Lock and Key

by Jacelyn Tsang

“1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 …” 

I quietly ran across the grass of the park towards an old house, which I had chosen as a hiding spot for the game of hide’n seek. I was the hider and my friend, Kylie, was the seeker. I tried to open the door of the old house, but it was locked.

“37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43 …”

I stopped for a moment and thought about how I could get through the door and into the old house. I looked at the sky and saw people flying with their golden wings.

“62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76…”

 I looked at Kylie and made sure she wasn’t peeking. Kylie had said it would be too hard if we used our wings or our powers. But maybe for this round I could use my wings.

I flapped my wings and flew higher and higher towards an open window on the second floor. I landed with a thump on the ground. 

“92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100!”

Quick! I ducked down and my hands touched the cold floor. Suddenly, an envelope came fluttering down and landed on my hand. I looked at it. My mind debated on whether or not I should open this mysterious envelope, but curiosity won.

I opened the envelope, and an orb and a piece of paper slipped out. I quickly picked up the orb and examined it. It was locked in a golden case. Power thrummed from the orb, and it emitted an amazing glow and swirl of colours. I used my hand to cover the glow and stuffed the orb back in the envelope. Then I picked up the piece of paper and read it. It was in ancient runes. I translated it. It read:


Please help me. I am stuck in a place called Mystic Realm. Everyone is evil there. The prince of the island had me captured. I found a book that said one hundred years ago everyone was good, but one day an evil prince came and made everyone wicked. I believe that the prince who captured me was the one who made everyone evil. To get to me, follow the arrows on the ground and then you will find a door. Open the door and step inside, you will be in Mystic Realm. Take the orb with you, for that is the key to make everyone good again. Place it on the old stand outside the prince’s castle. I am trapped in the prince’s castle on the tallest tower.

From Max, your friend.

I read the note over and over again. Then suddenly there was something rapping on the window, tap, tap, tap. I flinched and looked up. There, towering over me, was a white blurry monster with wings, wearing a floppy sun hat. In my mind, I shrieked, and I grabbed the note, the orb and the envelope and ran as fast as I could towards the closest arrow and followed them. The arrows were all scattered across the floor. My heart beat faster than a racing car when I finally reached the door, and I did not hesitate to open it. 

I stepped inside and the door swung closed behind me. I heard the voice of the fuzzy monster saying, “Wait!” but I did not open the door for the monster. I turned and looked at my surroundings. It was horrible!

There were stubby old trees all dead and blacked, the grass was as brown as the brownest trees ever, and the sky was pitch black with only the moon lighting up the place, and far away in the distance was a black stone castle with three tall towers— but one of the towers was the tallest. I put the envelope and note in my pocket but held onto the orb in its golden case and again the orb lit up, emitting the same glow as before. I decided to put the orb in my pocket.

As I walked on the blackened pavement, insects crawled around, also all black, and the owls hooted loudly. I passed black houses and occasionally I could hear the people in the house cackling with laughter of evilness. I could hear the flapping of wings behind me but when I turned, nothing was behind me. Strange. Then suddenly, with a leap and a flap, a large black crow with a golden beak and golden claws flapped in front of me! I recoiled in shock.

The golden black crow advanced towards me and grabbed my neck. 

“Well, well, well, who do I have here?” snickered the crow.

As he said that, hundreds of crows flew behind him and whispered loudly saying, “Who is this person?” “A new person to catch!” “Look at those gold wings. What kind of person is this?” and other rude remarks. 

“Better put this catch in the dungeon. Looks like a goody person and she’s not wearing black,” announced the crow happily.

He stuffed a gag in my mouth and drugged me by telling one of his crow minions holding a towel to cover my nose with the towel. And as he did that, my mind filled with nothingness, and I plunged into a deep dark sleep.

Someone was shaking me and saying, “Wake up, wake up.”

I opened my eyes and saw Max in front of me.

“Where is the orb, Ruby?” he asked.

“In pocket,” I muttered.

I reached into my pocket, only to pull out the envelope and note. I snapped into my senses.

“It was in my pocket!” I yelped, surprised.

Max looked out the small cell window and I looked out too.

“Crowbar’s got it,” said Max. “But that’s okay because I found a way out! The prison crow forgot to lock the door and we could fly out.” 

We were flying towards Crowbar’s magic room. Crowbar had left the room and gone to bed. Max told me that Crowbar could take the form of a prince. Anyway, we entered crowbar’s magic room and looked around for the orb, but it wasn’t anywhere to be seen. I sadly trudged towards the window and slipped on a rug. The rug moved and underneath was a trapdoor. 

Max rushed over and opened the trapdoor and there was a seven-lock safe. Max pulled out the safe and underneath the safe was another trapdoor. I pulled that one open and there beheld seven keys, each labelled number one to seven. 

Max picked up the keys and stuck them in the lock. Whilst doing that he said: “This is too easy.”

Instantaneously, the safe started screeching, 

“Your Majesty, there are intruders, intruders, intruders! Ahhhhhhhhhghghghghghghhggh! Help! They are stuffing my mouth with your royal ruggggggggagggagggg! Help helppppppp! They want your orb!”

“Stop being pathetic, Goldy,” said a voice.

I looked up. The door swung open, and a dark clothed person stepped inside. “Uggghhhhh, you people again. Well, you escaped, and I spotted you, so you must fight me.”

“Sure” replied Max.

“But if we win, we get the orb, and if you win, you get the orb but you must let us free. Deal?” said Max.

“Nah, not let you free. I am going to let you stay here but not go back to your world,” said Crowbar.

“Deal,” said Max.

Max flew out of the window to a good battling place while Crowbar snatched the orb out of the whimpering, rug-covered safe. He looked at me still standing there, shocked by what had happened. I did not want to fight. 

“Gooooooo,” hissed Crowbar.

I quickly flew out the window and joined Max down in the castle courtyard. Closely following me was Crowbar in his crow form. He didn’t look very happy.

The fight started when Crowbar sent feathers out of his mouth towards us. I quickly dodged out of the way while Max threw a fireball at the crow. I already knew Max had the powers pyrokinesis and telepathy, and he is an empath, which means he has the ability to read the feelings of others. While I only had telepathy. Anyway, the battle raged on, and I just stood and watched until Max yelled, “Use your power, Ruby. Use it to tell me his next attack. I can’t use telepathy right now. I am concentrating on my fires.”

I used my power and reached out to Crowbar’s mind. He was thinking, I am going to do the most powerful attack.

I transmitted that to Max’s mind and Max did his most powerful attack right at Crowbar’s neck. Crowbar screeched and dropped the orb. I quickly flew up and grabbed the orb. I gave the orb to Max and Max flew towards the front of the castle. He put the orb in the old stand and then what happened next was unexplainable. The orb burst into flames and danced around everywhere. The glow of the orb spread all around and reached further and further away in all directions. 

The island was saved. 

We walked slowly back to the door, and I opened it and we stepped inside. We were definitely going to visit again.

At home, I found out the fuzzy monster was not a monster at all, it was just Kylie. When she asked what happened, I replied with a secretive smile, “I will tell you later.”

Me, Max and Kylie stepped through the door, ready to explore the island more and show Kylie around …