Passages of Promise

Passages of Promise

[An Anthology of Student Work by Buffy Hamilton’s SOAR Creative Writing Class,
Chestatee Middle School]


Compiled by Buffy J. Hamilton

Foreword by Amy L. Balogh and Buffy J. Hamilton

[Original Cover Artwork by Grayson Bennett
Additional Artwork by Grayson Bennett and Alex May]

All compositions written by Ms. Hamilton’s Spring 2017 SOAR Students


Shakespir Edition


Published By: Buffy J. Hamilton at Shakespir



Each original piece of writing and artwork appears with permission of each student author.


©Copyright 2017 Buffy J. Hamilton

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or utilized, in any form or by any

means, electronic or mechanical, without prior permission in writing from the publishers.


Shakespir Edition, License Notes


This eBook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This eBook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to Shakespir.com or your favorite retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.






This semester I have thoroughly enjoyed sponsoring a SOAR Creative Writing class. Our SOAR pathway classes at Chestatee Academy provide students opportunities each semester to select in a class in one of three pathways—STEM, Health and Wellness, and Arts/Humanities—and develop a project of his or her choosing. A mix of twenty sixth, seventh, and eight grade writers signed up for this course with a common goal of having time and space to grow as writers. We have engaged in group writing, journaling, writing circle feedback, creative writing exercises, and three wonderful virtual visits from Kennesaw State University English faculty and writers.


Students developed their own writing plans for contributions to the group eBook. Some built on existing projects, but everyone developed at least one brand new writing piece for this eBook. Several of these young writers experimented with new genres and writing techniques. I have purposefully been an editor of minimal intervention so that students have had opportunities to craft and revise their works without my own voice drowning out theirs.


We hope you enjoy this sampling of student writing in Chestatee Academy’s first eBook publication of student authors.


Buffy J. Hamilton

Title I Writing Teacher

Chestatee Academy, Gainesville, Georgia





Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Poetry


“Crayons” by Grayson Bennett

“Piano” by Grayson Bennett

“Dream” by Grayson Bennett

“Weird” by Grayson Bennett

“Day Dreamer” by Grayson Bennett

“My Secret” by Drew Bowelle

“Feathers” by Drew Bowelle

“Me” by Drew Bowelle

“Blue” by Kinsley Cash

“The Worst Feeling in the World” by Hadley Culpepper

“Pressure Game” by Hadley Culpepper

“Anything” by Hadley Culpepper

“With Her” by Brenda Franco

“It Won’t Leave” by Brenda Franco
“Brutal Days” by Trey Garrett
“Rain” by Alisha Green
“Them” by Alisha Green
“Help” by Alisha Green
“Life is a Lie” by Analise Hirneisen

“Love is a Lie” by Analise Hirneisen

“Death is a Lie” by Analise Hirneisen

“Colors of Pain and Taste of Happiness” by Libby Irwin

“Candle in the Window” by Libby Irwin

“Mind of a Sinner” by Libby Irwin

“Sounds of Midnight” by Libby Irwin

“Her Savior” by Alex May

“I am Old and New” by Alex May

“Trees” by Alex May

“Where I’m From” by Alex May

“Underwater” by Kimberly Moreno

“Alexander Hamilton” by Kimberly Moreno

“I Am a Bird” by Martiza Santos

“My Soul” by Martiza Santos

“The Journey of My Life” by Martiza Santos

“Within a Second” by Avalon Smith

“Happily Sad” by Avalon Smith

“Flame” by Avalon Smith

“Time” by Marcia Speaker

“The Unknown” by Marcia Speaker

“Our Flaws” by Marcia Speaker

“Lightning” by Ryland Tucker

“Wrong Roads” by AJ Upham

Chapter 2: Short Stories and Microfiction


“The Brier Family’s Greatest Hits” by Abby Boyer

“Chocolate Milk” by Kinsley Cash

“Three’s a Crowd” by Brenda Franco

“Tatsu” by Alisha Green

“Scared” by Libby Irwin

“Perfect Town” by Libby Irwin

“Music’s Gone” by Libby Irwin

“Monsters” by Libby Irwin
“It’s My Sight” by Marcia Speaker
“Haunted Mansion” by Ryland Tucker


Chapter 3: Memoirs


“Days of My Life” by Trey Garrett
“Hershey Roller Coaster” by Analise Hirneisen

“Skateboard” by Kimberly Moreno

“When I Almost Got Attacked by a Shark” by AJ Upham



Chapter 4: Book Chapters and Fiction


“Valley Falls” by Grayson Bennett

“Nameless” by Drew Bowelle
“The Watchers” by Abby Boyer

“The Fire’s Shadow” by Kinsley Cash

“Attack on Artist” by Hadley Culpepper

“Class of the Titans Sequel” by Genesis Garcia

“Something Wicca This Way Comes” by McKenna Graham

“What Lurks Beneath” by Alisha Green

“Gray Matter” by Molefe Sijiye

“Fabian Walker’s Secret” by Avalon Smith


Chapter 5: Song Lyrics


“Where Did You Go?” by Genesis Garcia

“War Between Two” by Libby Irwin

“Wish I Hadn’t Seen” by Libby Irwin

“King of the World” by Molefe Sijiye


Chapter 6: Play Script


“Spar” by Hadley Culpepper

Crayons” by Grayson Bennett


People are like crayons.

Lined up in a box.


People always choose the sharpest.

The ones that work the best.

People also choose the dual ones.

They think they still work.


But people never choose the broken crayons.

Even though broken crayons still work…




Piano” by Grayson Bennett


Life is like a piano.

And you are the song.


Throughout life there is joy.

The white keys that play along.


Yet there’s still sadness.

The black keys that play on their own.


Yet life is like a piano.

And you play the song.









Dream” by Grayson Bennett

You ask me what my dream was.

You ask if it was good.


I sit in silence without an answer.

You think I misunderstood.


You ask the same question.

Was it good was it bad.


I lift my head from my desk.

And reply to what you asked.


Dreams don’t come easy.

But nightmares always do.


They’re just the other side of you.

That is longing to be free.


Because everyone’s nightmares are just.

The dreams they know they won’t SEE.




Weird” by Grayson Bennett

We are all a little weird.

But that’s life.


We find someone whose weirdness.

That complements our lives.


We talk, laugh and have fun together.

We know it alright.


Because we’re all a little weird.

But that’s life.















Day Dreamer” by Grayson Bennett

As sun shines you close your eyes.

And dream away the day.


You raise your head to the sky.

Each and every day.


You imagine worlds and place.

That lie far away.


You imagine monsters and people.

Battles you could have won.




My Secret” by Drew Bowelle


His blue eyes,

His untamed hair

His crooked smile,

His contagious laugh,

His ability to make me smile

His- voice,

His presents,


He’s a boy,

That only lives in my imagination.




Feathers” by Drew Bowelle


I am friends with the wind,

It never lets me down,

And if I am feeling low

She sweeps me off my feet,

I get to see many things,

I travel the world,

I must say,

It’s great being a feather.



Me” by Drew Bowelle


Who are you to judge me,

My hair,

My voice,

My appearance,

Or how I act,

Who are you to pick on my friends,

Their hair,

Their voice,

Their appearance,

Or how they act,

Who are you to start rumors,

About me

About my friends

About my family

Who are you to assume that you know everything about me.






























Blue” by Kinsley Cash


Blue is the color of a cool spring day,

Blue is a beautiful swan gliding in the lake.

Blue is the color of coolness and Beauty

There are blue lakes awaiting someone or something to come to it,

Blue feels like a cool breeze running through the trees.

Blue is the color of peacefulness, yet so many believe that blue is the color of sadness.

Blue should be a peaceful experience, not a broken heart’s lament.

Blue feels like an ocean of calmness awaiting anyone who is willing to embrace it.

Blue is the mistreated color of the spectrum, people claiming to know what it means, yet having no idea.

Blue should feel like the cool breeze that holds a child’s kite in the air, but sounds like heavy rain pouring on a windowsill to those who don’t understand it. That is not what I imagine though. Blue to me taste like blueberries for a delicious picnic.
































The Worst Feeling in the World” by Hadley Culpepper

The worst feeling in the world

Is knowing that you tried as hard as you could

But yet,

It still wasn’t good enough.


The worst feeling in the world,

Is being sad

Because you are a disappointment

To everyone


You are a burden

To your family

To your friends

To the world


My sister asked me

“What is sad?”

On the day that

The little blue bird died


I told her,

“Sad is when you realize

You are not as important to someone

As you thought you were.”


Since she was so young

She did not understand

So she smiled instead

And patted my head


And went to bury the little blue bird

That she held dead in her hands


The worst feeling in the world

Is anger

That you cannot control

No matter how hard you try


The tension rising in the air

It fuels you

And the words you spit from your mouth

They sting the ones around you


Words are like knives

Cutting deep into your skin

You can take them out

But they will leave scars


And still,

Taking them out brings pain

But so

Does leaving them in


The worst feeling in the world,

Is fear,

Because when you are afraid,

You cannot think


You cannot act

And you cannot step up

You have to watch

But you can’t help


You have to stand there


As the ones you love

Are destroyed


Whether it’s with words

Or with knives

What’s the difference?

They both are murderers in the end.


The worst feeling in the world

Is hate

Such a strong word

That hate is


“I hate you!”

The child screams

As he slams his door

Shaking the house


He does not understand

What it truly means


“I hate you!”

The girl cries

Running from the house

Down the street in the pouring rain


She is beginning to understand

What hate

Really means

To her


“I hate you.”

The man says

Pushing her down the stairs

The silence ringing in the air


He doesn’t know what his words meant

To her

But she understands

And it stings


The worst feeling in the world

Is disappointment

Or even being one

Because it is a form of loss


You come home,

Expecting to see your mother

And her smiling face

To greet you from school



There’s a note on the counter

“Sorry dear, I’ll be home late today. Happy birthday!”

It reads.


This is the tenth year

She hasn’t said it in person

And it’s the same note

From last year


She didn’t even bother to write a new one


You come to school,

Expecting to see your friends

Saving a seat for you

In homeroom


But instead

A new girl

A prettier one

A better one


Sits there in your place


They look up

And the color drains from their faces

Because they realize that

They’d ‘forgotten’ about you

You go home

Into your room

And you lock your door

And you do not come out


The worst feeling in the world

Is knowing that no matter how hard you try

That you will never be as good

As the world wants you to be






























Pressure Game” by Hadley Culpepper


I love the person I’ve become

Because I have fought to become her


Still, I can’t focus,

And though my body is still puzzled about what to do,


And though I’m trembling,

I can’t stop, even if I try to control myself.


Although neither sun nor moon are on my side,

“I’ve got no choice but to try.”


Those were the words I muttered to myself.

Those were the words that kept me going.


The odds aren’t on my side, but running away would be gutless.

Even if I can’t see the future, even if I can’t mend my past,


I’ll just have to win it over with courage.

Need to keep distance from the target as I hold myself back.


All that’s needed for victory is the pride to win.

The commitment that you hold in your heart is what gives you that strength.


Will we celebrate with the wine of victory?

Or will we end up kissing their feet in defeat?


There are two outcomes to everything.

And it is not always your fault that might lead to an outcome.


I want to control destiny.

I need to seize the golden opportunity with my hands.


So I’ll finish it up with my best poker face,

And drag them into a world of illusions.


I’ll find my way out of this endless pressure game,

And leap over the borderline of honor.


But what’ll I need to sacrifice to make it happen?

What is the one thing I don’t want to let go?




Anything” by Hadley Culpepper

I am a fragment

Of all the people

In this population

In this community


I breathe, I live.

But I am afraid I do not matter

I feel like,

I’m just sort of




I’m not doing anything

I’m not participating

I’m not important

But I exist


Don’t ever ask me,

“What do you live for?”

Because I’ll answer,

“I just kinda exist.”


I don’t live for anything.

I have no purpose.

I am useless.

I am a pawn.


All my friends,

They go out and do things,

With their other friends,

And their best friends


They go out,

With their lovers,

With their family,

With their friends,


And they have fun


It feels like


I’m just this sort of

Mildly entertaining thing

That people take in interest in

Every little once in awhile


But I know

That they wouldn’t really care

If I was gone



I exist


I don’t really mean anything.





































With Her” by Brenda Franco


With her, the sky is blue.

With her, the words are true.

With her, I feel perfect.

But how do I feel perfect, next to her?

This thing, I think I’ve experienced before.

But our thing is different, like nothing before.

Comfortable and loving when I’m with her.

This is how we are.


With her, my eyes sparkle.

The spark between us glows.

In the wind, our hair blows,

and her hands,

were mine to hold.

Next to her,

I feel at peace.

She truly is a masterpiece.


Never would I have thought, that she would be the one I wanted.

Never would I have thought, that she would be my happiness.

Never would I have ever thought, that she would be my last chance.


Because this thing I feel,

Because this thing I see,

Because this thing I’ve touched,

Just can’t be a thing I can easily let go.



















It Won’t Leave” by Brenda Franco


It doesn’t wait for you to catch your breath.

It doesn’t care that you’re in front of dozens of people and that you can’t stand public places.

It doesn’t matter if your friends are trying to calm you down.

It just won’t stop.


It doesn’t give you a warning of when it’s coming.

You think you’re fine, until it knocks on your door.

And when it enters, there’s no way in getting it out.

It´s with you when you wake up and walk around your house.

It´s with you when you walk down the hallway and when you talk to your friends.


It won’t go even if you scream.

You can cry and shout and yell, but it will never ever leave.

You try medicine, but nothing works.

You’re stuck with this thing called anxiety, and it makes you into a person you don’t want to be.


It’s the reason why you can’t go out.

It’s the reason you’re always afraid to make a move.

It’s the reason you stress over every little thing.

It’s the reason why you sit on that chair and don´t have the ability to even move.

It’s the reason why you can never bring yourself to smile.

It’s the reason why you pull at your hair, and you’re still surprised that you haven’t gone bald yet.


To you, it’s complete torture.

To others, it’s just another excuse as to why you can’t present to the front of the class.

People say to get over it.

You´ve been trying your whole life.

But it just won’t leave.

No matter how hard you try.

It won’t let you breathe.















Brutal Days” (a Persona Poem) by Trey Garrett



While the school bell rang

Students were running, falling,

and jumping everywhere.


Just trying to get to their classrooms,

I thought that a hurricane came

In with students and teachers.


A powerful storm of kids just destroying everything

around them while running, and then

all came to a rest.

































Rain” by Alisha Green



Not sad


Every cold droplet

Sending a chill

Clothes sticking to skin

A smile on their face

Ready to take a bullet for them


Not tragic


Every kiss

Sending warmth

Hearts pounding in time

Holding them as the grey clouds cry

Wishing this moment will never end

Happy to have them near


Never Parting
























Them” by Alisha Green
























Kisses in pale moonlight



















Help” by Alisha Green


Standing alone



Not sure

Can’t go on

Tell me

Can I?

Others say yes


The darkness says


Boney fingers grab my still beating heart

Free me

From living with


Stop me

From hurting

Anyone else.
























Life is a Lie” by Analise Hirneisen


I’m not going to lie,

these years I’ve spent alive

make me want to die.

These Tears I’ve shed

have been for each time my sorrow raised.

But really I just want to die.

Don’t worry this will not happen unless my tears

keep flowing and I keep living a lie.

Happy day to all those happy people

and to the people whose sorrows rose

like a girl’s expectation that he’s going to propose

as the time passes by.

But it wells up and you start living a lie;

Like a girl who’s in a relationship for five years

with the same guy only to find out he was cheating

on her with her sister for four

of those so-called “faithful” years.



























Love is a Lie” by Analise Hirneisen


Love, was it all a lie?

That thing everyone talks about will it only make me cry.

I don’t know I’m simply lost.

But what if the feeling is not love but lust.

Now I know what you’re thinking

the last poem wasn’t so great;

but imagine having a picnic with only your plate.

Now I get that I’m young,

but you have to agree

A lot of these things are just lies to me.

When your mother and father constantly say

they love each other but they constantly fight.

I’m sick of this sorrow

I’m sick of this pointless fight.

So let me say that love will bite.

Keep these things with you

because as I said it may not be love

but lust.


























Death is a Lie” by Analise Hirneisen

Why, why do we die?

Is it to let new people enter this world?

If it is then what about

making loved ones sad and depressed?

Is our life just a cruel game played by the gods?

What about our loved ones?

Are they included in this sadistic game?

What if there is no life after death?

What if after life your spirit floats around

and just watches your loved ones move on?

Maybe death is just a lie……


































Colors of Pain and Taste of Happiness” by Libby Irwin


The first drop of dark red scarlet blood and bright pink of irritated skin. The purple, yellow, blue, and black of bruises, can’t forget the paling of skin, the purple that takes over the lips. Fiery red of burns, the purple from frostbite, and the darkness you feel when betrayed.

A well cooked and assembled burger, first sip of cold sweet tea on the hottest day of summer, watermelon at the beach, and s’mores at a bonfire. Cookies and cream ice cream, hot cocoa, fresh cookies, and lastly chocolate milk.






































Candle in the Window” by Libby Irwin

The wick a flame, the sides covered in melted wax, light helping the ones that live see. It stands alone in the window, the light somber and the ghost, they gather to try and revel in the heat from the bright red flame. Once used for the old man that wrote taxes and now used for the boy who does school-work. One day it’ll be burnt out, the sides that were once covered in dried wax is now gone and the wick so used out that it no longer burns.


A candle rebuilt and reused, lonely it stands in the window of a widow, she uses it for light to look at the one she lost, her heart broken but mending, her soul tired but going strong, her face showing the tough years, and the tears she leaks not of hurt but of love.


A candle in the window, lost in time, haunting memories like a spirit, a candle lonely burning with the gift of flame. Once tall and unused, now short and seeing its days.

































Mind of a Sinner” by Libby Irwin


No rest, no quiet, the voices won’t stop, they won’t let me sleep.

They keep telling me things that keep me haunted.

WHY ME?! I didn’t do anything wrong, you can’t prove it!

If I did how could you know, no human does

But he does, he knows everything.

He knows what you don’t and he sends his men to do the dirty work

Demons crawl in my mind they sink their claws into me and drag me down

Now I’m where I need to be, burning, seeing my past, what I’ve done

Angels and God can’t save me now.

I’ve committed a crime and now I must pay

I’m gone, done, won’t hear from me again.

You will always pay.

































Sounds of Midnight” by Libby Irwin


Soft keys of the piano

Gentle breeze of the midnight air

Soft rushing of a waterfall

The low hum of a mother comforting her child

Peace and quiet after a long day

Your favorite song playing softly

These are the sound of moonlight.





































Her Savior” by Alex May



The only grandma that was close to me.

Hearing the thump on the ground,

like a baseball in a mitt.

Running down the stairs like

an Olympian.

Hearing the most pitiful cry in my


Seeing her hand me the phone.

The numbers went blank in my head.

I thought life was flashing before

her eyes.

The smell of all her worried feelings finally

getting to me.

Nothing I could her say for two weeks.

Then realizing, I had

just become her




























I Am Old and New” by Alex May

I feel old when I can’t find my way through the hopeless tunnel.

I feel new when I can see what my eyes want to see.

I feel old when my problems get to me without noticing.

I feel new when I see a glimpse of light out the window.

I feel old when I see younger people before me.

I feel new when I tell you how I really feel inside.

To be new is impossible when you don’t know how to find yourself in the real world.

To be new is possible when you know what you’re doing and how you’re going to do it.





































Trees” by Alex May



The trees smile at you from a distance away.

They sing to you with a gust of wind that the trees sing as their melody.

They trees dance within the night, but only under the safety of the moonlight.

The trees protect from the sun with its furious anger on most days.

They bring their kin from high and low to dance with the within the wind.

They stare at you with taunting eyes from all around, but they cannot see.

The trees sway as the birds chirp their favorite tune.

When you leave the trees wave with despair, and savor that memory.

When you arrive, they now know that a tree’s life will never be lonely.

As the trees wave with joy they sing their song in the wing.

Rarely will they ever sing a song of despair.
































Where I’m From” by Alex May

I am from the red

Clay hills of Georgia

I am from deciduous


I am from old

Rusty play



I am from red


I am from too

Many Christmas



I am from Alabama’s

Forgotten small


I am from made

Up towns in

The woods

I am from four

Wheelers over

Dug up roots


I am from,

“I’m gonna get

The wooden

Spoon!”and from’

“You better

Listen or you

Don’t get dinner!”


I am from

Macaroni and

Peanut butter and

Jelly sandwiches

I am from

Meat loaf with

Special home

Made sauce




I am from

Peggy Starnes

And David Starnes

I am from

Donna Elliott and

A grandpa I

Don’t know

I am from

Cindy Starnes

And Jeremy May

I am from

Dr. Seuss


I am from church

Meetings almost


I am from plays

Of God

Being born


I am from Disney

World with my

Little sister

I am from sand

In my eye

I am from saving

Someone’s life

I am from a

Little brother in

A Cinderella



I am from dance

Class that used

To be everyday

I am from working

So hard I’m


I am from

A loving family.








Underwater” by Kimberly Moreno


As I sink, I feel the pressure

Pulling me down to all its TREASURE

As I try to resist, I can’t escape the pressure


I float, senseless

I couldn’t feel anything, only EMPTINESS

As the cold surrounds me and this mess

I could hear my thoughts less


I could feel the cold, raw water filling up my LUNGS


These little stings OVERPOWER my body

I freeze up, panicking, piercing through the melody


The melody of my PULSE


Everything went DARK


I wake up seeing everything blurry, hearing beeping


Seeing doctors surround me,

I have been SAVED.






















Alexander Hamilton” (a persona poem) by Kimberly Moreno

I sat there, stressed

Thinking of everything I could write

I breathe in, then breathe out

Letting my thoughts and knowledge intertwine

I pick up my pencil

Going all out on essays


I pace, looking at what I have

Chills run down my spine

Looking at what I have written,

I notice that I have done enough

I have written 51 ESSAYS


I opened the big white doors

Nervous on how it would turn out

I walk slowly,

with the pressure of the papers on my hands

My palms were sweaty,

My legs were weak


I placed the draft on the table

Then looked at HIM

The person that was either going to decline or accept

A year later, he accepted


Blood decorated my shirt

As we attacked, I gasped for air, victory


All I hear is gunshots

I go attack another one

We see something white, a flag

They are surrendering













I Am a Bird” by Martiza Santos

All the things I see

All the things I know

All the things I am

I will always try

I will soar high

I will soar low

I will fly

The wind I feel

is the wind you feel

The breeze that blows

is the breeze that shows

The river that flows

is the river that knows

All the stars I see

Hopes and dreams

All the clouds I pass

All the things I once was

I now have wings

I now fly


I am a bird.
























My Soul” by Martiza Santos


Traditions I see

things I learn

the things I know

Who will I be

once I grow

The calls of nature I hear

the nightmares I fear

the dreams that I feel

the things I want to be real

My heart does the beat

My mind sings along

Together they make

the songs of my soul

Together they say

there is no right

there is no wrong

Together they say

There is

and will always be

a way

Forever and everyday

I will try.























