Michael and His Journey to Earth Part II

Josiah R.

So now Michael lay, still suspended in the middle of his cone, which he speculated was about 50 feet underground. He looked behind him. A tunnel marked where the cone had burrowed into the rocky sand. Impact hadn’t been as bad as he had feared. He was constantly floating in the middle of the cone about three feet away from any of the walls, so he only felt a jolt as the cone punctured the ground.
Near the end of the tunnel, a single shaft of light filtered through the hole in the ground. He started to worry that he would be stuck like this forever when a loud pop came from above his head and he was shot backward straight out the large end of the cone. He slammed into the dirt and slumped into a heap on the ground. He was lying flat on his back in a puddle of liquid. The first thing he noticed was the strong odor of mold and burnt rubber. He craned his neck to look around in the dim light. In front of him was the cone, dripping with the same bluish liquid that coated all the nearby walls. Lying next to him was the top of the cone. The contents of the cone must have been under so much pressure that it blew off the top of the cone, sending him flying out in the process. The fact that he was covered from head to toe with the strange liquid seemed to support this idea.

             Finally, he was freed of his prison cell. He tried to stand up. That was a mistake. Every muscle in his body was sore. From what, Michael had no idea. His legs felt like rubber. They were so weak he had to lie back down. He felt sick and dizzy. After being in null gravity for such a long time, his body felt like it was slowly caving in on itself. Shakily, he stood up again and leaned against the wall. He was weak, tired, and something else. A gnawing urge that started in his gut and spread out through his body. His body longed for something. Food. Michael was starving. He was unbearably thirsty too. He recalled that from the time he awoke in the Blackness to until he broke out of the cone, food and water had not once crossed his mind.

            The liquid. It was dripping off of his skin and was slowly soaking into the ground. Without thinking, he dove for a puddle of the stuff and began drinking it. Michael immediately spat it out. It was disgusting and had a bitter, toxic, burning taste.

            “Water,” he croaked. “I need water. And food.” With that, he turned and started down the tunnel towards the shaft of light.

            Between trying to remember how to walk, and choking on all the dust and smoke, it took Michael about thirty minutes of wheezing and stumbling to make it to the end of the tunnel. When he got there, he could hardly believe what he was seeing. Rather than finding a clean circular hole where the cone had hit, he found himself inside a crater the size of a football field. When he climbed to the edge, the sight was no more welcoming. For miles in every direction, parched and cracked ground dotted with jagged rocks. The single orb of light he had seen before seemed far away again, but he still couldn’t look at it for more than a few seconds. As he walked, the ground seemed to radiate heat. His feat were burnt on the bottom, and his breath was shallow and raspy. He felt dizzy again, but he just kept walking along packed ground. Then he noticed small holes in the ground in front of him. As he aproached, he noticed there were hundreds of them, straight in a line. Michael recognized what they were. Footprints.

He ran over and studied them carefully, a rare smile on his face. Bare feet, no bigger than his. The smile turned to disbelief, then rage.

“No!” he shouted. Slowly, he placed his foot into one of the prints. It matched perfectly. He had been walking in circles.

“No!” he shouted again. “No! No! No!,” he kept screaming. He couldn’t take any more. He scooped up a pile of sand and hurled it at a boulder. Void of all energy, he fell into the sand and lay there. He was already asleep when a pair of rough hands lifted him up and carried away.

Unicorns

How many years has it been since you thought about a Unicorn? How long since you imagined its sweet neigh caressing your dreams? Or how long it’s been since you felt the magic of its horn bring you happiness without ever touching you? How long has it really been since Unicorns were in your life? If your answer is: I think about them every day; they are so majestic and beautiful that one could not go a day without imagining such a pure creature. This would be an acceptable answer, if I didn’t know any better. No one knows what a real Unicorn is any more.  But I will tell you what a Unicorn really is. A Unicorn is a horse-like creature with magical properties. It is said to have the body and head of the majestic and kind horse, the powerful yet graceful legs of a stag, the tail of the proud and courageous lion and one long pointed horn in the center of the it’s head. This is the exact and precise definition of a Unicorn. The Unicorn also is said to be magical. They deliver most of their magic through the horn but it exists all through the animal. It exists in its graceful legs, its strong tail, and its mighty, beautiful body and head.

