“The Locker World” by Kamila Koralasbayev

Written by plumtree

Topics: Archive (2012-2019), Uncategorized

I had been asleep for three days. Of course my loving mother gave me some Advil after finishing some delicious waffles, which tasted better than normal since I hadn’t eaten in three days. She filled me in on what had happened, her large eyes filling with tears at every word. Her usual strong suited manner now seemed frail. Every time I caught her usually bright eyes, that now were dull, she would quickly look away. To see her like this was putting me on edge.

Heading to my locker with my best friend, Grace, we jabbered on about classes and such. When I opened my slightly rusted locker door, I made a double take. There was another door on the back wall of my locker! Grace noticed my change in mood, and looked into the locker. Her round, owl-like eyes seemed to take up more of her face. Her moth stood slightly ajar, revealing two slightly crooked front teeth. Astounded, by this remarkable sight, we looked at each other with equal looks of perplex. The warning bell rang and caused us both to snap out of the trance. We both agreed silently that this was not the time. We hurried off to our classes wondering what could possibly be behind that door. I could hardly concentrate on anything but the door. Questions swarmed my mind, and no matter how hard I tried, I could not stop thinking about it.

Although the end of the day came painfully slow, it came at last. Grace was already there eyeing the crowd, almost twitching with excitement. She saw me, and rushed over. We looked around us, but there were only a few people scattered towards the end of the hallway. Identically, we looked at each other both knowing what we would have to do next.

I felt the small door. It was made out of old, worn oak wood. The entire door was marked with etchings of flowers and trees. My hand ran over the notches in the wood. In the middle was a carving of the number ten.

“What do you think the number means?” I asked Grace

“I’m not sure, but maybe it means that there are at least nine other doors like this one,” she responded.

Finally, my hand found its way to the doorknob, so I slowly twisted it. The door opened smoothly, as if it had been used often. I opened the door cautiously, and it revealed a dimly lit passageway. We walked silently down the corridor towards a torch burning blue fire. It showed the outline of an old door knob. I took it firmly and twisted. A sight beyond all others stood before us. It was a huge field with rolling hills in the distance. There was a sparkling lake, surrounded by beautiful trees and flowers. But that wasn’t what made it beautiful. What amazed us the most were the creatures that flew, walked, and swam, all around us. Looking was almost too much.  Finally, Grace got ahold of herself.

“Come on let’s go check it out!” she whispered

“O-Ok,” I responded in a croak.

We walked down to the water, swiveling our heads, this way and that trying to take in everything. When we got to the lake, we both gasped in amazement. The water was crystal clear, and the lake floor was encrusted in jewels. There were fish, turtles, crabs, octopi, and many other water creatures swimming and scuttling around in the lake. But there were also other creatures that I couldn’t recognize. I leaned down and touched the smooth water. There was a small green emerald near my hand, so I picked it up. I would trade it for money, to help my mother with the car crash. But as it left the water, it turned into a simple, gray pebble. “Woah,” I said, but Grace was preoccupied at the moment. Right in front of her was a huge beast that looked a little like a giant dog with furry wings. Grace, stood still, completely petrified in terror. I was about to push her out of the way, but the creature just gave her one giant lick. Her entire upper body was coated in saliva. I laughed, and pretty soon she was laughing too. We petted the creature for a while, and eventually named it Clover.

Grace suddenly gasped, and looked in horror at me.

“What’s wrong Grace!?”I said worriedly

“It’s five o’clock!” she exclaimed.

We dashed up the hill, saying a quick goodbye to Clover while running. We quickly closed the doors, and grabbed our stuff. Grace checked her watch again, and held me back while I tried to run out the door.

“Nellie! It’s only three twenty!” she said

“What? But you just said-”

“I know, but that was when we were in there, time must go faster there.”

We both looked towards the door in unison. “Wow” we whispered together.

The next week and a half, we explored the magical place which we now called ‘the locker world’. We made new friends with the creatures that lived there, and Clover took us on amazing flights throughout the always beautiful and cloudless skies. We went swimming in the lake, where we found that we could breathe under water. And, for some reason no matter what happened, there was no way we could ever get hurt. During one of Clover’s flights, he dropped us as if it was something completely normal to do, and when we reached the ground, we felt as if we had just dropped from two feet instead of two hundred. Our visits were daily, and our dreams were filled with wonderful adventures, filled with the magical creatures that we would meet throughout the day.