The Journey of My Life” by Martiza Santos



The journey of life

begins with a path

A choice we make

A decision we take

The journey of life

is long

The journey of life

is hard

The journey of life

has smooth roads

The journey of life

has rough paths

The journey of Life

has no destination

You choose where you want to go

You choose where you want to end up

The Journey of Life

Is yours.


























Within a Second” by Avalon Smith


I look back up

Everything has moved

Everything has changed

The bell shaped cloud


The overlapping clouds

As if they were laughing


I only looked away a second

I said

It only takes a second

To lose everything

Replied the sky.
































Happily Sad” by Avalon Smith


She felt happy and sad

At the same time

She wondered why

That was

But you can’t be sad

Without first being


You cannot

be happy

Without first having

Something to be

sad about

But without being happy

You would never

Be sad

But if you were

Never sad

You would never

Be happy

So she was glad

To be happy

But also to

Be sad.





















Flame” by Avalon Smith

She smelt the smoke

Saw the flame

As it roared

And raged on

She didn’t blink

She didn’t move

Just stood there

And started into

Watching it dance around

In colors of red and blue

Watching time pass

Watching the birds flee

But she didn’t move

Even though

She smelt the smoke

And saw the flame.





























Time” by Marcia Speaker


Such a struggle

To understand,

The way it functions and how

We rely on it.


You cannot stop it

Nor can you make it faster.

You must move with it,

Or not move at all.


It will not wait for you,

But only continue on its way.

It will not slow down for you,

But only leave without you.


This constant race

That we are losing and winning

Will never stop

Until one day


One day when the lights turn out

And time will stop for you,

And then you will miss the struggle

Oh how you will miss it.


But for now,

We will stay

We will stay with one of its three beings,

And race it until the end.















The Unknown” by Marcia Speaker

The unknown,

The number one thing

That we fear,

Yet try to explore.


We explore it

Only to try and conquer our fear

Though, we know it may

Only prove them to be right.


The uncertain,

We are hesitant of.

We crave to become certain,

Just as we crave to know.


Perhaps that is a flaw,

Or perhaps it is a beauty.

That as humans we search,

And we search.


We bravely search to discover,

We search to conquer.

But mainly, we search

To know the unknown.





















Our Flaws” by Marcia Speaker

As humans,

We have flaws.

We dwell on them,

And we try to perfect them.


The word that is impossible,

Yet we use all the time.

“You’re flawless,” she says.

Though we all know the truth.


Our flaws make us,

Our flaws build us,

We cannot perfect them.

We cannot be ‘flawless’.


That word we must forget,

We must push it out of our vocabulary.

For our flaws are our beauty,

Our flaws that we dwell on,

Are not worth the dwelling.


Our flaws are not flaws,

Our flaws are not imperfection,

They are us.

And we should be proud of that.




















Lightning” by Ryland Tucker

Beautiful but deadly.

Every strike is



No one

couldn’t notice you.

You’re always followed

by your friend



Oh how satisfying

you are. Every

lightning strike seems

to has its

own personality.



never leave. I

wish you would

always stay is

the sky.



are just like

bright dancing angles.

Oh it’s such

a mystery

you come from,

















Wrong Roads” by AJ Upham


Why are you looking down all the wrong roads

When the right road is right in front of you

Is it because it has less twist and turns

Or is it because it has less stops and starts

The twists and turns make the ride more joyful

And the stops and starts help you see the beauty around you.






































The Brier Family’s Greatest Hits” by Abby Boyer

The Brier Family’s Greatest Hits




You quickly follow my order, and not two seconds afterwards, a glass vase smashes into the wall behind you. Despite the threat being over, you continue to stay crouched down, not responding to the shouts that echo from the other side of the room.


You take in my parents, their screaming and my mother’s tears. She tries to hit my father. He catches her arm, and throws her against the wall.


You look down, not wanting to keep watching. I didn’t, when I was where you are. I took everything in with sick fascination, looking on in the same fetal position as you. However, with me, there was no fear. There was only amusement, silent goading, as I watched my parents battle.


My dad strikes my mom. You hear the slap ring around the room, and my mother screams. When I was in this place, I did nothing, I didn’t interfere. You do. You try to run up to my father, try to pull him away – but you go through him, completely separated from this past. You try to yell at them, try to make them notice you – but nothing. You’re not a part of this memory, only a silent watcher.


You keep trying.


The scene starts to dissolve around you, and you turn back to where six-year-old me stood, fear in your eyes. My past smiles back at you, standing up, laughing at the scene around us.




You wake up once more in a different reality – a different night, still not the present. Once again, you find yourself in the same position as me as the memory starts – sat on a blanket, under the stars. My father’s truck is next to you, the back down. My father sits in the bed of the truck. It takes you a minute to realize he is talking.


He’s describing the stars to you – to me of the past. I am eight. This is still before you come in – real you. Present you.


“- That one’s Mars. It’s a planet, y’know, but from here it looks like a star.”


I know this already, but no one can blame him for trying. Any presence of his is welcomed, more than it should be. You know this, but still can’t help but being drawn into him. Everyone is, despite the demon that lies beneath the surface. Don’t feel bad.


Mother is inside, not wanting to acknowledge my father. A lover’s spat, they call it. Eight-year-old me wants to correct them. Their constant fighting is no simple spat, but something deeper no one wants to admit – something quietly poked along by their eight-year-old daughter.

He’s started to count the stars, trying to get you – me of the past – to join him. I don’t. You do.

You’re starting to wonder how this is of importance as you’re counting – how this is possibly one of the Brier family’s greatest hits – when my mother storms out, plate in hand. She had been doing dishes, you realize.

And quietly stewing with her anger, which has decided to make an appearance. She starts to yell at my father, berating him for his comments at dinner. All the things she couldn’t think of then come pouring out. How much she does. How he never acknowledges her. How he needs to get off his high horse and start helping out, or how we would lose the farm. I relish in the anger, even as you flinch away.

You hear my voice – past my voice – ring out.

“Papa’s not that bad, is he, Momma?”

My mother turns to where you sit – where I sat – disgust in her eyes. She starts yelling louder, starts going on about how I was my father’s daughter and would never amount to much if I continued that way. My father’s pride insulted, he starts shouting back – about how great I was, how smart I was for not taking after her, how he did more in a day than she had her entire life.

You move from my spot, watching me with horror. You see me smile, smile as everything descends into chaos. My mother throws the plate at my father. He ducks, as do you, and it crashes into the truck, shattering the back window. He’s screaming, he’s jumping from the truck bed to get to my mother, and I’m laughing. You forget this is in the past, forget this can’t hurt you, and you turn, trying to find a way out. All you can see is my face, my laughing, and you’re falling,





Another memory.


You try to get your bearings, blinded by the sudden change from night to day. Another scene starts to unfold around you – this time bright, this time with the outward appearance of happiness and joy.


You turn in a circle, taking in your new surroundings. A park. You’ve seen this park before, you realize, in the current-future-your-present. It’s no longer in the dilapidated state you know – you see it in the form it was fifteen years ago, where the swings weren’t broken and the wooden playhouse hadn’t rotted. You see past me – now ten, starting to look vaguely like the me you know – on one of those swings, my father pushing my baby sister next to me. She’s only six months old and still looks more wrinkled lump than baby, but nevertheless my father has her on the other swing.


You realize this time that you haven’t woken up in my position, this time – that there’s a separation between you and the scene that hasn’t been there in the last few memories. You’ll realize why in a minute. You’ll thank me for that, trust me.


My mother lies on a picnic blanket behind you, still recovering from her pregnancy. She doesn’t take her eyes from where my father is pushing little Ada, her eyes flicking back and forth between my father’s face and the baby. No one says anything, but it’s obvious that she doesn’t want Ada near my dad.

Ten-year-old me – past me – is swinging, eyes straight ahead. Not acknowledging either of my parents. They don’t look at me, either, too busy silently feuding over Ada to pay any attention to their older daughter.

You stand there, observing, until you notice a shift in past-my face – going from a state of boredom to something mischievous. Not mischievous, you realize. That’s too innocent, you decide. You’re reminded of a demon, you decide, when they know a deal was just struck that explicitly benefitted them.

You watch ten-year-old me drag my swing to a halt, staggering up as I land. I walk over to my father, my expression having morphed into one of innocence. I glance between my parents, pretending to notice the tension for the first time.

“Papa, I think Momma wants Ada. She doesn’t look happy with you.”

You watch as my father’s face contorts into one of rage. “Why shouldn’t she be happy with me? I’m her father, for god’s sake!”

He flips to glare at my mother. “She is my child, isn’t she, Cindy?”

You see my mother cringe, but you can’t decide whether from the shouting or the accusation. “Of course, dear. Of course she is.”

She fiddles with the blanket, staring my father in the eyes. “Why wouldn’t she be?”

Your hand goes to your mouth as the pieces start to click in your mind.

I draw closer to my father, going as far as to start to remove Ada from the swing where he was pushing her. “Momma wants Ada, Papa.”

You start to run towards where I am standing, forgetting again that you’re not really there. You don’t have it in you to just let the events play out, even if they’re in the past. Even if there’s no way anyone could change them.

My father whips back around to where I am. Even after I’ve noticed his attention change, felt his rage, past-me continues to try to get out the baby.

He snarls, lashing out to strike me. “DON’T TOUCH THE BABY!” He yells, spittle flying towards where I now lay on the ground. You watch in horror, having come to a dead halt, as he picks her up by the neck.

Ada starts to cry, wailing to be put down. My dad has her in a choke hold, and raises the baby over his head by one hand.

My mother springs up from her blanket, surprisingly fast in comparison to the last year of babyhood. Her voice is low, deadly. “Don’t. Touch. My. Child.”

My mother screams more than she does anything else. This sudden change unnerves you, to say the least.

My father cocks his head slightly. A smirk plays across his face and past me in synch before his once more going cold and ten-year-old me resuming the persona of Injured Child. In that moment, we had both realized we were about to get what we wanted.

“Admit you had an affair. Tell me that she’s not mine.”

My mother looks at him, her eyes going wide. Turning back to the mother we knew. “I would never!”

He raises an eyebrow, squeezing the baby’s neck tighter. “Really? You think I wouldn’t realize you were screwing around? Admit. It.”

My mother goes pale as Ada’s face starts to turn blue. “Fine! Fine, I did. She’s not yours. Please give her back.”

My father grins. “I’m so glad we could come to an agreement!”

You whirl around, trying to find someone else in the park, someone who could stop this. Nothing. Terrified, you turn back to where my father stands.

You scream as he snaps Ada’s neck.

There’s no falling or fading this time, no dramatic scene changes. You’re simply there one moment, and wink out of existence – if you can call the past existence – the next.

Blinking, you find yourself in the courtroom where you met me for the second time. You, fresh out of law school, were to represent my mother and dead little Ada on the case. You’re once again separated from the scene, and watch yourself – current-your-future but present-your-past – with interest as you recall how it felt to stand in front of the crowd that’s gathered to watch this case.

It’s been five years – five years since my father killed my baby sister. My mother refused to come forward for the longest time, worried in equal parts about how she would be implicated and what my father would do if such happened.

My mother had changed since that day. She no longer screamed back at my father, refused to get into fights with him. She allowed him to hurt her if she wanted, refused to leave him, and separated herself from her home life. Hardly a word she spoke to now-fifteen-year-old me – still past me, but much closer to the one you know – and I separated myself from my home life much like my mother, seeking out people easy to manipulate and bending them to my will before releasing them and watching as they drifted away, having become so unknowingly codependent on me that they found themselves strangely lost without a voice in their ear.

You should know that when I had first met you, I had taken you for someone that I could bend. I had figured you could easily be broken, easily dependent on the voice you hardly realized was there.

I was wrong, and for the first time in my life, one of my plans backfired on me.

I had, of course, told you my story – the first of a few steps in roping in a victim. You took it to heart – the story of the Brier Family and their self-destruction – but then differed from the rest. It didn’t cement you to me, like all the others – instead, you went to find my mother. To make her come forward. You promised to represent her, you promised to make my father pay, and finding herself with no logical ‘out’ – especially when you offered police protection once the court was in order, she had to accept.

My plan came crashing down around me. And now here we are. Were.

You stand behind the back row in the back row of the courthouse, trying to recall everything that happened – every expression my father wore as you presented his crimes to the court, every time past me flinched when we made eye contact – I hadn’t known then how to deal with someone that hadn’t fallen prey to my whims.

You watch past me, no question in your mind with how this fit into our greatest hits.

You’re snapped back into unreality when something doesn’t follow your mental script.

My father’s lawyer is speaking, reciting meaningless pleasantries when everything changes – you can see it shift in the colors of the room, in the way your own fingers become less see-through and more solid.

Past-me stands up, slides off the bench where I have been sitting. I turn and look straight at you for the first time.


You gasp – this isn’t right.

Of course it isn’t. Nothing about reaching into someone else’s memories is.

Past-me walks towards you, no one else realizing I’ve moved. I stop in front of you. “You had to realize this was coming, right?”

You step back, holding in another gasp. My face flickers before you, going through all the parts of me you’ve seen. Six. Eight. Ten. Fifteen. The one you know best – the one that put you here.

I laugh. “I was surprised, you know, that you didn’t succumb to my whims the first time I told you my story. You were the first! The first to not! You know that, though, don’t you?”

You realize your nails are digging into the palm of your hand.

“But – but, but, but – for some reason, you stuck around. So I kept trying.”

I laugh again – this time, it comes out menacing. “Apparently the second time’s a charm. So now you’re here. Have you realized how far you’ve fallen? How attached you’ve become to my family’s misfortunes?”

You back up more, trying to find the doors to leave. Useless. You’re in my memories – where would you run? How would you leave?

I reach forward, pressing two fingers to your forehead. “This should speed things up a bit. One minute -”

Memories start to flash past, falling faster and faster as you’re hurtled through them.

Winning the case. My father escaping jail. Killing my mother. You finding me again, becoming attached. Losing your way. Becoming hopelessly entangled in the Briers and the mess that centers around their eldest daughter.

Emotions now. Hope. Sadness. Joy. Loss. Rage.

And suddenly you stop moving. You find yourself in today, in your body, but still stuck in my mind. Somehow, the past and present and future in one.

We sit at a table outside a cafe – it’s sunny and people mill around. Everything is both completely clear and hopelessly blurry.

I lean towards you, long black hair framing my face. “I can show you.”

Even in the separation between your body and your mind, you feel your heart start to beat faster. “What?”

I’m still behind you, you realize – there are two versions of me. The one that sits across from you and the one that stands behind you.

“I can… You can go into my memories. You can really see what happened.”

With any other person you would’ve laughed in their face. You know this. I know this.

But you don’t.

“Really?” You’re screaming at yourself to not say yes, to run away. Even though it’s a world made in my mind.

Of course, you have no control over the past. Not here. Not ever.


Un-you draws in a breath. “Show me.”

I smirk. This time you can see the malice in my eyes. “Of course.”

I press two fingers to your forehead.




Chocolate Milk” by Kinsley Cash

“This is the last straw!”, I yell as I hold up the last straw. There was no telling just how long I had searched for it. With a look of confidence I walked over to where my chocolate milk sat, waiting for me. I placed the straw cheerfully into the milk and realized the straw was too short. My heart broke when I saw this. Once cheerful, I sit with a look of gloom on my face. “I know what I must do!” I shout, “I shall go to the temple of the gods and search for a longer straw!” With that, I begin my adventure for my straw.


I set out looking through every Target in the country to no avail. Then I tried this store, it looked an off-brand target, the sign said “Wal-Mart”. I walked to the door and was greeted by an old man with a huge bald spot. He told me in a rude manner, “Get your stuff and get out!!”


I smiled because of how much of a butt he was. “Have a nice day” he continued in a silly voice. I walked through the doors and immediately got the smell of trashy people, and that is when I knew this was totally an off-brand Target. I kept walking and saw the straws I needed. I went to grab them when all the sudden a middle-aged man with brown shaggy hair and an Illuminati tattoo ran up with a camera and stole them. I yelled “HEY”, telling him to stop, but he just yelled “WEEZY.”


I chased after him, even as far as to leave the store. Once outside the weirdest looking gray squirrel came barreling towards us on a unicycle. He was human sized and had on a red bow tie, all I could do was stare and watch with my jaw dropped as the man got on the squirrel’s back. They started to unicycle down the street right as a man in a dark mask stopped in front of them. He had a dark cape, he through an oddly shaped object at the single tire of the unicycle. Both the squirrel and the middle-aged man flew off the unicycle and dropped the straws midair. The oddly dressed man caught them with one hand and did not even flinch. “I’m Batman” he said in a low voice as he pressed a button on his suit. A dark black car drove up on its own and the man hopped in. The squirrel stood up and pulled out a knotted unicycle from his fluffy tail and the middle-aged man hopped right back onto the squirrel back. The both of them chased the car, all the while I just stood there, eyes wide and jaw dropped. I snapped back to reality and started chasing them on foot. I started to hear a loud buzzing sound, and realized that all this had been a dream. I now wanted chocolate milk and got out of bed. I poured some milk in my SpongeBob glass; I grabbed a straw and stared in fear as I put it in. The straw was too short.













Three’s a Crowd” by Brenda Franco

My jealousy had taken over. I did not mean to go out of control. This was a huge mistake that I could get into real trouble for… But I couldn’t just let her meddle in. I couldn’t let her get into our friendship. Not when we’ve gone through so much. But she just had to walk in huh? I bet she regrets that now.


I looked down at her now lifeless body, and thought of what to do with it. Should I bury it? Throw it in the lake? That would be smart. That way, no one would be able to find or identify her. I grabbed a big trash bag and tried getting her in it. Once I did that, I wrapped it with blankets, tying it all up with rope. I washed the knife I accidentally stabbed her with, and along with my floor, I didn’t want it to stain. When I finished cleaning up, I made sure no one was outside, so I could carry her to my car. The night was cold and dark, so It would be impossible for anyone to see what I was doing.


I drove to the nearest lake, ready to finally get rid of her. I couldn’t wait for things to go back to normal between Jessica and me. No Becky to come between us. I dragged her body closer to the lake, the cold water rising and falling. I pushed her in, and saw her drown in what was once clean. I smiled at myself, and walked back to my car, driving home. The happy memories passed my head. From the start to finish. From when I invited her over and stabbed her, to the ending when I pushed her in the lake.


¨Becky always liked roses, I guess that’s what we’ll get her for her funeral.¨ I thought when I walked back home. I got my phone out, and called Jessica.


I played dumb and worried.


¨Jessica! Have you seen Becky? She was supposed to come over tonight, but she isn’t here yet…¨ I worried over her and Jessica soon started to worry as well.


After our call, I laid in bed, happy with today and its events.


¨Like I said. Three’s a crowd.¨














Tatsu” by Alisha Green

I know that sound. Dragons. The roaring and screeching are deafening. I spin in circles, looking at the sky. My fingers brush my blade, aching for a fight. I see a glimpse of a shadow in my left eye. As I look in that direction a navy, feathered, horned, class four dragon lands to my right. I draw my sword, flames igniting on the blade. I swing and hit my target, hearing the screech. I roll and dodge the first blow, only to be smacked into a tree by the second paw. As my head spins, I rush behind the tree and gasp as the flames rush past me. I hear the tree creak and dash out of the way. The tree fell and hit the dragon, knocking it to the ground. As I walk toward it a part of me is saying, “ Kill it. This is your chance.” Though, as the beast whines, my conscience pulls at my heart. I sheath my blade and grab the tree. I push with all my might and heave the tree off of the creature. “ You know you could have helped.” I snarled looking at the dragon, “ Let’s get some food for you.” Muscles burning, I start to hunt. I see an Anipharied, a bull like monster with four horns and a mace for a tail. I sneak behind the grazing animal and lay on my back. I pull out my blade and ram it into the beast’s scaled stomach. Rolling out from under the falling beast, I survey my prey. It weighed about eighty tons and still was just a runt. Sweat covered my entire body. I pull off my shirt and tie it around my waist. I sit by the corpse and wonder how I was going to get it back to the dragon. In this world, growing up as a human male is hard. My father was elvish and couldn’t work, this made things tight. I had to become a worker at ten to fend for my family. I worked as a lumberjack, though I was smaller than the other boys. During my time at the mill, I would use a pulley system to lift logs. With that in mind, I go and gather some vines and tie them around the beast’s horns. I then climb a tree and wrap them around a branch. I jump down and use my weight and gravity to pull. Soon I had it about 10 feet from the beast. I cut off a huge slab of meat and placed it near the dragon. It growled as I backed away. Once I was at a respectful distance, I sit on the ground and start to build a fire. I struggle to spark the flints. After a few more failures, I give up and study my new companion. He was a navy blue, he has feathers and paws. His wings are magnificent, skin like, no feathers. They connect all the way down to his tail, giving him a fin look. His wings are navy, like the rest of him, with yellow and green accents. His muzzle is triangle shaped with a forked tongue that licks the blood off his feathers. His horns are gray, curling around the underside of his face. His ears are like a cat’s, twitching side to side. Lastly, I look at his eyes. The rim of a light green accents the charcoal black that takes up most of his eyes. I see a fireball hurtling towards me. I cry out, fearing for my life. The fire landed in my kindling and starts to crackle. I look up at the dragon, a low gurgling sound coming from his throat. “Did you do this? Alright smart guy, let’s figure out a name for you. How about, Ugly? No. Stinky? No. Fluffy? No, I think that was the name of my neighbor’s cat. Tatsu! I’ll name you Tatsu.” I say, a smile on my face. I cook my food and start to eat. Afterwards, I pulled the Anipharied into a tree so that predators couldn’t eat our leftovers. I sit by the fire and soon fall asleep.


I wake up in a panic, seeing Tatsu. I rub my temples, fighting the oncoming headache. Feeling peckish, I make Tatsu and I breakfast. Tatsu’s leg was badly damaged, I ‘borrow’ a wagon to put him in. We travel for days, only stopping to camp. We finally reach Blerish, a small merchant town. I book us a boat with a shady pirate. We land in Aste two weeks later. During this time, the beast and I had become friends. I lead Tatsu, who is well enough to walk now, to my aunt’s homestead. I take him inside the barn and make him a bed there. I begin to leave, stopping when I hear Tatsu wine behind me. I turn, “Come on, you’re a dragon. What are you afraid of?” I question as the rain begins to pour. Tatsu yelps and hides his face with his paws when the boom of thunder shook the barn. I nod and whisper, “I know the feeling buddy. I used to be afraid of thunder too.” I pause, weighing my options, “Alright. I’ll stay.” I sigh. I gather some hay and horse blankets and make myself a straw pallet. I lay down and blow out my candle. I smirk, “Goodnight you big baby.” and all I get in return is a low rumble from the disturbed beast. I kick off my shoes and lay silently. As I listen to the lullaby of the falling rain, I pull out a dirty photo. It was a faded photo of a well-groomed man in an army uniform. “Soon, I’ll be home.” I whisper as the world fades into a deep abyss.


