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Ebooks   ➡  Fiction  ➡  Fantasy  ➡  Epic

Dark's Descent

 

 

Dark’s Descent

Basil E. Bacorn

Prologue

Why am I here? How did this happen? One minute my life is normal, going to school and then home, and the next I am amongst witches, kings, and talking animals? This can’t be real. It can’t be. It just can’t be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Origins

 

The light from the knights’ torches was her only way of knowing what direction to run. She flew through the woods, not knowing how to get out of this one. Evangeline knew she was doomed when the arrow pierced her skin and she fell to the ground. No magic could save her now. When her powers were suppressed at the castle she knew that she wouldn’t escape, but she still had to try. She had to save her baby.

The knight stood before her, and with a swift movement, ripped the newborn child from its mother’s arms. “You can’t do this!” the mother screamed, “She’s my daughter!”

The knight stopped, and turned to face the weeping witch. “Not anymore.” And with that, the knight hopped on his steed and rode back to the castle, cradling the child close to his chest.

Evangeline, the once powerful enchantress, laid on the ground, trying to gain enough strength to heal where she was shot. “I will get my daughter back, and no one will get in my way,” she whispered, “and then my true work begins.” Eva then continued to weep, until sleep took her away under the full moon.

 

At the royal palace, the king waited for the return of his men. In order to save their realm from disaster, he had to do as the oracles advised, and send the witch’s babe far away, where it will no longer be a threat to the safety of his people.

Just then the scrawny messenger boy came running in and bowed, “It’s here sir, the knights are back.”

The king gestured the boy to leave and ordered the baby to be brought before him.

“Here is the child, your majesty.” the knight announced as he presented the girl to the king.

“Very well Sir Arthur,” said the old king, “now fetch me Marley, we have some business to attend to.”

The infant was put in a bread basket and Sir Arthur ran to the Great Tower to tell the wizard the king’s orders.

As he waited, King Oscar looked as himself in the mirror. Pretty soon it would be time to hand down the thrown. The king was grey, wrinkled, and very stout. He had to have specially designed clothing because the usual robes were too long and tight. Before he can retire, he must have a successor, otherwise all of the chaos might allow for an outsider to become the ruler, leaving his family as, ugh, regular citizens!

Marley rushed in, “Apologies, sir, I am ready now”

“Good,” King Oscar muttered, “do it!”

As he was told, Marley twirled his hand three times, and a portal inches away from the baby took form. The King got a smug look on his face as he trotted over to the basket, and kicked it in the hole.

“Where is it going anyway?” the king asked Marley.

“Far away, where it should never be reached. It is going to the Realm of the Foretold,” Marley answered, “to a little place called Earth.”

 

 

Somewhere in Central Park, a baby flies out from nowhere and lands in a nearby bush. The green-eyed babe began to cry as the gelid wind blew by. Having no blanket, the poor child got cold quickly.

Hours later, a police officer notices the baby, and taken with the child’s cuteness, decides to take her home to his wife. He picked it up and held it close. The kid must’ve been out here for hours! The man hurried home, with the baby tucked in his arms.

The cop finally saw his apartment and hurried inside. “Susan!” yelled the officer, still holding the baby, “I’m home!”

Susan Smith was a kind, and loving woman in her 20s, who always wanted a happy family of her own. She loved children, but hadn’t tried to have any because her mom insisted she was still too young. Being the obedient girl she’s always been, she’d listened to her mother. Up until now, that is.

“Wel-” Susan froze when she saw the child, “Where did that come from?!” Susan never did like surprises, especially of this magnitude.

After Susan heard the story, she whisked the babe from her husband and demanded they take the abandoned baby to the hospital.

“When we get to the hospital, follow my lead.” Susan told her husband as they pulled out of the driveway, “We are keeping her, but I don’t want anyone to know that she isn’t ours.” Her mother wouldn’t be as harsh on her once she saw the beautiful child, but she certainly didn’t want to have the you-are-adopted talk later on.

The Smiths pulled into the ER parking lot and rushed inside. “I just had a baby,” Mrs. Smith claimed to the receptionist, “We are both okay, but we need to fill out whatever paperwork is necessary.”

The receptionist smiled and handed them some papers and motioned them to sit down.

“James,” Susan asked her husband, “What are we going to name her?” James thought, and suggested some names. “How about Cassandra Alice?” Susan suggested, although she knew James would agree as always. “Sounds good.” James nodded and wrote ‘Cassandra Alice Smith’ on the paper.

Once they were done, James handed the stack of papers to the lady behind the desk, and walked Susan out the door.

 

Shaping Good From Evil

 

From that day forward, the Smiths tried to raise Cassandra to be a good little angel, although their little angel seemed different from their friends’ children.

When Cassandra was 5 years old, she went to a birthday party with her friends. They all wanted cake, but the adults were too busy to get any. Little Cassandra decided she should help the hungry children, so she ran in the kitchen with all of the kids, and kicked the table to get the cake. The leg snapped and the table tumbled over, covering everyone below with cake and icing.

When Susan ran into the room, Cassandra was gone. Seeing the cake trail out the door, Mrs. Smith followed the trail. Once outside, she stopped, seeing her daughter sitting next to a pile of torn wrapping paper and opened gifts, smiling.

From that point forward, Cassandra’s parents kept a close eye on her, because it seemed that one step into the darkness was all it took to drag her in all of the way.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith told their daughter to always hold good close to her heart, and be kind to everyone she met.

On the first day of school, Cassandra was more excited than any other kid in NYC. She was up at 3:30 A.M. and jumping on her parents bed, shouting “It’s time for school! It’s time for school!”

Susan and James sat up, seeing their daughter fully dressed for school with her pink and black backpack already on. Seeing the time, Susan got up and walked Cassandra to the living room to play.

“School doesn’t start until 8:00, but since you’re already ready, you can play with your toys while I make a, really early, breakfast.” Susan sighed, grabbing the milk, “How does homemade pancakes sound?” Cassandra rolled around on the floor with glee. Pancakes were her favorite, especially when they were homemade. “I’ll take that as a yes,” Susan assumed, “Now please stop, Cassie, or you’ll mess up your beautiful blonde hair.”

Cassie stopped at once. She was so proud of her hair. It was probably because her mom was so proud of it. She used three different shampoos and conditioners daily to make it long and silky smooth.

They ate breakfast at 5 o’clock, and when they were done, Susan decided to walk Cassie to school. She figured they’d take the long way, since there was nothing else to keep Cassie occupied.

 

Once at Abagail Elementary School, Susan dropped off her pride and joy and hoped for good news when she picked her up in about six hours.

 

A New Everlanon Prince

 

Three weeks after Enchantress Evangeline lost her child, the King’s son, Prince Albert became King and began the search for a wife. It only took a month for the determined king to find his queen. He decided to marry Princess Graciella of the neighboring kingdom, Deash, joining the two biggest kingdoms in all of Everlanon.

On King Albert’s wedding day, as the future queen walked down the aisle, not a single word was spoken throughout all Everlanon. Once the two kingdoms become one, King Albert and Queen Graciella will have complete domination over the whole realm.

“Do you, King Albert Eindhoven Herald Rindenton take Princess Graciella Ann Diana Elizabeth Catherine Belle Lee Margaret Taylor Addams-” the priest took a breath, “as your wife and queen, to love and cherish until death do you part?”

“I do.” answered King Albert.

“And do you, Princess Graciella Ann Diana Elizabeth Catherine Belle Lee Margaret Taylor Addams, take King Albert Eindhoven Herald Rindenton as your husband and king, to love and cherish until death do you part?”

“I do” answered the Princess.

“Then I now pronounce you King and Queen of the new kingdom Celestinia,” the priest pronounced, “you may kiss the bride.”

Cheers arose from all of Everlanon, as the royal couple kissed. Cheers, that is, from everywhere except for the Darkcloud Tower, home to the great Enchantress Evangeline.

“How dare they!” Eva scolded, watching the wedding in her Seeing Cloud, “to celebrate weeks after ripping a baby from the hands of its own mother! After they threw it into another realm! All on its own!”

She then had a wonderfully wicked idea.

“Throwing a baby into another realm, all on its own.” she repeated, eyeing the couple, “Perfect! The king and queen are bound to conceive an heir soon, and then they will know the pain they gave me.”

Evangeline ran to her library, scanning books, throwing the unnecessary ones to the ground until she found what she wanted. She grabbed a book titled ‘Family Spells and Curses’. Scanning through the book, she walked back to the Seeing Cloud. “Ah-Ha!” she yipped with glee, “To Conceive Overnight.”

She read the spell over to memorize it and yelled, “Gob! Get the carriage! We are going on a trip.”

“Yes Miss Evangeline,” the small green goblin answered as he scurried this way and that, “It’s ready, where are we-”

Evangeline interrupted, “Never mind you troll, you were too slow.” With her powers fully returned, she dispersed away in a cloud of green mist. In an instant, she stood before the couple as they stopped kissing.

“Guards!” the king yelled, but Evangeline simply waved her hand and they flew back. “No need to worry, I have a gift for you!” Evangeline teased,

 

A young couple of newlyweds,

Tonight you won’t need your beds.

For with this spell I grant thee,

A baby as perfect as a baby can be!

 

Finishing up, she threw her hand at the queen, pointing at her stomach as lightning sprung from her finger and hit Graciella’s abdomen.

“NOOOOOOO!!!!!” the king shouted as his wife’s stomach grew.

Evangeline blew the smoke from her finger and said “I’ll be back tomorrow when the baby is born to finish what you started. By the way, you don’t get to name your prince.”

And with that, the enchantress disappeared.

 

Miss Teacher

 

Cassie ran to a seat right up front where she could see everything up close. At 7:50, a lady, probably in her twenties, with long black hair walked in the room. She was wearing glasses, a beige pantsuit, and black heels, exposing her lack of fashion sense.

She walked up to the chalkboard and wrote ‘Welcome to Kindergarten’ in big colorful block letters and sat at the teacher’s desk. A sign on the desk read ‘Miss Teacher’. “That must be her name!” said a voice behind Cassie.

Cassie turned around and saw a boy with black hair, blue eyes, and freckles.

“Who are you, and what are you talking about?” Cassie inquired. The boy looked at her and replied, “My name is Charles Myers, and the teacher’s name is Miss Teacher because that’s what the sign says. What’s your name?”

“Cassie” she answered right before the announcements came on.

“Please rise for the Pledge of Allegiance” said the loudspeaker. Everyone stood and said the pledge after Miss Teacher started.

The announcements continued and welcomed everyone to school and said what was for lunch, along with some other things that Cassie didn’t listen to.

She looked around the room until the loudspeaker ended and Miss Teacher started talking.

“Good morning everyone, I am your teacher, Mrs. Spencer. Welcome to your first day of kindergarten!” Mrs. Spencer continued, “Since it’s the first day, how about we introduce ourselves. When it’s your turn, say your name, and two things you like.”

Mrs. Spencer looked around. “I’ll go first” she said, “I’m Mrs. Spencer, and I like teaching and strawberries.”

They went around the room, each kid saying their name and what they like. When it was Charles’ turn, he stood and said “My name is Charles Myers, but you all can call me Charlie, and I like race cars and bubble wrap!” Everyone giggled and then it was Cassie’s turn. “I am Cassie Smith and I like pancakes and reading!”

Mrs. Spencer smiled. She loved having students that already had some knowledge of reading. “Okay class,” she announced, “let’s each read a book from the Book Chest so I know where you are at with your reading skills. And don’t worry if you can’t read yet, just grab a picture book.”

Everyone ran to get a book from the chest and Cassie followed. When she got there she was upset. All that was left were little books. She had an idea. Cassie ran up to Mrs. Spencer and asks “I brought a book, can I read that?” Mrs. Spencer wondered what was wrong with the books in the chest, and said, “I guess.”

Cassie smiled and ran to her book bag. She quickly unzipped the bag and pulled out a textbook she stole from her mom’s bookshelf. It was called ‘Business and Accounting’.

Cassie ran back to her desk and dropped the book on top. Mrs. Spencer, seeing the book, walked over to Cassie. “Isn’t that book kind of big?” she asked Cassie.

“No, Miss Teacher, this is the kind of book I usually read.” Cassie replied joyfully.

Mrs. Spencer smiled, “Everyone start reading, I’ll be around checking your progress.”

She turned her attention back to Cassie and gasped. Cassie was whizzing through the book, looking very interested in it. She had to be reading at 10,000 words per minute. Mrs. Spencer dismissed the thought, and when Cassie was done, she took the book, went to a random page, and asked “Cassie, you were reading pretty fast, can I test your comprehension?” Cassie nodded.

Mrs. Spencer looked at the page. “What is something that is true about the doctrine of commercial speech?” Mrs. Spencer quizzed.

Cassie thought for a moment and said, “It states that commercial speech is entitled to limited protection.”

Mrs. Spencer couldn’t believe it, she was right! Maybe Cassie studied the book. Mrs. Spencer grabbed her own book that she wrote and hadn’t published yet, and gave it to Cassie. Once she flipped through the book, Mrs. Spencer took it back and inquired, “Who was Jacob’s third love interest?”

Cassie smiled, “That was Kim, my favorite, she was so funny!”

Mrs. Spencer just stood there. She really could read that fast. It’s impossible! It can’t be!

“Cassie, who’s picking you up from school?” Mrs. Spencer pried. “My mom.” Cassie responded, “Why?” “I would like to meet her, okay?” Mrs. Spencer smiled. Cassie nodded and returned the smile.

“Miss Teacher!” Charlie yelled.

“Yes?”

“What’s next?”

Mrs. Spencer forgot about class. “We are going to do some math! That was enough reading for now, let’s do some book work.”

She grabbed her work book and had the class open to page one. Do this page, and if -”

“Done!” Cassie interrupted.

Mrs. Spencer flew to Cassie’s desk. “Let me check,” she demanded. Looking over the page, she whispered, “In all my years,” Cassie motioned for her to turn the page.

“You completed the WHOLE BOOK!!!” she yelled as the class gasped. Mrs. Spencer called the office and requested that she have someone cover her class for a few minutes. “Sure thing, Charlotte” the secretary answered.

A few moments later Mr. Braddock walked in and asked what was wrong, but she didn’t answer. Instead, she grabbed Cassie and ran to the principal’s office.

“Mr. Miller! I need to talk with you!” Mrs. Spencer insisted. “Yes?” Mr. Miller pressed. “This child is gifted! I can’t believe it!” Mrs. Spencer ranted, “She reads 10,000 words per minute, and completed the entire math book in seconds! Mr. Miller, I don’t know what to do!”

“How about prove to me that what you say is true.” insisted the principal. The principal took a fifth grade math book and gave it to Cassie. As he turned around to sit back in his seat, Cassie said “All done!”

“This is insane!” Mr. Miller hollered as he flipped through the book, “Call her parents now!”

 

A Very Special Child

 

“Hello?” answered Susan after picking up the phone. “This is Mr. Miller, the principal of Abigail Elementary School, is this Cassandra’s mother?”

“Yes, this is her, is everything alright?”

“Oh yes, perfectly fine,” the principal continued, “but can you come to the school, right now, it is very important.”

“Of course!” Susan replied, “I’ll be there soon.”

What is so important that she come in the middle of the day? Did Cassie misbehave? Was there a newsletter she missed? She’ll find out soon enough.

Susan rushed inside the building where the principal stood. He shook her hand when she came up to him. “What’s the issue?” Susan questioned. Mr. Miller motioned her to a room. There was a stack of books on the table. “Did you know Cassandra could read?” Mr. Miller asked.

“Why of course!” Susan exclaimed, “What’s wrong with that?”

“Nothing,” Mr. Miller assured, “It’s just that she’s read every single book on this table since I called you.”

That can’t be! Susan had been called just five minutes ago!

“I don’t understand,” Mrs. Smith stuttered. “Neither do we.” said the principal, “Now follow me.”

They entered a room with Cassie sitting at a desk smiling. Next to her was a stack of math books, and Cassie was completing one every ten seconds, moving so fast that her hand, pencil, and book were a blur. Cassie looked up from her work, still writing, and greeted, “Hi mom!”

“How?” Susan asked her daughter. “It just happens, mom.” Cassie smiled. “Well I’m not going to question it anymore,” Susan announced, “and neither is anyone else, understand?”

“Whatever you say, Mrs. Smith.” Mr. Miller agreed.

Day after day was the same. Even when Cassie was the last one to get an assignment, she was still the first one done. After school, she would go home, not having any homework because she had already completed it, and play with toys, or watch TV.

As Cassie was always told to be, she was nice to everybody, and always behaved.

One day, the class realized that Cassie was special. So after school, they went to her one by one and got their homework done. Cassie didn’t mind. It was fine until Mrs. Spencer saw her handwriting on every single paper.

“Cassie?” Mrs. Spencer called, “Can you come up here please?”

Cassie skipped to the desk. “What’s wrong Miss Teacher?” she inquired, placing her hands on the desk. “I know you’ve been doing everyone’s homework lately.” Mrs. Spencer informed her star student.

Cassie grinned, “They all were so busy, so I decided to help them!”

Mrs. Spencer smiled, “Well, you see, if you do everything for them, then they will never learn. So I’m asking you to only do your own homework, okay?”

“Sure.” Cassie nodded. Mrs. Spencer sent her back to her seat and started the lesson.

That night, Cassie obeyed her teacher and made everyone do their own work.

 

First Revenge

 

The Great Court of Everlanon met in the morning to decide what to do about the new prince due to be born any second. The Court met only when Everlanon was facing a great challenge, and since they were dealing with Evangeline, they were in constant session.

Ever since the first record was written, the Court spoke in an ancient language belonging to them and them alone, in order to keep the matters they spoke of secret.

 

In the Grand Court, they were screaming frantically in syllables that made no sense to anyone else.

“Hatvd sjeéh ekéekc dédsz!” hollered the Elder One, presumably to get the Court’s attention, “Decion!”

The Court fell silent, and the designated speaker stood and yipped a string of sounds.

The Elder One thought, and nodded. He then turned and headed to the throne room.

 

Queen Graciella was on verge of giving birth when the Elder One walked in. “The Court had come to a decision,” he stated, “once the baby is born, and Evangeline comes to banish it, we will send someone of great bravery to protect the child no matter what. If Evangeline succeeds, the guardian will follow close behind, and we will get every wizard, sorcerer, and witch in Everlanon to work together and open a two-way portal between the realms, that will stay open for one year, in order to give enough time to find the Prince.”

King Albert stood. “How long will it take to open the portal?” he stated, knowing that they can take a lot of time. “As you know, these things take time,” the Elder One answered, “so if we can get the twelve needed to open the portal, it will take sixteen years.”

“WHAT!” King Albert screamed. “My apolo-” the Elder One was interrupted when the baby prince cried its first cry.

“It seems you are a father.” stated the Elder One,

“Congratulations.”

“SIR ARTHUR!!!” cried the king, “You are the Prince’s guardian!”

Sir Arthur shuffled in and bowed. “It is my honor.” he insisted.

“Did I miss something?” said a woman at the door. Stepping into the room, she twirled her hand and made a green cloud around the baby. Sir Arthur leaped to the baby and screamed as the cloud turned faster and faster. Within seconds, both the prince and the knight were gone. “So Albert, I heard you’re making the two-way portal between here and the Realm of the Foretold.” the enchantress teased, “Call me when it’s done, I have something to pick up there as well.”

Twisting her hand, Evangeline summoned hundreds of crows into the room that flew around her, speeding up until it was a black blur. The blur disappeared, and Eva was gone.

 

 

A stranger hears screaming from under a bridge and hurries on. Under the bridge was a man named Arthur Braddock dressed as a knight and holding a naked baby while screaming. Looking around, Arthur stopped screaming and ran down the road.

He found himself outside a hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. By this time, Arthur realized that no one was wearing armor, so he took his off and hid it in a bush. Wearing only his underwear, he ran into the hospital with his backstory in mind. Normally, knights in Everlanon weren’t all that bright, but Arthur was different. In fact, he was a genius!

Seeing the naked man, the receptionist flew her finger to the alarm, but before she could press it, the man flopped on the ground, throwing the baby in the air. Fortunately, the receptionist used to be a football player. She leaped over the desk, catching the baby and landing on the floor. The boy never even noticed. The lady got up and quickly yelled for a doctor.

Dr. Shale ran out to the waiting room and saw the scene. He shouted out orders, and had the man and the baby in a room in under a minute. He had a nurse stay with the man and told her to call him if the John Doe awoke.

As the nurse turned, Arthur sat up. “DOCTOR!” she yelled and Dr. Shale ran back in.

“What’s your name?” the doctor asked, “What happened? And the baby?”

“My name is Arthur Braddock, and I am visiting here. I was looking for somewhere I could become a citizen, because my baby was born just now. My wife, who I met here, and I were on our way to the nearest hospital, because I just delivered my son.” Arthur continued the story, “Then a man hit me over the head and took my wife. The worst part is I don’t know where to go now, with my baby, and I forgot my wife’s name.”

Seeing the confused look on the doctor’s face, Arthur remembered the Re-Life Powder he snatched from Everlanon. All he had to do was sprinkle the powder on him and the baby and it would slam them into this realm as if they were from here to begin with. They would get a new life!

“Oh no!” Arthur yelled, scaring the staff with him. He jumped up, grabbed the prince, and ran outside, with the hospital staff running after. He got his armor and reached inside, getting the powder. Opening the bag, he sprinkled him and his baby with it.

The staff stopped in their tracks as the powder shined brighter and brighter. A flash so brilliant that it blinded the whole city, and Arthur Braddock found himself in a house in the New York City suburbs, decorated to his liking. There was a big box, with a paper hanging on it. Before reading the paper, Arthur opened the box and received a chill. Frightened, he slammed the door shut and saw the paper.

Shimmering in the light, the paper read ‘Sir Arthur Braddock’s New Life’. According to the note, Arthur is from Albany, NY, and went to college for four years before moving to NYC to become a school teacher at Abagail Elementary. It also says he had a son with his wife who died giving birth. His son was born today and is named William Albert Braddock.

At the bottom of the paper, it read ‘Take this wherever you go, it will help you’.

 

 

 

 

Bring Your Parent To School Day

 

Cassie was abuzz with excitement. Yesterday, Miss Teacher told the class that tomorrow is Bring Your Parent To School Day. She said that they could bring their mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, and so on. Since her dad had to work, Cassie was told that her mom was going.

As usual, Cassie got her mom up at 3:30 A.M. and Susan would get up, make pancakes, and take her to school. Only this time, Susan would stay at school with her daughter for Parent Day.

Mr. Miller stood by the door and greeted the parents as they came in. Once they were inside, Cassie showed her mom her desk. “Very nice.” Susan congratulated.

When everyone was settled, Mrs. Spencer stood at the front and welcomed all of the parents to their first day of school, which made the kids giggle.

“Today, we will go through the day as usual until 1 o’clock.” the teacher announced, “At 1, we will have some special entertainment.”

Motioning to the chairs beside every desk, Mrs. Spencer continued. “All the parents can have a seat next to your child’s desk, and then we can continue.” The parents obeyed and sat down.

“Now, I’m sure you have noticed some improvement in your child’s reading skills, so as a demonstration,” Mrs. Spencer smiled, “Every student is going to read their favorite book in front of the class. Who wants to go first?”

Nobody moved. Seeing the restlessness of the room, Cassie raised her hand.

Mrs. Spencer got a scared look on her face. She was going to have Cassie go last, or ‘forget’ about her. Now everyone was looking at her, waiting for her to pick the first student. The only student practically falling out of their seat with excitement. Mrs. Spencer smiled, “Anyone want to go first?”

The parents looked at her with confusion. Why wouldn’t she choose the little girl on a sugar-high?

Mrs. Spencer dropped her head, and said, “Everyone, it looks like our best reader wants to go, Cassie?”

Cassie ran to her heavy backpack and got out her favorite novel. She found it in a library, and since the librarian knew nothing of the book, she gave it to Cassie. The book had a leather cover with golden spirals for decoration. It was about 1,250 pages long and entitled ‘The Land of Everlanon’.

Skipping to the front of the room, Cassie plopped the book on Miss Teacher’s podium.

Mrs. Spencer was twiddling her thumbs in anticipation. Susan tapped on her daughter’s desk nervously. What would the other parents think?

Cassie read the cover slowly. “The Land of Everlanon.” Cassie stated, “My favorite book.”

As fast as lightning, Cassie opened the book and started reading. Faster and faster she went, and then the impossible happened. The words leapt off the page and took flight, with Cassie still reading.

In amazement, everyone watched as the words blurred into a picture. A room of old men with pointy ears talking in a different language, signing a paper entitled ‘Everlanon’.

Blurring again, the next was a woman dressed in black with the ability to do impossible things. She twirled fast and vanished in a poof of smoke.

The woman appeared again, this time pregnant, walking to a castle, where she gave birth to a baby girl.

Susan gasped. The baby looked exactly like Cassie!

Next, an army of knights came and shot gold arrows at the mother. One hit the lady and seemingly drained her power. Scared, she ran into the woods.

Adjusting the focus, the next picture was a knight riding his horse through the woods, eventually capturing the woman and taking her baby.

At this point a whirlwind took form in the classroom, blowing papers everywhere.

The image showed the baby being delivered to the heroic king. The baby was then thrown into a whirlpool that appeared out of nowhere.

Then came a similar scene only with a cloud that surrounded the victims instead of a whirlpool.

A final image showed the old elf-men gathering twelve strange looking people in an arch. The twelve people then threw their hands towards a large wall. Within seconds, powerful beams shot from their hands at the center of the wall, creating a small hole that started to grow.

With a bright flash, the image dispersed and everyone was dazed and confused. Everyone but five people, Mrs. Spencer, Cassie, Susan, a kid in the back, and his father, Mr. Arthur Braddock.

The latter two exchanged glances, and Mr. Braddock decided he should keep an eye on this Cassandra Smith girl.

Mrs. Spencer then started clapping, and soon everyone followed. Nobody asked any questions and Charlie asked to go next, and everything went back to normal until it was time for math.

The last person to read was Will Braddock and when he was done Mrs. Spencer told the class that they were going to play a game.

“We are going to work on our math facts. I’ll hold up a flash card for two people and whoever answers first goes to the next desk and the game continues.” she explained, “This game is called ‘Around the World’.”

Cassie smiled. She loved math games.

This is how it went:

Chelsea vs. Andrew

3 + 5

Andrew won.

 

Andrew vs. Xavier

2 + 2

Andrew won.

 

Then it was Cassie’s turn. Mrs. Spencer showed the flashcard and Cassie answered. She moved to the next desk. Flashcard, answer, flashcard, answer. Cassie flew from one desk to the next.

Then it was Cassie vs. Will Braddock. Cassie never noticed him before, but she didn’t care. Mrs. Spencer held up a flashcard that read ’7+2’, and they both answered ‘9’ at the same time.

Remembering that both Cassie and Will were math geniuses, she grabbed her multiplication cards.

5×8

“40”

10×5

“50”

4×9

“36”

 

Frustrated, Mrs. Spencer grabbed the division deck and it went the same way. So she went to her desk and pulled out her old calculus flashcards.

 

log (22)/507

“0.00264777649”

 

“Okay! That’s enough math for today!” Mrs. Spencer announced, “Let’s just call it a tie.”

Everyone agreed and ran back to their original seats.

Mrs. Spencer looked at the clock. It was almost time for lunch.

“Okay, let’s get ready for lunch, everyone wash your hands and get in line!” Mrs. Spencer encouraged, “Today we are eating outside!”

Everyone scrambled this way and that, hurriedly getting ready for the parent picnic.

The lunch ladies at the school were so into their jobs. They always went all-out. On the first day, they had fudge-filled cupcakes with little signs that read ‘Welcome!’. In addition, every day, they hid a sticker on one of the trays, and whoever had the sticker, got a prize from Miss Café, the head lunch lady. Her real name is Miss Patts, but since she’s so dedicated to the cafeteria, everyone calls her Miss Café.

Yesterday, Miss Café had bought 3,000 picnic baskets for only $60.00. She is an expert at bargaining and extreme couponing.

For lunch, each student got a picnic basket filled with goodies to share with their parent. The basket also contained a plaid table cloth to sit on.

When Cassie and her mom got their basket, Cassie ran outside and yanked the table cloth out and put it on the ground. After straightening it out, they sat down and started to chow down.

“Cassie?” Susan asked with curiosity, “What was that reading?” Cassie looked confused. “Never mind,” Susan sighed, “How about you let me have your book and we can forget all about this, okay?”

“Sure mom,” Cassie nodded.

Susan reached down and fixed her special child’s hair. They ate the rest of their meal in silence.

After lunch, everyone went back to their class rooms. When Cassie got back to the room, she was shocked! All of the desks were gone, except for a few pushed against the walls. There was a carpet laying where their desks used to be. Mrs. Spencer came in and told everyone to sit on the floor. Cassie sat down.

“We have a presentation, and then we are going to have some entertainment.” Miss Teacher started, “But during the presentation, you have to be quiet, okay?” Everyone nodded.

Then Miss Teacher sat on the floor too! Cassie almost fainted.

“Hello, kids!” said a cartoony voice, as a big puppet stage rolled in. A small green man popped up in the middle. “My name is Scott, and I’m here to teach you about strangers!” Charlie Myers popped up and screamed, “STRANGER DANGER!”

Scott the green man smiled a puppet smile. “You are right! When we see a stranger, we think ‘STRANGER DANGER’ and avoid them!” Cassie pulled her friend down.

“Strangers can be dangerous and-” the puppet was cut off when a man walked in the room. Just then everyone jumped up and yelled, “STRANGER DANGER!!!”

Mr. Miller laughed as he followed the stranger in. “Don’t worry kids, this is just the new superintendent.” the principal reassured.

“I am Superintendent Sfendenhiemerdufflesmirtzabelle, but you can call me Superintendent S. because no one here can pronounce my name.” The superintendent chuckled.

“I don’t trust him.” Charlie whispered into Cassie’s ear, “Come to my house after school, okay?” Cassie asked her mom and her mom nodded.

The little green man soon finished talking and rolled to the next class room.

“Now we are going to finish off the day with a relaxing movie.” Cassie stopped listening to Miss Teacher and thought about the new superintendent.

When the movie started, Cassie whispered to Charlie. “That superintendent is really creepy.” Charlie nodded, “He was looking at you and Will a lot, maybe he’s interested in nerds.” Cassie

The three smartest kids in Mrs. Spencer’s class were Will, Charlie, and Cassie. Even though Charlie acted like a goofball, he was still the third smartest student. Cassie and Will were different. They both got everything right and were slightly mysterious, but while Cassie was an overachiever, Will was more of an observer.

Charlie giggled. “Can we talk later? I wanna watch this.”

“FINE.” Cassie huffed.

When the movie was over, it was time to go home. Susan and Cassie rode with Charlie and his grandmother to their house.

 

 

 

The Dragon

 

An impatient enchantress paced her tower. It has been five years since her baby was taken and no matter how many people she tortured, she couldn’t distract herself from it. “I know!” she crowed, “The Royals sent a protector, so I must too! If she’s alive still.”

“I need someone that can make sure she gets raised right. Stealing candy, kicking babies, and torturing the innocent. Someone who can keep her on the right wrong path that’s the right path to being bad.” Evangeline said, “One of these books should have something about Guardians.”

Raising her hands, books flew off the shelf as she walked past. Most weaken as they age, but she strengthens, just as her daughter shall. “Aha!” she exclaimed, “The Guardians of Old, perfect!”

Flipping through the book as fast as lightning strikes, she stopped when she saw the title ‘Dark Guardians’. She laughed with excitement.

“Troll, no.” she criticized, scanning the page, “Goblin, ghost, witch, bear, snake, a bunny?! As if! Aha!”.

 

Forces from both near and far,

Find the one who can feast on a star,

Hot enough to burn a wagon,

O bring, o bring me the one they call THE DRAGON!!!

 

Red smoke filled the room, and a loud roar pierced the air.

“Stop showing off and turn into your human form!” Eva demanded, “Do it right now, Jason!” The dragon filled the room with smoke once more. This time when the smoke cleared, a man stood where the dragon was.

The man was tall, bald, and dressed in a red suit. “What do you want?” said the man-dragon. “I need a Guardian who can make sure my little girl is raised properly rotten.” Eva explained, “Under no circumstances should she be okay with being good, make her a brat, can you do that?” The man nodded. “She shouldn’t be too hard to find, since she is my blood” Eva continued, pricking her finger so the dragon could get the scent, “Also this blood from the Queen. If you find her brat, destroy it.”

After picking up the scent, the man wondered, “Where am I going?”

“The Realm of the Foretold, you’ve been there before, you know what to do.” With that, Evangeline summoned a cyclone. “Fly in, and you’ll be there in no time.”

The man nodded, and ran straight out of the window, and then The Dragon took flight directly into the darkness of the twister.

 

Mrs. Spencer is outside on her porch at 9 when a gust of wind blows her over. Looking up she sees a giant flying creature that lands in the nearby woods. “What was that!?” she yelled.

“Charlotte! Get in here!” her mother screamed, “You’ve got school tomorrow!” Annoyed, Charlotte Spencer obeyed her mother and came inside.”

 

 

Superintendent

 

“You have your own computer?” Cassie inquired. Charlie nodded and went on the Internet. He searched ‘Superintendent S.’ and couldn’t find anything.

“That’s because you need to type his name!” Cassie stated, “Gimme that!”

Cassie grabbed the keyboard and typed ‘Superintendent Sfendenhiemerdufflesmirtzabelle’ faster than anyone should be able to.

The only thing they found was that his first name is Jason. So they searched ‘Jason Sfendenhiemerdufflesmirtzabelle’.

“That’s weird,” Cassie said, “The only thing here is a fairy tale about a man-dragon. You don’t think…” Charlie shook his head, “No, it can’t be.”

Reading the tale, they shivered and found out he has a unique allergy. “If the superintendent is allergic to this then that’s proof he’s a dragon!” Cassie exclaimed, shaking Charlie, “All we need to do is spill water on him!”

The next day, the superintendent wasn’t there. He was never there.

By the last day of the school year, Cassie had forgotten all about The Dragon myth.

Cassie graduated kindergarten and first grade. Her, Charlie, and Will stayed in the same class all the way to middle school. They were always at the top of their class in everything.

At the end of their fifth grade year, they graduated from Abigail Elementary School. At the end of summer, they would be introduced to the world of Ezekiel Jacobs Middle School, also known as EJMS.

 

 

 

Second Revenge

 

Now ten years after her daughter’s birth, and five after she sent The Dragon, Evangeline sat on her throne. “Nothing, I’ve heard absolutely nothing.” she muttered, “The Court is six years away from opening the portal. That’s how long I have to wait? I need to see… See! My Seeing-Cloud! How could I have been so dumb!” She summoned the cloud, and an image of ten-year-old Cassie appeared. “She’s beautiful!” Eva cried, dispersing the cloud, “That’s it!” She vanished and appeared in King Albert’s throne room.

The Royal couple gasped, as the former king walked in. “You!” Evangeline growled. Oscar broke into a run in the other direction, but Eva slammed the door shut. “You!” she repeated, using her powers to hold Oscar against the closed door. “You are the one who took my daughter from me!” Eva screamed making Oscar cringe, “So I sent your grandson there! What you don’t know is I also sent The Dragon to kill him! But I have heard nothing! And I will never hear anything until six years from now!” Evangeline lifted her hand and twisted it. One quick movement, and Oscar Rindenton was dead.

Eva turned and faced the horrified King and Queen. “When I get my daughter back,” she warned, “and I rule over both realms, I am going to kill you all! One by one, plucking you off, leaving you, Albert, alive, to suffer for all ETERNITY!!!” Evangeline turned back and flew straight up, smashing through the ceiling, and back to her corner of Everlanon.

 

 

First Day At EJMS

 

Cassie was now old enough to walk to school by herself. She got to EJMS at 7:45 and waited until Charlie showed up. Charlie was now Cassie’s official best friend.

“Charlie!” Cassie called when he walked up the pathway, “Over here!”

“Hi! Where do we go?” Charlie asked. “Probably inside.” Cassie answered, pointing at the sign that read ‘STUDENTS REPORT INSIDE GYMNASIUM’. “Oh” Charlie chuckled.

Inside, all of the students gathered in the gym, and sat on the bleachers. At 8:00, Superintendent S. came out. “Dragon man!” Cassie whispered to Charlie, making him snicker. “Hello students,” he began, “As you know, I am the superintendent of this school district, and I would like to announce our new employees here at EJMS.”

“Mr. Braddock from the elementary school is the new head of our history department, and he will be teaching 6th grade Social Studies.” Superintendent S. continued, “Now, please welcome your new principal, Mrs. Spencer.”

Cassie gasped and nudged Charlie as they watched their Kindergarten teacher walk in the gym. “Welcome to your first day of school, this year!” she began, “First, anyone who didn’t get their schedule raise your hand.”

Everyone raised their hand.

“Oh,” Mrs. Spencer frowned, “Then Mr. Braddock and the others will hand them out as I talk.” She motioned for Mr. Braddock to hand out the schedules. “Once everyone gets their schedule, I will go over how the day is laid out, but first, rules” Mrs. Spencer smiled and continued to go over the rules. Cassie listened attentively, while old Miss Teacher went over rules such as cell phones, profanity, PDA, and dress code.

“Touching is not aloud,” Mrs. Spencer explained, “so if you have the sudden urge to go up and hug somebody, uh don’t.”

Finally, Cassie and Charlie got their schedules and they instantly compared them.

To their surprise, they had all the same classes! Though they were both happy on the outside, Charlie was even happier on the inside. He remembered in kindergarten, when he saw her pretty blonde hair. He thought it was so beautiful.

When Mrs. Spencer finished, she asked, “Does everyone have their schedule now?” Everyone nodded. “Okay, this is how the schedule works.” she began, “School is in session from eight in the morning until three in the afternoon. When you arrive, you will report to the gymnasium until the bell rings. You will then go to your locker and homeroom for ten minutes. You have four minutes between classes to get where you need to go, and you need to be in your seat for attendance once the late bell rings.” Mrs. Spencer took a breath and looked at her boss, who was currently watching her like a hawk. “Each of the eight periods is 45 minutes long, leaving the last 14 minutes of the day as study-time.” Mrs. Spencer elaborated.

How did she even get this job? She was never the disciplinary type. She was a Kindergarten teacher until the School Board decided to vote the current principal out, and her in.

What Mrs. Spencer didn’t know was that Mrs. Susan Smith was the head of the board, who suggested she replace the disgraced principal. This was because Mrs. Spencer was the only one who knew that Cassie was special. Once the rest of the board agreed, the superintendent was sent to promote her.

When she was told the news, she was in shock. She didn’t know what to do, so she accepted.

“Now everyone please report to your homeroom as we do a ten-minute rotation through your schedule. That means that every ten minutes, you will report to your next class, for your teacher to do a quick walk-through of the course.” Mrs. Spencer said, hoping they would understand. The bell rang and everyone went to their homerooms.

