“Outta the way, freak!” called out the boisterous, cruel voice of Mallory Drachen.
The blond girl’s cold hands closed around Evan Jameson’s shoulders, and shoved him to the ground, before she continued to run away. He winced in pain, and bit down a yelp. Showing weakness would cause the vulture-like students around him to circle around and destroy Evan. Apparently, being the child of two terrorists, who died ten years ago, counted as a crime in the eyes of children.
All children except one.
Jean Obsidian leaned down towards the ground to help her best friend up. Nervousness showed in her dark eyes, but she still did not hesitate to help Evan to his feet.
She tilted her head to the side and blinked a few times instead of speaking, but Evan understood the message she was trying to convey.
“I’m okay,” sighed Evan gratefully as he started to walk with his only friend. “Thanks, Jean. I don’t know what I’d do without you.”
Once again, Jean did not utter a single word. However, she smiled slightly, and Evan grinned back.
After walking for what seemed like forever, due to the stares and whispers that followed the pair, Evan and Jean finally turned to a small, dark, vacant hallway, and left the people who were messing around with their magic staffs behind. At the very back of the empty hallway, there was a single, moth-eaten tapestry, which covered a secret passageway to the library. Evan and Jean often spent time in the passage, which was surprisingly well lit and comfortable.
Since the two were alone, Jean at last allowed herself to speak. “I apologize for the uncomfortable circumstances you find yourself in due to the judgement of juvenile peers such as Drachen,” she stated sincerely.
“Um, thanks, Jean,” replied Evan softly. As always, he was confused and surprised by Jean’s advanced vocabulary. She had never spoken to anyone at the school other than him, not even the teachers. To hear her say such sophisticated sentences would always be an odd experience.
Jean smiled, and added, “It’s not as if your parents faked their death, and are out there attempting to recruit you. Honestly, the prospect is ridiculous!”
Evan was about to utter a grateful reply, when he heard footsteps approaching.
“Come on, let’s get out of here,” murmured Evan. From the alert expression on his friend’s face, he knew she knew why they needed to leave.
Neither of them were sure they were allowed to be in the passage, nor did either of them want anyone to discover their secret hideout. After all, if they were exposed, they would never be able to experience the tranquil peace of their passage.
So the two ran, as quietly as they could, towards the end of the passage, where they could pretend to be studying in the library. However, it was difficult to run on the uneven carpet, and Jean tripped. She spun to the ground, and landed on her stomach with a loud slap. Behind them, the footsteps sped up, likely because the people had heard the noise. There was no escape!
“Well, Rosie, I think we have company,” stated a distinctly male voice mockingly.
Evan turned his head away from Jean, who he was helping up, to stare into the hazel eyes of a man with long brown hair, and distinct chiseled features, almost like Evan’s own. Next to him was a woman, likely Rosie, who peered at the two children curiously through her vivid green eyes, which were comparable to Evan’s own green eyes. The woman was blond, and had rosy cheeks from her run down the passage.
After anxiously staring at the adults for several seconds, Evan’s mind started to piece things together. Both of the adults shared features with him, and the man called the woman Rosie. The name of Evan’s mom had been Rose. Suddenly, Evan remembered what Jean had said only a few minutes ago. It’s not as if your parents faked their death, and are out there attempting to recruit you. What if they actually were?
The two adults continued to peer at Evan in confusion, until the woman finally gasped, “Evan?”
That was all Evan needed for his theory to be proven. He was hasty to spin around, help grab Jean by the hand, and push his best friend behind him. Then, he stood in front of Jean, to protect her. No one would hurt the innocent, kind brunette on his watch!
Once Jean was securely behind him, Evan yelled, “Appear!”
The command, which Evan had chosen on the first day of school, caused a large staff to appear before him. He could summon the weapon at any time, and channel his magic through the large branch.
“What are you doing?” demanded the man, who Evan now knew was Töpfer Jameson. “You know who we are, don’t you? We’re your parents! You don’t want to fight us.”
Instead of responding, Evan rearranged his staff in his hand. Though he had only been in school for a few months, the rough wood felt comfortably familiar. He pointed the end of the staff, which had several golden, silver, white and red leaves, at his father. Töpfer seemed to be the most angry, and ruthless of the two adults.
Evan’s theory about Töpfer being easily infuriated was proved when the man summoned his own staff by yelling, “Aid me!”
I really wish I thought this through, Evan mentally chided himself. How am I going to fight two talented adult wizards? My only hope is that they won’t try to hurt me, because I’m their son.
After seeing that the two boys had drawn their staff, Rose sighed her chosen phrase, “Reveal.”
Then, Jean whispered her own command so quietly that not even Evan could hear her.