I squint at the sudden light, sitting up as my eyes adjusted. I see a figure and pull out my sword, jumping to my feet. It was warm, humid. The hay under my bare feet felt intruding. “Who are you?” I question as I narrow my eyes at the figure, trying to make out their face. “Is that how you speak to an old friend?” Came a soft, familiar voice. It was him, Dorian. I run forward and throw my arms around him, tears filling my eyes. “You were gone so long, I thought…” I couldn’t finish my thought, tears threatening to break through. His voice soothes me, “I know, but I’m alright. I’m here. I won’t leave you Amatus.” As I hold him, I hear the deafening sound of a gun going off and Dorian slumps in my arms. I let out a cry and look up, Foren Pavus lowering his gun. I hold Dorian as the light leaves his eyes. Letting out a yell, I open my eyes to Tatsu looking at me worryingly. The first word to leave my mouth is the beast’s name. I pat his face with a shaking hand, trying to reassure him. He nuzzles my face with his paw, trying to get me to smile. I smirk and get dressed. We walk and soon get to an old tree. I touch the trunk and it comes alive. Writhing and attacking the tree monster came after me. I feel the rough bark-covered hands wrap around my waist. I try to pull out my sword but my arms are entrapped. I feel like the life is being drained out of me. I lose feeling in my legs and I try to scream, but my voice comes out a squeak. Tatsu attacks and burns the tree to death and I fall backwards. I sit panting on the ground. After a moment, I get up and we continue our journey. We continue walking until we get to a small town. I fill a trough with water and let Tatsu drink. I then go into the tavern and get ale. I sit with Tatsu under the shade and teach him the names of the mountains. “Arna, the tallest of the sisters. Next, is Gerna. Last, is Bast. She is nicknamed the mountain of death.” I finish, glancing at the dragon. He was looking at the mist-covered mountains, a look of longing on his face. “Our new home is on that ridge. We will be there soon, Tatsu.” Tatsu makes a small happy chirping noise as he lies down on his side. I pick two apples from the tree we’re under and throw one at Tatsu. I bite into mine, while watching Tatsu struggle to pick up with his paws like I did. I smile and demonstrate. I set the apple in my lap and pick it up with my teeth. Tatsu copies me and eats the apple whole. He grumbles and spits out the core. I finish mine and set the core in the grass. I stand and climb onto Tatsu’s side. I lie in his feathers and listen to his breathing. These were the moments that I wish could last forever. We laze around until the heat passes and the sun begins to go down. I slide off the dragon’s side and nudge him. “Tatsu, we have to get moving.” I say before filling my bag with apples, holding one in my mouth. I eat my apple and begin to walk. After a moment, the steps of Tatsu could be heard behind me. We made it to the bottom of the ridge by dawn. I urged Tatsu onward, my own legs burning from the effort.


We climbed onto the ridge and look at the two-story home that I had come to love. A man in an apron walks onto the porch and pulls out a spear at the sight of Tatsu. Tatsu growls and smoke pours from his mouth like a poison gas. I put my hands up and step between the two, “Dorian, he is not going to hurt anyone. I saved his life and he saved mine. Please, Vhenan, put down the spear.¨ I persuade, a slowly walking toward him. He swings the spear, trying to fend me off and cuts a dark gash across my cheek. The spear clatters on the ground as he dashes at me. He pulls out his handkerchief and dabs the blood coming from my cheekbone. ¨Amatus! I´m sorry. I am so sorry.¨ He was blaming himself, strings of Tevinter curses filling every pause. I grab his hand and smile. He then slaps me, yelling, ¨You were gone so long! Leaving me here like a maid! You could have been killed! I thought you were dead! And you bring a bloody DRAGON!¨ I smile and whisper, ¨Good to see you too.¨ I step back and snarl, “Can I come inside my own home?” Dorian jesters towards the door. I look at Tatsu, feeling bad. He closes his eyes and begins to shrink. Once he is small enough he jumped into my pocket. I frown, “You couldn’t have done that earlier?” Tatsu chitters and pokes his head and paws out of my pocket. Smiling I walk inside, Dorian at my heels. “Gale?” I take Tatsu out of my pocket and set him on the ground. Knowing that Dorian used my first name, I prepare for a lecture. “Yes?” I walk into the den, Dorian stirring the fireplace. “Are you leaving again?” The question sounded sad, His eyes refusing to meet mine. I grab his hand, making my reply, “No, I won’t leave you again.” He smiled and it grew as I poured us some wine. “Trying to loosen my tongue?” Dorian questions as he takes the glass. “I don’t need wine for that.” I smile and sit next to him. Tatsu jumps into the fire and chitters, ruffling his feathers. They didn’t burn as he rolled in the hot coals. Dorian and I laugh as we sit by the fire. Again, this was a moment that I wish could last forever.





























Scared” by Libby Irwin

He’s nothing like you; he’s evil, dark, and mysterious. Pain and trouble rolls with him, between a devil and a demi-god. A mask over the evil, good at acting like nothing is there. Hurt is the only thing you’ll get from him. Brown hair, warm and welcoming, grey eyes like chains, smooth looks, good with the words, past keeping people from trusting the lad. Guilty of everything accused and a fighter since birth, he’s not one to be trusted, but the ladies like a man that’s dark. He’s a devil in disguise, but the disguise is only one of pain. Hurt as a child, left for dead too many times to count. The power he has is one of darkness, he wants to be loved but people only see him as a monster, apologized but no one believes him, no one tried to see him for the broken man he is. Left alone in the end, his past haunting him, and his biggest fear caught up to him. He’s good at heart, the mind of a scared child, left alone to rot, and won’t see another soul again. In prison he sits plotting revenge, when will it happen, not even the man disguised as a devil can be sure.

































Perfect Town” by Libby Irwin

Lies leave everyone’s mouth and they don’t even flinch, sour times for a small town. Who did it? No one trusts anyone, people watching their backs constantly, shaky breaths. Nobody loves; it’s true. Nobody loves the truth. A body found, a murder at hand, who did this? This doesn’t happen to a small town, people are evil, no one can trust their own families, family back stabbing and hurting each other. Lies are spilt that were held away, people getting hurt. No sunshine shines on this town, nobody loves me she thinks. A murder lost of a brother and friends alike. The family people don’t trust. This town broken and divided, the murderer still on the loose. Secrets and lies are brought up, spilled, and made. Who did it, who do you trust? The town is broken; nobody loves anyone anymore.




































Music’s Gone” by Libby Irwin

The day the music stopped, it was the last time anyone felt anything but emptiness. The day children stopped smiling and giggling. The day adults stopped caring. The day people turned grey and lifeless. The day music stopped was the last day I smiled, the day people couldn’t help but want to leave this place.









































Monsters” by Libby Irwin

The monsters under my bed aren’t always underneath me. They moved up north to my head, they sink their claws into my emotions. They control my life, my actions, and my feelings. I’ve gotten cold, shut people out, hurt people, and hurt myself with the thought of losing them. Then they left, somehow they went back under my bed, but the damage was already done. I can’t take back what I did or said. I’m sorry you were in their crossfire. The monsters are gone but here I am still in pain and fearful they’re not done.







































It’s My Sight” by Marcia Speaker

“Cassidy, are you getting ready? Your eye appointment is in half an hour!” I hear my mom yell from the other side of the house. I get up off my bed and decide I should start getting ready as I was still in my pajamas. I make my way to the outfit my mom has laid out for me in its usual spot. Hoping she hasn’t messed up what I told her to take out of my closet, I put the jean jacket hoodie on along with a tight fitted tank top, light washed ripped jeans, and my tan booties. I walk to the bathroom to brush my teeth and such, the normal morning routine. I walk back into my room and grab my camera deciding that I’m ready.

I head to the living room to meet my mom who had been waiting impatiently for me. “Do I look okay?” I ask. “You always do, honey,” she says. “Do you have your walking stick?” “No, I hate using that thing. Why would I take it? We’ve been there before, I count my steps.” She sighs and I hear her reach for her purse. “I wish you would just take it, it’d make me feel better,” she says.

We shortly arrive at the eye doctor and take a seat in the waiting room. I put in my earbuds and start playing music. I tap my foot to the beat of the song. The rhythm relaxing me. “Ms. Andrews?” I hear someone say, cueing us to get up.

My mother leads me to the room as I haven’t been that way before. Carefully counting my steps, we arrive and are seated. The doctor does the normal procedures and I hear him take his seat. “Mrs. Andrews,” he starts, but I’m immediately uneasy from the seriousness in his voice. How bad could it possibly be? I’m already blind and have been for almost 8 years now, and I’m fine with it. I can’t get any worse, can I?

“I know you’ve been asking about eye surgery to help Cassidy with her vision,” Surgery? I was never asked about this. “But I’m afraid it’s just not possible. You see, when your daughter was in the accident-” “Don’t. Don’t bring it up,” my mom cuts him off. It’s always been sensitive to the subject to her, which is understandable.

I still remember that dreadful day when my father and I got in the car accident like it was yesterday. I’ll never be able to forget it, not even if I push it to the farthest part of my mind. A calm and beautiful summer day with a tragic end full of cries in place of laughter and smiles. My father decided to take me to a fair, though on the way we collided into an eighteen-wheeler with a drunk driver. The windshield shattered into my eyes, permanently blinding me. Our car was smashed, my dad died from the head trauma.

The doctor sighs and continues with what he was saying. “I’m sorry, but the way her eyes were damaged; they just aren’t able to be repaired. Both the lens and cornea of her eye were completely torn apart from the glass. There’s just no way any doctor could repair it,” he concluded. That’s when I knew things were going to go south very fast. My mom always gets furious when someone tells her something is impossible. I don’t know why she’s just always been that way. It’s how she’s wired. “When there’s a will there’s a way. Don’t tell me you can’t fix her eyes, you’re an eye doctor for Pete’s sake!” my mom starts, “My daughter was not supposed to be like this. Cassidy is not meant to be blind,” she continues. “Mom, I’m fine. There’s no need for this. Please, calm down,” I tell her. “Let’s just go.” I finish, standing up and heading for the doors.

Knowing my mom is following behind me, I walk to the door and stop. I don’t remember where the car is parked. My mom, knowing that I don’t know where to go next, takes my hand and leads me to the car. We get in and I stay silent, not knowing what to say. “I just want what’s best for you,” my mom says, starting the car, “I’m sorry,” she finishes. “I know, it’s okay.” I turn to her. “You know I’m fine with how I am. I accepted it a long time ago and I suggest you do too. It’s time to move on, mom.” We pull out of the parking lot and start heading home. I turn to the window, lost in thought.

I honestly miss being able to see at times, but I’ve gotten used to the complete cloud of white blur that I see. Though, it does suck not seeing. I will always and forever miss the dark night sky sparkling with stars, the bright blue sky full of white fluffy clouds, or the beauty of a tall willow tree covering a meadow. Willow trees have always been my favorite, I love how the leaves fall over the trunk of the tree almost like raindrops on a window. It’s always mesmerized me.

I snap back into reality when my mom tells me we’ve arrived back home. I get out of the car and make my way towards my home, already exhausted from the short day. I go to my room and pull out my phone, evening plans in mind. I dial the memorized number of my best friend, Aaron.

Aaron has been with me for the longest time, he’s always stuck by my side when times were tough and supported me. I couldn’t ask for a better friend. He’s always there when I need him, which I’m extremely grateful for as not many people are. It only rings about 3 times before I hear his familiar, calm voice. “Hello?” “Hey, can you come over?” I ask, though I know what he’s going to say. “Of course, I’ll be there in 5,” he replies almost instantly, not having to think twice about his answer.

Aaron arrives and we set up a pallet of soft cozy blankets, feather pillows, and we light scented candles. We make hot cocoa and popcorn, play some of our favorite music and just talk. I’ve always loved nights like this, not to be mistaken for anything more than best friends spending quality time together.

We snack on popcorn and talk for hours on end about anything and everything. I pull out my camera, looking through the lenses. I see colorful beds of roses, their soft petals looking as elegant as ever. I focus the camera and take the photo. Pulling the camera away from my eyes, I am faced with the white cloud of blur that is my life once again. Aaron takes my camera, looking at the photo I assume. “How do you do it,” I can visualize him shaking his head, half amazed and half frustrated as he will never understand how. I lean my head on his shoulder. “It’s my sight. There are some things that are just too confusing and astonishing for words,” I tell him. Which is true, I wouldn’t know how to explain it. I look into my camera and for some reason, my mind makes the area around me something beautiful that happens to match the beauty that’s reality.

We continue talking for a few hours before I fall asleep. These nights are always my favorite and we have one once a week, sometimes more. I wake up to birds singing their songs, a melody I’ve silently studied for ages but will never fully understand. Being blind has made me appreciate all my other senses that seeing people wouldn’t. Especially hearing, I listen for things that other people wouldn’t listen for.

“Good morning,” I hear Aaron yawn. “Good morning,” I reply, sleep still in my voice. “So, I have plans for today.” “Oh? What would those plans be?” I ask him. “It’s a surprise, but we’re leaving in roughly an hour so let’s eat and get ready,” he tells me. I quickly oblige and get up, carefully counting my steps to the kitchen. “What’s for breakfast?” I ask. “Eggs and biscuits,” my mom answers. “Sounds great, thank you Caroline.” Aaron says, calling my mom by her first name.

We quickly finish breakfast and get ready. Aaron leads me to his car, he helps me in and before I know it we’re on the road driving to who knows where. “Are you going to tell me where we’re going? We’ve been driving for what seems like forever and a half,” I say. “It’s been half an hour, not that long.” I let out a frustrated sigh. “That doesn’t answer my question,” I tell him. “If you really want to know,” he pauses teasingly. “We’re going to the fair,” he finally finishes.

“Okay, sure. You could’ve just said it was still a surprise,” I nervously laugh. He can’t be serious, I hate fairs. The only time I was going to go to one ended horribly. I can’t stand the idea of going to one after that day. “I’m serious, I know you don’t like the idea of them but Caroline and I were talking, and we both think it’ll be healthy to finally go to one,” he says. “Aaron, I’m telling you now; it’ll end badly.”

We finally arrive safely and I’m greeted with a sweet smell of fried sweets. I take a deep breath as Aaron grabs my hand, leading me into the fair. “So far so good,” he tells me. “I guess you’re right,” I reply, reluctantly. The day goes by fast; surprisingly it is filled with laughter and joy. We ride multiple rides, eat lots of fair food, and have a lot of fun overall. As much as I hate to admit it, I had a great time. We walk back to the car bantering playfully over him screaming on a ride.

While driving home we blast music, screaming the lyrics at the top of our lungs. All my worries forgotten, I’m genuinely living in this moment. We’re halfway through singing/screaming one of the songs when instead of the next line out of Aaron’s mouth, I hear him curse loudly, and I feel the car start to spin. My heart sinks to my stomach and I scream. I hear Aaron scream my name before I feel my head smash into something, presumingly the window.

I grab my head and open my eyes, instead of the familiar white cloud of blur I’m faced with a grassy meadow full of wild flowers. I then look up to see a large willow tree showering over me. I feel for my camera around my neck, and sure enough it’s there. I stare at what’s in front of me, speechless from the beauty of it all.

“Cassidy,” I hear an all too recognizable voice say. I quickly turn around to see a face I never thought I’d see again. “Daddy?” I ask, tears filling my eyes threatening to fall. He takes a few steps forward, and I see that he also has tears in his eyes. I also see he looks exactly the same from when I last saw him; down to the shoes he’s wearing.

“Oh God you’re beautiful,” he says, the tears now falling freely. “I am?” I ask. He walks closer, now only a foot away from me. “Of course,” he brushes a piece of hair from out of my face. “I haven’t seen myself in 8 years,” I tell him, the tears in my eyes falling the same way his are. He looks at my eyes, studying them. His eyes grow wide, obviously taken aback.

“Baby, I’m so sorry. I never meant for any of this to happen,” he says. “Am I,” I pause, afraid of the question, “dead?” I finish. He shakes his head no. He looks down, his eyebrows furrowed. Once he looks back up at me his eyes are full of something I didn’t see before. They were filled with selfless determination. “You’re not meant to be like this, I love you.” Before I could say anything else he walks up to me and covers my eyes.

I’m then faced with a hospital room in replace of the meadow. I look around, confused. “Cass?” I take a moment to focus on a chair with a boy sitting in it. He’s wearing a sling for his arm, and has a few cuts on his face. “Aaron? Is that you?” I ask, blinking a few times. “Yeah, it is. I’m so sorry,” he stands up and starts walking towards me. “Aaron,” I cut him off before he could rant about how sorry he is. “I see you,” I say.

His face is instantly full of confusion. “I’m sorry, what?” I feel a smile grow on my face. “I can see,” I tell him again. The door opens, and a tired woman walks through it. She has blonde hair and is carrying two cups that she drops when she looks at me. “Cassidy dear,” she says and walks towards me, arms open for a hug.

Once she lets go of me, I take a moment to look at her. I take in her facial features; her dull blue eyes stare back at me. I remember last looking at them; they were bright and full of life. “Your eyes used to be so much more vibrant,” I tell her, a slight smirk spread across my face. She looks at me just as confused as she looks at Aaron. “You can see me?” she asks. I nod. “Both of you, it’s crystal clear,” I tell her.

They both start asking questions that I can’t answer. I then think back to the meadow, and my father. Was it a dream? I remember the look he had before I woke up. The determination, the pain he had. The realization hits me before I could snap back to reality. “It’s his sight.”





































Haunted Mansion” by Ryland Tucker

One summer night a boy named David went out to play in his backyard. But then he saw what looked like a dark shadowy figure in the woods. He chased after it and yelled “Stop, stop,” but it never did. By this point David didn’t know where he was because he was chasing the dark shadowy figure. But he was scared so he yelled “Help, help, help!” But no one was around him to hear him. So he started to wander around the woods. Then he saw something that looked strange.


He got closer and closer, and then he saw that the something was a gravestone with the dates of 1796 – 1870. Now he is scared out of his mind. But then he heard leaves crunching behind him, so he turned around and seen the dark shadowy figure running after him. He started to run and he figured out that the dark shadowy figure was the Grim Reaper. He ran for nearly 20 minutes and David lost the Grim Reaper.


Then he found a huge abandoned mansion. So he decided to hide in there, but he thought that the Grim Reaper may have chased him to the mansion as a trap. But he went in there any way because he thought that was very unlikely. So he goes into the mansion and then he sees the dates 1796 – 1890 carved into the old wooden wall. So he runs out and then he sees the Grim Reaper again so he runs back in and goes up the staircase into a bedroom and into a closet and locks the door.


Then he hears the wooden stairs creak as the grim reaper walks up the stairs. Now the Grim Reaper is at the closet door and the Grim Reaper knows that David is in there because he can hear David breathing. Then out of nowhere the Grim Reaper breaks open the door with his scythe. Then the Grim Reaper starts to corner David in the closet and all of a sudden, the old wooden floor breaks underneath his feet.


He falls through the floor and into what seemed to be like an hundred year old basement. He starts to try to find a way out of the basement, but he could never find one. He noticed that there is a bed, a piano, a desk, and a rocking chair. Right above the bed it says Mr. Grim Reaper on a wooden name tag. So David figured out that this is the Grim Reaper’s room, and his house. Then David hears a knocking noise. So he turns around and sees the rocking chair rocking by itself.

David starts to walk over to it and then it stops. Then the badly out of tune piano starts to play by itself a creepy and song. So he turns around and starts to walk over to it and then it stops. By this point David is pretty creeped out so he starts to climb out of where he fell through the floor. So he makes it out of the hole in the floor. Then he runs out of the mission. He sees a light so he runs to it. It was his mom with a flashlight.


Then his mom looks at him and says, “I’ve been so worried.” Then she asked him, “What’s wrong?” On the way back he tells her everything that happened. But she didn’t even believe him. He tried to show her the house, but it wasn’t there no more. Then he says, “But mom it was right here.” But she said, “You have such a wild imagination.”




Days of My Life” by Trey Garrett

Life: The world that we live in when we are born and when death comes.


Hi, my name is Trey Garrett and I’m going to show you what happens in my life. It is six o’clock in the morning and I have just woken up, so I jumped out of my bed, put my school clothes on, eat a bite of breakfast and I’m out the door. Yes, I’m the first student to get to school but that is good because then I can be the first one to get to my class of a morning.


The first class I have is Advanced Mathematics. I like my Adv. math class because it is a gifted class and it’s a harder class. After 1st period, I go to SOAR which is my Creative Writing class with Mrs. Hamilton. Well, I’m not used to writing because I play baseball and also I’m left handed so I don’t write very well or neat. Everyone in my SOAR is so quiet, like REALLY QUIET.


Next I go to 2nd period (English Language Arts), but that class is so noisy that they CANNOT be quiet for about 2 minutes. But there is a good side about that class: lunch is the good part. Since I can’t write very well because I’m left handed, at least I’m special in some way. Now we are moving on.


After 2nd period is 3rd period or my art class. Since I’m left handed, I can be really creative (as people say) but I take that seriously; not in the bad way though. I mean I appreciate it when someone says that I’m creative because I’m left handed. While in art, the teacher Mrs. Tyner shows us how to do Still Life’s, Forms (3-d figures), and also thumbnails (no not that thumbnail on your thumb; I’m talking about a creative drawing from your mind.)


Once that class is over, I have History or Social Studies, where we study history of history. It’s like a bucket of information going straight to your head. Well, at least I think that. Again that class is a VERY NOISY and is worse than my second period. The good thing about that class is that the teacher is a man and also he is left handed. I get headaches once I walk in and out of that class. Now for 5th period.


My 5th period is the worst class out of all the classes I ever had; it’s science. Well science is not the bad part; it’s that everyone EVERYONE is talking constantly. They never are quiet for one second, even while taking a test. I feel sick after that class. That is why I hate that class. I like science but not really talkative people.


My final class is gym or P.E. (physical education). I like that class because you get to be energetic and run a lot. Also the coaches in that class are really nice and also they teach us how to do the new things (unlike some coaches). That is what I call a good and a well-educated coach. This is the school routine.






Hershey Roller Coaster” by Analise Hirneisen

When I was about 4 years old my family and I went to Hershey park. We had tons of fun going from ride to ride. There was this one ride where they show how they make the chocolate and after gave you a Hershey kiss. But then there was this one ride and we rode it three times after. My mom still has a video. We got on the ride and I sat in the cart with my dad with my sister and mom behind me. As we started up the rollercoaster, I started screaming. (Keep in mind this is one of the first rollercoasters I had ever been on) We heard people giggling and laughing around us while my dad told me that I don’t scream until we go down.


