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Morana By Ella Stott
The Animal Princesses By Abbi Colbert
Once upon a time in the mystical land of Magestia, a king and queen had a pair of twin princesses named Crystal and Amethyst. Crystal and Amethyst loved all animals and would rather spend the day with the pigs than their maids. The princesses had a hard time learning manners and such, but had no trouble memorizing every single animal name that they had. They grew up not talking to anyone but the pets and each other, and if they wanted something they would say
“Well Fluffy, I think I’ll have chocolate milk.”
The maid was asking what she wanted to drink, and Fluffy was the cat. They did this anytime they wanted anything. The Queens solution was that every maid had an animal or could call an animal whenever they needed to ask the girls anything.
When it was the twins 16 birthday they had a grand ball. During this ball, their parents invited many suitors to find the perfect one for the princesses. They were very nervous. All throughout that day the princesses were getting ready for the ball. And as you may think it took 3 hours to pick a dress. This is because of how the girls chose, it went like this
“Amethyst do you think pink is the perfect color, or red?” Crystal would say, Amethyst would reply
“Blue would match your eyes but what about me, these just don’t look right.”
On and on they went back and forth.
But it isn’t the worst conversation that happened. the previous year between their first suitor went like this,
“Good day Crystal, good day Amethyst.”
“Amethyst I think he’s talking to me!”
“No no Crystal he is simply talking to the painting behind us of great grandma Crystal with grandma Amethyst.”
The suitor then replied,
“No no girls I was talking to you not the painting.”
Amethyst then looked at Crystal and yelled
“Ahh run for your life!”
And off they went and hid in with the pigs. They were then found 3 hours later, all muddy and after the suitor was sent away.
So now you understand why the king and queen were very nervous. But to try and get the girls to stay and not run to hide with the pigs the king and queen told them that it was an animal party. So they were very excited to dress up for their animal friends, the queen even complimented them on how pretty they looked. So then they made the walk to the ballroom and they heard “
And now introducing Princess Crystal and Princess Amethyst”
and then...cheers? They were then shoved into the room by the knights. And they just stood there. But there was nowhere to go they were trapped. The entire kingdom was there, cheering and staring at them. And because they were all staring the girls were petrified in place. When they didn’t move the King told the knights to take them to the refreshment table. So the knights pushed the girls to the refreshment table, at the refreshment table there were some new suitors.
One of them asked Crystal if she would like to dance, Crystal continued staring at him. He took it as a yes and guided her to the dance floor. On the dance floor he told Crystal about himself. He said
“I am Prince Kainaniano but you can call me Kai, I’m from the Kingdom of Bablewack. I’m curious, why don’t you speak?”
Crystal’s pet parrot had just land on her shoulder and she said
“ Why Mr. Parrot. I don’t understand, I talk all the time.”
Prince Kai’s mouth gaped. Then he said “You only take to animals, why I should have guessed, hearing the stories about you and your sister.”
Crystal then asked Mr. Parrot
“What stories do you think he has heard about me and dear Amethyst, the time the strange person was talking to us and we ran for the pigs, or when the cook asked what kind of cake we wanted and we ran to dance with the bunnies?”
“All of those stories. I hope I can earn your trust so you will talk to me.”
Crystal was so surprised. She asked Prince Kai
“You think I don’t talk to you because I don’t trust you. That’s crazy, it’s just the first time we wanted to talk to people they went “Oh hush now” so me and my sister learned to communicate with animals. Oh dear I just spoke to you, I need to go now, it was nice meeting you Prince Kai.”
And she ran off not looking back even when he called to her.
She grabbed Amethyst who was stuffing her face so she didn’t have to talk and they ran. But they knew the first place people would look is the animal pens so they ran up to their rooms and into the tiny elevator shaft thing where their milk comes each morning.
Now you may think these elevator shafts are small so how can two 16 year old girls fit in there, well their maid had to come up with the milk, and the girls weren’t that big because they wouldn’t eat meat.
The first time they had to eat meat they screamed and yelled
“You murderers that was my favorite pig, so long Mr. Piggy Wiggy you had the most amazing oink!” They cried themselves to sleep that night.
After a while in the elevator shaft machine they climbed down to the kitchen, tiptoed past the cook who was yelling at the maids, and out the back door. They ran and ran, they had to get to the forest before the guards saw them. But then Crystal tripped her shoes fell off, but she just hopped back up and ran. They didn’t hear the guard so they had to have gotten away. They climbed a tree and watched, Crystal saw Prince Kai come out with the guards, they found her shoes. Then he yelled
“They went this way, we must be quiet if they hear us coming they’ll run again.”
Crystal thought, ya we would, how does this Prince know us so well? So she asked Amethyst. Amethyst replied
“I don’t know we got to do something unexpected. I know, let's go to another kingdom they wouldn’t think we have the guts to do that. But which kingdom?”
“Maybe instead of a different kingdom we could just go to a small town change our names and grab some maids clothes and food so they wouldn’t think we were princesses.”
“Yeah, let’s go.”
So off they went sneaking back into the castle and they asked their most loyal maid to pack them a bag of food and get them some clothes and if anyone asks say we probably went to a different kingdom looking for a new life.
After ten minutes they were off again. They were going through the forest because if they went on the road they would most likely be caught. They talked to squirrels and birds and ran to hide when they heard horses.
“It's getting dark, we should ask the animals if they could guard us so no one will find us,” Crystal suggested to Amethyst.
“Lets go talk to the wolf we saw 3 trees away she seemed nice.”
“Ya and we can also ask the fox family we saw the other direction.”
First they went to the wolf and said
“Mrs. Wolf would you be so kind and make sure no one finds us, we will keep you”re cubs warm.”
“Oh thank you Mrs. Wolf.”
“My wolf’s slacking, what did she say?” asked Amethyst,
“She said that if we kept her cubs warm she would gladly spread the word to keep humans away from this area.”
So they climbed in the den with the cubs and fell fast asleep. Amethyst woke up to the sound of someone talking.
“Who’s there?” she whispered, “Oh, it's just you Crystal.”