Cassie and Charlie had Mr. Braddock for their homeroom teacher. When they got to room 302, they sat next to each other and waited for the walk-through.

Cassie looked around. Some people she recognized, like Andrew and Will, but some she didn’t. “Hi!” she said to the girl next to her, “I’m Cassie!”

The girl turned. “I don’t care!” she replied mockingly, “Now don’t talk to me, got it?”

Cassie fumed, but Charlie calmed her.

When Mr. Braddock walked in, he already had a rivalry to deal with. “Okay class,” he began “let’s get you all into some assigned seats!” Over the summer, he watched a series about a middle schooler who spent a lot of time in history class, to study up on how history teachers act. He barely got the job, so he had to be really careful not to lose it.

“Everyone stand up!” he ordered, “Now at this here desk, I want Miss Cassandra Smith!” Mr. Braddock slapped the desk that was front and center. Still not sure of her secrets, he wanted to keep a close eye on her.

Cassie hopped up and walked over to the desk.

Moving to the next desk, he put William Braddock, and when he was done the seating chart was somewhat like this:

 

Alfred Stella Cassie Charlie George

Kathy Miles Will August Clara

Beth Brad Wade May Jim

Haley Justin Tom Henry Rose

Asia Nathaniel Macey Luke Martha

Missy

 

Impressed with his work, Mr. Braddock stepped back to get a better look. Perfect.

Meanwhile, Cassie was plotting. That awful girl was now sitting next to her. The only thing Cassie learned so far was that her enemy’s name was Stella Sanders. Once again, Charlie had to calm her down. He passed her a note that read ‘just ignore miss snobby preppy pants’. Cassie laughed.

“Passing notes, Miss Smith?” Mr. Braddock acknowledged, “Anything that funny should be shared, give it.” Cassie handed it over. Mr. Braddock read the note. “Her?” Mr. Braddock guessed, pointing at Stella. Stella perked up. Cassie nodded in agreement.

Mr. Braddock broke into laughter and threw the note away.

“What did it say?!” Stella squealed.

“Nothing that isn’t true,” Mr. Braddock sneered, “Oh, look, we are almost out of time, I guess everything else will have to wait until tomorrow!” The bell rang, signaling the students’ departure.

As Cassie stood, a trendy shark approached. “You better stay down, Lassie, or I will ruin you!” Stella snipped, “I can turn the whole school against you in a heartbeat! BTW, my Daddy’s the mayor, soooo, I could get your whole family on the NYC’s Most Hated List. Toodles!” Stella turned and knocked down Cassie’s books, and with a hair-whip, she was gone.

Cassie felt like ripping out that smug princess’s heart. Seeing her expression, Charlie helped her pick up her books and tried to calm her as usual. “I bet she’s just jealous because you have better looking hair.” Charlie whispered. Cassie faced him, “What?” “What?” Charlie repeated, “I just said no one could hate you, so don’t worry about her.” Cassie nodded suspiciously, “I guess.” Once they picked up her stuff, they headed to math class.

“Here we are, Room 247, Miss Hartenburg’s room!” Charlie announced. “WHAT!” Cassie gasped, “My mom said she was a janitor!” Cassie ran inside, and a confused Charlie followed.

“Aunt Linda?” Cassie called. “Cassie!” called a voice from the closet. A very round lady pounced into the open and posed. “Guess who’s your new math teacher!” she announced, “I’m so excited to be teaching my favorite niece my first year!” Linda shook Cassie’s head and then pushed her away, “But I’m supposed to be professional, so call me Miss Hartenburg or you’ll get detention!” She pointed at Cassie dramatically, and laughed. “I lost my Detention Slips on the bus!” she chuckled, “So I got these!” Miss Hartenburg held up a wooden board that had ‘I’m in TWUBBLE!’ engraved on it with a sad puppy. It had a string attached, and Miss Hartenburg hung it around her neck. Making a puppy-dog face she whimpered, “I’m in twubble.”

Cassie and Charlie laughed. Aunt Linda was the clown of the family. Literally, she was a Clown’s Apprentice in High School.

Cassie and Charlie took their seats and Cassie looked around. Good, no Stella.

“Sorry I’m late!” said a familiar voice. Stella.

Stella plopped down in the last seat, and smiled. She looked to her left and frowned. Ugh, that girl! What makes that Lassie think she can sit wherever she wants!

Miss Hartenburg, noticing the scowls, jumped up. “Let’s get some assigned seats!” she yipped, “Starting with you!” Miss Hartenburg scooted over to Stella. “Up you go!” she urged, “That’s it, you can sit WAAAAAY over here, and Cassie, you can sit all the way over there!”

After dragging Stella to her new seat, and putting Cassie in the opposite corner, she looked around. That’s good enough!

“In my class there is only one rule! Be nice!” she began, “This is math class, and I know that students, plus A LOT OF HOMEWORK, equals grumpy class.” Miss Hartenburg scooted over to Cassie, “So I am only going to give one homework assignment per week!”

The class cheered, and Miss Hartenburg smiled. There is no way anyone is going to prank her!

“The assignment is on Wednesdays, and quizzes are on Fridays.” she explained, “At the end of each unit, there is a summative. The summative might not be a paper test, so be ready.”

The class whispered. “Today is Wednesday, if you weren’t sure, so here’s your first assignment of the year!” Linda decreed, “Everyone bring in a cardboard cutout of a single digit number, 0-9, decorate it however you want.”

Cassie smirked. Of all the things, her aunt picks math! She was always more of an artsy person.

The bell rang and it was time to go to Room 186, for English with Mr. Calski. They walked in, and this time Cassie waited until the teacher started talking before she assumed that Stella wasn’t there. Score! No Stella!

Calski handed out a packet that went over everything he needed to tell the class, and continued to write his letter.

Cassie read her packet quick, and started whispering to Charlie. “This class sounds boring!” she mumbled. Just then the door flew open. “Mr. Calski, please go to the superintendent’s office now.” the secretary demanded. Cassie looked at the English teacher. He seemed nervous.

Mr. Edward Calski stood up and walked out of the room, knowing he was going to get fired. He grabbed his book and walked out. Cassie never saw him again.

The bell rang to go to third period. By then, everyone forgot Mr. Calski left.

 

“Back to Braddock’s.” Charlie chanted, “History!” Charlie loved history, it was his favorite subject. To him it was a magical mystery puzzle, and he loved magic. Especially when it was in fairy tales. Another reason for his love of history was his love of fairy tales. Oh how he wished magic was real!

 

They got to Braddock’s room and he was already writing on the chalkboard. It read ‘SIT WHERE YOU WERE ASSIGNED IN HOMEROOM IF YOU ARE IN MY HOMEROO’. Cassie watched as he wrote a big ‘M’.

Cassie and Charlie hustled to their seats, with Cassie begging to be as lucky as she was last period.

“I’m back!” Miss Snobby Preppy Pants announced, “I’m like totes excited for history!”.

She waltzed past Charlie, patting him on the head and then she saw Cassie. “Ugh.” she snorted, as she sat down.

Mr. Braddock paced back and forth the room. “History.” he stated, “What is it?” Cassie, Charlie, Stella, and Will raised their hands.

“Stella?” Mr. Braddock chose.

“History,” she began, “is like the past, and stuff like that. And BTW, Winston Churchill was totes adorbs!” “Sure, let’s go with that.” Mr. Braddock sneered.

“History is the past, and everything leading up to the present. What I just said is now History, which is why I am not using the book.” he continued, “I declare this History department free of books, instead we will use the internet!”

He said it as if it was unheard of. It was 2011, and schools all over already had kindergarteners on computers. Granted, this school district was behind, but still, he seemed too excited.

The bell rang, and Mr. Braddock ended his internet speech, and frantically handed out papers of what to expect.

 

“So it’s science next?” Cassie asked. “Yep,” Charlie agreed, “right across the hall.” Stella pushed past them and walked to the room.

“Earth Science” Cassie read, “Hmmmm…”

Charlie studied Cassie. He loved when she got all ‘thinky’.

On every desk was a sign with someone’s name on it, and each desk was paired with another. Cassie dawdled to the one with her name, and read the sign. ‘Garrett Sowards’ it read.

Mr. Sowards strolled in and slid next to Cassie. ‘Whoa. He’s cool!’ she thought.

Charlie watched Cassie put her elbow on the desk, and rest her head on her hand, while she was going gaga for the new dude.

Suddenly, he felt a hand on his shoulder. The hand swirled him around. When he stopped, Stella Sanders was inches from his face. “Hello Boo,” she teased, “Looks like we’re buddies now.” ‘Oh no’ Charlie thought as Stella held his hand. Her hair was nowhere as soft as Cassie’s, not to mention she’s a popular snob. Charlie tried not to enjoy the fact that a girl was flirting with him.

He looked at Cassie, and then the door. Where was Dr. Harrison?!

 

Just then Dr. Harrison burst through the door with 2 minutes left to use. “Here are the papers, take them and I’ll tell you stuff tomorrow!” Dr. Harrison gasped. She just ran across the school. Who cares if your dog has a rash? She had spent eight minutes trying to get the secretary to leave her alone.

“I’m not a vet, I don’t know!” she had said, but the lady wouldn’t listen.

 

What was Cassie going to say? She had to say something. “Hey.” she said, acting cool. Garrett nodded. ‘He knows I exist!!!!’ Cassie thought. While Cassie was trying to figure out the name of their third child, she flipped her hair. What was that?! Garrett looked at her. “Nice hair, wanna hang sometime?” he said. Was he kidding? Of course! “Sure.” she replied. ‘He’s hot.’ she thought.

The bell snapped her from daydreaming about their retirement plan. Charlie leaped to Cassie. Stella fell forward. She was leaning on Charlie.

“Anything new?” Charlie asked. “Tell you at lunch?” Cassie suggested. Charlie nodded, “Sure.”

 

Angry Boss, Hungry Dragon

 

The old principal, Mr. Bones, begged the superintendent for his job back.

“I told you,” the superintendent insisted, “Mrs. Spencer is the principal now. You were awful. Now get out before I make a rash decision!”

Mr. Bones laughed. “What are you going to do? Fire me?” he chuckled, “Call the cops?”

Superintendent S. smiled, “You’re right, I can’t do either of those things. But I can do something.” “What?” sneered the former principal. “Mr. Bones, you make me angry.” Superintendent S. explained, “Do you know what I do when I am angry? I eat.”

Mr. Bones laughed, “Then I’ll leave you to it!” As Mr. Bones turned around, Superintendent S. pounced over his head and blocked the door. Mr. Bones fell back. “The office is big, why are you scared?” Jason S. teased, “Mr. Bones,”. Jason huffed out a cloud of smoke. “I’M HUNGRY!” he roared as the room filled with smoke. Nobody heard the old principal’s screams as The Dragon scorched the ceiling and launched his gigantic mouth forward.

 

The Superintendent was waiting for Edward Calski outside his office as the smoke rolled out. “What happened here?” Calski questioned. “Oh nothing, just a small fire.” Jason grinned, “Walk with me.”

The two walked outside and through the city. “Where are we going?” Mr. Calski questioned. “Don’t you like Central Park?” Jason inquired, “A nice, big place, for us to, talk.”

 

They walked through the woods and sat down on a bench. “So why did you want to see me?” Calski asked. “Let’s just say, I’m all fired up,” he explained, “I saw you still didn’t turn in your lesson plans, which qualifies for termination. I am going to FIRE you” “I know.” Calski admitted, standing up. “SIT DOWN, MR. CALSKI!!!!” Jason roared, “NOW!!!”

Calski sat on the ground and took a double take. Is that smoke coming from his mouth? “Wh-wh-what?” Edward Calski stuttered as his angry boss clouded up the park. Calski heard a growl from the cloud, and gasped as a dragon snout flew at him, swallowing him whole.

 

 

Lunch And Later

 

Cassie and Charlie sat down at a table near Garrett’s. “I am hanging with him after school!” Cassie squealed. “I take it you like him?” Charlie asked sarcastically. Cassie looked at him and said “Duh.”

Cassie groaned as Stella slid in the seat next to Charlie and pet his head. “Is something wrong Char-Char?” she cooed, “You wanna sit at the popular table with me and my girls?” Charlie moved to the other side of Cassie. “Nah” he rejected. Stella blew him a kiss and sashayed away. Cassie caught the kiss and ripped it in half. “Hey, that was mine!” Charlie joked, making Cassie roll her eyes.

Cassie stood up and walked over to her pride, Garrett. “Hey,” she called, whipping her hair, “when do you wanna hang?” Cassie told Charlie they were hanging tonight, when in reality she had no idea. “Sometime,” he answered. “Cool” Cassie smiled, and went back to Charlie.

Meanwhile, Charlie watched Cassie flirt with Garrett and sighed. When he saw the hair-whip, he almost fainted.

Watching her sweet-cheeks, Stella realized that Charlie loves Cassie’s hair. It was silky and smooth. ‘Stop it!’ she thought. Stella whipped out her phone and texted her dad a picture of Cassie and a message reading, ‘If you love me u’ll have my hair xactly like that by 2morrow!’ Within seconds, she received a message saying ‘whatever you want, I’ll send for a hairstylist from Milan to make you better than that!’ Stella smiled. Tomorrow, Chella will be what everyone is talking about.

 

After lunch, it was time for gym and Charlie and Will headed to the boys’ locker room, while Cassie and Stella headed to the girls’.

In the boys’ locker room, Coach Maxwell Boyd went over the rules. “First off, boys’ locker room is for boys only, and girls’ locker room is for girls only.” Everyone nodded, while Charlie daydreamed about Cassie’s hair.

Even though he thought about it most of all, it wasn’t his favorite feature. He loved her green eyes, and freckles, but her personality was the best. To him, if Stella Sanders wanted him, the only way would be to morph into Cassie, and make herself act like Cassie, and, well, be Cassie.

Charlie hoped Coach Boyd wasn’t saying anything important because he was not listening at all.

To Charlie’s relief, Coach ended up handing out a sheet that said everything he missed.

 

On the other side, Coach Ava Boyd, Coach Maxwell’s wife, went over the same things, only in her own way. She handed out the papers before starting. “First thing’s first, no boys in here, and no girls over there, understood?” Everyone agreed, and Mrs. Coach went through the ins and outs of gym class while everyone listened attentively.

Everyone except for Stella who was hoping the ‘Chella’ t-shirts got done before tomorrow. She’d never had any trouble getting a boy before, but Charlie was different. Apparently you can’t buy everyone. She looked at Cassie’s hair, studying it, trying to figure out how she got it like she did. It’s no wonder why Charlie likes her, the hair is so mesmerizing!

Just before the bell rang, Stella plucked a hair from Cassie’s head and shoved it in a little bag to send to her Daddy’s private lab for testing.

Charlie was waiting for Cassie outside to go to band together. Stella scowled, Cassie had band too?!

“Charles?” Stella called, “Wait for me!” “Faster!” he whispered, causing a snicker from Cassie.

Stella eventually caught up to them, somehow picking up her own entourage on the way. Pushing Cassie away, Stella shoved herself under Charlie’s arm to cuddle. Charlie shot a look to Cassie saying he’ll just roll with it. Charlie felt bad whenever he made someone upset, and he definitely wasn’t going to disappoint the audience.

Riley and Miley were their names, the classic background entourage type. With their big eyes, and hopeful smiles, Charlie would probably cry if he let them down.

Cassie knew this about him, and thought it was one of his more attractive features.

They got to band just in time to grab the last few seats. Stella tried to sit on Charlie’s lap, but he didn’t allow it.

Stella smiled. Wait till tomorrow when she has better hair, then he’ll fall head over heels for her.

Mrs. Mary Appleyard walked up to the front of the room. “I’m so excited to see so many new faces this year.” she announced with glee, “With all these budget cuts, I’m so excited to see any faces this year!”

She continued to explain the situation when someone yelled “Appleyard! Move on!” Agreeing with the outspoken student, she handed out papers.

“The band has two concerts a year, that are held in the auditorium with the orchestra and choir.” she explained, “The winter concert will be first and will be held on the tenth of December at 7:00PM. The next one is the spring concert, and will be held on May 23rd at 7:00PM. We will go over the music tomorrow, so bring your instruments. If you don’t own your own, you can use one of the school’s.”

Appleyard checked her watch, and said, “That’s all I got, so talk quietly amongst yourselves. If you need me, I’ll be in my office.”

Five minutes left, a lot could happen in five minutes.

Stella rubbed Charlie’s back, and Charlie once again tried not to enjoy it. He didn’t want Stella to know, but she was actually getting through to him. He was warming up to all of the touches and such, but he resisted, for Cassie.

Cassie was investigating what Stella saw in Charlie. He wasn’t that bad looking, but he was no Garrett Sowards. And he did have a killer personality. With his side-swish black hair-do and his big bright blue eyes that Cassie used to dream of for hours, okay, maybe he did have a nice face. Cassie wasn’t going to admit he was attractive, but Stella did.

Anyway, Charlie didn’t like her as anything more than a friend, even if Stella was making her curious.

Stella hugged Charlie. How come Cassie hasn’t claimed him yet, it’s obvious he likes her! Stella knew all the girls were checking him out, so she made her move. No one will mess with a boy that Stella has her sights on. Stella still couldn’t believe how cute he was, OMG, his eyes! Bright blue and adorable!

As Stella tousled his hair, Charlie wondered what it would be like to call her his girlfriend. She has long blonde hair, pretty blue eyes, like his, and was very stylish. Today she wore a loose black shirt with the word ‘POP’ written on it in big colorful block letters, a rainbow skirt, and leggings that lead straight down to a pair of black boots. Definitely trendy.

Stella held Charlie’s hand, and he didn’t pull away! Either she was breaking through, or he gave up trying. She didn’t care.

Cassie saw Stella and Charlie holding hands and fumed inside.

Seeing the look on his friend’s face, he pulled away.

Seeing Cassie as the reason for the pull back, Stella flew into a rage, inside her head. SHE KNEW THERE WAS NO WAY ANY GIRL COULD RESIST CHARLIE!!! CASSIE WAS TOTS JELLY AND THERE IS NO WAY THAT SHE WAS GOING TO STEAL CHARLIE FROM HER!!!

The bell rang, snapping all three back to reality. “Come on Charlie,” Cassie beckoned, “time for study hall with Mr. Braddock.” Stella perked up, “I have that too! We can all walk together!” “Yay…” Cassie sighed. Stella grinned and sighed, Charlie would be hers.

 

They arrived to Mr. Braddock’s room in the nick of time. Stella kept stopping in the hallways to take selfies with Charlie. Cassie would sometimes photobomb them out of spite.

There were ten people in the mini study hall, four of which were Will, Cassie, Stella, and Charlie. Mr. Braddock tried to ignore the fact that the friend of Cassie was now being snuggled to death by her sworn enemy. Children. “No touchy!” Mr. Braddock reminded Stella as if she was going to listen. Instead she handed him a fifty. “Yeah, okay.” he muttered.

Mr. Braddock shoved Cassie in between Stella and Charlie so they could pay attention and not start making-out or doing something else against school policy.

“This class is for studying,” Mr. Braddock announced, “So always bring work.” Since that was all he had, he gave about 9 minutes as free time. Hey, what could possibly go wrong in 9 minutes.

 

Cassie glanced at Charlie from time to time. She did, anyway, until she saw Garrett Sowards. Then she just rested her head and stared.

Garrett had short, blonde hair, and brown eyes. He wore a grey jacket over a white shirt, jeans, and some really expensive looking shoes. He also had some stylish sunglasses on his head that made Cassie weak in the knees. She knew it was weird, but she had a thing for trendy eyewear.

 

While Cassie was going loony over Garrett’s glasses, Charlie was studying everything he loved about her. What he didn’t love was her obsession with Mr. Cool Guy. Sure, he was trendy like Stella, but he was probably the bran from Charlie’s breakfast cereal.

 

During this time period, Stella was still wondering when Charlie would come through. He was sups hot, and tots adorbs. Yeah, his style could use an update, but she could fix that with a couple thousand from Daddy’s private vault. Oh she loved being spoiled!

 

After some time in their thoughts, the last bell rang, and they got to spend the rest of their time in homeroom chatting with friends. This was a simple ‘catch-up with your friends after summer break’ thing.

 

Charlie got a cell phone a few weeks ago, so it was no surprise to Cassie when he pulled it out to check his hair. When Stella saw it, she slid really close and without taking it from his hands, put her number in his phone. To top it off, she did something that left everyone speechless. She let go of the phone, and kissed Charlie right on the cheek!

 

 

The Charlie Competition Begins

 

“I want a cell phone!” Cassie blurted out at dinner. Susan and James shot each other a look. “What’s this sudden interest in a phone?” Mr. Smith asked. “I wanna keep in touch with my friends.” Cassie answered innocently. It seemed like everyone in her grade had a phone but her.

The only reason she hadn’t gotten a phone yet was because her parents had assumed that she didn’t want one, because she never asked. In order to act parent-like, Susan looked at her daughter, “Are you responsible enough for a phone?” Cassie nodded excitedly.

“Okay, then, let’s go!” Susan exclaimed, getting up from the table. In all honesty, she really wanted Cassie to have a phone. That way, Susan could lengthen the leash without losing control. Susan was heading out the door, when Cassie stood up.

They decided to take a cab to the local electronic store. There, they picked out a phone with ease, and had Cassie on the Smiths’ phone plan in two minutes flat. The first thing they did afterwards was visit the Myers house. Cassie popped in and ran up to Charlie’s room. Charlie was lying on his bed when she ran in and scared the living daylights out of him. “Guess what?!” she yelled, making Charlie roll out of bed. “Ooh, are you okay?” Cassie giggled. Charlie nodded and stood up. “What’s so important?” he asked, rubbing his head. Cassie held up her phone and smiled.

Charlie grabbed his phone. He couldn’t wait for the day when he could have Cassie in his contact list. Taking a picture of Cassie, he made a new contact and gave her the phone for her number. Cassie eagerly typed in the digits. Cassie then gave her phone to Charlie.

“It’s off.” Charlie stated. Cassie looked at her feet, “They never told me how to turn it on.” Charlie laughed and showed her how. He then put his number in her phone and took a selfie for the picture. Cassie sniggered when Charlie took more selfies, admiring the camera quality.

Cassie was secretly saddened when Charlie stopped filling up her phone’s memory.

 

While Cassie and Charlie were hanging out, Stella was in the middle of her hair appointment with the famous hairstylist, Devé Déon. “Is it as smooth as silk?” Stella questioned. “I know I’m a world-renowned stylist,” Déon admitted, “but hair takes time!” Stella groaned and had her assistant check to see if the lab got anything with Cassie’s hair.

“Good news, Miss Sanders,” Mr. Celtics snipped, “the cosmetic company came up with an overnight hair remedy with that sample that can be sold to make millions!” Stella squealed, “Good, now gimme some!” Stella jumped down and followed her butler, leaving Ms. Déon alone with her thoughts.

An hour later, Stella had Cassie Hair Treatment thoroughly rubbed into her hair. This will have Charlie grappling at her feet! The treatment was a liquid, gold in color that shined in the light. The cosmetic team scraped dried hair products residue from the very bottom of the hair. That’s when they saw the DNA. They took the hair products and made an exact copy using a secret technique. By doing so, they were able to produce a whole gallon of hair liquid. Geneticists then took the DNA, and replicated it as well. The sample was unique, with extra instructions for hair-coding. By amplifying the instructions, and mixing it with the hair liquid, they made Miracle Hair. In order to test it and still get it to Stella in time, they used experimental time travel technology to go forward and test the product for ten years. They then went back to 2011, with the finished product. Unfortunately, the tech burnt out on the way back, so no more timely manner.

Stella went to bed that night with happy thoughts.

The next morning, Cassie got up to a text message from Charlie that read, ‘C u @ scool’. Cassie giggled, and texted ‘C u soon!’. Cassie skipped around to get ready for all of the learning. She got ready, grabbed her cardboard cutout of the number 6, and ran out the door.

Stella woke up with a smile. She felt her hair. Luscious. She had breakfast in bed and went to the bathroom to get ready. If she was going to see Charlie before Cassie, she was going to have to be fast.

Charlie dawdled outside the school, waiting for Cassie. Then, he saw it, a big, pink glittery cardboard cutout of the number 1 flying towards him. Stella dropped it down, revealing the most beautiful, blonde hair he’d ever seen. Hair-whip, hair-whip she went, showing it off. Charlie just stared, and stared, and stared.

Twenty minutes later, Cassie ran up to Charlie, still mesmerized by Stella’s stellar hair. By now, Stella had been holding Charlie’s hand for about nineteen minutes. Proud as a peacock, Stella turned to Cassie and teased, “Hi Cassie! How was your morning?”

Stella actually spent twenty minutes herself, sitting at her vanity, brushing, and petting her hair. It was hypnotic. Stella lost track of the number of people who ran into poles, walls, or other people while looking at her hair on the way to school. Some guy rear-ended a taxi!

She loved it too, long, flowing blonde hair that gleamed with every move. When Cassie had the best hair in school, Stella was a close second. Now it was vice versa. Charlie finally snapped out of it and saw Cassie scowling at him.

“Hi!” Charlie yipped to Cassie, “Did you see Stella’s hair?” Charlie stuck his foot in his mouth.

Yeah Cassie noticed her hair! How could anyone not! She wasn’t going to blame Charlie for getting lost in that silky smoothness. She had to take a double-take at first. You know, the kind of double-take that takes five minutes. Luckily, they all got to school early. Cassie studied it, and wondered how? A few times she reached out to touch it, but she stopped herself. She snapped out of it when she saw Charlie twirl it. It was when she shot him a look that he noticed.

“I mean,” Charlie stuttered. Cassie shoved him playfully and smiled, “Whatever.”

Stella wanted to scream! Charlie would be hers at the end of the day, if nothing went wrong.

No, no, no, no, no, no, no! Charlie was not falling for the enemy! Cassie would lose it! He needs to do something fast, it was only the second day of middle school. He needs to reject her!

Cassie knew Charlie was in a bunch, he was too nice to reject her, even if she told him to. Stella was popular, so even if he was mean enough, they would be exiled. Forever, a couple of despised geeks. Cassie wasn’t going to let that happen! But she didn’t want Stella to get him.

What if another girl took him? One who wouldn’t kick Cassie out of his life. She knew it! It was time for Charlie to get a girlfriend.

 

 

My Sweet Baby

 

Evangeline sat in her tower, and for some reason, she started to recite a chant.

 

How could this happen to me?

That stupid, now dead, king!

He took my newborn, Cassie,

And then, sent his son, to buy a ring!

 

My sweet baby,

How could this have come?

My sweet baby,

And now, I’m done!

 

They think they’ve seen the last of me,

They think I’m not coming back,

They speak of me, and disagree:

Boy, she never had anything to lack!

 

But my sweet baby,

Never in my arms again,

My sweet baby!

Turning out to be without a sin!

 

She should’ve been nasty,

Most definitely bad,

Kicking over the royalty,

And then taking all that they had!

 

Oh, my sweet baby!

Growing up to disappoint!

My dear sweet baby!

Never known to make her point!

 

“I’ve had it!” Eva screamed, throwing a chair at her mirror.

 

She never got to ask,

‘Mommy, how do I be like you?’

I MUST FINISH THIS TASK!

AND GET HER BACK TO-

 

She walked forward, and said “Take control of this petty place.”

 

OH WITH MY SWEET BABY!!!

COMING OUT OF THE BLUE!!!

WITH MY SWEET, SWEET BABY——

THERE’S NOTHING I CAN’T DO!!!!

 

When she cut out, she threw a fireball out the window. Hopefully, she hit someone.

 

 

Sky

 

As if it was destiny, Cassie bumped into the perfect match for Charlie on their way to class. Letting Charlie continue walking, Cassie stayed behind to help the girl.

She had brown hair, and light blue eyes. Her skin was as white as snow, and she reminded Cassie of a fairy tale. “I’m so sorry,” the girl with the glasses and freckles apologized, even though Cassie bumped into her. “You don’t have to apologize,” Cassie admitted, “It was my fault.” The girl just shook her head and handed Cassie her books. “Here you go,” she offered. Cassie thanked her and asked her name.

“My name Skyler Gledhill, but most people call me Sky.” she answered, “What’s yours?” Cassie introduced herself. “Do you know my friend Charlie?” Sky nodded her head, “Of course! Everyone does, he’s on the list of the Top Ten Cutest Guys in school!” Sky sighed, “He’s number 1 in my eyes.”

Cassie couldn’t believe it! Was there anyone in school who didn’t think he was attractive?

“How would you like it if I introduced you?” Cassie offered. To her surprise, she shook her head. Sky warned, “He’s taken, so I have to keep my distance. Haven’t you heard of ‘Chella’? It’s Charlie and Stella’s ship name.”

Cassie corrected the innocent girl. “Trust me, Charlie’s single.” Cassie explained, “You want to meet him?” Sky nodded excitedly, “If you could get Charlie to notice me, we’d be best friends forever!” Cassie smiled. This was going to be easier than she thought.

After a short chat, Cassie found out Skyler had English, math, study hall, band, and lunch with Cassie and Charlie. “Find us at lunch,” Cassie invited, “and ‘Chyler’ will be the next big thing for the next fifty years!” Skyler squealed silently.

Cassie ran into homeroom at the last second and sat between Stella and Charlie making google eyes at each other. There’s no way Cassie is going to let that happen. Mr. Braddock took attendance and the announcements came on. Pledge, news, and lunch. Cassie didn’t listen. Her brain was busy with her Charlie plan, Garrett Sowards, and Stella’s hair.

Meanwhile, Stella was counting down to lunch, when Charlie should make his move. ‘Chella’ forever.

‘Chella for never, Chyler forever’ Cassie thought.

After Mr. Braddock finished attendance, he assigned everyone a locker and lock, and complimented Stella, “Nice hair.”

Everyone put their stuff in their lockers and got what they needed.

Stella brushed her hair. She still couldn’t believe it! It was if the Miracle Hair was magic! Stella felt her phone vibrate. She got a text from her Daddy. The text read ‘MIRACLE HAIR IS SELLING FOR A MILLION DOLLARS PER TREATMENT, ROYALS EVERYWHERE ARE BUYING OUR PRODUCT, WE ARE GOING TO BE BILLIONAIRES!!!!’ Stella smiled. Sharing with foreign people for billions of dollars wasn’t that bad. She imagined her and Charlie traveling the world. Paris, Madrid, Venice! Mrs. Stella Myers had a nice ring to it.

Cassie took the extra notebook from her locker and wrote the words ‘Operation Middle School’ inside. That notebook will be Cassie’s official planner to make sure she thrived.

They got to Miss Hartenburg’s room and put their numbers on their desk. Cassie saw Sky sitting directly behind Charlie. She was staring at the back of his head. Cassie laughed.

Miss Hartenburg scooted to the front of the room with miles of string hanging from her. “Everyone gets a string to make your number wearable,” she announced with excitement, and proceeded to give everyone yarn.

Once everyone was wearing their numbers, Miss Hartenburg picked five students to come to the front. She picked Cassie, Charlie, Skyler, Rose, and Jimmy, giving her the numbers 6, 9, 8, 3, and 7. Putting them in that order she said “69,837.” Miss Hartenburg walked to behind Rose and put her hands on her shoulders. “What place value is Rose in?” she asked. Will raised his hand, and after being called on, answered, “Rose, number 3, is in the tens place.” Miss Hartenburg smiled, and nodded, “Correct.” She asked the same question with everyone else. Once she was out of numbers, she switched some students out and made the number 67,352,097 and did the same thing as before.

When Cassie was allowed to sit, she whipped out her notebook and flipped to the second page and wrote a note to Charlie.

‘You are going to have a girlfriend by lunch, turn around and trust me.’

When Charlie was on his way to his seat, Cassie slipped the note into his hand.

 

Why did Cassie hand him a note? He turned around like the note said and saw a smiling face. “Hi!” she greeted, “I’m Skyler.” Was Cassie setting him up!? If that made her happy, then he’ll take it! The girl was adorable, so it wasn’t that big of a sacrifice. He smiled and gave Cassie a thumbs up.

 

Stella watched as Charlie flirted with the nicest girl in school and growled.

The next few classes went in a similar way, Charlie flirted with Skyler when he could to impress Cassie, who was trying to make sure Stella didn’t become ‘Chella’.

 

Cassie pulled Charlie to their regular table and called Skyler over before Stella was able to sit. Stella blew in Cassie’s face and stormed off, leaving Cassie with Charlie and Sky.

 

“So, Charlie,” Cassie began, “Do you have anything to ask Sky?”

 

What was he supposed to ask her? Charlie panicked inside. If he messed this up, not only would he disappoint Cassie, but he would definitely fall for Stella, and who knows what would become of his and Cassie’s relationship?

Seeing Charlie’s panic face, she continued, “Maybe you should start dating a smart girl, to get your brain running.”

 

Sky was getting fidgety. Was Cassie really getting her a date with Charlie Myers!

 

Charlie got it! “Sky, would you want to go on a date with me?” Sky nodded excitedly, “Yes, Charlie, I would love to!”

Cassie clapped, “Why don’t you to have a picnic in Central Park. I’ll pack it!” Charlie agreed and held Sky’s hand, making Sky all loopy.

From that point forward, Cassie tried to keep them together, while Stella tried to break them up.

 

 

EJMS Student Council

 

About a week later, the student council opened up elections for the student council offices. They were searching for candidates for President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Whoever became President of the EJMS Student Council would have a massive influence over the whole school.

Cassie didn’t think about it, that is, until Stella Sanders signed up to run for president.

 

“There is no way that I am going to let Stella have that kind of power!” Cassie ranted. Charlie calmed her down. “Then run against her,” Charlie suggested, “I’m running for Vice President, and Sky is running for Treasurer.”

Cassie smiled, “You bet I am running for president!” Cassie marched directly from study hall to the office to sign up.

 

The next day, an announcement was made. “The candidates for the EJMS Student Council are as follows:

Treasurer: Alfred Hitchfelt, Cory Snider, and Skyler Gledhill

 

Secretary: Riley Alicia, and Henry Boyd

 

Vice President: Charles Myers, Missy Norman, Alice Curtis, and Garrett Sowards

 

And President: Stella Sanders, William Braddock, and Cassandra Smith!

 

Best of luck to everyone!”

 

When it was official, posters popped up all over school. Some read slogans like ‘Stellar Stella for President’, ‘Charlie for Vice’, and ‘Fly Sky High for Sky for Treasurer’.

Cassie took the campaign seriously. She put up a website called www.votecassie.com to advertise and track her followers. She had buttons made that said ‘Vote President Cassie’. She also made shirts she handed out for free that had ‘Vote 4 Cassie, and you’ll B happy!’ written on them.

Meanwhile, Stella handed out golden vanilla cupcakes with her name written on them in pink frosting.

Will, on the other hand, was just telling people to vote for him.

Cassie really didn’t care if she won. She just wanted Stella to lose. That was why she also endorsed Will. It helped that Charlie was endorsing her, because that got her lots of female followers.

The male followers, however, were all leaning towards Stella, because every time she talked about the election, she threw in a hair-whip or hair-twirl.

Halfway through, Sky did a mini Cassie campaign of her own, and being the nicest girl in school, she was enough to tip the odds in favor of Cassie.

Stella was furious. She had her Daddy’s marketing group go all out on campaigning for her. Commercials, prints, clothes, and even an airplane with a banner that said ‘STELLAR STELLA!!!’

Seeing how fierce the running for president had gotten, Mrs. Spencer made an executive decision. She disqualified both Cassie and Stella from the election, making William Braddock the automatic winner.

As for the other offices, they went as follows:

 

Treasurer – Skyler Gledhill

Secretary – Riley Alicia

Vice President – Garrett Sowards

 

President Will suggested to the council that they rename the offices.

“To what exactly?” Mrs. Spencer questioned. “I think we should rename them in honor of the medieval time period,” he explained, “So Skyler would stay as the Treasurer, but Riley would be the Scribe, instead of Secretary, and Garrett would become the royal advisor, leaving me, as the King!”

Mrs. Spencer smiled and had the council vote. They all voted in favor and King William thanked them for listening.

Cassie sighed, “At least it isn’t Stella!” Charlie chuckled and put his arm around his girlfriend.

 

Stella sat at the table next to theirs. Ugh, Charlie, why did he like Skyler so much? She wasn’t trendy, and her hair wasn’t near as soft as Stella’s, or even Cassie’s. She was nice, and smart, and that’s it. And maybe she was a little bit adorable, but everyone thought she was adorable! Stella growled.

 

 

 

First Band Concert

 

“Attention all bandos,” Appleyard announced, “tomorrow is December 10th, which is concert day!” They’ve all been practicing since the second day of school, and Mary Appleyard was pretty confident that they had all of the songs down pat. They had three band songs, one of which gave Cassie a flute solo, since she was by far the best flutist in the band.

Ever since the solo went to Cassie, Stella was furious. What was so special about that girl? She somehow had the ability to ruin Stella’s life! First Charlie, then student council, and now she infected band with her awful happiness killing disease!

They finished practicing their big finale, and packed up with five minutes to spare. As usual, Appleyard went to her office to ‘work’.

Cassie looked at Charlie and Sky and smiled. Sky was adorable, and she didn’t steal Charlie from Cassie. Cassie looked at Stella, who was scowling at the couple, and laughed.

“What’s so funny, Lassie?” Stella hissed. “Nothing” Cassie insisted, infuriating Stella even more. “Don’t act dumb!” Stella tested, “Your arrogance doesn’t allow it! You walk around thinking you are soooo smart, when in reality, you’re just pulling people’s legs and-”

“Shut up!” Cassie warned, “You have no room to talk, anyway, Miss Snobby Preppy Pants!!”

Stella gasped as Charlie ran up to Cassie to calm her. He knew Cassie, and he knew that if she went any further, Stella might get hurt. Cassie sat down and started humming band music to relax.

Stella just walked up to Charlie, and to Sky’s dismay, she kissed him on the cheek. Charlie just wiped it off. If she ever wanted Charlie to herself, she needed to be nice.

 

Cassie went home and practiced for two hours straight. By 5:30 she had enough confidence to call herself ready. Just then her phone rang. It was a text from Charlie. He sent her a selfie of him and Skyler ready for the concert.

Cassie looked at Charlie’s face and was a little sad, but hey, anyone is better than Stella.

Putting on her lavender dress, Cassie packed up her flute and got ready to leave. Even though the concert didn’t start until 7, report time for the band geeks was 6:15. Cassie grabbed her flute and music and ran out the door, which was too hard to do in her heels, so she just walked.

When Cassie arrived, Charlie and Skyler were cuddling outside the school. “Come on you two love-birds.” Cassie called, “You don’t want to miss the concert!”

 

Inside the band room, the students frantically practiced. As everyone finished practicing, Appleyard went to the front of the room. “This is the final hour, the fate of the universe rests in your-” Appleyard paused, “Sorry, wrong speech.”

