Category Archives: Stories

In My Shoes; By: Tabitha Hart

I’d like to see you walk in my shoes and have you feel the pain, hurt and disappointment I feel. The happiness I had is gone. I’ve tried so hard to find it but I can’t. I really don’t want to live like this anymore. I’m tired of fighting to be happy when all the fighting does is bring more pain. I feel like I’m hurting everyone with this fake happiness. I want to be happy but I can’t find it in me to truly be happy. I’ve tried with all I have. I feel like there’s no point in living anymore but I’m too much of a coward to end my life. I know that makes my loved ones happy but it doesn’t make me happy. I’ve had more horrible and sad times in my life than I have had good and happy times. I hate to tell all the people that love me this but even if I’m surrounded by them no matter what, I feel lonely. So I hid myself in my room so they don’t have to see the pain in my eyes. If I could show them how I felt, I think they would cry out in pain. If I only knew how to tell them and not hurt them at the same time. But lucky for them, I don’t know how and they don’t have to walk my shoes.

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Shadows of the Past; By: Adam Williams

One day a mother gives birth to her son. The year was 1756, and the mother and father were walking home with their new son. The father was a high ranking samurai who served under Lord Hubachi Hanasuma. They had a long day and all they wanted to do was go home, but their trip was cut short by the notorious assassins named Shadow Ryu. The blood-thirsty clan ambushed the travelling parents and killed the father and mother, leaving only the blood-soaked child. The harsh rain that barely nipped through the trees washed the baby from the warm, thick blood. The assassins took the baby and made him into a savage beast that will become the world’s best assassin.

1771. The boy is fifteen years old. The Shadow Ryu put him up to his first challenge… his first assassination. He had to kill the “Samurai of 100 Corpse” also know as Eiku Tachibana. While Eiku walked through the bamboo forest, the boy stalks him through the dense, shadowy forest. Just as the great “Samurai of 100 Corpse” stops to urinate, he feels an intense piercing and then stares at the bloody blade shoved through his chest. He drops. The boy rips the blade out of the mangled body… and smiles.

1783. The boy who is now a man at 27 years old. He starts to see what life should be and then wonders about his parents. So he asks his master. The master tells him that he doesn’t know because they found him stranded on the road side. The man accepts it and doesn’t bring it up again.

One day as the man was on an assassination mission, he was about to slaughter his 138th victim, which was a traitor of the Shadow Ryu. The traitor informs the man that the Shadow Ryu steals children and raised them to be killers, and almost every member is a stolen child. Hatred flourished from the man’s heart. He is now hell-bent on making the Shadow Ryu pay for stealing his life. The man’s name… is Kagahisa Shizuma.

Public versus Private; By: Anonymous

I woke up to a text saying “I miss you”. Unfortunately, it was from the wrong person. This was not the person I missed too, this was just a random guy who thought he knew me, but he didn’t. I stared at the text for a long time, wishing I could change the number it was sent from and wondering what I was supposed to say back. I went and ate breakfast, buying myself time by making him think I wasn’t awake yet. I opened the text ten more times, typed something out, then deleted it. I didn’t want to lie and get his hopes up. I didn’t want to hurt him like I’d been hurt, but I didn’t want to be mean either. I looked at the text again. “I’m sorry” I thought as I typed out my reply. “I miss you to” and send. He texted back “Can’t wait to see you, what are you doing gorgeous?” I felt sick. Little did he know, my simple “I miss you too” meant so much to him and so little to me. To me, it meant “I should just let you go”, “I’m not being fair to you”, “You don’t deserve this”, “You’ll never be him”. I sat there staring at his last text and sighed. After thinking of several things I could say, I decided to with “yea. nothing.” and send. Knowing I’d crush him, I set my phone down and went outside. When I came back, I had to build up the courage just to check my phone. He had texted back, “I think I love you”. I threw the phone against the wall. Why couldn’t I just say what needed to be said.

One Minute; By: Anonymous

We were driving, my best friend Lace and I. Well I was driving. She was fixing her make-up with the car mirror as we sung along to the Taylor Swift song playing on the radio.

It was a special day: my nineteenth birthday. Ah my special extravagant present was a car! I’d been begging for one since I got my drivers permit at fourteen, but I didn’t get one then. Neither did I get one at my sweet sixteen, not even for graduation.