“Stop, Evan, we are not here to fight,” ordered Rose icily, before taking on a softer tone. “We’re just here to retrieve something from the library. Then, we’ll leave. You can come with us, if you want.”
The blond woman’s tone sent a shiver down Evan’s spine. She made her offer sound so tempting, so sweet, and so… manipulative. As much as Evan wanted to escape the cruelty of his peers, and the apathy of living in an orphanage, he could not accept the offers of a terrorist. No matter what, Evan had to be pure and strong, to prove the judgements of others wrong.
Evan’s face must have looked conflicted, because his parents started to smirk wickedly, and Jean tugged on the sleeve of his gray sweater, to remind him of his parent’s maliciousness.
With a fierce, fiery determination, Evan hissed, “No. You‘re awful people, both of you! So what if you’re my parents? You’re not really family. You didn’t care about me enough to stop your organization, or to take me with you when you faked your deaths! So why would I think you care about me now?!”
Both adults seemed shocked by Evan’s outburst. Apparently, they thought he was weak-willed, with little morals. However, the color of the leaves on Evan’s staff should have been enough to prove them wrong. Gold stood for power, silver for determination, white for purity, and red for courage.
As the thoughts filled his mind, Evan was triumphant at first, but he then noticed both of his opponents had gold leaves as well, more than he did. In addition, they also both had red leaves, which stood for anger as well as courage. Unsurprisingly, Töpfer had significantly more red leaves than Rose. Closer observation led Evan to see silver leaves, as well as black ones, which showed corruption due to dark magic. Finally, Rose had a large, blue leaf in the center of her staff, almost entirely concealed by the other leaves, which broadcasted intelligence.
With his enemy’s traits in mind, Evan once again stared at his parent’s faces. While Töpfer still looked furious, Rose’s face was covered by a gloating smile. She had followed Evan’s gaze, and it seemed that him looking at the staffs was exactly what the woman wanted to happen.
The unearthly smile did not disappear from Rose’s face when she whispered, “Oh, my sweet boy, my beloved child. You mustn't think we don’t care for you! In fact, it’s quite the opposite. We need our organization to make the world a better place. However, the people around us all were against the changes we needed to make. We had to start to rebel, but all those who were not on our side considered us evil. If we didn’t fake our deaths, we would be targeted, and even worse, so would you.”
Evan raised an eyebrow, and opened his mouth to protest, but was interrupted by Jean pulling on his sleeve. The girl stood on her tiptoes to speak into Evan’s large ear, and murmured, “Pretend to agree, Evan. Request me being allowed to follow as well. Then, once your parents let their guard down, we will attack them from behind. You fight your father, I will take on your mother.” The girl paused for a second, before she added, “And for goodness sake, Evan, act natural! Submit progressively, or your parents will suspect something.”
After Evan nodded minisculely, Jean stood normally once again, and looked into Rose’s eyes with a curious, yet suspicious expression. She was a brilliant actress, but everything depended on Evan’s skills. Especially now that Rose and Töpfer appeared alert, due to Jean’s whispering.
“Fine, I’ll hear them out,” stage-whispered Evan, in order to subdue his parent’s suspicion.
Jean nodded. She was satisfied with his acting, and if Jean was satisfied, Evan must have done a good job.
“You have a smart little friend there,” commented Rose with a smirk that made Evan want to punch her. “What is it you need to hear, son?”
Evan’s throat started to feel extremely dry, and sweat dripped down his forehead. Still, he managed to stutter, “I-I heard that you k-killed people. Why would you do th-that if you were trying to be g-good?”
Did that seem convincing enough? Hopefully Evan’s stutter helped him, rather than hinder him. If he was unable to follow through with Jean’s plan, then the two children would undoubtedly end up in a fatal situation.
“They deserved it,” hissed Töpfer, which earned him a slap from Rose.
“What my husband means to say is that we had no choice,” covered up the green-eyed woman in a deliberately mournful voice. “People were fighting us, and if we did not disable them, they would have killed us.”
Evan barely managed to hold back a scoff. It was obvious that his mother would lie and twist the truth in order to achieve her goals, yet the lie she made up was impossible to believe. It was only thanks to Jean elbowing him that Evan remembered that he needed to look like he thought his mother was being honest.
Since Rose was no longer speaking, Evan took a deep breath before he replied, “I’m not really sure I believe you. After all, I only just met you, and everyone told me that you committed horrible crimes.”
At this statement, Töpfer scoffed, and disappointment flashed in Rose’s eyes.
“Do you want to believe us?” asked Rose innocently.