“You all have practiced so hard,” she continued, “I have faith that we can knock the audience’s socks off!” The band cheered. “Now let’s show them how it’s done!” Appleyard shouted. Everyone cheered again.

Stella growled when Cassie walked by.

Cassie sat down and started getting out her flute. It used to be her mom’s. Packed neatly inside a leather-covered case, the flute came in pieces that were gold and shiny. Cassie carefully assembled the instrument, tuned, and then performed a perfect B-flat scale. Charlie and Sky clapped for her. Stella huffed at her. “Show-off.” she said under her breath.

It was almost time for the band to go out, when it happened. Cassie started to get nervous. For the first time in her life, Cassie was scared. Scared of embarrassment, scared of messing up, of making the band look bad.

Stella noticed this, and decided that it was time for some revenge. “Nervous Cassie?” she teased, “Oh, well I like tots hope you don’t mess up. With all of those eyes on you, nerve-wracking, isn’t it?” Cassie’s stomach twisted.

“Stop it, Stella!” Charlie demanded. “Aww, Char-Char,” Stella cooed, “I’m just reminding her how important it is that she gets!”

Cassie felt like puking. She’s never been on stage before! Stella was right! Her solo! Oh no, Cassie’s solo was in the first song! She wasn’t ready, she wasn’t ready, she wasn’t ready!

 

Stella smiled as she followed the panicking Cassie onto the stage. This was going to be sups amaze!

As the band slowly walked on the stage, Cassie felt the eyes piercing into her soul. She sat in her chair and put the flute on her lips. The first song started. Toot toot went the flute. Cassie couldn’t concentrate. She just kept playing on, slightly out of tune.

The brass cut out. Percussion stopped playing. It was almost time for Cassie’s solo! Stella took a break and whispered, “Don’t mess up!”

The rest of the instruments cut out and there was silence. Appleyard mouthed the word ‘NOW’. “Oh no!” Stella teased. Cassie felt it, that feeling you have when everyone is looking at you, and no one else. Thousands of eyes stared at her, the spotlight making her sweat.

In an instant, Cassie dashed off the stage, dropping her flute with a clang. Charlie ran off after her, and Sky followed behind. “Cassie!” they shouted.

Cassie ran outside and stepped out of her heels. They only slowed her down. Cassie ran and ran, leaving a trail of tears behind her.

 

When Mr. and Mrs. Smith heard the door slam, they speed-walked out of the auditorium, and found one of Cassie’s friends with Cassie’s heels. She looked at them and said, “Charlie told me to wait with the shoes until you came out.”

“They went that way.” Sky said pointing down the block. “Cassie’s running to the boatyard!” Sue yelled.

Whenever Cassie was upset, she would go to Harrison’s Boatyard to be alone. It closed down years ago because it wasn’t sturdy enough for the city’s regulations. No matter how many times Susan told her not to, she still did.

About a block away, Cassie ran past Mr. Braddock and the Superintendent heading in the same direction. She made it to the gateway, and she ducked under the wooden board that blocked the entrance. She went to her favorite dock, Dock 6. There, she sat down and cried.

Charlie quickly hopped over the board and ran to Cassie. He sat down next to her and held her until she stopped crying.

 

 

A Dragon’s End

 

Before the concert started, Superintendent S. bumped into Mr. Braddock. “I think we need to have a chat, Jason.” Mr. Braddock sneered, “To the boatyard?”

The superintendent hadn’t eaten in a while, so he figured it couldn’t hurt. “Sure, let’s go” he ordered.

The two left the school and started walking to Harrison’s Boatyard. “To what do I owe the pleasure?” Jason inquired. Mr. Braddock sneered, “Wait until we get to the docks.”

Just then, a girl in a lavender dress ran past, sobbing. One of her tears hit the superintendent, and fizzled on contact. Jason winced in pain.

A kid in a suit shot past next, seemingly chasing the girl.

“Kids these days,” Jason sighed, “always in a rush.”

A few minutes later, the duo found themselves on Dock 8. “I know who you are.” Mr. Braddock shrieked, “Dragon.”

“It was going to end like this anyway.” The Dragon hissed, blowing out smoke. “Your right!” Braddock yelped, leaping forwards. The Dragon tumbled backwards into the bay.

Steam rolled up in clouds as the man-dragon howled, and water surrounded him. Hissing, The Dragon fizzled and dissolved until nothing was left but the echo of a cry of pain.

 

 

 

Stella

 

“Are you okay?” Charlie asked, still holding Cassie. Cassie sniffed and nodded. “I’m better now” Cassie smiled as she looked into Charlie’s big, bright blue eyes. A fog began to set in, even though it wasn’t in the forecast. Charlie started to remove his arm, but Cassie let out a whimper, and he put it back.

Five minutes later, Cassie heard her mom call her name. “I’m here!” Cassie shouted. Cassie gave Charlie a quick ‘Thank-You’ kiss on the cheek, and stood up, leaving Charlie dumbfounded.

“Are you okay?” Susan asked, giving her daughter a hug. “I am now.” she answered with a smile. Susan glanced at Charlie and smiled.

Cassie remembered something. ‘Stella’.

Stella walked out of the school as happy as she could be. Then, she saw an angry Cassie, being held back by that beefcake Charlie, marching towards her. Charlie calmed Cassie down just in time.

“What is wrong with you?!” Sky screamed at Stella, “You are the lowest, most awful, and pathetic, stupid rich girl I’ve ever met!” Sky was furious. “Why I outta-” Charlie swooped up in front of her and gave her a kiss to shut her up.

Susan looked at Cassie. “Is she the reason you ran off?!” Susan exclaimed. Cassie looked at her mom. “Don’t worry about it, mom,” Cassie requested, “It’s all water under the bridge now, right Stella?” Stella smirked, “Sure…”

Stella turned with a hair-whip and got in her limo to go home. Best night ever. That cow couldn’t have been more embarrassed if she was pantsed! Stella cackled. It was great! Now it was time to go further.

Cassie probably only came back because of Char-Char, so if Stella got him, she could ruin her! And Stella decided then, that one day, Charlie would be hers and Cassie would be out of her life forever!

Stella’s limo pulled into her Daddy’s skyscraper’s parking garage, and Stella hopped into her Riding-Chair and grabbed the handles. “Take me to my room!” she ordered. Four butlers came running over and lifted her chair up. Into the elevator, and all the way up she went. She was set down next to her bed and she rolled out of one thing and into the other.

 

Stella rolled over and looked at her Magic Mirror. Her dad’s company invented a mirror that was just like the one from the fairy tales! The only thing is in order for it to work, you have to rhyme.

Mirror on my wall over there,

Where is my lovely Char-bear?

 

The mirror snapped to life and said,

 

Little one so young and dumb

Just go back to sucking your thumb!

The one you seek doesn’t favor,

When you’re nasty to the ones he savors!

 

The mirror then showed a picture of Charlie holding Cassie on Dock 6, holding hands with Sky, and hypnotized by Stella’s hair.

Stella gasped, “Maybe I should use this thing more often!”

Stella fumbled and got out of her bed and sat in front of the mirror.

 

Mirror, up there on the wall,

Who’s my biggest enemy of all?

 

The mirror showed a picture of Cassie. The only thing different about her was that she was really angry.

 

 

 

Out With The Old And In With The New

 

The next day, everyone went to school as normally. The only thing different was that they had an assembly first period.

Okay, maybe it wasn’t completely normal. Susan was called at 3 in the morning for an emergency board meeting. Neither Susan, nor Cassie knew what it was about.

After they were informed of the assembly, Cassie asked Charlie what he thought it was about. “I don’t know,” he shrugged, “I guess we’ll have to wait to find out.” Charlie swished his hair to the side.

When the bell rang, they all got up to go to the auditorium. “Charlie!” Sky yelled, “Wait for me!” Cassie and Charlie stopped. Skyler gave Charlie a quick kiss.

What was it with all these girls kissing him? Not that Charlie was complaining.

They all sat together. To their surprise, Cassie’s mom walked on stage.

“Good morning everyone, I am Mrs. Smith, the head of the school board.” she began, “There has been a sudden change in employment. Mr. Jason Sfenden-whatever just quit. So the board met, and decided that your principal Mrs. Spencer, in now the superintendent also.”

Cassie looked at Mrs. Spencer whose mouth gaped open. Since no one else reacted, Cassie started clapping and cheering. Then Charlie got up and yelled, “Yay Miss Teacher!”

Mrs. Spencer dropped her head and smiled. She once again was put on the spot, and was promoted.

Soon, everyone clapped and cheered, and Miss Teacher walked on stage and waved. “I accept.” she announced.

Charlie held Sky’s hand. Charlie had so many mixed feelings. Cassie, Stella, and Sky. Ugh.

Soon enough, the assembly was over, and the trio went to English.

Alice Harper was a cool English teacher. She really got into the books. Like her family, she was great at literature and loved it. She had chestnut colored hair, and green eyes. Her own sense of style usually consisted of patterns and colors like pink and white polka-dots. On occasion, Alice would tell the class one of her crazy adventures she claims to be true.

“The other day, Mr. Angla came back!” she would say, ending every story with, “It’s true!”

Cassie loved her way better than the guy they had on the first day.

They went inside and sat down. Today, Alice was dressed in a snug horizontal rainbow striped dress, and splatter painted heels.

“Ello, everybody!” Alice yipped, “Today, we will be learning more about parts of speech.”

“Miss Alice?” someone called out. “Yes, Skyler?” Alice answered. “Do we have to?”

Everyone went completely quiet. Sky just asked a teacher if we had to do what she said.

“What do you suggest we do, Miss Gledhill?” Uh oh. You know there is going to be trouble when Alice refers to your last name.

“Well,” she began, “You always say how we know this already, so can we just talk today?”

Nobody moved as Alice Harper paced around the room. Suddenly, she broke into laughter! “Yeah, sure! I didn’t want to teach today anyway.” Though everyone was curious, no one questioned it, for fear of losing the gift.

Cassie looked around. Garrett wasn’t here today. In all honesty, she was kind of losing interest in him. Ever since she started wondering about Charlie, her eyes were opened to new possibilities. Last night, when she kissed Charlie. She KISSED CHARLIE!!! She did something that other girls dreamed of doing! With his arm around her, she felt something that she never felt before. So she kissed him. And at that instant, she was the happiest girl in the world. It was like a spark. Like a really good spark. Whoa. That was her first thought. Her second was “SKYLER!’. She would have to be evil to introduce a girl to a boy, and then steal that boy away!

 

She kissed him. Cassie really kissed Charlie. He was ecstatic! There was that single moment, as he felt her lips touch his cheek, that Charlie felt like he could do anything! It was so, so, so magical!!! Right afterwards, he thought one word, ‘Whoa.’ Once he got his bearings straight, he remembered he had a girlfriend. A girlfriend that Cassie set him up with! He was so confused.

Sky was so happy Charlie was her boyfriend. Cassie was the nicest girl in school by far!

 

Meanwhile, in Mr. Bulnk’s English class, Stella scribbled spasmodically on a piece of paper. So Charlie likes Cassie, Stella, and Skyler. Skyler and Charlie are dating, after Cassie introduced them in order to keep Stellar Stella from getting Charlie. Cassie now likes Charlie, but is confused. Just like Stella. Enraged, Stella snapped the pencil and threw it across the room. Cassie is by far, the worst person on Earth!

 

Charlie is so hot! Sky was so lucky that Cassie introduced them.

 

Cassie wished she never introduced Sky to Charlie! The more she thought the more she wanted to smack a kiss right on Charlie’s lips. So she stopped thinking about it.

 

Imagining the kiss on the cheek, Charlie dreamed about one on the lips. Just like the long, romantic ones on the soaps his grandma watches. Charlie sighed.

“Okay class,” Alice announced, “I need to go to the copier, I’ll be back in ten minutes!”

As soon as the door shut, Sky jumped out of her seat. She scooted over to Charlie and sat on his lap. Charlie didn’t mind, it was his girlfriend after all. Secretly, Charlie wished Cassie was sitting on his lap instead.

Sky had the sudden urge to kiss her boo, so she did. She held his head in one place and kissed him with enough passion for the both of them.

Cassie wished she was in her position. NO! Charlie was her friend and no more!

Still kissing, Charlie thought about how much better this would be if he was doing it with Cassie. Ah, Cassie. Or even Stella. Stella would lean forward and drape her luscious hair over Charlie as they made-out.

Finally stopping, Sky put her hand on Charlie’s cheek before returning to her seat.

When Alice came back in the room, she returned to complete and utter silence. “What happened here?” she interrogated, receiving no answers. The class was acting suspicious, but she gave up. After all, everybody was still alive, and everything was still intact.

She went into her ‘magic closet’ for the rest of the class period. Alice Harper claimed that whenever she went inside, she was transported to a different time and place. She even had props in there. One time, she claimed that she went to a beach, and then poured sand out of her shoes. Though Cassie thought it was funny, she no longer believed in that kind of stuff. In regards to the teacher’s craziness, the students nicknamed her ‘Mad Alice’, though no one said that to her face.

 

 

 

Alice Harper’s Closet

 

Whenever Alice found herself in a situation where she didn’t feel like being in class anymore, she would go in her closet. She was not mad as everyone said. It was true, she was no longer in her closet when the door shut. Every time she closed the door, she found herself in a strange and unusual place, just like magic.

Today, when she felt like the class wasn’t telling her everything, she decided to take a trip. Closing the door, she found herself standing in a huge library. She was excited. As an English teacher should, she loved to read. So she grabbed a book off the shelf. The title was ‘The Bug World’.

Alice decided to take a peek. Opening the book a crack, a bug flew out. “Why not!” she yipped as she opened the book all of the way, releasing thousands, no, millions of insects all shapes and sizes! Freaking out, she threw the book at a table, and it fell in a closed manner. Alice sighed, she hated bugs, but she still loved this place.

“Who is in the king’s library?!” a voice thundered. Seeing no exit, Alice picked a random book up. It was called ‘Bigger on the Inside’. She took her chances, put the book on the ground, and jumped in, pulling the book shut.

King Albert rushed in when he heard of an intruder. He was on high alert with the threats of Evangeline. Running in, he saw the book on the floor. An intruder! In his own magic library! He picked the book up and put it back on the shelf. “There,” he sighed, “All fixed!”

 

Inside the book, Alice tumbled down a spiral of words and numbers. “Ouch!” she shrieked as a ‘v’ flew in her face, “Oh dear!” The floor came too fast, and Harper slammed on the ground. She was always known for having her nose in a book, but this was ridiculous!

“Who are you?” a man demanded, helping Alice up. “I am Alice Harper, of Earth.” The man acknowledged her existence and introduced himself. “I am the author of this book, continuing my research on pocket universes, and the term, ‘Bigger on the Inside’. We are in a pocket universe right now that I created with a friend’s magical powers. It was stupid, but I was so amazed that I wanted to get a closer look, so I leaned forward, and fell in. My friend didn’t help me, he just put the book on a shelf.” the man sighed, “My name is Dr. Stephen Chanington, by the way.”

“Okay, whatever, Mr. Author Dude,” Alice bickered, “I need to find a door.”

Whenever Alice found herself in a closet situation, she looked for a door, because the next door she opened, was always the door to leave her closet.

“Um,” gulped the author, “There are no doors in here.”

“WHAT!?” she wailed. The author put down his head and walked away. “Oh no you don’t!’ Alice retaliated, tackling the man. The two rolled down a tear in the page and landed in a garden illustration.

“Look what you’ve done!” the author moaned, letting out a sneeze, “I’m allergic!” Alice gawked, “It’s just ink!” Dr. Chanington looked at Alice. “Magic ink,” he explained, “as in ink that you can interact with.”

“Wait,” Harper paced, “If you can interact with this ink, why can’t you just draw a door?” Stephen thought for a moment before shouting, “Hallelujah! You’re right!” Dr. Stephen Chanington skipped around the garden picking flowers. He gave the flowers to Alice and said, “Squeeze the ink out of these flowers, we have some finger painting to do!”

When they had enough ink, they started drawing a door. The two worked for twenty minutes or so, and soon enough, finished their project.

As they removed their hands, the door took form, and a handle popped out.

Alice hugged the inky man. “Do you want to come?” she offered.

Dr. Stephen Chanington thought about it. He had been trapped in here for nearly ten years. “Yes!” the author accepted, “I would love to!”

Alice grabbed his hand, and opened the door. Stepping through, she yanked Stephen through.

 

Back in her classroom, two people tumbled out of the closet. Alice and Dr. Chanington. “I’m free!” he yelled, “Thank you!”

 

Alice had an idea. She took the remaining ink from their hands and wrote a slip stating that Dr. Stephen Chanington is now the new science teacher. She figured that the slip would allow the author to easily slide into a new life here. The paper sparkled brightly, and then Mrs. Spencer walked in the room.

Smiling, she shook Dr. Chanington’s hand. “Welcome to your first day as our new science head. I hope you fit in nicely.”

Dr. Chanington smiled, “I hope I will.”

 

 

Field Trip To Ithaca

 

Today was the day. Cassie’s class was going to the Ithaca Space Place to study the mysteries of the universe. Cassie had left NYC many times before, but never for more than one day! The trip was going to be about four hours long one way, so the school had them staying for two days at the local Shady Tree Hotel.

Technically it was a three-day trip. They would leave today, after lunch, to get to the hotel by five for dinner. They would then spend the next day at the Ithaca Space Place, and be back at the hotel by seven. The next morning, they would load the busses and return to school.

Susan was a nervous wreck. Her baby never stayed away from home before, and if anything were to happen, she’d be hours away! They took as many chaperones as they could, but sadly, Susan wasn’t one of them.

Cassie couldn’t wait. For the first time in her life, she would be out of the city for longer than a visit to grandma’s! The only thing that could make the trip better, was if Stella wasn’t going. Unfortunately, that wasn’t true, since Cassie’s roommates were Stella, Sky, and Riley.

 

Charlie was also excited. Three days of Chyler time! He needed it if their relationship was going to last. If only Stella and Cassie weren’t going to be there, so he could focus only on his girl. He figured since Cassie didn’t like him as more than a friend, and Stella was just Stella, Sky was the only eligible girlfriend. He could end the relationship, but that would just fuel the war between Cassie and Stella.

 

Sky was so happy! Not only would she get to spend three whole days with her boo, but she would also get to sit with him on the bus for four hours straight! Cassie was officially her favorite blonde in the world.

 

Stella didn’t want to go, that is, until she had a chat with her mirror.

 

Hey you mirror that shows my face!

Why should I go to the Ithaca Space Place?

 

The mirror showed a video of smoke for effect and said,

 

Little one so young and new,

Why haven’t you thought this through?

Your crush you love so much will be there,

As well as the one with the fantastic hair.

If you really want to get your dream come true,

Then this is the perfect trip for you!

Suppose that Cassie and Charlie’s bae,

Got lost in town for all day!

With your lover in such panics,

He’ll be easy to show your dynamics!

Trust in me,

And then you’ll see!

And if you want for some extra fun,

Suppose that those two got left on the run!

 

The mirror cackled in delight as Stella hashed out the brilliant plan. That just might work!

Stella took the handheld version of her Magic Mirror, and shoved it in her pocket. Now was the perfect opportunity to get her Charlie all to herself!

 

The chaperones gathered everyone up. There were 400 or so people in their grade, and about 15 chaperones. That allowed for about 26 students per adult. Lucky for Stella, her, Cassie, Sky, and Charlie had Mad Alice, so it would be easy for two of the group to get very lost in a short amount of time.

Each group got on a bus. Because they got forty-seaters, they had to get eleven busses. Mrs. Spencer’s group got on Bus 1, along with Alice’s and Dr. Chanington’s. Once the busses were filled, a honk signaled their departure.

Cassie was so eager to get on the open road. Since Charlie sat with Sky, and Garrett was on a different bus, Cassie sat with Will. This was going to be a long trip. Cassie and Will never talked, so there was no conversation to be had. Luckily, Cassie had sat on the outside, so she was close to Charlie.

Stella sat with Riley, half of her entourage, right behind Chyler. Every now and then, she would play with Charlie’s hair, earning a scowl from Sky. Scowl all you want, Sky, pretty soon you’ll be far, far away, where you won’t be able to stop Stella from getting her man.

 

Charlie wished Stella would stop playing with his hair, because it distracted him from Skyler. If Sky wasn’t there, he’d probably give Stella a romantic, soap-opera-kiss. ‘No, stop thinking like that,’ Charlie thought, ‘Skyler is your one and only love!’

 

Charlie grabbed Sky’s hand. “Just ignore her,” he reassured, “You are my one and only.”

Sky smiled as butterflies filled her stomach. Charlie gave her a kiss on the cheek.

‘Where’s a teacher when you need one?’ Cassie thought, wearing a fake smile. She whipped her head to talk to Charlie, hitting Will with her hair.

 

Spitting hair out of his mouth, Will thought, ‘These people are so confusing! I don’t see the problem in telling someone how you feel!’

Cassie turned to Will to apologize, but before she got a word out, Will kissed her, right on the lips! And she didn’t pull away!

 

WHAT WAS WILL DOING! Charlie watched in amazement as the kid who had barely any significance made-out with Cassie. Charlie didn’t believe it! She wasn’t even stopping him! In fact, she was kissing him back!

 

Sky smiled her adorable smile. She loved seeing people find love now that she has found hers!

 

Stella’s mouth dropped. What in the world was Cassie doing! That pig! Kissing another boy to make Charlie jealous! Will must be a good kisser, though, since they were kissing for almost a minute already.

 

What was happening? Will was just thinking how easy it really was to tell someone how they felt, and BAM! He kissed Cassie, and was enjoying it. His first kiss shouldn’t be with the mystery girl his dad was studying! Too late now.

Cassie wanted to stop. She wanted to pull away and explain herself, but she didn’t. She couldn’t. This was her first real kiss, and there was no way she was ending it too soon. Not to mention that Will was a GREAT KISSER!!!

 

To Cassie’s, Will’s, and Sky’s dismay, and Charlie’s and Stella’s glee, Mrs. Spencer stood in the aisle and cleared her throat. Cassie looked at her out of the corner of her eye, and slowly pulled back. “Am I in trouble?” she asked her old teacher.

 

Mrs. Spencer was thinking. Cassie and Will were kissing like they had some connection, but as far as she knew, they never talked. “Okay,” she began, “Why don’t you and Skyler switch seats okay?”

 

Cassie was so happy! Best trip ever already!

 

Poor Cassie, she was so happy with Will! Now she had to switch seats with her. Sky frowned slightly.

 

Stella gaped. That was her punishment! To sit with her BEST FRIEND, just so they could start smooching down the road!

 

Charlie was filled with glee. He got to sit with Cassie! Oh no, how is he supposed to strengthen Chyler with Cassie right next to him, and Stella behind him!

 

Stella growled as the two switched seats.

 

Will was so lucky he didn’t get in trouble! Now he just had to figure out what made him do it. As soon as possible, he has to talk to Sir Arthur. Maybe he would know.

 

“Hi!” Cassie smirked, sitting next to Charlie. “Did you have fun over there?” he joked, “How did that happen?” “Okay, Charlie, he kissed me!” Cassie admitted, “But that doesn’t mean I didn’t like it.”

Cassie looked at Will. He had green eyes, and longish blonde hair that swished side to side when he moved. Cassie didn’t deny he was cute, and now she couldn’t deny she had a crush on him. She kissed King William. Cassie chuckled. If they were to date, that would make her Queen Cassie of Ezekiel Jacobs Middle School! Not that that isn’t a reason to go out with him, but it wasn’t the main reason. There was something about him that was a mystery. He had always intrigued Cassie, but not this much. Who randomly kisses someone? Unless, he likes her and is super confident. Cassie loved confidence. She waved to Will who grinned and waved back.

 

Will didn’t care what his guard thought now! Cassie clearly liked him, and there was no way he was going to make her wait. She was a mystery, a very pretty mystery, with a beautiful smile. She was also obviously nice, so why not go out with her?

Will scribbled a note down and gave it to Sky, who gave it to Charlie. “Is that for me?” Cassie asked innocently. Charlie saw ‘CASSIE’ written on the paper. “I guess,” he sighed as he gave her the love note.

 

Best Field Trip Ever! Cassie opened the letter and saw a number. Under it was a message that read ‘Wanna be my girl? :)’. Woo-hoo! Cassie got out her phone and texted one word to the number. That word was ‘YES’.

 

Will’s phone vibrated in his pocket. He opened it up and saw the word ‘yes’ written in all caps. He smiled and texted back.

‘Hi Cas, I hope we can continue what Mrs. Spencer interrupted sometime ;)’

He hit send and added her to his contact list.

Buzz-buzz went Cassie’s phone. It was Will. Reading the text, she giggled and showed it to Charlie. She was already heads over heels for her new boyfriend. She texted back.

‘Hope so’.

 

What were they texting about? Charlie had been watching them text since 3 hours ago when it started. Both Cassie and Will had big smiles on their faces.

 

Sky sighed. Young love, so precious! She was happy her friend had a boo of her own now.

 

Stella finally ended her three-hour growl. Riley handed her a bottle of water. Any growl that long had to make Stella’s throat dry! Stella seized the bottle, got out her Magic Mirror Mini, and held it in her hand.

 

Hey, little mirror in my hand,

Show me the text messages I can’t stand!

 

The mirror hacked into Cassie’s phone and displayed the messages. Stella scrolled through.

 

YES

 

Hi Cas, I hope we can continue what Mrs. Spencer interrupted sometime ;)

 

Hope so

 

You’re amazing

 

U 2, ur so cute!

 

Aww

 

Aww

 

Stella frowned. Bleh! She hated when Cassie was happy, especially when it was this gross!

 

Cassie had forgotten all about Garrett, and Charlie, and Stella, and the fact that she was on Earth.

 

‘So I guess this makes u a queen’

Cassie smiled and texted ‘I guess so!’.

 

“I guess so!” Stella mocked. That girl was infuriating! Stella put the mirror away. She reached forward and pet Charlie’s hair. Twirling the hair, she looked at Sky. Soon, Cassie, Skyler, and now Will would be gone, and there would be only Stella! And Charlie.

The busses pulled into the parking lot of the local diner for dinner. The hotel didn’t serve food in the evening, so they stopped on the way.

The mirror vibrated to get Stella’s attention. She pulled it out and saw an identical bus to the one they were in. The mirror said one word, ‘NOW’. Stella smiled an evil grin.

 

Will and Cassie got off the bus and held hands just like Charlie and Sky. Stella planned her scheme.

They all went inside the diner. Their group was so big, that they had to rent the whole building.

Will and Cassie sat together, as did Charlie and Skyler. Stella sat near to eavesdrop and plan.

 

Once everyone was done, Will, Sky, Charlie, and Cassie went to the restrooms. Stella followed stealthily. When Sky and Cassie were the only ones in the restrooms, Stella struck. She jammed the door shut, and waited for Charlie.

Charlie washed his hands and left the bathroom. “Hello Char-Char!” Stella teased, “Sky and Cassie are on the bus already, and they are getting ready to leave! Hurry up!” Charlie ran to the bus with Stella.

Will received a text from his guard. It read ‘Tell your friends to get on the bus behind the diner, Bus 1 broke down’. Will sent a text back that said ‘K’.

Stella’s mirror vibrated. It intercepted the text from Will’s phone. The mirror then switched and sent a text to Charlie from Cassie saying that they got put on a different bus. To top it off, all of the chaperones received texts from others about the arrangements.

When the busses left, Stella slid next to Charlie.

 

Sky went to the door to leave, but it didn’t open. “The door is jammed, Cassie!” Sky hollered. Cassie ran over and banged on the door.

 

Will heard a banging coming from the girls’ restroom. “What’s all that noise, Cas?” he yelled. “We’re stuck in here!” Cassie answered, “Can you get us out?” Will pulled on the door, while Cassie and Sky pushed. The door flew open and hit Will in the nose, making Sky and Cassie fall on the ground. Will rubbed his nose and helped Cassie up. He then told them about the bus in the rear. “Come on!” Cassie called, running outside. They ran around the corner and got on the bus just in time.

 

Catching their breath as the bus pulled into the road, they realized something was off. “Um, Will,” Cassie stammered, “Are you sure this is our bus?” William nodded, “That’s what it says in the text.” “Then, where is everybody?” Cassie questioned.

The trio looked around, Cassie was right, they didn’t know any of these people!

 

 

When the busses pulled into the hotel parking lot, Stella snuggled her prize.

Charlie couldn’t wait to see Sky; he was so close to kissing Stella. A text on his phone from Sky earlier said ‘Meet me by the restrooms when we arrive’.

Stella smiled and rubbed Charlie’s arm, swiftly holding his hand. As soon as they could get off, Charlie ran to the bathrooms. He waited there for a minute, and Stella showed up. She kissed him on the cheek and whispered, “Here’s your room key.” Charlie swished his hair and took the card. Stella turned with a whip, and hit Charlie with her hair.

 

 

Missing Students

 

Charlie went to his room. He was expecting to see his friends, since Sky never showed up. Charlie was rooming with Will, Andrew, and Henry.

As soon as he entered, he saw Andrew. “Have you seen Will?” Charlie shook his head no. “Is he missing?” Charlie asked. Henry shrugged his shoulders, “Mr. Braddock’s lookin’ for him now.” They thought nothing of it until a knock came at the door.

It was a panicked Mr. Braddock. “He’s gone!” screamed the teacher, “Him, Sky, and Cassie are all missing!” Charlie jumped up from bed, seeing only one possibility. ‘Stella’.

Stella was doing her make-up when a knock came from the door. “Come in!” Stella yelled. Charlie barged in and shut the door behind him. “Charlie!” Stella squealed, “Will, Cassie, and Sky are missing!” Charlie marched up to her and yelled, “What did you do!?”

Stella didn’t say anything. She stood up, and kissed Charlie. She held his head close and to her surprise, he kissed her back! This was too easy!

Charlie pulled back. “Where are they?” he gasped, “I know it was you!” Stella refused to answer. She whipped her hair around and kissed Charlie again. This time, Charlie pulled back instantly. “Tell me, and I won’t tell Mrs. Spencer you did it!” he demanded. Stella looked him in the eye and said, “I have no idea, all I know is they got on the wrong bus. They could be anywhere!”

Charlie left the room, and slammed the door. Why did Stella have to make his life a Soap Opera?!

Back in the room, Stella took out her mirror and saw all of the blocked texts and calls.

 

My little mirror, in my hand,

Where in the world are my victims going to land?

 

The mirror began,

 

My little owner, so smart and bad,

The girls you sent with the lad,

The answer is quick and simple, can’t you see!

The kids are on their way to the city of Philly!

 

“What!” Stella screamed, looking at Riley just coming out of the bathroom, “They are going to Philadelphia!” Stella knew that this was bad. She wasn’t really trying to get rid of them FOREVER! That stupid mirror! She had to tell Mrs. Spencer! Well, she should, anyway.

 

 

 

Making The Best Of A Bad Situation

 

When they saw the ‘Welcome to Pennsylvania’ sign, they were certain that they were in trouble. “What are we gonna do!” Sky whimpered. Cassie smiled, “I got this.” She walked up to the bus driver. “Where are we going, sir?” she asked politely. The driver grunted, “Philly, duh.” Cassie grinned, “Thank you!” She walked back to their seat.

“We’re going to Philadelphia!” she cried, “Wait, I’m sure the teachers will notice we are missing and come for us, right?” “I don’t know, Cas,” Will admitted, “me and Sky aren’t getting any replies, I’ve texted, called, and nothing.” “Yeah,” Sky added, “What are we going to do?”

Cassie thought, and then smiled, “We can have fun, YOLO, right?” They all smirked. “Why not?” Will agreed. “Yes!” Sky beamed, “Let’s do this!”

Cassie smiled and held Will’s hand. This was going to be the adventure of a life time.

 

Four hours later, the Philadelphia skyline took form. No one had received any replies from anyone. At ten o’clock, they arrived at the drop-off and got out. “Where are we going to stay?” Sky asked. “We can sleep in an alley, with someone taking watch, that way, if anything dangerous happens, the guard can warn the others.” Cassie smiled, “I’ll take the first watch, then it will be Will, and then Sky.” The others nodded. They found an alley with an overhang to spend the night in. Sky laid down on a nearby bench, and Will laid down on the ground.

 

Cassie studied Will. He looked so peaceful. In the dark, it was hard to make out all of his features, but he was still adorable. Wait, Sky smiled in her sleep? Who does that?

Cassie sat next to her boyfriend. She held his hand in hers, and kissed it. She pulled out her phone and checked the time. It was 11:11, and it was like no one noticed they disappeared. Just then, her phone buzzed, and buzzed, and buzzed again! Messages galore! From Charlie, her mom, her aunt, Henry, Riley, and Miley! They all asked pretty much the same thing. Where was she? Were Will and Sky there? Were they okay?

Cassie didn’t know where to start. She typed one long text to Charlie and hoped he got it. She then woke up Will and told him the news. Cassie gave him her phone and told him to wake her up if there was any more news.

Cassie was out like a light. She was so hot! Her beautiful hair draped over her shoulders, in waves of gold. When he felt the soft hair, hit his face on the bus, he liked her more than before. So when she turned around, he kissed her, not only to prove what he was thinking, but because he wanted to anyway. From there, it just flowed naturally. He wished he could do it again.

“Hey, Cas,” he whispered, “wake up!” He gently shook her awake. “Huh?” Cassie mumbled. As she sat up, Will was inches from her face. She studied his face, and kissed him.

They made-out as Sky opened her eyes to a buzzing noise. Sky smiled and tried to get Cassie’s attention. She tapped on her back, but to no avail. Sky decided to wait until they were done.

Cassie slowly pulled away and whispered, “You are a good kisser!” Sky tapped Cassie’s head. “You got a text.” she informed her, “Could be important.”

Cassie gasped and picked up the phone, it was from Charlie. She opened the message. It read, ‘Stella did it’. Cassie dropped her phone and it cracked. She knew Stella didn’t like her, but this was ridiculous! If they had proof, they could sue. Cassie would have to wait to find out. In the meantime, she had to tell the others.

“What?!” Will yipped when he heard Stella’s name, “Really?” Cassie nodded, “Apparently so.” Cassie knew someone would be coming now. Charlie has probably told Mrs. Spencer everything.

“What time is it?” Sky asked. Cassie looked at her phone. “4:30” she answered. Cassie got up and walked to the street. Will and Sky followed.

 

 

A Change In Heart?

 

Charlie frantically looked for Mrs. Spencer. He had to give her the information he got. There she was! Talking to Stella?

“So, let me get this straight, Stella.” Mrs. Spencer continued, “You are the one who hacked into everyone’s cell phones in order to get us to leave Cassie, Skyler, and William at that restaurant, and get them to hop on a bus to Philadelphia, after trapping the girls in the restroom? And you accomplished all of this with a small mirror?” Stella nodded, “This is a Magic Mirror Mini. It was too powerful for the market, so Daddy gave it to me.” Mrs. Charlotte smiled, “I appreciate your honesty, but you will be paying for their return.” Stella agreed and gave Mrs. Spencer a wad of hundreds.

Charlie couldn’t believe it. Stella Sanders actually did the right thing! For once in his life, Stella actually was able to impress him! But why? Charlie had to know.

“Stella,” Charlie bellowed, “follow me!” The two went inside an elevator and went to the top floor. Stepping outside, Charlie demanded, “Why did you do any of this?” Stella smiled, “You’ll get nothing from me, Char-Char, without a little incentive!” Charlie knew where this was going. He had to know, so he grabbed Stella in his arms and kissed her. She held him back as they leaned against the wall. Though he really, didn’t want to, Charlie pulled back. “Answer?” he asked, gasping for air. He always forgot to breathe. “Oh, Charlie,” Stella cooed, “I did it to get you!”

Charlie was secretly flattered. Stella wouldn’t stop trying to win him over. Charlie leaned over, and gave Stella a peck on the cheek as a thank-you.

Stella was stunned. Charlie was a good kisser, but that small smooch on the cheek gave her butterflies!

“Now let’s go find Cassie, Sky, and Will.” Charlie ordered. “How?” Stella questioned. “We’re going to sneak out, and you can buy us a ride to Philadelphia!” Charlie instructed.

“Then what are we waiting for, let’s take the fire escape!” Stella squealed, and ran towards the fire exit. There was no way she was going to miss this opportunity!

Charlie and Stella stepped down the side of the inn. “Hurry up!” Charlie ordered.

Holy cow, that hunk runs fast! Stella heaved. Think of the four-hour ride! Just Stella and her dreamboat!

At the bottom, Charlie looked at Stella. “So what are we doing for a ride?” he asked. Stella perked up as a limousine pulled up. “Who said you can’t search in style?” Stella interjected, “Hop in!” Charlie slid inside, and Stella hopped on his lap. “To Philly!” Stella yelled, with her arm wrapped around Charlie’s neck. Charlie laughed as the limo left the hotel in the dust.

Charlie’s phone vibrated. Finally, it was already the middle of the night! The text read:

‘Charlie, I just got ur txts, we’ve sent 100s! Me n Sky were trapped in the bathroom, and Will rescued us. His dad said that our bus broke down and sent us to the new bus. Somehow we went to the wrong bus and are now in Philly. Please help us we r planning on sleeping in an alley.’

Stella grinned. Charlie shot her a look. “I’m telling them.” Charlie told Stella as he replied ‘Stella did it’. “I will never kiss you again unless we find them!” Charlie warned.

Stella popped up, “So there’s more kissing?” Charlie put down his head. Stella ripped out her mirror.

Favorite mirror of my life,

Find Charlie’s friends so I can become his wife!

 

Charlie laughed. He was never going to marry her.

The mirror showed a video of Cassie, Sky, and Will walking down a street.

 

The ones you see are looking to eat,

So you can find them on West Campbell Street!

 

Charlie gaped at the device, “That isn't -” “No, silly, it's not magic! Boop!” Stella reassured, ending her sentence with a tap to Charlie's nose. “You're adorable!” she squealed, “And cute, but mostly hot! You're sups amaze!” Charlie wished Stella would get off his lap.

 

 

Cassie and Will held hands as Sky followed them down the street. They went around a corner, and sat in a picnic area.

People who walked by gave them money. Cassie looked at the group and understood why, they were filthy! Who knew that spending the night in a city alley would make them so dirty!

Within the half hour, they accumulated $34.73. “This should be enough for breakfast!” Cassie exclaimed, “Where do we want to go, and what do we want to eat?” Sky pointed across the street to a grocery store. “How about some groceries?” Skyler suggested. Will and Cassie agreed, and they entered the store.

There was food everywhere. “Should we get some cereal?” Cassie asked, showing the group a box of Sugaroos. Will nodded and got some milk. Sky grabbed some bowls and took some free spoons from the taste-testing table.

“That will be $17.65.” said the cashier. Cassie counted out the bills, and grabbed the receipt. “Thank you, have a nice day!” she told Cassie. Sky smiled and followed Cassie to the picnic table. There, Cassie gave everyone some cereal and milk.