I wasn’t expecting one this year; my dream of someone buying a car for me died long ago. Though I guess sometimes the unexpected happens.

“Crap!” said Lace.

“What?” I said, turning on my blinker.

“I dropped my lip gloss, its right under you foot, hand it to me” she ordered at me. I guess lip gloss is important.

I reached for it, bending down. I then heard Lace scream “Watch out!”. After that I felt the car crash into us hard, flipping our car. It just kept flipping; me and Lace screamed. Not one of those screams when you ride a carnival ride or your little brother goes “boo!” at you. This was a scream that was screamed when you know it was over. When you know there’s no way to save yourself. The scream of death.

It finally stopped flipping. We stood still, rocking only a bit. I cough from the car exhaust or whatever that was. I screamed when I tried to move my definitely broken arm. And I cried as I looked at the blood on Lace’s head and her unmoving body.

I screamed for her to wake up, as I yelled for help. I shook her, helplessly. I cried, I cried, and I cried. We were upside down, and if I was thinking about how nauseous I was, I would have thrown up.

I cringed as I moved my broken arm to unbuckle my seatbelt. I fell a bit. I struggled to push open the door. It just kept falling back on me. Finally I pushed it hard enough, though I let out quite a scream.

I fell to the road, as glass, rocks and everything else stabbed and poked me. The road was deserted. My life now changed forever. What life? It’s all over now. I then laid on the glassy ground and went to sleep, hoping it was but a dream.

One Minute; By: Anonymous

Change happens whether we like it or not. Nothing can prepare us for change or warn us that change is coming. Maybe that’s why change is so scary. It happens when we least expect it and can turn a person’s world upside down. I would have never guessed that in one moment, my life would be irrevocably changed. Everything I had come to accept as normal would be wiped away in a matter of seconds. All it took was one phone call. It all started on a day no different than any other.

“Wake up, sweetie,” my mom said as she gently shook my shoulder. I grunted and pulled the covers back over my head. My mother laugher her loud, goofy laugh and shook me one last time. I begrudgingly rolled out of bed to greet the new day. I walked down the stairs following the aroma of pancakes and vegetarian omelets. My father and brother were already seated at the table and scarfing down their breakfast enthusiastically.

My mother was wearing her crazy apron with pictures of all different kinds of cartoon frogs. She had on our ancient radio and was singing (horribly off tune) along to a Beatles song as she cooked. Just as I sat down, she put a plate with a tower of hot, steaming pancakes in front of me. I gratefully dug in. when she passed my father, he pulled her onto his lap and kissed her. She playfully slapped him with her spatula, her eyes twinkling. I rolled my eyes and laughed as my brother made gagging noises. Our parents were like that all the time. After breakfast, my mother drove my brother and me to school. She drives an old, beat-up van that is painted neon green. It embarrasses me to go anywhere with her because she is so different. To make matters worse, she honks and waves at us when she drops us off.

I turn bright red and don’t bother to wave back. I will probably regret that for the rest of my life. Then I rush over to my best friend Skye.

We talk until the bell rings and then we head to class. Skye has been my best friend since elementary school. We do everything together and tell each other everything.

School is the same as everyday. Boring and redundant. Although that day something horrible happens. In fourth period, my principal bursts into the room and speaks to my teacher in a low, serious tone. The news must be bad because my teacher pales and starts fidgeting. Please don’t let it be about me. Please don’t let it be about me. Please don’t let it be about me, I silently pray. Then my teacher solemnly says, “Bliss Haven. The principal needs to speak with you.” There was something in his expression, brimming behind his eyes.  I couldn’t pinpoint what it was. I got out of my chair and tried to avoid all the eyes on me.

My limbs felt like lead as I made my way to the principal’s office. It took all my strength to lift my feet. Almost as if my body knew what was about to happen and it was warning me. I took a deep breath and turned the knob, even though I wanted to run away in the opposite direction. The principal was on the phone and was pacing back and forth.

“Yes. She’s right here.”

He handed me the phone. My heart started thumping faster and faster, and I could hear a roaring in my ears. I wasn’t ready for this. I suddenly realized what I recognized in my teacher’s expression. Pity.