We got to the top of the hill and I flew my hands up and started screaming. In the video you can see the shocked, wide eyed kid screaming. I had fun and scream and all my dad did was laugh at me. When the ride ended, I got out and started jumping up and down to ride again. We rode it again and no matter what my little mind was still blown away. Then we moved on, even though I begged, and the rest of the day was giggles and silliness.
































Skateboard” by Kimberly Moreno

The event that I am about to tell you is probably the most terrifying thing that has happened to me. It was a normal school day. Everything was fine until I got home. Let me start from the beginning.

It was the day before the last day of school. Everything went smoothly until I got home. I unpacked and ate. Then I did my homework. After I finished my homework for the day, my family and I went outside. At the time, I had a skateboard.

When we went out to play, my little sister and brother went to play with each other, while I and my big sister (Yuritzi) were trying to learn to ride a skateboard. I would kind of “hold” her while she was on the skateboard because she was terrified of doing it alone. My family and I went to go for a walk. I brought my skateboard with me. When we walked up a little hill, my mom suggested that I should ride my skateboard down the hill. I quickly said no because I still wasn’t good enough. My sister looked at me and said, “C’mon, let’s skate down the hill”. I obviously could not say no because then she would do it all by herself. I said yes.

She got on the skateboard then I held onto her. As we started going, I realized that it was a big mistake. The skateboard started getting faster buy the second. I couldn’t feel my legs from running fast down the hill. My big sister started holding me tight and freaking out. I started to think of what I should do. I didn’t have much time to think. My big sister blacks out and she goes rolling down the hill with me.

My mom ran toward us, terrified. She stops and moves my sister. “Yuri, wake up, don’t do this to me!” As my siblings stood there, shocked, my mom holds Yuri in her hand repeating those words. Yuritzi’s face looked frozen; her eyes were wide open. My mom stands my sister up. Then the neighbor comes out and offers to help, but my mom declines. Yuritzi starts throwing up everywhere and my mom told me to call my aunt, so I did. As they all came running, my mom tells me to take my younger siblings home. “Ooh, is your knee okay?’’

I looked down my knee, and it was covered in blood. I couldn’t feel the pain. When I took my siblings inside my aunt gave us some ice cream. My aunt also put some numbing cream on my knee so I wouldn’t feel the pain. My sister was taken to the hospital. Turns out that she got a concussion. When she came back home, she said she wasn’t going on the last day of school, which was horrible. After all this happened, my mom sold the skateboard to someone, which I didn’t like.















When I Almost Got Attacked by a Shark” by AJ Upham

When I was around 3yrs old, my parents divorced. My brother was only two at the time. My parents fought over who had the kids all the time until we created a system where every other Saturday one parent would take one kid and the other parent takes the other kid. (We called it father-daughter day or mother-daughter day and same with my brother)

On the Saturday of this story, it was father-daughter day. I was four years old. My dad took us to the beach, since it was less than a half hour away. (We lived in Port St. Lucie, Florida) I don’t remember everything that we brought because it was so long ago, but I do remember the boogie board we brought. It had a dark purple wave with an orange frog on a neon green surfboard on it.

We played in the sand for a little while then headed towards the ocean. Most people picture the ocean as this bright blue, see thru paradise, but most of them are not like that. This one was dark. You could barely even see your feet underneath you. We weren’t very far out it was just deep. My father was standing on his tippy toes. He was holding the boogie board that I was on. He was splashing me, pushing me into the waves, and we were having fun.

This moment I remember perfectly.

We were waiting for the next wave. Then a shark rammed into my dad’s leg. It wasn’t like in the movies there was no fin sticking out of the water or ¨Jaws¨ music, there was no warning. I didn’t fully understand the matter of the situation when it was happening. My dad was holding onto the boogie board when it happened, and he almost dragged me down, but made sure not to. He frantically pushed me towards the beach which did not make me make it. He grabbed the boogie board, and ran as fast as he could in water to shore. We reached the beach. My dad told me to wait for him by the boardwalk that leads to the parking lot since it was close to where we were.

I don’t remember what happened after that but my dad told me that my mom got really mad at him.






















Valley Falls” by Grayson Bennett

Once there was a girl named V. She lived in the woods around a small town shrouded in mysteries and the unknown. The town was known as Valley Falls there were many strange things that only happened in the town and a soon as you leave it all disappears. It’s as if there is something in Valley Falls that causes all these strange anomalies. V wasn’t like most 14-year-old girls and I don’t mean she played video games or that kind of stuff I mean she was truly different. She lived in the woods that surrounds Valley falls she had wolf like ears on the top of her head that blend into her hair she had sharp claws were most people have normal fingernails and her teeth were sharp like fangs. Because of this, she would very rarely go to the town because of fear of what other people would think. Yet she didn’t know she wasn’t the strangest thing in the town throw out every inch of Valley Falls you could find something out of the ordinary. But most townspeople fail to see and realize this and just thought they lived in a boring old town with nothing interesting going on yet they didn’t know there was an impending plotting doom somewhere in the further.


At the far side of Valley Falls, there were luscious vibrant mountains that people would rarely go to because of frequent rock slides. The people of Valley falls thought of it as a natural occurrence. But what they didn’t know was it was caused by something much more sinister. Hidden deep inside the mountains there is an ancient settlement where no one resides it was abandoned thousands of years ago yet no one knows of it. In this ancient settlement there was a portal that linked two dimensions together one being dimension where we live and one being a place of war and hate were creatures unlike people have ever seen live. Almost every monster and creature that lives in Valley Falls came through that portal and now lives in Valley Falls. The reason none of the creatures live outside of Valley Falls is because they can’t leave the portal stops all of the creatures from the other dimension from leaving the town and no one knows why or even knows at all.


V’s life was never one she chooses or wanted to live. To most she would be considered a monster or even a freak. So she stayed hidden and made no sound no nose when she felt a human or other monster creep near. Especially the one that started it all. The monster that opened the portal and went through and forced many to come along with and some were willing.

No One knows what her name they just call her Red. Other monsters that have seen here gave her name dew to her piercing red eyes that make you tremble when you see them. When Red first came to this world through the portal, her sole purpose was to dominate the world and turn it into a crazy psycho funhouse. But upon entry of the world Red found that she couldn’t leave Valley falls this filled her rage that she was unable to accomplish her goal and reason for coming to these dimension. From that day on she forced hundreds of monsters through the portal and the ones willing to go to reach her ultimate goal.


In the small town that lies within valley falls there is a family that owned a little store and would put up attractions about beast they thought were fake but didn’t know they were real. The family consisted of a son and a daughter and there father. The kids wouldn’t often leave the house the would usually sit inside play games or read. Neither of them really liked the outdoors. Their father would always try to get them to go outside but they would reviews one day the two kids went to the library to return their books. Once there the searched around to find new books that neither of them have read yet. “Hey Skyler come over here I think I found a book but it’s weird” said the son Skyler walked over to her brother and proceeded to ask “where did you find that Aaron” said Skyler. The book had leather like serves on it with I large golden eye on it with a lock. “It was just sitting here on this shelf I looked here a second ago but I wasn’t there when I came back there it was” said Aaron. Skyler looked at the book once more “I think we should get it”. Aaron looked as Skyler with the same expression on his face, nodded “I think so too” the two walked over to the librarian, and gave here the book to check out. The librarian looked puzzled when she was handed the book. The kids asked the librarian “what’s wrong” the librarian told the kids “I have worked here for many years and have read every book here cover to cover but I have never seen this book” the kids looked at each other puzzled “hmmm you can keep the book I don’t know where it came from but it’s yours” the librarian told them. Both the kids exclaimed “really” the librarian nodded and handed them the book “go on” the librarian, said handing the book to Aaron. Aaron grabbed the book and went home with Skyler.


Once they were home the kids ran to their rooms “open it open it” said Skyler “alright” Aaron opened the book with the key on the side of it inside the book were pages upon pages of documented monsters including V. On the first page of the book hand written in large letters said TRUST NO ONE “weird” said Skyler Aaron nodded and flipped through the pages of the book looking at all the monsters till they found a loose paper in the book with a map. “Cool let’s follow it” exclaimed Skyler Aaron looked at here puzzled “are you sure someone probably just put it in there, it’s probably fake” Skyler hopped up and stood on the bed with her hand on her hips “what’s wrong with a little adventure” Aaron stood up and sighed “fine let’s go” . The kids grabbed the map and the book and started walking towards the woods.


As they walk through the woods, the kids hear rustling in a bush “w…what was that” said Skyler trembling. “I don’t know,” said Aaron walking towards the bush. As he walks over towards the bush Aaron trips over something “ughh”, Aaron looks behind him to see what it was it was I tail

“What is it?” asked Skyler Aaron stood up and accidentally stepped on the tail. Both the kids heard a human like scream and saw something jump out of the bushes and fall down. “AHHH” screamed the kids “AHHH” screamed the monster. “Please don’t hurt me,” cried the monster. Skyler and Aaron looked puzzled and scared by what the creature was. “W…What are you” asked Skyler as she slowly creeped forward toward the monster. The monster looked up at Skyler walking slowly toward her “Um…I am a Venate a…um kind of um…m…monster” said the creature. Skyler felt a small tug on her “what are you doing” asked Aaron. Skyler looked back at him “I want to know what it is” exclaimed Skyler. Aaron look shocked and confused “are you serious it just said it was a monster a MONSTER” yield Aaron. Skyler jerked her arm away from her brother. “Well it’s not trying to hurt us it looks just a scared as you” Skylar said. Aaron looked at the monster “fine” he said in a low mumbling voice. Skyler looked back at the monster “so what’s you um name” asked Skyler. The monster looked at her puzzled “my name?” said the monster. Skyler looked just as confused as the monster “you do have a name right? “asked Skyler. The monster shook its head no. “Hmmm you said you were something called a Venate right?” asked Skyler. The monster looked at her “um y…yes” the monster told Skyler. “Then why don’t we call you hmm…V” exclaimed Skyler.



The monster stood up “um o…ok” said V All the sudden the book in Aaron’s hands started to glow brightly. “AHH” screamed Aaron dropping the book. “W…what’s happening” screamed Aaron. Then the pages in the book started to turn and stopped on a page. Aaron, Skyler and all looked at the book it was a on the page describing and telling about what V was and what kind of monster she was like but the strangest part of all was this page was in the very back of the book and it wasn’t there before. “Um…is that page new and how did that just happen” Exclaimed Skyler looking at the book. “First a monster now this. What is going on?” Aaron looked at V asking to see if she knew. V picked up the book intrigued by it as if she had seen it before “where did you find this?” V asked in a worried tone.


The kids looked at her and said at the same time. “At the library.” V was still looking at and through the book “it wasn’t there one minute and the next it was there sitting on the shelf” Said Aaron starting to look worried. “Ya we even asked the librarian and she said she had never seen it before” Skyler said starting to look worried like her brother. “So you know what it is” asked Aaron. “Hmmm…..yes and it’s not good it seems the book choose you” said V handing the book back to Aaron. “What do you mean choose us?” asked Skyler. V sighed, “I am afraid I can’t tell you” said V. Aaron looked at her even more confused than before “what not” he asked. V put her head down in an upsetting manner. “You will be in great danger if I tell you,” said V.



Part: 2 (not part of Foreshadowing Narrative)

The kids looked at each other scared and concerned “w…what do you mean in danger” asked Skyler. V looked up at both Aaron and Skyler and sighed, “like I said I just can’t tell you that will only make things worse” V told them with the same concerned expression on her face. “Wait you did see the big bright red word on the first page of the book right?” V asked the kids. “Um y…Yes” said Aaron consciously. “So why did you open it? That is what got you into this mess that’s all I’m able to tell you it’s the book,” V told them. Skyler looked up from the book “wait it’s the book but how and why is it putting us in danger” asked Skyler asked. “Look I told you I can’t say anything else unless you want things to be worse,” V told them again starting to get annoyed by the same question.




Far off in the distance the rocks on the mountains began to shift and slide again. V jerked her head up as quickly as possible looking towards the mountains “o no” V said slowly backing up. The kids looked at V “o no….what” asked Aaron concerned even more. “The rocks are falling again,” Said V looking at Skyler and Aaron. “O…that’s just a rock slide it happens all the time,” Skyler told V. “well what you think is a rock slide isn’t totally a rock slide well not naturally at least” V said looking even more worried. Aaron and Skyler looked at her confused that didn’t know why she was so worried they were starting to be puzzled by the fear they saw in Vs eyes. “WAIT what do you mean not a natural rock slide” Aaron said in a panicked voice Skyler looked at V as well with fear in her eyes. “I will explain what I can in a minute right now we need to vet somewhere safe,”V said grabbing the kids by the arm. Skyler and Aaron were jerked along by V they both looked even more afraid than before. “What is going on?” exclaimed Skyler in a scared voice. V didn’t respond or look back at them she just keep pulling them by their arm till she came across a cave “perfect” said V pulling the kids into the cave “stay here we will be safe for now” V said peeking out of the side of the cave



“WHAT IS GOING ON” screamed Skyler even louder than before. V jerked her head and ran towards Skyler “SHHH” V said outing her hand over Skyler’s mouth “you don’t want them to hear you do you? “ V asked them in a whisper. Aaron looked at V “who” Aaron asked whispering. “The other monsters” V told Aaron looking back outside. “OTHER MONSTERS” Skyler screamed pulling Vs hand from her mouth. “Shut up” V said putting both hands on her mouth “o… Sorry” said Skyler pulling Vs hands away from her mouth again. “So there are other monsters and what is so bad about the rock slide” Aaron asked V confused and scared. “All I can tell you is that there is a portal that up monsters came through to get here and when the mountains have a rock slide that means more are being forced through” V told the sliding down the cave walls to sit. “Wait portal” asked Aaron “monsters being forced through a portal “asked Skyler. “Yes some monster choose to come here but some we’re forced and the portal is what got us here I’m sorry but that’s all I can say” V told them putting her head in her arms. “So did you choose to come here?” asked Skyler V looked up “no…. I was forced here”



“Can you at least tell us why you we’re forced here?” asked Aaron. V looked up “hmm I guess I could tell you why it won’t put you in much danger” V told them. “Please do” said both Skyler and Aaron sitting down “well most of us we’re forced here by an evil monster I can’t say who but they wanted to take over your world so the ones they saw useful we’re either forced through the portal or choose to go” V told them “so why did they want you” asked Skyler “I don’t know” Responded V “but most monsters stay trapped by the one who forced us here that keep them confined and try to break their mind until they do anything they are told to do” V explained. Skyler and Aaron looked at V in disbelief “but why would someone do that” asked Skyler V looked at her “you’re for getting something we aren’t people we are monsters that’s why there are so many bad ones among us” V told Skyler . “Wait there is still one thing I don’t understand how did you escape” asked Aaron. “I was brought here very young ripped away from my family because they saw me useful for some reason and when I was taken through the portal the first rock slide happened and I used it to my advantage and escaped they still want to find me thought.” Both Skyler and “Aaron looked up at V with sympathy “I… I’m very sorry,” said Skyler V looks up “we should probably get going” said V as she stood up and started to walk to the cave entrance.





The kids walked out of the cave behind V “so where are we going” Asked Skyler trying to catch up to V. V stopped walking suddenly V darted away the kids stood there in shock as a four armed monster chased after V. “w…what is happening” Skyler asked Aaron “that monster is try to get……V” said Aaron. “WE HAVE TO HELP HER SHE HELPED US!” exclaimed Skyler. All of the sudden the book in Aaron’s arms started to shake and glow again Aaron held it out as it flipped to a new page at the end of the book. “Weapons……COOL,” said Skyler on the page there were many weapons that could only take down monster. “Looks like we need these “said Aaron looking at the map and starting to follow it. Skyler ran with I’m looking at the map “we need to get there fast” said Skyler “I know” Aaron replied.



V ran among the treetops in the forest trying to stay away from the other monster. The other monster knocked down trees beaded V as she leaped across trying to stay away. “No no no no” V said to herself breathing heavily. Then another monster with bug eyes and bird like wings flew in front of V knocking of the tree and onto the ground “aahhgg” V screeched hitting the ground. V tried to stand up but the four armed monster grabbed her and through her against a tree knocking her out. The flying monster then grabbed and threw V on his back and flew towards the mountains.




Part: 3


The kid followed the map that lead the to the weapons that were decided as the only thing able to defeat a monster. Yet they didn’t know V was already captured by the other monsters “I really hope V’s ok I’m really worried” said Skyler worried and frightened. “She will be fine….I hope” said Aaron. The kids came upon an old dark crypt the looked at the map and back at the crypt “looks like the weapons are in there” said Aaron. Skyler stood behind Aaron scared and nervous “I…I don’t know maybe it um…the wrong crypt maybe it’s meant to be one less dark and…creepy” said Skyler clasping on her brothers arms. Aaron looked at Skyler in shook “you can’t be serious we need to help V this is not the time to be scared!” Said Aaron yelling at Skyler. Skyler looked at him with tears in her eyes “I…I’m sorry I’m scared it’s just last time where somewhere like this…….you know what happened” Said Skyler whimpering. Aarons face drained of color when he looked behind him he grabbed Skyler by the arm and gave her the book “run” Aaron told Skyler “but wh…” Skyler started to ask when she looked up to see tall shadow like figure with glowing eyes standing before them. “I said run,” Aaron said to Skyler once more but this time with more aggression. The tall figure grabbed the kids with its long slender arms and hands that seemed to only be claws with the same shadowy look. Skyler and Aaron struggled to get out of its arms at is carried them to the mountains at a slow agonizing pace. “Why didn’t you run?” asked Aaron scheming at Skyler. “I wasn’t going to leave you,” screamed Skyler. The shadow creature moved slowly and by the time, they were halfway to the mountain it was midnight. Yet the kids did not stop struggling to get out of the shadow figures clutches.



Back in the town, the kids’ father made dinner and expected them to be home any soon he finished cooking and set the table he eventually just sat and waited. After a while, he began to worry Aaron and Skyler were never late for dinner so there father grabbed his jacket and walked to the library to see if they were there. “Hello miss. Smith have you seen the kids” asked the father. The librarian looked at him puzzled “I’m sorry Mr. Jones I have not seen them since this morning, did something happen?” Mr. Jones looked at her “well they haven’t come home for dinner yet and there never late I’m worried something happened” said Mr. Jones. “O dear well I hope you find them” said miss.Smith “thank you anyway” said Mr. Jones was he walked out the door even more worried than before. Mr. Jones started walking towards the police station asking everyone he saw along the way if they had seen Skyler and Aaron. When Mr. Jones arrived at the police station, he walked to the front desk. “Hello Mr. Jones is something wrong,” asked the lady at the front desk “yes I cannot find my kids Skyler and Aaron” he said “well how long they have been gone,” asked the lady at the front desk “since before lunch” said Mr. Jones. The lady sighed “I’m very sorry Mr. Jones we can’t say someone’s missing until they have been gone for 48 hours I’m very sorry” said the lady at the desk. “Right….right” said Mr. Jones rubbing the back of his head the turning around and walking home. Once he was home, he cleaned up the table and went to his room and laid there in his bed until morning without any sleep exhausted and worried.



Bye the time it was morning Skyler woke up in an unknown place it looked like a prison. Skyler got up and looked at her brother who was still sleeping. She walked over to the bars on the cage they were in and in shock, she looked at the cage across from her and saw. She was chained to a wall with a gag in her mouth. “V” Screamed Skyler shaking the cage bars trying to get out. Skyler turned around and ran over to Aaron sliding down next to him. Skyler started to shake her brother to wake him up. “Aaron wake up” Shouted Skyler. “Huh…” Murmured Aaron waking up slowly. “WE NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE” Shouted Skyler trying to get Aaron fully awake. Aaron sat up and looked around “where are we” he asked looking at here with a confused expression. Skyler looked at him and put her head “I…I don’t know but we need to get out” said Skyler in a stern scared voice.



Skyler lifted up her arm and pointed to the cage across from them “We need to help V” Said Skyler. The book lay on the ground in the corner of the cage it started to open by itself and flipped to a new page in the back of the book. Skyler and Aaron ran over to the book and picked it up. On the new page, it showed the mountains and a portal as well and a blurred out tall figure. “Wait why didn’t this show up?” Asked Skyler “I don’t know” said Aaron. “But I do” said a shadow in the corner of the room outside of the two cages. V jerked up and tried to move away and scream for the kids to get away from it but her shackles and gag prevented her. “W…What are you?” asked Aaron looking at it. The dark figure looked and laughed in an evil way “I will get to you soon” said the dark creature in an evil voice.



The dark creature unlocked V’s cage and creped in. The creature grabbed V’s Shackles and ripped them off the wall. The creature grabbed V by the collar of her torn shirt “you know how long I have been trying to catch you,” said the Creature smiling menacingly. The creature grabbed V by her chains and dragged her on the ground V fought back as much as possible but couldn’t help but be pulled along with the creature. “Now you will do what I wanted you to do all along,” said the evil creature.







Skyler and Aaron ran to the bars on the cage and screamed at the monster to let V go. Yet the monster didn’t listen they keep screaming until the monster was out of sight. Skyler let go of the cage bars and paced around the cage. Aaron looked at her confused and concerned he walked over and put a hand on her shoulder. “It will be ok we will find her and help her I promise” said Aaron looking at Skyler trying to smile. “It said it wanted to use her for the purpose she was brought for what is that purpose what if she isn’t supposed to live after it” Said Skyler looking at Aaron with a determined look.



V struggle to escape the clutches of the dark shadow monster “Please let me go” V held with tears in her eyes and her arms dragging against the cold hard stone ground of the cave. The shadow monster stopped and slung V towards a dark throne. V Sat up slowly and looked at the throne she sat there as she was petrified with fear because of who she saw “r….red” said V stuttering.


Red Glared her eyes seemed empty dead like there was no soul or heart. “Finally” said Red with an evil grin that made any monster strong or weak tremble with fear. V Sat there breathing heavily with fear and worry creeping up her spine. Red stood up and walked towards V. As red creeped closer V struggle trying to get away. Red looked at V and smirked slightly “how sad it seems fear is one of the only emotions you feel these days” said Red pulling up V by her chin to see her face. V said nothing she just Sat there and looked at Red. “Hmmm so you wouldn’t talk I have ways to make you” said Red letting go of V’s face and walking back towards her throne. Red jesters her hand to send V away


V was picked up by the shadow monster once more but started walking in a different direction than before. V stopped struggling and tried to look in front of her she picked up her head and saw a small glimpse of light that soon faded with the slam of a large stone door. V was thrown on the ground her wrists began to be bound together by another monster V could do nothing but sit there. Her body was petrified with fear yet her mind though of a million ways to get out.



Skyler and Aaron looked in the book to try and find anything about what’s going on but was unsuccessful. “This book is useless” Held Aaron throwing the book against the wall. The book began to shake and glow unlike before the walls of the cage began to crack and shake. Skyler and Aaron fell to the ground as the Floor started to shake. The bars on the cage started to fall apart. The cage bars fell to the ground with a Skyler and Aaron looked at each other than the book. “I stand corrected,” Said Aaron. Both Antler and Aaron got up and grabbed to book run out of the cage.