Once they were done, Cassie grabbed the grocery bag and put their items back in. “Let’s get out of the city,” Cassie announced, “it will be easier for the others to find us.”

 

 

Mrs. Spencer awoke to a knocking on the door. She put on her robe and slippers and moseyed to the door. She opened the door and before she could open her mouth, Mr. Braddock yelped, “We lost two more kids!”

Mrs. Spencer gasped. Agree to the field trip, they said. It’ll be fun, they said. She officially lost 5 kids in one night! “Who?” Mrs. Spencer asked. Mr. Braddock looked side to side and said, “Charles Myers and Stella.” “STELLA SANDERS!!!!” Mrs. Spencer screamed, “Mayor Sanders’ daughter!”

They probably went to find Cassie, Sky, and Will. So if they find Cassie’s group, then they’ll find Stella. “Do the police know yet?” Mrs. Spencer asked. The school district couldn’t stand any more bad publicity. Mr. Braddock shook his head. “Good.” Mrs. Spencer sighed, “Go with Alice, Stephen, and Mary in the rental car and bring back our children!”

Mrs. Spencer was freaking out. Cassie’s mom was the only parent who knew, besides Mr. Braddock. She has until they leave tomorrow to bring them back, or else she has to go to the police.

 

Stella’s limo sped into the barn where the mirror said Cassie, Sky, and Will were. It crashed through the door for no reason and Charlie pushed the just now awaking Stella off of his lap to get out. Stella jumped out after him. “Cassie? Sky?” Charlie called out.

 

Cassie never wanted to see Charlie more in her life! She ran over to the limo and gave him a hug, and Sky followed suit. Cassie’s gaze then fell on Stella. “When are you going to stop!” Cassie screamed, “Why do you enjoy ruining my life so much!”

“Calm down, Cassie.” Charlie said. Will held her hand. Sky gave Charlie a hug.

Stella showed Cassie the mirror. Grabbing the mirror, she said, “Is this how you did it? Is this how you sent us away!” She threw the device at the barn wall and it sparked on contact.

“Skyler! Why did you do that!” Cassie yelled. Sky fell on the ground and cried, “I’m so sorry!” Stella turned around and left through the hole the limo left in the barn wall.

Stella picked up a rock and threw it at the wall in a blind rage. Suddenly the barn creaked, and the ceiling collapsed around the exit. “Oops.” Stella whined.

Rubble further crushed the sparking mirror.

Cassie looked up, she smelled smoke. “Fire!!!” Cassie screamed. Everyone looked at the pile of rubble ablaze with flames. The old barn had giant fans rigged to the ceiling, so when the fire hit the cables, sparks flew to the roof and giant fans fell to the ground.

“Get out of there!” Stella yelled to no avail. The limo driver had run away when the barn fell apart. Apparently, he didn’t want to be at the scene of the crime. Stella saw no other way, if she was going to save Charlie. She hopped in the driver’s seat and turned the key, hoping for the best. The engine roared to life, and Stella drove away. A few thousand feet away, she whirled around and pushed the pedal to the metal.

The limousine flew through the barn, allowing everyone to escape. Stella twisted the wheel and zoomed next to the group. Everyone piled in and she drove away.

“You can drive!” Cassie howled. Stella nodded, “I’m rich, remember?”

They drove until they saw Mr. Braddock and some other chaperones driving down the road. Stella honked until they pulled over. Everyone got out and ran to their teachers.

“No explanations, just get in the car” Mr. Braddock demanded. Cassie and Will sat together, and so did Skyler and Charlie. Stella sat in the very back with her head down.

 

 

Ithaca Space Place

 

That was at 5:30, and they got back to Ithaca at eleven. Since the rest of the class was already at the Space Place, that’s where Mr. Braddock drove. Regardless of how filthy they were, they were already short on chaperones and needed them back as soon as possible.

When Mrs. Spencer saw the students, she was so relieved that she hugged the messy Cassie. No one will find out.

Then, Mrs. Spencer realized something awful: she never told Susan they found Cassie! She immediately whipped out her cell phone and called Cassie’s mom and told her the news. “Aw, good,” Susan sighed.

 

While, Cassie and Will went off on their own to check out the exhibits in the museum wing of the Space Place, Charlie and Sky went to the seminar about ‘Man on Mars’.

Stella ran off to the gift shop. She loved wasting money on useless objects. Since her Magic Mirror Mini got destroyed by Skyler, she bought a cheap compact mirror so she could still check her face in case of emergencies.

In the museum wing, Cassie and Will were geeking-out. They saw the moon exhibit and the sun exhibit. They even saw the other seven planet exhibits! Cassie was so excited! She had her learnin’, and her boo!

Will watched the excitement on Cassie’s face and it made him happy. Her green eyes sparkled with interest in each of the rooms.

Charlie studied Sky. She was beautiful. He loved her, he loved her, he loved her! Charlie kept repeating that thought in his head in order to keep Chyler alive. Long live Chyler!

At noon, everyone met in the yard for lunch. They had PB & J’s with juice boxes in brown paper bags. They then spent the rest of their time at the Space Place in a presentation about space science.

 

 

Hotel Room Chaos

 

Tonight was Cassie’s first and final night in the hotel room. It was the same for Will, Sky, Charlie, and Stella. Since each room only had two beds, they had to share.

In room 834, Cassie’s room, everyone got into their pajamas and got into bed. Alice soon came around to do bed-check. “Everyone here?” she asked hopefully. When they all nodded, Alice sighed in relief.

 

Room 842 had the same routine. They got in their pajamas and got in bed to pose for bed check. When Mr. Braddock saw everyone was there, he relaxed.

Will’s phone vibrated. It was Cassie. The text said, ‘Ugh, it’s so boring!’. Will grinned and texted her back. ‘I have an idea’. The naughty prince nudged Charlie. “Wanna sneak over to Cassie’s room?” Will whispered.

Charlie was surprised. Of course he wanted to go to Cassie’s hotel room! He would get to bond with Sky, see Stella, and hang with Cassie! But they were supposed to stay in their own rooms! He was so conflicted! As Cassie always said, though, you only live once!

Charlie nodded, “Yes, let’s go!” Henry snored. Will grabbed his shirt and put it on as he headed to the door. Charlie rolled out of bed and followed. Will stuck his head out the door. “The coast is clear!” he hissed. Will ran out, and Charlie grabbed a room key before following him out the door.

On the way, Will texted Cassie ‘Me and Charlie are coming over’.

 

Cassie saw her phone light up with a message. She reached over to get it, and fell out of bed. Stella turned on the light. “What are you doing?” she asked. “Checking my phone, Will and Charlie are coming. Both Sky and Stella sat up and yipped, “Charlie!?” ‘And the excitement begins’ Cassie thought with a smile.

Will knocked on the door, and a giggly Cassie let him and Charlie in. Sky ran up to Charlie and kissed him on the cheek, while Stella sat on the bed and growled. Cassie led Will to the bed and they sat down. “What’s your idea?” Cassie giggled. Will thought for a moment and the idea came to him! “Truth or dare! One of the most exciting and risky hotel room games ever!” Cassie smiled and fell on the floor with glee. “Who wants to join us?” Will asked. Everyone, including Riley, raised their hands. Will grinned from ear to ear.

“I’ll go first,” Will volunteered, “Cassie, truth or dare?” Cassie smiled and picked truth. “Is it true that you think I am a good kisser?” Sky giggled at Will’s questions. “No,” Cassie started, “I think you are a great kisser!” Will blushed and smiled. “Now it’s Cassie’s turn.” Will dictated.

Cassie thought for a moment. Now was a perfect time to get back at Stella! She had the perfect dare! “Truth or dare,” Cassie began, “Charlie!” She was saving Stella for later.

Charlie wanted to prove he was risky, so he chose to do a dare. Cassie smirked, “I dare you to sell your shirt to Stella!” “What kind of -” Charlie was interrupted by Stella. “$50!” she squealed. Charlie sighed and traded his shirt to Stella for the fifty.

Cassie boggled. Since when did Charlie have such defined muscles? She snapped herself out of it. Boyfriend. She repeated the word in her head.

 

Sky was so lucky! She looked at her boyfriend’s abs. They gave her chills.

For the first time, Stella actually didn’t hate Cassie! Thanks to her dare, Stella now owned Charlie’s shirt, and had a great view!

 

Charlie was cold. Charlie wanted his shirt back. Looking at Sky, Charlie said, “Truth or dare, Riley?”

Riley Alicia gaped. He knew her name! Truth or dare, she thought. She was nowhere near popular, so maybe if she did a dare, people would think she was brave! “Dare” she said with confidence.

No one expected that. Charlie had no idea what to do! He grabbed his phone and searched for dares on the Internet, and he found the perfect one!

Charlie looked at Riley and dared her to swap clothes with the person on her left. He didn’t realize who was on her left, but Cassie did.

She rolled over her boyfriend to save him from having to wear Riley’s pajamas! Riley stood up and took Cassie to switch. “I take it she accepted.” Will joked, relieved he didn’t have to wear girls’ pajamas.

 

Cassie came out wearing Riley’s pink nightgown, and Riley was wearing Cassie’s grey tank top and sweatpants.

In retrospect, it wasn’t the best dare, but oh well, they did it.

It was Riley’s turn, and she targeted Stella. “Truth or dare, Stella?” she tested.

Stella thought about it. If she did a dare, she might impress Charlie. “Dare me!” she sassed.

“I dare you to lick the floor!” Riley teased.

Stella’s face scrunched up. Lick the floor? She was repulsed! How many people have walked on this floor? Do it for Char-Char, Stella!

Stella got on the floor, and got a big mouth full of carpet fuzz. Yuck!

Everyone laughed, and then Cassie shushed them. “Lights out was an hour ago!” Cassie warned, “If we get caught, we’ll be in so much trouble!”

“Well, it’s my turn now,” Stella announced, “Truth, or Dare, Cassie, pick dare!”

Cassie knew if she picked dare, Stella would slam her. She held her breath and breathed, “Dare.”

Stella grinned, “I dare you to do a headstand!”

A head-stand? That was so easy! Then, Cassie remembered that she was in Riley’s nightgown. “I can do that,” she said, “Will, can you help me, Stella didn’t say no one could help me.” Cassie smiled as Will stood up. She bent down to touch the ground as Will held her ankles, and nightgown. Before they knew it, Cassie was doing a headstand in a nightgown!

Show-off! Stella had to do a better one next time.

Back to Cassie, she thought about who to go at next. Looking at Will, she decided to get closer to her boo.

“Truth or dare, Will?” Cassie asked, hoping for a dare. Thinking Cassie was up to something, Will decided to pick a dare anyways.

Cassie smiled and began, “I dare you to kiss me while wearing your shirt.” Will was confused. “Wait, who’s wearing my shirt?” Will questioned. “Both of us.” Cassie teased. Will jumped up and pulled Cassie in his shirt.

Cassie smiled big. Her boy had a six-pack already! She knew this because her arm rubbed against it on the way in.

With Cassie close, Will kissed her on the lips, for a while. Will pulled away, causing Cassie to lose her balance and make them both fall on the ground. Uh oh, they were stuck.

“Help?” Cassie asked. “Nah,” Sky said, holding Charlie, “You two look fine down there, anyways, it’s Will’s turn.”

Cassie was so happy inside. She was enjoying being stuck to Will, as did he like being stuck to her.

“Truth or dare, Skyler?” Will mused. “Of course I’ll take a dare!” she teased. Will dared her to pants herself as revenge for leaving them on the floor. Skyler shrugged and dropped her pajama bottoms for a split second, before rolling back into Charlie’s lap.

Charlie was scared. This was getting crazy. Pretty soon someone would dare someone else to run naked through the hotel! It was already 1:30 in the morning!

Just then, Will’s shirt ripped, freeing Cassie and exposing his abs. Cassie stood and smiled, helping Will up as well. She took her phone and Will to the window, where she took a selfie with him. Seeing the time, Cassie gave Will a kiss on the cheek. “You better sneak back and get some rest.” Cassie whispered. Will agreed, he was tired. “On one condition,” Will ordered, “send me that selfie!” Cassie obeyed and pushed the boys out the door, keeping their shirts.

Once they were gone, Cassie turned and said, “How fun was that!?”

 

In the hallway, Will laughed. They had visited with their friends and lost both of their shirts. Charlie wanted to get back inside. He enjoyed the fun, until Will and Cassie shared a shirt. Would anyone notice if Will mysteriously disappeared? Eh, probably.

They got to their room and snuck back in. “It looks like you two had some fun.” Andrew accused. Henry snored. Will nodded, “True.” He jumped in bed with Charlie and covered up. That was the wildest thing he’s ever done! And he got no consequences!

Will’s arm fell on Charlie after he nodded off. Was he made of concrete?! Charlie tried shaking it off to no avail, so he just concentrated on falling to sleep. Soon he did, only to be woken up two hours later by the alarm.

 

 

 

Heading Home

 

The next morning, everyone packed their stuff before reporting to the complimentary breakfast.

“Pancakes!” Cassie squealed rushing to fill her plate. She grew out of a lot of things, but pancakes weren’t one of them. Cassie poured syrup over the stack. She then took those adorable balls of butter that certain places have, and rolled a few on top. Giddy with happiness, she sat down. Will brought her some milk to go with her food. Cassie never noticed how much of a gentleman he was until they started dating.

 

Though Will hadn’t told him yet, he was pretty sure that his guardian was catching on, not that Will cared. He was Prince of the Great Realm of Everlanon, and he didn’t care what a puny knight thought!

Will gave Cassie a kiss on the cheek and sat down. Cassie took a selfie with her big stack of pancakes. The royal couple ate in peace until Charlie sat down. As soon as he sat down, the royal table was opened to commoners, and therefore lost its significance.

Will loved Cassie. He hadn’t said it yet, since they just started dating, but he dreamed of taking her back to Everlanon with him to be his queen.

Cassie finished eating and took Will up to the eighth floor so they could get their stuff. Up there, Will couldn’t wait any longer. He looked around and blurted out, “I love you!”

Cassie stared at him. He was so hot, and so nice, and Cassie loved him too. She pulled him close and touched his soft lips with hers, pushing him up against the wall. She smelled his ocean breeze cologne and imagined they were on the beach with the sun slowly setting behind them. Was this usual? Did kids always kiss this much? Cassie didn’t know, but more importantly, she didn’t care.

Will held her close, and they accidentally bumped noses, as he ran his fingers throughout Cassie’s soft, blonde hair. Were they moving too fast? No, love has no speed limit. Whether fast or slow, love is love, and this was it.

 

As Cassie slowly pulled away, she opened her eyes, seeing Will’s handsome face up close. That was the most passionate kiss she’s ever had, and she wanted more. Cassie was going to marry him; she just knew it.

 

 

Charlie talked to Sky on their way up in the elevator. “Do you think it’s going to last?” Charlie blurted. “What?” Sky asked nervously. “Do you think Cassie’s and Will’s relationship is going to last?” he stammered, “I mean, they’re moving kind of fast.”

Sky looked into Charlie’s worried eyes. “Perhaps if there is the connection between them that I saw with their first kiss,” Sky confessed, “They could make it work.”

The elevator stopped on floor seven and an elderly lady held the door open. “Is this thing going down?” she asked. Charlie shook his head, “No, we’re going up.” The lady frowned. “Of course you are growing up, everyone does!” she said, still holding the door, “I want to know if this elevator is going down or not!” Charlie looked at Sky. They were going to be here a while.

 

 

Cassie looked around. No one still. She took a breath and felt the warm touch of Will’s lips once more. Side to side, they flowed like two birds dancing. Cassie soon found herself leaning on the elevator doors. She took another breath.

 

 

“Oh, so you’re going up?” the lady repeated. Sky nodded and screamed, “Yes!” The lady backed up and smiled as the doors closed. “What’s next?” Charlie sighed as they reached floor eight.

 

Cassie heard the elevator ding, but it was too late. The doors open and in they fell, practically on Charlie and Sky. Sky laughed and said “To answer your question, yes I think it’s going to last!”

Neither Cassie nor Will knew what they were talking about. Will stood up first and held out his hand to Cassie. She grabbed on and Will lifted her up off the floor. She smiled to her friends as they got off the elevator. “Come on, Sky!” Cassie beckoned, “Let’s get our luggage! We’ll meet you two downstairs.” Will shot Cassie a smile and said, “Can’t wait to see you!”

 

“So…” Sky put in while picking up her suitcase, “You and Will have fun?” The two laughed. “He said he loved me,” Cassie began, “and I just couldn’t stop myself. And that was before the break.” Sky dropped the bag, “There was a break?!” Cassie admitted, “It was brief before I went in again, and I’m pretty sure I love him too, and I want to be with him forever.” Sky ran in place with glee, as if she was an excited fan girl meeting her favorite celebrity for the first time. “I’m so happy for you!” she squealed.

 

Charlie eyed Will. There was something about him that he didn’t like. Never noticing it before, Charlie just couldn’t put his finger on it!

 

The two went down to the lobby, where their baggage was loaded for the trip home. Finally, Cassie and Sky came out, and followed suit. The two couples got on the bus in the very back. “Are you all excited to go home?” Sky inquired. They all nodded. Everyone had their own reasons for wanting to go home. For example, Cassie was plotting how she was going to break the news to her parents about her boyfriend, leaving out the kissing, of course.

 

Stella couldn’t wait to get back to her Magic Mirror, and have her Daddy get her a new Magic Mirror Mini. She had so many questions. Ever since the Philadelphia incident, Stella has been subconsciously questioning herself. She didn’t realize that the doubts she has are from her own questions.

 

The busses pulled out of the hotel parking lot. They would be heading straight back to the school with a maximum of two stops.

 

Cassie looked down at her hand, with her fingers interlocked with Will’s. She was as happy as could be!

On the way home, Cassie and Will talked about everything and anything. They talked about their favorite colors, their favorite books, and their favorite foods. They laughed and smiled, they made jokes and stories. By the time the busses returned to EJMS, they were both fast asleep. Cassie laid peacefully on Will’s shoulder, as Will rested his head on Cassie’s and had his arm around her.

 

 

Announcements

 

Cassie ran inside the door and hopped on the couch. With Stella around, Cassie didn’t think she was going to make it home in one piece. Neither of Cassie’s parents were home yet, which wasn’t unusual, but Cassie thought they would have been waiting for her given what happened. Nevertheless, Cassie helped herself to an after-school snack. By the time Susan was home, Cassie was finishing her cookies.

 

“Cassie!” Susan exclaimed, running to give her daughter a big hug, “I’m so happy you’re safe!” “Squeezing too hard,” Cassie groaned, and her mom released the death grip, “At least I can’t say I’ve never been to Philly now!” Susan laughed, rushing to make dinner. They were having Chicken and Homemade Dumplings and it was already five. Five o’clock was when they usually ate, but her husband was running late too, so it was alright.

At 6:56, Officer James Smith waltzed through the door. Since he became the chief, James often got home late. “I’m home!” he announced. When he saw his daughter, he was so happy. He had thought that he might never see her again. He did exactly what Susan did, and this time, Cassie almost passed out.

 

“Dinner’s ready!” Susan called, putting Cassie’s plate on the table. The two scrambled to get to their seats. With Cassie gone, her parents had some alone time, but really missed Cassie at dinner.

Dinner was like their family meeting. It was where they announced anything big going on in their lives, and talked about their days. Susan thought it was a necessity to a strong family bond. That night, Cassie had a lot to talk about.

 

When they were all eating their dinner, Susan asked, “So other than the obvious, how was your trip?” Cassie beamed. “It was great!” she asserted, “In fact, I have an announcement!” “Before the announcements,” James cut in, “How did you get lost, anyways?”

Cassie cringed. What would her parents say if she told them that a student tricked them? Should she tell them? “Just a mean rich girl who doesn’t like me,” she shrugged, “Mrs. Spencer knows.”

Cassie’s parents looked at each other. They had to tell her sooner or later, and there was no delaying announcement time now. Susan spoke up.

“We have two announcements ourselves.” Susan began, “We can take turns, you go first.”

Cassie looked confused. They barely had one announcement, let alone two! What could have happened while she was gone?

Without a filter, Cassie blurted out, “I have a boyfriend!” James stood up and yelled, “What!?” Susan told her husband to sit. “I had my first boyfriend in fifth grade,” Susan reminded him, “You should know, it was you!”

James and Susan had been together since they were ten. It was your classic love story. They told it to anyone who asked how long they’ve been a couple.

“What’s his name?” Susan questioned, “Do we know him?” Cassie answered their questions with a huge smile on her face. She was so in love, but she didn’t tell them that.

“Have you had your first kiss yet?” her mom quizzed. Cassie went silent. Yes, she had her first kiss! That’s how the relationship started! She didn’t want to tell them that she made-out with him, on three occasions!

James knew that look, he invented that look! “YOU KISSED HIM?!” he demanded to know. Like any other dad, he was overprotective of his daughter, not that it was a bad thing.

“I’m sure it was innocent, right honey?” Susan was the kind of optimistic who believed in the best of everything. Cassie nodded quickly. “Didn’t you have an announcement?” Cassie changed the subject.

“Oh, yes,” Susan answered, “I got a job. As your new principal!” Cassie gaped, “How did that happen?”

Susan explained how Mrs. Spencer hired her, since she was already the head of the board and there was an opening.

“Anything else I should know?” Cassie badgered. Her parents nodded as smiles lit up their faces. “Cassie,” they began, having rehearsed this moment for a while, “You are going to be a big sister!”

Cassie looked at her mom. She’s pregnant! She was Cassie’s new pregnant Principal Mom! Cassie got dizzy. She was going to lose it. She left for three days, and she misses everything! She excused herself from the table and wobbled to her room. She couldn’t handle it! She was going to be a big sister! She walked as the room swirled around her, becoming a dark mass. Then everything went black.

 

 

Cassie opened her eyes on a bed. She was soaking wet. Just after she passed out, Susan flipped. She knew they should’ve told her differently! She jumped up from her seat and grabbed the pitcher of water from the refrigerator and poured it on her, like they did in the TV shows. “What was that for!” James had said, “That’ll just make her cold!” Susan was calm in every aspect, except for emergencies. James picked up the soggy girl and took her to her bed. Cassie was always different with news. When her dad got promoted, she first cried, and then did a somersault because he wouldn’t be in as much danger.

 

Cassie yelled, “You’re PREGNANT!!!” The Smiths ran in. “You don’t need to know all the details,” Susan stuttered, “but yes, I am pregnant.” Cassie asked if it was a brother or a sister. She didn’t really care, either way she was probably going to do their hair and make-up.

“We don’t know, we just found out ourselves.” Susan explained, “We’ll find that out later.” Cassie gasped. She had to tell Charlie! And Will and Skyler too! She reached for her phone and texted everyone she knew. She was so excited! Cassie loved babies and kids, and now she was going to have one of her very own! Not really hers, but same difference. She grabbed a cookie, crying tears of joy and gave it to her mom. Susan didn’t notice the small tear that sparkled as she put the cookie in her mouth.

Cassie couldn’t wait to take selfies with the baby. She was kind of addicted to them. She took selfies with her friends, her family, her food. When she went places, she always came back with at least one selfie. Considering she only had her phone for some months, three memory cards full of selfies was a lot. Charlie didn’t even have that many selfies!

The next few hours were filled with texts and calls from her friends. They all were excited that there was going to be a new baby to talk about! The only one with younger siblings was Sky, whose brother was already eight.

That was when she told Charlie her mom was the principal. The only thing he said was ‘cool’.

 

 

Stella got an announcement of her own. Due to the high demand for Miracle Hair in a country called Athea Guana, Stella’s father was moving his company headquarters there. He was also looking to move his family there as well. Stella didn’t want to move. If she moved, all of her work for Charlie would be for nothing!

Mayor Sanders was going to stay in NYC to finish his term, and then join his family in a year. He was a very rich man, who could afford some extra pounds. He rode a personal transporter everywhere he went. The mayor was known for his ability to waste money on things he didn’t need. After all, he always wore the finest clothing, and thanks to his personal stylist, put other mayors to shame.

The mayor tried to coax his daughter to go along with the movement. Seeing no other choice, he told her where they would be living. “Stella dear,” he bellowed, “Athea Guana is a monarchy, who would love to have us there. They gave us our very own castle, and have agreed to name you Duchess Stella Sanders!” Stella perked up. “I would be a Duchess?” She questioned, “Of what, exactly?”

Mayor Sanders smiled, “You would be the Duchess of the whole Athea Guana country! Less than the Royal Family, but you would be able to rule over the common folk, and receive a weekly allowance from the Treasury!”

Finally, someone recognized her talent for being better than everyone else! “I accept!” she squealed, “Have the staff start packing my stuff!”

The old man laughed. He knew that would do the trick.

 

Stella ran to her mirror.

 

Stupid mirror that doesn’t lose,

Tell everyone in school the news.

Blow up their phones with my rejoice,

And make my love regret his choice!

 

Stella had gotten good at making rhymes quickly. She watched as the mirror sent thousands of messages that read:

 

‘Students of Ezekiel Jacobs Middle School, your favorite girl in school is moving to a beautiful country by the sea where she will rule as the Duchess. She may or may not miss you! And she definitely won’t miss Lassie Smith!’

 

 

Charlie grabbed his phone as it rang with messages. He saw one from a number he didn’t recognize. After reading it he was hysterical with joy! He ran down the stairs and out the door. Down the street he flew, screaming “SHE’S LEAVING!!!” for the world to hear. However, his excitement didn’t last long before he realized he wasn’t wearing any pants.

 

 

Cassie showed her mom the message. “Now do you know who sent me to Philadelphia?” Cassie hinted. “Lassie?” Susan grimaced, “She calls you a dog?” Cassie shrugged, “Don’t fret, apparently she’s royalty now. At least she’ll leave me alone.”

 

Sky lived a few blocks away from Charlie, so she snapped a picture as he ran by screaming in his underpants. “Cassie has to see this!” Skyler thought aloud, sending Cassie the photo.

 

“Do you think Charlie’s excited?” Cassie read. She saw her friend running down the street pants-less. Only Charlie would forget to put on pants before going for a happy run.

 

 

Summer Camp

 

Cassie enjoyed the rest of her sixth grade year, overjoyed that Stella was gone. She graduated with straight A’s, of course. On the last day of school, there was presentation.

 

“What are you planning to do this summer?” the man asked. Cassie had no idea, her summers were usually uneventful. “How about a week long, Coed Summer Camp!” he suggested. Cassie thought that was a cool idea, and for once in her life, didn’t zone out.

Cassie was sitting next to Will and Charlie, who seemed generally interested in the idea. What Cassie didn’t know was that she sparked their interest. When they saw Cassie perk up, they were willing to do anything.

“Grab a paper and sign up today, and for only $457, you get to join me, Mr. Henderson, on a week long journey in Paradise, Montana at Camp Silver Shadow!” Cassie ran up and took a flyer as soon as the presentation was over. So did Will and Charlie.

Seeing Charlie’s interest, Sky grabbed a flyer as well.

 

That night at dinner, Cassie showed her parents the flyer and begged them to go. Seeing how much she wanted to go, Susan agreed.

“You can go,” she began, “Only if someone goes with you.” Cassie nodded and texted Charlie. She also texted Will and Sky. To her amazement, all three already had their parents’ permission!

Showing her parents the texts, James sighed and agreed. It was official, Cassie was going to spend a week 2,500 miles from home!

 

The day for her to leave came up fast, and Cassie was ready. She got a big suitcase and filled it with everything she was going to need.

When it was time to get on the plane, everyone said their farewells.

 

“See ya!” Sky yelled to her dad as she ran to meet up with the others.

 

“Remember to watch Miss Smith and don’t tell the king I allowed this when he comes.” Mr. Braddock whispered. Will agreed and walked over to Cassie. He never did tell him that he was dating Cassie. He figured he’d find out on his own like he always did.

 

Charlie kissed his grandma on the cheek and said, “I’ll see you in a week!” Betty smiled her old, loving smile.

 

Cassie thanked her parents again for letting her go. It was July and Susan was already showing that she was pregnant. “Be good!” Susan called as Cassie met up with the others.

“Are we ready to go?” Cassie asked the group. When everyone nodded, they got on the plane and took their seats. Will with Cassie, and Charlie with Skyler. As the plane took off, a chill filled the plane, and Cassie shuddered.

 

 

The Eeshilno

 

Everlanon was in chaos with the recent death in the royal family. Evangeline looked down from her tower, and saw the dirty rats.

 

The Dragon had done no use to her, so she tried a newer approach. She recently had grabbed a young boy from the streets and changed him to her liking.

 

As she looked into the frightened boy’s eyes, Eva chanted a spell.

 

That little boy,

Shall become my toy,

To send to my daughter’s land!

He will become an ungrateful one,

To show off to my little hun.

Young and scared shall become grand!

Here I now speak to you!

I now pronounce you, the Eeshilno!

 

The boy screamed as his heart was melted and distorted, so he could no longer love, and be the most ruthless of all mortals. Evangeline had blown him to the Realm of the Foretold with a message. Find Cassie and report back how she is.

 

Today was the day the Eeshilno arrived. Eva looked at the child and asked, “What did you find out, Mr. Sowards?”

Garrett looked up and babbled, “Cassie had a pathetic crush on me. The Dragon died. Sir Arthur is a teacher named Mr. Braddock, who’s pretending the prince is his son. The Prince’s name is William Braddock and he knows about Everlanon. He is currently dating your daughter, but doesn’t know her true identity.”

 

Evangeline roared, “SHE’S DATING THE PRINCE!” Eva lived by a motto. ‘Love is weakness.’ was that motto. The prince would surely have her turn good! Or maybe this was good! If their relationship lasts until they found out who she was he would have to break up with her! That would smash her lovey-dovey heart into a million pieces, surely turning her dark!

Evangeline turned to the Eeshilno, and crowed, “I no longer have a use for you!” She tossed a fireball at the miserable thing and roasted it. All that was left was a hardened mangled heart. Eva swiftly picked up the stone and put it on her shelf.

 

 

Camp Silver Shadow

 

The plane landed in Montana in the afternoon. The camp bus picked them up and drove to Camp Silver Shadow for sign in. Their motto was ‘Anything is possible!’

Cassie and Sky were brought to their cabin. It was under Ice. Each group of cabins was given a name. They were Ice, Water, Fire, Light, Air, Earth, and Darkness. Furthermore, each group had four cabins that held four campers. So Cassie estimated that there had to be 112 campers. That was weird, because there was room for very few, but they had even fewer counselors. Two for 112. They had two counselors for over one-hundred kids! How did they make sure they behaved? She soon found out.

 

At ten o’clock, they had a large campfire. Head Counselor Henderson stood up and announced that it was time for a story.

“This is the legend of the Silver Shadow.” he began, “Not too long ago, there was a boy named Sid Macentire who loved playing in these very woods. He weaved in and out of the trees, his laughing echoing throughout the woods.” Cassie gasped as she heard a little boy laughing, but saw no one who owned that laughter. The scary man continued. “One day, he stopped, and turned around, for he felt something following him. He saw nothing, but noticed his shadow changing color to silver. He had a silver shadow. To the boy’s horror, the shadow leapt to life. He fell to the ground as he was consumed by his own silver shadow. Nothing was left but his shadow, free to roam wherever, and to consume whoever it felt like.” Cassie found herself with her hand squeezing Will’s.

“The Silver Shadow,” Henderson added, “can morph into anything, including people!”

Cassie screamed. Time to go home! Now she knew how they did it, by scaring them to death! Cassie told Will what she was thinking.

Will smiled and said, “Relax, there is no such thing as-” Will was interrupted by a blood-curdling scream. Cassie whipped around, and the girl next to her was gone. “I wanna go home!” Will shouted. Cassie held him close as she felt something brush against her leg.

Henderson screamed, “RUN! I’VE SAID TOO MUCH!” Cassie couldn’t move, but was frozen in fear as a silver figure took the man down in a choke hold. “How am I going to get to Everlanon now!” the creature hissed. Will gasped as the Silver Shadow looked at him. It finished off the counselor and leapt at Will, tackling him down. Cassie screamed and watched in horror as her boyfriend was gobbled up by the thing. “You’re next, Cassandra!” it roared.

Cassie screamed and sat up, hitting her head on the ceiling. Why did she choose the top bunk? She remembered why. It was because that place freaked her out. Why did they have to feed them so much sugar? It gave her nightmares. Cassie wished she never came. She was going to go home early until Will stopped her. It was already the second night; the time just flew by. Cassie had no idea where the nightmares come from. All she knew is she hated them.

Although she knew she shouldn’t, she got down from the bed and woke Sky up. “Let’s go for a walk.” Cassie whispered. Sky just nodded, half awake.

The two got their shoes on and left the cabin. Cassie immediately went to the boys’ cabin and Sky blindly followed. A twig snapped, and the two ran the rest of the way. Cassie felt she was being followed. Something about the camp scared them, a lot.

Cassie did the secret knock, and Will let them in. “What’s the matter, Cas?” he asked. Cassie explained her nightmares and Will gave her a hug. Someone pounded on the door. Cassie was right! Someone was following them. Sky and Cassie hid under the beds as Charlie answered the door. No one was there.

Charlie started closing the door until he saw a figure about fifty feet away. “Will?” Charlie asked as he turned around. Will walked over and looked out. A figure stood thirty feet away. Charlie jumped backwards; he only looked away for a second! He slammed and locked the door and jumped in bed. “I’m ready to go home!” he cried.

Everyone screamed as more pounding occurred. First the door, then the wall, and then the window. “If I live through this,” Cassie whimpered, “I am going home tomorrow!”

The window smashed open and shattered glass covered the room. Sky began to cry. Even if it wasn’t the Silver Shadow, someone wanted inside.

A figure jumped in the window. “Hello, kiddies!” it hissed.

Cassie was scared. She held out her hands to protect herself. Just then the thing was hurled backwards to the wall. It was going so fast that the wall didn’t stop it. It flew straight through the wall with loud snaps and cracks. They heard a crash, and out of curiosity, they all ran out to see it.

The Mess Hall paraded a gaping hole in the roof. Cassie ran inside and the others followed. Nobody was in there, but the table under the hole in the roof was smashed to pieces. “What just happened?” Charlie demanded to know. “I think it was the work of the Silver Shadow.” a voice echoed from the doorway, “If so, you all are in a heap of trouble.”

“I want to go back to New York!” Will announced. The voice laughed. “You aren’t going anywhere!”

Cassie had it with the secrecy. She marched up to the creep, grabbed his collar, and threw him to the ground. She stepped on his chest. “Who are you?” she pressed, “And you better tell the truth or I will crush your heart with my foot!”

Normally, someone would have calmed her down by now, but everyone was too scared. Everyone except for her victim. All the man did was simply let out a sigh, and disappear into thin air.

“Who wants to go home?” Charlie asked. Everyone raised their hands. Cassie whipped out her phone and called her parents.

“Why are you-” Cassie cut her mom off, “Please come get us, something happened and we are scared!” Cassie then hung up. That should do it.

 

 

Race To Camp Silver Shadow

 

Susan frantically dialed the other parents and told them what Cassie said. Before she knew it, her doorbell rang and in walked a group of nervous adults.

“What could have happened?” Mr. Braddock asked, scared for his life. If the king comes to a dead son, bodies would pile up quickly.

Susan had no idea, she had already sent James to get the one thing that could get their children quick enough. The NYPD Chopper. Being the Chief, James was able to use it in the most desperate situations, and to him, this was it.

Susan got everyone into Betty’s minivan so they could drive to the launch pad. As said before, Susan was not good in emergencies, so when she made it to the launch pad with four police cars chasing her, James wasn’t surprised. He just ushered everyone into the helicopter and showed his badge. Up they went, to Paradise, Montana.

 

After flying for a while, Susan spotted Camp Silver Shadow surrounded by police cars. They landed and everyone tumbled out. Cassie was sitting on a bench. Her hands were covered in blood.

 

 

The Silver Shadow

 

After Cassie hung up, they decided to wait in the Mess Hall until someone showed up. Will went over and put his arm around her. “I’m sorry I told you to stay one more night.” he apologized, “None of this would’ve happened if we left.”

Cassie nodded, but said nothing. She

had a feeling, a very bad feeling. “It’s not over,” she murmured. That was all she said.

 

They tried to comfort her, but nothing worked. Cassie looked at the door. It was closed. “Nobody move.” Cassie whispered, “Who closed the door?” Stephen, Glenn, Charlie, Will, and Sky all shook their heads. “If none of us closed the door, who did?” Charlie asked, moving closer to Sky.

A man laughed. They all watched as he walked towards them slowly. Cassie was furious. Whoever that was, she wanted him dead, and she wanted him dead now! Cassie leapt away from the group and in front of the man.

He had a really bushy beard. He vanished. “Behind you!” he teased. Cassie didn’t turn around, instead she did a donkey kick, and hit the creep in his gut. Cassie turned back and saw the man on the floor. He had dropped something. It was a dagger. Silver blade, and black handle. Cassie kicked it towards the group, making them jump. Will picked it up.

“What’s your name?” Cassie demanded. “Sid Saxton.” the man uttered, “and I am not alone.” Cassie kicked him and hurried back to the group. Just then, Counselor Matthew walked in and screamed. “What is this?” she panted.

She was wearing a black robe, and had her hair up in a bun.

“That guy!” Cassie yelled, “Is gone?” Sure enough, the bearded man was missing. “Is that a knife!” Matthew huffed, “What were you doing with that, in here, with that puddle of blood, and the roof!”

Cassie watched her. She threw her arms around wildly while she yelled, but she didn’t seem to worry.

“We were making you cherry pie, but as you see, we’re not good cooks,” Cassie lied, “That isn’t blood, that’s the cherries, try some.” Cassie knew the counselor by now, eating anything she could without hesitation. Cassie grinned.

“Oh,” she whined, “Um, are you sure?” Cassie tackled her and pinned her down. She had hesitation, she knew something.

“Get off me!” she howled, “What are you doing? Why aren’t you worried about-” She stopped talking.

“Your first name?” Cassie demanded. “Alizeb, now get off me, and we might let you live!” Cassie smiled, and punched her in the face until she was out cold.

 

Charlie watched in amazement. Cassie was enjoying this way too much! She just knocked out some lady, and was getting up and smiling!

 

“We are not going to die tonight!” Cassie announced. Will ran over to her and gave her a kiss. “Please calm down, that was uncalled for.” Will explained. Cassie looked at Charlie. His big blue eyes let her snap back to her good self. “We need to call the cops!” Sky suggested. Charlie took out his phone and dialed 911 and explained their situation to the dispatcher. “We’ll send someone right away.”

 

The group made their way to the kitchen, there were lots of things that they could defend themselves with if need be. Cassie then started barricading the door. “Aren’t you guys gonna help?” Cassie asked sarcastically. Charlie and Will joined in.