Then she listened to what crystal was saying
“If there is one more person I would want to talk to it would be Prince Kai, he was so nice and caring and somehow he made me start talking to him. Nobody has ever been able to do that! But he acted caring when I didn’t say anything or when I was talking to Mr. Parrot it didn’t seem so rude when he would jump into the conversation. How could he say the only reason I don’t talk to him is because I don’t trust him. Come on it's just that everytime we started to talk to someone they would shush us up. How rude, so we only started talking to people who would listen to us.”
Amethyst woke Crystal up and said
“Oink Oink OINK!”
Crystal said defensively, “I was talking in my sleep it could have all been made up.”
“No, I don’t think he is cute!”
“Fine he is just a little cute. And he is also charming,” she mumbled
“Yes charming, if he talked to you instead of me you would think the same thing.”
“Well if this fellow is so charming why don’t we turn around and head back so you can be with him forever?”
“Because I don’t want to be with him forever I just said he was a tiny bit cute and charming… but if father made us choose someone I would probably choose him, unless you want him I would hand him over in a heartbeat.”
“Oh, yes Mrs. Wolf we will go right back to bed, goodnight Amethyst.”
But right before either girl could fall asleep they heard a male voice say, “I think I heard something over here.”
Amethyst whispered, “Yes, thank you Mrs. Wolf,” but in wolf of course.
”Amethyst we could still sneak out so the animals aren’t threatened.”
“Yes, good idea, let’s go.”
Off they went into the dark night using the moon as their guide, right after they crawled out of the den though they saw a light coming through the woods, so they ran quietly the other way. But what they didn’t know was that they were leaving behind a trail of footprints. Crystal was the first to notice,
“Shoot Amethyst we’re leaving behind footprints.”
“I have an idea, hold on.” so while Amethyst ran into the forest Crystal hid behind a tree. After about a minute Amethyst returned with a fox saying, “This is Foxy, she will hide our prints while we go, but in return she wants to come with us.”
“Ok, thanks Foxy, let’s go.”
Off they went, Foxy was surprisingly fast at hiding their prints. Then finally the sun started rising and the girls stopped to eat something. Amethyst and Crystal ate an apple while Foxy was hunting.
“We should ask how far the village we want to go to is and figure how much food we need.”
“Foxy might know.”
“Yea, we’ll ask her when she gets back.”
So they sat eating their apple when they heard a big cry for help but it wasn’t a normal cry for help, this one was in dragon.
“We need to help him!”
“Yes, but where is Foxy?”
Just then, Foxy ran out of the woods holding a mouse.
“Oh that poor creature.”
Foxy ate it.
“Ew, ugh, come on Foxy that dragon needs our help.”
Foxy stopped abruptly and cocked her head as if to say Dragon?
“Yes now come on.”
Foxy still was unsure but they needed her so she ran with them. But they must of made too much noise because they could hear horses behind them. They kept on running but stopped when they saw where the dragons cries were coming from.
“The forbidden mountain?”
“Come on or we won’t make it in time!”
They started to climb. They were exquisite climbers because some bears taught them the tricks. When they were a fourth of the way up the mountain, the men arrived. They knew that they also had expert climbers, so they tried to go faster. After 5 more minutes of climbing, Foxy fell and sprained her ankle.
“Leave me here,” she said weakly,
“Never, we’ll carry you,” said Crystal
And off they went again, just a little slower. The men were bad at climbing on this terrain. The girls climbed on some rocks that were unstable, so the rocks came tumbling down on the men. They got out of the way in time but the rocks blocked there way up. The girls stopped to see if any of the men got hurt and when all the men got out the girls started climbing again. After a half an hour the men rode back to the castle, an hour passed since the men left when they made it to the cave. They sat Foxy down and cautiously walked in. There were a bunch of different paths that they could take but they heard the cry again and followed it. There standing in a giant cave was a emerald green dragon. There was dragon blood covering the floor. After searching for 5 minutes we found where the wound was, the dragon had a giant gash through her left leg. Crystal sent Amethyst to find some cloth for the wound and some water. When she left Foxy went with her, Crystal started talking to the dragon,
She said, “Hey, what’s your name? It’s going to be ok, we’re here to help.”
Emerald replied, “My name is Emerald, but there is no way you can understand me, but if you believe you can stop this pain then do it.”
“Well Emerald, I’m not like others so I can understand you, me and my sister have helped many animals before.”
“Oh, ok then.”
After 15 minutes Amethyst came back with what they needed and news of the guards.
“Here’s that, and they are still trying to find grips at the base.”
“Alright, you keep watch and I’ll take care of Emerald.”
Amethyst ran off with Foxy again.
“Alright Emerald, let me clear your wound, it might hurt so hang tight.”
She cocked her head in the cutest way.
“I’m fine Foxy, I just don’t know how Emerald is doing.”
“Well making sure the guard guys don’t get up will help her.”
And they were off again. When they got to the main cave entrance they saw that the guards had gotten farther up the mountain.
“Let see if we can wedge those boulders together to block the entrance of the cave.”
Foxy just nodded and ran over. It took them a while to move the first one into place, but after a while it got easier.
After every boulder was moved into place they ran back to Crystal and Emerald.
“Here we go Emerald if you need to breath fire or something, don’t do it in my direction.”
After 20 minutes she got the wound all cleaned. Then she started wrapping it in the cloth. Emeralds leg was so large that she and Amethyst had to tie the cloth together. They gave Emerald some herbs that would help the pain but also put her to sleep. Then they started to clean up, because dragons are very messy creatures.
After a couple of days Emerald woke up and said
“I feel great for this, I owe you a great deal.”
“Well if we can stay here for a while that would be great.”
“I hope you don’t mind us looking around your caves.”
“Oh not at all, you guys could be a great help for my messiness. I hate messes, but after I got this wound I couldn’t do anything.”
“Alright, that will be great.”
“May I ask why 2 pretty girls want to stay in a dragon's cave?”
“We are the princesses, our parents did something we didn’t like so we ran away.”
“Maybe after a while we will head back but this place is amazing.”
“Alright then, lets clean!”
Off went the princesses with their new friend to start a new life, hopefully it would work out great.