Vs hands were bound she couldn’t see anything the room was pitch black. She could only hear the clanking of Chains and footsteps of other monsters. V’s heart was beating rapidly; she felt alone, cold, and scared, but she couldn’t do anything because her hands were bound together and the chain on her neck was once again bound to the wall. She closed her eyes and Sat in the darkness she knew what they were trying to do they wanted to break her mind they wanted to make her a mindless slave to their evil game. V wasn’t going to let them break her she. She was used to being alone and in the dark she was used to the things they were going to do to her. So she sat there and waited. Much later light began to shine as the stone door opened V opened her eyes and looked up at the light. Red was standing there looking at V with an extremely evil smile her arm was draped over her back with a sword in her hand.





Skyler and Aaron dashed through the dark and stone hallways. “Come on we NEED to find her” Said Aaron said as he ran through the halls. Aaron stops and looked around “Skyler?” asked Aaron as he looked around. There was no one in sight “SKYLER” he exclaimed run in back where they came from. He gulped as he looked around the cage. His heart skipped a beat when he looked around and saw nothing. Aaron began to pace back and forth thinking where could she be. Aaron stopped when he felt piercing eyes watch him. He slowly turned around and saw a beep red monster with horns that fade darker its hair was a dark orange brown with hoofed feet and sharp claws. Aaron gulped as he saw the monster holding a sword with Skyler behind her.


The monster grind with an evil look “finally” said the monster. Aaron looked at her “Who…Who are you what do you what with my sister?” Asked Aaron worried. The monster once again smiled showing her sharp teeth “it’s not just her I what it’s both of you, the book choose both of you…kids…for some reason thinking you could stop me” The monster told them. Skyler made a muffled noise when she tried to speak there was a gag in her mouth preventing her from talking. “LET HER GO!” demanded Aaron. “Now why would I do that?” said the monster leaning down towards Aaron and looking at his face carefully. “WHO ARE YOU?” asked Aaron. The monster sat up “hmmm you are very demanding aren’t you…..fine I’m RED! “said the monster. “Red……you’re one of the monster that choose to come here and follow the orders of the monster that brought them all here aren’t you?” asked Aaron looking at his sister. Red laughed and walked around Aaron “you must be dumb to think I would follow someone” said Red. Aaron looked at her confused he thought to say something but decided not to all he could think of is helping his sister. Red stopped and looked at Aaron “that one evil monster that you said forced everyone….” said Red laughing evilly “…that’s me” red said with an evil smirk on her face.


V sat there in the dark afraid of what Red will do. She remembers Red walking into the room with a sword in her hands. Red threatened V that if she didn’t do as she said she would regret it. V was scared she knew that Red knew the fear of everyone and what could make them break even if it would be hard to break V she knew Red could do it. V sat there within the cold stone walls and thought to herself scared for her life. Vs head sat up with lightning speed “Skyler….Aaron” Said V remembering the two kids. She sat there afraid not for herself anymore but for them. V started yanking at the chains on the walls. She closed her eyes and fell to the ground with tears in her eyes afraid and scared more than any time before she had to know if they were alright.


Aaron stood there looking at the monster “y…your Red” said Aaron stuttering and looking at her sister in chains. “LET HER GO” yelled Aaron without thinking. Red glared at Aaron “how rude you know that no way to treat royalty” said Red with a disgusting grin on her face. Aaron stood there looking at his sister. “W…what do you want from us” Aaron said looking at Skyler’s scared eyes. “Looks like you have reasonable side” said Red glaring at Aaron. Aaron said nothing he just stood there looking at Skyler. Red raised one eyebrow “hmmm….Fine I what the book” said Red with her hand out waiting for it. Aaron looked at Red then Skyler behind her. Aaron grabbed the book out of the ripped bag and handed it to Red. Red jerked it out of Aaron’s hands “finally” she said trying to open it. Red began to fill with anger she tried to open the book but it wouldn’t budge one bit. Red throws the book on the ground and walked up to Aaron grabbing him by the collar of his ripped shirt. Aaron gulped as he tried to push Red away. “WHY WON’T IT OPEN?” screamed Red with fire in her eyes. “I…I don’t know I swear” Said Aaron scared. “Fine then” said Red dropping Aaron and motioning another monster to grab him as well. “I guess I’ll just have to keep you both,” said Red with a grin on her face as she plotted an evil plain.




Aaron struggled to get away from Red and fined his sister. “LET ME GO” said Aaron in a demanding scream. Red stopped and looked back at Aaron “now why should I do that” Red asked as she lifted his face up with her sharp claws. “You are of use to me until I get the book open so till then I will keep you where I like.” Red told Aaron. “s..So if I open the book for you me and my sister are free?” asked Aaron with a glimmer of hope in his eyes. Red stood up with a malicious grin on her face “yes if you open the book you will free to go.” said Red. Aaron stopped fighting against the monsters dragging him “alright I will open it IF and only if you swear you will let us go” said Aaron. V walked away from Aaron” fine I promise” She said turning her head back towards Aaron.



Skyler wondered the around the dark room of stone gripping her sides in fear she kept pacing back and forth till she tripped over a large chain. “Aghh” she let out a small scream when she hit the ground. The chain rattled as something stood up “who…who’s there” asked Skyler slowly backing up on the ground. “S…Skyler” asked a voice. Skyler stopped and stood up “…V” asked Skyler as she creeps towards the voice. “YES! YES!” said the voice; Skyler stood up and walked towards the voice. She knew it sounded like V but she felt like something was wrong. As Skyler started to see the outline of the monster two piercing green eyes opened. Skyler stopped in her tracks knowing it wasn’t V. “who are you” asked Skyler as she refused to walk any closer. “Why it’s me…um…V” said the voice with slight hesitation. “No you’re not……Tell me WHO are you” Said Skyler as she picked up the chain and yanked on it. Skyler could hear the monster moving with a slithering movement. The chain yanked out of Skyler’s hand and swinging her back into the ground. “You’re right I’m not V…..I’m worse” Said the voice as it appeared from the darkness, Skyler was petrified with fear of the monster she gazed at were its legs should have been but only saw a snake tale and looked up towards body it was of a normal man then looked towards its face its face only to see two piercing green eyes and its tongue moving in and out of its mouth like a snake.



Back in the town of Valley Falls Skyler and Aarons father was welling up with fear he couldn’t think straight not knowing where they were. It has almost been 5 days since Mr. Jones has seen them he couldn’t stand to think about what might have happened to them. The police department in the town keep telling him to stay calm that they’re doing all they can but there was no way he could be calm. People around the town keep trying to comfort him even if comfort wasn’t what he wanted he just wanted to see them again and know that they were alright.


Aaron walked along with Red clutching the book as if his life depended on it and in a way it did. Red stopped walking and pointed to a stained to place it but behind it was Skyler and V he was so happy to see them. But something was wrong they were tied up and being guarded by a snake like man. Aaron turned around and looked at Red “I thought you were going to let them go that was the deal” Said Aaron still holding on to the book. “Yes it was but you get them back after you open the book for me,” said Red with the same evil grin as always. Aaron hesitated and thought of the countless reasons of what would go wrong. Then he looked at Skyler and V again and saw the fear in their eyes. “Fine” he said placing the book on the stand and opening it. Red walked towards the book and touched with her long claws on her fingers “finally now everything will fall into place” She said as she turned the pages of the book. “What about our deal” said Aaron as he looked at Skyler and V.? The snake monster then grabbed him and began to tie him up “I knew I couldn’t trust you” screamed Aaron as he glared at Red. She walked over to Aaron and bent down in front of him and lifted up his chin with were claws “then why did you do it?” Red asked with a malicious look on her face.



Red walked over to the podium, flipped to one of the pages in the book about the portal, and begins to read an incantation that opened the portal bigger and made monsters stronger. A dark and ominous cloud of mist began to circle above them. Red’s eyes began to glow as she recited what it said. V began to struggle and move to get out but wasn’t able the snake monsters tale was twisted around all of them to keep them from running. “You don’t know what you’re doing,” Yelled V as she tried to free herself. But every movement caused the snake monster to tighten his grip around them. Red turned and glared at them with the smoke billowing above them “o… I know what I’m doing,” she said with a grin that you couldn’t bear to see without fear. Red the jesters towards a stone room “put them there” she said as the snake monster dragged them towards the room and tossed them in and sealed the door. All three of them began to bang on the stone door. They eventually stopped when they felt the door began to open they all felt a glimmer of hope. But it so drained away when they saw Red in the doorway. Red pushed back Aaron and Skyler against the wall without even a single finger lade on them dew to her newfound power from the book. Aaron and Skyler sat up from the wall “w…why are you doing this” asked Skyler as she held her arm in pain. Red glared at them “you will soon see,” she said grinning. V’s eyes filled with anger when red hurt them “YOU WILL NEVER GET AWAY WITH ANY OF THIS” V screamed at Red in rage. “I’m afraid I already have” Said Red as she picked up V without a touch and slammed her on the ground causing her to be knocked out. “V” yield both Skyler and Aaron as Red dragged her out and closed the stone door.






V lay unconscious as she was dragged to the pedestal the book was sitting on. Red used her newfound power to tie her up with only a flick of her hand. V began to move and wake up she slowly opened her eyes as time passed. Red glared at her “you know I really do have to thank you I mean you lead the book right to along with yourself and throws retched kids.” She said as she stood there reading the book. “W…what do you…w…want from me” asked V as she slowly began to wake up. “Not much really…..Only your powers and abilities.” said Red as the turned towards V and gazed at her closely. “W…what do you…m…mean power?” asked V as she finally got enough energy to lift her head up. V sat there with a look of despair in her eye and her ear flopped down with the feeling of little hope. “Poor poor V what have you become your scared, hopeless….weak.” said Red as she sat the book back down and began to walk around V. “you use to be a strong brave fighter remember…..then you left went on your own and became weak” said Red as he walked around V and stopped once she was in front of her. Red lifted up V’s head “but no matter that you will be one of us again” said Red as she held up V’s head. “I will never be on your side…..not again,” said V with determination in her eyes and her ears began to lift back up. Red let go of V’s head and began to laugh “you really think that was a question…..well it wasn’t you are going to join me no matter what I need to do.” Red began to pick up the book, turned to one of the very last page, and recited a spell aloud. “Your mind is mine you fall to my will” Red continued to recite as V screams echo through the halls as she cried for her to stop. Please I don’t want to fall to your will,” said V was tears rolled down her cheeks. But Red did not listen and continued to red until it was over. “You will now fall to my will and listen to my commands you belong to be now.” said red as she finished the spell a dark smoke circled around V as her eyes began to fade from a light beautiful blue to a glowing dark red. “What is your command?” said V emotionless.


Skyler and Aaron stood staring at the door still trying to comprehend what the book did to Red. And the power it gave her the eventually snapped back to reality ¨V¨ they both screamed when they realized that Red took her. They walked back and forth in the stone room torches with sharp metal points lit the room and let them see chains and cracks all along the walls. ¨What are we going to do¨ asked Skyler as he paced back and forth ¨ I don’t know¨ replied Aaron. Suddenly Skyler felt her heart drop from her chest more than ever before she stopped moving and within seconds, tears began to stream down her face as she dropped to the ground and held her arms tight to her chest. ¨Skyler? ¨ asked Aaron as he ran towards her and tried to help her up. Skyler looked up at her brother with tears streaming down her face ¨w…what about dad…he’s all alone and he doesn’t know where we are¨ Said Skyler as tears rolled down her cheeks faster. Aaron paused for a minute and then picked Skyler up and put her on her feet. ¨we…we will get home we will see dad again. I promise.¨ said Aaron as he forced a smile. Skyler stood up and wiped the tears from her cheeks ¨y…you’re right¨ said Skyler. From her wrist, she pulled a hair band and tied up her hair and regained confidence and determination. ¨let’s go¨ said Skyler as she began to search around the stone room for a way out. As the looked around the stumbled upon what seemed to be an old wall it looked like stones were placed in a terrible manner and moss grew on the rocks creaking and breaking them. ¨if the can find a way to move the rocks I’m sure it will lead to an opening¨ said Aaron as he looked at Skyler. ¨right¨ said Skyler as she began to push and pull on the rocks trying to get one to budge. “It won’t move,” said Aaron as he pushed and pulled on the rocks. Antler looked around and eventually found someone to pry apart the rocks. “Stand back” said Skyler as she used a metal pole from a broken lever in the stone room. She began to pry the rock out she quickly backed up as the rock’s began to fall of the walls. Once the dust clears from the falling rocks. Skyler and Aaron say that the rock’s did open up to where they could be free they saw a long hallway with a locked door on one end of it the “it’s stuck” said Aaron. Skyler took the wooden stick and hit the door trying to break it but instead the sick broke “Dang it” said Skyler as she dropped the rest of the stick on the ground. “I guess we will just go the other way…,” said Aaron as they walked down the narrow halls. Eventually they came to a larger room with sloping arched entries. They stood still for a moment and looked at what was in front of them. “T…the portal…” said Skyler as she looked at Aaron.





Vs stood up without hesitation and emotion then repented “what’s your command” several times until she was told what to do. Red’s grin grew more evil as time passed and tolled V what to do “I want you to follow me for a minute” she said as she began to walk out of the room. V followed without even stopping to think or say a word. As they walked through narrow halls and corridors they passed by many rooms with many monster some wanted to be there and you could tell others didn’t. As they walked past cages and chained monsters. Others for in the chains begin to stare but not at Red but V. Their eyes widened and some even pointed in shock from seeing her follow Red with her own will. Monsters started noticing V’s eyes, they could tell they were no longer the light blue they had been shown but a deep red color. As V and Red walked out of the room, a short time later Skyler and Aaron wondered as they looked for V and a way out. As they looked around the room with Cages and monsters locked up, they saw a familiar face and to them it wasn’t a pleasant one. They recognized its shadowy look and its eyes the claw like arms from its back that held its knees close to it body. But there anger towards it slowly started to diminish as they look at is state. They see him chained to the wall unlike the others who seemed to be there by will. They saw a scared look in its eye just as they had. Skyler began to walk towards him in his singular cage. She put her hands on the bars of the cage “…Why are you scared?” Asked Skyler the monsters head slowly started to look up at them. For a while, there was a pause, as the monster looked at them confused. “…I…I was scared s…she was going to hurt m…me or you if I didn’t bring you…” said the monster as he stuttered his words. Aaron began to walk towards the cage “so why are you here then?” asked Aaron as he was unsure if the monster was really trust worthy. The monster looked at them as if they were crazy. “L…lots of monsters w…were brought here against t…their will” said the monster as he put his head back to his knee “I…I’m not l…like other m…monster I’m not s…strong or brave…” he said as he squeezed his legs tightly with his arms as the claws from his back squeeze him. Skyler and Aaron looked at each other puzzled on if they should help or not. They saw in his eyes that he felt the same way they did trapped, scared. “What do we do?” asked Aaron as he looked at the monster then Skyler. “I think we should let him out….” said Skyler as she looked at the monster. Aaron looked at her with a concerned look “are you sure?” asked Aaron “yes” Skyler quickly replied without a second guess. “Alright…” replied Aaron. Skyler and Aaron began to look or the keys or something to pry open the bars. Finally, they found an old set of keys that looked like they hadn’t been touched in a very long time. Skyler grabbed they keys and walked towards the cage. Aaron grabbed her arm as she began to place them in the lock. “Shouldn’t we ask him what his name is” asked Aaron still unsure. “I guess you’re right” Skyler took the keys out of the lock and looked at the monster. “What’s your name?” asked Skyler as she looked as him. The monster began to look up at Skyler and Aaron “S…Shard” said the monster. Skyler looked at Aaron “now we know his name can I let him out now” asked Skyler as she became a little bit agitated. Aaron paused for a moment “…a…alright” said Aaron. Skyler put the key in the lock, opened the cage, and unlocked Shards chains. Shard thought his arms around Skyler “t…thank you” said Shard. Skyler just sat there on her knees “…y…you are welcome” she said as he unwrapped his arms from Skyler. “We need to get going to find V,” said Aaron as he stood at the entrance to the cage. Skyler nodded and stood up. “W…Wait can I come w…with you” asked Shard. Skyler turned around and nodded as she held out her hand to help him up. As Aaron still felt uneasy about it.






Aaron looked at Skyler with an uneasy look on her face and the thought of Shard being evil in the back of his mind. Skyler grabbed Shards hand and helped him up as he crossed his arms and squeezed hi body tightly with both is claws and arms. “…Are you ok” asked Skyler as he slightly tilted her head and looked at him in his white eyes. Shard paused for a moment and just stared and her “…O…I…I’m fine…sorry” he said as he shook his head snapping out of his gaze. “A…alright” said Skyler as she turned around and began to walk out the cage doors. Shard quickly began to follow after Aaron stopped her but as he put his foot at the exit of the cage. “Look just because Skyler trusts you doesn’t mean I do so don’t try anything I’m warning you.” Said Aaron as he glared at Shard. Shared just stared at his feet as Aaron stepped out of the way of the door and followed behind Skyler. Shard quickly followed behind as they begin to sneak and wonder around the halls again.


Red lead V to a large door Red began to jester to the snake like monster “FANG open it now” said Red with a malicious and stern look on her face. Fang slithered over to the door and pushed it open he held it as Red and V walked through the large doors and into the portal room. Once they were there, they spotted something strange on the other side of the room. Red was infuriated by seeing the door on the other side of the room open. She knew know other monster would come without permission. She knew it could only be one thing “those BRATS” she screamed. Red’s eyes began to glow with rage, she quickly turned around to V. She grinded in a malicious way “I need you to bring me those kids NOW” said Red as she gestured for V to go. V quickly followed Reds orders without thought or control over what she did. The snake like monster looked up to Red “My lord If you don’t mind me asking what do you plan on doing with those pesky kids?” he asked. Red turned around walked closer to the snake monster “It’s quite simple Screw I’m going to get rid of them like I should have done from the start.” says Red as she turns from Screw and begins to open the portal.


Skyler walks ahead of both Aaron and Shard. “Slow down” said Aaron as he fell behind. Skyler stopped walking, turned around, and realized she was walking much faster than the others “sorry” said Skyler as she rubbed the back of her head and let the others catch up.








Nameless” by Drew Bowelle

It’s that one week in February again, you know, the week where the school’s selling flowers. Everyone is sharing their plans with their friends; it smells of overused perfume and cologne. The girls are all giggly and hoping someone buys them a gift. Some are excited to see what they will get for valentines.

I am sure you get the obnoxious picture, hallway all crowded with over joyful students, do they even know that the holiday is held in school?!

I twist my locker dial round and round until it pops open, “So, are you dreaming about receiving a plant that will die either in the next hour or week once in your hands?”

I wasn’t sure why I had asked the question, the answer was obvious.

Skylar immediately pipes up, “Of course! Everyone is staying! Do you not hear everyone’s conversations?!”

I smirk, “No, I haven’t. Maybe I am going deaf?! Ty…..”

I pry open my jammed locker, almost hitting my face in the process. Lazily throwing in my science book, I notice a pink card crumpled at the corners. I feel Skylar and Tyler hovering over my shoulder, eager to see what caused me to stop in mid-sentence.

“OH MY GOD!” Skylar starts to bubble up with excitement.

“Oh lord, here we go Lorelai, brace yourself.” Tyler speaks so mumbly that it was nearly impossible to understand him.

The hallways started to empty, only the obnoxious kids were still roaming around the halls. I quietly snatched the card and tuck it into my pocket. Skylar leans over my shoulder; it was as if you could hear the gears starting to tick inside her head. She was placing all the puzzle pieces together, slowly, but surely.

“Lorelai! You received a locker note from someone that thinks you are cute!”

The hallways gave a quiet echo of her shout, mimicking her in a lower voice. Time was cutting short; we had seconds to enter our sixth period. Luckily, it was just across the five-foot hall and it was our last class of the day! I close my locker as quiet as possible, shift my satchel and tighten my grip on my lunch box handle.

There was a name that was floating all around my head, Wolf. I have had a crush on Wolf since seventh grade when he transferred to our school. Of course, because he was new, he became very popular and this immediately meant, he was off limits. Wolf was now for the popular girls to date, no one else.

However, what if he finally was catching on?! I had, in past, gave him hints and tried talking to him. I even attempted to set something up! This was all before he got involved with Charlotte though.

Throughout the four school years, I have only had one other class with him, tenth grade biology. That school year was rather embarrassing, not many good memories were made.

Now as we enter Mr. Sheldon’s classroom, my eyes magnetically find Wolf’s. We make it in just as the bell rings for class to begin. Mr. Sheldon was obviously annoyed by this; his gaze was like two lasers slowly burning holes into your back. The class gets uncomfortably quiet as our mini table group unpacks for class.

“Alright students, today we will be starting our final science project of your eleventh grade year.”

The classes reaction varied greatly some frowned in thought of presentations. Others smiled to the fact that this was the last science project for this year! Tyler glances around the room scanning everyone’s face before whispering, “Do we choose our partners?”

Skylar and I shrug at the same time and look back up to the front of the classroom.

“Now, I am sure that some of you are wondering about partners,” Mr. Sheldon stares at our table the whole time, “and I have them posted on the back of the door.”

Again, the room is split into two reactions. I stand up first from my table and walk over to the paper. I wait in line, in front of me is Miriam, an old friend, but now an annoying shadow. In front of her is Sam, the class clown, and in front of him was Wolf. The line continues to grow behind me and I slowly start to feel more claustrophobic. Wolf gives a loud exhale before slugging off to his desk. He plops down into his chair and gives a warning stare to everyone in the line, but his death stare seemed to linger on me a little longer.

I got a glance at the list over Miriam’s shoulder and I immediately regretted being curious. Wolf was my partner. Not only was he angry about it, but it made my juts turn to slush. I’d be partners with Wolf! I suddenly felt overwhelmed and nauseas. When it came to my turn to look at the list, I checked it five times. Wonderful! It wasn’t my imagination.

After everyone found their partners, they were to choose a topic and layout their schedule on when to work on it. The hour in Mr. Sheldon class went so slowly and I probably made it very awkward for Wolf.


Luckily, none of that mattered now! School was over for the week and now everyone was fascinating about their weekend. Half the school was going to Skate Country; they were allowing seniors and juniors to sleep over there, because of some fundraiser. Tyler and I were halfway there when Skylar sends me a text.

“Skylar has arrived there. She is probably with Logan, oh yeah! Have you heard that they are going out and…?”

Tyler nods.


I immediately regret what falls out of my mouth. Tyler’s grip on the steering wheel tightens slowly; his eyes get a little darker. I had forgotten that Tyler had a thing for Skylar; I must not let it slip out again. I return my gaze to the window and watch the large trees pass increasingly fast, Tyler’s foot pushes harder on the gas pedal.


“Are you guys tired yet? We’ve been here for three hours and I’m going to lose my feet if we continue skating.”


Tyler has to yell over the music to be heard.