They all huddled in the corner, armed with pots and pans. Then a knock came on the door. Nobody dared to answer. “Who’s in there!?” said Mr. Henderson, “Mrs. Matthew is knocked out on the floor, what happened?” Henderson banged on the door and repeated his demand for entry. Cassie moved the barrier, holding the stranger’s dagger. She opened the door and there stood Mr. Henderson. Seeing the blade, Mr. Henderson stepped back. “What are you doing with that?” he stuttered. “Protection.” Cassie warned. “Calm down, Cas.” Will called out.

“Why don’t you kids come with me, and we’ll sort this out.” he offered, “Give me the knife please.” “No,” Cassie refused, “How can I trust you, if I couldn’t trust Mrs. Matthew?” Henderson nodded. “I totally understand.” he said, “Keep the knife, and follow me.”

 

They followed Mr. Henderson to the office. “So the police have been notified?” he asked. Cassie confirmed his question, “Yes, they will be here any second.”

“Then I suppose we’ll have to clean things up,” Henderson proposed, “Mr. Saxton!” Cassie armed herself with the knife. Sky threw a pan and it hit Henderson in the head, knocking him out cold.

“Hello kids,” Mr. Saxton teased as he appeared in front of Cassie, “I’ll take the Silver Shadow now.” He reached out for the knife but was too slow. Cassie plunged the knife into his gut. Saxton’s eyes rolled as he stumbled into the counselor’s desk. Blood coated Cassie’s hands, as she pulled the murder weapon out.

“So this is the Silver Shadow,” Cassie mumbled with an evil grin. “Cassie?” Will whispered, trying to get her to come back. Cassie turned towards Will and Charlie. She realized what she did and threw the dagger to the ground. She ran to her boyfriend and hugged him crying. “Did I just kill someone?” she wailed. Will rubbed her back. “I was scared that he was going to hurt you guys!” Cassie exclaimed. Charlie hushed her, holding Sky close. Skyler had never seen anything like that before. She was petrified. They all stood there, not moving or talking, until the sirens sounded.

 

The cops took blood samples, fingerprints, and identifications of everyone there. The Silver Shadow got put in a bag and labeled ‘EVIDENCE’.

Cassie and Will walked outside to sit on the bench by the parade field. “I still love you,” Will admitted, “I think I love you more now.” Cassie looked at his eyes. He was telling the truth. Cassie leaned forward and their lips collided once again. Pulling away, Cassie looked straight into his eyes and said, “I love you too!”

 

“William Braddock, please come over here!” an officer ordered. Will obeyed and waved to Cassie.

 

Looking up at the morning sky, Cassie saw a helicopter. That’s strange, why did they call for a helicopter? The chopper landed on the parade field and familiar faces piled out. Her parents, Charlie’s grandma, Sky’s parents, and Will’s dad all fell out. Cassie coughed. Her dad shoved six people in a five-person chopper, a very dangerous thing to do, just because she called for them to get them. That’s either love or stupidity, maybe both. Cassie smiled and stood as her horrified parents saw their precious daughter drenched in blood.

 

“What happened?” Susan interrogated, “Is everyone alright?” Not the dude she stabbed in the stomach. “Yes,” Cassie began, “but they should really do better background checks on these people.”

“Let go of me!” a cuffed Henderson shouted as he was shoved in the back of a cruiser. James ran up to the man in charge and showed him his badge. “Officer James Smith, Chief of the NYPD.” he introduced, even though he had no jurisdiction here, “I’m also the father of Cassandra Smith. What’s going on?” “We don’t know yet,” the cop explained, “We need to interrogate everyone, but I advise your daughter to get a lawyer, because she’s in a heap of trouble.”

James told Susan what the man said. “What happened, Cassandra?” she demanded to know. “I had a nightmare, so I went to see Will and Charlie. I was being followed. We ran inside the cabin and some creep broke in. I don’t remember much after that, but he came back when we were in the Mess Hall, Mrs. Matthew was involved, and we hid in the kitchen.” Cassie took a breath before continuing, “I had taken the man’s knife to protect myself. Then Henderson came and took us to the office, the creep came back and Sky knocked out Henderson.”

Skyler’s parents gasped and Cassie added, “I was afraid he was going to hurt us, so when he grabbed for the Silver Shadow, I stabbed him. Charlie already called the police, so we just waited” Susan hugged her daughter. “You are braver than I ever could be.” Susan wept.

“Wait, so this camp is named after a knife?” Betty posed. Cassie thought about it and it was true, Camp Silver Shadow. The Silver Shadow wasn’t a monster; it was a knife. Why was it so special, though? Cassie quickly dismissed the thought, for now, anyway.

 

Susan called her high school friend, Laura Lingard, who became a popular lawyer in the law firm of Lingard-Belton-Bannister, stationed in northern California. “I’m sure it was in pure self-defense,” Lingard explained, “so I accept the case. I’ll be up right away.”

Susan was the popular nice girl in high school, so she had plenty of connections. If it wasn’t for her past, Susan probably would’ve never had a future!

 

By the time Laura arrived, Cassie had already been cleared to go. They didn’t need a lawyer after all. After a thorough investigation, and interrogation, it had been determined that Cassie was trying to protect herself and her friends from the threats of the adults, not to mention they were scared out of their wits.

 

Cassie got cleaned up and changed into new clothes for the trip home. There was no way she was ever going back to Montana again!

 

Then it hit them, they had ten people in Montana, and their only way to get back was a five-seater police chopper. The police volunteered to give them a ride to the nearest airport so they could get home. James, Susan, Cassie, Betty and Charlie took the chopper, while the others went to the airport.

Cassie never got to ride in a helicopter before, so she took a selfie with Charlie as they flew home.

 

Will sat next to his knight on the plane. It was time to tell him about his relationship with Cassie. “Dad?” Will began, “I have something to tell you.” Mr. Braddock looked at Will with his curiosity face. “Thanks for coming.” Will sighed.

Arthur was dumbfounded. The prince never thanked him for anything! That was a first! Maybe the near-death experience was good for him.

 

Cassie looked at Charlie. “I still can’t believe that the Silver Shadow is a knife!” Cassie exclaimed. Charlie just smiled. Cassie was always so curious.

 

When the airplane landed, James picked them up in Betty’s van to take them to their cars.

Cassie ran up to Will. “Did you tell him yet?” she inquired. Will kissed her on the cheek and said, “He’ll know soon enough.”

 

 

First Dates

 

Will sat on his couch thinking about his love. He imagined her soft hair, her smooth skin, and her loving smile. He was in love.

Then it hit him. They haven’t officially had their first date! How was he going to take Cassie out on a date, without Sir Arthur finding out?

 

Charlie got a text and checked his phone. It was from Will! Charlie groaned. He hated Will with a passion! He still didn’t know why, but something about him he despised. Regardless, Charlie opened the text. It read ‘Wanna double date? Me and Cassie and you and Sky’. Charlie figured it would probably strengthen Chyler, so why not?

 

When Will got the okay, he texted Cassie. ‘Will you go on a double date with me?’.

 

 

Cassie laid in her bed daydreaming when her phone vibrated itself off her desk. Cassie rolled onto the floor and read the text. She jumped up and ran to her mom as fast as she could. “Will just asked me out on a date!” Cassie announced. Susan whipped around and beamed, “Your first date!”

 

Sky received a text from Charlie. It read ‘double date with Cassie and Will?’ Sky fell on the floor and texted back ‘YES!!!’.

 

Will got a reply text from Cassie that invited him over. Realizing that the buzz kill knight was napping, Will got dressed, headed to Cassie’s, and left a note saying he went to a friend’s house.

 

Cassie popped on her favorite dress. Her mom told her that the first date was the most important, so look good, and be herself. When the doorbell rang, Cassie flew to the door and welcomed Will with a kiss.

Her boyfriend was wearing a purple dress shirt, a tie, and basically the works. His shiny dress shoes squeaked when he walked.

“You look handsome,” Cassie flirted, “Nice shirt.” Will smiled, “Charlie and Skyler are supposed to meet us at Central Park at six. What time do you need to be home by? So far, everyone needs to be back by eight. Cassie looked at her mom.

In all honesty, after going through what they did so far, Susan trusted them to be out all night. “Eight sounds good!” Susan chirped.

Cassie showed a big sparkling smile to her mother as a thank-you. “See you later!” Cassie called while closing the door.

Outside, the couple started walking to the park, holding hands. Will looked at Cassie as they walked through. He was the happiest boy ever!

Charlie and Sky waited for Cassie and Will to show up. They didn’t know the plans, but they were dressed up and ready.

 

It was August, and back to school ads were everywhere. The summer was pretty much done with, and everyone was getting ready for fall, winter, and the school season.

 

Cassie and Will walked into the park, and past the old man who always fed the pigeons. They soon came upon Chyler, sitting on a park bench.

 

“What are we doing?” Sky asked when she saw her friend. Will simply shrugged. “It’s up to you guys,” he disclosed, “I’m not good at planning things.”

 

Will didn’t have any plans at all. He had no idea what to do for a first double date. He had grabbed $350 from his allowance before leaving. That may seem like a lot, but for a prince with a big inheritance, it was merely pocket change. There was about five years until his sixteenth birthday, which was when his parents would bring him home. He wouldn’t become king until his father stepped down, or was killed, but he would still be rich.

Showing the group his cash, Will offered to buy. “Where did you get all of that cash?” Cassie demanded. Will just smirked and said, “I have a big allowance.” Though it was little to him, Will was used to people around here being surprised with him having the amounts of money that he did.

 

“I know a place that delivers to here,” Sky offered, “We can have a picnic!” Cassie liked the idea and said, “Sounds good to me!” Will and Charlie agreed. If anyone could lead the group, it would be Cassie. She could easily get the two boys to follow her blindly.

 

Sky called and ordered their dinner. They had mozzarella sticks as a group appetizer, and each got their own entrees. No one was surprised when they heard Cassie order pancakes. Soon, they received the three course meal in a box.

 

Cassie figured that if she was going to eat food that came out of a box, it might as well be her favorite.

Everyone soon finished, and they remembered dessert. They ordered a Monster Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie. It was $35 of sweetness. It was a chocolate chip cookie crust, filled with chocolate pudding pie filling, topped with a monster-sized chocolate chip cookie that covered the whole thing. On top of that stood a five-inch heap of whipped cream drizzled with chocolate syrup.

 

Charlie looked at the thing. He glanced at the plastic butter knife he was supposed to cut it with. “I don’t know what to do!” he wailed.

 

Sky laughed at her hopeless date. Seriously though, how do you serve a foot-deep pie with plastic ware! Whose bright idea was this?

 

In the end, they gave up and sent it with the pigeon man. “At least we don’t have a sugar-high now!” Cassie piped up.

 

“What now?” Cassie asked Will. “It’s 7:45, and the sun’s setting,” he began, “if you had fun, we can call it a night.” Cassie thought about it. She really didn’t want to end her first date yet, but she did have a good time. She gave Will a quick kiss and shook her head yes.

 

Charlie smiled to himself. Finally, this night was over! He could go home, and no longer have to watch Will and Cassie ogle each other! Woo-hoo!

 

 

School Life Under Mother Jurisdiction

 

It was the first day of the new school year. Cassie’s mom was excited for her first full year in her new position. Last year, she had a few weeks of training before school ended, so she didn’t get to the full experience. This year was the beginning of her reign over Ezekiel Jacobs Middle School!

Susan walked with her daughter to school like they used to when Cassie was little. They left early so Susan could meet with Mrs. Spencer to discuss the first day.

Once they were at the school, Cassie decided to wait for Will outside, as per their new tradition. “Hopefully I won’t have to go to your office!” Cassie joked, making Susan snigger.

 

 

Will ran to school, he couldn’t wait to see Cassie! His ‘dad’ was in charge of scheduling, so he had him stack the system so him and Cassie were in every period together.

“That way I can study her!” Will had lied. He just wanted to be with her, but there was no way he was going to tell that jester! He wanted to tell her about Everlanon! She would be ready when they went, but he knew if he told her without proof, she would think he was crazy!

When the school was in sight, he slowed down into a strut. Cassie looked his way and waved, smiling big.

“Will!” Cassie called, “What’s your schedule?” Will ran up and smiled, showing her his twinned schedule.

They both showed the other their schedule. They had Alice Harper for homeroom. Their schedule was then English, math, their elective spot, history, lunch, science, gym, band, and homeroom. Cassie wondered how they got everything together, but she didn’t care!

 

Mrs. Smith took very little time talking to the students, before she sent them to go through their schedules with the normal bell schedule, starting at first period.

This year, Cassie and Will had English with Mad Alice, which didn’t disappoint. Cassie loved how she taught, even if she was a little loony.

 

Alice was in her closet screaming when the first two students walked in. The door opened and Alice took a nosedive into the floor. “Are you okay?!” Cassie hollered. “Close the door!” she demanded, lifting her head off the floor, “NOW!”

Cassie walked over to the door, and to her surprise, a flaming arrow flew past and hit the chalkboard. From inside the closet! She yanked the door shut. “What was that!” Will shouted. Mad Alice stood up, quickly locked the door, and turned towards them. She reached in her pocket and said, “Assuming you believe me now, no one can know about the door.” She pulled out a vial that was labeled ‘FORGET-ME-NOT’. She threw the vial on the floor, and ran to the window as a mist surrounded the two.

 

 

Cassie didn’t know how, or why, but she woke up on the floor next to Will. “What happened?” she moaned. Will shrugged his shoulders and stood up.

Alice ran in with Ms. Smalls, the school nurse, and Mrs. Smith. “They just passed out!” Alice yipped, “I didn’t know what to do.” The nurse checked their eyes and vitals. “All normal, probably just dehydration.” the nurse diagnosed. Mrs. Smith then brought them a bottle of water and told them to drink up.

After her second bottle, Cassie soon got her bearings straight, but she still didn’t remember what happened.

 

The bell rang and class soon started. “Welcome to English class, I am your teacher, Alice Harper.” she introduced, “Call me what you like, as long as you are learning.”

Cassie looked at the closet. She thought she remembered something about it, but she didn’t know for sure. So she stood up.

“What are you doing, Miss Smith?” Alice asked politely. Cassie didn’t answer, she just walked over to the closet and knocked on the door. Knock. Knock. Knock.

“Get away from there this instant!” Mad Alice wailed.

Knock. Knock. Knock. Everyone looked around. Cassie didn’t do it. The noise came from inside the closet! “What’s in there?” Will questioned. Cassie turned the door handle and opened the closet.

“Noooo!!!!” Alice yelled, running to the door, but it was too late. A giant tentacle reached out and slammed around the room, crashing around, causing everyone to scatter. Alice lit a paper on fire and slapped it on the beast. A loud shriek filled the school, and the tentacle slammed on the ground, and slowly withdrew from the room, dragging a desk with it.

Alice shut the door and sighed. “I knew I should have invested in a better lock!” she said, leaning on the door.

“That door really-” Charlie stuttered, “You’re not crazy?” Charlie was one of the students who stayed. Alice sighed. “I’m not crazy, but no one can know about this,” Alice explained, “so I have to put this mist in the air vents. She held up a familiar vial labeled ‘FORGET-ME-NOT’.

She ran to the blower that circulates air throughout the school and dumped the potion in. A chugging followed, as she grabbed a gas mask. Cassie screamed as the school became very misty. A guy ran to Alice, his identity hidden, and stole her mask and put it on.

 

 

Principal Smith woke up with her head on her desk. What happened? It was 3:30! The last time she checked, it was nine! She walked out to the office. People were sleeping everywhere. A mass dehydration? That can’t be! They must have been gassed! She announced over the loudspeaker that everyone report outside as soon as possible for attendance. She then called James.

 

“James, I believe that the school was just gassed, can you send someone?” James agreed to his wife’s request and sent five cruisers and Detective Allen to investigate the scene.

 

When the cops came, everyone was waiting outside. Only one person could remember what happened, but they said nothing.

 

Detective Allen checked the ventilation system, and sure enough, there was broken glass in and around the main machine.

He took fingerprints, but received none, so he talked to Susan.

 

“Yes, you were gassed.” the detective stated, “But it wasn’t dangerous, so as long as nothing is missing or damaged, and everyone is okay, we’ll drop the case.” “Well no one reported anything so-” Susan was interrupted by Allen, “Okay, then call us if you need anything else!” With that, the cops all withdrew and Susan sent the students and faculty home. She hoped everyday wasn’t going to be like this.

 

 

A Chance To Find Everlanon

 

Will waited for Sir Arthur impatiently. When he finally showed up, Will ran to him. “Let’s go back to Everlanon!” Will shouted excitedly. “You know there’s still five years until the portal opens?” Mr. Braddock reminded.

Will laughed. “Mad Alice.” he said, “She’s not really mad.”

Arthur sat down and listened to Will’s story. “If we get to that closet,” Will explained, “we can use it to go back ourselves!”

“Let’s do it.” Braddock agreed.

 

 

Cassie got a text from Will that said to meet him at the school. Will was not going to leave her behind, not in a million years.

“What are we doing here?” Cassie asked. “My dad agreed to sneak us inside to take a closer look at Mad Alice’s closet.” Will explained, “I’m curious, aren’t you?”

 

They ran inside and went to their English teacher’s room. They opened the door, and saw Mr. Braddock laying on the ground, knocked out cold.

The door slammed shut and locked. Cassie turned around. It was Mad Alice Harper! “You shouldn’t have come!” she warned, “I needed to destroy the door, it has become too much of a hassle!” Cassie banged on the door as her former favorite teacher finished piling newspapers throughout the school, and sprinkled gasoline on everything. “This was my favorite job,” she cackled, “too bad you all have to go away with it!” Alice lit a match, and it went out. She threw it down and tried again, with the same results. “That’s it,” she said, whipping out her lighter. She took her scarf off and lit it on fire. She then threw down the hot accessory on the papers. Cassie screamed as the flames flew through the school.

Will didn’t know what to do. Alice was mad after all! He looked out the door window and saw her skipping through the flames, this way and that, like a moth to a candle.

Sir Arthur regained his consciousness and jumped up. “What happened?” he yelled, “Is that smoke I smell?” Cassie nodded.

 

Mr. Braddock wasn’t going out that easily. He ran to the door, and kicked it down. The door landed with a bang and Alice turned her attention to the escapees. “Oh no you don’t!” she warned, getting out a small handgun. She shot at Mr. Braddock, but missed, giving him time to tackle her down so the kids could exit.

Will pulled Cassie outside. “What if they don’t make it?” Cassie cried. Will shook his head and whispered, “I don’t know.” Cassie remembered she had a phone, so she got it out. Her hands were shaking so much that she dropped it on the ground. It smashed on contact with the pavement.

Will held her trembling hand and squeezed it. “Calm down, everything will be okay.” he comforted. Just then the school exploded, and debris rained down on them. They ran to the other side of the road, and Cassie cried out, “Why can’t I have a normal life!”

A fire truck, ambulance, and police car pulled in. Another explosion happened. Where were they? Why haven’t they come out yet?

The firemen tried to stop the fire from spreading to other buildings by spraying them down. By now, everyone had been evacuated safely from the area except for Cassie, Will, and the two teachers.

Mrs. Spencer and Susan showed up as they continued to fight the fire. It looked as if the fire was going to burn the school to the ground. The main doorway collapsed trapping the adults inside, it was unlikely that they were even still alive.

“What happens tomorrow mom?” Cassie asked, trying not to think of the fire. Susan shushed her daughter. They stood in silence as the school burned.

 

Inside the inferno, the closet blazed. It glowed brightly and with a big flash, it blew up Alice’s room with another loud boom.

 

Another boom, and the entire south section blew up. Cassie winced in pain as she imagined that she was still in the room. Boom. The sound replayed in her head. Boom.

 

When the sun rose the next day, the school was replaced with a pile of rubble and ash. The smoke still rolled from the ruins, as the school board met in the high school to address the issue.

 

“Okay then,” Susan announced to the board, “Mrs. Spencer suggested that we use the high school until we rebuild the middle school. All in favor, say ‘I’.” The board all said ‘I’ and it was official. The middle schoolers were now to be shoved in Gilbert Hoffman High School.

When Cassie heard the news, she was crying. Neither Mr. Braddock’s nor Alice’s bodies were found, and they were assumed dead. Where would Will go? His father died, and he had no relatives to take him. Cassie was really worried that he would be put in the foster system and they would have to break up.

When Cassie told her mom the dilemma, Susan thought for a while. Her daughter would be depressed!

A few days later, Will had been allowed to stay with the Smiths until the court decided his fate. There was an unnamed woman who insisted on adopting him, who the court was doing background checks on. Cassie was hopeful. The lady lived in NYC, and if she did adopt Will, he would still be in her school!

The woman was cleared, and it was time for Will to meet his new mother. They set up a time where Will could meet her with Cassie for support.

At 5:15, the Smiths received a knock on their door. Cassie looked at Will, it was his new parents! They opened the door, and we’re shocked. It was Mrs. Spencer! She came in and explained how Susan gave the idea so Will wouldn’t be ripped from his own life. Mrs. Spencer was ecstatic! She always wanted to be a mother, but it didn’t work out. Now she had a shot.

Cassie was so happy, that she gave Mrs. Spencer a big hug! She knew now that her and Will would surely be together forever!

 

 

Twins!

 

It was February and the babies were due anytime. Yes, babies. When Susan had gone for her first ultrasound, it was revealed that she was having twins! She was expecting a boy, and a girl. Ever since, James and Susan were frantically rushing around, getting ready for the babies.

Cassie had thrown a baby shower in January, and invited a ton of people. If she was going to have twin siblings, she had to be ready!

 

It was now February 22, 2012, and Cassie just turned 12 years old last August. Susan woke up around eleven. Her water broke.

She shook her husband awake and whispered, “It’s time.” James shot out of bed and got Cassie up with a loud “Babies are coming!” He acted as if this was his first time!

Susan walked out to their living room and called Charlie’s grandma. Betty had agreed to drive Susan to the hospital when the time came, because they didn’t own their own car.

Betty hung up the phone and called to Charlie. “Cassie’s mom is ready! Coming?” she shouted. Charlie came running down the stairs and was in the minivan before his grandma made it to the door. She got in the driver’s seat and drove to Cassie’s.

 

James was still running around when Betty arrived, and Susan got in the front. James jumped in the middle seats while wrestling the babies’ carriers, and Cassie joined Charlie in the far back. “Don’t you think my dad is panicking.” Cassie whispered. “Nah.” Charlie answered, looking at his shoeless feet. Cassie giggled.

Betty pulled out and left for the hospital. She soon arrived at the emergency room and James flew in, leaving his wife in the dust. Susan followed him in with Betty, Cassie, and Charlie.

 

At 11:59, on February 22, Vander Lewis Smith was born, and on 12:01 the next day, Vanessa Monica Smith was born.

 

Cassie entered the hospital room, and Susan said, “Congratulations, you are officially a big sister. Wanna hold them?” Cassie nodded and took first Vander, and then Vanessa. She was too scared to hold them at the same time.

 

 

Eighth Grade In High School

 

Cassie was now in eighth grade. The rest of seventh grade was boring, and they never did finish the new middle school in time for eighth grade. Will was living happily with his new family, and his father’s death didn’t seem to affect him that much, which surprised Cassie.

Alice was found guilty of torching the school, but they took no legal action due to her being deceased. Instead, the new mayor, who was way better than Sanders, gave the school the funds needed to build a better building.

The High School had 3 floors, so the rooms were compressed, and the middle schoolers were shoved on floor one, and the high schoolers moved to floors two and three.

With almost three thousand students in one building, it was very inconvenient. People hated Mad Alice for burning down the school, as half of the middle schoolers didn’t have desks.

Cassie and Will were in Miss Hartenburg’s math class, doing Algebra until they cried. Not literally, but that’s how Cassie felt. The new middle school wasn’t due to be finished until next year, so this would be her last year of suffering, but she was still cranky. The only good thing was that Will and her got to spend tons of time together. They sat together in Algebra, mainly because they shared a desk. Thanks to Cassie’s Aunt Linda, she had some say to where she sat. Will and Cassie would hold hands under the desk while they worked, and Miss Hartenburg never suspected a thing!

 

 

Meanwhile, Chyler still was a thing, although Charlie started to give up. No matter how hard he tried, he just didn’t like Sky in that way. He liked Cassie! After everything she’s been through, he wished he could be there for her. Hold her when she cried, make her laugh when she was sad, and most importantly, calm her down when she was angry. Charlie noticed a long time ago that when Cassie got mad, very few people could calm her, and he was one. He felt as if somewhere, she liked him, but he knew it wasn’t true, especially now that she was with Will.

 

One day, Miss Hartenburg saw Will and Cassie holding hands. Being herself, she decided to tease her niece a bit. “Hello Cassie,” she said in a sing-song voice, “Got a boyfriend I see?” Cassie hadn’t told her aunt about Will yet, so the accusation made her blush.

“Blush much?” she teased as she turned to Will, “May I just say, sir, you sure do know how to pick ‘em!” Cassie was as red as a raspberry. The class laughed. Aunt Linda pinched Cassie’s cheek. Cassie simply put her head down. She secretly liked being teased by her aunt. Miss Hartenburg ended with a big “AWW!” and everyone went hysterical.

Will laughed as Cassie slowly slid down in her seat. She had such a great sense of humor! He was so glad that Mrs. Spencer adopted him, so he didn’t have to break up with his true love! What he wasn’t a fan of was trying to remember to write Will Spencer on all of his work in place of Will Braddock. Soon, it will be Prince William Henry Oscar Albert Eindhoven Rindenton, officially making his initials W.H.O.A.E.R. as in he made everyone go ‘whoa’, hence ‘whoa-er’. That always made Will laugh.

Remembering Cassie, he grabbed her head and pretended to pull her back up, and she played along.

Miss Hartenburg put her head in her hands. Kids these days!

 

Charlie sat in history, missing Mr. Braddock. He was way better than the new guy. Or should he say old guy, he had to be 100 years old! Since when did they decide history should teach history!

Charlie started thinking about Sky, hoping he could save Chyler. It was like everyone wanted them to be together, but it just didn’t click with him! She was adorable and all, and she was nice too, but he didn’t want to be with her. He was told by his grandfather, ‘If you ever find yourself questioning your love, think of this: if you look into your future, ten, twenty years, who can you not imagine life without? That is who you truly love.’ Charlie did what he said. He looked into his future. Him and Sky were married, but Cassie was there too. He tried to imagine life without Skyler, and it was easy. Then he envisioned life married to Cassie, and he was happy. They lived together with their family, but he was just happy to call her his wife. Charlie remembered what his grandpa said and tried to imagine life without Cassie. He tried, and tried, and tried, and then someone tapped on his shoulder. “Mr. Myers,” the history teacher said, “If you have to go, sign out and go to the restroom.”

 

The bell rang and it was time for Cassie and Will to go to lunch. They had the same lunch as Sky and Charlie, since lunches were arranged by grade. Will and Cassie went through the line and went to their regular table. Charlie sat down next and then Sky. No one talked, yet.

 

‘Break up with Skyler’. Charlie repeated the thought in his head over and over again. He really hated acting that they had a connection, when any chance of that was long gone! ‘Break up with Skyler’ he thought again.

 

Sky hadn’t told Charlie yet, but she was in love. She was completely head over heels, in love. Sky wanted to tell him, but she was scared that she would scare him off. They’ve been dating since 6th grade. Will and Cassie had hit it off fast! Chyler wasn’t like that, unfortunately. It took time, and Sky was now certain. She loved Charlie, not just for his looks, but his warm personality that couldn’t hurt anyone’s feelings if he wanted to.

 

Cassie noticed Charlie acting strange. He hadn’t touched his lunch yet, and was moving his head from side to side, like he was arguing with himself. Charlie was weird, but it was a different weird today.

 

Will smiled. Cassie was studying Charlie’s strange actions and he absolutely loved her doing it. The curiosity burning in her eyes, wracking her brain, as beautiful as ever!

 

Charlie shoved a meatball in his mouth and chewed feverishly. He must end Chyler! But how? How could he break up with her without hurting her?

 

Sky imagined walking down the aisle to Charlie. She knew it was Chyler forever now! If Charlie had ended a while ago, she’d been sad, but would have gotten over it quickly. On the other hand, though, if he ended it now, she would be crushed! She’d hear her heart snap in two as her love ripped Chyler in half! She doesn’t know whether she’d be depressed, or fly into a rage, but either way, she most definitely would have her feelings hurt. Even if he did it gently!

 

Perhaps if Charlie broke up with her gently, she’d take it okay, and understand that it wasn’t meant to be.

 

Will noticed the complete opposite moods of Chyler, and decided to end the silence. “Isn’t Cassie beautiful!” he blurted. Not exactly the best way, but it worked.

 

Of course Cassie is beautiful! Charlie loved every detail of her! She was by far the most beautiful girl he’s ever seen. “She’s pretty, right Sky?” Charlie answered nonchalantly.

 

Yes, absolutely! Sky was not afraid to admit it, because it was a cold hard fact. Cassie was very beautiful. “Yeah,” Sky nodded, “You’re very pretty.”

 

Will! Why did he start this compliment fest? Cassie began to blush for the second time today. “Thanks!” she mumbled, “You’re too nice.”

 

Do it now! Break up with Skyler right now! Charlie opened his mouth and shoved another meatball in. Checking his watch, he found that not even five minutes had past.

Charlie texted Will under the table. It read ‘I can’t date Sky anymore, I don’t like her like that, Chyler has to end! Help me!’

 

Will’s phone buzzed and he looked at the text. What! If Chyler split, who knows what would happen! Dozens of girls still crushed on Charlie, and if he became available, they would have drama galore! Plus, what would Sky do. Will looked at Charlie who showed him a pleading puppy dog face. Will texted him back. ‘If you really have to, just tell her how you feel, and that you hope you can stay friends. Will sent the text and braced for impact.

 

Charlie read the text, and shoved his last meatball in his mouth. Chew, chew, chew. He was a nervous eater. He swallowed the meatball and started to talk.

“Sky,” Charlie stammered, “You’re a great friend.”

 

Cassie gaped. Will held her hand. Sky shot up, and her chair fell backwards.

“Are you breaking up with me?” she squeaked, “You’re breaking up with ME!” Sky glared at Charlie, burning a hole in his soul. Sky ripped off her glasses and threw them to the ground. “You’re breaking up CHYLER!” she screamed, catching everyone’s attention, “How dare you! You walking toothpick!”

 

‘That was hurtful’ Charlie thought.

 

“Sky?” Cassie piped, “Calm down?” Sky glared at her. “You’re telling me to calm down?” she yelled, “At least I never killed someone!”

Everyone in the cafeteria started whispering amongst themselves. No one knew about Camp Silver Shadow

Cassie fumed and without thinking she screamed, “That was supposed to be a SECRET!” Oops. Cassie looked around at all of the scared faces. Did she just admit to murder? By then, a teacher had called Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Spencer.

“Skyler!” Cassie steamed, “Leave right now, you just lost yourself a friend.” Sky gave her an evil look. Cassie shot back with an eviler look.

While this was happening, Charlie was cuddled in a ball. He was always afraid of Sky and Cassie arguing, since they had such big tempers. It was probably his biggest fear.

 

Mrs. Spencer was at a sprint. When she heard Cassie was involved, she knew it might be bad. Cassie was a good student. She was a good person all together, but her temper could be very dangerous.

 

Sky stood strong. There was no way she was going to let Cassie scare her. Will was trying to calm her down, but she didn’t notice.

“Sky!” Will whispered, “Run!” No one knew what Cassie was capable of, nor did they wish to find out. She did kill a man after all.

Sky looked directly at Will and said two words. “Shut up.” Cassie jumped on the table and screamed, “Leave him alone!” Sky backed up and said, “Murderer.”

Cassie leapt from the table and punched Sky in the face. Will ran over to stop her, until he saw her face.

“Charlie!” Will whispered, “You are the only one who I know can calm Cassie down. Please stop her before-” Charlie got up and walked over to Cassie, very slowly. By now, everyone had scattered to the walls.

“Cassie?” Charlie called, “Please stop.” Cassie whipped her head around and saw Charlie’s big, bright blue eyes, big and watery. Charlie continued, “Please.” A small tear rolled down Charlie’s cheek and Cassie looked around at everyone. They were all scared to death. She had freaked them all out.

“I’m so, so sorry!” Cassie cried, turning the other way and darting towards the exit.

 

Mrs. Spencer was almost to the cafeteria, when she shot by, almost running into her mom. Susan looked at Mrs. Spencer and they ran after her.

Charlie and Will ran after her as well, leaving Sky alone in the center of attention. Once the door shut, everyone looked at Sky, already bruising from Cassie’s punch to the eye. “What are you looking at?!” she squawked, “Don’t act like I’m the bad guy! You saw what she did! You heard about the murder!” Everyone stared at her. “She killed a man named Sid Saxton! She just punched me in the eye!” Sky yelled, “She’s messed up! Anger issues! You don’t know who she’ll go at next! It could be any of you!”

“Charlie calms her down,” Miley announced, “Who calms you down?”

“What is wrong with you!” Sky screamed, “I’m the nicest girl in school! She’s some freak who can’t be trusted! She’s a MONSTER!!!”

Dr. Harrison was on duty. “That’s enough, Sky!” she ordered, finally having enough confidence to speak up. Sky hollered in exasperation and stormed out of the cafeteria.

 

 

Cassie ran out of the school. She didn’t want to be judged anymore. She didn’t want to hurt anyone else.

Mrs. Spencer and Susan followed her outside. Why did they have to wear heels?

“Do you know where she might be going?” Mrs. Spencer asked Susan. She knew. Charlie knew. Will knew. “Dock 6.” Susan answered, “It’s her special spot.” Mrs. Spencer nodded and headed to her car. Will and Charlie followed.

“Get in!” the superintendent ordered. She knew it was against the rules, but she didn’t care. If Charlie and Will could help with a potentially life threatening situation, she’d take them out of school any day!

They pulled in front of Harrison’s Boatyard and got out. There stood Cassie, on Dock 6. “Stay away!” Cassie cried, “I’m not ready to be around people!” Cassie knew that was a lie. She wanted Charlie, but she was afraid Will would get the wrong idea if she asked for him. She loved Will, but Charlie was special. She didn’t know why, but she wanted him with her.

 

“I’m going in,” Charlie said, not waiting for an answer. He walked over and stood on the edge of the dock. Cassie didn’t yell, so he continued. He knelt next to her and whispered, “Thank you.” “For what!” Cassie wailed.

“Thank you for saving us, thank you for caring,” Charlie continued quietly, “Thank you for being you.” Cassie looked up and smiled, tears running down her face. She stood up and followed Charlie to the vehicle. Will smiled at her. Cassie jumped at him with a big, tight, hug. “I love you.” she whispered.

 

They soon arrived back to the high school, where unbeknownst to them, Skyler was waiting. Cassie, Charlie, and Will hopped out of the SUV, and ran inside. Lunch was over, and it was time for physical science, the period that Cassie’s partner is Sky.

Charlie walked with Cassie to science class, and Will headed to English. They got to Dr. Chanington’s room just before the bell rang. Cassie sat next to a very angry, and bruised, Skyler. Dr. Chanington hadn’t heard what happened, so he didn’t move the seats at all. Sky continued to scowl at her ex-friend.

 

“Today we are going to talk about physical and chemical changes.” Dr. Chanington announced. “Like my eye.” Sky muttered.

 

Cassie put her head down. “What’s wrong?” Sky teased, “Are you feeling bad? Because you should!” “Quiet Miss Gledhill.” the teacher ordered. Skyler rolled her eyes.

Cassie was so confused! Sky was so nice, but the second Chyler split, it was like something snapped. Now it seemed like she was out for blood!

While Dr. Chanington talked, Sky slid Cassie a note. It read ‘Meet me at the alley behind the school at four and we’ll finish things.’ Cassie stuck the note in her pocket.

 

Right afterwards, Cassie showed Charlie the note. “Don’t go!” he plead, “You need to be the bigger person and turn away!”

In truth, Charlie was scared of another confrontation of the two, and if she went, he knew he would have to go too.

“I think I should go.” Cassie admitted, “Miley told me that she was giving a speech about how evil I am.” Charlie sighed, “No one believed it, right? Mrs. Spencer knows that the murder was self-defense!” Cassie had even saved Sky, and now Sky was making a whole campaign against her!

“You’re coming with me.” she demanded and Charlie swished his hair in frustration.

 

 

After school let out, Cassie and Charlie went to the alley as the note said. Trash was everywhere, like someone had been digging through the dumpster. Barely any light was able to reach the ground, due to the size of the surrounding buildings.

 

Sky knew that Cassie was going to show up, but she wasn’t betting on Charlie coming too. Nevertheless, if she had to take care of them both, she would. Previously blinded by love, she only saw the best in Cassie, but now everything was so clear! Someone had to get rid of her before she causes anymore damage. Killing someone to protect your friends, doesn’t make you a hero! It makes you a coward! Sky did the right thing, by knocking Henderson out, and letting the court decide his fate. Cassie had hurt and killed innocent people, and now it was time for her to get what’s coming to her! She was ready.

Sky reached in her purse and got the brown paper bag from the man in the black coat. She knew he was bad news since the first time she saw him, so she paid him a visit. Sky had asked him how to get rid of an unwanted pest. The guy had given her a shady look and said, “The best way to get rid of a pest is to kill it.”

He gave her a bag and said, “Light this and run.” Sky now held the bag in her hand, and stood close to the street. It was now or never. Sky walked over to Cassie, wearing a fake smile on her face. “Hello Cassandra,” she began, “I thought we should end this.” Sky had about a minute before the bomb blew. She threw the bag to the side and ran. Hopefully she didn’t give herself away.

 

Cassie looked at Charlie. What was that about? She walked over to the bag, and smelled the air. It smelled like garbage and smoke. Smoke!? “Charlie!” she yelled, “Would Sky ever try to hurt me?” Charlie shrugged, “Maybe, I don’t know, why?” Cassie opened the bag and screamed. It was a bomb. Cassie picked it up and started to blow out the flame.

 

Charlie wasn’t sure why Cassie was worried. Then he saw her pick up a lit bomb! Skyler! “Run!” Charlie hollered.

 

Sky grinned. Twenty seconds left. Cassie was so stupid!

 

Cassie dropped the explosive and ran towards Charlie. They ran out of the alley as the bomb was set off. Garbage flew everywhere, and a glass bottle hit Cassie, hard enough to shatter when it hit her head. She fell to the ground, and laid still.

 

Charlie stopped immediately. “Cassie!” he yelled running to her side. He took out his phone and called 911. Cassie was out cold. After the dispatcher sent help, Charlie called Cassie’s mom.