To Be Continued…
Something was off about Morana, but Everly couldn't decide what was weirdest. For starters, all she ever heard Morana talking about was revenge. Morana couldn’t walk like a normal person either, she just trudged everywhere and whispered under her breath about revenge, and something about who to choose. She was like a zombie, too, with her face pale and dead and her hair ratty. Her clothes were torn and dirty, too, but Everly always reminded herself just because someone looked, talked, and walked weirdly it didn’t mean they were a bad person. Little did she know how wrong she was.
Everly had finally gathered up the courage to talk to Morana, feeling bad that she didn’t have friends. So at their neighborhood annual barbeque, Everly invited Morana to come along with Everly’s friend group. They carpooled, with Everly as the driver, and she was happy to see Morana come with them. Though all the other girls laughed and joked, Morana sat in the back of Everly’s silver minivan alone, though there were open seats in the other rows. Maybe she’ll feel more comfortable around us later when she gets to know us really well. Everly reasoned.
Once they reached the barbeque at the city park pavillion, Everly’s friends immediately ran off to play volleyball. Everly began to run off with them, when she noticed Morana trudging along in a different direction.
“Hang on for just a second!” Everly yelled at her friends as they decided teams. Everly ran toward Morana, who had surprisingly made it all the way to the pavillion in just a short amount of time, especially with how slow she trudged.
“Hey, Morana! Hang on!” Everly panted as Morana stopped, looking- and glaring- behind at her. “Wow, you’re fast!” She smiled, hoping Morana would too, but the glare stuck to her face like a moth to a light.
“Yes,” Morana whispered, the glare not easing up a bit.
Yay! I’m making progress, Everly thought. This is the first time she talked all night!
“So do you want to play volleyball with us?” Everly asked, really hoping Morana would agree. “You can be on my team if you want.”
Morana shook her head. “I hate volleyball, okay?”
Geez, Everly thought, taking a small step away from Morana’s angry scowl.
“Okay, then. Do you want to do something else?”
“NO.” Morana replied. “I just want to sit here. Can you sit with me?”
Everly bit her lip, clearly torn. She could go play volleyball with her friends- something she’d been looking forward to- or she could just sit with Morana and possibly make a new friend. “Um… sure, I’ll sit with you.” Hey, Morana was warming up, so she felt inclined to keep talking to her.
Morana’s face brightened a little as her glare eased and her mouth crept into a slow smile. Though it was a very startling smile, with her lips twisted backward showing her tiny, yellow teeth, it was still something.
“So, how’s your day been?” Everly asked as they sat down on the benches.
“Terrible,” Morana answered, looking away from Everly.
“Oh, um… I’m very sorry to hear that.”
“I’m not.” Morana looked back at Everly, the smile still stuck in place.
“Oh, good?” Everly began to wish she had decided to go play volleyball with her friends.
“Very, very good.” Morana’s smile grew and Everly’s stomach began to churn. “Very, very, very good. In fact, fantastic.”
“Okay…you’re happy that your day was terrible?” Everly asked, confused.
“Oh, no. I’m happy I found you.”
Everly smiled too, now, although her smile was a nice, pretty one. It was much less creepy than Morana’s. “I’m glad we’re friends too.”
“Friends? Who said anything about friends?”
“What?” She doesn't want to be friends? What do I do?
Morana’s smile grew even larger. “Have you ever wondered why I dress the way I do or act the way I do?”
Everly willed herself to say no, to be polite, but she couldn’t help it. “Yes, I wonder all the time.”
“Someone very much like me did it. She turned me into what I am now.” Morana’s smile faded, but not to a glare again. Now she just looked sad. “She took away my family, my friends, my future.” Everly noticed a tear rolling down her pale cheek.
“Morana! I’m so sorry! Why did she do it?” She felt like crying too.
“Because I was willing to get close to her.”
“Oh?” Everly’s insides churned again. She was willing to get close to Morana.
“Yeah. And now that you’re getting close to me…” Morana laughed, not sad anymore, and suddenly everything went dark. Everly’s insides squeezed like toothpaste from a tube and it was suddenly bright again. She felt… different. Very, very different.
She looked over and saw Morana sitting there, smiling… but it wasn’t Morana anymore. It was herself. Everly.
“Now I’m you! Thanks Morana. You really cooperated.¨ Everly ran away toward the volleyball net and soon she disappeared from sight.
She was Morana now. Anger suddenly took control of all her emotions, though she wasn't mad at Everly. It made sense, what Everly had to do. She just used the key.
“Revenge,” Morana whispered under her breath. Revenge was the key.
She got up and began to trudge away, but she didn’t notice her hair was ratty.
She didn’t notice her clothes were torn and dirty.
She didn’t notice her face was pale and dead.
But she did notice a new urge to go and find someone else.
Someone else to take this new burden off her shoulders.
To find a new Morana.
Each day, Bill distilled water until the still hill with the still, steel mill was tilled. But then Bill eventually sold the still steel mill to Jill’s friend Phil, who’s been still still still for seven days. Why was Phil still still? At first it seemed overkill, but it wasn’t profusion of illusion. There was someone on the window sill who went to kill Phil. Then suddenly Phil had gotten ill with a chill. He was ill until he was completely still on his still steel mill. And now, Phil is still still.
This was a super stuper for Jill. Jill was a friend of Phil and was in the profession of discretion, and this kind of thing gave her a thrill, but this was a super stuper for Jill, so Jill stopped at Phil’s stocky studio to look at Phil’s still steel mill that Bill sold to Phil at Bill’s store. She couldn't see a motive for Bill to kill, but she was still suspicious that Bill killed Phil because Phil bought the still steel mill, on top of the still hill, from Bill’s store to find out more. Bill was still tilling the the hill, only this time without his mill, because he had sold his still steel mill to Phil for his hill.
When Jill asked Bill if he’d killed Phil, Bill acted chill, so Jill guessed that it probably wasn’t Bill, because he had no cause to kill Phil. Additionally, when Phil was killed, Bill was busy tilling his still hill that once held the still steel mill (He had a lot of skill with the till).
The whole thing just made her feel ill as she thought about Phil. She thought and thought. She thought a lot. Then Jill remembered Dill. Her unkill named Dill (short for Dill Pickill). Dill worked at the old landfill at the bottom of the hill, so Jill went to grill dill for information on Bill’s extermination.