One day, I noticed the number on the door had changed. Instead of reading ‘ten’ as it did on the first day we found it, it read ‘three’.

“Grace? Did you notice that the number has changed?” I asked while we were coming back from an underwater walk in the lake.

“Actually, now that you mention it, I wanted to talk to you about that,” she said

“Really?”

“Yeah, I swear that the number read six when we went in a few days ago, but when we came back out, it read five!”

“Well this time I think it said three when we went in here,” I said.

We opened the door and stepped out of the locker. When we looked at the etching on the door it now read two in the same swooping lines as the other designs on the door, as if it had always been there.

“Do you realize what this means?” Grace said with a worried expression

“No, what?” I said

“It means we have a limited time before this door disappears!”

“What? No! It can’t just disappear like that, can it?”

“I’m afraid so, but we still have two more visits, we can say goodbye to Clover!”

We headed home together in silence, both of us deep in thought.

The next day, I was eager to talk to Grace.

“Grace! Grace! I have the most wonderful idea!”

“Well you’re awfully chipper under the current events that are taking place at the moment,”

“I think we should stay there forever!”

“What? You’re not serious, are you?”

“What makes you say that?” I asked, my mood starting to fall

“Umm, our families? Our friends? Our entire lives?”

“This life is so boring! Imagine the fun we’d have if we lived in the locker world forever!”

“You’re crazy!”

“I’m not”

“Fine! Go ahead! But I’m not coming with you,”

“Fine! I’ll go!”

The next few days went by without a word said. I was prepared to leave with or without her, but secretly I wished she would come.

I hadn’t been to the locker world in the days when I wasn’t speaking to Grace, because I was trying to prepare myself to leave. I visited Clover one more time by myself for a little longer than usual to prepare myself for the journey forever. Finally, I had prepared myself fully, and left for school with clothes, and a toothbrush instead of a binder and pencils. I opened my locker with shaky hands. I had to calm down, this was what I wanted. I took a deep breath, and opened my locker door. There it stood, the exit from the real world, and into the magical, wonderful one. I gripped the doorknob and twisted. I walked down the passageway towards the blue light familiarly. There, I opened the last door and walked through the cool grass.

“I can’t believe you’re actually doing this,” said a cold voice behind me. I turned around harshly, and glared at my ex-friend. But I was distracted immediately by the sight behind her. I ran towards her, and she ducked out of my way, surprised. She fell to the ground, and looked at the door. It was slowly disappearing. “Come on! Hurry! It’s closing!” I screamed. I threw the door open and climbed inside, Grace a few seconds after. We darted down the quickly disappearing hallway, our footsteps echoing loudly around us. I threw open the last door and leapt out into the empty school hallway. “We made it!” I gasped laughing. But there was no response. I turned slowly, hoping with every ounce of my heart, that she had made it, and just didn’t say anything. But there was no one there. I rushed to my locker, and banged on the now completely normal locker. I realized that she was stuck there. I sank to my knees and weeped. I cried for what felt like days.

When I finally calmed down, I realized I wasn’t even in the school anymore. I looked all around, and noticed that I was in a bed with starch white covers. I started realizing things more rapidly now. I saw that I was in a hospital, and there were tubes in my arms. I noticed an accelerating beeping, which I soon realized was my heart beat. I felt my face, and winced. I felt scrapes and cuts everywhere. Suddenly, a nurse came in and shrieked. I jumped, and she ran to get some doctors. Soon, an army of doctors rushed in and started asking me questions about how I felt and what I remembered. Finally, they let my mom come in. She looked terrible, with a bruise clouding her jaw. “Oh sweetie I’m so sorry!” She cried on my shoulder, which caused me to wince, and she jumped back immediately. My mother told me shakily, that the car crash had caused me to go into a coma for fifteen days. I tried to ask her about my little brother but instead Grace’s name escaped my lips. Then she sank further into her chair and stopped crying altogether. “G-Gr-Grace, was in the SUV that we crashed into. She didn’t survive,” she croaked.

My breath caught and I slumped into my bed. I realized just then, that it wasn’t the world that was so wonderful, but the time I spent with her doing the wonderful things.

 

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