 

 

Susan was making supper, listening to her favorite song, and taking care of the twins, when the phone rang. Cassie said she was going to hang out with Charlie before coming home. “Hello,” she greeted. “This is Charlie,” he began, “Please come to the school now, the ambulance isn’t here yet.” “What happened?” Susan yelled, “Where’s Cassie?” Wait, Cassie! Susan dropped the phone and ran outside. Since the babysitter was still there, Susan hoped she would stay. “My daughter!” she informed, shutting the door behind her. James didn’t want her walking to work anymore, so they bought an electric scooter. She hopped on and was at the school in two minutes flat. Who needed 911 if they couldn’t get to the scene before the mother?

“What happened Charles!” Susan exclaimed, running to Cassie. Charlie explained the meeting, and the bomb. Susan couldn’t believe it. Her daughter had been the target of an attempted murder! She was going to send that child to juvenile detention if it was the last thing she did! Susan held Cassie close, hoping she would wake up any second.

The ambulance finally showed up and took Cassie to the hospital and the cops began a thorough investigation as soon as they were gone.

 

Since she heard the bomb, Sky had been running. She had to get out of their so she wasn’t a suspect. She needed alibis! Sky would definitely be the number one suspect because of the fight! She knew she was in trouble. Jail was in her future for sure, but if that was the price for saving hundreds of people from that beast, then so be it!

 

 

Charlie and Susan sat by Cassie’s bed, waiting for the others. Charlie texted Will, and Mrs. Spencer said they’d be over as soon as possible, and if Sky was the culprit, everything would be settled. Sky would more than likely be put on trial for attempted murder, and face years of big-girl detention.

James had left work early to visit his comatose daughter in the hospital.

The babysitter called and asked if she could drop the twins off at the hospital so she could go home. “Yes, please.” Susan responded. The girl soon showed up and handed over the two eight-month olds.

Cassie was still in a coma when her Aunt Linda visited at 6pm. Other than being unresponsive, Cassie was doing pretty well. Her friends and family, however, were not.

“ How long do you think it will be before she wakes up?” Susan asked the doctor. “We don't know.” the doctor explained, “She could wake up any second, she could wake up in a year, or -” Susan started to cry. Her baby, the one who she took in all those years ago, the one she loved and cared for, might never wake up again!

 

 

Skyler had a visitor who took her to the police station. It didn’t take too much interrogation before Sky gave up. “I did it!” she admitted, to the camera, hoping Charlie would see it, “I did it to save this place from that evil wench! She’s a killer! She’s a disgrace to the human race! She deserves what she got, and everyone who thinks otherwise deserves it too!”

Skyler’s parents were stunned. Their angel was capable of murder? Or at least attempting it?

 

The next day, Will and Charlie checked back with Cassie. She was still unconscious.

Charlie felt like crying. Why did it have to be her? If he hadn’t broken up with Skyler, none of this would’ve happened! It was all his fault!

 

Will knew it was his fault. If he would have gone too, maybe Cassie would’ve gotten away. He had the opportunity to save her from this, but didn’t accept it. Sure, it would’ve helped if Cassie told him, but he knew something was wrong. It must be his Prince-tinct.

 

Susan knew that the blame fell back on her. If she gave Skyler detention, Cassie never would have got the note, not to mention that Sky wouldn’t have been able to attempt the murder. It was all her fault because she slacked off as the principal!

 

Mrs. Spencer sat in her office. If she would’ve spoken up, and made someone give Sky detention, she wouldn’t have given Cassie the note, and wouldn’t have gotten the bomb, and Cassie wouldn’t be in a coma! Her adopted son’s girlfriend, and her very special student was in a hospital bed, clinging to life, and it was all her fault!

 

 

Sky sat in her room. She was on house arrest. This was all her fault! She could’ve poisoned her, or shot her, or beat her to death, but now she laid unconscious in a hospital bed alive! That means if she wakes up, she will be running around, free and happy, with Charlie and Will! How could she have been so careless! Skyler picked up a vase and chucked it at the wall. Then she saw it. Charlie gave her a necklace after their second date. It was a glass heart on a golden chain. “You jerk!” she screamed, knocking over the nightstand. The necklace shattered on the floor, mixing with all of the other glass she broke in the past hour. The confession was being sent to court so they could decide her punishment. Until it was decided, Sky was locked in her room. Due to her new, very violent personality, she was handcuffed to her bed rail, and her mom slid her meals through the window. In addition to the silver, Sky also had an ankle bracelet just in case.

Everyone hated her for trying to save them! Now she was the bad guy! She hated Cassie. She hated her so much!

 

 

Cassie Wakes, Sky Breaks

 

Three days passed and it happened. Cassie woke up from her coma. It was when Charlie was visiting before school.

 

“Please wake up Cassie!” Charlie plead. He did this every morning and night since the tragedy. He sat next to her bed and begged her to wake up. He knew the news about Sky, and he wanted to tell Cassie. Charlie didn’t care about what he told her, he just wanted to tell her something, anything, and have her respond.

“Charlie?” Cassie moaned, “Charlie?” Charlie jumped up and said, “I’m here!” He was so happy! Not only was she awake, but he was the first person she called for! Granted that it was probably because he was the last one she saw, but still, it was cool.

“Doctor!” Charlie yelled, “She’s up!” Cassie opened her eyes and groaned, “What happened?” “Doesn’t matter right now,” Charlie said, “What matters is you’re awake!” The doctor came in and took her vitals. He also had a little chat with her, and told Charlie to call her mom.

Susan was almost ready to leave the house, when she heard the word “Cassie”. She turned around to a just as amazed babysitter. Vander just said his first word! And it was Cassie? “Up”. Susan looked at Vanessa. She just said up. The twins’ first words were ‘Cassie’ and ‘Up’. Cassie up.

The phone rang. Susan answered the phone and before she could say hello, Charlie screamed, “CASSIE’S UP!” Susan dropped the phone and smiled. “Really?” Sallie, the sitter, questioned, “Did they just say what we just heard?” Susan nodded and ran out the door as Vander and Vanessa took turns shouting ‘Cassie up!’.

 

Susan saddled up on the scooter and motored off. She sent out a text to her whole contact list that read two words, ‘Cassie Up’.

 

Sky’s mom got a text that said ‘Cassie Up’, and sighed in relief. She told her husband that Cassie was okay and they hugged.

Upstairs, however, Sky heard the news. “Cassie’s up.” she whispered, “How nice, Cassie’s up!” Sky got out of bed and got the hammer from between the mattresses. “Cassie’s up!” she yelled, hitting the cuffs until they broke, “Not for long!”

 

“Cassie’s up Cassie’s up Cassie’s up Cassie’s up!” Sky screamed, catching her parents’ attention. “I’ll calm her.” her mom volunteered. She went up to Sky’s room and unlocked the door. It was silent. She opened the door a crack. “What!” she screeched. She opened the door all of the way, and Sky was gone! As was her one-piece window. It was shattered into dozens of pieces that had rained out onto their lawn. Running to the window, Mrs. Gledhill saw Sky, driving away in the family car.

 

 

Susan got to the hospital and soon Cassie had dozens of visitors. They expected the chaos, but they didn’t expect what happened next. Susan got a call from Sky’s mother.

“I called the police, Sky just stole my car and I believe she’s looking for your daughter.” Mrs. Gledhill informed. “What? How do you know?” Susan asked. Mrs. Gledhill told her about the Cassie’s up chant, and her previous rants.

A car crashed straight into the hospital lobby, and a girl got out. “Cassie?” she yelled, “I heard that she’s up. I have come to change that. The receptionist called security, but got shot in the process. Somehow, Sky now had a gun. She wasn’t going to mess up this time!

 

Susan heard the chaos downstairs and looked at Cassie. She wasn’t going to be able to leave yet, so she shut the door and crossed her fingers. She called Mrs. Gledhill, who was already on her way. “I had a feeling.” she said.

 

Hospital security was shot down instantly, and Sky took a hostage so she wouldn’t be bothered on the rest of her mission. She went to the intercom and announced, “No interference, and no one dies. Except for Cassie Smith. She’s doomed.”

 

The police arrived, and found out about the situation. Sky took an elevator up to Cassie’s floor. Ding went the elevator and out she came, dragging her seven-year-old hostage with her. “Cassie!” she yelled, “Where are you?”

 

Her fairy tale went sour quickly. Cassie remembered the nice, skin as white as snow girl. Then she thought about the girl with the black-eye and hand gun. She was not the same person she used to be.

 

Sky was way better than she used to be! She used to be the rug that everyone walked on, and now, she marched on everyone! She was the happiest girl in the world!

 

The doctor who previously did a check up on Sky while she was on house arrest diagnosed her as ‘incredibly mentally unstable’ and said it was caused by ‘the sudden breaking of her heart in her highest love stage’.

Cassie didn’t want to die! She had so much planned! Grow up with the twins, marry Will, and have Charlie watch their kids! Wait, how did Charlie get in the picture?

Cassie shook the thought away when she heard a bullet being fired. It was a warning shot. Cassie watched Sky pass her room. Cassie was relieved until she came back. “Let me in!” she ordered. Seeing Charlie in the room, her face turned red. She fired six shots at the door knob, blasting away the lock. The door swung open and no one moved.

“Get out of my way, or I will kill every one of you!” Sky screamed. No one moved. Sky pointed the gun at Charlie and fired.

 

Nothing happened. She spent so much time scaring everyone that she ran out of bullets! “Oh well.” Sky shrugged, “I guess I’ll have to do it the old fashioned way!” Sky ran at the bed, tripped and fell on the ground. Before she could get up, Miss Hartenburg sat on her. She wasn’t going anywhere now!

Susan called her husband’s old partner and told him that Sky was no longer armed and the police should come in. “Are you sure?” he persisted. “My sister is sitting on her and she’s out of ammo, now arrest her or I will!” Susan answered.

 

Minutes later, Sky was riding to the courtroom in a police car for her sentence. Since she broke her house arrest, she was going to be tried as an adult for attempted murder, breaking and entering, as well as others. It was later decided she serve twenty years in the Gus Jones Mentally Ill Detention Center located in Sacramento California. It was also found out that she broke her back due to being held down by Cassie’s aunt.

 

Cassie’s visitors left so she could relax, and went to their original plans. Charlie and Will were late to school, but under the circumstances, they were excused. Cassie wanted to go to school too, but the doctor ordered she stay at the hospital for another night, and then stay home for at least two days, before returning.

Then, Cassie looked at the doctor and asked, “What happened anyway?”

 

 

Stella Returns

 

From that point forward, Cassie was able to live the normal life she wanted to. The twins grew, and learned new things, and Cassie had graduated from ninth grade. Vander and Vanessa now sported brown hair, and the prettiest blue eyes Cassie’s ever seen. Well, except for Charlie’s. Now 15 years old, and waiting to turn 16, Cassie had her normalcy, until the text.

 

Cassie was walking home with Charlie and Will when Charlie’s phone buzzed. He opened the text and stopped dead in his tracks as he dropped the phone. “What is it?!” Cassie cried, picking up the device. She read the message and knew. The text read, ‘Hi Char-bear, Remember me? I heard you are single! Great news, because I’m coming back! Love your one and only, Stella’.

Cassie looked at Charlie and gasped. Did he just smile? Charlie wasn’t mad, or sad, but happy? Why was he happy?

Charlie couldn’t help but smile. Stella had been gone for about three years, and still had a crush on him! Duchess Stella Sanders wanted to be his girlfriend. After all this time, living in another country with royalty, she hadn’t forgotten him! Then he saw Cassie’s face. Oops.

 

Charlie instantly stopped smiling. Cassie figured it out! “You like Stella!” she accused.

“Nu-uh!” Charlie snipped. Holy macaroni! Charlie liked Stella, and Stella liked him, and she was coming back! Her enemy! Her best friend likes her enemy!

Cassie switched sides and remembered how Charlie wasn’t a Will fan when they first started dating, but now they are buds!

 

“You have my blessing to go out with Stella.” Cassie’s words hit him like a rubber glove. Charlie was shocked! Maybe he liked Stella, but he liked Cassie. That’s why he broke up with Skyler, and she almost died. Ugh! Why was his life so dramatic!

 

Ever since she moved, Stella had been checking in on Charlie with her Magic Mirror. When he broke up with Skyler, she was rolling on the floor with happiness. Until things got nasty anyway. Then she got popcorn. She watched Sky go crazy, and bomb Cassie and Charlie. She cried when the bomb blew because she didn’t think he was going to make it.

Stella saw Cassie get a coma, and for the first time ever was sad. Just a little sad for Cassie. When Charlie begged her to wake up, she bawled. Charlie was so adorable as he hopelessly plead for her awakening. When Cassie woke up, Stella fell backwards. She was not expecting that! Stella threw her popcorn bucket at the mirror as Cassie moaned, “Charlie?” Charlie was so happy though. Then she heard the phone call. “Don’t you dare!” she had warned. When Sky opened the door, Stella was whimpering begs for someone to save them. Sky pointed the gun at Charlie and Stella screamed and yelled, and cried. Then it had no bullets and Stella fixed her make-up as Miss Hartenburg sat on the girl. Stella saw pretty much everything that happened, so when Mr. Sanders announced that the people wanted him back due to the new mayor’s corruption, Stella leapt for joy and texted her boo.

 

When Charlie got home, his grandma told him that he had a visitor upstairs. Intrigued, he went to his bedroom. “Char-Char!” Stella squealed shutting him in, “I’m back!”

 

Charlie backed up and fell on his bed. Stella was beautiful! Her hair, her eyes, her soft skin. She was absolutely gorgeous! And she liked him! Charlie felt strange. Was he crushing on Stella?

 

Stella was so excited to see him in person! Now she wouldn’t have to wash the smudges off of her mirror anymore! “I missed you!” Stella teased.

Charlie stood up and dusted his shirt off. He swished his hair and smiled. Time to switch on the charm. He did have Cassie’s permission after all. He walked right up close and whispered, “You look great!”

 

Was Charlie flirting with her? Flirting? With her? Chella is back baby! “Thanks,” she flirted back, “You look hotter than I remember.”

Charlie put his arm on the door behind her and leaned in, saying “You too.”

 

Stella couldn’t resist any longer. She pulled Charlie closer and kissed him. He wore different cologne now! Stella closed her eyes as Charlie closed his arms around her. They made not a sound, carefully avoiding bumping that annoying appendage between the eyes. Right at that moment, Stella became the happiest rich girl in the world.

Stella pulled back and said, “I love you!” before continuing. To Stella’s surprise, Charlie followed suit, and a few minutes later, pulled away, looked into her eyes and said “I love you too.”

 

 

Cassie and Will were at the movie theater watching ‘Evil’s Hour’. It was about a wizard who took over the kingdom and was sending troops to other kingdoms to spread his power. Will winced when the prince was thrown off a bridge and eaten by crocodiles.

After the movie was over, Will walked Cassie home. “My 16th birthday is soon.” Will beamed. “I know, it’s on September 30th,” Cassie answered slowly, “about a month after school starts.”

 

Will couldn’t wait! As Sir Arthur said, ‘The portal to Everlanon will open on your sixteenth birthday, it will be open for a year, it should open up somewhere around our house, since that is the strongest connection between here and there.’ When his father comes, Will was planning to take Cassie with him, where they will one day rule as King and Queen of Everlanon! He just hoped he could talk her into it.

 

Will stopped and looked at Cassie. “You love me, right?” he said. Cassie looked at him weirdly and replied, “Yes I love you!” Will smiled, “Good, I love you too.” He leaned over and gave her a kiss.

 

As they continued, Will told Cassie that they would be together forever.

 

It was unnecessary though, because Cassie already knew that they would be together forever.

 

 

 

Stella finally ended their make-out session with a question. “Does this mean Chella is a thing?” she asked. Charlie looked at her and proclaimed, “CHELLA FOREVER!!!!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The End Of Ever

 

September 30th, at one o’clock in the morning, a rumble spread throughout the Realm of the Foretold. The source of the rumble came from the old Braddock estate. For inside the living room where Will grew up, a crack through space and time, and reality itself opened, as a blue light spread out from the portal. “It’s time!” a voice from inside echoed. A bearded man wearing a crown and robe entered the house from a far off realm called Everlanon. Following him came an army of twelve knights who volunteered for the mission. “Let’s find my boy!” the king announced, “A year only, so don’t waste it!”

 

 

A rumble woke Will from his sleep. It was time! He snuck out of the house, and rode his bike to Cassie’s.

 

Cassie fell out of bed. “That was weird.” she whispered, deciding to investigate the disturbance. She put her slippers on, and went outside.

 

Charlie was staying in Stella’s guest room. When he heard the rumble, he woke up his girlfriend. “What?” she asked. “I said, get a limousine to take us to Mr. Braddock’s old house, I have a strange feeling.” Charlie repeated. Stella jumped up, she loved their midnight adventures. The limo driver put the pedal to the metal, and drove to Mr. Braddock’s house at a speed of 100 m.p.h.

 

Will pulled his bike up to where Cassie was standing. “Hop on!” he ordered, and Cassie obeyed. She never passed up the opportunity to hold onto her boyfriend’s rock-hard abs.

 

The limousine and the bike pulled into Braddock’s glowing old house at the same time. “What’s happening?” Cassie asked in wonder as Charlie and Stella stepped out of the limo. “That’s what we’re here to find out.” Charlie answered.

By now the sun was rising, just starting to shine on the neighborhood. Will smiled, “Good, you are all here, I have an announcement. Follow me.” They walked to about three feet from the entrance and stopped.

Without warning, the house disappeared, exposing a giant, glowing blue circle, so bright, it hurt your eyes to look at directly.

 

It was now or never. Time to tell his friends his real identity. How was he going to do that? Hello, I’m a prince from a magical far away realm called Everlanon? Will needed to do it, he wanted to, but he didn’t know how. Then, he had an idea.

A crowd of people emerged from the light. Will looked right at them and yelled, “Hello, people from Everlanon!”

 

Everlanon. Everlanon? It sounded so familiar, but Cassie couldn’t put her finger on it. Was it online? Did she read about it in a book? Cassie had no clue.

 

Will continued, “I am the son of King Albert Eindhoven Herald Rindenton!” A man looked their way. He started running towards them. When he was close enough to see, he was very happy. Wearing a king’s costume and a smile, the man studied Will. No one could move. They were too stunned. “Your name?” he asked. “My name is Prince William Henry Oscar Albert Eindhoven Rindenton, are you my father?”

 

Cassie couldn’t believe it. The man gave Will a big hug. His father? His father died. His father was Mr. Braddock, wasn’t it?

 

“Can you explain the story to my friends?” Will asked his father. “Of course, William,” the king began, “I am King Albert of Everlanon, and this is my long lost son, Prince Will. Sixteen years ago, an evil sorceress took him from me, for no reason at all, and sent him through a portal to here. I sent my trustworthy knight, Sir Arthur Braddock to protect him with his life, by the way, where is he?”

Will informed King Albert of the fire, and his death, and the king dropped his head for a moment of silence. Then he continued the story, “I had the twelve most powerful good sorcerers, wizards, and witches, work for sixteen years to open this two-way portal between the realms to bring my son back home!”

 

“Wait, are you leaving?” Cassie asked, tears gathering in her eyes. Will turned to his girlfriend and introduced, “Father, this is my girlfriend, Cassie. I was wondering if I could bring her with me. I love her.” Cassie held back the tears. Charlie started to cry silently.

“If it is okay with the lady,” the king agreed, “then I’ll gladly welcome her into my castle.”

 

Stella perked up. Castle? Prince?

 

“My family?” Cassie stuttered, “Will I ever see them again?” Will looked at her beautiful green eyes, and watched them water. “The portal is open for a year,” Will explained, “so if you wish, you can return.” Cassie grabbed his hand. “What if I return?” she interrogated, “Will I ever see you again?” Will’s eyes started to tear. “Probably not.” he whispered. Cassie started to cry, tears running down her face, and dropping on the ground. “I love you, Prince Will! I want to be with you for the rest of my life!” Cassie smiled, “And when the time comes, I will come here and tell my family everything. I will go with you! And I will love and cherish you until death do us part! What do you think?”

Will looked at his dad, who was gawking at the scene. Seeing his son looking for advice, he nodded. Will turned back to Cassie. “I love you too! And I too will love and cherish you even after, death do us part! This is because I always have, and always will love you! You are my one true love, and I shall never be happy with another!” Cassie beamed and nodded, leaning in for a kiss. Will wrapped his arms around her, and touched her kind lips with his, as the rain began to fall, and the teardrops dried away. They continued kissing, avoiding the awkward nose bump with ease. Cassie smelled her true love, and squeezed him until she couldn’t squeeze harder. Cassie felt like she could do anything. She wanted to make the whole universe smile at once! Here she was, finally having her prince sweep her off her feet, just like the fairy tales, where they lived happily ever after.

Cassie pulled away and said, “I’ll love you forever and always!” Will looked at the beautiful lady he held so close to his heart. “I will love you for-”

 

Will was interrupted by screaming coming from the portal. “No!” King Albert yelled, “Not her! Not now!”

“Who is it?” Charlie called out. The king looked at the portal as a black cloud broke through, and answered, “The one who took my son! Evangeline the Evil!”

 

A fierce woman took form. She had black hair, and wore a black dress that touched the ground. “What’s wrong Bert?” Eva teased, “Can’t I have a moment with my daughter, you know, the one you sent here long before I sent your son!”

“Who is your daughter, witch?!” the king demanded to know, “Because I wouldn’t want any part in that reunion!” Evangeline cackled. “Too bad,” she squawked, “because you already are, as it seems, your son sure does know how to pick ‘em!”

Everyone looked at Cassie, still holding Will’s hand. “What?” she asked. Eva chuckled. “That’s right, Cassandra, you are my only flesh and blood!” Eva explained, “You landed in a bush, and your parents claimed you as their own! Ha! So cruel to hide something like that, don’t you think?” Cassie felt the loosening of Will’s grasp, slowly letting her go.

“Will?” Cassie asked. “Let her go son!” the king demanded, “She has evil in her blood!” Will obeyed, shedding a single tear as he ripped his hand away. “Will? I thought you loved me!” Cassie cried. Will shook his head, “I did.” Cassie began to cry again. “You said you’d love me for-ever!” she screamed.

Will couldn’t believe this was happening. He said that. What was he supposed to do? He did love her. But that was before he knew. There was no way he could ever kiss her again! Will shuddered. He looked straight into her evil eyes and said, “I told you I would love you for-ever. So, I guess this is the end of ever.”

 

 

 

Evil Instinct

 

Cassie felt different than she thought she would. She was sad, but she was not going to let Will see that now! She was angry! Angry at his words, angry at his father! She was angry she wasted so much time on him! She was angry that their lips ever touched! She couldn’t stand to see his face. She hated him!

 

Will backed up. He knew that face. That was the same face he saw before Skyler got that black-eye. He couldn’t let anything ruin his face! Especially now he had to find a new girl!

 

Charlie looked at Stella, and let go of her hand. “Cassie!” he called, “I love you!”

 

Cassie stopped, and turned around. Charlie loves her! Charlie loves her! He loves her even though her mom is evil! She let out a smile.

 

Stella stared at him. She knew it. The mirror was right. She was just a replacement. Cassie was his one and only. She was his true love. And she was evil! Or her mom was at least. Stella couldn’t believe it. She felt sorry for Cassie! Her and Charlie were meant to be together! Stella smiled, and it was a big smile. Let them figure their own lives out, there was a hot prince walking away! “William!” she yelled, “Wanna go out?!” Will nodded his head and Stella ran over.

 

Cassie watched as Will held her hand, just like they used to. That dog! What scumbag breaks up with a girl, and then accepts a date with another chick! Cassie looked down. Where’d the ground go? She was flying. Her hand felt warm. That was because it was on fire! Cool! Thanks mom! Her head tingled slightly. Oh well, it’s just a small price for being awesome!

 

Charlie couldn’t believe it, he had Cassie’s attention, until Stella pulled that stunt! Now she was flying, with her hand on fire, and her hair turning black? Was it strange that he was getting more attracted as they went?

“Die!” Cassie wailed, throwing a fireball towards the obnoxious couple. “Cassie!” Charlie yelled again, “Forget them! I love you! I would’ve told you long ago, but I was scared!”

He was scared? “And you’re not now!?” she screamed. Eva looked on proudly, as her daughter yelled at her true love. He was probably the only one who could bring her back to good. She’d kill him, but then Cassie would certainly go back because of the death of her love. She needs to coax her daughter to the right side, the bad side.

“No.” Charlie answered, “I know you would never hurt me. I trust you, because I love you!!!” Cassie landed on the ground.

She was having so much fun! But Charlie loved her! She loved him too!

 

“Love is weakness, remember how Will made a fool of you?” Eva taunted, “How do you know he won’t do the same?”

 

Cassie looked into Charlie’s eyes. His beautiful bright blue eyes. She turned away. She looked at her mother. Her real mother. She seemed so cool!

She couldn’t decide! Her mother was family, she wanted to get to know her! She spent all of this time with a family that wasn’t even her own! “No!” Cassie screamed. “Are you going with me?” Eva asked. Cassie shook her head and jetted off through the portal, using her hands as engines. Her instinct said mom. But her heart screamed Charlie.

 

Evangeline couldn’t believe it. She glared at Charlie. “You!” she accused. Charlie ran to the limo and got in. “Go in that portal! Or your fired!” he threatened. The driver was gone. Charlie climbed over the seat and took the wheel. “I’m not letting you go that easily!” Charlie yelled, speeding past Eva and into the portal.

 

Eva was now alone. “Hmmm” she hummed, “I honestly wasn’t expecting that.” She motioned herself into dust, and drifted back inside the portal.

 

 

Cassie found herself scorching the floor of a castle as she flew. Knights jumped out of the way. No one dared to shoot, who knows what the girl would do?

Cassie now flew outside, sporting a new black streak in her hair. She kept going, and no one stood in her way.

 

Charlie drove recklessly through the halls of a medieval castle. He honked as knights tried to move. Those who weren’t so lucky got some dents in their armor. Cassie was the only girl Charlie ever really loved, and he had to get her back!

 

Eva dust drifted through the castle, making the knight sneeze. Eva hated to travel like this, but she didn’t care to waste time on trying new things. If Charlie beat her to Cassie, she would stay nice, and gross, so that meant Evangeline had to do her work. She had to get the evil to fully consume her daughter before it was too late!

 

Will and Stella looked out at Everlanon from the tower. “It’s beautiful!” she exclaimed, “Wait, is that Cassie?” Stella pointed to a girl flying very fast with fire hands. “Is that my limo?!” Stella shouted as Charlie’s ride drove after Cassie. “And there’s Evangeline.” Will stated with disgust, pointing towards the cloud of dust chasing the limo. Stella rubbed Will’s back. She was sure that they’d grow to love each other. “Honey, can I ask you a silly question?” Stella flirted. Will looked at his new girlfriend and said, “Sure.” Stella flipped her hair and asked, “Can you take your shirt off please?” This was going to work out.

 

 

Cassie walked once she got to the woods. A forest fire wouldn’t do anyone any good. Which makes sense if she’s supposed to be bad, but she wants to be good!

 

“Thank you!” said a small voice, “For turning the fire hands off! Only you can prevent-” “Are you a talking squirrel?” Cassie asked. “Why of course!” the squirrel squealed, “Are you new or somethin’?”

“Yeah…” Cassie nodded. What she really thought was way less calm: ‘Why am I here? How did this happen? One minute my life is normal, going to school and then home, and the next I am living amongst witches, kings, and talking animals? This can’t be real. It can’t be. It just can’t be.’ “It just can’t be!” Cassie screamed, scaring the small rodent away.

 

“Cassie!” Charlie yelled, “Cassie, where are you!”

 

Oh no, Charlie! “Charlie!” Cassie sighed dreamily. She needed him. She loved him. “Love is weakness, Cassandra, love is weaknesses.” Eva said, making Cassie spin around. “You! This is your fault!” Cassie shouted. “I’m so sorry for coming to find my only daughter who I love so much! I’m sorry your old boyfriend didn’t accept you!” Eva apologized, “Shall I go on?”

 

 

I’ve looked everywhere!

I’ve sent thousands!

Just to see you standing there!

So we can hold hands?

 

Cassie scowled at her mother. She was not going to sing a stupid song to get her on her side. “Shut it!” Cassie snipped.

 

Oh my sweet baby,

With her little attitude!

My sweet baby,

Wishin’ she was in a good mood

Like me!

 

Cassie swooshed her away. She wanted Charlie, and there he was. Charlie ran over to Cassie. “Are you okay?” he asked, “And can we go back home?”

Cassie looked at her cute friend. She wanted to kiss him, but instead she informed, “After I take care of some business.” Cassie clenched her fist and they were in a tower. The very tower Stella was rubbing Will’s six-pack in. “Stella?” Cassie called.

Ah! Cassie! Stella stood up. “Hi, buddy!” she choked, “How are you doing?” Cassie demanded that Stella apologize, and only if she does, would Cassie return to the Realm of the Foretold with Charlie.

Charlie silently begged Stella to apologize. “For what?” Stella asked. Cassie smiled, “Wrong!” She lifted her hand and the tower was ripped from its base. It wobbled precariously over the rest of the castle. “I’m sorry!” Stella yelled. “For what?” Cassie mocked. Stella thought very hard. “I’m sorry for taking your boyfriend, spying on you, sending you to Philadelphia, calling you names!” Stella whimpered, “I’m sorry I knocked down your books when we first met. I’m sorry I judged you, and was so mean to you.” Cassie smiled and asked, “If I don’t kill you, what will you do?” Stella whimpered, “I’ll say thank you!!”

Cassie was shocked as she put the tower back in place, and Stella ran over and gave her a hug. Stella was scared, and it made Cassie’s hair earn another black streak. Cassie looked at the crying Stella and frowned. She turned to Charlie who mouthed the words ‘Home?’ Cassie nodded, “For now. Goodbye Stella, Will.”

Cassie stomped her foot on the ground and her and Charlie ended up at her home. She was getting good at this. Charlie gave her a hug. “Not yet, Charlie.” Cassie warned, “It’s time for a chat with my so-called parents.”

 

 

Family Meeting

 

Cassie and Charlie waited in the living room. “Where are they!” Cassie yelled. A spell like the ones from the stories should work!

 

Those called parents should be near,

So bring Mr. and Mrs. Smith right here!

 

James and Susan appeared in a poof of smoke. “What? Cassie?” Susan questioned. “I know you found me in a bush.” Cassie stated, “The question is, why didn’t you tell me?”

Susan was shocked! How did she find out? No one knew except her, and James! “Who told you?” Susan inquired, “And what did you do to your hair?”

Her hair? Cassie looked in the mirror and saw it turning black. “My birthmother.” Cassie stated, “Now answer me, Susan.”

Susan gaped at her sassy daughter. What happened? Who was her birthmother? “We wanted our own child, so we said you were ours and have loved you ever since.” Susan admitted, “I hope this doesn’t change anything.” Cassie glared at them. “It won’t if you believe what I’m going to say.” she ordered, and the Smiths nodded, “My real mom is an evil sorceress from a place called Everlanon, and she wants me to grow up like her.” “I believe you.” Susan said, “To be honest, this explains your anger issues, and all of the strange things you’ve done, but you are staying here, right?” Cassie looked at Charlie. “Please,” Charlie added, “I don’t want you to leave.”

 

If Cassie had one weakness, it was Charlie, and she told them that. “Charlie, you are my one weakness, and that’s because I love you, and love is weakness.” Cassie slapped her hand over her mouth, as she gained another black streak. Where did that come from?

“Love isn’t weakness, Cassie!” Susan corrected, “Love is strength. It gives you the strength to stand up for what’s right, it makes you happy!” Charlie smiled at who he hoped to be his future in-laws. “Wait,” James cut in, “What happened with Will?”

Cassie fumed inside. William. “Never mention that boy again!” Cassie warned, “The only boy allowed in my life is Charlie, because I’ve always loved him. It’s always been Charlie, my one and only. I can’t imagine life without him. Literally, I have tried.” Cassie reached over and grabbed Charlie’s hand. “Together, always.” she decreed.

 

 

 

Back in Everlanon, Prince Will was having a ball thrown in his honor. “Will you go to the ball with me, Stella?” Will asked. “Oh, Will!” Stella squealed.

 

Stella was going to say yes, but didn’t. She looked at him, and realized that she didn’t like him. What she had done was a spur of the moment thing to get Charlie back, although she knew they were over. Growing to love each other? Stella was embarrassed she thought that was possible. She could never love Will, after seeing him with Cassie. She knew he couldn’t love her, and she didn’t want to be a part of it. “No.” Stella answered. Did she just get to turn down a prince? Score!

 

What. Did Stella turn Will down? He couldn’t believe it! Was there a hidden camera somewhere? They weren’t even dating for a few hours, and she already dumped him! What kind of person does something like that!

“I might have been mean, rude, and nasty to Cassie over the years, but while me and Charlie were dating, I actually thought of her as a friend.” Stella continued, “Not only because I’d be betraying a friend, but she did just not kill us! And I don’t like you! I’m leaving now. Bye!” Stella walked down the stairs and headed for the portal.

“Stella?” Will muttered as the door shut.

 

 

 

Cassie heard a knocking on the door and decided to answer it. It was Stella. “Cassie, I left Will, because I didn’t like him like I thought I would.” Stella began, “I also felt bad. I was sad that I was betraying my only friend.”

Cassie was in disbelief. Stella thought of her as a friend? Or was this a set up? Cassie let her in. “Now, what is going on with your hair?” Stella asked with sass. “I’m not sure,” Cassie shrugged, “but I think it might be my inner evil leaking out.”

“Okay, whatever!” Stella snipped, “What’s the deats with you and Char-Char?” Cassie grinned, “Nothin’ official, except we proclaimed our undying love for one another.”

 

Stella squealed. She was truly happy for them. Something changed her outlook on life, but she liked it, so she accepted it.

 

Evangeline had to do something soon if this was going to end in her favor. The only thing to do was some foul play. If she broke her daughter’s heart again, she would fall back into the glory of being bad! Now where did she put those love spells?

 

 

 

Love Is Weakness

 

Soon, everyone in both realms heard of the portal and went to see. This resulted in moving the royal castle in Everlanon because of all of the random Earth citizens entering the portal. They had ended up with tourists from all over flashing bright lights at the guards and knights.

 

While the commotion was happening, Evangeline searched through every spell book she owned, every potion she made, and everything else she owned for a love spell. More precisely, she was searching for a kiss spell. She had never understood anything having to do with love because love is weakness! Eva knew that if she didn’t find one soon enough, the portal would close, and all of her work would’ve been for nothing!

 

Six months had passed since the opening of the portal, and Cassie’s hair was almost completely blonde again, thanks to her good behavior. Her and Charlie hadn’t moved forward with their relationship because Cassie was scared of getting hurt again. Last time, she almost went bad, and Cassie didn’t want that. They only had to wait it out another six months, and the portal would snap shut, and Cassie would be home free! No more bad influence for her!

 

Will sat on his King-sized bed wishing he hadn’t screwed up. He wished he could change what he did, but he knew it wasn’t possible.

 

Stella was Cassie’s new best friend, other than Charlie of course. Ever since the visit, they had been more open and accepting of each other, which quickly led to a beautiful friendship. They had planned a movie night to celebrate the re-blonde-ing of Cassie’s hair.

 

 

Eventually, it was time for Evangeline to check the chest. The chest was a plain chest that Eva never opened before, so she had no idea what it contained. Eva stepped to the chest and undid the latches. She opened up the box, and there it was, a small envelope with a heart on it. Inside was a very old kiss spell.

It was so simple!

 

Cassie had gotten up to make popcorn, leaving Charlie and Stella alone. Evangeline saw this with her cloud and knew it was the perfect time to crush her daughter’s heart!

Evangeline did the kiss spell.

 

With this spell, I dare not miss,

I now command that Charlie and Stella kiss!

 

Without any warning, Charlie and Stella performed a long smooch, just as Cassie walked in the room. They heard a clang, and when the spell broke, the only thing left was some dispersing mist and the popcorn, spilled all over.

 

 

Cassie appeared at Dock 6. How could they do that to her! How could she have been so foolish! Her mother was right! Charlie was just like Will! Cassie couldn’t take it any longer, and she roasted a nearby seagull. Cassie screeched, “Mother! You were right!” Cassie’s head tingled as her blonde hair morphed into black hair, not as nearly as soft her old hair was.

 

A blackbird landed beside the girl and let out a squawk. The bird flapped its wings and transformed into Evangeline. “Darling! What has happened?” she teased, “Did that boy do what I thought he would? He probably won’t accept that you have a, shady, heritage.”

 

Cassie looked at the woman before her. The woman who didn’t let anything get in her way. Cassie felt like paying Charlie a visit. She wanted to walk up to him, look him straight in the eye, and strangle him! Cassie smiled, “Mother, how do I be like you?”

 

Evangeline couldn’t help but grin at what she’d done. She took a pathetic Earth dweller, and turned her into a rotten disgrace who was begging for lessons! Her daughter wanted to be like her! She looked at her new student and whispered, “If you want me to teach you, then we are going back to Everlanon, where I’ll show you our plans. Does that fit your needs, Cassie?”

Cassie looked down at her clothes. She was wearing jeans and a shirt with a smiley face on it. Earlier this seemed like a good idea, but now, she wanted to barf on it. “Hang on,” she answered, surrounding herself in smoke, “That’s better!” Cassie looked down at herself. She was wearing a black leather jacket over top of a blood red shirt. Her jeans were ripped off at the upper thigh and wore them over a pair of black skull leggings. To top it off, literally, was a red fedora with a black leather band around it for decoration. “I’m ready to go!” the girl announced, “You were right. The Cassie everyone knew is in the past, say hello to the new and improved Cassandra! And Cassandra has learned one thing from you already.” Cassandra adjusted her hat for dramatic effect. “Love,” she began, “love really is weakness.”

 

Eva looked on her daughter with pride and said, “Let’s blow this popsicle stand!” Cassandra and Evangeline dissolved briefly, before morphing into a storm cloud and rolling through the city to the portal.

 

Cassandra and Evangeline

 

Stella slapped Charlie across the face, leaving a red handprint behind. “What was that for!” Charlie yelled through the pain. “You just put your cheating lips on mine, and Cassie saw it!” Stella accused. “I’d never hurt Cassie!” Charlie fought back, “It was you!” Stella thought for a second on how Cassie went bad the first time. “A broken heart!” Stella announced, “It doesn’t matter who did it, what matters is we get Cassie and tell her what happened!” Charlie stood up, and added, “Because her last break up almost made her evil!” Stella nodded her head. “And since you’re her true love, Cassie could be full blown bad girl as we speak!” she explained, “Is it bad that I kind of want to see that?”

 

 

Will was walking to the portal room when he heard screaming. Originally going to visit Mrs. Spencer, he also wanted to see his old friends. He had been informed of Cassie’s goings-on and knew that she was good. Just then, Will had to jump out of the way as a cloud, big enough for two, winded through the corridors. “Cassie?” Will whispered. He needed an explanation, and the only way he was going to get one without being killed was Charlie.

