Sarah, Peter, Susan, Anne, Jessie, Harry, and Jack were playing together. It was a big occasion. For all of their parents were going to Florida for a month.
Peter was 18 years old. Sarah was 17, Anne was 17, Susan was 15, Harry was 14, Jessie was 13, and young Jack was 10. Since everyone was old enough to baby-sit, they had to babysat for Jack. But they didn't mind because they liked Jack. They missed their parents though. They were happy to be with each other for a month.
It was a quiet and warm day. They all agreed to go to the park. Peter, Susan and Anne were watching Jack. Everyone else was playing with him. They were having a fun time. Then the sun began to sink. They decided to get home.
It seemed like a long walk home. Probably because they were so hot, sweaty, and tired. When they finally got home it was past dusk. They figured they would go to bed early. Everyone was more than happy to go to bed. What they did not know was that they were about to go on a very great adventure.
The next morning everyone awoke with a start. Everyone seemed to have awakened at the same time. They ran straight into Jack's room. They all quickly realized that something had happened. Jack was missing! They searched the house, went to the park, and called his friends.
But the only thing they found was a note. It read:
|Come and seek him if you must|
|The secret passage lies in the dust|
|For if you don't say goodbye to your friend|
|His life will surely come to an end.|
Everyone stared blankly at the note. What did it mean by "sacred passage"? Would Jack be killed? Was Jack dead? They didn't know. There was a long silence. Finally, Peter spoke up, "Well, where is the secret passage?"
"All this note says is that it lies in the dust," said Harry.
"Wait a minute!" said Jessie suddenly. "Why did we all wake up with a start this morning? What happened that woke us up together?" Everyone looked at Jessie with awe. "What if we heard a noise?" Jessie continued. Everyone looked at her and realized what she was talking about.
"You mean," said Peter, "that we heard the secret passage closing?"
"So that means," stammered Sarah, "that the entrance and exit are in his room." Jessie nodded.
It had been a long and exhausting day. It was getting late. They all agreed to look for the secret passage tomorrow.
They all awoke early. Peter woke first. He began searching the room for clues. After about 30 minutes everybody else joined him. Around noon Peter found something that made him suspicious. He found a piece of blue glass and a key. He examined the key closely and decided that he was on the right track. For written on the key in bold letters was: Find the entrance!
Sarah came over and took the key and glass from Peter. She began to pace the room. Suddenly she tripped and fell. The key and blue glass went flying out of her hands. The glass slid across the floor, hit the wall, and bounced back again. It was only about a foot from Susan's head when her eyes became wide. Peter walked over to her and looked where she was looking. He saw it too and ran to it. He was looking at the glass. It was resting right over a keyhole! Peter picked up the key and walked to the blue glass. He moved the glass, but saw only the wooden floor. They sat thinking for a minute, then did the only thing that made sense. Peter stuck the key through the boards of the bare floor. The floor disappeared to reveal a small trapdoor.
Peter opened the trapdoor to reveal a tunnel. The door slid this way and that. "Well, ladies first," said Peter. He looked at the girls. Every time he looked at one of the girls, she shook her head nervously. Finally Peter said, "If none of you will go, I will." He took a deep breath and pushed in his legs. "I'll call back if it's a safe landing. If it's not, I probably won't call back at all." Then he pushed himself into the tunnel.
He slid very fast. There were so many turns that his head hurt from hitting the sides of the tunnel-slide. He hit a bump after about 2 minutes. He called up the tunnel, "Hey guys, you can come down." Everyone came down one after the other. Peter had been too busy making sure everybody came down safely to realize where he was. Not until everybody was safely down did he have a chance to look around.
They were in a green forest with streams all around. Everyone got up and started walking. Then they walked right into a tiny old man! He took one look at them, bowed, waved his hand at them, snapped his fingers, and disappeared. Where he had waved his hand there was a box, a key, and a small bottle with "Sarah" on it, a sword and shield with "Peter" on it, a bow and a quiver of arrows for "Susan", a dagger for "Anne", another small bottle for "Harry", and a map for "Jessie".