Dill had always wanted the still steel mill on top of the hill. Dill still had a will to kill Phil. He killed Phil to steal the still steel mill on top of the hill that Phil got from Bill. Now Jill knew the ill the squill who killed Phil. The nil vill, the shrill twill who killed Phil, had to be Dill. Jill stopped Dill from stealing of Phil’s still safe steel mill on Phil’s still hill with the still steel mill.
What if all of the avocados in the world came to life?
I just want you to imagine all of the poor people that were cutting avocados when this would have happened. The avocado would start screaming because it’s being cut open. The human would start screaming because this avocado just started screaming. And that wouldn’t be very good. Luckily, most people won’t be making guacamole. Most avocados would either be in stores, in a pantry, or in a refrigerator.
I see many ways avocados can change society, the avocados might find us as a threat and retaliate. What if they were hostile? Would they be able to get an advantage over us in war? Most, if not all, of these questions do not and never will have answers.
I personally think they would be friendly and help us in our activities. In my mind, we would have to build avocado sized entrances, windows, food, roads, cars, houses, parks, planes and everything we humans use on a regular basis. We might also have to make entirely different cities for the avocados, seeing as they can’t exactly move as quick as we can, so their cities would have to miniaturized version of our cities. Maybe these cities would be inside our own cities to appease the avocados and to prevent from uprising.
I personally think that avocados coming to life is a bad idea, we wouldn’t be able to eat avocados again without angering any more avocados. Cookbooks with avocado recipes would need to be recalled so they can be removed. The whole thing just seems like a gateway to a war between avocados and the world.
ILL by Christopher Chevalier
Avocado by Tyler Perry
Chapter one by Jenny Malm
She gasped as she fell to the ground. Her sword was only a yard away, but she knew she wouldn’t get there in time. Her enemy was coming closer now, her dagger ready to pierce, to kill. It couldn’t end like this. She had to finish the fight. As she crawled toward her dropped weapon, she heard the monster laughing. Such a vain attempt to keep fighting. She was almost there… She saw a streak of white rush toward her soon-to-be killer. No… Suddenly there was a flash of light and an unimaginable pain in the center of her back.
Becky Miller awoke with a start. It was just a dream. She had fallen asleep doing her math homework. She finished her equation and closed her eyes to relax, her curly red hair falling over her fair face. She hated Thursdays. So close to the weekend, but still one more day of school. Maleficent, her small white cat, jumped onto her lap, purring as Becky absentmindedly scratched her ears. She picked up the little ball of fluff and went downstairs for dinner. She set the cat down and sat at the table, where her mom was serving sticky chicken, which was one of her favorite meals.
¨So,¨ her mom said. ¨What are you planning to get Amy for her birthday?¨At the thought, Becky looked up. She had completely forgotten about Amy’s birthday! Tomorrow she and her best friends Amy and Chrissy were going straight from school to a space simulator for Amy´s birthday party. Becky was supposed to go get her gift right after dinner, but still had no idea what to get.
¨Umm...¨ She replied, looking sheepish. ¨I was thinking I would just walk around the store for a little bit until I find something...¨ She knew her mom hated ‘just walking around the store’ because it never took a ‘little bit’.
Her mom sighed and told her to think about it. Becky continued poking at her chicken, while she thought about what Amy would like. She remembered how she was always complaining about her book bag falling apart at the seams, and thought she would get her a new one.
After the meal of sticky chicken, Becky and her mom went to the cute little antique shop across the street. This is the perfect place to get Amy’s new bag, she though. It was full of adorable little trinkets and keepsakes. She opened the door and started to slowly look at all the bags, trying to find the perfect one for Amy, while her mom sat in the corner with a magasin. She checked every pocket and strap, every clasp and zipper, but couldn’t seem to find one that Amy would cherish.
While she was looking, she heard the small tinkling of the bell at the door. Someone else had come in. Becky looked up and saw someone in a long coat, and she couldn’t see their face very well, because of the hood he had over his face. She didn’t think much of it, because strange people came in here all the time, looking for the craziest things!
She continued to search the store, and eventually heard the stranger leave again. She decided to get a cute yellow one that she saw at the front of the store, because she couldn’t seem to find a better one. But when she got there, there was a different bag on the shelf, that she could have sworn wasn’t there before. That’s odd, she though. The bag was beautiful leather, stained a excellent lilac color. It was perfect! Becky looked for a price, but the tag seemed to have worn off at some point. She asked the cashier how much it was, and they estimated $7. That left her with a little bit left over, so she got herself a necklace with a gleaming emerald on it too. The emerald was fake, of course, but it was still pretty.
She went home with a grin on her face, and carefully wrapped the perfect bag.
The next day, after school, they were headed to the space simulator. The three girls chatted joyfully on the car ride, and Becky was wearing her emerald around her neck. Amy’s blond hair was held in a tight ponytail, bobbing around her tan face. She was the fashion nerd of the group. Chrissy was a brunette, with a slightly pimply face. She was the funny one, always making other people laugh. Becky was the smart one, who helped the other girls with homework and school. They talked about boys, style, just normal girl things. When they got there, the instructor told them to choose their role. Captain, guns, operations, and communications. They needed one more person.
Amy looked empty. They couldn’t play with only three people! The instructor cleared his throat. “We do have a kid that will be happy to join in. He’s my son, and just came with me today to see how I do my job.” The girls looked at each other. They were all thinking the same thing. A boy? It was either that, or they go home, so they reluctantly agreed.
A few minutes later, a super tall, skinny kid walked in. He had wavy blond hair, and thick glasses. Becky thought he kind of looked like a nerd. He smiled at them. His teeth were perfectly straight. “Hi, I’m Erik Reyes. Sorry you’ll have to have me in your group. I know what that’s like.” He was still smiling.
Becky, Amy, and Chrissy were all silent. Whoever this guy was, he was cute! He told them that he would be whatever wasn’t picked. Since it was Amy’s birthday, she was captain. Chrissy was guns, and Becky was communications. That left Erik to operations.
Before they went in to the simulator, they opened presents. Chrissy had gotten Amy a new set of hair bows, which Amy seemed to go through at least a pack a week. She immediately took out her old one and put one of her new ones in. Then Becky handed her the present. When Amy carefully unwrapped, she beamed at Becky, and hugged her tight. “Thank you so much!!” she said, “It’s perfect!” They came out of the room laughing and smiling, Amy’s new bag dangling at her hip, and new bow in her hair. Erik followed behind, sharing in on the jokes. He’s really funny, Becky though.