“H-hello,” I croaked.

“Bliss?”

It was my dad. His voice was ragged as if he had been crying.

“Yes. I-it’s m-me.”

“There’s been an accident. Your mother. Not going to make it.” He sobbed, unable to from coherent sentences. My hands started to shake, and I dropped the phone. I fumbled around the floor, trying to find it. But I couldn’t because everything was blurry. Then I looked up and saw the phone in the principal’s outstretched hand. He actually had tears in his eyes.

“She’s gone. She’s gone,” my dad was repeating. I don’t think he even remembered he was on the phone.

“Dad,” I said worriedly, but he just kept repeating it.

“Dad!”

“Tell your brother she’s gone.”

I will, Dad. I will. I’m coming home. Just stay there. Don’t move. I’m on my way.” I sobbed.

“She’s gone, Bliss. The love of my life is gone.”

Then the line went dead, thus ending the moment that forever changed my life. Now everything about my life is a reminder of all I’ve lost and all the things I took for granted.

Now I awake to the blaring of my alarm clock. That is if I’m even able to get any sleep. These days sleep is impossible. The emptiness in my chest keeps me awake all night. I always get up, though, no matter how tired I am. I know my family needs me, so I gather what’s left of my strength and face the day. I make breakfast for my little brother and my father. I have to take it to my father’s room each morning. Day after day he lies on his bed, staring at the TV, even though it’s turned off. Countless bottles of beer litter the floor. I have no idea where he gets them, but I always throw away the empty ones. The next day there would always be more. I never ever go in my mom’s office. It is too painful and overwhelming just to know she will never be scurrying around with her paintbrush in her hand and a crazy, goofy grin on her face.

Then I walk to school with my brother as an oh-so-familiar ache forms in the pit of my stomach. School is like a prison to me. Everywhere I go, people are staring at me. Some try to hid it by peeking at me out of the corners of their eyes, while others openly stare at me with wide eyes. The all have the same look in their eyes: pity. I can hear their whispers everywhere I turn.

“Is that the girl whose mother died?”

“Isn’t she the one with the weird mother?”

“Oh… that poor girl. I can’t imagine what its like for her to lose her mother at this age.”

“She looks like a zombie. Just because her mother died doesn’t mean she can walk around like that.”

“That’s the girl whose mother died. Yeah. And I hear her dads becoming a major alcoholic. I know! It’s so tragic. I’m so glad that’s not me.”

I was the talk of the school. Even the teachers and faculty referred to me as, “the Girl”.

Many of my teachers had told me that I could have extensions on all of my assignments. A few even said that if I needed to talk, they were there for me. I am getting so much attention when all I really want is to disappear. I got through each day of school in a daze. By the time I get out of school I don’t even remember one thing my teachers said. I’m not even sure how I travel from class to class, but somehow I’m where I’m supposed to be. At least my body is where it’s supposed to be, but my min is far, far away.

I think about my old life. About how much I miss my mother. Without her, my entire life has changed. I’m responsible for all the meals and cleaning and I have to keep an eye on my little brother. I’m really worried about him. He’s barely said one word since our mother’s funeral. I hear him crying at night through my thin walls. If eel horrible because I don’t know how to comfort him. I can’t bring out mother back, nor can I replace her.

I’m just doing my best to keep it all together and not have a mental breakdown. It’s bad enough that my old best friend Skye tries to reach out to me.

The other day she came up behind me while I was at my locker. She tapped my shoulder and said, “We need to talk, Bliss.”

“No… I’ll be late to class,” I said brusquely.

She cocked her head in a painstakingly familiar way. I got a pang in my chest just listening to her. I wish we could still be friends, but things are different now. I’m different now. She’s just a reminder of my old life, and it would be too painful to bear to pretend like everything is okay.

“You know that doesn’t matter to you anymore,” she said sadly.

I couldn’t argue with that, so I said, “Make it quick.”

“I miss you, Bliss. I miss all the things we used to do together. I miss being able to tell you everything. I miss spending time with you. I just… I really miss you.”

She had tears dancing in her bright blue eyes. She reached out and put her hand on my shoulder. I brushed it off and ignored the look of hurt that contorted her face.