When I say no one knows what a real Unicorn is, I mean it. The general population’s interpretation of a Unicorn is of a strange, mutilated creature. I can’t be sure what it is, but it certainly isn’t a Unicorn. Many Jefferson students envision Unicorns as rainbow-farting, cupcake vomiting creatures. I don’t even want to call them Unicorns because they simply aren’t.  I am not sure what strange ideas made these twisted children think that that could possibly be anything remotely close to a Unicorn. It is absolutely disgusting. First, eww; second, what is it with middle-schoolers, and cupcakes and rainbows, and third, how did those awful, awful traits get pinned on sweet, beautiful Unicorns?

You may think that there could be nothing worse than to describe a Unicorn using vomit and methane, but not only have they made up a trait, but they have changed a Unicorn all together! A Ninjacorn: it is ridiculous and nothing like an actual Unicorn. The only acceptable change to a Unicorn’s actual being is if you mix up the graceful Pegasus with a Unicorn to make a Unicorn-Pegasus/Pegasus-Unicorn. But instead, they decide to mix a human with a Unicorn, in which case that wouldn’t be a Ninjacorn that would be a Centaur. I am confused at this “Ninjacorn” for many others reasons too. First off, why do young children have strange obsessions with ninjas: “oh that’s ninja”, “your so ninja”? I am clueless as to why they say that, instead of just saying “nice” or “that was smooth”, because it is quite obvious that none of the kids at Jefferson are trained in ancient Japanese martial arts, and paid for espionage and assassinations. It is pure nincompoopery. Second off, why do children have to mess up a beautiful creature like the Unicorn? They make it into a joke that really isn’t funny, and rather quite disturbing at that. Instead they should be making it more graceful by adding feathery wings to it.

There are a few other types of Unicorns that are acceptable. Zebra Unicorns are acceptable, as are Donkey Unicorns, and Mule Unicorns. The reason these and not the “Ninjacorn” are acceptable is because they are part of the horse family. They are all equines or related to equines in some way. In no way is a human, much less a Ninja, related to a Unicorn. There are also rules to having Zebra Unicorns and other equine Unicorns. You must keep the whole name of the original creature. No zebra-corns, or donkey-corns. You may only have Zebra Unicorns, and Donkey Unicorns. This is mainly because you don’t call a Unicorn a horse-corn you call it a Unicorn. That is exactly why you should keep the whole name of a Unicorn and a whole name of the equine creature.

Now that I have prepared a background to the Unicorn, and educated you on its beauty you will understand why it makes me so angry every time someone mentions one of the disgusting or ridiculous notions above. Also with this new knowledge of the Unicorn, you may better understand why they are truly magnificent creatures

The Dollhouse

By Erin B.

I wake up and I don’t know where I am, I don’t know when I am, but worst of all, I don’t know who I am. My head pounds with questions to which I have no answers and the white ceiling, at which I am staring, spins. A melody with words I can almost catch echoes through my mind. I try to sit up and instantly a sharp, shooting pain runs through my fingers, up my arm, and down my spine, piercing my heart. I collapse, unable to bear that pain again. While I lay there, I realize I am wearing a soft, white nightgown and my dark red hair stands out in a deep contrast. A thin gold chain runs around my neck. I am too tired and pained to see where it leads. Slowly, ever so slowly, the agony fades and my head clears.

I try to sit up again, this time with success. I can take in where I am now. I am in a featureless, colorless room. There are no windows and the only source of light comes from a single harsh orb in the middle of the ceiling. The door sits in a corner as if not to draw attention to itself and resting at its side is what looks like a light switch. There are no mirrors to be seen anywhere. I am sitting on a bed, just as nondescript as the rest of my small confines. There are only three things that stand out to me: there is a dollhouse in the corner, a small mouse hole in the wall, and there is no doorknob.

A pinch on my arm distracts me for a moment. I find it bandaged, as if someone was drawing blood. I pull it off, feeling it rip the skin, leaving an angry red mark. A dot of blood still lingers. Suddenly, I hear a noise in the corner by the door. I jump and look over. I see nothing. I hear it again, it sounds like a voice lost in static.

I listen carefully this time, and can make out a few words. It sounds like “she’s asleep.” Static.” We got her just in time.” More static. “Almost ready,” and then the noise fades into nothing. While I strain my ears to hear it again, a few lyrics of the song I was thinking about earlier flow through my brain.

Remember the Time, Remember the Flight

Sing to the Stars and Remember the Light

Do not Weep for those now Lost

Remember your Wings, but Remember the Cost

I cover my eyes feeling overwhelmed. What did the voice mean when it said all those strange things? Where was the voice coming from? Why am I here? Who am I?

I look up and glance around the room. My gaze lands on the dollhouse. It, like the rest of the room, is colorless, as if in an icy, pale world. I climb out of the bed and my feet touch the cold, hard floor.