Evan nodded slowly. He was not being dishonest; he really wanted to believe that his parents were good. Then, he could leave his school, leave his orphanage, and live a happy life with parents who doted on him. Yet, the life was fantastical, and Evan had to accept that it was a dream that would never come true. Working with his terrorist parents would not help him in life.
“Then, allow your father and I to give you the life you want. Come, follow me, and bring your friend, too.”
The children followed the adults, and all four lowered their weapons. They had barely walked a minute when Jean nodded, then raised her staff, with it’s red, white, pink and blue leaves.
Evan was quick to follow, then both simultaneously cast a series of spells. Neither of them could manage strong magic, as they were only in first year, but a few of the jinxes hit their target. The spells were enough to knock Rose and Töpfer over.
Once the adults were down, the children sprinted down the passage as fast as their feet would carry them. Evan screamed, and Jean pounded on the wall as she ran. Hopefully someone would hear their plea, and rescue them from Evan’s parents, who had gotten up, and were now on their heels.
The running was endless; Evan kept putting one foot in front of the other, though he felt he would collapse with every step. Falling was inevitable, but Evan needed to avoid it as long as possible.
It was Jean who caved first, when they were only seven yards from the door. She stumbled forwards and, though she regained her balance, Evan crashed into her. The two of them toppled over and slammed into the ground, and a few spells, shot by Rose, zipped over their heads.
Then, more spells were fired, straight at Evan and Jean. Luckily, Jean protected them with a magical shield. To Evan’s shock, she yelled the incantation, “Tuere!”
A pale purple sheen surrounded the caster and her friend. The incoming spells hit the enchanted wall, and sizzled out of existence. However, with every new spell the furious Töpfer and Rose casted, the shield trembled and faded. Jean could not protect them for long!
So, Evan did something he had only ever heard about. He pointed his own staff at Jean’s shield, and bellowed, “TUERE!”
A jet of golden light hit the shield, then merged with it, to form a powerful, rose-gold dome around Evan and Jean. He had combined their power to make one giant force! It took immense strength to maintain, but when Evan turned his sweat-covered face towards Jean, who had fallen to the ground, he knew he had made the right decision.
“HOW DARE YOU?” screeched Töpfer, who was casting a series of dark spells.
“Silence, Töp, you’ll lead them right to us!” hissed Rose in response to her husband’s outburst.
Suddenly, the tapestry which concealed the passage was thrown open, and proved Rose right. Standing there was the headmaster of the school, Professor Menschen. The man raised his staff, which was covered in leaves of gold, silver, blue and red. Then, he whispered a spell, and ropes flew out of his wand. The ropes darted through the air, and wrapped themselves around the wrists and ankles of Töpfer and Rose.
Finally, the headmaster turned to his students, and asked them, “Are you both alright?”
“Yes,” murmured Evan while Jean nodded.
“You both were very brave and very wise today,” encouraged Professor Menschen. “Though I am sorry you had to go through this whole ordeal, I will be sure you are given the congratulations you deserve.”
Perhaps congratulations were not what Evan wanted, but he still had everything he needed. He was alive, and so was Jean, his best friend. Maybe his parents were evil, and maybe few people liked him (though the story of his adventure could change that). However, he had his best friend with him. That was all that mattered.
If Praise was Given in Cups
Praise is handed to me in cups of varying sizes and shapes. I clutch the gift to my chest and say thank you in every way I can, before diving into the praise. What can I do but guzzle down the wonderous compliments until not a drop comes out? Then I reach into the cup to scrape at what little praise is left. I do not stop until I have devoured all of my gift, and once I finish, I entertain the wishes of others until I am handed another cup.
Her promises have never meant anything. She broke half of the ones she made.
Once, she promised me that she would never cheat at board games. Another time, she promised she would never fall in love. She also promised we would be friends forever.
Well, I never really minded her breaking the last two promises. I have always loved her, and to see her love me back was the most jubilating feeling in the world.
No, the broken promise that hurt me the most was when she promised everything would be okay. She knew nothing would never be fine again. The screams and gunshots from outside of the storage room proved that. Still, she promised me, and she smiled. Her smile was full of more anguish than any I had ever seen, yet she did not cry.
Even when the bangs grew loader, and something scarlet started running down her face, her smile never wavered. Tears never flowed, at least not from her eyes. They still dripped endlessly down my face.
The only thing I could do was stroke her golden hair until her dark eyes went blank.
Silence never spoke,
not a single whisper.
That way she could never choke
and have her words misdeliver.
Jealous of Goodness
The sweetest sugar drips off every beautiful word. They are sincere, and would never think not to be. How could someone be so effortlessly kind?
I envy them, though I know I should not. Bitter jealousy won’t help me to be kinder. It corrupts the soul like mold spreads from berry to berry.