 

 

Susan came out of her bedroom to check on the kids, and found the mess. On the couch was a note that read, “Had to go make sure Cassie doesn’t turn bad due to misunderstanding. P.S. If we don’t return, it means we are probably dead.’

“Where’d Cassie go?” Vander asked. The twins were now four years old, and very curious and talkative. “I don’t know,” Susan confessed, “but I am going to find out.” She picked up the phone and called around until she had a babysitter. Susan had to figure out what happened.

 

 

Sky sat in her detention center in California. She had heard the news about the portal, and Cassie’s involvement, as well as the romance between her and Charlie. She was allowed to have her cellphone, but all of her contacts were erased, so she didn’t know who was informing her. She had been receiving anonymous texts since she was first incarcerated. They only fueled her hatred.

 

 

Cassandra and her mother arrived at the lair. Looking around, she couldn’t believe that this was going to be her home. “This place is gross!” Cassandra said, “I hope this isn’t the permanent arrangement.”

 

Eva looked around. She liked it, dark and ominous, but then she realized youngsters these days, who liked a little light every now and again, may not. “Only if we fail.” Evangeline informed.

Cassandra looked around. “Whatever it is,” Cassandra announced, “we won’t fail.” Evangeline smiled, “We both want the same thing, right? Happiness, together! The only way to get that is if we can permanently connect the two realms with the portal, and from there, rip control of both realms from the hands of the disposed!”

Cassandra couldn’t believe what she was hearing. Her mom was so cool! “One question,” she added, “I know love is weakness, but would I be able to have friends and date?”

 

Eva looked at her daughter. “Whatever makes you happy,” she answered, “and you’re going to need an heir for the empire sooner or later!” Cassandra smirked. She would have anyone she wanted! She could get rid of anyone she wanted too! Cassandra threw a fireball on the ground and hooted, “Where do we start!”

 

 

Charlie and Stella had gone to the portal. “You think she might have gone there?” Stella questioned. Charlie merely shrugged. A figure flew through the portal and landed on Stella. “Ouch!” she yelped, shoving the person off. “Stella! Charlie!” Will called. Charlie punched him in the nose and yelled, “Jerk alert!”

 

Will covered his face. Now he would need that nose job after all! “I was on my way to apologize for what I did!” he stammered, “It was evil to judge Cassie by her mother!”

 

Charlie was angry. When this was over, there was no way that Will was going to slide back into Cassie’s life. She was taken! “Well now she might be evil!” Stella piped, “Something forced me and Charlie to kiss, just like magic! Cassie saw, and now we don’t know where she went!”

 

“Evangeline!” Will accused, “Who else with magic would want to hurt Cassie? She knew it would flip her view!” Charlie knew Will was right. Stella knew Will was right. “Hey!” someone screamed.

It was Cassie’s mom. Not Eva, but Susan. She was riding her electric scooter. “Charlie! What happened, and where’s Cassie?” Susan demanded to know. Charlie told her the story, and who was behind it.

“I guess we’re going through the portal to the other place!” Susan declared, hopping on the scooter.

 

 

Vander and Vanessa were playing in their room. “What did ya find out, Van?” Vanessa asked. Vander kicked over his toy truck, and yelled, “Nothin’! She just had to find Cassie!” Vanessa stood up and walked over to Vander. “You’re a dis-grace!” she yelled, pushing him down. Vander started crying and Betty ran in. “What’s wrong?” she asked in her baby voice.

 

 

Evangeline started with Cassandra’s first lesson. “Revenge.” she began, “Kill those who wronged you, make them pay! That is why we are going to slaughter the royal family. They took you from me, and then broke your heart!” Cassandra nodded and agreed, “Makes sense, maybe I should get some hands-on experience.”

Evangeline was intrigued. “Who?” she asked. “An old friend who wasted three days of my life.” Cassie smiled, “Do you have a phone I can borrow?”

 

 

The phone rang. It was a text from an unknown number. Sky read aloud, “Skyler, I’m coming for you, you had called me a monster, are you ready to see what I am capable of? Your old friend, Cassandra” Sky tossed the phone on the ground. “Cassie’s up!” she yelled, picking up the pieces of the phone.

 

“Hello, Sky.” Cassandra whispered, “Have you enjoyed your stay? Because it’s about to end!” Smoke filled the room, and the only sound that was heard was Sky coughing and gagging as Cassandra chuckled.

 

 

 

Changes

 

Will had ordered a carriage to take them to the far end of Everlanon, where Evangeline lived. “It should be an easy journey,” Will told the group, “as long as the Living Screams aren’t awake.” No one wanted to know.

Charlie was determined to find Cassie. He loved her, and he didn’t know what he’d do without her. She was his one and only, there was no one else.

 

Evangeline couldn’t believe her eyes! “I thought you were going to kill her!” she screamed, “Why did you bring her here?” Sky laid on the floor by Cassandra. “I wasn’t going to let her off that easily.” Cassandra explained, “I figured we could get some use out of her, by making her our monster slave, allowing her to keep her consciousness, is that possible?”

Eva was stunned that her daughter could think of something so evil! To make the girl work for them as a wretched beast, allowing her to remember every second of it! Despicable!

 

Cassandra thought for a moment before reciting a rhyme.

 

For trying your hardest to do me harm,

Scales I put on your arm.

For being a girl who’s mentally insane,

I turn you into a Hu-Po-Dane.

And for the simple fact that I don’t like you,

You shall know what you are, and regret every second of what’s due!

 

Cassandra watched as Sky morphed into a hideous creature. Her pupils elongated, her arms grew scales, and her legs were replaced with a squid’s tentacles. She grew a snout and horns, and her skin turned green. Sky was gone, and was replaced with a Hu-Po-Dane.

 

Evangeline was alive with excitement! Her daughter just turned a girl into the beast she had once been called!

Sky woke up and was terrified! She knew Cassie was evil! If she had been successful with the kill, she would still be human! That monster! Sky let out a deep breath, and flames flew from her mouth. She breathed fire!

 

Will looked out the carriage window. In about an hour, they would be passing his new castle. At this rate, they would get to Evangeline’s tower in a month, and would probably be too late. They had to find a way there quicker, especially since by the time they got to her, it would only take a wave of her hand and Cassie would be back in the Realm of the Foretold! They were setting themselves up for failure! Will told them the dilemma.

 

“A month!” Susan exclaimed, “We don’t have time for that!” She had to get her daughter back, and she had to get her fast! Susan had no patience when it came to her baby.

 

Charlie thought about a possible solution. He remembered that the first time he came, he had left the limousine by the woods! That would definitely get them to Cassie in under a week! “The woods!” Charlie yelled, how fast can we get to the woods that I left the limo at?”

“What woods?” Will interrogated, “Where?” Charlie showed them the direction he had followed Cassie. “The Good Woods!” Will shouted excitedly, “Driver, go there, full speed!”

The driver whipped the horses, and off they ran, to the Good Woods, to get the limo, to chase down Cassie.

 

 

The twins were still fighting when Betty’s stories came on. She had given up, and hoped they could settle it on their own.

“Poophead!” Vander shot back, “Vanessa is a poophead!” Vanessa started to cry and pushed Vander down again. “We are not going to find out more if we keep fighting!” she cried, “Can you reach the phone?”

Vander jumped up to the table and got the phone. “Who are we calling?” he asked. Vanessa gave him Cassie’s number and he pressed the green button and waited for someone to answer.

 

 

Cassandra was enjoying herself when her new phone rang. She must still have the same number. Cassandra took it out and said “Hello?”. It was Vanessa. “Sissy?” she asked. Cassandra heard Vander in the background, “Did she answer? Where is she?”

 

“Hi Vanessa! Hi Vander! Is everything alright?” Cassandra asked. “Mommy went looking for you, and we’re worried. Are you okay?” Vander inquired, taking the phone from his sister.

 

Evangeline watched the look on her daughter’s face. It changed from happiness to concern. No, she wasn’t going to lose her that easily!

 

Eva zapped the phone out of her hand. “When we are in control, you can talk to your fake mother’s twins.” she reminded.

 

Cassandra was sad. She loved those two. Then her evil instinct kicked in. They weren’t even her family! Love is weakness. Love will make you weak. You can’t love those who might bring you down from your glory! Those twins were barking up the wrong tree!

 

“I’m back.” Cassandra reassured her mother, picking up the device, “Love is weakness, so I have to cut myself loose of that burden.” Cassandra squeezed her hand, crushing the device. “My mommy’s coming to get me!” she mocked, making Eva cackle.

 

 

Vander and Vanessa were shocked when the line went dead. Did Cassie hang up on them? Mommy should know. So that’s what they did. They called their Mommy.

 

 

Susan answered immediately. “Hi Mommy!” Vanessa greeted. Vander took the phone and informed, “We called Cassie and she hung up!” Vander was the tattle-tail of the two. “What?” Susan questioned, “Cassie hung up on you? And you can work the phone?” Vander confirmed what they said, “It went BEEEEEEEP!”

The Good Woods came into view and the twins hung up. Susan knew something was wrong because Cassie would never hang up on the twins!

 

Charlie hid his face in his hands when he heard the news. What has happened? His Cassie is evil! And it’s his fault! Would they find her before she couldn’t turn back?

 

“Faster!” the prince commanded, “I see the limousine!” The carriage went as fast as the horses could run, until a wheel broke off. The carriage tipped over and the horses broke free. They were only a hundred feet from the long car anyway.

Everyone ran to the limo and Susan got in the driver’s seat. “It’ll work; my electric limos have a lifetime guarantee!” Stella boasted as the engine started. Will pointed to the direction they needed to go in and off she went.

 

 

 

 

 

The Rawshkin Mountain Range

 

“So mother,” Cassandra began, “any plans for the rescue team?” Eva was already contemplating that problem. If they survived, they should arrive in a week. That was plenty of time for planning, and making her daughter permanently bad. Right now, she was still blossoming, or rotting, and she could easily be pulled from her success by a stupid boy!

 

“Relax my dear,” Evangeline cooed, “let them have fun with their pathetic mission while the can! We’ll take care of them when they get here.”

 

Cassandra thought about what would happen to them. She really wanted them to just not get here at all! “What exactly are we going to do?” Cassandra asked, “They are my friends and family after all.”

 

Evangeline laughed in her daughter’s face. “Really dear? I am your family now, and Susan never was!” Eva expounded, “She was a mere liar! And don’t get me started on your ‘friends’! Will is coming. The one who left you the minute he found out you were simply related to me! Stella teased and taunted you for years!”

 

Her mom was right. She was fooling herself all her life! But what about Charlie? “Charlie?” Cassandra inquired, “What did he do?”

Eva taunted, “Think about it, what didn’t he do!” Cassandra looked at her broken phone. “He was just like Will, only worse.” she began, “He led me to think that he accepted me. Charlie said he loved me even though you were my mother. And then he kissed, who I thought was my friend when I left to get a snack! At least Will never cheated on me!” Cassandra couldn’t stand it and she punched the wall until it crumbled to pieces.

 

Eva sighed, and remembered that they would be moving out soon, so she might as well let Cassandra beat up something.

 

“Cassandra,” her mother began, “if we want to conquer the realms in a timely manner, we have to save the petty work for later! Right now we need to find the special spell I hid twenty years ago for this occasion!” Cassandra was curious as to how some spell could help them defeat over 13 billion people, and that was just Everlanon and Earth. Who knew if they had any competition in space?

“I hid it in a cave in the Rawshkin Mountain Range, that I filled with tricks, traps, and everything else that could keep an intruder out.” Eva informed, “So, after twenty years, it’s hard to keep track of so many deadly traps, so you’re going instead!” Cassandra wanted to prove herself, so she set off to find the enchantment.

 

 

By the end of the first day, Susan was still going. She needed her daughter back, and nothing was going to get in her way. “Mrs. Smith?” Stella called, “Should I take over so you can rest? If we drive straight through we’ll get there sooner, but you look exhausted!” Stella was right. The last time Susan slept was 3:30 this morning, because Vanessa had puked. Everything was okay, but by the time she found that out, it was already eight o’clock. Susan decided to pull over.

 

Stella took the driver’s seat and despite everything the driver’s ed. teacher said, she maxed the speedometer at 160 miles per hour. Overnight, they made a great distance.

On the downside, however, it was the Market season. The Market season was when millions of vendors gathered by the Rawshkin Mountain Range and set up a gigantic operation called The Market Place. Will informed the group that the quickest way through was straight through, so that’s what they did.

 

The Rawshkin Mountain Range stretched across Everlanon, earning the nickname ‘The Belt of the Realm’. It was filled with caves, caverns, and mountain critters. It was one of the most dangerous places in Everlanon to hide something, which was why Eva chose it. Somewhere no one dare stay too long was the perfect place!

 

Cassandra flew from one mountain to the other, looking for the cave. For some reason, her mother refused to tell her what cave it was in. All she knew was whatever cave that she threw a stone in, that set off a dozen traps, was home to the spell they needed.

Cassandra plopped down in frustration. She was never going to find that stupid cave! She picked up a rock and threw it at the cave in front of her. It tumbled inside and landed in the open. With the blink of an eye, a flaming arrow shot at the spot, a boulder fell on top, and lava poured over it all, quickly hardening into solid stone.

Cassandra was amazed. She had found the cave! Now she only had to make her way a mile or two inside, while avoiding certain death, to get what was needed. This was going to be difficult.

 

 

Cassandra walked inside the cave with a handful of pebbles. She would take the pebbles and throw them ahead to check for traps. Throwing the first pebble, she carefully walked forward. Then her mom appeared.

 

“Cassandra!” Evangeline screamed, “Why are you going so slow? Just poof to the spell, and poof back! It’s that simple!” Cassandra glared at her mother. “I thought there was a magic suppressor of some sort.” she explained. “I did!” Eva assured, “But it was magic that doesn’t work on blood relatives! Duh!”

 

“Blood magic!” Cassandra confirmed, “I read a fairy tale with that before!” Eva acknowledged her daughter’s statement with a brief nod. Cassandra winked and dirt flew everywhere setting off hundreds of traps and tricks. When the dust cleared, the two were looking at a radiating scroll in a bottle. “Nice work on that move!” Eva congratulated, thoroughly impressed. Cassandra grabbed the bottle and sent them both back to the tower. It was time to get to work.

 

 

The Market Place

 

Susan took the wheel from Stella and slowly proceeded through the market. They moved through the crowds at a speed that made Charlie think of his grandma as a racehorse.

As they drove, vendors knocked on the vehicle and tried to get them to buy their merchandise. “Ugh!” Will sighed, “Peasants!”

 

One merchant got Stella’s attention. He had a small pink flask that was glowing and sparkling brightly. Stella needed to know what it was! She rolled down the window and yelled, “What’s that pink stuff!?” The man ran up close and answered, “This is the Elixir of Clear Sight. It shows you what is right in front of you, that you’ve taken for granted, looked past, or what you haven’t let yourself believe. I’ll give it to you for that necklace!” Stella glanced at the $250 necklace, and ripped it off. “Here, I accept the offer.” she began, handing him the necklace and taking the vial. Stella then put the potion in her purse.

 

The limousine slowly rolled through the place, and relentless sellers continued to knock on the doors and windows of their ride. “I wish I could just plow right on through.” Susan admitted. “As long as no one buys anything else, they should give up.” Will explained looking at Stella.

 

Will has lived among peasants for sixteen years, and he despised most of them. These individuals were worse, since they always demanded attention. Will looked out the window. Was that Cassie and Evangeline over there?

 

 

Cassandra looked at her mom. They were going through The Market Place to grab the ingredients they needed for the spell. So far they got the squid, but still needed to find the rest of the twenty-some ingredients. Cassandra was surprised at first when her mother said they were going shopping, because she thought that evil didn’t purchase. She was right. They had threatened the squid man with a small dagger and an evil grin. Cassandra was told that some give in easier than others, so she had to be prepared for a fight. They now walked past a group of people huddling around a limo? A limo! “Mother,” Cassandra informed, “We may have some trouble.”

 

Eva looked at the limousine. “Eh, let’s just go this way instead.” she ordered. Eva couldn’t take any chances that her daughter meet her old friends because they might restore some old emotions. Those emotions could be good or bad, so she hurried her girl along.

 

“Look!” Will announced, “It’s them!” Susan turned the limousine to where he pointed, and honked to scare people out of the way.

 

Cassandra turned around when she heard the honk. “They saw us!” she warned, “What now?” Knowing the possibility of losing her daughter, Evangeline shoved her forward. “If need be,” she explained, “I’ll take care of them.”

 

 

Susan raced after the duo, running into people who weren’t smart enough to move. She honked the horn repeatedly. She was not going to lose Cassie this time!

 

 

Evangeline pulled Cassandra around a corner. “Go! Run!” she told her, “I’ll slow them down.” Cassandra smiled and shouted as she ran away, “Leave some for me!”

Eva grinned and produced a fireball with her hand, sending the crowds screaming and running away. She tossed the fire at a nearby tent and the flames sprawled around the market. Good luck getting out now!

 

 

Susan saw people running away from something around the corner. A red glow bathed everything in its light, as Susan watched the fire dance their way. “No!” she yelled, driving straight into the flames. She cranked on the air, for cooling purposes, and followed the woman who was with Cassandra.

They drove out of the fire and went full speed into the lady. Right before contact, the woman disappeared.

 

 

Ingredients Of Evil

 

Cassandra was in Evangeline’s library when she heard a bang. It was her mother! “What happened!” Cassandra screamed. “Oh nothing,” Eva answered, gasping for air, “just catching my breath after barely escaping a limousine-ram.” Eva motioned for Cassandra’s silence. “Now what do we need again?” Eva asked. Cassandra grabbed the scroll and read the list of ingredients for the power balance-tipping spell, “Squid, archiles, the golden flame, a tomato?” Cassandra took a break before continuing. “A black sheep’s wool, a crushed beloved ornament, a skunk’s stink, the combined blood of twins.” Cassandra paused before reading more, “the Silver Shadow!” Cassandra’s memory blasted back to that night at summer camp, the night she killed a man, the night she was scared out of her wits. That was the night she held the Silver Shadow in her own hands.

 

Cassandra put the scroll down and told her mother the story of the Silver Shadow. She seemed impressed when she heard the killing part.

 

“Wait, so you had the Silver Shadow!” Eva exclaimed, “What did you do with it?” “The cops took it for evidence.” Cassandra explained, “It’s probably still at the Paradise Police Department office.” Evangeline took her daughter’s hand and said, “Field trip to Paradise?”

 

 

Susan was furious at the fact that they had the advantage. Will had an idea. He read a book that told of a spell that could only be performed by a mother and daughter team. It was the reason Cassie was sent away in the first place. The oracles knew that Evangeline possessed it, so when they foretold that she was having a daughter, they immediately spoke to the king.

The spell, was more of a curse. It allowed for the casters to alter reality and the balance of good and evil to their own desires. If the curse was cast, the battle was as good as over, with Evangeline the victor. They could even establish a permanent link between the realms if they wanted to!

 

“Mrs. Smith,” Will began, “If you want to save Cassie, and everyone else in existence, turn around and drive to my castle, I just had an awful realization.” Susan did as he said and drove the way he told her to. If this was her only way of bringing back her child, then she would do it.

 

 

Cassandra walked into the P.P.D. with Evangeline and waited for the secretary to see them. Eva was already impatient. “How may I help you?” said the lady. “I was wondering if you had a knife from a case a while back called the Silver Shadow?” Cassandra inquired, “I have been having nightmares lately about my involvement, and my counselor said that if I saw it again, maybe I would stop having the dreams.” The secretary looked on the computer. “Yes it is here, are you sure you want to see it?” the lady asked. “Yes,” Cassandra answered. The woman got up and went to the evidence room to fetch the knife. When she came out, she held out the bag. “Is this it?” she asked. Cassandra flashed back to that night. She heard the sound of the knife jabbing in the man’s gut. She felt the blood run all over her hands. “Yes,” she smiled, “Yes it is.”

Cassandra snatched the bag and waved her hand in front of the shocked woman’s face. The woman fell to the ground, smashing her head on the desk on the way down. “Come on mom,” Cassandra ordered, “let’s go!”

 

 

Susan had the pedal pressed all the way down, for there was no time to lose. She surprisingly arrived at the castle in under an hour, though no one paid attention. They ran inside, and Will waved the guards away. He needed to get the Book of Death from the library so they could see the ingredients and somehow figure out their next move.

The group barged in on King Albert’s reading session and started searching. “What is going on here!” he demanded to know. Will told him what they needed and why. “I had that book locked up!” the king explained pointing to a book shelf, “Remove the three red books and the vault will open. It should be on the table.”

Charlie ran and did as the king ordered and the bookshelf swung to the side, revealing a secret room. He ran inside and grabbed the book. Will flipped through the pages and found it. The top of the page said ‘The Mother-Daughter Disruption’. Charlie scanned through the ingredient list and stopped about halfway. “The Silver Shadow!” he screeched. Susan stopped on ‘the combined blood of twins’. “No!” she yelled, “You are not going to hurt my babies!” Stella froze when she read the second to last ingredient. ‘The heart of the one the daughter hates most’. She knew that was her. She kissed Charlie. She was doomed if they didn’t stop them.

Stella expressed her worry to the group, making Susan cringe. They all knew that Stella’s worry was a real problem. Stella was definitely the one Cassie hated most of all.

 

Will was smart, and he knew Cassie. He did some quick figures, and he determined that they more than likely have the Silver Shadow, and the next ingredient they went for would be three up from that. “What’s Cassie’s most beloved ornament?” Will asked.

 

“It’s at the house! With the twins!” Susan yelled, already running to the limo. Everyone followed and Charlie carried the book. They were through the portal at an incredible speed, and flying through the streets of New York.

 

Betty had been informed of the situation, so she stayed the night with the twins and James, knowing that Susan would insist he still work. James was the primary breadwinner of the family, so he needed his job.

 

Vander and Vanessa were running around the house laughing when Susan burst through the door. “Vander! Vanessa! Go hide in the storage space!” Susan demanded. She didn’t know how much blood they needed.

Susan dug through the Christmas decorations and got out Cassie’s favorite one. It was a gold star that she got from her grandmother on the day she died. Every year, she was very careful to not break it. The glitter occasionally fell off, but Cassie still loved it. They were going to be ready.

 

 

“What do you want to get next?” Evangeline asked. Cassandra already picked it out. She told Eva and she smiled. It was time to visit home.

 

 

Smoke filled the Smiths’ place as the two appeared. Cassandra dashed to the Christmas decorations, but it wasn’t there! “What happens if we can’t get an ingredient?” Cassandra inquired, panicking. Evangeline shouted, “It doesn’t work! What’s wrong?”

 

“I know what’s wrong!” Susan teased. Charlie popped out from behind the couch. “It’s an ambush!” Evangeline gasped. Charlie ran up to Cassandra. “I didn’t kiss Stella, I don’t even like her! I’m sorry! I love you!” Charlie blurted. “Shut your mouth!” Cassandra screamed, punching Charlie in the gut. Cassie gasped, “I’m so sorry!” “But I saw you kiss her you pig!” Cassandra accused.

 

Evangeline knew she was going good. It was time to retreat. “Cassandra! Come!” she ordered. “No! I need to make sure Charlie is okay!” Cassie cried. “And kick him after I do!” Cassandra howled. Charlie stood up and grabbed Cassie. “Let go of me you-” Cassandra cut out and Cassie continued, “amazing boy! I love you!” “Love is weakness!” Cassandra hooted, “Mother!”

 

What was he going to do? Charlie was losing her! He had to kiss her, maybe that would work! Charlie stood up and leaned forward. He fell face first as a loving Cassie disappeared in a poof of smoke.

 

 

Cassandra laid on the floor, exhausted. “Go rest in your room.” Evangeline ordered, “You barely made it.” From now on, Eva was going to have to collect ingredients on her own.

 

 

Twins Of A Tear Of Joy

 

Susan placed the ornament in her pocket, saddened by their failed attempt to bring Cassie back. They had been so close, but Evangeline took her away before they could finish. As long as Eva was around, they would never get Cassie back.

 

Charlie was so close! If he had moved faster, he’d probably be sitting next to Cassie right now, talking about where to go for their first date.

 

Stella was really hoping. If Cassie didn’t come back soon, she was probably going to die, and Stella didn’t want to die! She had so many plans. Stella wasn’t sure what plans she had, but dying young wasn’t one of them.

 

“Everyone get to Betty’s van.” Susan ordered, “She says we can use it. It’s good on gas, has a full tank, and we can all fit without having a giant limo to deal with.” Will, Stella, Charlie, and Susan all got in the van and drove back to Everlanon.

 

 

 

Betty wasn’t sure why the twins hadn’t come out of the storage space yet, so she went to go see. The group left a half hour ago, and she figured they were waiting for an ‘okay’ to get out. “Vander! Vanessa! You can come out now!” she called, opening the door. To her surprise, the twins weren’t there! There was only a note written in crayon by Vanessa. Vanessa was smarter than Vander, but her spelling was still way off. The note read, ‘Wee r goin wiv momee too find Casee. Dunt woree ubot us. Wee r O K.’ It was signed Vanessa and scribble-loop. Betty didn’t know what to do. She began to panic, and then she passed out.

 

 

Vander and Vanessa were hiding under a blanket in the very back of the van when the group went through the portal. Who knew Mommy was such a bad driver?

 

 

Susan flew past the Good Woods at a dangerous speed. “Do you think we can use any of these spells to get to Cassie faster?” Stella asked. Will shook his head no, “They are forbidden.”

Charlie laughed and flipped through the book. Nothing was forbidden when he was talking about Cassie. “Ah-ha!” Charlie announced, pointing at a page, “It says transportation spell, it works to send you a distance of 5 million gonshavs?” Will grabbed the book. “That will only get us to the Dark Forest! And no one here knows magic anyway!” Will explained, throwing the book in the back.

 

 

A big book hit Vander over the head and landed open in front of his sister. “Trans-port-ate-on?” Vanessa read. The rest of the words were easy! Vander scooted closer for a look as Vanessa read the page.

This book is for using,

We need to go far,

Send us on our trailing,

Says one who dares no spar?

 

 

Black smoke surrounded the van and they were lifted up. “What’s happening!” Stella squealed looking around, “Who’s doing that!” The van soared over the burnt market and over the Rawshkin Mountains. They began to lower elevation as they approached the Dark Forest.

 

Will knew that it must be the spell, but who did it? He looked behind the seat and saw two lumps under a blanket. “Gotcha!” he yelled whipping the blanket away. It was the twins with the book? How? “Mrs. Smith!” he called as the van landed at the edge of the forest, “Did you know your twins are here? And they can perform magic?!”

 

 

Cassandra looked around her new room. It was so dark and gloomy, but she just remembered she was a bad girl, and bad girls don’t have pink wallpaper and unicorn nightlights. The room was mostly black, with a few highlights of red and grey spread throughout the mix. There was a desk, and a bed, but that was it. The desk itself was cluttered with junk like bottles, books, and a crystal ball. A crystal ball? Cassandra had to investigate.

Cassandra hopped down from her bed. It was pathetic! Just hay on the ground. She sighed and remembered something. She had magic! Cassandra waved her hand and transformed the hay into a luxurious hotel type bed, perfectly made.

Turning back to the crystal ball, Cassandra picked up the orb. It must weigh like twenty pounds! Maybe it would make a good bowling ball. Cassandra walked up to the hall and rolled the ball at the wall. She thought it would just bump into the wall, but no. It kept going, sliding straight through the wall with ease. Oops.

Forgetting the ball, Cassandra started thinking about what she would do when she became ruler of, well, everything she knew. She would first get her old friends and put them to work. They would spend the rest of their lives pleasing her in any way she wanted. She thought of killing them if they messed up.

 

“You didn’t clean my shoes properly, Charles!” Cassandra would roar, as she reached for her sword. Charlie would beg for his life, and for some reason, she dropped the sword and gave him a hug. He then became her personal servant, and did everything that she demanded.

 

 

Back in reality, Cassandra wondered the reason for Charlie’s luck. She imagined it different ways, but for some reason, Charlie never died. “Ugh!” she yelled, tipping over the desks. She soon found out that the bottles weren’t empty. They broke open, and different colored solids, liquids, and gasses spread throughout the room. Cassandra frantically tried to contain them, but it was too late. Her sight blurred, and the last thing she remembered was her mother repeating the same three words, over and over again. ‘Love is weakness’. Love is weakness.

 

 

“What are you two doing here?!” Susan scolded, “What were you thinking?” Susan already forgot about the spell issue, bigger fish. She now had two four year olds on her hands and they were hundreds of miles from home!

“We just wanted to help!” Vanessa pouted. “It was her idea!” Vander tattled, pointing an accusing finger at his sister. “I don’t care whose idea it was!” Susan screamed, “Now I have to worry about you two as we try to save your sister!” The twins started to cry and Susan sighed. “Fine!” Susan exclaimed, restarting the van to drive through the potentially dangerous, scary woods.

“There are millions of creatures in these woods.” Will explained, “If the twins hadn’t used the spell, we could’ve used it to fly over the forest, but it can only be used once a day.” Susan turned on the headlights and started down the path.

Will had researched Everlanon in the time he was living there since the portal opened. He read of the Living Screams, trolls, goblins, and such that lived in the Dark Forest. They gave him chills, however, they weren’t as bad as the chills creatures from other realms gave him. Will took out ear plugs, a prince is always prepared, and gave them to the twins. “Living Screams are probably the most dangerous creature we could encounter.” he retold, “They are as the name implies, living screams. I call them The Eeks, but they are yips, shouts, and yells of pain, sadness, and anger that have detached from their owner, and have become, living, breathing sound.”

 

“That’s impossible.” Stella whispered, “Noise can’t live!”

 

Will opened his mouth to start talking when a loud bang came from the roof. “What was that?” Charlie asked. The bang hit again, and a hideous creature crawled on the windshield. It looked like a brown wrinkled little man. Its teeth were jagged and yellow, and it had pointy ears. The thing banged on the window and growled as it dripped goo from its rotting nose. “Drive!” Will demanded, “If it gets in, we are all dead.”

 

 

Evangeline was now getting a black sheep’s wool. She figured it would be easy, but sheep are fast! “Get back here!” she screamed, trying to zap the critter so she could get the wool. It figures the black sheep was a ram known for running fast. The ram changed course and started running at Evangeline. “Oh no you don’t!” she teased, turning into a cloud of smoke. The ram stopped and looked at the cloud. Now was the perfect time to put the thing to sleep!

Eva reformed, but before she could raise her hand, the ram did what rams do best, and butted her in the gut. “Argh!” she grunted as she fell over, “Ow, ow, ow!” The ram walked over her. How could she get beaten by an entree! How embarrassing!

 

 

Cassandra still laid on the ground when the smoke cleared. “Huh?” she yawned, sitting up. As she grabbed the desk for support, she by chance sent a small rock sliding across the floor. The stone hit some crystals and Cassandra got zapped by the resulting burst. She looked at her mirror and saw herself. Clothes ripped, hair frizzed, and a lazy eye, Cassandra counted the scorched spots on her skin. “23,” she announced to the empty, now trashed, room, “I hate clutter.”

 

 

Susan raced through the woods, trying to shake the troll off. It wailed and screamed as it swung side to side by its front paw, but it didn’t let go. Stella noticed that its claws had punctured the roof above her, so she got out her fingernail clippers. “This has got to be the grossest thing I’ve ever done!” she grunted, squeezing the clippers as hard as she could. Snap! The claw flew at Charlie and he screamed as he tried to get it off. Stella proceeded the spa treatment, each claw hitting someone as it broke off. “Ugh! Monsters are soooo lazy with their hygiene!” Stella snipped, as she cut through the last nail. The creature screamed as it flew off and fell on the ground.

 

 

Evangeline returned to the tower. Her dress was half missing, she had a bald spot from where the invalid ovine chewed, and had a black eye from a hoof. Her stomach was still churning from the attack. “What happened to you!” Cassandra inquired, smiling a bit. “A sheep, what happened to you.” Eva shot back. “You know that desk full of potions and stuff in my room?” Cassandra explained, “That kind of isn’t there anymore. I mean, not in one piece.” Evangeline snickered at her daughter’s clumsiness, and then remembered the sheep. She pulled the wool out and told Cassandra to put it with the other ingredients. “Now for everything else.” Eva sighed.

 

 

Will was still curious as to how the twins were able to perform magic. He had an idea. “Vanessa?” he called, “Can you hand me that book?”

Vanessa hoisted the book up on the seat and gave it to Will with a scowl. “I don’t like you.” she warned. That was the boy who hurt her sister’s feelings and she didn’t like that. It was a long time ago, but she didn’t hear him say sorry.

 

Will flipped to the page he needed. It was titled, ‘The Test’ and had a picture of a hand on it. “Vanessa, can you put your hand right here?” he asked and she obeyed. Nothing happened. Charlie was watching what Will was up to, and he had mixed feelings. Vander yelled, “Lemme see!” and jumped on Vanessa. The handprint shone brightly, and sparkles showed a picture story.

The sparkles showed Cassie crying tears of joy, and giving a cookie to Susan. A deep voice began, “A tear of joy produced two twins, whose powers were good.” Susan pulled over the car and watched in amazement as she saw herself eating the cookie with the tear. “Born from evil, changed by happiness, and transformed into two, the powers work only when the two are in contact with one another.” the voice expounded, “Vanessa and Vander Smith are all powerful, for they are the Twins of a Tear of Joy, and are capable of greatness.” Vanessa removed her hand once the glow faded away. “Cool!” the twins chirped.

 

Just one normal, not magical child? No? Oh well, it’s fine with Susan, anyway, she still loves them all the same. Susan sighed. Twins of a Tear of Joy.

 

 

Surviving The Living Screams

 

Susan continued at eighty miles per hour. This place was giving her the creeps, and she certainly did not want to meet any Eeks. The trees were a blur as the van bumped and lurched around. Susan’s main goal right now was to get out of the woods before night took the sky.

“Is there a way to kill Living Screams?” Charlie asked. Will just shrugged, “No one knows. We just hope we don’t run into any.”

Stella looked out the window and watched a goblin of some sort shimmy up a tree. It looked like it was scared of something. “Char-Char, Will?” Stella stuttered, “What scares a gob-” Stella was cut off as a blood-curdling scream echoed through the forest. Trees fell over and birds flew away. “Oh no!” Will whispered, “Go faster!” Susan pushed the accelerator down and they zoomed off. A thunderous cackle shook the van, and dirt flew everywhere. Yelps rustled in the treetops, hollers snapped branches, screams banged the ground. “Living Screams!” Charlie yelled.

Yelps, shouts, and cries. Branches broke, rocks flew, and the occasional goblin fell to its death. The minivan passed a small elf covering its large ears. A loud scream flew down, and knocked it out cold. A yell slammed the side of the van Charlie was on and made him fall on Will’s and Stella’s lap. He grappled for his own seat, but he was stuck. That is until Will shoved him off. Will had enough problems without Charlie in the way.

 

Will slammed on the ceiling as an annoying wail slammed back. The sound was putting dents in the roof, and Will was, painfully, fixing them. Where’s a hammer when you need it?

 

Susan kept driving. She was determined to get away before she had to buy Betty a new van. She turned around a corner and the screams followed. Were they angry? Hungry? Susan didn’t know. She just pushed on the pedal harder.

 

The window next to Stella shattered and a screech smacked her in the face. Stella screamed, the screech screamed, Stella screamed louder, the screech screamed louder. Stella tossed her hands in the air as the screech surrounded her. She screamed louder than she ever had before, and the screech went silent. “Mmmm…” Stella said, “Scream louder, Eek silences.”

 

While Stella thought, the twins woke up. They were napping, but the screams woke them up, even with the earplugs. “BE QUIET!” Vanessa screamed, and everything went silent. The van sped away with no more attacks and Vanessa smiled.

“Did she just tell the screams to shut up?” Charlie asked Will. “I guess,” he answered, “and it seems like it worked.”

 

 

Evangeline decided to get the troll claw next. She went to the Dark Forest and disguised herself as a beautiful young maiden. She gave herself long luscious brown hair, and light blue eyes. Dressed in a light green dress, she walked through the forest pretending to be scared. Trolls loved ladies. Sometimes for romantic reasons, but mostly for meals. A damsel in distress would surely get some troll-tention, and maybe a prince, but she could handle that.

“Help! Help!” she cooed, “I’m so lost, and scared! I’m so in distress, and beautiful!” She hoped a troll would come soon, the last thing she needed was to run into the Living Screams during their feeding time.

A troll leapt in her path, and roared. “Oh, a troll!” Eva exclaimed, “I’ve always wanted to meet one! I find them very, um, attractive.”

The troll stood up and slicked back his three hairs. He picked a flower and chewed it up. The troll strutted over to his dame and wrapped his arm around her. “Hey.” he growled. Eva smiled and grabbed his arm, flipping him over on his back. She ripped off his claw and put it in her pocket. “Thanks ugly,” Evangeline taunted, “I needed that.”

Evangeline ducked as a scream flew past. “Time to go!” she said, hearing a faint engine in the distance. She disappeared in a whirl of flames, scorching the monster.

After hearing the scream, the troll scurried up a tree just as the minivan passed.

 

 

Think Happy Thoughts

 

Cassandra was so bored! Her mother wouldn’t let her go get any ingredients and she really wanted to. Then she had an epiphany. She was evil! She didn’t need to listen to her mother! Cassandra got dressed in a black gown and looked at the scroll. She decided to get the polar bear hair. It seems easy, how bad could a polar bear be? Waving her hand, she summoned a blizzard to carry her away to the Arctic Circle.

 

 

Susan was ecstatic when she saw the end of the woods. The van pulled out and soon stopped in front of a bridge. Out of gas. They would have to walk from now. Will stopped them. “A warning before we cross the bridge.” he began, “This is the Bridge of Gloom. It has the ability to make anyone who crosses it, so gloomy and sad, that you turn back. So everyone think happy thoughts!”

 

Will went first and immediately started thinking about his castle. It was so big! And lonely. He started to think about something that he knew would keep him happy. Who he was doing this for. He thought about Cassie and their happy time together.

 

Susan took the twins next. She sang as they went to lift everyone’s spirits. Whenever Cassie was sad, Susan would sing to her and in the end, Cassie would look up and smile her pretty smile. That was the highlight of Susan’s day.

 

Stella walked across next. Happy thoughts. Rainbows are happy, but not enough. She remembered Charlie and Cassie. Stella has been hoping they would get together. She knew that Charlie could never love her as much as he did Cassie and she had accepted it. Cassie and Charlie deserved each other, and they were going to end up together if it was the last thing Stella did!

 

The Bridge of Gloom was pathetic! Charlie had been thinking about Cassie the whole trip, and the bridge didn’t stand a chance against his love. Charlie remembered Cassie before she changed, blonde hair, green eyes, sweet, and caring. She was so smart. Charlie loved her more with every passing second. He has waited ten years to get with Cassie, and her birthmother was not going to get in the way. Cassie was beautiful, kind, loving, and forgiving. Though her anger could get out of control, Charlie could easily bring her back. He wanted their first kiss. They hadn’t had their first date, first kiss, or first dance yet, and Charlie was going to get them. He was determined to get them.