“I miss you too, but we can’t be friends. Besides, the girl you used to be best friends with doesn’t exist anymore.”

She just stood there with pity written all over her face. I could take that from every other person in the school, but not from her. I didn’t want her pity. I wiped the tears from my eyes and walked away without looking back.

One minute changed my life forever more. Nothing will ever be the same again. I will never hear my mother’s laugh, watch her face light up in a smile, or feel her arms around me. I will miss her until the day I die. I know now that everything is always changing.

Moo Goo Gai Pan; By: Jaylyn Gatrell

The plastic wrapper crackled as I greedily tore open the fortune cookie. Then, I broke the fortune cookie in two, and I didn’t even bother eating it. I unfolded the fortune and my heart sped up in anticipation. Even though it’s a silly superstition, I believe whatever fortune you get will come true. It read: Don’t be hasty; prosperity will knock on your door soon. A feeling of disappointment settled in my heart. This wasn’t even a real fortune. No sooner had this thought escaped me, all the lights abruptly went out.

This wasn’t the kind of dark where you could see the outline of shapes being illuminated. This was a pitch black dark. It was as dark as I would imagine the deepest corner of a person’s mind being. Where everything that has been forgotten or discarded lies.

“That’s because that is where you are at,” a thunderous voice sang out. The voice was deafening and seemed to be coming at me from every direction. I covered my ears and meekly replied, “I’m inside my own mind?”

“Precisely,” the voice boomed.

My brain was swimming with questions. What did this strange voice mean? I couldn’t be inside my own head, right? That’s insane. Not to mention impossible. Or…is it.

“So who are you and how are you inside my head?”

“You will know soon enough.”

I had no idea what to make of this.

“Can you tell me why I’m here?”

“No, but I can show you.”

Before I could even contemplate what this meant, a whoosh resounded in my ears, and my body began disintegrating. I felt as if I was being sucked up a straw, but I couldn’t see anything because I was blinded by the bright light. Or was it the pure darkness?

With a thud, I was thrown onto solid ground by some inaudible force. In front of me there lay an ominous steel door with no clear knob.  I looked around for the source of the strange voice, but could see nothing but the darkness stretching on forever and ever in both directions.

The only thing that was visible to my naked eyes was the steel door and the small patch of dirt I was sprawled across that was directly in front of the door. I crept up to the door and pressed my ear to its cold, hard surface. I struggled to hear what sounded like a cross between a faint whisper and a hiss. Once I could finally decipher the whispers, I wished I could erase them from my mind. The voices were chanting help me and let me out over and over until I thought my head would explode. I backed away from the door and curled into a ball, but I could not get the voice out of my head.

“Help me!” I cried, “Get me out of this place.”

A shrill silence was the only answer I got. I had never been so alone or so scared as I was in this instant.

“Help ME!”

I heard a tinkling, melodious laugh on the other side of the steel door and I froze. All of a sudden, the temperature dropped about twenty degrees, and I could see my breath coming out in little puffs.

“Do you not want to join them n their eternal misery? But you couldn’t even if you wanted to because there’s no way in and there’s no way out.”

“Why are they in there?”

“Why isn’t it obvious? Because you put them there.”

This voice was starting to aggravate me. Its confusing answers only made me ask more questions.

“Just get me out of here.”

“Not just yet. You still have a lesson to learn. Choose wisely.”

Just then, a different door appeared on the opposite side of the first. It was wooden and actually had a door knob. It looked much more inviting, and heat practically radiated from the crevice at the bottom. I rushed over and flung the door open. Instantly I knew something was wrong. I took one step before I realized there was no ground to step before I realized there was no ground to step onto. As I was falling, I could hear the voices hissing in my ear. The longer I fell, the louder the voices grew. Right when I was about to hit the ground, the voices reached their epicenter. Then everything was silent.

I was terrified of what was going to happen next. I frantically looked around. All I could see was the dirt floor, but at least it wasn’t pitch black anymore. There was almost an iridescent glow descending around me. Then a bright white light shone on a little girl that was crying a couple of feet away. I asked her what was wrong, but she wouldn’t answer me. She kept crying out for her mommy and clutching her knee. When she lifted her hand, it was covered in blood. I rushed over and tried to her, but the strangest thing happened. I went straight through her. Even stranger, a second later she disappeared, only to reappear riding a bicycle. As I watched the scene play out, my mind began to cry for her mommy, but her mommy never came. I must have pushed this memory to the back of my mind. Tears filled my eyes as I watched the painful memory replay itself.