So, I try hard to be sweeter, kinder, better. Yet, the conscience effort makes it seem ingenue.
How can I be good if my goodness is as fragile, as fake as a breath of wind, too soft to be noticed? How can I be good if it takes me years to find words with the same sugary sweetness? How can I be good if no one can see my soul through this wishful facade?
“No one expects you to be perfect.”
The lies ring in my ears.
How much of this is reality?
How much of it is fears?
They all do expect the best from me.
I see it in their eyes.
All their voices call it out to me;
Compliments, needy cries.
They’re surprised when I make a mistake.
If I fail, they’re all “screwed!”
“Wait, you got this wrong?” Okay, I did!
You’re ruining my mood.
I do know it’s not intentional,
the pressure I can feel.
For it’s me who makes me feel the worst.
My flaws I must conceal.
Oh, it’s not their fault, but yet it is.
My fault is just worth more.
Yes, that sentence is true to my mind;
yet I’m doing better than before,
yet my confidence may win this war,
yet peace I may soon find.
The older I get, the more that I realize age doesn't define a person. Someone who is ten could be smarter and more mature than someone who is fourteen. However, we must judge by age, since there is no simple way to gauge our maturity.
Sometimes, I reveal that I’m an universe traveler. It might be an accident (never drop your act when surrounded by Sci-Fi lovers), but sometimes I just crack and tell people.
Most of the time, people are excited. I would expect fear, confusion, or disbelief, which I do get my fair share of. Yet, there are so many people who are excited at the prospect.
“That’s so cool!” they all ramble. “What’s it like?”
The truth is, being a universe traveler is horrible. I do not have the power to travel between dimensions at will. Instead, I’m transported to a new world every time I die.
Oftentimes, I travel to worlds I have read about or seen on Netflix. It is ironic that a couple centuries ago (Has it really been that long? It feels like yesterday, but yesterday it felt like a milenia.) I would have leapt at the chance of meeting these characters.
Not in this way. I get to know people, I befriend them, then I have one of my poorly thought moments of heroism, and it all comes crashing down. I die, painfully, most of the time, then find myself somewhere else. I can never see any of my friends or families ever again. At least, not until I can find some form of science that can travel from universes, but that would likely take me several more centuries.
When I explain this, I am once again meant with pity. I love to know everyone cares, truly, but what does pity do? ‘I’m sorry’ doesn’t fix anything! A hug is just another reason I’ll miss them when I die, again!
At times, I feel too much. Emotions come pouring from every direction, and I feel like my heart is bursting into flames and leaping out of my chest. Other times, I am void, empty, numb. What is the point of getting emotionally attached to someone I will lose? However, I realize that this is not numb at all. This is just me hiding away.
“Are all your smiles fake?” asks one girl one day. “You’ve been so strong through everything, you’re the only reason I’m okay, and then you’re so… broken.”
Yeah, I am broken, but my smiles are not fake. I assure her that everything is fine, but she does not believe me. Apparently, the girl can spot a liar. (A good liar, if all my years as a double agent have anything to say about it.)
Not everything is fine, but I would not go so far as to say everything is not fine. I smile, real and true (at times). My laugh is loud and genuine (often). The grief, the agony and the anger are just as real, but I have found myself a balance to live in. One thing you learn when you live for several centuries is that you can not give up your happiness to stop the negative emotions. (Didn’t someone say that once? A girl sang about it in a show, right? Oh, yeah, I spent a life there, didn’t I?)
Well, I’m most certainly not going to give up. I’m like this for a reason, right? (I have to be. I really have to be.) My heroic stunts have helped so many people. That must be why I can do this. I have to help people. I am good at that, apparently (even though I am always terrified that I will make the problem worse). So, I will help people. Maybe, once I help enough people, I can see everyone again!
No, I can not get my hopes up! Still, life without hopes and dreams is not worth living. How could I have lived for over two hundred years (I forgot the exact number) and still not know how to think or act?
Oh well. I will just keep helping others, and maybe (Am I being naive or calloused? I’m not sure.) someone will help me back.
Maybe (not). I can still dream, after all (I think).
About the Author (Only, the Majority of the Information is on the Author’s Sense of Humor, Since this is a Humorous Piece)
Evelyn Dawn is (probably) a human being who lives on the face of the planet. As you could have assumed from the fact you’re reading a book she wrote, Evelyn loves writing. She also enjoys reading and making bad animatics. This is literally everything Evelyn can say about herself, since anything anyone writes about their own personality would likely be inaccurate. Oh, did you not know that in many recent About the Author sections the author writes about themselves in the third person? That’s a little odd.