The dollhouse is tall, rising to about my waist. From what I can tell there are five stories and an attic. The only color on it is the latch on the side, which is gold. It is locked. I remember the chain around my neck, I pull it out from under my nightgown and on the end is a key. I kneel down and gently insert the key into the small keyhole. The lock clicks and the dollhouse swings open.

There are little rooms with little furniture and little people, mostly children, doing tiny everyday things. A boy with brown hair plays a miniature piano. A girl in a blue dress brushes her ebony hair by a mirror. In that tiny mirror I can see a bright green eye staring back at me. Another child, a boy with blond hair and dark brown eyes, sits painting a minuscule picture.

The last child sits at a desk and stares thoughtfully at the wall. She has long dark red hair and bright green eyes. Horror rushes through me, drowning me in its iron claw; that doll is me.

I can’t feel scared now. I need to focus. That’s when I notice a scrap of paper too big for the dolls. It sits on the floor of the attic. It reads-

Moira,

Don’t worry. We are going to find you soon. Just sit tight and be patient. Everything will be all right.

L.O.

I have just finished reading it when the door opens.

Life Before Death

“I wonder if it hurts to die?” I asked myself as the doctor kept talking to me. What did he expect? I’m dying here. It’s a little question I am forced to consider. I have something called Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (CJD) it’s a rare brain disease, which includes the symptoms of dementia, memory loss, personality changes and hallucinations. This is then accompanied by physical problems such as speech impairment, jerky movements, balance and coordination dysfunction, and other symptoms. There are too many to remember. This disease supposedly gives me about six months to live from once I begin to show signs of the symptoms, which just isn’t very long.

When I knew something was seriously wrong it had already been a month from when I started to forget things. It had gotten so severe that I had already forgotten my brother’s name. I knew it was not because of aging. I’m only twenty-three years old. I’m active, eat healthy, and I do not and will not ever smoke. There’s only so much one can fulfill in twenty-three years. I haven’t finished college, or left the east side of the United States. In all honesty I haven’t even been on a roller coaster, and I’ve always wanted to ride on one. What are you supposed to do when you know you’re about to die? I have only six months to live, minus two months considering time already gone by and that the symptoms will get worse and the doctor tells me I will be hospitalized towards the end.

“Laura, Laura” the Doctor interrupted me.

“Sorry. Um, so there’s nothing you could do to, fix it?” I said.

“No I’m so sorry. We have depression groups to help you deal with this. Is there anyone that can help you through this?”

“What? Oh yes there’s my brother but he’s currently in, in”

“It’s okay honey, take your time”

I hated this. Not the fact that I’m dying (yes of course I did hate that). What I mean is that I hated the doctor calling me honey like I’m some poor little girl who lost her favorite toy. I don’t need sweet names and sad looks to help me come to grips with what I’m dealing with. I don’t really need help. I’m not, depressed. I’m just in shock. I’ve come to a realization that I’ve got four months to live and I’m not going to ruin it with depression groups and moping around my house watching television and wasting my time with happy-ending movies and sitcoms.

In that moment, as I was telling my doctor about my brother’s world travels with his wife, I decided I am going to live every day to fullest. Yes, that might sound a bit cliché. But, I’m dying in less than six months and I’m going to live life to the fullest. So, I told the doctor goodbye, and assured him that I’d be back for my weekly checkups.

I left the doctor’s office and walked back to my house. Now I know for sure walking won’t kill me. I walked into the driveway of the house my parents left for me. I was thinking about my life the whole way. I was trying to remember all the significant moments (none since the loss of my parents). In that moment I said to myself: “I haven’t done one damn thing in my life and I have four months to change that.” I went inside and took out a piece of paper and pen. At the top of the page, I wrote out in bold and underlined: Life Before Death. Then, below that I wrote:

1. Travel to another country

2. Buy a pet

3.Redecorate my House (did that last year)

4. Repaint my house

5. Ride a roller coaster

Reading back my list, I frowned. What kind of list was this? Five, no, four things and they weren’t good. I’ve got four months and I’m supposed to travel to another country and repaint my house. I decided to take another walk to clear my mind. I entered a coffee shop, and the moment I walked in I wanted to sprint out. My thirty-year-old brother sat there looking the same as the last time I saw him. A normal sister wouldn’t want to run away from her own brother. But, when your brother tells you it was your fault your parents died and leaves to go travel the world, you don’t really have the best relationship. Frozen in place, I heard two words: “Hi Laura.”