The sound of footsteps quieted my sobs. I whipped around and gasped. I was face to face with… myself. Although this version of myself had gleaming red eyes and long inky black claws. When she spoke, I was a flash of pointy teeth that resembled shark teeth.

“It’s such a sad sight, isn’t it?” she cooed. “And now because of your hasty decision you will have to watch it as well as all your other forgotten memories replay themselves forever.” She swept out her arm dramatically and thousands of other beams of light switched on. They were each illuminating a different memory.

I covered my mouth with my hand, suddenly horrified with myself.

“You see, if you would have chosen the steel door, a moment later you would have heard my good friend opportunity knocking. The door would have swung open and you would have been freed. Of course you didn’t because the wooden door seemed more inviting. Well, maybe next time you won’t be so hasty.”

She smirked and laid her hand on my shoulder, being sure to dig her claws in.

“Now you’re mine forever.”

I screamed and screamed until I felt my eardrums bust, and blood ran down my neck.

I woke up screaming my head off in a small run-down Chinese resteraunt. The waiter was giving me a mischievous look.

“Did you learn anything?”

“Y-y-yes m-m’am…. I learned—-” my voice died ash she disappeared. She reappeared at a table on the other side of the room and gave the customer their fortune cookie. Then turned towards me and winked. Her open eyes glowed red.

Gargoyle Story; By: Jaylyn Gatrell

If you truly loved someone, wouldn’t you do anything to protect them? Wouldn’t knowing that your loved one would always be safe help you breath easier? Do you spend every waking moment worrying that something awful will happen to them? What if there is something there that could ensure their safety? Something that would always be able to guard and watch over them when you’re unable to. The truth is there is.

Melody Harris creaked open the door of her son’s room and glanced inside at his softly sleeping silhouette. She watched the steady rise and fall of his chest and breathed a sigh of relief. Then she opened his door all the way and tip-toed to his bedside. She tenderly brushed his hair away from his forehead and kissed him on the cheek.

“M-Mom?”

His eyes fluttered open, and he reached out for her.

Melody’s eyes twinkled as she gathered her son in her arms.

“Shhhh… Go back to sleep, Thorton.”

“Sing me a song, Mommy.”

She smiled and started to sing in her high, beautiful voice. Almost immediately Thorton’s eyes drooped and he fell asleep on her lap. Melody delicately untangled him from her arms and tucked him in under the covers. Before she left, she took one last look at the person that meant everything to her. If anything ever happened to him, she didn’t know what she would do with herself. She wished there was some way she could protect him from all the terrible things in the world.

Then she heard a loud thump coming from outside. She rushed over to the window and peeked outside. She saw a glimmer of something shiny, but couldn’t make out what it was. Gathering up her nerve, she walked out the front door to examine the mysterious object. It was a little box wrapped in silver paper with a matching silver envelope. She looked around, trying to figure out who could have given her this, but there was no one there. Then Melody walked down the pathway leading to her house.

“Hello?” she called out.

The whispering of the wind was her only reply.

“Hellooo? Is anyone there?”

Nothing. Finally, Melody gave up and went to pick up the little box. She took it inside to inspect it. First, she opened the silver envelope. Inside it was a plain sheet of paper that simply said you wish has been granted in a beautiful scrawl. What did that mean? she wondered. She eagerly tore the silver paper off of the box. Then she lifted the lid, her heart pounding in anticipation. She gasped as she gazed upon the necklace that was nestled in silver tissue paper.

She lifted the necklace by the thick chain to get a better view of the gargoyle pendant. It looked both wicked and lovely. The pendant was a little smaller than the palm of her hand. It didn’t feel like plastic or silver but… more like it was actually sculpted out of gray stone. The gargoyle was beautifully detailed with long talons, intricately feathered wings, and sharp fangs. Then she noticed something. A scroll of paper was enclosed in one of the gargoyle’s claws. Melody gingerly slipped the scrawl out. Written in the same beautiful, ancient-looking scrawl it read: The Gargoyle must be worn at all times to protect and guard its master.