 

Susan continued to sing, and the twins hummed along, smiling.

 

Stella thought about her happy ending. She wanted to find her one true love, just like Cassie and Charlie did. She wanted to dance through the moonlight, without a care in the world, with her prince. Happy thoughts. A candle-lit dinner on Valentine’s Day. She’d be dressed in a red dress, just like a princess. Stella sighed happily.

 

Will remembered the first time he kissed Cassie. On the bus, out of the blue. He was a true spontaneous prince. They dated for years, and he was stupid enough to let her go. Don’t think about that! Her pretty green eyes, the kind you can get lost in for hours, but have it only seem like seconds. He would twirl her hair as they kissed on the couch. They would sit next to each other, saying nothing at all, just enjoying the other’s presence. Their first date, the kiss in the hotel hall, when they laid on the floor, stuck wearing the same shirt. He loved her dearly. He still does.

 

Charlie thought of one of his happiest Cassie moments. Dock Six, first band concert. They sat down for what seemed like an eternity, but ended so soon. That was when Cassie kissed him on the cheek. The little spark of joy, just like magic. Heh, magic. If only he knew then, magic. Charlie loves Cassie. He wants to marry her, but first they need to officially become a couple.

 

Susan was still singing. She sang every song she knew, from Christmas songs, to pop songs. She thought of Cassie, and how she was going to get her back.

 

The group was now half way across, which was further than most make it. Halfway was when the Gloom Bridge switches settings to high.

 

 

“Here polar bear polar bear polar bear!” Cassandra called, freezing to death, “Here polar bear polar bear polar bear!” She’s been searching for hours, and still no polar bears. Then she saw her silver lining. A polar bear, just waiting to get a haircut.

Cassandra appeared behind the beast and leaned over it. She should’ve worn her winter boots, because she slipped on the ice and landed right on the bear’s back. To make matters worse, it was a mommy.

 

Think happy thoughts, Cassandra, think happy thoughts. The bear stood up, with the girl on its back. Get the hair and transport away. Cassandra waved her hand to get scissors, but nothing happened. She was too cold to get the motions right. Uh-oh.

Cassandra held on as the bear tried to shake her off. The bear let out a loud roar and turned over, and laid on its back. Ow. Cassandra was pushed into the cold snow, but she still didn’t release the polar bear. It got back up, and went for a run. A really fast run.

The snow flew in her face and stung her skin as the monster ran full speed through the white hills of the arctic. Happy thoughts! Everything will work out!

 

 

Evangeline returned to the tower with the cloud they needed. “Cassandra!” she called, “I got the cloud! Come out here!” After getting no reply, Eva saw the list open. The paper had a note that read ‘polar bear fur’. Oh no! If she gets too cold, her powers will freeze, and who knows what could happen! If Cassandra died, the spell wouldn’t be able to be cast, and Evangeline wouldn’t be able to get her revenge, and take over! And the fact that she is her daughter. She had to get to an arctic and fast! Since that’s where she is from, Cassandra is probably polar bear hunting in the Realm of the Foretold. Eva grabbed a coat and waved her hand. A bright flash, and she was gone.

 

 

Susan felt saddened, so she sang louder and happier. Joyfully belting out every happy song out there, including the birthday ones, Susan sped up to a skip with the twins.

 

Will suddenly remembered the night he threw it all away, the night he broke Cassie’s heart. The bridge must be getting stronger! He heard Mrs. Smith sing louder, and soon started skipping, in which Will took part. They had to get off the bridge before it was too late! ‘I love Cassie!’ he repeated over and over in his head. Cassie. Cassie. Cassie.

 

Stella saw the skipping and joined in. She loved to skip! She was always so lonely and sad. The bridge! Stella started humming along to Susan’s singing.

 

Charlie imagined the kiss that will never happen. Cassie is gone! No, she isn’t. She is still there, and Charlie loves her. “I love Cassie! I love Cassie!” he chanted to the beat of the song. The group skipped and sang across the rest of the Bridge of Gloom with ease. The thing was no match for a determined group like them!

 

 

Cassandra ripped a wad of hair out of the beast and it threw her off in anger. The bear whirled around and got ready to strike, when it was burnt to a crisp by a steady stream of fire. “I got the hair, mother!” Cassandra announced. Not saying a word, Eva marched over to her daughter and waved them back to the tower.

 

 

Once Cassandra was in her room, Eva summoned her Seeing Cloud. “Show me the annoying group.” Eva demanded. The cloud showed the group ending their cross of the Bridge of Gloom laughing and smiling. “Ugh,” Evangeline groaned, “they look like they’ll get here soon, so maybe they should rest after their long journey.”

 

With help of great forces I owe,

I send a message to the ones who go too fast.

The group who came is so close, so,

I give them a nap that’ll last!

 

Eva cackled as she watched the group lay down and fall asleep. “Think happy thoughts and dream sweet dreams!” she grinned, “Hopefully you don’t get eaten in your sleep!” Evangeline whipped around and grabbed the scroll. “That gives me three days at least!” Eva exclaimed, “Now what should I get next?”

 

 

Tu Be Without Magic

 

“Can I please go with you!” Cassandra plead, “If you don’t let me I’ll just go anyway.” Evangeline sighed and agreed to take her. She already had a tomato, skunk’s stink, and still water for the spell, and while she rescued Cassandra, she got the arctic snow they needed. Now it was time for the golden flame.

 

According to legend, the golden flame was tended to by a ferocious ogre on the island of Tu. There was a whole spiel about the Colored Bridges and a guard dog, but Eva didn’t remember. She’d just send herself there, grab the fire, and leave. If anything got in her way, she’d burn them. “Come on Cassandra,” Evangeline beckoned, “We have to go to Tu!” Cassandra snickered. “To Tu!” she yelled, as Eva waved her hand, “This is gonna be so easy!”

 

 

The two appeared on Tu. “This is not where I wanted to land!” Evangeline screamed. She waved her hand, and nothing happened! Something was suppressing her powers!

 

Cassandra rolled her eyes and sassed, “Watch this!” She summoned a lion to give them a ride, but nothing happened. Cassandra waved to turn into smoke, but still no success.

 

“This island must be able to subdue magic!” Eva screeched. “Don’t you mean able Tu subdue magic!” Cassandra joked. Evangeline rolled her eyes at her daughter’s stupidity. “Without magic, we can’t get the flame!” Eva expounded, separating each word to make her point.

 

Cassandra was in disbelief at what her mother said. She had relied on magic so much, that she thought it was impossible to get where they needed to go without it! “Mother,” Cassandra began, “I was fine without using magic, so I’m sure we can do this!”

 

Eva scowled, but it was their only option. They had to walk. They had to carry the flame off the island. They had to avoid a vicious dog, and his owner, the ogre. They had to survive this with no magic. They were doomed.

 

 

Cassie’s friends and family were out like a light. They dreamed dreams. The kind of dreams that are so realistic, it’s just scary. They were the amazing kind of dream that made you sad when you found out it wasn’t real.

 

Will dreamt of his beloved Cassie. It was after they brought her back and she dumped that lamo Charlie. He took her to his castle where they ate dinner. The chefs made the best meal he’s ever had. They had chateaubriand, amongst other dishes, and for dessert, shared a piece of the royal cake.

The royal cake was a very special recipe in Everlanon. It was guaranteed that it was the best cake you could ever eat. The recipe itself was locked in with all of the other treasures of Everlanon, as well as the chef who makes the cake, in a place that could only be opened by a royal.

 

Susan dreamt a simple dream. Her family sitting together, smiling. All were alive, and none were evil.

 

Vander dreamt of cookies that tasted really good, and Vanessa was dreaming of smacking Will with a wet noodle. She was so happy.

 

In Stella’s dream, she was in her very own castle, dressed in a beautiful blue gown. Then a stranger walked in. He was dressed as a prince from a fairytale would dress, and was very good looking. Stella just stared at the one who she thought was a male model. The prince waltzed over to her and kneeled down. “Will you marry me?” he proposed. Stella was ecstatic and acted on impulse. “Yes!” she squealed and the prince stood up to give her a kiss.

 

Charlie was happy. He was walking through the park with Cassie as they held hands. They walked a seemingly endless path, and Cassie would occasionally stop to give him a kiss.

 

 

The mother and daughter team walked across the island. It was a large flat landscape, and they could see the castle that the ogre lived in from where they stood. “This is taking forever!” Evangeline moaned. It already had been two minutes, and she didn’t even have a throat in her hands yet, let alone the flame!

The two had nothing to talk about. They were just silently marching, impatiently waiting until they could get out of this place. The island was seemingly recently abandoned.

The duo trudged through an old barn and were surprised with a decent gift. It was a horse! Evangeline ran over to it and hopped on. “What are you waiting for?” she asked, “Get on!” Cassandra climbed on the back of the horse and off they rode. Whatever Eva had to do to get to a place where she can use her power faster, she’d do. The silky black steed galloped across the plains, racing the wind. They stopped by the castle in the brush, and tied up the horse. It was time to get that fire.

 

 

The two snuck in the open door, and the fire was right there! It was as fire would be expected, only gold in color, and not hot at all. Cassandra picked it up and mouthed for them to leave. As they walked towards the exit, they heard a growl. Eva turned around and saw a massive dog towering over her. A blob of drool dropped from the dog’s mouth and landed on Evangeline, soaking her. “Guard dog.” she grumbled.

Cassandra and Evangeline ran out to the brush, with the beast close behind. They leapt on the horse and galloped away, with the canine bounding after them. “All we need to do is get off the island,” Evangeline explained, “and we’re home free.”

 

“WHO TOOK THE GOLDEN FLAME?!” a voice thundered. A 75-foot-tall ogre exited the castle and saw the intruders almost to the Bridges of Color. With a few leaps, the ogre stood in the way. “ALL INTRUDERS MUST DIE!” he roared as the horse galloped between his legs. Evangeline made the horse leap forward, and she felt her powers return on contact with the bridge. “GIVE ME THE FIRE!” the ogre demanded. Eva smiled, “You asked for it!” She pointed her finger at the monster and he burst into fire and crumbled to the ground, not having time to scream in pain. Cassandra watched as the giant dog turned and ran away like the puppy it was.

 

 

Dreams

 

“What’s next?” Cassandra asked her mother, sitting on her bed the next day. “You sleep.” Eva informed, “I need two ingredients from the Dream Realm, and I can only make a portal there if I have someone in a deep sleep, so.” Before Cassandra could protest, Eva put her to sleep and opened the portal. “Here I go!” she announced, jumping through.

 

Inside the Dream Realm, Eva remembered her friends who were sleeping in Everlanon. “Might as well have some fun while I’m here!” she said, bringing up the blueprints for their current dreams. “Cassandra has two boys with the hots for her! Ha!” Eva smiled, grabbing Will’s and Charlie’s dream, “I wonder how dreamy it will be if they were together.” Evangeline smashed the instructions together and watched as they turned from a blueprint, to a blackprint. A blueprint is for dreams, and a blackprint is for the other. Nightmares. “While I’m at it.” Evangeline sighed, “Let’s fix them all!”

She twisted Stella’s prince into a serial killer, and added herself in Susan’s dream. Evangeline changed Vander’s cookies into boogie monsters, and gave Vanessa’s wet noodle to her victims. “I’m so cruel!” she bragged, “Now I have to get the archiles and Belbad’s ax before Cassandra wakes up.”

 

 

Will’s dream went sour when Cassie unexpectedly excused herself and went outside. Naturally, Will followed. “Is something wrong!?” he called, “Cassie!”

 

Charlie heard Will’s voice yelling “Cassie!” It seemed like he was running. Then he appeared in his princely attire and all.

 

“What are you doing with him!” Will yelled, “I thought you left him!” Will was upset. Cassie and him were engaged! She was to become the future queen!

 

Charlie didn’t believe Will was right there. The portal had closed years ago, and him and Cassie were living their happily ever after together. Now Will was here like Cassie owed him something! “Shut up, Will!” Charlie warned, “She’s spending time with her boyfriend!”

 

Will was disgusted. That jerk thinks he can swoop in and take Cassie from him! They are due to marry tomorrow, and now Charlie is here?

Cassie backed up and Will walked up to Charlie and looked him in the eye. Charlie stared back.

 

Susan enjoyed her family time when a knock came on the door. Susan wondered who could be visiting. She stood up and walked to the door. “Hello,” Susan greeted, opening the door. “Hello, Sue” Evangeline cooed, “How ya doin’?”

 

Stella walked down the aisle to her prince. She was as happy as could be. She looked at her, still unnamed, prince and smiled. Stella was about to become a wife! To a prince!

“Before we proceed,” the prince began, grabbing Stella’s hands, “I lied. I’m not a prince.” “What?” she yelled, trying to pull her arms away. “I’m a murderer, and you’re my next victim!” he smiled and shoved her up against the wall, tying her hands together. “This place is rigged with explosives.” he explained, “Hope you enjoyed the ceremony!” The man turned around and left the building, locking the door behind him.

 

Vanessa went in for another hit, but her noodle was gone! She looked up, and in Will’s hand was the soggy pasta. “Looks like you better run!” he teased, raising the noodle. “Ahhh!” Vanessa screamed, running away, “He’s gonna noodle me!”

 

Vander munched on a cookie. All of a sudden, the cookie turned to mush in his mouth. Very slimy mush. He released his grip and yelled, “Boogie monster!”

 

 

Evangeline picked several archiles from the Archile Orchard. An archile is a round pink fruit, that tasted different every time you tried it. It could taste like an apple, or like cotton candy, but no matter who tasted it, they liked it every time. Once she had enough, she transported them back to her home and went to get Belbad’s ax.

Belbad was the nightmare lord. He created and delivered every nightmare there ever was, and he was pretty good at it. Whether about unicorns or goblins, he had the blackprint for them all. Anyone who disobeyed him was axed. His ax didn’t kill them, it squished them into a blackprint, so they spent the rest of their life in a nightmare, until they were literally scared to death.

Eva knew he wouldn’t willingly give her the ax, so she was ready for a fight. Fire in hand, she burst through the door and walked into Belbad’s sanctuary. “Belbad! I am here for your ax.” she decreed, “Hand it over and no one gets hurt!”

“Ha ha ha!” a voice chucked, “Evangeline! I can’t believe-” Eva threw him up against the wall and ripped the ax away from him, without lifting a finger. She had been practicing motionless magic, to take her enemies by surprise. “Tell me what you are going to do!” he demanded. “Oh, I think you know!” Eva said, lifting the ax. She swung the weapon and Belbad got sucked in a blackprint. “Pathetic!” she sighed, transporting to now rapidly closing portal. Cassandra was waking up, and Evangeline dove through the escape, losing a shoe in the Dream Realm. “Shoot, I liked that pair!” Eva screeched, as her daughter sat up.

 

“Why didn’t you ask before knocking me out?” Cassandra interrogated. “Time is precious!” she answered, putting down the ax, “According to the blackprints I found in the Dream Realm, the sleeping spell on your ‘rescuers’ is going to wear off today instead of tomorrow, so we have to hurry.”

 

Secretly, however, she needed Charlie and Stella for the spell. Eva needed to get everything but the heart of the person who Cassandra hates most, and the diamond of reality. Stella’s heart will go in the spell, and then the diamond will kick-start it.

The diamond of reality is not a diamond; it is the most precious thing reality can offer, true love. If she gets the heart first, then Charlie’s pleas for Cassie to return to the light might make her daughter good, but then the spell will be cast, and she will win!

 

The noodle whacking woke up Vanessa. Vander woke up with a slap by the booger. Susan was killed by Evangeline and woke up. Stella also died in the exploding church and woke up.

 

Will and Charlie punched and kicked each other. They both loved and wanted Cassie. Suddenly, Cassie held up her hand and produced a fireball. She threw the fireball at the boys and they both woke up with a heat flash. Charlie sat up. Will sat up. They stared at each other until the others got up and walked away. “I hate you!” Will mouthed. “Ditto!” Charlie piped, standing up, wishing he was still in the dream so he could finish him off. Charlie sighed, “Dreams.”

 

 

Beloved Decorations And Twin Blood

 

The two ingredients they needed before their guests arrived were the ornament, and the twin blood, both of which the group possessed. Evangeline decided she would pay them a visit before they made it to her tower. She gave Cassandra another sleeping spell, to make sure she didn’t pull one of her tricks, and flew out the window and down to about three miles away where the group walked.

 

“Hello,” Evangeline greeted, “I’ll take that ornament now.” Susan shook her head, “Never!” Evangeline smiled. “You think you’re so smart. You think you will win! I have a message for you, you’re not smart, and you’re not going to win!” Eva teased, and opened her hand, showing off the ornament, “I have a little thing called magic. What do you have? Hope? Faith? That won’t help you defeat me!”

 

Charlie came forward and yelled, “We have love!” Evangeline couldn’t believe what she heard. She fell forward, and held her gut, painful from laughing so hard. “Love is weakness!” she warned, “And trust me, your love will ruin you!”

 

Evangeline walked over to the twins, and Susan put them behind her. “This reminds me of that dream you had!” Evangeline cooed, “Or should I say nightmare!”

Susan wasn’t going to take it. That witch was not getting close to her babies! She punched the sorceress in the eye, and again in the nose. When Eva went to heal herself, Susan kicked her in the stomach and twice in the shin. “Ouch!” she screamed as the protective mother grabbed her by her hair, and twisted her around, making her fall to the ground. “You will not hurt my family anymore!” Susan warned, kicking Evangeline with each syllable spoken, “And you are most definitely not getting any blood from my twins!”

 

Everyone watched in shock as the principal and mother gave the evil enchantress a royal beating. Susan knelt down close to Evangeline’s face and whispered, “And I’m not even mad yet.”

 

Eva dropped her hand and sent her decrepit body back to her tower for the long regeneration process that she would have to do now. She put the tower on lock down before crawling into her bed chamber for healing. After the spell was cast, Susan Smith would most certainly be the first to go.

 

 

The group watched as a dome encircled the tower in the distance. “Should’ve finished her off while we could.” Will grumbled, “What now?”

 

Stella knew people like Eva. She was somewhat like Eva. “She’ll bring the dome down when she’s stronger.” Stella stated, “She won’t want anyone to think she’s scared of some mere mortals like us.”

 

“Hey!” Will shouted, “I am not a mere mortal. I am a prince! In fact, I am the prince of this very land you are standing on!” Charlie rolled his eyes. “Calm down, Princey,” he began, “This is no time for proving yourself. Wait until after we save Cassie to try and win her over. Better yet, don’t.”

Will squinted angrily. “I have nothing to prove!” he blurted, “Unlike you!”

Will and Charlie started another stare down. “Enough!” Stella ordered. Stella was determined on saving Cassie, and herself, and she was not going to let those two knuckleheads screw up the mission. “Neither of you are getting Cassie if we don’t win!” she announced, “Fight later, right now we need to be ready outside of the tower for when the dome comes down!” The now organized group walked towards the tower. They were going to win. They had to.

 

 

Cassandra woke up from her deep sleep. Mother! She told her that she didn’t want her to put her to sleep without her permission! She knows that woman is evil, but it doesn’t hurt to have manners!

 

Walking out to the main room, Cassandra noticed the vial that was to be filled with twin blood. It wasn’t very big, so it probably wouldn’t hurt the twins too much. She grabbed the vial and conveyed herself outside, where she hid next to a bush.

 

Vial, vial, in my hand.

Fill with the blood you were meant to contain,

Go right now and get it while they stand,

Quick and quiet so they don’t complain!

 

The container flew to the twins and stabbed Vanessa, filling halfway with blood. “Ow!” she yelled. Next, Vander topped it off and it returned to Cassandra’s hand. Vander rubbed the spot where it poked. “I think somethin’ bit me!” he whined as the hidden Cassandra returned inside.

 

“Where did you go!” Evangeline screamed from her room. “Relax!” Cassandra insisted, “I just got the blood!” Eva was so proud. Maybe she wouldn’t go good after all. Setting the blood on the table, Cassandra went to bed. It was late, and she needed to rest.

 

 

Dreams That Make You Think

 

Cassie laid on her bed at the Smiths’ place waiting for Charlie to call. She studied the ceiling like her and Will used to study the stars. It was white, and textured with many small mountains and valleys. She remembered her first date with Charlie when they looked out from the observation deck in Pennsylvania. They had visited with their families, and took joy in all of the mountains and valleys they saw. It was so beautiful.

The phone rang and Cassie answered it. Expecting Charlie, she was surprised when Will answered her hello. “I was wondering if you wanted to go out sometime. I made a mistake when I broke up with you.” he admitted, “I still love you.”

Cassie didn’t know what to do! She had feelings for Will, but then they broke up and she was with Charlie now! She loves Charlie, but now Will was confusing her. The last time she was this confused was when she chose good over evil, and her birthmother was imprisoned deep beneath Everlanon. She never thought about that again until now, but she knew it was the right choice.

 

“Um, Will,” Cassie began, trying to figure out how to let him down easily, “I’d love to go out with you!” Why did she say that? She’s taken! “Okay, how about we go to my castle for lunch tomorrow!” Will scheduled, “Does that work with you?” No! Of course not! Her heart belongs to Charlie! “Sounds great!” she agreed, “See you then!” Cassie hung up and rolled over on her bed. Did she just accept a date with Will in Everlanon? That means she’s dating two guys at once! At least they are both cute. No! Cassie planned to go on that date with Will and tell him it isn’t going to work out. She needs to break up with her other boyfriend.

 

The phone rang again and this time, to Cassie’s relief, it was Charlie. “Hey.” Charlie greeted, trying to sound cool, “How you doin’?” Cassie giggled and lied, “Good!” She thought Charlie was so cute when he tried to act cool. “Wanna come over?” he asked, “I’ve got a present for you!” Cassie nodded and remembered that he couldn’t see her. “I’ll be right over!” she assured sweetly. She got up and ran to her closet, after hanging up the phone of course.

What should she wear? Cassie searched through her wardrobe and saw many colors. She pulled out a light green t-shirt and blue jeans. She wanted to look casual, and nothing was more casual than a t-shirt and jeans. Except pajamas maybe.

After getting dressed, she ran outside and was at Charlie’s in no time. This was because she still used her powers sometimes, but not for evil.

Betty answered the door with a smile and pointed upstairs. “He has a surprise for you!” she whispered excitedly. Knowing Charlie, his grandma probably helped him pick out the gift, but it’s the thought that counts.

 

“Oh Charlie!” Cassie called, opening his bedroom door, “I’m here!” Charlie ran up to Cassie and kissed her on the cheek. “Are you ready for your present?” he asked enthusiastically. Cassie nodded eagerly. Charlie’s gifts were always so thoughtful and romantic! He went out in the hall and came back with a basket. Inside the basket was a little puppy and a cute kitten. The puppy was male and the kitten was female. “Aww! They’re so cute!” Cassie exclaimed, “I love them! Thank you!” Charlie asked what she was going to name them. “The pup is Bagel, and the kitten is Bella.” Cassie announced with joy. “Bagel and Bella?” Charlie checked, “That’s adorable.”

The puppy was a golden retriever, and the kitten was a Siberian, mostly grey, but it had a little black on its head. Seeing Cassie study the kitten, Charlie put in, “I picked the one I did because its green eyes reminded me of yours.”

Aww, Charlie is so thoughtful! The kitten’s eyes were beautiful! And Charlie said that they reminded him of Cassie’s.

Cassie gave Charlie a hug, and picked up the kitten. It was so small and soft! Charlie picked up the puppy and it licked his face. “Aww!” Cassie sighed. A cutie like Charlie with a puppy was to die for!

“Thank you again, Charlie!” Cassie said, grabbing the basket and heading out. She went back home with her new pets and put them on her bed. “Adorable.” she determined, “I’m so glad I chose good.”

 

The next day soon arrived, and Cassie had pancakes with Charlie for breakfast. “I have a meeting at lunch, so we won’t be able to meet up today.” Cassie explained, “It’ll be quick, just have to break a deal for work.”

Cassie was a business intern and she sometimes used it as a cover story for when she’s in a pinch.

“Sure,” Charlie began, “I understand.” Charlie got up and left. It was almost time for Cassie’s date, so she kind of had to shove him out the door.

 

Cassie got changed into her date dress and got ready to break up with Will. She loved Charlie, and not Will. He had his shot and blew it, now it was Charlie’s turn. And Charlie’s turn was the last.

 

Cassie rode to the portal and went to Will’s castle. There was Will, waiting outside his castle as princely as ever. “Hi Will!” Cassie smiled. She figured she would have some food, and announce her love for Charlie and leave, having a new friend. Okay, maybe that wasn’t going to happen, but Cassie was going to try.

 

“Hi Cas!” Will charmed, “Ready for our picnic?” Cassie smiled again. Time to get this over with. She sat on the ground where Will had a picnic lunch set up. They had some fancy food that Cassie didn’t even try to pronounce, but it was good. “This is all wonderful,“ Cassie began, “but-” Will cut in and leaned close to her, “I know you are with Charlie, but I love you and I figured I had to try to whisk you away from him.” Will kissed Cassie on the cheek, giving her chills. Charlie is what was keeping her from going back. She loved Charlie dearly, and knew that he was the one.”

 

A whirl of fire took form on their lunch, and standing there, separating them from each other, was Evangeline herself. “Hello Cassandra!” Evangeline cooed, “I figured I’d take care of your Will problem.” She kicked Will back when he tried to fight back. “Say goodbye!” she teased, raising a newly formed sword. “Noooo!” Cassie yelled as the sword went down.

 

Cassandra sat up and screamed. What just happened? She looked around, it was the middle of the night and everything was darker than usual. She stood up and looked at the force field surrounding the tower, and down at her old friends. Will, her old mom, the twins, and Charlie. Then she saw Stella. The one who claimed to be her friend, and then kissed her boyfriend! Cassandra hated her. She wished she was dead!

Then she remembered her dream. Charlie, Will, and the pets. Her mother, slaughtering Will with no hesitation. So evil. Cassandra was evil, right?

If they won, and evil reigned, what would happen to her friends? Her family? They came all this way to get her. Did they care? They must’ve cared, because if they didn’t, they wouldn’t have wasted their time.

Cassie remembered how she felt in her dream with Charlie, the animals, and even Will. She was happy, and she was good. Cassie looked around her at the dark and depressing place she now lived. It didn’t make her happy. And she didn’t know how happy she’d be ruling the worlds as the most hated person that ever lived. No, she was evil, and she didn’t care what the ungrateful peasants thought. Wait, she did. She wanted to be happy, with Charlie. She wanted her friends and family back. One thing she definitely didn’t want was to live here with her birthmother!

 

Cassie knew what she had to do. Until Evangeline appeared. “Cassandra, I think you should talk to me about your feelings.” she beckoned, “We don’t want a rift in our relationship, for we have a big day tomorrow. I am letting your visitors up to watch us cast the spell, isn’t that exciting!” Cassie thought. Cassandra thought. No, it wasn’t exciting, Cassie didn’t want to be evil! Yes, it was most definitely exciting! Cassandra loved being evil!

 

“I am excited.” The words dropped from Cassandra’s lips like icing through a piping bag, forced. Cassandra was gone. Cassie was back. A dream was all she needed. One of those dreams that make you think.

 

 

The Mother-Daughter Disruption

 

The next morning, the group below watched as Stella’s prediction came true. The dome disintegrated and the doors to the tower flew open. A small goblin stood there trembling. “Come in?” it squeaked. The group walked past the frozen mammal-reptile thing and into the tower. It was incredibly gloomy inside. There was a large empty room with one staircase that went all the way up to the top of the tower. The group ran to the steps and up they went. It was time to save Cassie.

 

 

At the top of the tower, Evangeline explained the plan to her daughter. “When we get the heart of the one you hate most,” she said, referring to Stella, “then Charlie’s pouring of ‘true love’ to you will activate the enchantment, and we shall rule all of reality itself!” Evangeline cackled and scorched the top of the tower with flames after she finished. She was in the mood for mayhem! “The time is now, my dear!” Eva decreed, “It’s time for the Mother-Daughter Disruption!”

 

Cassie forced a smile. She had no idea what her birthmother would do if she found out that she was no longer bad. If she found out that she chose good.

 

 

“Hurry before it’s too late!” Susan ordered. “Cassie.” Vander stated, looking at Vanessa. Vanessa smiled and said, “Good.”

 

Charlie was glad his grandma insisted they bond with step-a-robics, because there were a lot of stairs! Still, he kept going, whispering, “Cassie.” every three steps. They had been going for three minutes straight! That’s a long time to run up a staircase!

 

Will shot up the steps with ease. He definitely didn’t get his abs from laying around every day! He would get up early, and run, and he would exercise before going to bed. He was ready for his princely duties, mainly saving damsels in distress and slaying dragons, but nevertheless, Cassie was worth it too. Who is he kidding? He always wished she’d be his damsel in distress!

 

Stella wished she had her Daddy’s experimental hover board. She’d be at the top already! Pretty girls aren’t supposed to run! They should be carried, by a prince, who doesn’t turn out to be a serial killer.

 

 

Eva checked her Seeing Cloud. They weren’t even close! Too slow! Evangeline was getting anxious, so she whisked them up to the top with a dark purple mist, that for some reason, smelled like strudels. She was going to have to get that looked at.

 

 

The group found themselves at the top of the tower, where a pot sat on the fire. “Greetings!” Evangeline called, “Two ingredients left! Cassandra, go get yourself a heart!”

 

Cassie reluctantly swished here in front of a screaming Stella, and smiled. It wasn’t an evil smile; it was a good smile. “I choose good.” Cassie whispered as Stella watched her hair fully restore to the natural blonde hair Charlie so much adored.

 

“WHAT!?” Evangeline screamed, “You’re joking, right? Rip out her heart! She’s the one you hate most, remember?” Cassie turned around. “No.” she began, “Stella is my friend. It took me awhile, but looking back, it was obvious! The kiss was forced! I couldn’t see it before, because I was blinded with hate, but I now understand. I choose good, so give up the spell, because the one who I hate most, is you.”

Eva's hand flew to her chest. “That means that in order to cast the spell, I have to die!” she yelled, “Good one, you menace! You won! I can't take over with the spell, so now I have a fight.” Evangeline streamed fire at the group, but Cassie simply doused her with water. “You -” she hollered as Cassie created a loud beep with her hand until Eva stopped. “There are children present!” Cassie scolded, blasting her mother up against the wall.

Evangeline fell to the ground, dazed. What happened next was a blur, but it went something like this: Susan gave her a whipping, Charlie kicked her, Will punched her, Stella beat her with her own heel, Vander bit her, and she was pretty sure she was getting slapped with something like a wet noodle by a giggling toddler.

 

Cassie looked down at her birthmother. “You may be good now,” Evangeline taunted, “but when it’s all said and done, you’re still my daughter. That means that no matter how hard you try, or how much you work to be a hero, you are, and always will be, Dark’s Descent!” Cassie kneeled down close to Evangeline’s face and whispered, “So be it.”

Cassie stood up, and with the clap of her hands, she transported them all back to the portal, leaving Evangeline in a soggy heap on the floor.

 

“What are we going to do with her?” Will asked his father once they met up at the portal. “She shall be imprisoned far below Everlanon, by tomorrow, where she will no longer be a threat.” King Albert expounded. Will smiled and faced Cassie. “I’m glad you chose the good side.” he began, “I have a confession, I still love you. I know I messed up, but I was wondering if you would consider getting back together?” Cassie looked at the prince. “The answer is simple, no. I forgive you for what you did, but I love Charlie.” she confessed, “I am going to live in the Realm of the Foretold with him when the portal closes, and I was hoping I could visit you still. I’m pretty sure that I am strong enough to come without a portal, but if I don’t, I want you to know that I know you’ll be an excellent king.”

Will grinned, “Thank you, and I am sure you’ll see me again sooner or later.” Now he had to try to get over her. That was going to be his greatest challenge yet. He waved as the group returned to their home. The portal was due to close any second, because of the excessive use of vehicles through it. Sure enough, the ground rumbled and the hole snapped shut. Will returned to his castle, and sat on his throne. Will looked to the castle where the portal was and sighed, “Hopefully it’s sooner.”

Back in the Realm of the Foretold, Cassie and her friends and family all returned to their homes and lived happily ever…

 

 

Just kidding!

 

 

The Story Isn’t Over Yet!

 

Back in the Realm of the Foretold, Cassie decided that as soon as she visited her dad, she was going to spend some quality time with her new, and official, boyfriend, Charlie.

 

Vanessa pulled on Cassie’s skirt as they walked home. “Yes?” Cassie asked. “Are you sure it’s all over?” Vanessa questioned. “Pretty sure.” she sighed in response, “Why do you ask?” Vanessa looked at Vander and said, “We have a feeling.”

 

“Huh?” Cassie gasped, looking at her mom, “Did I miss something?” Susan explained the twins of a tear of joy thing to the gaping Cassie. Cassie looked at the twins, and then at her mother and inquired, “So do you think their feeling is something to be worried about?”

 

 

“Oh it most definitely is!” Eva screeched at her Seeing Cloud. What kind of villain would she be if she had been so arrogant as to not have a backup plan! “If I can’t have the realms, no one can!” Evangeline screamed as she ran to get the book she needed. “Death: The Realm.” she read the title.

 

Book I see,

The one I’m going to read,

Since I admit I can be lazy,

Open up to the exact page I need!

 

The book flipped open to a page titled ‘Anger Management: Admitting You Have A Problem Is The First Step’. “Very funny!” she snorted, burning the book a bit. In pain, the book flipped to the right page. It was completely blank. “Unlock the page!” she demanded. With her command, words appeared. The title of the page was ‘The Scarrcedenhogg: Destroyer of The Realms’. Evangeline chuckled as she skimmed through the writing. “A ginormous beast imprisoned in a faraway realm called Death.” Evangeline sighed, “And they think I’m bad! Once unleashed, this thing’ll rip apart every single realm in existence, causing the end of reality itself.” Evangeline knew that she was making her own downfall, but in order to destroy happiness, sacrifices must be made.

Death was the realm everything goes to when it dies. By freeing the Scarrcedenhogg, Eva would be opening the gates that kept all of the dead in, henceforth, everyone would come back to life, and no one will die. They will all suffer in a vast nothing! All of the suffering will surely be enough to make Evangeline happy while she too floated in the nothing. That is, if reality itself doesn’t crumble due to the nonsense of living things, not being able to die, floating in nothing. It made Evangeline’s head hurt just thinking about it. Or was that the pasta jammed in her ears?

Nevertheless, Evangeline was going to do it.

 

 

After the family reunion at the Smiths’, Cassie went directly to Charlie’s house. “Hi!” Cassie called, “Did ya miss me!” Charlie nodded gleefully. “I missed you ALOT!” he blurted, wearing a huge grin, “I want to get you something.”

Did he just ask if he could get her something? Cassie laughed. “Yeah!” Cassie answered, “Only if it’s a golden retriever puppy, and a Siberian kitten.”

 

Did Charlie miss something? “That was very specific,” Charlie joked, “but are you sure?”

 

Cassie thought about it. “I had this dream,” she explained, “That you got me a puppy and kitten just like what I just asked for, a boy named Bagel, and a girl named Bella. That dream made me decide that evil wasn’t for me, and I chose good, right then and there.”

 

Charlie beamed. He was in her dream! And she became good again because of it! “A puppy and kitten it is!” he agreed joyfully, “Let’s go now!”

 

Cassie grabbed Charlie’s hand and dragged him out the door and down the street. They were going to be pet parents! She couldn’t wait. They went to the closest pet store to Charlie’s house. It was called ‘Queen’s Pets’.

 

Queen was a nice old lady, who sometimes got ripped off by rude customers. Her motto was ‘Everyone leaves with a smile’. Queen always wore a black robe and a tiara that matched her name. She was strange, but the people liked her.

Cassie and Charlie burst through the door and went straight to the dogs. Cassie frantically looked around until there he was, her little Bagel. As Cassie picked up her future dog, Charlie visited the kittens.

 

“Which one?” he wondered aloud. He searched through the pile and almost gave up. Just then, the second prettiest green eyes that Charlie had ever seen looked up at him. “Aww!” he sighed reaching for the kitten, “Will this be Bella?”

 

Cassie rushed over and immediately said yes. “It’s eyes-” Charlie stuttered. Cassie just smiled. She knew him so well. The duo took their selections to the counter.

 

“That’ll be two dollars!” Queen chirped. “Really?” Cassie gasped. “But of course!” Queen reassured, “You deserve the animal of your dreams to be cheap!” Cassie got a chill and Charlie paid the weirdo. They had also got some little supplies as well.

 

Evangeline was grabbing at books here and there, looking for the spell that opens anything. She finally ripped the book off the shelf. After opening to the correct page, Evangeline began.

 

Something I want is behind closed doors,

So by the forces that are,

Without any roars,

The doors shall open by the light of the first star!

 

I, Evangeline the great,

Now continue to test fate!

Open, open, as you may,

Just be opened before the light of tomorrow’s day!

 

Last but not least,

The Scarrcedenhogg creature,

Let the beast feast!

And destroy every feature!

 

Open the gate!

For the end is here!

Love shall not conquer hate!

And now that the monster is free! You all shall fear!

 

 

At the words of the witch, her power shot straight through the tower ceiling and rocketed up, up, up, and smashed through reality and traveled past thousands of realms, blasting through until finally reaching the furthest realm of all. Death.

The beam of magic slammed into the gate that kept Death intact, and the locks all burst open and fell to the ground. The gate lurched, and squealed, and with one swift movement, flew completely open.

 

“Death’s Gates are open!” a voice screamed, sending an uncountable number of beings back into the living existence, and landing in their home realms. A roar, louder than anyone could imagine echoed through reality, and into every realm there is.

 

 

“What was that!” Cassie screamed, after hearing the monster.

 

 

Evangeline had used all the energy in her body to perform the spell. Having collapsed to the ground, she uttered, “The Scarrcedenhogg is free, the end is here!” With her final words, Evangeline was officially dead. Until she came back to life instantly, still in pain, but alive.

 

 

“No!” King Albert screamed, “She didn’t!” “What was that?” Will asked impatiently. King Albert looked directly at Will and said “That, my son, was the beginning of the end.”

 


Dark's Descent

Ever found out you were adopted? Imagine finding out that your birthmother is an evil sorceress from another realm! That is exactly what happened to Cassandra Smith, also known as Cassie, when she was 16. Before you get to that, you first read the events leading up to her true adventure in Part One. Then the two realms collide in an epic battle between good and evil, love and hate, not only outside, but also inside Cassie's head. Follow in her mother's footsteps to take over the realms, or fight against her to stay with her friends and loved ones here on Earth?

  • Author: Basil E. Bacorn
  • Published: 2017-05-31 18:20:21
  • Words: 61756
Dark's Descent Dark's Descent