They went into the simulator, and all took their seats. Some workers came in to teach them to do their jobs, while Erik, since he knew how to do all the jobs, answered the girls’ questions.
Finally they were ready to start. Their mission was to find and retrieve a spaceship that went missing 20 years ago. Amy barked orders like a real captain would, and everyone else followed their roles perfectly. Erik was super good at operations. He had experience with real engines, and know exactly what to do for all the problems they encountered.
Then, just as they were about to find the spaceship, the room shook. Some space simulators could do that, so they thought they were under attack by and enemy ship. Becky scanned the space around them, but didn’t find anyone but themselves.
They were still shaking. Erik was typing rapidly on his computer, while the girls stood around not knowing what to do. This definitely wasn’t the simulator. Was there an earthquake? A tornado? What was going on?
Everyone’s computer went blank. The room shook again. It tilted to one side, then another. Everyone was screaming and clinging on to their desks and walls. Everyone except Erik, who was rushing around the room, trying to figure out what was happening.
The girls and Erik were jolted upwards, and then it felt as if the room was traveling forward very fast. Erik fell down and hit his head on the wall, and fell unconscious.
Everything went dark…
Let it show by Darren Steffensen
When you look at me, what do you see? Most people know that I am openly gay, and have a basic idea of my personality, but just by looking at someone, you can’t see them. This may all just sound like an extended version of “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, but it’s true. If we could read minds, the entire world would be seen in a completely different way.
Just this morning, the cashier at my grocery store seemed troubled. One word replies and fake half smiles, I know them all too well. I didn’t give much thought to it then, but looking back, I realize that all in that one moment, so much could’ve been happening in their head. Stress, anxiety, depression. You can see it in someone’s eyes, but you don’t know it. Bottom line, you aren’t in their head.
How can we change this? While there are millions of changes in our daily life we would have to make, it really all begins with just being more open with each other. With everyone. Don’t just open up to your counselor, or your friends, or anyone you’ve opened up to in the past. Be open about how you feel, and what’s going on in your head. Whatever you’re comfortable sharing, don’t be afraid to.
We all see each other in different ways, some in a distorted, unreal view, others may see who we are. But nobody is in your head. Only you truly know who you are. It’s up to you to let it show.
Somewhere far over the ocean on an island, a 13 year old girl named Eden and her little brother Regi are stranded with nowhere to go for help. On their plane, they encountered a lightning storm and had to get off and onto lifeboats before the plane crashed. Their parents bodies have been found but no one knows where the kids are. With no one around, they didn’t know what to do. Since all of their luggage fell in the water with the plane, they didn’t have anything to eat, or anything to use to signal to get help. They didn’t know where they were, or how they were going to get home. So they started a fire with some wood and twigs that they found on the island where they had fallen asleep. The next morning they woke up thinking it was all a dream, that they were still home sleeping in their beds with waffles, strawberries, and plenty to eat for breakfast, but no. They woke up by the ocean, near the forest, on the sand stranded and all alone.
Whoa whoa whoa, let's not get too ahead of ourselves here. Let’s go back to the beginning. It’s just a normal day at the Payton household around 1:00pm, except for the fact they are traveling to Costa Rica! Everyone is so excited. Eden and Regi are quickly packing for their summer trip. As they are double checking their bags, dad is packing the car. When they quickly got to the airport, they ran to catch their flight. It was Eden and Regi’s first time on an airplane, so they just couldn’t wait. On the plane there were snacks, DVD players, and magazines. They had also brought other things to do for the 7 hours and 40 plus minutes on the plane.
It’s 5:00, about 3 hours from Costa Rica. Regi and Eden were fast asleep until it was announced on the intercom there was a lightning storm and that they needed to evacuate the plane as soon as possible. There were alarms going off and everyone was rushing to get a life vest and get onto a lifeboat. There were so many people, Eden and Regi couldn’t find their parents anywhere, but there was nothing they could do, so Eden took Regi by the hand and got on a lifeboat with other passengers. There was no land they could go to, but instructors from the plane informed them that everything was going to be okay and that they would contact someone to come and get them. As they were sitting there drifting away, they could watch the lightning and see how far away from it they were. You know when you see lightning and you count how many seconds are in between that one and the next to see how many miles away from you it is? Yeah, well that’s all Regi and Eden could do at those moments waiting for someone to come, not knowing what would happen next.
Their boat slowly started to drift off from the others, everyone was paddling as fast as they could to get back. Farther and farther they drifted away. Regi sitting in the corner reaching and screaming for his parents. Eden was scared, too, but there was nothing she could do. For she did not know where her parents were. But she knew that they weren’t with her and that’s what worried her the most. It was no use. There was no way they were going to get back. Still during this time the lightning storm was getting closer and closer to them. Soon enough their boat was struck by lightning. The boat immediately sank. Everyone on their boat was trying to keep themselves up from drowning. Eden was searching for Regi. After she found him she held him close, struggling to keep the both of them up. Soon she ran out of strength, and couldn’t last much longer.
Eden and Regi both sank slowly as they were floating farther out to sea.
Freelance Friday By Katelyn Perry
Chapter One By Josh Spilker
A long time ago, in the state of Utah, there lived a boy named Joseph (Jo) Stanley. This is the story of Joseph living life at school with friends and family. Joseph was a meticulously average height of. He had 4 great friends named Isaiah (Izikeoh) Henry, Charles (Hank) Karrimor, Eugene (Gary) Karmichael, and Karl (Kody) Stephenson. Around school they were known as the big five.
On the first day of the tenth grade, the big five were walking down the hall. This year was hopefully going to be different. Sadly, they were already being booed for their display of being absolute dummies the year before. As Jo looked down at his schedule he realized that the others were going to their first class without him, as he had detention for 1st period.
He got to detention with Principal Connors and sat down in the seat across from him. The principal immediately stood up and addressed Jo.
“Mr. Stanley,” he said. “I am glad that you have not been late to your first detention. That is at least a decent start to your first day at school.”