I slow my skates and roll off the large wood floor. I was getting tired too, but Skylar insisted that we stay longer.

“Come on guys! I am having a great time with Logan and you all want to leave already. If it was the other way around, I would stay for you both.”

Skylar got her way, of course. Anything to make her happy just had to be Tyler’s moto.

Now, as we approach Skylar’s table, I suddenly remember the note that sat folded in my pocket. I sit down and retrieve the card. Carefully unfolding it, my heartbeat soars. In my head, Wolf’s name was chanting from everywhere.

I felt my friend’s intense stares as I read the message.


Dear Lorelai,

I have known you since sixth grade and have been secretly hoping that you would notice me throughout the years. Unfortunately, we have not had a single class together and the only time I get to see you is during lunch! Although, I would like to change that. How about next Saturday around six? I know this is sort of weird, me writing a note, but I could not keep the silence between us anymore. I can’t wait to see you.



My mind is like scrambled eggs. I lay the note flat and let my friends read over it as I scan the crowd. Maybe they are here, right now, watching my expression! I focus back on the card and try to make a mental list of the optional people.


Tyler is the first to speak, “Who could that be? In sixth grade, you were literally buddies with everyone!”


I couldn’t recognize their handwriting, but there was definitely one name that I could cross off, Wolf. My heart and thoughts were split in two, one side was utterly disappointed, while the other was having an overdrive of curiosity.


Suddenly Skylar hops up, “I am going to find this nameless!”

























The Watchers” by Abby Boyer

The Laborers.

That’s what we call them.

The people who work without pay, the ones who can’t do anything except for the given task.




The prisons, which used to be almost overflowing, are now empty, except for the nighttime, the six hours they are there.




Then there are the Watchers. The guards of the Laborers.




Some say they’re mechanical, nothing but cleverly designed Machines.




But there are also the Ones, like me.








And then there are the Peepers. The remaining citizens.




All, or almost all, of the Peepers have accused someone at some point.




And on that day, it just so happened to be me.


“Police! Freeze!” I shouted, running through the streets. I could feel the eyes of the Peepers on me, but right now I was more concerned of the running Laborer.

Pushing people out of the way, gun in hand, I tore after the green-clad man.

(clever euphemism) it. Where are those stupid Watchers when you need them?

The Laborer, in worse physical condition than I, probably one of the Dish Washers or Nursery Workers, disappeared down one of the numerous alleyways. I tore after him.

I whipped around, looking around for the Laborer. I heard a strangled cry behind me. I flipped around to face the threat, gun held steady in front of me.

A little blonde-haired girl, no more than six or seven years old, was glaring at me with piercing blue eyes, ones that seemed to say, this is your fault.

No fear showed in her face, even though the Laborer held a knife to her throat. (Yep, definitely a Dish Washer. Where else would he get the knife?) I think the fearlessness scared me more than the threat of the little girl’s death.

“You never saw me here, and no one gets hurt,” He hissed, slowly starting to drag the knife across the little girl’s throat. She still didn’t utter a sound.

I gulped. If I let him go, then the Watchers would get to me. I knew it.

But if I stayed at a standstill, he would get impatient and kill the little Peeper and myself. Not necessarily in that particular order.

I took a step backwards and put down my gun. Sometimes part of being a cop was knowing when to… step down.

The Laborer stiffened as he heard the thud of boots against the pavement. He turned and ran down the street, dropping the knife with a clatter. The little Peeper slid to the pavement, coughing and massaging her throat.

Three Watchers caught up to us, not even the slightest out of breath. “Where. He. Go,” one of them asked in a mechanical sounding voice. Its’ head swiveled around unnaturally, taking in the scene. One of the others shuddered, blinking rapidly before straightening up and freezing. I gulped.

“Down the alley. Out of sight. He had a hostage,” I replied, willing the little blonde-haired person to stay quiet.

They nodded as one, and then ran off.

“What were those?” She asked, fear creeping into her voice.

“That –” I said, nodding to where the Watchers disappeared, “Is a Watcher.”



















The Fire’s Shadow” by Kinsley Cash

Loading…..“She’s waking up” Deep voice says as my eyes slowly open. I can’t remember anything. The voice asked me what my name was; I tell him the truth I didn’t know. He looks down a sly smile on his face. I look down to see that I’m in a hospital bed; tubes run do my arm to my wrist revealing a needle stuck into my flesh. “Why am I here?” I question, he looks at me with the same smile in his lips. “Be quite 2248 the more you question the less answers you get.”


His voice is cold when he says that. I shut my mouth, biting my lip, and looked

back down at the sheets that hide my legs. My vision was still blurry, I began to panic thinking that I was about to go back to sleep. “On the table to your left,” his voice scares me, “Your glasses are there.” I look over, grabbing what looked like glasses, and placing them on my face. Everything seems to explode with clearness; It was dazzling. Looking around I began to study my surroundings.


I’m not in a hospital. Where am I? I hear the sound of something appearing behind me “You’re in a facility, dear” the feminine voice says. I look to my left to see a girl, no older than twenty, looking at me. Her hair as white as snow, her skin the same. Her big purple eyes locked on me.


She wore a black shirt, yet across her chest was “#0”. I got up from the bed and realized that she wasn’t there anymore, neither was the man. “This is my chance to investigate just where I am!” I quickly dart around, examining everything.


I freeze when I see a mirror, scared that it might be someone. I couldn’t move my body so if it was, I would have been dead; luckily, it wasn’t. Although I looked dead, like something you’d find in a morgue. My eyes pale, sunken, all residents of color gone. I wore a baby blue nurse gown, in certain spots you could see where there had been blood. A huge cut broke the

calmness of my pale skin. The cut laid across my neck, “It’s deep, and someone wanted me to die.” I think as I check the slit. My heartbeat stopped when I heard a whooshing sound, like if someone faster than I ran by. I spun around expecting the worse, but to my surprise, nothing was there. I decided that I should look around…just to make sure I was safe.


I walked out into the little room located left of the mirror, and then I heard a whack from behind me. Just like that, I was down for the count. When I awoke I’m chained to the bed that had begun my adventure. I couldn’t feel my body, but I could still move my head around. “My glasses, I-I don’t have them on” I whispered softly to myself. I tried to break free once more with little success. Lying on the bed I start to think, thinking about everything I just went through. “Okay so let’s see, first I met a man who doesn’t know how to answer question. Then I meet a mysterious female who said one sentence to me and then left. After that I realized someone wanted me dead, THEN GOT KNOCKED OUT!” ” Man I should really stop getting myself in trouble,” I think. Suddenly I remember I don’t know where I am. The thought sends so many questions, and before I know it, my vision goes dark and I’m out again.




Attack on Artist” by Hadley Culpepper

“Hypothetically speaking, at what point does fire become too much fire?”


“Well, that was an excessively violent Monopoly game last night.” I say.


“You can say that again.”


Jull burps and takes another sip of her morning soda. She’s still wearing her faded purple cat pajamas, which were found in the questionable men’s section at Goodwill. It’s a onesie, and it is much too big for her. She’s an average size girl, but not really skinny, either. But there’s nothing wrong with that. All of us are different. Take me, for instance. Jia Hobley, age 19 (will turn 20 in November), short black hair, grey eyes, glasses, pale (because who goes outside?), and a walking beanpole. There are many more ways to describe me (*cough cough* crippling anxiety *cough*), but you’ll eventually learn about them.


I live with five other people. All of us major in art at the same university, which we’ve given the nickname, the Ridiculum. We call it that because it’s a ridiculous, crazy weird place where about anything can happen. I remember a couple months ago that some kids moved a table into the elevator and played poker. And yeah, I took the stairs.


I’ll introduce everyone as they walk in.


Well, actually, I’ll start with Jull.


Jullian Bellamy Becker. Age 20. Frizzy, medium length brown hair. Thick eyebrows, golden eyes. Extroverted, loves karaoke, and is the most stubborn, careless girl in the world. Likes old-school anime, sushi, and a good wifi signal. Hates slow wifi and cold ramen. Her sense of humor is really perverted, but she’s a great cartoonist. She eats all the time, commonly smuggling food on campus. Her favorite food is sushi and wafers. To add to that, she’s a troublemaker.

There was a time when I was at the store getting supplies for the apartment we live in. We had run out of ramen, and God knows we can’t live without ramen. We practically live off of it. But anyways, I was at the store, and it was the holidays. The others were visiting their parents and family members, but Jull had stayed home. She doesn’t really get along with her family, and her mom is really mean.


So I was browsing through the diary section, leering at the milk cartons at Kroger when my phone rings. My ringtone is the Doctor Who Tardis sound, so I listened to the ‘do-we-oooo’ for a couple seconds before picking up.


I was greeted by a panicky Jull.


I freaked out. Why? Jull does not get scared easily.


So I spoke.


“W-what’s wrong?”


“Hey, uh, not like it’s important or anything but… yeah… Um…”




“Hypothetically speaking, at what point does fire become too much fire?”


I sighed and scratched my head, looking around the store for a second before answering. The disgusting carton of milk glared at me, and I stuck out my tongue and scowled at it. Golly, I’m weird.


“What did you do?”


There was silence. I heard a pot clang in the distance of the phone, the static ringing in my ear. I waited, and Jull finally spoke. She sounded guilty.


“We just filmed our own version of Iron Chef. The secret ingredient was whiskey…”


“Who are we?”


“Picolo and I…”


“What did you cook with whiskey?”


Jull paused.


“We started a fire.”


So yeah, that was basically the story of how Jull and Picolo almost burned down the entire

apartment complex.


Speaking of which, I should introduce Picolo.


It’s morning right now, well, no. Nearly lunch. We stayed up all night playing Monopoly, so we’re all tired. Thank goodness, it’s Saturday, so we don’t have to go to our classes today. Or to work. We don’t have them on the weekends. But besides that, Jull and I have been up for a little while. I’m drinking my tea, cause coffee is much too strong for me. Being the sad, boring vegan I am, I avoid the flavorful foods. Not that I hate them, but I don’t enjoy eating them. For instance, something as small as barbeque sauce is too spicy for me. And I’m not vegan because the whole ‘save the animals’ thing (though I do love animals, especially ducks). I’m vegan because I get grossed out by all the chemicals and knowing where is comes from. Heck, do you even know what that egg came out of? Well, yeah, but it’s still kinda gross to me. I’m really

squeamish, and I HATE bugs. Ew. No. Nopeity, nope, nope, nope.

We’re going off topic.

Picolo is the only guy out of all of us. And don’t get weirded out by it, we all have separate rooms. And he’s not what you’d call the average guy…


Picolo Picasso Bitamin. A tall, funny, Brazilian dude who is 22 years old. He is an animator, and he wants to work for Disney (a long shot, in my opinion, but we’re supporting him). In fact, he has a Little Mermaid tattoo on his ankle of Sebastian. He wears Disney clothes a lot, and he quotes Disney all the time. He listens to Disney, golly, the kid is Disney.


I’m glad this apartment duplex allows pets because Picolo goes nowhere without his cat, and I’m talking nowhere. The cat has short black fur and is really cuddly, and its name is Maleficent.


Yeah, like the Disney villain.


Picolo is nice in general, and he loves Disney (like I just explained in two paragraphs). He likes coffee, ‘feelsy’ songs, constellations, seafood, and sneakers. He has few things that he dislikes, but a couple are zombies, crowded places, hot days, and when people ask him “Is that digital or did you draw that by hand?”


He just woke up and is making himself coffee.


Picolo sits down at the table and the chair creaks. It’s the weird, funky chair that’s being held together by mostly duct tape. He sighs and rubs his head, and Maleficent jumps into his lap, purring.


“Where is everyone else?” he asks, half asleep. He’s gotten dressed, wearing jeans and a shirt that says, “Let it go.” I’ve just now noticed that his socks are mismatched. The Sebastian tattoo peeks out and I try to muffle a giggle.


“I think Charlie and Sango went to the farmer’s market earlier in the morning.” I say, petting Maleficent across the table.


“No way!” Jull says, loudly. I flinch, not being prepared this ‘early’ in the ‘morning’ for her usual blabber. She talks really loud, while I’m pretty quiet.


“How the chicken fried nuggets did Charlie manage to get Sango out of bed!?” Jull says, loudly and more shocked. I am surprised too, ‘cause Sango will sleep for days. I’m not kidding, the girl slept through Christmas once.

The floor creaks and we turn around to see Nell standing in the doorway.


Nell Fonso Mustang. Age 24. 4’7”. Likes cheesecake, manga, birds, and simple pixie haircuts like the one she currently has. Hates bugs, slugs, lemons and parking. Is commonly mistaken for a sixth grader and is very sarcastic and easily offended. Never call her short.


She’s wearing a faded blue Portal 2 tank top and black gym shorts. Her black converse are being worn without socks, as usual, her backpack slung over her shoulder. Ready to- oh no. No, no, no!

“Let’s go outside!”


Well son of a biscuit.


Jull lets out a deep-throated laugh and says, “Ha! Ha, ha. That was a joke, right?”


“Nope. Let’s go to the farmer’s market and meet Charlie and Sango there. They-”


“I think I’ll stay behind-”


“Just got a text from Charlie. They’re watching lobsters fight in a tank.”




And with that, Jull is now the one dragging us outside. Huh. This is the first time she’s been enthusiastic about leaving the house. *Insert sarcastic ‘whoop whoop’ here*.


Soon we are outside, piling into my dad’s old van. It’s been painted bright yellow, earning its name, the ‘Banana Mobile’. It’s huge, being the size of one of those miniature buses. The radio doesn’t work anymore, so we bought a cheap Bluetooth speaker and taped it to the dashboard.


Picolo and Jull play Rock, Paper, Scissors to decide who gets to pick the music. Nell is listening to her own music with her earbuds.


Picolo wins. Immediately, he puts on the Frozen soundtrack and we’re listening to ‘Let it Go’. And combined with the smell of orange sherbet and succulent plants, I want to barf. Not that I hate Disney, no, I love it. But I had to watch Frozen for seven hours straight with my niece just last week. I’m not up for it at the moment, especially now that we’ve reached the Curl.


The Curl is the area where our apartment complex ends, where you must pull out into the road. The most dangerous left-hand turn ever, and we have to go through it every day.


I roll down the windows and turn off the speaker, listening for any cars. Neither Picolo nor Jull complain, they know how suspenseful this moment is.


I turn to the right; no cars.

I turn to the left; no cars.

I look right again, then left, then right again.

No cars.

And just as I pull out, we hear it.

The car.


Soaring down the road, speeding so fast it should only be a blur. I can’t back out, I’ve already turned out! I’ve committed myself to this, and I must finish!

I slam onto the gas pedal and throw the car onto the road, screaming while doing so. Jull, Nell, and Picolo cover their ears, and join the screaming like little kids.


I stick my head out the window to the car behind us and scream,




Shockingly, I get a similar reply.




Oh. My. Golly. Was that Mr. Mudgrass who just shouted that? My art teacher? The, art teacher?


“DRIVE, ‘FLIPPIN DRIVE!” Jull shrieks as another car steers around the curb. I let out a small screech and fly down the road, nearly crying.



“Quit apologizing and DRIVE!!”


We just arrived at the farmer’s market, and we’re watching the lobsters fight in the fish tank.

Sango is narrating it, like those people at car races or at football games. If she were with us in the car earlier, she would’ve been screaming in her best British accent, “God dang it, Jia! You ‘lil weasel! You’ve just nearly gotten us wrecked! Bloody he-”


“AND SCORE!!!!!” Sango shouts as the lobster with the blue ribbon clobbers the other. Her thick, light brown hair is tied up tightly into a high-up ponytail atop her head, and it bounces along with her exaggerated movements.


Sango Passando Hohenheim. Age 19 (but very soon to turn 20). Kinda tall, with long, thick light brown hair. Grey-blue eyes that look like flowers, and a row of freckles underneath her side-swept bangs that made the Big Dipper. She almost never wears makeup, because she’s naturally pretty. Her stereotype at the Ridiculum is the ‘hipster’ girl. Why? She always wears sweaters. She knits. Creative. Great artist. Drinks tea. Carries at least three books wherever she goes. Listens to jazz, piano, classic rock, and alternative music. Is a vegetarian, and likes to sleep in. She hates loud sounds, loud people, rude people, and crowds. We get along quite well. She’s really funny, but kind of salty at times.


Sango does her best Steve Irwin voice and animates what the lobsters are doing.


“Crikey! Would you look at that? Those claws, gotta be at least 10 inches. Could snap ‘ye arm

in half. I’m gonna ‘wrassle it!”


Charlie rolls her eyes and turns to look at the crowd behind us, gathering around a bunch of puppies.


Charlie June Constance. Age 25. SUPER tall, being 6’3”. Taller than Picolo. Has dirty blonde hair cut in a bob with green eyes. Wears heels almost every day and has a great posture, and loves to wear yellow. She likes books, running, dogs, and steak. She absolutely HATES bugs, wet socks, easy bake ovens, homophobes (I think we all do, with Picolo being g-)-


“WOULD YOU LOOK AT THAT? BLUE OVER THERE JUST CLOBBERED ‘LIL RED!” Sango shrieks. People are starting to stare. Picolo laughs.


Anyways… She wants to be a fashion designer, and loves to design outfits for us. Right now, Sango is wearing one of Charlie’s favorite arrangements. An oversized yellow sweater, a dark grey beanie (which she is not wearing at the moment), large brown boots, and a light blue skinny jeans.


Sango yawns and stretches, turning to see the puppies.


“PUPPIES!” she squeals, running over to see them. We follow, and I am shocked by what I see.


There, in the little pen, sits a husky/golden retriever mix. The toasted marshmallow of all dog breeds. I’m not kidding; these are my favorite dog breeds.


“ARE THESE UP FOR ADOPTION!?” Sango cries, running over to the woman in charge. She’s in her late forties, and she looks like she wants these pups off her hands asap.


“Yes. Take ‘em. I ‘don need ‘em.” Her southern accent is very thick and slurred, and I have a feeling she’s drunk. There are beer bottles littering the floor of her car, and I can see them clearly with the trunk open, revealing the puppies roaming around.




“No need to shout, honey. ‘Course ya can.”


“Sango…” Nell groans.


“How much?” Sango says, pulling out her wallet. Just as she does, Nell grabs her arm and drags her away from the scene, disappearing.


“Let’s go get some food…” Picolo says, walking the other direction. Jull nods and follows, and next thing you know, we’re stuffing our faces with funnel cake and heading back to the car.


An hour has passed since we saw Sango and Nell.


I’m unlocking the car when I hear it.


The barking.


We spin around to face Sango and Nell running towards us, a frisky puppy by their side. Sango is nearly crying from happiness, and Nell is just unimpressed.


“You bought a what!?” my mom shouts through the phone. I wince and look through the dog food section. We stopped at PetSmart on our way home to get supplies, and we’ve split up to make the trip faster. I’m alone with the dog, which we’ve decided to name Ahuva.


“A dog. Well, a puppy, to be exact. She’s taking a nap in the cart right now. Kind of a long story…”


“Jia, does your apartment even allow dogs?”



“Our apartment. Yeah, Mr. Chime is fine with it, as long as we keep her quiet at night.”



“But I thought you hated dogs…”


“Since when did I say that?” I look down at Ahuva and pet her fluffy fur. She really does look like a toasted marshmallow.


“When you were little, you said that-”


“Mom, I’m fine. Dogs are awesome. I was a kid when I said that. I’m almost twenty now…”


“Yeah, but…”


“It’s okay, mom. I love you, bye.”


“Bye sweetie. Love you too.”


I hang up and slip my phone into my back pocket. Almost on cue, Ahuva wakes up and looks at me with her chocolate brown eyes. I rub her head and buy the supplies, meeting the others at the car. Picolo and Jull picked out the bowls and the bed, while Nell and Sango picked out toys. Charlie went off to check up with the vet, we’ll meet her at home. I got food duty.


It’s true, I’ve never had a dog before. This should be interesting…


Ahuva yips and begins to climb out of the cart, so I pick her up and put her in the car passenger seat, just as Jull calls shotgun.


“Already taken,” I chirp, smiling. She laughs and climbs in, buckling up. She adjusts the speaker and we drive home, listening to ‘Carry on Wayward Son’. We’re singing along so loud that our throats are hurting before we reach the Curl.


It already feels like a new day. *****

Class of the Titans Sequel” by Genesis Garcia

I was walking down the street when someone put a bag over my head. ¨HEY¨ I shouted loudly. I also forgot to say my name is Chantelle and I got kidnapped with my best friend Charlie, I am so panicking. We came to stop and what we saw was awkward it was a group of teenage boys and girls. I was just confused why were these teenagers kidnapping us what are their reasons. I said “Hello” kept looking at them like that I am going to kill you look.


They finally spoke and they said come with us. We came up to a room with a big statue but wait I know that man from somewhere. Moments later of thinking it finally came to me it was Zeus and it was the exact replica of him. One of the teenagers asked me if I knew who he was and I said “yes” they told me then tell me who it is? Oh I do like a challenge but for his concern I do know who he is I said “Zeus the Greek god and ruler of the Olympian gods”. They all stared at me shocked I asked, “Why are you all so shocked”? They said nobody likes Greek mythology and it’s not well known. My friend Charlie said Chantelle knows everything “I said no I don’t”. They finally told me their names and I think that was supposed to be a hint which I totally got. Their names are Jay, Theresa, Atlanta, Archie, Neil, Harry, and Oddie.


Another reason I think it’s a hint is because they said it in slow motion which is just dumb say it like a normal person I wanted to scream literally. I told them “really you had to do that” and they told me what did we do. This were I said “hello new and improved Jayson, Theseus, Athena, Achilles, Narcissist, Hercules, and Odysseus”. They didn’t think I would get the hint I am not dumb people I did study Greek mythology, which is very interesting. Charlie said I told you so I told him “okay okay we get it”. Next thing I know they threw me into a room which was interesting it looked like a running track inside a gym inside a building. I stood there for a while shocked moment later I screamed, “Hey what is up with y’all.”


After about 40 minutes or so, it felt like it they came back in the room with Charlie. They told me are going to do a sort of tests and said “with pleasure”. The first test is running on this track like school passer test but different this a shooting and moving obstacle course okay I have been in running races, but this is just wow. They said get ready we are going to start “okay” I said 1-2-3 start I started the race the first thing that happened was a machine shooting Frisbees at me. I dodge them all with backflips guess gymnastics came in handy, the second thing was there was moving blocks connected to each other surrounding me and since I do all kind of dancing, I started dancing ballet. Moments later, that stopped which was a big relief. When I finished again for the 1000 time they stood there a little shocked. Next test someone screams “are you good with computers” I stood there for a moment and then said, “yes” okay then “come with me” said oddly. Oddey said “you need to hack this computer in less than 15 minutes” I said “it’s on” after 5 minutes I said “D-O-N-E” he just said “sure you are” I said “go check my computer.” He went to see and he was amazed and also screamed, “How did you do that?” I said, “It’s easy.”