Melody stared at the slip of paper, befuddled. What did all of this mean? Then she remembered the wish she had made mere seconds before this appeared on her doorstep. Someone or something had somehow heard her wish. She wondered if the gargoyle was magic and if so, would it really protect her son? There was only one way to find out… She vowed to give it to him tomorrow.

The next day Melody woke her son up, determined to give him the necklace. Even if it wasn’t magic, it was worth a try. She would try anything to keep him safe. He reluctantly climbed out of his bed and opted for his mother’s arms.

“I don’t want to go to daycare, Mommy,” he whined.

“Well Mommy has to go to work, Sweetie. You can’t stay here all by yourself.”

“Yes I can,” he protested.

“No, sweetheart, you have to go. I’m sorry.”

“Mommy. All the other kids are mean. They don’t let me play with them and they make fun of me.”

“I know, sweetie. I know.”

Melody had gotten a call from one of the workers at ABC Daycare. They had told her that Thorton was having trouble interaction with other children. Melody didn’t know what to do. She had no other choice but to put him in daycare while she worked.

After she made him breakfast, she went into her room to retrieve the necklace.

“Thorton!” she called.

He paddled into her room. “Come here,” she said patting the space next to her bed. He climbed onto the bed and looked at her with curious eyes.

She clasped the necklace behind his neck and lifted the gargoyle to his eye level.

“You see this necklace?” He nodded.

“It has magical powers that will keep you safe from the mean people. Now listen to me, Thorton. You can’t take it off. Not for any reason. You have to wear it all the time for its magic to work.”

He nodded and took the gargoyle.

“I understand, Mommy.”

Then she took him to daycare and went to work.

Hours later, Melody went to the daycare to pick Thorton up. Once there, she saw something that made her giddy with happiness. All of the other children were surrounding Thorton and they were playing with the toys together. Normally when she picked him up, he would be sitting in a corner all alone, waiting for her. This time he was having too much fun to even notice her.

After a while, he looked up and finally noticed her.

“Mommy!” he squealed and ran to her.

She opened her arms and spun him around.

“Mommy! They played with me! Billy stole my toy and called me weird, but when he saw this he stopped.” He held up his necklace fondly.

:Then he gave me the toy back and all the other kids started playing with me.”

“That’s wonderful, sweetheart.”

Now Melody knew the gargoyle really was magic. It would protect him from anything no matter how small.

She smiled and kissed him on the forehead. Now she never had to worry about losing him again. She didn’t know how or why, but someone had granted her wish. She looked at her son’s wide grin as pure happiness settle in her heart. She would be eternally grateful to the little gargoyle. Upon thinking this she swore she saw the gargoyle’s wing flap. But she told herself that it was just a trick of the light.

20 Years Later

                Melody hugged her son tightly, not ready for him to go back to college. He was home visiting her for the weekend. He had told her that earlier that week he had been shopping for groceries in the wrong part of town, and a hooded figure followed him to his car. The man held him at gun point and screamed for him to give him all of his money and belongings. Thorton told her, eyes as wide as saucers, that the man was then frightened by some unseen thing. He ran off muttering crazy things. Then her son startled her by looking her straight in the eyes and saying, “Mother, why do bad things never happen to me? I can’t remember a time when I ever got hurt or anything terrible ever happening in my life.”

Melody just smiled mysteriously and clutched her son tightly. She was so glad that her song hadn’t been killed. After a moment, her son dropped the subject and hugged her back. Then Melody watched him go as tears filled her eyes. She loved him so much. Then she saw something that made her heart pound. The gargoyle’s grin widened and both of its wings flapped once.

She gasped. Was it possible that… it was real? Melody decided she didn’t care if it was real or just magic. It kept her son safe and that’s all that mattered.

“Thank you so much.” She whispered to the disappearing gargoyle pendant as her son drove off in his car.

Later that night, Melody was walking outside to get her mail from the mailbox when she noticed something lying on her doorstep. It was another silver envelope. She eagerly ripped it open. In the same beautiful handwriting, it said: Your Welcome.

Melody looked up at the sky. Maybe some things could never be explained.