Joseph remembered his first day of school last year when he punched a kid in the face for bad mouthing his mother. Why did Connors have to remind him of it though? ¨The only reason I got in trouble because of that, Principal Connors, was because you have stupid punishment policies.” Connors quickly shouted about how he was going to expel Jo from school if he continued down this path.
Jo quickly ceased, but muttered some choice swear words, mostly centered around Connors’s bad choice of decor for his office.
Connors quickly shouted “I will expel you once I can get the paperwork filed!”
Jo then grabbed the principals tie and spat in his face “No you won’t!” He then proceeded to grab a lighter from the desk (probably for cigars) and burned his entire desk with all of his papers. “I am going to kill you!” shouted the principal in Jo’s face. Jo ran and jumped under the flamed desk for some kind of cover when Connors laughed and said “You cannot hide from me you dog”. Connors then flipped the desk, grabbed Jo around the collar of his Led Zeppelin T-shirt and threw him across the room through the open window. He saw the ground coming nearer and then crack!! He saw blackness all around him. He heard Connors’s raspy voice but it sounded more, more feminine. Connors said “ Wake up so I can beat you some more”. Why would he want to beat him more? He was probably knocked out or dead.”Wake up!”. Joseph woke up in a cold sweat. “Oh good just another bad dream”.
Joseph could hear low rasping breath for a few moments and realized that the nun in charge of the orphanage he was at since birth was standing right in front him.
“So did you get some rest you ungrateful swine?” the nun said in the meanest voice she could possibly muster. “ You were supposed to clean the bathrooms last night you ugly little dog”.
He then whined “ I got home late last night because I got into a fight at school and was really tired so I went to bed and -”
The nun interrupted and replied “Don't talk back to me you unwanted piece of garbage. When I tell you to do something, you do it.” Joseph stammered “But!”. The head Nun shouted “ That is it I am going to teach a lesson today you filthy animal.” Joseph thought to himself that maybe he wanted to go back to his terrible nightmare.
. . . . . . . . . . . . .
After being told off for talking back, Joseph was forced to clean all the bathrooms and was ordered by the nun to do it and to not talk back. His head aching, he went downstairs to the kitchen to get something to eat. He opened the cupboard to see absolutely nothing. Except for cabbage which he did not think was suitable for breakfast. He left the orphanage to go to school and on his way there he saw the store he usually bought breakfast from but realized that he did not have any money. So he got ready to grab an apple and a milk carton and run like heck. He grabbed them and ran but unfortunately the store owner grabbed him by the neck of his shirt and punched him in the face. He then spat in his face and said “So you’re that ugly little kid who constantly steals from me, huh? Well guess what? This time I am calling the cops and their going to arrest you punk”. When he heard the word cop he instantly started to run and surprisingly wrenched from his grip grabbed the items and ran. He got to the front of the school he saw the cops on his tail so he instantly hid in the garbage and hoped they did not see him move in there. He turned on his emergency flash light in his backpack that he always carried around and when he did he saw that the bottom of the garbage had giant rats. As soon as he flashed his light on them he had a stab of pain in his right leg and saw tons of blood. His leg and ankle twisted violently. He passed out from too much pain.
To be continued…...
Short Story by Aiden Carroll
Sam swore as the tube came loose once again. “Its not working. I think some dust got in there jamming the lock.” he said, a hint of worry showing in his voice. “We’ll have to apply some sealant to make sure it stays. Unless you want me to tell them to come back up here and haul us all back to earth.”
“Rather stay up here on the moon where it's nice and inhospitable, but are we sure we want to seal it? If we don’t make sure we get all around, it could leak without us knowing and in about an hour we have a fun time trying to breathe.” A voice stated from a speaker on the side of the padded helmet in a matter-of-fact tone. “I for one would like to survive at least a month”
“Do you have any other ideas? Or would you rather be liquified for fertilizer?” Sam responded, slightly aggravated. “We should ask Henry, he’s the engineer.”
“A little busy right now, can’t talk. The tube to the south plant got pretty dinged up.” a second voice urgently retorted in an informal tone.
“Here goes nothing,” Sam said as he prepped the long, thin rod, connected by a tube to on of the many tanks in the bulky pack on his back. The rod began to softly vibrate, but no sound travelled through the airless space. The sun glinted off the metal, and Sam wondered what time it was back on earth. He began to apply the dark green paste, almost resembling cement. He slowly went around the loosely fitted cable, making sure to get all around it. He had just finished when a ear-piercing blast rang through his head, leaving his ears ringing. “What was that?!!” Sam exclaimed, but all that returned was silence.
A motionless body sat on the small table in the enclosed room, a makeshift hospital. Medical supplies sat about, blood covered the floor. A large chunk of dull metal protruded from the man’s flesh, about the size of a pothole cover. A spacesuited person walked out of the room, in a slow, bouncing walk. Sam sat in a chair looking down, everything going in slow motion around him, the silence almost giving him claustrophobia. “Henry is dead,” the comm blared in his suit, causing to look up at the shadowed helmet. “I can see that,” he said sharply as he walked back to the sleeping quarters.
Only two weeks since Sam(Researcher), Nate(Chemist), Henry(Engineer), and Kathy(Physician) landed on the moon to prepare for the 200 person colony, and a faulty part caused failures in two of the pipes- an oxygen tube and a pipe to the CO2 filter. Sam had managed to seal the latter, but the oxygen plant, performing electrolysis(Splitting of water into oxygen and hydrogen) using the water from the well a deep surface scan had discovered, exploded when it overheated. Later that day he discovered that their communication antenna had definitely been sabotaged when they tried to send a distress signal. NASA would not know anything for 3 weeks, and they only had oxygen reserves for one. With 3 people that is…
They didn’t talk much anymore. Just said what they needed to. When repairs were finished and machinery set up, Sam would sit and look off into space, and Kathy take long spacewalks. Nate would just sit and look at charts and readings, with the occasional dry comment. Sam hated those, and each made him want to hurt him more and more. After the sixth comment Nate made, Sam walked off with a sigh. He ended up at his room, got in and went to bed…
Sam woke as he heard footsteps outside the door. He got out of his bed, and and cracked open the door. He saw Nate creeping down the hallway, holding a sharpened rod covered with blood. Nate turned to look at Sam.
