.

By: Kalli Dakos

I chose this poem because it is exact description of me and my friends.  This poem is about two people that are totally different but make great friends. This poem reflects the friend theme because it shows that you don’t have to have anything in common with someone to be friends with them. This poem is special to me because friends help you when you are down. They support you when you’re feeling low. Friends are very important to have in your life. Without friends life is not worth living.

Job              Comfortable Old Chair

I chose this poem because I want to be an editor when I grow up because I get to read new and exciting things all day. Plus I get paid to do it! This book is about a person that loves to read because he really feels like he is inside a book. This poem reflects the job theme because everyone says that you should always love your job because then it feels like you’re really not working at all! This poem is special to me because, as the poem says “I can be anything any person anywhere If I just have a book and a chair.” That is exactly how I feel when I am reading a book and I think it’s really funny to find a poem that states just that!

By: Karla Kuskin

A bird has a nest

A fox has a lair

A den is a home

If you are a bear

I have a comfortable old chair.

Soft pillowed blue,

a flowered cloud.

The perfect place to read aloud

to myself or silently

letting words run over me,

letting long words run over my head.

New chairs are nice

but mine is best.

My spot to think in

brood in


to plot in

dream in, many dreams,

to scheme a few outlandish schemes in.

Kings need crowns to be a king

but me

I can be anything

any person


If I just have a book and a chair.

Season            A  Snowflake Fell

A snowflake fell into my hand,

a tiny, fragile gem,

a frosty crystal flowerlet

with petals, but no stem.

I wondered at the beauty

of its intricate design,

I breathed, the snowflake vanished,

but for moments, it was mine.

By: Jack Prelutsky

I chose this poem because my favorite season of the year is winter and the main part of that is because of snowflakes. This poem is about a snowflake that falls into a little girls hand. She treasures how the tiny snowflake is like no other and thinks of the little crystal as hers because of its beauty. This poem reflects the season theme because snowflakes, as we all know, only fall in the winter. I cherish the moments like no other when the first of many snowflakes fall. This poem is special to me because my birthday is in winter. I always try to catch a snowflake before I turn another year older.




I’m working on some new stories now one is called I Am Chains, one Dystopia, and the other Flying Atlantis. Keep updated!




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