They all rushed over to their presents. Sarah opened the bottle and sparkles flew into her head. The bottle fell from her hands and shattered on the ground. She stared unblinking for a long time and then shook her head.
Sarah said, "Let's see what's in the box." She opened it to reveal many small bottles, leaves, berries, and other items. "These will make good potions." Everyone looked at Sarah and realized that the bottles held magic powers to teach.
They all looked at Harry. He was staring nervously at his bottle. Harry took off the lid and, sure enough, sparkles flew out. They went into his head. After he regained his composure, he cleared his throat and said "Dowinto." He swished his hand down and there was a loud pop and smoke rose all around. When it cleared, there was a path before them.
They began to follow it. Suddenly there was a loud scream. The trees around them rustled. Then someone ran into them. He screamed, "Run!" They all looked up and saw a large flag. They didn't know which way to go. So they decided to go and see about the flag.
Everybody moved closer until the flag was about 100 feet from them. Finally they reached a clearing. In the clearing was a large army. They stared up at the flag again. They were close enough to read the words on it now. It read: "The Sacred Score". Nobody had any idea what that meant. Suddenly a giant who was leading the army turned their way. He began to walk toward them. They would have run but they were too frightened to move. He seemed to be thinking something over when he reached them. He looked each of them up and down. Finally he spoke, "Who are you?"
After a long moment, Peter replied, "I'm Peter, and this is my sister and our friends."
The giant asked, "What you got there?"
"Oh, just some weapons a little man gave us," said Peter.
At this point Harry's hand came swooshing down followed by the words "Tempo agiar". There was smoke. When the air cleared, there was a large hole in the ground. The giant stood wide-eyed. He turned back to them and said, "Would you like to join the army?" They looked at each other and then at the giant. He was still wide-eyed.
"I don't know," said Peter.
"You'd be great," said the giant.
They all stood still for a moment. Then Peter turned to the giant. "We will join your army," he said.
They awoke early the next morning. Everyone began to follow the path Harry made. They walked until sunset. Everybody was hungry by then. The giant told some men to go catch some fish. He told others to hunt some animals. He ordered the rest of the men to make fires.
In about a half-hour there were 3 roaring fires, a group of men with buckets full of fish, and a group of men carrying in animals for meat. They had many helpings of food. Then they went to a freshwater stream for a drink. When they were full and they weren't thirsty anymore, they went to bed.
When morning came everyone was ready to go. They began to follow the path again. At around midday the path stopped. They looked around and saw that they were at the edge of a cliff. They were still looking around when a man of about 20 years old appeared out of thin air.
He looked at all of them and said, "I've been waiting for you." He pulled a sack he was carrying off of his back and untied it. He yanked out a boy by the scruff of his neck. It was Jack! "We can fight for him if you want." He walked over to the cliff and held Jack over the edge. "But if you try to hurt me, I'll drop him."
They didn't know what to do. But the giant walked over to Harry and whispered something in his ear. Harry smiled and nodded. He lifted up his hand and said, "Medopia". There was a flash of white light and Jack floated out of the man's grip.
Jack landed next to Peter. Peter hugged Jack and took out his sword. People surrounded the man. "Susan," said Peter, "use your arrows." Susan nodded. She took out her bow and an arrow and shot it right into the man's heart. He fell off the cliff into the water.
Now Peter looked at Harry. Peter said, "Harry, can you take us home now?" Harry sighed and nodded. Peter walked over to the giant and held out his hand. "Thanks."
"No," said the giant, "thank you", and he shook Peter's hand. "We'll miss you."
"And we'll miss you too," responded Peter. "Goodbye."
Everyone held hands. Harry brought his hand swishing down. "Hamen", he said. And they all felt their feet hit the wooden floor of Jack's room.
"You guys saved my life", said Jack.
"Well, we had fun," said Peter.
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