“Happy Birthday Elide.” My mom sings, my birthday has never been a happy day for me, my parents decided that they wanted to divorce the day before my birthday. My dad went and got a ticket and flew out the next day, to Miami, Florida to the house that his parents left to him. I never got to meet Grandma and Grandpa Rothstein, my mom told me that Grandma loved to swim as much as I do, and Grandpa loved nature and had the same nervous tendencies that I have, but I will never know for sure. Let’s stop with the sad stuff. After mom leaves, I crawl out of bed and get ready for the day. I decide on jeans and a gray shirt, and I finish off my look with the blue bird necklace that came in the mail from my dad last year. I head up the stairs, and head outside I make sure that we have our suitcases. After I check over everything else, I turn back and head inside. After about 20 more minutes, we are in the car and headed out to a lake near our house in Wimberly, Texas. It just felt too normal. We rented a little house boat that we could spend the weekend on. It will just be nice to have a break from school.
When we reach the lake, we push the boat in, and mom hops on to get things up and running. When she starts up the engine, I run to pull our bags out of the back of the truck. Almost slipping back down the slippery slope, I am eager to get into the water and escape the outside world. I am at the top of the slope when I hear a heart stopping crunch. I spin on my heel to see what made that noise and I see that the boat is in flames and stuck on a rock formation. I see my mom screaming from the deck. I start to panic. I can’t lose her. She is my rock; she helped me in school and understand why dad left and how strong that I can be. I can’t lose her.
“Mom!” I shout across the lake. “Jump into the water and start to swim to shore! I’ll meet you!”
Now is the time that I should mention that my mom was in a car accident when she was 5 or 6. Both of her shoulders dislocated. They were put back into the socket, but they are still quite weak. We meet close to the shore. It was still fairly deep. We turned and started to swim back to shore. I was constantly looking over my shoulder to make sure she was still behind me. One time when I looked, I saw her fighting the water. I started to swim toward her, but to my dismay, every stroke that I took she floated farther away from me. The last thing I saw was her fingers poking out of the fire wreck that was our boat, all I could think about is saving my mom’s body so that we could have a body to bury, I dive under the water and force my eyes open. I see where my mom’s body landed. I go up for a breath of air, then head down to get her. I grab her by the wrist and get out from under the boat, the adrenaline wearing off. Realizing how hot it is under our burning boat, I start swimming like mad to shore, still clinging to my mom’s wrist. I climb up onto shore and run back up the slope to grab my phone from my bag, I find it and dial 911.
“911 what is your emergency?”
“My mom and I were out on the lake and our boat crashed killing my mom…” I said my voice breaking at the end of the sentence because she’s really gone.
“Okay sweetie. Where are you?”
“We are out at Lake Buchanan, on the east shore.”
“We are sending help.” The line goes dead and I put my phone in my pocket and head back down the slope to where I left mom, I sit on the ground next to her and the last thing I remember is tears slipping out of my eyes before I black out on the beach.
Beep beep beep beep
I hear the machine montering my heart beep steadily . Where am I? Why can’t I open my eyes? How long have I been out? What happened? These are the questions flowing through my brain. I then hear people talking one of them sounds like my dad?
¨She hit her head pretty hard on that rock it doesn’t surprise me that she is still knocked out.”
After that I hear the doctor leave my room. Oh, so I am in a hospital, but what hospital? Did dad fly all the way out to Wimberly Hospital, or was I flown out to Miami Hospital? Now that I am thinking about it, the doctor said that it didn't surprise him that I was still out. I try to move my fingers one at a time but they don't move! OH MY GOSH! My brain starts to travel to a story that I heard the other day about a man who was stuck in a coma for two months. Am I in a coma? No, no, no, I’m just being silly this is just a bad dream! Sooner or later I’ll wake up and I will be in my bed in my house, and my mom will be there! I don’t want to see my dad again! I don’t know how to feel about him being here I mean he still my dad but after what he put mom through. How do I still love him, but somehow I do. That sentence must have been the key, because I again tried to move my fingers and they lifted probably half an inch off the bed.
I hear my dad gasp slightly, I try to open my eyes. My eyelids flutter open then snap back shut because of the bright light above my bed. I work on getting my eyes to stay open, I have them open and I see my dad sitting on a chair next to my bed his bright green eyes heavy with sleep. That makes me wonder how long I have been out, and how long he had been sitting by my bed?”
“Elide, are you feeling alright?” my dad asks me, and I take a minute before I answer.
“Where is mom?” I feared that I already knew the answer but I needed the reassurance.
“I am sorry to say, but honey, she passed away in the fire, the fire department found you laying next to her on the beach.” My dad said quietly. It hit me hard depending on how long I was out for I might not get to go to mom’s funeral. Two is I grew so close to my mom after dad left us. I feel myself start to cry. I try to stop because I know mom would want me to stay happy and focus on things that I love, like school and swimming. But I miss her.
“Dad? How long till I can go back to school?” I ask fearing the answer.
“The doctor said that you have to stay low for the next two days then you can go back to school and swim.” He responds with some joy in his voice, clearly excited to be off the topic of mom. Well, two days is better than a week I think to myself.
“How long till we can leave the hospital?” I inquire.
“The doctor told me after you woke up that we would need to stay for half and hour so that he can run some final checks, I’ll go and find him real quick so that we can get out of here.” He replies. As he leaves I finally let out all of my emotiotions out that have built over the past 20 minutes or so, I won’t ever see Texas again, I won’t ever see my house again, I feel a dark cloud slip into my head as I think how; I’ll never see my mom again.
“Elide? Are you okay?”I hear my dad ask softly.I wonder what my mom would want me to say? I feel my anger rise and with it my temperature. I kick my blanket off me. I take a deep breath and respond calmly.
“As good as I can be considering my mom died in a fiery boat wreck.” I retailate.
It felt good to get it off my chest. I turn my head towards my dad, he looks hurt and I run my statement through my head again and I realized that I implied that I don’t love him as much as mom. Which is a question that I am struggling to find the answer to.
“Dad? I didn’t mean it like that, I just am struggling to see how I can continue with out her.”
Trying to keep myself together. I feel some unwarranted tears stream down my face, I quickly wipe them up.