Eternities later or so it felt like it the teens came in and told me to sit down and stared at my necklace that is a heart locket made from diamond. They said you are a descendant of a Greek god that almost nobody knows about and your necklace contains special powers. I stood there shocked and then screamed, “Wait what?” *****


Something Wicca This Way Comes” by McKenna Graham

Dear Diary,

When I was born, the world changed. Everyone in the witch community knew who I was and what I could do. The magical realm of Maleficus had a new leader. By the age of two, I could teleport and read people’s minds. My parents thought those were my two powers and that would be that. Oh, boy were they wrong! By the time I was seven, I could conjure dead people and make them living witches or warlocks again. I could also levitate and move things with my mind. My family was worried that I would become an aventocrate. These creatures are disgusting things with a heart of stone and an appetite for magic. They feed on other magical beings to feel ¨whole¨ again. Basically, they are vile creatures who don’t have feelings and will devour anything they can get their hands on. If you have too much magic, you can turn into one.

My life is basic other than the fact that I have to deal with demons every day. On top of everything else, I have to pretend like I’m not the most powerful witch on this planet by going to school. My parents think it’s best for me to try and lead a normal life. As if I’m ever going to be normal.

¨Jeannie, you get your butt down here! You’re going to be late! ¨ my mother said.

¨Uh, coming! ¨ I scrambled to get my things together.


¨Yeah, wouldn’t want to be late to your first day of high school.¨ my sister, Gwen, mocked.

¨Now, just because you’re one year older than me doesn’t mean you, of all people, get to pick on me. You wouldn’t want to make me mad, would you? ¨


Gwen has always been jealous of me because she only has one power, which is a healing power and I have so many powers. Does she even know how hard it is to keep them at bay? I knew the answer, no. When I got down stairs, the bus was coming down my street. ¨Mom, do you think I could stay after school ´cause I heard there would be an audition for the school play? I really want to go.¨ I asked eagerly. ¨Now, Jeannie, you know I don’t like you being alone at any public place. You could set off your magic and blow the school up. But, I guess I could make this one exception, for you.¨ Miranda said sweetly.


¨Oh, thank you! You won’t regret it. I will be back right after the audition! ¨ I said excitedly.

¨Oh, and mom, don’t forget that Gwen has a swim meet today. I just thought you should know because she wasn’t going to tell you. She was going to sneak off with her friends and go to the movies.¨ I said knowing she would get in trouble for that. ¨What? Gwen, come here. I need to speak with you privately.¨ Miranda tried to sound stern, but all that came out of her mouth was a soothing voice. I was so busy watching my sister get in trouble that I didn’t even hear the bus’s horn blasting in the front of my driveway. ¨Uh-oh! Gotta go mom. Say hello to dad for me! ¨ I exclaimed, rushing out the door. I ran to the front door and closed it behind me. As I made my way down the long and steep driveway, I could hear Gwen trying to explain her ¨mistake¨. I was very happy. Everything was good in life and I could feel it getting better every second. At least that´s what I thought. I got on the bus and sat down. The bus drove off and that was the last and happiest morning I would ever have with my family. I just didn’t know it yet.

When I was seated on the bus, I realized I was sitting next to someone so I decided to say hello. ¨Hey, I´m Jeannie. What’s your name? ¨ I paused for a second so the person could talk.


¨Oh, were you talking to me? No one ever talks to me. Anyway, my name is Josie.¨ she replied with utter excitement. ¨Oh, that is such a pretty name! It´s better than mine.¨ I said eagerly. ¨It´s not that bad. Although, my grandma’s name is Jeannie. So, what grade are you in? I´m a freshman.¨ She said trying to mention another topic.


¨Really? I´m a freshman too! How cool is that?¨ I replied, trying to bond with her.


¨That is cool! Who do you have?¨ she asked.


¨What? Who do I have?¨ I said. ¨Ha, what teachers do you have, silly.¨ She repeated.


¨Oh, um, I have Mr. Watson for first, Mrs. Bridges for second, Ms. Archer for third, Mr. Whitmore for fourth, and Ms. Towns for fifth.¨ I answered.


¨OMG! I have the exact same schedule as you! I have to say this before will get to school. You are my new best friend! ¨ She shouted.


¨Great! I´ve never had a best friend before. Well, I guess we’re here.¨ I said pointing to the high school. “Wow, this place is huge! It’s like a palace.” Josie said with wide eyes. She was right, it was huge. It had four stories and a deck up at the top. I’m guessing you could eat there. “You’re totally right. I think I’m going to love this school.” I said with an excitement in my voice. Before I knew it, Josie and I were off the bus and headed inside the building. I was so nervous because I was the baby of the high school bunch. Josie and I stepped into the school and we felt a feeling of respect. That is until one of the seniors pointed us out and said freshman. By that time, we knew that this would be a long year. I ran and Josie was right behind me. I tried to steer clear of seniors, but they were everywhere.


The bell rang and that was our cue to go to first period, but how was I going to get there if I didn’t know where to go? I decided to go to the front office to ask where Mr. Watson’s class would be. Of course Josie followed.


When I reached the front office, I saw an old women sitting behind a receptionist’s desk. Her grey hair was so shiny and long. I don’t think she minded her age at all. “Hello? My name is Jeannie Whitmore. Where might I find Mr. Watson’s classroom?” I asked, hoping the lady would give me the answer before dying on me.



“Ah, Miss Whitmore, I’ve been expecting you for quite some time.” she said with a bit of relief in her voice.

“You have?” I asked, confused.


“Why, yes I have. Mr. Watson is out sick today so, you’ll have to pair up with Mrs. Umbridge’s class today. She is in room 722; on the end of the hall to your left. I would advise that you and your friend there introduce yourself before entering. She hasn’t had her morning coffee yet.” the lady kept rambling on and on.


“What exactly is your name?” I asked.


“Oh, dear, look at me. I must have forgotten to introduce myself. My name is Miss Maryweather.” she replied.


“Like the fairy? From Sleeping Beauty? That’s so cool!” Josie said with a sliver of interest in her voice.


“Look, we better head to class. Thank you for your help!” I said as I began to walk away. “No problem, dear!” Miss Maryweather exclaimed. I have to call Him. He will want to hear of this. “Did you say something?” I asked as Josie and I were making our way down the hall. “No, why?” Josie answered. “Oh, no reason.” I corrected myself. It was obviously not Josie talking, it was Miss Maryweather thinking. I soon realized that my powers must be acting up because I can usually keep them at bay with a spell I cast every morning. That spell must be wearing off. “So, I was thinking we should make a big entrance. You know, like the movie stars do,” she said. As she said it her long red hair flipped from side to side as she walked her Movie Star walk.


As we entered first period, my heart melted and my whole body felt like it was glued in place. I was paralyzed by the person I saw before me. He was tall with jet-black hair and purple-ish, blue eyes. His muscles were so big, they could have a life of their own. “Hey, Cole, pass the paper airplane!” a guy said. As soon as he said it, the guy’s muscles came to life in full swing. Cole. I wanted to get to know Cole. His face was brooding and kind. He was the only person in the world, right now. ¨Jeannie, you coming?¨ Josie asked, knowing she was interrupting my day dream ¨Huh? Oh, yeah.¨ I replied with a flush of embarrassment. I walked over to a desk near the far end of the classroom. I was not going to get picked on this year like I did last year. Last year, my homeroom teacher, Mrs. Moore, always pointed out what I did wrong and I hated it! As I sat down in my seat, the intercom came over the room and said that Mr. Watson was here after all, so we headed back to his classroom.


Sooner rather than later (unfortunately), Mr. Watson walked into the classroom with a suit and tie. To be honest, he looked younger than I expected. He had blond hair and a masculine face. He was also very built and had a kind demeanor. ¨Alright, let’s get this over with. I am 23 years old and I have an old grandpa personality. I like the color blue, but orange is my utmost favorite; not the sunset orange, jail suit orange.¨ He said sounding tired and aggravated. I knew I would not like this class. As Mr. Watson started talking about the ancient times, I decided to look at Cole, instead. I don’t think he was paying attention either because he was doodling on a sheet of notebook paper. Wow, he is gorgeous! He looked like an angel, but he had mysterious features too. He is…. ¨perfect.¨ I say, not realizing that I had said that aloud. Everyone in the class started laughing, including the teacher. ¨Jeannie, I think everyone knows you have the hots for Cole. Congrats! You made number one on the class clown list.¨ Josie said, laughing. As I turned to look at Cole, he looked at me and the world melted away. The sound of boisterous laughter left my ears in a hurry. I was in complete and utter solitude. Except for the people in front of me, at least I thought they were.

The girl started to speak, ¨I had a really great time tonight.¨ she said with giddy sense of excitement and wonder rolled into one. ¨Me too.¨ the guy said. ¨Okay, well bye. See you tomorrow.¨ the girl said with disappointment on her face. As she started to walk away, the guy grabbed her arm and swung her in his. ¨I don’t know what it is about you that makes me so infuriated, yet happy at the same time.¨ He said with a deep voice. The guy was leaning in for a kiss. They were so close, they could hear each other breathing.

The intense moment was gone and Jeannie was back to staring at Cole, only this time, Cole was staring at her. After class ended, Cole slipped me a note telling me to meet with him after school, in the gym. I didn’t know what to think of this, but whatever I was thinking, it had to be good. I was getting really happy over something so weird. The rest of the day went by in a haze of boredom and wonder. At lunch, I sat with Josie and some of her new friends. I wasn’t really listening to her conversation because Cole was sitting right behind me and I could hear his thoughts, well his ¨planned¨ conversation with me later. Let’s just say that he wasn’t ready to talk to ¨the beautiful new girl.¨ That part made me smile. In my bubble of excitement, I almost made Josie levitate in mid-air. Dang, I gotta keep my powers in line! I thought to myself as I headed back to class.


Soon, it was seventh period and I could not wait any more for the stupid bell to ring. Finally, it did. I was so happy, but so nervous at the same time. I met up with Cole in the gym. He was sitting on the bottom row of bleachers looking hotter now than he did before. ¨Hey.¨ I said with a hint of nervousness in my voice. One syllable, that is all it took for him to accuse me of something I had no control over. ¨What the heck did you do to me?¨ He shouted. ¨Me? I didn’t do anything to you!¨ I shouted back even louder so he knew I wasn’t playing. ¨Well then, how did that happen?¨ He replied with his voice back to normal. ¨How should I know? I see them too and it is not like you could have had anything to do with it.¨ I say. ¨Fine, if you won´t help me, then someone else will.¨ he said while storming out of the gym with a disdained look on his face.


I decided to skip the audition because my powers were, indeed, out of whack. When I got on the bus, Josie wasn’t there, so I sat alone. It was a quick and painless ride. As I started to make my way toward my house, I contemplated whether or not I should see Cole tomorrow or ignore him. I decided to ignore him. When I got home, the house was a mess and I thought it was because dad had come home to Gwen´s putrid whining. It wasn´t. I walked into my bedroom to freshen up. When I opened the door, I saw something no teenager should bear witness to. My mom, sister, and dad were dead on the floor of my beige carpet.











What Lurks Beneath” by Alisha Green

After a week of sailing, The Screaming Matron lands in Innsmouth. The new world was interesting to the passengers aboard the pirate ship. There was a lighthouse that loomed over the small port that sends a shiver through even the toughest man. The small fishing town was pointed out by first mate, Smithy. He had an award winning smile that shone very brightly as the boat docked. Smithy is the Captain’s Navigator and most cherished friend. He is an expert on the new land and only human that has ever been to Innsmouth and lived to tell the intriguing tale. He waves his hands and tells of Deep ones and engravings on the walls that glow when blood hits their surface. The sailors gasp and beg to know more of the people of this land. Smithy smiles and indulges their curiosity, “The people of this land used to be people. Then, as time went on, they started to change. Their bodies became bulbous and gills began to form. They grew to be just like the beast they massacre. With needle-like teeth, they slaughtered those who were different. How they became like this? Well, it was Cthulhu. They followed the dead deity and paid the price for it.” Captain Staffan smiled at his friend’s antics, he then had an idea. He spoke up, ¨Smithy, once you’re done scaring my pirates, come to my quarters.¨ All of the color drained from the Navigators face, causing some of the crew to snicker. Smithy nodded and followed to Captain out. The walk to the Captain´s quarters was silent, Staffan could see Smithy calculating his options. The Captain frowned as Smithy entered his quarters, the first mate a nervous wreck. Staffan watched as the navigator sat in a smaller chair, across from his own. After a moment, the Pirate Captain sat in the large leather chair, adorned with skull of captains that had crossed him. ¨S-Sir, did I d-do something wrong.¨ Smithy tried to keep calm, but shuddered at the sight of the captain polishing one of his skulls. ¨I can expect deceit from almost every man on this ship. Though, I never expected you to keep anything from me Smithy. I made you my first mate because I thought I could trust you and you BETRAYED ME! ¨ The Captains usual smooth, calm voice raised as his temper did. With the last words, he shattered the skull against the table with his hand and looked the confused sailor in the eyes, fury radiating off of him. ¨C-C-Captain, I never lied to you.¨ Smithy rubbed his hand against the back of his neck, a nervous habit that only happened when he thought of death or a woman. Staffan’s face took a moment to calm before he continued, ¨Then why didn’t you tell me it was your birthday, lad? ¨ The Captain´s was playful and his eyes flashed with mischief. Smithy brightened up as the boys bring in beer. The night was swayed away with booze, women, and laughter.

Morning came quickly as did Captain Staffan’s headache. He groaned as he sat up in a bed with a calmly sleeping woman. He quietly slipped out and got dressed, his head pounding. He picked her up and walked her onto the deck, throwing her into the ocean. After a moment a siren resurfaced and hissed at him, before going under again. Feeling like death, the captain took his place at the wheel. He barked order harshly, “Raise the sails, let’s take her around to a more busy port.” Many men avoided the brisling captain, the aura of despair hanging like a bomb on a string. Smithy pats the Captain on the back before catching a warning look from one of the men. Staffan slowly turns to Smithy and stares him down, it only takes a moment before the smaller man takes his hand off of his shoulder. The Screaming Matron pulled up to a larger port, busy with people selling and buying goods. Staffan and Smithy walk down the deck as Smithy tells the captain what he heard last time he came here, “Men were standin’ in a circle, chanting strange and unknown words. One turned to another and said, ‘Call Cthulhu.’ and I ran the other direction. Also they talked of a higher being called Azathoth. The ritual was to call Mother Hydra, Dagon, and Cthulhu to purge the land. Though, I didn’t stay for the climax.” Smithy looked at some of the people that passed by them as they walked, as if he expected one of them to try to cook us for brunch. Trying to lighten the mood Staffan reminisced, “Smithy, do you remember when we ‘commandeered’ The Matron?” Smithy laughed before answering, “You still had your hair long and it flew in the wind as we tried to outrun the British. You were a stunning man and an even more stunning captain.” Staffan stops his brow furrowed, “Are you saying I am not stunning now?” Smithy raised his hands and retorts, “The years have not been kind.” Staffan laughed and smacked Smithy upside the head, the younger man laughing as well. “We should have a talk with whomever runs this rock heap, get our goods, and go. This place reminds me of a death camp.” Staffan suppressed a shiver as he walked toward a large manor that lies in the center of the island. The captain picks up two apples and flicks a gold coin to the shopkeeper, handing a flush red fruit to Smithy. They both tuck into their snack as them reach the large doors that keep the weather out of the impressive home. Staffan knocks on the door three times, the sound ringing through the air. After the third he shrugged and pushed open the ornate doors. The house was cold and light music floated through the air. Smiling, Staffan walked into a beautiful foyer that takes his breath away. Though his reveling did not last long, He feels a needle pierce his neck. He turns to see Smithy smiling. He stumbled, “Smithy, why?” The navigator cracks his neck and starts to transform into a man in a black cloak, a scarred face smiling underneath, “No Trespassers.” Staffan grips onto a piano as the world swayed under him and he collapses.

Gagged, tied up, and blind, Staffan had to use his other senses. The air was cold and smelled of sweat and blood. Everything was eerily quiet, like the sound had been sucked from the room. It seemed no even a mouse would chitter, in fear of something that lurks in the darkness. He tried looking into the darkness, but gave up when his headache worsened. Staffan felt cold stone against his back and a small button, pushing against his spine. He hesitated, fear over taking the pirate. Though, being a pirate, his will to live took over and he pushed the button with his lower back. The room whirred to life, lights flashed but shorted out. Though they gave him a glance of his jailer, a woman. Staffan heard heels walking toward him, and a cold, sharp blade lightly go down his chest. Seizing the moment, Staffan gave a sharp kick and grabbed the knife as it flipped up to his hands. He cut himself free and took out his gag, waiting for his jailer to recover. Without a moment’s notice, Staffan was trying to shake off his iron gripped attacker. His breath was being pushed out of his lungs as she choked the life out of him. Staffan stumbled and plunged the knife into his attacker’s face, before making for the door. It was locked, so Staffan kicked it out. Rushing down a dank stone hallway in nothing but his trousers, Staffan felt rage boil within him. He was going to get his revenge.

Door after door, Staffan was lost. Though he never had a sense of direction to begin with. After what seemed like hours, Staffan found his way back to the foyer. Standing on the cold tile floor was Smithy, though he looked terrified. Rage boiled and raged inside of Staffan until the cloaked figure presses a knife against Smithy’s throat. The cloaked man took off his hood to reveal Staffan’s face. He chuckled as Staffan stood rethinking his life choices. Should he have gone to that boarding school? Did he want to be a doctor? Should he have not killed the neighbor’s cat? Well, none of that mattered now. He needed to save his best friend. “Let go of him!” Staffan yelled as he took a step forward. “Your life or his?” The voice sounded disembodied, broken as the magister growled. “Captain, no.” Smithy begged, knowing his answer. “Take mine.” Staffan said, his eyes met with Smithy’s. The blade came swift and painless, cutting a hole through the kindhearted pirate. Staffan fell to his knees and Smithy caught him before he could fall further. Staffan put his hand in Smithy’s and gave him a small stone on a leather cord. Smithy pulled back, “But Captain, this was your father’s.” Staffan smiled, “You are like a brother to me, and I want you to have it. This is goodbye old friend.” Staffan lays his head back and lets out a deep breath. Smithy began to cry and kisses Staffan’s forehead. Staffan suddenly sat up, “I’m not dead.” Smithy was confused, “ How?” Staffan gawks, “Dude, I think your gayness saved me.”











































Gray Matter” by Molefe Sijiye

I’ve always known we had powers. We’ve had them since birth—or at least we assume so. My powers “activated” when I was eight, I started hearing people say stuff they claimed they didn’t. It drove me crazy to the point that I wouldn’t acknowledge anyone when they spoke, it wasn’t till I was nine that I came to understand that I could read minds. From there my powers only grew; now that I’m 16 not only can I read minds but, I can unlock them, I can shut your brain down. I can control your feelings, your thoughts your memories, and if I can concentrate enough I can even change your personality.


My brother claims to have activated his powers at age four; he could only lift pencils and small rocks. His telekinesis is like a muscle he exercises it, and it becomes stronger now he can pick up boulders, cars and even small buildings.


Yes. We have thought of becoming super heroes but we figured we don’t have bad guys. Right?

I hate being a twin. When we were kids it might have been fun, but now it just sucks. We share everything, we share birthdays, friends, lockers, tablets, desks, computers, phones, rooms (I know right), television, deodorant, clothes, shoes, even toothbrushes (ok not really toothbrushes but you get the point). What really sucks is we look nothing alike, if you saw us you would think we were second cousin or something like that. I am about 5 foot 6, I have long dirty blonde hair I usually have tied in a ponytail, I have a darker complexion, and I’m what people call scrawny and clumsy. My brother’s pretty much the opposite. He’s 6 foot 1 he has short brown hair, he has very light skin, and he is slightly buff he’s not like a big muscle man he is just slightly buff. That’s it. Done. Period. Complete`O. The end. Ha ha. Bye


In my dream I was dead.


Or rather, Maddison was dead. I was spectating my own funeral. Except it wasn’t a normal funeral. There were seven kids standing over my coffin; four boys and three girls. One of the boys I recognized immediately, it was my brother, Max. Then a voice “These are the seven” it paused “The seven you will lead”


I woke up to my brother screaming.

No, he was not having a seizure or anything like that he was trying to wake me up. “Shut up” I screamed at him.

“We have school.”


“We are going to be late.”


“We don’t want to be late”


“Stop just saying conjunctions and get up.”


When my brother finally dragged me, using his powers to literally drag me downstairs, we sat down at the table; my mom was making pancakes.

My mom is a few inches taller than me. She is skinny and has short curly blonde hair. She has unbelievably clear soft skin. She has perfect teeth and beautiful amber eyes. So in other words she is what a guy would call hot, like REALLY hot. My mom is flawless, she is giggly and sometimes can be really stupid. She is the kind of mom she is another incidental in the big blonde stereotype.

“Helloooooooo” mom said in a high pitched voice. When she saw the look on my face she said, “Is everything ok, hun”

“I had a bad dream.” I told her.

“I would ask you to tell me, but I have things to do”

I read her mind.

“Yeah, you have another date with Ronney” I mumbled

Ever since dad left for war mom immediately began dating other guys. Now, I don’t mean like after a year or so, I mean the day after he left she got boyfriend named James. I mean who does that?

After breakfast the bus came, because of my scene in the room we hadn’t even dressed yet. Me and max threw our clothes on and jumped into my mom’s car. Max drove us to school.

As we walked into the school Max immediately went towards the Office.

“I’ll take care of this” I said

Max rolled his eyes.

Remember the last time you ‘took care’ of something Max said.

“You said you would never speak of it” I complained

I didn’t speak it I thought and I’m thinking this to Max thought.

“Shut up” I said then dragged him to class.



I never would have thought getting a ball to the face could be so productive.

I was talking to Max at recess when it happened.

“No the fart would find a way to escape and even in it didn’t the fart would lose its smell.” I explained.

“No, fart has a special composition it has hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and methane. This does not only mean that farts are flammable, but-”

Max was interrupted by a ball it was traveling at least 90 mph. It smacked Max. Hard. He was all like. Max flipped backwards and landed on the ground. Hard. I looked toward where the shot had come from. It was Michael Chain, I HATE that guy. When he saw me looking at him he began acting all innocent.

“Get over here Michael” I screamed.

“Make me” He called back.

Before I could do anything someone hit me in the back. Hard. My whole body straight up and dropped to the ground. Michelle Chain (Michael’s’ twin sister) jumped on top of me. As Max began to get up Michael darted across the field, at an unbelievable speed. Once he’d met up with us he jumped on Max.

“Do someth’n bout it, Jameson.” Michael teased.

Mechelle pulled my arm way beyond its extent. I screamed then I lost it.

I looked at Michelle and she immediately began to scream.

She clasped her head and toppled over.

I was drilling fear into her head. So much more fear than a human has ever experienced. She began to cry.