“It’s okay I should be more understanding it’s just… when you were a little girl you loved to come and visit me here, but when you were nine your mom called and said that it would be wise to stop your visits and I agreed for your own safety.” He murmurs low that it’s a wonder that I was able to hear all of it.
“I still love coming here. I love seeing you and the house but over the past eight years I didn’t see you, you stopped calling, I haven’t heard your voice in eight years. So I leaned on mom to get me through that time so we grew closer. You don’t get how hard it is to just move on, mom didn’t truely move on from you really at all, but here i am now with you just wanting me to forget her.” I tell him, tears brimming in my eyes, he thinks that I don’t love him as much but I do, I just need to get used to life without mom. After a couple minutes of awkward silence the doctor walks in.
“Elide, we’re so happy you're awake; you gave us quite the scare.” The doctors announces in a loud booming voice.
“Why?” I inquire of him.
“Well, we thought that you would wake up in a day but you didn’t wake up for three days.” He says.
“WAIT, three days!” I exclaim. I turn my head to my dad, he has an “oh crap” look on his face, I take a deep breath and tell my dad.
“You didn’t tell me that I was out for three days.”
“I forgot I was just so happy that you were awake” He whispers.
“What!” I screech, I turn back to the doctor and try to smile after all Can’t be mad at him.
“What do you need to do?” I ask.
“I have all the data I need, you are free to go.” He responds awkwardly.
I practically jump out of the bed, I hope that my dad is behind me as I head to his car, I’m still mad at him because he didn’t tell me that I was out for three days, but I guess that I understand why he didn’t tell me but I deserve to know what occurred the past few days. When I get to the parking lot I look around for my dads yellow jeep when I find it I start to jog over to it. Soon I realize that it was a bad idea. I got really dizzy and had to slow down and walk the rest of the way to his car.
“Elide are you positive you are okay?’ my dad asks once he reaches the car, I know he’s just concerned about me but this is getting annoying.
“Yes, I’m fine.” My voice hold no emotion. The ride home is quite, then a thought pops into my head.
“Dad… How long was I really out?” I asked fearing the answer. I look over at him he has a guilty look on his face and I know that I was out for longer that 3 days.
“Uhhhh…. You were out for 6 days.” He mumbles. It takes a minute for it to sink in, then it clicks if the crash occurred on Saturday and it was 6 days later then it was Friday. The drive home was quiet, when we got within a mile of the house things started looking familiar, then I saw it, the house of both my dreams and my nightmares, it is a light blue farm style house with white trimmings around the windows and door and a white patio, I don’t like seeing this house after what happened last time.
When I was 5, I was upstairs waiting for dad to come and kiss me goodnight when I hear his voice, it sounds like he’s talking over the phone, I went to the phone that was in my room and picked it up feeling guilty but he sounded mad and I was curious I picked up the phone so that I could hear what they were talking about.
“I don’t want you near my El!” my dad yelled, they were talking about me I immediately regret picking up the phone, who’s on the other side I wonder.
“I need to be the parent that she needs.” my mom sobs, I feel bad they were mad at each other because of me. I wanted to hang up but I couldn’t, it makes a clicking noise whenever someone hangs up.
“El needs her father, not a freak like you!” my dad shouted into the phone, my heart shatters, I love my mom and dad just called her a freak. I hear my mom sobbing at home, all I want to do is be there with her so that I could comfort her, I hear as she steadys her breathing.
“Goodbye Riley.” my mom says her voice on the verge of tears. I hear the click as she hangs up, I quickly hang up and scurrie to my bed, tears streaming down my cheeks, I hear as my dad walks up I wipe my eyes and force a smile on to my face, as he walks into my room his face is still red from the argument I flinch slightly as he bends down to kiss me goodnight he doesn’t seem to notice though which I am highly thankful for.
“El… are you okay?” I hate that he uses that nickname for me. That name was reserved only for mom.
“Fine.” I respond curtly, I am not trying to be rude or anything but this man was so rude to me and my mom when I was young. I just know realize that we are in the driveway of my dads house. I take a deep breath and get out of the car and slowly make my way to the house I don’t try to run because of what happened the last time.
“Do you want to go out to eat tonight El?” my dad asks as he pulls my suitcase behind him, I take a minute to think.
“Sure.” I respond I am trying to stay happy I mean at least he is taking me in, right?
We get back into the car and wed head to the Mountain Meadow Inn and restaurant, I loved this place when I was little I hope that it’s the same as I remember. We head in and we are shown to our table right by a window, as my dad and I start to talk I hear the soft pitter patter of rain hitting the window. My dad orders for us as I stare out the window watching as the raindrops hit the ground and form puddles. Before the food gets here I excused myself from the table needing a moment to compose my thoughts, I step outside and find a bench under the covering but an occasional raindrop lands on me.
“You must be new here.” a voice from behind me says. I jump and turn around to see a boy around the age of 17, standing behind me but he’s not the only thing that I see, my eyes catch the torches that are flickering against the wind, I fall back onto the bench shaking, all I can see and hear are my mom’s last moments on this world, slowly I am able to see and realize that sometime during my panic attack that I had fallen off the bench, I see the boy standing over me with a look that can only be explained as concerned. He offers me his hand I take it and he pulls me up, a wave of calm floods my shocked nerves.
“Are you okay?” the boy asks. I nod. I can’t seem to find my voice, the scene is still burning the backs of my eyes.
“I’m Zach Steele. Are you a senior?” Again I nod still unable to speak.
“Well then we are bound to run into each other tomorrow.”As he starts to walk away I find my voice.
“WAIT!” I run to catch up with him.
“Don’t tell anyone about tonight, I don’t want people to think that I’m a freak.” I tell him. He nods. I feel his eyes on the back of my head as I walk back into the restaurant, I sit back down as our dinner arrived. I had fun the rest of the night with my dad, when we get home it’s almost 10:30 I finish unpacking my things grab a pair of PJ’s and go shower, I finish getting ready and cross the hall back to my room, I slip under my sheets, the bed is slightly to small for me, but I like to sleep curled up any way, soon I slip off into a dreamless sleep.
Life As A Teen: Acrostic Poem by Tristen Kelly
Everyone goes through this, you can make it.