“Stop” Max screamed “you’re going to kill her”

I didn’t stop. Then our hearts did.

When I woke up a guy was kissing me.

As you can imagine, I, being an immature teenager, I kicked the guy, threw my head up, and yelled “Ewwwwww.”


“Calm down, Maddison” a voice called.




































Fabian Walker’s Secret” by Avalon Smith


 Dara stood at the edge of precipice in terror as the faceless figure whispered something into the wind while gradually approaching. The ground began to sway beneath her as she stumbled backwards. Losing her balance and falling into the deep abyss that laid beneath her damp feet. Suddenly awaking in a cold sweat. “It was only a dream, it was only a dream.” I tried to reassure myself, but it wasn’t just a dream, for it is the same one I have had for weeks now. I was scarcely getting any sleep. Looking at the clock and seeing it was 5 in the morning, only an hour before I would have had to get up for school. The last thing I would want is to repeat that horrid dream.

Giving up on the chance of getting anymore shut eye. I headed to the kitchen for some glorious coffee. Right in the middle of the doorway blocking me from my cup of heaven was my sluggish, dog Roscal. “Well, at least someone’s getting their beauty sleep” I sleepily mumbled.

He was originally named Rascal but our neighbor’s younger brother could never say it right. It once came out as Roscal and it stuck. For a golden retriever, he was never very golden for his paws were always covered in mud from digging and his body always filthy from rolling in dirt. He never cared, but my mother, Maria Walker, is always saying he smells like fertilizer and ruins the furniture. I’ve never minded the smell essentially because I have never smelt it. My father, Fabian Walker, would always say it was all in her head and uses it has an excuse to get rid of him, but that will never happen. My father past away almost six months ago. Even though most wives mourn their husband’s death my mother on the other seems to do the exact opposite. For every time my father’s name is mentioned she scolds us as if we have said a hurtful word and other times she will burst out crying. Then later she will come apologize and says, “I’m sorry, it just hurts too much to hear his name.” But I am uncertain because the look in her eye when she hears his name is also hatred.

Silently and gently stepping over Roscal, I scurried over to the coffeemaker. My attempt to make coffee utterly failed when my clumsiness kicked in and I dropped the coffee bag onto the cold floor. Making a loud booming sound. Roscol awoke and prompted his head onto his paws and his big floppy ears perked up to the noise. When I saw his eyes focused towards the front door, I realized I wasn’t the noise that woke him up. Walking around the corner I saw the Nolan twins standing outside the door. That’s weird; they usually don’t come for another thirty minutes.

Though they were twins the only thing they had in common was their looks. There was Makayla who is very energetic and loves all colors. Her clothes never matched, but were always bright. Her untamed, light brown hair never seemed to grow any further than her shoulders. Her eyes are a deep brown and never look tired. Then there is Valerie, who was the total and complete opposite. Valeria always looks very calm and at ease. You should not let her looks fool you. She can talk about 130 words per minute and can trump anyone in an argument. She wears calmer colors compared to her sister, but also understands fashion. Unlike her sister, she is very dedicated to her studies. Her hair is long reaching down to the beginning of her rib cage.

I twist the doorknob, swinging the door ajar and try to smile. “Oh, hi.” I said trying to act friendly, but my mind was still stuck on the dream. “ Hi, do you not just love the mornings? I think they are just amazing! So how have you been?” Makayla bubbled in excitement.

I froze unsure how to answer. “Well, um~”

“Sorry for my sister. I can see you are barely awake. I bet you are wondering why we came early to pick you up.” she said pausing.

“ Well they mixed our mail up again and we thought we would come early to give it back to you.” Makayla turned and scolded her sister even though she was not paying attention. “ Oh ok, I was wondering where it was. I just assumed that there was not going to be any yesterday.” “well thank you…ahh!” I screeched as Roscal pushed his way through me and nudged the door wide, revealing the interior. I quickly stood back on my feet fearing that I would have to run after him. To my surprise he was cradling Felix their younger brother, who was hiding behind them. Felix was now on the ground laughing on his back as Roscal licked his face. I looked back at the twins seeing the faces turned to their little brother. Makayla’s face was glowing from pure enjoyment while Valerie was happy, but had a look of annoyance. I forgot this Tuesday morning she had her student council meeting. That is probably the main reason she is here early.

I must have screamed louder than I thought when Roscal pushed me down, as my mother was sprinting from the hall to come to my aid. My mother was in her attorney outfit with only half of her makeup done. “Hi, Mrs. Walker.” the twins said in unison holding in a laugh. “ Hi girls, you know you can call me Maria, but what are you doing here so early for?”

“ Well, they mixed up yesterday’s mail again, so we thought we would come over and give it to you.” Stated Valerie.

“Without thinking I joined in, “ I asked them to come over. After they called me and said it got mixed up.”

“Well if that’s all?” mother said hesitantly.

“Yep that is all.” she then went back down the hall.

Turning back to face the twins and Felix still giggling and being cradled by Roscal on the stairs. I noticed Makayla held a box about the size of a soft ball behind her back. With my name plastered on each side of the box. Now it makes sense why she was not talking with her hands. I should have noticed something was up when her hands were not waving in my face the second she starting talking. I wonder what must be inside. I zoomed back into reality when Makayla held her arms out shoving the box at me.

“Makayla, We cannot just throw it at her!” barked Valerie. Makayla’s hands were still outreached as if she didn’t even hear her sister. I carefully took the box from here hands when I realized it was already six thirty. “Oh crap, your meeting starts in thirty minutes, Valerie!”

“Hurry you need to go get ready. The president of student council cannot be late for their own meeting!” Turing around back into the house, I ran to my bedroom. Throwing the box on my bed, I put on a pair of clothes and quickly threw my hair up. As I started to rush out the door, I looked back to the box on my bed. Wondering what was inside. I guess I will have to wait until after school, I hit the lights and shut the door.

























































Where Did You Go?” by Genesis Garcia


Verse 1:

Every now and then

We used to hang out



With no care, with no cares

Never separated even once

Kindergarten through Senior year


Verse 2:

We were the gang everybody talked about

Until one day I saw you talk with somebody days later you left me

Months later you dated and forgot about someone years later you got married and forgot to invite someone to the wedding


Verse 3:

Even more years later and you had a baby shower you also forgot to invite that person we were childhood friends I liked but that never will happen you forgot about me years later you came to visit me but I was not there anymore I was in the sky


























War Between Two” by Libby Irwin

P1: I don’t want to talk right now, don’t want you to leave, don’t let this moment run out. Don’t say it’s over, just hold me tight, it’ll be alright.

P2: Can’t pull you closer, just you, me, and the pain, who says we have to give up on us, say it ain’t over. Let’s, let this blow over.

P1: Hold me tight, don’t let go, if you let me go I’ll blow away, this feeling is controlling my life, can’t see past this. If this moment runs out so will I.

P2: You leaving is the worst thing I can think of, wanna keep you here with me, stay in this moment, don’t let it run away from us.

P1: Don’t say that it’s stolen from me, I won’t be able to live with the pain, let the moment guide us to love.

P2: Just hold on for a little more and we’ll be fine, this isn’t gone yet, we have love not like any other.

P1&P2: The moments over, we’re done, we tried, the moment has run.
































Wish I Hadn’t Seen” by Libby Irwin

I wish I had never seen them, they were so in love.

I couldn’t control myself, I wanted what they had, was it wrong to do what I did?

I was helping them realize they were terrible for each other.

I hurt people close to me, broke their spirits while I played the victim and innocent card.

I wish I had never seen him, he took control of my senses.

My heart can’t handle how much I love him, my brain isn’t accustomed to me thinking only about us.






































King of the World” by Molefe Sijiye


Cause he’s the king of da world.

He’s the prince of myself.

He’s the king of where my heart dwells.


Cause he is the king of my life.

He’s a ruler to heart.

And he crushes lords beneath his feet


Cause he’s the king of the whooold.

He’s the king of the whooold.


Cause he’s the king of the whooold.

He’s the king of the whooold.


Oh, he’s the king of the world



I can’t say I’ve never been afraid

In a corner scream’n out in pain. Think’n bout the terrible ways the world has gone.

But. there’s a god that really ca-a-ares. He can help you from anywhe-e-ere. It’s unbelievable the things that god can do.

When he’s so vast.

When he’s so strong.

When he’s so miiight.

We should shout it from the rooftops.


Repeat Chorus















Spar” by Hadley Culpepper


I love writing stories, and this is my first ever script. So it’s not going to be too good. I made it to be a suspenseful comedy based off a dream I had a couple months ago. Since there was so much dialogue, I made it into a script rather than a story. Please give me some constructive criticism. And also, since it is supposed to be a play, I had to shorten it. I wanted this to be a full-blown novelette, but I don’t have the time at the moment. Maybe another day, then! The characters were inspired off real people, yes. Nobilis was based off one of the two children of my old piano teacher. He was the youngest, yet still being more mature than his older sibling. And the armor thing? Well, I’m getting tired of the ‘sell your soul’ cliché. How about it’s stolen? And no, not your soul. Your body. Cool, right!? Ame is literally the male version of my friend Malepe. Also, Mordax’s famous line “I’ll speak Italian!” even though she doesn’t know it, was based upon the time whereas my friend Benlee tried to prove to us he spoke fluent Italian (he doesn’t) and failed. If you guys are reading this, then Metuculosus!


Sorry for all the inside jokes.







Two figures stand by the backdoor of a bakery, hiding behind a row of trashcans. One is big, one is small. The shadows cover them and no one notices their presence.


MORDAX (the little one)

Remember, if we get caught, you’re deaf and I don’t speak English.


NOBILIS (the big one)

Are you sure that would even work?



Nope! But’s it’s the only hope we’ve got, and I’m sticking with it.

I’ll speak Italian!



But you don’t even know Italian. You’re British-



So what? I’ve always liked Italy. And pizza. Pizza is great, you

should try it once you get your body back.



Yeah, I should..



Why so glum, Nobbie? You’re acting more depressed than usual..



Are you sure we can get it back? Are you positive?



What? You mean your body? Yeah! Of course we can get it back! And my scissors, too!



Excuse me, what?



My giant scissors? You know? The big orange ones? I only have the left blade and its handle right now, so it really only works as a sword.



And why do you want these scissors so badly?



Are you kidding!? Because it’s cool as he-



A figure walks dangerously close to where the two are hiding. MORDAX is pulling her hair back into a high-up ponytail when this happens and she freezes. The figure looks at them, walks forward, and grabs MORDAX by the collar of her shirt. Just as NOBILIS is about to act, the streetlamps come on and illuminate the figure’s appearance and they relax. Well, only a little bit.



Ah, Ammie, it’s just you.



For the last time! It’s Ame! AH-MAY!



Gee, sorry mate. Can you put me down?



AME drops MORDAX and she falls onto the dirt, groaning.



Listen up, pipsqueak. You and you’re talking trashcan need to pipe down! I could hear you all the way from-





NOBILIS is offended.



Pipsqueak? PIPSQUEAK!?


MORDAX is really offended.


Nobilis restrains Mordax from killing Ame.






Calm down, Mordax! People can hear us! Just be a little quieter, okay?












Actually, no, I’m fifteen. Remember, we’re the same age.






MORDAX leaps to her feet and stands back to back with AME. He is one and a half feet taller than her. MORDAX is ticked off.



Fifteen is the age where you either look eleven or twenty five. No in-between. Alright, now’s not the time to chit-chat. Let’s go.






They walk out into the street and they are illuminated. Their appearances are beyond clear.


NOBILIS – The helmet that comprises its face is adorned with a large, conical horn in the middle of the forehead, has a pair of parallel, horizontal vents beneath each half-moon eye hole and a fang motif just above the protruding chin. The top of the helmet also sports a ribbon of white hair that hangs down to the small of the suit’s back. The trunk of the body also consists of a removable breastplate with a protruding, triangular shelf on the chest just below the throat guard, a high collar that extends out of the back and surrounds the rear and sides of the neck, and a large, circular leather patch on either side of the abdomen. A mauve breech cloth covers the groin. It also appears to have a triple spike motif, as each shoulder is adorned with a trio of large conical spikes lined in a row and each elbow, knee and foot carries small, spiky protrusions as well. It also appeared to have a white band around its right leg which held up a small weapons holster. It is a huge suit of armor, being seven feet tall. The eyeholes glow a soft pink color.


MORDAX – Thick, wavy hair the color of sandpaper. Extremely long, kept in a high up ponytail. Heart-shaped face, high cheekbones, large eyes, little mouth and nose, pale lips. Thin and small, but muscular. Curious blue eyes and alabaster skin. Thick but neat eyebrows. Side-swept bangs that cover a row of freckles that are lined up like the big dipper. Pierced ears with pearl earrings. No makeup. Short.


She wears dark green cargo pants and black tank top with a knit jacket the color of sand. The strings are loose on the jacket and there is pocket on the sleeve with crumbling lavender inside. Leather boots.


AME – He wears his black hair long and tied in a ponytail with white ribbon while his long, spiky bangs hang over his face, obscuring his right eye. Lean, muscular frame, tall for his age. Yellow-brown eyes and thick eyebrows.


Wears black pants and a black shirt, plus black boots and a black jacket. Black, black, everything black. Let’s just hope it’s a phase. And, oh god, is that eyeliner?


The three figures walk along the street, NOBILIS is far in the back, trying his best not to make any noise. MORDAX is comparing her height to AME’s when suddenly, something catches her eye.



Ame- what the- are you wearing eyeliner!?



Makeup is gender neutral!



I know! But, still, it makes you look like Rota.



That old geezer!? No way! Don’t even-


MORDAX (in a sarcastic voice, imitating ROTA)

Oh, would you look at that! Another beanpole wants to be like me! Of course! I am such a wonderful role model, and I’m sooooo much cooler than that Ame boy. The kid’s a walking vending machine! He stuffs wafers in his pockets and smuggles fruit crisps-


AME (flustered)




Oh really? Then what’s that sticking out of your back pocket?


MORDAX eyes the crumbling vanilla wafer hanging out the back pocket of AME’s pants. MORDAX raises an eyebrow and scowls.



S-shut up!


AME’s voice cracks.


Did I even say anything?



Both of you, zip it! We’re gonna get caught if we don’t hurry up and be quiet.


NOBILIS turns around and sees that the two are about to engage in a fist fight. He quickly runs over, picking each up the collar of their shirts and carries them the rest of the way.


NOBILIS (mumbling to himself)

I’m only fourteen years old and yet I have to act like the adult.






MORDAX and AME are arguing. Again.



UGH! I could strangle you right now!



You aren’t tall enough.



Excuse me! You’re a walking beanpole!



Well you’re a talking beansprout! And you never shut up!


















You are the only person I know who has a fierce hatred for a fifteen year-old. Not even fifteen year-olds in general, yours is very specific, Mordax.


Suddenly, the building shakes and steam engulfs them. Boxes fall off shelves and tumble onto them. There is violent coughing before the one responsible speaks. They walk out from the shadows, wearing a light trench coat and a blank mask. A suit is worn underneath.



Do I dare disturb the universe?














I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I regret wearing eyeliner.


AME wipes away smudges of eyeliner that have mixed in with his dirt-encrusted tears. MORDAX is pulling NOBILIS out of the rubble, until there is another rumble and explosion. They fall over again, and MAKA approaches them, carrying his own homemade bombs.





The three run away, but NOBILIS is separated from AME and MORDAX. He runs into the army, who has already arrived. At one of the emergency exits he meets two friends, both from the military. More rumbles, and one of the pipes break. They do not seem to care, but NOBILIS is very much on edge.



Ah! First Lieutenant Falco! And Colonel Rota! You’re here!


FALCO wears her red hair in a tight bun, and ROTA has his dark hair loose and messy. They both wear dark green military uniforms. And yes, ROTA is wearing eyeliner, as expected.



I’m glad we got here in time. Lieutenant!






Go assist Mordax and Ame. They’re going to get themselves killed.


FALCO runs, and ROTA mumbles to himself.



When are those kids going to learn to listen to their superiors?


NOBILIS and ROTA stand behind one of the shelves. MAKA is approaching.



Come out! Come out!


ROTA sighs, realizing what a mess he’s gotten himself into. He peeks around the corner just as MAKA throws one of his bombs, along with a powerful steam-based bomb. NOBILIS shields ROTA from the blast. ROTA knocks on his armor with the back of his hand.



Thanks for the save, Nobilis. Steam bomb? Neat. Let’s go.


The two sprint around a corner and ROTA fires several bullets. Shockingly, MAKA avoids them by hiding behind the rubble, just in time.



Is there anything I can do?



Not just yet. Let’s wait a bit before resigning to hand-to-hand combat.







Wait? If First Lieutenant’s here, then that means..


MORDAX glances over at NOBILIS and sees ROTA, squatting under a beam. MORDAX scowls.



Yup. The Colonel… great. Just great.





AME pushes MORDAX out of the way of a bomb blast. She gasps and stands up.



Quick save, good thinking. Now, how are we going to catch him..



Mordax, Ame, get yourselves out of here. Leave it to us.



But he’s the one who-


Another bomb blast goes off and ROTA and NOBILIS run over. ROTA and FALCO press their backs against each other and fire at MAKA, who is dodging the bullets at a seemingly inhuman speed. ROTA pulls back his gun and reloads.



Lieutenant, if I die here, tell Mordax to lower me into my grave.



How come?



So she can let me down one last time.


Another bomb goes off, MORDAX screams in horror at the outcome.



How many bombs does he have? And ar-


AME gasps. NOBILIS is in shambles, and the entire right side of his body has been destroyed. MORDAX has her legs trapped under the rubble. ROTA and FALCO are nowhere in sight in all the smoke. MORDAX reaches out NOBILIS, but she doesn’t cry. Not just yet.





She pounds her fist onto the floor and tries to pull her head forward, but her ponytail is tied up between some beams. She pulls out her pocket knife and slices it off, now trying to wiggle out the rubble. But she can’t even feel her legs anymore.





AME runs out of sight. MORDAX curses under her breath and looks up to face MAKA, who is standing over NOBILIS. He is holding a gun, ROTA’s gun, and turns the armor onto its back. It’s empty. He kicks it with his foot, and turns to MORDAX. He aims his gun at MORDAX’s head.



Any last words, pipsqueak?


MORDAX (in a whisper)

Don’t call me small.. You stupid body-snatcher. Give Nobilis his body back..


MAKA shoots MORDAX in the shoulder and turns back to NOBILIS. He aims at the little gemstone inside it. The little stone that’s keeping his soul bonded to the armor.





MAKA puts his finger onto the trigger.









Suddenly, there is a gunshot and MAKA falls to the ground, clutching his knee. He screams, and FALCO stands over him.


ROTA (behind FALCO, walking forward)

You’ve gone far enough, Bodysnatcher.


MAKA is handcuffed and dragged away. MORDAX has been pulled out from the rubble and is crawling towards NOBILIS. One of the officers tries to hold her back, but she resists and makes her way to the armor. She nearly cries.



Nobilis? Nobilis, are you there?


The gemstone begins to crack and she gasps in horror. Across the warehouse, she hears someone cry, “He blacked out!”



Officer! Officer! Take me over there, now!



I can’t miss, we have to get you to a hospital. And-



Let her.


MORDAX is carried to the scene, where they are removing the mask. A voice not belonging to MAKA comes from the body.



Mordax! Mordax! Where are you? Mordax! I need to see Mordax!


MORDAX gasps and rolls out of the officer’s arms. She turns the body over and sees something she and NOBILIS have been looking for years.



Good Lord..



Nobilis, you’re back in your old body..


The body looks just like MORDAX’s, but male. And he lacks the freckles.



This is going to take a lot of explaining…I’m so glad you’re okay, sis.


MORDAX (out of breath)

Yeah, me too.. Uh..


MORDAX passes out.


NOBILIS (sleepily)

I’m feeling kind of…tired…


NOBILIS passes out.





































The fire department, ambulance, and police and here. The army is beginning to leave, but ROTA is looking over at MORDAX and NOBILIS, who are being put in the ambulance together. They are smiling. AME and FALCO sit together by a water fountain, talking.



So they’ve been at it for how long?



Eight years, now. It happened when they were kids. That Maka boy, he’d had his body obliterated, so he took over his, somehow. They were lucky that they’d been in possession of a soul stone, or else..



It’s crazy, really.. I’ve been friends with them since grade school. But this..






I still can’t understand how soul stones work. The human soul, soul bonding, all this weird ‘science’ stuff..



I know how you feel. The military has yet to figure out how they work. Though they do seem to have some relation to Nicholas Flamel and alchemy…



You’ve lost me. Anyways, I had no idea they were with the military. You can go at that age?



Well, no. There were exceptions having to be made due to the fact that-



Lieutenant! Let’s go.


FALCO turns to AME.



Well, see ya.



See ya.



FALCO and AME shake hands before parting ways.






MORDAX and NOBILIS are reading in their hospital rooms. Their beds are side by side, with the curtain drawn back. There are no lamps on, only natural light. MORDAX’s hair is cut short into a pixie cut with an undercut. NOBILIS has the same haircut, but without the undercut.


NOBILIS puts his book down and looks out the window.



Today, no one noticed that I didn’t have a place to sit at the dining hall.


NOBILIS looks down at his book, which is closed.


NOBILIS (in a sad tone)

Is my presence really that weak?


MORDAX gasps angrily and looks at NOBILIS.



I noticed!



Yeah, but..



Don’t worry, little bro. You’ve just only gotten back, and you’ve changed so much. Many people don’t recognize you, so it’s fine. Soon, you’ll be the center of attention.






How do you feel?





MORDAX (chuckling)

Are you even listening to me?


NOBILIS is silent. MORDAX sighs, smiling, and goes back to reading.








A figure walks towards NOBILIS and MORDAX, who are playing in the park with their dog. The figure gets closer, and it is shown to be Second Lieutenant CROWLEY. He is carrying a cardboard box. Almost instinctively, MORDAX spins around and he gives her the box.



A package from Central, miss.



Thank you, Crowley.


MORDAX opens the box and drops it onto the grass. She looks down, unmoving.






Miss? Is something wrong?


MORDAX reaches inside the box very slowly at first. Until..





MORDAX whips the giant orange scissor blade out of the box and spins it around her arm like a pencil around a finger. NOBILIS face palms, wondering why she even bought the scissors in the first place. CROWLEY is utterly horrified and backs away from MORDAX. He ends up tripping over the dog.



Girls are weird…












Passages of Promise

This anthology is a collection of original writing by the SOAR Creative Writers of Chesatee Academy in the War Eagle Writing Studio, Spring 2017. Pieces of writing include poetry, short stories, memoirs, book chapters and longer works of fiction, song lyrics, and play scripts. Works are written by students in 6, 7, and 8 in Ms. Buffy Hamilton's SOAR Creative Writing class.

  • ISBN: 9781370344925
  • Author: Buffy Hamilton
  • Published: 2017-03-13 21:50:57
  • Words: 40858
Passages of Promise Passages of Promise